Posts categorized ‘News’

The Benefit of Adding a News Ticker to a Publication

The idea of a news ticker, specifically one embedded in a piece of online content, is nothing new, and yet still there are many brands out there not utilizing one properly. A news ticker can be a valuable tool in a brand’s arsenal, offering content in a way a blog or social media site cannot.



A news ticker is a way to provide timely content that doesn’t require producing. It’s one of the reasons why user-generated content is also so valuable – it constitutes authentic information that requires very little execution from your team.


The reluctance with integrating a feed like this is that you cannot control the content, but in reality you can control it as much as you like. You can set up the feed and post to it regularly. This allows you to easily push real-time corporate news, product updates, or other information to your readers.

Customizable Features and Options for a News Ticker:

Placement of feed – You can embed a news feed anywhere on the page of a viewer, meaning editorial decisions can take priority, and then the ticker can be placed wherever there is a fit.

Transitions – Transitions like scrolling, curtain, refocus, fade, and others can be employed, so that the feel of the news feed fits the feel of the overall publication.

Duration – Only you can tell how long the features of the feed will take to read, so you can customize how long each is shown before transitioning down or across the feed.

Reload frequency – Similar to duration, you can customize how often the ticker is updated with new posts.


Bring in posts and content from social media sites without your user having to leave your window.


An RSS Feed can be deployed on any site, not just your digital publication. You can create one for your publication, and then deploy it on other pieces of content or future publications down the road. This versatility makes the news ticker all the more worth it.

Publications a News Ticker would be ideal for:

The latest news and information in a specific industry or niche carries a lot of power and popularity. That is probably a surprise to no one. The key for digital publications will be harnessing that power in a way that adds value, but does not distract from, the main focus of the publication.


(Photo Credit: Wikipedia Commons )

Mobile Commerce Apps Still Falling Short of Consumer Expectations

Last week, a Forbes contributor posted an infographic created by Cognizant, illustrating how top retailers are adopting mobile apps, but still have work to do, to satisfy their customers.

Cognizant found that 83 percent of top retailers provide at least one mobile offering. With such high adoption, surely retailers must “get” how today’s connected consumer wants to shop? Not exactly. According to Cognizant’s and our own research, many retailer mobile offerings are not living up to consumers’ expectations. Vital features that today’s savvy shoppers want are still missing, like customer support and social media integration, and a compelling use of rich media such as videos and optimized product views.

The good news, marketers, is that your mobile and tablet commerce app can be saved! It may just need a makeover, as our COO and CMO, Sean Ford, discusses in a recent blog post. He explains that even the most successful companies have made missteps along the way to creating game changing and successful products. Ford offers four tips for brands and retailers to follow when creating a new and improved app, whether for smartphones or tablets. Following these steps, and keeping your finger on the pulse of your customers’ mobile shopping expectations, will help drive more engagement and ultimately, increase revenue.

Here are some other interesting pieces of news from last week:

Retail Customer Experience: Survey: Consumers using Pinterest to engage with retailers more than Facebook, Twitter
Never before has social media been so attractive to consumers, literally. According to the 2012 Social and Mobile Commerce Study, a joint research project by, comScore and The Partnering Group, the visually appealing social media site Pinterest has become a big player in an even bigger arena, with online U.S. consumers reporting that they already follow an average of 9.3 retail companies on the site, compared to the average 6.9 retailers they follow on Facebook and the 8.5 retailers they track via Twitter. Overall, almost two out of five (38 percent) online consumers follow retailers through one or more social networking sites.

Digiday: Why Pinterest is Online Retail’s New BFF
There’s been a whole lot of talk about Pinterest lately, with brands and retailers alike betting that the platform will live to become an important part of social media marketing. According to ComScore, Pinterest hit 11.7 million unique monthly U.S. visitors in January. The reach is clearly there. And there are some retailers for which the platform now serves as a customer-acquisition tool and a means of driving online sales.“Pinterest brings together people with similar interests,” said Hayley Silver, vp of Bizrate. “Facebook is different in that just because we are friends doesn’t mean we’d be interested in buying the same products. Another unique opportunity [with Pinterest] is the ability to see a product within the context of your own lifestyle.”

Multichannel Merchant: 5 Tips to Elevate Your Mobile Commerce Strategy
A new research report found that 41% of retailers possess a mobile initiative, but many are still hesitant about rolling out a mobile commerce program. Find out how you can elevate your mobile commerce strategy.

ConversionXL: What You Need to Know About Mobile Internet Users and Their Shopping Behavior
80% never leave home without their phones in hand. They do everything on it, including shopping. Whatever your business is, an ever growing chunk of your target customers are using their mobile devices instead of computers to go online. Here’s what you need to know about mobile internet users and their purchasing behavior.

MediaPost: Magazine Print Readership Declines, Digital Grows
Consumer magazines’ print readership declined over the last year, but the losses were partly offset by growth in digital readership, according to GfK MRI, which recently released the second wave of its revised Survey of The American Consumer, amended to include more questions about digital reading. In the period from September 2011-April 2012, the total average print audience of 190 major titles tracked by GfK MRI came to just over 1.2 billion, down 2.7% from 1.24 billion for the same period in 2011. When print and digital editions are considered together, the figure sank 2.6% from just under 1.25 billion to just under 1.22 billion (The GfK MRI figures offer unduplicated estimates of audiences for print and digital editions, but do not include traffic to magazine Web sites).]]>

Zmags Takes Home a Red Herring Top 100 Award!

Last week, we announced that Zmags had been named a finalist in the Red Herring Top 100 Americas Awards – a prestigious list honoring the most promising technology ventures in North America.

Yesterday I presented in front of a panel of judges at the Red Herring Americas 2012 awards competition in Santa Monica, California, as did about 150 other finalists.  I gave an overview of the business, technology, and consumer forces driving marketers to create completely new kinds of digital marketing and shopping environments, and how the curated digital experiences Zmags enables are stimulating customer engagement, improving transaction metrics, and strengthening brand loyalty – ultimately increasing dwell time, order sizes and conversion rates.

I’m very proud to say that at the awards ceremony last night Zmags was selected as a Red Herring Top 100 Company! Although I personally accepted the award, it is truly on behalf of all of my Zmags colleagues that I did so. We are delighted to share this honor with other award-winning innovative companies that participated.