Daily Archives: September 5, 2014

Australian PM calls India ’emerging democratic superpower’

Describing India as an “emerging democratic superpower”, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott today kicked off his two-day India visit during which the two countries are likely to clinch an elusive civil nuclear deal.

Abbott, the first Head of Government outside the leaders of SAARC nations to visit the country after the inauguration of the Narendra Modi government, said he wants to make the most of “an abundance of opportunities” for business in India.

“…..this is a country which has amazed the world over the last few decades with its growth and its development – the world’s second most populous country; on purchasing power terms, the world’s third largest economy, clearly, the emerging democratic superpower of the world and a country with which Australia has long and warm ties.

“The purpose of this trip, as far as I am concerned, is to acknowledge the importance of India in the wider world, acknowledge the importance of India to Australia’s future, to let the government and the people of India know what Australia has to offer India and the wider world for our part, and to build on those stronger foundations,” he said addressing a 30-member business delegation accompanying him on the trip at Hotel Taj Palace in Mumbai, his first port of call.

Noting how India has changed “enormously” since his last visit 33 years ago as a backpacker, Abbott, who has expressed keenness to sign a nuclear deal with the country, said,” I can remember on my first day in Mumbai watching a bullock cart take material into a nuclear power station.

“Well, 33 years on, there aren’t that many bullock carts left in urban India, and the power stations – the nuclear power stations – are more sophisticated than ever,” he said.

Abbott, who will have wide-ranging talks with Prime Minister Modi in New Delhi tomorrow, said the Indian leader’s call “come, make in India” is “close in spirit and in intent” to the phrase he had used in respect of Australia that “we are open for business”.

He said though there is no dearth of opportunities elsewhere in the vicinity of Australia, there is “an abundance of opportunities” in India.

“I am determined to make the most of them, I know all of you are determined to make the most of them and I look forward to working very closely with you and with our Indian interlocutors over the next two days,” he told the delegation. Abbott met some Indian business leaders and CEOs, who also held talks with the visiting Australian business delegation.

The meeting was attended by SBI chairwoman Arundhati Bhattacharya, ICICI managing director and chief executive Chanda Kochhar, IDFC executive chairman Rajiv Lall and Kotak group vice chairman and managing director Uday Kotak among others.

“We discussed investment opportunities in various sectors such as energy, water resources, education, skill development, finance and capital markets at the trade delegation meeting,” Bhattcharya told PTI emerging from the meeting.

Kotak said he discussed investment opportunities for Australian businesses with trade delegation, during the luncheon meeting, adding “China’s trade with Australia is 10 times larger than ours with them and the gap needs to be narrowed.”

In line with Modi’s emphasis on the development of the youth, Abbott also launched the ‘New Colombo Plan’, the signature initiative of the Australian government which aims at enhancing the knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia by supporting undergraduates from that country to study and undertake internships in the region.

“Presently, there are thousands of Indian students studying in Australian universities, but there are very few Australian students here. This will change now. Australian students will now come here to study. From next year onwards, there will be hundreds and thousands of Australian students studying in India,” Abbott said addressing a gathering at Mumbai University.

Colombo plan is a collective inter-governmental effort to strengthen economic and social development of member countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The primary focus of all Colombo Plan activities is on human resource development.

Though formally the organization was born out of a Commonwealth Conference of Foreign Ministers held in Sri Lankan capital Colombo in January 1950 with only seven countries, including India and Australia, it has now transformed into a into a truly international initiative with 27 member nations with inclusion of non-Commonwealth countries.

“In 1950, when the Colombo plan was launched, about 14000 Indian students came to Australia for studies. We now want to return the favour to India and send some of our best students to study here,” Abbott said.

Abbott, who later left for Delhi, will hold talks with the top Indian leadership including the President, Vice President, Prime Minister and External Affairs Minister tomorrow. There are strong signals of an elusive nuclear deal coming to fruition after his talks with Modi.

“I am hoping to sign a nuclear co-operation agreement that will enable uranium sales by Australia to India,” he had told Australian Parliament ahead of his visit to India. Australia has about a third of the world’s recoverable uranium resources and exports nearly 7,000 tonnes a year.

The two countries have had five rounds of talks since the Labor Party reversed its decision to ban uranium sale to India because of New Delhi not being a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty despite being an atomic power, but a nuclear deal could not be clinched.

Abbott has said he wants a nuclear pact with adequate bilateral safeguards. Trade Minister Andrew Robb, accompanying Abbott on the trip, said, “While India is Australia’s fifth biggest export market and a valued investment partner there is enormous scope to deepen the relationship.”

“Our two-way trade is worth around 15 billion dollars, however, our aim is to substantially grow this figure, when you consider our trade with China for example is worth more than 150 billion dollars,” Robb said.


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Google to pay $19 million for child app purchases

Google has agreed to issue at least $19 million in refunds to consumers whose children made app purchases from its Google Play store without parental consent, officials said on Thursday.

The Federal Trade Commission announced that Google agreed to the settlement to resolve a probe into “unfair” practices by billing consumers for charges by children made within kids’ apps since 2011.

FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez said in a statement that in the age of mobile technology, “it’s vital to remind companies that time-tested consumer protections still apply, including that consumers should not be charged for purchases they did not authorize.”

The in-app charges are a component of many apps available from Google Play and can range from 99 cents to $200, according to the consumer regulatory agency.

In some apps used by children, users are invited to accumulate virtual items but sometimes are billed without the knowledge of their parents.

Google has also agreed to update its practices to ensure that it receives parental consent for the purchases.

The agreement follows a similar deal earlier this year with Apple, which agreed to pay $32.5 million.

The FTC in July sued Amazon as part of its investigation into in-app purchases by children, but no settlement has been announced.


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8 tips for measuring e-commerce ad campaigns

Jake Peterson is the head of customer success at Segment , a customer data hub that lets you integrate analytics, advertising and marketing tools with the flip of a switch.

The e-commerce industry will reach $294 billion in 2014 alone, and accounts for nearly 10 percent of all retail sales according to Forrester research. Clearly, it’s a competitive market, and many online retailers rely on marketing to break out of the pack and get more customers.

Here are a few tips for measuring e-commerce ad campaigns that will help you make the most of that marketing budget.

To measure the effectiveness of your ad campaign, you first need to decide why you are doing one in the first place. Some e-commerce companies make the mistake of just buying random ads. This is a waste of money.

Before you shell out to ad networks, you should set goals for your campaign. Here are some examples:

Now you have your goal in mind, you need to be able to measure if you’ve reached it. Figure out what information you need to do this analysis.

For example, if your objective is to drive more sales, you’d want to measure three metrics that contribute to reaching that goal:

Most ad campaigns goals revolve around a visitor to clicking through your ad and then do something on your site, like purchasing a product. As a result, you can measure most key metrics overtime with a simple framework that tracks important events in the customer lifecycle:

Once you have event tracking setup, it’s easy to calculate your metrics. For example, divide the number of people who “Completed Order” by the number of people who “Viewed Product” to calculate the viewed-to-purchased product conversion rate.

Google, Facebook and LinkedIn, among other popular ad networks, advocate for building multiple ad variations to find the best performing piece of creative. Most of these tools also have the functionality to automatically identify which version is getting the most traction and serve that one more often.

You never know exactly which design will resonate, so try some versions with images, try some without, try different color schemes and calls to action. When designing, make sure you keep in mind your original goal of what you want people to do after they hit your site. Draft your calls to action accordingly.

UTM links are unique links you can build to tag each ad variation and channel. They enable you to attribute ad visitors to each network accurately. Google URL builder is the easiest tool for building UTM links, but you can also use something like Terminus if you want want a more advanced tool to keep track of all of your links.

When building unique UTM links, you can set parameters like source (ex: Facebook), medium (ex: banner variation 1), and campaign (ex: autumn collection) to easily track where ad referrals are coming from. The link I just described (that points to a blog post about your autumn collection) might look something like this:

http://yoursite.com/blog-post-fall-collection/? utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=bannerverision1&utm_campaign=autumncollection

Once you set up your links, you can drop them into each ad variation with your ad network admin access.

Before hitting the scary “publish” button, make sure to test all of your tracking. Click through each of your UTM campaign links and make sure they direct to the right place.

Go through the life of the customer (signing up, clicking around, viewing products, adding products to carts, checking out), and make sure all this data shows up in your end tools.

Try it for a few different products, and make sure the revenue associated with each product is going through as well.

Everything working? You’re ready for take off.

After you set up event tracking and UTM links, you can actually use a few different tools to view the analytics data after your campaign.

KISSmetrics is a great tool for seeing how your key metrics like product purchases and newsletter signups change over time. Google Analytics is helpful for understanding referrals-this is where the UTM links come in. You can see how many people came into your site from each link.

Convertro is a more advanced tool built to analyze ad spend and reallocate your resources to the best performing channels. All of these tools will tell you if you’ve hit your original goals, and if not, how much you missed them by.

You can also view conversions and impressions in your ad tools themselves, but industry folks often worry that ad channels beef up their numbers, so using a third-party analytics tool is recommended.

Now you know whether you hit your original goals. Way to go! Not so fast. What are you going to do with the results?

Using a tool like Google Analytics you can easily view sites that refer the most people to your website, and sort them by your conversion event. So instead of just seeing that your Facebook ads brought in 890 visitors, you can see that 56 of those people actually completed an order.

Then, you can compare it again your Twitter ads. Maybe Twitter only sent you 300 people, but 70 of them completed an order. That would mean that Twitter is sending you higher quality traffic. Next time, buy more Twitter Ads.

The trick with evaluating your campaigns is to make sure you take what you’ve learned and apply it to your next launch. You’ll spend ad dollars more effectively and be more likely to hit your goals.


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