COSTA, what is the APP use for?

Good afternoon, my dear followers. Here we met again!

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I wonder how many of you are watching my blog through the WordPress App on your smartphone now. Yes, we all love App these days because it is convenient and useful. A company can use an App to engage with its customers and keep them loyal. But not every company can create very good one.

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This week we are going to talk about the App for Costa coffee.

The storage of our smartphone is mostly limited. So an App must be useful to occupy the storage. That is, it should be functional and create value for users. The Costa coffee App can be connected to user’s social media account and can be a store locator. It also provide a Costa product catalogue, puzzle game and free music. Sounds pretty good, hah?

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But when you think deeper, what is all those functions related to a coffee shop App? It serves a purpose that people can locate the nearest Costa coffee and can know about the product of the company. These two functions are absolutely very good. Last week I talked about Cafebene, their App only shows how many stores they have instead of helping customer to find the nearest store. Obviously, on this point, Costa did better. However, Costa creatively offers a puzzle game in the App. It is like this.

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I really doubt those days how many people will use this game to kill time. Not to say engage with the brand. It is too boring to attract the customers. If you want to use a game to engage with the customers, at least it should to unique and fun to play.

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The function should be mostly related to the company. Costa App also provide some free music. It is good. Starbucks also provide free music. But overall, Costa App’s theme is unclear.  On the other hand, Starbucks did a great job. They provide a membership program and you can even swipe the App to pay your bill in store. I really found the App payment thing is brilliant. You have no feeling you are using money but only see the number in an App is decreasing. And then you pay more happily.

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A great App should not only be useful but also easy to navigate. If it is like a high-tech software, not too many people will like it. Again, just as we discussed last week, UX(user experience) is important. The Costa App is quite easy to navigate since it does’t contain too much stuff.

The design of the App is fine. It is consistent with Costa in store decoration and Costa logo—-simple and clear. What’s more, it provides numerous yummy pictures of the drinks and snacks. I always love those kind of pictures which looks sweet and delicious.

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Overall, It is a pleasure to use Costa App as a store locator but I don’t think customer will engage with the brand through the App. After all, we already got Google Map App that can give us direction. Not too many people will willing to have it occupy the limited storage on the phone just because of the product introduction and the puzzle game. As for me, I will delete it immediately after I did this homework.

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I really hate say so many bad things about all those coffee shop’s digital marketing tools. No matter it is Cafebene or Costa, they both provide really good products. It is just that the digital marketing is rising, and they should pay more attention to it to stay competitive. Starbucks’s achievement has a reason. And I believe to some extent it can contributes to their gorgeous App.

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XOXO, see you next week~

Korean Cafe bene in US——UX has a long way to go

Hi, my dear followers, long time no see! Hope you all had a great Valentine’s day and a happy lunar new year!

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This week we are going to talk about the user experience(UX) across all platforms(Including website, tablet and mobile phone) for Cafe bene.

Cafe bene is a Korean Cafe franchise which provides traditional European coffee, modern creative drinks and delicious desserts. Now, it has more than 1,600 stores all over the world and is planning to expand and compete with Starbucks. Quite ambitious, isn’t it?

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However, Cafe bene’s online platform UX is not that competitive compared with what Starbucks has done.

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The visual design of the website is good.It is full of delicious and delicate picture of it’s coffee and food, talking about Cafe bene’s story, menu and expanding location. Simple and bright layout of all those things remind people of Cafe bene’s cozy and relaxing atmosphere.Besides, the website provides some related news and franchise join information. But this is not enough. In my opinion, the only purpose of the website is to let more people know about Cafe bene.  It is not designed to be useful or to provide some useful functions like membership, online ordering and location reminding. cafe bene2

The content of the website is mostly introducing Cafe bene itself without interacting with its customers. I do like all those yummy pictures of it’s menu! They are very attractive. But they don’t put price on it or online purchase method or at least where is the nearest store to find those good-looking food.  I don’t find it entertaining, convincing or inspiring enough. Because it mostly talks about how many new stores it is going to launch. How can it attracts more customers by talking about the store is expanding? With this kind of content, customers  won’t have strong emotional reactions.

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Cafe bene doesn’t have APP for tablets and mobile phones. The visual on tablets is almost the same with the computer screen which is fine. And the website for mobile phone is customized which means they do employ responsive design. The content for tablets and mobile phones are exactly the same.

If the website on computer doesn’t provide location reminder, I think it is fine. But if the version on the mobile phone can’t do that, it is not desirable. It is highly possible that when people search with mobile phone they want to find a nearest Cafe bene. But the Location button on the mobile phone web page only shows all the Cafe bene stores all over the world. At this time, it is a little bit disappointing for the user to talk about Cafe bene’s achievement. They should locate the customer and give the customer the direction to find a Cafe bene.

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Maybe it is because that Cafe bene is just going to start in US. But they do have to pay attention to their online platform UX, there is a large space for them to improve. They can learn from Starbucks and Coffee Bean to design an App for customers. Creating membership card to gain customer royalty is also a way to grow bigger.

Anyway, they do have a long list to check their UX for all those online platforms. It is a digital world now, if they can’t think more for customer, they won’t get what they want.

Oh, my god. I seem to said too much passive things about Cafe bene.

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I do have to tell you something they did perfectly! Their milk bubble tea is fabulous! Gave it a try, you will never regret!

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How fascinating you are?

Hi, everyone~ Are you missing me?~ I bet the answer is YES!

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This week you might know me better and maybe can get an idea to know yourself better! Have you ever thought how fascinate you are in other people’s eyes?

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No, no, no, I don’t mean what you looks like in the mirror.

I mean the inner quality of you.

Sometimes, you feel so good about yourself out and wonder what other people might think about you. Hope it’s not like this…

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Fortunately, I got the chance to know a little bit about how the world sees me. Our professor told us about Sally Hogshed and gave us the access to the Fascination Advantage test.

I always found of doing self test. It’s like someone knows you better that you to tell you about who you are and what can you do to be better. And looking through the result is like being a detective who is trying to match the evidence with the reality.

This time, I am satisfied.

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Because I got a 16 pages result report!

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Surprisingly, the report is quite me. It says my primary and secondary advantage is passion and prestige and my dormant advantage is mystique. I feel flattered when it says I am the talent. It is almost compliment that makes you more confident. On the other hand, it also provides some suggestions to make you improve. I should be more pragmatic instead of trying to do everything perfect. Time and energy is limited and I should rank all those bulletins in my to-do list. Put time on the most worthy one!

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Besides, as it says, I am not a mysterious person. I always tell my friends almost everything. For me, sharing is important to a relationship. The stories of each person are the bridges to connect each other. And I don’t what to change that. I am what I am. I like the way Sally says you have to be more you to be fascinate. Don’t trying to change yourself to some popular personality. Everyone has their own unique fascination.

Keep true of yourself and be fascinate!

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Here is Sally’s TedTalk. She talks about how she use online dating website to test how fascinate she is and how to impress others in the first 9 seconds. Believe me, it is quite interesting and I just want to have a try to see how fascinate I am on the online dating website. Don’t tell my boyfriend.

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And here is the link to the fascination test. You can give it a try to find out how fascinate you are.

http://www.howtofascinate.com/

Bye my dear followers, see you next week.

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I am going to embrace the frozen Manhattan today! (Video took by me using a cell phone)

Disney Digital Dazzle

Hi my dear followers~ Here comes our first story!

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This week, we are asked to talk about a brand that engaged with us using digital tools.

After read my first blog, you know I become passionate. However, only passionate is not enough. I thought about which brand to choose day and night. When nothing comes up, I just want to run away.

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But, I am the kind of person who won’t easily gave up!

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Fortunately, my lovely Disney dolls gave me inspiration! I was delighted and eager to tell you about it!

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When I went to Orlando Disney World last year, I downloaded Disney App and followed Disney on Instagram. And that’s how the story begins.

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I remember years before when I go to Disney World in Hong Kong and Tokyo, the App is nowhere to find and so does the way. I lost like a thousand times in the park and wait for hours for each attraction without the fast pass. Now, all those inconvenience is swiped away by the amazing App. In the app, Disney provides Attractions, Characters, Dinging, Restroom, Entertainment , Events, Guest Service and Shopping choices.

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That is, whatever I want to do, the App can give me suggestions and directions. I reserved fast pass for my favorite attractions within 1 minute and found them easily with the map’s instruction. When is the parade, where is the nearest restroom and which restaurant to have dinner, the App gave me all the answers I want. Of course, I keep it till now because I know I will go back to the magic kingdom soon! Digital tools like useful and convenient Disney App can improve the user experience immediately and sustain customer relationships. If a company use it right, customers can feel that you try to make things easier for them and let them experience more!

(I had a fabulous time there!)

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Disney Instagram got 1.2 million followers (Data in Feb 8th, 2015) They post pictures about Disney characters and even celebrate birthday for each character! Imagine that, when you open their account, you can engage with those lovely friends since childhood! It is fabulous for me to see them on my Instagram refreshment everyday and I won’t hesitate to like all of it.

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Social media is meant to engage with customers. Disney did it successfully because they know their targets well. They keep posting entertaining contents to attract, engage and retain those followers. And people can comment, @friends and even take action like me.

They post lovely pictures of Disney dolls which is irresistible for me!tumblr_mfnzekglkq1s0dcwto1_500

And look what I did last semester.

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I am not a heavy social media user, so I checked online to find more digital tools Disney used. They are AMAZING! They put so many attractive, creative and exclusive contents on Vine, Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, Google+  and Pinterest. If you want to know more, check out this link:  https://econsultancy.com/blog/64550-how-disney-uses-social-media-vine-youtube-pinterest-instagram-and-more/

It is quite important to be on all popular social media platforms since you don’t know which one your customer use.

And you have to ensure you put things on to satisfy your customer always. Because once you annoy them, no matter what changes you make, they won’t buy it. (They UNFOLLOW you before you change)

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Since I have to register to log into the App, they smartly got my email. They sent me emails once a week which is not annoying. The content is usually about discounted Disney movies. However, it is not my type. And this is one thing I think they can do better. When they got people’s email addresses, they can provide various selections for them. People can decide what they would like to receive. This is necessary to retain customer subscription. If the content is not what I want, I will soon unsubscribe the email from them. Because

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Brands should always be careful when they use digital marketing tools. It is fast, irretrievable and get into the customers daily life. If they use it right, they will succeed, or else

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All right, I won’t speak to much to bore you. Time for bed, see you next week, XOXO~

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P.S. I wrote this blog based on my own experience, if you are interested in more Disney digital news, check this out.

1.  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/22/business/media/disney-struggling-to-find-its-digital-footing-overhauls-disneycom.html?_r=0

2. http://mashable.com/2011/08/03/disney-social-media/

3. http://digiday.com/brands/inside-disneys-social-strategy/

XOXO Digital Marketing, Here We Go!

When I sat down in front of this blog, I feel like this

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And this

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I never wrote blogs before. For a long time, actually, I thought blogging is for those celebrities and XYZ masters to broadcast their life details and super professional perspectives. There won’t be anybody have time to read about what I am thinking.

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In the mean time, why should I spend so much time on Internet instead of  painting or keeping company with my friends and family?

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Because this blog counts 30 percent of my score for digital marketing class.

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I looked outside the window, desperately.

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Across the Hudson River, Manhattan is under the sun of February, shining. What a wonderful day! I  rushed out to the balcony anxiously. (Photo below is taken by me today with a cellphone)

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10 seconds later, I was like

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Don’t be fooled by what you see, it’s less than 25F out there!

That’s it! If you never try, you will never know what it is like. Steve Ballmer once said that” You have no right to dislike anything.” I would say “At least you should know what it really is before you dislike it.”

I am trying to be more passionate about blogging. I checked all recommended blogs and surprisingly I found a lot of interesting posts and inspirations!

The world is changing every minute, but to catch up with it doesn’t mean you have to throw away traditions. Blogging is a new field for me to learn, communicate and explore! And today’s digital marketing is the same. It is growing to get the customers in an engaging way which traditional methods cannot achieve. Besides, people can still enjoy the fun of cutting coupons off the newspaper while the electronic one will automatically present in their emails when they come across the store!

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In the next 12 weeks, I will passionately provide both innovative and entertaining contents about digital marketing for you. XOXO Digital Marketing, Here We Go!

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