Tag Archives: direct marketing

2018 A Stormy Year for Social

2018 was somewhat of a stormy year for social media in general.

In January Facebook users complained that posts from businesses, brands and media were crowding out personal moments on their Newsfeed. Adam Mosseri, Head of News Feed, reported that FB would change their algorithm and would prioritize posts from friends and family over paid advertisers.

Then, the Cambridge Analytics (CA) Scandal came to light in March. CA was a British political consulting firm that combined data mining, data brokerage, and data analysis with strategic
communications during the US Presidential elections.

CA used information from Facebook and others to build psychological profiles of American voters by using an app that appeared to be a personality test. The app collected data on tens of millions of people and their FB friends, even those who didn’t download the app themselves.

Facebook share prices dropped more than $100 billion in days and politicians from the US & the UK demanded answers. The scandal eventually led FB President Mark Zuckerberg to testify in front of Congress.

The scandal incited public discussion on ethical standards for social media companies, political consulting organizations, and the war on false news heated to new levels.

May of 2018 brought the launch of the GDPR- General Data Protection Regulation. This
European Union law gives individuals more control over how and what data is collected by third parties and forces companies that collect data to be more transparent. That includes expedited notification of breaches. Though not in effect state-side (yet), the law and penalties apply to companies that collect data from EU residents, even if the company collecting isn’t part of the EU. Many expect similar legislation to follow here in the US.

Lastly, FB removed their Partner Categories in August. Partner categories were demographics available when creating audiences for paid FB & Instagram ads. These demographics derived from third party giants such as Axciom, Epsilon, Experian, Oracle Data Cloud, and Quantium. They provided game-changing personal information such as household income, parents with children (you pick the age), or what kind of car an audience drives.

Removal of these demographics left many marketers wondering what kind of returns to
expect in the future.

All was not blustery for digital platforms in 2018. Communicating through video apps and stories became front runners and are defining new ways marketers need to spend their advertising dollars.

In June, Instagram launched IGTV. Unlike Instagram, it allows users to upload vertical videos up to 10 minutes in length. Up to 60 minutes if you are verified or “popular”.

China based TikTok became the most downloaded app in the US. This app is for creating and sharing 15 second videos. (See our blog, ‘Six Wildly Popular Social Sites That You (probably) Never Hear Of“).

One thing is for certain. Social Media marketing landscapes will continue to change at lightning speed and we’ll do our best to keep you abreast of the latest trends.


Winning Direct Mail Equation

Marketing expert Ed Mayer advanced a formula for direct marketing called the “40/40/20 Rule”.  Though developed in the 1960’s, the concept is still viable and is worth keeping in mind when creating your direct marketing campaigns.

The rule reflects that the first 40% of emphasis lies in determining the audience you are making the offer to.  The next 40% should be placed on what you are offering and how you’re offering it.  The last 20% should focus on creative, format, production, etc.

Remember, you can put all of your effort into creating an absolutely beautiful mail piece, but it won’t matter if you’re not sending it to the “right people”.    #DirectMailWorks


2013-08-14 HEADER PHOTOWe were recently asked to assist a regional industry association with marketing their annual conference.  We created a multi-channel marketing campaign strategy that included direct mail, e-mail, tweets & Facebook posts, and video marketing.

Our audience consisted of the association’s current membership, lapsed members from a three-year period, and two targeted lists of prospective companies.  Prospects were identified through a partnership with a similar industry association and targeted businesses based on SIC codes within a five-segment, geographic area.

The campaign rendered attendance from over 30 companies, across the nation and Australia.  Twenty percent of the companies were first-time attendees and eight percent of the lapsed market was recaptured.

Direct mail brought the largest returns as 57.5% of the total registrations occurred within 10 days after a mailing and 57.1% of first-time registrations occurred within the same time frame.  We also saw that 33% of our total webpage traffic occurred within a ten-day period after a mailing.

E-mails that emulated the mail pieces and followed a mailing brought the second highest amount of activity.  Within 72-hours after a direct mail/e-mail,  23.1% of our total website hits occurred and 12.1% of attendees registered.

2013-08-14 CONF REGISTRATION CHARTGeneric e-mail blasts brought also brought 12.1% of the total registrations and comprised 15.8% of the total website activity within the 120-day campaign.

The social media component brought interesting results as well.  Nearly 25% of all website activity (24.7%) occurred on the day of positing on Facebook or Twitter, using a link connected to the website.  We noted that 14.6% of registrations occurred on days where social media was the only form of marketing used.

Seven videos were created and uploaded onto YouTube during the 120-day campaign bringing 399 views.  One-third of all views came from the inaugural, two-minute, introduction video that outlined location, topics and speakers.  Daily, 30-second spots, highlighting schedules for the three-day conference were watched by 18.7% of the registrants and accessed from a QR-Code conveniently placed on the cover of the conference program.

2013-08-14 WEBSITE ACTIVITY CHARTIn conclusion, the conference was a profitable and successful venture for the association.  Revenues were 13.4% higher than the previous year and first-time attendees were up 3.9% from 2011.