Marketers need to be Customer Obsessed

In an article from Forbes the author, David Cooperstein, makes the point that many marketing-obsessed marketers are getting off track.  They seem to have forgotten the customer.

Cooperstein states that  ”the link between the agency pitch, the production, and the delivery leaves a lot missing along the way.”

Read the complete article – click here.

In-Store Pickup

Why Retailers Should Offer This Service to Shoppers

-Emily, 8/15/13

In the past, I’ve ordered items online and opted to have them shipped to a local store to cut down on shipping costs. When I bought my laptop, I was even given the option to purchase items directly from a local store’s stock but pay for my order online. This gave me the option to pay for my items in advance and pick them up at my own leisure.

When I find that the items I’m purchasing online can be picked up same-day, I’m thrilled. But not all retailers offer this fantastic service.

Econsultancy suggests that retailers who do not offer in-store pickup may be losing out on potential sales. Customers who purchase online and pick up in store are more likely to make additional purchases when they make their pick up. In-store pickup also saves a lot of time for consumers, allowing them to choose exactly what they need and pick it up when they need it. This increases their satisfaction with a brand and increases their likelihood to stay loyal to that brand. Even if consumers don’t order online, they may be more inclined to come directly to the store and purchase what they were going to order if they know it is in stock. Retailers can only gain from this service. Do you think more will offer it?

Adapted from the Econsultancy article by Graham Charlton entitled “Seven Reasons Why Retailers Should Offer In-Store Pickup.”

Retail Sales Rise in July

A Sign of Better Economic Times

-Emily, 8/14/13

After a 1.2% drop in sales in June of this year, the retail business saw a 6% increase in sales this past July. Although the percentage increase was lower than planned, forecasters believe this jump from June’s dropping numbers is a sign of better economic times. Consumers are now showing a better attitude toward the economy and are spending despite climbing gas prices.

Some analysts advise not to show too much optimism toward this 6% jump. The economy is still at “mixed bag” and can fluctuate both up and down. For the mean time, July’s numbers look hopeful! Shop on!

Adapted from the Washington Post article by Katerina Sokou entitled “Rise in Retail Sales Signals Stronger Growth.”

Brands Dabble with Tumblr

Another Social Media Site Jumps on the Brand-Wagon

-Emily, 8/14/13

Brands have made a social media presence on sites like Facebook and Twitter since these sites first began. Tumblr, a blogging site popular amongst teens and twenty-somethings, has always been something of an enigma for brands. The dynamic of the Tumblr community has made it particularly difficult for brands to successfully infiltrate the site and reach out to its users. While it has been difficult, it has not been impossible. Brands like Lexus, American Apparel, and Doctor Who have built strong Tumblr presences.

What do Tumblr users have to say about brands on the blog? Above all, they hope brands will provide a diverse selection of blog posts and not just focus on the selling aspect of their brand. Users want to be able to connect with brands and feel more personal with them, not feel bombarded by advertisements in between sincere blog posts.

How do you feel about brands on Tumblr?

Adapted from the Econsultancy article by David Olshanetsky entitled “How Misusing Tumblr Might Hinder Your Connection to the Teen Demographic.”

From The Post to Higher Education…

What America’s Newspapers and Universities May Have in Common

-Emily, 8/13/13

You may have heard recently that The Washington Post was sold to Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com. This came as a surprise to many people, but author Jeff Selingo outlines the logic behind this bold business move.

The Washington Post has offered for many years the same content both online and in its newspaper. The difference? Accessing this content online is free. People are less inclined to pay for a newspaper subscription when they know they can receive the same information quicker and cheaper online. With an increasingly-mobile society, it was time for the Post to transition and undergo changes that will make it a more relevant means of delivering the news.

Like the newspaper industry, colleges are even beginning to feel the impact of the mobile world. MOOC’s, or Massive Open Online Courses, offer virtually the same information online that people pay thousands to receive at your typical four-year university. Selingo’s advice to higher education? Colleges must innovate and prove what is it about the campus experience that people should want. If not, they may face the same future as the newspaper business.

Adapted from the LinkedIn article by Jeff Selingo entitled “The Lesson of Commoditization: From the Washington Post to Higher Education,” courtesy of Professor Elizabeth Elmore of the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.

Want More Traffic? Use Video.

Popularity of Apps Like Vine and Instagram Create New Outlets For Small Businesses

-Emily, 8/13/13

People tend to spend more time on sights that feature videos. Apps like Vine and Instagram that offer 6 to 15 second video sharing options allow you to reach out to potential customers in a new way, says Manta. Featuring funny, inspirational, or interactive videos can boost interest in a company or a product and thereby bring more customers, sales, and ultimately loyalty. The best part about this method? It’s free!

Check out what Manta has to say!

Content courtesy of Professor Elizabeth Elmore of the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.

Kickstarter Film Fest 2013

Kickstarter is a revolutionary website that connects creators with backers. This year marked the third Kickstarter Film Fest in Brooklyn, NY, where creators who were able to fun at least 100% of their projects were able to showcase what exactly their backers paid for.

Kickstarter is a site that features independent creative projects, ranging from art to music, film, technology, and beyond. People from accross the world can choose which creative projects they’d like to see develop and fund these projects accordingly. The best part is that creators keep 100% of the funds raised for their project, and if the creator is able to meet their goal of 100%, Kickstarter will donate an additional 5% of the funds to the project.

The Film Fest took place on Saturday, August 3rd. Those who weren’t able to make it can still catch a line up of what was featured here!

Content courtesy of Professor Elizabeth Elmore at Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.

Show Love For Your Favorite Small Biz…

…And Win!

-Emily, 7/22/13

In today’s economy, small businesses need a lot of love.

Manta understands that, and wants you to show love to your favorite small business!

Using Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, upload a picture of your favorite small business and tag both @Manta and #SmallBizLove for a grand prize of 10k!

For more contest details, click here

Vine Contests

Vine Users Can Get More Than Just a Laugh on This App

-Emily, 7/16/13

If you haven’t already checked it out, Vine is a cool app where you can make your own 6 second videos and upload them for others to watch. Some are inspiring, some are confusing, and some are just downright hilarious.

Brands have entered the world of Vine, expanding their audiences and communicating in an innovative way. A few brands have even taken the initiative to create contests on Vine. Contestants upload certain video entries with a particular hash tag in order to win the prize the brand has designated.

You can read more about the Vine contests here.

Now that Instagram has video as well, do you think that brands will create contests there as well?

Marketing Bootcamp

30 High School Students Tap Into the World of Digital Adverising

-Emily, 7/15/13

This week, 30 students from the Boston area were welcomed into the fast-paced world of digital marketing with the help of Digitas. Students will learn about digital marketing, public speaking, and presenting final campaigns. They will also be given the opportunity to meet individually with Digitas employees to learn about their education and work experiences and receive career guidance.

Students participating this week are from all races, genders, and economic backgrounds. Digitas believes that in order for people to succeed in a global market, all students must get a degree, regardless of who they are.

Adapted from the BostInno article by Lauren Landry entitled “30 Local High School Students Thrown Into Digitas’ Marketing Bootcamp