Marketing strategy

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Using Wikipedia as a source for an academic paper will still get most people into hot water, yet a growing number of people are turning to even more dubious sites to verify facts for information about their health. A survey of nearly 23,000 Americans, released last month by the National Research Corporation, says that 20% use social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, to help make health care decisions, with one in four saying the information found there was “likely” or “very likely” to affect their course of action. Perhaps more telling was that 32% said they had a “very high” trust in social media — only 7.5% of respondents rated their trust level as “very low.” These are not the young or poor making these decisions, either. The survey found

In its infancy, advertising was an interruption. Ads were part of the price of watching TV or flipping through a magazine. More recently, brands have experimented with ways to make their messages desirable in their own right, via social engagement and branded content. But at a Social Media Week event at the Time-Life Building in New York City this month, Gabe Zichermann argued that in the future, brands will use game mechanics to go beyond just getting a customer’s attention. Instead, they will make themselves a part of the rhythm of their customers’ lives. Games are “a process, not a destination,” Zichermann argued. Zichermann said he defines “gamification” as the use of game mechanics and game-based thinking to solve problems and create user engagement. But more broadly, he explains, a solid game-based marketing program is really just the final incarnation of the loyalty programs businesses have been using for almost 200 years. In the first phase of loyalty programs, customers were given free merchandise for buying a set amount of product. Think of those cards that promise you a free pizza after you buy nine pizzas at the regular price. These are still the most common form of loyalty program, he says, but they’re not the most effective. They tend to offer incentives

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In my introductory ad classes, students review two ad articles each quarter. And from the very first class I taught in January of 2001, an overwhelming number of reviews have extolled the glory of highly targeted advertising on the web. These articles described a virtual eden – where advertising’s power is increased because ad dollars are spent only on communication with those who care. Just imagine, they say, targeting by interest, by their browsing history, by online purchase history, by selection of keywords in the past 10 years, and perhaps even by the genetic make-up of the consumer’s children Ten years later, how is Eden? The answer is decidedly “mixed”. First, response rates to web advertising are horrible. I was reading

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Competition for Share of Consumer Spending is Intensifying as the Country Emerges from Recession CHICAGO, March 3, 2011 - Consumers deserted shopping malls and car dealerships in droves to spend wisely and save in 2009. While this conservative mindset has stuck with many consumers, others increased spending at least somewhat during 2010. The CPG industry demonstrated signs of improvement, with unit sales declines slowing markedly across channels, and some departments and categories experiencing positive sales trends for the first time in five quarters. SymphonyIRI Group continues its analysis of the CPG industry's performance throughout the past year and identifies new market opportunities in its latest report, "Times & Trends: CPG 2010 Year in Review: Out of Turmoil Rises Opportunity." "Although many are breathing a sigh of relief since the "Great Recession" officially

This post was written by SmartBrief technology editor Susan Rush. If you think social TV is only for young, hip viewers, you are mistaken. Live televised events or TV series that have loyal fan bases are perfect candidates to add social TV elements — that was one of the takeaways from the “Social Television — . Where will social TV work? To open the session, panel moderator Richard Sussman of The Nielsen Co., pointed to the success the 2010 Oscars had with Facebook, noting that “Facebook was the winner of the Oscars.” Shows like the

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Digital advances are changing the shopper marketing landscape daily. Think about it: we are almost never away from a digital gadget today. At home, we have our computers. On our commute, many of us are surfing the web or checking emails on our mobile phones. At the café, there’s a 3G connection that will have you up and running while you sip your morning latté. Consequently, every digital development offers new opportunities for brands to grab attention, so this year at the SymphonyIRI Group Summit, we are proud to offer many exciting sessions that will help you hone the tools in your digital marketing arsenal. To set the scene, Steve Frenda, Managing Director of In-Store Marketing Institute, will help us break down the current media environment, and decipher shifts in shopper behavior in our “Future Marketing – Digital and Mobile” track session. Building on those key elements, comScore will focus on the key trends in digital marketing for the CPG industry. comScore will present its insights into the industry’s ad effectiveness and growth opportunities in one session, and share study findings from

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"]Twitter HQ in San Francisco - Olaf Koens, http...[/caption]
This post was written by Arlina Allen, owner of Social Media Restaurant Marketing, a Silicon Valley social media marketing company, and author of “Twitter for Restaurants,” now available online. As a social media manager, I encounter my fair share of resistance from restaurant owners who have not started using Twitter or who have not understood how to use it correctly. What are the biggest concerns from restaurant owners? Well, mostly that they don’t have time to learn how to use it, that they don’t see the benefit and that their customers don’t already have Twitter accounts and won’t sign up. Twitter did a case study that showed how Naked Pizza, a healthy-pizza restaurant, used Twitter exclusive promotions. The company reported record-breaking sales by

This post was written by Mirna Bard, a social-media consultant, speaker, author and instructor of social media at the University of California at Irvine. SmartPulse — our weekly reader poll in SmartBrief on Social Media — tracks feedback from leading marketers about social-media practices and issues. Last week’s poll question: Would you pay a monthly fee to use a social-networking site?
  • I would rather delete my account than pay a service charge  — 58.49%
  • I would pay only if I was using it for professional/business reasons — 28.30%
  • I would need my network to introduce some extra features to make paying the fee worthwhile  — 9.97%
  • I’d be happy to pay, if the fee was reasonable  — 3.23%
Many studies are detailing the rapid growth of social-network use. Is there anything that could bring this trend to a half? If this week’s poll numbers are any indication, social networks imposing a fee might just do the trick. A majority of SmartBrief on Social Media readers say they would rather