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It did not escape the notice of my partner as we walked down Nathan Road in Hong Kong that the local couple ahead of us were carrying a plethora of bags from Gucci, Chanel and a host other top designers, while our bag bore the Chinese logo of one of the local emporiums. Having sought out in vain the great local goods and technology deals we used to find here just a few years ago, we had reluctantly came to the conclusion that we were standing in the next great bastion of high end consumerism.  Gone are many local shops and outlets, replaced by designer names on every corner and giant shopping malls that offer soft music, stores-in-stores and richly designed aesthetics.  Just like you would find in New York, Paris, London or Tokyo – only more expensive in many cases! With 10 Gucci stores/stores-in-stores in Hong Kong (home to 7 million people), the density of stores per capita is already higher than in London or Tokyo.  

gucci queue hk

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Information and communications technologies are advancing rapidly, reshaping all aspects of our work and lives, from telecommuting to how we find information to how we interact with others.  The implications for providers of commercial goods and services are enormous, from how they manage their increasingly tech-literate workforce to how they interact with consumers and customers over time.  For the public and non-profit sectors, the changes are equally significant with new ways of connecting with constituencies, gathering tax returns or polling information to new ways of engaging communities in social activities and philanthropy.

With the data deluge increasing, there is an “attention arms race” going on – organizations are competing not only within their industry but across all industries and forms of information to gain – and keep – the attention of their consumers and customers.  It can’t be done alone.  Organizations need to manage a growing array of channels and intermediaries through which their information is filtered, aggregated and relayed to target audiences, including search engines, social networks, news sources, mobile communications providers and purchasing portals such as apps stores.  

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