Category Archives: Issue 2012 January
Negative campaign ads (serve a very useful purpose, or should be banned).
Negative campaigns should be banned in my opinion. Whom are we trying to impress with such nonsense of information. We as adults should stand up for teaching our children and society that negative ads only lead to destruction and no good will every come from such ads. Do we as adults feel that negative ads give us the upper hand in better products or information?
Negative ads teach our children and adults alike that lying, cheating, and stealing are ok. This is what our society has come to, look at our nation, look at the state that we are in right now! Poor information and negative/bad publicity has given us thoughts and ideas that have us thinking, believing, and accepting that it is ok to do as we please. So yes, negative campaign ads should be banned. Thus, we teach our children and society that lying, cheating, and stealing are accepted.
If convincing you and everyone else that negative campaign ads should not be banned, just look around you. Take for instance where such ads have gotten us as a society. Look at the housing market for one. Individuals are so upside down in their homes that they are losing them, for the mere fact that it was so easy purchasing a home with the type of mortgage financing available. So should we band the negative campaign ads that have enticed the mere souls to cheat and indulge in such financing, yes we need to band these ads!
Looking at another side of negative campaign ads one would just assume give up lately as to watch Television for all the negative and debatable ads swirling around the election. I for one am completely sick of hearing all about what can and needs to be done to help our future children and society. Just do it for heavens sake! Stop slandering and blaming everyone else, take ownership as a nation and take care of the problems. Our children and our society is sick and tired of hearing all about the negative side of ads and campaigns.
Banning negative campaign ads whether they be related to politics, products, or simply general information needs to be done. This is only influencing our children and our society in an unconstructive way. We may never be able to recover from the destructive ways that have become our norm if we do not start banning negative campaign ads.
It was no surprise to us that content marketing remains a top priority for marketers in 2012. Many of the statistics and results are consistent with what we saw last year:
- 9 out of 10 organizations market with content marketing.
- On average, B2B marketers employ eight different content marketing tactics to achieve their goals.
- Marketers, on average, spend over a quarter of their marketing budget on content marketing (see the full budget breakdowns in the report).
But, we’re seeing a lot of changes as well.
Increased adoption rate for some tactics
Just as we found in last year’s study, article posting and social media (excluding blogs) are the most popular tactics and are currently used by 79% and 74% of B2B marketers, respectively.
But, there are a number of tactics that are seeing an increased adoption rate:
- Blogs (27% increase)
- White papers (19% increase)
- Videos (27% increase)
Marketers are using social media more frequently
As we saw last year, Twitter is the most popular social media channel with content marketers. Every social media channel is seeing increased adoption, often by 15-20%:
- YouTube: 47% increase
- LinkedIn: 39% increase
- Twitter: 35% increase
- Facebook: 30% increase
Content marketers are becoming more effective
Last year, we asked marketers to assess how confident they consider their usage of each tactic to be. This year it’s clear that marketers are more confident in how well they are using these tactics — around just about every tactic. While in-person events and webinars are still seen as the most effective tactics, on average, the following ranked notably higher in perceived effectiveness compared to our last report:
- Blogs: 45% increase
- Case studies: 32% increase
- Videos: 36% increase
- Webinars/webcasts: 25% increase
1. Marketing automation 2.0 will arrive, ushering in mature software and increasing enterprise adoption
Historically, marketing automation has consisted primarily of email and email nurturing. In 2011, however, we witnessed the expansion of social customer relationship management (CRM). Marketing automation is now one of the fastest growing segments of the CRM industry.
In 2012, it will evolve from being an early-adopter tool into a mainstream solution for organizations that want to connect marketing operations, from the very top of the funnel, to online search, and down through sales and customer management.
Industry players like Aprimo, Eloqua, Marketo, and Optify (our company) will continue to shape the marketing automation 2.0 revolution.
2. Customers and employees will become an extended part of companies' marketing teams
As social networks are used ever-more frequently for aggregating and sharing interests, expect opinions, positive or negative, about products and services to spread with lightening speed. As a result, businesses' customer relationships will become increasingly focused on creating and managing perceptions.
In 2010, companies began listening to customers' wants and needs via social buzz. In 2011, they focused on responding to digital customer commentary. In 2012, companies will need to move the needle forward, scaling marketing efforts by creating and sharing information with employees and influential customer evangelists to help define their brands, products, and services from the ground up.
Salesforce.com's recent extension of its chatter feature, which allows businesses to share information and files with their customers via a hosted network, is early evidence of this trend.
3. SoPo (social personalization) will be on the rise
"Keeping up with the Joneses" has never been so transparent. The power of referrals and recommendations will be fine-tuned and harnessed to encourage and persuade others to follow their friends' leads.
With an ever-increasing social network footprint, and the explosion of data fueling it, expect networked recommendations to become more ubiquitous (e.g., your friend's friend likes this product).
Content recommendations on Facebook stores and participating e-commerce sites will be increasingly powered and filtered by friends' preferences (see "Likes" and "Social TV" below). Social sign-on, group sharing, and universal wish lists will even make personalization on smaller sites possible, and collaborative filtering will create connections between people in unanticipated and creative ways.
4. "Likes" will intersect with multimedia
"Likes" will begin to influence more than just online text content. Digital video content providers will assume friends share "Like" preferences for video content. In turn, they will tailor and filter programming to you based on the "Likes" you and your friends provide.
By anticipating what you'll be most inclined to watch, digital providers will help you cut through the growing expanse of online multimedia content. It's highly probable that Facebook, either via acquisition or via a partnership with companies like BuddyTV or Hulu, will explore or invest in "Social TV."
5. Location-based marketing will grow, and certain customer use cases will shift predominantly to mobile
In specific markets, such as travel, shopping, and dining, customer engagement and purchases will happen more frequently via mobile device. A recent study found that one-third of all American adults use smartphones, and that percentage will continue to rise.
Travel-related click-through-rates are already higher on mobile devices than on PCs, and location-based marketing—fueled by the likes of Foursquare—will continue to soar.
This holiday season, we'll see the majority of last-minute gift and store searches happen via mobile device. And with 50% of last-minute shopping projected to be done via mobile device in 2015, marketers in 2012 will have to consider mobile in their usage mix as adoption of the mobile smart device becomes increasingly universal.
6. The discount economy will grow even larger
Considering the flagging economy and consumers' income woes, offers from companies such as Groupon, Living Social, and niche players like One Kings Lane and Zulily, will have an even greater uptick in 2012. Those companies will grow more than many have previously forecast.
Even Amazon.com has gotten into the local deals mix, recognizing the value of even deeper discounts for customers. At the same time, daily-deal offerings will become increasingly hyper-local. Players intelligent about using the mobile market and geo-based offers will be category winners.
7. Social media ads will become a significant part of the advertising mix
At the end of 2010, Twitter had 150 customers using its paid advertising program. In Q2 of 2011, it had increased its advertising customer base to 600, with an 80% rate of renewal. Moreover, in 2011, Facebook's brand advertising revenue rose 104% from Q1 to Q2.
But even in light of those tremendous gains, Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks have only begun to scratch the surface of potential advertising revenue streams.
In 2012, marketers across the board, from big and small companies, will include social networks as a line item in their online paid advertising budgets because those networks will make access to their hundreds of millions of users more accessible.
8. Social networks will become a more significant source of organic search traffic and a greater influencer of SERPs
As social networks become an increased source of paid traffic, they will also become an increased referral source of organic search traffic. In 2011, small and medium businesses, typically technology followers, began using social media more frequently, perceiving it to be an effective marketing medium.
In 2012, we can expect that trend to rise, especially as social media buzz becomes a mainstream component of SERPs. For companies that wish to preserve or improve their rankings, social marketing activities will no longer be optional; in 2012, they will be a necessary element of traffic-driving success.
9. Google antitrust will continue to be a thorny issue
Heading into 2012, Google is being investigated globally as an antitrust offender. Google's overwhelming market dominance puts it squarely under the worldwide legal microscope for any anticompetitive actions.
With 80% of Yelp traffic, for example, derived from Google, and 30% of Google searches resulting in traffic to the largest e-commerce sites on the Internet, Google's power is indisputable. As a result, Google's business practices will continue to endure intense scrutiny and encounter legal challenges.
10. Focus on social media ROI will be top of mind
As businesses move from initial adoption of social media marketing toward the next stage of reflection and refinement, they'll be seeking data that clearly indicates the cost-effectiveness of social media campaigns.
With another year of experimentation and trial under their belt, marketers will be more sophisticated and adept at navigating the social media channel. In turn, they will be more demanding of tools that effectively enable tracking, measuring, and improving ROI.
11. Virtual teams will become more common
The globalization of the workforce will continue to mushroom with low-cost access services becoming more prevalent.
As more effective video-conference, document-share, shared schedules, and various other online project-management and workflow technologies are introduced to the market, the ability to communicate and work with virtual teams will become ever-more efficient.
We've witnessed a growing trend of employees working in distant states, countries, or continents who are considered integral parts of core business operations. Remote employees are being woven into the fabric of our companies, working virtually side-by-side with locally based employees to create and deliver winning products.
12. Facebook will advance social commerce and give Amazon a run for its money
It's undeniable that Amazon and Facebook are the market dominators of their markets: online shopping and social networking, respectively. But to date, those two markets have experienced very little crossover. That's odd, considering the tremendous opportunity to marry those markets. After all, isn't it an enjoyable pastime for friends to shop together?
Facebook will make it easier for friends to do just that by providing an environment and online-shopping experience that are entirely different from the way we shop on Amazon.
Content marketing spend is increasing
Rising confidence in the effectiveness of content marketing seems to be spurring marketersβ¨ to dedicate more budget to this strategy. On average, 60% of respondents indicate that they plan to increase their content marketing budgets over the next 12 months. This compares to 51% of marketers who were planning to increase their budgets in the previous study.