2009. jan. 31.

Axe seduces Swedish 14-24-year-olds with Messenger game

Case Study|16/12/08


A flirty first for Axe deodorant tempted Swedish 14-24-year-olds into a closer relationship with the brand through Windows Live Messenger. ‘Wheel of Temptation’, the first branded game to be launched on Messenger in Sweden, was played over 900,000 times, achieving a 15.6 per cent reach amongst the target audience and increasing sales by 11 per cent over a five month period. The results proved the effectiveness of such branded Messenger games as online advertising solutions.
Campaign objectives
  • Reach a target group of 14-24-year-olds, particularly young males
  • Engage this difficult-to-reach demographic with the Axe brand
  • Prove the effectiveness of this form of online advertising
  • Drive sales.
Creative solution

The Wheel of Temptation incorporated an Axe deodorant can into a traditional Spin the Bottle game, inviting young adults to reveal their secrets in categories such as ‘personality’ and ‘sex’ through an integrated Messenger chat. The opportunity to delve into one another’s embarrassing secrets provided an incentive for 14-24-year-olds to pass the game on with the unpredictable, personal nature of the questions adding to the excitement of this online advertising solution.
  • The campaign reached 412,000 players and was played over 900,000 times
  • 98 per cent of the players were introduced to the game via the Windows Live Messenger menu or a friend’s recommendation
  • The campaign achieved a 15.6 per cent reach amongst 14-24-year-olds
  • The average visitor spend 6 minutes with the game
  • The campaign increased Axe sales by 11 per cent.

Branding Strategies in an ever-changing digital world

David Pugh-Jones, Creative Strategist, MSN

(If you are a marketer or working for them then it is a must read)

2009. jan. 25.

Simplicity, Simplicity, Simplicity

jan 14th, 2009 by Mindy Sabella

“President Obama: Make Clarity, Transparency, Simplicity a Priority,” Say 79% of the American People

New Siegel+Gale Survey Finds 75% Believe Complexity Played Major Role in Current Financial Crisis

NEW YORK, NY—January 14, 2009—”People are desperate for clarity and simplicity in order to make informed decisions,” says Alan Siegel, Founder and Chairman of global brand consultancy Siegel+Gale. “There is a huge opportunity for government and business to overcome cynicism and regain lost trust through the way they communicate with their constituents and customers.”

A new survey of 1,214 American homeowners and investors conducted bySiegel+Gale between December 29, 2008 and January 5, 2009, released today, shows an overwhelming majority demand more clarity in communications from companies and the government. Fully 84% of all consumers say they are more likely to trust a company that uses jargon-free, plain English in communications. And 79% say they think it is “very important” that President Obama “mandate that clarity, transparency, and plain English be a requirement of every new law, regulation and policy.”

“Transparency and authenticity are the new marketing imperatives,” says Lee Rafkin,Siegel+Gale’s Global Director of Simplification. “People are fed up and desperate for institutions and brands that offer simple and honest communications they can understand. That’s the clear message from our most recent research survey.”

Complexity Up; Trust Down

Three-quarters of survey respondents (75%) say that complexity and lack of understanding have played a significant role in the current financial crisis. Moreover, 63% of those surveyed feel that “banks, mortgage lenders and Wall Street intentionally make things complicated to hide risks or to keep people in the dark.”

Trust in companies is predictably down, the survey shows. Compared to one year ago, 37% are less likely to trust their mortgage lender, 36% are less likely to trust their broker or financial advisor, and 35% are less likely to trust their bank.

However, consumers agreed they should shoulder some of the blame for the financial crisis. Over half of all surveyed admitted to not reading or attempting to understand the complicated documents they sign. And 50% agreed with the statement, “Financial products are inherently complicated. It’s the final responsibility of the customer to make sure they understand all the risks.”

The Power of Simplicity

The survey asked how much of an impact jargon-free, plain-English explanations and disclosures would make on consumer interest in a number of categories. Consumers reported:

  • a 79% increased interest in investing in a financial product,
  • a 73% increased interest in selecting a broker or a financial advisor,
  • a 67% increased interest in purchasing a life insurance policy,
  • a 63% increased interest in taking out a loan, and
  • a 63% increased interest in applying for a credit card.

Majority of Americans ‘Fed Up’ With Complex Documents

Three-quarters of Americans believe that complexity and confusion has played a major role in the current financial crisis and 63% feel that financial institutions intentionally make things complicated to hide risks or to keep people in the dark, according to research bySiegel+Gale.

The survey of 1,214 American homeowners and investors reveals that an overwhelming majority of Americans are now demanding more clarity in communications from companies and the government. Fully 84% of all consumers say they are more likely to trust a company that uses jargon-free, plain English in communications than one that does not, and 79% say they think it is “very important” that President Obama mandate that clarity, transparency, and plain English be a requirement of every new law, regulation and policy.

Trust Down Across Board

Because of the economic downturn, trust in companies is predictably down, the survey confirms. Compared with one year ago, 37% of respondents are less likely to trust their mortgage lender; 36% are less likely to trust their broker or financial advisor; and 35% are less likely to trust their bank.

Among the most trusted sources for financial information, financial advisors, accountants and family members still come out on top, while TV personalities, newsletters and magazines have almost no credibility:

Financial Documents Hardest to Understand

The financial crisis also has highlighted the complexity and confusion that consumers have tolerated and accepted with contracts and investments. Consumers admit to rarely reading and often not understanding what they are committing to and attribute density, lack of comprehension, complicated jargon, and length as the primary reasons for not reading the materials.

Specific survey findings:

  • Nearly half (48%) of respondents say their mortgage application is most difficult to understand, followed by health insurance explanation of benefits (EOB)  forms, tax returns and investment account statements.

  •  About 50% of consumers find their insurance, credit card and wireless phone contracts extremely or somewhat difficult to understand.
  • 65% feel that prospectuses and investment disclosure materials are by far the most difficult financial materials to understand.

  • 52% of investors report they “sometimes” or “never” read investment materials.
  • 52% “sometimes” or “never” read insurance policies.
  • 32% “sometimes” or “never” read credit card applications or wireless phone contracts.
  • Consumer Attitudes are Shifting

Despite these admissions of past complacency, the survey reveals that the financial crisis has produced a significant shift in consumer attitudes away from blind acceptance of complexity and toward a major groundswell of support for more transparency. Half (50%) of all consumers are now more likely to read prospectuses, disclosures and contracts compared with one year ago.

Making these documents simpler and easier to read would encourage consumers to take more responsibility to understand risks and rewards, and to be more accountable for their decisions, Siegel+Gale said.

“People are desperate for clarity and simplicity in order to make informed decisions,” said Alan Siegel, founder and chairman of Siegel+Gale. “There is a huge opportunity for government and business to overcome cynicism and regain lost trust through the way they communicate with their constituents and customers.”

About the survey: Siegel+Gale conducted an online survey between December 29, 2008 and January 5, 2009. 1,214 US homeowners and investors age 25+ participated in the survey.

2009. jan. 19.

2009. jan. 11.

The Collective Is The Focus Group

by David Armano

Originally posted at Experience Matters

Picture 581

We've been thinking about the current economic climate and the pressure, not to mention scrutiny digital (if not all) initiatives are currently under. Digital by definition is highly measurable, which can increase the focus of ROI (return on investment) for project before it ever gets off the ground. The challenge however is that there is so much to learn from initiatives that launch—insights can be applied directly to that project, or indirectly to something else. In addition to launching our own initiatives as organizations, we realize that companies may not see the advantages they can have simply by listening and potentially participating in what we like to think of as "The Collective". Every day, millions of people are talking about what they care about, and your products and services are most likely part of that story.  
Download our POV on "The Collective Is The Focus Group" and let us know what you think about what we have to say about tapping the collective for insights. Is this something that can yield a real return?  You can also see a version of this article on BusinessWeek.

Reconsidering the Advertising Industry

This presentation is not only for advertising agencies but it is a must to read for all clients as well.

2009. jan. 4.

I Love Wordle

This is how my blog looks like in Wordle ...and I don't know how to explain it to my creatives. The word creativity is not just small but doesn't even appear on the screen. What a shame...

in 150 words
Wordle: attilabujtas.blogspot.com

in 75 words
Wordle: attilabujtas.blogspot.com 2nd visualization

Mobile Social Networks Best Practices from Asia

Learn Anything In 2008?

by Kevin Hillstrom, President, MineThatData

What did I learn in 2008?

  • Our industry follows a script. "Buy online, pickup in stores". "Free shipping is the key to holiday success". "Mobile marketing is the next big thing". "E-Mail marketing has the best ROI". "Dell has great social media evangelists". "Multichannel customers are the best customers". "The newspaper industry is dying". "It you're not on Twitter, you're a dinosaur". "Matchbacks indicate that you must keep mailing catalogs". "Lands' End cut back on mailing catalogs in 1999, and look what happened to them", "Eight Easy Steps To Turbocharge Your Brand Via SEO", you get the picture. It is a script that is repeated over and over and over, until you believe it.
  • You don't get invited to speak at conferences if you don't follow the script.
  • The blogosphere is less likely to link to you if you don't follow the script.
  • Subscriber counts are cut in half if you don't follow the script (and that is just fine with me).
  • Analytical minds in our industry are being squelched by the script.
  • Our KPIs are designed to reward the script.
  • Following the script got us in the same -20% sales mess that everybody else is in.
  • E-Mail marketing is being completely mis-measured, in large part because of our desire to follow the script. In some cases, e-mail ROI is 10x of what our KPIs report. In other cases, e-mail ROI is zero. Neither case can be detected by open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.
  • Paid search is being penalized, from an ROI perspective. When catalog marketing or e-mail marketing cause a customer to click on a paid search ad, the catalog marketing or e-mail marketing activity should be allocated the expense, not paid search. We do the opposite, we penalize paid search for something that traditional advertising caused to happen. More on this tomorrow.
  • Almost none of us know our Net Google Score. And here's a hint: Larger brands are being killed by a negative Net Google Score, while small brands strongly benefit from the advertising that large brands do, advertising that drives customers to Google, where Google re-directs customers to smaller brands.
  • Smaller brands who depend upon Google are going to suffer in 2009 when larger brands cut back on advertising.
  • Books. I have very mixed feelings about writing books. I'm obviously proud of the three books I've written, and they've been indispensable in the process of starting a consulting practice. Based on what you have told me, you've especially used the Multichannel Forensics text to understand how customers interact with channels. But wow, a ton of effort, and it isn't like you're going to sell 100,000 of the things. Worse, you don't have any metrics to tell you that the books are "working". And the ideas in a book need to be timeless, because the ideas can become slightly outdated in the time it takes a book to be published. Books struggle in a world dominated by Twitter-storms.
  • Blogs. Now this is a totally different thing. The effort that goes into this blog is about 2x the effort that goes into writing a book, with a ton of metrics and feedback that help you improve in real time. This medium isn't for everybody. It is perfect for evangelizing concepts that will never see the light of day (i.e. are not part of the industry script). I doubt there's ever been a better time to introduce new ideas to the world. I'm guessing that we've passed the peak on this blogging thing --- it has become very hard to gain mindshare, and the social media elite have moved away from blogging.
  • Twitter. After ten days of participating in the micro-blogging world, the best part is getting to see the bios of the individuals who decide to follow you ... something that is badly missing from blogs or writing books. You are an amazing and diverse audience of CEOs, Entrepreneurs, Online Marketers, Business Intelligence Experts, Social Media Mavens, Web Analytics Gurus, and Direct Marketers.
  • Combined, books/blog/twitter yield a unique slurry of information. Use only one channel, and you miss out on part of the story.
  • We must test free shipping promotions over the long-term ... one group of customers gets free shipping, one does not. Measure profit over the long-term, not based on a key-code or click-through. Short-term profit does not always equal long-term profit.
  • Almost none of us in the catalog and e-mail marketing industry know our organic percentage, causing us to significantly over-mail our customers and be less profitable than we could be. Hint --- you can easily measure your organic percentage via catalog and e-mail mail/holdout tests.
  • We've messed up multichannel marketing by focusing on channels and not on customers. Urban customers skew toward retail. Suburban and exurban customers skew toward e-commerce. Rural customers skew toward catalog marketing. Using catalog marketing to drive retail sales may not be right for the urban customer, or for the 28 year old customer. Seriously --- we've messed this whole thing up by viewing it as something that everybody participates in. We're better off using these channels to speak to niches of interested customers.
  • Mobile marketing is all messed up, you can't even get a cell phone to work across half the geography in the US (including my home), but we're all supposed to jump on this channel to offer coupons to the customer looking to buy something at Macys? The CEO of Sprint should try to update his Facebook account via their spiffy 3G phone thirty miles south of Moses Lake sometime. It's easy to do everything you want on a 3G phone in Times Square, it is harder to make magic happen on a 3G phone in Western Minnesota.
  • Social Media is a ponzi scheme.
  • Micro-channels matter. We'll figure out how to manage a thousand or a hundred-thousand micro-channels. Well, we'll have no choice, because we're experiencing the death of the mass audience.
  • Best Practices squelch innovation. Best Practices are really important when running a call center or distribution center, when merchandising a catalog, or when trying to figure out how to get an e-mail into an inbox. Best Practices mean almost nothing in emerging media, in the merchandising strategy of an e-mail campaign, in multichannel marketing, or in any facet of marketing requiring innovation to drive sales.
  • As mentioned earlier, traditional advertising fuels the online, social media, and e-commerce ecosystem. Multichannel Forensics clearly illustrate these trends.
  • E-commerce is wonderful, but it comprises well under ten percent of total sales. Until online marketers figure out how to create demand without the power of retail brands or traditional advertising, e-commerce will continue to be a minor channel that grows by cannibalizing sales from physical retail and traditional advertising.
  • I continue to be optimistic about 2009. We don't know where the innovation will come from, but there will be innovation, and it won't be pricing innovation or marketing innovation. I think it will be merchandising innovation --- new ways to merchandise e-mails, new ways to use social media to drive sales instead of followers, new ways to use video to create demand, new ways to use advertising to pay for the cost of a catalog mailing, new products and services that differentiate us from our competition, new online marketing leaders with new ideas for landing pages, new partnerships with non-competing brands. 2009 demands innovation, and I think we'll see it.

Trendspotting Predictions 2009 - Online, Mobile, Social Media

What are the Benefits of Social Media Marketing?

by Adam Ostrow

Looking to make the case for why your organization or clients should be using social media marketing? A survey last month, highlighted today in eMarketer, outlines the benefits that marketing executives cite as reasons to embrace the medium:

Not surprisingly, customer engagement takes the top spot, with 85.4% of respondents citing it as a benefit of using social media marketing (perhaps the better question is, who are the 15% of respondents who didn’t see that as a benefit?). More interesting is that direct response – defined as “great lead generation source” in the list of benefits – was only cited by 21% of execs, implying that most execs don’t see the medium as having a direct impact on sales.

Will that make it harder to make the case for social media marketing as a part of leaner ad budgets in 2009? With 51% of respondents also citing “low cost” as a benefit, I think the case can still be made that social media marketing is a viable medium for driving customer growth next year. But, it could be challenging, given the more immediately tangible results you can see (or not see) from more traditional online ad buys like pay-per-click or affiliate marketing. 

Original Post

A Modern Time Machine For Data: Zoetrope

eMarketer's Predictions for 2009

What lies ahead in the new year?

    David Hallerman, Senior Analyst

Online Ad Spending: Still Solid Choice

Video ad spending will run counter to overall economic developments, rising by 45% in 2009 to reach $850 million. Two key factors support this trend.

First, the sharp escalation of professional video content on the Web—mainly from TV networks—is creating a viable base for brand marketers.

Second, even though most advertisers are increasingly cautious with their budgets, they still need to reach online audiences and woo their shrinking wallets with messages that reach their hearts and minds—hence, more video.

US Online Advertising Spending, by Format, 2008-2013 (millions)

Search marketing spending will grow by 14.9% in 2009, to $12.3 billion. Search marketing is not recession-proof, but it is recession-resistant. Two basic assumptions support this eMarketer projection. Search is highly measurable, so it will maintain its place in many budgets and increase in some others, as advertisers look for secure and effective methods to combat fear in an economic meltdown.

Also, consumers—who monetize search ads by deciding whether or not to click—will take money off the table by shopping less, and put money back on by searching for deals. Although search advertising will grow less in 2009 than in any previous year, its inherent strength will mean greater spending gains than for any other major form of advertising, whether online or offline.

Total US Internet ad spending will increase to $25.7 billion in 2009, an 8.9% growth rate. That will be the lowest year-over-year increase for online advertising ever. Yet it will still be a robust increase compared with nearly all other media.

  Lisa E. Phillips, Senior Analyst

Demographics: Multicultural Ads Ascend

Multicultural marketing will gain intensity online. Although white Americans make up about 70% of the US Internet population, more and more African-Americans and Hispanics are going online, through their PCs and their mobile phones. Marketers will follow, targeting these segments with language- and culture-specific messages that evolve from their general-market campaigns.

Market Segments Targeted by Multicultural Marketing Programs According to US Marketers, 2003 & 2008 (% of respondents)

Ageism is out, online. Some 55% of US adult Internet users are over age 40, according to Harris Interactive

Although Internet penetration within the 40-and-over crowd is lower than among younger demographic groups, boomers and seniors outnumber younger adults in the general population—so that lower Internet penetration still translates into greater numbers of older Internet users, according to comScore Media Metrix.

US Internet Users, by Age, September 2008 (thousands and % of total)

While younger Internet users go online for entertainment, older users are more practical in their online usage. Smart marketers will target older Internet users with special offers, uncluttered Websites and ad messages, and lots of product information.

  Jeffrey Grau, Senior Analyst

Retail E-Commerce: Record-Setting Declines

Online retail sales (excluding travel) will grow by only 4% in 2009—the first full year to feel the impact of the economic crisis.

Over the long term, online sales growth has been on a downward slope as the number of online buyers approaches saturation. So, the economy accentuates an existing trend. Most retail e-commerce sales growth in the future will come from increased spending by consumers who have long been online buyers.

US Retail E-Commerce Sales, 2007-2012 (billions and % change)

  Debra Aho Williamson, Senior Analyst

Social Networking: E-Commerce a Revenue Stream

E-commerce will be a growing revenue stream for social network sites. Expect both MySpace and Facebook to enhance their self-serve advertising systems to allow consumers and businesses to buy and sell real-world goods and services.

With US ad revenue growth slowing, smaller and niche social networks will have a tough time gaining traction and several may close up shop or be acquired by larger players. In addition, marketers that have built standalone social networks tied to their brands will either close them or migrate them to existing social network platforms where they can reach a broader audience.

Facebook, already a de facto business networking site because of the number of businesspeople who use it, will develop ad programs aimed at B2B companies. This will directly affect LinkedIn.

Twitter may have turned down Facebook’s all-stock offering in late 2008, but it will still end up being acquired. The company that buys it will use the Twitter infrastructure to offer targeted marketing and analytics to advertisers.

  Carol Krol, Senior Analyst

Traditional Media: Continues Hurting

Newspaper advertising will continue to decline in the new year more than any other medium. Industry-wide cutbacks will continue, and there will be some consolidation. The industry was limping before the recession; expect more newspaper companies to become casualties.

In October, the venerable Christian Science Monitor became the first national newspaper to announce its move to a Web-only daily strategy beginning in April 2009. It won’t be the last. Some newspapers will also reduce their publishing frequency.

eMarketer estimates that US TV ad spending will decline 4.2% to $66.9 billion in 2009. This drop in spending reflects not only expectations of a continued poor economy but a seismic shift in the way TV ads are bought and sold.

US TV Advertising Spending, 2007-2010 (billions and % change)

Fragmentation on TV and declines in viewership have made it more difficult for advertisers to reach audiences. Broadcasters will be pressed to redefine their businesses in an increasingly digital world. They will focus on expanding programming to the online realm and will continue to test business models.

The 800-lb. online video gorilla, YouTube, announced in Q4 2008 that it would carry full-length television programs supported by ads. Expect to see similar properties compete with it in 2009.

Agencies and brands from all verticals rely on eMarketer Total Access for analysis and data. Daily articles are just the tip of the iceberg. Find out what you are missing. Learn more about Total Access today.

Original post

Let them feel it 2. - Experiential Marketing Online

Ray Ban Virtual Mirror

Best Practice: Sony Ericcson pX1

“Tell them
and they will forget.
Show them
and they will remember.
Involve them
and they will understand.”

Ancient Chinese proverb