Saturday, November 14, 2015

Quick bite on Machine to Machine (M2M)

It’s not been very long since I have entered the Telecom space; but I am extremely impressed to see the incredible work done by Vodafone in M2M.
From last 2 weeks, I am going through some extensive training on this technology & I am blown away to see how M2M is revolutionizing industries from various verticals these days.

M2M is also impacting our lives too:-
Few street lights in India are not manually managed; they are street lights which are operated based on the Sun & Moonlight. 
To enter your hotel room all that you need to do is tap your Smartphone.
Car Insurance premium can now be calculated based on your driving habits.
Not only today people are getting smarter, it’s the machines which are getting smarter than us. Thanks to M2M technology. This technology has been around for quite some time now, but these days we see its implementation very often.

Machine to Machine communication is considered to be a highly developing domain, which will work as an enabler for making various verticals “Smart” by providing the capability of transmitting data in real time by using wired / wireless networks, this communication concept offers will provide a wide range of opportunities that will help enabling novel business cases, enhanced workflow, efficiency and improved quality of life.

The M2M ecosystem is considered to be organized in a 3-Layer conceptual model as explained below:
  1. Network Services Layer: Provided by the Network Service Provider (Telecom Service Providers).
  2. M2M Services Layer: Based on Internet Protocol (IP) and provided by the M2M Service Provider.
  3. Application Layer: Provided by the Application Service Provider catering to End User Applications
General description of M2M communication:
  • M2M refers to the technologies that allow wired / wireless system to communicate with the devices of the same ability.
  • M2M solution connects machines or devices to the internet transforming them into intelligent devices that can exchange real time information.
  • M2M uses a device (sensor, meter, etc.) to capture an 'event' (motion, meter reading, temperature, etc.), which is relayed through a network (wireless, wired or hybrid) to an application (software program), that translates the captured event into meaningful information. 
  • M2M devices may be fixed or mobile. Some examples of the fixed M2M applications are Smart metering, City Surveillance cameras, Home automation (remote monitoring of the house and communicating with Fridge, Air conditioners etc.). Moving M2M device applications may have vehicle tracking, Fitness health care devices, e-call, woman safety bands etc. Enabling technologies are as given below:
    • RFID, wireless sensor networks (WSNs), Location based services (LBS).
    • Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), NFC, WLAN (IEEE 802.11), Low power personal area network (IEEE 802.15.4) such as ZigBee, 6LoWPAN, Thread for short range communication (TAN / BAN/ FAN/ NAN/ LAN)
    • Cellular 2G/ 3G / LTE MTC (3GPP rel 12), fixed line BB for WAN depending upon the applications.
    • LPWAN technology such as LoRa and Sigfox for WAN are proprietary
    • 5G will bring ultra-high reliability, ultra-low latency, wide coverage and high security network, suitable for M2M / IoT
    • IPv6 capable of providing unique IP addresses to all the devices available on earth. 
  • Devices may be connected directly to the M2M platform or through Gateway / aggregator, depending upon the design of the network. Fixed M2M devices may be connected through gateways having connectivity on lease lines (IP) / fixed line BB or on SIM based connectivity. 
  • Moving M2M devices will be having the connectivity mainly on SIM

M2M Benefits:
  • Operation efficiency: Automation of a process
  • New Business Models:  Innovative strategy
  • Consumer satisfaction:  Remote engine diagnostics of vehicles are a good example which WOWs  customers
  • Compliance: Private APN to assure data security, the transaction is done safely
  • Sustainability: eg Smart metering, Reduce wastage & assure optimized usage of resources

How M2M work?
  1.  A SIM is inserted into the device
  2. The SIM gathers information and transfers it via the Vodafone network to an M2M application
  3. The M2M application processes the data to provide us with useful information

M2M applications:-M2M applications as per industry are given below:

Industry / Vertical
M2M applications
Automotive/ Transportation
Vehicle tracking, e-call, V2V and V2I applications, traffic control, Navigation, Infotainment, Fleet management, asset tracking,  manufacturing and logistics

Utilities / Energy
Smart metering, smart grid, Electric line monitoring, gas / oil / water pipeline monitoring.

Health care
Remote monitoring of patient after surgery (e-health), remote diagnostics, medication reminders, Tele-medicine, wearable health devices

Safety & Surveillance
Commercial and home security monitoring, Surveillance applications, Fire alarm, Police / medical alert

Financial /Retail
Point of sale (POS), ATM, Kiosk, Vending machines, digital signage and handheld terminals.

Public Safety
Highway, bridge, traffic management, homeland security, police, fire and emergency services.

Smart City
Intelligent transport System, Waste management, Street  Light control system, Water distribution, Smart Parking

Remotely controlled irrigation pump

Some interesting work by Vodafone in M2M:
1. Calcutta Smart meters send electronic meter readings to the energy provider automatically. Read more....

2. Reva - Making the connected car a reality. Read more...

3. mSwipe-  Card payment via smartphone.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Radian6 for Social Media Listening & Engagement - Top 10 Features

I have been using social media for brand promotion and engagement; there was this desperate need to evaluate data flowing in various channels. That’s when I discovered Radian 6 – it’s a very expensive tool but worth exploring.  
Radian6 has created a social media monitoring and engagement platform that allows you to view relevant conversations happening around your brand and products in real time. It’s a great social media listening tool that allows brands to enhance their products & services. I have been playing around with it for quite some time and here’s a breakdown of the top 10 most important features of Radian6.

Before you get started, create “Topic profile” by providing your product/ brand name, keywords and Social media channel list.

1. Conversation Cloud: It’s a widget that displays the top 50 words and call out the more distinct words mentioned across all the social media about your product/brand. So, if a negative word appears in the Conversation Cloud, it may be worth further investigating those mentions to see what’s being said about their brand.

2. River of News: River of news widget enables you to see mentions about your brand, products or competitors, and where the conversation is taking place. Further, the River of News allows brands to organize these conversations by Forum Thread Size, Twitter Followers, Publish Date, Media View Count, and more.
3. Topic Trends: By opening the River of News or Conversation Cloud widgets within Topic Trends, can further drill down into specific points throughout the timeline to see why the conversation had a spike during a specific time period. It pulls in conversations from Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, Flickr, YouTube, Mainstream News, and Buy/Sell websites
4. Reporting: With this feature all the Radian6 widget data can be seamlessly integrated into excel worksheets. You can set up alert emailed reports on daily/weekly bases that need to be sent out to the higher management.
5. Summary Dashboard:  With the summary dashboard users can monitor about their brand, products, competitors and regarding industry very conveniently. It provides Social media metrics, Twitter analysis, brand analysis, competitive intelligence, workflow, engagement, key influencers, and demographics. It’s like a report card which gives the overall well being of brands from development to failures.

6. CS Engagement: It allows brands to interact with their customers as well as monitor conversations. Via engagement console can integrate various social media platforms such as multiple twitter handles, Facebook account and all the pages associated with the brand are integrated as well and chatter streams. Workflow functions with team mates are even possible on the go! If you have a VOC (Voice of the customer) team the desktop version will help teams to work on the go!

7. Competitive Analysis: Radian6 offers users comprehensive coverage of listening, monitoring and discussing on the social web about the Interaction of their customers with brand products as well as competitors. Given the same industry,  it’s easy to track which competitor was trending, and for what reasons. Based on the no of total post & sentimental analysis you can get a feel of how the market interacts with your competitor. You can build your strategy to play around with their weekends.  

8. Tracking Leads Generated: Radian6 is now part of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud, so its integration with is improving with each release. You can drive revenue by understanding what content drives traffic, finding the conversations that will convert into prospective sales. Discover purchase signals and point-of-need conversations or even intercept discussions with competitors. Plus, you can take advantage of the integration capabilities, linking you to Salesforce CRM, Service Cloud, web analytics, and more.

8. Sentiment Analysis: Radian6 is one of those matured tool which has the capability of automated sentiment reviews on-topic posts as they come in, determines the sentiment of the post at the sentence level, and aggregates a positive, negative, or neutral designation at the post level based on specifies sentiment keywords and phrases. To BigData is aggressively used to identify is our customers are happy about our products & services. Radian6 sits as an overlay to this technology and can give you real-time data of how your customers are feeling at a given time for brands to course correct and not lose revenue and goodness of the customers.

10.  Media Monitoring: Brand is facing the pressure of being present in all the social channels right from Facebook,Twitter, Instagram, Blog, YouTube to Forum. In this case radian6 will help you identify which are the most effective channels and can guide towards how much resource and budget brand need to invest in a given social channel to assure maximum ROI.

Let me know which is your favourite feature and why :) 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Why as a Marketer I ask for Data?

How to approach your target audience?
Where would you find your TG?
When can you connect with your TG?
How much budget I allocate for a Digital campaign?
What is the idea cost per user acquisition?
Best bid for CTC/CTR/CPM?

….and many more questions haunt a marketers mind.

In a traditional & conventional marketing scenarios, all these questions where answered with a vague amount of guess, prediction, case studies, intuition, assumption, try & error mechanism.

Well, in todays time with so much investment in big data analytics, marketers are on the right track when they decide to use a targeted and intentional approach to analysing their data. Big Data has become a marketing buzzword. All that marketers need to do is ask the right set of questions to get measurable results.

As a marketer we have access to social media analytics data, sales date, internet searches, cookies, CRM, thus we should ask some interesting questions to Big Data:

Which is the untapped market segment?
Nike saw big data as a portal into an entirely new market. As strong as Nike’s position has been, the “just do it” inspiration of its brand and the quality of its products was likely not enough to strengthen and grow its highly valuable and profitable customer relationships in the future. The data and information streaming from performance tracking and health monitoring wearables was potentially more valuable, providing a closer, more sustainable and constant connection to customers (not to mention loads of high-value data). Big data – a great complement to Nike’s current product portfolio and market positioning was both the ends and means of Nike’s innovation into a new market

When are consumers leaving us?
When T-Mobile set out to decrease its churn rates, it looked to big data to tell the story of customers who jumped ship and went to another company. The company noticed that customers who left shared similar behaviours across billing cycles, web logs, and social media channels.
Having identified several markers as risk factors, the company was able to effectively intervene when some of these markers popped up, decreasing churn rate within a quarter.

How effective is our social media?
Whirlpool, the largest manufacturer of home appliances, wanted to discover what their customers and consumers were saying about their products and services on social media platforms.They used Big Data to monitor and analysis conversations across popular channels such as Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube, review and blogger sites, and mainstream news. Analytics findings were incorporated into Whirlpool’s decision models to accurately predict customer churn, loyalty, and satisfaction. This process enabled the company to listen, respond, and measure on a scale unobtainable by manual methods. The results revealed that Whirlpool improved its understanding of its overall business. There was increased satisfaction, faster responsiveness, and overall, more satisfied experiences with customers. 

Do our customers want us?
Finding the commonality in what your customers like can be eye-opening and can prevent you from making big investments in products or services that no one is interested in. Netflix proved this point when it optioned the wildly successful series "House of Cards."
Execs weren't originally sure whether to move on the series or not. Sure, it was good, but would Netflix audiences like it? Luckily, Netflix had more than enough data at its disposal to help make a pretty educated guess. Do viewers like Kevin Spacey? Yes. Do they watch gripping, cynical political dramas? Yes. Do viewers watch material like this all the way through? Yes! Then, does it follow that they will like this series? Yes! And so it is that "House of Cards" fans have big data to thank for hours of enjoyable TV watching.

How effective is you're marketing?
Nissan have a whole host of localised websites designed to help consumers determine which Nissan is ideal for them. They wanted to go further than just simply measuring conversions, but instead delve into the car types, models and colours that customers had been looking at online.

They did this through a ‘request form’ that a potential customer has to fill out following their completion of a brochure or test drive request. By aggregating these data points from individual customers, Nissan were able to paint a vivid picture as to the vehicles which were in demand throughout a particular region – this means that advertising campaigns and production can be tailored to suit the needs of a region instead of just a country as a whole.

What will WOW a customer & gain a competitive edge?
It’s hard to talk about analytics success stories and not mention Amazon. They were one of the early adopters and are the only company that have a patent that allows them to ship goods before an order has even been placed. Their ‘customers who bought this…’ feature was revolutionary at the time, but compared to the company’s current offerings, it pales into insignificance. Now, the data points are wide-ranging and far more indicative of what a customer is likely to be genuinely interested in.

Today’s recommendations are based on. their wish list, the items they have reviewed and what similar people have purchased – this creates a very rounded profile of a customer and is a great example of predictive analytics being used to its full potential.

So to get the most from your Big Data investment, focus on the questions you's love to answer for your business. But remember, while there may be good and mediocre questions, the worst mistake you can make is being too afraid to ask your data any questions at all. The process may be challenging, but it can create an incredibly targeted and effective strategy.

Data-driven decisions are better than intuition-based ones. Happy Questioning!

Monday, March 30, 2015

A golden journey coming to an end with Huawei

Before I joined Huawei India all I knew was, that I had enormous passion for Android. My understanding of the OEM space today has strengthened working with Huawei for 3 and half years.

It’s been a golden all my passion, aspirations, desires, ideas all started coming true here. I could actually write a book, if I have to describe the learning’s that I got here....But I shall keep it limited to a post for now & just share some of the key projects I worked on:

MBB Landing Page:

Working as a business developer, partnered with some amazing companies to bring in some cool discounts, gifts, offers for our datacard users. The first web landing page we started monetizing by bringing real value for our customers. Total WIN-WIN

Huawei Club:

The new era of marketing is all about empowering your core fans to talk & advocate your brand. We travelled to many cites, visited colleges, met young minds, engaged with them & as a brand tried to bring in a small difference in the way they learn/adopt technology. Through the club we wanted to make fans feel honoured of being who they are & aspire to be who they wish to be. During this phase...I relived my college days!


The power of fans can take you anywhere..That’s what we witnessed during our partnership with RCB. We were all there in all the possible new channels, newspapers. Getting to meet all the RCB players was a dream comes true for me.


Being in this Smartphone space, I leant that hardware is going to get saturated. The game changer will be the experience an OEM will bring on to their consumers hand via the device. EMUI stood for making user experience simple & make touch more meaning full. Engaging with EMUI users across the global made my belief stronger about the power of social media. The power where you can get your ideas spread across with not limitations.

Honor Launch Event
So grateful to end my journey with some very sweet memories, all that was created during our recent Honor launch event in Delhi. I will forever be a fan of Huawei products & people who inspired me during this journey.

I take this opportunity to thank Huawei for making this journey remarkable & for all the beautiful memories which I will cherish for lifetime.

This is the perfect time, I am ready to finally say goodbye to the corporate world & embrace the start-up life. I will see all my loved ones on the other side...where my life takes a 180 degree twist. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

12 Social Media listening tools

Social Media is used by brands for various purposes like:
      ·         Brand Building
      ·         CRM
      ·         ORM (Online Reputation Management)
      ·         Lead Generation
      ·         Sales
      ·         Traffic Generation
      ·         Internal Communication
      ·         Fun Raising

The major activity in social media that marketers need to do is listen to what, when, where are consumers talking about their respective brands. Data on web is scattered all around, thus to make our life's more easy we have some free, premium & paid Social Media listening tools.

Tools to Monitor & Measure on Social Media:

1. Google Alerts: 

It’s a free tool; you can get email notifications any time that Google finds new results on a topic you’re interested in. Eg:- get updates about a product you like, find out when people post content about your brand on the web, or keep up with news stories.

Google Analytics is a free service offered by Google that generates detailed statistics about a website's traffic and traffic sources and measures conversions and sales.

3. Facebook Insights:
Facebook Insights is a pretty powerful tool for those wanting to track user interaction on their Facebook Fan Page. Facebook Insights helps the page admin to track the number of active users, engagement, brand reach, virality & better understand page performance.

4 Klout: 
Influence is the ability to drive action. When you share something on social media or in real life and people respond, that’s influence. The more influential you are, the higher your Klout Score. It offers several ways to bring influencers & brands together.

Very similar to Klout, it helps brands to identify the key influencers & content that really matter to them.

TweetReach is a simple free tool to measure how far a hashtag reached on Twitter. It provides set of metrics to help you understand an idea's reach on Twitter, top contributors, top RTs etc

Bitly is not only a URL shortening service but also lets you track the statistic of any bitly URL

Social Mention is a social media search engine that searches user-generated content such as blogs, comments, bookmarks, events, news, videos, tweets from across the web into a single stream of Information. It’s one interface to know if your brand reputation across the social channels is negative or positive.

It’s a paid social media management system, with functionality for teams to focus on engagement, publishing & analytics. Sprout makes it easy for the entire team to respond to customers on social and to know we’ve gotten back to each and every one. Provides great managing reports.

10. Alterian SM2:
Alterian SM2 is a business intelligence solution designed to provide visibility into social media and let brands tap into their customers' thoughts and opinions.

11. Radian6:
Very popular & desired social media tool. Powerful tool which will change the way you use digital marketing. Radian6 is a platform that enables organizations to monitor and engage in conversations across the social web. When you configure a search, the Radian6 platform retrieves results from more than 150 million sites and sources.

12. Sysomos: 
Sysomos helps you monitor, analyze, gather insights and ultimately, make the decisions that allow you to create better products and services for your customers

All the above tools lets you hear customers feedback, issues, suggestions...All that I can say with my experience is - You build customer loyalty and connection not by answering fast, but by engaging with respect and transparency.

So let’s not social media be all about no of Facebook likes, Twitter followers, Youtube views, Unique page views...let it be a platform where customers feel heard & connected to brands. 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

10 Learning’s from 2014 – A Chance to do it right in 2015

1. Save & Travel More:
Last year visited - Jaipur, Jodhpur, Delhi, Agra, Bangkok, Vellore, Mangalore, Gokarna…
Each travel brought in a new perception & exposure to different set of culture & people.

My logic says "Travelling actually saves you money". Thus this year I will work hard and save enough money so that I can travel more.

2. Kick-start a project with a clear Vision:
A project which was very close to my heart turned out to be unsuccessful not because we lacked efforts or skills but due to the gap in project vision.

Working towards clarifying the short term & long term vision for a project before it begins.

3. Keep abreast with latest Technology:
When I heard that your Refrigerator can send you email with list of grocery things to buy, I was amazed to know that Internet of Things has not just arrived – people have been working on it since 2010.

Big Data my latest crush, I lose my sleep imagining tones of things how Big Data can change the world in coming years. I hope to get my hands dirty on it soon. 

4. Health is Wealth:
Fast food, late hours of work, lack of sleep and no exercise is causing health issue to all.

If we don’t have a good health you can’t go a long way in life – so I have committed 45 mins each day for workout. Aiming to get that damn abs. 

5. Spend more time with loved once:
We always take our loved ones for granted. When you learn how unpredictable life is, its too late.

Keep the faith, things can change drastically in a year and bring more happiness than ever

6. Faith can do Miracles:
Few incidents that happened to me last year looks like a miracle, but without putting any logic I realized that you got to have faith to make things happen for you the way you want it.

All that I have is bring it on!

7. Don't think ...Just do it:
We all think & try to put logic around before doing anything. We think, we thing, we thing & eventually give up! At the end we regret or land up being normal.

Normal is not cool, just do! If it works - good for you, if it doesn't you will fall & learn more...that's what is life all about. Start living!

9. Slow down enjoy life more:
I was once asked “What you want from life?” & I realized – all that I want is to be happy.

Will not let time pass, instead I will be busy building memories.  

10. Work on Ideas:
I got so addicted to “Shark Tank” that I finished watching all the series in a month. That not only changed my perception towards the way I look at product but also what it takes to bring ideas into reality.

When I see how we live our lives & the kind of product we work with – I know there is a much better way of how things can be done. Let not the fear of failure stop us any more.

I wish you write and draw something that is important and interesting for you...
And if anything goes wrong I hope you get courage to wipe and start again.
Wish you and yours a happy new year!