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Consumerist Nominates Worst Commercials in America

What would you say is the Worst Commercial in America? asked their readers that very question and, after receiving responses that numbered higher than their credit score from, they put together a ballot for a vote.

Bad spokespeople and annoying icons filled out most of the list and the insurance industry took the hardest hit with seven nominations. Thankfully, my favorite Gecko escaped unharmed but that deliriously cheerful woman from the Progressive commercials made it into the top five overall worst commercials on TV.

For Those Who Abandon Shopping Carts

Tell the truth. Have you abandoned a shopping cart this week? I’m not talking about the people who leave actual carts in the middle of the parking lot when there’s a corral two feet away. (Though they annoy me, too.) I’m talking about the 70% of shoppers who load items into a virtual cart on a website only to walk away without buying anything.

We all do it. Ironically, I was going to do it today simply to see if the online store I was buying from would offer me an incentive to come back and finish. I decided not to count on it and it’s a good thing. According to an article on eMarketer, only 35% of marketers send out a remarketing email to people who showed an interest but didn’t follow through. Odds are the small site I was buying from wasn’t part of that 35% but they might be in the future.

JangoMail Survey Says Less Isn’t More, Anymore

You’ve heard the old saying that “less is more.” Apparently, this isn’t true when it comes to email marketing. According to a recent JangoMail survey, 67% of those who enjoy consistent email marketing success include three or more calls to action in their email campaigns.

This reminds me of my college days when I worked as a telemarketer. We were instructed to get three “no’s” from a prospect before we were allowed to end the call. With email marketing, the rejection isn’t so overt, thank heavens, it’s more about the prospect’s ability to ignore a call to action than to vocally object. (Your email came in the middle of my favorite TV show! Dangnabbit!)

New Report: Making the Most of Transactional Emails

According to a new Experian Marketing Services report, transactional emails that include relevant and related products and services have 20%  higher transaction rates than those without.

Blown away, aren’t you? Okay, probably not. It’s no big marketing secret that suggestive selling and cross-promotions work, so why doesn’t everybody do it?

Let’s go back to basics. A transactional email is one that a customer expects. Could be an order confirmation, a shipping notice or information on returns and exchanges. Experian analyzed more than 1,800 emails of this type that were sent through their CheetahMail system and found that more than 100% of the time (how is that possible?) these emails are opened by the recipient. You won’t find anywhere near that kind of open rate on bulk emails.

Mafia Wars Marketing Stunt Angers City DA

San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera has made Zynga Game Network an offer they better not refuse.

As part of a marketing stunt for Mafia Wars, dozens of fake $25,000 bills were glued to the sidewalks around San Francisco. It was probably a hoot watching people bend down and try to pick them up but the Department of Public Works isn’t laughing. They say they had to steam clean the sidewalks costing them time and money. . . really money, not that phony stuff. The total cost is still being figured, said a spokesperson to SFGate, but you can bet it’s going to be high enough to prove that crime don’t pay.

WOMM: Let Your Employees Do the Talking

When it comes to word of mouth marketing, GasPedal says there are three talkers you may have overlooked. One of them you see everyday when you head in to work. It’s your receptionist, your mail-room guy, even your secretary and it doesn’t matter if they work for the marketing department, they are the perfect brand advocates.

Employees are often the last people we think of when it comes to marketing but who else has a bigger stake in wanting to see a company do well? Take your receptionist. She probably has 500 Facebook friends and her own fan-following on her blog. Why not offer her some free samples to spread around? Make her an affiliate so she can earn a kick-back on sales or give her her own discount code to share with friends and family.

Companies Spend More on Email Than PPC; 39% Have No Clue of ROI

Wouldn’t it make sense that if you spent more money on email marketing than pay-per-click marketing, you’d have a reasonable explanation for that choice?

Well, according to the data discovered in Econsultancy’s 2010 Email Marketing Census, companies are spending more on email marketing (17% of online budgets) than PPC (16%) despite not fully understanding the return on investment (ROI) achieved or taking advantage of one of the most important benefits of email marketing: segmentation.

When you run PPC campaign, you attempt to segment your target audience by using different ad creative and targeted landing pages. You wouldn’t bring a “window shopper” to a landing page that displayed only one product, would you? So it’s a shock that many companies are still not using segmentation to target their email campaigns and deliver messages, or offers, that are tailored to their customers’ known interests and buying habits. Think about that. When you email your existing customers, you already know at least a little about their buying preferences, so why would you not segment them so that they receive tailored email messages?