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Postmaster General urges marketers not to give up on the US mail service

pr14_018-1It’s logical for online marketers to use email to contact their customers. It’s inexpensive compared to printing and mailing materials and changes can be made on the fly – something you can’t do very well with a direct mail piece.

But Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe wants to remind you all that the US post office is ready and willing to be a part of an integrated marketing campaign. Speaking to the National Postal Forum, he said,

“Our industry needs to give all marketers a sense that mail can be used in new ways. We need to drive a better understanding of the value mail brings to integrated marketing campaigns.”

Majority of Marketers Say They Don’t Have the Digital Tools They Need to Succeed

Top PrioritiesThe newly released 2014 Digital Trends report from Econsultancy and Adobe shows that both B2B and B2C marketers are making big changes in the way they reach out to their customers. Unfortunetly, only 23% of marketers believe they have the tools they need to succeed.

Marketers said they were concerned about social media curation tools that block business messages. Others worry that we’ve given customers too many ways to buy exactly what they want so competition keeps growing as customer loyalty fades. But the biggest is the speed at which digital marketing keeps changing.

Said one respondent,

“The creative use of technology coming through the generations [is a key trend]. The 40-year-old marketing director doesn’t have the understanding and natural intuitiveness of the digital natives and so can’t imagine what is coming next. The hyper-connected generation and all its baggage is fast on the horizon.”

Babies, Familes and Controversial Boxers: What Were 2013’s Most Searched Ads

Though many people go out of their way to avoid commercials, there are a handful that create the opposite reaction. These commercials are so funny, so offensive, or so touching that people actually use a search engine to find them online. What’s the secret to their success? Maybe you can figure it out after you peruse Bing’s Most Searched Advertising Campaigns and Brands 2013.

We start with the top advertising campaigns.

First place goes to Old Spice. This old-school shaving lotion has managed to reinvent itself with a wacky series of commercials that consistently go viral. This year they did it with a buff baby and a watermelon. Baby currently has 10,231,767 views. Here’s a look at the watermelon ad.

Study Shows the Old Fashioned Print Catalog is Good for Internet Sales

1962-sears-christmas-bookWhen I was little, my sisters and I nearly burst with excitement when the Sears Christmas Wish Book landed on our doorstep. We’d sit together on the couch and slowly go through it page by page (even the boring pages because the anticipation was part of the fun), working our way back to the toy section. We’d play “pick,” choosing our favorite item on each page as if we were creating the world’s biggest wish list.

I wonder if today’s kids feel that way about the Toys R Us catalog that shows up in the Sunday newspaper?

The excitement level may not be the same but a study by global management consulting firm Kurt Salmon shows that print catalogs actually help boost online sales.

Facebook vs. Twitter: Which One Rules for Mobile Marketing?

Facebook has a lot of users and that equals a huge pool of potential customers – aka reach, but it’s not always the advertising juggernaut you’d expect it to be given its popularity.

Larry Kim, the wise man of Wordstream turned his magnifying glass on the social media giant and whipped up a few charts comparing Facebook to its biggest (little) competitor, Twitter! What he discovered was. . . . (did you really think I was going to spoil the ending? Read on.)

Comparing advertising on Facebook and Twitter is a little like comparing apples to coconuts but Larry did it anyway. (Check his blog post for where he got his numbers.)

twitter-vs-facebook-ad-performance-metrics

The Lowly Promotional T-Shirt Gets a Philanthropic Lift

t-shirtThe T-shirt. It’s a basic staple that went from practical undergarment to fashion statement in under fifty years. We tie-dye them, rip them, fill them with glitter and studs. We mass produce them with funny images and hand paint them like works of art. You can buy one for $3 at Walmart or fork over several thousand dollars for a simple, plain, couture shirt.

But dig around in their closets and you’ll find that 44% of Americans own a promotional shirt that they probably didn’t even pay for. And why should they? Promo shirts turn the wearer into a walking billboard and now, those simple tops have a loftier goal – they’re raising money for charity.

Bing Launches Linked-Offers: Use Your Credit Card, Get a Deal

The downside to most coupons is that you have to have them to use them. Logical, I know, but at least a few times a month I end up at a store or restaurant when the coupon for the establishment is at home on my desk. It makes me crazy but Bing is here to help.

Bing is currently testing a new program called Card-Linked offers in Seattle, Washington. The consumer signs up for the program, lists their credit card and debit card numbers, then a deal is automatically applied when they meet the discount conditions.

bing offers linked cardsHere’s a deal for 10% off a meal at Blue Ginger Korean Grill & Sushi in Bellevue. To get this deal, you only have to show up at the restaurant, eat, then pay with your linked card.