Wednesday, September 30, 2015

iPhone success: it's all about paying attention to details

Each iPhone launch I read the same articles: they did not improved much things, only buy it if you have a very old iPhone, Apple's capacity to innovatie is broken since Steve left, "why I won't buy the new iPhone", Samsung innovate more that Apple, etc.

And then... Huge sales success. Something unbelievable. Record breaking.


Because Apple pay attention to details and spending tons of resources to improve details. They are mad about details. Polishing. Fine tuning.
And people just love it. 
And people buy it whatever the price is.
They don't buy a Phone, they thanking a brand for madly paying attention to details, and thus madly paying attention to them, which is rare.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Facebook, Mark, please hide all outdated data you have about us!

Facebook, Mark, please listen to me:
Time where people were building albums is over. Time where people wanted to keep track of things is over. People care about the present.
You do your best to avoid content deletion on your platform. No "delete all", no bulk deletion, no "delete it / make it invisible after 3 months" feature.
People use Facebook from 12 to death.
What's the point of letting a friend you ad at 31 years old check that you were married 6 years ago, fat 8 years ago, in Burma 3 years ago. It's weird, useless and counter productive in terms of usage.
You have to evolve with your users.
They don't want to live with a platform tracking their life for the last 10 years and making it available to 500 persons that would potentially share some stuff with, let's say, 4 friends, which means a reach of 2000 persons.
They never go back to old content. I know you know, you track everything.
I know you want to keep the data for your ad business. Fine, in that case archive content. Keep it for you but make it invisible, you can ever pretend encrypting or aggregating it to look smart.
And, between us, you figured out that ads based on people's unstructured profile was not that good, and you now mainly focus on web behavior and structured info such as pages liked, liked by friends, age or location.
So, please hear me Mark.
Follow my advices and you'll make people more sticky and active.

A surprise for your customers? They'll hate that!

Why people choose...
Uber? Because they feel confident. No surprise, you know the price In advance and how it works. 
Audi cars? The same. No surprise, it's German quality.
Zappos? The same. No surprise, you know they propose an amazing service and have fair prices.
H&M? The same. No surprise, it's cheap stylish clothes.
Chipotle? The same. No surprise, it's Tex Mex food made by humans with good ingredients.
Qatar Airways? The same. No surprise, it's Gulf county airways have great planes and good films.
Aeroflot? The same. No surprise, they are safe enough and the cheapest.
Your favorite bakery? The same, you know it's good quality for price.

People hate surprise, hate risks, hate uncertainty. Give them certainty, and they'll never go elsewhere.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Tipadvisor: from pretty useless rating to useful tagging and filtering

What is Tripadvisor?
A website where you put 3, 4, 5 stars to a place and write a little story.
Tripadvisor is cool to rate overall popularity of places but it's crap for all the rest.
Because they miss tags, the miss filters!!! They miss structured data. They focused on unstructured data with millions of stories. Unfortunately, transforming unstructured data into structured inputs is a headache.

You want the top 5 Italian restaurants in Paris? You got it in Tripadvisor and most of the time, it's good recommandations. Top restaurants deserve it.

For all the rest, look...

Want the top 5 Italian restaurants in the Paris's 15th district? Well, without "district" tag, no way.
Want the top 5 Italian restaurants in Paris with Veggie option? Well, you can type Ctrl F to find the word veggie in comments... except that comments are cropped... never mind, ok no way. The tag "veggie" is missing.
Want the top 5 Italian restaurants in Paris with a terrace? Well, we don't really keep track of which restaurant has terraces or not. We miss this tag...
Want the top 5 Italian restaurant in the Champs-Elysées? Well the only way we handle location is a map and radius distance, we can't use the street as tags and filters.
Want the top 5 Italian restaurants in Paris which can deliver food to you? Well...  no delivery tag, sorry...
Want the top 5 Italian restaurant who take credit card? Well, call them... we don't tag payment methods.
Want the best pizza 4 cheese in Paris? Well we don't really keep track of what people eat and tag dishes...

BUT things are changing!!! Tripadvisor finally got it and now asks its enormous community to put 4 or 5 star and a story nobody cares... and to tag restaurants: kind of cuisine, delivery or not, terrace or not, best dishes, service, etc.

What a move.
I expected that for years. Well done guys.
You're late but you're still ahead of the others!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The world is shifting to pooling

I was in NYC last week:
I used UberPool I "pooled" the car with other people 80% of time.
I went to clubs where people enjoy together music.
I lived in AirBnB flat I "pooled" with people.
I took public transport, a public ferry, free bikes, "pooling" them with other people.
I visited museums opened to everybody, "pooling" it with other people.
I ate in restaurants, "pooling" good food with other people.
I bought vintage clothes in shops fed by people and where anybody can buy stuff.
I went to a farm market where producers sell stuff they product to a pool of buyers.
I prepared my trip using feedbacks of a pool of travelers and locals, TripAdvisor. I also got feedbacks and suggestions from friends.

What did I do alone?
Nothing. Walking maybe.

Our society is erasing not pooled activities and stuff.
Even private jets are no longer privates.

Thanks god we still have a house with furniture, a car and a desk with pictures of children at the office…
Well, not really:
Cars: in the US you have Zipcar, in France, Paris, we have Autolib working the same way than city bikes but for small electric cars.
House & furnitures: We start bringing AirBnB people in our houses. In the UK, London, renting a flat is expensive and most of people share flats. It’s definitely a first steps of more shared live spaces I think.
Desk: Shared desks and coworking spaces are more and more used…

What product & service don’t we pool or aren’t we about to pool?
Desktops, mobiles, clothes, notebooks, personal diaries, souvenirs and other personal stuff, things a bit dirty (e-cigarette, earplugs ...). Anything else?

The world is shifting to pooling.
To be precise, urban world is shifting to it.
Outside of cities, people still have their own stuff... for now.

If you start a business which is not about pooling, be careful.

If you find things that are not yet pooled, maybe there is a business to create.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Food industry - Are consumers finally listened?

Voice of consumer is a cool concept used by marketers for a couple of years. It is seen as a great way to innovate and improve products & services the right way, based on customer feedbacks.

Now look what’s happening to junk food and soda industry.
The face huge difficulties.
They are under pressure.
Their benefit goes down.

What happened?

For dozens of years, junk food and soda industry was flourishing. 
Everybody barely knew it was not so good for health. 
These industries were spending tons of dollars in lobbying to create “positive” surveys, hire "positive doctors", influence FDA policies, make ingredient lists difficult to understand. 
They were financing educational programs saying exercise is good to keep healthy. They were marketing the quality of ingredients they use. They were doing minor efforts to look more healthy. They were advertising like hell, controlling indirectly media (financed by ads) content.

But now, in 2015, it seems that it’s no longer enough.
Soda ban project pop up everywhere, tax projects on junk food appear everywhere, studies showing that sugar is a dangerous poison spread everywhere in the news, industrial food is finger pointed and… sales decline.

What happened? (again)

Did these industries lower their lobbying and marketing efforts? I don’t think so.
Did they made “big communication mistakes”? I don’t think so.
Did you saw some mass demonstrations in the street against junk food and soda? Didn’t saw it.

Maybe something else changed. 
Maybe the way people get information changed.
Maybe people realized that their purchase behavior was the center, the cornerstone of the food system (with the price of energy and climate of course…)
Maybe the way people spread news on social media changed.
Maybe the way government, seeking more than anything else popularity, changed.
Maybe – now that Wikileaks discloses cables every weeks and that Hillary Clinton emails are on the web - transparency is increasing and unpopular brands loose tractions on politics.

Maybe consumers are finally listened and empowered.
I hope and I think.