Saturday, June 30th, 2012 | Uncategorized | No Comments
When you claim to be one of the top art, film and music educational institutions in the world, you better practice what you preach — and Full Sail University in Florida has consistently done that across 30 years, turning out stellar graduates and award-winning projects across media, entertainment, the arts and more.
So when Full Sail recently released its totally integrated, awesomely innovative new YouTube channel, well, you expected something that would wow you. And wow it is.
The Full Sail YouTube channel is the first we’ve seen that fully (and sweetly) integrates animation and motion graphics in its delivery. With each page load, a different student appears against a nondescript background, to open and hold up a blank piece of black paper — the creative canvas upon which the Full Sail story will literally unfold. From there, a brief video story engages and excites you to the Full Sail experience, dissolving to a montage of clickthrough opportunities, complete with the aforementioned student’s hands that, while still holding the canvas, move up and down with your cursor.
It’s work like this that clearly convinces you that Full Sail University’s got what it takes and delivers on its promise — proving once again two adages true: actions speak louder than words and yes, those who can do.
Tuesday, October 4th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
For as long as we’ve been able to say “Google Analytics,” one of the key metrics in measuring a web brand’s ability to engage its visitors is “time on site.” The theory was (and generally, correctly) that the longer your average time on site, the more you were engaging consumers.
Well, a new study by Summus Limited makes a pretty strong case for the fact that “time on site” may fast becoming a fact of the past. The reason? The rise of mobile devices.
According to the research, mobile users access the web and apps far differently than via laptops. Rather than settling in for a leisurely online experience, mobile users tend to visit websites or brand apps approximately 12 times a day — but generally in increments of five minutes or less.
Not only does this fact alone reduce time on site average, a slow-loading mobile website — or even a cumbersome brand app — can cause impatient or hurried visitors to bail, and bail fast. And a bad user experience is one not likely to be repeated.
What should we take away from this? First, when analyzing your analytics, measure any time on site data with mobile device usage before determining any trends. Second, make darn sure your mobile website or mobile app is as fast loading, intuitively obvious and user friendly as possible. And third, continue to follow Trnedspottings for more great insights like this, every month.
SOURCE: SmartBrief, NOISE
Sunday, October 2nd, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
If you’re an online marketer, it’s easy to become enamored of social media’s exciting landscape — its seemingly endless ability to engage consumers, stimulate action and influence or even transact sales. But here’s a reminder that despite appearances, the grass of profitable online sales remains far greener on the web side of your digital neighborhood.
How much greener? Among organizations offering both web- and social-based sales channels, according to a recent study by technology marketer Demandbase in partnership with online network Focus, websites remain a whopping 700% more powerful in generating inquiries and actuating income than alternative social platforms.
What should that mean to you? Well, NOISE would suggest that should mean you remain about seven times more focused on the success of your website, making certain it’s:
• Spot-on branded;
• Strategic, intuitive, obvious, simple and fast;
• Enjoyable and rewarding;
• Interactively engaging with video, imagery, social networking, sharing and more;
• Incredibly search engine optimized;
• An awesome user experience that consumers will want to return to and repeat, again and again.
For most marketers, social media isn’t a highly profitable alternative to web-based sales — at least, not yet. So embrace it — like digital marketing, e-marketing and your other effective strategies and tactics — as another seed to help your web sales grow.
SOURCE: ZDNet, NOISE
Saturday, October 1st, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Next time you’re gearing up for a campaign that requires a human element, NOISE creative offers up this suggestion: before you (or your agency) contact a bunch of professional modeling agencies to sift through endless head shots, comps and portfolios — stop and, instead, look around. You’ll find some outstanding talent among your employees and your consumers.
Amazing? Yes. True? Yes. Easy? Well, there’s the rub.
While the thought of working with real people scares many a hearty marketer’s heart — or sounds exceedingly boring to those of you who can’t imagine an interesting face around your place — the fact is that fascinating, compelling, engaging and attractive people types are literally all around you. You simply (alright, not so simply) need to know what to look for when you look into someone’s eyes, and that’s where your agency and their talents should come in.
We were reminded of this lesson recently at a two-day, run and gun photo shoot for a NOISE client. By the end of our assignment, we had compiled a portfolio of quality, variety and style any talent agency would drool over. Plus, our client didn’t have to pay a dime in talent fees.
Lesson: don’t be afraid of turning to real people for a campaign that requires real people. More often than many marketers assume, they’re perfect for the part.
Friday, September 30th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Maybe it’s just us, but it seems the relationship between social media and return on investment is a particularly hot topic. Here at NOISE, we can’t seem to make it through the day (or through a conference) without an e-mail, a blog or a seminar proclaiming that it owns the definitive bottom line on how to arrive at SM’s bottom line.
News alert: there is no one way or best way to measure social media ROI. The way we see it and practice it for NOISE Social’s many clients, which is the way you should see it and practice is, is that you measure social media’s return simply against what you’re asking it to do. And as you know, social media is no one-trick pony.
So, drum roll please, as NOISE reveals the top ten ways we apply (and measure) social media return on investment:
1. Brand Ambassadorship Development: Defined by the numbers of legitimate, involved social community followers you attract.
2. Consumer Engagement: Defined by the involvement and participation of your community’s followers in your brand via interactions.
3. Brand Passion: Defined by how often and how passionately your followers recommend your brand, and share it with or refer it to others.
4. Databuilding: Defined by hard counts of actual e-data consumers your social media efforts add to your overall marketing machine.
5. Market Research: You can use social media to learn a lot about a lot of things, both consumer-based and marketing-specific; if so, what’s the level of involvement and quality of data?
6. E-commerce: Are you transacting sales within your social media platforms? If so, measure your inquiries, conversion rates, transactions and profits.
7. Secondary Sales: Social media can generate sales by driving consumers to secondary transaction points (like a reservations page, or a shopping cart). Measure your efforts vis-a-vis referrals to your sites, as well as transactions.
8. Public Relations: Done effectively and creatively, social media can create a whole bunch of ancillary buzz via public relations. Are your social media efforts being acquired and publicized by other media outlets, creating value-added buzz for you?
9. Web Traffic: Social media should generally have an end-goal, and for most brands, that end-goal should be to drive consumers to your web brand to further engage, interact and transact with you. Look at your analytics.
10. Dollar Signs. In the end, social media can specifically and emphatically deliver sales. Don’t believe us? Try creating a social-media-only sales offer, package or campaign.
Bottom line? There is no one, best way to measure social media. But social media’s bottom line can clearly be measured by how you apply strategies and tactics — and if done correctly, its impact on your branding, marketing and sales efforts can be powerful and positive.
Monday, August 1st, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Although Google+ has put a temporary moratorium on branded accounts for business, odds are it won’t be long before the new social media upstart opens the door to all of us impatient marketers who, like Black Friday shoppers at midnight, are lining up outside. Are you one of them? If not, you should be. Here’s why:
Google+ and YouTube = Success. The integration of these Google products means a far more pandemic viral potential for branded video marketing. Plus with Google Hangout (its multi-user free video chat), brands will be able to interact with consumers real-time.
Google+ and Latitude = Success. With Google’s geo-tracking product (Latitude), it’ll be easier than ever for people to check into a location and have that information immediately shared with their “circles” of friends — enabling brands to easily execute loyalty marketing and rewarding programs.
Google+ and Translate = Success. Are you a brand with an international audience? With Google’s Translate product, multi-lingual communications to your brand page will automatically re-render in your default language — and vice versa. A simple advantage like this could literally open up new worlds to marketers.
Google+ and Sites = Success. While Facebook remains relatively limited in its ability to enable marketers to truly brand pages, Google’s Sites product is far more flexible in design, content and functionality — another plus for Google+.
Google+ and Adwords = Success. Added bones: Google’s paid search marketing program will bring far more contextual, demographic and analytic sophistication to social PPC campaigns — bringing all of us more clarity on the value of social media marketing.
Within the first month of its “launch,” Google+ has been attracted more than 15 million users, not to mention Facebook’s attention. The question now is: will Google+ be the next social media phenomenon? Only time will tell — but if you’re an innovative marketer that in any way engages a social media community, the time is now to prepare for the opportunity that Google+ is about to open to you.
SOURCE: Memeburn, NOISE
Saturday, July 30th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
What does your brand sound like? Does it rock? Is it a little jazzy? Is it classic, or sophisticated, or chilled out? If your brand’s consumer experience happens to include a little attitude or style, then you’re in luck because now — your brand can, in fact, have its very own sound.
The new place to find it is online at Turntable, which purports to be a new online social community where like-eared friends can gather to listen to, vote on and chat up music that’s available for play free from Turntable.fm’s extensive and impressive online library, or via personal library upload. And while Turntable currently remains in beta testing and is accessible only by invitation, more than 400,000 members (according to AppData) have already hopped on the dance floor.
What’s most interesting to us at NOISE is AdAge Digital’s report that a number of brands have already staked their claims and names to their very own, free music lounges — including Pepsi, Groupon, Gawker, New York Times Digital and Bravo. And in full disclosure, so has NOISE — with our own NOISE Blues lounge, as well as branded lounges for most of our clients.
Where will it all go? We’re not quite sure and odds are, Turntable isn’t either. But one thing is for sure — brands are beginning to mark their territory. So if you’re a brand with a personality and a passionate following, you might want to tune in, so to speak, build your playlist and give your brand loyalists (and their ears) another reason to enjoy their relationship with you.
SOURCE: AdAge Digital, AppData, NOISE
Sunday, July 24th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
In case you haven’t been paying attention, it’s a digital world that’s evolving almost daily with new media and new opportunities for your brand to capitalize on. And yet, there remains this constant: word of mouth.
However it’s said in our online and mobile and social and digital and ubiquitously-connected world, word of mouth remains among the most influential contributors to a consumer’s decision-making process. Just consider how “digital buzz” — the term we at NOISE have dubbed for old-school “word of mouth” — is explosively influencing consumer purchasing habits as reported in the outstanding e-book, Winning the Zero Moment of Truth, from Google:
• More than 37% of all shoppers find online social sources to be a significant, influential driver when when making a decision to buy (or not). That’s nearly double the 19% reported just one year earlier.
• Online referrals from trusted sources like friends or business associates, or positive mentions of the brand in social networks like Facebook, dramatically up the chances for said brand to be purchased.
• Editorial relative to the product — specifically, both external (public) and internal (your proprietary) blogs — can influence a purchase.
• Additionally, the muscle of Facebook brand pages also flexes the consumer’s inclination to buy, especially (and obviously) when he or she becomes a follower or friend of the brand.
Google’s Zero Moment of Truth is a manifesto on why today’s and tomorrow’s most successful brands aren’t shying away from consumer word of mouth — positive or negative — but are running toward “digital buzz” with arms outstretched. How about you and your brand? Are you embracing this brave new world? Or ostriching it?
SOURCE: Google, NOISE
Monday, March 28th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Do you know the land of Gib? The land of Gib is neither an easy nor a comfortable place to journey to. It’s a destination sought by only the most courageous brands and agencies who dare to think big plus (bonus) think counter-conventionally — thus, the name Gib.
Arriving there is like navigating your classic, precarious Scooby Doo rickety rope bridge across a plummeting-deep gorge — only unlike ol’ Scoob and Shag, should the risk-taking brand or agency slip, we can’t motor-burn our feet to congo-drum sound effects and race safely to the promised land. We fail. We fall.
Example in point is NOISE client Florida Repertory Theatre, and case in point is the Rep’s annual fundraising gala held this past March. Now, you might expect that a performing arts group hailed as “one of the best repertory companies in the United States” by the Wall Street Journal — serving an audience that skews decidedly older adult than most in the country — would default to the expected, formal, black-tie event. But not so, these daring marketers. Rather, Florida Repertory Theatre held steadfastly true to its brand — which by definition is the delivery of creativity, passion and excellence in performing arts — and challenged its status quo with the “Downtown Hoedown,” a celebration of all things red-necked, white-trashed, tatted-up, dressed-down and otherwise diametrically opposed to high artistry.
We applaud Florida Repertory Theatre leadership and management for daring to think Gib and act Gib. It’s a sparsely populated place. But it’s where great, memorable branding is found. Bravo!
Thursday, February 10th, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Here’s something you already know: given the state of the economy the past few years, discounting has become the norm. But here’s something, as NOISE sees it, you may not know: subtraction may not be the best form of addition anymore.
Instead, think addition if you want addition.
By addition, we mean value added. Gift wrapping your service or product with the pretty bow of perceived high value (meaning both desirable and tangible) enhancement, rather than a discount. Amplifying your consumer’s positive experience with your brand by rewarding their experience — therefore exceeding your customer’s expectations, which fuels not only satisfaction but loyalty, which stimulates word-of-mouth and social network referrals. All of which will multiply your addition, so to speak.
And bonus: value-added promotions often cost less in real dollars than simply subtracting real dollars from your price tag.
Now, NOISE is not suggesting you abandon competitive pricing structures. Unless you’re a brand (x-luxury) that commands its own price regardless of market conditions, price point will always be important. But by combining competitive pricing (not discounting) with desirable value-added, we believe your pluses will far outweigh your minuses. It’s a strategy we’re implementing in 2011 with our clients, and the results are (pardon the pun) adding up.
Interested in learning more how NOISE can rock your world? Contact us before February 28, 2011 and tell us you want to get “plused.” And yes, of course: there’s a $5,000 value-added offer waiting for you (legal department mandatory: certain restrictions apply).
Saturday, November 6th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
As a business leader, it’s incumbent on each of us to grow our knowledge base every day. Failing to do so — in today’s exponentially-evolving world that seems to morph every minute — we lose. But as we all know, there simply aren’t enough free minutes in our 14-hour days to stay attuned to every development in management, branding, marketing, sales, user experience, customer satisfaction, advertising, social media, public relations or the countless other contributors to our professional and personal success.
That’s why, if you don’t already, you should know about SmartBrief.
In my opinion and experience, SmartBrief is one of the efficient, relevant, useful and beneficial information resources I consume each day. SmartBrief culls and compiles content from across the internet — then provides it, free of charge, to my in-box in an attractive, easy-to-scan newsletter format that allows me to very quickly identify items of interest. Most importantly, SmartBrief allows its members (again, free of charge) to opt in to to daily newsletters devoted to more than 100 industries and 10 management-marketing best practices.
Good. Fast. Smart. And yup, even cheap.
Saturday, August 28th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
But what we are decidedly opinionated on is the latest case study that Favre, coach Brad Childress and the Minnesota Vikings organization is, by their example, sharing for our business benefit.
The study is ultimately about leadership within an organization — and what happens to that organization’s goals, values, heart, soul, morale and self-respect — when a win-at-all-cost, ends-justifies-the-means mentality is not only allowed, but encouraged.
We all know Favre’s latest dance relative to football, training camp and money. We’ve seen it before and only a fool wouldn’t see it coming again. But perhaps that’s what the Vikings organization is — for unlike probably most other NFL franchises, it has allowed its spoiled star to dictate his terms. Terms that trump team. Terms that trump coach. Terms that usurp leadership’s authority and, in my opinion, ultimately render Brad Childress (for all intents and purposes) impotent when push may come to shove. And it will. It always does.
Perhaps like your business, my business — advertising — has a few Brett Favres. These are your sales or creative rainmakers who will try to parlay client acquisition or award winning successes into their pound of organizational flesh — demands for more money, sweeter perks and an implicit (or explicit) attitude that says: screw the rest of you, the rules don’t apply to me.
Faced with this hostage situation, the question every organization must ultimately ask itself is: sure they make us money, but are we gonna let ‘em get away with that? And if we do, what will it do to the rest of our team, our managers and our ultimate goal?
The Brett Favre case study won’t be decided until the end of the 2010 season. It should be interesting to follow, for football fans and business leaders alike.
Saturday, August 28th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
While there’s growing evidence that the effectiveness of e-marketing is somewhat giving way to other means of interactive consumer dialogue — specifically social media and mobile marketing — the well-targeted, spot-on-messaged e-campaign remains a powerful, efficient, effective marketing and sales tactic.
And while studying open rates is all well and good, it’s clickthroughs to your websites, micosites or special offers that count. So how do your clickthroughs add up against national averages?
While there are statistics and sources aplenty, one e-marketing performance resource NOISE looks to is Bronto. Delivering approximately one billion targeted emails each day for its clients (utilizing in-house lists), Bronto data on deliveries, opens and clicks should by sheer size be considered “benchmark.” And bonus for marketers, Bronto breaks its data down into 15 major industries.
Here’s a snapshot from today:
• Travel & Hospitality: Open 25.4%, Clickthrough 3.7%
• HealthCare: Open 38.0%, Clickthrough 3.7%
• Real Estate: Open 17.4%, Clickthrough 5.0%
• Entertainment: Open 36.6%, Clickthrough 30.5%
• Retail: Open 19.8%, Clickthrough 3.9%
At NOISE, we’re proud to report that among more than one million e-mail messages we authored for our clients last year, our opens kept pace with national average — while our clickthroughs delivered 450% greater return than the national average. That’s good for us. But outstanding for our clients.
How do your clicks add up?
SOURCE: NOISE, Bronto
Wednesday, February 24th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
If one of your major initiatives this marketing year is launching a new web brand, NOISE Inter.Active would like to share our “NOISE 5.0 Process” that can help ensure your success:
NOISE 1.0: Begin at the End. The first question you need to ask is: what must my new web brand accomplish? Are we an experience and transaction site? An information and engagement site? An engagement and lead generation site? All of this? All of something else? Define your desired user experience and end results, and you’ve defined your goals.
NOISE 2.0: Set Your Site. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line; the same can be said for clicks. At NOISE Inter.Active, this is simply called the Site Architecture — a multi-leveled, content-, technology- and marketing-interface-specific flow chart of your site’s superstructure, and search engine optimization strategies and tactics.
NOISE 3.0: Bells and Whistles. What new, exciting, effective, engaging marketing and social media elements should be integrated into your site to help optimize your website, enhance customer engagement, generate the desired response and foster customer loyalty? Make sure to include this creative discussion as part of “NOISE 2.0″ above.
NOISE 4.0: Brand New, Brand True. For more and more businesses, your web brand is your front door. Make sure that every consumer walking through that front door is greeted with a smile and a welcome that reflects your brand and the many other consistently integrated elements of your brand campaign — while directing them to the next door they want to access.
NOISE 5.0: Kick the Tires. When your site is close to launch and ready for beta testing, invite a focus group of likely consumers in for a couple of hours of tire kicking. Watch as they leisurely and easily steer through your site, or careen out of control and crash into the bushes. How they intuitively interact and engage with your new web brand is the true measure of how successfully you’ve navigated Click A to Click Z.
SOURCE: NOISE Inter.Active
Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Facebook is just for kids.
If you’re a marketer who continues to have this impression about social media and, specifically, Facebook — well, you just haven’t been paying attention recently. And shame on you.
Over the past 12 months, Facebook’s total U.S. audience has grown approximately 145%, to 115 million members or so — or more than one out of every three persons. That’s remarkable.
But for marketers seeking to target adults 25-54 years old, the numbers are even more overwhelming and exciting. Growth in Facebook’s audience within this demographic has increased 300% by another 37 million “friends,” to represent almost half of all Facebook users. And lest you jest that the 55-years-plus group is too weak of sight to view the monitor, or too arthritic of hand to peck at a keyboard, this demographic showed the greatest Facebook membership growth in 2009 — over 900%, totaling almost 10 million older adult members.
Still think Facebook is just for kids? Still think Facebook isn’t for you and your marketing success?
SOURCE: NOISE, istrategylabs
Your Mighty Mighty Trendspotters
What's your brand story? Do you even have one? NOISE's work in brand development, brand building, strategic planning, creative, production, promotion, partnerships, web, digital marketing, media and public relations has been honored by more than 500 awards in our career, for Fortune 500 clients to boutique start-ups throughout the United States.
Would you like us to make NOISE for you and amplify your success? Contact me, or call me on my dime at 800.326.5443 today.
I double dare you.
John Sprecher, Chairman and
Chief Creative Officer of NOISE.
- Early Learning Center on MARKETING: Experience and Satisfaction vs. Nickels and Dimes — What Would You Choose?
- John Sprecher on CAUSE MARKETING: $50,000 Ways NOISE is Saying Thanks.
- Jim Esmeier on CAUSE MARKETING: $50,000 Ways NOISE is Saying Thanks.
- harley davidson on MOBILE: Where the Web Is Headed.
- Samantha on LEADERSHIP: What’s On Your Chalkboard?