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42% of Consumers Pay for Products or Services After Trying Them

The free sample has been used to tempt grocery shoppers since the invention of the toothpick, yet many of today’s marketers are reluctant to give anything away. Apps, ebooks, access — you gotta give a little and if you do, you’ll get a lot.

iYogi just released a new study and infographic all about the power of the Freemium model. Their results show that 100% of the people they surveyed have tried a Freemium product and 42% have gone on to pay for it.

Certain categories fared better than others as you can see from this slice of the full infographic:

Online security and movie services such as Netflix and Hulu were voted most likely to succeed. Music services, not so much. Only 26% said they were willing to fork out money for games after trying them. I think those people are kidding themselves.

Talking Baseball and the Younger Generation

Baseball season is upon us and though I am strictly an NHL gal, I understand the marketing potential of what many consider is America’s pastime.

Scarborough Sports Marketing just released a new study and infographic which shows that 49% of all American adults are Major League Baseball fans and 15% consider themselves “avid fans.”

What’s surprising is that 44% of Generation Y respondents said they were fans and 13% said they were an “avid fan.” Surprising, because we generally think of the 18-29 group as technology buffs who prefer Wii games to “we” games. But these numbers from Scarborough show that even though baseball card collecting isn’t as popular as it used to be, watching the games live and on TV still rules.

Inspiration Alley: Levi, L.L. Bean and Angry Birds

This week we’re taking a look at how two old brands are keeping things fresh and one modern company who went to new heights to promote their product.

Levi’s Water<Less Jeans

Levi’s is a brand that’s been around since 1873. It’s a brand that the world over associates with one thing – jeans. They’re trusted. They’re respected. But they still have to keep finding ways to modernize a product that really hasn’t changed all that much in over a hundred years.

Introducing the Water<Less Jean. Levi’s the average pair of jeans uses 42 liters of water in the finishing process. With their new system, they’ve reduced water usage up to 96%. To date, they have already saved more the 172 million liters of water which is equal to 726,600,812, 8-ounce glasses. Who knew?

Marketers Say Email is Best but Could Be Better

What do you do when your best isn’t good enough? This is the dilemma faced by marketers struggling to meet sales goals.

Crain’s BtoB Magazine and Bizo conducted a survey of B2B marketing professionals in the US and what they found was a general case of “we’ve got what we’ve got.”

59% of marketers said that email was the most effective channel for generating sales. This is good because 49% said email took up the majority of their time and resources. Trouble is, 63% of respondents said their current marketing mix wasn’t meeting their needs.

Inspiration Alley: New Promos from Guinness, Toyota and Cadbury

Thomas Edison said that genius is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration. I can’t help you with the second part, but I can help you with the first.

Every Friday, I’ll present to you a variety of new online, mobile, and social media marketing campaigns. It’s my hope that you’ll be inspired by the works of others because face it, even though inspiration is only 1%, it can be much harder to come by than the other 99.

Guinness Attempts to Break a World’s Record

Holidays are always a good time for a promo and no holiday could be better for Guinness Beer than St. Patrick’s Day. But simply asking folks to party responsibly on the Friendliest Day of the Year isn’t enough, so Guinness has added a second gimmick. They’re inviting folks to help them make it into the Guinness Book of Worlds Records for “The Largest St. Patrick’s Day Celebration.”

Ad Spending on Digital Shows Q4 Decline

The good news is, total advertising expenditures rose in 2011. The bad news is that the rise was only 0.8% and the internet didn’t make out all that well.

The numbers come from Kantar Media’s final 2011 report and it could be worse, right?

Looking at the Internet section, you can see that Q4 was a tough sell. Display still did okay for the year but paid search is down 2.8% over last year. Newspapers and magazines continued to take the hit in Q4 and in spite of a boost from their Spanish language options, ended the year down compared to 2010.

Ad Spending by Category

Automotive folks continue to be the biggest spenders with Retail coming in second. Insurance had the largest growth rate with Food and Candy and Telcom the only losers for the year.

Ads on Your TV, Your Phone and Now Your Glasses?

Imagine you’re walking down the street and as you pass a Starbucks, an ad for their latest frothy delight appears on your glasses. On the inside of your glasses, where only you can see it.

The New York Times says that the day is nearly here thanks to secret augmented reality glasses created in a Google lab.

First  of all, let’s take a moment to digest the concept that Google has a secret lab. I imagine it to be like the Batcave, buried deep within a hillside in Mountain View, California.

Now imagine these Google scientists (I’m picturing brainy Oompa Loompas) working on all kinds of futuristic gadgets that they’ve seen in spy and scifi movies.