Searching the blogosphere, I came across this post from Warner on Adventures in Internet Marketing. In this post, he details many conventional and FREE ways to find out what people are talking about and what they are searching for. Amazon top selling products, eBay pulse, and eBay keywords are some of the best ways to check out the new buzz. Sites like technorati and Del.icio.us are great because you can view different sites that people have been saving and analyze interested keywords. Marketers are beginning to look at social media as a great way to analyze information. The shift from traditional focus groups and surveys are changing as people are making information readily accessible on the web.
Advertising Age had this informative article about a study conducted by Advertising Perceptions, a market-research firm. According to the research study, media buyers are pessimistic about Broadcast TV, magazines, newspapers, radio, and outdoor, and have plans to decrease their advertising budgets for these mediums. Broadcast TV, and newspapers are the hardest hit, with 30% of the respondents citing a decrease in their expected spending over the next six months. On a positive note, online, cable TV, and mobile are not experiencing the same downturn. For online media spending, 72% of study participants are anticipating an increase in their spending, and for cable and mobile the percentages were 28% and 53% respectively. Audrey Siegel, a VP Director of Client Services for TargetCast, believes that, The decline indicates that marketers need their dollars to be flexible during times of economic uncertainty so they have the opportunity to pull back on spending if necessary. On a contradictory note, as reported in the NY Times in this article, Mr. Coen senior VP and forecasting director at Magna, is optimistic citing the Olympics, and the political campaign as a reason why advertising will not be as hard hit as the Advertising Age article suggests. Coen was quoted as saying, ‘It will get better in the second half of the year. I think the worst is over in terms of the slowdowns.’ In summary his belief is that while the economy has played a huge role in the hesitance of media buyers to spend their advertising budgets, the decrease may not be as noticeable while the Olympics, and Political campaign remain a hot topic in the media. His predictions also have him quoting that 2009 will be better than this year with advertising spending up 3.1%. It will be interesting to see which perception will prevail.
Traditional marketing methods are decreasing as more and more consumers are turning to customer reviews, forums, blogs, and discussion boards to reach out to peers for help and advice on new products and services. I came across this post this morning from The Copywriter’s Crucible which points out that Customer Service is the new Marketing. Do I believe this statement’sure I do. Consumers do not want to be pitched sales messages, instead they want insightful advice and a place where they can easily access the information they need. While we can not altogether forget about traditional marketing methods like sponsorships, advertisements, events, and PR, we must begin to turn to new media to allow consumers to place trust in the advice of their peers. Matt Ambrose mentions, ‘Be useful and people will reward you with their loyalty.’ Create a site where consumers can share their passions, navigate to find answers, and interact with others and you will begin to see that your marketing dollars are being well spent. Web 2.0 technology has become increasingly popular and is only expected to grow, make sure your company doesn’t get left behind
As reported in this post from Church of the Customer Blog, BIGresearch conducted a study of close to 16,000 people regarding consumers use of online research to determine which products to buy. The results of the study, as shown below, indicate that adults who actively research online, are more likely to pass on the information that they have found.
|Active Online Researcher||All adults|
|Regularly gives advice||47.0%||29.4%|
|Occasionally gives advice||49.8%||63.4%|
|Never gives advice||3.2%||7.2%|
Source: BIGresearch, SIMM 11 (December 2007) The study also reported findings that a majority of individuals, 72.7%, communicated their findings face-to-face. Still many others, 63.2%, passed on information via e-mail, where as 11.8% talked using online communities, and 6.8% used blogging as a medium. These findings indicate that while forums, such as blogging and online communities are starting to become more and more relevant, especially in terms of research about products, a majority of individuals still see an importance in discussing product reviews in person. Brad Fay, study co-author of a Keller Fay study, which concurred with BIGresearch that 75% of individuals communicate product reviews face-to-face stated: “Apparently, the value of eye contact, voice and perhaps even non-verbal communication provides a boost to credibility and the likelihood that we’ll do something about what we’ve learned.”