The Appalachian State Mountaineers have just unveiled a new logo and it looks like a deranged Simpsons version of Abe Lincoln. What were they thinking?
On Monday, Appalachian State University unveiled an official new secondary logo for the school's athletic department: a disastrous figure that looks like a Simpsons rendering of Abraham Lincoln’s drunken evil twin. Probably drawn in Microsoft Paint, it shows a grumpy, frowny old man smoking a corncob pipe and with a top hat hiding his bald yellow head. This character’s name is “Victory Yosef,” but his face is the picture of defeat. .
Mobile devices have made it possible for people to shop anywhere, anytime, and apparently, they’re taking advantage. According to Millward Brown Digital, people who shop from their mobiles visit more retailer sites than those who shop from their PCs (6.2 retailer visits per month on mobiles versus 2.9 on PCs). Mobile shoppers also use search engines and social media sites more than PC shoppers do. With all that opportunity to capture mobile purchases (or lose them to rivals), there’s all the more reason for retailers to make sure their mobile strategy is airtight.
If one thing needs to happen in 2014, it’s that brands must get content right. Content is the lifeline into the digital ecosystem. It’s how we reach consumers, break through the clutter and change their behavior. It’s pretty obvious, I know.
What’s not so obvious though is that we need to elevate the conversation beyond just the content marketing insanity.
Deanna Dahlsad's insight:
Finally, an article that gets to the questions which must be addressed by brand before they hop onto the curation band wagon.
Content marketers appear to think that the word content is equivalent to the word article. It is not, there is so much more to content than articles.
Deanna Dahlsad's insight:
Jones also misses a major point. When he says people want "content in a myriad of forms – articles, yes, but also they want items in print, they want online lectures, they want ebooks, podcasts and more", he forgets one very important factor: We are not after "people", we are after a target market. So, really, the first thing to address is what kind(s) of content does your target market want?
It has long been a mystery to me why more mainstream products that are sold to porn-watching adults are afraid to advertise on porn websites. Porn advertising is dirt cheap, and so you’d think that any brand that’s not afraid to admit its customers also like porn would be all over the porn website world with huge ad campaigns. Whiskey and cigarette advertisers used to buy endless full-page ads in PlayBoy and Hustler back in the day; why don’t they now?
Thus I was both heartened and pleased to see that one of the online food-delivery startups has not only taken to porn site advertising, they’ve blogged in detail about why they did it and how well it worked:
Pantene Breaks Down Every Sexist Workplace Stereotype in One Ad TIME PrenticeMathewPorter 5pts. This is precisely the kind of ad that takes the tone that many men in support of the feminist movement will resent.
Content or Conversion Ecommerce (B2C) merchants are narrowing the "content marketing" gap with their B2B cousins, but the old left/right brain problem remains. Ecommerce requires a strange synergy between right brain creativity (design, merchandising, visualization) and left-brain science (analytics, metrics, KPIs).
If you asked me the greatest challenge from my 7 year Ecommerce Director tenure it would be finding ways to win on both sides of the content - conversion Rubicon.
When we thought we had the content dial just right it would tank our conversion metrics. Each time we thought we had conversion set up perfect our "content" metrics like pages viewed, time on site and bounce rates would disintegrate.
Finding the tiny balance beam between CONTENT's heuristic benefits (more time on site, better engagement, more Lifetime Value, better quality User Generated Content and more of it) and conversion's MONEY was hellish.
Scoop.it To The Rescue If you run a multi-million dollars ecommerce website and aren't using Scoop.it you’re nuts. There is NO faster content feedback tool than Scoop.it (period, full stop).
Here are ways I would be using this magic wand of a tool if I was still responsible for more than $6M in online sales yearly:
* Test contest and game ideas. * Test Q&A content (most shared WINS a page). * Find and empower brand advocates (buzz team).
* Watch competitors like a HAWK (with keyword tool).
* Watch my key brands like a HAWK (also with keyword tool). * Ask for help (amazing talent in Scoop.it community). * Reward previous helpers with Scoop.it profiles and long thank you notes). * Copy Scoop.it's brilliant soft gamification and leader boards.
* Crack the API and find ways to build curation as a "channel" with a P&L, a budget and distinct goals. * Partner with the Scoop.it team to find common points and tap their community for "testing before you test" ideas.
* Look to create an uncapped incentive plan with Scoop.it team to weigh, measure and value traffic and conversions from the channel and PAY THEM a % of the action they create.
This last bullet is worth MILLIONS . Instead of simply thinking about the very cool curation tool I would set up "content curation" as a marketing channel with a budget. Next I would call Guillaume and Marc and ask to meet in SF.
At that meeting I would pitch a mutually beneficial partnership. Instead of approaching the partnership in a static way I would pitch the Scoop.it team on a more flexible and uncapped arrangement. If the "commons" we create together produced millions projected then Scoop.it gets a sizable "affiliate-like" commission.
If I were running LLBean.com, Target.com or especially B&N.com I would be all over Scoop.it in 2014. RedEnvelope.com is an even better example. When I created FoundObjects.com in the late 1990s (now gone sadly) RedEnvelope was the cool kid on the block.
Now RedEnvelope.com is being destroyed.
They can't compete against the User Generated Content of Estsy.com or the scale of Amazon. They are in the middle where NO ONE SURVIVES.
Crack the top of that website and reinvent it with the help of a cool tool like Scoop.it or RedEnvelope.com will reach the point of diminishing return where every order costs more to ship than it makes (ouch).
If you are developing your ecommerce plan for 2014 and you aren't thinking about Scoop.it LOOK OUT.
Holiday season shopping officially kicks off this week with Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Historically around...
Deanna Dahlsad's insight:
The best thing about this night-before-the-holiday article is that it is short. That should have been on the list. Because during the holiday season we don't have the same amount of time to read. This time of year, I always advise shorter posts, published with greater frequency, for my clients who are pushing holiday merch. Shorter posts have a better chance of getting read -- so long as they get to the point quickly. And more frequent posts means that your great content doesn't get buried at the bottom of timelines and readers.
I disagree with the first point as a "never"; your approach depends entirely on your product/service, your audience, and the platform you are using.
Points 2 & 3 are ships that already sailed for this season.
The statement about the 36% of U.S. consumers say is a bit misleading... Even when you read the Adobe Digital Index article (under the "With social, it’s all about the purchasing journey" heading) it's far more complicated than that; see points 2 & 3.
This summer I went hiking several times in California’s Eastern Sierra. Each time I went I counted the number of male to female hikers and ended up with a 5:1 ratio. This reflects many women’s experience of the wilderness and outdoor sports such as rock climbing or mountaineering. These are male-dominated arenas.
One of the reasons for that is because these activities are advertised to women as an escape from their stressful lives, not as a sport meant to challenge their physical ability. Outdoors equipment marketed towards women, then, consistently focuses on comfort and style, in contrast to men’s marketing.
Many of us spend our days brainstorming, formulating and deliberating how we can create the best content for our brands or organizations. But we spend much less time focusing on the audiences that will be consuming those great content ideas. It’s not so much the number of followers we have on each of our platforms, but whether or not they are the right followers.
Deanna Dahlsad's insight:
A link round up to illustrate the point about "the right audience" in terms of social media. However, this does not address how organic SEO, i.e. well written content, helps bring the right audience by meeting the needs of those searching.