February 13, 2014 § 2 Comments
Paula Froelich, author of A Broad Abroad, knows quite a lot about traveling solo. There are 32 million single women who traveled solo in the past year. And when I say travel, I don’t mean going home to Mama’s or the beach. Women are taking adventure vacations and going to exotic locales all over the world. (Read Paula’s tips on why you should go to Egypt now.)
In fact, the average adventure traveler is not a male, but a 47-year-old female. Fueling this travel trend is the growth in single women. One third of all women are single “indies” - a new term for those over 27, not married, not living with a partner and without children.
So it is time for travel marketers to acknowledge this growing group of travelers. These women are more educated, affluent, adventurous and curious about life. They want real experiences that are intellectually stimulating. And they would like the marketing to speak to them and their needs – not the happy empty nester couple or the nuclear family.
January 23, 2014 § Leave a comment
Hispanics are a growth target for consumer product brand marketers. A new eMarketer study finds that Hispanics do more grocery shopping than the average US shopper and they spend 20% more during routine trips. For marketers, it is also important to know that they are heavy online users as well.
Hispanics have a strong family culture. Some say that 75% of their families have a traditional sit-down meal every day. And Hispanics also take their friends and family with them when they shop. Hispanics grocery shop with family or friends on nearly 80% of their shopping trips.
Their social nature also extends to social media. eMarketer estimates that in 2012, 68.9% of Hispanics were using social networks, compared with 66.2% of the total US population. They are also more likely to post reviews and participate with brands. A Post brand manager for Honey Bunches of Oats reported that their Spanish Facebook page garnered more than three times the engagement levels of their non-Hispanic page. Currently the page has 211,000 likes.
Mobile is also an important part of their digital profile. Their use of mobile and smartphones while shopping is higher than any other ethnic group. They are more likely to compare product prices, call or text a family member about a product and look for a coupon.
Are you leveraging your Hispanic audience?
January 5, 2014 § Leave a comment
The landscape is changing. We tend to shop everywhere we go and the shopper’s path to purchase is changing radically. There are many signs of the change. Amazon is now providing grocery delivery in select metro areas. Netflix is the darling of broadcast entertainment at the moment. Online sales and show rooming are the norm for any selling season. Just in time shopping is where it’s at. And men are growing in importance in weekly shopping.
So here’s some Shopportunities for Marketers in 2014 based on the new Nielsen Category Shopping Fundamentals study exploring the varied mindsets of today’s U.S. shoppers when it comes to making purchases for their everyday needs.
Planned vs. Impulse Shopping. Consumers plan to buy 72 percent of the category purchases that end up in their cart before they even head to the store. When you need toilet paper, a prescription refill and dog food, it’s not an impulse buy. However, that leaves 28% of purchases in the “shopportunity” category. They are the impulse category. Here’s a handy chart prepared by Nielsen.
Men Shopping More Often. Men just shop differently than women – they are less about the shopping experience. Men tend to shop functionally, planning purchases based on replenishment. They are less likely to focus on traditional promotions and coupons, which are effective with female shoppers. So the marketer’s job is to remind the male shopper he needs to replenish supplies. It seems that men also tend to pay more attention to in-store marketing intended to inform or attract purchases. It’s true in our household. I bet it is in yours as well.
Millennials Love Coupons. Millennials have been caught in a decade long budget squeeze. They are 1.6x more likely to be influenced by a coupon. The way offers are delivered are different. Millennials are looking online, taking advantage of loyalty groups and checking in with social sites like Foursquare to see if they are eligible for a coupon. And because the millennial is more open to new products, a coupon or promotional offer is a great way to invite trial.
Buying Loyalty. Some 82 percent of North Americans find money-saving deals worthy of their participation in loyalty groups. Beyond lower prices, respondents favored enhanced customer service (44%) and free shipping incentives (42%). Free shipping incentives are important to 46 percent.
Hispanic Shopping Influence Growing. Hispanics compose nearly 17 percent of the United States population and are among the nation’s fastest-growing demographic groups, according to the Census Bureau. And Hispanic buying power is creeping skyward as well. For instance, they do more grocery shopping than the average US consumer and they spend 20% more on routine trips. All this has made the Latino consumer extremely attractive. But one size marketing does not fit all. There are nuances that make it important to know your Hispanic market which will change by store and by region. Kmart and RoomsToGo are both using Sofia Vergara, star of the popular television show “Modern Family”, because she is one of the few that is authentically Latin American and part of mainstream culture. In addition, while Hispanics have traditionally been more price conscious, they can also be very brand loyal, and marketers need to know the facts.
Price Checking and Private Label. Shoppers are 40% more likely to price check when buying private label. U.S. shoppers do less price checking in-store and more coupon consideration pre-store when purchasing branded products, probably because of the preference and higher value of brands. However, private label is open to more price shopping.
December 31, 2013 § Leave a comment
Who knew? It seems that the first New Year’s was first celebrated about 4,000 years ago as an 11-day festival in Ancient Babylon. It turns out that the Babylonians are not just responsible for the celebration itself, but also one of its most popular traditions: The New Year’s Resolution. So, what was the most common resolution back then? Well, it wasn’t to lose weight or quit smoking. Nope, year after year the Babylonians promised to return borrowed farming equipment.
The Babylonians didn’t have the Roman calendar so they actually celebrated in the spring. It was Julius Caesar who made January the first month of the year. He named the month for the Roman god of doors and gates (or entrances and exits) Janus. Janus was often portrayed with two heads, one looking forward and one backwards, which Caesar thought was appropriate for looking back and forward.
Toasting also goes back to ancient history. Ulysses drank to the health of Achilles in The Odyssey. In Rome, drinking to someone’s health was so important that the Senate demanded that all diners drink to their emperor, Augustus, before every meal. The word toast came about because in the 17th century, it was common to plop a little toast or crouton in your drink as a snack. For your toasts tonight, just remember what W. C. Fields said: “I never worry about being driven to drink; I just worry about being driven home.”
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light;
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.
Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
For those that here we see no more,
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.
Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.
Ring out the want, the care the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,
But ring the fuller minstrel in.
Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.
Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.
Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkenss of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.
December 14, 2013 § 1 Comment
‘Tis the season of lists so I thought that we might make a list of important learning from this Holiday Season of Marketing so that we could use it all next year. So here is my list. Feel free to add your learnings to the list.
1. Pinterest is the thing of Sugar Plums and Dreams. This female-focused audience is now 70 million strong and retailers need a Pinterest strategy. Holidays, DIY and Recipes are some of the top searches on Pinterest. And 47.7 percent of shoppers say that Pinterest content has inspired holiday gift purchases. Here’s an amazing fact - Amazon has been among the most popular holiday season e-retailers for passed-along Pinterest content, drawing more than 16,300 pins/shares a week since Thanksgiving, per Searchmetrics’ research. Walmart is second and Apple is third.
2. Gift guides are an important sales tool. Some of the most-opened emails during the holiday season are gift guides. Use your imagination for special groups, categories and price ranges. Also popular are gift guides for gifts under a certain price like $50 or $100. Pinterest would be a great place to create gift guides.
3. It’s online! Black Friday gave way to early Thanksgiving openings and Cyber Monday. These shopping holidays saw some new trends this year. Seventeen (17%) of consumers are expecting to increase their online purchases this year, including 2o% among more affluent households. For the first time, more consumers will shop online (47%) than at discount/value department stores (44%). While consumers did more of their pre-Thanksgiving shopping at online retailers than at mass merchants or department stores, they will do more last-minute shopping at mass merchants and department stores (presumably because they won’t have time to wait for the shipping). (Integer Group, M/A/R/C Research.) Oh, and there’s a new term to learn – Green Monday (the Monday with at least 10 days until Christmas).
4. Price checking abounds and Amazon is a clear leader in online shopping. Some 87% of consumers agree that they will always check Amazon before making most online purchases (MarketLive/e-tailing group.) Retailers’ sales and promotions are the most likely factor to influence shoppers’ holiday spending (44%), ahead of household expenses (27%) and existing debt obligations (14%). (Discover).
5. Free shipping is now the standard; 7 in 10 shoppers expect free shipping online, and 47% expect free returns. (Deloitte.)
Bonus Trend: One third of holiday shoppers will be buying gifts for themselves this year, while spending the rest of the budget on friends and family. However, holiday shoppers value generosity and social consciousness from their favorite brands.
There are only ten days left until Christmas. Make the time count – smile more, laugh more, treasure the time and be generous of spirit during these last days before Christmas.
December 10, 2013 § 1 Comment
Women are the holiday multi-taskers so it’s no surprise that 43% of female workers say they have holiday shopped online while at work, according to the new CareerBuilder CyberMonday study. Jennifer Sullivan Grasz from CareerBuilder reports only 35% of male workers are also holiday shopping online.
CyberMonday shoppers work too!
Over half (54 percent) of all workers expect to be shopping online for the holidays. Many of those will be planning to spend the time during lunch or during breaks. The survey finds that one in five workers will spend between one and three hours browsing Internet deals from the office over the course of the holiday season and 10 percent will spend 3 hours or more; a quarter report just planning to spend an hour or less.
Back in 2010, we reported on a similar study that found that 40% of female workers 18-54 said they shopped online, and a whopping 84% of moms said they spent 15 minutes or more daily shopping. And emails were a definite trigger for with 60% responding to email offers.
Workers are responding to lots of holiday emails.
No wonder we are responding to emails. Some 28 percent of all emails are sent during the holiday season. In fact, every brand is sending consumers an average of six emails, up from five last year. Experian says that email accounts for nearly 3 percent of website visits (ahead of social) and higher conversions (3.58 percent) than search (2.49 percent) and social (.71 percent) combined. Oh, and don’t forget – half of all emails are now read on mobile devices.
Email tips for marketers.
For marketers, we need to take all of this in consideration and start planning early. Some of the important considerations are:
1. Test emails and offers for effectiveness.
2. Test timing of emails. Weekends versus weekdays may yield different results. By the way, half of all working women do their shopping between 11 am and 2 pm.
3. Make sure your subject lines are appealing and stand out to your consumers. Subject lines are where most people make a decision to unsubscribe.
4. Help your customer with gift guides. According to Experian, gift guide emails experience 48% higher transaction rates than normal promotion emails.
4. Look for new ways to build your list and reach new people.
5. Be more personal. Address your customer by name or tailor the message to your geography, weather or preferences.
6. Use re-targeting and abandoned cart messages.
7. Make sure you are optimized for mobile.
The CareerBuilder survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive© on behalf of CareerBuilder among 3,484 U.S. workers and 2,099 hiring managers and human resource professionals (employed full-time, not self-employed, non-government) between August 13 and September 6, 2013.
November 26, 2013 § Leave a comment
October 14, 2013 § Leave a comment
New research says that the average consumer visits the doctor three times a year but spends some 52 hours a year researching health information online annually.
The average number of physician office visits per person is 3.19x. Since most physicians actually spend only 15 minutes per patient, there is a role for other healthcare efforts to expand the physician experience through other efforts such as email, telephone care and even group visits. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, 63% of women want a relationship with a doctor that knows their medical history.
Marketing healthcare is really marketing to women.
Learning the behavior of women in these situations is important because women make the primary healthcare decisions in 2/3 of households.
- Some 59% of prescriptions are ordered by women.
- Women spend 80% of all dollars in a drugstore.
- 60% of all doctors appointments are made by women for the household.
- More than one in ten care for a sick relative or parent.
While many online search occasions are prompted by physician diagnosis, it certainly means that consumers are not getting adequate information from their healthcare provider.
The research, conducted by Makovsky Health and Kelton among Americans aged 18 and older, was focused on behavior related to healthcare and prescriptions. We tend to go to pharma-related websites when we are experiencing symptoms (16%), after receiving a diagnosis (51%) and before filling a new prescription (23%).
Some 24% of consumers use at least one or a combination of social media channels (YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and blogs) to access healthcare information.
The most accessed online resources are:
- WebMD – 53%
- Wikipedia – 22%
- Health Magazine Websites – 19%
- Advocacy Group Websites – 16%
- YouTube – 10%
- Facebook – 10%
- Blogs – 10%
- Pharmaceutical Websites – 9%
Contrary to their search for health information, 33 percent of consumers have spent less than an hour researching information on the Affordable Care Act.
October 8, 2013 § Leave a comment
Women are hardwired to shop – a desire to provide for our families that might be traced to the earliest hunter-gatherer times. So maybe we aren’t looking for soft buffalo pelts, mastodon meat and twigs for fires. But for retailers to appeal to women, advertising and marketing need to resonate with the female shopper.
Nielsen NeuroFocus research has found that the female brain is hard-wired with evolutionary patterns that create a very unique shopper whose purchasing prowess has never been stronger.
Research from Nielsen NeuroFocus tells us that women’s brains are designed for:
- Big-picture thinking
- “Gut” reasoning
- Social and verbal skills
But men’s brains are hardwired differently for:
- Concrete thinking
- Goal-oriented tasks
- Logical solutions
Getting a woman’s attention is the first step toward intent and brand loyalty.
Second women must retain the information we are providing. Women remember more and differently than men do, so marketers must talk to both her emotional and rational sides and acknowledge her attention to detail. The combination of emotional decision-making opportunities and rational information increase purchase intent and have strong “sticking” power.
We women have better memory for detailed information than do men, while men tend to have better spatial ability and the ability to build systems. This means that marketers need to get product design, packaging, pricing, branding, messaging and more in sync with how the female subconscious mind receives and processes information, and directs behavior.
According to Nielsen NeuroFocus, the female brain is programmed to maintain social harmony, so messaging should be positive and not focus on negative comparisons or associations.
- Male brain vs female brain: How do they differ? (theguardian.com)