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20 posts from October 2005

With a Rebel Yell, he cried More More More

UntitledAt the magazine publishers association annual meeting, Mel Karmazin, CEO of Sirius Satellite Radio, gave a bizarre presentation encouraging publishers to produce more content distributed across more media so that more marketers have more options to reach more audiences with more frequency...and I think I'll retire to a cave.

MediaPost Media Daily News - Mel to Mags: Produce More Content

Karmazin said marketers can drive circulation while producing new revenue streams by developing or repurposing content through new media. Karmazin said that one good example is a deal between Sirius and Hearst Magazines to produce the Cosmopolitan channel, a new channel for Sirius subscribers that will be a platform for Hearst to extend the reach of the Cosmopolitan brand and drive subscriptions. "Checks will be written from me to [Hearst Magazines President] Cathy Black," Karmazin said. Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia is also producing a channel for Sirius. However, growing circulation will be easier than growing ad sales because of the sheer breadth of choices advertisers now have, Karmazin said. "Even video games are now talking ad dollars," he noted.

Drawing your Audience into the Email

JmullenOver at ClickZ, Jeanniey Mullen provides a checklist for making sure your emails support your brand. I think her powerful checklist is a great tool to use to make sure your email gets read at all, because today it is credibility--the reliability of the sender's brand--that gets email opened. Don't these four questions make sense? Go to the article to see all ten.

ClickZ: Brand's Power in E-Mail by Jeanniey Mullen of OgilvyOne

Here are [4 of] 10 quick questions to ensure your messages deliver on the brand promise:

  • Does my list understand why I will send them a message?
  • Does my brand logo sit where it can be easily seen and add trust and strength to the copy?
  • Does my creative appropriately represent that careful combination of personal relevance and corporate branding?
  • Will my reader feel a personal connection with the copy and understand how it will benefit her, fulfilling the brand promise?

Audience Respects Custom Publications

Given the choice between reading an advertisement and reading an article, Americans were found to prefer gathering information about products and services through articles, even if those articles are written by the advertiser. I find this data difficult to interpret in the larger context, but if you want to get your message through to an audience of committed shoppers, then issuing custom publications would seem to be the way to go. I still don't understand how many of these publications just get wasted because they received by people who aren't shopping the category. If you have an information-intensive product, a way of identifying category shoppers and a large enough audience, then issuing a custom publication makes a lot of sense.

MediaPost Media Daily News - Readers Prefer Edit Vs. Ads by Ross Fadner

85 percent said they prefer custom publications to ads, and 75 percent felt better informed after reading them. More than six in ten said custom pubs made them feel closer to the sponsoring company, and 75 percent said they believe the effort shows an interest in building good relationships with customers. Eighty percent said they find the information in these magazines interesting.

Car Makers getting Better Prospect Data with New Methods

MuddsAt the WSJ, Gina Chon has a good round up of the recent efforts of car manufacturers to make better use of online and nontraditional advertising, including the creation of the Mudd family story for the Jeep web site (pictued here). Several factors are driving these innovations. First, print and broadcast are becoming less effective. Secondly, car buyers are starting their purchase research online. And thirdly, the car marketers really seem to be figuring this "customer engagement" thing out. Here are a few quotes from the article:

  • In 2002, Jeep, which is part of the Chrysler Group, the U.S. arm of auto giant DaimlerChrysler, created online games to promote its vehicles. Mountain Madness, for instance, lets drivers save a town from an avalanche as they ride around in the 2005 Jeep Liberty Renegade. Jeep garnered 3.5 million registered users from its 10 online games, it says. "We were able to find out more information from the consumer than we ever did with direct marketing and other methods," Jeep Vice President Jeff Bell says.
  • Although the 2006 Mercedes R Class luxury wagon didn't arrives at dealers until September, the DaimlerChrysler brand began providing information about the car 18 months ago through its Web site. Mercedes said it received about 100,000 online requests for information on the R Class.
  • For the 2003 launch of its Scion compact, Toyota Motor sponsored concerts in small venues and other events across the country in order to reach younger buyers. To attend for free, consumers had to sign up on Scion's Web site. Car Makers Hone Their Pitch Online by Gina Chon (subscription required)

When consumers voluntarily try to obtain information about a product, they are more likely to provide information that marketers want, like age, salary and hobbies.

TELUS Finds New Way to be Useful

TeluswaterfallIn my last post I fussed that advertisers ought to be less intrusive and find something valuable to share. So then I find out that TELUS has a Canadian campaign in the bathroom designed to help 'go faster.' Well, that's the spirit, but I don't know...maybe still a little too intrusive!

MediaPost Out to Launch: TELUS Campaign by Amy Corr

Bar and restaurant patrons will receive unexpected "assistance" during their next trip to the bathroom, thanks to the latest TELUS High Speed Internet ad campaign. Using Soundboards and eBoards of trickling water sounds and cascading fountain images, the campaign's headline tells viewers to "go faster." More than 50 eBoards and 90 Soundboards will be posted above urinals and behind stall doors in various Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton bathrooms. The LCD screens are equipped with looped audio/video footage, and the Soundboards have motion-triggered sound chips of flowing water that run for 30 seconds.

TV Viewers Adapt, Broadcasters Adapt

In USA Today, Gary Levin has a clear analysis of how broadcaster have adapted to get more commericals in front of more viewers. Among other things, they've started slicing shows into more parts and air fewer commercials between shows.

And so it goes in the endless wrestling match for viewers' attention. Ad glut turns off viewers by Gary Levin

"There's been a lot of hand-wringing in the business about when viewers are going to say, 'Enough's enough,' but they haven't," says Tim Brooks, a TV historian and research chief at Lifetime. "It may never be that commercials drive people away from the set, but it makes them pay less attention to avoid the irrelevant interruptions."

Although TV viewing has increased, it's no longer the only medium in the room. Most people are reading something else during those commercials. Instead of trying to get strategic placement, most advertisers are better off trying to find something valuable to say. And an inoffensive way to say it.

Surprising Bank Customers with a Game Show


To raise awareness and get prospects to walk into HBSC branches, Renegade Marketing staged a 'Wheel of Fortune' type game on the sidewalk outside. Now, zany bank promotions aren't all that unusual, but the attention to the details of the experience really sets this one apart. Read about the strategy and details as described by Drew Neisser (Renegade CEO, pictured left) at Presence Marketing Helps HBSC Build Foot Traffic.

"The element of surprise stopped people, the game itself got them involved and the fact that every player won a prize completed the brand experience," Neisser says. "Several players told their friends about the game, and better yet, many came back with friends in tow."