A study by AdWeek and Harris Interactive provides some interesting stats on which medium ads are most ignored. At first glance its easy to assume that this means that internet banner ads are most ignored and television ads are the most effective. But the study fails to take into account several important factors. 1) Most

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A recent study shows that two thirds of all online searches are the result of offline media. TV, magazines, word of mouth, radio, direct mail…all that traditional media is pushing people online. Of those who searched for a product or company 39% ended up buying from the brand that motivated their search. What happened to

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I’m a self taught digital girl. Besides one tech class in college, digital was not something ever discussed in all of my communication, advertising or journalism classes. And now I’m solo in the digital department, with no one to collaborate with or learn from.  Which is why I am always on the search for additional

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A week ago Skittles relaunched their website and it looked strangely familiar…reminiscent of Modernista’s unwebsite, Skittles.com’s site is merely a redirect to social networks, Wikpedia, YouTube and a couple of static pages. 

Initially, the Skittles homepage was pointed at the results page for a “skittles” twitter search but within a couple of hours there were hundreds of inappropriate tweets making onto the results page. Hilarious for those of us with a juvenile sense of humor, but probably not what Skittles had intended. They have since redirected the homepage to their Wikipedia entry, but those twitter search results are still the redirect for the “chatter” section of the site. 

There was no clear consensus within my Twitter friends if it was genius or a lame attempt to jump on the bandwagon. I can’t understand why would they attempt to feed off of a social network without someone who was actively twittering as the face of the brand? Unless of course Skittles the Cat (@skittles) is the mastermind behind the candy. 

While I applaud the attempt to “go social” and I love the idea of the unwebsite, I really don’t think that it fits with the brand of the product. Once all the attention dies down from the new site, how is the unwebsite going to further the brand, continue to build awareness or make me want some Skittles? Just because the unwebsite is a great idea, doesn’t mean its a great idea for the brand. 

You can read some great posts on the Skittles redesign here, here and here

Now if I could have had a hand in this site redo, I would have taken a look around the internets to see what people were already saying about the brand. Check out what I learned about Skittles in 5 minutes. Starting with my first two Google searchs (auto completes say a lot!):

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My very Southern Grandma Norton once wisely told me that “the only thing a girl can own is her reputation.” True, but hardly applicable to just women these days. Brands need to step up and listen own their online reputation becuase there will always be someone out there calling you a douchebag or a slut.   

81% of consumers read online reviews before purhcasing duringtheir holiday shopping according to MarketingCharts.com and Neilsen Online. While only a fraction of consumers will post reviews or submit complaints a whole lot more will read what those people are saying. If there are consistenly bad posts and no response from you, consumers will seriosuly consider buying from you.  

Do you know what your consumers are saying about you? Are you checking review sites such as Yelp.com as well as the niche review sites (like DealerRater.com for local dealerships)? Do you have a Google alert set to your brand or industry? Do you regularly check to see if Facebook/MySpace groups have formed for or against your brand? Do you monitor Twitter, Brightkite, Friendfeed and Blogs to listen to what your consumers are saying about you, your competitors and your industry?

While social media is fun, display ads easy and search is cheap, online reputation management is a bit more time consuming and harder to grasp. Unfortunately, that leaves a lot of brands unwilling to take the lead and spend their time seeking out reviews and taking control.  

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As the end of the year approaches every blogger out there is throwing down their 2009 predictions; I’m jumping off the cliff to throw down my own thoughts on the new year.

But don’t worry is isn’t some haughty predictions list, but merely a top 10 list of my hopes for marketing and technology in 2009. 

1. MySpace will die. Enough of the glitter backgrounds, 10 mintue page downloads and endless random friend requests from half naked teenagers. Most of the cool kids have left anyways. 

2. Everyone will stop hating on Twitter. You know you want to, like that one time in college. Get drunk and blame your experimental tweets on the booze. In four years if you’re not into it anymore you can just say you were going through a phase. Then you can follow me here

3. Spammers will learn correct grammar and proper English. Maybe more people would respond if they could read your spam emails or they contained plausable stories. Really I won the lottery in Nigeria, I didn’t even buy a lottery ticket?!

4. Mobile marketing will finally take off. The last few years have been predicted as The Year for mobile, please finally get big so the masses will figure out what the next big thing will be.

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Apparently as the market tanks and layoffs run rampant and the sky crumbles around us, several bits of the internet have been pronounced dead.  First up, Google’s SearchWiki has killed off SEO. Google has made the SearchWiki function a permananet fixture on Google Search. So now you can organize and make comments on your search results.

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The Online Advertising Playbook is a fantastic book for anyone trying to sort out new media. It covers the basics, provides insight through interesting and relevant case studies and won’t bore you to death. I read it for work but actually really enjoyed it. 

Here are some of my favorite bits of information- you’ll have to read the book to learn more!

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The new search engine Cuil (pronounced as cool) launched earlier this week. Lots of online hype, but I am just not impressed by it. Interface is interesting, although a bit too much text to read through. Results are just wacky! A post on Current regarding these wacky results asks you to type ‘Jesus’ in the

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