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All this talk about e-marketing, viral marketing, Facebook and so on…it can be a little daunting for those who don’t spend their time surfing the internet 24/7.

But if you’re thinking about promoting any sort of business online, don’t let that put you down. Optimising in e-marketing strategies can provide great success as there are a huge range of dynamic platforms which can suit your needs and budgets.

Jeremiah Owyang from Web strategy and columnist for Forbes CMO network has listed the different forms of web marketing.  

Here are some that were mentioned, including ones that I have previously spoken about in my previous posts:

Email marketing: Many consider email marketing a bit old fashioned these days, but it still works! It is cost effective, fast and convenient than snail mail. Email allows interactive links to web pages, videos and information to download. However, it would only effectively gain the interest of consumers if they have chosen to ‘opt in’ or subscribe to the emails because they would most likely be the right target market for your business –  so note to self: Don’t just send emails out to addresses you randomly found – they would just disregard it as junk.  

Social Media: Ahh yes…there has been lots of talk about social media and there are a range of platforms available such as blogs, social networking sites and video and photo sharing sites. These sites allow interactions with consumers to provide feedbacks and discussions – it’s a two way marketing process. Like emails, it is cost effective and instant, but social media allows a much quicker turnaround as it has the opportunity to go viral. If your page is interesting enough, people may send the link to others, or even posit it on their own Facebook page for all their 800 or so friends to see. That is an almost instant viewing!

Banner ads and pop up ads: one that is often used, placing banner or pop up ads can give you the ability to use colourful and animated graphic as well as vary in sizes and positioning of a website. These ads are essentially like interactive magazine ads – you can place them in websites that would fit with the target market you’re after. However, less is more: don’t be too animated and don’t place sounds or noises to it – consumers may find it more annoying than appealing.  

Group coupons: A new way of issuing out coupons and promotions – group coupons combines that viral ‘tell all your friends’ in order to secure a great deal for themselves and companies will be able to see a large amount of traffic and business.  

Websites: any business should have a website set up – even if it’s just a page with details and information (NOT one that is still ‘under construction’). The internet has provided a new way for consumers to search for information – they would generally search for what they need through the internet and if your name and website doesn’t pop up, then you’ll be missing out.  

Search engine marketing/Pay per click/viewed: The whole purpose of a website is to be listed when a search is done through a search engine (think Google). Choosing to pay for your link to show up more prominently – such as on the side bar with a pretty picture and a description or just right on the top of the search – may allow more traffic to your site. Paying for keywords that aligns with your business will also have it shown up through the listings.   

Always think carefully of how you want to market your business online – it still has to align with the rest of your marketing campaign, as well as the image of your brand. It should also have some creativity to draw people’s attention – but be careful, don’t overplay it as it can be disastrous.  Take Witchery’s viral campaign as an example. In trying to launch their new men’s line, they posted a video on Youtube that showed a girl looking for a ‘man in the jacket,’ a romantic quest to find the guy of her dreams. The video went viral and many generous people attempted to help the girl. However – it was all a hoax – a campaign to catch the attention of consumers. Indeed, it was a different concept and it did gain a lot of attention on the internet, but it left a bad image and a bombardment of complaints about marketing ethics.


The ‘man in the jacket’ posting that went viral


The actress comming clean about the campaign for Witchery men (and still attempts to sell it with her bad acting…)

So always remember – the internet has social etiquettes too!  

Article Source:
Owyang, J, 2008, ‘A Complete List of the Many Forms of Web Marketing for 2008,’ web strategy,  Jan 1st
http://www.web-strategist.com/blog/2008/01/01/a-complete-list-of-the-many-forms-of-web-marketing-for-2008/

Lee, J and Marcus, C, 2009,  Retailer kills Heidi: web appeal revealed as campaign, Sydney Morning Herald, January 21
http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/retailer-kills-heidi-web-appeal-revealed-as campaign/2009/01/20/1232213646804.html

And the winner is…ads! Oh…wait..omg…sorry…it’s banner ads

I have found the new easy way to get rich.

 And I’m sure many of your ears have just perked up.

 The answer is….

 Social Media & Youtube

 Of course, of course, many of you may consider this old news (like we haven’t heard enough about Beiber Fevers these days) ….but how many of you knew that by allowing companies to post banner/pay per click ads on your page you can earn up to $100 000 a year??

My favourite video blogger of all times, Natalie aka CommunityChannel, is a prime example. A normal, 20 something year old uni student from Sydney, has not only found sudden fame, but also a fortune just by posting skits about her life on Youtube. But then again, not many possess the charisma, cleverness, and not to mention courage, in making videos such as hers.

 Examples of her clever skits are seen here:

 Her $100 000 revenue stems from good old banner ads on her pages, in which she takes half of the advertising revenue.

 Social networking sites have been a very popular medium to place banner/pay per click ads. The price of placing ads on social networking sites is much less than web portals such as Google or Yahoo. The different links and pages within a social networking site allows marketers to purchase more ad spaces at a bulked price .

 As with all banner/pay per click ads placed on the web, a reasonable amount of traffic needs to flow on a particular website in order to make any real money – and that’s where social sites such as Youtube, Facebook and even blogs come in handy.    

 So why are social networking sites the most popular choice?

 Well, where do people spend the most time socialising and procrastinating? Where is the first point of contact when people need communicate with friends or even to just vent about their frustration over St.Kilda’s grand final loss? (or extreme happiness for you Collingwood fans). These social networking sites have such high traffic and page site views, that it’s a no brainier companies find value in placing their advertisements through these sites.  

 Facebook commonly displays 50 billion ads a month and is the most popular choice for ad placements, currently sitting at number 3 for most trafficked site.

 It never ceases to amaze at how dynamic it can be. Within an hour of watching that cringing moment from Australia’s next top model, a Facebook page was already made by a fan with ads on the side promoting all things beauty and cosmetic related. 

Related ad placements for facebook fan pages 

Not only does social networking sites have the ability to tailor ads to related topics, it can also track the number of page views and subscriptions a profile has, thus allowing companies to see the most popular profile and work out strategies to approach individuals for ad placements and endorsements.

 Advertisers are allocating more and more marketing spending to these online mediums as a way to engage and connect with target audiences. Research also found that 76% of people don’t mind seeing ads when they are logged in to a social media site.

Yes, there is much success in advertising through these mediums, but as with all types of ads, companies have to be mindful in not being too intrusive and ‘in your face’ with their ads.

Article Sources:

Moses, A, 2010, ‘Our Natalie raking in $100,000 a year from YouTube’, Sydney Morning Herald, August 20
http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/digital-life-news/our-natalie-raking-in-100000-a-year-from-youtube-20100820-133be.html  

Oresekovic, A, 2009, ‘Social networking sites grab big slice of Web ads’ Reauters, Sep 1
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE5805QX20090901

 Ostrow, A, 2010, ‘Facebook Now Serving More Than 50 Billion Banner Ads Per Month,’ Mashable Business
http://mashable.com/2010/05/12/facebook-banner-ads/

McCollum, J, 2008, ‘Social Network Advertising: Annoying or Effective?,’ October 29
http://www.marketingpilgrim.com/2008/10/social-network-advertising-annoying-effective.html

Iphone ads apps – following you everywhere you go.

It’s been more than 3 and a half years, but I finally caved and popped my iphone cherry when I bought the new iphone 4 three weeks ago.

Since then, barely a minute has passed when I haven’t been checking my phone, playing a game or downloading a new (free) app.

It’s safe to say, I’m addicted. My family is even looking into having an iphone-ectomy surgery done to get it out of my hand.

The one thing that really stands out after the first 3 weeks of using my shiny new iphone is the difference in the way ads are now placed. When I go into an app it actually asks me if I want to turn the ‘ad’ function on or off. I remember when using my partner’s iphone 3, ads kept popping up through, within, and on top of the apps. Maybe it’s just me, but the last thing I wanted to be distracted by when I’m rocking out to Metallica on tap tap, is how many single people want to meet me. Really? Right now? Because I’m playing tap tap? I doubt that was on their online dating wish-list somehow.

I can, however, appreciate apple wanting to cash in on the huge potential for marketing on the iphone/ipad, especially if Steve Jobs is correct when he says “The average user spends over 30 minutes every day using apps on their phone. If we said we wanted to put an ad up every 3 minutes, that’s 10 ads per device per day. That would be 1b ad opportunities per day.”

Still I couldn’t help but wonder, can’t we at least make this a little relevant to what we’re doing or take advantage of the location capabilities and base it around where we are??

Well, looks like Apple has the answer for everything. Apple has clarified advertising rules to allow targeted ads to users, based on location – but only if they allow it, thus ‘opting in’ to the ads.

Apple’s February statement notified app developers: “If you build your application with features based on a user’s location, make sure these features provide beneficial information. If your app uses location-based information primarily to enable mobile advertisers to deliver targeted ads based on a user’s location, your app will be returned to you by the App Store Review Team for modification before it can be posted to the App Store”  Isn’t that relieving? No more being bombarded with ads that don’t have any relevance to what we’re doing, but would be beneficial to location apps such as ‘around me’ and ‘true local.’

Furthermore, Steve Jobs announced new advertising platforms for iPhone applications. Dubbed “iAd” the new ads are designed to integrate with iPhone/iPad apps, meaning the user is exposed to the ads within the app–not taken to some web page to view the content. Apple plans to host and sell the ads, and will give the developer 60% of the collected revenues. The ads will be interactive, take advantage of video, and allow developers to create free apps and monetize them with the ads.

Steve Jobs said at the ios4 release; “We have a lot of free or reasonably priced apps… we like that, but we have to find ways to make money. So we are putting ads into apps, and for lack of a better way to say it, we think most of this kind of advertising sucks.” it’s at this point I started to think; clearly I wasn’t the only one complaining about this problem!!

At the ios4 release, Jobs showed-off one they created as a demo for Disney’s Toy Story: It was fully interactive, and looked similar to a native app — it actually had a game integrated in it. Jobs said, “”This is a new kind of mobile ad. Have you ever seen a mobile ad like this? Anything even close?”

These ads are looking a lot more like apps that you download to your phone…to look at apps..hmm how does Apple do it??

Article Source:

Ritchie, R, 2010, ‘Apple shows off iAd mobile advertising platform,’ TiPb Blog, April 8 http://www.tipb.com/2010/04/08/apple-shows-iad-mobile-advertising-platform/

iOS Dev Center, 2010, ‘News and announcements for IOS developers’,  Apple Inc, February
ttp://developer.apple.com/news/ios/archives/2010/february/ 

iad, 2010, ‘Engage, capitivate, connect,’ Apple Inc
http://advertising.apple.com/

If you want the coupon, you better scoop a group

 

Ok, I have a confession to make.

I’m a bit of a shopaholic.

Then again, what girl isn’t?

As of recent, I’ve been hiding my shopping sprees from my partner via online retailing (God sent!), and recently, I’d come across this website called Scoopon.com, where they feature deals from different service industries, e.g. haircuts, personal training classes etc.

It was there that I found a deal that was too hard to miss – 70% an hour’s worth of facial and massages (Yeah, so I like to be pampered once in a while….).

Intrigued (but sceptical), I checked out what this website was about. It follows a concept called internet ‘group buying,’ a very intriguing way of ecommerce.   

How it works is that when there is a daily deal, members are alerted of the offer. If they’re interested, they click the agreement to buy, BUT they will only get the deal (and pay for it) if the required minimum number of people is reached. For example, the massage and facial offer needed a minimum of 30 people to buy it before I could get the deal, otherwise I would miss out. So what do I do? Tell all my family and friends of course, so then I would get the bargain!

So my friends and I signed up (still sceptical), and before we know it about 50 other people around Melbourne had clicked on the deal also, and within 2 minutes our voucher and invoice was sent to our emails! The vouchers last for a year and there are varieties of different deals a day, from pedicures to life drawing classes. The last deal which featured a 59% discount at an all you can eat restaurant, had over 4000 clicks! That’s an extra 4000+ customers that the restaurant will be serving within the next year! Well known companies such as Bridgestone auto services and Contour gyms have used these mediums as a way to reach out to new customers.

Scoopon’s Bridgestone car service deal

This internet group buying concept started off in the US, where Andrew Mason decided to take advantage of the bargain hunting hype on the internet, and hence formed ‘Groupon.com’ After just 17 months, Groupon.com is now valued at US $1.5billion. Pretty impressive huh?

Well it had to be, because now there are so many sites following the same business model, with Australia’s Scoopon, Spreets and Jump On it booming in the market. 

These deals usually end within 24 hours, so it encourages people to use the most convenient and viral way to spread the word quicker – Facebook, Twitter and email –  the perfect way for today’s obsession with social networking. Not only that, but most of these group buying sites reward you when joining their social networking sites, such as further discounts on future deals.

Most of these sites popularity are primarily due to social networking. JumpOnIt.com has 450,000 followers on Facebook since April this year.

These websites are like advertising. Whether or not a single person buys a deal from a certain company, the company is still getting featured in a newsletter that is sent to thousands of people – at a much cheaper rate than other forms of communications. These sites only feature one deal per day, allowing them to concentrate all marketing resources towards distributing the one deal for that company.

Companies themselves have been doing discount deals for centuries, from in store promotions to snail mail coupons, but this is a different way of getting people through the door. It reaches a much wider customer base and is viral – the likelihood that people will spread the word of a good bargain on the internet is much higher.

Furthermore, it will give companies the chance to sell themselves to customers who use the coupons to try the service for the first time, with the potential to gain regular business from them.  

So for those who love a great bargain, I’d suggest that you try these sites!!

Article Sources: (In sequence)

Scoopon, 2010, Melbourne, viewed: 12 September 2010
http://www.scoopon.com.au

Boehart, K, 2010 ‘A deal on a haircut? That’s what friends are for,’ the Mossberg Solution, Wall street Journal, 23 March, viewed: 12 September 2010
http://solution.allthingsd.com/20100323/a-deal-on-a-haircut-thats-what-friends-are-for/

Scoopon, 2010,  ‘Bisq bar and grill all you can eat’, Melbourne, viewed: 12 September 2010
http://www.scoopon.com.au/deals/498/pay-only-20-for-a-49-all-you-can-eat-brazilian-bbq-at-bisq-bar-and-grill

Coburn, L, 2010, ‘Groupon Ceo Andrew Mason talks growth, clones and why Groupon isn’t a coupon site,’ TNW Location, 24 March, Viewed: 13 September
http://thenextweb.com/location/2010/03/24/groupon-ceo-andrew-mason-talks-growth-clones-groupon-coupon-site/

Steiner, C, 2010, ‘Meet the fastest growing company ever,’ Forbes Magazine, 30 August, viewed: 13 September
http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/0830/entrepreneurs-groupon-facebook-twitter-next-web-phenom.html  

JumpOnIt, 2010, Melbourne, viewed: 12 September 2010
http://www.jumponit.com/

Spreets, 2010, Melbourne, viewed: 12 September 2010
http://www.spreets.com.au/

Rolfe, J, 2010, ‘Discount coupon websites offer savings over sixty per cent on items,’ The daily telegraph, 30 August, viewed: 12 September  
http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/lifestyle/discount-coupon-websites-offer-savings-over-sixty-per-cent-on-items/story-e6frf00i-1225911564083

End of the Printing Era

 

As print publications are facing declining circulation and readerships, there have been shifts towards online publishing as a attempt to gain back readers and advertisers who have moved to online media.

The internet has without a doubt changed the way we gain information.  As we are becoming more and more time constrained, we tend to use the internet to look for news, updates and even jobs or ads. It has given us a much easier and faster ways to locate information than using offline mediums such as newspapers and magazines.  

Of course this means that publishing companies, who once upon a time earned millions and millions of dollars, are dropping like flies. The industry declined by 16.2% during 2009-2010 as they continue to lose readers.  

Fairfax Media which publishes The Australian Financial Review, The Age and The Sun-Herald have embraced the trend and launched online newspapers in Brisbane and Perth with no intentions of producing print products for them. They have also launched an iPad app for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age which allows readers to flip through pages as if reading a traditional newspaper with the ability to zoom in and out and have the stories read out to them.

Popular men’s magazine Ralph, also closed printing publication 3 months ago to publish solely online.

So it looks as though the era of print publishing is really coming to its end.

Why do I say that? Have a look at some of the factors that are already leading to this trend– and why we’d benefit from it.

Internet is already taking over our leisure time and it is more up to date and attractive
Reading a newspaper or a magazine is considered a leisure activity – but the internet is taking over our leisure time. Many of us are online at least once a day (like right now) – bidding on eBay, checking your Facebook or reading the news, so it has already been identified as a preferable way to reach target audiences.

Online materials also have the ability to provide more updated information and prominent visuals.  Many newspaper and magazine companies now embrace websites to allow ‘real time’ articles, not to mention full colour stories, galleries and videos which we all enjoy.

Online is a cheaper option 
Goes without saying. Publishing companies are always looking for ways to cut costs and without the need for Ink and paper there would be massive savings.

Going green
The growing importance of environmental issues has seen publishing companies increasing their sustainability practices – especially in terms of cutting paper usage. Cutting print publications may actually see us in a paperless future where we won’t have to deal with piles of old newspapers.

Advertising agency preferring online
Advertising makes up 75% of newspaper and magazine revenue, and with all the cheap, available online tools that can be used, it’s not uncommon for companies to switch their advertising over to the internet.  And being such a huge chunk of their revenue stream – print companies will subsequently follow.

Development of wireless technology – blackberry, iPhone, iPad
The advancements of technology have allowed many to embrace the mobility of wireless internet. Furthermore, products such as Kindle, e-reader and iPad allow consumers to read online print more easily and conveniently and with the same readability as print – no more getting black ink on your hands!  

Need to increase younger generation of readers
 As the younger generation matures with age, they will still be as tech savvy as they are now. With the convergence of print and online technology, we may actually see 15 year olds reading the newspaper!

What are some issues?

Of course, before we begin to see this move there are still some issues that need to be addressed.

  • Issues in broadband – slow streaming and downloads and quality
    Higher bandwidth is necessary to meet rich data and multimedia traffic, and with the slow broadband facilities in some countries – aka Australia – it may be a problem. That is unless Gillard keeps her promise.

Issues about health risks relating to technology
There are still heath issues revolving around the use of screen based activities, such as poor eye vision, epilepsy and back pains, which has some people decreasing their time spent in front of technological devices and screens.

Loss of the jobs in printing and ink
There will be significant job losses from those in the printing and distribution labouring, as well as ink manufacturers and newsagencies – I can see possible union protests coming into play.

Justification of charging for online materials
If companies do start publishing online, they won’t do it without a cost. But will people be willing to pay for news contents that, for almost a decade, they have been receiving for free? An effective online revenue model has to be established. In saying that, people already pay for mobile phone contents and online download, so maybe they will be accustomed to paying for it online. 

What are your thoughts? Do you think print will continue to live on?

 

Article Sources:

Andersan, C, 2009, ‘Is Print Dead? Print publications are folding at an alarming rate’, Suite 101.com, 23 November

Tachamkertenian, H, 2010, ‘Industry’s pace of growth accelerating,’ PIAA, i-grafix.com Australian Printer Magazine, 4 March

The Age iPad editions on the way, 2010, The Sydney Morning Herald, 27 May

Jackson, S, 2010, ACP turns Ralph into online-only men’s magazine as readership droops, The Australian, 4 June

The ad your ad could look like

 

Old spice on the internet

Old Spice. Not a very attractive name is it? But it is a brand that has been around for more than 70 years – a brand that has been passed on down to generations of men as a tool to attract the opposite sex. Unfortunately, over the years the musky strong smell of the deodarant only conjures images of one’s grandad – not a very appealing image when you’re trying to impress the girl of your dreams.

In their recent attempt to revive the brand (and get away from the image of wrinkly old men), Old Spice has used a clever tool to speak out to the younger generation of boys and the women’s market– and that is through social networking.

In this phenomenal campaign, former NFL player Isaiah Mustafa, (now known as the old spice guy) uses his devilishly handsome good looks and suave personality to promote the product. In these viral videos, which only aired online through Facebook, Youtube and Twitter, Mustafa utters: “hello ladies. Look at your man, now back to me, sadly he isn’t me. But if he stopped using lady’s scented body wash and used old spice, he could smell like me.” The image of the Old Spice Guy has gone from being your grandad to the hottest guy on the planet…

But enough about him. The remarkable thing about this campaign is the fact that it only used social media to advertise. We all know social media is the new, edgy way of marketing, but this has taken it to a whole new level. For the first 3 days of the campaign launch, instead of just setting up a profile and posting twitter notes, the old spice guy actually responded to people’s comments with a personalised video post – a much pricier way of replying to tweets than normal, but boy did it work! During that period, the company posted over 150 video responses with each one averaging to over 2.8 million views.

Here are some examples of his video responses.

One of the notions of marketing through social networking sites is to make personal connections with consumers, and in this case, Old Spice did just that – addressing each person, by name, with a personalised message that they’ll remember. No mass emailing, no generic responses – each video comment was carefully written to address each individual.   

This had people sitting at computers all afternoon watching the Old Spice Facebook/Youtube/Twitter page for updates, wanting to see what he was saying and checking if their question had been answered. Even celebrities such as Alyssa Milano and Ashton Kutcher wanted to be part of it, showing their support for Old Spice.

Another interesting note is that even though this campaign has not been aired in traditional marketing mediums, it still gains global attention. That is the beauty of viral online marketing. As we all know firsthand, when we see something as awesome as…let’s just say the old spice guy…we immediately share it with ten other people. The company also posted videos targeted at talk show hosts, gossip/news columnists and entrepreneurs such as Ellen Degeneres, Perez Hilton and Guy Kawasaki. How smart is that? These video responses are essentially branded ads, but instead of placing 150 expensive ad spots on TV or in a magazine, they are going through non traditional mediums – influential people in the pop culture market who have their own set of audience and fans, and who would most likely share it with them – cause well, let’s face it, the campaign’s awesome! 

Craig Reiss from Entrepreneur.com claims that this campaign has changed the rules of social network marketing and commentators are calling it the best use of social media ever, and I can’t agree more. It’s clever, it’s fun and it made me want my man to smell like an old spice man!

On that note, have a look at Tim Costello’s parody of the campaign to market world vision. Not quite as attractive as Isaiah Mustafa …but I think he did a great job!

Article Sources

  • Moses, A, 2010, ‘Old Spice guy takes the web by storm’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 14 July
  • Wei, W, 2010, ‘The most watched videos in July: Old Spice takes over the world’, Business Insider, 2 August
  • Old Spice, 2010,’ Re: @wspencer’, 13 July, viewed: 1st September 2010, viewed 1st September
  • Old Spice, 2010, Re: @LucretiaPruitt, 13 July, viewed: 1st September 2010, viewed 1st September
  • Reiss, C, 2010, ‘Now look here, no learn from this’, Entreprenuer.com, 18 July, viewed 2nd September  
  • Mumbrella, 2010, ‘World Vision seeks the smell of Old Spice’s viral success,’ 16 July