Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thinking Inside the Box

Binney and Smith manage the Crayola brand with rational deftness. As strong today as ever, it owns the back-to-school concept of elementary school kids and their mothers. The brand negotiates a heritage meaning across all media and is directed to mothers who remember it from their childhood (Edenkamp, 1998:1). To me, as a kid, it was a familiar friend the first day of class, especially the smell, a clay-like smell.


A recognizable and reproducible voice gives a brand dimension and differentiates it in the marketplace (Isaac Reid, 2009:1) The dimensions of the brand voice are color, creativity, imagination and the relationship between mothers and their kids (Liebeck, 2002:1). These are masterfully applied across all media and consistently between verbage and visuals.

Television ads show children in creative activities that are fun. Some of these ads include grandmother, mother and kids (Fitzgerald, 1992: 1). Here’s a recent TV spot with just kids but you know its meant for Moms (Crayola on Youtube).

Their Web site and Facebook (Crayola on Facebook) pages are kid friendly and relay the same messages about imaginative fun. Needless to say, B&S insisted the site comply faithfully to the Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act (Adobe). They even employ social media for interactive communications with mothers to provide:

“Tips to help mom invest in her child’s creativity, to ideas on how to create affordable fun to fire up her kids’ imaginations before they head back to class, moms can tweet the night away in a fun, party-like atmosphere” (Otlacan, 2009:1).

Crayola sponsors “Girls Night Out series” on Twitter from July 28 through August 25.

Crayola has received the ADDY award for its advert Celebrate the Scribble: Appreciating Children's Art Book in 2008. It associates its products with kids and the aspirations their mothers have for them.

Finally, its brand partnerships work the same theme. For example, it partners with Kraft in back-to-school promotions. According to Diamond (2003:2), Kraft “no better partner for a back-to-school promotion than Crayola.” It can tap the heritage and trust Crayola has built-up over the past century for back-to-school, fun and color.


References
Diamond, Matthew1 (10/6/2003). Leveraging the Big Idea. Marketing Magazine. Retrieved on November 13, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Ebenkamp, Becky (06/29/98). Crayola aims fall push at mothers. Brandweek Retrieved on November 13, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Fitzgerald, Kate (11/30/92). Family values shade Crayola's first image ad. Advertising Age. Retrieved on November 13, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Isaac Reed School of Journalism, West Virginia University (2009). IMC 625 Lesson 4: Verbal Branding. Retrieved from WVU IMC 625 Lesson 2 on November 14, 2009.

Liebeck, Laura (February 2002). Crayola Colors Outside the Lines. License. Retrieved on November 13, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Otlacan, Otilia (August 10, 2009). Crayola Launches Creativitycast2 Back-to-School Social Media Campaign on Twitter and Facebook
Retrieved on November 13, 2009 from http://www.adoperationsonline.com/2009/08/10/crayola-launches-creativitycast2-back-to-school-social-media-campaign-on-twitter-and-facebook/

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Visual Violations

I did not get this Fosters ad until someone explained it to me. I did not get the connection between the picture and the narrative. Alcohol advertising is directed to young men and the Addiction Letter (1994, p 3) says such advertising has an implicit and “dangerous promise”, that sex is an outcome to drinking.

The cantilevered breasts are an attempt at such an appeal, I guess. However, Sullivan says (2008, p. 55) that boobs are now a visual cliche in beer advertisements.

The idea here is that they provide shade to keep the beer cold. There is a risk, though, that young men seeing this ad could care less about Fosters, warm or cold, and take away the two attractive models from the ad.

At a brand level, IBM's Linux brand extension is a puzzle. Its Graffiti ads, for example, make no sense to me either. They are inconsistent with the entirety of IBM's umbrella brand that negotiates a meaning of stability, reliability and trustworthiness. Things you would want when entrusting them with corporate information systems. Instead, for the Linux brand extension, this is an ad campaign centered around a socially irresponsible act.

IBM actually defaced public properties in the campaign and they were prosecuted by Chicago and San Francisco (see Computer Weekly) . Shepard (2006, p. 3) advises that visual cues and brand dimensions should be consistent with the enterprise message architecture of a company. I view the IBM dimensions as trust, reliability, and stability. They are not a trendy clothing line where guerilla marketing might work.

For successful management of visual imagery and narrative, I present for your consideration Coca Cola. Coke communicates vitality and refreshment and always has an appeal to modernity. Coke is also part of my life. With its campaigns throughout history, The Pause that Refreshes, The Real Thing, and Max Headroom, Coke positions itself as something that fits into my lifestyle. It’s a cultural touchstone. To me Coke communicates style and energy.

Red is, after all, the color of vitality (McCarthy, 2005, p. 3)

References
Addiction Letter (March 1994) `Dangerous promises' campaign successfully fights sexy alcohol ads. Retrieved on November 9, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

McCarthy, Jared (2005). Logos: What Makes Them Work. MarketingProfs.com. Retrieved on November 9, 2009 from WVU IMC 625 Week 3 Readings.

Salter, C., (2001). Trendsetter. Fastcompany. ecampus.wvu.edu readings. Retrieved, November 6, 2009 from WVU IMC 625 Week 3 Readings.

Sullivan, L. (2008). Hey, Whipple, squeeze this: A guide to creating great advertising. (3rd Ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

Anthropologie Visuality

Anthropologie understands its customer’s lifestyle and its stores provide a journey of self-discovery. Duncan (2005, p. 289) defines Lifestyle marketing as an association strategy, which uses situations and symbols of lifestyles that are relevant to the target audience. Relevant because it is their present lifestyle or one they aspire to. Aspiration might explain why upscale MSL surprised the skeptics.


Anthropologie is extremely effective at using visual wit to communicate with its customers. In our readings, Pink (1998, p. 3) talks with Gerald Zaltman who observes that “Cognitive scientists have learned that human beings think in images, not in words.” The visual artistry of Anthropologie has propelled them to unprecedented growth. Labarre (2002, p. 2) reports that sales have grown 40% annually.

Anthropologie Technique
Labarre (p. 1) likens visiting Anthropologie to her “open-ended sense of discovery” in France as a teen. She catalogues some of the Anthropologie technique. Foremost in my mind is that the store has a mission to be a journey, not only for customers, but for all the employees as well. Keith Johnson, a buyer, spends 50-75% of his time journeying around the world (p. 5). The entire staff (p. 6) is admonished to travel, shop, soak in culture.

In his book, Zaltman (2008, p. 98) describes the powerful Journey metaphor and notes it is rooted in our biological need for growth, progress and maturation. Labarre (p. 4) relates how Anthropologie wants to help its customers grow, similar to MSL. She quotes them:

"We wanted to create an experience that would set up the possibility of change…”

This is a powerful mission.

Other practices:

  • Be customer experts (p. 2). Women, 30-45, educated, in committed relationship….
  • An earthier sensibility (p. 3). Texture is important.
  • Imperfection, eclecticism, and quirkiness (p. 4). The nature of Journeys.
  • Merchandizing to set a mood, not highlight a product (p. 4).
  • Storytelling (p. 3). Their voice is friendly and worldly with good stories to tell.

Similar Stores
Pier 1 and Wegman’s come to mind. Pier 1 was the Anthropologie of its day, when I was in my thirties. Labarre (p. 4) discusses the creation of vignettes and stalls that reminds me of Wegman’s. Wegman’s is designed to look like a NYC street of bygone days, with each department looking like a street vendor you might find then.

Duncan says (p. 289) that lifestyle selling is especially effective in highly competitive categories. WVU School of Journalism (2009, p. 2) says that products are not the purpose of a business executing a lifestyle strategy. Products are the vehicles for delivering a message that resonates with the community that relates to your business.

References
Duncan, T. (2005). Principles of Advertising & IMC. McGraw-Hill.Irwin.

Labarre, P. (Decmeber 2002). Sophisticated Selling. Fast Company. Retrieved on November 1, 2009 from WVU IMC 625 Week 2 Readings.

Pink, D. (April 1998). Metaphor Marketing. Fast Compnay. Retrieved on November 1, 2009 from WVU IMC 625 Week 2 Readings.

Isaac Reed School of Journalism, West Virginia University (2009). IMC 625 Lesson 2: Your Client: Intro to a Shelter Title Launch for Time, Inc. Mission, Voice, Lifestyle Message, Target Audience, Strategy. Retrieved from WVU IMC 625 Lesson 2 on November 1, 2009.

Zaltman, G and L Zaltman (2008). Marketing Metaphoria. Harvard Business Press.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Semiotic Analysis of the BMW We Built TV Ad

The Ad and Some Background Research
The quiet clarity of the guitar picking in BMW’s We Built commercial (Bimmer: We Built) immediately grabbed my attention when I saw it on MadMen. The elegant and attractive work is a .30 TV spot.

The guitar score is lifted from Jackson Browne’s These Days track from the mid-60s. These Days is emblematic of the pop music of that time (Amazon_30_sec) and it has “lasted for decades as a classic of [blue] introspection made even more remarkable by [Jackson] Browne having been only 16 years old when he wrote it.”

Music can stimulate creativity and is also a fundamental aspect of creative advertising. Dr. David Allan (2006, p 435) says the value of music in inspiration as well as its use in creative advertising campaigns is a heightened arousal. Arrangements similar to We Built would seem effective appeals to baby boomers of higher income and education levels. The demographics of this style pop music has a bias for higher income and education levels. Likewise for BMW’s demographics (for example see BNet).

Signifier, Signified and Signs
In this advert there are several signifiers: words and a series of video clips. BMW has captured a fundamental psychological mazeway, according to Zaltman and Zaltman (2008 ,p. 145), the deep metaphor of Resource for automobiles. Deep metaphors are seven unconscious lenses that “shape what people think, say, hear and do.” They are widely used in marketing and if you own a deep metaphor for a category, the way Budweiser owns Connection in the beer market, you have powerful advantages.

Griffiths (2006, p. 3) says that the effects of marketing are based on a reward from the product, and this can include “deeper psychological motivations.” A Resource is an enabler. It is the giver of many rewards.

Since the 1970s, BWM has beat this drum, and kept the same slogan “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” The signified is being enabled with this ultimate machine. There is a sequence of seven video clips that lead up to the presentation of the text, “The Ultimate Driving machine.” The words before each clip say “We did not start out to …” but the unspoken completion from each video sequence is “however, our cars enable it.” The seven sequences in the video are:
  • Mastery (skilled driving)
  • Artistic Expression
  • Subculture inclusion
  • Pop culture inclusion
  • Mastery (racing)
  • Social inclusion
  • We provide the resource (we just make the car)

The sign for the first six video signifiers is an iconic contrast. The words “we did not start out to” form a contrast to the video conclusion. Griffiths (2006, p. 5) notes that contrast can accentuate a sign, in his case individuality, in our case Enabler-ing. The video clips are themselves semblances of various cultural touchstones. Stultz (2009, p. 1) informs us that with iconic signs “the signifier resembles the signified, e.g. a picture.”

The last, 8th scene is a presentation of the text “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” This is a symbolic sign: conventional English words. Stultz (2009, p. 1) again tells us that symbolic signs are culturally specific (like English words) and represent a conventional relationship between signifier and the signified. The BMW machine is our resource to fulfill our desires.

As a final thought, Stultz (2009a, p. 8) informs us that the application of Semiotics to marketing involves more than just signs and symbols. It must also consider social context. The ethos of our generation is different than previous generations. Wallace (1963, p 103) contrasted the Dionysian and Apollonian ethos and the transition he sensed to have occurred. For a quick overview see Dionysian/Apollonian. The desire for the Dionysian is personal experience, while that of the Apollonian is moderation. “The Ultimate Driving Machine” would not have appealed to an Apollonian culture, while it does to a Dionysian.

References
Allan, David (December 2006). Effects of popular music in advertising on attention and memory. http://www.calstatela.edu/faculty/sfischo/sound%20advertising.html.doc

Griffiths, M (2/16/06). A Semiotic Analysis Of Diesel Print Ads. Retrieved on October 26, 2009 from WVU IMC 625 Week One Readings.

Stultz, Larry (2009). Semiotic Terminology. Retrieved on October 26, 2009 from WVU IMC Week One Readings.

Stultz, Larry (2009a). Lesson 1: What Does Your Idea Look Like? Retrieved on October 26, 2009 from WVU IMC 625.

Wallace, AFC (1963). Culture and Personality. Random House

Zaltman, G and L Zaltman (2008). Marketing Metaphoria. Harvard Business Press.

Health Care as a Connection

Differences between Health Care Communication and Commercial Marketing Communciations
Health care is a Connection Deep Metaphor, according to Zaltman and Zaltman (2008, p. 135). Deep metaphors are seven unconscious lenses that “shape what people think, say, hear and do.” They are widely used in marketing and if you understand the deep metaphor(s) for your category, you have powerful advantages. Why a Connection metaphor and what is it?

They say (p. 136) that across all studies of health-care, one facet dominates and that is the consumers relationship or connection with the health care provider. There is corroboration of this in our readings for this week. Chavez (2003, p. 29) says that “Good communication between health care providers and individuals is so important to achieving positive health outcomes” that it is a primary objective in the National Institute of Health (NIH) healthy people program. NIH is the publisher of the Pink Book.

The implication is clear, although other IMC practices have effect, in health care the importance of influentials is paramount. Gladwell (2002, p. 33) explains how effectively using connectedness can make or break a communications campaign. An essential link in communications is a role he calls Mavens. Mavens connect people with information. Health care providers are mavens.

Another difference between health care communications and “standard” IMC is privacy concerns. Duncan (2005, p. 259) observes that medical information is personal and subject to greater privacy protections. Chavez (p. 208) informs us that health communications often involves unpleasant information, and this needs greater testing to get right.

What’s the Same?
Well, we still go through the communications process. Chavez (2002, pp 11-13) describes a health communication process that is familiar: Define goals; Describe audience; Create effective messages by understanding the channel, identifying credible sources, test; Measure.
Hernandez (2009, p. 2) notes that health communication campaigns use marketing and communication strategies. Such might include:

  • Advertising
  • Public relations
  • Events andSponsorships
  • Promotional materials
  • Branding
  • Product placement

He goes on to say (p. 12) that the strategic process for health communication campaign, is similar to “designing a marketing campaign in non-health areas.” He lists a series of questions (p. 18) that we ask in other IMC areas also:

  • What’s the significance of the opportunity or problem
  • How does the problem impact people
  • Are certain segments more feasible or susceptible
  • What causes the problem or opportunity
  • How can the issue be resolved

References
Chavez, C. (1/9/2003) Making Health Communication Programs Work, aka Pink Book. Retrieved on October 27, 2009 from WVU IMC 621 Week One Readings.

Duncan, T (2005). Prinicples of Advertising & IMC. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Gladwell, M (2002). The Tipping Point. Back Bay Books.

Hernandez, N (2009). Lesson 1: The Field of Health Communication and Marketing. Retrieved on October 27, 2009 from WVU IMC 621.

Zaltman, G and L Zaltman (2008). Marketing Metaphoria. Harvard Business Press.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The GM CEO Blog

A corporate blog gives voice and agency to a company, and CEO’s should take advantage of this opportunity to communicate directly with customers and the public. A CEO should share a love and enthusiasm for their company and its product or service. They should not be CEO of the company if they don’t feel that love. With GM, of course, it is easy. Beautiful cars, colorful history, and of course, appealing advertising.



Vice Chairman Bob Lutz gives his thoughts on the blog (see his blog) and over time it has become apparent Bob loves cars.

A CEO like Bob now has voice without being lackey to media conglomerates and the sickly procession of charlatans who work in them. I still think about the now infamous incident between the NY Times conglomerate and GM. The NYT published a vicious Tom Freidman editorial about GM that it later admitted went over the top. GM sent them a reply and asked it to be printed on the op-ed page but kept getting the run around by the Times editors. (See GM Blog )

GM complied with demand after demand to water down their reply until the editors finally demanded that GM remove the word rubbish. The Times said it was a devil word inappropriate for a paper of their stature. At that point, GM posted the unsightly email thread it had been keeping with the Times on its Fastlane blog.

It was so outrageous that it spread across the Internet like the fire of righteous retribution. Many were appalled by the Times hypocritical censorship and arrogance. The Columbia School of Journalism wrote that the Times was patently unfair (Columbia Journalism Critique).

The days of newspapers playing God because they were the only game in town are over. An open discussion about GM occurred despite the Times trying to suppress and censor it. As a postscript, when you get wildfire like this, the law of many eyes kicks in and some eyes found editorials posted in the Times past that contained the word rubbish.

I am saddened by the Chapter 11 status of GM. The NYT is on the same path. A consortium of colleges may save them (see Freepress) but the Internet has destroyed their revenue structure.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Vexing the Dull EAR of a Drowsy Man

If you participate in global trade you can run afoul of export regulations. The United States is notoriously sensitive about the shipment of advanced capability to its potential foes. The Bureau of Industry and Security (see their Web Site) is responsible for "enforcing Export Administration Regulations (EARs)."

A mistake here and they may give you a thumping you won’t walk away from. Here's a watchful inspector now.


The FedEx service I select this day is its Export Advisory Services. FedEx provides comprehensive protective services to companies, helping them navigate the regulatory minefield put in place for national security (see The EAS FAQ). Let FedEx deal with these inspectors.

Vanides (2009, p. 1) says that B-to-B global segmentation must deal with a different model. She says that one important dimension is "How customers will use product." Not all export businesses will use the Export Advisory Service, but those on the Export Control List are people who might. There are several categories of industry that will benefit from my service. Two industry classifications I will visit with my Fedex team are software and wireless communications.

NAICS codes
EAR Category 4, Computers, encompasses Software, which has a NAICS code of 511210.
EAR Category 5 (Part 1) is Telecommunications and I drill into the Wireless NAICS code 517210 thusly:

5172 Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite)
51721 Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite)
517210 Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite)

If you're like me and don't like mind-numbing regulations written in bureau-speak, FedEx can help.

References
Shakespeare, W (1611). Louis the Dauphin, in King John, act 3, sc. 4.

Vanides, A. (2009). Lesson 8: Managing the Global B-to-B Brand Asset with Direct Marketing. Retrieved on October 9, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week 8 Readings.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

IBM On-Demand Sevices

1. The Business World is on Fire.
Small businesses’ partners and customers expect quick and easy transactions. Their competitors continually erase profit margins. Information management systems must be part of the solution, not millstones around their necks. At last, the world can be their computer, thanks to IBM On-Demand Services.




Wouldn’t it be nice if an IT solution were like their electric utility? Flip a switch to use it. Flip back when done. They only pay for when they use it. Oh, and by the way, they can connect to the world’s dataspace seamlessly. An impossible dream? For over a century, IBM has made impossible dreams come true for small businesses.

2. Who are the customers and what do they want?
IBM (2009e, p 1) says the world is “Instrumented. Interconnected. Intelligent.” and that these on demand services are “Inevitable.” They report that there are now 1 billion transistors per human. Over a trillion things are networked. All those things have intelligent devices in them. “The time is right now. “

Small Businesses are the target market according to Vanides (2009, p. 1). They want effective support of their operations. They cannot afford the IT staff and glass house expense for the sophisticated information services used by larger competitors. They also need to reduce costs including whatever IT costs they already incur. What is more, with the new Waxman and Markey HR 2454 Bill (2009, pp 652-672) also known as the Cap and Trade Bill, all business including small business will need to reduce carbon footprint. Penalties will be assessed on those who don’t. Those who do will be able to sell their carbon allowance credits on the open market.

Small business managers in the business units want efficient automation of their operations. It would be nice to have access from anywhere rather than the currently constrained in-the-building format. Small business workers want ease of use. Existing partners want an easy way to perform transactions with the small business.

Existing computer suppliers and software vendors would be opposed to a move to On-Demand services. They have a concerned interest in the sale of expensive solutions and services to these businesses.

3. Market Analysis
3.1 Competitive Actions
Leong and Chamberlain (2009, pp 1-2) report that this market is rapidly growing. It is considered the future of computing by the most of the major players. The new Microsoft Chief Technology Officer, Ray Ozzie is not blind to the market change. Microsoft completely missed virtualization but they have a belated start here. Online services are becoming an important market segment for them, according to Mackey. A Microsoft on-demand services initiative is code-named Azure (see Mackey, 2008, p 1). Google and Amazon are also in this developing market as well. The players in on-demand services will soon have good-enough offerings, or so says Gartner (see Smith and Austin, 2007, p 1).

Wainwright (2009, p. 1) highlights Microsoft’s weakness in this area, which is its Software plus Services model rather than on-demand services model. Wainwright gives as an example:
"A Microsoft spokesperson told me that customers will need to buy a SharePoint server, which ranges from $4,400 plus CALs, or $41,000 all CALs included, if they want to share documents using the online version of Office 2010."

$41,000 to get what Google offers for free with Google Docs, not to mention the pounding the prospects will take in buying Office. Wainwright concludes that Azure is not a competitive threat to the other players but a defensive play to give existing Microsoft customers, who already paid for the software, a .NET friendly cloud. This is Microsoft’s competitive weakness.

What about Google or Amazon? Neither of them have the history of supporting small business that IBM does. Neither has the business expertise that IBM consulting marshals. According to a Gartner Press Release (see Gartner, 2009, p 1), Google is a leader in offering advertising services. However, Leong and Chamberlain (2009, p 2), in their Gartner study, do not rate Google or Microsoft as even niche players for on-demand business operation services. They do rate Amazon as a visionary but without the ability to execute that vision. For On-Demand Services, they rate IBM in the highest category – a leader with the vision and ability to execute.
Their main competition is AT&T, another venerable institution, and my former employer. What are AT&T’s weaknesses? They tell us. Poor customer service! How long would a small business last if they gave their customers poor service? AT&T is inflexible. AT&T’s process is difficult, complex, and slow.

3.2 Marketing Issues
Like the PC in the early 1980s, On-Demand services is a leap into the unknown by most small businesses. This is because it is a new technical approach to business operations. In such a case, a trusted institution like IBM is a strong marketing positive. It was that way with PCs, which did not take off until IBM backed them. There were microcomputers before the IBM PC. When it introduced the PC, Jackson, et al (2002), say that IBM was “responsible for unleashing the upheaval that would lead to … the complete restructuring of the IT industry.” So it was with each new automation era in business processing.

There are no success stories for On-Demand services, it is such a new concept. There are no references. IBM is eating its own dog-food, so it can report on its own experience, but that is it. To counter this, there is little marginal cost in offering a free starter service and consulting to reduce risk for the small businesses.

Another marketing issue is that no one has a complete toolset at this time. To counter this, there are positive returns for the small business from the implementation of even one of the tools. Furthermore, according to Gartner only IBM and AT&T have the comprehensive vision for the toolset and the ability to execute that vision. The lack of a complete toolset by anyone can actually be an advantage to IBM.

Additionally, there are issues and cautions for email marketing. Vanides (2009a, p. 2) says that this is even truer for B-to-B: messages. B-toB email must be relevant and have substance. Vanides (pp 7-8) provides advice on the form and style of our emails. First make a compelling offer and tell a story that “engages the reader’s imagination.” Stay focused, an email should cover one product or service. Give assurances to the forces of nature with money-back guarantees. Keep the paragraphs short and the tone appropriate to the audience. You may want to have a P.S. Finally, have multiple calls to action.

Momentum is another aspect of email marketing. Quris (p. 10) says that measurement of past behavior lets us gauge email engagement momentum. This gives us the recipient motivation and interest before we send our emails.

4. Constraints
The Direct Marketing of IBM On-Demand services is constrained first by an incomplete toolset. Another constraint is the radical newness of this technology; we are not completely sure how customers will use the various services. There is a further lack of references and no real life feasibility studies with existing implementations. Accomplishing the objectives of this Direct Marketing campaign will remove many of these constraints.

5. Decision Options: Objectives, Strategies and Tactics
Leslie and Holloway (2006, p. 116) stress the importance of education when marketing new technology. This is a two-edged sword, especially while the services are being fully defined. The customer needs to be educated on the value and benefit of the service but at the same time IBM will need feedback from the customer on how they think they can employ the service and any changes that would make this easier. This two-way education is a common thread amongst our objectives, strategies and tactics.

There is risk in changing technology, and free trial is a way we can reduce that risk. This will be a second common thread throughout our objectives, strategies and tactics. In our readings, Carlson Marketing (2007, p 2) reported that one On-Demand service that has already proven successful is Customer Relationship Marketing.

CRM will be the free service offering in our IBM campaign – all businesses need it and small businesses may consider it a luxury because of the cost and difficulty of a traditional implementation (see Doyle and Martin, 2003, p. 1). Additionally, it is something that we can offer as a plain vanilla basic package to give them immediate benefit with low marginal cost to IBM. Then we follow-up with paid consulting engagements to customize it according to more specific ways they do business.

Finally, the Waxman and Markey Cap and Trade Bill may make On-Demand services pay for itself at small businesses. Waxman and Markey's bill (2009, pp 652-672) puts a cap on carbon footprint and will dictate an allowance to each business. All companies will be required to purchase an "Emissions Permit" and over time this allowance will be reduced to squeeze companies to further drive down carbon footprint.

The trade aspect enables “green” companies with an allowance greater than their footprint to sell credits to “dirty” companies at whatever the market will bear. On-Demand services reduces server and glass-house carbon footprint. We can take it a step further as well. With On-Demand services, you really may not need an office building: they are just big filing cabinets. People can access On-Demand services from anywhere they have Internet access.

So On-Demand services can help companies with a quick reduction in glass-house carbon and later with smaller buildings for enormous carbon savings. Teleworking becomes a more feasible option with On-Demand Services.



5.1 Objectives
Spiller and Baier (2005, p 210) find that roughly 80% of people respond to email compared with less than 2% click through on banner ads (p 214). This established the order of magnitude for our expectations in this Email Direct Marketing campaign. Here are our objectives. As noted before, with a radical new technology, an education process is the appropriate first step.


  • 90% of IBM small business customers are aware of benefits from On-Demand Services

  • 50% of recipients accept an invitation to a free online seminar with the promise of free consulting services after completion of seminar, and completion of a questionnaire at the end of the seminar.

  • 5% agree to the deployment of On-Demand basic CRM services with free consulting services. A free trial period of use will be followed by discount rates per hour of usage for these innovators, an influential group.

These objectives will guide the education of the market about the benefits of IBM On-Demand Services. In addition, IBM will learn how customers actually use this radical new technology. This will give IBM both references for future sales, as well as guidance to product development on what real customers look for in such services.

5.2 Strategies
Spiller and Baier (2005, pp 210-11) disclose that the grand strategy for email marketing is to target promotions to specific customers and that such an approach should be database-driven and customized to match the specific needs of the recipient. This type of customer-centric marketing is at the heart of customer relationship management. Thompson (2007, p 2) says we need to become customer-centric by understanding our customers and giving them "what they want." Our grand strategy is to integrate our email campaigns now and in future with the customer databases at our disposal.

Our second strategy is to offer free consulting services in an exclusive offer. Spiller and Baier (p 89) suggest that when products are new to the market, and so are in limited supply or not yet generally available, in such cases an effective approach is to offer an exclusive. The Email offer will use this strategy and the chance for Free consulting services. Spiller and Baier (2005, pp 102-103) list nine strategies and (p 104) 99 specific tactics for direct marking offers. The first strategy is a free offer.

Of course we must avoid the appearance of being Greeks bearing gifts, the all pervasive strategy of Western civilization, but that said, I think gifts as in "we're here to help" are a way to get the doors open for IBM On-Demand Services with its small business services. In this email campaign, prospects will have the opportunity for Free consulting services to set-up a very basic customer relationship management system. Once IBM has that the basic foudnation setup then we can spin-sell off of it. Additionally, IBM have references for early majority and late majority customers.

The marginal cost of the service is nil, the opportunity cost is low because it is only the basics, and the engineering time is an investment. The establishment of the basic foundation gives IBM sales teams opportunity for spin-selling to get follow-up work. The benefit for the customer is reduced risk.

5.3 Tactics
This is a high involvement product. Customers will need to engage in detailed descriptions of benefits and attend a learning seminar. The email will not attempt this education since a seminar is a better forum. The email body copy will emphasize benefits, however.

  • Better your own business through access to services previously available only to large organizations

  • Reduce IT costs

  • Free consulting

  • A time limit offer – we are starting now and value your expertise.

We will say that because we want timely feedback for product development and later marketing campaigns, this is a time-limit offer. Time limit offers are a standard tactic in direct marketing.
We will use the IBM CRM database (see Spiller and Baier, 2005, p 121) to personalize aspects of the materials. We will include the compelling promotional phrase “At last” to start our text. Spiller and Baier (p 111, 126) make the case that the phrase “At last” is attention grabbing. At last, the world is your computer.

Bob Stones Seven-Step formula in Spiller and Baier (2005, p 117). First a benefit is promised: “At last, the world is your computer.” Next the most important benefit is enlarged: Wouldn’t it be nice if your IT solution were like your electric utility? Flip a switch to use it. Flip back when done. You only pay for when you use it. Oh, and by the way, you can connect to the world’s dataspace seamlessly.

Back up what you say: “We’ve Defined Each New Era In Business Processing for Over a Century.” Tell them what they lose by not acting: “”Free implementation of an online service.” Incite action now: An impossible dream? Call us now. For over a century, we’ve made impossible dreams come true for small businesses. IBM On-Demand Services. P.S. We’ll throw in free consulting to get you started. Call today.

Vanides (2009a, pp 7-8) provides life-giving advice on the form and style of our emails. First make a compelling offer and tell a story that “engages the reader’s imagination.” Stay focused, an email should cover one product or service. Give assurances to the forces of nature with money-back guarantees. Keep the paragraphs short and the tone appropriate to the audience. you may want to have a P.S. Finally, have multiple calls to action.

6. Implications/Recommendation/Conclusion
IBM has a leadership role in the industry for this important new direction. Gartner (see Leong and Chamberlain, 2009, pp 1-2) rates it as having the comprehensive vision for the future of On-Demand services and the ability to execute. AT&T is so rated as well.

This is a radical new direction for an industry noted for radical changes. IBM must learn how the customer will use the new services and as Leslie and Holloway (2006, p. 116) observe, this is true for all new technologies. This campaign is only the first step. The results and feedback from it will lay the foundation for next steps. We are ready to work with IBM on those steps and welcome the opportunity to discuss with you our ideas.

References

Carlson Marketing (2007). No More Limits: On Demand CRM Goes Strategic. Oracle. Retrieved on September 17, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week 3 Readings.

Doyle, M., Starr D., and R. Martin (2003). Salesnet: Change or Die. Retrieved on September 4, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week Three Readings.

Duncan, T (2005). Prinicples of Advertising & IMC. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Gartner (March 26, 2009). Gartner Says Worldwide Cloud Services Revenue Will Grow 21.3 Percent in 2009. Gartner Press Release. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.gartner.com/it/page.jsp?id=920712

IBM (2009). 1400 Series Computers. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/mainframe/mainframe_PP1401.html

IBM (2009a). IBM 405 Series Business Machine. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/interactive/index.html#/EarlyAmbitions/405AccountingMachine

IBM (2009b). IBM 603 Series Adding/Multiplying Machine. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/interactive/index.html#/GrowingInfluence/603ElectronicMultiplier

IBM (2009c). IBM System3 and 30 Series Computers. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/rochester/rochester_4008.html

IBM (2009d). IBM Personal Computer. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/pc/pc_1.html

IBM (2009e). Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www.ibm.com/ibm/ideasfromibm/us/smartplanet/20081106/index2.shtml?&re=sp2

JACKSON, M., MANDEVILLE, T. and J. POTTS (2002). The Evolution of the Digital Computation Industry. Prometheus. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Leong, Lydia and Ted Chamberlin (July 2, 2009). Magic Quadrant for Web Hosting and Hosted Cloud System Infrastructure Services (On Demand). Gartner Research, ID G00168687. Also, retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.rackspace.com/downloads/pdfs/GartnerMagicQuadrant.pdf

Leslie, M, and C. Holloway (July-August 2006). The Sales Learning Curve. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved on September 18, 2009 from EBSCOHOST>

Mackey, Kurt (October 27, 2008). Microsoft has head in the clouds with new Windows Azure OS. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20081027-microsoft-has-head-in-the-clouds-with-new-windows-azure-os.html

Marketing Vox, (October 4, 2007). Ballmer Sees Ad Revenue as Microsoft's Future. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.marketingvox.com/ballmer-sees-ad-revenue-as-microsofts-future-033446/

Quris, Inc. (October 2003). How Email Practices Can Win of Lose Long-Term Business. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Readings on September 13, 2009.

Smith, D and Austin T (June 5, 2007). Microsoft and Google: Who's Going After Whom? Gartner Research, ID G00148622

Spiller, L and M Baier, (2005). Contemporary Direct Marketing. Pearson/Prentice-Hall

Thompson , B. (Jan. 22, 2007). Why "CRM" Must Die for Customer-Centric Business To Thrive. CustomerThink Corp. Retrieved on September 8, 2009 from www.customerthink.com.

Vanides, Alexia (2009). Case Study: IBM’s New Company Positioning Strategy: E-Business on Demand. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Assignment on September 13, 2009.

Vanides, Alexia (2009a). Lesson 5: Online and Other Email Marketing Techniques. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Lesson on September 13, 2009.

Wainwright, Phil July 20, 2009). Assessing Microsoft’s Cloud Intentions. EBiz. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.ebizq.net/blogs/connectedweb/2009/07/assessing_microsofts_cloud_int.php

Waxman and Markey (2009). H.R. 2454, aka The Cap and Trade Bill. U.S. House of Representatives. Retrieved on September 18, 2009 from http://www.heritage.org/Research/EnergyandEnvironment/upload/hr2454-text.pdf

IBM Support for Small Business: A Visual History

According to Vandies (2009, p 1), network computing is at the heart of IBM’s E-Business On-Demand project. This On-Demand computing allows companies, and their external partners to work seamlessly together. IBM brokers this effortless, cooperative information sharing by offering a suite of technology services.

Analysts speculate that only a small subset of the eventual service offering is now in place. Leong and Chamberlain (2009, p 1) note that this is true industry-wide. In their Gartner article, they rate IBM as a leader, with vision and the ability to execute that vision. It is important to stress IBM’s history of executing visions for small businesses.

Although On-Demand is a far cry from selling hardware, it does follow the IBM tradition of supporting small businesses. Here is a short, visual history of its support for small business over the past century. All of the equipment shown below was designed for and used by small and medium sized organizations.

1930s-40s: IBM 405



1940s-50s: IBM 603


1950s-70s: IBM 1400 Series



1960s-80s: IBM System 3 Series

For the 1980s-2000s, IBM Defined an Era



For 2009 and the future: On-Demand Services


IBM anticipates that 60% of the profits in the high-tech industry will be derived from software services (see Vanides, 2009, p 1) and they want to be there. IBM has purchased an on-demand tool vendor and a major consulting firm. IBM itself is eating its own dog food and becoming a user of its on-demand services.

References

Figure 1: IBM 405 Series Business Machine. Retrieved on September 19, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/interactive/index.html#/EarlyAmbitions/405AccountingMachine

Figure 2: IBM 603 Series Adding/Multiplying Machine. Retrieved on September 19, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/interactive/index.html#/GrowingInfluence/603ElectronicMultiplier

Figure 3: 1400 Series Computers. Retrieved on September 19, 2009 from http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/mainframe/mainframe_PP1401.html

Figure 4: IBM System3 and 30 Series Computers. Retrieved on September 19, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/rochester/rochester_4008.html

Figure 5: IBM Personal Computer. Retrieved on September 15, 2009 from
http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/pc/pc_1.html

Figure 6: On-Demand Services. Retrieved on September 20, 2009 from
http://www.ibm.com/ibm/ideasfromibm/us/smartplanet/20081106/index2.shtml?&re=sp2


Leong, Lydia and Ted Chamberlin (July 2, 2009). Magic Quadrant for Web Hosting and Hosted Cloud System Infrastructure Services (On Demand). Gartner Research, ID G00168687. Also, retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.rackspace.com/downloads/pdfs/GartnerMagicQuadrant.pdf

Vanides, Alexia (2009a). Lesson 5: Online and Other Email Marketing Techniques. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Lesson on September 13, 2009.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Vesper Martini Came Later: A Campiagn to Introduce Campari

Campari
In his first novelized missions, just after WWII, James Bond’s drink was the Americano: Campari, Cinzano and Perrier (see Fleming, 2008, p 5). Today, it is a drink on Mad Men, obtaining product placement on that popular series (see MadMen Cocktails). Campari is an Italian aperitif, infused with herbal essences as well as extracts from the Cochineal beetle.

Need NAICS? OST Does
The first phase of my Campari campaign is B-to-B with an objective of increasing awareness of this historic drink in America among influentials. The strategy I will follow is to seed happening places such as clubs and bars with the product. This focuses initially on opinion leaders who obtain positive direct experience with the brand.


Once word of mouth creates a buzz about the product, then widen distribution to sectors surrounding the “in” spots. Keller (p 57) postulates that word of mouth advertising is particularly effective at building positive brand image in the product categories of restaurants and drinking places.

The tactic is to use direct email and direct mail to alcoholic drinking places to get them to carry Campari and incent them to introduce it. To do this, I start with the NAICS code for bars, coded in NAICS as alcoholic drinking places. Once word of mouth has worked its magic, then I will expand to other businesses that sell alcohol, such as liquor stores.

Getting the NAICS Codes
I used the Census Bureau worksheet of all NAICS codes to find the one for the business category of bars and drinking establishments. The worksheet is located at: Census NAICS. In record 2122, NAICS code 72 I find accommodation and food services industry segment. Reviewing the subordinate records, I then find in record 2137, NAICS code 722 - food services and drinking places. Then with record 2155 and following, I find NAICS codes 7224, 72241, and 722410 all with the same description, “drinking places, alcoholic beverages.”

I will go with the full six-digit NAICS code 722410 when I deal with list vendors.

SalesGenie.com is my Lister of Choice
Yo, where my drunks at? A list broker can help me answer that question. In dealing with list brokers, Vanides (2009, pp 1-2) gives some pointers.

In my case, I will want to work with the vendor on a follow-up campaign to liquor stores and more normal bars and restaurants. So the advice from Vanides is to select a broker who will work with me on OST. A truly professional vendor can help me properly set-up my first campaign so the second phase is easily feasible. I will also need a vendor with multiple files, so I can do appropriate follow-up with them for a different set of industries like liquor stores.

I will be segmenting on NAICS code and also on characteristics of the drinking place, as in trendy. One issue that can arise from this segmentation is overuse – too many other businesses are trying to reach my audience with other offers. The repetition of such email or mails creates immunity to new messages according to Gladwell (2002, p 273).

According to Vanides (p 2) the list broker has a key role, “Understanding how the source-mix has changed” and how that will affect the campaign. With all this in mind, I have selected SalesGenie.Com to help me with this vital work. They were enumerated in both Lesson 6 (see Vanides, 2009, p 2) and Multichannel Merchant (2008, p 2). Multichannel Merchant gives this write-up.

“Salesgenie.com is an Internet-based subscription service that helps sales representatives and business owners find new customers and increase sales. With 24/7 access to the freshest leads and mailing lists, and hundreds of search selections, Salesgenie.com clients can find the right prospects in minutes! Clients can search all 12 of infoUSA’s databases, which are comprised of the most comprehensive business and consumer data in the industry. Choose from 14 million U.S. businesses.210 million consumers and 10 other databases. “
Multichannel Merchant has write-ups on a dozen other list brokers as well.

References
Fleming, Ian (2008). Quantum of Solace: The Complete James Bond Short Stories. Penguin.

Gladwell, M (2002). The Tipping Point. Back Bay Books.

Keller, K (2008). Strategic Brand Management. Pearson/Prentice-Hall.

Multichannel Merchant (2/16/2008). Direct Buyers Guide. Retrieved on September 21, 2009 from EBSCOHOST.

Pearson (2006). Case Study 4: Red Bull, Building Brand Equity in New Ways!. Pearson/ Prentice-Hall.
Vanides, A (2009). Lesson 6: The Issue with Lists, Leveraging the Channel and DM Campaigns. Retrieved on September 20, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week 6 Readings

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Economic Darwinism and the Marketing Struggle for Attention

Economic Darwinism manifests itself in a marketing struggle for attention. One of the enemies of attention is the development of immunity to habituated stimuli, and email advertising may be on the verge. This may explain the marketing interest in social media – the hope that people are not yet immune to it as they are to email. This would be consistent with adaptation level theory (see Hawkins, 2007, p 293), “over time we adapt or habituate to it [in our case frequent email from a vendor] and begin to notice it less.”

Poulos (2009, p. 1) contends that the deciding factor in email success or failure is the strategic planning that goes into the entire campaign: segmentation, objectives, tactics and so on. He cites research about the value of a list that is both opt-in and highly targeted. He finally advises us to implement the Sender Policy Framework in our email directory technology (see Sender Policy Framework). This is designed to prevent spam.

For habituated stimuli in other media, look at Rosser Reeves' Minute Maid or Anacin TV campaigns. Minute Maid complained about the deathly repetition in its orange juice campaign, to no good effect. Twitchell (1996, p 29) notes that such repetition "will no longer be tolerated" in TV advertising. Based on our readings this week, repetitious (too frequent email) may not be either.

An Attention Economy model has been presented to explain attention immunity in marketing with the utility theory of neo-classical economics. The unfinished argument in economics over the sui generis of the market now finds new application in the potential of Internet technologies. Is it natural for the market to be governed by a higher authority, the state, or is it a stand-alone, self-regulating entity? Likewise with email and social media. They are connected to brand planning but to what extent should they be governed by it?

The Cluetrain Manifesto sees the old marketing as a procession of charlatans who no longer have an audience. The new technology opens a free conversation to form markets directly between empowered members of a firm and the community they serve.

Most new parades, I think, start out solemnly and with dignity, buttressed by 95 theses or whatever, but end up in turmoil and rancor. Email is an example and so is blogging. Microsoft has employees talking directly to customers on blogs. In fact, Joe Cox reports (see Microsoft Watch) that Microsoft has over 5,000 employee blogs and quite often Microsoft makes major product announcements only on these blogs, not incorporating one or another of its marketing agencies.

John Cass is a marketer and a researcher at Forrester and has made a counterintuitive finding (see his blog ). Dell and Macromedia use a dedicated approach, and control communications that uses email and social media rather than take the wide-open approach of Microsoft. Dell and Macromedia are doing quite well with such an approach.

Cass concludes that anarchy does not work. While the Cluetrain Manifesto helped focus attention on change that is needed for marketing communications because of the Internet, "[it] did not provide a really effective road map for how to open up a company.”

Marketing communications is a discipline. By focusing their email and social media efforts in smaller groups capable of effective marketing communications (i.e. people trained in IMC), and providing them with support, Dell and Macromedia have been effective. More so than Microsoft. I think the lesson this week is that email is governed by a higher authority, the principles of marketing communications and marketing platform of the firm.

References
Hawkins, Del, David Mothersbaugh and Roger Best (2007). Consumer Behavior. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Newbusiness.co.uk. Retrieved on September, 25, 2009 from http://www.newbusiness.co.uk/articles/marketing-advice/how-grab-customers%E2%80%99-attention

Poulos, Alex (May 4, 2009). Email Marketing – Still Friend or Foe? (Part I). Retrieved on September 23, 2009 from http://www.covisio.com/blog/2009/05/04/email-marketing-still-friend-or-foe-part-i/

Twitchell, James (1996). Adcult USA. Columbia.

Are you jumping off a cliff with that email?

Both Email Marketing and jumping into a rocky canyon have risks. Both disciplines have proven techniques to cope with those risks. Well, at least Email Marketing does. It is manageable if you follow the practices recommended this week. Both experiences have a set of deadly forces at work and a set of life saving forces as well.

Deadly Forces
The erosive power of friction from email frequency can land us in the rocks. Quris (2003, p 10) says that “slow and steady wins the race.” Throughout their article they admonish us to avoid losing customers completely with Email that is too frequent. This is not having customers delete our emails. This is having them terminate the relationship.

Another deadly force is inertial boredom. Its uncomfortable gravity casts a gray pall over our dive or our email, and we will not get full points. Vanides (2009, p. 2) says that this is even truer for B-to-B: messages must be relevant and have substance. Quris (2009, p. 10) observes “Relevant versus boring is of course a subjective judgment.” That is the risk of cliff diving but it’s why people applaud us if our company and we survive and are not paralyzed.

The future for marketers who ignore these warnings is a rocky landing that acts like a meat cleaver, wielded by a client infuriated with the predictable banality of our frequent intrusions.




Life Giving Forces
Things are not completely bleak. Momentum is a force of hope. Quris (p. 10) says that measurement of past behavior lets us gauge email engagement momentum. This gives us the wind direction before we take our leap. They also say that our perspective should be the ocean, the long-term relationship with the customer and not a one-time sales objective.

Vanides (pp 7-8) provides life-giving advice on the form and style of our emails. First make a compelling offer and tell a story that “engages the reader’s imagination.” Stay focused, an email should cover one product or service. Give assurances to the forces of nature with money-back guarantees. Keep the paragraphs short and the tone appropriate to the audience. You may want to have a P.S. Finally, have multiple calls to action.


References
Quris, Inc. (October 2003). How Email Practices Can Win of Lose Long-Term Business. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Readings on September 13, 2009.

Spiller, L and M Baier, (2005). Contemporary Direct Marketing. Pearson/Prentice-Hall

Vanides, Alexia (2009). Lesson 5: Online and Other Email Marketing Techniques. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Five Lesson on September 13, 2009.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Case Study: Chiquita Brands and Landec Technology

1. Background
1.1 Industry Dynamics
Chiquita Banana International is a major international distributor of fresh and value-added food products. Its operations include a strong marketing element "designed to win the hearts and smiles of the world’s consumers…" (See Vanides, 2009, p 2). The nature of fresh produce favors a vertically integrated industrial organization and that is true with Chiquita.

The value-add is concentrated in specialized shipping and marketing activities (p. 4). This has led to discontent among growers, as their associations have not been able to negotiate favorable returns to the farmers. Grower associations have attempted to end-run the produce conglomerates, mainly Chiquita and Dole, (p. 5) but with mixed results. Dole International is Chiquita Brands’ major competitor in the vertically integrated fresh produce sector.

Customer concentration makes Chiquita vulnerable in North America. The case study (p. 5) reports that banana marketers and distributors are facing "the challenge of the increasing role that is being played by supermarkets and retail chains." The Boston Consulting Group, in their Harvard Business School publication examines the impact new information technology will have on disintermediation, getting rid of the middleman in many industries (Evans and Wurster, 2000, p 72).

1.2 Topic Statement: Don’t Become a Wal-Mart Harlot
The topic of this proposal is to recommend that Chiquita Brands work at 90° with the powerful grocery store channel. Using enabling technology like Landec to enter a new market is a start. We also recommend marketing strategies to broaden your customer base, first with Core-Mark and convenience stores, but longer-term with manufacturing intermediaries such as Gerber and Mrs. Smith’s. Additionally, we review marketing pull strategies to increase ultimate consumer awareness of your unique expertise and long experience in safe handling for the delivery of fresh produce.

1.3 Who are the customers and what do they want?
The customers of Chiquita Banana International are varied but concentrated so that 62% of its North American sales go to its top 20 vendors, a Pareto distribution (see Vanides, 2007, p 5). In Europe this is slightly more balanced with 32% of sales going to the top 20 retailers. The case study mentions the following customers:

  • Convenience store distributors who need smaller delivery quantities of fresh bananas and packaging for individual sales.
  • Supermarket retail chains that need continuous delivery of fresh bananas with high quality as well as integration with their supply-chain systems. They also seek long-term relationships.
  • The ultimate customers, shoppers who buy fresh bananas
According to Spiller and Baier (2005, p. 320), bananas can be used as raw materials in manufacturing processes, in addition to being an end product for retail chains. With this in mind, I would propose the following customer categories:

  • Independent canned goods manufacturers such as Bacardi Banana Daiquiri Mix, Comstock, or Gerber who use bananas and fresh produce in their processed foods
  • Manufacturers of pastries and pies like Mrs. Smith’s Banana Crème Pie.
  • Bars and restaurants such as Chili’s, Ruby Tuesday’s and Appleby’s
  • Soda shops such as Dairy Queen, Baskin Robbins and Ben and Jerry’s.
  • Convenience stores for processed foods such as slurpees or yogurts


2. Market Analysis
2.1 Competitive Actions
Chiquita sells to retailers and there is a growing Wal-Mart Effect in North America. Retail chains, especially in the USA, are leveraging their growing power to better control the wholesale distributors like Chiquita. Vertical coordination by the retail chains is managed through supply-chain software systems.

Dole’s response is to become Wal-Mart’s harlot. Dole concentrated its management attention on the market side of the business, strengthening its supply partnerships with the retail chains (p. 5). Chiquita has done the same so far. This is risky. Wal-Mart does not partner with such companies but instead uses them until they no longer have any life and are therefore not usable anymore.

2.2 Marketing Issues
The first marketing issue is the need to diversify and broaden Chiquita’s customer base to include convenience stores and other outlets independent of the large grocery store chains and Wal-Mart. Another related issue is the need to distinguish Chiquita from commodity bananas. Marketing communications should emphasize both Chiquita’s long experience in distribution that gives it complete understanding of the safety and cleanliness issues in handling fresh produce, as well as knowledge of new technology that can benefit the process. Freshness from Landec is an example of such a technology.

The case study goes on to say that powerful grocers are moving up-channel to exert increasing control over produce. This can torpedo Chiquita profit margins by commoditizing its offerings. To obtain a reasonable rate of return, Chiquita should also expand its reach into more profitable uses of its produce, especially with manufacturing intermediaries. Spiller and Baier (2005, p 320) note that often a manufacturing intermediary has an inelastic demand for the price of a banana in comparison to shoppers at Wal-Mart. This is because the cost of a banana in a Cream Pie is a small part of the total cost of the ware so banana price can be raised more before it is noticeable to the bottom line of the manufacturer.


3. Constraints
Demand for bananas as bananas is constrained by pricing pressures from both Dole International your major fresh produce competitor, and by the ability of large retail chains to negotiate favorable pricing terms in return for access to the market they control. Chiquita Brands is further constrained in its pricing to the extent the buying public assumes bananas are a fungible commodity and is not aware of the sophistication of the handling process managed by Chiquita to ensure cleanliness, safety and freshness.

Finally, Chiquita is constrained by the operational costs for its distribution activities, especially oil costs, which make cost reduction efforts problematic. This limited ability to trim costs also increases the vulnerability of Chiquita to an outfit like Wal-Mart muscling into its distribution and marketing franchise, leveraging Wal-Mart’s control of final retailing. With Chiquita’s retail sales concentrated mainly in twenty chains, there is a real risk that retailers can dictate low prices to Chiquita, basically asking "Where you gonna go?" This will squeeze Chiquita profit margins.


4. Decision Options: Objectives, Strategies and Tactics
4.1 Objectives

My biggest worries for Chiquita Brands is that its product line will be cast as commodities, that its profit margins will be squeezed, and that powerful new competitors will emerge if hefty retail chains like Wal-Mart make deals with grower associations, directly by passing Chiquita. This does not need to happen. Pine and Gilmore (1999, pp 1-3) show that exactly the opposite is possible when management has a more positive outlook and distinguishes the product or service of its company. This is our job as marketing communication consultants. We propose the following marketing objectives:

  • Differentiate Chiquita from commodity bananas: 75% awareness among the retail trade about Chiquita’s sophisticated distribution methods like Landec,
  • Diversify the customer base for Chiquita Bananas: Add 5,000 convenience stores to its retail channel. Both goals accomplished in next fiscal year.

4.2 Strategies
We recommend an immersive mix of push and pull strategies to differentiate Chiquita bananas from commodity bananas and expand its customer base into the convenience store sector. This initial campaign will be the introduction of the new partnership with Landec to provide consumers with a fresh and healthy snack at convenience stores. However, it is also the foundation for follow-up campaigns that must be undertaken.

The motif of this Landec campaign will be the century long experience Chiquita Brands has in safe and efficient distribution that protects consumer health while providing a continuous supply of fresh bananas at a reasonable cost. Chiquita innovates and is expanding the envelope with the introduction of a new technology by Landec. Unlike newcomers to the produce business, Chiquita does not need to experiment with the health of Mr. or Mrs. Consumer to learn the ropes like an upstart would.

Our push strategies are two: 1.) Trade-promotion to motivate trade-support through a mix of allowances; and 2.) Trade-promotion support through a complementing consumer promotion (see Duncan, 2005, p 502). Our pull strategies will use targeted advertising to different customer segments, along with promotional incentives. Additionally, we will use public relations because this advanced new technology is a "news peg" (Duncan, 2005, p 551).

The timing of the push and pull is to first push the Landec wrapped bananas into the channel at the same time as the public relations work is conducted. The consumer advertising and promotion will be presented shortly after the trade promotions to give time for the product to be available in the channel.

4.3 Tactics
Venerable trade promotion tactics form our toolkit for building this campaign. For the convenience store owners, Duncan (2005, p. 489) suggests the use of shipper displays to both highlight a new product and make it easy for customers to take a single banana. He goes on to say that co-operative advertising is an effective incentive, with 1-2% of the store sales in Chiquita bananas going back to the store for joint advertising Chiquita product availability in the store.

We will use direct mail to get a response from stores about the co-op ads. We also send direct mail to the C-stores to educate them on the profitability of this new market sector that is now open to them because of the Landec and Chiquita partnership. This direct mail is economically feasible because there are roughly 5,000 C-stores. Vanides (2009a, p 4) says lead generation is a goal of any campaign, and this will return store interest in co-operative ventures. This is a pull strategy aimed at a downstream channel member, the C-stores, to pull demand from the upstream channel, Core-Mark. Core-Mark can be incented with off-invoice allowances (see Duncan, 2005, p 497).

To forge pull from the ultimate customer, direct response advertising will be used. Spiller and Baier (2007, p. 144) note that special interest magazines have proliferated, so this gives us the ability to target our message to different consumer segments. Omniture (2007, p 1) notes that customers demand relevancy in marketing communications. Segmentation enables this.
Our message to the ultimate consumer will stress the sophisticated expertise that is required to transport fresh produce safely and with cleanliness. We also want to discourage any movement by the aggressive retail channel into your marketing and distribution franchise. There will be a call to action in the direct response ad, namely a discount coupon (see Duncan, 2005, p. 469). Spiller and Baier (2007, p. 145) note that magazine ads are relatively inexpensive. They go on to suggest that using remnant space will lower costs even more.

Internet promotions are a powerful opportunity. An increasingly popular method is Advergaming. An example game is Kellogg’s Froot Loops Treasure Hunt (see Froot Loops Game) The response rate for advergames is between 16% and 45%. Customers spend an average of 25 minutes with absorbing entertainment featuring our message. Blank (2001, ¶ 1) reports that Hershey’s Chocolate experienced a phenomenal response rate with advergaming.

For new products, like your bananas in a fresh-preserving wrapper, Spiller and Baier (2007, p. 90) recommend cross selling, a second opportunity we can exploit. One example is Graceland Cupcakery selling in 7-Eleven stores throughout the southeastern United States. They make banana bread cupcakes. See Graceland Cupcakery. Spiller and Baier (p. 96) go on to suggest new products can benefit from guarantees. We are asserting the new wrapping will preserve freshness. Let’s back it up with a money back guarantee.

Last but not least is a publicity campaign. The joint Core-Mark, Landec, Chiquita venture is a news peg – something new that can be legitimately reported by the news media. This creates awareness from a trusted source. Here is an example Chiquita-Landec News Release.


5. Implications and Recommendation
5.1 Implications
As noted earlier in this report, there are serious long-term threats to the Chiquita bottom-line and we have additional marketing communications plans that will help Chiquita more completely diversify its customer base. We welcome the opportunity to discuss these with you in future. Today, this plan is for convenience stores but tomorrow Chiquita must expand the use of bananas and fresh produce by manufacturers such as Gerber’s and Mrs. Smith’s. They provide markets with price inelasticity, i.e. protection from pricing pressure (see Spiller and Baier, 2007, p 320).

Evans and Wurster (pp126-7) expressly warn that Wal-Mart engages in predatory activity but, of course, monkey-see/monkey-do when it comes to bananas and retail food chains, so we should expect the other powerful grocers to do the same. As already noted, the growers are looking for a better deal than they get from Dole or Chiquita. How long before the two ends of the chain connect without the middlemen?

If Wal-Mart, et al can turn bananas into the ultimate fungible commodity and move up-channel to cannibalize Dole and Chiquita value-add, then they take away the basis for Chiquita revenues. The Chiquita marketing campaign with Landec will lay the foundation to counter any such attempt by alerting the public to the skill necessary for the transport and distribution of fresh produce. Chiquita will not be experimenting with shopper’s health while learning the ropes. Additionally, this campaign is the groundwork for future marketing to expand relationships with manufacturers.

5.2 Recommendations
If you will allow us to conduct follow-up campaigns, after the Landec-wrapped Chiquita bananas, we will begin working immediately to form symbiotic relationships with manufacturers such as Gerber Baby food, Ben & Jerry’s, or Mrs. Smith’s Banana Cream pies. Partnering and co-branding with them can increase supply of Chiquita even in an aggressive retail chain. We strongly recommend this for the following reasons.

Keller (2008, p 289) says that co-branding can both broaden the meaning of a product and increase its access points. Co-Branding can (p. 290) create "compelling points of difference" and create access to a higher profit margin category. Brand alliances can be an effective method for differentiating especially a fungible product, say like bananas, in a commodity war of declining profits and upstart retail chains.

To accomplish this, Chiquita must use customer database marketing to customize messages to its intermediaries. After co-branding agreements are in place with manufacturers such as Gerber, Ben & Jerry’s and Mrs. Smiths, we recommend using direct mail with coupons to enhance the partnering brands and establish pull demand through the retail chains.


6. Update
Levinson (2009, p 63) reports that Chiquita Brands is spoiling, and is unpalatable.
Its stock was downgraded to a sell in March of this year, because its profits margins have been squeezed into losses. The stock dropped 43% after losing 74¢ per share. Still, this is a great brand name, which can be salvaged. The name still has great potential but needs an integrated marketing campaign to escape the powerful chokehold being applied to it.


7. References
Blank, C (August 6, 2001). Hershey's Online Push for Reese's Gets Sweet Response. Direct Marketing News. Retrieved on September 3, 2009 at DMNews.com

Duncan, T (2005). Prinicples of Advertising & IMC. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Evans, Phillip and Thomas Wurster (2000). Blown to Bits. The Boston Consulting Group. Harvard Business School Press.

Levisohn, Ben (3/9/2009). Chiquita Bruised. BusinessWeek. Retrieved from EBSCOHOST on September 5, 2009.

Omniture (February 2007). Online Marketer‘s Segmentation Guide. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Two Readings on August 29, 2009

Pine, J and J Gilmore (1999). The Experience Economy. Harvard Business Press.
Spiller, L and M Baier, (2005). Contemporary Direct Marketing. Pearson/Prentice-Hall

Vanides, Alexia (2009). Case Study: Chiquita Banana and the Distribution Channel. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Two Assignment on August 29, 2009.

Vanides, Alexia (2009a). Lesson 2: Developing OST for B-to-B DM Campaigns, About Lead Generation Management. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Two Lesson on August 29, 2009.

Five Pressing Issues in CRM

The Web site http://www.crmguru.com/ has published a series of blog postings that analyze customer relationship management. Here is a synopsis of five of those CRM postings.

Customer Relationships Need a Personal, Not Robotic Touch.
The foundation of customer relationship management, indeed all of marketing is how we communicate with customers or publics. Engwall (2009, p1) speculates that the feedback method chosen by companies is often inappropriate for the customer relationship they are trying to build. For example, an email requesting a customer to take an anonymous Web survey is not a method for building closer customer relationships. He suggests that customers who are making "big decisions" want a more personal dialogue. Therefore, vendors need to spend the time to learn the operations of their customers. What distinguishes successful B-to-B companies is a structured approach that is personal at the same time. It "sends a strong signal about the commitment to listen and respond to customer needs." There is the old saying that a system, like CRM, is only as good as what we feed into it.

CRM is Too Associated With CRM Technology’s Front-End Focus.
Lee (2009, p1) reports that an enterprise-encompassing viewpoint is now outflanking the old viewpoint driven by CRM software, with its emphasis on the front office. Customer-centric behavior needs integration of the entire enterprise, front and back offices. This is "clearly beyond the capabilities of CRM software," according to Lee. He asserts that customer-centric planning is "the tail [wagging] the CRM dog," and notes that more and more companies are initiating comprehensive customer-centric efforts that don’t include the perceived limitations of CRM. His prediction: "[CRM] is not coming back."

Can CRM Systems Prevent Sales?
Apollo (2009, p 1) says that CRM is "no magic wand" to improve sales. Conversely, the immense resources invested in CRM are "often wasted." Apollo’s firm found that CRM systems do not reflect how the most promising prospects buy. He identifies five warning signs that a CRM system is a sales prevention machine:

  1. Your CRM sales process stages are based on sales person activity rather than prospect commitment.
  2. Your CRM has a Give/Get imbalance: it demands more of your sales force than it returns to them.
  3. Your CRM has poor sales forecast accuracy: CSO Insights estimates that such accuracy is now less than 50%.
  4. Your CRM is based on a static sales model, which hasn’t been verified and validated "for ages and has failed to take account of changing market conditions, buyer behavior and sales best practice."
  5. Your CRM fails to reflect the prospect decision-making process; today decision makers are more risk averse and filled with growing uncertainty.

Taking Your Eye Off the Ball.
Band (2009, pp 1-2) describes Forrester research conducted on CRM technology. He expresses a concern that businesses are concentrating their attention on trendy CRM technology such as Social CRM rather than CRM technology that provides the best value. Forrester found that "Selling, Ordering, and Servicing" technology returns the most CRM value to a business. There are other categories of CRM technology offerings, each having its unique drawbacks.

Examples of CRM technology with risk/reward drawbacks are "Enterprise Marketing Management" and "Partner Relationship Management." They are not considered "critical for business success" but both are hard to implement. In another category, "Customer Insight" and "Data Management" solutions are critical but are risky and extremely challenging to implement. "Contract Life-cycle Management" and "Configure-price-quote" systems offer moderate benefits but again are very difficult to deploy. Finally, the contemporary Social CRM has yet to prove itself. Band’s conclusion (p. 2): "’Selling, Order-taking, and Customer Service’ remain the solutions that deliver the most certain business value-add."

Confused Meaning of CRM
Thompson (2007, pp 1-2) says it’s time to say goodbye to the term "CRM." Its confused meaning encumbers true customer-centric business operations. Consultants say "CRM" is an approach to business process improvement and their "CRM" is a package of consulting services. On the other hand, software vendors say "CRM" is a practice implemented around their technology. Industry analysts define "CRM" as a set of front office applications. So, "CRM" can mean many different things to different people. CustomThink research suggests that the IT-focused "CRM" projects have enjoyed modest success, which is to say they have positive ROI, but "have not [generated] strategic benefits." Thompson advises us to erase the term "CRM" from our lexicon, and instead embrace "the development and implementation of a customer-centric business strategy."

Overall Conclusion
The first thesis of the Cluetrain Manifesto is that markets are conversations among many players (see Levine, et al, 2001, pp1-3). The Internet has unleashed powerful changes in customer relations, and Levine, et al summarize that "smart markets will find suppliers who speak their own language." Customer-centric thinking has become even more imperative for companies. The CustomerThink Web site agrees. On it, Thompson (2007, p 2) says we need to become customer-centric by understanding customers and giving them "what they want." The five issues discussed in this report have a theme of customer focus, and customer centered business organization and operations. The 19th thesis of the Manifesto says "Companies can now communicate with their customers directly. If they blow it, it could be their last chance."

References
Apollo, B. (Sep. 03, 2009). Is your CRM System a Sales Prevention System? Inflexion-Point. Retrieved on September 7, 2009 from http://www.customerthink.com/.

Band, W. (Aug. 14, 2009). The Extended CRM Application Ecosystem: Value, Risk and the Future of Social CRM. Forrester Research. Retrieved on September 8, 2009 from http://www.customerthink.com/.

Engwall, E (Aug. 31, 2009). Customer Feedback: The Method is the Message. E.G. Insight, Inc. Retrieved on September 7, 2009 from http://www.customerthink.com/.

Lee, D. (Jun. 15, 2009). Has the CRM Industry Become Redundant? High-Yield Methods. Retrieved on September 7, 2009 from http://www.customerthink.com/

Levine, Locke, Searls & Weinberger (2001). The Cluetrain Manifesto: The End of Business as Usual. Retrieved on September 8, 2009 from http://www.cluetrain.com/book/95-theses.html

Thompson , B. (Jan. 22, 2007). Why "CRM" Must Die for Customer-Centric Business To Thrive. CustomerThink Corp. Retrieved on September 8, 2009 from http://www.customerthink.com/.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

IBM On-Demand Services is Timely

IBM On-Demand services is a timely introduction. They are the company that defined the era we live in with the introduction of the IBM Personal Computer in 1981. They will work vigorous wreckage on the Microsoft, Sun and Oracle with this new foray into on demand services, defining the next era. IBM (2009, p 1) says the world is “Instrumented. Interconnected. Intelligent.” And that these on demand services are “Inevitable.” They report that there are now 1 billion transistors per human. Over a trillion things are networked. All those things have intelligent devices in them. “The time is right now.“ Who better to define the next era than the one who has been defining next eras for over a century.

You could look at On-Demand Services as outsourcing your IT function and keeping the backoffice part of it off-premise. This saves you the costs of the network (replaced by Infrasturcture as a Service or IaaS), server computers (replaced by Platform as a Service or PaaS), and software (Software as a Service or SaaS), and the people who maintain them. You pay for what you use, like the electric utility. It is a boon to small businesses because they might gain access to automation services they could not otherwise afford.

The pieces are already offered: GoogleDocs is an example of SaaS. So is the On-Demand CRM service discussed in the Carlson Marketing (2007, p 2) article. They reported that an On-Demand service that has already proven successful is Customer Relationship Marketing. All businesses need it and small businesses may consider it a luxury because of the cost and difficulty of implementing traditional solutions (see Doyle and Martin, 2003, p. 1). Amazon offers IaaS and PaaS with service level commitments.

The leaders are IBM and AT&T, according to Leong and Chamberlain (2009, pp 1-2), in a Gartner Magic Quadrant. Amazon and Google are niche players now. Even though Ray Ozzie is the visionary who invented Lotus Notes and sees cloud computing as the future, Microsoft is not considered even a niche player. They are trying to fight the trend with what they call Software Plus Services. In other words, you still pay for the software license up front and then again as you use it. According to Wainwright, the Microsoft Azure effort at cloud computing is really a defensive effort to offer a .NET version of the cloud to keep exisiting customers in the fold.

Here's an example of MS Software Plus Service he gives:

"A Microsoft spokesperson told me that customers will need to buy a SharePoint server, which ranges from $4,400 plus CALs, or $41,000 all CALs included, if they want to share documents using the online version of Office 2010."
$41,000 to get what Google offers for free with Google Docs, not to mention the pounding the prospects will take in buying Office. Azure only makes sense if you are an existing MS customer and already own the licenses.

References
Carlson Marketing (2007). No More Limits: On Demand CRM Goes Strategic. Oracle. Retrieved on September 17, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week 3 Readings.

Doyle, M., Starr D., and R. Martin (2003). Salesnet: Change or Die. Retrieved on September 4, 2009 from WVU IMC 626 Week Three Readings.

Leong, Lydia and Ted Chamberlin (July 2, 2009). Magic Quadrant for Web Hosting and Hosted Cloud System Infrastructure Services (On Demand). Gartner Research, ID G00168687. Also, retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.rackspace.com/downloads/pdfs/GartnerMagicQuadrant.pdf

Wainwright, Phil July 20, 2009). Assessing Microsoft’s Cloud Intentions. EBiz. Retrieved on September 16, 2009 from http://www.ebizq.net/blogs/connectedweb/2009/07/assessing_microsofts_cloud_int.php

U.S. Cap and Trade Bill and IBM On-Demand Services

Green marketing is no longer an appeal to conscious. With the passage of the Cap and Trade Bill, it will become an appeal to wallet also. Waxman and Markey's bill (2009, pp 652-672) put a cap on carbon footprint and will dictate an allowance to each business. All companies will be required to purchase an "Emissions Permit" and over time this allowance will continuously get smaller to squeeze companies to further reduce carbon footprint. The "trade" aspect enables good-boy companies with an allowance greater than their footprint to sell credits to bad-boys at whatever the market will bear. IBM On-Demand services reduces server and glass-house carbon footprint. We can take it a step further as well. With On-Demand services, you really may not need an office building- they are just big filing cabinets. People can access On-Demand services from anywhere they have Internet access.

So On-Demand services can help companies with a quick reduction in glass-house carbon and later with smaller building carbon savings. Teleworking becomes a more feasible option. This is considered by both the Heritage Foundation and the Brookings Institute as one of the most sweeping pieces of legislation ever contrived. Heritage is opposed. Brookings is keeping distance. Plausable deniablity is a good ploy with something that can go really wrong. Although not yet signed into the law of the land, it is expected to be so before the Copenhagen World Environmental Summit. Obama wants to showcase it there. The expectation is that it will reduce global temperature by 1/10 of a degree to 2/10 of a degree.

References
Waxman and Markey (2009). H.R. 2454, aka The Cap and Trade Bill. U.S. House of Representatives. Retrieved on September 18, 2009 from http://www.heritage.org/Research/EnergyandEnvironment/upload/hr2454-text.pdf

I Choose a New Star This Day

NeuStar is a sophisticated vendor to communications companies and to business customers of communication services (see their 10-K, Our Company Section). They just started a direct response campaign to direct marketers, an audience interested in efficient corporate communications with the world. Here is their online ad.

Please notice, this is a NeuStar ad (logo is at bottom right). I found it at DM News Online. For fear the ad will not be in rotation when you view the page, I made a picture of the page for you, so you can see and it is here - the DMNews Page.

The ad immediately grabbed my attention with “270 Million Customers,” while I was on the DM News Web site. It kept me engaged with “Free Nielsen White Paper.” Spiller and Baier (2005, p 126) tell us that words like free and new are attention getting. In addition, Nielsen is a name I know and trust. Finally, as Kostermans (2007, p 4) recommends the ad uses “fonts that are easy to read.” Okay, so I click the download link and this pops-up.

This quick registration, before getting the free gift, separates prospects from muffin men. It also gives permission to be contacted by the Common Short Code Administration, which I know, and/or NeuStar. Kostermans (2007, p. 2) says that we should make it clear what action we want readers to take. In this case, we want them to register with us to get the Nielsen report. Vanides (2009, p 2) reports using a similar technique in a Hughes 500D campaign to register interested prospects for follow-up, in her case at a later conference.

If I am interested in mobile marketing, I should know short codes and the CSCA. As Spiller and Baier recommend, the NeuStar body copy gives the benefits and ends with a call for action. The sentences are short and active. I type and submit. The Nielsen report appears and I save it (here at Nielsen Mobile Marketing).

Not surprisingly, the report mentions NeuStar. After the download, I have the option to connect to the NeuStar Web site, which I do. Here it is: their snazzy Web site Although, I have never heard of NeuStar, they have partnered with names I do know and trust. Moreover, I am interested in Nielsen’s views on mobile marketing, which is a free gift (if I register).

I watch the NeuStar produced video and its quiet clarity is professional enough to direct market to direct marketers. I now believe that NeuStar is an important player in corporate communications. I’d be willing to talk with them about Mobile Marketing as well as communications infrastructure topics.

In summary, I find this NeuStar direct response ad to direct marketers to be effective because as Kostermans (p. 6) recommends, it is “solving a problem for them – not touting how great your product is.” The solution is for mobile marketing. Helped by big names, Nielsen and CSCA, NeuStar registers prospects with an interest in the NeuStar mobile marketing, short code solution.

References

Kostermans, J (3/12/2007).Lead Generation Top Tips: 28 Ways to Optimize Direct Mail Design. LeadGenesis. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Four Readings on September 9, 2009.

Spiller, L and M Baier, (2005). Contemporary Direct Marketing. Pearson/Prentice-Hall

Vanides, Alexia (2009). Lesson 4: Proven Creative Strategies for B-to-B DM Implementation. Retrieved from WVU IMC 626 Week Four Lesson on September 9, 2009.