It’s hurricane season in the world of online marketing – in terms of stats that is. They’re everywhere, flying fast and furious and changing the landscape:
Strategies that withstand the deluge of stats are worth continued consideration
Strategies that do not weather the stat-storms may simply have been built on a poor foundation, or may just simply have been poor.
Strategies you don’t employ that seem to be appealing to your market (like boarding up your windows1) also deserve some think-tank time.
I’m going to leap out on a limb here regarding these 5 stats I’ve pulled for your interest and state the following:
- As far as I know, everyone reading this was actually born
- Most of us will fall in love, and many of us will at some point get married, for better of worse
- A whole schwak of folks are educated, and a painful process that was
- Most of us would like to be gainfully employed, or instant millionaires, but I can only speak to the former
- All of us have friends, some a few special friends, some a whole swathe of acquaintances. I can count my really good friends on one hand, and my other friends on my other hand and my toes (I regress digress). But I also have a big bunch of folks I like and respect in the social space, and who I may well become friends with in time – apparently I can be a handful, so I’m warning you now before I ask you to follow me on Twitter!
Let’s take a peek at some recent stat releases that on the surface2 appear to be worth peeking at, and how they may impact your strategy:
1. We were born: By 2010 Gen Y will outnumber Baby Boomers….96% of them have joined a social network
- are you reaching out the Gen Y and iGen folks on the social networks? If not, perhaps you should. If you’re not sure how, I strongly recommend Linda Bustos’ post on ‘Top 10 Web 2.0 Activities for Ecommerce’ as a great guide to what works, and why.
2. We fall in love: 1 out of 8 couples married in the U.S. last year met via social media
- Do you sell engagement rings, his and her toiletries, flowers, gifts, gift cards… are your ads quick, to the point, targeted to burgeoning relationships of all ages? Romance is universal and timeless.
- Do you host weddings, are you a wedding planner, reception venue? Are you offering deals and coupons, discounts and special treatment for your customers, online and on the social networks?
- Do you have parenting advice, sell baby products, books on how to engage your new wife’s 7 year old son, or gift ideas for your new husbands 10 year old daughter?
- This list is scary long in how what you could offer and how you could engage with the ready and waiting and already engaged market.
- You can take it further to appeal to age groups, family life-cycle status etc
3. We are educated: 1 in 6 higher education students are enrolled in online curriculum, and the 2009 US Department of education study revealed that online students out-performed those receiving face-to-face instruction (on average).
- Do you tutor higher-ed students?
- Do you sell academic books (especially curriculum dictated books)
- Do you offer career, advice, stress, relationship, money management etc consultation?
- There is a big market of online higher-ed students out there needing everything a young adult needs, especially one attempting to better themselves, looking for deals, and active in the online space… where are you?
4. We have or would like a job: 80% of companies use Linkedin as a primary tool to find employees.
- Are you looking for a job?
- Are you interested in better career opportunities?
- Are your recruiting costs high?
- Are you interested in expanding your resource pool geographically?
- If your answer to any of these or similar questions is ‘Yes!’, get on Linkedin, or expand your use. Worst case scenario is the initial cost of a monthly membership fee of about $49/month, and you can cancel any time I believe.
5. We have friends: 78% of consumers trust peer recommendations, 14% trust advertisements & only 18% of traditional TV campaigns generate a positive ROI
- Word of mouth, the most powerful converter known ever has made it’s way online. It is now called peer recommendations – do you have reviews of your products? Do you deal with customer complaints and praise equally fairly, quickly and overtly?
- Are you still relying on advertisements alone? Or TV?
- What is your determination of an effective brand messaging and awareness campaign?
- Are you only after short term profits, or are you interested in both short-term profits and long term brand & reputation establishment?
This is only a sample of some great stats I found in the last few weeks without actually looking (thank you Twitter), and now my kudos thanks to:
MarketingProfs – a great resource for more than just stats
1 Lived through hurricanes hitting the North Coast of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa as a kiddie, and through 1 or 2 coming through Barbados when we were there visiting family – and yes, boarding up your windows is high on the to-do list.
2 Stats require interpretation along with an understanding of the hypothesis (or null), population and sample size to name but a few affecting variables. Taking them at face value can be a big mistake.