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Volume 4 | Issue 7

Bulletin MEMBER OF THE ABF GROUP

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A view from ground level for China in 2019 How to manage your AI content The top hottest trends in marketing

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18 - 19th March, 2020


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2020 b2b Expo overview “We live in interesting times” for SME’s there are ever changing options, challenges, opportunities, and change. The major annual small business exhibition – B2B EXPO 2019 provides SME’s with an excellent opportunity to connect with the changing trends of business today, as well as keeping updated with the many new products and solutions to grow and expand enterprises in this dynamic rapidly changing business landscape. The impact of Cloud Technologies, Artificial Intelligence (AI), robotic solutions and innovation, across all industry sectors, driving everything from start-ups to cross border e-commerce, are just some of the issues SME’s must understand to compete in business today. B2B EXPO 2019 now in the fifth year is the “Small Business is Big Business Expo”, with over 80 exhibitors and speakers on the Wednesday 18th & Thursday 19th March at Marvel Stadium, Docklands, Melbourne.

Business Matters free daily seminars are a major feature of the exhibition, which will feature high profile speakers, industry experts, and renowned entrepreneurs; with key topics, keynotes, case studies, and panel discussions.

The daily sessions include: • “Digital Marketing 102: Beyond the Basics”; • “There is Nothing Small About Small Business”; • “Innovation Strategies for Small Business” • Plus daily workshops and networking events. Anyone in business who is looking to expand their market, to be up-to-date with the current trends, solutions and critical issues for business; the B2B Expo 2020 is an opportunity not to be missed. B2B Expo and Business Matters sponsor, partner and exhibitor enquires visit www.b2bexpo.com.au

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A View from Ground Level 2019

I

spent last week in China as a member of the inaugural CKGSB CEO Study Tour Program where I travelled to 4 cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Shenzhen) in only 6 days. During this week, we visited three of China’s biggest and best known companies, Alibaba, Tencent and Fosun, attended lectures from many of China’s leading industry experts and academics, networked with CKGSB’s high calibre alumni and students, and, to maintain high energy levels throughout, we even participated in Taichi sessions each morning! It has been a wonderful and insightful experience and proves that nothing in China is one dimensional. If you embrace China as a complex, multi-faceted and dynamic environment, as I do, you’re always learning, growing and challenging your assumptions. I can still remember back in 2008, at the height of the global financial crisis when there was a very real fear that, in the absence of the US consumer, China’s export led economy would plunge into recession (resulting in unimaginable chaos and poverty) many respected and well known international commentators predicted it could take up to 30 years before Chinese consumption would be strong enough to maintain a positive growth rate for the overall economy. How wrong they were. Here are some of my observations about the current state of China’s economy from being on the ground over the past week:

1. China’s Booming Domestic Economy

2. Tencent Driving Innovation

C

T

hina’s domestic economy is booming and you can track the start of this growth to around 2008, when the likes of Alibaba, Tencent and Fosun, three of the big names we visited last week, really got going. Whilst China continues to welcome foreign brands to enter their market, particularly if they offer something unique and different (eg British heritage, French sophistication, German engineering, Australian kangaroos) you get the feeling that time is running out. After 20 years as a manufacturing hub for the rest of the world (think Apple smartphones, Samsonite suitcases and Barbie dolls) there isn’t much they can’t design and produce themselves, and so their focus is on the domestic consumer rather than worrying about the rest of the world (despite what the US may think!)

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encent, the developer of WeChat is now the 5th largest internet company in the world. The all pervasive app now has 1.1 billion active users, of which over 50% spend at least 90 minutes on WeChat every day, it has transformed the internet age in China and is rapidly attracting overseas users aswell (20 million international users so far and growing fast). Despite their amazing success and growth, Tencent are now attempting to completely reinvent themselves once again by launching their ‘Industrial Internet’ project which will merge the ‘virtual world’ with the ‘physical world’ to transform many sectors, utilising big data, AI and CRM. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how this new strategy will transform our lives (as WeChat has) but you can be sure it’s coming very soon!


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3. US-China Tensions

P

rofessor XIANG Bing, the founding Dean at CKGSB who is regarded as a leading authority on the transformation of China’s economy and the global implications, believes that the current tensions in the US-China relations can be attributed to 2001 when China entered the WTO. At that time, the key areas required by the US to be met by China in exchange for WTO entry were: • • • • •

Market access for US companies Improvement in Human Rights Introduction of Democracy China to shoulder more global responsibilities China to support the US on global issues

Despite growing their economy by 12 times since 2001, China has failed in all of the above areas, and actually gone backwards on some, which was first flagged by President Obama in 2009 and led to the US designing a new strategy to ‘embrace China with a hedging strategy’ (eg TPP) and led to China’s response (‘Made in China 2025’, ‘One Belt One Road’) which is how we got to where we are now. He is confident that the world’s two largest economies will find a way to sort out their differences but it will take time. The stakes are too high for them to fail!

4. Crazy Entrepreneurs

5. Made in China 2025

C

hina is focused on technology, innovation and the rollout of 5G in China and across the world. This is an important moment for China. With 18,000 new Chinese companies being created every day, mainly internet, AI and big data companies, and with the 5G network expected to be fully functional in China before the end of 2020, we’re going to see some enormous changes in just the next 18 months. As a local venture capitalist, Sheng Xitai, said ‘the Chinese are crazy about entrepreneurship’!

2019 By David Thomas Chairman - ACBW Forum

T

he key word in today’s China is ‘innovation’. Whilst not mentioned much in public, the ‘Made in China 2025’ initiative is very much alive and well and, with the ability to innovate at scale and engage the users of over 700 million smartphones which are in almost constant use, Chinese companies are already designing, defining and creating the future.

The short term opportunity for foreign companies and entrepreneurs is to contribute technology, innovation and products in key sectors (eg healthcare, education, tourism) and clean food and eco-friendly products while they clear up their environment. But the window of opportunity is closing. Don’t wait another 10 years to start your China Journey!

http://www.davidthomas.asia/blog/a-view-from-ground-level-2019/

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SMEs optimistic despite tougher borrowing environment

A pre-Budget Client Pulse Check conducted by KPMG Enterprise in March 2019 confirms what many small businesses have feared: since the Royal Commission, close to one third have found it more difficult to obtain a loan, with 14 per cent saying it’s been “a lot more difficult” and 17 per cent “somewhat more difficult”.

close to one third have found it more difficult to obtain a loan, with 14 per cent saying it’s been “a lot more difficult” and 17 per cent “somewhat more difficult”.

KPMG Enterprise, which advises mid market organisations, undertakes a Pulse Check annually before the Federal Budget. This year 133 CEOs, CFOs and Company Directors completed the survey. Just over half of respondents (52 per cent) were optimistic about their business’ future in the next 5 years, but 48 per cent were either pessimistic or neutral. Businesses situated in NSW (66 per cent) and Victoria (49 per cent) appeared the most positive.

Respondents were especially concerned about their personal finances, with over one third (63 per cent) pessimistic or neutral. The downturn in the housing market has affected almost half (46 per cent) with 11 per cent saying they have been ‘greatly affected’. This is also applicable to business outlook – those who were greatly or somewhat affected by the downturn in housing were also more likely to be pessimistic about the future of their business, relative to those with an optimistic outlook (61 per cent versus 35 per cent).

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Political uncertainty, the forthcoming election and subsequent changes in policy have driven mid market concerns, with comments expressing anxieties over the slowing economy, escalating regulatory burden and global economic instability. Although 57 per cent of respondents indicated they were not considering expanding offshore, 20 per cent were ‘definitely’ doing so and 21 per cent mentioned it was a ‘possibility.’ In terms of Government initiatives, the Government’s $20,000 instant asset write-off scheme is yet to show an impact, with only five per cent reporting a positive outcome. Similarly, measures to tackle the Black Economy and reduce tax avoidance announced at last year’s Federal Budget were reported by 86 per cent as having had no direct impact on their organisation. Enterprise Partner and national Tax Lead, Brent Murphy, said, “There is a general feeling of cautious optimism, an indication of greater positivity than we saw in last year’s Pulse Check.

“If the mid-market is finding it more difficult to obtain bank loans, that will hamper future growth. That is as worrying as lack of overseas expansion, which forestalls entry into new markets.”

“Mid-market companies are ready and willing to invest in their business. They recognise that only by harnessing new technology and innovation will it be possible to get ahead, combat disruption and tackle competitors in an ever-shifting economic climate. However, the Pulse Check shows a clear link between the housing downturn and diminishing business confidence which is a cause for concern. “If the mid-market is finding it more difficult to obtain bank loans, that will hamper future growth. That is as worrying as lack of overseas expansion, which forestalls entry into new markets.” - Inside Small Business

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2019 CONNECTING BUSINESS ACROSS AUSTRALIA AND CHINA 31 JULY 2019, RACV CITY CLUB, MELBOURNE READ MORE

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China KOL Strategy By Frank Xu Frank is a brand/business strategist and researcher with extensive experience in Chinese digital marketing.

Influencer marketing is a pivotal element in brand communications in China market as social media platforms are playing a dominant role in the life of Chinese consumers. Influencers, or known as Key Opinion Leaders (KOL) are becoming more powerful than traditional mass media because they have not only a bigger audience base, but a deeper and more intimate connection with the audience as well.

KOLs are popular social media content creators who produce widelyspread viral contents and build a large fan base on social media platforms. They are lifestyle advocates, knowledge distributors, and fun/entertainment providers. Their contents often can resonate with followers at a deep level and their opinions or preference on certain products can influence or change followers’ buying decisions. Brands can leverage KOLs’ influence to help build awareness, trigger conversions and achieve sales. But KOL marketing in China can be tricky. The price of big KOLs skyrockets, the result figures can be faked. There’s no guarantee for sure win. Here are some tips that we think might help to guide you in the labyrinth of KOL marketing.

1. Make KOL relevant to your product The power of KOLs comes from the trusting relationship between KOLs and their followers. Do not confuse KOL marketing with celebrity endorsement. Any commercial trace in KOL marketing will compromise KOLs’ intimate connection with their followers. The first thing in KOL marketing is to identify KOLs who are relevant to your brand or product. Before signing a KOL, do consider if your product fits the KOL’s personality, style and expertise. Only pick the KOL who can tell a natural, relevant story about your product. The more convincing he/she can tell the story, the better results you will achieve. Apart from choosing the right KOL for your brand, it’s also crucial for brands to work with KOL to create a relevant story. For example, Mini Cooper worked with Fashion KOL Becky Li who has a keen sense on color selling 100 limited edition mini, painted in a rare turquoise hue called the Caribbean Aqua, in just 5 minutes.

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2. Empower your KOL with exclusivity Exclusivity is one of the key drivers in today’s social context. Things like exclusive offer, customized edition are not just offering transactional discount, but a kind of social currency to the receivers as well. And these can help KOLs to bond with their followers with real value linked to your brand or product. Brands can empower KOLs with special offer, exclusive coupon, follower-only experience, even limited editions co-branded with KOLs to effectively maximize conversion, and furthermore, motivate followers to share and spread your content.

3. Leverage the power of SEO Chinese social media platforms like WeChat, Little Red Book, Weibo etc. use either internal search engine or Baidu to offer brand/product key word search. Chinese consumers are accustomed to search and browse products directly on social media or Ecommerce platforms. Therefore, it is crucial for brands to leverage search engine optimization in their KOL campaigns

on these platforms. For example, brands can target certain key words and make sure these key words are frequently used throughout the contents posted by KOLs.

4. Be smart to choose the right KOL mix The size of fan base is not the sole criterion for an impactful KOL campaign. And it certainly does not guarantee success. Micro influencers who has fewer followers sometimes can be more effective in converting sales because their followers are normally more loyal and have greater interest in the KOL’s field. This kind of strong bonding between the KOL and followers can often be more effective especially in conversion than KOLs who have huge fan base and much higher price. Marketers do need to consider the task you want to achieve. To build awareness or stimulate conversion, to spread reputation or establish a clearer and sharper image, you need to pick different KOLs to achieve different tasks. Always choose a mix of KOLs according to your priority of goals to maximize your campaign impact. In Think China, we have our own KOL management portal and an experienced team to plan, execute and measure KOL marketing campaigns. We can help brands identify the right KOL mix and work closely with KOLs to create the right content according to your specific business objective. And with the tracking data powered by our technology tools, we can further measure and optimize the campaign result.

2020

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How to manage content with artificial intelligence By Eric Holtsmark General Manager – Strategy, Transformation and Technology, Konica Minolta

A

rtificial intelligence (AI) can help businesses predict their future needs and enhance efficiency by using the data they already have to create insight.

The importance of managing content more responsibly is growing for businesses. Governments around the world have created content management legislation to increase privacy and security for their citizens.

and documents to determine its nature. Then, when employees search for the content they need, the system will surface those relevant documents based on how they were categorised by the AI. Additionally, AI can help sort out the mess of content that most companies are dealing with, and can impose order on chaos, to a large extent. Employees save time when information and data is easily searchable and locatable, and smart AI technologies will collate and store masses of content in ways that avoid overwhelming employees with information overload. However, the area where AI can have the most impact is on content that hasn’t yet been developed. Applying AI from the start makes that content much easier to manage. Importantly, it can then start to help businesses derive value from that content without much human intervention.

These requirements mean that businesses must be able to immediately find and provide any information they possess that includes the personal details of a customer. They must be able to edit that information, delete it on request, and protect it from cyber attackers. Companies therefore need to apply specific governance to their content management. This is a complex undertaking that can be made easier and more effective with AI.

AI can monitor how employees interact with documents, then learn from those patterns to automate the process. For example, it can see how certain documents are classified and where they’re saved, then take over that classification and storage process. By applying AI to automate burdensome, administrative tasks, managers can free up employees to focus on value-adding activities, meaning businessess can move faster due to the efficiency gains provided by automation.

AI can help organisations manage and search content. And, unlike most content management systems (CMS), AI thrives on more content rather than less. By tagging content via metadata, businesses can apply AI to automatically find that content again later. This means it no longer matters so much where employees store content, but what that content is. For example, an AI system can analyse the content in emails

It’s important to note that AI is in the early stages of adding value for companies. The opportunities still outnumber the companies leveraging them, and the technology is still being developed and enhanced. Businesses should start exploring how they could best gain a business advantage from AI, to make the most of it in the future.

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Business Innovation: How artificial intelligence is changing business

By Adam Geitgey Software engineer and Consultant

Artificial Intelligence is a crucial tool for many businesses today. Two experts share their insights on how you can harness its power for business innovation. Today, business innovation and artificial intelligence (AI) seem to go hand-in-hand to improve many areas of a business. In customer service, for example, chatbots are now interacting with online customers to improve customer service. In HR, artificial intelligence is being used to speed up the recruitment process, and in marketing, AI-powered tools are increasingly used to personalize the customer experience.

A 2018 study by McKinsey Global Institute predicts that by 2030, 70 percent of companies might have adopted at least one type of AI technology. (The study was based on two independent surveys of 1,600 business executives across industries worldwide and 3,000 corporations in 14 sectors in 10 countries.) Despite common fears surrounding the impact of artificial intelligence on employment, AI is here to stay. AI and machine learning (a subset of AI) are at the forefront of business innovation.

Is AI-Powered Business Innovation Changing Marketing? Let’s take marketing as an example: To get some insights into how artificial intelligence can help you take your marketing strategy to the next level, I spoke to Neal Schaffer, a leading social media marketing strategist. (Schaffer is the author of three books on social media, with his fourth book, The Age of Influence, set to be published in 2020.) According to Schaffer, artificial intelligence isn’t changing the approach to marketing—yet. “I think we’re seeing, in the different tools that exist for marketers, that slowly these tools are beginning to leverage AI and machine learning to give [them] better insight into their marketing activities.” In this day and age, Schaffer adds, everyone is awash in data. Using these tools can help marketers analyse the data swirling all around them.

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“I think AI is actually going to save marketers a lot of time and also make them look smarter,” he says. AI has found its way to influencer marketing, as well. “How do you determine who is an influencer when there are so many fake followers and so much fake engagement that exists on the Internet?” Schaffer says. “We can teach the AI engine how to spot people when they have an unnatural spike in follower increase in a limited amount of time, which could be a sign of fake followers.

“If they average 1 percent engagement,” he continues, “but all of a sudden have 5 percent engagement when they publish a sponsored post using #ad, we might suspect that they participated in an Instagram pod to boost engagement levels. These are some of the ways AI can automatically flag accounts that require further investigation when their influence should be questioned. We can teach artificial intelligence to look for these trends that might indicate that these people are fake—their influence is not authentic.”

Can Smaller Marketing?

Businesses

Leverage

AI

for

Artificial intelligence isn’t just for huge companies—small or medium-size business can also harness the power of AI to maximize the ROI of their marketing efforts. A chatbot that interacts directly with users on your website is a great entry point for “companies to first really experience what AI can do for their business,” Schaffer says. Schaffer uses chatbot technology customized for his own use-case scenario on his website. Chatbots can increase engagement with a website visitor, Schaffer explains. “People come to your website and not everyone engages. Not everyone goes to a contact form or buys a product,” he says. “But a lot of people are very comfortable engaging with these bots these days. So I’m getting more people engaging with my bot and having a conversation with me there versus going all the way to my contact form and filling out that form.” There are a number of tools available right now that leverage AI and are accessible to smaller businesses. For example, there are tools that use AI and natural language processing to understand a company’s keywords and brand messaging, and basically repurpose a company’s content. Start with the problems you most need to solve in your business, and then work backward and see if machine learning might be a good solution for them. Don’t start by assuming that you need to use machine learning and AI just because everyone else is using it.

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3 reasons why your marketing team should be attending exhibitions By Simon Barnett Director of ABF Events

With the B2B EXPO 2019 due to be presented on Wednesday 13th & Thursday 14th March at Marvel Stadium Docklands Melbourne, we look at how business exhibitions can be beneficial for your business. Attending exhibitions should be a vital part of every marketing team’s plan – not only because some are free to attend, but they can also reap high rewards for your team and for morale. After all, a happy team is a productive one. Here are three reasons why your marketing team should be attending exhibitions:

Be inspired Exhibitions are inspiring places to visit. From free entry and free seminars to learn something new or to hear from market and industry leaders, to seeing new and exciting products and services that you may not have otherwise heard of, inspiration can be found in every corner. You really can walk away with real useable knowledge to grow and develop your team and your business. When we spend a lot of time with our head buried deep in whatever task we’re doing, exhibitions are a refreshing break to gain some perspective of that all-important ‘bigger picture’. You can find out what the major players are doing and what’s on the horizon for your industry and growing your business.

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Check out the competition Visiting exhibitions where you know your competitors are exhibiting allows you and your team to scope out the show for your future marketing- exhibiting plan. Although you can find out things like target market and demographics of visitors from most exhibition organisers, you may find it’s best

to visit the exhibition yourself – especially if it’s a future investment for your business. Not only will this give you a good chance to see the types of exhibitors that go to the event, but it will also help you to see your competitors face-toface. To find out what offers they give while at the exhibition, what displays they’re using and how large their stand is. Make sure that if you exhibit next time, you can compete.

Plan your future Stand Seeing how other people exhibit and how they use the space available to them can be a great source of inspiration of how you’re going to plan your next stand. There’s nothing better than really seeing how displays are put together and how each item works in unison to create a great display. Critiquing other people’s displays is a great way of making sure that your business heads in the right direction by aligning best practice – for what attracted you and detracted you as a visitor – against your campaign objectives. B2B EXPO 2019 now in the fourth year will showcase eighty exhibitors over sixty keynote speakers and host thousands of visitors.

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18 March 2020 - Marvel Stadium, Docklands Melbourne

Inaugural Award The inaugural awards program acknowledged and showcased entrepreneurs under thirty-five who have demonstrated the core values of business innovation, technological achievement and engagement via a set of established business and product award categories. B2B Young Hero Awards process culminates in the selection of enterprise which implement worldclass business initiatives, projects, products and services. B2B Award Dinner presented on the Tuesday 12th March 2019, Medallion Club, Marvel Stadium, Docklands, Melbourne. An intimate dinner event attended by finalists, guests including sponsors and VIPs. Seven award categories were presented including the prestigious Dell Young Hero Entrepreneur of the Year and Yellow Excellence in Marketing Award.

Award Winners Individual - Dell Young Hero Entrepreneur of the Year Award - Michelle Mannering - Yellow Excellence in Marketing Award - Anthony Lieu - Rising Star Award - Harry Sanders - Social Media Influencer Award - Michelle Mannering Enterprise - Startup of the Year Award - DigiGround - B2B Business of the Year Award - SalesPreso - Business Matters Award - X Nihilo

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Sarah Calder, Small Business Lead, Dell ANZ

Brand Matters Award Winner - Jenny Hsieh from X Nihilo

(Left) Sarah Calder, Small Business Lead, Dell ANZ (Middle) Award Winner - Michelle Mannering (Right) Tony Perna, Marketing Manager - Small Business, Dell ANZ

Dell Young Hero Entrepreneur of the Year & Social Media Influencer Award Winner - Michelle Mannering

Rising Star Award Winner - Harry Sanders

Erin Williamson, Senior Brand and Communication Manager, Yellow

B2B Business of the Year Award Winner Chris Cadet from SalesPreso

Startup of the Year Award Winner - John Luhr from DigiGround

Award Finalist - (right) Shane Chand from Digital Squad, with partner

Award Finalist - (left) Christian Martinez fromThe Financial Fox, with partner

Award Finalist - (left) Kate Matheson from Cake Creations by Kate, with family

Award Finalist - team from The Circle Cowork

Award Finalist - Dhvanit Shah from Compax Int.

Award Finalist - (2nd right) Ben Farrow from FirmChecker, with team

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What you can earn and learn from hosting a hackathon

~ Michelle Mannering, Hackathon Queen

Innovation, hackathons, design thinking. These have become buzzwords for corporates seen as progressive, ‘with the times’, and ‘innovative’. But it doesn’t have to apply to the businesses at the top of the tree. These are for everyone. Every business who wants to be a leader in their field should be thinking about how to be better. Do you want to be innovative? Do you want your business to exist ten years’ from now? Do you want to create a workplace where ideas flourish and people want to work for you? Good, then read on!

What is a hackathon?

Image by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

Hackathons have become commonplace in many companies, especially tech-based ones. They can go by many names: hackathons, ideation workshops, hack days, design sprint, jam sessions, and more. All these words essentially mean the same thing. A hackathon is an event where the main goal is to come up with creative ideas. Hackathons are based around either problem solving, and/or utilising technology. No limits, no boundaries. People are free to let their

imaginations run wild. This type of environment encourages participants to think outside the square, to remove restrictions from their mindset, and to solve problems in new ways.

Top 5 benefits from running a company hackathon Company hackathons are widely used to incubate new ideas, develop company culture, and in some cases, hire people. The likes of Carsales, REA Group, PayPal, Foursquare, and many other big organisations host hackathons all around the world. Take a leaf from their book. Here’s why you should have a company hackathon too:

Ideas

one of the main reasons why big organisations run hackathons is to generate new ideas. These ideas can be customer-focused, business-focused, or even focused on building entirely new products. Ideas can be simple, solving small but pressing problems. Others can be big, solving an industry-wide issue. Some ideas developed at hackathons are inspiration for new products and services.

Culture

In an age where choices are abundant, why do your employees want to work for you and your company? You need to create a workplace where ideas flourish. Where your employees feel they can have ideas, and those ideas will be heard. But it’s not just about your internal culture. You want to be known as the company with the culture to change the world.

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Professional development

Why spend lots of money on professional development courses? With a hackathon, your employees learn by doing. They’lll learn from one another and put skills into practice. Good facilitators and curated workshops can teach your staff design thinking, human centred design, how to develop ideas, and how to present good ideas.

About Mish Michelle Mannering, AKA the Hackathon Queen, has been running hackathons for nearly three years. Mish is the founder of several tech companies and is one of the driving forces behind Melbourne’s startup and entrepreneurial culture. She runs several workshops around design thinking, idea generation, and presenting ideas. You’ll often find her on stage MC’ing conferences and speaking at events, everything from artificial intelligence, to business, community engagement, the future of work, and esports. Mish is also an accomplished facilitator and journalist with a background in science, media, events, communications, and marketing.

Image by Raxpixel on Unsplash

Team building

Okay, the go-karting and Friday night drinks are great activities. These develop our social skills and help us work better together. But hackathons are a fantastic way to develop professional teamwork. Staff will practice the soft skills that are integral to the future of work: problem solving, communication, collaboration, leadership, critical thinking.

Fresh perspective

An external facilitator is key to a successful hackathon. They’ll come in with new ideas. Someone from outside your business can help ensure your hackathon isn’t another “let’s listen to the boss” workshop. The right facilitator can bring a sense of excitement and fun into your organisation.

If you want to follow Mish’s work, then you can check out her social media profiles, MishManners on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. For more info on hackathons, and when community hackathons are running in your area, see: hackathonqueen.com. Mish recently entered the B2B Young Hero Awards. She won the DELL Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and Social Media Influencer of the Year.

Get in touch If you’re excited about running a first hackathon or even spicing up your tenth, get in touch. As someone with over 70 hackathons under my belt, I’ll be able to cook up something fun and creative just for you.

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Asia Pacific:

The Supply Chain Revolution Starts Here Asia-Pacific is leading the revolution in digitally-driven, highly-integrated supply chain solutions But supply chains must be a strategic priority to maintain global competitiveness By Karen Reddington, President FedEx Asia Pacific

Softening consumer demand in major economies and trade tensions have undoubtedly combined to weaken global growth . But that decline in economic momentum shouldn’t deter business in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) because there’s a revolution underway – in supply chains - and the region is at the heart of it.

(1)

APAC is leading the way in evolving ever smarter, technology-driven supply chain models which are highly interconnected and can readily compete in the digital marketplace.

Supply Chains in APAC a Strategic Priority

APAC’s supply chain advantage – a fresh approach

That’s why, more than ever, supply chain investment in APAC is a strategic priority.

So what exactly is APAC’s advantage?

This investment provides businesses with flexibility to respond quickly and efficiently to economic headwinds, whatever they might be. Take trade tensions, for instance. A recent poll found more than 90 percent of Chinese companies are reviewing their supply chains, including relocating production, to lessen the impact of tariffs (2). That requires agile, increasingly integrated supply-chain ecosystems, which in turn, demands collaboration between businesses, governments, and logistics networks – not always an easy task. But the rewards can be phenomenal. Modern supply chains make it much easier for small to mid-sized businesses (SMEs) in APAC to not just scale up fast, but be globally competitive.

APAC is well ahead in digitization, which delivers greater visibility and efficiencies in supply chains. But it’s also because, historically, the region is starting from a vastly different base. In the early 90s, APAC’s supply chains ran from a desktop and reflected technology of the time –electronic shipments such as PCs, clunky mobile phones or semiconductors. Trade routes were one-dimensional and linear – focused simply on delivering products from low-cost factories in APAC to highly-developed US and European markets. Trends in outsourcing, offshoring, and near-shoring were yet to come.

1.IMF World Economic Outlook, Executive Summary, April 2019 2.https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3007334/ trade-war-forcing-93-cent-chinese-companies-transform-supply

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By the mid-2000s, we had well-established just-in-time supply chains. Fast forward to today and global supply chains are almost unrecognizable. They’re now run on smartphones – are more innovative, more diverse, digitally driven, sophisticated and, critically – aligned to business strategy. Not just in the array of products and the way they’re being transported, but in best-practice supply chain solutions which are driving cost efficiencies and ensuring global trade is more accessible to all kinds of business. Global production shifts have fed this growth, with more products now originating in Asia, traded intra-Asia, and destined for the United States and other major markets. With this huge transformation in trade flows, APAC has a central role in the supply chain revolution.

The largest trade lane is not Asia to Europe, or Asia to the US, but intra-Asia (3).

While this has been happening, some developed economies found themselves stuck with older, more rigid supply chain models and legacy infrastructure. In contrast, developing Asian economies and businesses often started from nothing, so could hit the ground running with a fresh

approach and develop new supply chain models unencumbered – with agility and innovation and knowhow. Regional supply chain hubs have sprung up across APAC, from Guangzhou to Shanghai to Osaka and Singapore, giving APAC economies a bigger role in new networks. A heart patient in Taiwan can now receive a pacemaker made half way around the world in one night, or sensitive biomaterials such as human liver cells can be sent between Japan and the US – arriving in perfect condition.

‘Best in class’ supply chain solutions Digital innovation has vastly improved visibility, transparency, compliance and reliability in supply chains – but innovation in supply chains is not just moving products from A to B. First, it must solve a problem. We have to ask, exactly what is the business problem, why isn’t it being solved by existing solutions, and how can we structure a supply chain to deliver real value? Second, supply chains must be more adaptive, flexible and ready to respond to volatility and risk. Third, they must deliver end-to-end visibility, which is intrinsically linked to trust and security. Fourth, we are seeing a more personalized customer

experience – the emergence of “on demand” supply chains. Lastly, supply chains must reduce complexity and cost – and deliver operating synergies and efficiencies.

PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS WITH ABF MEDIA contact info@abf.events 03 8698 9898

3. https://www.ltdmgmt.com/impact-from-logistics-partner-actions.php

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This is a challenge that extends far beyond the digital supply chain. We must constantly deliver new possibilities in the way we structure solutions for customers. For our part, we started out in air express, but new demands and challenges have seen a huge evolution of FedEx offerings. Our response to be ‘best in class’ today includes a vast mix of road, ocean and air transport solutions, inventory warehousing and distribution; e-commerce fulfilment; customs brokerage and trade facilitation; not to mention secure payment technology and forward logistics.

APAC’s Resilience has Powered Change With five billion people, accounting for 40% of global GDP (4), it’s not just size that makes the Asia-Pacific region stand out. APAC is a vibrant, receptive marketplace and its supply chains have had to be resilient, having come through the Asian Financial Crisis, the Global Financial Crisis, the growth of China, and more. As a result, we have seen APAC’s infrastructure and modern supply chains evolving as technology changed the playing field. In a diverse region like APAC, technology transcends culture, language, and to a large extent, regulations, to streamline cross-border trade. Looking ahead, APAC’s place at the centre of world trade looks set for some time to come. Global growth is increasingly driven by emerging markets, and by 2050, at least eight of the top 20 economies will be in Asia (5).

Future Supply Chain Solutions So against this outlook, we have to keep asking, what’s next? To name just a few - big data, AI, autonomous vehicles, robotics – are changing the way we structure supply chains and design solutions which overcome specific challenges. Our FedEx SameDay Bot is an autonomous delivery robot designed to change the face of last-mile delivery for the growing e-commerce market - in a way that’s both safe and environmentally friendly. Retailers accept orders from nearby customers who live within a few miles of the business and deliver them by bot directly to customers the same day. Of course, not everyone is on board for the digital age, yet. In our experience, some sectors and companies in APAC are slow to embrace change and still prefer old ways of working – like paper airway bills, telephone and even fax bookings for shipments. Compare that to most e-commerce businesses in APAC which have never known anything other than electronic, integrated supply chain systems.

Staying ahead of the global competition demands technology-driven supply chains which are vital for business survival. APAC has had a head start in supply chain evolution – we must not lose the momentum.

1. https://www.paragkhanna.com/home/ourasianfuture 2. https://www.pwc.com/gx/en/world-2050/assets/pwc-the-world-in-2050-full-report-feb-2017.pdf NB: (including China, India and Japan)

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5 of the hottest trends in marketing right now, according to industry experts By Brenda Stoltz The president of Ariad Partners

The thing about marketing trends, particularly for B2B marketers, is that they change frequently. If you don’t stay on top of them, you risk missing out on serious potential for revenue growth and customer acquisition. So what’s hot these days? What do you need to pay attention to and learn to embrace? Recently, I interviewed several industry leaders to see what they consider to be the most significant marketing trends happening right now.

“We’re getting down to creepy levels of personalization” Just a few years ago, personalization in marketing meant customizing an email to address the recipient by name. Brandi Smith, VP of demand generation marketing at Uberflip, says we’ve come a long way since then. Account-based marketing (ABM) and technology are being used to dive deep into an audience base to deliver highly personalized content, especially for B2B marketers. Smith says, “We can creep their social profiles to see what information is hot and trending to them, we can look at their company’s annual reports, and look at the footnotes or just the content in general to find out what might actually be a key focus in a key directive for their business moving into the new fiscal year.” It’s necessary, she says, to use tools like artificial intelligence in meaningful ways to create a personal experience without

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the customer feeling like the company has crossed a line into creepy. Nissar Ahamed, senior director of demand generation at Atomic Reach, agrees with Smith. “There’s too much noise, which makes it more difficult and also more expensive to create content that hits the mark and converts,” he says. And that’s why, according to Ahamed, hyper-personalized content based on the buyer’s journey, demographics, location, etc., make for much more effective marketing. He cites the example of emails that Amazon sends: no two are the same because they’re based on a shopper’s past history, profile, and demographics. Ahamed encourages marketers to invest in tools and automation that can help personalize content in a meaningful and relevant way.


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Email marketing is making a comeback Though we’ve heard this claim already, “email marketing is just as effective today as before,” says Ahamed. That’s due, he says, to the fact that it’s become more integrated with content marketing to build audiences. As algorithms and advertising policies change on social media, it has become more difficult to own an audience there. Meanwhile, reliable email marketing offers distribution and the ability to build an audience through an established and proven channel.

AI is no longer a mysterious black box Ahamed also says that 2019 is going to be the year of heavy exploration and implementation of artificial intelligence for brands. He believes that as companies of every size start to realize that AI isn’t there to replace humans and jobs—that it is, in fact, there to augment and complement those roles—more brands will adopt AI in innovative ways through marketing.

Content is becoming increasingly interactive

Chatbots are going to take charge this year

Content marketing certainly isn’t a trend; it’s here to stay, but its delivery and consumption continue to evolve.

Smith also sees that chatbots are going to increase their presence in 2019. In fact, 35% of consumers would interact with one to resolve a complaint or problem, and 33% would use one to make a reservation at a restaurant or hotel.

Gaurav Harode, founder and CEO of Enablix, sees that content is becoming more and more interactive. “So, right now we have static content, maybe some web content and video. But I think there is going to be a middle ground where there are going to be a lot of platforms and a lot of flexibility where content is going to be interactive,” he says. One example Harode gives is calculators that businesses use to attract leads. You can use these calculators to calculate ROI, auto or home loan payments, and more. But what’s less obvious is these are interactive content tools designed to drive business to a company. Ahamed concurs: “Content is no longer a siloed department within marketing.” He says it’s now a crossteam function, and he also sees more integration of content in other aspects of marketing, sales, and other departments.

There are plenty of marketing functions chatbots can serve, from directing a website visitor to a particular product, color, and size to offering instantly redeemable coupons. And as more brands find proven success with chatbots, we’ll see an increase in adoption as well as inspiration for how to use them to reach an audience.

Trends matter If you’re serious about reaching your customers on their terms, pay attention to these trends. While they may evolve (or even disappear completely) over time, right now they are an effective means to build a real and sustainable relationship with your audience.

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DIGIGROW WITH US GET ON BOARD

DigiGround is an application development and boutique digital marketing agency. We understand that the effective use of technology is a key competitive differentiator in today’s global market. Our mission is to strengthen your processes by empowering and helping you efficiently manage your business. We do this with the same design-driven, analytic approach as enterprise businesses. Customers today are on the move and they’re using mobile applications to get there. We’ll build you an app that works across multiple mobile platforms, so your customers have everything they need at their fingertips. You can see some of our amazing apps by downloading youchamp and Oktion from the App Store and Google Play. Our experience in branding, lead gen, web design, app development, graphic design and digital business strategy means we can provide an end-to-end digital solution for your business. Our success rests on your success. If you are considering taking the next step and are wanting to design, develop and release an application we can be more than useful to your business.

CONTACT US NOW P: 02 8259 0311 E: connect@digiground.com.au www.digiground.com.au


A BOUTIQUE MARKETING AGENCY SPECIALISING IN: 4 APP DEVELOPMENT 4 WEBSITE DESIGN & DEVELOPMENT 4 DIGITAL & BRAND MARKETING

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We are a young company, and we are happy to have achieved some amazing awards and recognition in a very short period of time. We are proud of each and every person in our team and thank every one of our partners and clients for making us what we are today.


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ABF Bulletin - Volume 4 | Issue 7  

For over a decade now, Australian Business Forum (ABF) has been the premier business platform dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs, busines...

ABF Bulletin - Volume 4 | Issue 7  

For over a decade now, Australian Business Forum (ABF) has been the premier business platform dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs, busines...