June 12, 2012

Social Media insights for SMEs

IIPSI's digital innovators Dr. Xiao Ma and Dr. Mark Swift participated in the Social Media World Forum 2012 in March 2012. The event had generated heated debate on best social media practices for businesses especially small and medium size businesses (SMEs). Those key messages/insights for SMEs to improve social media activities has been shared with our SME clients via twitter @coolseraph . Here is a full list of the insights we'd like to share with regional SMEs who is (going to) operate social media activities.


  • Don't push on social media platform, create content worth sharing
  • Google+ is a must have for the time being as google is not indexing Facebook.
  • A lesson to learn - KLM and Nokia have social media customer service team separated from their existing customer service team.
  • Social media should be considered as a separate platform as messages goes public directly!
  • FourSquare may be an ideal platform for virual tour.
  • "Culture eats strategy for breakfast" - Culture and education are key barriers for businesses to take up social media.
  • Get the right contacts from the right platforms. LinkedIn to get professionals, but Twitter to get CEOs.
  • Social media popularity is different from country to country. Knowing the target counry's social media profile first, action second.
  • B2B social media content should be written for customers, not from their own perspectives.
  • Get ur social content right is the key, seo is falling away.
  • Be human behind your brand, think about your user/audience on every message you are sending out.
  • Starting a new group on social media? Monitor other groups for 3 month, if this is good, participate; otherwise, start ur own.
  • why using twitter for your brand? 36% twitter user tweet brand related posts
  • Business should tailor messages on different platforms, define USP according to the user profile on a target platform.
  • Social media marketer should be artist and gambler. Be creative and gamble your ideas.
  • Social Media tips - Suck less if u r not good at it; Be awesome more - do more if you r good at it
  • Building online community? Reward for uses or recognition
  • Never build a community from scratch! Make sure there is a need and no one has done it yet. If your users dont care, they wont come!
  • Building online community? If the content is niche, keep it niche. Don't worry about the most of the world not undemanding it.
  • If you dont go mobile it's as effective as shutting your shop on a Tuesday

February 16, 2012

Attention – Dropbox users, get extra 5GB to reach 23GB

Writing about web page http://forums.dropbox.com/topic.php?id=52900

Many SMEs found Dropbox a handy tool to sync their files among multiple PCs, mobile devices, etc. However, the SME team here at WMG gets a particular question all the time - how do I get more than 2GB default space?

Now, with the release of dropbox new build - version 1.3.12, we reveal the "black magic" to get 23G for your dropbox account.

Get 5GB within 1 minute:

1. download the new build - http://forums.dropbox.com/topic.php?id=54227&replies=217

2. Import a photo from your camera or USB key via the new dropbox, get 500MB extra

3. find any 5GB file, rename the file extension as .mp4, put that in your USB key, import via dropbox

4. wait until the status of your dropbox changes to "upload" (from index file), delete the mp4 file from your "camera uploads" folder

5. now enjoy your extra 5GB

Then Get your dropbox to 23GB

1. Invite your friends/staff, get 8GB max

2. Find a .ac.uk email (or .edu if you know someone reading in a US uni), and get this email to join your account. Your space gets doubled to 18.3GB

3. with the 5GB from the previous step, enjoy your 23GB free cloud storage!


For those ones who don't have dropbox yet, get it here: http://db.tt/pkrN8OK


December 05, 2011

"Cloud for Business" in action – How cloud services benefit Strategic Capability Ltd

Author:Eleanor Precious @ellieprecious

Five months ago, Strategic Capability (Transcap) Ltd spun out of WMG, University of Warwick as a new business which will deliver the Transforming Capability toolset previously developed as part of a major R&D project at WMG. The toolset enables companies to embed innovation in their work place culture and create more receptive environments for effective technology transfer. The new business led by Managing Director Clive Reynolds has since been working with the SME knowledge exchange team at The Digital Lab to create a successful business model and build its profile online.

Dr Xiao Ma, Technology Transfer Specialist at The Digital Lab examined the company's objectives, and looked at the use of cloud services such as the Google Apps toolset to transform the way in which the company can conduct its marketing and operations activity. The most important element of the project is the development of a file sharing and collaborative market place that allows Strategic Capability to give access to its trainers and develop a community online focussed on the implementation of the toolset.

Clive Reynolds said "Through working with Xiao and the SME team, the future direction of the business is clearer and we have a sustainable model of recruiting practitioners to deliver our toolset. I was impressed that free online tools could be manipulated in such a way that was specific to our business needs."

To find out more about cost efficient online tools that can help your business, contact:

Dr Xiao Ma

Click here to find out more about the Transforming Capabilities Toolset


November 16, 2011

The SME team and IIPSI – Online Presentation

The SME Programmes Team offers expertise in a range of technologies and is here to help SMEs in the West Midlands gain competitive advantage from accessing the International Digital Lab funded programme.

As well as The Digital Lab programme, from April 2012 our new ERDF funded development - International Institute for Service and Product Innovation (IIPSI) will be available to SMEs too.

The IIPSI building is a new four storey research building with a double height rear workshop. The building will be 2300 sq. m and will be the fifth building in the WMG academic group.

IIPSI builds on the success of the International Digital Lab, specialising in digital enabled plastic electronics, digital media and user focused product design. The building is designed to help SMEs in the Midlands Region grow.

The online presentation below offers more information about the digital media demonstrators and technology we will be supporting SMEs with as part of IIPSI. SMEs may also consider using online presentations for their communications activity. Many presentation platforms are available (for FREE):

  1. Presentation with animation: Google Presentation, Prezi
  2. Photo album style presentation: Flickr, Picasaweb
  3. More controlls needed: try jQuery


Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.


November 08, 2011

Data Collection and processing tool – Yahoo Pipes

Writing about web page http://pipes.yahoo.com

IIPSI Digital Media theme offer a number of business assist for West Midlands based SMEs. A key area that businesses have voted for is Meta Data Collection & Data visualisation. This post will introduce one of the online tools that can help with collecting and processing data - Yahoo Pipes.

The combined twitter feed on the right-hand side of this blog is made by Yahoo pipes from two of our twitter accounts. Yahoo Pipes provides a range of widgets, in this case, we've made use of the following to create the feed:

  1. Fetch Feed: a feed reading function to import RSS, ATOM, etc. Here we used two of them to load twitter feeds from two accounts
  2. Loop: a looping function to read every item in a feed list at a time
  3. String Builder: placed in a loop to assign a new title message to every item
  4. Truncate: only keep the latest five items from each feed
  5. Union: joined multiple feeds into one
  6. Sort: sort items in the new feed by publish time
  7. Done! Output can be exported as RSS, JSON, ATOM, XML, etc.
  8. Once configured, Yahoo Pipes will frequently check the source feeds to update the output. All we need to do is to copy&paste the output URL!

Yahoo Pipes for Digital Media Twitter

There, a codeing FREE tool for SMEs to automatically load target information. Potentially, this could contribute to a small scale of market research, competitor analysis, or much more......


October 21, 2011

The Power of Social Media – Making it work for your business

Writing about web page https://digital.warwick.ac.uk/component/option,com_events/Itemid,140/agid,174/day,4/month,11/task,view_detail/year,2011/




On Friday, 04 November 2011, the SME Programme Team at The International Digital Lab will be hosting and delivering a social media workshop for the West Midlands business networking organisation - Warwick Business Growth Network (WBGN). WBGN is a networking group based in Warwickshire set up by Warwick Business School SME Alumni. For more information please visit: WBGN

The workshop will feature lively case studies from businesses that have used social media to generate new business opportunities in West Midlands region. Selective presenters will cover high impact digital media research and trend, Multi-national organisation digital media strategy, and SME use cases.



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