Business, Entertainment, Technology, Web

Analyzing internet search – more than what you could guess

Analysis of the web searches of people all over the world has provided some interesting answers and the adult search content is not even among the top 3 in volume.

Some major trends in the internet search:

  1. Maximum searches are for social media sites, be that facebook or linkedin, but why do people still search for these sites??
  2. Second rank holders are the video sites, that will be youtube by far.
  3. Next comes the email providers like yahoo, gmail, hotmail, etc.
  4. Fourth rank is taken up by adult search content.

Now, while trying to understand the logic of searches the world over, there are more interesting things that pop up.

  1. People like to do searches just for being sure that spelling is right. There are multiple reasons for that, some users do not want to take a risk of going to other site by mistake and some others find it easier than typing the whole text.
  2.  Most searches do not have any meaning. The search for meaningless words is very high, much higher that they command a huge traffic volume. Take for example asdf, qwertyuiop, etc. These have become huge because people search for them out of boredom and these are the easiest ones to search from keyboard.
  3. Then there are people who do not have time or are just lazy enough that they even want to search than finding the link on page. Classic example is people searching for facebook login on google than on facebook website.
  4. Search for public personalities is on a huge rise with the popularity of people from business, sports and entertainment field generating a lot of interest due to the availability of information online.
  5. People do search for adult content and these are the only top searches which are less focused on a site and more on generic verbs/nouns.

All definitions of what internet was made for have changed over times and so have the search engine purposes.

It would be interesting to hear what our readers think has been changing in the world of internet search. Please do put down your thoughts below.

 

Source: Google Zeitgeist, Mike’s marketing tools, AOL’s top searches

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IPL 2012
Business, Entertainment, Sports

IPL 5 – Is it bigger than EPL and Superbowl ?

And yet another year for the sporting extravaganza that has made everyone in the world take notice of India. The Indian Premier League, despite all the controversies has been attracting audiences year on year, not only for the sport, but for the things off the cricket field as well. In marketing lingo, the mix has hit the sweet spot – cricketenment. Now, a bit of the zing was off in the 4th season with dwindling TRPs and empty stands for some matches. But that has been dismissed as a one-off thing with the last IPL being scheduled immediately after a world cup which India won.

IPL 2012

Now, the question that so many of my friends have been asking is where does the IPL stand vis a vis the global properties such as EPL, Superbowl etc . Well the answer to that is not too simple. I try and break it down –

Audiences – In terms of audiences, IPL wins, but does not quite as easily as one would have thought. EPL has a global audience, with great following from Asia, Africa and Europe in particular. Besides, IPL has been a recent phenomenon, while EPL has a bigger tradition. Now, in terms of audience numbers, IPL is a winner. But what about the ROI?

Sponsor view – (a) Branding – In terms of branding, fewer properties may be as lucrative as the IPL. IPL has given known and measurable returns to brands. Before IPL 2011, hardly anyone had heard of Floriana. However, IPL 2011 sponsorship and the branding spend later on has catapulted Floriana into a national level recognised brand. Similar stories have meant that a lot of brands have wanted to buy IPL teams. Sahara for example, entered late into IPL , and bought the costliest team – Pune .(b) Returns – IPL has had decent impact on sales. While, I cannot quote names, some of the leading brands have seen good jump in the months following IPL. As they say, cricket works in India and how! However, still the returns aren’t anywhere close to something like EPL or Super Bowl.

Viewers – IPL has made cricket more viewable for the women audiences in India. The 3.5 hour time limit has worked for sure in attracting family audiences, not only to the television sets, but also to the grounds.

Overall, while, IPL is a hot property, it has some while before it becomes bigger than EPL or superbowl, simply because, the per capita spending power for the average EPL/Superbowl audiences is much higher. Thats my opinion, whats yours?

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Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Web

Amazon Junglee!!

About 150 million people in India or around 75 million households are ready for ecommerce in India today. However, less than 10 million are engaged in active ecommerce today. The potential of consumer e-commerce in India by 2024-2025 is likely to touch around 594.8 million individuals or 297.4 million households. You can only guess the market size of the ecommerce industry in the coming decade!!

Amazon India has gone live with the launch of portal, Junglee.com, which Amazon acquired in early 1998 from Indian entrepreneurs Rakesh Mathur and Ashish Gupta. Junglee is an online product comparison and advertising site with several first-of-a-kind features such “real-time customer reviews” from Amazon.com, inline seller store locator for sellers in India and one-stop access to selection from Indian and international sellers. Junglee aggregates detailed product information including customer reviews, price, and shipping speed across multiple sources, including Amazon.com, so customers can research products and evaluate buying options to make an informed purchasing decision. Customers can also write their own reviews, read millions of real-time customer reviews from Amazon.com, “Like” products or sellers, and share products through Facebook, Twitter and email.

Junglee is positioned as a market place which makes buyers and sellers meet, instead of an ecommerce website. It could possibly become a means to drive people to Amazon India in future when they launch the full fledged service in India. The incentive scheme for sellers to post their products on Junglee is very interesting. They can:
1. Drive traffic to your store/website: By advertising products on Junglee.com, one can convert Junglee’s traffic into their own customers
2. List Product Ads for free: No listing fees, no cost per click or subscription fees. On the other side, Ebay.in charges sellers to post ads!
3. Reaching qualified shoppers: Junglee puts products in front of customers who have expressed intent to purchase those exact products
4. Highly targeted placements: Recommended buys when classified in categories means a highly focused sales channel for the sellers

Customers can discover over 1.2 crore products and 14,000 brands, and purchase items directly from hundreds of retailers. Customers can buy products online by following the link to the seller’s website or find a seller’s physical store if they would rather purchase the product in person or call the seller and place an order by phone.
Junglee has an ambitious vision of organizing selection and buying choices. They are relentlessly focused on adding selection and making it convenient for customers to find, discover, and shop anything using the service.

Given that Amazon is launching its ecommerce service in India soon, Flipkart and other ecommerece websites need to ramp up at the earliest and quickly build presence in Tier-II and Tier-III cities of India. Flipkart or Amazon? Do you have a brand loyalty or you will go after the one offering lowest price?

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Entertainment, Marketing

Why this Kolaveri Di?

Why this Kolaveri Di – a Tanglish (Tamil and English) song which is a funny take on heartbreak, is from Dhanush’s upcoming Tamil movie 3. It is a big craze on the internet. So viral, that the song became the first Tamil film song to be premiered on a national music channel, MTV India. The song has attracted all categories of people and has reached to all corners of the country. From children to youngsters to celebrities, everyone is so passionate for this song.

What does the song mean?
Kolaveri, a highly popular slang among Tamil youth normally used to silence a cranky person in a group. It is among several Tamil words which youngsters use between themselves without implying actual meaning. The slang has been used by the makers of 3 to depict the anguish of a person who has just tasted rejection from the hands of a girl whom he liked. Soup in the video implies failure in love.

What makes it so popular?
Simple and Funny Lyrics: The song uses simple english words especially Youth Lingo. The have made an effort to make the song simple. The video includes subtitles in English to help people understand the lyrics. Also it helps people to sing along. Take these lines for example:

lovvu lovvu oh my lovvu, you showed me bouv-u
cow-u cow-u holy cow-u, i want u hear now-u

Catchy Tune: The song is catchy and has superb beats! How many of us have found ourselves humming this tune everytime the song is played?

pa pa paan pa pa paan pa pa paa pa pa paan

Caters to a wide audience: The song is Tanglish, which I think is a very smart move. Even the Tamil words in the song are reasonably easy to figure out. But the song has an emotional connect. It’s a song by a young guy with a broken heart. Heart break is universal, it caters to a large audience. Not just guys, I have seen girls enjoying the song. The audience relates to the lyrics.

Unassuming: Dhanush’s down-to-earth voice and the casual attitude with which he approaches a song have created a new trend in film music. Even the first cut video is shot in the recording studio. You can see Dhanush enjoying while singing. I think that summarizes the feeling.

Versions: The simple and catchy ‘Kolaveri’, has enthused people to remix and edit the footage to create their own narratives. You can find the female version, milk version, Sharad Pawar version, Hilter version. The songs instilled creativity in people. The nth version of Kolaveri helps in increasing popularity of the original version.

Overall, I feel with Kolaveri, Dhanush has tapped the potential of social networking sites to promote a movie. A marketing tactic which is popular in the West and will surely pick up in Bollywood. Kolaveri is being studies as Case Study in management schools. IIMA has adopted it as an inspiration for future marketing managers. The institute plans to introduce a session on ‘Kolaveri Di’ as a part of its course on Contemporary Film Industry for business perspective. What Kolaveri did to the movie is kind of lasting. The national channels that telecast the uprising of the song on cyberspace are going to carry news about the movie’s release when it’s out. I think the movie 3, has a perfect launchpad with the popularity of Kolaveri.

In terms of Youtube hits, the song has little over 16 Mn hits on youtube (at the time of publishing), which is still miles away from Justin Bieber’s Baby which has 649 Mn views. Damn You JB!

Just in case you have not seen or heard it here it is!

Why this Kolaveri Di?

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Business, Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Technology, Web

Dhunio – Categorization is Everything!

One of the best things about India is Music! Bollywood and its music defines us. One of the most common hobbies for Indian youth is …. watching movies and listening to bollywood music. Movies and its music drives India and is a part of the nation.

Still, such an important service and in no single place has it been categorized completely? Itunes does not yet sells Indian music or categorizes it. Lets not blame them for we Indians don’t have a habit of paying for music and thus we make it impossible to put capital behind it or generate revenue from it.

This is where Dhunio comes in. Dhunio has ambitiously made an attempt in this space and has categorized innumrable Indian music videos! The best part of their strategy is that the videos are sourced from Youtube which makes it cost efficient. Dhunio drives the part where it is best, Categorization.

Now one of the best part of Dhunio. If you are reading this article then please try this … Go to Dhunio, search for Rockstar, it will give you a list of songs from the movie, you can listen to them or click on any of the links … you can click on Imtiaz Ali, Ranbir Kapoor or Mohit Chauhan and each will give you a list of songs in which they are director / actor / singer respectively. Now this is Categorization!

Ofcourse there are many more additions and many other features. That is for you to check out.

 

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Business, Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Marketing, Strategy, Technology

Movies Stock Market – A Solution To Piracy?

Recently an exchange to trade box office success of movies received approval from US market regulators according to Yahoo. Personally I believe this is an amazing idea and I had in fact pitched it as a presentation during an internship as well.

Why I think movies can be a good exchange market?

  • Solution to piracy! I think the exchange can actually help in reducing piracy by making common public a shareholder in the movie. People will be much more inclined in reporting piracy if their own financial interests are being harmed by piracy.
  • Number of participants: The success or failure of a movie is not in the hands of few people (like sports). The box office success of a movie depends on thousands of moviegoers! Although critics can enhance / dampen the success of a movie but they can’t dictate it. All exchange traded products require the presence of large number of market participants to ensure markets are not manipulated.
  • Natural Sellers: Movie producers, distributors, movie halls and investors are natural sellers on the exchange. They can hedge a part of their investment via the exchange.
  • Movie Fans, Natural Buyers: Movie fans will like to buy the movies in anticipation of movie doing well. Ofcourse a lot of people will want to buy Twilight Eclipse Opening Box Office rights and it can be actively traded.
  • Seed Money to upcoming producers: As far as I understand (and I may be wrong), new upcoming producers find it hard to raise funding and such an exchange can actually help them! The article on yahoo mentioned that big movie houses were against such  an exchange and this could actually be one reason for their disapproval.
  • Invest in a single movie, not the production house: Investors currently have no way to express a view on the success of a single movie, and have to take view on a production house and hope that all their movies turn out well. By having single movie futures we can remove this.

What are your comments? What do you think about this idea? Please do let us know…

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10739728-bp-logo
Business, Entertainment, Finance, Public Issues

BP Oil Spill: Why even $20 billion isn’t enough?

BP has made a blunder. No doubt about that! So we shall not even discuss it here. Is only BP responsible? We shall also not discuss it here. Now that BP has agreed to pay $20 billion in payments to the US Government, the main question which people are asking is …. whether $20 billion are enough? Here are some arguments why they are probably not!

  • Tourism Industry in the Gulf of Mexico: According to CNN, tourism is about 46% of the Gulf economy i.e. over $100 billion! Has the spill destroyed the tourism industry? Yes, No, Maybe? If ‘maybe’ then till what extent and how much will the loss be? The state governments are saying that the beaches are not closed but will this save the tourism industry? With photographs of wildlife soaked in crude all over the internet, will anyone realistically go to the gulf for tourism? State tourism departments are saying that they are getting cancellations as far as 3 months out. Cancellation rates are being said to be around 50%. If we do back of the envelope calculations and assume 6 months of tourism disruption and 50%  cancellations then it give us $25 billion of tourism revenue lost!
  • Unemployment: In a state with 12% unemployement (according to CNN) the after effects of the spill will likely cause more layoffs. With a major overhaul of oil & gas industry and decline in tourism industry, unemployment will spike. This can have major impact on the society near the gulf and can cause various problems. Ofcourse Government will have to take care of the situation but the costs will be very high.
  • Real Estate Decline: A natural follow-up of this has to be another shake-up in the real estate valuations around the gulf. Just when US is recovering from 2008 recession, this is not something that anyone will look forward to.
  • Clean-Up Costs: Exxon Valdrez spill occurred in 1989 near Alaska and it was an oil tanker leak! According to Exxon they spent over $2 billion in clean up costs. Looking at the scale of current oil spill plus adjusting for inflation, this will amount to atleast $5-8 billion.
  • Wildlife Loss: One of the biggest losses caused by this oil spill is loss of wildlife and natural environment. This loss is invaluable and just can’t be measured. The loss of fishes, birds, vegetation and ecological balance cannot be brought back by money! If we can just learn a lesson from this tragedy of not taking nature for granted then it would be a small step towards redemption.
  • Oil & Gas Loss: The spill will probably cause stoppage of drilling in deep sea water! This is a good step for all of us in the long term, however in short term it probably means supply shortage and higher oil prices. Because of  negligence of one company, some poor soul will have to pay extra for travel!

Ofcourse too many issues and very little explanation. Hope you enjoyed the video though.

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Business, Entertainment, Strategy, Web

Facebook Quizzes and Self Discovery

Everyday when you login on facebook, there is one thing hard to miss, Facebook Quizzes. Quizzes like “Which bollywood character are you like?” to “Where will you end up in 20 years?” to “Whats your horoscope?

I think most of these quizzes can be divided into 2 categories –

Firstly – Quizzes which tell you something about the future. Quizzes like “Where will you end up in 20 years?” to “Whats your horoscope?” to “Who will be your perfect match?” …. the list is actually infinite. The excitement of knowing the future has always been an attraction to all of us. Through these quizzes we pass time and hope to know a future possibility. The most important question we do not think is that if we know the future then will we really be able to live it? Will knowing the future not change the future? and ofcourse who makes these quizzes! Do these quizzes even make sense?

Secondly – Quizzes which tell you something about yourself! Quizzes like “Which bollywood character do you look like?” or “Whats your personality type?” or “What kind of a friend are you?” … so many quizzes. Again people give these quizzes as a way to pass their time but are they really finding out anything? To be honest, NO!

So please stop giving these quizzes friends .. and stop crowding the facebook updates page!

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Business, Entertainment, Marketing, Planning, Strategy, Technology, Web

End of an era – Floppy Disk

I saw this news article on BBC News and it got so many memories back. We all are so lucky to be witnessing technology and the world around us changing so much. It seems like yesterday when I got my first computer which had a floppy disk and a CD drive. I played so many games even on MS-DOS which were actually stored on a floppy disk! A floppy disk in which I transferred programs to school from my home PC and made my school project.

floppy

On the left there is an image of a floppy disk. The simple device stored just 1,024 kilobytes of information but was so important to people. Because at that point of time even 1,024 bytes were sufficient for transfer of information but now even gigabytes don’t suffice.The first floppy disk was introduced by IBM in 1971 and it used to be read-only! After 40 years the floppy disk comes to an end and it sure seems like a new era is beginning.

CDusb-flash-driveSome of the devices which have replaced the floppy disk are CDs and USB drives. Two of the main reasons why these devices became so much more popular are storage capacity and resistance to data damage. Of course one of the reasons for their popularity was the ability to transfer movies and music. Next came DVDs and transportable HDDs and now Blu-Ray Discs. With each generation of storage we get more capacity to store information in smaller space.

ipodIt seems ironical that the company which started the slow death of Floppy Drives is the company which probably will take the storage industry to the next level – Apple! Apple was the first company which in 1998 stopped having floppy drives in its computers. Slowly Dell (2003), PC World (2007) and now Sony have also stopped providing it. iPod and iPhone store your music, your movies and a lot of your information. It also works like a hard disk and you can store everything you want on it, making all other forms of storage obsolete! Where will technology take us next? Only time will tell.

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Entertainment, Marketing, Public Issues

God Save our Tigers

Saving Private Stripey

Saving Private Stripey

By the way, I have never used Aircel nor do I have anything against them.

A quick look at the site, the ads, the hoardings and the airwaves quite honestly make you think that it’s a new revolution coming this way.  The poor cub waiting for its mommy, the magical figure of 1411 tattooed all over, the facebook community, they all have a nice enough ring to it. Beyond any shadow of a doubt, it’s a great idea. It promotes a cause which has been around for the past 20 years and makes it a populist, hip concern. My reservations, however, lie elsewhere.

The second you logon to saveourtigers.com, you are greeted by an impressive number of people who have pledged their support, a nice figure of 202035, the last time I checked. This is accompanied by the celeb speak in favor of this initiative and 2 boxes on either “wings” of the site. The site is designed well with a minimalist agenda. The trouble is that it doesn’t really do anything. So, 2 hoots if you have pledged your support. Which tiger are you saving again by clicking and entering your details in some meaningless boxes?

The map of India with the pugmarks and the sanctuaries is a nice touch, but unfortunately, that’s where it ends. There are no hyperlinks to how and when you can visit the sanctuaries. Statistics for Tiger populations in the sanctuaries are also conspicuous by their absence. Info about a “Moderate” tiger density is about as useful as a speeding ticket on an F1 track.

The biggest shortcoming of this aircel initiative/movement/drive is the contribute section. Presence on facebook and twitter is well and good but do you care if I tweet or write on someone else’s wall about tiger trouble? There should have been, at the very least, a competition for the best tweets or the most frequent tweets and wall posts. The videos on youtube and their uploads also don’t mean a thing unless it is centralized and work to a common cause. I can’t shake the feeling that aircel had a great idea with this but the scale of the movement threw them off and they were happy with just pointing you to the doors instead of making a solid, decisive decision that would have been a killer investment of both time and money. Jaago Re was a huge hit because of the persistence and the pervasiveness of the initiative. This initiative has a long way to go before even trying to catch up with the efforts of Jaago Re, in my opinion the last true mass movement. Saving Stripey will fall flat before too long, even a spoof-ish community is up on facebook that promotes eating parle G instead of tiger http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Eat-Parle-G-Do-not-eat-TIGEROnly-1411-Left/314552397454?ref=ts

🙂

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