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Master Servants will continue to reap increasing amounts of personal and professional success in 2014. We are all in the service industry; Will you be a Master Servant or a grunt all you life?
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Here’s a business idea, a grocery store aimed specifically at men. Sound crazy? Maybe not. According to Defy Media’s 2nd annual Acumen Report: Brand New Man 65% of men are the primary shoppers for several household product categories. And here’s a well-kept secret, 67% say they actually enjoy shopping for the family.


I’m one of those rare animals that actually enjoys grocery shopping, so I get it. It can be very relaxing and freeing and if you’re a dad, it feels good to choose the products that are right for your family.


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>The report clearly shows that the modern man is less interested in being the bread-winner as he is about being the bread buyer or even baker!


The important note for marketers is that men are happy to forgo the wife’s shopping list in favor of new brands if they have a good reason to do so.


Younger males (18-34) are represented by the darker line. The lighter line are males 35-49.


Almost half of young men said there were influenced by recommendations from friends and family first, followed by ads and coupons. Note that 28% became aware of new brands via an online video. That’s a pretty big number for a small marketing segment. Also note that younger buyers are highly likely to by the brand their parents used. So if your brand has a history, don’t be afraid to use that in your marketing.


Older men were slightly more influenced by advertising and coupons. Recommendations from friends is secondary but still important. Video and social media barely register with this group. If this is your audience, spend more of your budget on real mail and less on email.


Buying from the Heart


Old comedies often show clueless male shoppers randomly grabbing whatever their hand lands on when forced to grocery shop. For an extra laugh, the man might ask a kindly older woman to help him choose the best laundry detergent or he might ask a pretty veggie shopper how to determine ripeness (when all he really wants is a date.)


But this new report shows that the modern male shopper is actually quite thoughtful when it comes to product choice.



  • Almost half (49 percent) bought a product because he liked the brand’s story or history and 60 percent noted they bought a product specifically because it was made locally


“I will look at local as well; if there are local brands, I try and support [them]. That’s just for the economy and trying to help out what’s happening nearby.” – Derrick, Orlando, FL – survey participant



  • Health matters: men appear to be seeking healthier options in the grocery aisles – more than half (58 percent) of men look for foods that are natural, low fat, less sugar or organic while 70 percent said they are buying more healthful foods compared to the past

  • Close to 57 percent said they would stop buying from a company that did something offensive or illegal


Read that last one again. More than half would stop buying from a company that offends them. I know you think that can’t happen to you but that’s what the marketing manager for SpaghettiOs thought before he okay’d the tribute to Pearl Harbor Day.


The takeaway here is that a male-oriented marketing message might be all your company needs to move to the next level.




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Internet marketing is a growing niche. There are too many newbies jumpin, while one too many people have assumed the role of experts to cash in on the situation. Here's a simple guide of 10 rules to excel in internet marketing space.
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In Q4, 55% of all email opens happened on a mobile device. I’m repeating this title phrase because I know that many of you have never viewed your own customer email blasts on a mobile device – let alone multiple devices. I know this, because if you did, you wouldn’t be sending out the wonky emails that I see every time I try to read my email on my iPad.


It’s better – for sure and I’m bolstered by that fact. But the reality is that the number of mobile email readers is increasing and with that, the number of mobile initiated sales.


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The data comes from Yesmail’s new Email Marketing Compass report. Look at all the dollar bills! Mobile sales that came in via an email click increased 52% from Q3 to Q4. That’s right, not year-over-year, but quarter-over-quarter. Clearly, mobile was a big part of holiday 2013. Just imagine how important it’s going to be to holiday 2014!


Here’s an interesting note, desktop email viewership also increased but only by a tiny amount. So were did all the extra people come from? The hybrid pool. Less people are bouncing between their desktop and their mobile device for email. We’re choosing sides and mobile is winning.


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Before you can send an email message, a person has to become a subscriber. Since we’re talking about Q4 2013, there was an expected increase in active subscribers. Now here’s a very interesting chart:


According to Yesmail, companies that send out six emails per week have the highest percentage of active subscribers. I guess this fits the “out of sight, out of mind” rule. When you only send one email, customers forget about you the very next day. Six emails and they get a constant reminder to come over and shop.


But that seventh email might be the one that breaks the email camel’s back. Time for the handy unsubscribe button!


When you set up your mobile email tests this week, also include a Gmail test. 43% of new subscribers in Q4 were Gmail users. They’re also the most engaged users with 19% active within the last year compared to 10% on AOL and 14% for Yahoo.


After all that good news, there’s one bummer. Open and click rates overall declined slightly in Q4 but that might not mean what it appears to mean. Yesmail says that the default “image off” setting many email clients use can cause an email to read as “unopened” even though the consumer actually saw the text.


How’s email going for you these days?




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The term "analytics" in the context of online marketing refers to a highly precise discipline involving the use of a set of software tools designed to assist a competent online marketer or online property owner in achieving maximum performance of an online property. Analytics can also offer a clearer understanding of the reasons for the success or failure of an online property.
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I’ve been using Google+ a lot more lately but mostly because of the forced connection between the social network and YouTube. It makes me wonder if this new connection has anything to do with Google+’s spike in user registration.


We Are Social crunched the numbers and here’s what they found:



In the past year, the site has seen tremendous growth in terms of registration. But in terms of active users, not so much. And note that active means using the site on a “monthly basis”. We’re not even talking about truly regular,

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daily users. A year ago, 51% of the users were active, now that number has dropped to 32%.


Who is using Google+ regularly? 62% are men and the most active age group is 25-34. Facebook has more active women but it’s a slight difference (not like the gender bias you see at Pinterest) and it skews toward the 18-29 age bracket.


Google+ users are also more likely to come in via a mobile device.



Good numbers, but Facebook has them beat with 66% of the social sharing happening through a mobile app.


If you’re a marketer, getting people to the site is one thing but how long they stay is just as important. People who hit and bounce aren’t going to be influenced by your message. The longer they stay, the better chance you have of getting through.


So here’s Google+ going from an average of 3.3 minutes (per month?) per person in 2012 to 6.47 minutes in 2013. Compare that to Twitter with 170 minutes per month and 257 minutes on Instagram.


Those numbers are so far apart, I keep thinking I’m reading them wrong. Six minutes a MONTH? It hardly seems worth it and yet  70% of the top internet brands are on Google+. Why? Because it’s Google.


Think about it. If Google+ was actually George+ would anyone use the site? No. We use it because everyone says doing so will boost your search ranking in Google. Plus, as I said at the top, if you want to run a YouTube channel, you have to have a Google+ page and that page is going to auto populate when you post videos and comment. Your page is going to look active even if you never post directly or read your newsfeed.


If Google+ was the Facebook replacement they set out to be, they wouldn’t need to resort to extortion and bribery just to get people to play in their yard. The only thing that is keeping Google+ going is the name.


Your turn. Yea or nay on Google+?


 


 




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Elite Email released their email marketing trends for April 2012. Elite Email analyzes samples of around one million emails throughout vertical markets to get an idea of the major trending topics. The study uses an innovative algorithm to see the patterns and trends to learn what businesses are telling their customers via email marketing campaigns along with the activity of the consumer. The study is based on businesses that reside in Canada or the United States.
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How do you really feel about Facebook? Do you trust it? Would you give it your money? Is it fun? Is it safe? These are just a few of the questions asked in a recent AP-CNBC poll and the answers they got. . . well. . . they weren’t exactly surprising. But hey, we love data here so let’s take a look!


Who is on Facebook?

Facebook is a keeper for most of the US. 56% of all Americans have a Facebook page. 3 in 10 use it everyday with younger users visiting more often.


Those who don’t have a page, 35% say they have no interest or they have better thi

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ngs to do with their time. 22% stay away because they think it’s bad or not right for their age group.


Advertising:



  • About 8 in 10 Facebook users surveyed say they hardly ever (26%) or never (57%) click on online advertising or sponsored content when using the site.

  • Most (54%) say they would not feel safe purchasing goods and services on Facebook. Among the site’s most frequent users, half say they would not feel safe making purchases through the site.


Trust:

  • 59% of Facebook users do not trust the site with their personal information and have little or no faith in the company to protect their privacy. A slight minority (13%) trust the company completely or a lot.

  • Just 18% of Americans have deep confidence in Zuckerberg’s ability to run a large publicly traded company like Facebook, another 40% say they are “somewhat confident.”

  • About a third of the public (36%) has a favorable impression of the Facebook founder, while 14 percent hold an unfavorable opinion and 20 percent say they’ve never heard of him or don’t know how they feel.

  • The Social Network filmgoers have a more favorable impression of Zuckerberg than others (51% favorable compared to 31% among those who have not seen it).


Facebook vs The World

Facebook as a whole scores a net positive favorability rating, with 51% holding favorable impressions of the company compared to 23% who have an unfavorable impression.



  • 27% of those surveyed have a favorable impression of Twitter. 4% said they never heard of it.

  • 71% favor Google

  • 17% of those polled have a neutral opinion of Facebook


And my favorite stat:



  • 2% have never heard of Facebook.


Need more information? CNBC has put together a whole Facebook-lolapalooza site with everything you ever wanted to know about the social media giant, its founder and its prospects for the future. Let’s just say that as of right now, everything’s coming up dollar signs for Zuckerberg and the gang.

Join the Marketing Pilgrim Facebook Community






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There is evidence that small business is starting to see the value of social media for their operations. As it has been with search marketing it is likely that a majority adoption of the practice will take a considerable amount of time but it looks like the movement is underway, to a degree.
So why not announce that “Small Business is Using Social Media!”? Well, that would imply that there is widespread adoption of the discipline which, at this point in time, just isn’t true. A study conducted by Sage Software and AMI-Partners is covered over at
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icle.aspx?R=1007121">eMarketer and while it’s interesting, it’s no coming out party for small business and social media across the board.
The study reports that 260,000 small businesses across the US and Canada are employing social media tactics in their business to one degree or another. That’s a pretty good size number but if you take it one step further and calculate the percentage of small businesses using social media in 2 countries it is a little less impressive. Assuming 25,000,000 small businesses in the US and 2.5 million in Canada, that means that just under 1% of these business are using social media. Now many will debate these figures but if you cut the number of total businesses in half, well you do the math. These are not widely adopted practices quite yet.
So what are those who are in the game doing?
Most of them used professional social networking sites such as LinkedIn. General social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook were also widely used, followed by niche communities and job sites.


Twitter has not been readily accepted as a small business tool yet but there are those who are having success using it. So why are they using any social media at all? The most prominent reasons are responding to customer questions, networking and education. What most are not doing is looking to sell through these channels which is interesting considering some of the success that can be found with a small business that gets it.
So what’s it take to get the little guy involved? Well, extra time, money and people for one. With social media being so time intensive the barriers to entry get higher as a business gets smaller. In the future it is going to be critical for small businesses to decide where they want to put their scarce resources so they can maximize their ROI. With a constantly moving target however that is increasingly difficult so the future of small business and social media will be interesting to watch.
Your thoughts?



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It is no real surprise that Twitter has application to the SMB (small and medium business) space. There have been success stories talked about for some time no. What is starting to happen, however, that the success the small business has been having is no longer just a business owner stating “Yup, it worked!” According to AdAge two case studies they looked at are starting to put numbers to that success.
Let’s get a small detail out of the way first though. As you can see from the quote below it is likely that the busin
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ess profiled may have a bit more going for it than the average Mom and Pop or small business.
Naked Pizza, a New Orleans healthful-pizza shop that’s hoping to go national — Mark Cuban is a backer — has been marketing itself via the microblogging service. And recently it has started to track Twitter-spurred sales at the register. In a test run April 23, an exclusive-to-Twitter promotion brought in 15% of the day’s business.
Ok, so Mark Cuban is a backer so there may be a little slant to this but let’s go with it anyway. Co-founder of the restaurant, Jeff Leach, is getting aggressive with his Twitter usage and it seems to be paying off. He is making sure that people are aware of his Twitter tendencies by posting a billboard outside of the shop. His subsequent write up in TechCrunch re: this technique has garnered attention from Twitter itself so he will now be beta testing some small business apps for Twitter. I gotta think there are others out there doing similar things but once again most media outlets and businesses (i.e., TechCrunch and Twitter) tend to perk their ears up when someone as rich well-known as Mark Cuban is somehow connected.
Another business, however, in the article didn’t have the same kind of celebrity gravitas but is using Twitter to full advantage.
Michael Farah, founder and CEO of Berry Chill, a yogurt shop with three Chicago locations, has been using Twitter to send out “Sweet Tweets” — promos that require users to show they’re Twitter followers of the store. In a month, he’s logged 700 followers and, he said, “sweet tweets” haven’t diminished his daily sales.
During one promotion he gave away 1,100 yogurts but his daily sales did not go down. Of course, you have to consider the cost of the product eats into profits but lets not nit pick here.
It’s hard to put a real dollar value on people that actually visited the location for the first time due to the offer. This type of marketing can be invaluable for any retail shop. Sure beats getting a mailer. In fact, the way that Leach of Naked Pizza talks he is anxious to shed the costs of more traditional means of advertising.
Mr. Leach, who spends up to $60,000 a year on direct mail and almost $2,500 a year on e-mail-marketing services, said he’d gladly pay a monthly fee for services like those.
Wonder what those beta testing services look like for Twitter? Any guesses?
The article wraps up with some suggestions for the small business owner when it comes to Twitter which include alerting followers when you are on the go, create a conversation, track every sale and even dumping last minute inventory.
So let’s talk real world here. What’s your experience with Twitter? Can you provide some hard numbers that show Twitter’s bottom line impact?



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