management

If You Use Any Of These 25 Passwords On Your Computer You Better Change Them Now

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/if-you-use-any-of-these-25-passwords-on-your-computer-you-better-change-them-now-2012-1


hackers computerRemember how all those lazy Subway managers caused millions of dollars to be stolen from customers?

A band of hackers was able to guess the passwords to their point-of-sale systems and went to town nabbing credit and debit card numbers from everyone who walked into the restaurants.

Don’t let that happen to you, people.

The Internet Crime Complaint Center just released 25 of the most commonly hacked passwords of 2011.

It boggles the mind to think people are still using these everyday words [e.g.: Monkey, football, 123456) to protect devices that hold all their financial data – especially in the workplace.

Raise your virtual hand if your employer assigns workers a single password to access company databases, content management systems or email accounts. (See 11 ways to protect yourself when shopping online.)

“Sharing passwords among users in a workplace is becoming a common theme to continue the flow of operations,” the ICCC says, but “users have prioritized convenience over security when establishing passwords.”

Here’s the full list of passwords to avoid:

  1. password
  2. 123456
  3. 12345678
  4. qwerty
  5. abc123
  6. monkey
  7. 1234567
  8. letmein
  9. trustno1
  10. dragon
  11. baseball
  12. 111111
  13. iloveyou
  14. master
  15. sunshine
  16. ashley
  17. bailey
  18. passw0rd
  19. shadow
  20. 123123
  21. 654321
  22. superman
  23. qazwsx
  24. michael
  25. football

Now see the dirty dozen internet scams to watch out for this holiday season >

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Thursday, January 5th, 2012 news No Comments

If You Use Any Of These 25 Passwords On Your Computer You Better Change Them Now

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/if-you-use-any-of-these-25-passwords-on-your-computer-you-better-change-them-now-2012-1


hackers computerRemember how all those lazy Subway managers caused millions of dollars to be stolen from customers?

A band of hackers was able to guess the passwords to their point-of-sale systems and went to town nabbing credit and debit card numbers from everyone who walked into the restaurants.

Don’t let that happen to you, people.

The Internet Crime Complaint Center just released 25 of the most commonly hacked passwords of 2011.

It boggles the mind to think people are still using these everyday words [e.g.: Monkey, football, 123456) to protect devices that hold all their financial data – especially in the workplace.

Raise your virtual hand if your employer assigns workers a single password to access company databases, content management systems or email accounts. (See 11 ways to protect yourself when shopping online.)

“Sharing passwords among users in a workplace is becoming a common theme to continue the flow of operations,” the ICCC says, but “users have prioritized convenience over security when establishing passwords.”

Here’s the full list of passwords to avoid:

  1. password
  2. 123456
  3. 12345678
  4. qwerty
  5. abc123
  6. monkey
  7. 1234567
  8. letmein
  9. trustno1
  10. dragon
  11. baseball
  12. 111111
  13. iloveyou
  14. master
  15. sunshine
  16. ashley
  17. bailey
  18. passw0rd
  19. shadow
  20. 123123
  21. 654321
  22. superman
  23. qazwsx
  24. michael
  25. football

Now see the dirty dozen internet scams to watch out for this holiday season >

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Thursday, January 5th, 2012 news No Comments

Will Groupon Thrive Or Tank In Q4? This Chart Holds The Key (GRPN)

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/this-chart-tells-you-whether-groupon-will-thrive-or-tank-in-q4-2011-12


groupon girl

Groupon’s Q4 2011 couldn’t be more crucial: Will it see the revenue bump it needs from holiday shoppers to justify its business model? Or will sales collapse following CEO Andrew Mason’s promised pullback on marketing and customer acquisition spending?

The Wall Street Journal reports that gross billings at the company rose just 1.5 percent from September to October, and not 22 percent as previously estimated.

Has the company reached a plateau before falling of a cliff? Or is it merely taking a pre-Thanksgiving breather before continuing its climb up the Christmas sales ladder?

The company could go either way. Until recently, the company has been dependent on a cash float (and the money it raised in its IPO, of course) to stay in business. Groupon generally makes a loss each quarter. It funds its operations by taking revenues from customers’ credit cards immediately and then delaying for 30 days or so the share of those sales it owes to the merchants who made the offers. As long as there is a greater amount of new money coming in than old money owed, Groupon continues to function.

But what happens if Groupon enters a period in which its revenues decline? At most companies that isn’t too problematic — management can cut expenses to remain profitable. But at Groupon the company’s marketing and customer acquisition expenses are closely related to its revenues. It is not at all clear whether Groupon’s revenues will continue to rise if Mason cuts costs. ! Here’s a chart showing Groupon’s net revenues plotted against its total operating expenses:

groupon

As you can see, in Q3 Mason pulled back on expenses (the green line) in hopes of seeing a profit, but revenue growth (the red line) began to lose steam. The WSJ report suggests it hasn’t regained momentum since, but the October sales period doesn’t include the Christmas run-up.

In Q4, this chart is all you will need to understand whether Groupon can mature into a business that isn’t funded by stock sales. If Mason can get the red line above the green line, or if he can keep the red line moving upward, then he should be congratulated.

If he cannot, then the company — and its investors — will need to do some serious thinking about whether their daily deal business model is viable or not.

SEE ALSO: Groupon Allegedly Hacked Merchant’s Email To Alter Contract

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Monday, December 12th, 2011 news No Comments

Guess What The Biggest Topic On Facebook Was This Year

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/boonsri-dickinson-guess-what-the-biggest-topic-on-facebook-was-this-year-2011-12


The death of Osama bin Laden.

10 percent of all status updates (in English) mentioned Osama bin Laden in the days following his death, according to a Facebook blog outlining the top ten global trends in 2011.

Coming in second was Green Bay Packers beating the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl.

Charlie Sheen was winning in March, if you recall.

Each month engagement centered around the hottest current events. For instance, conversations about the Royal Wedding were really popular during April. Mentions of the marriage shot up 600-fold, according to the Facebook post.

This is what your status updates revealed:

Facebook Top Ten trends

The blog post also looked at the memes that emerged this year.

In it, you’ll see planking — you know, where people lie down in an unusual place. It hit a spike after Max Key, the son of New Zealand Prime Minister John Key uploaded a photo to Facebook, then celebrities gave the meme a second wind, but then it just sort of disappeared.

If you don’t know what “lms” is or “tbh” — then you’re clearly not spending enough time on Facebook.

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Wednesday, December 7th, 2011 news No Comments

You Won’t Believe How Big This Profitable 5-Person Startup Is

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/you-wont-believe-how-big-this-profitable-5-person-startup-is-2011-11


adrian constantin tv links

We recently met with Adrian Constantin, the founder of video startup TV Links

TV Links is a video aggregator and search engine, serving up videos from hundreds of sites, similar to US startup Clicker.

It’s not the most innovative business in the world, but here’s what you should know about it: it’s bootstrapped, profitable, it claims 37 million monthly unique visitors, and it has only 5 employees

TV Links is not just impressive, it’s interesting because it’s a combination of two important trends: globalization, and the extreme capital efficiency of online businesses. 

Globalization: the company has developers in Romania, servers in Spain and in the US through Amazon, and most of its users coming from the US, UK and Canada. 

Extreme capital efficiency: the company basically outsources everything: hosting, advertising and even some development. 

TV Links’ one weak spot is that it gets the vast majority of its traffic from Google and so will live and die by SEO. But the company has ambitious plans; it’s even starting to produce its own original video. 

We once wrote that Instagram is the future of startups in part because of its extreme capital efficiency: it has over 10 million users and half a dozen staff (the other reason is distribution via app stores and social media). TV Links is another example of this extreme capital efficiency; unlike Instagram, it gets distribution through the more “traditional” medium of search engines, but unlike Instagram it’s also profitable. 

This new reality has broad implications beyond startups. If you’re wondering about the sky-high valuations of companies like LinkedIn or Twitter, part of your calculus should also take into account the fact that it’s now possible to build these very efficient businesses with huge global markets, something which wasn’t possible 10 years ago when “clouds” were still things in the sky and the internet population was counted in millions, not billions.

We will see many more of these ultra capital-efficient, globally-distributed online businesses in the future. 

MORE: Why Instagram Is The Future Of Startups →

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Wednesday, December 7th, 2011 news No Comments

Spending Tons Of Money To Attract New Customers Is A Stupid Idea

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/spending-tons-of-money-to-attract-new-customers-is-a-stupid-idea-2011-11


If you’ve ever tried to explain the concept of “make new friends but keep your old ones” to a five-year-old, you have a pretty good perspective on how many high-growth businesses approach customer acquisition and retention.  Growing businesses tend to spend so much of their time and money acquiring new customers that they often overlook their best source of growth: retaining and growing their existing customer base.

One of our clients has more than 90 percent of its resources–people, marketing budget, etc.–focused on creating millions of new customers a year. Their business model is based on monthly recurring feeds, much like the cable or wireless industries. Customers come in and they stay…until they don’t. An analysis of the client’s historical data shows that the average customer stays for an average of 2.5 years. Because their customer acquisition cost is lower than their expected customer lifetime revenue, they reach a break-even point in less than two years. So it’s a great business, as long as they keep generating new customers, right?

Wrong. The problem is that as the management team’s growth expectations increase, it gets increasingly harder to acquire more customers. As a result, customer acquisition costs go up and the quality of customers, in terms of how long they stick around, goes down.

To solve this growth dilemma, the client needs to ask three key questions:

  • What revenue growth will we achieve if we keep our existing customers for just one additional month, on average?
  • What will it cost us to do this by, say, improving customer service or adding customer benefits?
  • How does this growth compare, both in magnitude and cost, to acquiring new customers?

The answer for our client will be the same as it is in almost all businesses. It’s cheaper, easier, and more effective to retain current customers than it is to acquire new ones. In fact, if this business can retain all of its customers by just one additional month on average, they can achieve an additional 3 percent of annual growth. If they can retain their customer base for four additional months, they can create double-digit growth–without adding a single customer.

It’s simple math–something that even a five-year-old might understand.

This post originally appeared on Inc.

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Tuesday, November 29th, 2011 news No Comments

John Bell, Managing Director, Oglivy 360

Source: http://blog.compete.com/2011/11/14/digital-cmo-series-john-bell-managing-director-oglivy-360/

“Even Social Media needs brand management.”

At the 2011 Digital CMO Summit, John Bell, Managing Director at Ogilvy 360 shared his thought provoking presentation – Overcoming the CMO’s Dilemma. John discussed a number of key questions and challenges that CMO’s are facing as brands begin to move from experimentation into operationalizing” social media.  It’s not as simple as senior marketing executives finally “getting it.” CMOs and their immediate teams are faced with some organizational issues, capability gaps, and the unforeseen consequences of embracing social media marketing and communications. Below are the 7 big challenges that must be overcome in order to reap the largest business value from social media:

1. Challenge: The Curse of the Channel Mindset

Solution: Plan around owned, earned and paid ‘engagement’
____________________________________________________________

2. Challenge: Understanding what to value

Solution: Adopt a new model that values behavior
____________________________________________________________

3. Challenge: Uncontrolled growth

Solution: Social Brand Management
____________________________________________________________

4. Challenge: What do I do with my Web site

Solution: Develop a content strategy
____________________________________________________________

5. Challenge: Assigning the right roles

Solution: Form a “center for excellence”
____________________________________________________________

6. Challenge: Building knowledge and capacity

Solution: Train, train, train
____________________________________________________________

7. Challenge: How else does social media drive value?

Solution: Develop a social business strategy
____________________________________________________________

Hear from John as he discusses the 7 big challenges and more on the CMO’s Dilemma on the Compete YouTube Channel.

About John: John Bell, managing director at Ogilvy, developed and leads 360° Digital Influence, the world’s largest, award-winning network of social media strategists, with team members in more than 27 countries. Bell and his team have designed integrated social media strategy and programs for B2B and B2C businesses as diverse as Unilever, American Express, Dupont, LG, and Lenovo. Bell has also received recognition for his enterprise social media strategy for The Ford Motor Company.


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Thursday, November 17th, 2011 news No Comments

Here’s What Groupon Insiders REALLY Think Of LivingSocial (GRPN)

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-what-groupon-insiders-really-think-of-livingsocial-2011-11


LivingSocial is a very close competitor to Groupon.

Unaiz Kabani, the data whiz at Daily deals aggregator Yipit, tells us that Groupon’s market share dropped to 54% in September, down from 57% in August. Meanwhile LivingSocial was up to 22% from 19% in August.

Despite this heated race, Groupon barely mentioned LivingSocial in its IPO roadshow. Can you even spot it on this slide from the presentation?

GRPN IPO

Ridiculous, right?

But what do Groupon execs really think of LivingSocial? While we were talking to sources for our story INSIDE GROUPON, we got a pretty clear picture.

Highlights:

  • “LivingSocial was discussed in every management meeting.  It always seemed liked Groupon was winning in the markets that mattered, except in D.C., which is LivingSocial’s home base.”
  • “I would say LivingSocial was the main driver behind the huge marketing expenses because the idea was always, lets have more subscribers and thus more sales, then them.”
  • “Internally, the company rhetoric to employees was we’re way better, way cooler. [It was] a pep rally approach – they’re the rival the team can beat. At the management level, I would say they were taken seriously.”
  • “LivingSocial had the biggest influence when they would do something before Groupon.  They launched their instant deals before Groupon Now got launched and that was kind of a blow.  They did their escapes before we had a travel channel and that was a blow also. “
  • “The perception was that they launched an inferior product so ours was better. Just as a consumer, their mobile platform is far inferior.”
  • “Having that first mover advantage was huge.  It just always seemed like Groupon maybe had deeper pockets and could take advantage of the scale they thought they needed, then LivingSocial could.”
  • “They think they’re a lot smarter than LivingSocial.  Andrew thinks about LivingSocial all night and all day.  He totally obsesses about them.”
  • The Whole Foods thing drove him crazy. Groupon was bidding on that too, and basically LivingSocial went in and fully subsidized the deal and said “we’ll pay the whole thing, we just want Whole Foods on our roster.’ And you saw the number, the LivingSocial thing really worked for them, it really lifted their top line.”
  • “They’re a great company, a great fast follower. I don’t know what they’re worth – maybe $3 billion to $6 billion dollars – which is amazing [since it] didn’t exist 3 years ago.”
  • “There’s scale advantage that they don’t have; they don’t have a global presence. “
  • “I think they get gobbled up by one of the big four – Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook. Or maybe they even get acquired by Groupon.”
  • “[If] Groupon is worth $15 billion or $16 billion then maybe LivingSocial is worth 4 or 5.”

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Tuesday, November 8th, 2011 news No Comments

Groupon’s Future Is Groupon Now

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-groupon-now-2011-10


Groupon Now is a mobile app that shows users all the deals surrounding them on a map.

Because it allows Groupon to offer more deals than one per day, Groupon Now is the future of Groupon’s business.

As Groupon’s margins compress, Groupon Now is supposed to save the company by bringing in a huge volume of sales.

Also, because the deals are offered in “real-time” Groupon Now is an important part of Groupon’s plan to become a “yield management platform for small businesses” – as one source recently described the vision to us.

Unfortunately, according to Yipit, Groupon Now isn’t growing very fast.

Go read Yipit’s whole, careful breakdown of Groupon Now’s slowing growth for more >>

chart of the day, groupon now, october 2011

Follow the Chart Of The Day on Twitter: @chartoftheday

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Monday, October 24th, 2011 news No Comments

The Capital Network That Runs The World

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/capitalist-network-runs-the-world-2011-10


There really is a secret capital network that runs the world, according to an analysis published in the esteemed New Scientist (via Patrick.net).

The work revealed a core of 1318 companies with interlocking ownerships. Each of the 1318 had ties to two or more other companies, and on average they were connected to 20. What’s more, although they represented 20 per cent of global operating revenues, the 1318 appeared to collectively own through their shares the majority of the world’s large blue chip and manufacturing firms – the “real” economy – representing a further 60 per cent of global revenues.

When the team further untangled the web of ownership, it found much of it tracked back to a “super-entity” of 147 even more tightly knit companies – all of their ownership was held by other members of the super-entity – that controlled 40 per cent of the total wealth in the network. “In effect, less than 1 per cent of the companies were able to control 40 per cent of the entire network,” says Glattfelder. Most were financial institutions. The top 20 included Barclays Bank, JPMorgan Chase & Co, and The Goldman Sachs Group.

While the existence of a core capitalist network isn’t surprising, this is the first time it has been mapped and quantified.

Here are the 1318 companies that control (60 percent of) world assets, with the really powerful companies in red.

image

And here’s the top fifty:

1. Barclays plc
2. Capital Group Companies Inc
3. FMR Corporation
4. AXA
5. State Street Corporation
6. JP Morgan Chase & Co
7. Legal & General Group plc
8. Vanguard Group Inc
9. UBS AG
10. Merrill Lynch & Co Inc
11. Wellington Management Co LLP
12. Deutsche Bank AG
13. Franklin Resources Inc
14. Credit Suisse Group
15. Walton Enterprises LLC
16. Bank of New York Mellon Corp
17. Natixis
18. Goldman Sachs Group Inc
19. T Rowe Price Group Inc
20. Legg Mason Inc
21. Morgan Stanley
22. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc
23. Northern Trust Corporation
24. Société Générale
25. Bank of America Corporation
26. Lloyds TSB Group plc
27. Invesco plc
28. Allianz SE 29. TIAA
30. Old Mutual Public Limited Company
31. Aviva plc
32. Schroders plc
33. Dodge & Cox
34. Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc*
35. Sun Life Financial Inc
36. Standard Life plc
37. CNCE
38. Nomura Holdings Inc
39. The Depository Trust Company
40. Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance
41. ING Groep NV
42. Brandes Investment Partners LP
43. Unicredito Italiano SPA
44. Deposit Insurance Corporation of Japan
45. Vereniging Aegon
46. BNP Paribas
47. Affiliated Managers Group Inc
48. Resona Holdings Inc
49. Capital Group International Inc
50. China Petrochemical Group Company

* Lehman still existed in the 2007 dataset used

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Friday, October 21st, 2011 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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