eMarketer’s analyst have come together to present 11 trends that will influence business and society in 2004. In particular, I found interesting what they’re saying about gaming, online advertising and online content. Have a look.
The risk of too much fragmentation is emerging on the UK rich media market. In an article on New Media Age Chris Dillabough says that increasing competition among suppliers of rich-media technology to online media owners and agencies could lead to a price war over the coming months. Actually, what we hope is that competition and so called “rich media wars” will bring a formats’ standardization rather then a further proliferation of ads.
Tom Hespos wrote yesterday about advergame, maybe not exactly about advergames but, more in general, about the potentials of videogames for advertisers. He comes up with a new perspective on the matter, which I believe is rather interesting. He takes the issue a step further, not considering only advergames and product placement (remember Intel and the Sims?), but suggests brands to think about full game sponsorships. In his excellent analysis, Tom says:“While some marketers are paying game developers for product placement, I haven’t seen anyone completely underwrite the cost of a game and distribute it at no- or low-cost to end users.”
News.com.au reports Internet advertising in Australia is regaining credibility. According to a survey released by Roy Morgan and online internet group Emitch, advertisers expect to spend 6 per cent of their total advertising budget online in 2004, up from 4 per cent last year.
Adding online advertising to a TV campaign boosts brand awareness, but the inclusion does little to impact purchasing decisions, according to new findings from Dynamic Logic. As reported on Yahoo! News, the Web is a particularly effective medium for reinforcing a brand’s sponsorship of an event, cause or other entity.
Unicast, the online advertising solutions provider, has announced in press release the birth of a new online ad format that enables advertisers to deliver their message with full-screen, broadcast quality video. Unicast’s Video Commercial is built on the Microsoft� Windows Media� 9 Series platform and is delivered to consumers via Unicast’s patented pre-cached technology. AT&T, Honda, McDonald’s, Pepsi, Vonage, and Warner Brothers are currently participating in a six-week, pre-paid beta launch of the Video Commercial. The idea of video advertising is interesting, but I don’t understand if people need to install Unicast’s software on their machines. If this is true, I won’t expect a lot of users to agree, at least at time being. There’s too much spam and spyware around. First you need to build trust and educate people about this kind of advertising. I mean, users can’t skip ads, the Internet can’t exist without advertising, so it’s just better to build a relationship with users, telling them about existing formats and asking them the one they prefer. See the example of WeatherBug I talked about a couple of days ago. On the topic, you can also read the eCommerceTimes, where Jay Lyman interviews Michael Kelleher an analyst at Yankee Group. He says that the video ads are the next generation of online advertising, particularly with the growth of broadband Internet connections. However, the analyst added, the ads might not win the favor of users if they interfere with their online routines.
According to a recent survey, about two-thirds of top-level marketing executives surveyed said online marketing has a high strategic importance to their companies. The news is reported on DMNews.com, where Brian Morrissey also quotes Kathy Gogan, vice president of marketing at Responsys, who says:“I see that as a shift from having the attitude of it being an experiment. Digital marketing is much higher in terms of importance, and they’re also spending more in that area.”
Mobile couponing it’s the hot topic of then moment. Today even the International Herald Tribune talks about it, saying that they give retailers a more targeted approach than many other types of direct marketing. Daren Siddall, an analyst in London for Gartner says:“When it comes to mobile marketing, coupons seem to be the direction things will go in 2004.”
Mobile coupons appears to be an important tool to increase (or build) customer loyalty. They’re personal, direct and rather cost-effective.
Online competitions are becoming a fashion. Everybody wants to have one, no matter if it doesn’t make sense for the brand or if the game (and the prize) has no connection at all with the business you’re in. The initiative of train operator First Great Western in cooperation with Hamleys (my favourite teddy bear shop) is, in my opinion, a clear example of a no brain “me too” strategy. Customers can enter a competition to win prizes from Hamleys, such as, for example, a Ferrari replica for kids. Tim Hayne, E-Commerce and Channel Marketing Manager for First Great Western says:“This is exactly the kind of promotion we love to run on the website, the Hamleys prizes are ones which our passengers will treasure and we are always looking for new ways to add value to our customer offering.”
Well, this might be the kind of competition First Great Western likes to run, but if they ask their customers, I believe the answer will be different. People travelling by train would rather like to win free train tickets or a discounted season ticket. What’s the connection between a Ferrari for kids and a train service?
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