Saturday, November 14, 2009

Saturday night Catch Up

One of the emails I get everyday is from, based in the Green Mountain State of Vermont.

Every once in awhile, I'll post on the Collective Wisdom site some of their work, but they even get too busy to post everything.

So on Friday's they send this:

Behind the Curve: Week Ended Nov. 13, 2009

Below are some links to recent research news, studies and lists from the collection of items that MarketingCharts didn’t get to writing up this week, but still may be worth a peek:

Male Gamers Earn Less than Non-Gamers

High-Carb Diets May Put Dieters in Better Moods

NBCU Study Shows Shift in Women’s Spending Habits

Usage of The Beatles: Rock Band and Guitar Hero 5 Show Strong Loyalty to the Music Game Genre

Car Shoppers Looking for Pet-Friendly Car Increase 67%

Q4 Shows Some Improvement for Some Magazines; Ad Pages Fall 22% in 2009

Consumer Reports Index Shows Stability

Private-Label Edge in CPG Lessens

Different Marketing Preferences Among Insurance Agents

Sales of Ethnic Foods in US to Grow 20% by 2014

Verizon Sold 100,000 Droids Over First Weekend

Nielsen BookScan to Produce Bestseller Book Charts for The Wall Street Journal

CareerBuilder: Most Unusual Employee Requests of Hiring Managers

Women Playing a Prominent Role in Shaping Future of Philanthropy

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A Fishing Lesson

It's a proven fact that you can't catch lobster in Lake Erie.

Why? There are no lobsters in Lake Erie!

Check out this piece from the DysonTech blog, it applies to ALL your marketing, online and offline:

What Purple Rain Can Teach You About Effective Online Marketing

Purple Rain

Ever had an idea that couldn’t miss?

You took immediate action, created the perfect warm-up content, the best launch strategy, and the perfect offer . . . .

And then it totally failed.

So yeah, the film Purple Rain contains the consummate lesson on this one.

No, really.

The Lesson of Lake Minnetonka

Upon mature reflection, the album Purple Rain is a work of genius, while the film . . . not so much. But any true Prince fan loves it anyway.

And as a teenage boy in 1985, the fact that a diminutive man sporting a jerry curl and a ruffled shirt could score with gorgeous women was rather encouraging, you know?

One memorable scene involves Prince giving bombshell Appolonia Kotero a motorcycle ride through rural Minnesota. As he pulls up to the shoreline, Prince lets her know she has to prove herself.

“You have to purify yourself in the waters of Lake Minnetonka,” Prince says mysteriously. Then he says it again.

Next, fulfilling every teenage boy’s as yet unimagined wish, Appolonia strips down to her thong and jumps in the lake.

The freezing water provides an immediate shock. But the cruel surprise comes from a half-apologetic Prince.

“That ain’t Lake Minnetonka.”

Did You Jump in the Wrong Lake?

Often, you do everything right, except for the first thing.

You start with an otherwise great product and mistakenly try to sell it to the wrong people.

This isn’t always fatal, but it’s definitely frustrating. And it’s because you focused on what you want rather than who you’re trying to serve. You jumped right in without understanding all the critical facts.

While it may sound a bit kumbaya, understanding who you can help helps you. It’s the key to the kind of outstanding success that alludes those who don’t understand why the take, take, take strategy doesn’t work.

It’s really give, give, give to win. But only if you give the right things to the right people.

Missing the true needs and desires of your market is like jumping in the wrong lake.

You simply end up like Appolonia — cold, wet, and disappointed.

Start With the People, Not the Product

So where do online marketers go wrong?

There’s an old saying . . . start with the prospect, not the product. It keeps you from trying to sell stuff to the wrong people.

Even better, it keeps you from selling stuff nobody wants.

That truly unfortunate event happens when someone has an idea they think, for example, every small business owner should embrace. But it isn’t something the small business market wants to embrace.

It’s like trying to sell asparagus to kids because it’s good for them. If you’re competing against the jingle of the ice cream truck down the street, you’re not likely to get the results you want, because there’s simply no market for your offer.

In this sad case, the analogy is more Matrix than Purple Rain:

Do not think that the lake is cold . . . that’s impossible.

The truth is, there is no lake.


It’s About Them, Silly

You’ve heard it all before. But do you get it?

Wealthy entrepreneurs are essentially highly-compensated servants to their chosen market. And yet the benefits are way better than the numerable perks Alfred gets from the bat cave.

Wow, three film references in one post . . . did it work?

If you’re trying to make a match between your market and the right offer, subscribe to Copyblogger’s free newsletter on Internet Marketing. It starts with a 20-lesson tutorial on the four keys to building a sustainable business (one of which is finding the right product or service for your people).

About the Author: Brian Clark is founder of Copyblogger and co-founder of DIY Themes, creator of the innovative Thesis Theme for WordPress. Get more from Brian on Twitter.

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Gen Y & Social Media

Here's today's Social Media Update:

Generation Y females have redefined the idea of “peer group” to encompass online friends, bloggers and anonymous reviewers, according to the “Why Y Women?” report from PopSugar and Radar Research.

Looking to this expansive group of peers, rather than experts or celebrities, Gen Y women are particularly influenced by social media.

Younger women are nearly twice as likely as their Gen X counterparts to say they had discovered a new brand or product when a friend mentioned it in an online status update. They are also significantly more influenced by blogs, by both professionals and especially by “someone like me.”

Telling friends in person or on the phone is still by far the most common way for Gen Y women to spread the word about products or brands they love. But they post about products and brands on social networking sites or online forums nearly twice as much as older women. Gen X women, on the other hand, are more likely than younger females to share information via e-mail.

Further, with even two-thirds of Gen X women considering their younger counterparts trendsetters, according to the survey, the potential pop culture influence of social marketing is multiplied.

Mr Youth, which has studied “millennial moms”—mothers around the same age as PopSugar’s Gen Y women—has also found the peer group an important influencer.

“With moms it is even a stronger source, as moms have always found it important to ask other moms before making important decisions that affect their families and kids,” Brandon Evans, managing partner and chief strategy officer at Mr Youth, told Media Life magazine. “With social media, it became much easier for them to seek out advice on a variety of topics from a wider net of people, so it quickly gained in influence.”

Keep up on the latest digital trends. Learn more about an eMarketer Total Access subscription, today.

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3 Words

another tip from SalesDog:

3 Power Words for Selling
by Tim Smith

There are three words that, when used properly, carry tremendous influence, no matter the situation, regardless of the industry and irrespective of the type of person you are talking with. They are:

This is probably the most powerful word you can use. From an early age, we have been programmed to accept this triggering word. Remember when you asked your parents why you couldn't do a certain thing and they responded, "Because I said so." Not the best answer, but we learn to accept it. The same is true as adults.

There has been direct research demonstrating this word alone is powerful enough to cause people to allow you an appointment, maintain your price and successfully negotiate. One study showed that people were willing to allow others to cut in line at a copy machine with the statement, "I need to cut in line because I need to make some copies."

This word is great for presenting your solution, but it can also be used in many other areas. In my own sales consultations I often say, "Based on what you told me, I recommend..." or "I recommend we set up a time next week to review our solution." Whatever the situation, the word "recommend" positions you properly and allows you to be viewed as an expert endorsing valuable solutions, as opposed to a product-pushing salesperson.

When applied conservatively and accurately, the word "instantly" is excellent to use in your sales letters, marketing collateral, and presentations. The reason it works is because we live in a society, which, to some extent, has conditioned many people to expect immediate results. We have microwaves, fast food, video-on-demand and drive-thru oil change facilities. We expect instant gratification instead of waiting for long-term results or gain. Prospects and customers want to solve their problems instantly.

We must always pay attention to the words we use and seek to understand why certain words work or do not work in the context of our day-to-day selling. I believe these words will help any salesperson sell more and secure more appointments.

The Brooks Group is a Sales and Sales Management Screening, Development, and Retention company that has helped more than 2,000 organizations in 500 industries transform their businesses by focusing on building and sustaining top-performing sales, sales management and business development programs.

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Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Wrapping up the work week, but....

We have 3 to 4 daily updates Saturday and Sunday too!

by Karlene Lukovitz
The effect was designed to make the viewer have an almost visceral sense of the stock's "inviting, warm feeling and smell, and so make a somewhat uninteresting category sexy," says Bronson Smith of Smith Brothers. During creative testing, this spot drew an ASI score ranking among the top 5% of all 40,000 commercials that have been tested by ASI. ... Read the whole story > >
by Sarah Mahoney
The company says that while health and wellness Q3 sales were strong, with gains in the mid-single digits and grocery sales increased in the low-single digits, despite deflation, other categories struggled. Sales of home goods were flat, and sales declined in entertainment, especially consumer electronics, as well as apparel. ... Read the whole story > >
by Tanya Irwin
Remington has created the Face of Success Challenge, an online game centered on creating a "look" or "style" with the help of grooming and shaving tools. Guys create their own avatar by choosing from a combination of hair styles and facial hair looks, then try their skills with the game's female characters, including the fitness instructor, the blonde bombshell and the girl next door. ... Read the whole story > >
by Aaron Baar
While the partnership may address the "desperate [need] for credibility" of in-game marketing, simply following consumer behavior is only half of the equation, says Drew Neisser, CEO of event and online marketing agency Renegade. Gaming companies and marketers also need to demonstrate the value of in-game advertising to the users as well, he says. ... Read the whole story > >
by Karl Greenberg
"What we found was there's a large segment of moms talking about Jeep-branded strollers, toys, electrical, miniature Jeeps kids can ride, things like that," says J.D. Power's Michael Cooperman. He says it's a positive for Jeep because it has a brand extension that targets young kids, who will be the next generation of drivers. ... Read the whole story > >
by Karl Greenberg
Among his biggest challenges, he says, "You can spend money on product-specific messaging, or on brand building. I think understanding how to effectively do that in a value-based way and be consistent is a challenge. Everyone's in that same boat. It's real easy in this economy to go lower funnel." ... Read the whole story > >
by Sarah Mahoney
The survey, part of Deloitte's 24th Annual Holiday Survey, a poll of more than 10,000 adults in the U.S, says that of the nearly one in five who plans to use social media sites, 60% say they will do so to find sales, discounts, and coupons; 53% intend to use sites like MySpace and Facebook to research gift ideas, and 52% say they will check the wish-lists of friends and family. ... Read the whole story > >
Best Buy Program Helps Teen Charities

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Throw away your Stereotypes

Yesterday I had a great meeting with the ad agency that takes care of McDonalds in my area and we talked about how one of my radio station, WILD 96.3, (official call letters are WNHT) can continue to help them reach their target.

They want to reach the people who listen to our station which plays Hip Hop & R &B music.

Mediapost yesterday ran a column on the teen audience and I've included a video I produced of my radio station doing a remote broadcast last weekend at an area McDonalds. Perhaps, this will help you to reconsider any negative preconceived ideas you have about this audience.

There's A New Urban Consumer Among Us

In the not so distant past, the young urban market was defined by stereotypical images of African-American youth clad in baggy jeans and over-sized shirts listening to loud rap music.

The definition of today's urban lifestyle consumer has clearly evolved, outgrowing many of the preconceived notions of what urban is. No longer confined to a demographic living in inner-city zip codes, these urban consumers have come to represent a specific mindset born out of the unique energy, creativity and diversity of America's urban centers.

Still closely connected to hip-hop, ethnically diverse with a shared set of passions and strong aspirations to succeed, these young consumers are seeking to redefine the urban lifestyle. Inspired by the work of my Consumer Insights team and the deep dive we are doing for our multicultural-focused clients, we've uncovered a notable and important shift among African American teens, who, along with Latino teens, are at the core of what has morphed into a diverse urban mindset (a/k/a mash-up culture).

Both of these groups have begun to shift from being exclusively trendsetters and mega-consumers into creators of social change. At this moment in time, the idea of coming from nothing and rising to the top of ones' game has taken on new meaning.

For this group, role models and paradigms of success are shifting dramatically. Just a few years ago, rappers or athletes topped the list of role models for the majority of urban teens. Fame plus money equaled success. That's changing, with a number of factors contributing to a reassessment of what and who success represents, as well as how to ultimately achieve success.

The "Obama effect" has clearly made an impact. Urban youth are increasingly expressing a "sky's the limit" attitude, rooted in the ascendency of a man of color to the highest position in the land. Sociologically and psychologically, their sense of self-worth and symbolic capital has increased exponentially.

Now added to an "if he can do it, so can we" attitude is the state of the economy. The harsh economic climate is not as much of shock to this group as it is a motivating catalyst towards change (for many urban youth have disproportionately felt the brunt of harsh economic realities for quite some time).

African-American and urban youth have aspirations that are similar to those of most young people -- to be the best they can be. What's coming to light now is that their dreams are becoming more inclusive of others; they are actively -- and proactively -- thinking about others. It's not just "about me"; it's about how they can better the situation for their families, their communities and, ultimately, better the world they perceive adults have made a mess of.

They now see service as a means to fame, power and greatness, not just wealth that will take you there. It's the emergence of a new mindset and an inspiring evolution from the more self-centered and materialistic mindset that seemed to drive this group previously.

Combining the foundations of hip-hop culture (creativity, self-expression) with community building-and entrepreneurship (a "give back" mentality,) these consumers are exploring a host of social entrepreneurial endeavors and using service as a means to achieve greatness. And they are leveraging technology and their significant social currency to connect with like minded teens, spread their causes and to make things happen.

In the midst of the times we are in, we as marketers need to challenge ourselves to use our power to empower these young people. Support their causes, provide platforms -- both online and offline -- that allow their voices to be heard and arm them with the necessary tools and resources to see their dreams realized and realize a powerful connection that can be forged with this large group of influentials.

As Director of Consumer Insights for Alloy Access, the multicultural and urban marketing division of Alloy Media + Marketing, Andre Pinard leads a team of strategists for qualitative research conducted by Alloy Access. Andre is responsible for all development and strategic planning for Alloy Access clients with focus on the African-American, Latino and Urban youth markets. He works with clients including The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, MTV Tr3s, Reebok, Nike and Rockport. Reach him here.

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3 Social Media Networks for Business

Today's Social Media Wisdom is from

The Three Most Popular Social Networks for Business (and Why You Should Use Them)

by Paul Chaney

An ancient proverb states that a "cord of three strands is not easily broken." By way of analogy, I hypothesize that the more individual connections to a person, the stronger your overall relationship with that person.

In constructing my social graph (i.e., my network of connections), I build relationships at three sites: LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. In some cases, I have connections with people on all three networks.

The connectivity usually begins on one network and gradually extends to two or three networks, and sometimes more, as we get to know each other. It seems logical and natural to continue the relationship cycle, building to sites where we both have a presence.

My focus is on creating threefold connections to individuals. It's not enough that you have a presence on each site, but that you leverage your presence to connect with others who also have a presence on those sites. Social media is about being social. Each platform offers distinct advantages, but you need all three to build the strongest connection.

If the "cord of three strands" philosophy is true, what are the top-three social networks for business? Based on my experience, I recommend LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

1. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is your business suit. It is not very conversational in its orientation, but people expect you to have a profile there. The network lends a degree of professional credibility and requires the least amount of upkeep.

According to its Web site, LinkedIn is an interconnected network of more than 35 million business professionals from around the world, representing 170 industries and 200 countries. It is designed to be a place where you can find, be introduced to, and collaborate with qualified professionals with whom you need to work to accomplish your goals.

For a long time, I thought of LinkedIn solely as a place to find jobs or employees. My profile there was complete and detailed, but it was nothing more than an online resume. I kept it updated, thinking that one day a prospective employer might come along and offer me that dream job.

However, I have come to realize that LinkedIn is much more than just a place to hunt for a job. It's a social network that offers you the opportunity to connect with others in your field, find vendors and consultants, develop your business, and generate leads.

2. Facebook

If LinkedIn is your business suit, then Facebook is your business-casual attire in that it allows more of a 360-degree view of you by combining both your professional and your personal sides. Facebook is a more conversational platform than LinkedIn.

A little over four years ago, I was visiting my son in college. At the time, he was a junior in college. He showed me some photos he had taken and posted online to a site called Facebook. I had heard of the site, but I really had no idea what it was other than a social network for college students. (Back then, you couldn't register on Facebook unless you had a .edu email address.)

I queried him about the site. I was interested in its unique features, such as the now infamous Wall, photo galleries, and status messages. I thought to myself how nice it would be if Facebook were available to users other than the college crowd. Not long after, in the fall of 2006, Facebook's young CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, did precisely that, opening the platform to anyone over the age of 13.

Since then, the average age of Facebook users has become progressively older. In February 2009, one of the fastest-growing demographic segments in the network was females age 55 and older.

However, the number of Facebook users in all age/gender demographic groups is growing, with use among women growing faster than among men in nearly all age groups. Among all users, those age 26-30 form the fastest-growing age group; 45% of Facebook's US audience is now age 26 or older.

With more than 300 million users worldwide and over five million new users joining every week, Facebook is the largest social network on the planet. Those numbers are strong evidence that social media is in the mainstream and businesses need to pay attention and consider establishing a presence there.

3. Twitter

If LinkedIn is your business suit and Facebook is your business-casual attire, Twitter is your business social-networking cocktail hour: You go there to casually and informally interact with potentially thousands of others.

Whereas LinkedIn tends to be a more latent form of engagement, interaction on Twitter is (or can be) in real time. It's the most informal of the three networks and allows for the greatest degree of conversation.


The more I think about it, the more I am convinced that participation in the three big social networks LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter is an absolute must for just about every business.

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Out of Left Field

Another one from SalesDog:

What To Do When It Gets "Weird"
by Paul Castain

Imagine a meeting with a potential client. Everything is going well; then it happens without warning. The prospect throws a left hook in the form of an uncomfortable question and things get mighty weird.

Maybe it's a question about something your company once went through that needed to be fixed or why you're the third rep in 13 months to have your position. It can get much weirder as in these real-life situations: A man asks a female sales rep how long before she starts having babies and they lose her as a rep or the prospect asks about your political or religious beliefs.

Here are a few tips to help you navigate these wacky waters.

First, during your pre-call planning you should anticipate certain scenarios. For example, if I know we've quoted in the past with other reps, then questions about the reps or pricing could come up. If my company has recently gone through some changes, I might be asked about it. I need to be prepared.

Learn how to "buy" time
The difference between a good response and a poor one can be as simple as having an extra second or two to think. Here's how to buy time:

  1. Have them repeat the question.
  2. Put the onus of awkwardness on them. When someone asks a straight up rude question, try this. Look them right in the eye, pause confidently and say, "I'm happy to answer your questions and so I can better understand your perspective, what prompted that question?" This buys you time and allows you to regain control without being controlling. You may even find that they'll answer their own question.
  3. Ask for specifics. Once again, this buys you time but also allows you to understand the context in which the question was asked.
  4. If you are in a group setting and the question is going to cost you and the other participants' valuable time, offer to discuss it off-line.

Deal with the question head-on
I believe it was in Frank Bettger's "How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling" that I learned this really cool comeback for when someone badmouths my company. Hear them out and then simply ask, "If you were a part of the leadership team and you kept hearing things like that, what would you do?" Chances are they will say, "I'd make some changes." At that point you simply say, "That's exactly what we did and I'd like to discuss those with you. Would it make sense to add that to today's agenda or should we schedule some additional time when it's more convenient for you?"

You can also reframe the question so it's not so toxic. For example, I know some young sales reps that have been called out about their age. I train them to reframe the question: "Unfortunately the age part I can't help but let me tell you about the level of experience I have and, if by chance you are still uncomfortable, I won't take up any more of your time."

If the question is really personal, try thinking out loud. Last year, while visiting a customer in another state, someone asked me about both my religion and who I was voting for. I handled it by thinking out loud saying, "Wow, Bill, I'm thinking that question goes against everything that makes up my comfort zone so consider this a friendly changing of the subject."

Remember, as much as the other party is looking at you deciding if they want to do business with you, you should be looking back asking the same question. If you're hanging out with Mr. Obnoxious Question Asker, perhaps your crappy courtship is indicative of what would be an even crappier marriage. Let us not forget, your title isn't "Punching Bag" and you do have the right to respectfully part as friends.

Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics. Paul has over 25 years of sales and sales leadership experience and has trained, mentored and coached over 2,000 sales and sales leadership professionals. You may email Paul at

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thursday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click to

by Karl Greenberg
Saatchi's Mike McKay says the ads are customized for different outdoor lifestyle magazines. He says the company decided to go back to an outdoor theme because most other automakers had abandoned it. "This is the last authentic SUV. All the rest have gone suburbia," he says. "We saw an opportunity to go right back at that spot." ... Read the whole story > >
by Sarah Mahoney
"Shoppers are having a logical reaction to getting hit with very high revolving credit rates right now, so they are moving to cash and cash equivalent payments," says Retail Forward's Mandy Putnam. "Layaway and 0% credit options become more appealing under this scenario for consumers who don't have cash on hand." ... Read the whole story > >
by Aaron Baar
Sprint's sponsorship of the series includes on-air tagged tune-in spots and billboards. The Overland Park, Kan., company will also sponsor a weekly Web series, "A Day In The Life," which will follow each of the Housewives during a typical day. The Web series, airing on, will be promoted through a custom weekly on-air spot. ... Read the whole story > >
by Tanya Irwin
The online auction is being promoted via emails to frequent flier program members. Other marketing includes newspaper ads in the airline's three hub cities: New York, Houston and Cleveland on Nov. 22 as well as banner headlines on Info about the promotion is also being tweeted on Twitter with a link to the auction site. ... Read the whole story > >
by Tanya Irwin
Travelpro has developed a marketing program launching Nov. 17 which includes print, online and in-store advertising and a consumer sweepstakes offering the chance to win a trip to Hollywood, along with Travelpro luggage. For its more than 2,500 retailer partners, Travelpro will sponsor a drawing offering two winners a trip to the official movie premiere. ... Read the whole story > >
by Karl Greenberg
"There is an interesting trend in luxury in ... which consumers are saying, 'I'm going to buy luxury, but not to prove something to the neighbors.' Keeping up with one's neighbors in terms of luxury for the sake of luxury is starting to be very much out of style," says Infiniti's Ben Poore. "And that trend from 'outward' to 'inward' is something that can help us a lot. ... Read the whole story > >

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New Ad Campaigns

from Amy:

T&A promotes Reebok EasyTone. Droid does... bizarre ads. Sony VAIO "feels something." Let's launch!

The only time you'll see me rooting for the Yankees in the World Series? When their opponent is the Phillies. PatrĂ³n Tequila used its billboard, located at 8th Avenue and 34th St in Manhattan, to congratulate the 27-time World Series champions. Usually home to good-natured "debates" relevant to New Yorkers, the 225-foot-tall wallscape now bears a fact: #27. Congratulations, New York, reads copy above a Patron bottle. See the billboard here, created by The Richards Group.

d-CON mouse traps and baits launched two TV spots starring an in-your-face actor in a mouse suit, who takes his role as rodent seriously. His beady eyes and raspy voice are disturbingly funny. A homeowner wishes death upon his uninvited guest in the first ad, seen here. The mouse replies, "I understand it, but it doesn't mean I respect it." Mouseman doesn't blink! A mouse eats peanut butter by the pawful, disgusting a woman who's unable to complete her peanut butter and jelly sandwich. See it here. A print ad, seen here, shows a mousehole and three letters: R.I.P. Euro RSCG New York created the campaign.

Hapa Sushi wants to inform Colorado residents about its daily lunch specials and proximity to medical marijuana dispensaries. And if this map is drawn to scale, consumers are surrounded. Did I mention that lunch specials are available until 10 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on weekends? The ad, shown here, launched this month in alternative newspapers such as Westword and The Onion. TDA Advertising & Design created the campaign and media buying was handled in-house.

There's nothing easy about getting toned, so I'm already skeptical about Reebok's EasyTone sneakers, the walking shoes that supposedly tone your calves, thighs and buns. Then I watched the TV ads. There's talking breasts and a woman who sleeps in her sneakers, and not much else. Will this sell $110 walking shoes? Methinks not. "Black & White" features a woman tossing and turning in bed, showing off her toned butt, legs and calves. As the camera pans further down her body, her secret is revealed: it's her walking shoes, which she's still wearing. See it here. "Stupid butt gets all the attention now. She's so tight now, so pretty," says one boob to the other in "Dialogue." They are no longer the center of attention, yet prominently featured in the 15-second spot. Naturally, there's also a requisite shot of a woman bending over to highlight her assets. Watch the ad here. DDB Chicago created the campaign.

I really like this TV spot for Sony VAIO, airing in Latin America. "What if technology could make you feel..." opens the ad. In rapid succession, snippets of sensory experiences, from holding hands, petting a horse, crying, touching a blade of grass, to swimming, being caught in the rain, laughing and floating in the ocean are shown. The spot closes by completing its initial question, "...more human." Watch the ad here, created by Ignited.

Verizon launched a set of TV spots promoting Droid, its competition for Apple's iPhone. The first TV spot, "Big D," is strange. Rather than call itself a smartphone, Droid refers to itself as a robot phone offering a "bare-knuckle bucket of does." It does have a big screen, but it might not be the best-looking phone around. But Droid doesn't care about vanity. Couple that with imagery of robots crushing rocks and boxers punching one another, and I'm left wondering how this ad would sway me into buying a Droid. Watch it here. A second ad sticks with the robotic theme, while illustrating Droid's ease of surfing the Web to watch videos of an ocean surfer. See the ad here. mcgarrybowen created spots.

Samsung launched a TV spot promoting its new line of washing machines. A young boy stacks a screw, eraser, golf ball, golf tee and dice atop one another in "Balancing Act." Better still, he accomplishes this feat atop a washing machine that's mid-cycle. Watch the ad here, created by Beattie McGuinness Bungay New York.

Target launched a TV spot promoting its in-store pharmacy. The spot encourages shoppers to ask pharmacists questions, regardless of whether they have a prescription to fill. The ad takes a peek inside the minds of shoppers, asking themselves questions such as: "How big is an infant dose" and "Why is Pepto pink." The Pepto question is a good one, but I simply turned to Google for that answer. Bismuth subsalicylate, Pepto's active ingredient, gives the product its lovely shade of pink. See the ad here, created by Wieden + Kennedy Portland.

Random iPhone App of the week: Bump'ny is a reimagining of the English pub game Shove Ha'penny. The physical version is played with halfpenny coins on a tabletop board marked off with horizontal lines. Players drag a coin to the bottom of the board and try to shove it up so it lands between two lines. The App version of this game has players shoving coins into play by physically bumping the bottom of their iPhone with the palms of their hands. The App costs $1.99 at the App store.

Amy Corr is managing editor, online newsletters for MediaPost. She can be reached at

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Social Media vs Email

No, that's not me in the picture.

Continuing our Social Media updates, today we put to rest the rumor that social media networks will kill email. From

Reports of Email's Death Exaggerated

While some believe that the rise of Twitter and Facebook has sounded email's death knell, Jordan Cohen, writing at the Pivotal Veracity blog, disagrees. He takes issue with statements like this one from the Wall Street Journal: "Email has had a good run as [the] king of communications. But its reign is over." Cohen counters: "There are at least three mega-trends occurring that indicate email is experiencing a Renaissance; not an apocalypse." Bold words, but he backs them up.

Here are the trends Cohen sees as actually boosting email's strength:

  • Participation in social networks is increasing email usage. Sites like Twitter and Facebook rely heavily on email alerts, and conversations begun at the sites often continue through conventional email channels.
  • Email functionality is broadening. Advancements will make possible the incorporation of elements like video and JavaScript into everyday emails. "Consumers want richer email," notes Cohen, "and they're going to be getting it in the months and years ahead."
  • Smartphones are helping marketers replace costly SMS campaigns with email. By 2013, according to one study Cohen cites, the number of handheld devices with access to email accounts will reach one billion. "This will elevate email to a whole new level of relevancy for marketers and customers alike," he confidently predicts.

The Po!nt: People like having choices. Although social networks will undoubtedly change the way customers communicate, there are many reasons to believe they won't replace email—they'll complement it.

Source: Pivotal Veracity. Read the full post here.

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Manage your Time


A Secret to Effective Time Management
by Mike Brooks

I don't know about you, but 24 hours in a day isn't enough. The 8 to 9 hours for work barely covers the paperwork, order follow-up, client calls, e-mails that need answering, voicemail messages, and more. "You mean you want me to prospect and find time for closing, too? What, are you kidding?!"

Sound familiar? It should. Sales reps and their managers constantly tell me they are on the run from the moment they get in the office. Just opening their email can take them on a 2 hour journey away from what they should, want, or need to be doing to drive sales, like the prospecting, closing or reorder calls. What to do?

The answer is in effective time management. Here's a quick tip you can use every day.

Start with your most important or most difficult priority first. Accomplishing one or two important tasks always leads to more success and always frees up the most energy. Once those "mountains" are out of the way, you can easily and more enjoyably take on your other tasks of the day.

Most people do the opposite: they put off the hard and most important stuff and get caught up in the time robbers. This is a sure recipe for feeling overwhelmed. Do the opposite: start with the hard, and watch your day get easier! Mike Brooks, Mr. Inside Sales, offers free Closing Scripts, and a free audio program designed to help you double your income selling over the phone. He works with business owners and inside sales reps nationwide teaching them the skills, strategies and techniques of top 20% performance. Learn more at:

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wednesday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click and read...

by Karl Greenberg
"It really is an awareness campaign on a limited budget," says RPA's Joe Baratelli. "It's also illustrating that Honda can be successful at a two-way dialogue. [Honda] was reticent about that kind of dialogue. You open yourself up; it's risky, but with the success of Fit and Insight with Facebook, they were able to see the advantage." ... Read the whole story > >
by Sarah Mahoney
After years of hyping expensive electronics or luxury items as the ultimate gift, this year, more and more marketers are pushing everyday products as useful gift solutions, a message that is resonating with consumers. A recent survey from the National Retail Federation and BIGResearch reports that 36% of consumers say they'll be shopping for more practical gifts. ... Read the whole story > >
by Karlene Lukovitz
The company also announced an agreement with Subway to feature Starbucks' Seattle's Best Coffee brand in nearly half of the sandwich chain's U.S. restaurants. The deal represents a foothold for Starbucks in the QSR sector to help counter McDonald's McCafe momentum and Dunkin' Donuts' aggressive coffee marketing. ... Read the whole story > >
by Tanya Irwin
A variety of marketing programs are planned for the partnership in 2010, including a print campaign in national magazines focused on health, wellness and active lifestyles including a fairly extensive media buy with Competitor magazine and Triathlete magazine. Other media include radio commercials (both in-store and out-of-store), ad circulars and social media support. ... Read the whole story > >
by Aaron Baar
For marketers looking to get into the gaming space, an offer need not tie into the game's content, nor does it need to offer something other than virtual currency in return. Rather, the pitch must be relevant to the consumer trying to play the game, Q Interactive's Matt Wise says. ... Read the whole story > >
by Karl Greenberg
This year's focus is on getting smokers to realize that there is no natural law saying they must smoke while they drink or drive. "One thing we found is that with smokers there are some universal triggers that are really common, so we wanted to present those ideas in way that fit in with last year's campaign," says Legacy's John Constantino. ... Read the whole story > >
by David Goetzl
The deal links the new Taurus model with the network's documentary-style series "UnSung." The arrangement employs custom on-air spots, while stretching into radio and online properties affiliated with the network that targets African-Americans. ... Read the whole story > >
Nintendo To Tout Super Mario For Wii

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McDonald's in 2010

Tomorrow I have my annual advertising preview with the ad agencies that handle them. I will ask them if this is true:

McDonald's lays plans to take dollar menu to breakfast nationwide

By Mike Hughlett

Tribune staff reporter

McDonald's Corp. appears to be planning to mate its popular dollar menu with its equally popular breakfast menu in a nationwide promotion -- not just in Chicago and a few other markets where it currently exists, according to documents obtained by the Tribune.

This would appear to be the first time McDonald's has brought the dollar menu to a breakfast promotion in a nationwide fashion. McDonald's said "it does not comment on information obtained from unauthorized sources," or on rumors or speculation.

The Oak Brook-based fast-food giant in August brought the dollar menu to breakfast in Chicago, with six items at that price point, including the sausage McMuffin, a sausage biscuit and two hotcakes. The company has stores in a "few other markets" that have also brought the dollar menu to breakfast, McDonald's Chief Executive Jim Skinner told stock analysts in a conference call two weeks ago, though he didn't elaborate on which markets.

It's not clear whether the breakfast dollar menu nationally would mirror Chicago's. But national advertising for the breakfast dollar menu is likely to begin in January and run through the first six months of 2010, according to documents obtained by the Tribune. A group of McDonald's franchisees and executives that set national ad priorities has recommended such a course. McDonald's franchisee groups that determine local advertising still need to vote on the idea, but they usually go along with the national body.

McDonald's launched its breakfast menu 30 years ago, and the company remains the heavyweight player in the quick-serve breakfast business, despite increasing competition. The notion of a national push for the breakfast dollar menu comes at a time when even fast-food chains, including to a lesser extent McDonald's, have struggled with slowing sales.

Some companies -- notably Burger King with its dollar double cheeseburger -- have taken to discounting more premium sandwiches. Meanwhile, many companies are playing up their value offerings, including McDonald's in a recently launched ad campaign featuring a guy roaming around trying to find what he can buy for a dollar, and coming up with basically zilch -- except at the Golden Arches.

McDonald's also plans in January to nationally roll out its Big Mac snack wrap, according to documents obtained by the Tribune. McDonald's began testing the item late last year in 400 U.S. restaurants and later -- at least temporarily -- across Canada. Milwaukee and Houston both served as U.S. test markets.

The new wrap is cross between McDonald's chicken wraps and the company's popular Big Mac burger. The snack wrap features Big Mac fixings -- sliced burger patty, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions – but no sesame seed bun.

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Twitter Usage Update

Continuing our daily Social Media updates with this report from Mediapost:

Twittering To Keep Current

Some 19% of internet users now say they use Twitter or another service to share updates about themselves, or to see updates about others. This represents a significant increase over previous surveys in December 2008 and April 2009, when 11% of internet users said they use a status-update service.

Three groups of internet users are mainly responsible for driving the growth of this activity: social network website users, those who connect to the internet via mobile devices and younger internet users (those under age 44).

Internet users who already use social network sites such as MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn are also likely to use Twitter (35%), compared with just 6% of internet users who do not use such social network sites.

And, the more devices someone owns, the more likely they are to use Twitter or another service to update their status. Fully 39% of internet users with four or more internet-connected devices (such as a laptop, cell phone, game console or Kindle) use Twitter, compared with 28% of internet users with three devices, 19% of internet users with two devices and 10% of internet users with one device.

Percentage Of Online Adults Who Use Twitter Or Another Status Update Service (Adult Internet Users)

Demographic Group

% of US Adults Tweeting

All Online adults








White (non Hispanic)


African American














Less than high school


High school diploma


Some college


College graduate


Household Income

< $30,000






≥ $75,000


Internet Connection





Wireless or Tethered





Number of Wireless Devices







Four or more


Social Network User





Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Survey, (August-September), October 2009

Survey data shows that internet users who use social network sites are more likely to use Twitter or another status updating service, independent of other factors such as that group's relative youth or propensity to go online via mobile


Social Network Use & Status Updates (2008, 2009)

Online Communications

% of Internet Users

May '08

Nov '08

Dec '08

Apr '09

Sep '09













Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Survey, October 2009

As of September 2009, 54% of internet users have a wireless connection to the internet via a laptop, cell phone, game console or other mobile device. Of those, 25% use Twitter or another similar service, up from 14% of wireless users in December 2008. By comparison, 8% of internet users who rely exclusively on tethered access use Twitter or another service, up from 6% in December 2008.

Analysis also shows that wireless access is an independent factor in predicting whether someone uses Twitter or another status update service. It is not simply because this group is likely to be young or tech-savvy. Owning and using a wireless internet device makes an internet user significantly more likely to tweet.

Age is another strong, independent predictor for use of Twitter and other status-updating services. Internet users ages 18 to 44 report rapid uptake of Twitter over the last nine months, whereas internet users ages 45 and older report slower adoption rates. For example, 37% of internet users ages 18 to 24 use Twitter or another service, up from 19% in December 2008.

The median age of a Twitter user is 31, which has remained stable over the past year. The median age for a MySpace user is now 26, down from 27 in May 2008, and the median age for LinkedIn is now 39, down from 40. Facebook, however, is graying a bit: the median age for this social network site is now 33, up from 26 in May 2008.

Median Twitter Age is 31

% of Internet Users

Twitter Age Group

Dec '08

Sep '09



















Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Survey, (Nov-Dec '08, Aug-Sep '09), October 2009

The report points out that Harvard Business School researchers analyzed a random sample of 300,000 Twitter accounts and found that "the top 10% of prolific Twitter users accounted for over 90% of tweets." In addition, says the report, Sysomos analyzed 11.5 million Twitter accounts and found that most people post just once per day (and one in five have never posted).

For now, concludes the report, "... it is clear that a 'social segment' of internet users is flocking to both social network sites and status-update services. This segment is likely to grow as ever more internet users adopt mobile devices as a primary means of going online.

For more about the study from Pew Research, please visit here.

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The Pipeline

from the SellBetter website:

The automakers are not the only ones who get a jump start on the upcoming year, by the time you will be reading this it will be mid November, leaving about six selling weeks in 2009, a year few will be sad to see go; take out Thanksgiving (USA), and the seasonal holidays, and you are looking at about five weeks of productive time. It is around the time of year that people begin to focus on closing the year on target by trying to “make those deals now”. There is no denying that there needs to be a focus on trying to do as much as you can (without discounting or cheating) to salvage a year or to bring in revenue NOW. The challenge is to do it in a way that does not adversely impact other aspects of your on going success.

It is an old familiar challenge, we are all familiar with the “You can pay me now or pay me later” syndrome. The reality is that if you have a sales cycle longer than five weeks, most of your prospecting as of now will likely be a 2010 revenue. Look at it differently if you ease up on your prospecting now to “close”, you are going to pay for it in 2010. You need to redouble your efforts right across the board to ensure no let down January 2nd, because I’ll bet you any amount you’ll have a new Target January 1st, and it may just be higher than your number was for 2009.

So what can you do?

First thing, step back for a few minutes, and take inventory of the landscape, then plan, review and act. First things first, “weed your pipeline”, look at what you have in your pipeline now, are the prospects really engaged or are you just hoping? What is the litmus test for engagement? What action are they taking to make the deal happen? What concrete evidence, not words, but concrete skin are they putting in the mix to make the deal happen by December 31? If you do not have clear and honest answers to these questions, then do these prospects merit your time NOW? If they do not, don’t scrap them, but place them in proper priority, if they are waiting, looking but not acting, come back to them. It is one thing to lob a call or an e-mail to stay in Touch, but time and effort needs to go to those engaged on the playing field, not those scrambling on the sidelines.

Once you have reviewed the plan, the most important focus is to plan out your time. We have spoken in the past about the need to allocate your time and manage your activity. Well this is that much more important now, as the year end pressure builds, so should you discipline and resolve to do the right things in the right proportion. One of those has to be continuous prospecting. Mostly for on going sales in 2010, and the occasional blue bird now. Yes you need to be realistic and find the right balance between key activities, but once you find that balance write it down, put it in your calendar, and make it your purpose your mission. You would not go on a long journey without a map, and that is the fully completed calendar. Once on the trip you would not take different roads or directions than the ones planed and leading to your destination, do the same for your sales. Don’t get drawn into things that cause you to abandon your success plan. You wouldn’t take a call from your manager during a client meeting, you wouldn’t go for a coffee with a buddy when you are supposed to be meeting a prospect, and you should not be distracted from your other activities either.

It is not always easy to avoid distraction at the office, so remove yourself. Do your prospecting from home, or lock yourself in a board room. Do the same for writing proposals, research, what ever you have committed to getting done. You take a similar thought process to what you do when. There are a number of things that can be done in ON time, and some in OFF time. These will vary from company to company, but the distinction is simple. ON time is time that is best spent doing things directly tied to moving deals forward, what has traditionally been called face time; OFF time is for those important tasks that have to be in order to successfully sell, but where you have choice or latitude as to when to do them, as long as you understand that the question is not whether they do them, but when. For example, in some companies orders can be entered in a simple straight forward fashion, so it makes sense to do that late in the day, after hours or before you start your day in the morning. At other companies, for legitimate and specific reasons, order entry can be complex and involve other people so you will have to do it during the day.

The key is to know in advance why and when, and then do it, don’t rationalise, don’t rethink it, don’t share war stories, have your plan and execute it. Imagine if Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen spent time rethinking or rationalizing their plays. Success is in the balance of planning, executing then reviewing. Plan, allocate the time needed and manage your activities and execute.

The added bonus is that once you embrace this simple approach, it works in the last five weeks of the year, the first five weeks of the year and the 11th five weeks of the year.

What’s in Your Pipeline?

Tibor Shanto , Principal with Renbor Sales Solutions Inc., and find out how he has helped dozens of organization with execution - - from filling their pipeline with real prospects - - to driving real revenue.

You can also read the blog edition of The Pipeline at For more information on helping your team sell better, write to: info@sellbetter.caThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , or call 416 671-3555. You can also follow Renbor on Twitter

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