From Seth G: “On buying unmeasurable media”

Posted by John Park on Oct 28th, 2010
Oct 28

This is an especially well written piece from Seth.  Food for thought as you plan for 2011.

On buying unmeasurable media

Should you invest in TV, radio, billboards and other media where you can’t measure whether your ad works? Is an ad in New York magazine worth 1,000 times as much as a text link on Google? If you’re doing the comparison directly, that’s how much extra you’re paying if you’re only measuring direct web visits…

One school of thought is to measure everything. If you can’t measure it, don’t do it. This is the direct marketer method and there’s no doubt it can work.

There’s another thought, though: Most businesses (including your competitors) are afraid of big investments in unmeasurable media. Therefore, if you have the resources and the guts, it’s a home run waiting to be hit.

Ralph Lauren is a billion dollar brand. Totally unmeasurable. So are Revlon, LVMH, Donald Trump, Anderson Windows, Lady Gaga and hundreds of other mass market brands.

There are two things you should never do:

1)  Try to measure unmeasurable media and use that to make decisions. You’ll get it wrong. Sure, some sophisticated marketers get good hints from their measurements, but it’s still an art, not a science.

2)  Compromise on your investment. Small investments in unmeasurable media almost always fail. Go big or stay home.

And if you’re selling unmeasurable media? Don’t try to sell to people who are obsessed with measuring. You’ll waste your time and annoy the prospect at the same time.


Oct 12

milk mustache

If I see one more “Got Milk?” ripoff, I might very well lose it!
I was at the airport last week and sure enough a lady in front of me was wearing a shirt that said “Got Hog?”.  The shirt had a picture of a Harley Davidson motorcycle on it.  Never mind that Harley Davidson probably didn’t approve this shirt but it made me think about why a successful slogan should not be copied or ripped off.
When a brand or a slogan becomes wildly successful, it eventually becomes an identifier for what it is representing.  The slogan becomes inherently affiliated and it becomes one with the product.  If you can achieve this, you’ve succeeded as a marketer.
Every time we hear “Got Whatever?”, what we all first think about is milk.  In fact, we might even go far as to picture a milk commercial or a print ad.  The “whatever” that is being promoted becomes a secondary thought.  Why would you want your product to be a secondary thought?
So, my message… BE ORIGINAL and wipe that milk mustache off your face.

Until Next Time…

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The T-Mobile Dance… Just Really Fun to Watch!

Posted by John Park on Aug 18th, 2009
Aug 18

One of my clients passed this along to me and I just love it.  It’s another successfully produced viral business video.  The importance of this particular video is that T-Mobile has successfully connected their brand to the video.  It isn’t just funny or shocking, it actually supports the brand in a magical way–right down to the slogan.  See if you can count how many times they’ve managed to connect the brand to the actual video.  HINT:  How many people are holding a cell phone to their face?

Until Next Time…

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How Sticky is Your Business Web Site? — PART 1

Posted by John Park on Apr 1st, 2009
Apr 1

Sticky Web Site Content

First my apologies for not posting in a while.  There are hundreds of you now generating over a thousand page views a day.  I am also happy to report that my little blog has also been picked up for syndication on a few notable web sites around the Internet.  I am hoping this means you are finding my posts to be informative and helpful.
Like you, I also head a business and things got a little crazy in March.  The good news is that the economy seems to be thawing a bit.  It’s not necessarily getting better but maybe consumers and businesses are slowly realizing that business and life needs to go on.
Today, I want to discuss with you the idea of making your business web site “STICKY.”  Yes, I know.  The Internet generates a lot of funny marketing phrases.  In this case the word sticky is very appropriate.  If how much business you generate from a web site is important to you, this is a post you must read.
Many of you are probably reviewing your web site traffic statistics on a fairly regular basis—I hope.  Reviewing how many people visited your web site is not enough and just willfully accepting a low web site visitor to lead/sale conversion at any poor ratio should be unacceptable.  As an example, if it takes 100 visitors to your web site to get one solid lead, you should be always asking the following.  “How can I get more leads and sales for the same amount of traffic?”
Unfortunately, this is not the question often asked by business owners.  The question often becomes “How can I get more traffic to my web site?”  More traffic is important as well but it’s the visitor to lead/sale ratio that is more important.  A sound way to better your current ratio is to make your web site more sticky.
Sticky is basically the web site marketing tactic of turning an anonymous web site visitor into an identified web site visitor.  Instead of having hundreds or thousands of people come and go without making any contact with you, sticky is a way to turn some of those “ghosts” in to real prospects and sales.
( Making a Web Site Sticky – The Basics )
1.  PROFESSIONAL WEB SITE:  Your web site has to look professional at first glance.  The days of do-it-yourself web sites are gone.  Do you make your own furniture for your lobby area?  Do you make your own copier?  You get what I mean.  On the WWW, perception is reality.  Whether we like it or not, we all size up a business by the look and professionalism of their web site.  A poorly designed web site is one of the fastest ways to get someone to click away from your web site.
2.  CLARITY OF CONTENT:  Don’t you hate it when you land on a web site and you have no idea what they do or offer?  Your web site content should clearly communicate the services and products you offer.  Your navigation must be simple and direct so that your visitors find it easy and intuitive to navigate your web site.  If it requires more than 2 clicks to get to the information they need, this situation will start them down the path of frustration and thus a departure from your web site.
3)  FLASH ANIMATION INTRODUCTIONS:  Get rid of it.  No one wants to view it a second time.  Deep down inside, you know they always click the skip introduction.  In fact, you probably do this on your own web site if you have a flash introduction.  Name for me one Fortune 1000 company that uses a flash introduction in lieu of an actual homepage.
( Making a Web Site Sticky – Intermediate )
1.  RESOURCES IN EXCHANGE FOR INFO:  Allow visitors to download or takeaway resources from your web site in exchange for some basic contact information.  For example, an online Halloween costume store might offer a free Trick or Treating Safety Check List for download from their web site.  The user just needs to input 2 or 3 bits of information in order to download the document.  The document or whatever they download should also be branded with your company information.  The difficult part is to make sure that whatever you are offering is truly useful for your web site visitors.  For example, you should not do this with your company brochure.  It has to be truly useful from the visitor’s perspective.
2.  SUBSCRIPTIONS:  Allow your visitors to subscribe to an email newsletter, your blog or other forms of on-going communication like RSS feeds.  Again, it’s important to clearly communicate a value proposition.  I often come across web sites that ask me to sign-up for their email newsletters without letting me know why I should.  If I sign-up, what can I expect?  For example, an insurance company that deals with workers compensation issues might offer the incentive of keeping all of their subscribers updated on the latest workers compensation regulations.  There is always something your prospects are interested in having or knowing.  Many of you are reading this post because you have signed up for my RSS feeds or posts via email.  As result, you are sticking with my web site.
3.  MEMBERS AREA:  This is one of those tactics which require a serious commitment.  If you’re up to it, you can include a members area on your web site.  Access will only be given to registered members. I say this takes commitment because you have to update your members area with new and fresh content on a fairly regular basis.  Otherwise, you will just lose all your members over time.  Typically, you can collect more information when you are requiring registrations for a members area.  The most effective approach I’ve seen to date is when a web site offers something of value in a members area for free.
4.  INTERACTIVE TOOLS:  Work with your web developer or license interactive tools for your web site.  For a little bit of information, you can give your web site visitors full access to these online tools.  An example might be a Financial Planning Service offering a series of financial planning calculators on their web site.  Have you ever filled out one of those “how much money do I need to retire” calculators online?  These interactive tools are also a great reason for visitors to return and for other web sites to link to your web site.
5.  SOCIAL MEDIA:  With the prevalence of free social media platforms, you can also utilize these membership driven tools to make your web site more sticky.  Including a blog to give your visitors a reason to return or subscribe, adding a Face Book, My Space, or Linkin so that you can connect with your prospects in a more informal setting, developing a YouTube channel for your business and developing a complete social network platform utilizing Ning are just a few tools available to you.  I know… I will post separately in the near future about utilizing social media to market your business.
If you are a regular reader of my posts, you know that my goal is not to overwhelm you with more items to add on your “To Do List.”  Utilizing and implementing any of the above specific marketing tactics will make your web site more sticky.  The goal, at the end of the day, is to make your web site more sticky in order to garner more leads and sales without always focusing on more traffic.  In Part 2, I will focus on taking “STICKY” to the next level—a bit of Marketing Crazy Glue.
Until Next Time…

Low Cost & Quick To Implement Marketing Ideas

Posted by John Park on Mar 12th, 2009
Mar 12

low cost marketing ideas

I am always being asked about low cost and quick to implement marketing ideas by my business owner clients.  And because we are in uncertain times, speed and cost certainly are mission-critical considerations.  For this reason, I have compiled the following list for my readers.  All of these ideas have been implemented by me or on behalf of my clients with great success.  My goal with this list is to keep the cost of each idea or initiative down to $200 or less.  A few of the marketing ideas are completely free (aside from your time).
Many of these initiatives are what I consider “in the street” back to the basics ideas.  No business is above them if their existing business environment is suitable for any of these strategies.  Now is not the time to protect those fragile and proud egos.
Wallet Keepers:  Print informative content on a card.  The information should be good enough for your prospects to want to keep in their wallets.  Think this through.  How can you take up permanent real estate in someone’s wallet?  The low hanging fruit ideas are calendars and tip charts.  Be creative and try to be specific to your industry.
Line of Sight:  This is a strategy to display your promotional materials in your prospects’ line of sight.  It can start with a simple brochure display in your lobby to poster signs in heavy traffic areas.  For example a self-storage company might want to put up an ad poster in every aisle of the storage units promoting peripheral services and products.  Look around.  Where are your prospects and customers spending time?  Do you have any of your marketing collateral there?
Invoice Stuffers:  How many bills do you send out a month?  Existing customers are your best bets for a quick revenue boost.  Print an envelope size mini-flyer promoting a new product or service.  Offer an incentive or a special offer just for them.  Most of your customers do not know about everything you do or offer.  Invoice stuffers are a wonderful way to generate new inquiries from your existing customer base.
Premise Signs:  This is a basic tactic but it still works.  Print a banner or a yard sign.  If you are near drive-by traffic and you offer a product or service that is suitable for this kind of promotion, use this timeless tool.  If your location is at a corner deep inside a center or an office park, put up a simple yard sign near the entrance that points to you and your offers.  During these times, your landlords aren’t going to fight you on signs.  They don’t want your business to fail.
Car Magnets & Decals:  Do you drive?  Do you have drivers?  Slap some magnets on the doors.  If you have a web site, post your web address on your rear car window.  Again, this is not a time to be self-conscious.  Don’t keep your business a secret.  Get out there and tell everyone what you do for a living.  Offer your employees an incentive to do the same.  If you’ve got some team players, they’ll want to do this without the incentive.
Branded Clothing, Hats:  These days you can print branded shirts, hats and other wearables in small quantities.  Just search online for companies printing low quantities.  Wear your business proud.  How about a “company colors” day where everyone wears company-branded shirts?  Take everyone out to a team lunch and give out a $50 gift certificate to the most enthusiastic team player.  Doing something like this will not only promote your business, it can also increase morale.
Free Online Listings:  Go to the following key online directories and list your business for free.
Free Online Classifieds:  Go to these widely used national classifieds web sites and post your service or product for free.
Search Engine Indexing:  If you have a web site, go to these top 3 search engines and submit your web site.  Be found online.
I hope my list inspires you to take action today.  Marketing doesn’t always have to be about strategic planning, branding and other mental paralysis causing endeavors.  Sometimes, it is just about quick action with a “Whatever It Takes” attitude.  There are many good reasons why Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan became one of the best advertising campaigns of all time.

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