Friday, May 21, 2010

Keywords: Search Engine Optimization Basics

When designing a website, search engine optimization needs to be a top priority. Search engines such as Google, rank websites using specific algorithms which consider keywords, relevance and popularity. The higher the ranking, the closer to the top a website will appear on the results page. Keywords play a significant role in ranking a website, no matter what search engine is used. When designing or updating your website, it is important that you are selecting relevant keywords or phrases because they will help to determine the visibility of the site when a search is performed.   

When trying to determine which keywords or phrases to select, it is important to be as specific as possible to the content on your site. Once you have a list of keywords generated you can use utilities such as the Google Keyword Tool to evaluate the popularity of the term and how frequently it is searched. Where many companies are missing the mark is in their organic search results. Billions of dollars are being spent by Fortune 500 companies on paid search term. However these keywords are not landing these companies’ websites high in the natural/unpaid search results. Over 52% of Fortune’s 500 largest companies have no organic search visibility when their keywords are queried. Organic search rankings are important because studies show that 80% of users’ clicks occur on the natural search results rather than the sponsored links.[1] 

Not only are the keywords themselves important, the location of the keywords is also a significant factor to a website’s rating. Keywords should be located in the domain name, page titles, headlines, links, copy, meta tags, etc. The specific algorithms used by search engines give different weights to the location of the keywords, and this helps to determine ranking.  

Many companies have found it useful to diversify their selection of keywords to help cut costs and to stay ranked higher than competitors. This expansion includes bidding on keywords that may be misspelled or mistyped. If a word is commonly misspelled, it might be in the best interest of the business to bid on that keyword in order to be assured that they will still appear in the generated results.  

Search engine optimization is an on-going process. Websites, specifically e-commerce and those that want to attract high traffic volume, need to make sure that their keywords and phrases are frequently monitored and updated. 



[1] The Internet and Marketing Report. “When Fortune 500 flunks, you win”. March 5, 2010


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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Personalize to see an Increased Response

In my last post, I discussed the basics of mobile marketing and the benefits it offers businesses. There’s no doubt mobile marketing is on the rise, but it is most effective when used as part of a multi-channel campaign. Based on results from research conducted by InfoTrends, more than 60% of marketing professionals have responded that they have experienced increased customer response rates, acquisition, retention and satisfaction by using multi-channel marketing. Another easy way to help integrate channels such as print and web, is by using personalized URLs (PURLs).

What is a PURL?

PURLs are web addresses that are customized with a prospects name such as RichardStocktonCollege.com/PhilKening. These can be included in the call to action on a direct mail piece or they can be sent in an email. The goal is to motivate either the existing customer or the prospect to visit the PURL. Once the user types or pastes the PURL into their browser, they are directed to a customized landing page. The landing page usually contains the users name on it and should also include targeted information specifically pertaining to their lifestyle, demographics, purchase behavior, etc. This is where the marketer can add value by using their database to really create a relevant message and connect to the customer or prospect. Any information that a marketer has in their database can be used to increase the relevance of their communication resulting in higher response rates and higher conversions.

PURLs increase relevance, raising response rates

The use of PURLs can benefit both the marketer and the customer. For prospects and existing customers, PURLs can help to increase brand loyalty by creating a unique user experience. Landing pages can be specifically tailored and customized, making the consumer feel like this offer is exclusively for them. This helps to strengthen existing relationships with customers as well as form new ones with prospects. For the marketer, PURLs can help to grow and maintain customer databases. If a business wanted to update existing information about their customers, the landing page can include a form for the user to make revisions to their own information and answer additional questions that the business might want to know. If the recipient of the PURL is not an existing customer, the landing page can serve as a way to obtain their information. This can be done by offering an incentive for filling out the appropriate sections or by asking for it in return for more information, to set up an appointment, etc. This automated data capture process can also greatly improve the quality of leads.

Another benefit to marketers is the high response rate PURLs generate. From the study previously mentioned, it was reported that compared to print only, a multi-media marketing campaign using print, email and PURLs was 35% more effective in generating responses.

Ways PURLs can work for you

An example of an effective multi-channel campaign might look something like this. A postcard is sent out to a prospect list inviting them to attend a seminar. Included on every postcard is a PURL with that prospect’s name asking them to visit that website to obtain more information and to register for the event. Once on the page, the user can confirm their attendance, update their contact info and can choose to opt-in to be reminded via text message 24 to 48 hours before the seminar.

PURLs can be used across all industries. In the automotive industry, you could send a personalized postcard with a PURL to customers whose lease us about to expire. Or send an email notification using PURLs to allow customers to schedule service appointments at regular intervals.

Colleges and Universities can boost enrollment by sending personalized communications with a PURL offering information tailored to the prospects known academic interests, gender, geography, extra-curricular activist, etc.

What information exists in your database that you could use to help make a more relevant communication?

Can you use that information to incorporate PURLs into your multi-media campaign?

If that data doesn’t exist, what information would you most like to gather?


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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Moving Ahead with Mobile Marketing

More and more companies today are using messages sent to consumer cell phones as a marketing tool.  This is known as Mobile Marketing.  The two most common methods are:

  • Sending a promotional text message to the consumer where the phone number is known and
  • Asking the consumer (whose number is unknown) to send a text message to the marketer by entering a specified keyword to the provided short code.

For example, text ‘Perks” to Dunkin (386546) to receive a coupon or text ‘Phillies’ to Google (466453) to receive the most recent score or next scheduled game. The possibilities are endless.

In the U.S. alone, more than 270 million people own cell phones, representing 87% of the population. With the growing popularity of smartphones such as the iPhone and BlackBerry, marketers have increasing opportunities to reach their target audiences. Given the growth and usage of cell phones globally, it is not surprising that marketers are shifting resources to advertise using mobile channels. From the Direct Marketing Association’s 2009 Response Rate Report, respondents indicated that from 2008 to 2009, they increased their budget for mobile marketing by 38.8%. Marketers are obviously constructing mobile marketing campaigns but what situations do they work best in?

For existing customers, mobile marketing campaigns can be used as an additional point of contact, helping to reinforce CRM.  It can add value by making the process of communicating more immediate and easier (i.e. texting a payment reminder, inviting customers to special events, sending coupons, etc.). Cell phone users literally will have access to information at the touch of a button wherever they are. But for prospects to initiate the communication, incentives such as coupons, sweepstakes, and contests can be offered. These offers can increase brand and product awareness as well as encourage trial usage and ultimately, repeat sales.If you are a retailer, could you send text messages to your customer list inviting them to an exclusive sales event at their nearest location?

Unlike other forms of direct marketing, lists cannot be purchased for mobile marketing. Because of this limitation, businesses have to either rely on their house lists or have to integrate the text-in call to action to obtain the necessary opt-in. Once a user has opted-in, their phone number can be stored in the database for future marketing opportunities. The call to action can be incorporated into television and print advertisements as well as point-of-sale and end-cap displays. For customers, it can be through an existing email database or it can be displayed on the company’s website. Many major companies have already successfully implemented mobile marketing into their marketing strategies. The following is an example of such a company.

After recently launching a new line of instant coffee, Kraft Foods wanted to create awareness of their new product by having customers sample it. They also wanted to develop a customer database. In order to reduce waste and minimize costs, Kraft decided to have customers request samples via text message. The short code and an explanation of the sample was included on Kraft’s print and televisions advertisements and customers were invited to text in to receive samples. A request form was sent back to their cell phones along with an option to opt-in to future messages. At the end of the campaign, 500,000 people sent requests for samples and more than 80,000 users opted in to receive future messages.

How else can this form of marketing be successful? What types of businesses could most benefit from this interactive communication?

If you are launching a new product, would you consider a mobile marketing campaign to offer samples, coupons, a video demonstration, etc?

Do you offer educational workshops or financial seminars that require reservations? Could this be used to make the process easier? Can you see how this application could benefit a company like yours?

The next blog post will discuss the use of PURLs (Personalized URLs) and their integration in a multi-channel marketing mix.


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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Keys to Measuring the Success of Advertising with Social Media

Social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace are no longer channels of communication restricted to teenagers and college students. Facebook alone had over 300 million users in September 2009. Those users combined spent eight billion minutes per day updating statuses, gathering information, and accessing the many other services Facebook offers. The reality is that millions of people worldwide, of all age groups, are logging onto these sites daily to communicate with friends, families, co-workers, and now businesses. Major companies such as Dell, Microsoft, and Starbucks have already launched successful marketing campaigns via social websites. But the major dilemmas facing many other major businesses are how do you effectively use social networks for your marketing campaigns, and how do you measure your campaign’s success?

Like any aspect of marketing, if you want to be successful, you need to plan. Before launching a social media campaign, the company has to decide its main objectives and goals, keeping in mind that they should be realistic and measurable. Whether it is to increase traffic to the company’s main website or to increase purchase intent, the company needs to decide what exactly it is they are looking to achieve by using social networks.

Which networking sites will be used?  What roles will they play in the campaign?  Who are you targeting?  These are just some of the questions that need to be answered in this planning process.

Once you have clearly defined the goals of your campaign, you need to monitor the social networks that you will be using. Social media monitoring is “the process of listening and engaging with customers and prospects who are talking about a company’s brand or product within social media circles” (MarketingProfs). This is beneficial to businesses because if they know what their target audiences are saying and are able to communicate back with them, marketing teams will have a better understanding of how to effectively reach their audience. This will make for a more successful campaign.

Now that you have monitored these social networks to better understand your target audience, you need to decide how you will measure the results of the campaign to see if you succeeded in reaching your goals and objectives. No method of measurement will be the same for every campaign because the measurement tool(s) or service(s) employed by the marketing team will be specific to their marketing goals. Some of the most commonly used tools and services for measuring social media are Google Analytics, Omniture, bit.ly, Vocus, and Radian6.

One example of a company effectively using social networks is Nissan Canada. Their goal was to generate interest and engage potential customers in a contest designed to help spread the word about their new Cube vehicle to young creative minds.  Nissan wanted to measure the campaign’s reach as well as the audience’s engagement and awareness of their product. Entrants of the contests were asked to express their “social creativity” in the form of images, videos, songs and words and to submit their projects online. After 500 finalists were selected, they were asked to share their entries on Facebook, Twitter, and any other social media they were actively involved with. This would bring news of Nissan’s new product to their target audience. To measure how effective their contest was in terms of reaching their goals, Nissan conducted pre- and post-awareness surveys. They used Google Analytics to quantify site visits, referrals, page view per visitor, and time spent on site. Nissan also used Radian, a social media monitoring service, to track mentions of the contest on various social networks (MarketingProf).

By using these measurement devices, Nissan was able to determine that their campaign was a success. There were more than 330,000 visits to Nissan’s contest site with more than half of visits resulting in referrals from Facebook. Halfway through the campaign there was an 87% increase in awareness of the new vehicle. By the end there were more than 8,000 tweets about the contest (MarketingProf).

It is possible to successfully market your brand, company, product or service by using social networks as long as you plan out the goals of your project and strategically employ the correct measurement tools to correspond with your objectives.


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Friday, February 19, 2010

Social Media vs Email

The rapid onset and growth of social media into prominent fixtures in our daily lives is remarkable, but it hasn’t replaced e-mail as the preferred method of receiving B2B information.  People now have the ability to connect to peers using a variety of networks like Twitter and Facebook from their cell-phones, and many of the millions of cellular phone customers do so.   It makes sense that B2B companies looking to sell products or services have also taken to advertising using social media.

A recent survey published by Marketing Sherpa showed that 18% of marketers believed that their customers viewed social networks as their preferred medium for receiving information about products and services.  However marketers looking to get ahead of the competition may have jumped on the social media bandwagon a bit too soon.  The same study showed that only 12% of buyers valued social networks as their primary source for new product or service information.  The majority of both marketers and buyers agree that an internet search is the best way to obtain this new data, but what was the buyers’ second choice?

E-mail, was the favored method for receiving new product or service information for 32% of the surveyed buyers.  The rise of online searches and social media may have caused marketers to write email off as an obsolete method for communicating with customers – only 20% of marketers surveyed believed that buyers preferred receiving product or service related emails.  The success of social networks does not necessarily signify the death of email as a marketing tool. In fact, email is still considered the most targeted and measurable medium. While social media is a good source for gathering general information and finding facts, email motivates action.


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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Value Proposition

What is a value proposition?  I’ve seen it defined and used many different ways in both industry and business school.  I like to define the value proposition as the amount of benefit your customer receives for the price he or she pays compared to competing products or services.  It is an economic concept, and can be stated in terms like, “more for less” or “less for much less.”

We recently had an assignment to develop a marketing strategy for a technology company that served two distinctly different target markets with two separate software offerings.  The client recently took a seminar at a well-known business school and had been exposed to new terms and buzz-words for the first time: value proposition, social media, CRM, etc.  He wanted to start working on his new strategy by communicating his product’s “value position.”  We quickly learned that our client, like most of us, used “competitive advantage,” “positioning” and a “value proposition” almost interchangeably. 

I am currently teaching my tenth or eleventh Marketing Principles class at a small state college in New Jersey. To be a successful teacher, I need to present concepts to beginning business students in clear and unambiguous language.  We teach that the purpose of marketing is to facilitate exchange.  Exchange is when a party gives up something of value for something else they would rather have.  Marketing is what we do to create, communicate and deliver the value that a company’s customers are willing to pay for.

I like to think of the value of a product or service in terms of relative price and benefit. Price is what is charged for a particular product or service, and benefit is what I receive in exchange for my money.  In this school of thought, there are three levels each for price and benefit: more, same, and less.  The level selected describes your product relative to its competitors.  Does what you have to sell offer more benefits for more money than your competitors, or do you offer less but charge much less? 

We can use auto manufacturers to illustrate the concept.  When advertising its high-end luxury cars like the S-550, Mercedes-Benz acknowledges the fact that their model is more expensive than the competition.  However, they assure you that no other automobile offers the same quality of workmanship, comfort, safety-level, and driving experience as the S-550.  For those seeking the highest level of amenities, the S-550’s value proposition is “more for more.”  Hyundai, on the other hand, argues that their new Genesis boasts the same features and performance as other luxury sedans offered by Acura or Lexus, but at a much lower price.  The Genesis’ value proposition is “same for less.”

Wholesale clubs like Sam’s and BJ’s do not have the selection and variety of regular grocery stores, but you get much more product for a much cheaper price.  This is a “less for less” value proposition.   High-end grocers – Whole Foods, for example – advertise better-quality organic products that are more expensive than similar items found in a wholesale club or a chain like Shop Rite.  Similar to Mercedes-Benz, Whole Foods purports to offer food of a much higher quality for more money than its competitors, or a “more for more” value proposition.

Using this approach, how do you define your products or service’s value proposition?  Do you present a competitive benefit over your competition, or do you need to rethink your price-points or service-packages to present a greater value?


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Thursday, January 7, 2010

The First Step to Great Advertising

You don't have to have a multi-million dollar budget to get good advertising.  With their bigger budgets, large businesses can afford to allocate more resources – people, money, etc. – towards developing and producing an ad campaign.  However, even a small company with a very limited budget can get effective advertising if it does a little work up front.

If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.” – Lewis Carroll

Many companies and their ad agencies develop their advertising using a process that is similar to the Lewis Carrol quote (above) from the Wizard of Oz.  A better approach, without wasting your ad agency’s time and your company’s money, is to develop a Creative Strategy Statement, also known as the Creative Platform as the very first step in the process.  The Creative Platform is a document developed in conjunction with your ad agency that outlines the purpose of the ad campaign, describes the target audience, and gives reasons for the target audience to act.  This is important for both your company and the ad agency because it establishes a clear direction for the ad agency to follow and gives you a clear framework to evaluate their campaign or execution concepts.

This is not a new idea or process, nor was it invented here.  All Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG)  companies and all large ad agencies have the creation and approval of the Creative Platform as the mandatory first step before starting to develop any new ad campaign, regardless of the media to be used.  In fact, one of the first training sessions that I had to attend almost thirty years ago, when I was an Assistant Brand Manager at Raltson Purina Company, was the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) Seminar on Creative Advertising which taught this process.  Back them almost all of the major CPG companies (P&G, Pepsi, General Mills, etc.) sent their young brand managers to those seminars. 

Here is what I recommend including in your Creative Platform:

Item

Description

Advertising Objective

To inform, persuade, remind or engage

Target Audience

A description of whom your advertising is aimed at

Strategy

The single-minded proposition that communicates your brand’s key benefit.  Geico's might have been something like "save 15% or more on car insurance".  Energizer batteries was "Energizer batteries last longer".

Support

The facts that give the target audience permission to believe your proposition.

Tone/mood

Should your ads be serious or light-hearted, etc.?

Executional Musts

Things the ad agency must include in the ads, i.e. a slogan, logo. disclaimer, warning, etc.

Call to Action

If a Direct Response Ad: what should the target audience do? Call a phone number? Visit a website?

 

Case Study: GEICO Advertising

While GEICO car insurance is not a small company, their current campaigns are a perfect example of a company and an ad agency working off of a consistent creative platform.  Now, GEICO is concurrently running at least four different television ad campaigns; GEICO Gecko, the Cavemen, Kash (the stacks of money with googley eyes), and the Rhetorical Questions.   

The objective in all of GEICO's campaigns is to persuade the target audience, everyone who drives and therefore needs car insurance, that they will benefit from switching to GEICO because GEICO can help save money.  Other auto insurance companies also offer this benefit, but GEICO supports their claim by emphasizing quickness and convenience. 

GEICO ads are tongue and cheek and generally humorous, and every campaign uses a variation of the company's slogan that  “fifteen minutes can save up to fifteen percent or more on auto-insurance,” and a call to visit GEICO's website or telephone its toll-free hot line. 

Where GEICO separates itself from others is in their advertising budget.  GEICO needs to advertise more because they use a “pull” strategy to sell directly to motorists, where their chief competitors sell indirectly through their agent channels.  Warren Buffet, CEO of GEICO's parent company, Berkshire Hathaway, said in an investors' meeting that if he could, he would spend two billion dollars on GEICO advertising instead of last year's $789 Million.  GEICO’s willingness to spend copious amounts of money on advertising allows them to run four different television ad campaigns on major networks in prime-time, so people do not become fed up with the monotony of repeatedly viewing the same commercial.  Yet because all four campaigns work from the same creative platform, the net effect is a much stronger imprinting of the message.


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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Improving Customer Retention: Win-Back Programs

Repeat customers generally produce the majority of revenue for businesses in the service industry.  This well-known fact makes improving customer retention an annual goal for companies looking to increase profits.  Many companies utilize CRM systems, run frequency or loyalty programs and have dedicated marketing teams focused on customer retention.  However, even the most customer-centric companies lose some of their good customers to “controllable” reasons.

An often-overlooked tactic that goes hand-in-hand with customer retention is a “win-back” program.  These programs are designed to regain lost customers or reactivate lapsed customers.  This could be something as simple as a phone-call to a former customer asking them to return, or a full-blown automated multi-media campaign.  Generally these programs use personalized communications and tiered discounts fueled by data stored in both the customer service and transactional databases.   

Win-back programs can be an extremely profitable way of acquiring incremental business.  If your business has the following general characteristics, it might be a good candidate for a win-back program: 

  •      Historical transaction data available for customers
  •      Customer profile information
  •      Customer service records
  •      Frequent purchase occasions
  •      Customer revenue segmentation with “Heavy Users”
  •      Ability to offer “soft” incentives – free minutes, bonus product, etc.

Case Studies:  Successful Win-Back Programs

Comcast

Several years ago, Beacon Marketing Group was asked to do a win-back program for Comcast Metrophone, now AT&T Wireless.  They had a significant opportunity to reactivate customers lost to competition in the rapidly growing cellular telephone market.  At the time, the company had a 2% monthly churn rate, which meant that every year, they lost one-quarter of their existing subscribers.

We used a direct mail and phone effort to communicate a tiered promotional offer based on value segmentation to reacquire the most profitable customers lost to rival companies.  The audience was sent a personalized letter communicating a relative value offer with variable copy geared towards their specific, individual disconnection reason.  The letter was followed up by a phone-call from a customer-service representative. 

Comcast Metrophone experienced a reactivation rate of over seven percent, and achieved a one-year payback of eleven dollars in profit for each marketing dollar spent on the program.

 UPS

Another example of a successful Win-back program is what UPS did to regain customers lost as a result of a labor strike.  In 1997, a fifteen day Teamsters strike caused loyal UPS customers to turn to FedEx, Airborne, RPS and USPS to meet their shipping needs.  FedEx delivered 850,000 additional packages during the strike and expected to keep as much as twenty-five percent of the new business.  Thousands of UPS workers were laid off as a result of the company's losses and employee morale was low.  Jobs relied on an aggressive customer win-back strategy.

UPS sought to rebuild trust with a timely, dedicated effort to reach out to all lost customers through a combination of personal contact, direct mail and incentives.  UPS officials telephoned apologies to customers for inconveniences while assuring that they were back in business and pledging reliability.  Drivers assured customers that things were “back to normal,” and were cheerful, confident and customer focused.  UPS issued letters of apology and discount certificates, and initiated face-to-face meetings with big and small customers alike to rebuild trust and reinforce UPS's commitment. 

This aggressive strategy resulted in an eighty-seven percent increase in profits in the year following the strike, and allowed UPS to reinstate many laid-off workers.


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Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Mobile Marketing on the Rise

One new marketing technology that you might not be aware of is JAGTAG. This is a promotional communication tool that delivers a multimedia message right to your cell phone instantaneously. This new media is non-invasive to consumers, as they can only receive the message if they choose to request it.  The user does not have to download an application for this to work. The promotional messages that consumers can receive can be in the form of a video, audio clip, enter-to-win sweepstakes, or coupon just to name a few.

Qdoba Mexican Grill, a fast-food restaurant with close to 500 locations across the nation, used JAGTAG earlier this year to promote a new store’s grand opening. This new restaurant was opening up around the campus of the University of Michigan. With their goal to generate traffic for the site’s grand opening, Qdoba ran a six day ad campaign in the University’s newspaper featuring a JAGTAG 2d barcode with the tagline “FREE BURRITO”. If consumers took a picture of the barcode image on their cell phone and texted/emailed it to the provided shortcode, they would receive, in the form of a text message, a coupon for buy one burrito get one free. This promotional campaign generated a 2.2% response rate and 52% of those people redeemed their coupon.

The JAGTAG technology works as follows. Consumers who have cell phones with multimedia messaging capabilities (MMS) take a picture of the JAGTAG, the 2d barcode located on the promotional medium, and send it to the number given. The user can send the JAGTAG in the form of a picture message or through an email. Once the image is sent, the user receives a message back within seconds with a video, coupon or special promotional offer. There is no additional cost for the user (standard carrier message rates apply), and the technology is opt-in only.

While still a relatively new technology, many consumers have the ability to take advantage of this marketing tool. The consumer’s cell phone must have a camera and MMS in order for the JAGTAG to work. Of those consumers who have a camera phone, 75% of them have a MMS plan. In the first half of this year, 10.3 billion MMS messages were sent in the US, a 54% increase from the same time frame in 2008. The number of MMS users for 2009 is estimated to be about 450 million. MMS has a high potential for continual growth with total users estimated to reach about 600 million by 2011.

With the MMS technology so readily available and rapidly growing, do you think JAGTAG will be a smart promotional tool for marketers?

To experience JAGTAGs, visit their website for a demo at:

http://www.jagtag.com/

Reference and related links:

http://www.gomonews.com/qdoba-shows-52-redemption-rate-from-jagtag-mobile-coupons/

http://www.jagtag.com/product_offering.php


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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Are Corporate Gifts on Your List This Season?

The holiday season is upon us – ready or not.  Each day our mailbox (and inbox) is stuffed with catalogs, coupons, and reminders from gift retailers and holiday card vendors.  And while we will choose to procrastinate just a little bit longer, many of you have already made your gift-buying decisions.  Industry statistics, as well as our own research study targeting businesses, show that corporate gifts are planned for and approved in October/early November.  Some motivators for early ordering are price discounts, free gifts and other special offers.  And I think those incentives will prove even more meaningful in today’s bleak economy.  Do you still plan on giving corporate gifts this year? 

 Food gifts are becoming increasingly more popular.  Why?  Because they can be easily shared with others, are well-received by all, offer flexible price points, and allow you to share something you like. 

According to a recent study, the corporate gift market was valued at $7.7B with food gifts at $2.5 B and growing, representing one-third of the overall corporate gift market.

 This year we will continue our tradition of sending gifts to our customers and vendors.  Being marketing professionals, we are sometimes extra critical when evaluating our shopping experience. But for what it’s worth, here’s our list of must-haves for any e-commerce site looking to grab a slice of this year’s holiday pie:

  • Site has to be easy to navigate
  • Once we find what we want, it has to be easy to buy.  Sounds like a no-brainer, but unfortunately not everyone complies!
  • Has to be easy to order an item for multiple recipients
  • Provide an order history so gifts can be reordered for past recipients with minimal hassle
  • Ability to send personalized message
  • Satisfaction guarantee
  • Good customer service

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