Keep your eyes open for the cell phone commercial war going on between Verizon and AT&T. Most of you have probably heard about this public "coverage" battle: Verizon is essentially calling "BS" on AT&T's claim of having so much "coverage" and the maps that they use to illustrate it. In my personal experience, coverage is a description reserved for throwing on my bathrobe or observing another person's choice in swimwear. However, this very public battle that the two companies have waged brings up the obvious question of "How do you measure coverage?"
I was out at the ANA (Association of National Advertisers) conference in Phoenix a few weeks back. In this, the 100th year of the ANA, there appear to still be lots of questions surrounding which 50% of advertising is "wasted." Still, it's difficult to ignore the many signs of great progress the marketing industry has made towards better understanding the financial payback of marketing and advertising.
I've often said that not all Web analytics tools were created equally. Each tool has various nuances that make it either very appropriate or less than effective for your business. While looking at simple lists of features, hearing the sales-speak, and watching product demos is certainly helpful for assessing tool capabilities, limiting yourself to only those activities is never wholly sufficient to put the "tool decision" in context.
I had a chance to talk briefly with Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, at last week's ANA conference. He'd just finished sharing his take on marketing and advertising with 1,200 of us representing marketers, agencies, and supporting service providers. Of relevance to Metrics Insider readers, he said...
The numbers are in. The National Retail Federation (NRF) is, not surprisingly, predicting another dip in holiday spending in 2009, starting with an 1% drop in sales during the eighth-largest U.S. spending holiday, Halloween. It's a dismal outlook for marketers, but one that doesn't have to leave us scratching our heads and biting our nails until the actual sales figures are reported. Even with dour consumer spending and strained marketing budgets, smart marketers can adjust their marketing strategies to divert search traffic from rivals and gain an online competitive advantage.
According to the most recent Interactive Advertising Bureau Internet Advertising Revenues Report, Internet advertising for the first 6 months of 2009 was down 5.3% year over year, to $10.9 billion. According to TNS Media Intelligence, total U,S, ad spend for the same period was down 14.3%, which means that online advertising is doing a pretty good job of weathering this recession, and is in fact increasing share of spend. That will stand us in good stead as the economy recovers. Digging a little deeper into the IAB report, two trends jump out at me.