Friday, December 28, 2007

Links to Sip 12.28.07

+ Best Internet Marketing Blog Posts of 2007 has some decent links to check out.

Ritz Crackers' new campaign stresses fun over function.
The “Ritz. Open for Fun” campaign may fly, or it may thud, but one thing is certain: It will be hard to miss.

And, of course, there will be commercials. The inaugural one — called, appropriately enough, “Opener” — shows blink-of-an-eye vignettes of fantastical Ritz-induced fun. A boy and his dog play Frisbee with a Ritz, a girl blows bubbles through a Ritz, Ritz-shaped confetti rains down on an amusement park, a magician pulls Ritz crackers from someone’s ear, ... well, you get the idea. Two 15-second spots, one using live action to simulate a video game and another using animation to simulate a party, will make their debuts as well.

“We don’t want consumers to just think Ritz is a fun cracker,” said Andrew Benett, president of Euro RSCG, the agency that dreamed up the campaign. “We want them to think Ritz is a champion of all kinds of fun.”

Euro pitched the “Open for Fun” idea. It presented Ritz with the results of a “Ritz fun pulse,” a survey asking people what’s more fun (puppies won over chocolate, Swiss cheese beat out snow angels, and only doctors were considered less fun than President Bush). And it sketched out ideas for Web games and ads.

“We wanted to create a magical world of Ritz, not one that’s anchored in some kind of functional benefit,” Mr. Benett said.

New Year’s Eve is just the launch pad for an integrated campaign that will stretch throughout 2008. Already on is a rudimentary quiz that lets visitors rate the fun quotient of silly activities like shooting their house with paintballs. There will be an expanded quiz, as well as online games in the form of banner ads (for example, tick-tack-toe, with Ritz Crackers as the O’s and stylized boxes as the X’s).

There will be more commercials, both live action and animated — one of them has a cracker saying “don’t tell peanut butter we’ve been dating jelly” — in English and Spanish.

There will be posters on buildings and construction sites showing Ritz crackers with humorous lines (“Crummy — but not like those guys you dated in college,” or “If being flaky is bad, we don’t wanna be good”). There will be print ads in unusual sizes and shapes, particularly in women’s magazines (Ritz’s core customer is women 25 to 54). And of course, there will be some in-store ads.

The need to increase internet capacity is growing.

The ANA envisions a slower 2008.
The ANA predicts a continued emphasis on innovation and creativity in all aspects of advertising and media planning, including ad creative and delivery strategies. Such focus will only be strengthened by the ongoing fragmentation of audiences as new media possibilities proliferate--another key driver of change next year.

With innovation will come an increased demand for measurement and accountability. The ANA believes companies will begin creating positions for "accountability officers" who will lead strategies to implement better measurement of delivery and results.

Tribbit is a site I stumbled across, which looks like it could be interesting. The premise is that you create a site that is a tribute to someone or something.

Logolounge on logo trends of 2007.

Predictions of social trends that will effect marketing in 2008.

Communispace has a study out on how fulfilling 6 human social needs creates business value from social networks.
The Six Social Needs People Seek in Social Networks:

1. Expressing personal identity: online social networks provide people with the ultimate tool for defining and redefining themselves, as evidenced in profile pages on Facebook and MySpace.

2. Status and self-esteem: the need for autonomy, recognition and achievement are essential to our sense of self-worth and are fulfilled in online communities, blogs, and social networks that provide a way to develop and manage a virtual reputation.

3. Giving and getting help: people have a need to both seek and provide help to others.Mutual assistance between strangers is a phenomenon that has been uniquely enabled by the Internet.

4. Affiliation and belonging: online communities are becoming the way people find, create and connect with others “just like me” – people who share similar tastes, sensibilities, orientations or interests.

5. Sense of community: a sense of belonging or affiliation alone is not equivalent to a true sense of community. Achieving a real sense of community requires long-lasting reciprocal relationships and a mutual commitment to the needs of the community as a whole.

Communispace tapped its other research on social networking behavior and found that when companies meet the full range of social needs, they gain trust and deep insights into their consumers and community members – marketing nirvana. And when companies go still further to actively embrace and act on people’s ideas they fulfill a sixth social need:

6. Reassurance of value and self worth. People want to be reassured of their worth and value, and seek confirmation that what they say and do matters to others and has an impact on the world around them. Meeting all 5 + 1 of these social needs generally requires the level of intimacy and facilitation that are the hallmarks of smaller, invitation only online communities.

Inspired by networking sites, teens are creating more online content.
More and more teenagers are publishing their photos, diaries, videos and art online, fueled in part by social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace, according to a report released Wednesday.

Almost two-thirds of online teens have created something online, whether it's a personal Web page or a remixed video, according to a study by the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Sites such as Facebook and MySpace have opened the doors, giving them many of the necessary tools.

"Social networking is this fabulous opportunity to share content," said Amanda Lenhart, co-author of report. "You're not just posting it in a vacuum. You're also getting feedback from people."

The report found that 39 percent of online teens have shared their personal art, photos, stories or videos on the Internet, up from 33 percent in 2004. Almost 30 percent have penned their own online journal or blog, up from 19 percent in 2004. And 26 percent, up from 19 percent, have remixed content - often known as mashups - using the content they find online and turning it into their own creations, the study said.

The Wall Street Journal's list of Best and Worst Ads of 2007.

How to market to the modern mom.
According to a recent survey of 3,500 U.S. mothers by BSM Media, 65 percent of mothers feel that they are "under-served" by advertisers — either because mom-focused ads don't resonate with moms or because the ads aren't aimed at moms at all. Strike the right nerve, though, and there's a mountain of money to be made.

First, consider the medium. Print magazines tend to be more effective at catching a mom's eye than newspapers. Moms read an average of 4.1 magazines a month, according to BSM Media. Radio works, too: Moms spend a lot of time in the car.

Moms are also increasingly online: 71 percent use the Internet to research purchases. By contrast, only about 20 percent comb newspaper ads.

"[Moms] don't use a camera because it has eight mega-pixels, but because it captures their memories," says Karen Cage, a spokesperson for HP. "Making that technology understandable and approachable is beneficial to the consumer."

On the Web, don't just rely on banner ads — moms want to engage in a conversation. A good deal of action happens at social networks like Maya's Mom and CafĂ© Mom, and at mom-centric blogs like BlogHer.

"We recognize that we don't always do a really good job via advertising or providing a comfortable dealer experience [to women and moms]," says Christopher Barger, director of global communications technology for General Motors. "We have been looking at how we can use [online] social media to improve our efforts there."

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