Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Marketing plan examples

Hey 341,

I made copies of the projects as you requested. They're on my office door (Reid 347). Please don't take one if you didn't ask for it, and only take one per group. If you think you need another one (like, you signed up for the wrong one), let me know asap and I'll make you a copy.

Good luck on ALL your finals!

Ta da!

Okay, CBers --

Case #6 is up and ready for you to get crackin' on.

For those of you who don't need to write this last one, I still need you to read the articles and come to the discussion day next week. Don't worry -- they're fun, you'll love them.

Good luck to everyone on your finals!!


Monday, April 28, 2008

Mobile marketing is coming

Remember that firm ShotCode, that makes it possible to buy stuff -- concert tickets, soft drinks, tennis shoes, etc. -- directly through your phone when you take a picture of the target-shaped bar code?

Here's a new, similar application that's getting tons of press today: SnapTell. This program rewards customers (who photograph ads and text them to a special phone number) by sending them free ringtones, videos, games, etc. No bar code required.

Both programs greatly enhance ROI for advertisers, since the ads, and the contact phone number, will allow them to track exactly which ads the customer are seeing and responding to. They can be anywhere -- print, outdoor, guerrilla, etc. Of course, the advertisers also get the benefit of all the database info they can compile based on user-supplied information.

You can check out SnapTell ads in the current (and future?) issues of Rolling Stone and Men's Health magazines.

Pricing articles

I read in the NY Times this morning two very good articles related to food pricing.

The first is on price elasticity of demand (PED), related to how people are changing the ways they eat during the current economic downturn.

(Here's a good primer for everyone to read in order to learn -- or brush up on -- what the term "elasticity" means. If you don't read anything else in this post, read this.)

The second article is about proposed solutions (i.e., taxes) for the carbon costs of transporting food around the world. Who should pay these costs? Growers? Shippers? Retailers? Consumers?

Friday, April 25, 2008

Testing, testing, 1, 2, 3...

Does this link go to a 4-question case study??

I'm about to bite a hole in something... Until now, I thought Google could do no wrong!

Thanks to Casarae, Lorena, Gabrielle, Clifford, and Julie for alerting me to the ongoing saga of Case #5.

My apologies for the inconvenience!

A green-collar future

Hi all,

There's a conference coming up right after graduation about Montana's future economic prospects in a changing climate.

While the press release doesn't mention marketing in particular, as we all know, marketing is the engine for all economic enterprise. This might be a valuable thing for some of you to do in all your spare time at the beginning of the summer (plus you might get to meet the Governor!)...

CB Case #5

Dear students,

Yesterday, Julie S. and I discovered that there are apparently two versions of the case study that somehow pop up when you click on the earlier link I posted. I don't quite know how that happened, since I only posted it once.

Anyway, I've republished it in Google Docs, and you can access it here.

There should be only *4* questions, and Q2 should read:
2. How does culture play a part of how we feel about certain things? Does utilitarian meaning differ from person to person (or culture to culture)? Explain.

If, for some reason, you get a version that has 5 questions (with Q2 being about metaphors used in marketing), please let me know asap.


Thursday, April 24, 2008

A FunPack (TM) of articles!

Hi guys,

I've found links to a bunch of fun stuff related to things we talked about in all three classes today.

Nickel Beer Night
-- the best baseball promotion ever (even though the beers really cost a dime, or three for a quarter). I got this a little wrong -- the game went into the ninth inning before the riot really got hot and the Indians had to forfeit to the Rangers. Prior to that, though, there was plenty of mooning, flashing, streaking, and fighting. All in a good night's work!

Not sure what the best way is to memorialize a loved one, be it your parent, pet or partner? Lifegem has got the answer for you. Sparkly! Romantic! Creepy!

Here's the seminal article about consumption rituals, specifically Thanksgiving, that I mentioned in CB today. And here's the trailer for Pieces of April, a lovely movie about a dysfunctional family celebrating Thanksgiving together. It's also got a great soundtrack, by Stephin Merritt (of the Magnetic Fields).

Finally, this is an article from the NYTimes about how people's cognitive processes are shaped by the primary language they learn. Very interesting to think about!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day!

Have you ever wondered how many pesticides are in the fruits and veggies that you eat?

You don't have to wonder any longer!

If this info freaks you out, or if you need to let off some steam during finals week, I recommend turning to Twinkies for comfort, like these students did.

Marketing plan outline

Hi 341ers,

I've posted an outline you might want to follow in order to prepare your final projects. If you don't like this outline, you're free to use another one (for example, Appendix C in your textbook). Just make sure you are logical and thorough in how you present your data.

Also, I'm going to bring in some examples of other excellent student projects next week, so that you have something to base your own performance on.

Remember, you not only have to turn in the written report, you also have to give a presentation during the final meeting (May 9th, 12:00 pm). Your group should determine the best way to present your material -- one person might be the best one to do all the talking, or you might want to share the love. It's up to you; just make sure it's quality!

Finally, I've posted a student-made TV ad for you to watch and maybe use as inspiration -- it's really simple, yet really effective. I think he made it with stock photos using iMovie (on a Mac), and had a friend play about three notes on an acoustic guitar while he read from a script he'd written. I think it's way cool! (My one criticism is that it's a 41-second long spot... not exactly a standard length for media-planning purposes.)

Okay, have fun!

CB -- Final case discussions

Hi CB students,

There seems to be some confusion about finals for this class.

You're not taking a final! The last class will be just like all the other case study days. Come to your regular classroom, prepared to discuss the anticonsumption case that you've written.

The 8:00 class will meet on May 6th at 2:00 pm.
The 11:00 class will meet on May 5th at 2:00 pm.

If you need to know what days/times your other finals are, you can get all the info here.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Extra credit opportunity

Hey everyone,

Here's a way to make a few extra points this semester (1% of your final grade).

Dr. Kroff is conducting a survey for his research and needs subjects to answer it. It takes about 15 minutes or so.

After you've answered all the questions, you'll be prompted to enter your name and mine, so that you can get the credit. (This info will be banked in a separate file to preserve confidentiality.) If you're already doing this for another class, you're in luck -- this is one of the few times that double-dipping is allowed. I'll make sure to go through all the names and give credit where it's due, even if you entered another prof's name.

Thanks for your help!

Rituals assignment

Hi 343ers,

For the "Rituals" assignment that's due next week, you'll need to write a story about a ritual that you take part in.

It could be
  • something you do daily (e.g., always drying your hair before you put on your makeup),
  • preparations for situations where you want to do well (e.g., always wearing a suit to school on days when you have exams),
  • holiday traditions (e.g., always getting a call from Uncle Jim, who pretends to be Santa and asks you what you want for Christmas, even though you're now 22 years old),
  • taking care of prized possessions (e.g. always applying the Armor All to the interior of your car in the exact same way),
  • etc.
All of the examples above are real-life examples from students. And last semester, before I was on the DL, I wrote one of my own.

Have fun!

Greatest ad campaigns of all time

Thanks to Kurt for sending this in! You shouldn't need to subscribe to AdAge in order to access this site.

Bob Garfield's analysis at the bottom of the list is also excellent. (I love the phrase "savory cardiovascular time bombs," used to describe McDonald's fare.) Also, be sure to check out the other items in the sidebar on the right -- there are all kinds of interesting factoids you can use to impress your friends and win fabulous prizes!

While I'm making recommendations, I'll go ahead and say that "Dirtbag Lunch" might be my favorite print ad of all time. "Dirtbag Twister," which I mentioned in class, is also high on the list. (The sleeping guy in the photo is actually MSU alum Jeff Wogoman, who's now Cloudveil's director of marketing. He got the job when the photographer at the shoot determined that the professional model they'd hired was too good looking to be plausible as a couch-surfing climbing bum.)

While you're poking around and being impressed, you might want to look at all the work done by Alex Rice -- the art director behind the dirtbag campaign. Well, this probably isn't everything he's done, but it's a great little gallery of promotional ideas.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Meaning of Things

Hey CBers,

Remember, Case #5 is due at the end of the month!

I think this one is really fun and interesting -- it's my favorite case of the semester. Although it's a little looser as far as "right answers" go, you should still strive for precision and strength in your interpretation of the material. In fact, I think this one might be a bit dangerous, in that some students tend to make flabby, unsupported arguments when analyzing and answering questions like these. Don't do it!! Just because it's fun doesn't mean you can be lazy.

Things to watch out for:
  • Statements such as, "Because all people are different, we can't really know what the standard of behavior is in situation X..."
Of course we can.

  • Or the opposite, "I think I just want what all Americans want: job, home, family, dog..."
Generalization is dangerous business.

  • Beginning sentences with the phrase, "More and more..."
I hate this phrase. It's dead to me. Be specific.

  • Finally, using fluff and filler. Although these questions are all related (hence their being included together in the case), your answer for each should be distinct, well-considered, and well-argued. Even question #4 will need support from more than just your own experiences.
Okay, other than that, there should be no problems... But seriously, let me know if there's something that you can't work out.

Ad analysis assignment

Hey 341,

These are the instructions for the assignment due next week.

Sorry I can't find this ad online to include with the example -- the student who wrote the analysis turned in the paper ad itself. However, I think he did a good enough job describing everything that you'll understand what he's talking about, even without seeing it for yourself.

Please note how much analysis he does, relative to how much describing he does. As you'll be turning in your own examples, you should focus on "reading" what the ad is doing, instead of merely telling me what it looks like and says. You sometimes will need to describe in order to analyze; just don't let it be the only thing you do.

Also, please note the terminology that this student uses. You'll improve your grade on this assignment if you make sure to include info on things like "copy" and "layout" and "headline"... Therefore, I strongly recommend reading chapter 19 before you write this up and turn it in!

Word out.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

You know the old saying, pt. 2

I'm... I'm... speechless...

Speaking of...

How funny that we should've just been talking about the safety of Lexan (best known as Nalgene) bottles, when this article (about toxic plastic leaching into food/drinks and its effect on humans) appears!

In contrast, Sigg has changed the way it lines its bottles in order to avoid leaching.

It'll be interesting to see what changes -- if any -- this makes in consumer behavior.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

You know the old saying

Consumers don't know what they want. They only want what they know.

How true it is...

How did we ever get along without such a marvel of modern engineering??

Win $15,000!

If you're interested in a career in advertising, here's your chance to catch a break into the biz.

Even if you're not interested in a career in advertising, this is an interesting and informative website. You can check out contributions from other college students and compare your efforts/ideas to theirs.

Monday, April 14, 2008

IMC instructions (for 341)

Hey everyone,

Here are the instructions for the IMC assignment that's due next Thursday.

Good luck, work hard, have fun!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Internship opportunity

If you're at loose ends for the summer and want an amazing opportunity to learn a lot and not get paid, this might be the gig for you!

Please note that you need to know something about web editing, and have *excellent* written communication skills (see item 4.1).

It looks like fun, though, if you've got those things covered.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Stuff for 341

Go here for an updated schedule. Note that these are minor changes to the timeline.

Here are the slides you'll need for these last few weeks of class:
Chapter 14
Chapter 18
Chapter 19

Chapters 20 & 22 to follow soon...

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Hey roadies...

... and would-be roadies.

Team Delphine -- the bike racing team I'm on -- is having an open house this Thursday (April 10) from 6:00-8:00 pm. There'll be refreshments and ladies in spandex who'll be happy to chat about the first women's cycling development team in Montana.

If you or someone you know is interested in getting into racing, come to the Owenhouse bike shop (right behind the hardware store on Main St.) and check it out!

Genericized names

What do dry ice, heroin, and trampolines have in common?

They don't just make for interesting Halloween parties. Check out this pretty comprehensive list of genericized (and protected) trade names.

And here's the Wiki entry for genericide, which is also fairly accurate. Note, though, that the list of examples doesn't distinguish which brands are still protected (e.g., Google, Kleenex, Jacuzzi), and which have lost their protection (e.g., aspirin, zipper).

I can't find confirmation online about this, but I heard once that the word "zonk" (as in, "I totally zonked out for three days after finals were over!") was originally the name of a narcotic-based patent medicine at the turn of the 20th century.

Product recommendation

I urge everyone to try Wilcoxson's licorice flavored ice cream. It's amazing. It also has the added benefits of (1) being almost perfectly black, which makes for a strange and satisfying dairy-eating experience, and (2) temporarily staining your lips, teeth and tongue a very dark color, though not quite black.

Get some at Myo at the mall, then walk around eating it and imagining yourself as a goth high school student. It's fun and tasty!

For a not-so-nice strange licorice treat, you can pick up salty licorice at the Cost Plus (on 19th Ave) in the candy section. They're the ones shaped like fish... Great for April Fools!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Interesting article

How do you successfully brand a political campaign?

Maybe the secret's in the typeface you choose...

In the house

Hi all,

I forgot that I have a physical therapy appt at 1:30 today, so I won't be in the office until 3, as I thought. I'll be in the office for a little while, but I'm unsure when...

Thursday, April 3, 2008

CB case #4

Hola chiquitos,

Get the next case here.

PLEASE don't freak out when you see all the readings I've provided in the document. All of these are popular press, short, average-Joe kinds of articles. You don't even have to read them all. Just use what you think is best to answer the questions, or even provide your own input into the source material (but make sure to cite your sources!).

Questions? Call, email, or stop by my office.

Have a great weekend,