I found a firm, New Media Strategies, that focuses mainly on twitter and other social network sites as their platform to sell communications. They specialize in entertainment, beauty, sports, retail, travel, public affairs, and more. They have executed 2,000 campaigns and have represented 85 industries. They do market research, analytics, strategy and other types of marketing for their clients. When looking through their staff, it appears that everyone is relatively young, and work from across the country. I think this is a new, innovative firm that would be interesting to take a deeper look into.
The Harvard Business Review recently used an eye-tracking and facial expressions study to determine what makes ads viral, which are two innovative strategies we've learned about in lecture with Professor Ball and with Andrew Danielson.
1) People are put off to logos - Do not spend time blatantly showing your logo, weave it into the ad without the viewer feeling like they're being targeted.
2) People get bored easily. People will continue to view your ad if they feel two emotions: Surprise or joy. Start off with something that will evoke those two feelings.
3) Keep people's attention with an emotional roller coaster. Use joy and surprise sporadically throughout the ad to keep people invested.
I found an interesting article that compares Google and Facebook, including their advertising strategies.
Both Google and Facebook have been molded and altered throughout the years to benefit both the users and advertisers. This article gets in to how only reaching your fan base is the minimum you can do as a brand. In order to keep your fans, and gain the attention of new ones, Facebook believes brands need both a solid page and paid advertising. They hope this will create a cycle where both brand pages and ads bring in more consumers for the brand and facebook.
I think this is an interesting strategy and way of thinking. It gives smaller, lesser-known brands a chance to reach a lot of people even if they cannot pay for advertising at first. However, this will steepen the competition, and that brand will most likely pay for advertising eventually. Facebook also hopes this competition will bring on more viral ads.
I found a hilarious ad from the Got Milk? campaign that I had never seen before.
The ad shows men fighting over buying milk, and man who basically robs a milk truck. Towards the end of the ad, the narrator shares that calcium has been found to reduce PMS. Then a man comes home to his wife with a carton of milk and flowers.
This is an older ad from at least 5 years ago. There was a lot of controversy when it came out, and a lot of people thought it was a parody because it is so risque. PMS is not a widely discussed topic, especially in advertising. I think the strategy behind this particular ad was brilliant, though. It tapped in to a different audience by changing their sense of humor a bit. It even used proven data to back up the premise, which I think is very clever. Overall, I think this ad was a smart choice.
When I logged into myu today, I found a brief poll along the right side of the page where I usually do not look. The poll was as follows:
Fall semester is almost over, meaning that finals week is just around the corner! How many finals do you have this semester?
More than 5. Yikes!
This poll is clearly for undergraduate students at the U and is meant to be an informal poll, hence the "Yikes!" The results are as follows:
0 50 votes
1 191 votes
2 391 votes
3 666 votes
4 588 votes
More than 5. Yikes! 186 votes
Total Votes: 2072
So far, there are only 2072 votes, which means this poll is definitely not representative of undergrads at the U. Also, the people who even notice these polls and take them are probably not representative of the undergrad population at the U. That is to say that people who consistently take these polls are different than people who never take these polls.
Interestingly, I found out that you are allowed to vote more than once. I do not understand why that would be an option for this type of poll. Usually, only promotional or contest polls allow that. In this case, it just skews the results if people vote more than once.
I hope the U is not using this poll as a serious look at the life of an undergrad, because of the issues I discussed. I hope it is more of an informal communication to engage undergrads.
A couple of weeks ago, I took a survey from the SJMC research website called "University Brand Perception, the .XXX Domain, and Pornography.
This was an interesting survey because I was not even aware of the issue going into it. Apparently, .XXX domains will be available within the next year, so big companies and schools are purchasing potential .xxx domains that would be associated with their image. For example, the U would buy domains that include maroon and gold, goldy, ski-u-mah, etc.
Schools are already beginning to do this, so the survey asked about my opinion on the impact of .XXX domains and what the U should do about it.
The survey was set up with almost all multiple choice questions which was nice because I did not have enough information or opinion on the matter to fill out open-ended questions. This was the first time I had heard about the issue, so I appreciated having options. The questions asked if an .XXX domain would change my opinion on a brand or school, if I would decide against going to the U if there was an .XXX domain associated with it, and also my opinion and use of .XXX domains and pornography sites.
This was quite a controversial survey, so I think it was a good choice by the researcher to make it available online. This allows for people to have more privacy and it makes them more willing to share sensitive information.
Last week, I took a survey through the SJMC studies website. The survey was called "Message Strategy Effects" and was created by Samantha Steinbring.
This survey started with an advertisement from Sun Chips. Following the ad, I was for my opinion on the ad and the brand. Most of the questions used differential semantic questions in which I rated the ad or brand as pleasant/unpleasant, happy/unhappy, and so forth. After I did this for the Sun Chips ad, I was shown an ad by Dasani. I then answered the same questions about the ad and brand.
This study used two ads that emphasized a more "natural" product. Sun Chips focused on using natural ingredients, and Dasani focused on using water in recyclable bottles which are more green. In my opinion, the Sun Chips ad was more exciting and pleasant. It put me in a good mood, and I can see how someone would want to try Sun Chips after that. The Dasani ad did not make me feel anything, and it was rather boring to me. Based on my responses, I think my answers show that I would rather be entertained by an ad than be loaded with information.
Last week, Professor Ball emailed with us a pilot survey for an honors student's thesis, at the following link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DFDB6C8.
This survey was very different from most surveys I've ever taken because all of the main questions were open ended. They all related to the reasons I do and do not drink bottled water, who I know that does and does not drink it, and who would or would not support me drinking bottled water.
Though this type of survey would get detailed information from the respondents, it is tough to code these kinds of responses. It is best to use open-ended questions to gather data to start off a research study because it gives you an idea of what your hypothesis should be and what types of opinions you will be dealing with. However, I hope the honors student is not planning on solely using this survey. I do not think it would probe accurate answers from the respondents which would complicate the validity and reliability of the survey.
It is also frustrating as the respondent, because it is difficult to come up with answers on the spot with no aid. As a respondent, I prefer to take surveys where they offer some answers, and provide a box to add additional information. That way, it gets me started and I will think of more things after I have some help.
A couple of days ago, I was asked to take an opinion poll on tobacco use and exposure at the U of M. It was created by a Tobacco Work Group and they are partnered with Boynton Health Services.
Here is the link I was emailed: https://solutions.oms.umn.edu/cgi-bin/qwebcorporate.dll
The survey mainly asked me questions on my tobacco use in the past month, 6 months, and year. The same applied for chewing tobacco. There were a few questions about how well I think the U is applying their tobacco use restrictions on campus. There were only a few demographics questions at the end. Most questions used a scale from 1-6 with an option to decline answering. The survey took about 5 minutes total to fill out.
A recent study was released by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) which found that the base salaries of CEOs of more than 1,100 community colleges in the US increased by 4.1-6.2% over the past six years.
The study was conducted through a 37-question survey with a response rate of 39%. The median salary was $167,000 and the mean was $173,983.
Some interesting findings from this survey include:
-75% of the community college CEO's said they plan to retire in the next ten years
-70% of respondents indicated that they receive the allowance of college-provided housing
-66% of respondents received a college-provided car
-Women's salaries were higher, but men received more in total cash compensation
-Black and Hispanic CEOs earned more on average than white CEOs (The researchers explain that the non-white CEOs often work in large, urban institutions where salaries are higher.)