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, 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
Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011 | Uncategorized | No Comments
While social media may have been launched and nurtured by young adults, today’s social media audiences are decidedly older — and more female — than ever before. So social media marketers, take note of these important trends as reported by Pew Research in a study of engagement habits over the past two years:
1. Twice As Nice. Today, almost one of two persons in the United States (47%) interacts daily with a social media site — nearly double the number in late 2008, when the last study was undertaken. And for whatever it’s worth, folks who participate in social media sites are more politically engaged than other adults, and more likely to trust others.
2. Aging Gracefully. At the same time, the most significant growth in social media is occurring among older adults — with the average age of the social media user climbing to 38 years old (five years older than just two years ago).
3. Girl Talk. Additionally, the U.S. social media audience continues to grow more feminine, with 56% of today’s users women (versus 53% two years ago).
Need to reach intelligent, trusting, motivated females who are likely involved in families with children, with a higher than average disposable income? Now you know a little more about where to find ‘em.
SOURCE: NOISE, MarketingProfs, Pew Research
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).
Tuesday, November 9th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
Take e-marketing. Over the course of any given year, NOISE creates, produces, delivers and measures (in-house) more than one million e-blasts for our clients. And the outstanding performance of these highly branded campaigns — which annually deliver clickthroughs exceeding 400% of industry average — demonstrates why we’re passionate advocates of creative, engaging, visually- and verbally-motivating html-based messaging.
So imagine our antler dance when testing of simple, text-only campaigns rocked those numbers — generating clickthroughs almost 800% greater than industry average, as well as numerous social community mentions and referrals seldom seen by traditional campaigns.
Now, there’s a strategy to text-only campaigns that (as a service to our clients) we won’t reveal here. But suffice it to say there’s strong evidence that as sophisticated and studied as e-marketing has become, there’s still a time and a place — even today — for selectively pulling out the KISS principle.
Ask your marketing partner. Or even better, ask us.
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
Sunday, July 25th, 2010 | Uncategorized | 1 Comment
Great brands rock because they succeed at providing exceptional customer experiences and satisfaction. Great brands also rock because they succeed at convincing customers that the value provided is greater than the price charged. But what happens to that brand when it “nickels and dimes” its satisfied customers to almost laughable extremes? And what would you choose to do — abandon the brand, or accept the pocket-change-mentality surcharging?
Case in point: AirTran Airways.
You may disagree with me (and you probably will), but I love AirTran. They satisfy my business travel schedule with more non-stop flights. Their fares are low. Their online reservations process is a breeze. Their online ticketing process the same. Their fleets are new and clean. Their flight attendants are generally very positive. And heck (depending on whether you think it’s a plus or a minus), they were the first to market with in-flight internet.
But here’s the nickel and dime rub, and it’s moved beyond luggage. In my experience, there exists not one seat on any AirTran flight that doesn’t come with a surcharge. Front, rear, aisle, window, middle, exit row, within sniffing distance of the lavatories, it doesn’t matter — now that you’ve booked your flight, you get to pay again to sit down. And last I checked, sitting down is mandatory on U.S. air travel.
I applaud AirTran’s ability to get away with this and still not really irritate me. It speaks volumes for their brand’s overall positive experience, satisfaction and price-value relationship. That’s a goal every brand should strive to achieve regardless of pricing structure. But what would you choose — to reward the exceptional brand that is all about money (so to speak), or abandon ship?
SOURCE: NOISE, John Sprecher
Wednesday, May 12th, 2010 | Uncategorized | No Comments
There’s a growing uneasiness among some marketing “experts” that the halcyon days of e-marketing are in the rear view mirror. They fear that we’re tuning out due to the daily onslaught of e-solicitations, welcome or not, that find their way into our in-boxes. They opine that we’re turning instead to more social brand interaction alternatives, particularly Facebook “like” pages, for our communications.
While we at NOISE don’t disagree with those sentiments, we’re also clearly in the camp of the majority of marketers profiled in MarketingSherpa’s 2010 “Email Marketing Benchmark Report” who — by a three-to-one margin — remain convinced that the effectiveness of e-marketing continues to increase, rather than decrease.
However, we’d add a number of asterisks to our e-marketing cheerleading, which include:
* Your Message Better Be Branded. You spend a lot of money and energy to build your brand. So empower the architects of that brand — be they agency or in-house — to build your e-marketing campaigns, too. It doesn’t cost exponentially more to have a fully-integrated, cohesively-branded e-campaign. And the results in opens and clicks will far outweigh the production cost.
* Your Message Better Be Valuable. We’re not just talking about value-driven offers here. We’re talking about value-driven content of all kinds. The point is, whatever the editorial agenda of your e-campaign, make sure it provides the kind of interest value that will compel your consumers to open it, engage with it and act on it.
* Your Message Better Be Motivating. Obvious point? Perhaps. But the most effective e-marketing is the kind that provides multiple points of interaction for the consumer — a discount here, a value-added there, an opportunity to win here, an opportunity to share there.
Done right, e-marketing remains highly effective. Done wrong, e-marketing is a waste of money. How are you doing yours?
SOURCE: NOISE, MarketingSherpa
Wednesday, April 21st, 2010 | Uncategorized | 1 Comment
If Morgan Stanley analysts are correct, more users will access the Internet in 2015 via mobile devices than our computers.
Impossible, you say? Or at the very least, hard to imagine? Not really, when you consider the widespread acceptance and exponential growth of smart phones; the proliferation of faster 3G mobile service, combined with affordable pricing; and the rapid rollout of innovative and exciting new mobile applications, technologies and uses.
From its introduction in June, 2007 via the iPhone and iTouch, mobile web in less than three years has become the standard for anywhere and anytime access to friends, games, video, entertainment, shopping, sharing, mapping, research, wireless home appliances and much more tomorrow. In fact, the average iPhone user today spends less than half of his or her on-device time making phone calls!
As the landscape changes for web marketers, the challenges will be many. But so are the opportunities. So charge up your smart phone now.
SOURCE: Morgan Stanley, Mashable, NOISE
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
Sunday, November 22nd, 2009 | Uncategorized | No Comments
If you’re a smart marketer (and you are, because you’re reading Trendspottings), you’ve no doubt produced highly targeted, professionally executed and customer-centric E-marketing campaigns this year — and you’ve witnessed the benefits of The Almighty E-Mail to deliver outstanding clickthrough results and cost efficiencies for you.
Being the smart marketer that you are, you’re already budgeting more for E-marketing and social media — the only two marketing tactics to increase budget share in 2009. And to help you factor your E-marketing budget, NOISE presents this useful trending from MarketingSherpa that highlights the significant increase in E-marketing spend, across eight industries. (Note: simply click on the image to enlarge.)
Where will your 2010 E-marketing campaigns propell you? Hopefully, to greater success. And should you need a little propellent, well, rocket fuel is available here.
SOURCE: MarketingSherpa, NOISE
Sunday, November 22nd, 2009 | Uncategorized | 1 Comment
At NOISE, we have a chalkboard near our front entrance to inform or remind employees each day of the week’s top goals. While client priorities change on a daily (or sometimes hourly) basis, our company’s core goals have remained the same over the past six months. They are:
1. Be exceptional!
3. Touch five new prospects a week!
I haven’t altered those goals recently for obvious reasons. And I’m very gratified to say, I believe those goals have helped us achieve this year, smack in the middle of one of the most economically challenging times in our country’s history, perhaps the most impressive record of creative excellence, new comprehensive services introductions (QwickClick VideoTours, Vwallah! Social Media, NOISE Inter.Active) and big name client acquisition in our 23 years in business.
Clearly, the lesson here isn’t that you write words on a chalkboard and you find success. The lesson is more, I believe, about how managers and leaders articulate — not just to their employees, but to themselves. In our case, we looked in the mirror and resolved to make a top-down corporate commitment to reach for the sky, even if the sky is full of dark clouds; we resolved to demand and expect only the brightest and best of employees, no excuses, within an environment that nurtures, molds, recognizes and rewards those efforts; and we resolved to make management accountable to its employees for growth (because actions do speak louder). Oh, and one more thing: we kept the faith.
I hope this doesn’t come across as self-serving. It’s not meant to be, because it’s a lesson we were gratified to have learned ourselves. And I’m sure if we stay open to it, we’ll learn more with every day.
How about your company? What words would you write on your chalkboard for success?
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?