Accenture Song MD on helping brands become ‘life-centric
Pritesh Gadhia is Managing Director, UK and Ireland, at Accenture Song (formerly Accenture Interactive). We asked him about his role, his opinions on the metaverse and the future of brand marketing.
There is no typical day! I’m fortunate to be working in a sector that is going through significant and necessary change. Each day, where possible, I try to find a balance between focusing on the great work we do for clients, our amazing people, and of course a little time for myself.
We’re very lucky to have great clients who have a real desire to drive growth, but the world around us is changing so fast, so we need to keep really close to them to help them stay relevant. This takes a lot of energy from our team – so we spend a lot of time looking after our talent to make sure they have the right opportunities, space to grow and are working in an environment where they feel seen, safe, and connected.
On a more personal level, I start each day by enjoying a gentle walk with my dog, stopping off at my favourite coffee shop before settling down to my desk at home or at the office. I try to balance my week with time at clients and with my team – whether that’s in person or virtual.
The biggest challenge really is the speed of change needed to stay relevant. Incredibly, 90% of C-suite executives are saying that customers and employees are changing faster than they can change their business. This shift has been driven by two years of major disruption, which has spurred people on to re-think their relationships with work, technology, and the planet. Companies have no option but to design new ways of doing business.
Brands need to be ready for the era of questions! What I mean by this is that there’s a new expectation from consumers to ask, and have questions answered, at the touch of a button or through a brief exchange with a voice assistant.
The fact that it’s so easy and immediate means people are asking more and more questions. For brands, the range of customer questions and the number of channels for asking them is growing constantly. How to answer them is a future source of competitive advantage, so we expect to see significant innovation in this space.
Our Technology Vision report showed plenty of optimism, with 71% of global execs saying it will have a positive impact on their business. I’m genuinely excited about the possibilities of the metaverse and how it could transform some of our client organisations – but brands need to approach it with some caution.
Businesses must use the opportunity to ensure that it is developed with responsibility at its core. From ownership of data to inclusion and diversity, to sustainability and through to security and personal safety, this work must begin now.
I’m closely watching how brands are experimenting with the use of digital twins. We’ve traditionally thought of digital twins as replicas of machines (e.g. duplicates of airline engines to know what maintenance is required). But in the metaverse we could see an acceleration of this whole idea that we can have twins of things. So, we could build digital twins of our homes to monitor the flow of products and services, and when we came to sell our house there would be a digitally secured record of our house’s system. That could create some amazing commercial opportunities.
We’ve seen brands launching new experiences across virtual and physical environments, one particularly interesting example is Gucci creating The Gucci Garden Experience to sell virtual products, resulting in the sale of a virtual-only digital twin of a Gucci purse which went for a higher price than its real-world counterpart!
Accenture has always had a longstanding culture of change – but the coming months and years will see an acceleration of this. From idea, to build, to operating with strategic managed services, we are going to help our clients to access ideas, talent, and results faster than ever before.
With everything going on in the world right now, we want to help more businesses go from being “customer-centric” to “life-centric”. Brands need to appreciate that customers’ lives are more complicated and changeable than ever before, and make sure they understand the external forces influencing their decision making. Ultimately, we believe life-centric brands will respond faster to consumer behaviour changes and lead the market.
Mark Zablan is the CEO of Emplifi, a unified platform for social marketing, social commerce and customer care. We asked him about the role of data and automation in CX, as well as what makes for a successful rebrand (following the merger of Astute and Socialbakers – to become Emplifi – last year). What are.
Dominic Dunne, commercial lead at Clear Channel, which runs programmatic out-of-home buying platform, LaunchPAD, outlines what ecommerce marketers need to know about this fast-growing channel.
From order picking to last mile delivery, grocery retailers and FMCG brands are increasingly looking for ways to improve speed and efficiency in omnichannel fulfilment. With rising consumer expectations, the goal is to give customers what they want, exactly when they want it, even amid wider challenges in the supply chain. A large number of .
Ocean census aims to discover 100,000 previously unknown marine species
Researchers have embarked on an ambitious global initiative to discover and record marine life hidden in the world’s oceans.
Ocean Census aims to identify 100,000 unknown species in the next 10 years, allowing scientists to better understand and protect the deep-sea ecosystem.
There are huge gaps in our knowledge of the ocean depths. Of the 2.2 million species believed to exist in the Earth’s oceans, only 240,000 have been described by scientists, according to the census.
It typically takes scientists at least a year to definitively describe a species post-discovery, but new types of technology are making it much easier for sea creatures to be studied in their natural habitat. These include tools like underwater laser scanning that can scan gelatinous creatures such as jelly fish that are hard to study on land.
“You can now look at (the creature) in the water column and see what the morphology is and study them in situ,” said Jyotika Virmani, the executive director of the Schmidt Ocean Institute in Palo Alto, California, which will participate in the project.
“What we’re moving towards is a place where we can actually perhaps even do taxonomic identification in the water column instead of bringing everything back to land. And that’s really exciting and will make things move a lot faster.”
All living organisms, including humans, disperse genetic material into the environment, and the project will also make use of new and accessible techniques to sample waterborne DNA to detect and track species.
While many of the species discovered are likely to be on the smaller end of the scale, Virmani noted that the world’s longest sea creature was only discovered in 2020 off the coast of Western Australia — a 150-foot stringlike animal known as a siphonophore.
Ocean Census will also help to identify how marine ecosystems are responding to the climate crisis, and assess how marine life could adapt to a warmer climate.
The project is being led by Nekton, a UK-based marine science and conservation institute, and funded by The Nippon Foundation, a nonprofit foundation based in Japan.
Over the next decade, dozens of expeditions to the ocean’s biodiversity hotspots will search for new species involving divers, submarines and deep-sea robots. The project also hopes to involve private vessels and individuals. The data and information gathered will by openly accessible for scientists, policymakers and the public for noncommercial use.
3 tips can help you save if you’re living paycheck to paycheck, personal finance expert Suze Orman says
When you’re living paycheck to paycheck, it can be tough to find money to save.
That was the situation one audience member, Natalie, wrote in about ahead of CNBC’s Women & Wealth event on Tuesday. While grappling with high childcare and housing costs, Natalie is barely breaking even, she wrote, which makes finding money to set aside for big goals like retirement difficult.
A recent CNBC Your Money Financial Confidence Survey, conducted in partnership with Momentive, shows that she is not alone. More than half, or 58%, of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, according to the March results.
If you find setting money aside difficult, it’s a sign that it’s time to change your lifestyle, personal finance expert Suze Orman said.
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“You have to strike the word ‘can’t’ out of your vocabulary,” Orman said in response to the audience query.
Rather, people should draw up a financial to-do list right now that includes getting out of credit card debt, having an eight- to 12-month emergency fund and funding their retirement accounts, Orman said.
That’s as many experts, including Orman, say a recession could be coming.
But whether there is a recession or not, you need to be prepared that an unexpected event — like an illness, accident or layoff — could set you back, Orman said.
“The most important thing, really, for everybody to understand about their money … is that you have got to live a life below your means, but within your needs,” Orman said.
Several tips can help you get started.
1. Make yourself a ‘No. 1 priority’
Portrait of an elegant man in a suit preparing for an important day at work
Daniloandjus | E+ | Getty Images
People who think they are living paycheck to paycheck likely have something they are doing with money that they should not be doing, Orman said.
For example, if you go out to eat rather than eating in, that’s $10 you could be putting into a Roth individual retirement account — an account for post-tax contributions towards retirement.
“You have to make yourself a No. 1 priority,” Orman said.
That means you do what you have to do in order to meet your financial goals, she said, even if it means taking on more than one job or cutting back on discretionary expenses.
You should be always be funding your retirement accounts, Orman said.
2. Automate your savings
To get into the habit of setting money aside, it’s best to automate the process, Orman said.
So whether you choose to do $50 a month or $100 a month, by setting aside money before you see it in your paycheck, “you will find that you do not miss it,” Orman said.
Inside MT BARBER: The Rising Star in the Barber Shop Industry
Gustavo Olmedo Romero, a professional barber from Oaxaca, Mexico, is making waves in the world of barbering with his brand MT BARBER. Born on September 1, 1986, Gustavo migrated to the United States at the age of 15 in search of a better future. He settled in New Brunswick for two years before moving to Delaware, where he worked multiple jobs, including dishwasher, cook, and gardener.
This period of his life was crucial in shaping his work ethic, and Gustavo is now living his dream.
At the age of 24, Gustavo started learning the profession that had fascinated him since childhood. He taught himself through videos and practice sessions with his friends, and in 2010, he began working in a barber shop where he worked for seven years, honing his skills and becoming a high-level barber. In 2017, Gustavo opened his first barber shop called MT BARBER SHOP, where he employed 12 barbers. Two years later, he opened his second shop with the same name, adding 12 more barbers to his team and expanding his brand.
According to Gustavo, the world of barbering is an excellent profession to learn and grow in, but it requires a lot of discipline and constant learning because haircuts and styles are continually evolving. Gustavo has also worked with professional soccer players, including José Andrés Martínez and Gelmin Rivas. His vision is to expand his brand nationally and internationally, and he knows that it will take a lot of hard work and effort, but he is determined to achieve his goals.
MT BARBER’s Instagram handle is @mexican_talent, and you can book an appointment on their website mtbarbershop.booksy.com. Gustavo Olmedo Romero is changing the world of barbering with his brand, MT BARBER, and he is an inspiration to many aspiring barbers.
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