Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Made to Stick: The Anti-Slogan Argument

Fastcompany Dec 08
By: Dan Heath & Chip Heath

You might think that a slogan is a modern concept, but the Oxford English Dictionary traces the word back to the year 1513, referring to a battle cry of Scottish Highlanders. The Scottish clans liked their slogans so much they would often display them on their coats of arms. The Donnachaidh clan's slogan was "Fierce when roused." The Cameron clan: "Sons of the hounds, come here and get flesh." Another clan: "Dammit, it's not a dress, it's a kilt." (Just kidding.)


Billionaire Blowups of 2008

Dozens of the world's wealthiest lost billions in recent months, but these 10 distinguish themselves for some of the biggest flops.

It was a dreadful year for the world's wealthiest as markets and currencies around the world tumbled.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year!

All the best to you and your family in 2009!

Mitch Drew

Why Local Sports May Pay Off for Marketers

During Difficult Times, Investing in Community Events Can Win Consumers

By Jack Neff
Published: December 29, 2008

BATAVIA, Ohio ( -- Marketers have it wrong, according to Richard Luker: In a time when consumers are hunkering down in a bad economy, they yearn for the community of local events rather than the big national ones advertisers gravitate toward. And at a time when people are making and maintaining friends virtually on the internet (and marketers put more spending there), people actually need more social networking the old-fashioned way -- face to face.


Monday, December 29, 2008

Crisis? What crisis? Most Canadians upbeat heading into 2009: Poll

OTTAWA — A new poll suggests a significant majority of Canadians remain optimistic as they look ahead to 2009 - notwithstanding all the gloomy talk about a looming recession.

The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey found that 58 per cent of respondents were upbeat about the coming year, and only 21 per cent were pessimistic. Another 20 per cent said their outlook was neither optimistic nor pessimistic.

Ironically, the poll found less cheer among the wealthiest respondents - those earning a family income of more than $100,000 a year - than among those earning less than $60,000.

In the lower income bracket, fully 61 per cent said they're looking forward to 2009. That compares to 54 per cent among high-end earners.

Losses on the stock market, or from retirement savings, may have impacted higher-income earners more.

Fewer than one third of overall respondents said their net worth had declined in 2008, while 42 per cent with household incomes above $100,000 said their investments had dropped in value.

The poll of more than 1,000 respondents was conducted Dec. 21 to 24 and has a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points, 19 times in 20.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

NBC Nixes 'Shared' Super Bowl Ad

Cesario Migliozzi proposed to buy a slot on the game and resell the time to eight different advertisers

By Steve McClellan

NEW YORK A day after remaining silent on the issue, NBC said today it would not allow a spot in the upcoming Super Bowl with multiple advertisers.

Yesterday, Los Angeles-based ad shop Cesario Migliozzi said it was discussing a plan with the network in which the agency would pool eight advertisers to jointly buy at least one of the remaining Super Bowl spots.


Ed Note: Cesario Migliozzi came out with a statement yesterday claiming that they are going to sue NBC over this article...MITCH-TV will keep you posted. MD

We spent big and in cash

27th December 2008

Bleak economic times failed to stop Canadians from swiping their debit cards more than 15.9 million times on Tuesday -- the busiest shopping day of the year.

That total is 300,000 swipes greater than the busiest day last year, which fell two days earlier on Dec. 21. The statistics were released yesterday, so it was impossible to include Boxing Day activity in this year's total.


"Canadians love their debit and we are one of the leaders of the world's use of debit," said Caroline Hubberstey, public and government affairs director for Interac, which released the statistics.

"We saw people use Interac as a budgeting strategy, because they were using money that they had."

Ontario this year came second-last of all the provinces for most debit use at 0.47 transactions per person -- adding up to $330.5 million. The biggest shoppers were found in Prince Edward Island -- 0.74 transactions per person -- and Newfoundland -- 0.73 transactions per person.


Grocery stores hauled in over $219.5 million for holiday dinner supplies, while people spent $180.6 million on specialty clothing.

Consumers also spent $121.5 million at department stores; $64.9 million at booze outlets; $64 million at gas stations; and $30.8 million at bars and restaurants.

Interac statistics showed that Canadians power-shopped during the final days before Christmas, swiping their cards nearly 40 million times between Dec. 21 and 23.

Will trends continue into the new year?

"We know the figures now," Hubberstey said. "We watch them year over year and time will tell in 2009."

Friday, December 26, 2008

Still much to be grateful for

© Copyright (c) The Calgary Herald

December 26, 2008

Rarely has a holiday season seemed less infused with good cheer. Job losses are mounting, the economy is pitching and gasping like a hooked trout and Canadians' personal finances are stretched to the limit. For many people, who woke up on Christmas morning to find coal in their stockings, this would only be par for the course. And yet, 'tis the season and despite the low-hanging dark clouds, there are many reasons for Canadians to be grateful for what they have. Take the credit crunch.

Commentary on the current troubles clumps at the negative end of the spectrum, with plenty of pundits describing the situation in the direst of terms as a once-in-a-century crisis with the potential to drag on indefinitely, saddling countries with"lost years"of zero growth. One might imagine the world is teetering on the edge of the Great Depression, the Sequel, but this is not so.

During the Depression, more than a quarter of Canadians were out of work and both Canada and the United States saw declines in gross national product close to 40 per cent. Governments at the time firmly believed financial aid would weaken the national character and did little but raise tariffs (choking trade) and make rosy predictions that the worst would soon pass. Then-prime minister R. B. Bennett cut back spending while to the south, president Herbert Hoover callously held up relief bills and, when asked why so many jobless people were hawking apples in the streets replied, "Many people have left their jobs for the more profitable one of selling apples."

North America has no such governments. Canada and the U.S. both dipped into their respective treasuries and offered billions last week to automakers to preserve jobs. The United States has al-ready poured hundreds of billions of dollars into the economy and the Canadian government will follow suit (albeit on a smaller scale) when Parliament reconvenes in January. Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation member nations, including Canada, also pledged last month not to resort to protectionism, freeing faltering economies from one of the worst Depression-era mistakes. With the news this week that trade barriers are starting to rise a bit despite these promises, leaders must re-commit to living up to their pledges.

Concerned leadership is not the only thing we have to be grateful for. Other parts of the world are beset by troubles which ought to make Canadians appreciate our country for the tranquil oasis it truly is, despite its economic troubles.

Eight Marketers May Share Super Bowl Spot

A Los Angeles shop is in discussions with NBC to purchase one of the network’s remaining Super Bowl slots in order to re-sell the time to eight different advertisers.

The move, which would allow marketers to share the steep price of appearing during the big game, would be a first for Super Bowl advertising, writes Adweek.

The shop, Cesario Migliozzi, has several advertisers who have expressed interest. It has set a deadline of Jan. 5 for advertisers to sign on and pony up $395,000. The cost covers the $3 million Super Bowl nut, leaving $160,000 for production.

The creative concept for the ad is still being developed. Advertiser logos would remain on the screen throughout the ad; advertisers would also be included in a website that would remain up for a year.

Unprecedented economic woes have caused at least one advertiser to bail out of the Super Bowl this year. FedEx has announced that, for the first time in 12 years, it will not run an ad during the game. NBC is said to have eight to 10 spots left to sell; observers say that NBC may have a difficult time selling the remaining slots, according to Brandweek.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Talk Radio Edges Past Country as Most Popular Format
Dec 22, 2009

Changes are afoot for talk radio. Television talk show host Joe Scarborough is starting a radio show, while Bill O’Reilly is ending his run. Fred Thompson, Law & Order star turned presidential candidate, will begin hosting a two-hour show on Westwood One in March.

Meanwhile, the talk format ranked as the most popular radio format in the U.S., surpassing country music for the first time ever, according to The New York Times. Talk news has been added to 40 stations in the last year, for a total of 2,064 stations using the format - up from just 1,500 ten years ago.

Those stations are increasingly relying on syndicated programs from Premiere Radio Networks, ABC Radio Networks and other syndicators.

On the other hand, talk generally becomes less popular the year after an election, says Maja Mijatovic, vp and director of national radio for Horizon Media. Still, between the economy and renewed interest in the presidency, talk is likely to remain a popular format.

Other changes in talk radio include conservative commentator Monica Crowley entering weekday syndication through the Talk Radio Network and CNN anchor Lour Dobbs signing new affiliates for a three-hour afternoon show.

Network radio ad spending slipped 3.5% through the first three quarters of the year, compared to the same time frame in 2007, per Nielsen. Overall radio industry revenue plummeted for the 19th straight month in Nov., down 20% compared to the same month last year. Local revenue slipped 21%, while national was down 24%.

Buyers Ask Networks for Deals, Nets Refuse (for Now)
Dec 22nd, 2008

Media buyers are asking TV networks to reduce pricing - both in the scatter market and for ad time booked during the upfront - but the networks are saying there’s enough demand in the market that such discounting isn’t necessary.

“While we recognize the concern in the marketplace, our clients continue to receive excellent value from our partnership and their upfront deals,” Jon Nesvig, Fox Broadcasting’s president of sales, is quoted as saying in TV Week. Nesvig says there have been no renegotiations, pointing out that, in fact, the network’s scatter market in fourth and first quarters has been at or above upfront pricing.

That may change, however, if the economy continues to worsen. One buyer, having heard that many clients plan to exercise their options to cut back upfront buys by as much as 50%, predicts the second quarter will be a “disaster.” Just how bad breakage in the second quarter will be should be apparent by mid-January, as that is when advertisers usually need to let networks know their cancellation plans.

Cancellation for the first quarter was slightly higher than a year ago, according to media analysts.

Meanwhile, despite what Nesvig says, pricing for fourth quarter scatter is slipping. Some networks are selling at between 5% and 30% below upfront pricing. That news isn’t as negative as it sounds, however, as many networks sold a larger than normal amount of prime time inventory during the upfront and don’t have much inventory left to sell.

The Super Bowl is the biggest TV program for the first quarter, and has not yet been affected by the economic crisis. Come January, that could change, as advertisers can still make adjustments to their Super Bowl buys.

Estimates say NBC has only eight to 10 spots left in the game, which the network is reportedly selling at $3 million per :30 spot.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Cutting Advertising Could Backfire In Recession

Research Agrees

Roland S. Vale conducted the very first study on aggressive advertising during recessionary times in 1927. Vale found that advertising could help a company maintain or even increase profits during a recession.

The results still hold true today.

While it is tempting to cut costs during times of trouble, its long-term consequences may outweigh its short-term benefits.

Companies with an aggressive advertisement budget during the early 1980s recession increased sales and profits by up to 256 percent in 1985. Sales and profits were up during the recession and for three years after an upturn of the economy. In addition, performance took a dive at firms that slashed advertising and other marketing investments, according to a McGraw-Hill Research analysis of 600 companies.

“An overwhelming majority of American executives (86 percent) agreed that companies that advertise in a down economy stay more top-of-mind when purchase decisions are made, and create more positive impressions about the commitment to their products and services,” according to Guy Consterdine, an independent media consultant.


Has the bling lost its lustre?

Dec 20, 2008 04:30 AM

Global credit crunch puts serious dent in culture of conspicuous consumption

Luxury is out.Parsimony is in.

With a global credit crunch chopping the wealth of the world's billionaires, it's no longer fashionable to yak on the Prada phone while burning carbon in the Gulfstream G550.


Saturday, December 20, 2008

General Mills Boosts Ad Spend 21% YTD

General Mills Boosts Ad Spend 21% YTD

General Mills has increased its marketing commitment by 21% year-to-date; for the second fiscal quarter, the company has increased advertising spend 10% over the same quarter last year.

CPGs are expected to increase ad spending overall, as consumers cut back on dining out, writes Adweek. Between January and September 2008, packaged-foods companies increased measured media spend by 6%, per TNS Media Intelligence. Kraft Foods was the biggest spender.

A new campaign for General Mills flagship Cheerios brand’s Banana Nut Cheerios will see dollars going toward daytime broadcast and cable TV, and to print pubs like Reader’s Digest.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Display Ads Put Searchers in a Branded State of Mind

Display Ads Put Searchers in a Branded State of Mind

A Specific Media study finds the presence of display advertising significantly affects click-through and search style across both paid and organic searches.

In the “travel and tourism” category, display advertising engendered a 274% lift on both paid and organic search. A 260% lift was seen on searches in the realm of “health,” while “personal finance” saw a 206% increase, writes MarketingVOX.

“Automotive” and “news and media” enjoyed a 144% search lift, while “property and real estate” demonstrated 125%.

“Consumer packaged goods” saw the slightest increase — 22%. And in “retail,” display advertising drew just a 69% lift in search.

Findings suggested consumers exposed to display ads are more likely to search for brand terms (like “BMW”) and segment terms (like “635 CSi”) than unexposed ones, according to Specific Media.

The research tracked 60 Specific Media campaigns, then integrated its findings with 12 months of “ad effectiveness” data backed by comScore, MediaPost writes.
Recently, Yahoo announced plans to incorporate Search Assist into its Image Search function. Search Assist will serve image previews — intended to encourage specificity — as users type in their queries.

Specifc Media
Marketing Vox

Mitch Drew
Elton Media
604-913-1001 ext2

Tuesday, December 02, 2008