Yesterday (March 2, 2017) was a big day for Snap Inc. and the tech industry overall because of Snap’s highly anticipated IPO (initial public offering) on the New York Stock Exchange. Some analysts are excited at the popularity of this IPO; others wonder whether investors are being overly exuberant. What do YOU think?
“Snap soared as much as 45% when it opened for trading at $24 a share on Thursday. Market makers at the New York Stock Exchange indicated the stock was set to open from $23.50 to $24.50 a share. At 200 million shares, Snap raised $3.4 billion and was valued at nearly $24 billion as of its pricing. Sources had told CNBC earlier this week that investors were expecting a pricing of $17 to $18 per share, above the $14 to $16 per share range originally given by the company. The IPO is 12 times oversubscribed, sources said Thursday morning, meaning that there were 12 times more orders for than there were shares offered. Some managers told CNBC they got as little as 2 percent of what they were asking for.”
“Snap’s IPO valuation of $24 billion is quite a tall order for a company that has never turned a profit and warned investors that it never might. The company is now valued at 59 times its total revenue for 2016. Even for a fast-growing tech company that is a lot. Facebook in comparison has a price-to-sales ratio of around 14. As our chart illustrates, Snap is valued considerably higher than many American household names. That includes companies such as Ralph Lauren and Harley-Davidson that have been around for decades and probably will be for decades to come.”
“Most key objectives of marketers are rooted in big data, from targeting and customer relationship management to attribution — and even artificial intelligence. eMarketer has curated this Roundup of articles, insights, and interviews to help you understand why and how advertisers and marketers are putting these large, complex data sets to work.”
“Big data are gradually becoming a part of U.S. business, and companies that are able to take advantage of their scope and complexity appear to be seeing benefits. In January 2017, research from NewVantage Partners revealed that at least half of organizations are incorporating some type of big data initiative. Not all areas businesspeople were polled on got high marks. Of the big data initiatives executives were asked about, establishing a data-driven culture and making over their business for the future had the lowest success rates, both at 27.9%.”
“[In 2016,] stagnant global trade, subdued investment, and heightened policy uncertainty marked another difficult year for the world economy. A moderate recovery is expected for 2017, with receding obstacles to activity in commodity-exporting emerging market and developing economies. Weak investment is weighing on medium-term prospects across many emerging market and developing economies. Although fiscal stimulus in major economies, if implemented, may boost global growth above expectations, risks to growth forecasts remain tilted to the downside. Important downside risks stem from heightened policy uncertainty in major economies.”
Click the image to access the full 276-page report in PDF format.
“What does ‘influencer marketing’ mean to you? Are you thinking of celebrities posting product photos to Instagram? Or having a famous YouTuber run a contest for a meet and greet at an event? Why not send products to bloggers in the hopes that they’ll do a review and say nice things? Surely that’s not all enterprise marketers think of when it comes to the possible outcomes with influencer relationships.”
“The promise of brands collaborating or outright paying influential individuals to create content that lifts the brand’s credibility and reach to sell more products is something that companies of all sizes have been hot on – especially in the past 12 months. With a groundswell of interest, there are many divergent interpretations of what influencer marketing really means.”
“With so many different opinions, best practices, and even definitions, we set out with influencer marketing platform Traackr to bring clarity and future direction by conducting research into the practice for large, enterprise organizations. We also engaged my pal and respected futurist, author and analyst, Brian Solis of Altimeter Group to conduct an analysis of that research and write a report outlining what is working, what isn’t and future trends.”
Take a look at Influence 2.0: The Future of Influencer Marketing Research Report 2017, in-depth analysis and research on influencer marketing.Click on the image for the full report.[Note: a FREE signup is required.]
Over the last year, artificial intelligence (AI) personal assistants have become BIG!! The leading ones are (alphabetically): Alexa from Amazon, Cortanafrom Microsoft,Google Assistant, andSiri from Apple. These AI options can answer questions, play music, give directions, tell jokes, and even play games (try Jeopardy on Alexa).
How good are they? For this stage in their development, they are very good and relatively accurate for the simple tasks in which they specialize — and they can be fun to use. But they do each have limitations and their evolving software updates will continue to get better. In addition, there may be security issues that occur now. [Read this article for more on security.]
“As the Web diminishes and the Amazon Echo [Alexa] continues to be a runaway hit, all the big players are convinced that talking to an AI will soon become the dominant way we interact with our computers. So they’ve started building. Apple has Siri, Amazon has Alexa, Microsoft has Cortana, and Google has the new and refreshed Google Assistant. The tech has come a long way, but all of these companies openly admit that it’s very early days for this proposed future. As such, all of these assistants are far from polished. But they’re also things you can use today. So which one works best? I strapped in for eight hours of robot conversations to find out, testing each of the big four assistants across a variety of categories.”
“There is a ton of work to be done. The problems here are large and sweeping: Each assistant still feels like a fragile, thinly veiled web of loosely connected services — because that’s what they are. It’s almost impossible to tell when one of them won’t be able to do the thing you asked. You have to be OK giving up your location and loads of personal data to get the most out of them. There are numerous instances where using a Web browser is simply faster for doing fundamental tasks. Each one is still wildly finicky when it comes to phrasing. They all think too much in black and white; one misplaced or forgotten word is often enough to discard an entire request.”
Here are some of Dunn’s comparative findings:
Best for travel — Google Assistant
Best for E-mailing — Google Assistant and Siri
Best for messaging — All four in different scenarios
Best for Music — Alexa
Best for weather — Alexa, Cortana, and Google Assistant
Hofstra University’s Zarb School of Business Distinguished Professor Joel Evans was recently interviewed by the award-winning Hofstra radio station WHRU about the upcoming 2017 global economy. Here is that EIGHT-minute interview. The views are those of Professor Evans and not Hofstra University.
[Please pardon all the sighs. Professor Evans is not in a state of distress, only in a state of bronchitis. 🙂 ]