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UBER – where Plouffe’s touch turns into gold?

Posted on May 26, 2015 by Active

We have all witnessed UBER’s rapid expansion. Some acclaiming it, some, more conservative, dismissing it. Truth is, if you look at the numbers, there’s a bigger picture here:

  • The latest fundraising efforts could value the company above $50 billion (YEAH, YOU GOT THAT RIGHT!!)
  • UBER EATS, a food delivery service recently expanded from 2 markets to 4
  • There is a potential acquisition of Nokia’s HERE mapping service for up to $3 billion
  • UBER is investing in a robotics facility in Pittsburgh that could be used for the development of driverless cars.

Safe to say big things are coming their way. It’s no longer all about cabbies. In fact, it never was. The bigger picture portrays a company focused on innovation, aware of the fact that for a business to work nowadays it needs to focus on 3 main factors: accessibility, speed and technology. Oh, and one more thing. That magic thing that can either turn you into a winner or a whiner: YOUR COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGY.

And that’s where UBER pulled out their ace card: David Plouffe, Obama’s former campaign manager and political strategist was appointed by UBER as the company’s senior vice president of policy and strategy in 2011.

That’s when every crisis situation became a new opportunity to build up a strong image reflecting safety, innovation, accessibility and modernism. When hundreds of taxis blocking Trafalgar Square causing gridlock all across central London just to protest against your company, you would immediately classify it as a crisis situation.  Most would, but UBER was already one step ahead of the game, controlling the narrative before, during and after the day.

Neelie Kroes, the  European Commissioner for Digital Agenda commented on the case: “Taxi protests – tech is disrupting many sectors. Taxis cannot be exempt. We need to work with tech not against it, it’s not the enemy.”

Plouffe stated in an interview “We’re on an inexorable path of progress here, Uber is making transportation safer. It’s providing jobs; it’s cutting down on drunk and distracted driving. I think the mission is really important. A tweet-length change to a law could spell the difference between success and failure of an entire new sector”.  His messaging is so clear and concise but at the same time spot-on and competitive. There is no space for confusion or misinterpretation here.

An integrated 360-degree communications strategy is a key-element to a growing business. UBER understood that when they appointed David Plouffe. His ease at swaying through politically-sensitive issues and turning crossing-point into winning-points is invaluable.


Tesla paving the way in consumer energy storage

Posted on May 17, 2015 by Active

“Tesla is not just an automotive company, it’s an energy innovation company,” Elon Musk , Tesla’s CEO said at the recent launch of its $3,500 10kWh Powerwall home battery. The Energy Storage Association and GTM Research said earlier this month they expect the storage market to grow to 220 megawatts deployed this year, a 250% jump from 62 megawatts deployed in 2014.

With power from the sun and wind becoming more widespread, energy storage devices are crucial in order to efficiently use such energy. Could the Tesla battery mark a new era for energy storage for homes and beyond? Well, only time can tell.

Amid a party atmosphere at the company’s design studio near Los Angeles International Airport, Elon Musk delivered a 20-minute presentation electric presentation introducing the wall-mounted Tesla Powerwall battery pack. The campaign is garnering attention globally for its marketing savvy approach. With its Energy Batteries making $803 Million in one week, Tesla does seem to be on the right track.

Although the Tesla battery is being promoted as a superior alternative, it certainly is not the only one to hit the market recently. Now more than ever, more companies are looking into ways to make energy storage feasible and convenient.

Entering what is already a competitive market for energy storage, including much larger rivals such as Samsung, GE and Saft Groupe SA, Tesla will have to adopt marketing and communications strategy that will ensure it stands out. Samsung’s online Historical Gallery for instance traces evolution of Samsung devices in past 40 years! It does a great job in story telling – a journey from traditional to the modern day world and how the products have grown over these years.

Most people associate the technology with taking electric power off the grid at night and storing it in a battery, releasing it later on when the demand for power is highest and when the sun may be hiding. With the world adopting the storytelling through visuals and moving away from routine heavy technical content, Tesla can look at adopting interesting ways to depict energy storage on marketing and digital communications through pictography. This is a method that is efficient yet easy to understand for consumers.

As these energy storage products will service not just homes but also utilities, they are likely to bring much-needed attention to the accompanying technologies. This in turn, may attract new capital and help bring about economies of scale that would further reduce those prices.

More competition will mean more innovation… Musk’s long-term vision for Tesla Energy is bold—he expects global sales and to “fundamentally change the way the world uses energy.”

If Tesla holds true to its promise; better, cheaper batteries appear to be on the way—and more power to them!


Success in its true sense

Posted on May 5, 2015 by Lovelyn Rodrigues

Everyone keeps setting goals and achieving them is considered as being successful. Having a huge bank balance or owning 100 acres of property or even more is when we feel like we have achieved something. I would not disagree with what is being said but what I also truly believe is being able to inspire someone or make a difference in other people’s life or adding great value to your work is another way of looking at success.

There seem to be many books written and tips shared by people who have accomplished a lot, on how to be successful and it has definitely helped me in my work place. At the top of these lists is the need to be healthy. Which clearly means it’s important to be healthy in order to be able to help another person wholeheartedly. It could be assisting your client in helping him accomplish his task or doing your own day to day work. Another important tip shared in order to be successful is setting goals. From what I understand these goals could be long term or short term too. Like your daily task list. End of the day striking the activities that have been completed is definitely an accomplishment. The long term goals could be getting to a senior position in a stipulated period of time or just being able to buy that dream house or dream car or it could even be getting married by a particular age.

Even the inspiring speeches given by successful people revolve around what they can offer to the society along with their struggle to reach that top spot. This is learning for all. On the other hand, the bravery awards given to people who by making a difference through their voluntary services or saving lives, have achieved success. Hence, there are different ways of looking at success and there needs to be an action for the results to be achieved. Having a positive outlook will automatically create opportunities to accomplish anything you want. Like Jim Rohn, American entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker truly said; “If you really want to do something, you will find a way. If you don’t, you’ll find an excuse.”



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