Posts Tagged ‘invincibelle’

I recently attended Adtech in San Francisco, a digital marketing conference in US.  And some of the insights I got from speaking to industry experts and thought leaders validated my initial perception that mobile marketing and M-commerce is at the onset of taking off here in the US and in Asia with Japan being the only leader in this space. It reminded me of my days when I was getting out of Engineering school back in 1996.

As an Electronics and Communication Engineering graduate, I landed in the emerging wireless industry at the time. I was probably the only one who even had a wireless phone based on GSM technology (thanks to the wireless service provider company I was working for at that time). It was clear to me that I was at the intersection of the biggest mobile revolution that would change the world. And it did.

From feature phones to iPhones to Andriod Phones, the world of mobile communication has come a long way. And just like we were at the helm of wireless communication over fifteen years ago, I believe that we are now at the intersection of the biggest revolution at the intersection of  M-commerce and Mobile marketing.

Here are some of my observations:

The New Media renaissance: When SMS marketing was experimented with, it took a lot of heat from the mobile users.But with guidelines that were put in place by the mobile operators; mobile marketing via SMS has expanded rapidly in Europe and Asia as a new channel to reach the consumer. Now the industry is looking at mobile as not only a way of “Targeting” users but to become “Business solutions”. I love that I can use location based services by some cell phone networks as a way to send custom advertising and other information to cell-phone subscribers based on their current location.

The Mobile web : We all know that FB gives marketers access to over 200M users growing exponentially. But another statistics that is mind boggling is that 65M users are accessing FB through mobile devices.  Infact mobile FB users are 50% more active on FB than the rest of the users. And the 80 mobile operators in over 60 countries are to deploy FB mobile products in the coming future. Advertisers are increasingly using the mobile Web as platform to reach consumers. The total value of advertising on mobile was 2.2 billion dollars in 2007. A recent study by the Online Publishers Association reports that about one-in-ten mobile Web users said they have made a purchase based on a mobile Web ad, while 23% said they have visited a Web site, 13% said they have requested more information about a product or service and 11% said they have gone to a store to check out a product.

M-commerce: Gives the ability to conduct commerce using a mobile device, such as a mobile phone, a Personal digital assistantPDA, a smartphone, or other emerging mobile equipment such as dashtop mobile devices. Everything that you ever got from your AppStore on iPhone falls in this category. But this is reaching new heights when game developers bring out games like we city where you are required to get ZAP from Zap store within the game or in Angry birds, get frustrated in clearing a session and get power to get through it.

What will be the next big thing? Ever wondered about a mobile social network…keep a watch…its coming soon.

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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My work has given me the opportunity to be at the helm of rapid innovation in the world of gaming. And one of the fastest growing segment is interactive gaming where the user gets to play the game and also create content like videos, virtual goods and even produce story lines. This is largely influenced by video gaming.

Here are three scenarios to help you make sense of what I am saying:

  1. Communities get involved in creating content: Guitar hero is a game which allow users to create their own songs and share it with their friends. Also, game content creation enables users to create their own virtual goods to share with their friends. This leads to a new digital economy when the users can share the profits from the sale of their virtual goods with the developers. Allowing both communities of users and developers to benefit from each other – a win-win situation.
  2. Games become advertising channels: The massive amount of users on some of these games make it attractive for Brands to be in front of them. But now it is not an irritating ad banner but your hero in the game has the ability to get his favorite “drink”, stop by their favorite “Gas station” or  even dress their avatars in their favorite brands. For brands this is an ideal product placement since traditional media is not effective for reaching the growing demographic of digital natives.
  3. Story lines get interactive: Game developers are now building games where a player can engage in the story development. He is required to upload a video, find a clue in another website or even visit a real location to get a “clue” to progress into a next level if they wish to continue playing.

For this behavior to continue it is critical to nurture the communities of gamers. So, the marketing departments in different gaming companies have to become competent in listening to these communities and engage with them by tweeting, blog posts and updates so that they retain the users who are HARD CORE gamers.

Photo Credit: Papermag

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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From Morse codes to cellular phones, from x86 processors to Intel’s i7 processors and from email to social media, mankind has come a long way. All these methods have one thing in common – need to connect. And the most important thing we forget is that though these devices and technologies are designed to improve productivity, they are serving the basic human need to communicate. And the litmus test for all these advancements is when you can use them during crisis situations.

The recent crisis in Japan is a reminder to us to that Technology can be a boom and a curse.

When a nuclear reactor has radiation leak, it makes it impossible to justify benefits of nuclear power even if it is designed for making the world Green or Safe. After all, what is the point if families inhabiting that place will virtually never be able to go there for decades due to the radiations. And then technology renders the only way to either give your location in a crisis or communicate with your loved ones.

In the recent Japan quake, all the telephone lines got disconnected, earthquake knocked out electricity supplies, interestingly Internet availability remains relatively unaffected, according to a blog post from Internet monitoring company Renesys. And what is most compelling is that Japan turned to social media for connecting with their loved ones. Less than an hour after the quake, the number of tweets from Tokyo topped 1,200 per minute, according to Tweet-o-Meter. This is where the Twitter strategy to follow hashtags simply rocks. Check out #Japan #tsunami #earthquake.

Social Media sites such as Twitter & Facebook have also made it possible for people to get and provide real time help. There are numerous messages that provide links to charities for folks who want to make a contribution to organizations who are helping the affected folks. Then, there is also a “Trust” factor on sites like facebook – If a facebook friend of mine endorses a charity organization, chances are there is an implicit trust that I will have in doing the same… which basically helps the affected folks get help, quickly!

Also, people found it easier to share their stories on Facebook stories page. Facebook again became instrumental in not only connecting friends and family but also became a broadcast channel for people to share their updates and checkin with their friends. There was a positive outcome other than news and analysis since REAL people were able to connect.

In this mix, Youtube and blogs became instrumental in giving people eyes into the disaster ridden areas with the help of citizen journalism.

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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Week In Review: Feb 20 – Feb 26, 2011

by Magesh Tarala on February 27, 2011

Author’s Journey Update: Easy ways to organize blog posts, books and ebooks

by Roger Parker, Feb 21, 2011

You need organize what you are going to write before you start writing. It helps you provide structure, sequence and relevance for your ideas. Roger provides 10 options you could use to get organized. Make it a habit to use them and it will help you keep up your writing commitments. more…

Project Reality Check #10: Personal Resilience

by Gary Monti, Feb 22, 2011

Being centered though all situations and avoiding distractions is key for a project manager’s success. You can achieve this by being resilient. Resilience is the ability to continue functioning while adapting to a changing situation. In this article Gary lists the questions that you can ask yourself and take appropriate action. Sometimes you get the elevator, other times you get the shaft. The idea is to build resilience, think, and keep moving to get more of the former and less of the latter. more…

Social Media and Tribes #30: Virtual Valentine

by Deepika Bajaj, Feb 23, 2011

Thanks to Social Media, there’ve been very interesting shifts in Velentine’s day behaviors. This year people not only sent personal messages but wished their friends, shared their gifts, surprises, roses and even their  dinners on FB. People are broadcasting their love for friends and special ones. Moreover, there are Valentine Apps on the iPhone store, Groupon Deals, Valentine Events marketed on FB. Better watch out Hallmark! more…

Flexible Focus #42: Time Lapse as a Mandala Movie

by William Reed, Feb 24, 2011

Manda Charts show relationship between the frames in a 3D perspective. What about the 4th dimension, time? This is not so difficult to imagine if you look at the effect you get in time-lapse photography. So as you create and use Mandala Charts, try to see them from the perspective of the 4th dimension, time and transformation. It will add a new dimension to your enjoyment of flexible focus. more…

Leader driven Harmony #13: 4 P’s to get your !deas MOVING – Part II

by Mack McKinney, Feb 25, 2011

Last week Mack showed you how to be a pro and likeable when pushing for change and I showed you key actions that would get you taken seriously. In addition to that, you need to be somewhat patient and promote your !deas. When you promote your ideas to others, let them become their ideas, because people will advocate their “own” ideas more passionately than other’s ideas. more…

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Social Media and Tribes #30: Virtual Valentine

by Deepika Bajaj on February 23, 2011

Yes, the fact that Valentine’s Day was a week ago is not lost on me! In retrospect, its actually a good thing I waited to write this post till now as I had the time to notice very interesting shifts in behavior, thanks to the Social Media & Valentine Tribes! Alright, lets get going…

Some of us probably remember the days when you had to write a letter while you were dating or wooing someone special. This was not a long ago, although it might seem so.  At that time, if you were in a long-distance relationship, you had no choice other than to write a letter or spend a ton of money making a long distance phone. In both cases, you were not sure if the person concerned will receive your message. Your best intentions to connect might be futile.

It is almost hard to believe but I have personally gone through that era. When I got my Valentine Card in the mail from my then boyfriend, now my husband; I did not receive it till the next day in my college hostel room. And when I did, I was already upset with him for being late (for apparently no fault of his since it was the nature of the postal system that caused the delay in the delivery).

Well! if you are late in today’s time only Heavens can save you. Since with emails, instant messengers, cell phones, text message, twitter, FB and smart phones you better have a good excuse. There is no way you can be late even if you were in a different time zone in a different country!

This year, I observed how people not only sent personal messages but wished their friends, shared their gifts, surprises, roses and even their  dinners on FB. Some of them were extremely creative and some of them were extremely bold. The bottom line is that you had a Virtual Valentine’s Day! All in all, you could broadcast your love for your friends and special ones. I am sure Hallmark did not expect that facebook will steal its thunder ever. They really don’t have a competing business model. But suddenly, no one is looking for Valentine’s Card in greeting cards section in a store. They are more interested in creating their own special Valentine and share it in one to many medium rather than a greeting card which is one to one.

Moreover, there are Valentine Apps on the iPhone store, Groupon Deals, Valentine Events marketed on FB. I was recently a DJ at one such event. I got to share pictures of the event, connect with everybody at the party on FB and got a lot of love since they enjoyed my music.

The pointVirtual Valentine enables you… make that “Super enables you” to connect with loved ones!

Of course! there are people who still did get a greeting card and mailed it OR had it accompany their gift. And that is really COOL. But there is a shift that we cannot ignore. Yes, you still need REAL people to celebrate this day. But the Virtual Valentine enables it and is here to stay!

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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Week In Review : Feb 13 – Feb 19, 2011

by Magesh Tarala on February 20, 2011

Social Media and Tribes #29: The new BLINK!

by Deepika Bajaj, Feb 14, 2011

Contrary to popular belief, FaceBook is not a distraction. This is true at least for people who can use it in moderation like everything else in life. Glancing at the news feed once in a while helps you be connected. It happens in a split second and you see something that doesn’t register at the conscious-level but provides a gut-feel about the thing. Just like what Malcolm Gladwell states in his popular book BLINK: The power of thinking without thinking. more…

Project Reality Check #9: Tyranny of the “Truth”

by Gary Monti, Feb 15, 2011

Everyone sees their version of the “truth” and this can cause tyrannical behavior. This happens if the person’s “truth” limits the available options for action. Or it could be because of the rigidity in the system or bureaucracy. A great example is the comparison between the Brits and the Germans in WWII. Even though both of them has the technology for a similar artillery piece, the Germans were adept at improvising whereas the Brits were more concerned about maintaining status.  more…

7 Key Strategies for designing an Analysis based Company

by Linda Williams, Feb 16, 2011

In today’s fast changing environment being an analysis based company is critical to survival and profitability. Different industries will have different needs for analysis but there are some key components of an analytical strategy that are foundational to the majority of businesses. In this article, Linda lists the top 7 strategies for designing an Analytical Strategy. more…

Flexible Focus #41: Your 100 year life span

by William Reed, Feb 17, 2011

Irrespective of what ages determine the boundaries of each stage, the truth is that there are stages to life. And you cannot see some things clearly until you take the 100 year perspective. The 100 Year Life Span Mandala Chart can help you gain clarity. It takes a while to thoughtfully fill it out, but that is a small investment of time compared to the perspective it gives you. Think of it as climbing a mountain to the summit of your life, and getting the view of everything below. You owe it to yourself to go there at least once, and if possible at least once a year. more…

Leader driven Harmony #12: 4 P’s to get your !deas moving – Part 1

by Mack McKinney, Feb 18, 2011

The four Ps to move your ideas are be Pleasant, be Professional, be Patient and Promote like crazy. But very often you may not be able to find the traction in your organization. If that’s the case, Mack suggests some ways to rectify that. more…

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Social Media and Tribes #29: The new BLINK!

by Deepika Bajaj on February 14, 2011

Last weekend, with my co-founders, I was working on a time sensitive project in my living room. They were sitting around the dining table with each of them having a laptop open in front of them. We had to get some work done and decided to make dinner together and make it a “work and eat” session. It was a creative session and we were working on a script for a radio show we have recently launched.

What I observed was that we all had multiple sessions of windows open and one of them was constant across every laptop on the dining table – this was THE FB window.

I was pleasantly surprised by this observation. And then started to pay attention to how each of them was using it.

To my surprise, no one was distracted by it (as per the popular belief). On the contrary it was used to take a break and check out the conversation for a bit and come back to work. And it was amazing how each one was always effectively contributing AND we were not disconnected from our world. I did observe that we went straight to the News Feed, scrolled down to see what was the current activity among our friends and came back to the task at hand… and all this sometimes happened in a matter of split seconds!

Almost reminded of the book by Malcolm Gladwell: BLINK: The power of thinking without thinking.  I saw ALL of us “essentially seeing something that doesn’t register at the conscious-level but provides us a gut-feel about the thing”.  Behind this behavior, the intention is to stay connected and enjoy our social interactions which is big part of our lives while we do our best work.

I think FB window is not a distraction but a sense of connection in your day’s work. I believe with the advancement of technology and mobile communications, we are no longer able to separate work and life. So, if we are able to make a comment, like a status and check a pic of our friend on a vacation – we get a sneak peek into their lives – connect, comment, like and share while we are working. All this is based on our gut-feel, the first impression of the status – the power of our sub-conscious mind.

At work, sometimes we deal with people we don’t like or people who mean nothing to us and part of the work life issue is that you get to spend less time with people who matter. I felt this could play directly into feeling motivated with being able to contribute to our friends who matter…I have learnt about accidents, operations, movements, birthdays and baby showers on FB and made instant calls, comments and even visits based on my gut feelings.

Of course! like everything – “Too much of everything is BAD”. Moderation is key. And you need to be aware of this habit not to get lost in it but to find yourself and get back to being more productive!

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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Week In Review – Jan 30 – Feb 5, 2011

by Magesh Tarala on February 6, 2011

Pop-up retail, meet pop-up office

by Marc Watley, Jan 31, 2011

Pop-up retail stores is a recent concept that’s enjoyed immense success. This is applicable to B2B focused organizations too. For example, consider a SaaS company in Dallas needing exposure in Silicon Valley in order for the new product to succeed. They should consider setting up a pop-up office in University Avenue in Palo Alto or Castro Street in Mountain View, for example, which are both hotbeds of Valley activity – with everyone from Googlers to Facebookers to VCs constantly rushing along these thoroughfares to coffee/lunch/dinner meetings. Despite the recent corner-turning of the economy, most cities’ central business districts like these still have plenty of empty storefronts and ground-level offices. Right now is a particularly good time to consider a pop-up office. more…

Project Reality Check #7: Cage Wrestling – Project vs. Operations Management

by Gary Monti, Feb 1, 2011

Inherent conflict between projects and operations might be called white-collar cage wrestling. Participants are focused, strong, and may carry the belief – winning means dominance of their approach. Who’s right? They both are. What is at stake is delivery of a product that performs well and is sustainable. more…

Social Media and Tribes #28: Social Media on the GO!

by Deepika Bajaj, Feb 2, 2011

In today’s world, we are no more rooted to our computer for staying connected. This is largely because of the advent of smart phone and mobile apps. If you have an iPhone and a friend of yours complains about your delay in responding to his/her email…you better NOT say, “I was away from my computer”. Similarly, if you are a smart phone user and you say to someone “I don’t have time to Tweet or FB”; most likely they are wondering if you are using any smarts of the smart phone! more…

Flexible Focus #39: The Principle of Gratitude

by William Reed, Feb 3, 2011

One of the hardest lessons of flexibility is letting go of the ego’s attachments. Pride prevents you from achieving flexibility, because it insists on being right, being first, or being better than others. It’s companions are alike, inflexible, stubborn, righteous, and condescending. The ancient Greeks called it hubris (hybris), excessive ambition or pride leading to a fall, or to total ruin. There is away to flexibility, based on a Mandala Principle from Buddhism, the Principle of Gratitude (慈悲喜捨 Jihi Kisha). You can download the Mandala of Gratitude, and start using it in your daily life. more…

Leader driven Harmony #10: Don’t Be a Baby Bird (Part II)

by Mack McKinney, Feb 4, 2011

You can spend an (enjoyable) lifetime in anything, if you get all the way IN IT. Business, retail, real estate, banking, dentistry, chiropractic, farming, nursing, appliance repair, EVERY FIELD can provide you with a lifetime of thought and involvement if you will just dive in and commit to being the best at it. Do you have a “fire in the belly” to stop being a baby bird? more…

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Social Media and Tribes #28: Social Media on the GO!

by Deepika Bajaj on February 2, 2011

In today’s world, we are no more rooted to our computer for staying connected. This is largely because of the advent of smart phone and mobile apps. If you have an iPhone and a friend of yours complains about your delay in responding to his/her email…you better NOT say, “I was away from my computer”. Since you are on your iPhone, the other person is 100% positive that you have received the email and read it too…whether you replied to it OR not is a different story. Similarly, if you are a smart phone user and you say to someone “I don’t have time to Tweet or FB”; most likely they are wondering if you are using any smarts of the smart phone!

The point is that a cell phone is now more than an instrument to make or receive calls. It is now your desktop on the GO and has enabled social media on the GO.

My Favorite Mobile Apps

  • Facebook for iPhone: Talking about FB, the coolest mobile app for iPhone is Facebook for iPhone. It is convenient to use, read live feeds of your friends, upload pictures taken from your iPhone to FB, review notifications, chat with online friends, update status et al.
  • LinkedIn: LinkedIn mobile app is like a rolodex online. If your connections change jobs and businesses and update their profiles – you are still in touch without having to be in touch. I like the fact that I can see updates, invite people to connect, Accept invitations simply on my iPhone
  • Echofon: I love tweeting and so any app that allows me to see tweets real time, see mentions, retweet and send direct response to people is valuable for me on the go. This app is great as I get to tweet from anywhere and share thoughts from the touch on the iPhone.
  • Foursquare: I love the fact that I can checkin real time into places. And choose if I wish to share my location with my Facebook and Twitter friends. Also, the badges that I have unlocked (Jetsetter, Adventurer  etc) are a great motivator. Primarily I use it to locate places near by, get tips about a restaurant from people who have shared their views and see where my friends are at.
  • WhatsApp: If you have blackberry friends, then you have heard about the pleasure of BB messenger BUT now with WhatsApp you are able of message friends on Blackberry (if you are an iPhone user). I like to send pics as attachments, see who is available and also chat with friends all over the world on my iPhone….
  • Dropbox: I simply love this application. It is virtual file sharing and syncing – in a secure environment, right at your fingertips… and your fingertips don’t have to be around a keyboard or a laptop! It enables me to receive a contract from a client half way across the world, while I am riding in a train, I can read it on my smart phone and send my approval! Productivity Galore! On top of that, the first 2GB (yes, I said, GB!) of space is FREE, and you get an additional 250MB when you sign up referrals (each referral gets you an additional 250MB of space – up until 8GB! Surely, not a place to add your high-def videos but definitely good for coordinating and sharing work related stuff!

So, if you are on an airport and find yourself in the middle of nowhere, try to connect to wireless network of the airport. Voila! the world will be at your disposal…to chat, communicate and collaborate. So, next time you get a response to your email when your friend is traveling or you chat with your friends in different continents or you post a pic on FB…remember it has nothing to do with being on the computer…and everything to do with your smart phone – so think twice when you say – “I’ve been out of touch since I am not a person who likes to sit on my computer”. As long as you sit, walk or stand and have a smart phone, you have powerful tools to stay connected, thanks to Social Media, on the GO…. !

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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There has been a lot of speculation about the what will be the impact of social media when Gen Y grows up into more mature digital natives. This generation already proved those wrong who thought they will grow up to be TV watching couch potatoes. This generation has the unparalleled skill to use their fingers on their smartphones and use social media to stay connected and consume entertainment. While generations older than them still watch TV on a flat HD screen in a living room, there is a revolution happening where your TV, computer and smartphone connected through internet are all equipped to provide entertainment on the GO – taking living room to the airport lounges, malls, libraries and even schools and other cool cafes.

Sure, Gen Y watches over 3 hours of TV a day, but it’s not a couch potato experience. I would argue that they’ve turned TV viewing itself into social media.

If you see them watching TV, do not assume that that is ALL they are doing. Check how they are texting, commenting and tweeting. They don’t just watch a movie, they are sharing, collaborating, distributing and connecting. This thumb-savvy generation has no issues with the overload of new technologies –  they are excited about to learn about the launch of innovative technologies – eg. Google TV, ustream.tv.

The traditional TV watching is going to need a face lift when this Generation grows up. Brands have rested for 50 years reaching their consumers through mass media. They are not up for a challenge to make contact with their future consumers. Advertising on TV to a Yelp reading, Foursquare Tip taking and Quora questioning and answering community is not as simple as placing a 30 sec ad on the prime time network during Superbowl.

Another cool example is the President’s State of the Union address that happened today. Sitting from my office, I was able to watch the address simply by logging on to yahoo through an ABC.com feed. The fact that there were real time tweets and a real time blog with a commentary ongoing made the whole experience so much more richer! Admittedly, I (during some parts) enjoyed watching the blog more than I enjoyed watching the speech!

TV watching is still there and psychology behind watching the TV is the same. BUT I get excited about the world where sharing screens will be on a touch of a button, finding movies on my smart phone that my friends are watching, avoid sitting in living rooms….and I am not even a Gen Y.  As a Gen Xer, I hope to just keep up with them. As I find TV watching an isolating experience and the new approach to being entertained resonates with me.

Afterall, ” Man is a social animal”. Soon, “Man will be a social media animal”!

DD-new-pic-headshot Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle
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