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    How Risk Management Plans Correlate With Marketing

    In the business world, a risk is a condition or an event that might affect the business objectives if it materialized. Unlike threats, risks are not imminent – they are a probability, or what might happen. For instance, investing money incurs the risk of financial gain or financial loss – except it’s more elaborate than that.

    Translating that into the marketing world, marketing risk entails the potential losses or failures that may arise from a marketing strategy. Such risks cover a myriad of issues affecting marketing, including fraud, performance, and reputation.

    Marketing Risks

    Marketing risks include:

    Brand risks

    A business can lose its brand value due to poor marketing or stiff competition. For example, if you overestimate your brand’s strength, you might end up using inappropriate marketing techniques. As such, you might lose your marketing capital for failing to realize the need for more brand promotion or increased marketing efforts – early enough.

    Demand risks

    Selection of the target market(s) affects the riskiness of a marketing plan. Failure to conduct adequate market research, gathering data from wrong sources, improper use of collected data, etc., can result in a miscalculated target market. Failure to understand your market can lead to improper positioning of your products/services. The demand risk can then trickle into your differential advantages, strategic objectives, and the share of resources among the aspects stipulated in your marketing strategy.

    Promotional risks

    Your promotional approaches should be well-calculated into compelling, effective, powerful, and ethical techniques. Otherwise, the methods may fail with devastating effects. Think of the consequences of false, exaggerated, or misleading messages, such as a ruined brand reputation.

    Changing trends

    Marketing trends change daily, from price shifts to promotional messages and automation technologies. The changes are mainly due to technology, and as such, your marketing strategies must keep up lest you risk having a lowered bottom line.

    Consequences Associated with Marketing Risks 

    Recently, brand safety has rapidly taken up the marketing agenda following high-profile data harvesting. That resulted in the incorporation of GDPR (the general data protection regulation). You probably remember Dixon Carphone admitting to a data breach that affected 10 million of its customer records or the TSB’s IT meltdown. Or the most scandalous data breach involving harvested Facebook profiles by Cambridge Analytical – a data company – to create targeted political campaigns.

    (Now, targeted ads are something many marketers are familiar with, which explains their silence on the Cambridge Analytical saga.)

    Marketing risks can result in a breach of trust. Recoizing this, the Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg published an apology- a full-page newspaper ad of an apology! When customers lose confidence in your brand, they’ll (most likely) shift their business to your competitors. Following their failed IT migration, TSB lost 80,000 of its customers to rival banks.

    Losing customers is expensive, probably more expensive than acquiring new ones. A 2018 study conducted by IBM on the Cost of Data Breach concluded that: 1% of lost customers translates to an average of $2.8m (£2.1m) in lost revenue. Thus, losing just 4% of your customers can cost your business up to $6m (£4.7m). In their case, TSB lost £330m of their revenue: £125m on customer compensation, £122m on tech systems, £49m on operational losses, and £34m on waived charges.

    If the customers sympathize and decide to retain their business with your brand, they’ll exert more demands. The 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer indicates that 71% of consumers want companies to pressure social channels to safeguard their private data better.  Moreover, these customers will be keener on your marketing activities. Edelman’s analysis showed that 48% of customers believe that if your marketing/advertising activities appear next to inappropriate content (think of hate speech and violent content), then it’s your brand’s fault. Also, 47% of customers will likely take the content surrounding your ad on Google and social platforms to indicate your values. 

    With your customers’ eyes fully hooked on you, it’s easy for them to spot even the slightest misstep. In their 2018 report, IBM noted the likelihood of a trust breach recurring (in 2 years or less) is 27.9% – of which, if it happens, your customers will be less forgiving.

    The Solution

    Limiting your brand’s risk exposure calls for a marketing risk management plan that’s all rounded to help you anticipate/identify, prepare, and circumvent any marketing challenge. The risk management plan should be a continuous cycle involving risk identification, risk analysis, risk mitigation, and risk monitoring.

    To paint a picture, employees across the business spectrum should collaborate to create heat maps of the anticipated and identified marketing risks, indicating their probability and magnitude of their impacts. The key here is getting the right people on board. Think of the tech stack, content, data management, and customer experience teams. 

    Side note, risk management strategies in marketing activities are more valuable for companies with substantial reputational risks or massive international franchises. Brands thinking in the long-term in that their PR people and marketers take into account brand safety, ad visibility, or brand reputation.  All in all, businesses are beginning to appreciate the need for marketing risk management strategies, as seen in the rise of brand safety officers and Chief Security Officer positions.  


    Marketing risks results in lots of uncertainties. You’re unsure whether your ad will reach the right target or whether prospects will respond warmly. That’s where a marketing risk management plan comes in – to help curb these uncertainties. Thus, consider taking a class (or two) on the matter. For quality and convenience, visit Brain Mass’s online community of academic experts who are experts on risk management issues related to marketing. 

    The Importance of Reducing Childhood Stress

    The emotion of stress is one that’s virtually unavoidable. It’s a part of the human experience; sometimes, it’s even linked to situations that are otherwise positive. Learning to manage stress, process it, and cope in healthy ways is something that’s learned through experience. Taking time to focus more deeply on how we can reduce the impact of stress is a timely prospect, as World Mental Health Day takes place on October 10, encouraging all of us to educate ourselves on the far-reaching impact of mental health and the significance of mental healthcare in our communities.

    For children, who don’t yet have a lifetime’s worth of experience and coping skills, dealing with stress can be especially difficult. When stressors at school or home become overwhelming, they may experience changes in mood and behavior, be less interested in playing or engaging in former hobbies, stop focusing on their studies and extracurriculars, and may even to turn to unhealthy habits such as drugs or alcohol to deal with their feelings. It’s important that both parents and educators know how to spot these signs and what they can do to help children manage their stress effectively.

    Helping Kids Feel Less Stressed

    • If you know something big is going on, talk about it: If there are big changes, major events, or ongoing stressors in a child’s life, make a point to check in with them regularly, having an ongoing dialogue. Let them know it’s okay to share their thoughts and feelings with you without prompting.
    • If you can help, do so: If there are obvious stress triggers or situations in a child’s life where you can assist or intervene, do so, especially if the stress is toxic rather than typical or tolerable. For normal stressors, help children to develop coping skills like patience and self-care.
    • Use acceptance, reassurance, and support: Help kids feel better about stressful situations by accepting them as they are, reassuring them that you’re there for them, and acting in ways that tangibly support their needs and reduce their stress.

    The impact of childhood stress can be significant, and adult intervention can play an important role in helping children to cope in healthy ways. Take a look at this infographic from We The Parents for helpful tips on sources, signs, and remedies for stress in children.

    Interested in learning more about Stress and Childhood? Search here, or try one of our Solutions below!

    The Impact of Innovative Technologies on International Development

    What is International Development?

    International development is the belief that different nations have differing levels of progress, be it in terms of economy, health, education, etc. The study of international development is the attempt that developed nations make through the use of tools such as technological advancement, innovation leadership, and such to eradicate poverty and bridge the gap between themselves and developing nations.

    Although the concepts of international relations and international trade have been around for several centuries, international development is a relatively new idea. It is measured in several ways, but most commonly by looking at the GDP of a nation.

    International development and innovative technology

    Whatever the field might be, technology has irrefutably been at the core of its advancement, and international development is no different. Recent years have seen a great deal of success in this field with 1 billion people now lifted above the poverty line since 1990. This has been encouraging, to say the least, and progress has speeded up because of it.

    Technology and specifically innovative technology has claimed much of the credit for this triumph. From the increased use of mobile phones to assist in business and banking to oral rehydration therapy in the field of medicine, the digital world has always come to our rescue.

    Innovative technology and its impact

    Research indicated a 9% increase in the number of people (from developing nations) who frequently used the internet between the years 2013 and 2015. That might seem like a small rise in figures, but in practicality, these people transformed their lives and livelihoods through something which most other nations would take for granted.

    But broadband and mobile phones haven’t been the only form of technology that has changed the development landscape in developing nations, listed below are some of the other technologies that have had a substantial impact on international development.

    • 3D printers

    During rehabilitation efforts for the people of Haiti following the 2010 earthquake, 3DP played a key role in the manufacturing of humanitarian supplies. 3D printers are devices that are capable of printing 3D objects directly from digital prototypes.

    This technology had previously been used for art and other purposes but recent years have seen its popularity rise in developing nations because of its convenience and ability to shorten manufacturing processes.

    Another instance that this technology was used for international development was when in 2014 when a non-governmental organization called Field Ready, again in Haiti, 3d printers were used to print umbilical clamps to reduce umbilical infections in infants. These clamps could be made in under 8 minutes.

    • Internet of things

    Internet of things is the incorporation of data communications technologies into physical objects which can then be controlled remotely. These objects can also be used to collect data which can then be used for monitoring purposes.

    A real-life example of this is how the water output and failures of water pumps in African villages are monitored to help plan out future investments. Internet of things also has much potential in the field of medicine, especially since the invention of swallowable camera pills which can help doctors look inside the patient’s body.

    • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Commonly known as drones, these devices have the benefit of being low cost and easy to use. The world has seen a steady rise in the use of drones for various purposes, and now developing nations are realizing the possibility of their use for development.

    A delivery company, known as Zipline, which operates in numerous African countries, most prominently Rwanda uses fixed-wing drones to deliver medicine, blood, vaccines and other small medical supplies to difficult areas.

    Other instances of the use of drones have been in the form of Rocket mine which allows a survey of areas and then mapping services to miners, farmers, engineers, etc., Redline and FlyingDonkey are also delivery networks that use drones to reach remote and barren areas.

    • Atmospheric water condensers

    Atmospheric water condensers are meshes that are installed which aim at mimicking the process through which plants and insects convert moisture into savable water. This is not a recent technology and is rather popular in dry regions around the world. The first dated use was all the way back in 1960.

    “Fog collectors” set up in Chilean villages around the year 1990, have the capacity of providing up to 331 liters of water per person. Not only is this water safe for consumption, but it has also aided the villagers to take up small agricultural practices.

    WarkaWater has taken up a similar initiative in Ethiopia and has set up “water towers” made of Warka Tress and other material collected from surrounding regions, to allow locals to combat the shortage of water that they’ve faced for decades.

    International development isn’t a simple process, nor is it anywhere near completion. Through active research and innovation, this process can be speeded up and more and more countries and people can be provided with sustainable lifestyles and good standards of living.

    Interested in learning more about International Development? Search here, or try one of our Solutions below!

    unsplash-logoBen White

    Becoming A More Efficient Startup

    The road to success is riddled with many challenges, and even more so when you’re a startup with limited capital and resources. The beautiful thing about success, however, is that it seldom depends on how much money you have at your disposal. It is, more often than not, a product of hard work, dedication, careful planning, and a never-ending quest towards business and office efficiency.

    Efficiency is instrumental in the success stories of large and small-scale businesses alike as it allows companies to make the most out of their time and finances. When your processes are streamlined, and your operations are set up in the most efficient ways possible, you and your team can accomplish more within a shorter time frame.

    So, how do you become a more efficient startup? These tips should help you get started.

    Use technology to your advantage

    Some people find it more comfortable doing things the traditional way, but while they do get the job done, there are far more efficient methods. Incorporating technology into several facets of your operations can make things easier and finish tasks faster.

    Task management applications, team collaboration platforms, integrated POS systems, and chatbots are but a few of the many ways that you can use technology and the Internet to your advantage.

    Promote internal process automation

    Embracing digitalization also means automating as many processes as you can. Businesses operating in the retail or service supply chain industries should consider automating monotonous tasks like sending receipts and invoices, employee-tracking, even their customer service, and promotional efforts.

    There are plenty of apps and programs that you can download on the Internet, which will help you streamline and better organize several aspects of your business. Automation is perhaps one of the best things you can do to improve overall business efficiency. Cutting down the time you spend on the less essential aspects of your operations will allow you and your employees to focus more on the things that matter.

    Don’t forget to pause and review your efforts

    While it’s true that one secret to success is to keep pushing forward, just as important is knowing when to pause and evaluate your efforts. Your current strategies may be going well and as planned for you, but there’s almost always a better way of doing them. If you don’t look back and assess what you have implemented so far, you’ll miss out on a lot of opportunities for improvement.

    With the wide selection of tools and applications available nowadays, reviewing your processes and strategies shouldn’t be too hard.

    Consider outsourcing some tasks

    You don’t have to do everything on your own, especially if the tasks concerned requires skills that take some time to hone. Knowing which responsibilities to outsource can be tricky, but you can start by determining the competencies of your team. If the cost of mastering a skill (time, money, energy) is higher than the price of outsourcing, then you should definitely think about finding a reliable service provider.

    You don’t have to say YES to everything

    Grabbing an opportunity and making the most out of it is one thing; saying YES to every opportunity that comes your way is another. Getting into something without proper and careful assessment of how it will impact the business, both in the short and long term, can be counter-productive.

    What seems to be a great idea at first can go south. You have to think twice, thrice, and take the right measures before jumping into the water.

    Running a successful startup is not too far from reach. Just take a look at the numerous startups that have grown and expanded their ventures through sheer determination and by improving their business efficiency continuously increases. As they say, “It’s always impossible until it’s done.”

    About The Author

    Casey Belle is the Content Marketing Specialist for Techaerus, a company that focuses on teaching and implementing proper use of software/hardware within companies and organizations. When not working, she makes use of her time doing yoga and completing her travel bucket list.

    unsplash-logoCarlos Muza

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    Benefits of Studying English Language and English Literature

    Learning a language can enrich our lives and speaking skills. It is not an opportunity to increase your employability, but also a way to connect with people on a foreign trip. Reading literature can take to the infinite journeys of incredible theories, memorable stories, and cultural interaction. English is one of the languages we all learn in our lives at some point. It is the universal business language. It gives you the confidence to communicate efficiently.

    Some people have reservations about learning a new language. They don’t consider it an adequate use of their time and energy. People are more encouraged to take lessons of a language which is widely spoken locally in the area where they are living.

    There are numerous benefits of learning the English language. We will look into the advantages people have by learning this language.

    1. Communication in a Foreign Language
    It is exciting to learn a language other than your local language. You are able to connect with the literary personalities of different cultures who spoke English. It is also a great opportunity to communicate to a wider population.

    2. Enhanced Problem Solving Skills
    A lot of people are not aware that if you learn English, you are entitled to increase your learning and problem-solving abilities. It includes creative hypothesis, design, abstract thinking skills and building new concepts. Recent studies have shown that learning the English language stimulates your multitasking skills and aids you to filter out distractions and extra information.

    3. Increase Digital Understanding
    As we all are aware that most of the websites and mobile application are designed primarily in English. Being able to read, write and speak in English makes an individual to abbreviate the gap with modern technology. It is also suggested that English language learners have increased mental ability to get ahead of the technological world and cope up with the constant changes in the digital world. Intelligence assisted by the apt understanding of the English language gives an ability to the person to accommodate the existing realities of the existing institutions.

    4. Memorable Travel Experiences
    English is considered the universal official language of the world. Many countries around the world have English as their official language. Individuals who travel to different countries prefer to speak in English. It is a language of choice and easily understandable. Even the local vendors and employees in customer services of the hotels learn English to adequately cater to the needs of the tourists. It is observed by the travelers that the local individuals are keen to learn English language and enjoy speaking it.

    5. Language with Diverse Literary Background
    Writers from all around the world prefer to write in English as it is a widely spoken and written language. It makes English literature so diverse that it can open new worlds of imagination and give you a unique perspective on everyday issues. English Literature is so fascinating that it caters to all kinds of readers from novels, poetry, science fiction, modernization theories and history of Victorian times. English language enriches your experiences and opens new doors for learning and development for you.

    6. Largest Spoken Language
    English is spoken by 300 million individuals around the globe. It is declared to be the third most commonly spoken language after Chinese and Spanish. 20% of people can read, speak and understand English in the world. Due to its popularity, it is widely learned language by students and professional employees. Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom has English as its Official spoken and written language. It is also used by the United Nations, the Olympic Committee and the European Union as a co-official language.

    7. Cultural Perspective of English Language
    The English Language gives a unique cultural perspective to the non-native speakers of the language. The language opens the window of your soul by giving you an option of studying art, economics, literature, and philosophy. English Comedy is a lot more understanding and entertaining when you are able you understand British culture and customs. Oscar Wilde’s narration of an ideal individual is how he can show his attitude to people he doesn’t like and stills speak to them politely. So, you will never be able to understand the pearls of Oscar Wilde’s writings like “An Ideal Husband” of you are not aware of the English Language.

    8. English as a workout for your Brain
    Recent studies have concluded that learning the English language if you are not a native English speaker can stimulate the functioning of your brain in a positive dimension. As a result, you are gifted with increased creative skills, better problem-solving activities, and a sharper mind. Bilinguals have a great edge in understanding complex concepts and diverse viewpoints of cultures worldwide. One of the studies published in the New York Times suggests that Bilinguals who have higher degrees are more impervious to the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

    Learning English is an essential feature of these times. It will be there to help you if you have to fill a form, go out for groceries or learn an online course related to your studies. With the advancement of internet, individuals can speak, write and read to each other online. The mode of communication enhances your language skills. English Language has not only hidden treasures of literature but will also help you with your potential employers. So, challenge yourself today to gain the above benefits of taking advantage of learning English. It will be a way of achieving astonishing results.