Tags: market

How to Market to Millennials

How to Market to Millennials

Beyond • March 11, 2014

A hawk-eyed ad watcher and trend spotter, I couldn’t help but notice the significant shift of some major brands in favor of the Millennial market. Whether it was ads, or what key pieces made the news, or even how long-running shows catered to a younger audience – the key takeaways told me two things: Millenials like stories and they love technology. Neither of these traits fell prey to the classic Millennial stereotypes of “lazy” or “entitled” that even I’m guilty of deferring to from time to time. This got me thinking: who are the Millennials and how do we market to them? First, contrary to the rest of us, Millennials aren’t Facebook mongers. Millenials prefer punctuated image-friendly communication with their network. They don’t want suggestions on who to like, be friends with, or follow. They also want creative capabilities, which Facebook just doesn’t allow. Snapchat understood this, which is why the punctuated picture messaging app traffics about 350 million messages daily. That’s a one in five ration and it’s where Millenials currently are more than on Facebook. This is likely the reason why Facebook’s Zuckerberg had his eyes on the app – though unsuccessfully. His $3 billion offer was refused. Zuckerberg moved onto WhatsApp, a mobile texting startup that (according to Forbes in an article by Shel Israel titled “Facebook Buys WhatsApp: Bonehead or Brilliant?”) is “enjoying meteoric success in developing countries.” So why would Facebook be interested? According to Shel, “Facebook is taking a long view, that Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Yahoo! and other may not yet be seeing. Most of those companies are doing quite well with available low-hanging fruits of the First World orchards. Facebook seems to be forging out into the jungles and deserts that are yet unexplored by rivals.” Facebook’s attempt to conquest popular apps is about killer visionary perspective: millennial thinking isn’t just about what’s popular today, but about where we’re headed tomorrow. And when it comes to WhatsApp, Facebook recognizes that technology is on a fast rising course, where in just one generation more people have cell phones than running water and electricity. These are today’s demographic and part of a greater Millennial group tomorrow. Rob Reed, Founder of MomentFeed, would agree that Millenials are into heavy picture platform users – and Instagram is one of them. Rob feels that Instagram provides the most compelling visual medium for communicating brand messages and engaging with loyal customers. Aaron Strout of Marketing Land feels that “with 65% of people being visual learners, social sites that focus on photo and short video sharing are going to win in the long run.” This means that as I had predicted two years prior, the name of the game is images. Graphics, videos, pictures, images, and even portraits – in short visuals – are what Millenials respond to. So where does that leave marketing? With all the WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Instagram talk, it’s clear Millennials are heavy mobile users. As a Benchmark Email article by Katrina Killer best summarized it, “born between between 1982 and 2000 and numbering 78M, Millennials came of age together with the Internet and mobile phones. Technology to them is no big deal and is a helpful rather than frustrating component to getting things done and being entertained.” Technology is key. Millennials may seem like a frustrating demographic for marketers, but as Amazon’s Jeff Bezos puts it: “All businesses need to be young forever. If your customer base ages with you, you’re Woolworth’s.” This means getting on board with marketing the way Millennials live. Katrina understands this, arguing that the mobile savvy group has a 72% smart phone usage and the highest app usage across mobile devices in any one demographic. When it comes to mobile marketing, Katrina argues that “the mobile experience of your brand isn’t an add-on experience for Millennials, it is THE experience.”


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Best Buy Scores an Email Marketing Win with Autoresponders.

Best Buy Scores an Email Marketing Win with Autoresponders.

Beyond • May 26, 2010

Recently, I purchased a Flip HD camera from Best Buy. I had one a few years ago, and a friend of mine lost it at Lollapalooza 2009. Coachella 2010 was fast approaching, and I wanted to be able to capture some of the magic on video. I liked the product the first time around, and I found a newer version on sale with an online only deal at Best Buy. Being the impatient person that I am, I opted for the in-store pickup option. The purchase of this product trigged a whole chain of autoresponders. It was almost scary how efficient Best Buy is with them. I was asked to register with Best Buy at the beginning of my checkout process. Being an email marketing nerd, I opted-in to their newsletter. I received a welcome email before I even completed my checkout process. The welcome email described all the various advantages I would have with a registered BestBuy.com account. The email was designed to match the website. A quick welcome email with great information - good work, Best Buy, on this round. The purchase of the camera triggered several more emails. The first was the standard receipt. This let me know that my purchase went through and my credit card was being charged. They provided me with the complete details of my purchase, as well as a confirmation number. Most importantly, it explained the store pickup procedures. This means that not only was an order confirmation triggered, but also it was segmented into a group for in-store pickup. Props to Best Buy on this round, too. Using a similar template as the first email kept their branding intact while delivering informative content. Next was an email advising me of all sorts of accessories I could purchase to go with my new video camera. I deduced by the products listed that this was simply triggered by a purchase of any video camera, not just my Flip. I could tell this because they offered large camera bags, tripods, memory cards and extra batteries - none of which have any use to me with a Flip. Still, it’s an above average display of list segmentation. This email had more images and more of a catalog type feel to it. The branding and design remained intact. Then came an email telling me that my Flip was ready for pick up. I placed the order early on a Sunday morning before Best Buy opened. I was surprised to see an email informing me that my order was ready just before the store was set to open. That’s more of a compliment to the Best Buy staff and the in-store pickup program rather than their email marketing, though. Still, it was good to receive an email saying my Flip was ready instead of just leaving me with the 45-minute window the order confirmation email gave me. While I was on my way home from the store, I received an email confirming that I had picked up my camera. It was just the last reminder of how efficient the autoresponder campaign is that Best Buy had set up. Like the last, it fit the brand and design. It also thanked me for picking up my order. This is a great example of how to run a well put together and efficient autoresponder campaign. The campaign followed me through my purchase from order to pickup, and it even branched out into selling me on related products. Take note, and begin an autoresponder campaign of your own with Benchmark Email.


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Social Sharing Buttons: Email Marketing’s Seismic Shift

Social Sharing Buttons: Email Marketing’s Seismic Shift

Beyond • May 6, 2010

The advent of the social network sharing button has caused some pundits to note that it may mark the beginning of the end of Google\'s stranglehold on the web. The structuring of web navigation based on sharing features such as Facebook\'s \"Like\" button could supercede the more static indexing conducted by Google and other conventional search engines. A Google SERP is essentially based on an algorithm\'s preferences, but the \"Like\" result is based on your friends\' and family\'s preferences. When a computer user is given the choice between a buddy\'s recommendation and a convoluted program\'s, it\'s not difficult to see why the \"Like\" button could set up a seismic shift in the currently well ordered Google-ized universe. These social network sharing icons can also be assimilated by astute email marketers into their campaigns to provide an additional layer of connection and pertinence to the prospects and their social circles. Sharing Buttons Can Dramatically Increase Marketing Impact Leading edge email marketers are exploring various means whereby social network sharing buttons can be integrated into their current campaigns. One of the most powerful advantages to incorporating social network sharing buttons is to provide a greater sense of relevance to the reader and their social cliques. By featuring buttons that allow easy sharing of content on a wide variety of social sites, the \"pass along\" rate of your messages can skyrocket. In a few and very special cases, the message itself can go universally viral, which will then increase your marketing impact by several orders of magnitude. There Are Many More Social Sites Out There Than Just Facebook & Twitter The inclusion of a social network sharing icon does not necessarily need to be limited to the top of the pecking order sites of Facebook and Twitter, but also to sites such as MySpace and LinkedIn. It can also extend to the bookmarking websites such as StumbleUpon, Delicious, Reddit, and Digg. The Brand Should Be Primarily Interested In Conversing, Not Selling This sharing initiative considerably encourages and boosts bilateral interaction as the inclusion of the icon communicates that your company is interested in a conversation based on mutual interaction. This display of corporate openness is enthusiastically welcomed by many social media participants as it is generally interpreted as a hallmark of credibility, relevance and professionalism. This portrayal leads to an increased likelihood that your readers will click on the button in order to amalgamate your brand into their social circle. The Slightest Hint Of Hucksterism Will Bury Your Campaign There are also some caveats in social network sharing button integration: Although you might be willing to head down to the used car sales lot to save a few bucks on some rusty wheels from a checkered jacket huckster, it doesn\'t necessarily equate to wanting to invite him over for dinner. Similarly, the inclusion of sharing icons can be interpreted as counter-productive by some readers as it may seem to cross the line into gung ho self-promotion which is usually a taboo behavior behind the fortress walls of the online social fiefdoms. Some of the less internet proficient prospects such as senior citizens may also feel deluged by the sheer density of your choices, as well as suffering from incomplete comprehension of exactly what social sharing is all about. In order to tread the fine line between these two extremes, wise email marketers are exercising great care in the integral position of these social sharing icons and with a heightened sensitivity to the brand-customer relationship.


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David Ogilvy’s ‘Mad Men’ Rules For Successful Email Marketing

David Ogilvy’s ‘Mad Men’ Rules For Successful Email Marketing

Beyond • February 23, 2010

Although David Ogilvy, the genius \"Mad Men\" co-founder of Ogilvy & Mather advertising agency, did not live to see the day of universal email marketing, he set out a series of rules in his books of the Fifties and Sixties which are just as applicable to modern email marketing as they were in placing a full page ad in Life or a 60 second commercial on The Ed Sullivan Show. Ogilvy stated that he hated \"rules\" yet his books laid out rules for proper advertising which remain somewhat equivalent to the Stone Tablets of Madison Avenue. \"I am sometimes attacked for imposing \'rules\'. Nothing could be further from the truth. I hate rules. All I do is report on how consumers react to different stimuli.\" Research demonstrates what hits a chord with your customers and what doesn\'t, so it pays to do the research and then most importantly structure your efforts so that they fit the research results. Creative Is Good, But Effective Is Better \"I do not regard advertising as entertainment or an art form but as a medium of information. When I write an advertisement, I don\'t want you to tell me that you find it \'creative\'. I want you to find it so interesting that you buy the product.\" You must never let your goal waver from the essence of your message which is to take action. Although email marketing can be informative and educational, the bottom line is that it must sell. This Ogilvy \"rule\" accompanies his: \"You cannot bore people into buying your product. You can only interest them into buying it.\" How many times have we composed an email message by rote without taking the care to truly delve into why it is, again, \"so interesting that you buy the product\"? Honesty & The Big Idea \"It takes a big idea to attract the attention of consumers and get them to buy your product. Unless your advertising contains a big idea, it will pass like a ship in the night.\" Great email marketing contains an idea so big that your readers literally stop and take notice. It has to be so unique that your more savvy customers must wonder why they didn\'t think of it themselves. \"Don\'t try to imply that your product is better. Just say what is good about your product and do a clearer, more honest, more informative job of saying it.\" The reality of competitive commerce is that it likely is very true that although your product or service may have some leading features it\'s not necessarily the end-all. Your readers will appreciate your honesty in proving that it\'s the right one for them. Stick With What Works \"If you are lucky enough to write a good advertisement, repeat it until it stops selling. Scores of good advertisements have been discarded before they lost their potency.\" This may just be one of the truly great dictums for email marketing. If you find something that really works, stick with it. Due to the nature of email marketing you can\'t just repeat the same message verbatim, but when your metrics show an essential approach which is a winner, you can be confident in establishing your campaign on it. The Subject Line Is Your Headline \"On the average, five times as many people read the headlines as read the body copy. It follows that unless your headline sells your products, you have wasted 90 per cent of your money.\" All we need to do is replace headline with subject line, and the overarching truth is so evident it needs no further explanation. Although David Ogilvy wrote these words when cars had fins and backyards had bomb shelters, the cosmic truths they contain can still serve as a beacon to email marketers in our world of instantaneous global interactive communication. Although he never knew it, David Ogilvy was a great email marketer.


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How The iPad Will Change Email Marketing

How The iPad Will Change Email Marketing

Beyond • February 2, 2010

The launch of Apple\'s new iPad tablet computer has set off a firestorm of plaudits and criticisms, but one thing is certain: The Age Of The iPad has begun and it will change email marketing forever. The iPad Has Created The Tablet Market Whether you\'re on the side of \"If Saint Steve Jobs sells it, I\'ll buy it\" or \"Where\'s the camera / replaceable battery / multitasking / Flash / Skype / USB / HDMI / OLED...\" you have to admit that the iPad (enough sanitary jokes already, thank you) has certainly shaken up the consumer electronics sector. iPad version 1.0 may not be a sales success to parallel some of Apple\'s previous smash hits, but it is indisputable that Saint Steve has opened the floodgates to tablet computing and we can expect the waves of tablets from a flotilla of brands to saturate the market soon. Get The Jump On Your Competition The first iPads won\'t be on sale for two to three months, so right now is the time to look ahead to determine the best way that you can appeal to tablet owners. It\'s obvious that one of the primary uses of tablets will be email, so Apple may just have presented a late Christmas gift to email marketers everywhere. The marketers who are able to appeal specifically to tablet owners and concoct email campaigns that take advantage of the particular characteristics of the new breed of tablets are the ones who are going to obtain significant success. The market is there for the taking. Although it can be argued that many of its features have already been present for a while on existing tablet PCs, the iPad has established a new paradigm in the minds of consumers: The \"pinch and swoosh\" hands-on manipulation of tablet functions will soon become the standard. In the midst of this futuristic eye candy platform, will your staid, basic, straightforward email even be noticed? Tablets Require Different, Dynamic, Interactive Emails This is the time to make that tech consultant earn their hefty hourly rate. Figure out a way to either have your emails display differently when they are read on an iPad, or have the tablet functions set up so that they can be activated either by hand or mouse motions. If you can pull off that technical coup, you can then have your emails take full advantage of iPaddery: Have something interesting happen when the user turns the unit from landscape to portrait. Place a series of images, or effects, or \"something\" that the user can pinch and swoosh around. Go multi-page so that the fancy \"page turning\" effect can be implemented. Make your email visually relate to the side list bar when the email client is in landscape mode. Create an app or iTunes download that ties into your brand and preview it in your iPad email. Don\'t Pile On The Gimmicks Without Relevance Remember the early days of Mozilla browsers when most websites were full of flashing, dancing, jiggling, strobing junk? Good. Avoid that. You don\'t want to put in special effects just to show you can. iPad owners are going to be web-savvy and you will need to relate your pyrotechnics to both your message and their sensibilities to keep from alienating them. The Age Of The iPad is certainly going to be an exciting one for email marketing. As with every other major technical innovation, there will be those who will blaze a pioneering path to reap the benefits and others who fail to grasp the impact until it\'s too late. Which side will you be on?


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