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App Sh*t Nuts!

untitledFlurry recently released data showing that app usage is up in 2014 while mobile web surfing is down. What does this mean for businesses? Some businesses are utilizing apps in their marketing strategy by turning to sites like  Goupon & Living Social , these are the mobile apps that allow users to search for deals. By using the data of previous purchases and location,  businesses are able to offer special deals to their target market. Mircosoft used these sites to send a five dollar coupon to “wealthy educated women who bought family-orientated deals” after they watched a video. When looking at consumers who retail online, 10%  are  acpinkcessing retailers using web and apps.  When looking at the current top apps, most are still gaming, however some companies are taking the app bull by the horns including eBay, Amazon, Victoria’s Secret , and Walgreens. All of these companies are on the top ten of the iTunes free lifestyle apps.  The most interesting app in the category would be the Victoria’s Secret app because it is such a narrow market. The Victoria’s Secret’s app is constantly being updated with version 4.1 posted on February 20th 2014. The app allows you to start an account, store your information, shop and receive exclusive offers. These are all excellent things to have in the app and the app is very easy to navigate. They offer another app for their Pink brand. While you cannot find any hard data on how many times the apps have been downloaded to a mobile device in  iTunes, the Victoria’s Secret & Pink Nation apps have over 10,000 reviews. The Pink Nation app recently had an in-app scavenger hunt that had consumers looking for the letter P-I-N-K within the app to receive a sweet treat from the company. This is an excellent way to get consumers familiar with the app which was launched originally in 2011 and was last updated February 7th 2014. Most consumers turn to their apps for entertainment purposes, so the scavenger hunt was a great way to get consumers to play a “game” on their phones but also become familiar with the Pink brand. This works great for their target market of college aged women. I wonder if they could find a similar way to get the older women interested in the Victoria’s  Secret Brand to play on the Victoria’s Secret App. Apps are where consumers are headed and it is important that your company is there to greet them.

Is Email Dead?

With everyone  connecting on Facebook, texting, Tweeting and sharing photos on Instagram you would think that email is dead and no longer in the  marketing tool belt. Is the oldest way to share content dying off? Business Insider and Bloomberg BusinessWeek bloggers would have you believinmodelg yes, emailing is a dying tool. Business Insider points to the low rate of individuals opening their email, Gmail even has a tool that sends promotional emails to their own folder outside of the general inbox folder.  Bloomberg points to the lack of collaboration offered by your standard email, millennial generation  spending more time on Instagram uploading photos of their breakfast than checking their email and the difficulties of sharing  content from an email.  Marketer Paul Jorgensen suggest that email is not dead offering stats like the ROI of email being 4,300%  due to the low cost of sending an email, he also points to the fact that 64% of decision makers read emails on their mobile phones with only 32% of Marketers not having a stratezombie-opera-not-dead-yetgy to optimize email on a mobile device. Social Media Today also adds the fact that having a social sharing button on the email increases click through rates by 158% . With this information it is clear that our oldest online media sharing method is transforming. People want to share deals and information with their family and friends, this is a hassle via email, also sending to many offers begins to clog the recipients inbox and can become overwhelming and lead to a decrease in opening.  To bring email to the new age we will see marketers begin to add a social sharing button to emails, they will integrate email into the marketing mix, possibly warning customers of deals coming to their email, and we should also see emails becoming more mobile friendly because this is how consumers are accessing the information.

Oh Snap!?

untitledSnap Chat is an app that was launched in September of 2011 and has 26 million U.S users as of October 28th 2013. The app allows users to send photos and videos to their friends that are automatically deleted after being viewed. You can also add a picture or video to your “story” which allows friend to view the snap for twenty –four hours. Businesses are trying to figure out how to use it to their advantage. Mashable recently interviewed the organization Do Something whose target demographic is young adults, they felt that snap chat was a good tool to utilize more Cupid-Snaps-2-640x319interaction with their market. In the campaign discussed in the interview Do Something discusses how the uploaded pictures into their story that encouraged users text key words to decide the fate of one of their team member’s Valentines Day. I think this was a campaign to strengthen the bond between the organization and its followers, giving them a face to think of when thinking of the organization.

A business who recently tried something new was the New York yogurt chain 16 Handles who recently gave customers a coupon via Snap CimagesCAE79UI2hat, the coupon had to be opened at the cash register to see how steep the discount would be some received 100% off their purchase, this was a great tactic because at this point you already have their business and the only way for them to see the discount would be to come into the yogurt shop. This app has the possibility to really boost business because it gives direct contact to their “friends” on Snap Chat and because consumers know that what is sent to them is only viewable for a few seconds it gives the business the consumers full attention for a few seconds. The trick to Snap Chat is that you must intergrade it into your other social media because the consumer must add the company to their friends list. Last year Taco Bell announced on their Twitter that were on snap chat and gave followers the name to add into their friends list on the app, the use this platform to release information on their release of the crunchy taco. You can use Snap Chat in a way to stay fully connected with your audience for a couple seconds.

How Useful is Facebook

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My Facebook News Feed has exploded recently with small businesses trying to get me to tap “like” on their page. What effect does that really have their business? Sure everyone is on Facebook and you want to stay connected to your customer base but are there any down sides to using this social media giant?

untitledrwqerqeOne case study about the New Zealand Company, The Sleep Store discussed the positive affects that Facebook had on their business. The Sleep Store is an online only business that focuses on helping individuals sleep. The Sleep Store decided to participate on Facebook in 2010 by sharing articles and other content relevant to their store, holding drawing when the page reached a certain amount of “likes” and by tying the Facebook page to their existing website. They reported a huge increase in sales, and traffic to both sites which eventually lead to them having to hire more staff. It’s clear that Facebook is a useful tool that has the possibility to increase profit and sales for a company.

untitledWhen looking at the negative side of Facebook, you are in the public eye. This means be careful about not only what you say but how you say it. It opens your company up to negative comments from unhappy consumers, so you must learn to deal with those comments in a respectable way while protecting your brand image. Facebook has also changed its structure so that in order for your posts to be seen by all of those who “liked” your page you must pay more money. This could be bad for businesses who have a limited budget. As Elan Dekel puts it, “Our biggest disappointment was our misunderstanding of how Facebook Pages work. Instead of building a database of users that you can contact at will, you are essentially paying Facebook to build a list of people that you can then advertise to.” Some tips that I would suggest for business looking to join the Facebook world would be 1)Be human, interact with your customers they took the time to like your page. 2) Timing is key, there are times people are more likely to read the content you post 3) Do not Spam your fans, fans will unlike a page if your content becomes too much. Personally I think its best to only post one post every 1-3 days. While I am sure there are a million other tips to add I believer this are the most essential. Feel free to share more below.

Coca-Cola vs Pepsi on Facebook

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It’s no doubt that Pepsi and Coca-Cola are competitors, the way that both of the competitors run their Facebook pages are pretty different.

Both of the pages are constantly being updated every two to three days and both of these pages use photos, questions, and contests to keep the public involved. Coke just finished up their #CokeGames Contest which allowed participants to enter videos of them participating in different games Coca-Cola made up involving the Olympics.
Coke Games

Pepsi posts photos and asks it’s followers questions opposed to asking followers to participate in contests. They try to get conversations going about the lives of those who follow their page, trying to get a deeper connection between Pepsi an their consumers pep

When you look at these two different techniques and the stats of the pages it looks like Coca-Cola seems to be winning with their Facebook page reporting 79,759,125 likes and 526,718 talking about Coca-Cola Pepsi’s Facebook page reports 31,502,083 likes and 152,845 talking about Pepsi.