Archive | September 29, 2013

Digital Magzine Ads – new direction for advertisement

In this decade, digital magazine emerged with the portable and digital trend results from mobile personal devices (tablet, iphone, etc.). Digital magazine user amount follows the geometric growth. According to MPA (magazine media factbook, 2012), “the number of iPad apps for U.S. magazines has increased more than ten-fold since iMonitor™ started tracking publication-related apps in April 2010”. The advertisements embedded in digital magazines started to attract companies’ attention. For prediction of digital magazine ads market, please refers to:

But how digital magazine ads utilize IT to distinct from traditional printed one and other e-advertisements? This blog will roughly excavate the 3 crucial characteristics of digital magazine ads.

1. Multimedia content

Digital magazine ads typically insert video/BGM/audio which linked from internet, provides the reader a more completed access to the ads’ content and superior experiences and excitements.



2. Interactive and reader-controllable

Differ from traditional one-way delivered style of print advertisement, digital magazine ads are carefully designed to enable the interactions between ads and readers.

Readers could tab on the content they interested in for more information, tab on the link to directly visit related website (which outside of the magazine), sign up for opt-in emails/newsletters, entering content (e.g. for questionnaires) and so forth. Ads can jump out from the page size limit to enriching content through, for instance, listing out only tiny photos for different products, user can tab to view detail information about the product if they interests. Ads providers can even be authorized to post mini game to improve customer engagement.



Besides the interactive property, controllability is another competency that digital magazine ads own, which provide a superior user experiences. As mentioned before, readers can explore the contents they are in favor of via interactions. Nonetheless, they are also allowed to skip the content they feel unattractive by avoiding tabbing, for example, play button of a video, links, or just slide vertically – at present, it is not surprised to see a digital magazine page can be slid both vertically (for more information about this page) and horizontally (to the next page).

3. High pertinency

At last, digital magazine ads inherit strength from printed magazine ads namely high pertinence. The source of high pertinency is, readers select magazine by themselves, different magazines vary from themes, this provides a direction for ads provider to choose the most effective magazine for them. Nevertheless, digital magazine ads leverage this strength by analyzing electronic statistics and feedback according to reader’s reading behaviors. Therefore, magazine publishers and ads providers can continuously improve the accuracy and quality of ads.

Here are some interesting facts about digital magazine advertisement:

  • Ÿ   Reader engagement with a digital interactive magazine (82%) is more than four times greater than with a website of similar content (18%).
  • Ÿ   Of all forms of electronic advertising, interactive magazine ads have the least negative impact on the reader experience — more than 7 in 10 find display ads in digital magazines less intrusive than banner ads; 8 in 10 see them as “easier to read,” “inviting” and “more fun.”
  • Ÿ   58% of digital magazine readers read their edition the same day it arrives.
  • Ÿ   60% of digital consumer magazine readers go to an advertiser’s website and 55% tried a new product or idea presented in their digital edition.


Technology and Self-Control

In his best-selling book Predictably Irrational [1], Dan Ariely made an important point about procrastination: Everyone does it, but some people simply apply smarter methods of self-control. For all those who would like to get more things done, here are some helpful apps to keep you on track!

stickK is a website that allows you to set up a commitment contract for any goal you want to reach (quit smoking, lose weight, finish your thesis in time) and include incentives for yourself, e.g. fines that you will have to pay for breaking the contract. In addition, you can select a referee for monitoring your progress to make sure that you report everything truthfully. The website was launched by a group of professors from Yale who recognized the difficulty that most people have with self-control and came up with a scheme that makes it easier to follow through on commitments. The results so far look promising:


If you would simply like to study for a few hours without any distractions, try Steve Lambert’s app SelfControl (Mac only) which allows you to block your access to certain websites. The best part: even after deleting the app or restarting your computer, you will not be able to access the blacklisted sites until the time runs out.

Let me know if you use these apps (or similar ones) and how it works for you!


[1] Ariely, D, 2008. Predictably Irrational, Harper Collins.
[2] Picture:

Team 16 – Technology of the week (5): DesignCrowd vs. Threadless


With the emergent electronic markets, it is very common to create a product for a company or a consumer whom could be a thousand kilometers away. The development of information technology contributed greatly to the rise in these electronic market. Information technology reduced time and costs, which created all sorts of new trends such as crowdsourcing.

In our technology of the week report we would like to introduce two companies that revolve around the phenomena of crowdsourcing.

The first company is DesignCrowd. DesignCrowd provides an online platform for other companies which are looking for any form of design, the community of 141.235 designers will create the input. The creator of the best design will get a financial reward. Designcrowd operates in a B2B-market, linking companies to free-lance designers with an industry consortia form. (

Our second company is Threadless. Threadless gives designers the opportunity to create clothes designs. The community decides which designs are the best and then Threadless decides to print them and put them in the shop. Consumers can buy the clothes and the designer gets financially compensated. Threadless operates in a B2C-market using co-creation design and a platform to create their items opposed to Designcrowd.

Threadless and DesignCrowd both use crowdsourcing for their business models, but the way they do so is very different. Whereas Threadless sells shirts directly to its customers and uses the crowd for designing their shirts, Designcrowd is an intermediary allowing companies to find designers. They use the crowd to deliver the most fitting design to a company at lower cost. However, both companies are extremely dependent on the crowds input.

Becoming a designer in the electronic markets nowadays is easier than ever. Are you ready to design and be judged by the crowd?

The age of not owning: they give us everything, we leave with nothing


Although people are now more than ever making use of online webshops for their purchases and companies are going online to grasp the potential of ecommerce, there is another business model that is becoming even more important in our day-to-day lives. Just like me, you probably use Spotify for your music, watch Youtube videos occasionally and might even have tried Netflix since it launched in the Netherlands. And if you’re creative, you might use Photoshop and noticed that this service moved to a subscription-based system.

What do Spotify, Youtube, Netflix and Adobe have in common? They have all started to rent their goods. The price may not even be high, that’s not the point, but we’ve come to live in an age of not owning. Where is the time when we had shelves from IKEA solely for storing our DVD’s and CD’s? Nowadays nobody has them anymore. Instead, consumers are moving away from buying music and movies towards streaming and everybody seems happy with this convenience. But I think it’s an illusion to view this as the perfect solution, when in fact it is a trap the world has started to embrace, when in the end we get nothing in return.

Just think of Spotify; you think that you have a music collection, with your own music playlists and even your local songs of your computer are imported. In a way you do have a music collection, but what if Spotify decides to increase the monthly subscription amount each month or even worse; decides to stop this service, or goes bankrupt. Then all ‘your’ songs would be gone, you may even have spent 100 euro’s of monthly subscriptions for it, when you do not even own the songs, you merely rented them. Also while paying for it; you were limited to syncing your Spotify account with only three devices.  It may seem okay to pay some money for an almost unlimited music library, but the consequences when it ends are disappointing.

Subscribing to digital content is still a fairly new business model, and I think that users are still trying to find out what it means to lease digital content and whether it is an investment that is worth it for what you get in the long term. But as things are going more digital content is moving to this business model; e.g. Oyster is a new application for books, and newspapers are setting up a paywall that let’s you view all content available online when paying a fee.

In other words: Do you think it’s worth it? Or do you prefer ‘the old way’ of buying and owning your digital content? And will this be a trend that is here to stay?


Caroline Massart



A to B? Has never been this convenient!

What is the most stressful situation of your day? Getting a shower? Drinking coffee? No, we think for many of you it is getting from A to B. For the technology of the week, we analyzed two techniques making commuting more convenient and less stressful. TomTom Live Services provides accurate, comprehensive and frequent traffic information, and better road coverage compared to other traffic solutions. As soon as an accident or other delay is found on the route, TomTom alerts the motorist and can re-route to an alternative, faster route. Subsequently, the idea of the iNStApp is to inform passengers real-time with the occupancy level of trains. The different occupancy rates in the compartments are indicated with green, yellow or red LED screens at the stations. Moreover, one can see the features of different compartments, such as wheelchair entrances, WIFI network or a silence compartment. The functionalities of iNStApp will be integrated with the already existing NS Reisplanner Xtra App, which displays current travel information.

TomTom LS and NS iNStApp are both technologies providing real-time information to travelers. We can deduct that people have to make a decision regarding which technology they use, depending on which type of transport they use. If the technologies have an effect on the type of transport a person chooses, it means that the two are competing . TomTom competes normally with many other companies, while NS enjoys a more monopolistic market. Also, the type of device the technologies are available on. TomTom LS is offered on a separate TomTom device, and is available on mobile devices, through apps. The iNStApp can be accessed with supported iOS’s, but even without one, thanks to the LED screens at stations that offer the real-time information, making iNStApp to some extent easier to use. Lastly, where for TomTom the consumer will have to pay, iNStApp is a free service. To conclude, as stated, the techniques are designed both beneficial to commuters and the organizations. Customer satisfaction will rise by providing real-time journey information and organizations will gather vast amounts of data. As a result, management of TomTom and NS can base their decisions on real data commuters data instead of the HiPPOs.

NS iNStApp explained:

TomTom Live Services explained:

McAfee, A., & Brynjolfsson, E. (2012). Big data: the management revolution.Harvard business review, 90(10), 60-66.
Wokke, A. (2013, 2 4). NS-app laat realtime drukte in treinen zien. Used on 9 24, 2013, from Tweakers:

Technology of the Week: Team 14

Omni-channel Retailing



Recently, a new business term has been appearing more and more in ecommerce blogs, forums and social media: omni-channel retailing. Although regarded as a buzzword by sales experts a couple of years ago, it is now a “must-have” competitive advantage for retail companies that operate in multiple channels (store, internet, social networks, mobile, catalogue), as users don’t want to see different, indistinguishable channels during their shopping experience but rather they seek a unified solution to meet their demands. Omnichannel retailing promises to refine the shopping procedure, meld the advantages of physical stores with the information-rich experience of online shopping and let customers move seamlessly among retail environments, as if they were one.


The following animation illustrates and captures the essence of the omnichannel approach:


But the question is : why should retailers invest money and time in converging their existing channels using the omnichannel approach? According to studies, the omnichannel shopper spends on average 3.5 times more with retailers than someone using just one or two channels. Furthermore, an “Omni-shopper” is very well informed, knows exactly what her needs are and most importantly, she exhibits strong loyalty and is more likely to influence others to endorse a retailer. Within 5 years, it is predicted that about 80% of retail purchases will be heavily influenced by omnichannel activity.

With that in mind, retailers might need to consider the following strategies in an effort to provide a unique and fluid experience to customers:

  • Synchronize all channels into a common database. In that way, discrepancies between different channels’ prices, stock amounts, availability of products, promotions etc. can be avoided.
  • Give flexibility in customers’ buying options. For instance, a customer shall be able to check the inventory by the store, buy the product online and finally, pick it from a specific location.
  • Create incentives for different departments to share data.
  • Install quick pick-up counters inside the brick-and-mortar for online purchasers.
  • Unite e-commerce and retail channel under one leader.

Apparently, the evolution towards an integrated physical, digital, mobile and social shopping experience is just starting. For that reason, retailers will have to adapt to the new strategy and innovate if they don’t want to lose market share and be left behind the competition.

What about you? Have you found yourself in a position where you used a multi-channel approach to buy a product? Do you think that companies should invest on that strategy?



Click to access 2013_XChannel_rpt_RSR.pdf

Team 13 – Technology of the week (5): smarter bidding

Did you ever buy something on eBay? Then you might know finding the right item for the right price can be quite a hassle. Everything in our world gets smarter; can our online bids also become smarter?

eBay is the largest online marketplace at the moment, and therefore it is not strange that given the topic of this week, – e-markets and auctions – the technology in this blog has something to do with eBay. Since mobile is big at the moment, the focus here is on mobile apps. The ones that are introduced and compared are ‘Myibidder’ and ‘Pocket auctions for eBay’.

Pocket auctions for eBay is a free app that provides a handy shortcut to use eBay more efficiently. Search becomes easier and smarter, by for instance offering a feature in which you can scan barcodes, which the app then finds on eBay. Another handy aspect is that you can get warnings when you are outbid and you can receive notifications when the bid is nearly closed. The downsides? For one, it is only available for android. Myibidder on the other hand is available on other platforms as well, though this app usually is not available for free. The niftiest feature of this app is that it can ‘snipe’: you pick an item you want, you place your maximum bid and the app does everything for you! It does so by placing the bid seconds before the bid ends. The risk of losing the item is higher, but if you win you got it at the lowest possible price. An advantage of Pocket auctions over Myibidder is that it gives much more information about the items, meaning product uncertainty is lower.

Which app would you choose? Either will make your online auction experience smarter!

Team 13
Session 5