Great Marketing

One-to-One Marketing

I had an interesting example this week where the concept of One-to-One marketing crossed with some of the reading I have been doing on preferences. In one-to-one marketing the goal is that your database is so rich that every single person can get a message tailored to them specifically. I first came across this term in ’98 or so, and Peppers and Rodgers were doing a lot with it.

Cross this with recently reading Dan Ariely’s Predictably Irrational and Barry Schwartz’s the Paradox of Choice last year and I found an interesting thing:

I get a daily email from a local lunch place. It has the specials for the day that everyone gets. I noticed that I look at the specials and if I don’t like any of them I go somewhere else. If I do see something that looks good I’m more likely to go there. Here’s the crazy part – every time I go there I see something I like better, or I hit the salad bar. I never actually buy the specials. So even though the email about the specials influences my choice to go there, it has nothing to do with my purchases.

The solution is to patch the disconnect – if they could get to my purchase records they would see that they could send me the same email every day: “Hey John, the seafood salad is fresh and cold on the salad bar and your Nantucket Nectars Half and Half is waiting for you” and that email would never discourage me from going there.

Something to think about as you craft your copy.

photo courtesy of Consumatron

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The Secret

This weekend I finished a couple of photography books I had been trying to get through, and even got to take some night shots:

The Secret was lying around and I thought I would check it out to see what all the hype was about. The first thing that struck me is that it is a very slick piece of marketing. Everything from matching some proven tactics to make it a best seller (very short and easy to read, lots of images), plugs for the DVD, and even the glossy pages and graphics to make it look like it’s an ancient book on parchment that was pulled from some tomb, rather than bought at Wal-Mart last week.

I agree with the content, I think that a positive attitude is the biggest difference between those who succeed and those who fail, so I can’t argue with the book. If you need this book, it will probably help you. It reminded me a lot of some of Tony Robbins stuff without all of the “boring” research and study that proves his material on improving performance.

Basically you ask the universe for stuff, maintain a grateful state of mind and you’ll get what you ask for. There’s also some great points about not being against things, always work for things (don’t be a Yankee hater, be a Red Sox fan). This is a subtle change but it does make a difference, the classic example is the caddie planting the seed of negativity in the golfer (it’s an easy putt as long as you don’t leave it short). We see this all the time and we know that subconsciously it makes us feel better. Everyone will choose to be pro-life or pro-choice, but nobody would want to work with the pro-death, or pro-totalitarians. Another key reason why marketing is as much art as science – based upon our irrational behavior of our opinions from the name of the group, not who they are or what they stand for.

One thing that struck me was that this material crosses over readily to religion. Many religions ask (pray) and are thankful (reverent), but religion was not mentioned at all and I could only come up with three reasons why this would be the case:

  1. Marketing – by not including religion there’s no book buyers that would be offended
  2. Competition – with many Americans appalled at the antics of the clergy or used to church shopping, this is the market they want
  3. The Secret as “The Truth” – what if the core of the secret is actually the key to religion and everything else in the church is bureaucratic cruft that’s built up around it? As much as everyone doesn’t want to think about it, in every religion there are those who need things not to change in order to protect the lifestyle they are accustomed to.

There are a lot of discussions that could spin out of number 3, but a key for me is that a church involves a community, while The Secret is content to leave you home alone asking the universe for money. Something about that doesn’t strike me as the best course of action.

I also liked the closing line “May the Joy Be With You”, there was no mention of Yoda as a source…

Great Marketing

Social Media Marketing Results

If this is your first time checking out the auction results you can start here for the whole story.

The dust has settled and the results are in. Here’s the tale of the table:

How about that Tiger Woods. Yes, you read it right – FREE SHIPPING. And the final graph:

Some interesting observations: Jaffe was able to pull in the views, but Brogan turned them into bids and dollars. A bummer for me having picked him as the winning horse. I’m not surprised that Brogan took the day, but I didn’t think that Verdino would beat out Jaffe. No real reason for that other than my opinion of who’s got the buzz. Obviously I’m not the guy to ask about that.

Thanks to all of these guys for taking a chance and putting themselves out there it give me something to think about,  and congratulation to Jennifer for a great campaign, leveraging egos to create cash from nothing is a masterful move!

Great Marketing

Marketing Your Past

This weekend I went with my wife to her 15th reunion at Williams College. You would be harder pressed to find a greater disparity than the difference between the communication with a Williams grad versus what I receive from my alma mater, University of Massachusetts in Amherst.

My wife is involved with some of the fundraising for her class, as a result there is usually something in the mail from them every week.

I get the alumni magazine and an email from the department I graduated from, and that’s about it.

As a result, my wife’s class of 500 students, at my last check, gives as much to their school as my class does. I believe my class has about 3,000 students, of course this number is squishy, I think there was 3,000 my freshman year, but we were told only 2 of 3 would make it to graduation, at the same time students were added to my class from community colleges and other sources that kept the number fairly constant.

How does this culture start, and can it be recreated by the larger organization? Is it squelched by bureaucracy?

The good news is that I finally have a Willams ’93 baseball cap, and shall now refer to myself as J. Joseph Wall III.

Great Marketing

Auction Watch 2008

Social Media Consultants

Follow up to the Social Media Consultant Auction. While checking out the rates I found a similar offer to Golf with Tiger Woods. We’ll call that one an outlier.

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The Price is Right

I really enjoy Drew Carey, we always used to have a stack of “Whose Line is It?” on the TiVo (no chance of that now because the Verizon FIOS DVR is a POS).

Here’s some weekend fun, even though I’ve seen this show all my life I only appreciate it as a product placement showcase now:

glumbert – The Easiest Million Ever
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Closing a Deal in Twitter

True story: I have been transitioning the family over to Macs. The most absurd part of this is that I don’t own a Mac myself. And yet, I did make the right decision. My Dad is no longer plagued with spyware and my wife can manage her pictures, music, etc.

The lovely Carin is actually very savvy and likes to login through the VPN at work to use a virtual desktop. As a result she’s asking about running Windows on her Mac. After digging in I found Chris Pirillo, freejacking on the cutting edge of tech, as usual, saying that the two are very close in features, price, etc.

So, having already bothered Chris Penn with my Mac question of the day (do I use Super Duper or Time Machine for backups?), I decided to throw it on to twitter:

themshow The boss wants to run Windows on her Mac so she can access work data. Parallels or VMware Fusion?

an hour later I get:

vmwarefusion @themshow Pssst….she wants to run Fusion. She told us ; ) Free 30-day trial, fully featured. Give it a spin

I spoke, someone listened. Case closed…

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Helio on Dancing With The Stars

In wordpress you can save any notes you have as a draft. As you can imagine, this topic has fallen to the very bottom of the stale pile.

As cornball as it is, it’s still worth talking about. For the uninitiated, Dancing with the Stars is a TV show where celebrities learn how to dance, while competing against other teams. During the writer’s strike it was one of the reality shows that thrived.

The important part to see is that Helio, the guy who won this year, is an Indy Car driver. When he won it actually made the news over on ESPN. I thought it would be a cold day in hell before that show made it on to ESPN, but there it was.

Keep this in mind – some winners are worth more than others.

Great Marketing

David Meerman Scott on Viral Marketing

David Meerman Scott has released a new ebook on Viral Marketing, it’s free and packed with info. His first ebook spread like wildfire, which then fueled demand for his best selling book “The New Rules of Marketing and PR“.

Did I mention that the eBook is free?

In there you’ll also find some links to his audio presentations on CD, and you might recognize the other guy!

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This year was interesting because 2 Darth Vaders came back to the light side for me.

After an incident more than 5 years ago over DSL that had me trying to get the FCC to take notice, Verizon showed up at my house with FIOS. Even though the DVR is crap compared to TiVo, overall I’ve been very happy with the blazing speed and HD Picture. I’m watching the Patriots turn it on right now as a matter of fact.

In a turnaround that took far less time, after bitching about Sprint treating me worse than someone they’ve never known, I decided on a lark to go to the local Sprint store rather than waiting on hold for another shot at the call center.

30 minutes later my new BFF Ludmilla hooked me and the lovely Carin up with new Palm Centros at the $99 rate. Incredible how fast things can move when you are working with someone who knows how to make things happen.

As part of the upgrade my bill ended up getting screwed up. After only 10 minutes on the phone it was corrected. If these big faceless corporations start making all the right moves what will I complain about in 2008?