Author: A. Perez

Social media sharing will cure rosacea, says blogger Rosy JulieBC

This YouTube video creator feels that efforts like hers are becoming increasingly important for people with the skin condition.

Every Sunday and Thursday, Rosy JulieBC adds another video to her YouTube channel, in part because she believes social media sharing is among the best resources rosacea patients have. This chronic skin condition is currently incurable and effective treatments are few and far between.

That said, despite the fact that there are millions of rosacea sufferers, even reliable information is scarce.

Rosy JulieBC rosacea blogger - social media sharing“It’s incredible,” said the blogger and YouTube creator, whose real name is Julie B. Campbell. “Aside from a basic description of what rosacea actually is, the information available online and even through many doctors is thin. As a rosacea patient, it’s very frustrating. As soon as we’re diagnosed, our lives become a never-ending trial-and-error session for skin care and lifestyle products and techniques.”

As a result, Rosy JulieBC feels that social media sharing will be the road to a rosacea cure. “Honestly, I don’t know if rosacea will ever be cured. Nobody even knows what causes it. There are a lot of theories – from autoimmune disorders to mites and even to unique adaptations to colder climates with dark winters – but even the experts don’t know anything for certain. That said, I’ve learned a lot more through other rosacea patients than through official sources. The two have been vital to creating a more complete picture of how I should treat my skin.”

When Campbell wasn’t able to find the information she needed online, she took to social media sharing.

Rosy JulieBC - rosacea YouTube videosIt began with a blog, now titled Rosacea Treatment Options with Rosy JulieBC. As a writer and novelist, Campbell felt comfortable expressing herself through regular written posts. She decided that it was time the web offered some information to rosacea sufferers that wasn’t either too vague or trying to sell something.

“If you try Googling information about what products you should use on rosacea prone skin, you’re inundated with ‘cures.’ It’s all so misleading. I certainly don’t have any answers and I’m not a skin care expert, but I feel I can provide something unique with my blog. I can talk about my experience, try new things and track them with images.”

According to Campbell, she never really expected it to amount to much. When she first started writing, she didn’t know how many people had rosacea. She’d never met another sufferer before – or so she thought. “Not long after I started writing [the blog] people started coming out of the woodwork. People I knew, sure, but mostly people I didn’t know, and they were from countries around the world. They were all thanking me for sharing my story because they were going through similar struggles with their rosacea and with finding information. Every time I received another message, I’d cry. It was so moving but so heartbreaking! Why are there so many of us and yet there doesn’t seem to be much in terms of unbiased and truly usable information we can apply to helping ourselves?”

It wasn’t until Campbell had a bad reaction to a sunscreen she’d previously successfully used that she started posting videos on YouTube. “I’d always said that I’d never put a video of myself on YouTube. I have social anxiety disorder and that sounded like a fast path to a panic attack. But when I had a rosacea-flare up from the sunscreen, words simply couldn’t express my frustration. I needed to talk directly to the people who had been reading my blog.”

It was through YouTube that the Rosy JulieBC name was born and that’s where she discovered the power of social media sharing. Likes and comments were posted on a regular basis and Campbell broadened her Rosy JulieBC presence to include Facebook, Twitter and, more recently, Instagram.Rosy JulieBC rosacea flare-up

“I’ve also started using features on various social networks such as private discussion pages on Facebook. They are very useful for sharing information with other rosacea sufferers in a kind of safe space without judgment. We share pictures of both our flare-ups and our victories when we clear our skin. We talk about different DIY mask ideas, and we pitch ideas about the impact of water hardness, various supplements and even alternative techniques such as dry skin brushing. Social media posting gives us the opportunity to exchange notes, share research and articles we’ve found and talk about our own experiences.

“It’s similar to the forum participation I have at places like the TalkHealth Partnership, which I love. I feel as though all these resources come together to create a pretty solid body of knowledge. As soon as I come across a topic I want to experiment with or learn more about, it becomes my next YouTube video or blog post.”

Social media has, according to Campbell, offered a great deal of freedom to learn and talk to people without judgment while making it easier to avoid scammers who are continually trying to peddle their snake oil to rosacea suffers who are desperate for something to work.

Rosy JulieBC rosacea skin care and treatment productsOver time she has created an active and supportive community she calls her Rosy Friends. “Rosacea is one of those conditions we just don’t talk about. Most of us work hard to cover it up, not to try to tell people we have it. Because of that, social media sharing gives us the chance to talk to people but from the safety of our own computers or mobile devices. Social media has placed me in contact with hundreds of Rosy Friends from around the globe. We exchange support, ideas and ask questions. Before blogging, YouTube and the other platforms, I may still have been under the impression that I don’t know a single person with the condition.”

That, says Campbell, is why she feels social media sharing is key for rosacea patients being able to find the right skin care routine, treatment, and trigger avoidance routine for their unique needs. “If a rosacea cure ever does happen – and, who knows, it might – it’s going to start with those of us with the rosy cheeks.”

Five Steps to Monetizing Your Company’s Data

In Latin America, many companies are recognizing the hidden value of data they didn’t even know they had.

By AnaAnabel Perezbel Perez
President & CEO, NovoPayment

Every second of every day, banks, retailers, payments organizations and a broad network of companies across the region play host to a vast flowing river of transactional data. From the tiny ripples of single transactions to massive waves of batch settlements, this information comes from customers, merchants and even third parties. Most of this data is recorded and stored for invoicing, account statements, auditing and fraud prevention, but it’s poorly exploited when it comes to generating new revenue sources and businesses.

That’s right – businesses. Those countless daily transactions containing data have real value and are the “prima materia” or source material for improving profitability, efficiency, customer experience and customer loyalty, and fashioning new, finished products. How, is this possible? Here are five initial steps you can take to start monetizing your company’s data:

  1. Start thinking about institutionalizing your approach to data – The initial step is to promote an informed discussion about the value you can begin to extrapolate from what you have and its potential value to others inside and outside your organization. What would it look like if your company started to institutionalize the capture, storage, analysis and application of data? Clearly, the help of a business intelligence and analytics specialist would be of significant value in this process. It may also be useful to create a steering committee with specialists from various business areas.
  2. Audit your current data – Establish the size and nature of the data that your company has by undertaking a comprehensive audit. Where is it stored? Is it centralized or dispersed? How many customer records and data points do you have? How far back do they go and across how many different markets? How much of a customer’s “life journey” are you holding? What kind of predictive insights and behavioral patterns might be possible with your data, such as: what do they buy, when do they buy and how often do they take out cash? Finally, what do you know about their demographic profiles?
  3. Assign a data manager – To truly maximize revenue or any other tangible value from your data, someone must own responsibility for it. These experts are increasingly specialized and coveted talents, and like all human resources, recruiting is key. Also, when you find the right leader, make sure that person has an important seat at the executive table. In today and tomorrow’s world, data managers will have a major strategic influence as opposed to the current operational role of custodians and safe-keepers of data.
  4. Package and make your data work for you – Determining the best delivery vehicles for new data-based products or services targeted toward existing and/or new customers is a considerable, but worthy challenge. Through business analytics and intelligence, your newly collected and organized data will reveal insights and understanding into how your company’s bottom line can be improved by: 1) streamlining current business processes, 2) revealing new revenue sources and models and 3) providing opportunities to frame, package and brand the data to be shared externally. The possibilities include geo-localization, proximity +NFC, apps for mobiles, imaging and M2M among others.
  5. Embrace emerging-payment systems – As non-traditional or emerging-payment platforms (such as mobile phones and wallets) grow in use this represents a rich data pool. However, many companies are not taking advantage of such emerging payments, and they are losing out on opportunities for new revenue streams. Make sure you embrace emerging-payments systems in order to capture as much data as possible.Data Managers

Regional Challenges

As the buzz around big data turns to increased action in our region, some eminent and long-term challenges will have to be addressed:

Digital payments: If our formal economies are flowing rivers of data, our informal economies are like vast, opaque lakes. We’ve heard for many years about the war on cash, but this initiative is going to be increasingly relevant to broaden our digital world and break down its current edges.

The talent question: A new generation of talent is going to be needed to carry these practices forward and improve them. The question then is where will new resources be trained in order to effectively wield these powerful tools?

Security: Our standards and local laws will need to be up to the task of addressing the risks associated with bad practices and misuses of data, and of protecting consumers in particular.

Collaboration: Good data is like good ingredients. Some combinations can be extremely appetizing and even sustaining. Will our companies learn to share data or will our strong culture of competition and suspicion keep us from great things? Can we imagine a “First Bank of Data” for sharing this information or is it some utilitarian dream?

These and many other questions come to mind when contemplating how we will relate to our data tomorrow. Whatever the answers, one thing is certain: the time to start thinking about data differently was yesterday.

Anabel Perez is President & CEO of NovoPayment, the leading payments technology services company in Latin America, providing prepaid “stored value” program design, implementation and Platform as a Service (PaaS). For more information, visit: