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ABM Study: The impact of B2B media on purchase decisions

It is one of these questions many B2B marketers would love to get an answer: How many of the B2B business professionals that can be reached by B2B media and live events are involved in purchasing decisions or supplier selections?

Well, a recent study by American Business Media’s “Value of B-to-B” report, which was based on 6,682 responses from business professionals, 74 marketers and 111 business publishers and released Wednesday, gives an answer: Of those purchase business decision makers responding to the survey 74% can be reached by B2B media and live events.

The web plays a critical role here. The study states that 87% of those use industry-related websites on their customer journey and research in the decision making process. What they predominantly use is print magazines (65%), industry conferences and trade shows (58%) and e-newsletters (55%).

ABM B2B Resource Usage 2013

However, we all think the world is completely digital these days, the study makes clear that 74% use both digital and traditional media to get latest best practices and get the right information for their business. The industry-related focus of the print publications is relevant for (68%) as they spend more time with those publications than with mainstream business or consumer publications.

PS: There are good signs for the media industry, too. Almost half of the responding marketers (45%) expected an increase in B2B advertising budgets for the next 12 months.

Mobile Advertising: Performance gets better, and Google takes 50% of revenue

mobile-webThere are different views on why mobile advertising is performing. However, some new studies might spread some light: one form TNS and one from SessionM which did their study in cooperation with Millward Brown. The study SessionM published today shows that consumers react positively twice as often to mobile ads… but only as long as they get some value out of it.

Mobile banners are most used from smartphone owners when they get a gift card, coupon, events tickets or loyalty points. Although this gives some good insight in the ranking of the preferred mobile engagement options, consumers want to know what benefit they get out of the digital experience. It means that marketers need to be clever and having some good approach. The surveyed consumers replied that the way mobile ads are presented was crucial to their feedback.

The study makes clear that the mobile strategies need to be clear to the consumer, said Lars Albright, CEO of SessionM: “The questions are, ‘What value am I bringing to the consumer?’ And, ‘How am I doing it?'” It asked 1,000 consumers in a digital survey, as well as a dozen participants in each four hour interviews. 93% of respondents said they had the opportunity to choose a reward in exchange for their smartphone time was “important”. This comes as no surprise after the latest Adobe study telling us that often digital advertising is found “annoying”.

The difference between rewards-based mobile ads and different types of on-the-go promos was that rewards-based mobile ads performed better for purchase consideration (+65), the brand in brand interaction (+14%), branded website traffic (+13%), web searches (+8%), in-store shopping for the brand (+6%), and approaching the brand’s social media pages (+5%). Obviously, the user can be handled and does not always see banners as “annoying and invasive”.

Finally, while a lot of industry players see location-based services as the key to mobile’s future, Joline McGoldrick, research director at Dynamic Logic, Millward Brown’s digital practice, spoke about how interest-level marketing can be a huge help to the space. “Targeting is getting better in mobile,” Joline McGoldrick, Research Director at Dynamic Logicsaid, “but it is still not perfect.”

eMarketer 2013Now, although mobile ad revenue is far from reaching big amounts of ad spendings, many marketers see it as a growth area. Whatever the number that is attached to total mobile ad revenue worldwide is, Google is the leader with over half of surveyed people according to eMarketer. And if you see the numbers it seems that Gogle is still not happy with the budget chunk they do get, reaching out for more it seems. But also Facebook investors will see some light at the end of the tunnel with mobile ads on the rise. However, Google might like the competition but all that market dominance simply making way for some more challenging competition.

It will be interesting to see who will come up as the leader in this cmpetition, who can compete with Google in general, and will Google continue to grow their business? You tell us your views….

PayPal Global Study: Will we have a wallet-free future soon?

Credits: © Piotr Marcinski - Fotolia.com

Credits: © Piotr Marcinski – Fotolia.com

Are you still keen carrying a wallet with you for paying your stuff? I am not. I actually hate it. And I have got my money loose in my trousers very often (not seldomly ending up staright in the washing machine). Now, Paypal might have a solution for me in the future. They recently announced their findings of a new study conducted by Wakefield Research which gives some insights on the end of the wallet: 83% of respondents across five countries (Germany 90%, Canada 87%, U.S. 86%, Australia 80% and UK 76%) would love not to carry a wallet with them. Now, Paypal is reacting to this answer and will be launching Cash for Registers. It will allow merchants to accept Paypal payment as well.

The study made clear that the UK (32%) is most open to choose a smartphone over a wallet when going out if they could only bring one item. Canadians might be struggle the most in the old world: 75% of them don’t carry cash around. Obviously, the beach and the gym (but also restaurants and grocery stores) are places where people would love to leave their purse away in all countries. However, Germans and Americans don’t like it at concerts and sports events, whereas Canadians don’t want it in the bar. And parking mobile apps are very much appreciated today in all countries.

“It’s not about replacing cash or your credit card with a new payment method, it’s about using technology to solve real shopping pain points. PayPal is at the forefront of developing products that make life easier, help shoppers be more efficient, and untether consumers from their wallets forever.” David Marcus, President, PayPal

The question is whether the development we see in terms of getting rid of the penny is increasing. Countires like Canada are trying to reduce the distribution of pennies, following Australia, New Zealand and other countries. Increased metal costs and a questionable need for 1-cent coins might be valid reasons. In the U.S. it costs more to produce a penny than to there is need for it. And while Germans still would bow to pick up change and carry it in general, Americans and Britains are most likely to lose it.

Spot On!
Although I would also call for a wallet-free future, I sometimes think about the problems it might cause for i.e. charity. How often do donate change to charity in a week? And how often are kids proud when you give them some money for their saving-box? Or when we hand over the jar where we collected the money for them? Would we also give and save them money when it is digital? How do you see it? And would you be open for the wallet-free future?

Digital Content, and some stats how we use it in 2013… (Infographic)

Digital content readership is changing massively. And the guys at Uberflip have done some research around how data was used between February 2010 and February 2013 via Google Analytics and Uberflip Metrics. The infographic that highlights their findings shows how much mobile content usage and consumption is evolving, as well as how much content is shareable.


From a global perspective, mobile content consumtion in terms of visits makes up 21% (from 1,6% in 2010) while desktop traffic is decreasing continously. But mobile is not the only winner in this field. Video is increasing massively as well since 2010: 22% (from 6% in 2010) of internet users are putting video into their content portfolio.

People also change their way of sharing content these days. While in 2010, users were used to sharing their content via email, in 2013 the figure of sharing content via email went down to 53.3% in February 2013 (from 93.3% in 2010). Facebook and Twitter seem to be the big winner here: 27,4% of people are sharing content via Facebook (compared to 3,4% in 2010), and 9,7% via Twitter (compared to 0,5% in 2010).

uberflip-DigitalContent-Consumption

Study: Content Marketing – a challenge? B2B hiding behind false excuses…?

We had written about a Curata content marketing survey some months ago. Now, I came across another research which is making it’s way through the web, and I am glad as I have been asked at a University St. Gallen event for some new insights on the topic today.

The Content Marketing Institute’s 2013 benchmarks shows what the challenges for marketers are: producing enough content (64%), producing the kind of content that engages an audience (52%), or producing a variety of content (45%).

Sounds like we have heard that before, right…?

If you think lack of budget is still the issue, you might find yourself being in the wrong corner. Just 39% of the respondents said that they lack budget. Furthermore, traditional restrictions and limits like buy-in/vision (22%) or finding trained content marketers (14%) is falling out; not even senior level buy-in is their biggest challenge (7%).

All lies? Well, seems like that… And when just 14% say, they are having problems hiring in this field, i would suggest some clever journalists or PR managers have found a way to market themselves.

Challenges For Content Marketing 2013So, a questions arises that also came up today in my moderation: What is the real issue, why marketers don’t challenge the content marketing business?

We have probably all heard what Outbrain told us today in their speech that push is the new pull, advertising becomes marketing, creation the modern editorial, campaigns are the always-on of tomorrow which makes sprints the new marathons. Still, the question is whether marketers understand why this should become the new budget engine for a change in an emerging shift towards content marketing and away from advertising?! Maybe marketers need to understand what makes them a media-house? Content curation, distribution and measurement might be more of a big bang theory to address…

Measurement for B2B Content Marketing Success 2013Spot On!
The challenge might actually arise in the definition where content marketing gets propelled. Many marketers see still search engine advertising (SEA) their wholly grail. If companies get turned around into SEO engines, the whole result-driven aspect of the fluid content marketing world would not be questioned any longer. It just depends on getting the right people engaged inside the office and to find the commitment that lets the formerly outsourced world stand in the shade. And have companies ever understood the value of content? Content is not a test budget! It is an attitude towards business, towards communication, towards social business. Or have you ever put into question why you send out newsletters, flyers, whitepapers, or even company brochures? Blogs, status updates, tweets… written in an intelligent way, is increasing the way your conversations will arise…

Are you really hiding in the content marketing fields, marketers – or is it a real challenge…?

InMobi Global Study: Mobile media consumption outpacing TV, mobile ads drive sales

In prepapration of the first dmexco Night Talks moderation in Hamburg on “Mobile: The new first screen: reach, engage, measure, monetize”, sometimes studies fly into my mailbox which are reaching me just at the right time.

InMobi released their second wave research report on Mobile Media Consumption at Mobile World Congress. It covers some on-going overview on 14 countries on how we consume mobile content these days, and it obviously underlines the rapid growth of mobile media and the benefits of mobile advertising around the globe.

From a global perspective, mobile has reached the sweet spot in media consumption. It will generate its growth in the coming year predominantly via social media, search/download apps and search activities. In the 14 countries, humans spent from 7 hour media consumption (apart from other channels)…
1. Mobile 1,8 hours
2. PC 1,6 hours
3. TV 1,5 hours

The research piece shows that 50% of the average global mobile web users primarily use their mobiles now to go online. The average mobile web person uses 6.5 apps throughout a 30-day period.

But what does this mean for marketers?

The study states that globally, 54% of users discover mobile ads via apps, 40% on a search engine, 27% on a retailer website and 23% on a video website. It also makes clear that mobile is the touchpoint for finding new products and services. 3 out of 4 say mobile advertising has opened doors to something new. Almost every second say mobile ads have influenced them to buy mobile (46%) and almost the same amout (45%) say that mobile has mobile ads have influenced their purchase decision.

When seeing mobile ads, it is not that users don’t take any actions. It is actually the other way round. Mobile ads let users downloaded an app (80%), visit the advertiser’s website (67%), visit the store/retailer/business for additional information (52%), locate an advertiser on map (45%), or even take an immediate phone call (37%).

Mobile Media Consumption InMobi 2013

Spot On!
While I still have some marketers from media houses and brands in my ears, saying that apps and mobile ads don’t seem to be the right marketing approach, it seems they just did not find the right content approach to their users. The mobile commerce world is growing at speed of light and innovative retailers and brands should be well-prepared for it – and ideally have at least a click-to-call solution on their mobile website. It is not surprising that in these 14 countries 80% retailers say they plan to get the right approach to mobile in 2013.

How about you? Are you prepared for the mobile sales and marketing development? What experiences do you have so far with mobile ads?

PS: If you are interested in attending the dmexco discussion in Hamburg, please book your seat here.

Study: Big brands could do better on social customer service

Some weeks ago, we have written about the importance to be fast on response time on Social Media platforms. We made clear, based on some research by Convince & Convert, that companies need to react in not more than 60 seconds on complaints, customer enquiries and questions that appear on company’s and brands’ social platforms.

Now, a recent study of some of the biggest brands in the U.S., like Coca-Cola, McDonalds, Visa or Starbucks shows that providing a top standard of customer support on Twitter is not really as fantastic as it seems. Although some readings of all those good posts about these brands and their Social Media efforts might assume the companies do whatever they can in Social Business terms.

In the study, four Software Advice employees used their personal Twitter accounts to address customer service tweets to 14 consumer brands in seven industries – McDonalds, Starbucks (Fast Food), Coca Cola, Pepsi (Soft Drinks), Visa, Mastercard (Credit Cards), Wells Fargo, Bank Of America (Banking), Walmart, Home Depot (Retail), Apple*, HP (Consumer Tech), Gillette and Colgate (Personal Care).

They sent each brand’s Twitter account one tweet per weekday for four consecutive weeks, from “Urgent, to Positive/Negative, or questions about FAQ or technical issue. Then, brands were evaluated on their average response time and rate. See the results in the following infographic…

36% of mobile car search convert within an hour, finds study

It will be one of these studies that will make the car and travel industry think. Nielsen, xAd and Telmetrics just published the third part of their “mobile path to purchase” study. The research is based on findings for the travel industry, restaurants and the car industry. The study found some significant differences in the consumer behavior from the three industry sectors. Especially for the car industry the findings seem notable…

The research discovered four types of mobile car users: car researchers, car, deal hunters, ircumstantial or emergency users, gear heads. All showed different signs of behavior, demographic and income profiles. There are some significant findings.

Half of the mobile car search was done as a longer term research. However, 49% were “looking to make a purchase within the day.” Even more, 36% of this part converted “within the hour.”

By comparing the three categories, the study found some elementary difference between apps and mobile web usage. While car searchers are heading for mobile web usage (maybe because their demand is not of daily expertise with these apps), the travel search is done predominatly via apps.

The study also clarified some differences between smartphone and tablet user behavior which was especially in the automotive category of importance for the car industry:
– Tablet owners are 3x more likely to be influenced by positive reviews than smartphone owners
– Tablet users spend more time looking at reviews and doing price research than smartphone users
– 42% of smartphone users do some research while in their cars

Most car search activities were business directions (44%), pricing comparison (43%) and phone numbers to business impact (36%).

Social Media & Customer Service? Companies have got 60 minutes max. to react

Many companies and brands are asking themselves (and us): “How fast do we have to give some feedback or answer when somebody is pinging us on Facebook, Twitter and the likes?” Or: Do we have to give some feedback on the weekends? And the answers we have heard were quite astonishing. Many managers in companies still think they have got a day or two to reply to their customers – whether they are speaking with them on email or on one of their realtime streams. Many test we have done so far, have shown us that most companies don’t react at all, some not on weekends, and some after one or two days. Be sure, if you offer your clients a realtime channel, they will use it – and they don’t care if the problem comes up on a weekend or not.

In a recent research by Convince and Convert we can find some clean answer now: 42% of the respondents expect an answer in the first 60 minutes! What comes even worse for companies: 57% want the some reaction time no matter what time of day it is or whether it is a Saturday or Sunday. In total, 67% expect some response by companies in the someday.

Still, many companies don’t have the right resources to satisfy their customers Social Media expectations. And there are many reasons for it: not enough resources, lack in modern process management or lack in technical establishment. Some companies started mentioning their opening hours in the info or biography fields which kind of makes sense and becomes a state-of-the-art workaround for the interim period until companies understand what a full-fledged social business with proper community management means. And this definitely goes away from the “9-to-5” workplace we know from our fathers.

Spot On!
The main challenge for companies and brands is to find out what the deeper demand of the status update, the comment, the review or a rating is. Remember the 3R’s? In the end, what we have learned years ago, is that people want to have the feeling someone is taking care of them immediately. This does not essentially say that companies or brands have to supply the best possible answer or solution. Many managers have still not understood the fine difference between these topics.
What we would like to know is: Do 60 minutes feedback time make sense? Should we try to be more patient as users? Is a quick feedback really that important if our lives are not depending on it? You give the answer…

Google Study: How mobile-friendly sites help sales

While Facebook turns more and more to search and ad exchange budgets, Google is still riding the mobile wave. In many moderations over the last two years, I could listen to their attitude towards building mobile websites, and why these are important to the business of the future. However, companies often resist to face the mobile evolution and still stick to their conventional desktop websites. Not to mention what this does to their brands when the user experience is driving into a nightmare of usability and readability.

To get more attraction for their mission, Google has now published some research data on their blog that will help them to evangelize in the mobile business world approach. The benefit for Google is obvious. The more people use mobile sites, the better the experience in mobile usage, the more people tend to approach the Google search which means more marketing budgets into their hands.

In their research of about 1,100 U.S. adult smartphone users conducted by  market research firms Sterling Research and SmithGeiger, Google gives some handsome advertising tips to make marketers better understand and evaluate the power of mobile.

The key findings can be summarized as follows…
– 67% of smartphone users state a mobile-friendly site makes them more likely to buy a company’s product or service
– 74% are more likely to return to the site with a good experience later.
– 61% made clear that when they don’t find what they’re looking for (in roughly five seconds), they’ll click away to another site.
– 50% of respondents said even if they like a business, they’ll use its site less often if it doesn’t work well on their smartphone.
– 72% see a mobile-friendly site important to them, however 96% have visited sites that aren’t.

Spot On!
The Google study advices marketers to create a fast mobile site with big buttons and text, and simplify the mobile experience in terms of keeping steps to complete tasks to a minimum. For sure, Google did not forget to promote the site with Google mobile ads with some good results: two-thirds of people who use search find a site. Their conclusion is that “having a great mobile site is no longer just about making a few more sales. It’s become a critical component of building strong brands, nurturing lasting customer relationships, and making mobile work for you”. There is not much more to add.
Still, we would be happy to hear from your mobile experience – with or without Google. Did you change your site lately and what did it do to your sales?