News Update – Best of the Day

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Excellent, the media meltdown by the American group blog Xark

Great, funny ad by McDonalds…

Some viral campaigns can really deliver what they promise…

Conversion and Convergence: the transparency of click-rates

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In the last decade, there was a lot of discussion between media and platform providers versus clients. The topic was all over the world valid – next to negotiations on the cpx-currency: What are average click-rates for banner advertising?

Now, that leading marketers admitted in the latest CMO report that they need to get more power on their conversion. The first online strategy rule to bear in mind is: clicks are still the basis for the success of an ad campaign.

Although click-rates is not the basis for conversion -for transforming a consumer into a customer- it simply shows the amount of users who wish to access the advertiser’s website or landing page. It seems that the common perception still is that click-rates indicate the success of a display campaign. Now, there is some proof on the best-hidden online secret ‚average click-rate‘ in our modern online world. This week there comes some transparency and background-light, provided by Eyeblaster and ADTECH.

Eyeblaster Analyst Bulletin
In their latest bulletin ‚Trends in Conversions‚ of more than 2,000 campaigns representing 29 billion impressions, Eyeblaster concludes that the average click-rate is 0.14% which does not correlate with the convergence rate. That is much higher with 0,32%! Via conversion tags, which were placed on the advertiser’s web site, Eyeblaster was able to track actual user activity that the marketers and advertisers are looking for. The interesting story on top of these findings is that ‚In-Banner‘ conversion is 5-times higher than On-Site‘ data capture.

The bulletin offers some very interesting insights in banner conversion and optimization, data capture creation and benchmarks for different banner formats, click rates and performance statistics in different markets. It’s definitely a recommended reading on the future of display advertising and results…

ADTECH (via eMarketer)
A recent study of more than 10 billion banner inquiries across Europe states that the average click-through rate is somewhere between 0.11% and 0.19%. eMarketer makes clear that the end of the season, i.e. X-mas shopping, is a powerful driver for higher click-rates. But it has to said, that there is no definition explained on B2B or B2C, banner- or creative formats differentiation – it’s an average number.

And sure, there is some difference between European countries. It surprises that the majority of clicks in display ads still go to pop-ups and layers 0.5% although these format seemed to have killed the consumers nerves for ages (imho). The future definitely belongs to video ads (1.7%). See…

Spot On!
No doubt, summarizing these studies it becomes clear that the average click rates on classical display advertising have been decreasing by half, from 0.3% to less than 0.15%. BUT: Companies and agencies have to ask themselves what the reasons for this ‚recession on click-rates‘ is.

Apart from obligatory argument of ‚banner-blindness‘, watching the development of client’s and agency’s creativity there is some obvious tendency from an ad consultant perspective…

– colors not ,catching‘ the users attention
– creative scenario not for the consumers (nor customers)
– text talking to target-group
– pictures not attracting the target-group
– banners ‚clickable‘, but not immmediately
– call-to-action missing
– call-to-action displayed too late
– a free-be does not make a sale
– mpu’s have become simple bigger (or video) banners, not multiple-functional creations

Come on there are thousands of reasons. It’s yours. Be creative, find some more and help us all….

News Update – Best of the Day

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If you have enough time to educate yourself on social media topics, take this route and get an update. Containing some good read…

Social Networks can monetize. You want a case… OK see how virtual goods do on Chinese Tencent network, click here.

Like a road-map on ‚trends in publishing‘? No problem, it’s all there for everyone on the web… (via Miguel Barbosa and via Old School Value).

Twitter Ads: Thoughts on the test

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Now, there has been a lot, a lot, a lot of thoughts and talk lately on how Twitter will be making money. Finally, Twitter is experimenting with a new revenue model as Techcrunch tells us…

First, it seemed like a nice idea to promote their own service (i.e. widgets and search), which I thought is the case. This well-placed add-on feature makes it easier to work with Twitter, especially heading towards their search site, when you are not using any of the helpful Twitter apps. And there were also some good thoughts on Twitter becoming a search engine and as how this will be a driver monetizing their business. But Overture (now controlled by Yahoo), has patented placement of text ads on a search results page. So, this was probably a difficult pitch.

Now, back to what is happening, see the black box on the right hand side on ‚Widget’…

It is obviously really a ’simple‘ test for some solid revenue stream generating business, we all are familiar with via Google text ads. But can this be an appropriate test to recall on revenue models?

The two test objects, Twitter search and the above mentioned Twitter widget link, belong directly to the Twitter concept. It offers some immediate navigation benefit to the user. This is what users are after for a long time. Thus, ‚Twitterati‘ will click on the links and appreciate the easy way accessing their search service. So, the results Twitter sees with the test don’t reflect in any way potential click rates on text ads as these are dependent on results.

Isn’t there a difference if you promote some internal service or feature, or if you run a promotion from some external party or company? In my experience, in terms of text ads, and those generating results, we can definitely say, there is a huge difference on the click rates. Hence, on the conversion rate clients will find the difference as well. Editorial focus is not comparable to advertising, reaching out for awareness, right? And as clicks is the interactive currency ‚No. 1‘ for marketers and convergence their need, according to yesterdays CMO report, the test sounds like comparing apples and oranges.

Spot On!
Nevertheless, the test is worth some thought. And just imagine Amazon and Twitter are getting engaged, the business model becomes clear based on some semantic web thoughts: connecting Amazon’s product catalog by connecting tweets and related products. Someone talks about a film and gets an offer from Amazon in the text ad. Or maybe Yahoo could be the new ‚Who is buying Twitter at last‘ as they could compete in the long-tail market. In general, Google could finally face a competitor here…

News Update – Best of the Day

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Today, it’s easy reading with a ‚How to‘-session…

Imagine you want to avoid bad clients? Well, if your business is in danger of taking the wrong orders, then you should read the ’10 types of bad clients‘ by Laura Spencer. This stereotyping description is a nice idea, and definitely all of us have experienced at least one of these types in business…

Imagine, you just got hired, but don’t like the job? How you tweet yourself out of it… Great example by Hutch Carpenter. The best learning is the history of this accident… BUT don’t worry, there is some great advice by Tara Weiss on How to blog into a job….

…and finally try to imagine your memory is like a child. We should all not forget what makes us pay checks when we are successful. Nice read on PuneMirror on ‚How to nourish your money‘.

CMO report: budgets better than expected

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Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council’s Marketing Outlook 2009 states that CMO’s see their budgets stable. Almost half of all asked CMO’s (54,1%) say their budgets will increase or at least remain.

What is the value of a click? Obviously, the best deal is transforming a consumer into a customer. For 36% this seems to be the biggest issue: converting clicks to sales and finding the value of online marketing. Just 9% of the chief marketers argue about their online performance capability as being “excellent”.

The outlook in the recession is not too bad… The majority of top marketers answered their traditional marketing focus (print, outdoor and TV) remains the same, and especially digital advertising (also social media and search marketing) will increase. But it also has to me mentioned that 45.7% said their spending budgets will decrease.

“Senior marketers are looking to hold budgets steady and not make tremendous cuts in headcounts,” said Liz Miller, the council’s VP of programming and operations. “Instead, they’re reallocating both their budget and talent into those areas that better engage and communicate with core audiences and customers.”

Spot On!
The loyalty of customer becomes more and more an issue for marketers. Who would be surprised… Those who want to study as deep as possible how the customers thinks, don’t ‚owe‘ the sovereignty on customer service and support issues, nor have they big influence on CRM, the survey says.

The question remains why the majority of marketers rely on old online measures (i.e. page views and registrations 64.6%) and not focusing on more modern online engagement opportunities which keeps the consumers with the brands. The most obvious options could be personalization and client first programs (i.e. client opinion platforms or community building) which could replace the old-school “watering cans” techniques. The more companies focus on the client, the ‚happier‘ the revenue lines will show.

The report was co-sponsored by Deloitte, Jigsaw and Ad-ology and asked 650 worldwide marketers.

News Update – Best of the Day

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Some month ago, I thought about combining social media and business, and concluded that the personal web manager might be a great solution for future business. But before you hire one, read in addition to this some valuable thoughts by Tinu AbayomiPaul on ‚How to Tell If Facebook Is Worthwhile For Your Business or a Waste of Time‘.

Forrester published a new survey which claims that ‚Despite Recession, More Than 50% of Marketers Increase Spending on Social Media‘, writes Sarah Perez. And if companies don’t know the value of social media, here is the Forrester recommendation: ‚…marketers start with a listening platform and then integrate social media marketing metrics like share of voice and engagement to demonstrate the value of these new tools‘.

Yes, IBM does Social Media and there is some great backgound by Robin Fray Carey on ‚Employee-Centered Social Media‘ and the idea of the corporate newsletter going social…


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Experten: Web 2.0 im Unternehmen verstärkt im Kommen

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Cubic Consulting veröffentlichte kürzlich die Ergebnisse einer Expertenbefragung ‚Web 2.0 im Unternehmenseinsatz‚. Die Ergebnisse verdeutlichen, daß Web 2.0 im Unternehmen klar im kommen ist.

Das Fazit der Studie besagt, daß bei der Einführung von Web 2.0 in Unternehmen folgende Faktoren bei der Implementierung erfolgversprechend sind.

– Verankerung in Unternehmensprozesse (70%)
– Klare Strategie und Zielvorgabe (66%)
– Integration mit anderen Kanälen/ Tools (61%)
– Kontinuierlicher Verbesserungsprozess nach Einführung (55%)

Dirk Ploss, Geschäftsführer von Cubic Consulting, weiß über die Hintergründe bei den webbasierten Veränderungsprozessen in Unternehmen bescheid.

„Die Möglichkeiten des Web 2.0 werden bei vielen Unternehmen noch nicht erkannt und ausreichend genutzt – Angst und Unwissenheit sind hier die stärksten Hinderungsgründe – wie auch von den befragten Experten eingeschätzt wird. Unternehmen werden zukünftig Web 2.0-Anwendungen stärker einsetzen – intern wie extern. Unternehmen werden kaum die Möglichkeit haben, sich diesem Trend zu entziehen.“

Unterstützt wird seine Annahme von Forrester Research. Nach deren Angaben werden Unternehmen die globalen Ausgaben für Web 2.0-Technologien in den nächsten Jahren bis 2013 sehr stark erhöhen.

Das veränderte Kundenverhalten macht dabei die Investitionen in Web 2.0 unbedingt erforderlich, meint Ploss:

„Unternehmen müssen erkennen, dass sie nicht mehr allein bestimmen, wie sie mit ihrer Zielgruppe kommunizieren und auch nicht mehr, was über sie geschrieben wird. Die Technologien machen es möglich, dass Unternehmen zukünftig folgendermaßen kommunizieren: 1=nx“

Als Fallbeispiele fallen Dirk Ploss aus eigenener Erfahrung folgende Beispiele ein…

OttoFashion Blog: Two for fashion (Mode Blog sponsered by Otto): Zwei Moderedakteurinnen schreiben aus Berlin/Hamburg und New York über Mode und Trends.

Synaxon – Einsatz von Blog und Wiki: „Der Chef ist nicht automatisch der Schlaueste. Aus dieser Erkenntnis hat Frank Roebers, Vorstandssprecher der Synaxon AG, eine radikale Konsequenz gezogen: In seinem Unternehmen darf jeder jederzeit jede Regel ändern.“ Brand Eins

TchiboCommunity Building: Ideenaustausch zwischen Designern, Erfindern und Entwicklern mit Kunden und Konsumenten.

Spot On!
Unternehmen, die den Einsatz von Web 2.0 evaluieren, sollten sich auf jeden Fall mal die Tipps des Experten für Enterprise 2.0 anhören: Dion Hinchcliffe hat seine Meinung abgegeben, wie europäische Unternehmen auf das Thema Enterprise 2.0 zugehen sollten. Eins muss dabei allen Unternehmen klar sein: Die weltweite Wirtschaft befindet sich in einer Transitions- und Umbruchsphase, was neue Strategien im modernen Web betrifft. Ein absolutes ‚Richtig oder Falsch‘ für die eigene Unternehmensstrategie zu finden, ist dabei schwer. Mit professioneller Hilfe können Unternehmen aber auch Fehler vermeiden.

News Update – Best of the Day

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Most of big companies are not really relying on social media, nor evaluating it seriously. Susan Rice Lincoln found some answers why ‚big brands struggle with social media‘. She found six reason.

Social Media is…
– … often viewed as just another marketing channel.
– … does not fit into current structures
– … a long term proposition
– … promises no guaranteed results
– … measured differently
and… Communities and content are global and corporations are generally national. – A lot of option if you tackle these issues from the right angle…

In some way Twitter is like a search engine. Have we ever thought on how we use this search option?
Danny Sullivan started a research and – although someone might be there who does not believe in research results – there is definitely a very interesting trend in the findings. Yes, I would say, Twitter is an ‚additional search engine’…

– Half ask a question on Twitter at least once per week
– Nearly 40% are “usually” satisfied with the answers they get
– Half “sometimes” or “often” turn to Twitter for questions rather than a traditional search engine
– Only 4% said they’d give up a traditional search engine for Twitter
– Nearly half said they ask questions on Twitter because they trust their friends or followers more than search results or are seeking expert answers
– 40% said they seek answers to “real time” issues or they want a variety of opinions
– Nearly 70% said questions they asked were related to computer or the internet, followed by 44% asking questions about Twitter, then 41% asking about shopping or product advice

Advertising in a social media world always carries the problem that people might abuse your brand in some unfavorable way. Last week some boys made up the idea in „How to Smoke Smarties“. Adage focuses on this latest YouTube phenomenon and posts some important hints how to handle situations where people are ‚messing messing with your brand online‘.

1. Don’t fight it. (Brands cannot control client communication!)
2. Survey the extent of the problem. (Brands need to know how big ‚the damage‘ is!)
3. Turn to your social-media crisis plan. (Develop one!)
4. Be open with employees. (Social Media guidelines will help!)
5. Respond accordingly. (All spokesperson should have the official response statement asap!)

Enterprise 2.0: Dion Hinchcliffe’s advice for Europe

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At Cebit, I had the pleasure to be part of an exclusive social media experts group to enjoy dinner with Dion Hinchcliffe, the enterpise 2.0 specialist as well as ZDNet blogger, and Dr. Frank Schoenefeld, Head of Business Internet Applications and Services at T-Systems.

The fireside talk offered some very interesting insights on enterprise 2.0 and how companies are starting to put the pieces together for a progressive approach on ‚breaking the chains of control‘ and ‚being open for change in terms of the new dialogue with customers‘.

Dion explained on how much companies in the US use wikis, social networks, external and internal blogs for the sake of collaborative working benefit. What was surprising is that companies in Europe are also preparing to become enterprise 2.0 business focused (i.e. ABB, BASF, Deutsche Lufthansa and Vodafone) – although these ‚offices‘ don’t really have an elaborated enterprise 2.0 strategy, yet, both experts admitted as much as they could see it.

On my question how far enterprise 2.0 goes, when facing the Skittles website experiment Dion simply answered that this is a social media experiment which we will see more often probably. Nevertheless, a good example that shows how companies experiment on social media and web 2.0 opportunities – though this ‚completely open approach‘ might be risky.

Next day, Dion found some minutes to spend with me to give European companies some advice on…

How to find the right attention for enterprise 2.0 inside your company?


What are the biggest challenges of enterprise 2.0 for European companies?

Spot On!
The final conclusion of the very well organized dinner by Kongress Media was that the enterprise 2.0 strategy heads in the direction of…

Position the ‚right‘ people who live and breath the enterprise 2.0 intelligence and know of the appropriate techniques and tools. The rest will follow…

Up to now, there is no case of bad experience with enterprise 2.0, at least none Dion, Frank or the other experts knew of. Still… There is no proof whether this is the right tactic to convince business decision makers of a new enterprise communication strategy – but the essential strategies are visible. Will stakeholders rely on this kind of business outlook? And afford to focus the risk of ‚letting go responsibility‘ in difficult financial times of strong accountability? The fact is, the more examples of enterprise 2.0 we find the better for every business. Enterprise 2.0 shares knowledge, intelligence and humanitizes companies in the eyes of customers.

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