Where Cash Will Go in 2020

For starters, cash is not going obsolete. Despite all the airtime and column inches dedicated to the exciting new ways we have to transact without cash, physical money still has an incontrovertible place in our society. Perhaps the more interesting question isn’t whether cash still matters, but to whom cash matters and why. Let us begin with what’s new. 

Throughout 2019, high-profile examples of the cashless society came in the form of cashless stores like Amazon Go. Also, in new mobile payment systems like Facebook Pay that continue to be heavily promoted, promising to be the next big thing. On the face of it, it’s not hard to see why becoming cash-free is so attractive. 

From the business perspective, going cashless can increase operational efficiency, cut wait times for customers, remove the need for cash security, reduce errors in cash-handling, and create a safer work environment by reducing the risk of robbery or theft. For individuals, there is the convenience of not carrying bulky wallets, never running out of cash, losing cash, needing an ATM, and of course the reduced likelihood of being targeted for a crime. 

For many of these reasons, cash today no longer forms the majority of how we transact. According to the FDIC, cash represents just 30% of all payments1. Most are in petty amounts, often for sums under $102, such as for tips, payments for small goods and services, and casual donations to Salvation Army red kettles. Larger amounts tend to be transacted through online banking with some still relying on checks. That’s why economists like Kenneth Rogoff have suggested we even phase out large bills, like how Sweden did away with their 100-kronor and 500-kronor notes3. 

But the need for making small payments is where we start to see the cashless pushback. Organizations, businesses in rural areas, small businesses, and individuals (like doormen and waitresses) that deal in petty payments will be negatively affected if society went cashless. Third-party research commissioned by Square, the mobile payment company, shows that 51% of small business owners are against going cashless and 83% of them never plan to go cashless. 73% even believe we will never be a fully cashless society4. They are not the only ones. 

#b2bcopywriter

How the Coronavirus is Driving Innovation in AR/VR

With the increased need for social distancing, working from home and cancelled events, many industries are looking to digital innovations to bridge the gap of engagement. The AR/VR sector is the primary beneficiary of all that attention. Here are 10 areas we could see increased usage of AR/VR technology.

1. Virtual Education

Now that events and classrooms are closed, event speakers and educators will be using VR and AR to create rich learning environments with VR simulations and AR laboratories.

2. Virtual Shopping

With malls and offices closing, retail and B2B eCommerce will be reshaping online shopping with personalized experiences. From AR product demos and virtual unboxing to VR apparel and cosmetic trials. Some companies are currently working on virtual shopping advisors to walk you through your choices.

3. Virtual Space Planning

From Ikea’s room planners to urban landscape planning, VR and AR are helping designers collaborate to model and test ideas with both interior and exterior virtual spaces.

4. Virtual Repair and Maintenance

One of the biggest industrial uses of AR is for repair and maintenance of complex equipment. Maintenance and repair staff in the field are using AR headsets to provide useful diagnostics on the spot, suggest fixes, and point out trouble areas.

5. Virtual Surgeries

Medical schools have taken leaf from pilot training and are increasingly using AR to train future surgeons before they get to the surgery room.

6. Virtual Culture

More museums and galleries are broadening their cultural reach by bringing art, history and anthropology out of their halls and into homes and classrooms across the world.

7. Virtual Safety

AR is helping emergency responders be more aware of their surroundings and danger issues in real time by providing critical information in real time through AR headsets, keeping them safer.

8. Virtual Healthcare

Going beyond telemedicine, AR headsets with the aid of artificial intelligence are being used to help physicians to diagnose symptoms more accurately and enabling surgeons to peer inside a patient’s body without making incisions.

9. Virtual Factories

AR headsets are enabling engineers to provide critical real time performance information on equipment to improve processes and predict safety issues.

10. Virtual Marketing

As social distancing takes hold, more marketers (and every B2B copywriter) are finding new ways to enhance brand experiences for both B2C and B2B products and services.

Top 3 Predictive Earthquake Apps to Install in 2020

While we were all engrossed by the coronavirus news cycle, three important things happened in the past week. Three earthquakes, to be precise. In the 7.5 magnitude in the Kuril Islands, 6.1 off Ecuador, and 5.7 in Utah. Yes, our earth is still turning while our emergency beds are churning.

Considering the number of fault lines in the US, it may be a good idea to have an earthquake alert app somewhere on your smartphone. There are several in the app store. The best ones send alerts before an earthquake. Here are our picks.

MyShake

Developed by the UC Berkeley Seismology Lab and sponsored by the State of California Office of Emergency Services, MyShake uses your phone’s accelerometers to collect ground shaking data to help scientists improve the app’s accuracy. In the seconds after an earthquake occurs, the app will send a push notification to users, alerting them that they may soon feel shaking in the event of a 4.5 magnitude earthquake or stronger.

QuakeAlertUSA

QuakeAlertUSA gives up to 60 seconds of pre-shake warning, enough time to drop to the floor, find cover, and hold on. It does this by using P-wave and S-wave data from the United States Geological Survey to determine where the location and size of the quakes are. The Early Warning Labs cloud server then calculates the individual alerts for all users with personalized time to shaking and intensity.

Earthquake Network

Earthquake Network uses the accelerometer on more than 5 million smartphones to detect in real-time the shaking induced by an earthquake. When an earthquake is detected, an alert is sent to all the smartphones within the affected area. Users who are not too close to the epicenter, can receive the alert in advance. In many seismic countries, Earthquake Network is the only predictive alert system. 

#b2bcopywriter

Why the hantavirus is worse than the coronavirus

Trending on Google: A man in China has died from hantavirus, a disease that’s initiated from specific types of rodent droppings, urine, and saliva or a rat bite.

The bad thing about hantavirus, according to the CDC, is that its rate of fatality is 38%. That’s nearly 10 times the mortality rate of the coronavirus. Second, the incubation period is far longer than coronavirus at 1 to 8 weeks. And there is no cure.

But the really really bad problem is that there’s not much we know about hantavirus either. The CDC says there is “limited information” about it. The only good news they can tell us is that hantavirus is not easily communicable from human to human.

There was an outbreak of it across the US in 2017 and so far 262 people have died from it, mostly in their 20s to 50s.

The initial symptoms are shared by the coronavirus – fever, muscle aches and fatigue – but without the sore throat or runny nose. Later, victims will likely develop headaches, dizziness, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain.

#b2bcopywriter

Top 10 B2B Copywriters to Hire in 2020

With good B2B content, you can increase trust in your brand, strengthen relationships with customers, drive inbound traffic, generate demand, build authority in the industry, and educate prospects. That’s why many leading B2B companies invest in the best content copywriters.

But good B2B copywriters are hard to pin down. They need strong research skills and an aptitude for technical details to write believable long-form content. They also need the ability to write for certain business personas and the editorial focus to ensure the text is sharp and relevant. These capabilities are inherent in many of the copywriters in this list. Here are ten of the best ones to hire in 2020 and what makes them good.

1. Tim Yang

Tim Yang is a rare find. While many a B2B copywriter and B2B content marketing copywriter has come up from B2C, Tim is the only qualified specialist in B2B. He has spent years writing thought leadership and demand generation content for SaaS, fintech, healthtech, data management, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, network infrastructure, and other enterprise technology industries. Many business leaders from Oracle to SAP trust Tim as their go-to B2B copywriter when they need something done right.

2. Laura Soo

Laura is an award-winning professional, with years of experience in the communications industry. She is all about developing and implementing creative solutions that engage, connect, and deliver results. She has proven strengths in delivering a wide range of marketing strategy tools, including through-the-line campaigns for B2C and B2B.

3. Emma Gan

Emma is a specialist in the insurance sector. She has proofread, edited, and crafted copies for insurance groups. She managed and produced monthly content through social, digital, & traditional media while ensuring consistent brand tone & copy across all platforms.

4. Puan Khadijah

Puan Khadijah was once a creative director for a multinational advertising agency. She specialises in Malay copywriting and translating for the Malay Market. She has experience copywriting for Print, Digital, Outdoor, Corp. Video, TV, Radio, Innovative Media, Point of Sales.

5. Sonny Lim

A writer that cut his teeth in the telco business at the infancy of his career, Sonny has since bled, perspired and cried in the name of advertising for 12 years. When he is not writing, he teaches English after recently graduating from the British Council.

6. Alexandria Soon

With years of experience as a social media manager and freelance copywriter, Alexandria enjoys cultivating a strong online presence for brands through strategic content and effective publicity. She managed and wrote social media content for various brands such as One Doc Medical, Glo Damansara, and SPLAT Asia.

7. Minton Chew

Formerly a journalist covering financial market and economic issues, Minton now offers services in copy editing and copywriting of press releases, annual reports, and speeches. He has worked in print and online platforms, in addition to writing scripts and visualising the infographics for business videos.

8. Azman Ismam

Azman’s experience has strong experience in setting up content funnels and executing them by preparing content and copywriting for paid advertisement and websites.

9. Danny Hong

Danny has been an editor with years of experience in the video game and entertainment industries. He has proofread, edited, and crafted copies for various businesses (both print & online). He also dabbles into TVC/Online video scriptwriting, web content writing, and social media strategy.

10. Klara Lee

Klara is a specialist in communicating with the Chinese market. She offers copywriting, translating and proofreading services in Mandarin and English.