Category Archives: Marketing

Green Marketing Case Study: Is it really good for you?

Earth Shoes.  “They are good for your posture and good for the earth”.  How convenient is that? Finally some inventor did the right thing, designed a prosaic object such that both entities that came in contact with it benefited enormously [environmentalism]. And at that time there were no forums, no social media, no websites, no internet to “rise up and reveal the lie”.

On April 1, 1970, a new shoe shop opened its doors for business on East 17th Street in Manhattan.  The owners, Raymond and Eleanor Jacobs, soon began to see throngs of hippies flocking by on their way to Union Square to celebrate the first ever Earth Day. In a flash of brilliance, the Jacobses wrote a sign advertising “Earth Shoes” and stuck it in the storefront window.  What used to be plain footwear suddenly became a generational phenomenon; for the better part of the next decade, so-called Earth Shoes were a staple of the American environmentalist’s wardrobe.

The Earth Shoe phenomenon was not just a right-place, right-time aligning of the stars.  It was the first—and perhaps the most successful—case of green-stamping.  Now a well-established practiced, green-stamping involves marketing a product for its environmental benefits.  Seems simple, yes?  The problem lies in the discernment between true sustainability and fakery.  The case study of the Earth Shoe can help shine a light on our own susceptibility to false green-stamping, and let us see clearly the consequences of being duped.

The manufacturing of Earth Shoes, as you can gather, had no connection whatsoever to the environmental ideals promoted by Earth Day.  However, the podiatric craze was filtered through the underlying fabric of a broader social movement, and so it was accepted without much fuss.  It survived for so long because of its unquestioned linguistic connection to early environmentalism (perpetuation by cultural contact high, if you will).

 

Full Article and Source

Crowdsourcing and co-creation

This is nice graphic that explains some relationship across co-creation and crowdsourcing. Interestingly, the social media notion of UGC (user generated content) could be labeled “crowd generated content” and find its way into this umbrella. Co-creation is a great way to develop mutually beneficial relationships between brands and consumers. Engaging in consumer co-creation establishes an ecosystem that encourages interaction. Through these interactions, businesses are able to gain valuable insights, of which can be applied to various aspects of the business- be it for product development, marketing or communication strategies (Source: http://en.eyeka.net)

 

Infographic source: http://dailycrowdsource.com/intl/crowdsourcing-taxonomy/

 

Crowdsourcing Umbrella infographic
Crowdsourcing Umbrella infographic

War of the Tentacles: Connection between Engagement, Ease of Use, and Stickiness

I was using Songkick.com today, to add artist concert tracking to my profile. I noticed the variety of ways the site uses to display related artists you “may also want to track”. This reminded me of two “related” features of web sites: Amazon’s famous related product recommendation engine, and the Facebook social plugin options for extended into your web pages. The word Tentacles now pops into my head, and sure enough it is also discussed that way elsewhere:


How facebook is slowly creeping its tentacles all over your web


Obviously huge topic, but to summarize in short form:

Engagement means interesting, captivating, and induces actions and exploration on the part of the [website] user.

Ease of Use means actions are visible and marked in a way that desired goals are easily obtained by minimum number of clicks.

Stickiness means that the more a user (customer) uses the product, the more dependent they become on it, leading to audience growth, usage per person growth, and lack of churn (customers leaving the product or service).


So with Songkick, remember the more artists you track, and more work you do refining the desired list, the more “invested you are in the platform” and the data they store in your profile is more personalized. Its “seems” good for you, increases your loyalty and dedication and possibly usage. Its good for them, because its less likely that you would ever leave for any other service or competitor. And there will be some more…. To over simplify, I offer this conceptual equation.


Stickiness = Ease of Use + Engagement + Profile Depth Functionality (PDF)


Where in this case, PDF means the ability to connect to other people, artists, events, groups, anything that builds structure or data about your interests, desires, preferences.

Wikipedia Defines Sticky Content here

The interest question is: What if there was a platform called “portable connection”; that delivered the meta data of your past platforms (e.g. Myspace and Facebook) to some new platform (e.g. Tumblr)?

My daughter is already bored with Facebook, and is now extolling the virtues of tumblr.com. Its interesting to see how children can demo the these social platforms in middle school to each other and cause “adoption without commission”…As any platform grows and its feature set becomes less disruptive and its ad content becomes more disruptive, it paves the way for the next generation.

–Chris

reblog on Peer influence analysis from forrester

I found this fascinating quote today:

Recently, Forrester introduced a new way to consider influence in Social Media.  We identified a group of social media participants we call Mass Influencers.  While just 16% of the US population, Mass Influencers are responsible for 80% of the influence impressions and posts about products and services in social channels. blogs.forrester.com, Peer Influence Analysis: What It Is & How Marketers Use It, Apr 2010

You should read the whole article.