Archive for September, 2012

How Connectivity Influences Global Shopping

August 28, 2012
Connected devices have become a way of life for many, but shoppers are digitally engaged to varying degrees depending on the products they buy. While e-commerce activity for some consumer packaged goods (CPG) products — especially perishable categories where freshness counts — may not be as transformative as other non-CPG industries — such as books, music and travel — online grocery purchasing power is growing. New findings from a Nielsen online survey of respondents from 56 countries around the world provide insight into the influence digital devices have on grocery-shopping behavior.

More than one-quarter (26%) of global respondents said they planned to purchase food and beverage products via an online connected device in the next three to six months — a jump from 18 percent reported in 2010. Skin care and cosmetics also increased from 22 percent to 25 percent in the latest survey.

One in five global respondents said they planned to purchase electronic books and digital newspaper and magazine subscriptions, a new category added to the Nielsen Global Survey in 2012. The online purchase intent of hard copy books and physical subscriptions declined from 44 percent in 2010, to 33 percent this year. Categories with growing global purchase intent include computer/game software (+18 percentage points), entertainment tickets (+10), computer/game hardware (+6), video/music production (+5), cars/motorcycle and accessories (+4) and apparel/accessories/shoes/jewelry (+1).

Online shopping intentions for food and beverage categories increased 44 percent in two years
Six-in-ten global respondents used the Internet for grocery shopping research
Nearly half (49%) of respondents purchased a product online
Globally, 46 percent used social media to help make purchase decisions
37 percent purchased from online-only stores most frequently
For more detail and insight, download Nielsen’s Global Digital Shopping Report here.

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comScore Releases August 2012 U.S. Search Engine Rankings

RESTON, VA, September 12, 2012 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released its monthlycomScore qSearch analysis of the U.S. search marketplace. Google Sites led the explicit core search market in August with 66.4 percent of search queries conducted.

U.S. Explicit Core Search

Google Sites led the U.S. explicit core search market in August with 66.4 percent market share, followed by Microsoft Sites with 15.9 percent and Yahoo! Sites with 12.8 percent. Ask Network accounted for 3.2 percent of explicit core searches, followed by AOL, Inc. with 1.7 percent.

comScore Explicit Core Search Share Report*
August 2012 
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Explicit Core Search Share (%)
Aug-12
Total Explicit Core Search 100.0%
Google Sites 66.4%
Microsoft Sites 15.9%
Yahoo! Sites 12.8%
Ask Network 3.2%
AOL, Inc. 1.7%

*“Explicit Core Search” excludes contextually driven searches that do not 
reflect specific user intent to interact with the search results.

More than 17 billion explicit core searches were conducted in August, with Google Sites ranking first with 11.3 billion. Microsoft Sites ranked second with 2.7 billion searches, followed by Yahoo! Sites with 2.2 billion, Ask Network with 550 million and AOL, Inc. with 292 million.

comScore Explicit Core Search Query Report
August 2012 
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Explicit Core Search Queries (MM)
Aug-12
Total Explicit Core Search 17,046
Google Sites 11,317
Microsoft Sites 2,710
Yahoo! Sites 2,177
Ask Network 550
AOL, Inc. 292

“Powered By” Reporting

In August, 68.8 percent of searches carried organic search results from Google, while 25.3 percent of searches were powered by Bing.

 

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5 Companies With Inbound Marketing Strategies That Work

1. Salesforce: Leverages Content to Market the Cloud

According to Kieran Flanagan, inbound marketing manager for Salesforce.com, “The new B2B purchase journey is search-initiated, social powered, and buyer-controlled.” In fact, his take on the 80/20 rule is that for social success, it’s more like 90/10. That means 90% of your content marketing should be about customers and only 10% about your products. As the brains behind the Salesforce strategy, Flanagan’s job is “to produce transformational marketing that attracts visitors naturally through mediums like search engines, the blogosphere, and social media.”

The Salesforce strategy has been able to generate leads by building — and effectively promoting, through multiple channels — a “content-rich micro-site” valued by the target market. Flanagan decided to use four different content types: created (original content created from scratch), curated (round-up style content), collaborative (content contributed by relevant thought leaders) and legacy (re-purposed and repackaged content).

The result? During the first month after implementation, the company saw the following gains: January traffic was up 80% when compared to January of the previous year. Social media traffic was up 2,500%, there were 6,500 newsletter signups, and 10,000 ebook downloads. This effectively translated to 10,000 leads.

2. Cisco: Focuses on the Cloud and Mobile

After a rough couple of years, Cisco is managing a turnaround that, according to Shaw Woo, senior technology analyst at Sterne Agee, is under-appreciated.

In an August 16th CNBC interview, Woo stated that the network equipment vendor’s turnaround was accomplished by “taking advantage of the cloud [and] taking advantage of mobile.” Cisco’s CEO, John Chambers, is said to have set a precedent by changing the company’s strategy. He lowered the cost structure, making the company more competitive. He also made it more “shareholder-friendly” by committing to return at least half of the company’s profits to shareholders.

In that same spirit, the company is publishing a collection of My Networked Life video documentaries, a series it bills as “true stories from a connected world.” The videos, published on the Cisco website and publicized through its social media pages, tell the “personal” and “powerful” stories of “how young professionals, entrepreneurs, artists, and students are using connected technology to achieve goals and realize dreams.” This is just one more way the company is reinforcing its “human” image.

The company also made a calculated switch from conventional advertising to brand journalism, which is helping consumers envision the potential improvements Cisco’s products and services can bring to their lives.

3. Dell: Takes a Multi-Layered Approach

Founded in 1984, Dell has become a force to be reckoned with in the computer sales market, and it has done so, in large part, through savvy inbound marketing practices. While its marketing strategy has always beenmultilayered, the computer giant has always encouraged customer feedback and participation in its product development. Today it is not only announcing new products on its Facebook page and engaging fans by asking questions and encouraging them to click “like” on its posts, it’s also addressing their need for knowledge through a blog, newsletter and a glossy magazine.

The company is also making the most of the video medium by featuring a growing collection of videos on its Facebook page, tweeting about them on Twitter and promoting them on other social media.

Dell is also leveraging mobile technology to attract greater response to its marketing emails. By adding the mobile element to its standard desktop marketing email and making significant changes to its mobile email version, Dell managed to garner an impressive five-fold increase in downloads of the app the day the emails went out.

4. GE: Focuses on Experts, Ingenuity and Innovation

When GE reinvented its marketing in 2011, much of its effort focused on several disciplines that today would be considered critical components of inbound marketing. These included strategy and innovation, branding and communications, value creation and pricing.

One key strategy the company embraced in its new marketing mix was the practice of highlighting its experts and the critical role they play in bringing GE products to market. Currently, the company is reinforcing that focus by featuring links to its experts’ Twitter profiles on the GE homepage under the heading “Meet the People Who Make GE Work.”

For the past year, the company has also sponsored an online magazine called Txchnologist, which it describes on its About Us page as offering “an optimistic, but not utopian, take on the future and humanity’s ability to tackle the great challenges of our era through industry, technology and ingenuity.”

The company also posts periodic videotaped interviews with its experts, via the Txchnologist YouTube channel. Again, this is meant to reinforce the expert element, although its videos don’t appear to be posted frequently enough to play as significant a role in its inbound marketing strategy as Dell’s do.

5. Starbucks: Works on Connecting with Customers

Starbucks is all about “connecting,” whether that’s chatting with a customer over a steaming latte, interacting with fans on the company’s Facebook page or posting fascinating photos on Instagram. The well-known coffee chain has effectively created an emotional connection with its customers. In countries like the U.K. and Ireland, this connection made the company’s recent campaign to have its baristas start connecting with customers on a first-name basis that much smoother. The company launched the campaign with a promotion promising customers a free latte to come in and introduce themselves.

Starbucks, a pioneer in mobile advertising, is clearly savvy about connecting in more ways than just in person and online. Named Mobile Marketer of the year in 2010, the company launched an app the following year that accepted mobile payments and, less than a year later, saw 26 million mobile transactions, with mobile devices accounting for $110 million worth of funds reloaded to customers’ Starbucks cards.

Starbucks is also making the most of the features and functions of its social networks to grow its fan base and maximize likes, shares and re-tweets. All these digital word-of-mouth marketing opportunities help Starbucks get found by a growing audience that, on Twitter, currently exceeds 2.8 million followers and, on Facebook, has registered more than 31.5 million likes to the company’s business page.

And, speaking of social, the company’s strong focus on social responsibility hasn’t hurt its popularity either. In short, the gentle corporate coffee giant has become the company everybody loves to love.

 

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Twitter to Earn More Mobile Ad Revenue Than Facebook This Year [REPORT]

Twitter may have a ways to go until it matches Facebook’s valuation, but at least in one crucial segment — mobile advertising — it appears to be besting its larger rival.

A report from eMarketer estimates that Twitter will hit $129.7 million in U.S. mobile ad revenues this year compared to $72 million for Facebook.

However, Twitter’s advantage in the mobile ad space won’t last for long. According to eMarketer’s predictions, Facebook’s ad revenue will grow five-fold to $387 million in 2013, beating Twitter’s take by more than $100 million. This would make Facebook the second highest mobile ad earner behind Google.

eMarketer’s predictions offer some hope for investors who are concerned about whether Facebook will figure out its mobile advertising strategy. As the research firm points out in the report, Facebook only launched its first mobile ad units in June and still has plenty of room to grow.

“Mobile is a long-term play for Facebook, and by next year, eMarketer expects the social networking giant to beat out Twitter by a significant margin, taking in $387 million on mobile in the US.,” the firm wrote in its report. Concerns about Facebook’s ability to monetize its platform as users shift to mobile has bedeviled the company’s IPO. The company’s stock has fallen about 50% since it went public in May. However Facebook’s current $41 billion market cap is still more than four times that of Twitter’s.

Despite investor skepticism, both Facebook and Twitter have already seen some promise in their early mobile advertising efforts. Twitter CEO Dick Costolo noted earlier this year that the company has generated more revenue from mobile ads than desktop ads on certain days. Meanwhile, a report in June found that Facebook’s mobile ads earn two and a half times more than desktop ads.

Overall, eMarketer predicts the mobile advertising market will hit $2.61 billion this year in the U.S. and grow to a $12 billion industry in 2016 due largely to companies like Facebook and Twitter.

 

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