In today’s highly competitive market, businesses need to keep customers needs and the changing market demands in mind. The customer today is increasingly aware and uses online channels to research purchases; thus marketing meets prospects earlier than ever in the buying process. Every customer is not only looking for a good product; he also wants to get a good deal. It is important therefore for businesses to nurture the prospect, thereby ensuring that he actually buys the product.  

The best way is to use lead management to bridge the gap between marketing and sales. Lead management is the entire business process of gaining new customers to retaining the existing ones. Lead management begins from the time when you capture or generate a lead to filtering leads based on the lead intelligence, to the point a high priority prospect is ready to engage with a sales representative and qualified leads to the marketing team for lead nurturing.

Lead management requires the following capabilities:

·          Lead scoring- With robust marketing automation applications, leads can now be automatically scored and prioritized based on their activity, interest and intent.  Makes Sales more efficient by helping them focus on the hottest leads first and get to them with a relevant solution in real time.

·         Lead Intelligence - Offers marketing and sales teams a user-friendly way to fully automate and gain critical insight into the prospect's buying intent and process. Marketing and sales can identify opportunities with greater clarity and more effectively drive sales opportunities to revenue.

·         Lead nurturing – As all leads are not sales-ready, to convert them to customers, they have to be nurtured well. Lead management enables businesses to track interaction and feedback, which can help determine whether leads have been nurtured enough or not. Lead nurturing best practices helps to build relationships with qualified prospects and aims at building a long term relationship with prospects through a consistent and meaningful dialog between the marketer and the prospect throughout the sales cycle.

·         Lead distribution - to pass the sales ready prospect to the right sales channel seamlessly.

Enterprises need to evaluate their lead strategy and create an effective lead management with queries about lead flow, current lead generation campaigns, sources of leads, the process of transferring leads from marketing to sales, measuring lead follow-ups, tracking sales leads to closed sales, etc. Thus it is seen that well nurtured prospects tend to buy more in comparison to others. Companies having an efficient lead management have better alignment between marketing and sales leading to increased revenue.

Also read on - Lead scoring,  Lead nurturing best practices
The mobile phone has become more than a necessity today. It has multiple utilities than just simple calling and texting. The internet boom and the growth of mobile technologies have added to the development of mobile application development. This means, today mobile workers are able to work from their mobile phones or smart phones when they are moving from one place to the other. Not only that, the online gaming industry depends on innovative mobile application technologies and makes business on the maximum download percentage.

Most consumers look out for high –end mobiles than just a basic model. They want a phone that would help them in computing when they are not in front of their desktops or laptops. This has resulted in several MNC’s to foray into mobile application development solutions. The scope to create better solutions and applications is increasing each day, as any software that is discovered today needs to be updated after a span of time.  As you venture into the market, you will come across several mobile operating platforms for instance Java, Symbian, Android, Windows, Blackberry and the like. The process of mobile application development works toward increasing the productivity level of a mobile.

Top software product development brands nowadays are equipped with the methodologies, tools and the required experience and knowledge that enabled them to establish mobile applications faster and in a cost-effective way. The focus areas are listed below-
  • Location-Based Services (LBS)
  • Mobile Media Streaming
  • Presence & Social Networking
  • Messaging & Syncing
  • Mobile Advertisement & Ad Engines
  • Mobile VoIP
  • Gaming

Apart from these, the service providers also have the skill and experience of working with Level A companies and assist them with effective product lifecycle management solutions. Some of the selected mobile application support and development facilities provided by them are listed below-
  • Developing mobile applications in J2ME, BREW, Android, iPhone, Symbian, Windows Mobile and BlackBerry
  • Conceptualizing mobile applications and eliciting requirements, for instance UI design, prototype, wireframes, user stories
  • Designing, developing and testing applications
  • Porting mobile applications between platforms and devices
  • Developing server-side and infrastructure, including for location & mapping services
  • Integrating third-party components on the server side, for instance SMS/MMS, billing, feeds, ads, content and many others
  • Integrating carrier, SMSC and billing systems, for instance LBS platform for location determination
  • Coordinating with carriers and device manufacturers for mobile application testing and certification, for instance NSTL, Java Verified
  • Launching and distributing mobile applications
  • Carrier Catalogs and Storefronts
  • Providing maintenance and support services

Today the mobile application development industry is a million dollar industry and is only expected to flourish and expand in the coming days, which will serve as a platform fort other companies to make profits.

Also read on - ecommerce solutions, Customer research
Single seater auto racing is every boy’s dream. Right from the time, boys are of age to distinguish between the toys, the wheeled ones always excite them. Its quite natural then that as they grow, and understand the technology and its use, they head for the more sophisticated toys, which includes the fast racing games on the computer systems and xboxes or even any hand held devices. Speed, which the wheeled machines give, is what pumps their adrenalin up. The Formula One Motor Sports is one, which glues the boys to their seats.

Formula One has been thrilling its fans, while endangering the lives of its drivers, since its inaugural season of 1950, in the sports traditional base, Europe. Also referred to as, Formula 1 or F1, this sport is officially known as FIA Formula One World Championship. This motor sport is the highest class of single seater auto racing sanctioned by the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA).

Based on a set of rules or “Formula” that each participant car has to follow, the F1 season consists of a series of races, or Grand Prix held on purpose-built circuits and public roads. FIA Formula One World Championships are given one to the Driver and one for the constructor.  The result of all the races of the season is combined to declare the champion. Formula 1 complete motor sports drivers are required to be holders of valid Super License, the highest class of racing license issued by the FIA.

To understand more about this great sport, one can browse through book stores for details of the Formula 1 complete motor sports books. The F1 cars are considered the fastest cars in racing circuit with a racing speed of up to 360km/h. The online books detail on how the aerodynamics, electronics, suspension and tyres of this machine help it to gain speed. Books such as ‘Formula 1:The definitive visual Guide’, ‘Formula 1 Injected Fact Book’, Formula 1 Official Guide, and ‘Burning Rubber: Extraordinary Story of Formula 1’ is quite informative. These books actually steers one through the crazy budgets and nail biting finishes of the sport. Besides, it takes one under the bonnet of the top pf the line formula 1 cars from BMW to Toyota to understand the insides of these speed machines.

With the Grand Prix moving to India, and the F1 race organized at Jaypee's Buddh International Circuit (BIC), Greater Noida has tickled many Indian youngsters dream to drive the speed machine. Buy books online and read through to experience the electrifying driver's seat of the dream car and discover the fast and furious world of Formula 1.

Also read on - online shopping, Enid Blyton books
Today’s global business environment has placed organization’s workforce and development teams across locations and time zones. However, the technological innovations have paved way for a successful achievement of results even in a distributed environment.  Agile development methodologies with high result orientation and ability to accommodate change are what the development teams look forward to.

Research and development is a well-made investment for the company’s future growth. With an expected investment at least 15% of the budget for R&D, the organizations can be ready for the changing market trends.  In a scenario with the R&D teams distributed, the Agile development methodologies and remote presence technologies takes up the challenge. With the help of these technologies, like SCRUM an agile product life-cycle management method for distributed software engineering,  it becomes possible for the teams to develop product and mange budget based software engineering outsourcing within schedules.

Agile software development is a combination of several software development methodologies based on iterative and incremental development. The requirements and its solutions evolve through effective collaboration between cross-functional teams. For success in distributed agile development, the software teams needs to ensure that releases are as per schedule. Regular feedback from users help in improving the product. Further, the credibility that is established makes it easy to manage the user requests. Though distributed, creating an efficient team, with the divided workflow ensures a single version of the software that is tested through various hands.

Agile methods for global R&D, supported by collaborative platforms and frameworks enable rapid product lifecycle management. This combination of methodology and state-of-the-art product lifecycle management tools helps organization to overcome the challenges of working across a distributed environment. This also facilitates delivery of high-quality products while accelerating timelines and reducing costs. The agile distributed development software from leading organizations has three components: Method, Platform and Objects.
  • Method- for distributed software R&D,
  • Platform are the set of open source-derived tools for collaboration, tracking, end-to-end traceability and product lifecycle management and
  • Objects – an open source software development framework, which can be used with any standardized architecture for distributed software development

The distributed agile development provides a competitive advantage for a software product development through delivering early, simplified communication and facilitating change as per business requirements. It also facilitates R&D outsourcing thus providing the client organization the freedom to concentrate on other core business strategies. 

Also read on - Product R& D ServicesOPD
1. Creating Buzz

It is about creating buzz or news worthy events, videos, tweets, or even blog entries that attract attention, and become viral in nature. Buzz generation is what makes social media marketing work; it replicates a message, not through purchase of an ad, but through user to user contact.
The message does not necessarily have to be about the product, but could be anything either relatively or remotely associated; many successful viral campaigns have gathered steam by focussing on the interests of the social media enthusiasts with a subtle presence in the form of a company logo or tagline included.

2. Content Creation

This aspect requires building of assets that facilitate fans of a brand or company to promote it across multiple social media channels. Fan pages in Facebook or Groups in LinkedIn are ideal examples.

3. Customer Involvement

Social media marketing is successful only when it is designed to allow customer/user participation and dialogue, with little or no control by the organization. If a company has something to hide, then maybe social media marketing is not for them, here only the honest or the smart can survive.

Advantages of Social Media Marketing versus Traditional Marketing Strategies

Efficiency- Unlike many traditional marketing automation methods, social media marketing provides an instant connection between the company and its target audience. As soon as a company puts information up on the internet, it immediately becomes easily available to a large number of people. By contrast, television or radio commercials can take weeks to produce, billboards take time to print and install, and postcards and mailers can take several days to travel and find their way to the desired address.

Cost - Social media marketing is extremely cost-effective when compared to other marketing methods. Many social networking platforms charge little or no fee to register, allowing companies to utilize their services to locate and interact with their target audience without having to spend large amounts of money.

Effectiveness- Social media provides a lot of flexibility, when it comes to reaching out to the target audience. It can be used to connect with both the masses as well as a company’s niche segment. All one has to do is to ensure that they use their social media channels and assets carefully. And tweak the message as per the audience they are reaching out to. Such flexibility makes any campaign effective, yielding significant results, with just a little effort.

Personal Connection- Unlike most traditional marketing strategies, social media allows companies to open up a conversation with their audience, allowing them to provide feedback and express their ideas and suggestions about their business in real time. Customers who have a personal connection with the business and feel as though the company cares about their feelings and opinions are more likely to return to the company when they need their services again. For organizations trying to promote an idea or cause, social media allows them to have discussions with people, informing them about their cause and eventually winning their support. Social media marketing can also be effectively used for lead generation by automating its processes using a robust lead management system.

Also read on - Lead nurturing best practices, Marketing automation software
It is mandatory for employers to buy certain types of insurance coverage, in certain countries. For example, in U.K. employers must buy employer's liability insurance, and this can be obtained either locally or by extending the head office policy. As per China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, there have been new measures that require foreign employees in China to participate in its Social Insurance System. The law is the first attempt to bring together and intensify laws and regulations that were previously spread across different administrative bodies and levels of government. All the foreigners employed in China and their employers in China will be required to pay for five types of insurance policies, namely the Basic Pension Insurance, Unemployment Insurance, Maternity Insurance, Work-related Injury Insurance and Medical Insurance, effective from October 15th 2011.

The regulations stipulate that the insurance fees will be paid both by the employers and the foreign employees which could increase per head costs for employers, while the employees also incur additional costs. Considering high salary levels of foreign employees, this law will result in a cost burden of as high as RMB 5,000 to RMB 5,500 per month, considering the present contribution rates. Chinese local governments are expected to issue further measures and regulations in order to bring some clarity on the rates of various contributions, administrative procedures, etc. The law also requires employers to undertake their employees’ social insurance registration within 30 days of applying for their employment permits. The insurance program also extends to employees in representative offices registered or incorporated in China after signing employment contracts with employers outside of China. Further, it requires the Chinese entity to conduct social insurance registration on behalf of the foreigners.

Social Insurance Penalties

In an international business expansion, employers who fail to register their expatriates for social insurance or fail to pay fees on behalf of the expatriates will be penalized according to the Social Insurance Law and other relevant regulations. Penalties amounting to more than one time and less than three times the social insurance fee amount can be levied and the personnel responsible for it will have to pay a penalty of more than RMB500 and less than RMB3000. A 0.05 percent late payment fee will be imposed on a daily basis for employers who fail to pay full social insurance fees in a timely manner. For those that fail to pay overdue payments until the stipulated date, the relevant administrative department will impose a penalty of more than one time and less than three times the delinquent amount.

Social Insurance outside China.

The law requires foreign employees receiving social insurance payments outside of China to annually submit a certification proving that he/she is still alive issued by the Chinese embassy/consulate to the social insurance agency from which he/she receives payments.

Taking the help of a business expert can bring many benefits, in any international expansion, and avoid costly penalties later. A reliable business will be aware of all the regulations and the ever changing laws. They offer useful guidance on various aspects like tax equalization expat, regulatory filings, etc.

Click here for more on: International accounting, Expanding business overseas

Advertising has come a long way from its historical roots. With Internet customers relying more on search engines than newspaper ads or yellow pages, to find the products and services they want, it becomes necessary to be ‘visible’ on search engine results.

Since search engines contribute to website traffic immensely more and more B2B companies are aggressively pursuing Search Engine Marketing (SEM) activities. Touted to be the top ranked online marketing  automation technique in recent times, SEM activities play a primary role in driving website traffic and contributing highly for lead generation as well.  Today, B2B companies have also increased their spending for SEM as well, thereby making SEM a high priority activity for lead generation.

Google is the most powerful search engine. It gathers sorts and showcases search results which match very accurately to the search terms. But Google also offers a very powerful Intent based     advertising platform for businesses. Google advertising can be placed on search networks or on content networks.

Search Network
A search engine displays the ads in response to the initial search query sent by the user. You can see some search results displayed on top of search results or on the sides – these are PPC ads where the advertiser only pays once the ads are clicked on. Google search networks provide added benefits of:
  • Targeted advertising
  • Better advertiser ROI than untargeted ads
  • Improved user experience

Content Network
Google search technology places advertisements on the most relevant content page, thereby enhancing the chances of getting clicked. Ads are also placed in content publishing sites such as, iVillage, etc.; so that the user search experience is highly gratifying. Some of the other places where a marketer’s ads are put up include Google search partner sites like,, YouTube, Gmail, etc.

Benefits of Google Advertising
  • Brand Awareness – Google has access to over 60% of Internet users and hence, B2B marketers can make targeted impressions on buyer groups.
  • High Lead Quality – By making the marketer and his product visible to prospective buyers, Google advertising indirectly contributes to generating high qualified leads and reducing cost per lead expenditure.
  • Timing – Google advertising helps marketers reach audience at the right time, with the right message.
  • Flexibility – Marketers can view their ads on Google within minutes of creating them, can make unlimited changes to it and, target ads to the specific location and day of the week or particular time every day.

Click here for more on marketing automation software, lead management software

Product development is the most important process that can determine whether a product will be a hit or a failure. New products are being developed and introduced in the market rapidly to cater to the increasing demands.  Customers are being offered unique and better technological applications and equipments. Businesses that have the power to adapt to new changes without much resistance have the edge and can gain brilliant scores.

Developing new products without causing any negative effects on cost and compromising on quality is not everybody’s cup of tea. It requires a great amount of expertise, knowledge, resources and experience to handle these projects and deliver optimum results. Cost and time are some concerns that can upset the whole process. A lot of research is required for creating and finalizing a concept, incorporating the key features, selecting a compatible architecture and design, implementing the best development strategy and technology for creating the prototypes.

While developing a product care has to be taken to ensure that the products are customized to suffice the needs of the customers. It also entails installing the product at the user’s end and training the user on special skills. It has to provide complete support to help tackle all technical issues and enforce the use of best practice for the usage of the product. The role of a product developer encompasses identifying and extending the functionality of the product, making the product fit for cross-platform integration and use in web and smart devices.

The processes have to be organized and executed with precision and caution. This task needs outsourced product development specialists who can provide the best product engineering services. These specialists are thorough with product localization processes such as updating of graphic elements like screenshots and fonts. They can facilitate run-time language switching, rebuilding of the resource files, resizing and rearranging of the dialog controls, applying correct formats for values, dates, time and numbers and testing the product’s compatibility and appearance.

The outsourced product development specialists can skillfully handle the migration processes for operating systems, applications, databases and servers. They deliver superb performances that enhance platform interoperability which is a requisite in mobile application development. They employ the best designing, developing and testing models. They provide solutions that foster integration of mobile applications between platforms and devices. Making the right decision is imperative in creating an impressive impact. The product development process can be accomplished successfully if handled by a committed and professional team.

Also read on - Independent verification