KnowThis Blog Postings
- Published on September 09, 2009
- Posted by Paul Christ
We have been off a few days enjoying an extended weekend and during this time there were quite a few stories. Here are several and we'll post more this week.
Magazines Now Create and Customize Ads (New York Times) - As traditional print media struggle against online competitors some are fighting back by adding new features for their advertisers. As described in this story, a few magazines are appealing to their advertisers by offering special ad services that include designing custom ads.
Hearst has been doing more customized ads lately, and will do about 10 this year, he said. The process is helped by digital photography, which makes it cheaper and faster to shoot and swap different models or settings.
Besides customizing ads, what other methods can publishers use to attract advertisers?
Pressure Mounts on Web Tracking (BrandWeek) - As we discuss in our marketing tutorials, Internet tracking research has been criticized for methods that encroach on customers' privacy rights. This is not a new complaint and once again regulators are being asked to take action.
But now, as it has periodically over the past decade, pressure is mounting from privacy groups, federal regulators and lawmakers for stricter rules governing how Internet advertising targets consumers.
Will the industry be able to regulate itself or will government intervention be needed?
After the Fall: What Really Happens to Bankrupt Brands (brandchannel.com) - Brand equity can live on long after a brand has failed. In this story there are several examples of marketers tapping into a brand's value after it fell from a position that originally made it successful.
In times past, a bankrupt brand might have been abandoned. But today, bankrupt brands represent a new business opportunity for companies to acquire a well-known name for below-market value and revive it.
What other brands not mentioned in this story were also rescued from a failed situation and remain in use today?
Report: How Twitter Buzz Is Built (FastCompany) - I know we have posted a lot of Twitter stories lately. But this one has a nice marketing angle as it looks at research on what may be important to stimulate word-of-mouth mentions. If you do not know what "retweet" is then read this story and the linked research report.
A Boston research group called the Web Ecology Project has analyzed 12 of the service's most popular users over the course of a 10-day period, in order to understand how influence works on Twitter.
So how would a marketing company take advantage of the information discussed here?
Retailers' Shelves Make Room For Coconut Water (NPR) - This is a fun story about the marketing of an unusual drink product and what it is taking for the marketers of this company to gain distribution.
Last month, Merrill Lynch released its first ever analysis of the coconut water market. The paper noted that annual sales have grown from near zero five years ago to 30 to $35 million today.
Any chance this product is anything more than a fad?
- Published on September 03, 2009
- Posted by Paul Christ
Highlighted Marketing Stories:
The Crowded, Caffeinated Soft Drink Sector: Who Will Bubble Up to the Top? (Knowledge @ Wharton) - Red Bull and Gatorade are probably the most well known brands in the sports and energy drink segments of the beverage market. But there are many more and this story discusses what competition may have in store for brands in this segment.
The so-called "functional soft drink sector," which includes sub-categories from sports and energy drinks and other health-oriented beverages, grew by 48% between 2001 and 2008 to reach sales of $30.3 billion.
Which segment is likely to be more competitive as the economy recovers, the sports drink segment or the energy drink segment?
The Hidden Costs of Clicks (Strategy+Business) - As pointed out in this story, online marketers often fail to consider the full cost for driving traffic to their website. Beside the obvious costs associated with advertising there can be extensive supply chain costs.
The issue, as eBags discovered and as many online vendors have yet to understand, highlights the fundamental operational challenges of Internet retailing. It centers on a concept common in the business-to-business realm but rarely employed in a business-to-consumer context: cost-to-serve.
What other types of consumer products not discussed in this story remain difficult to sell online due to high supply chain and operational costs?
Coupons You Don’t Clip, Sent to Your Cellphone (New York Times) - Here is a technology that has been talked about for years but has so far been difficult to implement. Maybe now things might finally get rolling.
Mobile coupons — usually text messages with discount codes sent to a cellphone — are becoming the blue-light specials for the digital age, promoting last-minute clothing sales, two-for-one entrees and cheap tickets to the theater.
How long will it take before the big name retailers agree to accept coupons delivered through mobile devices?
Mobile Payments Are Taking Off. But Which One to Use? (FastCompany) - And speaking of using mobile devices for purchasing, here is another angle for using these during a transaction. Not only using cellphones to get a discount but using these to actually pay for the full purchase.
Mobile payments services work in two ways: some allow you to buy stuff from online retailers using your phone, while others allow you to send money to your friends.
As with the mobile coupon question, how long before the big guys accept payment in this form?
- Published on September 01, 2009
- Posted by Paul Christ
On the heels of the last posting which featured stories on social networks and marketing, this posting is also topic specific. In this case we look at a few recent stories dealing with the selling function.
Selling Gets Complex (Strategy+Business) - Anyone who is even remotely involved in selling should read this story. It offers a great perspective on the past, present and future of personal selling. Here is an in-depth look that is well written and quite insightful.
Buyers and sellers alike have turned to sales professionals to manage the complexity created in the buying process by the explosion of information and the need to undertake more sophisticated, often strategic, purchases.
Do you believe there will always be a role for salespeople, or is the evolution of the Internet and other technologies likely to make these jobs extinct?
Is Sales Right for You? (ABC News) - Many people who are struggling in a tight job market are considering sales as a possible career option. But not everyone is cut out to sell and this video story offers a good overview of what it takes to do well in sales.
"It is likely you are selling already, everyday. We sell people on what restaurant to go to, we sell people on what movies to see, we sell people on what big screen TV to buy."
A common perception is that to be successful a salesperson must exhibit certain characteristics such as being extremely outgoing, being a good talker, and never willing to accept "no" from a customer. Does this perception still hold?
A Sales Force Built Around Cold Calling (Inc. Magazine) - Before you consider taking a sales job, read this story on one company's model for operating a sales force. The methods are tough but the rewards can be plentiful
Next, a candidate spends a full day with a rep door-to-door cold-calling. "We've had people leave halfway through, because the pace was too much for them," Chapa says.
Why would a company, such as the one in the story, believe cold calling is the best approach for finding customers?