Monday, December 19, 2011

5 tech trends to watch out in 2012

As 2011 draws to a close, here are some trends which will top the trending list in 2012:

1) Mobile payments and NFC
This year saw the success of Square's iPhone dongle and that seems to be just the start of mobile payments. 2012 will have NFC change the mobile payment landscape. My earlier post talked about this more.

By 2013, 1 in 5 cellphones are expected to be NFC enabled. This trend is by far going to be one of the biggest and impact our day-to-day life.

2) Siri and beyond
Siri feature in iPhone 4S might still seem like in an alpha stage but it is the advent of sophistication in the voice control field. While voice control has been around since many years, it was not until now that it seems intelligent and futuristic. There are also talks that Apple might use this to replace the remote control.

3) Spatial gestures
While voice will thrive in 2012, spatial gestures will also have early adoption. Microsoft Kinect has started this trend and its going to get more and more popular in the coming year.

4) More Tablets

2011 was the inflection point for tablets. With the Kindle Fire selling like hot cakes it is expected to give some serious competition to the iPad. The different in price points would make this play more serious.

5) HTML 5

2011 already saw the start of many apps in HTML5 and even hybrid in native wrappers. With the biggest advantage of multiple platform support, this is definitely going to be explored by many more companies who are considering mobile apps for their businesses.

Friday, December 9, 2011

NFC would be game changing

I saw the demonstration of NFC and image recognition in Grocery IQ iPhone and Android apps by the CTO of and it led me thinking to how this would change the future. The possibilities are immense and NFC has barely been launched.

NFC or Near Field Communication allows for simplified transactions, data exchange, and wireless connections between two devices in proximity to each other, usually by no more than a few centimeters. Many smartphones currently on the market contain embedded NFC chips that can send encrypted data to a reader located within a short distance, for instance, next to a retail cash register. The smartphone or tablet with an NFC chip can serve as a credit card, id card or key card.

Lets take a deep dive into some of its applications:

(1) Coupon codes: The Demo of this app got me thinking so I will start with this. The smartphone will store all your coupons and then you can just use NFC to transfer coupon codes to avail discounts. This not only saves time at the cash register but a lot more time from clipping, emailing or printing coupons.

(2) Payment Gateway: This is probably the biggest and most talked about application. With Google Wallets already in action on some Android phones and usable across many stores, many other companies are likely to follow soon. Both handset and point-of-sale manufacturers are investing in this.

(3) On-to-go virtual shopping: Many shopping experience has been transformed using QR codes already. Tesco has already implemented grocery shopping at a subway station in Korea. Watch the video here. Sears and Kmart among many others are using posters to encourage virtual shopping. In both the stores, you scan a QR code of displayed merchandize, add to your cart and pay. The goods get delivered to your home. With the launch of more NFC enabled phones this process will become even quicker.

(4) Identification and Tickets: It would be used by hotels to replace key cards. You can check in on your mobile, download a virtual key on your phone and use it to enter your room with a tap at the NFC-enabled door. It can also be used to replace boarding passes, concert or movie tickets or basically any place where you have a possibility of forgetting your physical ticket.

(5) Advertising and User engagement:
Kraft Foods has used this in a Halls Campaign in Chicago to promote new products and get user feedback. Read more on this link. Besides serving the intended purpose this is sure to generate a lot of buzz at this stage of the NFC lifecycle.

The possibilities are endless and we will see many more uses as more NFC devices are launched.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Top Smartphone OS in US: Android

According to a report released by Nielsen today, Android is still the number one smartphone OS in US in Q3 of 2011. As per the data, Android accounts for 43% of the smartphones OS in US. iOS is a distant second with 28%. Android has jumped from 39% in Q2 of 2011 based on the data released by Neilsen in July. iOS has maintained its 28% share since last quarter.

While Apple holds a second spot on the smartphone OS front, it is in the lead as the smartphone manufacturer. The obvious reason is the fragmented Android manufacturer market. RIM's Blackberry OS has fallen from 20% to 18% in Q3. Windows Mobile has also fallen from 9% to 7%. It is interesting how the share lost by RIM and Windows Mobile has been picked by Android with iOS reamining constant. However with the new hardware and OS version announcements, Q4 will definitely show some more changes.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Brands in App Stores

As per a report released today by the mobile analytics firm Distimo, a mobile 91% of the top 100 brands have a presence in atleast one mobile app store. This is huge increased compare to only 51% having a mobile app around 18 months back.

Most brands have free apps and look at the app stores to establish a presence of their brand rather than making money.

The average number of apps per brand is 24! Some of the most active brands are Disney (636 apps) and Sony (285). The 3rd on the list if BMW at 63.

It doesn't come as a surprise that Apple’s App Store is the number one pick. 86% of the top brands have a presence in Apple’s iPhone App Store, 66% are in the Apple iPad App Store, 59% have a presence in the Android Market and a low 26% are in BlackBerry’s App World.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Connecting You to Public & Private Openings Pt. 2

Privacy issues

Once your resume is posted on any number of job boards, you have no idea who may have access to your material. Almost all major job boards sell access to their resume databases. Both employers and recruiters utilize these services as part of their search for candidates. Since every word in your resume is scannable, anyone who uses their services might uncover your resume. This is just one more reason for using short resumes, materials that don’t reveal anything unnecessary... on the Internet.


Aggregators are sites that go out and “spider” other sites... and subsequently list all openings in one place. They by no means represent the entire public market, but these sites make it much more convenient for people to find what they want and respond accordingly.

Some sites are free and others charge a fee to subscribe to their service. Currently they claim to aggregate openings from thousands of sources, but none come close to representing the entire public market.

Be aware, the more successful these sites become—the more job seekers compete with you. These sites also must grapple with the problems of all job boards relative to duplicate job listings, false listings and jobs that keep reappearing on a regular basis. In an era of identify theft, you don’t want to let complete information fall into the wrong hands. This is another reason for using one-page resumes as your introductory material, and not revealing your complete story.

Over the years some less than legitimate recruiting agencies have been notorious for running ads to simply collect resumes. Then, they try to shop them to employers for a placement commission. Unfortunately, too many people have been burned when their resume reaches their current employer.

Too many online ads are posted which sound like an attractive position, but which subsequently result in a response that asks you to fill out an on-line profile that seeks disclosure of a substantial amount of private information. This is partially caused by the “dehumanization” of the recruiting process in our Internet era. But, be assured, there are others who are collecting this information for different purposes. How do you tell which ads are real? Look for openings that really target what an employer is looking for.

For more information be sure to check out SET Personal Marketing's Twitter, follow SET Personal Marketing's Facebook, watch SET Personal Marketing's videos on YouTube or visit SET Personal Marketing's website.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Connecting You to Public & Private Openings Pt. 1

Our job hunting information system is a unique resource for helping you uncover any public openings that might be suitable for you. At the same time, it is invaluable for helping people connect with situations that are private. With this in mind, it will be critical for you to clearly understand the different approaches to effectively penetrating both the public market and the private market.

Public openings

Through our job hunting information system, you will be able to connect with virtually all openings from all worthwhile sources. But, the first thing that is important to understand here is how the public job market is formed.

When employers decide to hire someone... there is an event that leads to their decision. Typically, someone has retired, quit or been separated. Turnover leads to over 95% of all jobs opening up.

Now once that decision has been made to fill a job, what do employers do first? Well, they look within their company... and they look at candidates on file in their recruiting database. If they can’t fill a job that way, what do employers do next? Some consider referrals and those who network their executives. If that doesn’t work, they need to go public and see if they can fill their job openings.

Let’s briefly talk about public openings. Over 300,000 employers now post their openings. You can also find openings in 2,000 newspapers, 2,100 magazines and over 1,500 job boards.

Employer websites represent the fastest growing means of recruiting staff. There are more than 300,000 employers who recruit this way... and many of them recruit through their website exclusively. The sole exception may be when they go to an executive recruiter for a very senior executive. So, if you’ve pinpointed your best prospects, check out their websites.

Newspapers have declined rapidly, but in many instances can still be a good source for lower and mid-level openings for professionals. Trade magazines are a worthwhile source for those seeking middle level and upper mid-level openings. Many director and vice president openings, where industry knowledge or experience is important, can still be found in these publications.

In terms of job boards, Monster, Career Builder and Hot Jobs are best known here, but there are many others that might help you. Job boards have replaced newspapers as the largest source for openings. Staffing industry sources now claim that upwards of 40,000 job boards now exist. Our research staff estimates that about 1,500 have some level of significance. On a broader basis, these can be broken into the following categories:

  • Premier job boards
  • Manager and executive boards
  • Human resources boards
  • Finance & accounting boards
  • Sales & marketing boards
  • Engineering boards
  • Diversity boards
  • Industry boards
  • Military boards
  • Scientific boards
  • Recent grad boards and state boards

The problem with all the job boards is simple. Once you get past the major boards, most will have only a few listings suitable for you. Even on the largest boards, a person can waste an enormous amount of time, only to find out that there are many duplicate listings, and some appear over and over again for months. By the way, whenever you respond to any type of opening, if you respond by email, also send a response by first-class mail.

For more information be sure to check out SET Personal Marketing's Twitter, follow SET Personal Marketing's Facebook, watch SET Personal Marketing's videos on YouTube or visit SET Personal Marketing's website.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Giving You a Step-by-Step Action Plan

As we put together your overall marketing plan, one key thing that we will do is to recommend a step-by-step track to guide your search. We call this your action plan.

In today’s competitive arena most people will never get enough interviews with a hit-or-miss approach. This leaves too much to fate. Think of it this way. Chances are you’re marketing a “product” with millions of dollars of earnings capacity remaining in your career. That much value deserves your best effort. Besides, job hunting is a numbers game. So, why take a chance at doing a lot of things haphazardly, without a well- designed plan?

Similar to any company who is about to market a new product, a good plan can cut job hunting time in half and save money. It also helps people produce better results, and when people generate a lot of activity in a concentrated time period, they feel better and do better. Much better.

Recapping the components of your overall marketing plan

Job hunting goals: We surface all critical information about you and then decide on the goals that will best advance your career.

Liabilities: We identify liability issues that might restrict your success... and arrive at ways for minimizing their impact.

Assets and transferable skills: We pinpoint these and incorporate them into your resume, letters, and your personal website.

Industry alternatives: We will suggest the industry alternatives that we feel are best for you.

Action plan for getting interviews: We will lay out a step-by-step plan... a weekly agenda... that will guide your search. This is your complete track... a game plan. It will include a plan for your approach to interviewing and negotiations.

For more information be sure to check out SET Personal Marketing's Twitter, follow SET Personal Marketing's Facebook, watch SET Personal Marketing's videos on YouTube or visit SET Personal Marketing's website.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Apple's Latest Stats!

Here is a consolidation of all sales numbers disclosed by Apple in yesterday's event. Some of the number are mind boggling!

iOS devices
(iPhones, iPads & iPod Touches):
  • 250 mn devices sold (and NOT shipped) till date
  • iPhone 4 makes more than half of total iPhones sold

App Store
  • 18 bn downloads till date
  • Current rate of 1 bn download per month (compare this with the 9 months is took to download the 1st billionth app in April 2009!!)
  • 500,000 apps out of which 140,000 are made for the iPad
  • $3bn has been distributed to 3rd party developers
  • 300 mn iPods sold in 10 years (compare to quarter million cassette players sold by Sony in 30 years)
  • 45 mn last year itself (July 2010-June 2011)
  • 20 mn songs on iTunes
  • 16 bn downloads
iPhone has 5% of mobile market share world wide - "An Enormous Opportunity" according to Tim Cook.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Siri for iPhone 4S: Your new PA

It was a big disappointment not to see the iPhone 5 launch today and the Wall Street also made this clear. However, the announcement of Siri for iPhone along with a few other features reduces this slightly. This is the name of the app Apple bought for $200 million a couple of years ago.

Siri launches with a long press of the home button, just like Voice Control, but after that the options are huge. Some questions for the demo today makes this interface much awaited in the new iPhone 4S. “Wake me up at 6 a.m." “What time is it in Paris?” “Set my alarm for…” “Find me a great Greek restaurant in Palo Alto.” “Do I have any meetings this Friday at noon?”

One Q & A gives away the deal on what Siri is exactly:
“Siri, who are you?” Siri responds: “I am your humble personal assistant.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Equipping You With a Marketing Website

We will be creating and hosting your personal marketing website. We do this because our experience has proven that if you have a superior resume and marketing website, job hunting can be much easier.

Job hunting is all about getting enough of the “right people” to look at your credentials. A “Personal Marketing Website” is a website that presents your universal resume... and sometimes your biography... for those who wish to review it.

Here’s how this works at our firm. When we write resumes, we create a distinctive and professional “Personal Marketing Website.” Displaying one on the web in color... is an impressive way of presenting yourself. It gives you a fast, no-cost way to get your presentation in front of the right decision makers.

How? Because you can simply send out emails with a link to your “Personal Marketing Website.” Through our job hunting information system, all you need to do is get the names of decision makers... and emails of key employers... throughout the U.S.... or the world... in industries that are right for you... or in the area where you want to live.

Can this make networking easier? Yes. For people you already know... all you do is send an email to let them know that you are open to new opportunities... and that you put up a new and unique “personal marketing website.” And, when people see your presentation, they will be far more impressed than anything you could say over the phone.

With access to our Job Market Access Center (JMAC), you can even comfortably network people you don’t know. For example, you can quickly get the names of alumni from your school who hold influential jobs... or others who worked with you some years ago... or executives in an industry or metro area... whose advice and referrals you’d appreciate.

Can this website also be used for responding to ads? Absolutely. Mention your link in a compelling email and you’ll have a surefire way to dramatically stand out from everyone else who answers an ad. The bottom line is that if you’re in the market today... and don’t have a “Personal Marketing Website”... you will be searching with an unnecessary competitive disadvantage.

For more information be sure to check out SET Personal Marketing's Twitter, follow SET Personal Marketing's Facebook, watch SET Personal Marketing's videos on YouTube or visit SET Personal Marketing's website.