Let’s Get Social!

Hello, my name is Alexa, and I am one of the new interns here at The Weinstein Organization.  I have been brought on board to work on one of our client’s social media campaigns.

To say the least, I live in a social world. Social media is apart of my every day life, and it always has been. There is not a day that goes by when I am not present in both the real world and the “online” or social networking world.  Whenever I am neglected access to social media, whether I’m on a plane, my phone dies, or whatever the circumstance, I always feel as if I’m completely out of the loop and missing out on the latest news. My generation is ALWAYS “online” living a second, virtual life, through the click of a button.

To better explain how much I use social media on a day-to-day basis I am going to describe to you a normal week in my life.

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Stop Following Me

Written by Julie Determann - Account Supervisor

Yes, no doubt about it stalkers are very creepy, but what about those advertisers who use behavioral targeting and retargeting online… Are they creepy or smart? Is this fair game or a breach of your privacy?

Most of us have received online, targeted advertising, although you may not have realized it. Remember that banner ad that ironically surfaced the very next day after you went online to research the product? Or, how surprised you were when you received that email about the books you abandoned in your online shopping cart – Yes, they are watching your online moves, habits and tendencies.

Online website publishers and advertisers use behavioral targeting to capture information about you by monitoring your online visits to various websites and landing pages.  They can detect how long you were on the site, the pages viewed, the links clicked on and the subjects searched. This new found knowledge allows them to target messages and increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns. They compile the information to build a customer and prospect profile. The data is linked to each individual’s browser. Every time you use the same browser, they track, bait, and serve you a targeted ad.

As much as I hate being followed, from my biased marketing perspective, this is an ingenious idea. I mean talk about being in the right place at the right time! What better way to spend your marketing dollars than on prospective customers who have already shown a definite interest in your product or service. It’s not only cost-effective, but it is customer-service oriented. The ads being displayed contain relevant information to meet online shoppers’ needs. As advertisers, we are just simply assisting them with their search, like that “helpful” sales lady in the retail store, by putting the items right in front of their face. After that it’s really completely their choice on whether or not they want to click on the ad, learn more or make a purchase.

A Good Opportunity for Direct Marketers?

With the 2012 London Olympics around the corner businesses from all over are incorporating the games in their marketing.  While 1964 Tokyo Olympics introduced live satellite television broadcasts and the 1996 saw the first dedicated webpages, the 2012 London Olympics promises to be the Olympics of social media with the ability of fans and athletes to interact with each other.

If you are thinking of tying into the Olympics there are some very harsh rules to protect sponsors who have paid a minimum of $7.8 million (5 million pounds).  The use of words like “games” or “2012” combined with “London”, “summer”, “medals” or “gold” could open you up to some hefty fines.

For direct marketers seeking a short-term promotional connection to the Olympics consider social media. Use blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest to start a dialogue on events, key match-ups, athlete interviews, TV coverage or anything you can use to eventually link to your business and engage more potential customers.

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JC Penney Brings Sales Back.

By Shopping Enthusiast, Kara Monson

In early 2012 JC Penney decided to simplify their retail pricing strategy and offer “month long values”. This new approach replaced the coupons and sales historically run at JC Penney, modeled similar to the WalMart everyday low price system. The promotional advertisement materials and deals would run for a month’s time and it was supposed to be that easy.

After all, under the direction of new CEO and former SVP of Retail Operations at Apple, Ron Johnson, the company had high hopes for success. Under his leadership, JC Penney has made many changes. In addition to the pricing structure, the logo, branding and advertisement styles have all changed.

Changes in high level staffing may also be shifting, per the latest news update. Just this week after announcing declines in revenue by 40%, Johnson announced the “sales” message will once again return to JC Penney. Despite 40% lower prices for merchandise than one year ago, customers still aren’t choosing to shop at JC Penney.

While JC Penney should be commended for taking a unique stand against other competing retailers, they seem to also recognize when they need to revise their strategy as their customers demand. Today’s consumers want to feel like they are getting a deal. Price matters. Coupons are cool again, courtesy of daily deals sites and newspaper coupon clipping. The new JC Penney three-tiered pricing strategy may be confusing customers who may not want to take the time to understand it and can instead be lured to another competitor’s 20% off sale.

JC Penney was founded over 100 years ago. They have weathered decades and many economic climates before. To stay in business, hopefully the decision to advertise “sales” brings the people back too.

Is Pinterest Changing The Way We Look At Websites?

Written by Chris Czachor - Account Executive

I just read an article about how Mashable recently conducted a study in which they tracked the eye movements of 600 participants looking at various Pinterest pages and the results were quite interesting.

When people look at websites they tend to look up into the left corner of the screen and then move their way down and across the site.  If you think about it for a second, that is why most companies have their logo in the upper left corner, or for social media sites you can see the person's profile picture and information.  Facebook and Twitter are set up like this as are most web-based email providers and even Outlook for that matter.  The fact is, this is pretty much the standard way things work for websites until Pinterest came into the picture (pun intended).  There were a few interesting takeaways from the article that I wanted to share as they tend to go against the common way people view sites:

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