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Whales vs wasted-energy: where should you spend your time?

SAVE_THE_WHALES___man____by_Porpoise_SongWhen I hear the word “whales”, I think of Las Vegas. Weird, I know, but that’s where I first heard the word used for something other than a sea creature. In Vegas, whales are those guys who drop huge sums of money on a single hand of blackjack. They leave tips equal to a week’s pay and pony up big bucks for crazy things like a bathtub full of caviar.

Your business has a whale or two but probably not the tub of caviar kind. The average business whale is simply a customer who spends a lot more money than most of your customers and does it on a regular basis. Now, here comes the big question; can you name the whales in your business and are you giving them special treatment?

Positive fem-vertising makes women more likely to buy

A showerDove is known for their ethereal, ‘you’re perfect just the way you are’ ad campaigns but I don’t get it. Yesterday, I saw a TV commercial where women are asked if they want a make-over, then they’re offered nothing but a shower and Dove moisturizing body wash. The women laugh nervously – a shower?

At this point, I can only hope that these are actors and the whole thing is staged because the only thing worse than being told you need a make-over is being told you need a shower.

Dove calls these commercials empowering. All women are beautiful – as long as they have smooth skin.

At least they’re trying to push the right buttons.

IAB takes a global look at what works and why

Live Tweeting BadgerStuck in a marketing rut? The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) just released their first ever “What Works & Why: IAB Global Insights Report” which includes highlights of award-winning digital campaigns from around the world.

Last year, the IAB released a similar report but only included winners from the US. This year they included works from 14 countries such as Australia, Chile, Germany, Italy, South Africa, Sweden and the UK.

And since we’re talking digital content, the “report” is actually a website where you can click through to read case studies, watch videos, view the images and get insight from a team of global experts. It’s worth exploring and it could help you hone in on your next big campaign.

Here are a few of my favorites:

To gain a customer’s trust; meet them on their preferred digital stomping ground

Trust MeTrust is the number one, most important factor in getting and maintaining a relationship with a customer. People have to believe that they’re going to get their money’s worth, that their personal information will be kept safe and that they’ll receive what they ordered in a timely manner. No problem for Amazon, Target or Disney but what if you’re Susie Woosy’s Sleepytime Toys or Fred’s Fish-o-rama? New businesses (by calendar date or simply new to this customer) have to earn that trust before the average customer hands over the credit card a second time, and a third.

A new survey from SDL says it takes two years before the average customer fully trusts a brand and five years before a customer commits to a “Greater than Average” spend.

Majority of seniors say advertisers don’t treat them with respect

Beatrices wallEarlier this year, Esurance ran a TV commercial where a senior citizen tried to prove how up-to-date she was by posting her vacation photos on her “wall”. But of course, it wasn’t her Facebook wall, it was the wall in her living room. When her friends try to top her with talk about fast insurance quotes, the woman “unfriends” them. Which. . . of course. . . is not how that works. Very funny.

Not really.

This is why 60% of the seniors in a GlynnDevins survey agreed that boomers in advertising are stereotypes. Slightly more than half said they don’t feel like they get respect from advertiser and only one third said they can relate to the seniors they see in commercials. They were particularly hard on pharmaceutical and financial ads. They said that companies have a tendency to go too far in either direction – too good to be true and too bad to be true. The attractive, wealthy, jet-setting seniors were just as off-putting as the feeble, confused seniors.

Canada’s new email law: gone too far or list optimization at its finest?

canada-emailYesterday was a big day for Canada.

Yes, of course, it celebrated Canada Day, but it also saw a new anit-spam email law go into effect, and apparently that put businesses in a tizzy trying to comply:

Under a new antispam law that went into effect on Tuesday, the sender of any commercial electronic message — emails, texts and potentially some social media postings — must first verify that they have the recipient’s consent. The regulator, the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, also says the rules apply to senders in the United States or anywhere else who want to communicate virtually with Canadians.

Search still driving ecommerce, social and affiliate on the decline

Maybe it’s my naturally pessimistic state of mind, but when I see a comparison report, I’m more interested in what stopped working than what’s still working.

A good example is this chart from the Q1 2014 US ecommerce report from The Custora Pulse.

Cutora Pulse April 2014

Comparing 2013 to 2014, we see that search marketing is still going strong. Organic and paid combined are responsible for 44% of ecommerce orders. It worked last year and it still works today. Google is responsible for almost three-quarters of that traffic which is both good news and bad news. On the good side, you know where to go if you want results. On the downside, there’s only one place to go if you want results and that’s scary.