Saturday, March 27, 2010

Home Improvement & Marketing Concepts


Life lessons from a friend. She originally posted this on her company blog which you can find here.

Tiling a Bathroom and Marketing

When I moved into my house, the bathrooms were carpeted. Really. So my sister, whom I dearly love, decided to help me one day while I was at work, and pulled up the carpet and laid down linoleum in my small guest bathroom. My sister had never laid linoleum before, but she had watched a lot of home improvement shows, and it looked easy enough.

To make a long story short, when I got home from work that day, my house was clean, there were fresh flowers on the table, and there was a note from my sister saying, “Sorry about the floor.” So, she had made my sons help her clean the house and bought me flowers to make up for the linoleum debacle. It’s hard to put into words exactly, but lets just say it’s a few years later and I’ve just now found the heart to tackle the mess of glue (on the floor and tub), misplaced silicone caulking, and the ripping up of the floor where, since it was cut way too small and crooked, she’d just filled in the gaps with caulk.

But finally, I’d had enough. I had to commit to the time to fix the flooring, regardless of cost and time. So, I bought some ceramic tile, which is lovely, but time consuming to install, especially for the novice, and got to work.

Once we stripped up the old floor, I had to make sure the concrete floor was clean from most adhesive and the rest of the mess. Then we had to measure and measure and measure once more, and then begin to cut the tile. I had help from a friend and my son, and the three of us made pretty good time. We rented a tile cutter and did all the cutting at once, and then laid down the tile to see how it looked before we started gluing.

So we laid the glue and tile, in sections, and then let it dry to two days. Then I grouted, and let that dry for two days. And then I sealed the grout and let it dry for a day.

This whole process made me think of marketing and how we often times want immediate results, but we have to wait. Sometimes we are left with a mess that seems overwhelming to fix, so we procrastinate until we realize the job must be tackled now. We finally dig in, align our team, and embrace the challenge before us. Then we realize there are other issues that need to be fixed and the project grows into something else. We need the right tools, a support staff that cares, we must measure and research, and do something. Reading about how to install tile on the Internet didn’t lay the tile—we had to just start doing it.

But, keeping our goal in mind, we finally finish what we set out to do and have a great marketing program…or a newly updated bathroom. Don’t give up. An overwhelming task can be a great challenge, and once completed, it feels great.

–Sonya

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Google & China

The words of Laura Ries:

Why Google should get out of China

Google_china

Sometimes the most illogical business decision is the right decision for the brand. This is certainly the case for Google.

Google is pulling its company out of China, the biggest internet market in the world.

Sounds illogical and crazy to me and most leaders. But it is the right call for several reasons.

1. Google wasn’t winning in China anyway.

Google is the most popular search engine in the world and dominates the market in most countries, except China.

Why is that? It’s simple, Google was late.

Google only entered the Chinese market in 2006. Even a brand as powerful as Google is at a huge disadvantage if it isn’t first. Baidu was the first search engine in China and it is seen as the real thing in search with over 77% marketshare. By contrast Google has only around a 12% share.

Google china share

Of course, even a small share in a county like China adds up to a lot of users. China has the world’s largest online population with over 300 million people using the Internet, a figure that is expected to soon exceed the entire U.S. population.

Google has had success with one part of the Chinese market; younger and more educated Chinese users tend to prefer Google. But Google has not succeeded in getting the general Chinese population on board.

Google also is losing in Russia to a brand called “Yandex,” in South Korea to a brand called “Naver.” And in Japan to Yahoo. In all three countries, Google wasn’t first.

2. Google has a flag to carry. And is getting a lot of PR.

Google equals “search” in the minds of consumers across the world. But what does “search” really mean? The dictionary definition of search is “the activity of looking thoroughly in order to find something.” You ask Google to search for something and it does. Google searches for it, finds it and delivers it to you.

It does that everywhere except in China of course. In China the government censors information. In China most internet users can’t even access this blog. It is crazy, scary yet true.

In most of the world, the value of freedom of information is highly regarded. Probably in no place more so than the United States of America. Freedom, democracy and free markets are our core values.

China has realized the power of free markets and since opening up its economy has seen great rewards. But information is not free at all in China.

As a company focused on search, it is in Google’s best interest to fight for freedom of information around the world. The media has certainly rewarded Google’s fight with China with a massive amount of media coverage. There have been multiple front-page stories in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times and many other publications around the world.

3. Freedom will eventually win.

Google is picking the “freedom” side in this fight. In the short term, Google is going to suffer a loss of sales. But in the long term, Google is strengthening its focus on search and freedom. Around the world most people respect the idea that the Internet should be a place of freedom of information. Access to information should not be filtered by any government or any group.

Because of its stand in China, Google benefits now in other markets. And if history repeats itself, freedom of information will eventually come to China. When that happens Google will be ready to claim itself the real search engine.

4. Age doesn’t always equal wisdom.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Google’s decision to leave the Chinese market involved a heated debate with CEO Eric Schmidt in favor of staying and the two young co-founders of the company, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, in favor of saying “zai jian,” Chinese for goodbye.

Eric-schmidt-larry-page-sergey-brin-google

Don’t tell my father, but sometimes kids are right. Schmidt was probably looking at the numbers while Larry and Sergey were looking at the message. Pulling out means losing millions but it also says what Google is willing to fight for.

Sometimes the best decision for a company to make is based on gut instincts rather than spreadsheets.

Sure, Google will lose a few dollars in the short term, estimates say up to $600 million in lost sales.

But in the long term, standing up against censorship and promoting freedom of information will likely bring great rewards in the hearts and minds of the world.

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Adjusting to the Economy

from my email:

Daily Sales Tip: Selling in a Recession

Here are some ideas that can help guide your sales strategy in difficult times:

Stop Doing

* Stop generalizing your customers' needs and prospects' business situation.

* Stop assuming customers and prospects are uniformly cutting back on spending.

* Stop pretending risks don't exist and avoiding discussions about them.

* Stop assuming your customers and prospects know what is going on in their markets, or that they understand the implications of what they are seeing.

Start Doing

* Start getting the facts about customers' unique situations.

* Start finding customers and prospects who are seizing this opportunity to improve their market positions.

* Start exploring new frameworks and actions customers and prospects can take to manage risk.

* Start bringing customers and prospects fresh information and value-added proposals that help them achieve their business goals faster and more reliably.

Source: Jeffrey Baker, senior consultant for Forum Corporation (www.forum.com)

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Friday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Plenty of Updates will be coming Saturday & Sunday too...

Automotive
by Karl Greenberg
Lexus will launch its CT 200h compact hybrid at the New York International Auto Show next week with a panel discussion about global warming. The moderator will be comedienne and star of the eponymous Comedy Central show, "The Sarah Silverman Program." ...Read the whole story >>
Mobile
by Aaron Baar
"They actually said it was more provocative to them, and they see the potential value in this type of advertising," says Frank N. Magid's Natalie Suski. "Nowadays, you're looking at consumers that are so used to display, banner and Internet ads that the only thing they're interested in is viral advertising or something interesting in video ads." ...Read the whole story >>
Restaurants
by Karlene Lukovitz
Brand Keys does not specifically probe consumers about calorie counts, but was inspired to pull out these restaurant "healthy choices/quality" rankings from its brand loyalty research (conducted in February) by the menu calorie disclosure mandate within the new federal healthcare reform bill. ...Read the whole story >>
Automotive
by Karl Greenberg
The poll found that after Chevy and Ford, in order, Chrysler, Honda and Nissan were the next go-to auto brands for Toyota avoiders. "What we have started to pick up on is that there may be a pro-American-car sentiment," says Jumpstart's Joe Kyriakoza, "that Toyota's problems may have given consumers a reason to start considering American cars more than they have in the past." ...Read the whole story >>
Automotive
by Karl Greenberg
A spokesperson says it made sense to devote the big media guns to heavy-duty trucks, though they are 30% of the pickup truck market. "Our research tells us that messages that focus on heavy-duty drive light-duty traffic and vice versa. On the vocational side, creating credibility for the heavy-duty truck will support positive consideration for the entire brand." ...Read the whole story >>
Retail
by Sarah Mahoney
"We are building on our foundation as a company that sells hardware and accessories," says CEO Brian Dunn, "to one that understands that means we can connect people to the people, content and networks they care about." He adds that the sale of each connectable device is an opportunity to create a longer relationship with the customer. ...Read the whole story >>
Charter Comm Is Out With Smartphone Apps

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The Ugly Side

from Drew:

Sometimes, your baby is just ugly

Posted: 24 Mar 2010 03:02 AM PDT

Screen shot 2010-03-23  at 10.54.44 PM Thick skin.

We had a lively discussion on that very topic at work this week.

As marketing professionals, it's our job to come up with compelling ideas (writing, design, etc. etc.) that will trigger actions and reactions from the intended audiences.

To discover those ideas requires a great deal of collaborative thinking and working together to sift through, push, pull and generally heat test each of them to see if they can stand up. That can be brutal if you've made the fatal flaw of falling in love with your own idea.

Brainstorming has this "warm and fuzzy" image. Who wouldn't like to just sit around and think up ideas? It sounds so wistful and charming.

But in the pragmatic world of marketing, you don't really have time to putter around in the ideation stage for too long. You need to shift back and forth -- generating ideas, evaluating ideas, building off each other's ideas and twisting and turning someone's ugly baby into something interesting and curious.

Sometimes to get to the truly genius idea -- you have to pop the head off of someone's ugly baby. There it is... the cruel truth about brainstorming.

You might be the poor shlub who has to watch his idea get trampled in the quest for the really, really remarkable solution.

I don't know about you, but when I'm trying to be creative -- I have to go through a lot of horrific, trite, pun-like ideas before I get to the good ones. And usually in the early stages, I sometimes come up with an idea or two that I think is just about as smart as anything could possibly be.

Until someone starts knocking holes into it. When I was young (both in age and professional maturity) I'd get upset and defensive. It hurt. After all... that was MY idea and it was THE answer. I clung to it, fighting off the enemy who wanted to attack my baby. I was sure it was THE answer.

Of course... it wasn't THE answer. And by putting it through its paces and criticizing it out loud, my co-workers were able to riff off my mediocre idea to get to something fresh and new.

My ideas -- the good ones, bad ones, off the wall ones -- even the ugliest babies in the bunch are a part of the process. And my job isn't to create "art" and defend it to the death. Our clients can't afford for me to fall in love with the ugly babies just because they're mine.

How about you -- do you make it okay for other people to tell you that your baby is ugly?



Photo thanks to MetsBallers

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New Ad Campaigns

from Amy:

Excessive gaming leads to insignificant others. Cars used for escapism. Let's launch!

What does freedom smell like? A variety of flavors, according to a global print and TV campaign Old Spice created to support its Fresh Collection line of deodorants. A man wearing "Matterhorn" "is winning a habit you can't seem to quit." He also chisels ice sculpture self-portraits and carves turkey slices arranged to resemble his girlfriend. Watch it here. A new word is created in "Quad." Freshersest. Four armpits go from ordinary to extraordinary to denote the four flavors in the Fresh Collection. "Fresh, fresher, freshest and freshersest." A word I could get behind, despite my trouble pronouncing it. See it here. Print ads, some scratch and sniff, are running in April and May issues of Men's Journal, Men's Health, Maxim, ESPN and GQ. The "scents" as pictured remind me of floating bath toys inserted at the armpit; expect quirky copy to accompany creative. "As fresh as the day is fresh, but twice as fresh" and "It's not where you've been, it's where your armpits smell like you've been," are two nuggets. See the ads here, here, here, here and here. Wieden + Kennedy Portland created the campaign.

Eyewear designer Oliver Peoples created "The Children are Bored on Sundays," a branded short starring Shirley Manson and Elijah Wood. The 2:30 minute film follows the escapades of Fred and Ginger on a lazy Sunday. As the song "You and Me" by Zee Avi plays, the duo dance, drink, lounge, golf (and I use the word loosely), sit in a waterless bathtub and stand in a pool fully clothed, resulting in a bevy of wardrobe and eyewear changes. Watch the short here, directed by Autumn de Wilde of O Positive.

Sony PlayStation launched two TV spots promoting its "God of War III" video game. Customer service reps are so obsessed with "God of War III," they spend most of their work time playing. An insignificant other found out the hard way in "Ignored." She lost her boyfriend's attention once he bought "God of War III," and she can't even get the attention of a PlayStation rep who's in the midst of playing. See it here. "Kratos" is a 15-second spot that shows the main character in action, along with a set of high ratings bestowed upon the game. Watch it here. Deutsch Los Angeles created the campaign.

What is it about massive amounts of paint that turns an ordinary ad into something enjoyable to watch? There was Sony Bravia's "Paint" in 2006; Ray-Ban's "Paint Balloons" last year; and Nissan Qashqai's "Artistic Paintball" this year. The ad was filmed in Bangkok over a 6-day period. It's a giant paintball war between Qashqai and city streets, with Qashqai avoiding direct hits, leaving the city a colorful, dirty mess. My two favorite scenes are the billboard getting hit with black paint, resulting in a black eye, and Qashqai driving out of a parking garage as pellets of paint pour down. Watch the ad here, created by TBWA/G1 and TBWA/Paris.

Ever feel like escaping your job, family or big city atmosphere? Going as far away as possible, like the other side of the world? Land Rover will get you there. The brand launched a print campaign as part of its existing "Go Beyond" initiative. A picture of planet earth appears in each ad; atop earth are city congestion, overwhelming family obligations and a work desk stuffed with papers. Directly below stressors, on the other end of the earth, is Land Rover. "Defender" says each ad, shown here, here and here. Young & Rubicam created the ads.

The world is surrounded by data. So says "Data Anthem," a TV spot for IBM. Aerial LIDAR scanning technology was combined with images of cars, hospital patients, and electricity grids, to illustrate the importance of understanding data. The end result could lead to reduced energy costs and faster detection of diseases. "Let's build a smarter planet," closes the ad, seen here. Ogilvy, New York created the spot, directed by James Frost of Zoo Films.

How better to promote Chicago White Sox baseball, whose team colors are black and white, than with a black and white ad? The preseason ad brings viewers inside U.S. Cellular Field during winter; it's snowing and desolate. A voiceover describes the activities of White Sox players and managers, who are situated around the world during the off-season. "Somewhere in a Florida gym, A.J. is doing squats. Mark Buehrle is studying tape in Missouri..." The ad closes with The Sox's 2005 World Series Championship flag blowing in the wind while the voiceover says, "Twenty-five different men. Twenty-five different locations. One destination." Watch the ad here, created by Energy BBDO.

Here's an oldie but goodie from Absolut Vodka. "Anthem" would make an ideal New Year's campaign. Absolut bottles are hung in a forest, snow piles are erected, and lettered balloons are blown up. Each action seems out of place, until the camera pans out to reveal words spelled out. "Doing things differently leads to something exceptional," closes the global TV spot, seen here. TBWA/Chiat/Day New York created the ad.

Random iPhone App of the week: HowStuffWorks.com launched "Stuff to Rattle Your Brain." Who doesn't love a good batch of trivia questions? Players can choose from a dozen categories ranging from sports, geography, electronics and science. If a question is answered incorrectly, players can click on "Find Out More" to be connected to a corresponding HowStuffWorks.com article. Nice integration. The app also enables players to compare their scores to other players in real time. CUBiC Digital and HowStuffWorks.com created the app, available for free in the App Store.

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Adjusting


from my email:

Daily Sales Tip: Let the Customer Set the Tone
When opening a sales presentation, synchronize yourself to the prospect's warm-up rate. If the buyer wants to talk sports, then by all means talk sports. If the buyer wants to start talking immediately about business, then follow suit and talk about business.

Source: Sales consultant George Ludwig

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thursday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Is Paula Dean, the "butter queen" as my wife calls her, switching to cream cheese?

Food
by Karlene Lukovitz
Kraft Food's Philadelphia Cream Cheese is teaming with Food Network star Paula Deen to launch "Real Women of Philadelphia," an online community to be led by "real life" cooks/hosts chosen via an online video and live cook-off competition. ...Read the whole story >>
Tourism
by Tanya Irwin
Hilton Hotels and Southwest Airlines rank highest in brand equity in their categories, according to market research firm Harris Interactive's 2010 EquiTrend study. The annual brand equity study measures over 1,000 brands across 42 categories, five of which focus on travel and tourism. ...Read the whole story >>
Electronics
by Aaron Baar
Marketers may may want to consider sponsoring a local race or other outdoor activity, have a presence at organic local markets and place ads near the coupons in Sunday papers, says Scarborough's Howard Goldberg. "We can see how the early adopters behave from the data. It's about getting the right message out and getting them in front of these consumers." ...Read the whole story >>
Retail
by Sarah Mahoney
So far, the new product is sold in Meijers, the Midwestern grocery chain, and such hardware stores as Ace, True Value and Do it Best. "The timing, psycho-graphically, is ideal." Joseph DePreta is determined to see it launched nationally, and tells us about the journey so far. ...Read the whole story >>
Automotive
by Karl Greenberg
"A lot of what Ford does around 'Idol' is online," says Ford's Connie Fontaine. "We thought it was important to seed the idea in that first week of the top 12, then do integrations in music videos and with a very strong online integration as well. We want everything we do on air to feel relevant, credible and organic." ...Read the whole story >>
Sports
by Karl Greenberg
Until now, Adidas has owned that distinction everywhere but Europe. But, starting with the 2010-11 NBA season, the sports apparel company will also handle NBA gear across the pond. Adidas in 2006 signed an 11-year global deal that put its apparel on all NBA players and also made the brand the official apparel provider of the WNBA and NBA D-League. ...Read the whole story >>
Infiniti To Sponsor Cirque du Soleil

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Feeling Lumpy?


I am.

And it's not good.

The kind of lumpy I'm referring to is where you're lumped into a group with a bunch of others due to something that you have in common.

When I turned 50 in December, I started getting junk mail for retirement centers. It's gonna be at least 10, more like 20 years before I'm ready for them. And in the meantime, all they are doing is annoying me.

This is from Mediapost:

Segment Shmegment: Slicing And Dicing The Boomer Cohort
Many marketers have realized that today's Boomer consumers are still worthy of their attention, so now they are scrambling to find the best segmentation scheme. That's because they want to determine which specific parts of the large Boomer cohort are their best prospects.

The problem, of course, is that most segmentation schemes have little value to most marketers. They are too general, and while interesting, are not actionable.

Fundamentally, segmenting any audience starts with the immutable facts: age and gender. Age reveals two important components -- the generational cohort of the consumer and his or her physical and cognitive development.

Generational cohort is important because the time and place in history in which someone matures, or comes of age (ages 10 - 20 or so), the events they experience -- world events, political, societal, cultural -- affect their worldviews and values. It's what makes Boomers different from their parents, and from their children.

Physical and cognitive development is important because as we age we continue to change and evolve. Boomers at ages 46 to 64 are different physically and mentally than when they were 26 to 44 years old. For example, all Boomers have begun experiencing changes in their vision, hearing, mobility, flexibility and other physical changes. And, Boomers at this age are becoming less concerned with acquiring more material things and are seeking out more and better experiences. This "middle age" stage of life brings with it the acceptance of the potential reached so far and a more realistic view of what can be achieved.

Age, therefore, must be the foundation of any segmentation scheme that you put into action. But, it isn't where you end. It's where you start.

Choice Factors

The next two levels of a more successful segmentation scheme are rooted in choices made by consumers -- Life Stage and Life Style. Actually, one has considerable influence over their life stage -- married, single, parent, working, retired. Some stages are outside control, but how much one embraces or rejects the life stage affects one's behavior (caregiver, grandparent are two life stages that some embrace and others reject).

Nonetheless, knowing the consumer's life stage is critically important in determining potential consumer behavior. Do they have kids? How old are the kids? Do they still live at home? Are their parents alive? Are the parents in good health? Does the consumer work? Retired? Obviously, each life stage comes with its own set of wants and needs.

Similarly, understanding the life style and socio-economic status of the consumer is important. How are they living their lives? What are their interests and activities? Understanding their chosen life style reveals much about their consumer behavior, but not the whole story.

In most segmentation schemes, the big "aha" comes by overlaying consumer attitudes on top of the four stages we've built so far. But marketers will be better served by first inserting transactional data into the mix long before looking at attitudinal differences. Actions speak louder than words.

Follow the Money

You should mine your purchase data to see who buys. That's because in order for segmentation to be of value in the board room, where money is king, you better understand which customers make you money and which ones don't.

For example, if analyzing purchase data tells you that 80% of sales come from 20% of your customers, guess whose attitudes you'll want to better understand? Segment that group to learn about their attitudes and perceptions, and then turn your attention to the remaining customers to determine which could become better customers, and who in your prospect universe fits that model best.

The bottom line is the bottom line for any successful segmentation scheme. If you start, and finish, by looking at purchase activity -- and not attitudes -- you'll be well on your way to creating a segmentation scheme for Boomers that will work for your company or organization. And in your board room as well.

Everything else is just talk.

Boomer Project founder/president Matt Thornhill is an authority on marketing to today's Boomer Consumer. He has appeared on NBC, CBS and CNBC, in "BusinessWeek," "Time," "Newsweek" and "The New York Times" and countless others. Matt is also the co-author of the business book "Boomer Consumer." Boomer Project is a marketing research and consulting firm and has done work for Johnson & Johnson, Lincoln Financial, Samsung, Hershey's Foods and Home Instead Senior Care. Reach him here.

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Fresh Ideas

From a weekly email I receive from Springwise.com...

Here's a quick run-down of the new business ideas
that caught our attention this week:


wtfjeans Limited-edition, gadget-friendly jeans
Fashion & beauty

It's no longer uncommon to see bags and even jackets with pockets
for gadgets, but French WTFjeans are the first pants we've seen
designed specifically with gadget geeks in mind.


photours Guided travel for photographers
Tourism & travel

Founded by two professional photographers who were tired of tours
that took them to wonderful places but hurried them through the
sights, Photours offers specialist photography holidays.


preorderit Website encourages shoppers to preorder new gadgets
Retail / Life hacks

Doing their part to help tech-obsessed consumers be the first to get
their hands on the latest electronic gadgets, Preorder.It allows
customers to preorder the latest devices in advance.


naturespaper Copy paper made from wheat straw
Eco & sustainability

Nature's Paper collects leftover wheat straw and converts it into a
paper pulp. The waste hull, meanwhile, is used to produce biofuel
that helps power the company's plant.


dreamtours Crowdsourced cycling trips
Tourism & travel

Tour D'Afrique has set up a division called DreamTours which invites
consumers to pitch their dream cycling tour concept and engage with
fellow cyclists to bring the trip to fruition.


butchbakery Masculine cupcakes for men
Food & beverage / Retail

A far cry from the pink and fluffy affairs that are typically embellished
with sprinkles and flowers, Butch Bakery's cupcakes aim to be the
place where "butch meets buttercream".


uopeople Global university extends the reach of higher education
Education

University of the People is a non-profit venture -- supported by the
United Nations -- that embraces tech to bring higher education to
people who would not otherwise have access to it.


tuberefund iPhone app helps claim refunds for Tube delays
Transportation / Telecom & mobile

The app is used to register where and when a delay occurred and
how long it lasted. Tube Refund then submits that information to the
London Underground, which generates a refund voucher for the user.


redmoonpetfood Design your own pet food
Lifestyle & leisure / Food & beverage

Inspired by the recent rash of pet food recalls and the increasing
incidence of food allergies in pets, RedMoon offers fully customizable
dry pet food based on a variety of meats, produce and supplements.


famebook Custom notebooks feature your tweets or Facebook feed
Media & publishing

Now that social networks are a major part of many consumers' lives,
there's a growing need to bridge online and offline worlds. Famebook
and TweetNotebook embellish notebooks with personal online content.


b1g1 Giving engine enables 'buy one, give one' generosity
Non-profit / Social cause

We've seen several "buy one, give one" programs, and recently we
happened upon a Singapore-based site that enables and supports
myriad such efforts at once through a transaction-based giving engine.


powerkiss Furniture surface wirelessly charges mobile devices
Telecom & mobile / Homes & housing

Powerkiss's charging packages have already been integrated into a
meeting room table and a coffee table from Finnish Martela. Who will
join them in releasing customers from charging-cord shackles?

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Cold Calls


from my email:

Make That Cold Call!

Are you reluctant to make a cold call?

You're sitting in your office after promising yourself yesterday that you would start making cold calls today...and you reach for the phone and you stop...you suddenly remember you need to make a dental appointment, then you remember your dog is overdue for grooming, then it hits you that your spouse's birthday is in two weeks and you need to buy a present. Yes, you are avoiding making your calls.

Here are some tips to help you right now:

1. Take a deep breath -- it will slow down your mental processes that are overactive and chaotic, creating your anxiety. (Yes, it's not cold calling that is causing your anxiety, it's your thought about cold calling.)

2. Make sure that both of your feet are on the floor as you close your eyes and take a second deep breath.

3. Think of a current customer who really believes in you and you are part of their inner circle. Keep thinking of them until a smile comes across your face.

4. What is the value you provide for this customer? What do they say about your products/services? Be specific. Ease yourself into allowing yourself to recognize your value. Jot down the key points.

5. Pick up the phone with the thought of this customer in your mind and that you are simply going to find your next customer.

You can re-train your brain to prospect consistently.

Source: Sales trainer/coach Connie Kadansky (www.exceptionalsales.com)

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Read, Click & Read more:

Telecom
by Aaron Baar
Executives did not disclose marketing plans behind the service, although Verizon would likely want to hype it if only to differentiate from other applications on other carriers. "Skype Mobile is an exclusive application to Verizon Wireless," Verizon's John Harrobin said. "The features and functionality that you'll see here, you won't see anywhere else. It will be the best Skype mobile experience available." ...Read the whole story >>
Research
by Karlene Lukovitz
While brand extensions historically have not outsold newly developed brands, the top launches also reflect food and beverage makers' recognition that leveraging existing, trusted brands with innovative extensions makes sound strategic sense during tough times when consumers are more hesitant to try unknown brands, notes IRI Business Insights Practice EVP Anne Berlack. ...Read the whole story >>
Sports
by Karl Greenberg
This time around, however, Coca-Cola and its brands get a range of programs well beyond the usual pouring-rights and sports promotions bedrock of such deals: In addition to being the corporate pour, it will be on MSG entertainment and sports properties like Fuse, Fuse.tv, MSG and MSG Plus. ...Read the whole story >>
Retail
by Sarah Mahoney
Look for more beer, wine and food offerings at Walgreens, as the drugstore chain continues its efforts to optimize its product mix, and zeros in on the customer needs that it fills best. One program, which includes changes like spruced-up d├ęcor and lower shelf fixtures, focuses on four key merchandise areas, and reduces the number of SKUs per store by about 3,500. ...Read the whole story >>
Automotive
by Karl Greenberg
The company says the new effort will be focused on the bigger trucks under the Ram banner Ram Heavy-Duty pickup. The market for heavy-duty trucks, whose engine size is well north of the 1,500 cubic inches typical for standard pickups, is about 30% of the pickup market, it says. ...Read the whole story >>
by Wayne Friedman
Satellite TV advertising wars --- and lawsuits - between DirecTV and Dish Network continue. Much of the conflict comes from identifying (or mis-identifying) programming packages analyzed in the respective campaigns. ...Read the whole story >>
Old Navy Taps Hotel Exec For Key Marketing Post

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We are from Different Planets


...so we should understand the the differences.

This came from MarketingCharts.com:

How Marketers Should Appeal to Women

Marketers targeting a female audience need to understand the critical difference between men and women, according to Dr. Bob Deutsch of marketing firm Brain Sells. Namely, women cycle and men consummate.

How Female Consumers Differ from Male Consumers
Deutsch further defines this key difference between as the sexes as females being oriented toward the conceptual, underlying dynamics, the relationship between things, and to stability over the long-term. The female understands and sees patterns over time.

In contrast, males are oriented toward the present, the concrete, the visual, winning, and themselves. Evolutionarily speaking, the male must “bring home the bacon.” Above all else, males are pragmatists.

Seven Tips for Marketing to Women
With these gender differences in mind, Deutsch offers the following seven factors retailers seeking to make their brands more appealing to female customers should be aware of:

1. Pattern. Marketers should recognize that women have the ability to perceive more than the metric of a product attribute or an instance in time. They appreciate the underlying pattern (idea) that gives rise to the fleeting moment.

2. Authenticity. Beyond immediate appearance, marketers should realize that persona, biography (or history), and current contingency must all be factored into a brand, and that universal principles underlie particularities.

3. Quality, not just quantity (size). Marketers should understand that for women, bigger and more is not necessarily better. A steady build is often better than an impulsive response.

4. Connectedness, not just individuals. Marketers should know that communality can reign over dominance. Women see people as all bound together.

5. Society, not just markets. Marketers should recognize that markets are numbers, but numbers are not people. Women are people and have personal feelings and social intentions.

6. Quality of life, not just accumulation. Marketers should learn that women have material and spiritual needs made up of individual wants and musts which are cast in the context of a social matrix.

7. Reasonableness, not extremism or absolutism. Marketers should see that all issues have grays, and exaggerations to one side or the other only cover-up the reality of subtlety and nuance to which women are attuned.

Gen-Y Women Respond to Interactive, Non-Intrusive Campaigns

Marketers trying to influence the subset of women who are members of Generation Y (ages 15-32) should realize these women discover new brands and get most of their style inspiration and product recommendations from blogs and social media, according to a recent research report from PopSugar Media and Radar Research.

Nearly twice as many Gen-Y women than Gen-X women (ages 33-44) say they rely on blogs to influence their decisions to buy a product (28% vs. 16%). Twice as many Gen-Y women than Gen-X women report they discovered a new brand or product from a friend’s status update on a social networking site (42% vs. 22%).

Consumption of new media, such as blogs, reinforce Gen-Y women’s perception of themselves as more individualistic than earlier generations. This generation of women cites blogs as being more accessible, more likely to be honest, on the cutting edge, and more likely to know about trends first. They also believe the “commentor community” on blogs is very important. Gen-Y women say they often find new ideas about websites and products from other readers’ comments on blogs.

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Can't say March Madness


Let's see if their legal team comes after me for posting this from Mediapost:

Hoopla Over March Madness Marketing
If you are a company not officially affiliated with the National Collegiate Athletic Association, be very careful what you say in marketing campaigns. Now that NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament is underway, watchdogs at the NCAA are being especially vigilant in how marketers are trying to crash what has become one of the most-watched, and most-financially seductive, sports parties of the year.

The NCAA can count on both hands and a toe the companies whose alliances as "corporate champions" or "corporate partners" entitles them to use terms or marks related to the college basketball tournament: AT&T, Coke, Capital One, Enterprise, The Hartford, Hershey's, Kraft, LG, Lowe's, State Farm and UPS. A number of other companies, such as Papa John's, have deals with the NCAA legally enabling them to use certain terms for a limited time.

But that means hands off for non-affiliated marketers to such widely used, but registered, trademarked or copyrighted phrases as "March Madness," "NCAA Sweet Sixteen/NCAA Sweet 16," "Elite Eight/Elite 8/Men's Elite Eight," "Final Four/Final 4/The Final Four," "Road to the Final Four," "The Road to Indianapolis" (where the 2010 Men's Final Four will be played), "The Big Dance," "NCAA Basketball," "NCAA" and a plethora of others.

The NCAA takes invasion of its corporate territory very seriously. There is a full-time staff, and lots of lawyers, monitoring the NCAA's "Trademark Protection Program." According to an official NCAA statement, "Federal regulations support the NCAA's efforts to prohibit the unauthorized use of the NCAA's name and trademarks or any use of NCAA championship tickets in sweepstakes, promotions or contests, or any other unfair attempt to associate with or exploit the goodwill of any NCAA championship event . . . nor may NCAA trademarks be used on the Internet for commercial purposes." The ominous sounding official NCAA brochure, "Protecting Home Court Advantage," offers rules, regulations and penalties for marketers in much greater detail.

Beyond national championship bragging rights, there is significant financial territory to protect. The total amount spent on national TV advertising during post-season events in 2009 was topped by the NFL (including Super Bowl XLIII) at $753 million. The NCAA men's basketball tournament was second with $598 million. That figure was ahead of Major League Baseball playoffs and World Series ($391 million), the NBA playoffs ($347 million) and even the NCAA's college football bowl games ($272 million), according to marketing and research firm Kantar Media, New York.

Does that mean marketers not aligned with the NCAA will keep a safe distance? No way, especially with millions of potential customers who do not normally follow college basketball now paying attention. It just means they need to be creative (the NCAA might call it deceptive) and use catchwords that have not been trademarked when building their ad campaigns.

PepsiCo, for example, has SoBe Lifewater Zero Calorie ads offering "college hoops fans reason to engage this March" with a "bracket challenge" that features such celebrities as ex-NFL star Jerry Rice and Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover model Brooklyn Decker.

T.G.I. Friday's is offering specials during "college basketball watching parties" while "tournament" games are on TV. "It's March, and that means madness," explains the casual dining destination. Competitor Ruby Tuesday is offering $1 million during its "Perfect Bracket Challenge," which invites consumers to compete for prizes "throughout the tournament."

Southwest Airlines is touting new ads that will air "during broadcasts of the college basketball championship games." Fathead recently introduced its first talking wall graphic, featuring Dick Vitale, longtime college basketball analyst, which it supports with a sweeps targeting "college basketball fans throughout the month of March."

Diamond Foods' Emerald Nuts has "declared its support for all the heroes and underdogs in the national college basketball tournament" with a "Bracket Game" promotion. As Craig Tokusato, VP-marketing for Diamond Foods, said in a statement, "We are always seeking ways to increase the velocity of our products, and we view online promotions and upfront visibility on high-traffic Web sites during the tournament as an ideal way to encourage consumer interaction with the brand and drive in-store sales."

In other words, you can officially be mad about pizza in March, but unless you are Papa John's, you can't be the "official pizza of NCAA March Madness."

Barry Janoff is executive editor of NYSportsJournalism.com, a daily sports marketing site. He previously was the executive editor and sports editor at The Nielsen Co., where he wrote a weekly sports marketing column, "The Game." Janoff has been covering sports marketing for more than 25 years and has had articles published in "Entertainment Weekly," "The Sporting News," "Newsday," "San Francisco Chronicle" and in-flight magazines for American Airlines, United, Delta and USAir. Reach him here.

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