Analysing the Impact of Smartphones and Tablets in the Media Industry

How Business Intelligence can help you analyse online reach and increase revenue opportunities.

Content monetisation has long been a challenge for media companies and for years, business intelligence solutions like SAP BusinessObjects have delivered insight to uncover trends and analyse consumption patterns that help improve monetisation strategies.

But the ever-evolving ways in which consumers access content online is adding yet another dimension to how media companies can use business intelligence to help increase revenues and secure a bigger slice of the online audience.

Ofcom’s recent Communications Market Report 2013 shows that mobile devices are rapidly becoming central to the way people consume media in the UK.

Here are 5 key findings we took from this report – and how business intelligence tools can be used to capitalise on these trends:

1. Smartphones are becoming ubiquitous. Just over half of UK adults now own a smartphone, with 49% using a mobile to connect to the web. The way we interact with a smartphone versus, say, a laptop is very different. And so to create compelling content for smartphones requires a good understanding of how content is being accessed and consumed. Business intelligence can help you better understand how smartphone users are interacting with content – meaning you can create experiences that are more attuned to the needs of a mobile audience.

2. One in five people said using their mobile was the media activity they would most miss if it were taken away. Significantly less than the 43% who’d miss TV the most – but certainly a lot more than the 4% who’d most miss newspapers and magazines. Although the decline of print is not a new trend, business intelligence can help publishers that are migrating to online channels to improve their chances of success. For example, Business intelligence tools can help you analyse online performance versus print – and fine-tune strategies that will help you capture a bigger share of audiences who access mobile-based content.

3. Tablets are becoming mainstream. The number of households with a tablet such as an iPad rose to 24% in Q1 2013, up from 11% a year earlier. Like smartphones, tablets can open up even more opportunities to engage with an online audience. From apps to micropayments to subscription-based models, business intelligence can help you to understand what, where and how an audience consumes information, to make better, more informed decisions on pricing, delivery, format and platform.

4. The consumers of tomorrow are more mobile. Among 16 to 24 year olds, theMobile Tablet proportion owning a smartphone is now 77%.
Young people are also far more likely than any other group to use mobiles for social networking activities such as Facebook and Twitter. Media companies can use business intelligence to tune into how an audience interacts with them on a variety of social media platforms and so better inform and optimise their social media engagement strategies. mobile-tablet

5. Mobile advertising expenditure rose to £526m in 2012, growing 148% from £203m in 2011. The growing adoption of smartphones and tablets means a growing appetite for advertisers to reach these audiences on a mobile platform. Media brands can use business intelligence to understand the sales performance of various advertising slots which can help to inform pricing strategies and offers such as cross-platform advertising packages and bundles.

The switch to accessing content via mobile devices is already having a huge impact on media businesses, with audiences now consuming more content on both tablet and smartphones than ever before. However, media brands still have to compete with many other online activities for consumer attention, and so need to focus on getting mobile products absolutely right. And Business intelligence solutions gives media companies a way to uncover trends and inform strategies in this ever-changing environment.

Tax Evasion, is SAP Tax and Revenue Management the Answer?

Curbing tax evasion has long been a priority for Governments globally, with Revenue Collection Agencies using increasingly sophisticated methods to detect possible fraud and recoup monies owed to help close the tax gap. Industry solutions like SAP Tax and Revenue Management can help Revenue Authorities to increase efficiencies in the collection process, but what else are Governments doing to help recover taxes owed?

As part of the British Government’s 2010 Spending Review, it was announced that an investment of £917 million would be made available to help tackle tax avoidance, evasion and fraud. This investment enabled the UK’s Tax Agency (HMRC) to increase the number of people focussed on these areas, enhance their skills, expand the use of third party data and develop tools that would help identify even the most hidden forms of tax evasion. In December 2012, the British Government reaffirmed this commitment by investing a further £77 million in HMRC avoidance and evasion work. This investment, it seems, is starting to pay off…

Earlier this month The Financial Times reported that the number of criminal prosecutions for tax evasion in the UK had more than doubled over the past year, as the HMRC stepped up its efforts to crackdown on individuals suspected of defrauding the Exchequer. Tax evasion prosecutions rose from 302 in 2011-12, to 617 in 2012-13, according to figures obtained by international law firm, Pinsent Masons. This increase, says The FT, reflects a pledge made by the British Treasury in 2010 to increase the number of tax prosecutions fivefold, in an effort to create a more robust deterrent against tax evasion.describe the image
Tax-EvasionDespite this increase in prosecutions, Pinsent Mason also reported that the number of incidences of serious tax evasion (evasion of tax totalling £50,000.00 or more) has actually dropped significantly. Last financial year, local HMRC offices identified 2,888 suspected cases of serious tax evasion – representing a 16% drop on the 3,456 cases that were identified in the previous year. This reduction, they say, was helped by an increase in anti-evasion efforts, including new powers to:

Impose penalties of up to 200% of the original tax owed if an individual does not declare any income or capital gains that has been hidden from HMRC in an offshore bank account.

Create taskforces to help prevent cases of serious tax evasion. For example, the Offshore Coordination Unit (OCU) coordinates HMRC’s analysis of the information it receives on UK taxpayers who have money concealed in overseas deposits.

Use ‘private sector’ experts to improve HMRC’s strategy and use of data to identify possible tax evasion.

Deliver high profile advertising campaigns which are designed to heighten evaders’ discomfort about not declaring all of their income.

An increase in the number of treaties with other countries is also thought to be assisting in efforts to catch tax evaders who hold their assets in offshore accounts. This includes deals with the governments of both Liechtenstein and Switzerland. Phil Berwick, Partner at Pinsent Masons said: “International co-operation has been stepped up significantly as HMRC strives to curb tax evasion. Tax evaders are now realising that HMRC has a much greater ability to tackle evasion, even if individuals conceal their assets abroad.”

Improving the Collection Process with SAP Tax and Revenue Management

Invenio’s Public Sector practice is uniquely placed to offer a rapid, efficient and cost effective deployment of SAP Tax and Revenue Management solutions. Invenio helps Tax Agencies to create a stable foundation for the entire management of the tax and revenue management lifecycle across all tax types to aid efficiency of the entire collection process. SAP Fraud Management has been designed as a platform solution to prevent fraud and non-compliance in various areas tackling the large volume of tax related data compiled in tax authorities.

Top 3 IT Challenges to Delivering a Successful Big Data Solution

In a previous post we spoke about the anticipated growth in Big Data and Analytics over the next 5 years, according to research from the IDC. Continued on from this, here are the Top 3 IT Challenges that the IDC considers could hinder the success of a move Big Data and Analytics if not sufficiently addressed:

1. Lack of Sufficiently Skilled IT Staff and Cost of Technology
IT Directors today need to show a good return on investment from new technologies and so must have a very clear idea of what the business can achieve with Big Data. In addition, employing and maintaining the right skills in a highly competitive market also needs to be factored into the cost of embarking on a Big Data project and so, again, IT Executives must have a clear idea of these costs to assess the return (and indeed the viability) of Big Data.

2. Managing Data Quality
The information you get out of any system is only as good as the information you put in. Data quality problems usually arise because no one person is responsible for the complete “data picture”. Without a central custodian ensuring that all data, across all systems is correct, consistent and up to date, the quality of data can vary significantly from one system to another. Of course, this isn’t a problem that’s new to Big Data – but nevertheless it is an important point to consider when assessing the viability of a Big Data project.

3. Data Integration
Another age-old problem that IT functions will be very familiar with is that most organisational data is highly fragmented. This creates challenges at several levels when embarking on a data integration project of any nature: syntactic (how do we define a common format for our data?), semantic (what are the agreed definitions?) and political (who ‘owns’ the data?).

While the above factors do indeed pose a challenge to CIO’s, they are not insurmountable. Indeed, the benefits that Big Data offers will, for most organisations, considerably outweigh these challenges.

It is often quoted that some 90% of the data that exists today has been created in the last 6 years. This data explosion, combined with the rising sophistication of analytical tools and the speed offered by Big Data technologies, means companies should be addressing these challenges sooner rather than later to ensure they can maintain competitive advantage.

Next week we will be looking at the top ten verticals signing up for big data and analytics. Sign up to receive this next post straight to your inbox.