Sunday, August 28, 2011

Facebook's Ticker is here--What's Good and What's Bad

Seemingly the new feature introduced by Facebook is not only useful but also addictive as it streamlines the friends activities in a box. One can say its just a small twitter that you can see and use in your Facebook. Many users have already been looking for such a feature to quickly checkout posts activity by their friends without scrolling pages for minutes. Although this feature looks really nice but there are some pitfalls attached with it too.

One bad thing about Facebook ticker is that it shows the kind of activity which not all users would like to publicize. For instance, I just checked out on which communities/pages my friend commented. The Ticker even showed the text of his comments. This streaming will perhaps continue to show to all friends. I think its not good for ones privacy. Personally i do not want people to see on which pages i go and what contributions i make.

Similarly the app is displaying what comments you would make to the photos of your friends and families. This is very bad.

One good thing about this feature is that it rotates the posts/updates by friends and the pages you have joined.

I think Ticker must not go ahead of it and shall only limit showing only the posts/statuses activity.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Careers in Digital Media Marketing--A Sector Neglected By Pakistan

Digital Media Marketing (DMM) is an emerging field in the world of marketing. It utilizes digital media and advanced concepts of marketing integrated with computing technologies. New careers are being introduced in internet marketing and universities all over the world are offering graduate and post-graduate programs in this area of study. Unfortunately not only students and professionals in Pakistan are unaware of the career opportunities available in it but also the universities seem to be clueless what it is and how to incorporate its principles in the curriculum.

Digital Media Marketing and Advertising is different from the traditional marketing and advertising in a sense it is applied in different media such as computers and mobiles. Its performance is also tracked which gives it a mathematical touch.

Some of the major activities/careers in eCommerce marketing include Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), Social Media Optimization (SMO), Email marketing, Mobile Marketing, Digital Media Buying/Advertising, Marketing Research and Blogging. There are numerous sub-careers that also exist in the entire field.

There is a misconception that you have to be a computer science student to step into any career in eCommerce. That is a wrong perception as today most of internet marketing jobs require almost no programming or coding skills. Students who have a flare for advertising and marketing must think about starting their careers in Digital Media. You might be surprised to know that companies pay employees on managing their social media communication platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. New kinds of jobs such as Social Media Manager are arising.

It is true that e-marketing's importance is neglected in Pakistan. To this date you can hardly find out universities offering study programs in DMM. Similarly the businesses are not confident how to expand their business online. As a result we are missing opportunities to grow our economy and create jobs for the students.

Although in Pakistan a lot needs to be done to promote online spending but universities and IT Industry professionals shall interact with each other to frame out strategies that will benefit students entering into the field of IT marketing. For instance, IT professionals shall provide industry data to the universities that how many professionals are still engaged in outsourcing-based internet marketing careers despite the fact not much businesses in Pakistan are offering online commerce services. There are less jobs of domestic nature available as compared to the marketing jobs based on online outsourcing. Keep in mind that outsourcing involved doing work for businesses from distant countries.

In developed countries people are fast changing their buying habits. Many people now prefer to purchase items online and have them delivered to their homes through shipping. This is an encouraging thing for the professionals working in eCommerce businesses. Ad spending is also increasing to encourage more online buying. For instance, in US alone the first quarter of the year 2011 experienced phenomenal $7.3 billion ad spend and that ad spend is likely to cross $34 billion mark in the year 2011.

On the other hand in Pakistan there is a severe lack of digital infrastructure. Local banks are not able to devise satisfactory ecommerce and payment processing solutions while the businesses are reluctant to step into online sales. Common man might not trust that online purchasing in Pakistan is possible. In addition to this, due to poor track-record of our country in terms of excessive involvement in money-laundering, foreign payment-processing companies such as Paypal also do not provide services in Pakistan. This creates troubles for the IT companies which find it difficult to receive or send payments abroad.

Now the question arises is this a good move to enter into a digital media career considering the actual state of online economy in Pakistan? Will it be good for the students to find certificates and degree programs to train themselves in this field? What can they do when universities are not providing this kind of education? Is going abroad for higher studies and seeking jobs in foreign countries the only way to become an Internet Marketing professional? There will be numerous such questions that will arise in the minds of students.

Before trying to answer all of these questions it will be a good idea to discuss certain principle that greatly helps to choose any career. The basic principle is student must choose the field which he finds interesting and s/he would be passionate about it.

If you are one of these students who are interested in designing ads for web sites, researching the customer behavior of internet users and devising advertising campaigns on various platforms available online, you shall plunge into the growing profession of DMM. If there are no advanced courses being offered by the local universities never hesitate to move abroad into a respectable institution. Similarly trying self-help through practice, experiment and research is a good way to master Online Marketing.

You might not realize that in many cases companies do not just look for the degrees in your hand. Rather they will prefer individuals with great passion and relevant experience to do the tasks required for a job.