Sunday, September 30, 2012

Mobile ads aren't that memorable

  • A new survey by Azullo has found that mobile ads are failing to make an impact on consumers. 
  • When asked, “In the last 6 months, do you recall having seen an advert of any kind whilst using the browser function or apps on your smartphone?” just 21% of the 1,014 smartphone users taking part said ‘yes’.
  • These respondents were then asked if they could recall what brands, products or services were being promoted in the adverts they had seen, to which the majority, 53%, said ‘no’.
  • Those who couldn’t recall what was being advertised on adverts they’d seen through their smartphone were asked to explain why they thought that was the case. While a third (34%) put it down to the adverts not being memorable, 39% said one or more of the adverts were ‘too distorted’ to be able to tell and 17% put it down to their own bad memory.

It's not 'showrooming,' it's just shopping now.

The key finding in the Vibes Mobile Consumer Report : "showrooming" can be good for business.

Close to half of consumers reported using their mobile phones to assist them in making purchases, whether by texting or scanning for more product information. An opportunity exists here for retailers to go to action to give consumers helpful product data, according to the report findings.

Battle Against Showrooming Starts with Understanding Consumer Expectations.

With the ease of mobile price checks and online product comparisons, traditional brick and mortar (B&M) retailers have fallen victim to the “showrooming” phenomenon. Even manufacturer-owned retailers must understand the motives some customers have for switching to other B&M and online competitors.

Fundamental to understanding why consumers engage in this switching behavior is knowledge about the in-store shopping experience at a particular retailer. It boils down to expectations.

Customer Experience Disciplines Apply To Small Businesses, Too

Showrooming causes a particularly acute problem for small business owners. Their very existence is at stake: Just last weekend, Harley walked by a small bookstore in Concord, Mass., and saw a sign in the window that said, “If you see it here, buy it here, to keep us here.”

Turning the Retail 'Showrooming Effect' into a Value-add.

Showrooming -- the consumer practice of checking out a product in one store and buying it elsewhere at a better price -- has always been a challenge in retail. 

But with the advent of smartphones and the expansion of online retailers like, showrooming has gone from being a headache for bricks and mortar retailers to a full-blown migraine. 

Survey shows social is integral to business

  • New research from Econsultancy and Adobe - presented - found that two-thirds of businesses (67%) agree that social media is integral to their marketing mix, while 66% say social is integral to their overall business strategy.

  • The survey of 650 marketing professionals also found that 64% of businesses use social for brand awareness, 44% for marketing campaigns and a quarter (25%) for customer service.
  • The Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing: Managing and Measuring Social examines the trends for managing and measuring the business value of social media and provides a snapshot of social media uses, challenges and needs from companies today.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Winners & losers along the digital path to purchase.

We know that ever-increasing numbers of consumers are going online to help their shopping, whether it’s to speed up a transaction, research best prices or seek reassurance that they are making the right choice. 

However, it is not the same across all categories and brand owners need to think carefully about the right approach to take to ensure that their digital strategy doesn’t distract from sales. 

The digital path to purchase.

As new research shows mobile devices and social media becoming more dominant in search strategies, it is critical that marketers have the budgets to keep up to date with developments in search technology.

5 Reasons why Evian "Smart Object" creates a new CPG loyalty solution

Apple basically invented the phrase "There's an app for that" and promptly trademarked it.

Whilst a catchy advertising line however, what it neatly demonstrates is how Apple popularised the concept of small, situationally specific applications that do a single job very well.  Whether it's a mapping app, a camera app or a Scrabble app, people now have on
average 41 different apps installed on their smartphones.

Will Augmented Reality Leap-Frog the QR Code?

There continues to be a steady buzz about QR codes, those bar code-looking thingys that can be scanned by a smart phone to link you to added content, a website or perhaps even a coupon at the point of purchase. Here’s the Wikipedia definition.

The changing consumer

Best practices for mobile email design

The web is going mobile, and so are emails. One in three in the UK says they access mobile email more than ever, and over half do so via a smartphone. 
Right now about 30% of all email checks are done from phones and tablets, and the usage grew by some 80% during 2011.

How Location & Small Screen Size Impact Search Behavior On Mobile Devices

It is no news that mobile devices are rapidly taking over the Web! Latest estimates peg the share of mobile traffic from 10% to 20% of the total Web traffic. Popular websites like Quora and Facebook are claiming that about one quarter of their traffic comes from mobile devices (including tablets).
With more and more people having their primary Web experience on mobile devices, this platform cannot be ignored. In fact, companies that innovate specifically for mobile devices are the ones who will have an early lead for the next couple of years.

More Indians surf the Web via mobiles than desktops

Since the last few months Indian telcos have been running numerous campaigns promoting their numerous inexpensive mobile Internet plans. So it is not surprising that India’s fast growing mobile Internet usage has actually surpassed the country’s use of the fixed-line Web. 

According to Internet measurement firm –StatCounter data, during August 2012, Web usage in India via mobile accounted for 51.63%, while from desktop devices made up the remaining 48.37%. 

Digital Shakes Up Traditional Advertising.

"It's been quite some time that an advertisement on the TV had any significant impact on my buying behavior", writes Jatinder Singh in his recent article.  

"May be I'm not glued to the TV like I used to be before the advent of new-age devices in my life."

Indian FMCG firms eye slice of Pak market.

Kolkata-based consumer goods major Emami plans to foray into Pakistan. "With its large population, very similar consumer habits and social mores and the overflow of Indian advertising, Pakistan is a very attractive market for us, and we plan to launch our full range of products in that market soon," Emami's chief executive officer (international marketing division) Shyam Sutaria told Business Standard.

Shopping aaram se!

After a hard day, the last thing you want to do is drag a trolley around a busy supermarket and shop for household essentials. gives you all that minus the hassle, with just a few clicks on your phone. Priyanka Singh tells you more about this new website..

Closing The Loop From Mobile Search To Mobile Payment Systems

As the adoption of smartphones increases, consumers are becoming comfortable using their smartphones and tablets to buy goods, transfer money and perform many different kinds of financial transactions.
A new study by comScore reports 80% of U.S. smartphone owners accessed mobile commerce sites and apps in July (85.9 million total).
According to Google’s Our Mobile Planet: United States, penetration is currently 44% of the U.S. population, and 66% access the Internet daily.

Friday, September 28, 2012

The Growing Importance of International Mobile Search

For a long time now English has served as the lingua franca, or common language, of the Internet. English is still the most commonly used language online but it still represents only just over a quarter of total usage.
The growth rates of various foreign languages also far outstrip the growth in English usage, which may be heading for saturation point.
Over the past decade the number of English speakers online has grown by just over 300 percent. Compare this to Spanish (807 percent), Chinese (1,479 percent) or Arabic (a massive increase of more than 2,500 percent).

Lessons social marketers can learn from email marketers

The  world of social media has led to significant hype about the possibilities this  emerging channel offers  marketers.  And there is certainly a lot about social media that should get the experienced, informed and enabled marketer salivating. 
Social media is not, however, the first new channel marketers have had to adopt in recent years. We don’t hear much about how practitioners of social marketing can learn from their colleagues operating in other marketing channels, specifically email, which has evolved considerably in the last few years as well.

Google Introduces “Local Discovery Engine”: Field Trip

Google’s Niantic Labs project, headed by former Google Local/Maps chieftain John Hanke, has just released its first mobile app:Field Trip. Currently it’s only available for Android but an iOS version is coming soon.
In short it’s a customizable “local discovery engine” that runs in the background on your smartphone (or connected tablet, though it’s not intended for tablets) and notifies you when you’re near something interesting — across a wide range of categories. Categories include: history and architecture, places and events, lifestyle, offers/deals, food, cool and unique, outdoor art.

Retailers: Prepare for m-Commerce Boom

New research conducted by NetSuite Inc. (NYSE: N), the industry's leading provider of cloud-based financials and ERP software suites, has revealed that the UK high street is expecting an unprecedented £11bn growth from m-Commerce business over the coming year. The report is based on economic models provided by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) and primary research conducted by Vanson Bourne, analysing 200 UK high street retail brands - including 7 of the top 10 retailers in the UK.
Key Findings of the Report:
  • 87% of retailers are optimistic about growth prospects in the year ahead despite macro-economic volatility, backdrop of recession and retailer woes in 2011.
  • On average, retailers expect to see 10 percent revenue growth, but m-Commerce is expected to grow at a rate of 23% - from £45bn this year to £56bn in 2012.
  • Two thirds (67%) of the high street already has a mobile app, rising to 80% when you include those that plan to implement one in next 12 months.
  • The top platforms for mobile apps are iOS (48%), Android (45%), Windows Phone (30%) and Blackberry (23%).
  • The biggest challenges to deploying mobile commerce are integration into other e-Commerce systems (38%), lack of budget to develop a site or app (37%) and a lack of understanding on how to deliver a good m-commerce experience (15%).

Forrester Study: Email and Search, Not Social, Drives Sales Online

The report from Forrester called “The Purchase Path of Online Buyers in 2012”  basically says the the most effective tools in the online space to drive sales are the equivalent of online hammer and nails: email marketing and search marketing. Here are the main points but without the report’s detail.
  1. Paid search matters most for new customers
  2. Email matters most for repeat customers
  3. Social tactics are not meaningful sales drivers
Commence screaming and feigned outrage.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Why PRs need to get to grips with Google's Zero Moment of Truth

Last year Google published a new marketing model that added an extra step into the traditional view of the customer purchase journey.
Labelled The Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT), the model essentially states that the internet has created an additional customer touch point between the original advert and the actual purchase.
ZMOT is when consumers go online to research products, look for reviews or try to find coupons.

Kellogg’s Opens Pay-with-a-Tweet Pop-up Shop in Soho

Kellogg’s has opened a ‘Tweet Shop’ to launch its latest Special K range of Cracker Crisps in Soho, London.  Visit the store during this week’s social media week and pay-with-a-tweet for your sub 100 calorie pack of sea salt and balsamic vinegar, sweet chilli or sour cream and onion flavours crisps.  The Tweet Shop features a ‘tweet wall’ of shared tweets. It’s a smart way to get products into people’s hands and give them something to talk about – which is the ultimate secret to word of mouth, according to Emanauel Rosen, author of the best book on word of mouth.

Report: Fewer Than 1% Of Sales Can Be Tracked Back To Social Media

A new Forrester report titled “The Purchase Path of Online Buyers In 2012″ analyzes conversion paths on 77,000 orders to determine what sources returned the most revenue. While the report found a handful of high revenue sources (paid search, organic search, email) one clear cut source fell behind the rest: social media. The data showed that fewer than 1% of transactions could be traced back to social links.
Forrester suggests that the low numbers could be due to measurement periods required (a 30-day attribution model was used in this report) and company sizes.

Retail Web Sites Are Getting Slower; IE 10 Beats Firefox & Chrome, Study Says

The top retail websites are slower to load than they were last year, and the problem is at its worst on Google’s Chrome browser — the slowest of three browsers measured in Strangeloop Networks’ Fall 2012 State of the Union study on page speed and web performance.

Strangeloop measured the performance of the top 2,000 retail websites (as ranked by Alexa) during July and August, and found that the median page load was nine percent slower than its last study, which was done in November 2011. That’s measuring first-time page views, which slowed from 5.94 seconds last year to 6.5 seconds this year — a nine percent change for the worse. Load time was 15 percent slower for repeat visits, too (as shown on the right of the image below).

Optimise your product reviews for higher conversion rates

Reviews are a great way to increase your conversion rate but the reason we see them fail to have an impact is often down to execution.

The efficacy of reviews depends on the system design i.e. how the reviews are rated, the ease of rating, how they are displayed.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Importance of Multichannel Strategy

A recent survey done by Econsultancy shows the importance of Multichannel Retail

Consumer demand for multichannel retail

A majority of consumers said they would find it useful to have a choice of retail channels, with 40% of respondents in the UK saying it was very important.
Aggregated survey results from 2011 show that 33.5% of respondents from the US and UK said this was ‘very important’.

The Future of Retail in Six Trends

Six trends are shaping the future of retail, many with a social angle
  • The Socialisation of Retail (Social Product Discovery, Consideration and Evaluation). Social influence has a major impact on what we buy, and new retail technology helps retailers harness this. From social recommender systems to social window shopping sites such as Pinterest
  • PR with Sales (product placement morphs into content and commerce). The tried and tested PR strategy of sending new merchandise to editors and journalists in the hope they’ll mention, discuss, or review it is being taken in-house. Retailers such as Gilt Groupe and Zappos are becoming content creators, producing magazines to promote their wares

From Walls to Malls: Facebook Now Tracking Your in-store Purchases

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Those with Orwellian privacy issues towards online ad-giant Facebook should look away now.
Facebook has teamed up with Colorado-based database marketing firm Datalogix to track what Facebook users are buying in-store.
It works like this; Facebook sends (anonymised) lists of its users along with the Facebook ads they have been shown to Datalogix who reconcile the lists with CRM purchase data from 100m+ individuals from 1000+ retailers (US).

Smart Phone Adoption in India and its impact.

Many of the 27 million smartphone users in India are rapidly consuming mainstream content such as video, gaming and entertainment on their devices, driving a steady growth in mobile advertising, shows a study by consumer research firm Nielsen.

Why the high street needs the internet

Last year Mary Portas released 'The Portas Review', which set out her recommendations for reviving the high streets of Britain's towns and cities. 
As we said at the time, she seemed to have a blind spot as far as the role of the internet and digital technology is concerned. In fact, the report said that the internet 'is one of the key threats to retail on our high streets'.
We see it differently: the internet is vital to the future of the high street. 
In our new report, 'How the Internet can save the High Street'(free for Bronze members upwards) we explore how digital technology can be used to drive footfall to the high street, and to enhance the in-store experience for comsumers. 
Here are a few highlights from the report....

Consumer trends

The internet is not going away, so retailers need to adapt to changing consumer behaviour, or face losing business to savvier competitors. 
The growth of e-commerce, as well as smartphone penetration and increased use of mobile internet, offers some serious challenges to high street businesses. 
Let's look at the stats: 
  • 80% of UK shoppers have reserved products online for collection in stores (up from 74% in 2011).
  • 44% of UK shoppers always research purchases on the internet before buying offline. 
  • Just 4% never use the internet for product research. 
  • 43% of UK shoppers now use smartphones while on the move to compare prices and read product reviews (up from 19% last year).
 Have you used your mobile to compare prices and look at product reviews while out shopping?

Driving more footfall into stores

The report looks at a number of ways that retailers can use the web to drive customers into their stores, including the use of vouchers, social media, location-based marketing and mobile. 
For many offline purchases, the research process begins online. A recent Econsultancy survey, carried out using TolunaQuick, found that 44% of UK consumers always research purchases online before actually buying in-store, while a further 52% sometimes check online before buying in-store.
Therefore, high street stores must have a website which, at the very least, allows potential customers to access information about the product range and location. 

Enhancing the in-store experience

As well as using the web to help to attract customers to the high street, businesses can also use this technology to provide a more useful and enjoyable shopping experience for customers. 
For example, relatively new technology like interactive mirrors can provide a 'wow' factor for shoppers, while at the same time being useful, and enabling them to share their images on social sites and spread the word. 
Using mobile
Mobile, and the use of apps and sites for price comparison, offers a very obvious threat to offline retailers as shoppers can often find the same product cheaper online.
However, the high street retailer needs to use all of the advantages they can offer to counter such a threat. 
Get customers to use your mobile site or apps
The first thing is to accept that shoppers are going to use their mobiles in store. If customers are going to pick up their phones and look for reviews, persuade them to use your site for this. Promote it in store. 
If you can provide the reviews they need, then customers won't have to use competitors' sites where they might find a better deal. 
Better still, provide them with a link on the store shelf where they can find reviews, or maybe a QR code or barcode to scan and view further information. 
Provide wi-fi
Make sure shoppers can access the internet on their phones when in stores. This will improve the experience for them, and ensure that they can access mobile sites and apps, scan barcodes etc. 
In addition, having customers logged in to wireless networks on their phones can allow retailers to target them with very precise and timely offers.