Afterlife Well Spent: Zombies Take Over Sears.com

You may think of Sears as a stuffy, old fashioned brand, but they’re working hard to change your opinion with a brand new social shopping site and zombies!

Sears has outdone themselves with a Halloween site makeover that doesn’t miss a trick and is loaded with treats. They’ve taken the basic website and replaced the ads with zombie versions such as dead hands showing off rings and a fridge complete with brains on ice. Clicking through the links will take you to a real page where you can buy real items and how can you not buy with an enticement like this?

The center of the page features a Zombie Gift Guide where you’re asked to choose the zombie type (slow, cranky, dirty) and brain preference (runny, chilled, boiled). These lead to more zombie graphics with gift suggestions that are legit.

Coke Shuffles Marketing Org to Reflect Changing Landscape

How does a company become one of the most recognized and respected brands on the planet? In the case of Coke (get it, case of Coke?) it’s comes from the benefit of a lot of years of being at it (over 100) making changes along the way (sometimes failing miserably like the New Coke debacle) and adjusting to the shifts in how people receive, digest and disseminate marketing messages.

It appears as if they are well on their way to keeping their position if the recent moves in their organization are any indication. AdAge reports

Coca-Cola announced internally today that it is making changes to the leadership team of its global integrated marketing communications and capabilities organization. That group, led by Wendy Clark, falls under Joe Tripodi, chief marketing and commercial officer.

Google TV: Web Meets TV. TV Says Get Off My Lawn!

Google has never had much luck breaking into the TV business. Its latest foray, Google TV, could end up being a non-starter as well.

It’s hardly a big secret that TV networks and Google haven’t exactly seen eye-to-eye, but the battlefield has typically been within your web browser. In other words, Google’s turf.

Now that Google is taking the battle to your actual television set, the big networks are fighting back. In fact, they’re blocking you from using Google TV to access their content.

So, what’s actually going on here?

Well, Google TV–in all of its flavors–allows you to watch video content posted on the web, on your TV. It’s basically a browser for your TV set. In theory, that means any videos on the web, should be available on Google TV.

Local Franchises Lag in the Social Media Market

Over the years, my husband has spent thousands of dollars on tools from Snap-on, but his connection to the company was always through a local franchise owner and not with the corporate office. But if you look for Snap-on on Facebook, you’ll find only a few dealers have pages. Of those, most are out of date and one is friends locked. That’s no way to do business.

According to comScore’s Local Search Usage Study, (as reported by Clickz) “69% of consumers are more likely to use a local business if it has information on a social networking site.” 22% contacted a business after finding them on a social network and 67% of those consumers went on to make a purchase.

Friday Fact: Wealthy On Facebook But Don’t Actually Use Facebook

I call this the Friday Fact section (which I reserve the right to not do every single Friday) because it sounds good but the reality is there are no real facts about the social media space. There is information and there is research but none of it should be held as the absolute truth.

Having said that today’s fact is about the wealthy and Facebook. The Wall Street Journal reports on a poll conducted by the SEI Wealth Network that found the following.

The poll from SEI Wealth Network, a wealth-advisory firm, showed that 70% of respondents with $5 million or more in investible assets are users of Facebook and other social media sites. That is more than the 61% of the broader population who use such sites.

A Triple Grande Latte with a Side of iTunes: Starbucks Launches Their Digital Network

The last time I was in a Starbucks, I was surprised to see a large number of patrons hunched over laptops and iphones as they silently sipped their trendy drinks, completely ignoring the actual human sitting across from them. I imagine it’s this need to be virtually connected at all hours of the day and night that has led Starbucks to launch their own digital network.

Working in partnership with Yahoo! the Starbucks Digital Network offers in-store Wi-Fi users a taste of new music, local news and events and the low down on the latest lifestyle must haves.

In a company press release, Stephen Gillett, Starbucks executive vice president, chief information officer and Digital Ventures general manager (and geez, by the time you finish calling him, he’s late for dinner) had this to say:

Washington Post Says “No Twitter For You!” To Its Journalists

Whenever there is a great controversy or conflict regarding the appropriate use of social media by the traditional media (in this case the journalists for the Washington Post) it’s important to look at several things. First, what is the subject matter that triggered the ‘discussion’ (which in this case is one of the one of the most volatile you can imagine: homosexuality). Second, where it was printed in the paper (in this case it was a column on faith so you can connect the dots there) and third is it about social media or about the subject matter itself?

Over at Mashable, the claim is that the Washington Post is making a mistake by shutting down interaction by its journalists on Twitter.