In a convoluted letter to Congress, Attorney General William Barr summarized Robert Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation and said he won’t charge President Trump with obstruction.
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All the latest trends are part of Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends report every year and we couldn’t ignore the changes digital in media usage, mobile consumption, voice search and all the innovations that change our lives.
Here’s an overview of the stats that caught our attention.
Increasing digital media usage
There has been a growth of 4% in the digital media usage, reaching 5.9 hours per day. Mobile digital media usage as reached 3.3 hours, while the desktop usage has slightly decreased in 2.1 hours per day. Despite the growth of mobile media consumption, we still see a stable use of other devices, while desktop usage is still present.
This stat can be useful for brands and publishers who try to understand their audience and how the rising mobile consumption can affect their next campaigns.
How innovation drives product improvements
Innovation takes place in many forms and trends and the most interesting stats have to do with the rise of messaging, voice search and video.
According to Mary Meeker’s Report, messaging is expanding and we’ve already noticed the increased number of monthly active users among all the popular platforms. Messaging platforms become more useful every day for users and brands are already exploring the best ways to include them in their digital strategies.
Mobile adoption keeps increasing for video usage and there is no prediction that this growth will end soon. As mobile consumption increases, more users are watching video content through their phones. This makes more companies evaluate their existing marketing strategies and how their publishing habits can adjust to this trend.
Voice services have seen an impressive growth with Amazon Echo reaching an impressive adoption rate. Except for the usage, there has also been an improvement in the service and the skills, which justifies the rise in sales. As voice technology matures, more consumers are ready to try it out. Its improved accuracy makes it more appealing and the growth from one year to another proves this trend that becomes mainstream.
Product discovery and search
Search has become an important part of the process of discovering a new product. Amazon seems to be the first option when it comes to product discovery, but search engines seem to come second at a percentage of 36%. This serves as a great reminder of the power of SEO for e-commerce businesses and how search can lead to consideration and sales.
Amazon may be the primary choice for product finding, but we cannot ignore how SEO can play a critical role in affecting consumers’ decisions for their next purchases.
An interesting journey is presented in the slide below, showing how the process of product finding takes place through search. An organic search can help a user move into a paid search to find the right product. This can move to Google Shopping and Product Listing Ads and the journey is complete with a shopping action.
This is a great visual representation which reminds us of the role SEO and PPC can hold in a digital strategy that seeks for increased sales.
Social media contributing to product discovery
Another interesting observation has to do with the role of social media in product discovery. Facebook, Instagram and also Pinterest can play a key role in the stage of awareness and consideration. Brands can involve social media in their funnel to help move users in their next stages that lead to a sale.
What’s important to understand is that a conversion cannot be achieved without the crucial previous stages, starting from the awareness and, moving to consideration before the actual purchase. Thus, every channel, including social media, can play a key role in a multi-channel world.
The rise of Internet advertising spend
There has been a growth of 21% in the Internet advertising spend in the US with a growing allocation of the budget going to mobile ads.
As mobile usage increases, advertisers adjust their strategies to reach their audience. We are expecting an even bigger budget on mobile advertising within the next years, although it’s still important to create ads for different devices.
The rise of e-commerce related advertising revenue
A closer focus at the advertising spend shows a growth of the advertising revenue for Google, Amazon and Facebook. This growth is related to the rise of e-commerce and how it is combined with ads to increase the sales.
Google saw a 3x increase of engagement with its focus on mobile product listings, while Amazon noted a 42% YoY increase in its advertising revenue.
Although the advertising spend is split between the big players in the industry there is still an indication that more advertisers are willing to invest in e-commerce growth to maintain a viable business.
One of the most important changes in search the last few years has to do with the increase of personalization. The more data search engines access, the higher the chances of successful personalization. The key to success, in this case, is the effective combination of data and UX to provide the best search results.
People seek relevant and fast answers to all their questions, while proximity is also an important matter for them. Thus, there has been a query growth of 900% from 2015 to 2017 to the results that include ‘near me’ as more users search for local results. This also means that local marketing and local businesses can benefit from this trend, which highlights another big trend in marketing. There’s no need anymore to create generalized content as personalization and local marketing can lead to more successful results.
As innovation brings more exciting opportunities, marketers and advertisers are facing the challenge of keeping up with the trends. The stats above indicate:
- A growing mobile usage
- The rise of voice services
- The domination of video content
- The stable trend of messaging
- The use of search for product discovery
- The explosive growth of personalized search queries.
All these observations can be really helpful, especially when your team is ready to look ahead to plan the strategy and the upcoming campaigns. Any of these trends can bring a business closer to its customers, provided that it embraces its potential in the most relevant way.
This is a must-read for understanding the tech industry. We’ve distilled famous investor Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends report down from its massive 294 slides of stats and charts to just the most important insights. Click or scroll through to learn what’s up with internet growth, screen addiction, e-commerce, Amazon versus Alibaba, tech investment and artificial intelligence.
Startups are a gamble, but it’s possible to better understand why some thrive and many more die by looking at the ecosystems in which they operate. Such is the mission of eight-year-old Startup Genome, composed of a group of researchers and entrepreneurs who, every year, interview thousands of founders and investors around the world to get a better handle on what’s changing in the regions where they operate, and what remains stubbornly the same.
The larger objective is to figure out how to help more startups succeed, and the outfit — which this year surveyed 10,000 founders with the help of partners like Crunchbase and Dealroom — produced some data that should perhaps concern those in the U.S. To wit, China looks positioned to overtake U.S. dominance when it comes to numerous tech sectors. Consider: In 2014, just 14 percent of so-called unicorns were based in China. Between the start of last year through today, that percentage has shot up to 35 percent, while in the U.S., the number of homegrown unicorns has fallen from 61 percent to 41 percent of the overall global number.
You could argue that investors are simply assigning China-based startups overly lofty valuations, as happened here in the U.S., and we partly believe that to be true. But China is also clearly “in it to win it,” based on a look at patents, with four times as many AI-related applications and three times as many crypto- and blockchain-related patents registered in China last year. With so much of the tech industry now focused on deep tech, it’s worth noting. In fact, as much as we loathed the January Financial Times column penned by famed VC Michael Moritz, who suggested that U.S. companies follow China’s lead, his underlying call to arms was probably, gulp, prescient in its own way.
What else should startups know? According to Startup Genome’s findings, in addition to the rise of AI, blockchain and robotics manufacturing, there are clearly declining sub sectors, too, including, least surprisingly, adtech, which has seen a roughly 35 percent drop in funding over the last five years. No doubt that ties directly to the growing dominance of Facebook and Google, which accounted for 73 percent of all U.S. digital advertising last year, according to the equity research firm Pivotal.
That doesn’t mean adtech startups are cooked, notes the study’s authors. Rather, declining sub-sectors are often “mature” but can be revived by new technologies. In this case, while funding for adtech has dropped, virtual reality and augmented reality could well inject some new growth into the industry at some point. Maybe.
Either way, to us, the most interesting facets of this report — and it really is worth poring over — are the connections it’s able to make by talking with so many people around the world. It addresses, for example, how Stockholm, a relatively small startup ecosystem, is able to produce sizable startups at a meaningful rate, versus Chicago, whose ecosystem is ostensibly three times bigger. (The answer: Stockholm’s startup founders are apparently better connected to the world’s top seven ecosystems.)
Also quite interesting is the report’s findings about women founders, who build more relationships with regional founders and are more locally connected than their male counterparts — except with investors. That’s bad news for both women founders and investors, as local connectedness is associated with better startup performance.
To read the report in full, click over here. You have to fork over your email address, but with 240 pages filled with fascinating nuggets and other useful information, you’ll likely find it well worth it.
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