Visual toolkit to stimulate innovation… a good starting point when facilitating workshops.

Analogies that are helpful when you are trying to stimulate the innovation and you need to demonstrate measurable outcomes and results.
Participents new to facilitation and workshop exercices often respond better to visual prompts to facilitate a meaningful dialogue and drive rigour and metrics in the thought process.

Smarter Cities -are they so smart?

They can be if they choose to be…

a Smarter Cities Overview

In the 21st Century, Cities, Government Bodies, Businesses and Service Companies are becoming more and more sophisticated.

In pure ‘real time’ customer environments the marketing gurus are deploying more social media tactics and point of service initiatives to engage and  retain communication with customers. they do this by communicating in ‘lifestyle’ events and environments that promote ‘top of the mind’ measuring and monitoring the Customer Advocacy or Voice of the Customer.

The ultimate aim is to attract and retain more Customers or provide a better more enhanced services or services to Citizens.

The Citizen (customer) is at the forefront of Smarter City initiatives, driven by EU and Local Government funding it is aimed at  driving economic growth and better living standards  in line with the urbanisation of  inner cities.

As a direct result, Cities are adapting and changing to meet the trends of the way we live, work and enjoy our social life and lifestyle activities.

Cities and Citizens are realising the benefits of communication and are building integrated communication and ecosystems coupled with high speed 5G infrastructures to enhance, speed up and meet the ever-changing needs of the citizen and businesses alike.

Local Authorities and Cities are now Smarter – they are more collaborative in the way they interact with Citizens, businesses and European and Local Government.

In the next five years the pundits state more of us will live in the City, over 85% of the population it is predicted will live in Cities by 2025.

This will bring about the need for providing IOT Technology solutions, Eco-systems and Services that will embrace and benefit our daily lives- from Retail, Telco, Travel & Transportation, Healthcare, Education to Food & Entertainment as well as essential services and Housing/Social Care Services.

Smarter cities are the choice of Citizens today and are more popular than ever and they are here to stay!

The explosion of mobility and social media coupled with the advent of digital revolution has placed more importance and emphasis on the Citizens there needs and wants and desires.

Coupled with the development of a multi-model Transportation links between Road, Air, Water and Rail are becoming seamless as a city proposition.

How does a City become Smart – Where do we start.

The key challenges for most smarter cities today and to its ecosystem partners is where and how do we start.

How do we identify the citizen benefits, improve satisfaction and drive incremental revenues for the city and its partners.

Key areas of focus to address:

·      Identification of the Strategy and Precepts coupled with the Building Blocks of a Smarter City

·      Identification of the ecosystem and partners, enabling the IT infrastructure (front and back office) to support a Smarter City initiative and exploring the links and steps to industry partners.

·      Identification and understanding a roadmap to Citizen interactions and ‘touch points’ designing the engagement models and the incremental benefits.

Finally developing a Strategic Vision using stakeholder  ‘Journey maps’ of a Smarter City as part of a strategic roadmap.

In addition, to the understanding of the key focus areas are:

Understanding the citizen and his life cycle

Building an Eco-System that supports the value proposition – starts outside the citizen journey to provide a superior citizen service.

IOT as an enabler allows us to join up the dots to ensureCitizen Advocacy  a connected Smarter City


Understanding the technology Eco-system enablers, mobility, apps, social channels, and collaborative partners, air, weather and retail required to bring about an enhanced Citizen value proposition.

Understanding and mapping the empathy and loyalty to the brand by building an Eco-system that provides Citizen Advocacy practices & principles, a social media ‘signals’ in an environment that measures voice of the citizen.

Service First’ initiatives identify increased revenues from ancillary products & services revenue recognition and the move towards a more services led e-Commerce Citizen proposition.

All aimed at Creating a Smarter City and Smarter Citizen environment.

This is my own viewpoint and comments and questions welcome as usual.

Who are Millennials and do they matter?

I am afraid the answer is yes. They do make a difference and are the target of Retailers and Telco’s as well as other major industry sectors. There are 2.5 billion Millennials Worldwide demanding and exercising their right of choice and how they shop. Brands feature heavily in their core shopping habits and are part of their DNA.

New strategies are required to reach this unique technology savvy customer buying group. Marketers are relying heavily on omni channel environments and extensive use of targeted social media.

It is a whole new segment of the universe that from a retail perspective cannot be ignored. Embrace them, meet their demands and you will have their loyalty and wallets. Ignore them at your peril.

Views and comments welcome as usual.