Archive for October, 2012

In Bid to Go Global, Cadillac Shifts Advertising Dollars to Digital

As GM attempts to take the Cadillac brand global, its ad spending is going digital.

Cadillac has moved 25% of its marketing spending into digital platforms from 17% three years ago as it uses online advertising to build its global brand around its BMW-fighting ATS sedan, said Don Butler, VP-U.S. marketing for Cadillac, between sessions at the JD Power Automotive Marketing Summit in Las Vegas on Wednesday.

“We’re using digital to do things we couldn’t do 15 years ago in terms of establishing and our place and our voice” abroad, Mr. Butler said.

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Why Advertisers and Publishers Should Care That Apple’s ‘iPad Mini’ Is More Mobile

Apple on Tuesday introduced the iPad Mini — a 7.9-inch tablet starting at $329 that is closer in size to the Kindle Fire HD and the Google Nexus 7 than previous versions of the iPad. Now advertisers and publishers that focus on Apple devices have a new complexity to consider: a truly mobile Apple tablet.

The Mini’s resolution is the same as the iPad 2, Apple said, and apps made for other iPads will render correctly on the smaller device. But its essential portability is still significant. Up to now, advertisers have talked about how iPads are typically used in a lean-back setting; Apple ads even pictured users’ feet up. That, in turn, has informed the type of ads that marketers distribute to tablets: often magazine-style, whole-screen takeovers and ads that drive people to e-commerce experiences made for browsing.

At the other side of the spectrum are advertising strategies for mobile phones, which are focusing more and more on location data, with the belief that the person viewing the phone is on the move and looking for something to do or buy.

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Twitter Hires Agency Relations Chief From Google

Twitter is signaling to agencies that it’s all grown up and ready to service them the way the likes of Google and AOL do.

The company has hired a new director of agency business development, former Google exec Matt Derella, who oversaw the company’s relationship with Publicis, the world’s third-largest holding company by revenue.

Google has invested considerable resources into improving its image at agencies after building its fortune largely as a self-service advertising platform. Publicis has close ties to Google and uses its DoubleClick Bid Manager for much of its targeted ad buying. Now Mr. Derella will be tasked with establishing relationships at other ad holding companies on Twitter’s behalf.

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Some more thoughts on Social Media and ROI [Infographic]

Yesterday, the above infographic popped up on my radar (thanks, V. Harris). At first, I thought “here we go again: another crap social media ROI infographic.” But then I took a closer look and I got it. It’s actually not bad. Well… up to a point.

Part 1 – Showing that basic business literacy is still lacking in the digital marketing space:

Verdict: Good.

Here’s what this part of the infographic tells us:

1. Marketers still mistake metrics like net followers/fans, web traffic, and social mentions (all essentially reach metrics) for ROI. Less than 30% of them consider sales to be an element of ROI. Still.

2. 73% of CEOs think marketers don’t understand basic business terminology and objectives.

3. Is it any surprise that CEOs think that marketers are essentially dumbasses and that social business is bullshit?

If that part of the infographic doesn’t perfectly illustrate the urgent need for an infusion of actual competence on every level of the social business management scale, I don’t know what does. This situation is absurd.

The silver lining: Over 70% of marketers still haven’t read my book, so we still have a lot of potential sales there.

Okay, all kidding aside, the fact that over 70% of marketers still qualify followers and fans as a measure of ROI is… shocking. Seriously. Web traffic? Social mentions? Here’s a fix: Send these people back to school. It’s almost 2013. We should be over this by now. Anyone who still thinks that way needs an intervention. It might have been acceptable in 2008, but not anymore.

Part 2 – Showing some financial outcomes that can be tied back to social media activity (and budgets):

Verdict: Good.

Here, we see examples of social media activity having a direct impact on sales. The cool thing about it is that if you go back and look at how much that social media activity cost (man hours, technology, etc.), you can assign a specific cost to it. If you have the gain figures and the cost figures, you can calculate ROI.

Thumbs-up. More of that, please.

Part 3 – “Last Touch Conversions” and the problem with last-click attribution models:

Verdict: Last click attribution is too limited a model to illustrate the full impact of social media activity on sales.

Here’s where the infographic runs into a wall. We’ve talked about this: It isn’t so much that last click attribution is wrong in assuming a cause and effect relationship between clicking on a link and making a purchase. Clearly, there’s a strong connection there. There’s intent, if anything, and that’s important, so we need to track that and put numbers to it. But focusing too much (or at all) on last click attribution is a lot like looking at consumer behaviors through a simple, robotic, kind of binary lens that only accounts for a very small fraction of the customer journey. It completely ignores the dozen (if not hundreds) of other triggers that led a consumer to eventually click on that link and decide to make a purchase.

Last click attribution doesn’t take into account the full scope of discovery (that is to say, how a consumer found out about the brand and/or product). It doesn’t take into account the impact of advertising, marketing, PR, media exposure and word-of-mouth recommendations. It doesn’t take into account the months, weeks, days or hours of research done by the consumer before clicking on that link. In other words, the entire decision process that takes place before a purchase (discovery, research, preference and validation) is excluded from the last click attribution model. Months of social interactions: gone. Customer service experiences: gone. We’re down to attributing a transaction to the very last thing a consumer did before pulling out a credit card. That’s a lot like a military unit attributing a victory in battle to the last bullet fired. Focusing only on the final few minutes of a long and complex customer journey is terribly-short-sighted, and that sort of methodology (and mentality) drags us into a ditch of assumptions as to cause and effect that generally leads to poor consumer insights and ultimately investments in the wrong types of activities.

Last click attribution is easy, sure, but since when does easy trump smart or relevant? The truth is that it’s a lazy mode of thinking. That’s right, I said it: It’s lazy.

A couple of weeks ago, we looked at how Ohtootay helps companies move beyond last click attribution (and last touch conversions) to map how consumers actually behave – that is to say how they shop. It’s a good start. We need more of that kind of thinking and more of that kind of insightful application of technology. The objective for businesses and marketing teams has always been this: to understand consumer behaviors and how to affect them in a way that leads them to notice, want, buy and ultimately recommend products. Last click attribution doesn’t do that. It’s a snapshot of the final step in a long transaction funnel. That’s all. You want to measure ROI? You want to know what’s working? You want to fine-tune the way your traditional marketing, social channel activity, customer service, product design, packaging, retail experience and competitive landscape work together (or don’t)? Great. Then you’re going to have to work a little harder to figure out how all the pieces fit, and how to make them fit even better.

Personally, I think that’s half the fun of the marketing profession: figuring out what works and what doesn’t – and why, solving those kinds of problems, fine-tuning and then fine-tuning some more… That’s what marketing is about: making it work. Understanding how to move all of those needles so your company or product team gets what they want, and your customers do too. Do it right and everyone walks away happy. That’s the goal. Happy customers, happy product managers, happy investors, job creation on the back end… That’s the big picture, one piece of the daisy chain at a time.

So a word of caution: If you’re not into asking questions, doing research, or caring enough to bust your ass to do real work, hard work – sometimes tedious work – to kick ass, maybe you shouldn’t be in the marketing business. There’s a reason why 73% of CEOs think that marketers lack business credibility. It’s because of laziness and apathy. Every marketing pro who still hasn’t learned how to explain the relationship between ROI and social media contributes to that credibility problem. Every marketing pro who still uses last click attribution as their go-to metric to gauge the effectiveness of a social channel contributes to that credibility problem. Every marketing pro who isn’t working in concert (hell, in tandem) with a product group and a sales department contributes to that problem.

Give that some thought. And if that isn’t enough to give you pause, maybe this will: If you work in marketing, 73% of CEOs right now can’t figure out why they’re paying you. And you know what? They’re looking for someone better.

Fix that.

*          *          *

Social Media ROI – Managing and Measuring Social Media Efforts in your Organization was written specifically to teach managers and executives how to build and manage social media friendly business programs and incorporate social technologies and networks into everyday business operations. The book is divided into four parts: social media program strategy & development, social media program operationalization, social media program management, and best practices in measurement and reporting. If your boss doesn’t yet have a copy, time to fix that. If everyone on your team doesn’t yet have their own copy, fix that too. It makes for a great desk reference.

(Now available in several languages including German, Korean, Japanese and Spanish.)

CEO-Read  –  –  –  Barnes & Noble  –  Que

Filed under: ROI Tagged: brandbuilder, digital, marketing, measurement, olivier blanchard, pr, ROI, social business, social media ROI

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Google Turns in Soft Quarter as Search Shifts to Mobile

Google’s profits fell 20% last quarter, but CEO Larry Page led with the good news on a hectic day for the company: mobile is now an $8 billion run-rate business and the company cleared a big revenue milestone.

“At just 14 years old, we cleared our first $14 billion revenue quarter,” Mr. Page said. “Not bad for a teenager.”

The big numbers masked a less-than-dazzling quarter, however, and Google missed both revenue and profit estimates and released its earnings hours early in a gaffe it blamed on the printer. As Mr. Page noted, “I’m sorry for the scramble today.”

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Wendy’s Taps WPP’s VML for Digital Duties

Kansas City-based digital shop VML has been named Wendy’s lead digital agency after a review.

Wendy’s CMO Craig Bahner told Ad Age that “during the process [VML] best demonstrated they had the track record, client list and strategic thinking and creative firepower to explode our digital effort.” He added that the No. 2 burger chain is getting more aggressive with digital and is “planning a double-digit increase” in digital and social marketing in 2013.

The review was managed internally; besides WPP-owned VML the other participants were not known. The digital portion of Wendy’s marketing account was previously handled by the chain’s lead agency, Publicis Groupe’s Kaplan Thaler.

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Microsoft in Talks to Sell Atlas Ad-Serving Business to AppNexus

AppNexus, the New York-based ad-tech company, is in discussions to purchase the Atlas ad-serving business from Microsoft, according to two people familiar with the process.

This is not the first time the two companies have engaged in discussions about a deal, but the talks are said to be as serious as ever as Microsoft pushes to finalize a sale before year’s end.

While AppNexus is currently viewed as the frontrunner, other companies have submitted bids, one of these people cautioned. It’s not clear who those others bidders are, though there’s been speculation that Adobe could be one.

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