Under Armour Wins With Its Use of Nontraditional Media!

Under Armour is using nontraditional media to market to the masses. Over the years, the variety of marketing functions has propelled Under Armour to “the leading company in the performance apparel market.” The company decided to focus its marketing efforts to target the female population, the demographic that has been overlooked in past successful campaigns. UA’s past marketing campaign is “No Matter What, Sweat Every Day. I WILL.”

Under Armour is pushing this campaign on a variety of nontraditional media outlets (e.g. Facebook, Hulu, Twitter, etc.), the company is not neglecting its mass media for advertisements and has shown commercials on Bravo, E!, and VH1, specifically focused on the female audience. Additionally to engaging consumers with advertisements, the company has created a “What’s Beautiful” microsite and mobile app “that [allows] women [to] document and share their daily workouts. Those features are being pushed via Facebook posts to the brand’s nearly two million fans on the social site.”  This interactive media encourages women to create a profile and interact daily with other members. Check out the video of their “What’s Beautiful” campaign.

The company captures the audience’s attention advertising by using high profile athletes (e.g. Michael Phelps, Lindsay Vonn, Tom Brady, etc.) and promoting and sponsoring sporting events. They have created a brand identity using the athletes that wear their gear and the message their commercials convey.

Under Armour’s direct response advertising makes browsing and buying online so simple. The email ads and sales promotions to save 10% entice consumers to click on the advert directing them to the website, where they can purchase their goods online. Besides the quality products and inspiring advertisements, Under Armour has obtained or maintained an increasing consumer brand loyalty over the years because of their charitable community activism, specifically the UA Freedom initiative that supports the Wounded Warrior Project.

What other ways is Under Armour achieving best practices with its use of emerging media?

Personal Information and Privacy: The Ethical Conundrum

Increasingly more people are using Smartphones and other mobile devices; with the greater usage of mobile devices, personal information becomes increasingly easy to access through apps. 54% of app users have decided not to install a mobile app after learning the amount of personal information needed to obtain it, as well as 30% of app users have uninstalled apps due to discovering the personal information it was collecting. Read the report here.

Have you decided against downloading an app because of the amount or type of personal information it asked for? I know I have.

Personal information about a user should be disclosed to the individual from the source that desires to collect, share, and use that information for any reason. Andrews explains the term “redlining” which can now be retitled “weblining,” denying people opportunities based on digital personal information collected such as purchases, web searches, or emails sent.

Other ethical concerns based on collection of personal information applies to who is searching, such as children. Congress has tried to keep up with the pace of new and emerging media to protect the youth and their personal information, for example the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act which was implemented in 2000; but try as the government may, technology is changing at a much faster pace than privacy laws can keep up with. With children being likely innovators and early adopters of new wireless technology, marketers are going to leverage the opportunity to collect all the data that they can (and while they can) from the youth to target children and their parents.

What other legal issues do you see emerging as people change the way they use their mobile devices?

Making the Most of Google Adwords!

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Web analytics “allows marketers to analyze and statistically process user and customer behavior…Equipped with a basic knowledge of Web analytics and SEO, marketers have the ability to optimize their sites and achieve higher conversion rates.”

Last year Google AdWords rolled out enhanced campaigns. The purpose behind this upgrade is to help manage ad campaigns in today’s multi-device world. Here’s an overview of some key features.

Key features for Enhanced Campaigns:

Powerful marketing tools for the multi-device world: Search results that are relevant to the context they are in are desired by consumers. The device that is being used for the search, the person’s location and time of search all help with context and relevancy. Enhanced campaigns manages campaigns for multi-devices that are being used today. Bid adjustments, allows one to manage bids for ads across devices, locations, and so on, from one campaign.

Smarter ads optimized for varying user contextexts: Mobile users versus a desktop or stationary user are looking for different things. Enhanced campaigns shows ads across devices with the right ad text, sitelink, app or extension, without having to edit each campaign for every possible combination of devices, location and time of day.

Advanced reports to measure new conversion types: Technology enables people to interact with ads in a variety of ways. Consumers can view an ad and download an app. Measuring these interactions to analyze the full value of a campaign is possible with enhanced campaigns. It enables easy count of app downloads as conversions in an AdWords report.

The 4 Rules of Engagement for Social Media!

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Don’t neglect the various social media channels to further reach your audience; ensuring you are integrating these channels effectively is also vital to establishing a strong digital presence which will help your brand awareness. Following these four social media tips when engaging with your customers will make sure you are making the most of your social networks and communicating with them effectively.

Rule of Engagement on Social Media:

  1. Listen first, and then engage! It’s important to discover the appropriate way to communicate. Think about whom the influencers are, how they interact with each other, and so on. Then interact!
  2. Be a thought leader: share interesting industry topics, relevant news, and what not. Position yourself as an expert or at least let your audience know you’re passionate about the industry.
  3. Integrate your channels: Don’t forget to share links to other digital platforms, from websites, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Make it easy for people to follow you and discover all digital channels where you have accounts.
  4. Nurture relationships! Remember, that’s what social media is all about, a two-way conversation to cultivate relationships.

What other rules of engagement would you include for social media best practices?

Check out these other great tips for engaging on social media.

Thrive in Mobile Marketing!

Who doesn’t enjoy a good infographic?! Optimizing your mobile marketing doesn’t have to be complicated, WSI has used their expertise in digital marketing to put together a Best Practices playbook on optimizing your mobile marketing efforts. Here are a three main takeaways:

  1. Keep it Simple: Short and sweet will keep your audiences’ attention. Subject Lines: No more than 60 characters…to the point.
  2. Click Space: Most people are accessing the internet and email by mobile devices, from phones to tablets. Think about the click space and size accordingly for these devices.
  3. Landing Pages: Check how everything from content to headlines look on different devices, such as Androids, iPads, iPhones, etc. Ensure content is formatted correctly for each platform and is appealing.

With Mobile devices becoming the main and only platform that is being used to access email and internet, it is no wonder than a company MUST adapt to the mobile climate. As Dr. Deming famously said:

“It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory”

— Dr. Edwards Deming

The Marketing Mission: Achieving Virality!

7-Principles-Of-Social-Design-Infographic-infographicsmaniaEvery marketer desires to create a campaign or collateral that will lead to the invaluable and unpredictable objective of virality. So what exactly is virality?

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The ability of an image, video, or piece of information to be circulated rapidly and widely from one Internet user  to another; new metrics will allow marketers to better assess the virality of their campaigns.

What makes one campaign spread like wild fire, and another fall flat?

Here are 5 traits that should help your next campaign find more viral success:

  1. Surprising
  2. Interesting
  3. Intense
  4. Positive
  5. Actionable

Surprising: Trying to incite a bit of shock and awe into the reader is a good thing. Maybe the video has an unpredictable ending, or the article makes a concrete connection between two completely disconnected ideas will also create surprise in your reader.

Interesting: Don’t bore your audience!

Intense: If it is controversial, shocking, or opinionated it will generate more buzz. Don’t be afraid to find your voice and take a stand, but be calculated in your actions to be intense. You don’t have to be shocking or controversial just for the sake of being intense. Remember to be authentic, your audience will appreciate your honest views and opinions.

Positive: There is enough negativity out there; find the silver lining, take the positive spin, find the humor, and be a positive source.

Actionable: Will this encourage visitors or viewers to take action? Think about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, it spurred a movement through a call-to-action.

Matthew Inman created The Oatmeal, a virtual comic, after just one year consistently received four million unique visitors each month. Inman’s strategy was:

  • Find a common gripe
  • Pick things your target audience will relate to
  • Create easily digestible content
    • Lots of visuals
    • Not too text heavy
    • Top 5 or 10 lists
  • Create an infographic
  • Talk about memes and current events
  • Rouse emotion

What other strategies are likely to achieve virality success? Do you have a magic process that has proven effective?

What’s Trending with Social Media? Self-Identity Drives the Future, with the Exception of Nowness.

Since social media’s start, the last ten years have greatly been dependent on how Facebook defined it. But social media is changing, and with it so are the expectations from users. Before, users were happy to have the same self-identity across every platform of social media, but now users want the “liquid self” instead of the unified self they were content with early on in social media.social-identity

The liquid self?  More apps and forms of media are allowing users to express their identity in a less permanent way, such as Snapchat. Some elements of your personal life a user may only want to share with a smaller community, than an overly public and permanent one like Facebook.

Snapchat’s Researcher, Nathan Jurgenson, explained the idea of a liquid identity, “Identity is never solidified and always in flux. Instead of a single, unchanging self, we might consider a ‘liquid self’, one more verb than noun.” As social media continues to spread throughout all parts of our life and networks, such as Linked In connecting our professional life and Instagram our personal life among other channels, our self-expression continues to be more calculated and self-policing to ensure the desired self is expressed appropriately.

Nathan goes on to eloquently say, “Today’s dominant social media is too often premised on the idea (and ideal) of having one, true, unchanging, stable self and as such fails to accommodate playfulness and revision…this grid-patterned data-capture machine simply does not comfortably accommodate the reality that humans are fluid, changing, and messy in ways both tragic and wonderful.”

With the desire to communicate a more authentic self in the appropriate channels, users are driving the demand for more apps and platforms that do not keep a permanent record of what is shared and simplify access to social media based on a user’s groups of interest.

What else is trending?

Aside from self-identity, “the Stream” is another major driver of what is relevant in emerging media. The Stream is the availability of information accessed in real-time streams instead of stagnant information, such as web pages. The demand for what is most current equates to what is relevant; The Chicago Tribune paper is stagnant, but the Chicago Tribune Twitter feed and Facebook page are in the stream, sharing information in real-time. With the need for information now, more media and technology opportunities will emerge that promote the nowness.

What trends do you see occurring now or predict will be on the rise in the next five years?