April 2, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Considering an app to market to moms? A recent study found that 97% of moms made a purchase on their tablet in the last month and they’re spending significantly more time on their tablets than laptops. There’s a huge opportunity for brands to provide value for moms on their tablets.
One way to make the most of moms on tablets is by developing an app for your brand. However, developing an app, especially for the first time, is not an easy task. It requires a big budget, skilled engineers, and dedicated marketers to build a useful, powerful app.
So before you begin, there are 4 key things to keep in mind when planning to develop a new app:
App functionality – In order to be truly effective, apps must be smart, innovative, and provide value to the customer. Know when your customers will be downloading the app and why they need it at that moment. Determine the use case scenario and keep it top of mind throughout all stages of development. Also know that you don’t have to include all potential features in the first release of the app. Prioritize the essential elements and add additional functionality in future releases.
Operating systems – You don’t need to develop an app for all platforms to be successful. Rather, understand the devices before choosing one or a few. First, narrow down your options by knowing which device your target audience uses. For example, about 51% of moms own an iPhone, iPad, or iPod, compared to 52% of teenagers owning an Android. Second, understand the pros and cons of the various platforms. Windows is known for its flexibility and provides a great user experience. Apple has fewer models and screen sizes so testing is easier. However, a rejection from Apple’s App Store means more time and money to make improvements. With Android, though, it’s easier to get apps into the Google Play store. On the down side, there are many Android models and testing on all of them is nearly impossible. Finally, testing on various devices requires lots of Quality Assurance (QA), not only for the first release but also to maintain the app as devices update their operating systems. Don’t forget to budget for ongoing QA as you develop your plan.
Pricing model – Will the app support your core business or will it be the sole revenue stream? If your business has other revenue sources, you may offer the app for free because it builds mobile presence and authority for your brand. If this will be your main revenue source, the app itself might be free but perhaps it will generate revenue through an eCommerce engine or paid membership. While some paid apps are very successful, tablet users have been shown to prefer free apps with ads to paid apps. Paid apps accounted for only 23% of all tablet app downloads in 2012. Does your app offer something that customers will pay for or does it offer another value to your business?
Download strategies – Marketing your app and getting customers to download it provides a huge challenge. Make sure your app is searchable within the app store. You can do this by choosing the most relevant keywords. What will customers be looking for when you want them to find your app? Find out and use those keywords. Note, you are limited a specific number of characters for keywords. For Apple, keywords must be less than 100 characters. Another download strategy is through email marketing. Email your existing customers and include a direct link to the app store so they can download the app immediately. Make it easy for them to find and download. Also consider integrating a social sharing element into your app so users market the app for you.
Creating an app may or may not be worth it for your business, but after thinking through each of these topics you should have a better idea of your approach and strategy. For more insights on the habits of moms on tablets and how to build the best app strategy for your brand, download the white paper, “Tablets 101: A Primer for Mom-Focused Brands.”
This guest post is by Katie Petrillo. She is the B2B Marketing Manager at Punchbowl, where she writes about marketing to moms for the Punchbowl Trends blog. Follow her on Twitter @PunchbowlTrends and find her on Google+.
February 3, 2013 § Leave a Comment
For those in advertising that are spending their Super Bowl money to reach only men, they are missing the wings and nachos boat. The number of men versus women watching is getting more narrow. Who is sitting next to the NFL commissioner at the game this year? Why a little girl from Utah named Sam Gordon — a girl playing in an all-boys tackle football league.
Last year, 54 percent of the roughly 111 million viewers who tuned in to watch the Packers and Steelers on Fox were men, compared to 46 percent women. And those women were not just delivering the pizza and chips to the guys in the family room. They are real fans.
A recent survey by Advertising Age showed that 55 percent of American women watched at least one regular season NFL game last season, and women account for 20 percent of all fantasy football participants. In the last 10 years, the gender gap in the Super Bowl audience has narrowed from 14 percentage points in 2002 to 8 points in 2012. More women are watching the Super Bowl than the Academy Awards!
Since 2004, the NFL has been promoting more family-oriented half-time entertainment and fan attractions. It’s no surprise that Beyonce is the half-time performer this year. She appeals to both strong men and women, and she rocks that modern sensibility for young women. It is also not surprising that the first spot coming out of the half-time show was an All American Jeep and USO salute to our military, to our families and to our faith – voiced by Oprah. As the mother of a deployed Marine, it definitely was my favorite. My husband said, “Let’s go buy a Jeep.”
So what gives with many of the Super Bowl ads? Many are sex-driven, testosterone celebrations. Advertisers are being challenged to find a way to embrace female sexuality without degrading women. “Especially given the female viewership, advertisers have to be broadly acceptable without being polarizing,” said Tim Calkins, marketing professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
The tasteless award this year may be model Kate Upton in a spot for Mercedes. In the ad, the model is hand-washing a new Mercedes Benz C-Class in revealing attire for the entire 90 seconds of air-time.
But here’s the interesting dilemma: More than half of all women polled in a PHD survey reported that Super Bowl advertisements using sex appeal equally targeted both genders. Seventy-four percent of women aged 18 to 34 said they liked the sexy images in the previous year’s Super Bowl advertisements, compared with 84 percent of men in the same age range. So how do advertisers create the right mix of female sexuality without the woman being portrayed in a demeaning fashion.
One of the ongoing issues for the advertising community is the lack of female creative directors. Some estimate that only 3-4 percent of creative directors are female. Why is that a problem? Because creative departments start to take on the personality of a frat house. Women are not fairly represented unless there are strong women in the account management and/or client side.
November 5, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Have you ever created a book of inspirations? For a wedding, wardrobe, home or entertaining? Well, I have cabinets full of ideas that I tore out of magazines, pictures I took and products that I like. Well, it seems that is what Pinterest is for women. And what Facebook is not.In a Bizrate study among online shoppers using Pinterest, 70% said they do so to get inspiration on what to buy – that compares with just 17% of Facebook users who report the same. So here’s the deal – Pinterest is about ideas and inspirations and Facebook is about relationships. That is why Pinterest users say they are more likely to use the site (43%) to engage with retailers and brands versus Facebook (24%). Pinterest is definitely a discovery tool. And Facebook is a relationship tool. So it is no surprise that Pinterest users actually follow more brands than Facebook users do.
Engagement by Platform
Some interesting information has come out of this study that shows the differences in the user activity. Facebook users are more passive than Pinterest users. I think this really gets at the purposes of the sites – Facebook is about connecting in a window shopping way (Participators and Observers) versus Pinterest (Creators) putting together ideas for a real shopping experience. Marketing Charts summed it up this way:
For example, online shoppers who use Facebook are more than twice as likely as those who use Pinterest (55% vs. 26%) to say they’ve liked or followed a retailer or brand. They’re also more likely to have searched for a specific retailer or brand (30% vs. 23%), browsed photos or pinboards created by retailers or brands (44% vs. 36%), viewed or claimed coupons or sales (30% vs. 9%), and participated in contests or promotions (30% vs. 9%).
But while Facebook users appear more engaged in these observational activities, Pinterest users are more apt to be “creators,” as Bizrate Insights calls them. That means that Pinterest users are more likely to repin an item (55%) than Facebook users are to post or share one (37%). They’re also more likely to pin an item they saw on a retailer or brand’s website (37%) than are Facebook users to post or share such an item (27%).
Facebook is still the gorilla. Latest research from September 2012 shows that 63% of online consumers have a Facebook account, and only 15% of online consumers have a Pinterest account. But as we know, things change quickly in social media. Right now, marketers are not sure how to use Pinterest, while Facebook advertising has matured a bit.
Oh, and don’t forget, Pinterest recently surpassed Yahoo to become the fourth largest driver of traffic in the world.
What to do? Make sure you have a Pinterest page. Have a Pinterest button on your website. And start experimenting. Remember that 10% of your budget should be used for new touch points – knowing that some will work and others won’t.
October 22, 2012 § Leave a Comment
There is a prevalent myth among marketers that women don’t watch sports. The NFL is debunking that myth. Here’s some info from Advertising Age that shows that football scores with women. The Super Bowl’s female audience has more than doubled in only five years. The last three Super Bowl telecasts have set records for being the most-watched shows by female viewers.
And NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” has become the first sports show to finish in the top spot in prime time. Why? Well the weekly match-ups ranked fourth among women 18 to 49 years old, behind only “American Idol” (Wednesday), “The Voice” and “American Idol” (Thursday).
Another clue to the popularity should be the number of pink shoes and gloves you have seen on NFL players during Breast Cancer Awareness month. The National Football League and NFL Players Association support October’s National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their fourth-annual national breast cancer screening initiative and fundraising campaign. The campaign seems to be working - 64% of NFL female fans and 61% of all NFL fans identify the importance of annual screenings, especially for women over 40.
And football fashion is not far behind. Remember those spots about NFL apparel for women? Well, it turns out that it’s the NFL’s fastest growing consumer-products business, showing double-digit growth. And who’s jersey reigns? Last year it was Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu among women’s jersey sold. Polamalu was followed by Peyton Manning and Drew Brees, who rank fourth and second on the men’s list, respectively, according to stats from NFLShop.com.
The Dunham household has loved Troy Polamalu since he played for beloved USC Trojans. Troy’s brother-in-lay and business partner Alex Holmes says that of Polamalu’s more than 2,222,349 likes on Facebook, 49 percent of his fans are female.
October 9, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Holiday marketing has begun. Does it matter when your email arrives in your target’s email box? Well, a new survey sheds light on how timing of an email reaching a recipient’s inbox affects engagement and purchase behavior. Conducted in September 2012, the StrongMail Email Delivery Performance Survey 2012 included more than 700 business leaders participating in the global survey. Some of the survey highlights include:
– 80% have seen performance increased for emails delivered during a particular time of day
– 61% cite a decrease in performance when emails don’t arrive at scheduled time
– 74% would like more control over the arrival of their campaigns
– 53% are not currently testing for an optimal delivery window for their email campaigns
– 61% are not currently doing any segmentation of email campaigns by time of day
When Consumers Prefer To Get Emails
Most consumers have a preferred time of day to shop online, but research shows retailers are not aligning their email campaigns with those preferences, according to an October 2012 report from Yesmail. Here’s the kicker. This report shows consumers (39%) preferring evenings between 6PM and 10PM as their preferred online shopping time, while just 5% of the email campaigns by top brands tracked over a 3-month period were delivered during that time window. The research suggests that the night time preference might be attributed to commuters shopping on mobile devices. Every target audience and geography has a preference of is own that should be determined by the marketer. The majority (41%) of retail email campaigns are sent between 2AM-6AM, with another 31% from 6AM-10AM. These two time periods were preferred by just 5% of the consumers surveyed.
Marketers should consider timing their email campaigns based on subscribers’ channel preferences, as consumers who shop in-store indicate very different patterns than online shoppers. For example, 79% of in-store shoppers prefer to shop over the weekend, versus 31% of online shoppers. Among those online shoppers, 47% who identified a day-of-week preference selected a day between Monday and Wednesday.
What Consumers Want in Promotional Offers
What type of promotions get our consumers’ attention? Consumers say the promotions that most influence them are percent discount, free shipping, money off, buy-one-get-one-free, gift with purchase and rewards points. When actual email promotions were tracked for a 3-month period, they measured up to consumer desires. Discounts were the majority share (54%) of email promotions, followed by free shipping (30%), money off (13%), rewards points (2%), and a gift with purchase (1%).
For those of you who have not sent your first holiday season email, here’s some news that might give you pause. Fifteen percent of top online retailers sent their first holiday email campaign in September this year. That 15% is up from 11% only two years ago. Everyone is vying for holiday dollars this year.
Shopping Begins in October.
Most consumers (51 percent) start their holiday shopping in October or November. Twenty percent start their shopping before October, though 24 percent wait until December.