Friday, January 23, 2015

Mobile devices show more traffic on e-commerce sites on Christmas Day

On Christmas Day 2014, did you make any online purchases? If yes, was it on a desktop computer, mobile phone, or tablet? Research from IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark showed that while PCs had less e-commerce traffic than mobile devices on Christmas, PCs did account for more final transactions. In fact, desktops had an estimated 65.2% of the total online sales.

The Center for Media Research reports that e-commerce traffic from mobile devices was approximately 57.1% followed by PCs at 42.6%. The average order value for a desktop purchase was about $107.72. Mobile devices only had an average order value of $88.70.

The report further breaks down the mobile devices into smartphone and tablet traffic. Smartphones had about 40.6% of the online traffic and 16.3% of online purchases. By comparison, tablets had 15.9% of the traffic and 18.4% of the online sales.


The mobile traffic has increased from years past, which makes sense considering more of the population is obtaining mobile devices, is becoming more comfortable with mobile purchases, and the fact that it was Christmas, and people may not have been near a desktop to browse e-commerce websites for deals. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Don't let your email marketing end up in spam

Sometimes good intentions can get you sent to the spam folder. For advertisers who send out email marketing, the headline is very important. Advertisers have one line of copy to grab the attention of the audience and entice them to open the email. A hazard of the job is avoiding terms that will send an email straight to a spam folder.

Spam and phishing emails are very creative and deceptive, which can make it difficult for genuine advertising emails to break through the clutter. Keywords or phrases that an advertiser may want to use in a headline may trigger that email going straight to a junk or spam folder. According to the Center for Media Research, a new report from MailJet tallied some of the words that can get an email flagged as spam.

For retailers, be careful of using words like “Buy,” “Clearance” and “Discount” as spammers can heavily use these terms.

For marketers, spammers over-use words like “SEO,” “Web Traffic” and “Sign-up Free Today.”


Overall, advertisers work really hard to have a message reach a potential customer; therefore, don’t let the hard work go to waste by sitting in a spam folder. 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Classic Hip-Hop format performing well for radio audiences

Radio stations rely on listening audiences to determine if a format is effective. With the introduction of Portable People Meter (PPM), it is possible to measure radio ratings and listenership much quicker than before. With this quick response, programmers have an easier time determining what moves the needle in terms of audiences.

According to MediaPost, some radio stations have flipped formats to include “classic hip-hop.” While historically urban format stations have not fared well with PPM markets, there seems to be a trend of growing ratings and listeners with the switch. The New York Times was first to report that a station in Houston, TX changed a news format to classic hip-hop. Results showed average audiences go from 245,000 to 802,000.

Other radio stations have started converting fledgling dial positions since Houston’s KROI-FM did so in October last year.


For media buyers, the key is tracking radio stations in the markets. If the ratings have dropped or skyrocketed in a target demographic, find out why. It may be because of a format change, which may need to be approved by the client to buy, or it could be another seasonal factor like carrying sports games or playing Christmas music. Whatever the case, an advertiser needs to know what station and what format is being purchased.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Media consumption for Millennial men

Nielsen recently released new research on spending habits of American consumers namely focusing on Millennial men. It reports that in addition to being the most diverse generation racially in U.S. history, the consumer group varies in media consumption by ethnicity.

Center for Media Research explains that African-American men within the Millennial age group spend more time watching traditional television vs. the Millennial men group as a whole. On average, African-American Millennials watch about 33 hours a week with traditional TV and 3 hours a week of video online. Compare this to the fact that Millennial men spend approximately 20 hours a week watching TV and 2 hours 15 minutes watching videos on the Internet. Hispanic Millennial men tend to watch less traditional television and online video at 19 hours and less than 2 hours respectively. The study reports that Asian-American Millennial men spend about 4 hours a week watching videos online, which is more than any other. However, this group tends to watch the least amount of traditional TV at 11.5 hours a week.

It is reported that about 88% of all men in this age group listen to the radio each week for about 11 hours and 42 minutes. This amount of radio consumption is more than the Millennial female counterpart at 10 hours and 46 minutes.


What advertisers need to glean from this is your target audience may have different media consumption habits from others within the same age group. It is the advertiser’s responsibility to evaluate each tier within the target audience and determine which media will be most effective.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Where should you start if you have an advertising client in a new market?

Where should you start if you have an advertising client in a new market? As a media buyer and planner, getting familiar with a new market fast is key in evaluating and putting together advertising recommendations for clients.

One of the first places that we like to start is pulling out a map and literally looking at the market area that advertising dollars will need to cover. Once the areas main highways or thoroughfares are located as are surrounding cities, it is time to start pulling research information.

We will need to check to see if the new market is measured in what is called a Designated Market Area or DMA. If it is measured, it will make collecting data much easier. At that time, we will pull radio information that includes format, dial position, company contact information, demographic breakdown, market coverage, etc. We will pull the same for television.

The next few steps are figuring out what vendors are in the market like outdoor companies, theaters, newspapers, local magazines, cable providers.


Once the vendors are established, it is time to start carving out a plan by obtaining media kits, researching cable coverage, figuring out target demographics, pulling cost per point for broadcast, evaluating inventory from online vendors, etc. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

What digital ad size should you use for a campaign?

There are a lot of different kinds of online display ads available for advertisers. One of the most common questions we get is what is the best size to run? It really depends on the campaign, the objective, and the measurability. Are you tracking success as clicks? Viewability? Conversions? A new report discusses the ad sizes that tend to have the highest in-view rates.

The research comes from Moat Analytics and reports that the following are the ad sizes ranked as far as in-view rates for desktop computers.
·        65.8%: 970x250
·        62.1%: 300x600
·        55.0%: 160x600
·        52.6%: 300x250
·        49.5%: 728x90

Breaking this down, it’s not surprising that larger ads tend to have the highest viewability on site. These ad sizes tend to be set in positions above the fold on websites.

Also, eMarketer reports that the longer ads typically have longer viewing time. Meaning ads like 300x600 and 160x600 are viewed approximately for 21 seconds vs. the wider ads like 970x250 and 728x90 that are viewed from 16 – 17 seconds. Again, this is not surprising because a user may scroll down a page to read content, and the longer ads can still be seen on the screen.

When looking at the mobile ad display units, 320x50 has the best in-view rate of 64.6% and the 160x600 ad size has the best time viewed with 18.6 seconds.


Overall, our recommendation is to run multiple ad sizes for your campaign. As the campaign matures, look to see which ads are getting you the best results. Once you have established what results you are looking for, you can optimize and funnel more impressions towards the better performing sizes. Additionally, for the ads not performing as well, pause or remove them.  

Friday, December 12, 2014

Should companies move customer service to social media?

If you have a question for a company, what’s your first choice for reaching out for customer service? New research shows that while some companies have been emphasizing reachability through social media, most consumers don’t seek help from there.

eMarketer reports on the findings from American Express’ study “2014 Global Customer Service Barometer” which was conducted by ebiquity. According to this, 53% of internet users will use social media to praise a company for a great customer service experience. About the same amount of people 50% will reach out socially to talk negatively about a service situation. The next highest response was sharing information about personal customer experience at 46%. Coming in fourth place at 40% was reaching out to a company for help in regards to a service issue.

Research shows that people prefer to go to a company’s website or email when making a simple customer service inquiry. The next method preferred is speaking to real person on the phone. If dealing with a difficult question, people prefer an actual person on the phone the majority of the time. A close second is speaking with a person face-to-face. Reaching out to a company via social media was the least preferred choice for both the simple and difficult issues.


In summary, the report suggests that companies should utilize social media to reach out to consumers to continue brand awareness, and manage public relation situations and not be the primary means of customer service.