Wednesday, 11 October 2017

藝術精品掛帥 特色店進軍商場

藝術精品掛帥 特色店進軍商場
營造「群聚效應」 同類店舖要夠多

零售環境和消費者口味轉變,令意念新鮮的商舖能夠進駐在核心地帶的商場。一間以外國藝術精品及本地創作為概念的店舖,剛剛在尖沙咀商場開幕,令藝術愛好者在港也能買得藝術精品,本地設計師增多曝光機會。

浸會大學市場學系系主任霍廣賢指這是商場好嘗試,惟他提醒,商場想要建立明確特色,需要吸納足夠同類型商舖,才能製造群聚效應(critical mass)。

對鍾愛的藝術品,看了又看,不住細味,普通人無力把藝術品買回家,惟有轉移視綫至藝術品引發靈感的商品,稍微慰藉心靈。各地藝術館及博物館早已把展品開發為一系列商品,不但有助宣傳,也可增加收入。

與4博物館洽談 售逾300商品

大英博物館、法國羅浮宮、美國紐約現代藝術博物館(MoMA)及大都會藝術博物館(The Met)均是全球知名博物館,香港人去到除「朝聖」,說不定也會去禮品店看看有甚麼可買來留念。

現在,不用遠飛歐美都能滿足購買慾,或者當時錯過,現在香港可買回--美麗華商場的新店DNA Store,直接和這4間博物館洽談,售賣逾300件商品,包括蒙娜麗莎筆袋、杯及2018年日程本等;莫奈畫作製成的水晶磁貼、梵高月曆、筆記簿等;以日本浮世繪木版畫《神奈川沖浪裏》為藍本的文具、杯及袋等。

DNA Store創辦人林振中(James Lim)構思此店已有一年,指「DNA」代表Design and Art,他開店7成源於個人愛好設計、藝術,3成因為覺得有市場空間。

最平僅數十元 料有市場空間

他稱,以往商場未必接受這類型店舖,傾向著名、大品牌的衣物、奢侈品,但現在較積極找有特色的店舖。「商場都要適應,因我們這些特色店,不能負擔太高租金,但可能吸引本地消費,帶來人流。」網購衝擊了消費習慣,他相信實體店價錢和網店差不多,習慣逛街的港人樂於光顧特色店舖。其店位於商場新設的「Mira Discovery」區域內,其他新店皆着重設計、本土文化特色,據知美麗華是迎合消費者口味而有此改動。

James曾視察將軍澳、觀塘及荃灣的商場,最終選擇美麗華,因尖沙咀地點優越,又剛翻新完畢,顧客以青年為主,是最有消費力一群;開店個多星期,他形容反應和生意「ok」,要逐步來。

他經營香港科學館和太空館禮品店多年,故早和外國博物館建立關係,他評估新店的市場空間:「店內貨品最便宜的是筆記簿,僅數十元,tote bag售300元以下,價錢負擔得來,亦和其他品牌差不多,消費者會覺得:何不買個款式、設計特別的?」最貴是雕像,售約6,000元。

藝術品精品在港尚屬小眾口味,但環觀世界,其受歡迎程度不遜主流商品。2013年,英國國內博物館禮品店銷售額超過一億鎊,目前亦有網店專門銷售藝術品複製及相關商品。

其實也有香港商家窺中藝術品的價值,例如周生生婚嫁首飾之V&A系列,是其珠寶設計師造訪英國著名Victoria and Albert Museum後取得靈感,以現代工藝重新演繹。

舖多產生氣勢 消費者感改變

霍廣賢稱,零售市道轉變,內地遊客花錢也較前精明,加上尖沙咀商場林立,美麗華有決心建立特色是好嘗試,然而要有一定數目的特色租戶,才能有群眾效應,產生氣勢,令消費者感覺到改變。

對於香港有沒有藝術精品市場,他指店舖位置和有否針對客群,是零售關鍵,以他所見,沙田文化博物館禮品店每逢有展覽,客人明顯多,因客人都是對展覽有興趣,故想買禮品留念。藝術精品店設於商場,要視乎能否與鄰近商舖產生群眾效應,吸引足夠數目的目標客群。

他又指出,店舖貨品組合重要,雖然想以合理價格吸引消費者,但店舖要持續營運,就需要大額消費;惟對價錢敏感的遊客,或寧願去赤柱買數十元的紀念品。

撰文:
張少貞
近年藝展有不少年輕參觀者,他們或是藝術精品的潛在客人。(陳國峰攝)
林振中相信藝術品精品給消費者新鮮感,他計劃約每季改變貨品,引入不同博物館精品,尤其稍後是聖誕旺季。(陳國峰攝)

Friday, 6 October 2017

5G走上台面 買定中興長飛

5G走上台面 買定中興長飛

‧第四季投資市場仍偏暖,可關注近期冒起的熱炒板塊。

‧5G概念股上月開始成市場熱點,料今季會續跑贏大市。

‧中興(00763)成首選股份,其他可留意股份包括長飛光纖(06869)。

內地加速第五代移動通信(5G)研發,帶動相關股份近期熱炒。中興(00763)及長飛(06869)兩者股價於9月至今累升逾3成,料第四季續領漲大市。

今年兩會期間,李克強總理在政府工作報告中提出加快5G等技術研發和轉化要求;8月國務院印發《關於進一步擴大和升級信息消費持續釋放內需潛力的指導意見》,提出力爭2020年啟動5G商用。《5G經濟社會影響白皮書》指,5G建設將斥資1,800億美元,料2020年、2025年及2030年帶動直接產出達4,840億、3.3萬億及6.3萬億元人民幣;間接產出則分別為1.2萬億、6.3萬億及10.6萬億元人民幣。

5G設備股首選中興

近日,北京召開的第二屆5G創新發展高峰論壇中,工信部官員表示,5G已進入第二階段的技術方案試驗,5G國際標準化工作已進入攻堅階段。同時,工信部於今年9月開始起草第三階段測試的試驗規範,分階段制定基於NSA和SA架構的規範,預計2018年第一季度啟動第三階段測試。由此可見,內地積極推進5G建設,預期相關股份將迎接新機遇。

中興研發地位領先,可作5G設備股首選。近日中移動(00941)公布2017年31省蜂窩物聯網無綫主設備集採結果,華為、中興、愛立信、諾基亞四家中標。其中,華為、中興整體中標份額超過80%,成為兩大贏家。而且,中興擁5G領導者地位,去年率先完成中國5G試驗第一階段測試,並與中移動(00941)、日本軟銀、韓國KT、西班牙Telefonica、德國T-Mobile等運營商簽訂5G戰略合作協議,確立5G領導者地位。

中興股價上望32元

麥格理認為中國5G研發領先全球,中興於今年6月已在廣東展開5G商用基站,料中國在全球5G系統上的重要性日益增加,設備商首選中興。此外,富瑞指內地5G商業化正在全速推進,當局正設計第三階段測試,將明年首季啟動,相信中興將在內地及海外5G市場提升市場份額。

策略上,內地加速5G研發,中興為設備股龍頭值得持續看好,股價屢創新高,首站上望32元。《投資熱話》「熱選20」模擬組合中,周三已按策略於27.5元買入3,400股。

欄名 投資熱話

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

第四季 十大必勝股

第四季 十大必勝股

踏入第四季,本刊嚴選的10大必勝股揭盅,期望今季為各位讀者把握致勝機遇,成2017年港股大贏家。

中國及外圍形勢將主導港股後向,第四季投資市場要關注資金面及政策面兩大焦點。

資金面方面,影響全球資金流向首先是美國聯儲局10月開始進行縮表行動(初時預算每月縮減100億美元),此後,市場將聚焦另一大放水歐央行的取態,因為對上一次會議未有明確談及縮表的意向;政策面主要看10月18日中共中央召開的十九大會議,屆時市場將密切注視供給側改革、企業混改、樓市政策等最新定調;本港方面,10月11日的施政報告,是特首林鄭月娥上場後首份施政報告,樓市政策方面的落墨成市場焦點。

港股表現方面,恒指今年由22000點起步,已連升8個月後,9月出現調整,短期有所回調不足為奇,未來仍可挑戰2015年大時代高位28588點,中期再上望32000點。參考大行看法,高盛以恒指約28000點水平計,未來一年內仍可漲一成,因中資股盈利增長不俗;大摩8月上調恒指目標至29000點,最「牛」預測則維持34000點。短期則要留意美滙走勢,若美元指數大幅走強,例如大幅升穿94,港股短期升幅或受限制。

盡管今年四季度略帶變數,但如沒有重大突發的負面因素出現,投資機遇仍舊吸引,特別是經營環境好轉、估值不貴、盈利能見度好的公司,都會成為本刊必勝股致力篩選的目標,今季必勝股圍繞市場熱門板塊如科技、汽車、資源、新能源、電訊設備及零售股中精選必勝股。

為了跟進策略上的改善,自第四季開始,本刊的10大必勝股將會在經濟日報網站「投資頻道」內設有專頁,屆時本刊可以更緊貼市況,為各位隨時跟進策略,期望能提升推介回報。

撰文本刊編採組
欄名封面故事

Break the Ice With These 6 Questions at Your Next Networking Event

Networking events are perfect opportunities to build your contact base, but you won't get more than a few business cards if you don't leave an impression. Making meaningful business connections requires delving beneath the surface. To pull off that critical first impression, try leading with a creative icebreaker.

These six entrepreneurs share the first question they ask when seeking a new acquaintance at an event. Remember: It's okay to have fun with it.

How did you get started?

When seeking to learn more about a new contact and their company, sometimes the best place to start is at the beginning. Chris Gronkowski, creator of shaker bottle Ice Shaker, finds that learning more about where they started and how they got to where they are today is valuable for connecting -- and even picking up a trick or two.

"This is a great question to ask, because everyone has a unique story about how they got started in business and different techniques that were successful for them, which I like to note," he says. "It also gives me a chance to learn about this person and their company and how we can benefit from each other."

Would you rather lose one arm or one leg?

"Asking a silly but thought-provoking question can start a memorable conversation with a stranger," says Bryce Welker, founder and CEO of CPA review site Crush the CPA exam. This is a great way to break through the noise of the many attendees focusing strictly on business.

"I've found that asking off-the-wall questions to potential connections sets me apart from other professionals who ask tired questions that often encourage canned responses," says Welker. "It's possible that one zany conversation can lead to opportunities in the future."

Why haven't we worked together?

Ryan Bradley, partner at personal injury law firm Koester & Bradley, LLP, understands that making an advantageous connection starts with addressing why you're both there. So why not cut right to the chase?

"The reason that entrepreneurs and founders attend networking events is to generate business. I never avoid this fact. After the standard pleasantries, I love to ask people why we haven't worked together before," he says. "It is an offbeat question, particularly if you are a little outside your direct niche, but it allows the conversation to flow in a positive direction toward a goal: business!"

What's your favorite book?

You can tell a lot about a person by their hobbies and passions. That's why Zac Johnson, CEO of blogging business Blogger, asks about a personal interest that many entrepreneurs have in common.

"Many people, especially entrepreneurs, are very passionate about reading. When it comes to books, people like to discuss what they've read recently, along with their favorite books," Johnson says. "This is a great way to open a conversation with someone, and it helps you better understand their interests and passions in the process."

What's your biggest challenge right now?

Running a successful business isn't all fun and games, and Sam Miller, founder of strength training and performance measurement technology platform Boston Biomotion, likes to confront this. Asking someone about their biggest challenge opens up an honest dialogue that could prove to be mutually beneficial.

"I prefer this question as a way of getting some depth. This often leads right to learning more about what they do and where they're at, and also seeing if there's any way I can be helpful," he says. "The question is pretty disarming, so it requires quickly establishing some trust and comfort, but some of the best conversations and follow-ups I've had have come from this."

What's your dream?

"I always like to ask people what their big dream is and if they are currently doing it," says Dalia MacPhee, CEO of clothing brand DALIA MACPHEE. This goes beyond simply learning about their current business ventures and demonstrates that you value their passions, too.

"There's never been a time when I've asked that question that someone's eyes didn't light up and a meaningful conversation ensue," she says. "I'd rather skip the small talk and be the person that was remembered at an event for helping to light a fire under someone."

Ask This 1 Question at Every Job Interview to Increase Your Chances of Being Hired

magine it's zero hour and the administrative assistant calls you in for the job interview. It took you a long time to land this interview and you don't want to go home without the job.

The process of interviewing can be intimidating. There are so many things you need to know. What should you wear? What questions should you ask about the company? What should you answer? Wait! What if you could do one thing to swing the odds in your favor?

In a recent talk at our company, Dr. Robert Cialdini, the best-selling author of Influence and Pre-Suasion, shared a secret method to put you in the interviewer's good graces before the interview even gets started. It all has to do with the interviewer's need to have a consistent identity.

What is consistent identity?

Consistency is one of the six principles of influence. In Pre-Suasion, Cialdini states that all people want to be seen as consistent with their commitments. These commitments are the previous statements they have made, stands they have taken, or actions they have performed.

This principle was first discovered in a study done by two Stanford psychologists, Jonathan Freedman and Scott Fraser. The researchers were able to persuade 76 percent of homeowners to put an enormous--and ugly--billboard reading "Drive Carefully" on their front lawn, simply because two weeks earlier the homeowners had agreed to put a tiny "Be a Safe Driver" sign, the size of a postcard, in the window of their car or house.

Why did the homeowners do this? Well, the first postcard established an identity for the homeowner as a citizen committed to driving safety. So when the researchers asked homeowners to put an ugly billboard on their lawn with the same concept of safe driving, the homeowners wanted to stay consistent with their safe driver identity and agreed to do so.

How consistent identity works in the job interview

In order to get someone to be consistent in the job interview, Cialdini says you need to get people on record as making a preliminary step in your direction. This is what will drive their commitment.

Verbal commitment works wonders in getting people to commit to doctor appointments, voting, and showing up for dinner reservations. In the case of dinner reservations, Cialdini recounts a tale in his book Yes! in which the owner of a restaurant was upset about all the no-shows for dinner. No-shows meant no money.

To turn this situation around, the owner used the principle of consistency. All he did was have his host change the question "Please call if you have to cancel" to "Will you please call if you have to cancel?" and then wait for an affirmation from the guest. All the guests, of course, verbally committed with a yes. This simple verbal commitment decreased the rate of no-shows in the restaurant from 30 percent to 10 percent.

The one question you need to ask...

Now, imagine you are sitting down for your job interview. The reason you are in this room at all is because the interviewer thinks you have the potential to do the job. All you need to do to increase the odds in your favor is have the interviewer verbally commit to your good qualities. How do you do this?

Before you begin the interview, Cialdini suggests asking, "Why did you invite me here today?" or "What was it about my candidacy that attracted you to my résumé?" By asking this one question, you will invite the interviewer to talk about your strong qualities.

Having made this verbal commitment to your strengths, the interviewer will then focus on your strengths when deciding if you should be hired.

Cialdini said this method worked three times for one of his friends. It might just work for you, too.

Saturday, 30 September 2017

瑞聲可低吸 光學可憧憬

瑞聲可低吸 光學可憧憬

港股昨日先低後高,9月6日前浪底27421及50天綫失而復得,陰陽燭日綫圖上形成「好友反攻」形態。大市近期回吐,績優股亦要陪跌,藍籌股之中,可以考慮上半年純利增長57%的瑞聲科技(02018)(圖1)。

恒指(圖2)昨日以27308點裂口低開,已經跌破了9月6日低位27421及50天綫,形勢看似很淡。不過,恒指再多跌8點,最低見27300,已成全日最低位,然後反彈並收復整個下跌裂口,最終回升12點,收報27513,成交970億元。

恒指收市時不單止收回升至9月6日前浪底27421及50天綫27508點之上,陰陽燭日綫圖更呈現「好友反攻」形態,顯示有資金在低位力托,不欲大市下跌,可能與周四期指結算及周五季結有關。由於恒指昨日收市前重返27421點之上,形勢並未轉差,昨日之跌可能只是技術性「假跌破」,因此,暫時毋須轉發黃燈警戒訊號。

由於昨日大市在低位反彈,並輕微回升12點,如果今日以至本周內,進一步反彈,收復10天及20天綫,則自9月19日高位28248點以來的調整,有望轉危為安。相反,恒指如果跌破8月11日低位26864點(26800區),則直接轉發紅燈危險訊號。

跌近升軌 首注吸納

在此明暗不定之時,戰友如欲反攻,亦請考慮優質藍籌股。瑞聲科技今年上半年收入增長55%至86.4億元人民幣,純利及每股盈利皆增長57%,分別至人民幣21.3億元及1.73元,每股派息增長33%至0.4港元。

近期有消息指iPhone 8銷售遜於預期,對瑞聲帶來壓力。然而,瑞聲回吐正好提供分注買入的機會,因為瑞聲上市以來,每年平均增長率達到28%,屬於長期增長股,該股昨日跌至接近上升軌水平便出現反彈,說明有投資者趁低吸納。

瑞聲上半年收入增長強勁,主要受惠於技術升級帶動產品平均值提升及出貨量增長,聲學及非聲學毛利率均超過40%。微型揚聲器模組市佔率持續上升,加上立體聲及防水規格升級,聲學銷售上升22%。非聲學業務增長更加強勁,同比增幅達到130%,主要是觸控馬達價量齊升,及無綫射頻結構解決方案獲得更多安卓客戶採用,成功令業務多元化。

瑞聲上半年已進入光學領域,已經出貨1,300萬像素5P後置鏡頭給安卓客戶,未來以光學業務作重要的增長動力。集團已經可以每月量產塑膠鏡片1,000萬套以上規格不低於1,300萬像素或5P鏡片,未來的增長動力來自全球獨特玻璃晶片技術,及生產玻璃+塑膠混合型鏡片創新解決方案。

總結而言,港股在調整之中,優質股如瑞聲陪跌,可以考慮在跌近上升軌時首注吸納,押注光學業務拉動長期盈利增長。

oscarlee@hket.com

撰文 李國慶 投資版總監
欄名 透視中港美

This Attorney Can Teach You More About Building a Brand Using Social Media Than Any Marketing Book

​When you hear the word 'law', a lot of things come to mind. More than likely, none of those things are the phrase 'social media', but that didn't stop this California lawyer from using the power of social to take his firm from a local to an internationally recognized brand, and it shouldn't stop you either.

Through his presence on Facebook Live, Periscope, Snapchat and more, Mitch Jackson (Senior Partner at Jackson & Wilson Inc. and Founder of Streaming.Lawyer) has been able to unlock a ton of incredible opportunities.

As a result of social media and live streaming, Mitch's firm has exponentially increased their weekly referrals. Additionally, because of a case that came to him through social, he was named 'California Litigation Lawyer of the Year' and 'Trial Lawyer of the Year' in Orange County. As the icing on the cake, it's also paved the way for him to speak at top conferences like as Tony Robbins Business Mastery event, Summit.Live and Social Media Day  in San Diego.

I quickly realized that when I added the people skills I spent years developing to social media, I was able to amplify my brand from local to global. - Jackson

Whether you're the owner of a local coffee shop or a well-funded startup, the principles Mitch has practiced can be applied to help you build an international brand using the power of social media. Here are the key learnings.

1. It's all about the relationships.

For Mitch, social media is simply an extension of what he's been doing his entire career: developing and cultivating relationships.

The people skills I learned and developed before social media became my secret weapon as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn all rolled out their welcome mats for business. - Jackson

Mitch utilizes social media and live streaming to answer questions his viewers have about legal matters, business tips, and more. By doing so, he's providing value to his online audience in much the same way he's always done in person.

The takeaway here is simple. Think of social media as a tool to connect with others the same way you would in person. Think of it as a tool to develop the relationships you'd normally develop at conferences, networking events or elsewhere.

By beginning to think of social media more like a cocktail party and less like a sales pitch, you'll put yourself in a terrific position to reap all the benefits it has to offer your business.

When it comes to your business, how can you leverage this principle to provide value to your audience and build trust?

2. Occupy a very specific niche.

Mitch is a prime example of how occupying a very specific niche can turbo-charge your rise to the status of 'thought leader' in your respective industry.

In the social media marketing and digital marketing landscape, Mitch is quickly becoming the 'go-to authority' on anything and everything legal. Given the Federal Trade Commission's recent crackdown on online content creators, the growing importance of intellectual property law, and more, this niche will only grow more important over time.

3. Awareness, awareness, awareness.

With every Tweet, Facebook post and Medium article you produce, you're increasing the chances of others discovering you. With every person who discovers you, you're also increasing the number of potential clients who discover you.

By putting himself out there in the live streaming world, Mitch was able to not just obtain new clients, but also to solidify himself as an authority in the social media marketing community.

4. Social media as a way to scale your influence.

Instead of helping one person over the phone with an answer to her legal question, I can now help thousands around the world using Facebook Live, Periscope, Snapchat, Instagram and yes, the more traditional digital platforms. - Jackson

Using social media is the fastest way to multiply yourself a thousand times over. One live streaming session with 50 viewers is akin to holding 50 individual sessions.

If you're a yoga teacher, holding a live streaming session where 20 viewers pay $10 each would yield you the same return as a $200 private session. How's that for a solid return on investment?

5. Above all, provide value.

What worked for me was focusing on personal relationships and paying attention to the needs, wants and desires of my small but consistently growing network... The more I listened, cared, and helped, the busier I got. - Jackson

Social media is no different than any other type of touch point in business. By consistently being there for others, answering their questions, and giving without asking, you could find your social media following increases along with your business referrals.

Mitch is a prime example of how social media, when utilized strategically, can add fuel to the fire of any business, no matter the industry. Be strategic in your set up, consistent in your delivery, give without expecting anything in return, and your company is likely to experience the same results as those laid out in this article.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

人臉辨識投商用 貴客嶄新體驗

人臉辨識投商用 貴客嶄新體驗
偵測客人身份類別 制定銷售策略

蘋果iPhone X以人臉辨識功能解鎖,令此技術突然爆紅。同時亦證明,發展多年的技術已日漸成熟。

最近有企業更將人臉辨識投入商用,為零售客戶帶來嶄新體驗。

時下網購大熱,實體零售店面對的挑戰更大,如何為客戶帶來更佳體驗,令零售商費煞思量,有企業就想到加入人臉辨識功能,助零售商針對不同客戶提供專屬體驗。

佳能香港商務影像方案及數碼印刷部總監兼總經理陳志剛表示,以往有不少客戶希望將人臉辨識技術用於零售業務,但礙於成本、器材以及技術等限制,一直不能大規模商用。「以往的監視器大多使用模擬訊號,亦沒有圖像分析軟件支援高清拍攝,更缺乏一個可靠的數據傳輸及分析平台。」

直到今年,無論在軟、硬件以至平台發展都開始成熟,因此夥拍企業雲端服務供應商NTT,為本地零售客戶,提供雲端影像分析方案。

該方案的硬件來自佳能的高清監視器,而後台就用NTT的企業雲端服務。佳能香港商務影像方案及數碼印刷部商業應用服務及方案部高級經理梁洛楓表示,方案包括人流統計、人臉辨識以及人流密度三大功能,當中人臉辨識可偵測客人性別及年齡,誤差僅3至4歲,準確度最高可達90%。「準確度亦會受距離、環境光暗等因素影響。在安裝時,會為客戶提供適當建議。」

投資回報私隱處理 屬關鍵

陳志剛表示,該方案較適用於價值較高的產品,例如賣珠寶首飾等零售店,目前已在樓盤銷售點內試用,未來或能助零售商識別出VIP客人,並給予專屬的體驗。他補充,該方案已在亞洲某連鎖餐館使用,餐廳主要統計男女客人消費數據,得出其購買偏好,成為制定銷售策略的參考。

他續指,收集客戶大數據是未來發展趨勢,方案可提供大數據分析,如人流數據統計可助商戶疏導排隊人潮,再配合商戶銷售紀錄,可幫助調配零售店舖人手。

「該大數據分析雖屬入門級,但市場上未見太多人在做,這塊市場的潛力其實非常巨大。」

雖然市場龐大,同時亦有不少阻力。京信通信(Comba)技術營銷解決方案高級總監及企業業務總經理Marie Ma表示,企業選用方案時必會考慮投資回報率,而企業通常很保守,希望得到其他案例作參考後才使用,但目前該技術會為企業帶來多大回報,仍屬未知數。

其次是私隱問題,即客戶的樣貌特徵等數據的儲存及使用,本地企業對該問題比較嚴謹,或對人臉辨識方案卻步。

撰文:李彥煒
佳能香港商務影像方案及數碼印刷部總監兼總經理陳志剛(中)表示,影像大數據仍未有太多人在做,預計該市場商機龐大。(陳偉能攝)
人臉辨識方案,料為客戶提供嶄新購物體驗。(資料圖片)

Monday, 25 September 2017

收水

儲局收水 美牛市最後通牒?
羅傑斯料熊市將至 ETF或首當其衝

美國聯儲局10月開始縮減4.5萬億美元資產負債表,淡出量化寬鬆,變相量化緊縮取而代之,成為高懸美股頭上一把利劍。

美股熊蹤警告多時雖仍未實現,但今次流動性收緊不容忽視,有專家甚至形容,儲局猶如向市場發出最後通牒,大牛市是時候告終。

環球量寬操作逆轉,市場水浸日子不再。儲局下月起每月縮表100億美元,金額每季上調100億美元,直至月縮500億美元。市場亦預期歐洲央行下月公布收水計劃,2.4萬億歐元量寬同樣即將淡出舞台。

跌市必有水源思維 須擺脫

摩根士丹利前經紀、投資通訊《Stock Traders Daily》創辦人托馬斯基(Thomas H. Kee Jr.)直言,這是對美股的最後通牒。他形容,過去跌市警告好比「狼來了」,市場在央行量寬下流動性充足,資產下滑變得困難,可是若然沒有央行出手,標指市盈率也難達現時24倍之高,遠超14.5倍歷史均值。

托馬斯基稱,狼今次或者真的來了,當流動性不再充足,已踞高位的股市即難以再升,市場走勢或會出現實質改變,掉頭下滑,投資者必須擺脫跌市時必有水源來救的舊思維。

「商品大王」羅傑斯(Jim Rogers)更預期熊市將至,而考慮到全球債務水平在量寬下創新高,衝擊或會是歷來最嚴重。他警告,交易所買賣基金(ETF)近年受散戶大舉追捧,在熊市到來時會首當其衝,跌得比其他資產更慘。

全球債務新高 衝擊難估計

諾貝爾經濟學獎得主席勒(Robert Shiller)也指,美股現時市況與過去熊市之前相似。除了周期調整市盈率(CAPE)達30倍,超越過往熊市前均值,昔日熊市出現前,企業盈利往往亦有雙位數升幅,高增長不一定能避免股市轉勢。

不過,席勒表示,現時市場心態與過往有巨大差別,靠巨額貸款買股票並不盛行,這或會對保護投資者起到重要作用,大蕭條式跌市未必重演。羅傑斯則建議,投資者宜選擇受忽視的個別股票,例如農業股。

說到底,不管熊市會否真的到來,儲局縮表影響也不可小覷,不得不防。德銀指出,縮表是向未知進發,歷史經驗預示此舉會有顯著後果,環球多年放水仍只帶來低增長低通脹,卻大幅推高負債和資產價格,故縮表影響難以估量。

美國聯儲局10月開始縮減資產負債表,淡出量化寬鬆,對美股的影響備受市場關注。(路透社資料圖片)

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

嚴重事故的危機管理

過去一星期香港接連出現樂極生悲的意外,先是海洋公園哈囉喂鬼屋「活埋凶間」發生一名青年被棺材夾頭斃命的意外;翌日西九文化區舉行的電子音樂節 Road to Ultra 先後有 3 男 1 女懷疑因吸毒後中暑昏迷送院,其中一名男子經搶救後不治,另外 3 人情況仍然危殆;然後新城市廣場有長者在扶手電梯暈倒不治。警方仍在調查多宗事故,公關這幾天實在很忙。

面對這類嚴重意外事故,公關一般都採用所謂的 CAP Approach,即是 Concern,Action and Perspective。首先遇事的機構要對事件表達關注,對受害者和受影響人仕表示關心;然後機構須宣佈採取適切的行動,例如成立調查事故的小組、委任獨立人仕進行調查、成立基金照顧受害者和其家人等;最後是指出機構在事故中的角色,在過去及未來如何避免事故再發生。

而且上述的公關工作,愈快回應效果愈好,是與時間的一大競賽。

CAP Approach 簡單易明,但如何仔細執行才是重點。例如在上述兩宗事故中,機構如何照顧死傷者家屬,非常重要,事關只要他們隨便向傳媒說一句機構漠不關心或缺乏透明度,機構的信譽便會受到嚴重損害。

除了在事故發生後幾天要全面應對危機外,到了事故周年或同類型事件在其他地方發生時,亦要留意當日機構已承諾的措施有否切實執行,不然傳媒回頭跟進也一樣會出現公關災難。

其實,機構若要減少在大型事故中造成的形象損失,可在風平浪靜時準備好危機管理手冊,並定期進行演練。此外,機構亦可為業務操作多做些內部溝通功夫,令員工及其他持份者留下好印象。例如最近香港國際貨櫃碼頭便製作了全新以圖像為主的安全小册子,提高工友職安健意識,還找了勞工處處長主持發佈;媒氣公司為同事改良維修工具,亦有邀請傳媒採訪。

天災人禍有時難以避免,但只要平日做好準備,損害自然會減輕。

Monday, 18 September 2017

Ten Fears Keeping You From Achieving The Career Of Your Dreams






Ten Fears Keeping You From Achieving The Career Of Your Dreams

From Forbes, a Flipboard magazine by Forbes

Several years ago, I worked with a very talented media professional who wanted a career change. But she had a senior role and bristled at…

Read it on Flipboard

Read it on forbes.com


Saturday, 16 September 2017

How to Stop Caring About What Other People Think

The first step is to remember that if many people have felt this way and still achieved great things, that they've faced their fear of failure—and judgment—and won. Successful risk takers manage to keep criticism from holding them back.

If you want to go from being that person who's scared to say anything in meetings to the person who confidentially speaks up, look no further than these four successful individuals who already learned how to do that.

1. Ask Yourself: "What If I Do Nothing?"
Marie Forleo, host of Marie TV, American life coach, and entrepreneur says that when an opportunity arises to do something new or outside of our comfort zone, the most helpful thing to do is to to think about the worst-case scenarios. In other words, before you hold yourself back because there's a possibility of failure, ask yourself "What's the worst thing that can happen…" Is there a possibility you'll fall flat on your face by going for something new and challenging? Sure, but what if you don't say anything?

Write a list of all the things that could possibly happen if you said yes to taking on this scary opportunity. Include all of the worries about criticism you might get from this decision. Next to that list, make another one with all the things that will (and won't!) happen if you decide to play it safe and keep your ideas and plans hidden from the world. Compare each list and decide which path you'd rather take.

The Muse: 6 Important Questions Every Hard Worker Needs to Ask Themselves Today

2. Remember That Your Work Doesn't Define You
Rohan Gunatillake of Mindfulness Everywhere (the company responsible for the popular app buddhify), says that we have a bad habit of letting our work define us—so a lack of success on the job makes us feel bad about ourselves.

In his 99U talk, Rohan explains that the cure is "decoupling self and work." He uses mindfulness phrases—statements you choose to read out loud, reflect on, and notice how they make you feel—to achieve this.

He invites you to repeat phrases: "I am not my Twitter bio," "I am not my resume," "I am not my company," and "I am not my work." Then tune in to yourself to see how these statements make you feel.

He states that practicing this technique helps you to start separating self and work, in turn helping to defuse that pain that comes if you mess up on the job. If you're "not your work" then even if you dropped the ball in the office—which happens to us all—you don't have to carry it with you and feel bad about yourself. Working backwards means it's OK to take on that big, scary project, because if it doesn't work out, that doesn't mean you personally failed. Remembering that you're more than your job will help you get out of your own way.

3. Don't Let Others Get You Down
Silencing your inner critic is only step one. That's because you have to be prepared for others to judge you, too.

Brené Brown, a best-selling author on vulnerability whose TED Talk is one of the top five most viewed TED Talks in the world says that "not caring what people think is its own kind of hustle."

In a speech for 99U, she shared a quote from Theodore Roosevelt that changed the way she thought about criticism for good:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood…who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.

This quote made way for a new approach to feedback: Brown decided that if the person critiquing her isn't also out in the "arena," putting himself on the line, but just criticizing her, she wasn't going to worry about what he said. However, she doesn't do this by wholly ignoring the other person. Rather she takes an approach of saying "I see you, I hear you, but I'm gonna show up and do this anyway."

You don't have to pretend people who disagree with you don't exist; you just have to decide that you're going to follow your plan anyhow. (After all, you've already decided that action will be better than inaction, and that even if you miss the mark, it won't define you.)

The Muse: 6 Classic Career Books Successful People Will Always Read

4. Embrace Judgment
Seth Godin, whom I mentioned earlier, is an entrepreneur and best-selling author of 18 books that have been translated into 35 different languages. He says that there are "only two choices" in life: being criticized or "being ignored."

You get to choose. But if you're holding yourself back because you fear judgment ask yourself this:

  1. If I get criticized for this, will I suffer any measurable impacts? Will I lose my job, get hit upside the head with a softball bat or lose important friendships? If the only side effect of the criticism is that you will feel bad about the criticism, then you have to compare that bad feeling with the benefits you'll get from actually doing something worth doing. Being remarkable is exciting, fun, profitable and great for your career. Feeling bad wears off. And then, once you've compared the two, and you've sold yourself on taking the remarkable path, answer this one.
  2. How can I create something that critics will criticize?

If you stop viewing feedback as a sign that you did something wrong, and instead see it as a sign you did something notable, it's suddenly not so scary. In fact, it becomes a badge of honor that you did something worth other people taking the time to comment on.

It's natural to doubt yourself or let others harsh words stay top of mind. But, if you practice these mindset shifts, you'll be able overcome your fear of failure and achieve what you'd set out to.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

7 Words That Make You Sound Less Confident in Emails

This piece originally appeared on Monster.com.

With a whopping 28% of the average workday spent reading and answering emails, you want to be sure you're not just adding to the noise. It's crucial that you're writing in such a way that properly conveys your needs—and your professionalism

"Several words and phrases often used in emails function as filler words or qualifiers," says Alyssa Gelbard, founder and president of Resume Strategists, a career consulting and personal branding firm based in New York City. "They can weaken your message and make you sound tentative."

Avoid the following words when using email, and your perceived confidence and competence levels at work will skyrocket. Oh, and you'll very likely get more of the answers you want to hear.

"Just"

Example: "I just wanted to check if you have any feedback on the copy I sent over."
Similar words: only, simply
Why it doesn't work: "'Just' downplays the importance of the task or work item being discussed; it implies the item should not be prioritized or doesn't require significant skill, time or attention," notes Kate Gremillion CEO and founder of Mavenly + Co., a New Orleans-based resource for millennial women.
Use this instead: "Do you have feedback on the copy I sent over? I need it by the end of the day."

"Probably"

Example: "I can probably send a mission statement by noon."
Similar words: perhaps, hopefully, ideally, maybe, possible, should
Why it doesn't work: "Probably" implies uncertainty. If you are hesitant about something, provide a more realistic alternative.
Use this instead: "I won't be able to send the mission statement by noon because I need to finish the website copy. I can send it by the end of the day."

"Try"

Example: "I'll try to edit the article you sent to me."
Similar word: attempt
Why it doesn't work: It says to people that you're not confident in your ability to execute. There's nothing wrong with asking for help, which tells people you are concerned about doing something correctly.
Use this instead: "I will edit the article now. I have a few questions before I start editing; do you have time to meet for five minutes?"

"Think"

Example: "I think we should check the patient's white blood cell count."
Similar words: in my opinion, personally, I'm not sure but, I feel like
Why it doesn't work: It gives people license to dismiss what you're about to say. Be confident in the validity of your recommendation.
Use this instead: "Let's check the patient's white blood cell count."

Read more from Fortune: 10 Writing Tips to Make Your Emails Less Terrible

"Whatever"

Example: "I saw the client's complaint about whatever. I'll offer them a discount or whatever."
Similar words: something, some such
Why it doesn't work: Not only does "whatever" sound dismissive, but it also implies you're not concerned with accuracy—both of which do a big disservice to your professionalism.
Use this instead: "I saw the client's complaint about yesterday's late delivery. I'll offer them a discount on their next order."

"Maybe"

Example: "Maybe we should write a chapter about why we started the company. Maybe I can go to the conference in March."
Similar words: perhaps, I guess
Why it doesn't work: "Maybe" makes you sound ambivalent and apprehensive.
Use this instead: "Let's write a chapter about why we started the company. I can go to the conference in March!"

More from Monster:
10 things you should never cook in your office kitchen
How to impress your workaholic boss without turning into a workaholic yourself
The 5 steps to getting on the CEO's radar (in a good way!)

"Sorry"

Example: "I'm sorry, I have a meeting at 1 p.m., but would 2 p.m. work?"
Similar words: apologies, my bad
Why it doesn't work: It's completely unnecessary and diminishes the value of your voice. Make statements and ask for what you need without apologizing first.
Use this instead: "I have a meeting at 1 p.m. Are you available at 2 p.m.?"

How To Properly Set Up And Run An Influencer Marketing Campaign

Social influencers, although a relatively new phenomenon, are quickly making waves within the marketing sphere: given the ubiquity of social media, this form of marking is projected to be a $5-10 billion dollar market by 2020.

They also possess several noteworthy characteristics, and many of which readily explain these promising projections. First, anyone can potentially become an influencer; it is no longer a realm reserved exclusively for celebs. A successful influencer businesses can now secure a six-figure salary - and operate from the comfort of a bedroom rather than a boardroom. Further, micro-influencers provide valuable opportunities for brands to test-and-invest across dozens of influencers, rather than having to partner with macro-influencer heavy-weights with millions of followers (and prices to match). And further still, social influencers hold the distinct edge of an opt-in audience - for many, the Ace of Spades of the marketing world.

While such influencers are more prevalent within certain industries (namely, fashion, beauty and lifestyle), there are several companies which prove that no matter the product, by leveraging the right influencers you can build a booming business. One such example is The Sugarbear Hair vitamins, who repeatedly recruit a star-studded list of social influencers for their Instagram campaigns, and now boast an enviable following of 1.6 million on the platform - a lofty accolade for a multivitamin to achieve.

So I sit down with Igor Gauzner, Director at InSense, to reflect on the four key considerations a company should have, if they are to consider investing in an influencer.

One: The Metrics

When considering a catalogue of influencers, it can be tempting to automatically gravitate towards follower count: 110k on Instagram, 1.2 million on YouTube, 305k on Facebook. Yet this is only part of the story. Alongside this, it is also crucial to consider Engagement Rate.

The engagement metric offers a good indication whether followers are actively participating in the content (illustrated through multiple iterations: likes, comments, shares, etc.). A high follower-count but low Engagement Rate can often represent a red-flag: either the influencer has paid for their following, or while many eyes may see the content, few will actually notice it. Both are bad news for business.

When reviewing influencer profiles, examine each one holistically. While many may boast a formidable following, take time to understand how the influencer connects, engages and resonates with their audience - best done by simply interacting with the content yourself.

Two: The Goals

Never seek the influence of a social influencer with the overarching goal 'to influence.' In the same way that you would not launch an SEM or DM campaign without a clear understanding of whom you are addressing, what you are aiming to achieve, and how you intend to measure success, you must also approach social influencers having done your homework.

Your goals will significantly shape both the campaign content and the lens through which you will review post-performance data. A campaign which functions as a PR-push will not only look markedly different to a campaign with a more prominent sales dimension, but will likely scrutinize metrics like CTR, Bounce Rate and Engagement with a greater degree of depth than the latter - which in contrast may be primarily concerned with a healthy ROI and the CTA performance.

Whether you are looking to build brand-awareness and increase footfall to your site, or push a promotion and drive droves of conversions, this must be clearly established prior to on-boarding an influencer: while the likes, favorites and comments may be a nice affirmation for your brand, it is critical to keep in mind how and why these metrics correlate to your overall business objectives.

Three: Optimization Strategies

So the goals are defined and you have compiled something of a whitelist of influencers you believe would make lucrative partners. While you may be able to contact them directly, it may be worthwhile to enlist a third-party service to help streamline this process. Such services, in addition to offering an expansive database of influencers, also provide tools which both enable you to actively collaborate on campaign content and receive strategic advice, insights and recommendations.

Similarly, the impact of social influencers can often be boosted when used in conjunction with other tactics. The most common of these is combining social influencer posts with paid search ads, of which the benefits are threefold. First, it looks decidedly less slovenly than a 'link in bio' CTA. Second, since paid ads can (currently) be tracked much more accurately, it allows performance to be measured with a greater degree of precision. Finally, a clear CTA presented alongside a social post is an effective prompt encouraging customers to take action.

Four: The Content

The final factor is the quality of content itself. Increasingly, the caliber of content is quickly rising to prominence as a key consideration when choosing an influencer. As brands are increasingly able to promote influencer posts directly, they are equally able to receive immediate results regarding the CRT/CPA/CPC of each post - and naturally, the highest performers are those who can craft the most engaging content.

Subsequently, take time to identify influencers which align with your brand's voice, values and tone. In many ways social influencers exist as an extension of your business - after all they are entrusted to communicate your brand's story on your behalf - so finding an ambassador who does this confidently and correctly is of the utmost importance.

If used correctly, social influencers can enable you to reach whole new pockets of potential customers online. It is also an archetypal example of how technology continues to eke out entirely new areas of business, and subsequently it is worth pausing to consider what lies ahead for this relatively new market. "Regulation," Igor quips, when I present the question. "We are currently living in the 'Wild West' days; this is still an emerging market that's constantly shifting and changing. And we must roll with the new rules as and when they are announced, so the ability to pivot is key."

You do not need to search for to see examples of this in action: earlier this year, the FTC reprimanded nearly 100 celebrity influencers for failing to provide full disclosure when they were paid to promote certain products on their social media. As a result, this information must now feature on such posts - usually in the form of the tag '#ad' - in order to clearly differentiate paid collaborations from organic (unpaid) ones.

In light of this, I inquire whether this increased regulation will only be beneficial for the industry at a macro-level, or whether it will impede growth. "It will be a good thing. Not only for the consumers, but it will become easier for us to digitally measure results. Facebook and Instagram are already beginning to roll out specialized toolbars for us to track organic paid posts - and on Facebook you can even dedicate media dollars specifically to this channel, as it becomes increasingly recognized as an effective marketing tactic."

So amidst this flurry of change, as a final thought, are any aspects of social influencer marketing impervious to change? Well, for Igor there certainly is: the authenticity. "Influencers must feel as though the product aligns with their personal brand as much as vice-versa. If it deviates from their usual content the influencer simply won't be interested - and that authenticity is an aspect that will always remain."

Likes, shares, comments and favorites are quickly rising to power as an incredibly influential cultural currency within contemporary society. And while marketing is forever devising new ways to utilize online content, a strong social influencer can prove to be one of the most effective ways to translate this cultural currency into economic currency for your business.

Friday, 8 September 2017

公關的颱風應變技巧

今個夏天香港不停打風,一眾上班族學生哥當然希望力抗「李氏力場」,成功懸掛 8 號風球,放風假偷得浮生半日閒。

但颱風對一眾籌劃活動記者會的公關來說絕對是噩夢。預先安排好的採訪大受影響;在惡劣天氣下勉強進行活動易生意外,但要改期進行,又未必達到預期效果。這正是考驗公關的應變技巧之時。

面對風雨,已籌辦活動的機構,可說是千頭萬緒,不知如何入手。先要決定活動是否取消或延期,然後通知受影響的各個單位,再研究如何另擇日期舉行活動,過程手忙腳亂。

有公關朋友早前舉行一個快閃跳舞活動,但因當日可能懸掛 8 號風球,連日致電表演團體和主辦機構商討對策,還做了多個「Plan B」,例如轉換另一表演地點、縮短路線等,還要考慮一旦改期進行,表演者能否配合。

切勿小看這些微不足道的細節,稍有差池可引致嚴重後果。

有任職社福機構的公關朋友談起,機構每年都舉辦公眾教育活動,上司今年突然想到用船隻做宣傳,邀請教育團體上船看展覽。豈料活動當日風球除下才半天,海面仍有湧浪,但活動如常舉行,更糟糕的是應記者要求,船家需將船隻多次靠岸,供他們上船採訪或離開,乘船者都被弄得「暈陀陀」,投訴之聲不絕。其實,如果當時多做一點功夫,例如多了解海事條例,或縮短活動時間、集合一定數目的記者才上落船等,應可避免混亂情況發生。

公關並非天文台,亦沒有「水晶球」,不能預知何時打風,但可做好準備工作。

首先,構想不同計劃。假設活動下午 2 時進行,公關要設定在不同時間「落波」時,活動是延遲舉行、如常進行、取消還是改期,以及每個方案的利弊;

第二,與持份者做好溝通:了解一旦改期或延遲,對方能否配合;若如期進行,在惡劣天氣下會否有危險,雙方有甚麼應變措施;

第三,了解原定地點能否進行活動及何時開放,如涉及政府部門,應及早了解颱風下的安排;

最後,構想採訪安排,並盡早通知傳媒。

但公關不需「望天打卦」,只需懂得構想在不同天氣狀況下,做好不同的活動安排,Hope for the best and prepare for the worst,自然手到拿來。