Men Put on the Dad Lens When Buying for the Family

Everyone knows how important it is to market to moms, but what about dads? A survey by the newly formed Dad Central Consulting (an off-shoot of Mom Central Consulting) says that  92% of dads put on their special “Dad Lens” when shopping for the family.

What this means is that they use a different set of criteria when choosing items such as groceries, cars and home entertainment, than they used before they had kids. For marketers, this is a significant piece of information. Now, instead of marketing a car to men for its good looks and speed, this survey would suggest you go with safety and room to grow.

The survey also found that 77% of dad said being a parent significantly influenced their decisions and 82% said being a dad influenced who they trusted when seeking advice.

YouTube Says Don’t Block Them, Join Them

In the early days of fandom, studios routinely sent out cease and desist letters to fanzine publishers who were producing original works based on the characters from their favorite shows. It had a finger in the dyke effect, stopping one writer as twenty more popped up. In other words, it was useless.

When video software became common and YouTube hit the web, the studios began battling another, bigger problem, that of the unauthorized use of clips from shows. In order to plug the holes, YouTube created their Content ID system which scans videos and compares them to a list of items provided by the owner of the copyright. Then, like a virtual cease and desist letter, the software would block the offending videos, but who really wins? The studio gets their way, but the fans get mad and that’s never a good thing.

iTunes Ping Has No Zing

Apple says that more than one million users joined their new music-focused social network Ping in the 48 hours following its launch. I find that hard to believe. I do believe that people will flock like seagulls on a chip bag to a hot new social media site even though they can’t keep up with the ones they’re already on. I do believe that people will jump at the idea of a music-based network (take that Myspace!) especially one brought to you buy the maker of the iPod.

What I have trouble with is the fact that when I sign on to Ping, I can’t find more than twenty people using the site. Those that I did find were all in the music biz. What gives?

Mobile and Online Deals Expected to Drive Holiday Sales Dollars

In a recent survey about holiday shopping, 64% of the people said they’ll be spending less on everyone this holiday season, so that means marketers will have to work a little harder to make sure it’s their company that gets the cash and not their competitor. The trick is paying attention to how and why people are spending and customizing your marketing efforts to match.

eMarketer has a nifty new report called, “Online Holiday Shopping Preview: What Retailers Need to Know,” that can help, but here are a few of the basics. 42.7% of the people surveyed said they would only buy gifts that were on sale and 36% said they’d be doing more comparison shopping before forking over the cash.

Watchdog Group Takes Google to Task in Times Square

Consumer Watchdog’s has something to say about Google’s disrespect for people’s privacy and they’re saying it at one of the busiest intersections in the world.

The group has purchased advertising space on a 540 sq ft Jumbotron in Times Square and they’re using it to blast Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt. The animated feature is called “Don’t be Evil?” and shows cartoon Schmidt spying on children from the innocent trappings of an ice cream truck.

In a press release, Jamie Court, president of Consumer Watchdog said;

“We’re satirizing Schmidt in the most highly trafficked public square in the nation to make the public aware of how out of touch Schmidt and Google are when it comes to our privacy rights.”

Is There Any Room in Retail for the Small Business?

At least once a week, my husband laments the loss of a mom & pop record store we had near our home. They carried mostly used albums and rock and roll memorabilia and a visit there was like hunting for treasure on the beach. If we go to eBay, we can find all those same albums and more but it simply isn’t the same as flipping through stacks of worn cardboard and finding a gem you didn’t even know existed.

It’s a sad fact that the small business is rapidly becoming a thing of the past. comScore is reporting that small business is down 5.6% over last year with those dollars going to the big box retailers we drive by every day. Usually we blame it on the economy, but the big boys are seeing a rise in profits, so why aren’t the mom and pop stores seeing it, too?

Yes, Virginia, There Are Men Using Facebook

Texting may be the most popular mode of communication between men, but for men under forty, Facebook beats out phone, Twitter and even email.

The result comes from “The Great Male Survey,” a study conducted by Ipsos OTX for eMarketer boiled the responses down into a nice chart that shows Facebook gaining on texting as you move from young teens up to the 20 somethings. By thirty, Facebook becomes just as important as texting and incredibly, that old fashioned thing called the telephone becomes an even more important tool for communication. Imagine that.

Even though most of the men in the survey didn’t choose Facebook as their main means of communication, an average of 69% of all the men who responded said they do log on to the site regularly. The 20-24 age range comes in on top with 78% of men using Facebook and as you can imagine, it drops off dramatically after 50.