Monthly Archives

July 2015

Social Media

The power of social media and storytelling: Foo Fighters will play in Cesena

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Happy Friday everyone!

Today, I’m really happy to share with you an incredible Italian story, based on storytelling, dreams coming true and people.

I think all of you read about the 1000 musicians who played “Learn to Fly” by Foo Fighters at the same time and in the same place in Cesena, to actually ask Foo Fighters to come & play in Cesena.

A cool idea, a great accomplishment, months of hard work and an incredible result, which I think took over the Guinness World Record.
But, was it just a dream coming true?  And what can we learn out of it?

I think it’s becoming a great example for all online professionals and brands to be more confident about the power of storytelling, people and social media achieving a community goal.

1) People
It’s all about people. Do you have a dream? Find people helping you out and share your goal. It’s always about the team and not only the individual. You wouldn’t be able to achieve the same goal alone, in your little room, without sharing.

2) Storytelling
Tell your story, be spontaneous and keep track of what you’re doing. Be genuine, share the success but also the problems you can find in the process.
Videos are amazing helping you out, but also pictures, events are important.
Sometime brands think it’s not good sharing your weaknesses. But if you’re human it’s normal and we should be emphatic, we are not all superheroes! (even if it would pretty epic! :D)

3) Social Media
Social media are powerful, but maybe you already know it. People are empowered and there are so many examples of positive or either negative experiences.
People approaching social media are very much looking to produce viral content and become popular, even if just for a few hours. How can you do it?
Follow the first two points,  and share it. People love being part of positive stories, dreams coming true and bottom-up community achievements.
Don’t trust people telling you that they can do the job for you: it’s your dream and a daily job. It’s hard but important.
Remember to be authentic: it’s easier finding out your main goal was just being viral.

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Well done Fabio Zaffagnini, congrats to all your team and the musicians involved in this amazing project!

ps: thanks to my flatmates Marco&Silvia who shared the story with me before even reading it online!  

Growth Hacking

What you shouldn’t ask a growth hacker

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What’s a growth hacker? Here in London it’s the moment of the growth hackers. It’s the word of 2015. Are you looking to scale your project? You need a growth hacker, at least with 2 years of experience scaling other projects, who knows the winning tricks.
But which are the winning tricks?

A couple of days ago I listened to a really interesting podcast where Graham Hunter has been asked a lot of questions about hiring a growth consultant. Graham has been a marketing consultant at several agencies and he’s now Head Instructor of Growth at Tradecraft (USA) where they train smart people to succeed in traction roles at high-growth companies.

growth-hacking-guide-mindset-framework-and-tools-So, what’s a growth hacker? He’s a digital marketing person with a to-do-approach and a growth-mindset. Marketing is broad and sometimes marketing people working at corporates knows everything about branding and nothing related to customer acquisitions. So, that’s why startups are now looking for growth hackers: they have limited resources so they need to grow, acquire new users and retain them.

Which are growth hacker’s skills? Graham says they should: “Take a not prescriptive approach, being a generalist, have a data-driven approach and knowing a fair amount of everything“. So, if someone told you that, in order to take a step further you should focus and specialise on specific topics, well..now you know it’s bullshit.

What should a growth hacker ask you? He’s the specialist, so, be prepared to reply to a lot of specific questions, mainly about your audience, your user acquisitions strategy or your retention rate. In order to hire the best growth consultant, Graham suggests you to ask: “How do you grow my business“? and I think this is a great point.
I had several discussions with people asking which is my experience scaling businesses. Can I ask you why? If you’ve not been part of the early team at Uber, Airbnb, Dropbox or Slack is hard giving outstanding examples. So, why are you asking? Focus on people’s skills and mindsets, listen to experiences and suggestions, and a final tip: asking about scaling twitter followers is not the most important thing a growth hacker can do for your business.

If you want to listen to Graham Hunter’s podcast click here.
If you want to learn more about Growth Hacking click here

Digital strategy Growth Hacking

Startup tips: how to build a successful marketing strategy in 5 steps

bE Careful: this is a technical post. Well, not really technical, but a bit.

Online marketing strategies are really important and you can’t really do much without setting a basic, simple, straight forward strategy.
“Why do I need a strategy?” you would ask me, I guess. At least it’s something people are asking me sometimes. Or they tell me: “Na, you don’t need to work on a strategy, just post on social media”. What are you going to post if you don’t know what you want to reach out?
It seems strategies changing everytime, but the truth is that you need goals & strategies, even if you’re a startup and you just know you should open a twitter account and increase your follower base.
For example, this is a goal=> increase your follower base. Is it a good one? Well, not really sure. That’s why you need to think about your goals before building a strategy

online-marketing-strategy-startup-1) So, the first thing is to have a clear goal in mind. To reach a good one, just think what does success mean to your project/company. Do you want to create am engaging community? Or improve conversions? Or drive sales? Just pick one and be focused. I know that success means a lot of different things, but priorities are really important, especially if you’ve just launched your app/website/project/whatver

2) Then: learn about your audience. What do they like? How could you motivate them? It’s really difficult communicate with them without knowing them.
People click if they’re interested, if they like the way/what you’re talking about and they’re feeling comfortable.
You need to create content and you don’t want to waste time & efforts for things you’re not sure could be appreciated, aren’t you?
Just the last tip: work with different segments, your audience don’t need to be the same across all channels.

3) Customer journey: it’s important also if you’re not selling.  Why?
‘Cause you can enlarge the range of information you have about your audience: how do they find you? Do they research first on a mobile device?

4) Link your goals to KPIs: which are the KPIs you’d need to measure your customer interactions? KPIs are really key and they’re different for every channel. Mapping them all could help you understand your business goals.

5) Define the activities you should implement to reach KPIs and don’t forget to create reports to understand if you’re going in the right direction! 😉

 

Mobile Tech

What’s the future of online payments?

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Boring. I think it’s what you have thought after reading the title. But, keep reading, I think you’re wrong.
In this article, I’ll talk about an e-commerce startup, a Geek GIRLS event and current payment tools China.
I told you, I hate being boring. 😀

So, how to make your e-commerce successful? Thanks to my experience at Moorbi, I can tell you should focus on 3 main things:

  • Branding strategy: make sure you have a determined value proposition and a branding strategy, to picture your company on customers mind. You need to be reliable and distinguished yourself from the mass!
  • Customize people’s experience: it’s all about analytics and target audience. You have to reach an audience, create particular offers and help your customers to come back and then buy again. So, forget about social media and paid campaigns and focus on your website before!
  • Online Payments: this is the most delicate part of the journey so expect a lot of drop-offs if:  the whole experience is not integrated with the rest of the website. And don’t forget about people’s payment habits.

And here my post: how do you know what people’s payments habits are? Well, this is quite tricky, especially because: 1) it really depends on our culture, sensations, ecc… 2) everyday there are new payment solutions.

So, last week I’ve been to a meetup organised by Geek Girls to learn more about it!

All Saints’ and Badoo people were awesome giving us a lot of tips and suggestions to improve the customers experience when it’s related to online payments.

For example I did learn that adding a new payment option, for example Paypal or Amazon payments to your e-commerce website could terrifically increase your conversion rate (a 34% rise)! In fact, as I was saying before, customers behaviour depends a lot on habits so if people see their favourite payment option, it will be easier for them buying your items. Also, comparing a few options you’ll find out that the time it takes to make a purchase is really making a difference [thanks to Christiane Binder for these great insights!]

Also, if you’re serving a global market, you should understand that the performances and habits are really different: there are countries where mobile payments are not a trustworthy method.  In fact, even if mobile platform revenues have overtaken the Web, but payouts and flows are still very poor.

Finally, to have a better idea of how the culture has an huge impact on this topic we digitally went to China to learn more about payment methods there. And well, Monica Chien‘s speech was very impressive!
Do you know that before making business in China you should became friends and people are easily adding you on Wechat?
So, people using online payments are 20yrs old, they’re using 3rd parties features for personal financing planning reasons (P&L accessible anytime). Also, they mainly used online payments to send money to their parents in the countryside.

Payments gateways are mainly driven by 3 key players: Alipay, Tenpay and 3rd parties tools.

Finally..what’s the future of online payments? Well, for sure integrating those tools within a B2b environment, for example using Alipay to pay salaries. Are we so far away from this scenario?
Or, how about selfies? Nope, I’m not getting crazy, don’t you think that facial recognition could be an interesting option to reduce fraud losses? Check out this article and let me know what you think!

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Startups

3 Startups I love – June 2015

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Hello and happy Friday everyone!
Today I’m happy to start my first article about startups! So, why am I so in love with startups? Well, as I was fascinated by innovation and really wanted to learn more, I attended a MBA in Innovation Management when I was in Italy, and we had lectures about innovation strategy, startup and business planning. We also went to Helsinki and innovation poles to meet startuppers and ventures..a really inspiring and amazing adventure. And that’s where (and when) my passion began.

So, here I am. I know, it’s Friday evening..but before celebrating summer, I’d like to share with you all the projects I fell in love in June. Since it’s already July..(time flies!!) I can’t postpone it anymore!

clotho-london-startup-sustainability-fashionSo, as my background with a startup in sustainability I couldn’t not fall in love with Clotho: two young girls met at University and decided to create a startup to help people not throwing away their unwanted items! And it’s a pretty cool concept, since they’re collecting your clothes and giving you a voucher to use in their online store. Why don’t you sign up? I’m sure you’ll love it..and you’ll contribute to produce less waste preserving our amazing Earth. If I haven’t convinced you, you can read their full story on my ‘This is Not Art’ blog clicking here

 

peak-games-brain-training-startupI also fell in love with Peak, well actually, we had our first date a bit before June, but who cares? So, Peak is an app offering a range of great games to train your brain, tracking your progress and performance. For example you can play Spin Cycle, which will improve your working memory and task shifting or Logic to help you make better decisions under stress and your planning skills. If you use the free plan, you have just 4 games per day you can play to improve yourself. But, all of them are great! You can also check the in-game statistics and see in which you’re scoring better and where you need to work more. Well, I’m really addicted to it. 😉
What are you saying? Which are my favourite games? Well, I love Perilous Path, ’cause my short term memory is improving a lot! But also Low Pop, Baggage Claim, Sqaure Numbers and Unique!

 

Last one but not because it’s less important, just because it was the last one I discovered is: BonAppetour, a dining travellers-focused platform to help people discovering local dining experience. Say that you’re travelling around Europe and instead of going to the most touristic restaurant in the most crowded street of the city you have the chance to pay the same amount of money dining with local people in their house. What are you going to choose? Well, I love it. It’s more or less as Air Bnb but it mainly works with terrific non-professional chefs aiming to transform their living room in the greatest restaurant ever. I’m Italian, so, yeah, we can do it and we’re proud of it 😀
Create a profile using my Referral Link here if you like cooking and start using it..I’m sure it will be the next BIG thing here!

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How about you? Which is your best/favourite project? Let me know what your thoughts are!