Episode #193 - March 23rd, 2012
How to interact on Twtter: Include #MktgUp in your tweet!
On the show today is Karen Rubin (@KarenRubin) and Mike Volpe (@MVolpe)
As always, all the old episodes are in iTunes. If you like the show, please leave a 5-star review!
Anyone is welcome to come by the show to watch as part of the live studio audience - 4pm Friday
Gawker's New Content Strategy
Each day of the week, a different staff writer will be forced to break their usual routine and offer up posts they feel would garner the most traffic. While that writer struggles to find dancing cat videos and Burger King bathroom fights or any other post they feel will add those precious, precious new eyeballs, the rest of the staff will spend time on more substantive stories they may have neglected due to the rigors of scouring the internet each day to hit some imaginary quota.
On their assigned pageview-duty days, Gawker writers produced a cumulative 72 posts — about 14 posts per writer per day. On their off-duty days — and remember, each had four off days for every “on” day — the same writers cumulatively produced 34, or about 1.3 posts per writer per day.
The Top Nine Videos Of Babies Farting And/Or Laughing With Kittens(17,757)
Here Is the Best Video of Chinese Soldiers Playing ‘Hot Potato’ With a Live Grenade You Will Ever See (34,134)
Penguin Shits on Senate Floor (15,570)
Those 72 pageview-duty posts produced a combined 3,956,977 pageviews (as of the days I captured data, Friday 3/9 and Monday 3/12), a mean of 54,958 pageviews per post.
The 34 off-duty posts produced 2,037,263 pageviews, a mean of 59,920 pageviews per post.
Pageview-duty posts that week attracted 703,476 new visitors (people who viewed a post that had never visited Gawker before, or at least who didn’t have a cookie set). That’s 9,770 per post. Off-duty posts attracted 289,996 new visitors altogether, or 8,529 per post.
Marketing Takeaway: Use data to drive marketing improvements.
Post Rapture Business Oppotunities
Harold Camping, a Christian radio broadcaster, predicted the rapture on May 21st 2011
His prediction was that Jesus Christ would return to Earth, the righteous would fly up to heaven, and that there would follow five months of fire, brimstone and plagues on Earth, with millions of people dying each day, culminating on October 21, 2011 with the end of the world.
Camping's original pronouncement made some Rapture-ready Christians decide it was time to make arrangements for Fido and Fluffy when their owners were swept up into glory.
In 2009, Bart Center started booking atheist "rescuers" across the country to recover feathered and four-legged friends who got left behind.
By the end of 2010, he had 170 clients. But once people started talking about Camping's prophecy, "then we started to see an uptick in business," he said.
With demand on the rise, Centre did what any smart businessman would do — he raised his rates, to $135 per pet for a 10-year coverage plan. If someone had a second pet, the additional fee rose to $20.
In the first quarter of 2011, business jumped 150% from the same time in 2010. In April and May — as the end-of-the-world date approached quickly — the jump was 200 percent, he said.
"Now the next thing we're gearing up for is this Mayan calendar end times, which we still believe is going to bring us some substantial business," Centre said, referring to some interpretations of an ancient Mayan calendar that the world will end in late 2012.
The owner of a business who claimed he would provide atheist rescuers for Christians' pets left behind in the Rapture now says his service was an elaborate hoax and never had any clients.
Bart Centre, who lives in New Hampshire, came clean after the state Insurance Department delivered a subpoena because he appeared to be engaged in "unauthorized business of insurance" through his Eternal Earth-Bound Pets business.
Asked Wednesday why he had announced the service in the first place, Centre said he considered it a "social experiment."
"How much do believers really buy into this?" he said he wondered. "How committed are they to their pets? How much do they trust atheists?"
Centre said just two Rapture believers — rather than his previously claimed 267 clients — contacted him to sign up for his service. He said he told them he didn't have a rescuer close enough to their area to make a commitment.
Marketing Takeaway: Controversy helps you get found... but will it help you convert?
Email Deliverability Dives
Overall worldwide email delivery to inboxes declined in the second half of 2011, falling to a record low 76.5%, down almost six percentage points from the first six months of last year, according to email deliverability company Return Path.
According to the company's “Global Email Deliverability Benchmark Report,” the drop is being caused by
more stringent filtering and blocking by Internet service providers;
the deterioration of some marketers' sender reputations;
and recipient impatience with email overload, leading to their hitting the junk buttons.
Return Path, the world’s leading email certification and reputation monitoring company, reviewed data from over 1.1 million messages, 142 ISPs and 34 countries in North America, Central and Latin America, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Asia Pacific territories from July through December of 2011.
Email Blocked and Flagged as Spam Increases 24% - Both spam folder placement and blocked emails rose during this period. Spam folder placement was recorded at 8.4% and emails not being delivered, or essentially being blocked by ISP-level filters, came in at 15.1% – that’s 20% worse when compared to the first half of 2011.
More than 1 in 4 American Retailers Not Reaching the Inbox - Retailers had more than 1 in 4 emails blocked or delivered to the spam folder in this region. Gaming companies fared even worse, with only 1 in 2 emails reaching the inbox.
11% of B2B Email Classified as Spam - Delivery into enterprise mail systems increased in the second half of 2011 with 86% of all email surviving the spam filter. Mail being marked as spam through enterprise filters actually increased to 11% during this time frame while less mail was blocked.
Marketing Takeaway: Watch your email stats!
Mad Men & Hunger Games Inspiration
The Fine Brothers have created the Mad Men The Interactive Game, a Mad Men-themed interactive retro-style video game on YouTube. It offers three possible endings based on decisions made during play.
We have pushed the annotations feature on YouTube to its limits, in a way we’ve never used before, where based on the order of which you complete the tasks the game “knows” which order you chose to play the game, and in turn, will ultimately give you an alternate ending depending on which task you completed last.
Hunger Games fans will get a surprise on Friday when they load up Draw Something, with the addition of seven words related to the novel and movie franchise.
Game creator OMGPOP recently added the ability to update the game with new words, particularly pop culture and news references. Coinciding with the release of the Hunger Gamesin theaters, Friday words pertaining to the book will also be released into the game.
Marketing Takeaway: Mashup two mainstream trends and tie your marketing into that.
Postal Service Wants More Junk Mail
A new U.S. Postal Service campaign encourages small businesses to send more direct mail (AKA junk mail), in an attempt to boost the suffering U.S. Postal Service's revenue stream by 'hundreds of millions of dollars.'
The ailing U.S. Postal Service, which reported a $5.1 billion loss for the year ended September 30, has put a year-old online tool at the forefront of its new campaign, entitled 'Every Door Direct Mail.' The web tool supposedly helps small businesses micro-target direct mail by allowing companies to target customers by neighborhood or zip code -- no names or addresses required!
The program, which has been around since April 2011, charges small businesses 14.5 cents per mail piece sent and generated $153 million in revenue through December 2011. The direct mail program is estimated to raise $750 to $800 million of revenue in 2012.
When asked about the average cost per lead of both inbound and outbound marketing lead channels, only 34% of marketers surveyed indicated that direct mail generated a below average cost per lead, compared to inbound channels such as blogs (52%), social media (45%), and SEO (38%).
Furthermore, when survey participants were asked which sources of leads had become less important to them over the last six months, direct mail topped the list, with 51% of marketers indicating it had decreased in importance, followed closely by other outbound-based channels.
Marketing Takeaway: Measure what works for your business...