Thursday, April 24, 2014 | 9 a.m. CDT, 10 a.m. EDT, 3 p.m. BST, 7:30 p.m. IST

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The global services industry is evolving from a cost focus to a cost+ value proposition. Next generation models such as Business Process as a Service (BPaaS), cloud, analytics, and robotics are challenging the established paradigms of sourcing. The competitive intensity across different BPO segments is at an all-time high and BPO solutions, delivery models, and contracts are getting more sophisticated. The discussion around sourcing models is also moving from a “shared services vs. outsourcing” conversation to a “shared services and outsourcing” approach. As a result, clients with mature third party outsourcing relationships are asking:

  • Is my relationship creating significant and sustainable value for my company?
  • Does the existing solution reflect the ever changing realities of the marketplace?
  • How can I take my outsourcing relationship to a strategic level?
  • What future sourcing roadmap should we follow?

Many enterprises are realizing that a comprehensive assessment of their sourcing arrangements, which covers inter-linkages between solution, contract, pricing, and performance can help them better understand current gaps to unlock future value.

Join us for a one-hour webinar to explore how some mature BPO clients embarked on the exercise of optimizing the value from their outsourcing arrangements, and the roadmaps they finally adopted.


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Related Research


In a recent blog I noted that there is a new wave of shared services activity. But don’t dismiss that news with an assumption that new starts in shared services just means taking a slice of business away from third-party service providers. Here are my tips for shifting this potential business loss to a new revenue stream.

Tip #1: Be patient

If a company has decided to go down the shared services path, your trying to convince them to use purely outsourcing is not likely to succeed. However, we know that over time companies that decide to embark on a shared services journey later decide to use third-party providers in their shared services mix, to a lesser or larger degree. So be patient. These activities take years to develop.

Tip #2: Be an ally 

Don’t be an enemy of their decision to take the shared services path. Instead, be an ally and assist them on their journey. You can help them build out their shared services approach and use that relationship to identify where they could use a third party for part of of the services.

Tip #3: Cede control

At some point a shared services unit probably will adopt a hybrid approach to services. Even so, companies moving to shared services inherently favor maintaining control; so the types of services you offer them should be designed to allow them to exercise control.

Much of the outsourcing model is about giving the provider control so the provider can operate in an efficient manner and give the customer a low price. That approach won’t work in a hybrid shared services model. Instead, take an approach along the lines of “Let us help you craft control” so you can participate going forward.


All women know that self-examination is crucial for the fight against breast cancer. Still some forget all about it. To help our client, Nestlé Fitness, to remind women about self-examinations we came up with the idea to create a wearable device – the first bra that Tweets!

The lucky person to wear the prototype was a famous Greek talk show host named Maria Bacodimou.

Maria was responsible to wear, charge and of course, unhook the bra each time she needed to. At the very moment she unhooked the bra, the bra tweeted a reminder as well as information about self-examinations to her 170k followers.

And since the Tweeting Bra is a unique piece of smart underwear, it shortly became a hot topic around the world., The Huffington Post, The Independent and CNN were among the 1 million+ websites and TV shows that featured stories about the campaign.

When we considered why the Tweeting Bra campaign was so successful and widely covered we arrived at four key learnings:

1 – Take the Headline Test

Always ask yourself: Is my idea worth writing about it? As soon as you have an idea, write it down in the same way the media would write about it. If it makes sense, it might get media attention and create earned media.

2 – Solve a Problem

People are open to share ideas that creatively solve real problems. Your ideas should always try to solve an existing problem instead of just communicating it.

3 – Do it for Real

If you want to get media attention you should always try to create newsworthy campaigns. All the campaigns that have received media coverage were not fake. They did it for real.

4 – Find a Cultural Tension

Connect with people by finding relevance in popular culture. The cultural tension behind the Tweeting Bra campaign was our relationship with technology.

Price cuts from Amazon, Google and Microsoft support predictions that the public cloud computing market is a race to the bottom — for pricing, that is. Customers will no doubt benefit, but cloud providers who aren’t one of those three companies should be prepared for a long, hard war of attrition.

MV Q1 2014 Industry I3

Though never dominant, Defense transactions per quarter have declined by 60% in the past year

Visit the report page


MV Q1 2014 Industry I1

BFSI outsourcing transaction activity rose steadily in 2013 following an earlier dip; activity in Q4 2013 reached 2011 levels.

Non-performing loans and loan loss provisions and lower interest income are putting pressure on banks, which is likely to result in a high level of activity in the first half of 2014.

Visit the report page


 This guest post was written by Hope Frank, Assistant Account Executive at Social@Ogilvy Chicago, and Josh Williams, Art Director at Ogilvy PR Worldwide.


Imagery is key to any social content strategy. Here are 5 must-knows for social media practitioners about the basics of using images on social.

1. File Format. With so many different image types, it can be confusing to know which ones work on social platforms and which don’t.  Formats accepted across social platforms:

  • .JPEG: most common, basic image file, but with every save more of the picture is lost.
  • .PNG: most likely to look exactly as planned on the web.

Formats not accepted:

  • .PDF: not accepted as an image file.
  • .GIF: image files that are compressed and look like a moving picture, but will not upload to social networks (if you’re really looking for a .GIF, check out Giphy).
  • .PSD/.AI: editable versions within Photoshop and Illustrator that are not considered image files.

2. File Size. Each platform has recommendations as to which image sizes populate best both on the platform. As of March 2014, the recommended image sizes are:  Facebook:

  • Photo Post: 403×403 pixels
    • Note: this is the size that the image will preview on the Timeline, but it is recommended to use larger images with a similar aspect ratio of 1:1.
    • Images with other aspect ratios can be used, but will preview as letterboxed.
    • Cover Photo: 851×315 pixels
      • Note: design consideration must be given to the bottom left corner where the profile photo overlaps.
      • Profile Photo: 180×180 pixels


  • Photo post: 900×450 pixels
    • Note: this size fully populates the preview screen. Other sizes can be used, but only a portion of the image will preview.

On April 8, Twitter announced a new profile layout. Updated creative specs (for when your brand page transitions over to the new layout) include:

  • Profile Photo: 400×400 pixels
  • Header Photo: 1500×500 pixels
    • Note: the header is cropped to a 2:1 aspect ratio on mobile devices.


  • Banner image: 646×220 pixels
  • Standard Logo: 100×60 pixels
  • Square Logo: 50×50 pixels

3. Usage Rights Possibly the most important aspect of using images on social media is whether your brand actually has the right to do so. Three key questions to ask yourself include:  Do we own this image?  In what context do we own this image?

  • Royalty-Free: stock images for purchase that can be used in any application, for as long as you like, in as many different projects as you like.
  • Rights-Managed: stock images for purchase based on licenses for a defined scope of usage and some are available with exclusive rights.

 How long do we have rights to this image?

  • Rights-managed stock images will state in the license when usage runs out

4. Advertising Considerations. While each platform is constantly changing, there are a few considerations to keep in mind when utilizing imagery in paid social: Facebook:

  • Facebook Paid Ad images have a recommended aspect ratio of 1.91:1 and an upload size of 1,200×627 pixels.
  • Promoted posts only allow 20% of the image to contain logos/copy within the image. Want to know if your image works? Try out their handy tool here.


  • As far as we know, Instagram ads have the same image requirements as regular Instagram uploads.

5. Quick Facts. Beyond basic image sizes, advertising, and rights, here are a few nuances to images that are helpful for social media practitioners to understand.  

Pinterest [1]

  • Images with less than 30% whitespace are repinned the most.
  • Images with multiple dominant colors have 3.25 times more repins per image than images with a single dominant color.
  • Red, orange and brown images receive approximately twice as many repins as blue images


  • Twitter images now have a preview that automatically populates within the user’s feed. This part of the image – or whole image – has a 2:1 aspect ratio (the proportional relationship between an image’s width and height).
  • Tweets featuring images garner 18% more clicks, 89% more favorites, and 150% more retweets than tweets without images.[2]

Now that you know the basics, what questions do you have about imagery?


PwC announced last Friday that it completed its acquisition of Booz & Company — now named “Strategy&.” Why did Booz agree to be acquired and why did PwC want Booz? And what does this mean for the services industry? My opinion: It’s a bold move that has the signs of being a game-changer in the global services world.

Booz had a trouble spot. I’ve blogged before about this phenomenon — the growing power of large consultancy groups and service providers’ ability to utilize access to their existing customer base to increase their revenue. It enables the rich to get richer. The champions of this strategy are the Big Four (Deloitte, E&Y, KPMG and PwC in the consultancy arena) and Accenture, Cognizant and TCS, to mention a few in the provider landscape.

Even though Booz had one of the most venerable, respected brands in strategic consulting for the past 100 years, it became increasingly difficult to drive consistent customer access. Booz believes it will be easier to succeed in this strategy of radiating to advantage by meeting client needs within the PwC family rather than having to blaze its own trail.

Using existing customers to grow a services business is a proven model that Deloitte certainly demonstrates in today’s marketplace, and PwC enjoyed the advantages of this model before the SEC asked it to divest services years ago.

PwC perspective

Bringing Booz into the PwC network is a bold commitment signaling that PwC intends to join Accenture and Deloitte as a major transformational player. PwC has been studiously building back its consulting and advisory services since its divestiture, and the Booz acquisition adds the high-end strategy capability that will enable PwC to be a strong value player in advising and driving major transformation deals.

What it means for the services industry

The arrival of PwC Strategy& in the marketplace changes the provider landscape significantly. It adds another true power with a broad set of capabilities stretching from the boardroom and strategy to implementation. And it will contest the market for large-scale transformational work.

In that contest, it will prove interesting to see which providers lose some market share to PwC Strategy&.  Will this new power inhibit Deloitte’s growth? Will it affect Accenture and IBM? Will it affect the aspirations of Cognizant, TCS and Wipro as they look to join the transformational party?

One thing is for sure: The transformational dance floor is getting crowded.


“When captives think about what they want to outsource, they typically pick transaction-based processes where the service provider could have a platform or services that experience variable demand so that the provider can manage the changes required in deploying a workforce,” said H Karthik, vice president at IT consultancy Everest Group. Read more.


The NCAA’s annual college basketball championship tournament gets bigger and bigger every year. Don’t let that amateur college status fool you, March Madness is big business; last year’s tournament generated $1.5 billion in advertising revenue. To put that in perspective, last year’s Super Bowl generated $220 million. With a hyper level of competition, brands are clamoring to break through the clutter. As the UConn Huskies take on the Kentucky Wildcats in tonight’s championship game, let’s cut right to the chase – what are the biggest takeaways for marketers this year?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

“Go Big or Go Home” Works

Before March Madness even kicked off, you were in the majority if you were crossing your fingers that your risky picks added up to a perfect bracket and a $1 billion score in the Quicken Loans Billion Dollar Bracket Challenge with Yahoo! Sports.Meanwhile, Quicken Loans was likely lapping up the opportunity to be part of a traditional and social news story that had longer legs than any shocking in-tournament upset.


Jay Farner, President and CMO of Quicken Loans, told USA Today that the story had received more than 1 billion traditional and social media impressions days after the tournament began. Even more, brand awareness increased by 300% over the previous month of February (full report here). Even if it meant sharing the spotlight with Warren Buffet, Quicken Loans proved that a “go big or go home” stunt can pay major dividends.


Move over Ellen, the Selfie has hit March Madness

Unless you’re living under a rock, you know that selfies are all the rage right now and March Madness has been no exception. With big wins and heartbreaking losses, the tournament is the perfect breeding ground for emotional moments caught on camera. From University of Tennessee’s #Sweet16Selfie to the Richard Sherman/Condoleezza Rice #StanfordSelfie, you weren’t anyone if you weren’t snapping a pic for March Madness.

 megan1 megan2

When the University of Dayton upset Syracuse University in an epic 55-53 victory, Dayton president Daniel Curran crowd surfed with celebrating students (if you missed it, see the highlights on Business Insider. It was incredible). Dayton students took photos and videos of themselves with President Curran crowd surfing. Collegiate athletic programs also jumped on the selfie bandwagon. University of Louisville started the #CardinalSelfie, encouraging students and fans to share their photos for a chance to win a basketball jersey.


Real-time Moments: Big Wins and Major Upsets

Social media regulars know by now that early successes with real-time marketing has opened the door for brands to barge in with less flattering attempts to get in on the action. Still, there are some that manage to get it right.

Here are some of the best:

Burger King tapped the biggest theme we can count on for March Madness year after year. #BracketBusted

Nike got smart with its promoted tweets early on by using vivid imagery and creative copy to make a statement. See how other brands succeeded (or quite frankly, didn’t) with promoted tweets on


With the Championship on the horizon this evening with unexpected contenders UConn and Kentucky, we know we’ll be glued to both first and second screens along the way. What are the biggest trends you’ve noticed during this year’s tournament?