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HOW WORKING REMOTELY CAN BE BUSINESS AS USUAL

The growing concerns surrounding the spread of Covid-19 is forcing business owners to look at alternatives for how they can stay operational yet protect their staff, customers, and suppliers. For many businesses, one option is to initiate a remote working policy and have all employees work from home. But how is that manageable?

 

Some companies embraced remote working many years ago and they have proven it can be done; one prime example is Automattic, the company behind the popular WordPress website and blogging platform. This is a billion-dollar company with around 400 employees and no offices, that’s right, not one office.

 

The technology available to us all today makes remote working easy and productive. Aside from email, we have Skype, Zoom, Slack, Eko, WhatsApp, and more. Even the good old-fashioned conference call is effective.

 

One of the most important factors to making this work is having a project manager or a project management tool. The aforementioned Slack is one such option, as is Thailand’s own Eko, developed by Korawad Chearavanont as an alternative to Slack and other apps.

 

Change is difficult for many, but when circumstances such as those confronting us all right now arise there is a need to embrace change and make it work for your business.

 

Once a company masters the remote working process they can continue to use it to their benefit once the Covid-19 crisis passes. It opens the door to engaging the skills and talents of freelancers and consultants from all corners of the world. This, of course, expands the capabilities of a company.

 

There is another benefit to embracing remote working and that is staff morale. There are times when some staff may need to be at home for personal or family reasons, giving them the option to work from home while still being a productive member of the team gives them a boost and shows them that the company respects their needs.

 

At Vivaldi, we started to explore the potential of remote work in early 2019 and we have not looked back since. If you would like to discuss our experiences with this and how we make it work for us please feel free to get in touch.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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Email is king – but what accounts for its reign?

Despite the rise of social media platforms and their multitude of messaging applications, email remains the go-to communications tool for exchanging messages in the business world. This simple, efficient, inexpensive way of sending and receiving text and visuals was credited as the single-most important way to communicate with clients and customers, according to a new study. All the apps of today fail to compare. Yet much remains unknown about how and why email is used and how effective it still is.

 

Somewhat off-message

 

While communication teams crave knowledge about how useful email and other communications channels are, there is a lack of agreement and ideas on what, exactly, we need to know about the sending and receiving of messages. Deciding what metrics should be used and how to even start measuring communications brings up big challenges. Internal measurement of communications in companies remains mysterious. Finding clarity will be of incalculable worth to digital marketers, since persuasive messages need to be received in optimal right way at the right time if they are to be most effective.

 

Don’t forget to write

 

While ROI and SEO rank highly in the minds of businesspeople and the PR firms that help promote them, the lack of attention paid to how information is exchanged in the information age is of growing concern. Marketers who are able to paint a picture of and take advantage of precisely what effective communication is stand to greatly boost potential in years to come. As IT continues speeding up communication and giving us more options on how to communicate, the metrics of effective messaging will be of increasingly great interest to anyone with something to say.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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At home on the road, now more than ever

It’s never been easier to take a trip and still feel the comforts of home. According to a recent study, the market for accommodation worldwide is worth over $630 billion, and is estimated to take a flying leap to nearly $900 before 2026. Supporting conditions for the growth are surges among several demographics among leisure and business travellers, as well as the development of varied online platforms for booking places to stay. The online option in particular is a game changer for the industry, and has transformed many individual residences into hotel rooms, dramatically multiplying the number of places available to travellers.

 

Opening up

 

Easing up on formerly tedious visa requirements in countries throughout Africa as well China and India is also significantly contributing to the global trend for more widespread travel accommodation bookings in hotels, B&Bs, paying guest accommodation and other places to stay. Accommodation seekers on the road are most interested in mid-range options for their mix of services and reasonable prices.

 

On the move, all the time

 

The growth of tourism and travel overall, particularly the ease of booking tickets online for travel by air, rail and by road, goes hand in hand with the trend. The over-tourism phenomenon, though, shows that some prudence and guidelines may be needed for sustainable long-term growth in the accommodation sector. Both travellers and locals should not be overwhelmed. Otherwise more major cities and venues will have to corrective measures taken by the city of Amsterdam, which recently asked tourists to consider going elsewhere, and has implemented steps designed to gently slow the flow of people coming to enjoy the popular Dutch city.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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The problem with PR crises today

Fake news can be just as damaging as legitimately bad news. Crises are crises – even when they don’t really seem like they should be. A new consumer behaviour study states that over half of its respondents reported that they visit social media sites at least six times a day. And while social media are ideal platforms for digital marketers to cheaply and efficiently spread key messages about clients, they are also awash with fake news that can have a negatively impact.

 

Online, all the time

 

The 2019 Crisis Impact Report: How Consumers React to a Brand Crisis, which summarises the main messages of 2,000 buyers of all kinds of products, details how misinformation remains at scourge in the information age. The proliferation of social media has led to countess reports, blogs and posts on an endless variety of topics. Unfortunately, this means that untrue information about brands can spread with little notice. Professional crisis teams need to be ready to deftly counteract with facts and stories. Keep in mind that no two crises are identical; sometimes you simply have to go with your gut.

 

Do something; do the right thing

 

Consumers expect that their favourite companies will be first to learn of a problem and first to do something about it. Delay is associated with complicity, embarrassment, uncertainty or other unfortunate outcomes. A tactical delay can seem reasonable, yet often leads to deeper problems and smaller profits. Prudence is called for, but so is direct action and a consistent message spread far and wide, so as to limit any negative fallout from unwanted news. That being said, happily though, there’s enough information out there these days that things tend to be forgotten: the report emphasises how stories with negative news decrease by 70 per cent within four months after the bad news breaks. Happily enough, part of a successful strategy for rehabilitation a reputation is thus simply waiting out the clock without acerbating the situation.

 

Key moments for core messages

 

The thing about crises is that they are also windows of opportunity. Reinvention and refocusing on core principles is always a good idea, even in the good times, lest companies become overly complacent when rivals are hungrier.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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The Russians are buying online

While Russia’s economic growth only sputtered along in the first half of this year, registering less than 1%, e-commerce in the country shows no signs of stopping. During the same six-month period, online shopping surged by a rate of 26 per cent. Despite sanctions from many Western nations and reluctance by some demographics to give up traditional shopping patterns, market analysts see the growth in e-business as a sign of good things to come.

 

Just in time for winter

 

The stunning growth accounts for over $US11 billion in sales of products and services spent on credit via smartphones and laptops. The longer distances to and simpler selections in brick-and-mortar stores, not to mention epically harsh weather conditions during the long Russian winter, goes far in showing why business trackers and digital marketers are confident that the trend will continue to grow in popularity. News of the convenience is spreading rapidly in small towns and villages across the world’s largest country. The changes to lifestyles are nothing less than revolutionary.

 

Just the beginning

 

The percentage of online sales in Russia is 6 per cent now, indicating just how much room for expansion and opportunity there is for companies who can tap into the market of netizens with rubbles to spend on wonders of all kinds from the wider world. Chinese manufacturers in particular are in prime position to cash in on the trend, for various factors related to long-term convenience, primarily logistics and price. And to think, just a generation ago a significant amount of trading across Russia took place in frenzied, five-minute stops along the Trans-Siberian railroad, with products being hastily lowered from the train to buyers and money handed up to sellers. All across mother Russia, the future is very much now.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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The art and craft of email -Part II

As the first half of this two-part blog described, the vast majority of emails go unread. The importance of making your email relevant and readable is thus not to be underestimated. One key tip is – as this should be well understood by now in the era of texting – is to keep to the point. Subjects should ideally be between six and 10 words long. In addition to reduced attention spans, and an IT incursion into all facets of life, most emails are now read on smartphones. The reader of your email may very well be in transit somewhere, navigating the physical world around them, so won’t have a lot of time to commit to reading your message – but also may very well have curiosity as to why you’re contacting them. So email well and be respectful of their mobility and the other worldly pressures.

 

Make your key message key again

 

Necessitating the recipient of your email to scan through several sentences before getting to the main point of your message is unadvisable. Don’t bury your key message. The first sentence your reader sees should almost always express your most important points. That being said, some cultural norms seep into email culture. For example, emails in Latin America often start with a bit of small talk rather before the main idea is expressed. But for the most part, it pays to be precise.

 

To be clear

 

Keep your main ideas clear and keep your words to the point. Brevity matters. In fact, in the era of texting, the subjects of emails can serve as the entire idea, and simply be followed by a message body that’s blank. Just sign off your short subject with “EOM” (End of message) or “NNTR” (No need to reply).

 

Keep positive

 

Another advantage of clear, short sentences and messages is that they prevent misinterpretation. A significant issue these days is that many emails are interpreted more negatively then the sender had in mind, and ambiguous words are taken to reflect ideas or a darker tone that the sender hadn’t intended to convey.

 

So what about emojis?

 

It depends. It helps if you know the receiver. While a smile in real life can work wonders, studies show that smileys are not their e-equivalents, but less effective conveyers of feelings. Worse emojis, may come off as overly informal or even unprofessional. More broadly, email ethics vary across cultures. Moreover, a lot of communication is sent through body language. So when you’re relying on messages sent mostly in just a few words, and mostly on smartphones, keep in mind that clarity is king.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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The art and craft of email –Part I

An average of 280 billion emails are sent every day. That’s quite a lot. And, on balance, quite wasteful: nearly 80 per cent of them are never opened or dispatched to the junk box on sight with the help of algorithms. While social media and other communications innovations continue to change the nature of sharing ideas, email remains a key tool of modern business. Marketers who want their emails to be read need to be aware of how to maximize chances that their messages are getting across and have the potential to be acted on.

 

Lying in wait

 

There’s a lot of email entering your inbox that is not overtly a waste of time, and still needs to be sorted through. In fact, of course, it’s often rather relevant to business. One recent estimate is that the typical office employee is bequeathed a nice, round sum of 100 emails every day, and that they have approximately 200 unread emails lurking at any given time in their inbox. That’s a lot of email. So how to get noticed and be seen as merely one more contributor to one more addition to someone’s inbox intake?

 

10am on Tuesday

 

That’s the optimal time for sending an email and having it read and acted upon, according to an extensive analysis of this modern-day, yet somewhat dated communication tool. By midmorning on the second day of the workweek, the last weekend has started to fade from memory and the approaching weekend seems a bit too far off to fully envision. This enhances productivity, the peak of which is 10am on Tuesday, a study shows.

 

Make it personal

 

A short but heartfelt ‘Good seeing you yesterday’ or ‘Thanks for the coffee’ to start things off gives your email a boost of about 17 per cent that it will be read. In an increasingly impersonal world, genuine signs of humanity are welcomed and encouraged. Emails with a polite but meaningful yet non-robotic reference to a shared occasion or common acquaintance will help keep your message from being ignored.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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Female and Muslim, travelling and spending

Muslim women – around 63 million, to be precise – spent more than $80 billion while travelling in 2018, according to a study recently released by MasterCard and CrescentRating. The news on this demographic should be a brightly shining indicator to digital marketers of a key sector that many big players in the hospitality industry have largely overlooked so far.

 

Ready for more

 

Seventy per cent of Muslim women travelled with their families. Nearly three out of 10 of the trips taken by Muslim women were solo voyages, reflecting a particularly rapidly growing part of this growing demographic. Two out of every three respondents were under 40 years of age. The primary concern for them is leisure, which 9 of 10 respondents listed as a significant motivation for travel. A sense of exploration, getting re-energised and a focus on family were also key parts of the findings. Over 20 per cent of respondents named religious reasons as a key factor for travel while 11 per cent ranked business as another important reason for travelling.

 

Looking for deals, digitally

 

More than fifty per cent of the women covered in the survey use the Internet and social media sites platforms in particular to find places to stay and eat and ways of getting around. Religious factors that factored into the preferences of the traveler surveyed included access to prayer rooms reserved exclusively for women, as well as single-sex beauty parlors and spas. Halal dining options as well as security are also of a significant concern to female Muslim travellers, who are characterised overall in the report as being willing to pay for the services and preferences they desire, and find them online.

 

Thailand in prime position to profit

 

The report ranks Thailand second for women travellers adhering to Islam among nations that are not members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. The segment remains little understood, which stakeholders looking to capitalise on this emerging demographic would to well to pay closer attention to.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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The spectacular potential of quantum marketing

The future is now (and then, and both and neither of these things, perhaps). The much-anticipated quantum computer has arrived, thanks to – and this should be no surprise really – Google. While traditional computing is based on zeroes and ones, quantum computing turns this traditional state of “on” and “off” states to the next level. The stakes are high in what this means computers will be capable of doing for us and knowing about us, not to mention assisting and suggesting in purchasing decisions. The rules of traditional computing have just been upended, and the impact on society will be profound.

 

A whole new Google Earth

 

There’s a whole lot of Googling that will help you get your company noticed. Without Google Maps, your visibility is limited – make sure your company is listed and is located where on the app where it is actually situated in the real world. How about your SEO? When you Google for your firm’s name, how high is its placement on the world’s top search engine? What about Google AdWords? Is this increasingly popular service being used to your company’s advantage? While the world has grown accustomed to Google’s gargantuan influence in business and so many other fields, the tech giant’s recent claim of ‘quantum supremacy’ may be the biggest game changer of all. The US has sunk over $420 million into R&D for quantum computing, and the results are beginning to be felt worldwide.

 

The future is quantum

 

Digital marketing will never be the same after the implementation of quantum computing, which takes what have become digital norms and turns up the speed, potential and intensity, in a shocking variety of ways. The market for quantum computing will be estimated to be worth about $5US billion next year. That’s just the beginning. It is predicted that in just 20 years, there will not be sufficient bandwidth and energy required to keep all of the world’s computers running. A new type of computing is therefore needed looking just at this metric alone. Quantum computing is arriving just as it looks most needed. Forecasting and predicting and a range of problems that would had previously taken even the standard computers of today some time to solve, will be done much, much quicker on quantum computers. When quantum computing becomes more widely available to business, the effects on how we buy and sell things – and a whole lot more – will be subject to innovation and disruption cycles like nothing we’ve seen before.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

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Splurging on me, electronically

What do you get when you combine the energies of the world’s largest e-commerce company and the world’s most popular pop star? An additional boost to what is the world’s biggest single-day spending phenomenon, organisers of Alibaba’s Singles’ Day hope. This year the day will be lent the considerable star power of Taylor Swift, who will highlight a spectacular show in Shanghai promoting the event. While November 11 is set aside as a holiday in various Western countries as Veterans Day, Armistice Day or Remembrance Day, in China the day is a 24-hour online shopping phenomenon that now outranks Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving once known as the biggest day in shopping.

 

Look East

 

For more than 10 years the Singles’ Day has surged, and now has assumed a primary position in the history of capitalism and marketing. Last year Alibaba earned a whopping US$30 billion in sales on November 11. This represented over an increase of over 25 per cent on the previous year, which in turn was nearly 40 more than in 2017. The message signaled this year with the inclusion of the ultimate marquee act that Swift – the world’s highest paid celebrity, who has a net worth of US$360 million – is that the online shopping king very much intends to extend its reign and defend its position as the go-to platform for buying all imaginable products and services.

 

Eleventh-hour bargains

 

The growingly popular one-day event for spending online takes inspiration from the greatest number of “1”s in the day’s date – 11/11 – as well as the demographic realities of fewer marriages, marriages taking place later in life, growing affluence and IT growth reflected in much of East Asia. The last-minute opportunities available for just an hour more after the clock ticks 11pm on the eleventh day of the eleventh month well represents the enthusiastic nature of the day, and the mushrooming opportunities for digital marketing in a world increasingly getting accustomed to going on shopping sprees while relaxing at home.

 

The Human & Digital Communications Agency

Our award-winning communications team blends human interactions & digital engagement seamlessly to produce results for brands.

Best PR Agency Delivering PR | Social | Digital. 

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