On October 8, I received the Best Consulting Award by the US Search Award! (http://www.ussearchawards.com/Winners) It was great to be recognized by a group of judges, who are respected search marketers themselves. This award was particularly sweet since the nomination came from one of my clients.
The consultant’s success depends so much on how well clients implement the suggestions and the recommendations that we provide. My award means that I am fortunate to work with clients who are not afraid to take some calculated risk to make constant improvements to their search marketing projects and the websites.
Also, I must mention how much I learned from other search marketing professionals over the years. Good search marketing professionals always share their challenges and the success, and want to learn from each other’s experiences. I see this at the search events, on online forums and the social media on daily basis. I am lucky to be a part of this great community. I hope that I’m returning the favor to others and paying it forward to young search marketers entering the industry.
Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has published the Digital Commerce Report for 2013. The report says that B2C – EC market in Japan continues to grow, and it has reached 11.2 Trillion Yen (about 150 Billion dollars) last year, which was 17.4% higher than the previous year.
The B2B – EC market also grew by 4.4% from the previous year to 186 Trillion Yen (about 2 Trillion dollars).
In both B2C and B2B market, EC businesses had a healthy growth in 2013.
It also reports that 35.4% of Chinese EC users have purchased the products and the services offered by US and Japanese businesses compared to 10.2% of Japanese EC users and 24.1% of American EC users.
Japanese were the early adopters of social media. Even before mixi started in 2004, Japanese were creating communities and finding the ways to network and socialize online. You’d think that they are very comfortable communicating with others online by now. Surprisingly, Japanese still want to stay anonymous online, according to the data published by Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. While 65-70% of people in other countries don’t have problem with using their own name to create a social media account, 75% of Japanese want to stay anonymous. This is one of the main reasons why Twitter grew rapidly, while Facebook slowly gained the traction in Japan. (I know that many Facebook users don’t use their real name. Japanese are honest people. If they hear you have to use real name, they think that’s the rule.)
This made me think about my experiences with Japanese social networking sites. I belong to several networking groups online, one of which I became a member back in 1996. The way of communication has changed from a community website to mailing list to mixi and other social networking sites, but many of the members has managed to stay connected. Over the years, many of us became good friends, and have met off-line, too. Interestingly, although we know some members’ real name, and even address, we still don’t show real name in the account profile. Why is that? I don’t think their security concern is due to other members.