Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Infographic: Greater Food Culture

Ever wanted to see all of the renowned food personalities in one place?   Well, now you can!  Thanks to HartmanSalt for creating this Subway inspired interactive Infographic.  While it is a bit confusing and could draw a few more connections (for instance, shouldn't John Mackey be tied to more than just "local"?) overall the graphic is a great snapshot of the food culture's movers and shakers.  Check out the full interactive version here.

via HartmanSalt

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

As Twitter Matures, what's on the Horizon?

In the first of two posts by Peter Yared at VentureBeat, he asserts that "as Twitter becomes the go-to source of information for news, celebrities and more, it’s differentiated from Facebook, which is very focused on what your friends are posting."  Based on this insight, he goes on to suggest a few opportunities for the microblogging platform in upcoming years.  You can read the inspired full post here.

In short, below are the (mostly interface) advancements he suggests:
  • Integrate a dynamic news view
  • Offer news streams for events and locations -
  • Show photos, videos and other media inline
  • Develop inline comment threads
  • Improve search
  • Develop more Twitter widgets for websites  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Look into the Future of Education

"How might the mission of a university change in the 21st Century?"  Three professors at Harvard Business School asked themselves this very question 6 years ago.

"Their eventual answer: Throw open the doors to older adults—and give them the tools to help change the world."

More specifically, they developed the Advanced Leadership Initiative almost three years ago, addressing what they term the "Third Stage" of education.  The program gives late-career professionals, think CEO level, access to just about all of the school's resources for the year of their fellowship with only one caveat -- they must develop a "social purpose project" addressing significant societal banes, such as education, health and the environment.

The initiative, truly of the 21st century, embraces open-source methodology, requires the discipline of a self-starter and hopes to spread to schools across the country.  How inspired!!

You can check out the full article on WSJ here, but one other interesting snapshot we thought to include is this simple bar graph created by Met Life/Civic Ventures illustrating the percent breakdown of those considering an "encore career."

So, what would be yours?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Food For Thought

Good Medicine Magazine published an enlightening infographic illustrating why the cost of some food items are more expensive than others.  Its a wonder why these two Federally influenced initiatives are flipped and no wonder why health advocates such as Robin O'Brien and Jamie Oliver are driving cultural acupuncture around the topic.

In related news, the Sisters of St. Francis in Philadelphia are bringing heat to McDonald's, asking their board of directors to issue a report "assessing the company's policy responses to public concerns regarding linkages of fast food to childhood obesity, diet-related diseases and other impacts on children's health."  They aren't stopping there either, with support of Corporate Accountability International, full page ads in some of the Nation's biggest media outlets issue an open letter to McDonald's CEO imploring him to "stop marketing junk food to children."  AdAge covers the move in more detail here.

Thanks to Maria Popova for bringing the graphic to our attention.

IFT: Top 10 Food Trends

According to IFT (Institute of Food Technologists) the weak economy is still driving many of American's eating habits.  A full list of the trends can be found in a recent post to their site.  While they are all interesting and worth the read, we can't help but notice the 6% increase in "three meals per day" mostly attributed to breakfast growth.  It will be interesting to know if breakfast sales at restaurants are seeing enough benefit to offset operating costs as most people (73%) are keeping it at the kitchen table.

Photo Credit: Flickr user doc18
Article found via @jambutter

Tweet On!

Ever wondered what happens to those 140 characters after you press enter?  Madras Geek has created this inspiring little infographic to help shed some light.  Enjoy!

What's in Your Queue?

A recent study just found that the majority of of internet traffic in North America comes from Netflix, that's right, Netflix.

"Even more than YouTube?!" Yep.  Even more than YouTube.

Apparently the site is now responsible for 30% of "peak downstream" content. So while the company is currently given credit for turning the way we rent movies on its head (sorry Blockbuster) could it soon be considered a viable threat to cable TV subscriptions?  I mean, if we can have Netflix for as low as $10/mo without the commercial interruption what's to stop many consumers from considering the switch?  As Netflix continues to license and make more content available with potentially shorter wait times, it will be fascinating to see what other market share they can start taking.  Honestly, if I were Hulu, I'd be a bit scared.

Regardless, one thing is for sure, Time's assertion that "Bandwidth is the New Black Gold" is right on.

Thanks to Sam Decker for his tweet that inspired this post.

Monday, May 9, 2011

HBR Article of the Year: How will You Measure Your Life?

Asked to speak to last year's Business school graduating class at Harvard, professor Clayton Christensen gave us all a big dose of inspiration -- and guidance. Not by applying his business principles to our careers, but more importantly to our lives. While I still believe life is a bit messier -- and that we learn a lot from the decisions we make -- Clayton's perspective helps us keep our eyes (and hearts) on what really matters so we can consciously work to avoid making short-sighted choices that strip life of the joy and depth we all want most. Playing really big, this was recently recognized by McKinsey as the #1 HBR article of 2010.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Volunteering for the time starved

Ever find yourself with a few minutes to spare while you're waiting in line at a packed movie opening or a busy restaurant?  Ever wanted to use some of that time to share your skills to help support the causes you care about most?  

If you are familiar with "The Extraordinaries" app, you already know there is a way for even the busiest of us to give back.  Now the product has focused on Sparked, the next evolution of this innovative way to volunteer.  

The site takes you through a short series of questions to address the causes you care about most and offer specific skills to get involved.  (Of course these smart folks have integrated social media into the system, allowing you to see who else has similar skills and interests).

Once you've signed in, you are given a challenge.  They are simple and less time involved, so you are able to "microvolunteer" when its most convenient for you.  For example, I entered "Education" for a cause, and "Marketing" as a skill.  The first challenge I was given was to provide feedback on a non-profit website.  In addition to providing my own advice, I can read others and give a "thumbs up" to other site volunteers' suggestions - very cool.

Such a smart way to make volunteering tangible, convenient and catered to one's skills.  Check it out for yourself when you have a spare moment and let us know what you think!

HBR: From mudane to amazing!

Bill Taylor recently posted an inspirational challenge on HBR -- "How to Turn Anything from Adequate to Amazing."  He references a great example of taking a seemingly mundane business, in this case a parking garage (as pictured above), and turning it into something more, a civic space.

He asserts that despite the perception of your industry seeming not as "cutting-edge" and or "glamorous" as the likes of Google or Apple, there are opportunities to turn those assumptions on their head.  We couldn't agree more.

photo from NYT: High-End Miami Parking Garage

Thursday, May 5, 2011

What influcences you?

Trendwatching just released a great summary on what they call "The F-Factor" - or the increasing influence of the three "F"s - friends, fans, followers.  As we've covered in some of our previous posts, the new chain of influence continues to define social commerce and generate new avenues for brands to interact and learn from their consumer.

Specifically, they list five ways in which the "F-Factor' influences the consumer decision process:

  1. F-DISCOVERY: How consumers discover new products and services by relying on their social networks.
  2. F-RATED: How consumers will increasingly (and automatically) receive targeted ratings, recommendations and reviews from their social networks.
  3. F-FEEDBACK: How consumers can ask their friends and followers to improve and validate their buying decisions.
  4. F-TOGETHER: How shopping is becoming increasingly social, even when consumers and their peers are not physically together.
  5. F-ME: How consumers’ social networks are literally turned into products and services.

What was that last thing you discovered through a post, article or "like" shared by one of your friends?

Lets get persona

Great "how to guide" on using personas to navigate effective paid, owned and earned media in the rapidly growing Hispanic online community.

Read Jose Villa's article and key takeaways here.

Check out the website featured above:http://www.hispanicpersonaproject.com/

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Collaborative Commerce

Books Videos

We've spent a lot of time recently thinking about how business will be done in the future -- looking into the impact of social tools, the evolution of the consumer and opportunities for business growth that may not have existed five years ago.

Through all of this research, we curated quite a list of inspiring books, quotes, and videos that not only informed us, but also inspired us.  So, as true believers in the value of "knowledge flows" above is a aggregate of resources - an "inspired bibliography" if you will.

And of course, we'd love to keep adding to the list! Please share any additions with us!

Social Business

Here's a great article on "10 Ways To Use Twitter for Business" by Jeff Bullas.  He also links to some interesting Case Studies that illustrate the positive impact companies like Zappos and Dell have garnered from the use of social tools.

Have you started to experiment in social tools to drive business results?  Any words of wisdom to add?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Exponential Change

We've talked a lot about exponential change lately -- the explosion of choice, the brain freeze.  This is a fun little photo to remind us of just how far we have come in the last decade.

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | fantastic sams coupons