March 12, 2012
If you follow our Facebook page, you may have noticed that early last week, we quietly marked the 10-year anniversary of envisionit media, inc. We’ll be celebrating properly as the year goes on (so be sure to keep up with us here and on Facebook and Twitter for updates). Meanwhile, I thought I’d take a look back at a few notable differences between the digital marketing landscape a decade ago and today.
It wouldn’t be a very quick read if I included every single difference, so these are just my faves. Enjoy the walk down memory lane and provide your own memories in the comments!
OMG, what did we do without Facebook?
That’s right…10 years ago, Facebook didn’t. even. exist. Gasp! Social media was barely even a phrase. Yes, the idea of social media has been alive for some time—think instant messenger and message boards. But the marketing world’s favorite buzzword of the last few years didn’t quite yet have today’s popularity and meaning back in 2002.
And how quickly the space has grown! In 2002, Friendster was introduced. Myspace followed in 2003. Flickr and Digg hit in 2004, and that same year the college scene was introduced to The Facebook. Twitter was born in 2006. StumbleUpon, FourSquare, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest…all these social networks later, and companies now commonly have dedicated social media marketing roles and entire departments.
Phone is ringin’…
I happened to graduate from college in December 2001 (which is why I know to follow up this section’s subtitle with “…oh my god.” Name the reference in the comments if you know it!) and got my first cell phone a few months later in 2002. It was the standard Nokia phone that everyone else had. It made calls, it received calls, that was about it. Some fancy people had PDAs at the time, but it would be a few years before Blackberrys found popularity and exactly 5 years until the first iPhone was introduced. And now? There’s an app for that! And QR codes, geo-fencing, mobile-friendly websites, mobile SEO…and the word on the street for a few years now has been that the future is mobile marketing.
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June 24, 2011
With FourSquare hitting the 10,000,000 user mark this past week it’s time you do more than just claiming your business? You could go play real FourSquare with the hipsters in the park or you could start taking advantage of all the different features that FourSquare has to offer your business for free!
Create a FourSquare Special
When a FourSquare user checks-in, they are often times rewarded with some type of special. There are seven different types of specials including:
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- Swarm Special:
- If 43 people check-in at your bar, everyone whom checked in will get 10% off of their bar tab
- Can limit the frequency that this occurs and what number makes a swarm
- Friends Special:
- Check-in with four friends and receive a free appetizer
- FourSquare allows the number of friends that must be checked-in to be awarded the special
- Flash Special:
- First 50 people into the store starting at 10:00 AM receive a coupon for $25.00 off of their purchase of $100.00 or more
- Gives an incentive for individuals to come to your store at a specific time and specifically spend a certain amount of money
- Newbie Special:
- On your first check-in, receive a free pedicure with the purchase of a manicure
- Establish that relationship and hopefully gain a devoted customer
- Check-in Special:
- A special every time a customer checks-in to your place of business
- Loyalty Special:
- Every third check-in, receive a free desert with your dinner
- Same concept as the Subway stamp card, reward your loyal customers for their loyalty
- Mayor Special:
- If you are the mayor as of election day 2012, receive a free hour long party for you and 15 friends. All check-ins while mayor will be rewarded with 20% off of your bill.
- Again, reward your loyal customers
January 19, 2011
The New Year was brought in with champagne bottles popping, balloons dropping, and unrealistic resolutions that never stick (congrats if they have for you). But once all the fun settled down, along came the expected tidal wave of predictions for 2011. It’s the year for this, the year of that, and I’ve got one more that you can add to the list- 2011 will be the year for mobile marketing. Oh, you want an explanation? Let me tell you why…
Mobile usage for search is increasing more and more every year, and with the launch of the new tablet category growth seems almost endless. In Fact, according to internal Google Data in Q3, Google searches from mobile devices increased by a whopping 130% year-over-year. In addition, a study by the Mobile Marketing Association found that 59% of consumers plan to do their holiday shopping via their mobile phones and overall Google searches have increased by five times the amount they were two years ago. That means if you aren’t optimized for mobile and aren’t doing any mobile marketing, you’re missing out on more than half of the consumer population shopping during the holidays.
It seems obvious that the use of mobile phones to search and browse on the web has continued to increase every year, and every year they say “this is the year for mobile”, but this year Google is supporting that argument in a big way.
Say hello to the release of Google’s brand spankin’ new Mobile Keyword Tool. This tool allows you to develop a more detailed keyword list to help target your specific audience. You can now find what people are searching for globally and locally from mobile phones, and not only that, you can also segment the audience by what type of mobile phone they are searching from (whether it be phones with WAP browsers, Full internet browsers like (iPhones and Droids), or both).
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September 28, 2010
Nielsen recently released a State of Mobile Apps report. It’s mainly a collection of nice graphs depicting how we use mobile, based on the Nielsen App Playbook Study of 4,000 people. The highlights:
types of apps
- The most commonly downloaded apps are games.
- The most popular individual app across all platforms is the Facebook app. Google Maps, The Weather Channel, and Pandora round out the top five most popular apps on iPhone, Android OS, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile—the four operating platforms Nielsen focused on for this study.
The study notes that YouTube is among the top five most popular apps used on Android devices, and Twitter is among the top five most commonly used apps on the BlackBerry. “Perhaps because the device’s keyboard is optimized for typing,” reasons the report, not taking into account that, really, all keyboards are optimized for typing.
advertising in apps
- Teenagers aged 13-17 are more likely to notice advertisements within apps than “old” people (anyone older than 17, in this study).
- Men are more likely to be affected by mobile ads than women.
- Android users are more likely to click on an ad within an app than an iPhone user is. BlackBerry users are the least likely to click on an app ad.
That last point isn’t surprising. There are considerably fewer apps that run on BlackBerrys than on Androids or iPhones, so there are considerably fewer app users with BlackBerrys. Furthermore, Android, an open-source platform, is filled with apps that are free to download. So, it makes sense that a free app would contain an ad. iPhone apps, on the other hand, are often paid for, which means they require fewer ad dollars—hence, they feature fewer ads. (If anyone would like to relay this payment-should-mean-no-ads concept to the individuals responsible for bombarding audiences with soda commercials before previews at the movies, it would be greatly appreciated.)
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June 24, 2010
Dear Todd Brook & envisionit media,
The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce would like to thank you and your team for a successful event last week. Your comprehensive seminar on how to make the most of your marketing efforts in the new mobile world was extremely informative. The attendees learned a great deal about the new mobile landscape and how to optimize, design, and develop within it. All of the feedback we received have been overwhelmingly positive.
envisionit media’s expertise in new and emerging technology and strategic marketing has made you an asset to the Chicagoland Tech 2020 Committee and the Chamber as a whole. We appreciate your participation in this event and look forward to collaborating with you in the future.
Member Investment Manager
Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
Click here to view the slides from the presentation
June 14, 2010
June 3, 2010
You’ve probably all heard the latest buzz on Foursquare, the location-based marketing game that has recently been blowing up the headlines. With over 1.4 million registered users, Foursquare is a mobile application and website that allows you to check in on your phone where you are currently located and announce it to friends and share on sites like Facebook and Twitter. Foursquare also allows businesses to award those who check in frequently with discounts and incentives.
This week, Loopt, the first of the location-based marketing applications, with over 3.4 million registered users, announced a new mobile app, LooptStar, that will compete more heavily with Foursquare and Gowalla, but with more of a loyalty program incentive. Gone are the days of those little punch hole cards that I always seem to lose in my purse! Welcome are the days where your loyalty cards are right on your phone!
So what is the difference between LooptStar and Foursquare? The main difference that I like best is that it uses Facebook Connect instead of creating a brand new social networking site. This way, users don’t have to have multiple networking sites and portals for checking in and receiving discounts. For me personally, one social network (Facebook) is enough!!
Second, it’s main focus is on rewarding customers for their loyalty to their business. Big brands like the Gap and Burger King are partnering with LooptStar to start offering incentives for frequent check-ins at stores. These stores can then use the data collected through the app to personalize their incentives and customize them to the user – therefore encouraging more return visits to the store, and ultimately more money spent! Using Facebook Connect also allows the sharing of these incentives as well as your whereabouts to your friends.
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May 11, 2010
Ready or not, the mobile web will surpass desktop in less than three years. As users flock to new devices and capabilities, businesses are racing to meet a whole new set of needs and expectations. And mobile is proving to be a boon to businesses that are quick on the uptake.
Leveraging the platform
It may well be the Year of Mobile, but it’s also the Year of Budget. Fortunately, mobile is shaping up to be an extremely cost-effective channel for expanding the reach of your brand and driving some serious sales.
For starters, consider the inherent characteristics of the mobile platform:
- Sophistication. Mobile phones are getting better operating systems and longer battery life. Other devices—the iPad, for example—will follow suit in their race to center stage. Whatever the latest device, people are ready and eager to adopt.
- Applications. Sleek, user-friendly apps are giving users familiar interface cues. No more clunky WAP-based sites.
- Instant access. High-speed networks are bringing online interaction to life everywhere. Not to mention that, these days, you can find a Wi-Fi hotspot pretty much anywhere you go.
- Location. Location-awareness is becoming the gold standard for mobile devices, and users are embracing its capabilities at breakneck speed.
As rapid-fire innovations and sweeping user adoption continue, the mobile space will bring you closer than ever to your customers. You’ll soon be able to reach your customers wherever they are, and—perhaps most importantly—you’ll be reaching them through their preferred channels.
Entering the arena
You’re ready to go mobile, and there’s certainly no shortage of solutions and opportunities at your disposal. So where do you start? Your website. It’s the first touch point most people have with your business. Here are three smart things to think about as you enter the mobile space:
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April 30, 2010
Barcodes. They’re on everything you buy. They’re on everything you rent. They’re on your ID cards and your membership cards. You see them all over the place, but you don’t really pay attention because they’re meaningless to you. What if those barcodes had meaning? What if you had a barcode scanner in your pocket all the time and you could learn things about that product just by scanning the barcode?
Enter the next generation of barcodes: Mobile Barcodes. These new 2D QR barcodes can contain lots of useful information like a website address, phone number, or an entire address book entry. Your shiny new smartphone can take a photo and interpret these barcodes to open a website or add the contact info to your personal address book – with no data entry required!
What’s even more amazing is that these barcodes can be generated in fractions of a second and displayed on your smartphone for others to scan. Just think of all the possibilities!
Mobile barcodes are very new to the American market, though they’ve been a huge success in Japan and Europe for a few years now. A number of businesses are maximizing on this new technology in interesting ways. Take a look at this mobile QR code presentation to learn more about how mobile barcodes will allow your interested consumers to learn more about your product, and save your contact info while they’re at it!