December 11, 2008
We’ve made a decision to stop publishing on Marktd. Despite making changes to focus on the creative/marketing ideas sister site of PSFK.com, we are still unhappy with the quantity and quality of the site.
Marktd started life as a subscription site called IF! which offered ideas to marketers about how to promote their products in a fresh, modern way. It was fairly successful and we got a good number of people pay the $25 subscription - but we felt that the subscription stopped it being read by a large group of people. A few months back we decided to stop the subscription and relaunch the site as Marktd. Since then interest in the site hasn’t really picked up. I would suggest that this is because of a number of reasons:
* We just aren’t that interesting in marketing and advertising. Personally it’s been 7 years since I had a full time job in advertising and the longer time goes on, the less interest I have in the field. Combine that apathy with the fact that only one or two of the regular writing team have ever worked in advertising.
* Many of our readers who work in marketing and advertising don’t seem to be that interested in only reading about marketing and advertising.
* When we do find exceptional marketing ideas that we are interested in, they tend to end up on PSFK.com anyway.
* We launched Marktd because IF! just wasn’t good enough. We’re closing Marktd because the site just didn’t meet our standards.
Maybe one day we’ll think about relaunching it - maybe with a sponsoring partner. From today, the Marktd email newsletter and RSS will change to PSFK content. We’re hoping that the existing Marktd readers will get even better creative ideas content as a result.
November 26, 2008
The fine people at Blurb have offered free gorund shipping within the US for our book Good Ideas In 2009. All you have to do is add ‘freeshipping’ in to the promo-code box on the product page here before Dec 9 (and read the small print below*).
Want to know more about the book? Well, at this time of year we’re supposed to produce a trends report for 2009. When we all sat down and chatted about it, we thought such a report would be so gloomy and rather depressing. We didn’t want to write about things like ‘trading down’ or ‘discreet consumption’! We wanted to talk about all the inspirational ideas we read and write about every day, we wanted to spread the positivity, we wanted to encourage you to re-ignite the world. Honestly.
So we created Good Ideas In 2009. The 80 page click-to-print book features nine Good Ideas and manifestations of them. We write about design, mobile, collaboration, digital, social media, the long term and much more. Click through to the Blurb site and you can get a sneak peek.
The books are $50 for the softback and $60 for the beautiful hardback. If you’re considering buying reports for your company or just books for your coffee table, we ask you to consider Good Ideas In 2009. We’re rather proud of it. We hope it inspires you yo make things better.
* To qualify for free shipping (up to $10), you must enter the promotion code in the shopping cart at time of purchase and complete your purchase in USD. Offer is good for free shipping up to $10.00 in value. Offer expires 11:59 PM PST December 5, 2008. Limit one-time use per user and cannot be combined with other offers. Not valid towards purchase of gift cards.
November 21, 2008
The Economist did something interesting in Philadelphia, USA recently. They branded pizza boxes that went out from 20 pizzerias in the city with global statistics of food consumption - like the amount of wheat consumption or cheese imports. Apparently, most of the pizzerias were near universities or colleges, so they had the aim of getting young people interested in the magazine. From Cool Hunting:
While undoubtedly a promotion for the British newsmagazine, the pizza boxes represent a creative, through-provoking method of essentially force-feeding information. Perhaps it’s a subject matter slightly heavier than the average pizza consumer is expecting. Do we need to know that 96.8 percent of American mushroom imports come from Canada? Probably not, but it’s definitely food for thought.
November 18, 2008
The folks at innocent drinks, makers of tasty smoothies, have revamped their site to include a rating and review section. Hoping to foster a more robust brand culture and connection with their audience, innocent is trying out a consumer-centric website. The new feedback area provides simple ratings along with more detailed reviews. A built-in feature promises to randomly select comments to be highlighted on the homepage and further entices visitors by awarding funky prizes each month. The site layout was designed by Soup with a goal of pushing the playful nature of the company into the digital arena.
[via Ellie @ Soup]
November 14, 2008
AdverBox points us to an interesting endeavour by Absolut in Barcelona. In order to transfer the brand’s concept to different global realities, Absolut is trying to promote the idea of a smokeless, bike-filled Barcelona. On the initiative’s webpage, users have to answers questions through an interactive game to see if they are ready for such a Barcelona. And it’s not all pointless - the site ties in to Barcelona’s 1st Bike Film Festival, which will include films like E.T that feature a bike! One warning though: the Absolut site is in Spanish (because its for Barcelona, duh!). We just wish that we English-speaking people could log in and see what it’s about as well.
November 7, 2008
Taking a page from their customer friendly food service model, Burger King recently took “Have It Your Way” into the realms of D.I.Y. fashion. A collaboration between 5 designers and artists tasked with reinterpreting elements of Burger King’s icons and logos culminated at an event held in Chicago on October 24th. The gathering invited participants to take part in the studio creation process by silk-screening the final designs onto their own clothing in any combination they chose. Essentially, a clever form of marketing that allowed Burger King to subvert their own image, while at the same time maintaining recognizable aspects familiar to their wider audience. The company has also pushed this idea a step further with Burger King Studio, a site that takes the hands-on experience and introduces it to the online space. Users have the ability to design their own T-shirts using the same details from the out-of-home event with additional levels of customizable options available, promising the uniqueness you want without fear of “getting ink all over yourself.” Additional happenings have already been scheduled for November 7th and 21st.
Companies are taking a lesson from the old adage that sometimes it’s better to give than to receive. Giveaways, often linked to national events that are themselves already in the public conscious, have begun to generate serious buzz within the online sphere. In fact, the mere mention of one of these limited time offers creates noticeable spikes in the amount of times a participating business’ name is searched and that’s before any free transaction even takes place. Add in the increased foot traffic as potential customers flock to stores in the hopes of getting a sample of the featured product or service and the incentive to buy additional items rises as well. An equation that makes a great deal of sense for these companies considering the amount of “free” marketing they’re receiving for such a small initial outlay.
A sample from Tuesday’s election day tie-ins:
On Google Trends, 10 of Google’s top 100 hot search terms are looking for free election swag. Who’s getting all that traffic?
- “Starbucks free coffee” is the 23rd fastest-rising search term of the day and “starbucks election” is 79.
- “Chick Fil A” is number 6 and “chickfila” is number 58 (they’re giving away free chicken sandwiches)
- “Ben and Jerrys” is number 16 (free ice cream)
- “Krispy Kreme locations” is number 25 (free donuts)
- “Shanes Rib Shack” is number 29 (free meal, but only to first 300 customers at “participating stores”)
- And generally, “free stuff for voting” is 17, “free stuff on election day” is 51, and “freebies for voting” is 66
[via Silicon Alley Insider]
The Travel 2.0 blog has an interesting post on Pepsi’s social rebranding. The fact that they’ve changed their logo is now common knowledge - Seth Godin recently blogged about it as well - but it hasn’t been done in a vacuum. Pepsi has actively reached out to 25 of the most influential marketing bloggers, sent them a set of Pepsi cans that captured the brand’s history, as well a set of the new cans and an invitation to join their FriendFeed room to post their comments. FriendFeed, for the uninitiated, is a site that captures all your social activity in one place - so if you are on Twitter, Facebook and Flickr, for example, every time you make an update to these sites, the information is updated on FriendFeed. By creating a separate room on the web to record user comments about the rebranding, Pepsi has shown that they are actively listening to consumers and not just dishing out changes without any concern for how it has been accepted.
[image courtesy Greg Verdino's blog]
October 21, 2008
The dairy lobby has always been a powerful force in America, but recently they saw their classic ad campaigns overtaken by cartoon characters that children more readily relate to. These new school cultural icons easily sway children in purchasing choices. The proliferation of SpongeBob snacks or Spiderman cereals drove Big Milk to form a modern marketing group known as “Milk Media.” In the venture’s first deal, school milk consumption increased 34% after the implementation of Disney’s Doug into the milk campaign. While milk has enemies, they certainly have fans in the federal government who wish to promote the milk alternative to sugary foods. The New York Times reports in the Consumed section of their Magazine:
The goal of Milk Media, Long insists, is not to advance the interests of pop-culture products; the goal is to leverage their power to promote milk consumption. “You can have Shrek beating the drum for 500 different sugar products or the Transformers saying, ‘Drink milk and roll out,’ ” he says. “I think we’re doing a lot of good.” In other words, he sees Milk Media’s approach as responding to the realities of the kid-culture marketplace.
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