Make Money Online


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Most Marketers Aren’t Making Data Driven Decisions & 9 Other Internet News Items

This week in internet news you’ll learn why you have a huge advantage when you really pay attention to your data, what trends are emerging in online tech (and how to take advantage of them), how to better target your advertising, how to become a better collaborator and so much more.

Let’s Go!

Most Marketers Still Not Making Data Driven Decisions


News Article In Question: Columbia Business School

According to a study by Columbia Business School’s Center on Global Brand Leadership and the New York American Marketing Association (NYAMA), there is a big gap  between where organizations would like to be and where they actually are in capturing, analyzing, and using data to inform business decisions.

Data is either not collected, collected too infrequently, not shared across departments, and even when it is collected, not acted upon quickly enough, or used to develop more personalized communications.

Here are some of the key findings from the research:

    • 91% of senior corporate marketers believe that successful brands use customer data to drive marketing decisions


    • Yet, 39% say their own company’s data is collected too infrequently or not real-time enough


    • And 51% say that a lack of sharing customer data within their own organization is a barrier to effectively measuring their marketing ROI


    • Large firms are much less likely to collect new forms of digital data like mobile data (19%), than they are to collect traditional customer survey data such as on demographics (74%) and attitude (54%)


    • 85% of large corporations are now using social network accounts (e.g. brand accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Foursquare) as a marketing tool


    • 65% of marketers said that comparing the effectiveness of marketing across different digital media is “a major challenge” for their business


    • 37% of respondents did not include any mention of financial outcomes when asked to define what “marketing ROI” meant for their own organization


    • 57% are not basing their marketing budgets on any ROI analysis


    • 22% are using brand awareness as their sole measure to evaluate their marketing spend

Now if these results came from your average solo or small business owner, it might be understandable, but they study says it interviewed “253 corporate marketing decision makers, director-level and above…between January 27 and February 8, 2012. These professionals are employed at large companies (90% have a global annual revenue of over $50 million; 45% are over $1 billion)”

Why This Is Important To You:

Multi million dollar companies are ignoring their customer data, not collecting it frequently enough, and not acting on it. And if they’re not doing it, how much of your direct competition do you think are in the same boat?

Sure, it’s true that data can be boring, but when you consider your data represents different things about your customer, ignoring the data  means you’re ignoring your customer.

If you’re in a space with lots of competitors, your secret weapon will be paying attention to your data and becoming more responsive and agile.

What shocked me the most about these statistics were the staggering amount of aimlessness shared among these multi million dollar companies.

For example “85% of large corporations are now using social network accounts, yet 37% did not mention any sort of financial goal tied to their “ROI”

Also, the statistic about focus on demographic and attitude data confirm that these organizations aren’t using online tools to their maximum potential.

This is why you should always be paying attention to your Google analytics, segmenting your email lists, and your Facebook Insights and adjusting accordingly.

Sure, data can be boring, but making money rarely is.


Google’s New Research Pane Allows You To Access Search From Docs

News Article In Question: Mashable

Google made the argument for cloud based word processing a little more compelling this week by incorporating it’s search function right into the Google Doc’s interface.

Without ever having to leave Google Docs, you can quickly insert quotes, maps, and free use images by simply dragging and dropping straight from the resource pane. The best part is, attribution for each one of these items will be included automatically in the footnotes, so you can focus on what’s important, the work.

For more tips on how to use “Research” click here.

Why This Is Important To You:

For students, this is a wonderful way to create research papers more efficiently, but that’s just a little too obvious.

As a business owner, you may find yourself on a joint venture where you have to write a business plan with one or several partners. If you’re team is interested in data, there will be a considerable amount of research that goes into your plan, and on a big enough project, email becomes too hard to work with.

Because Google Docs *ahem* Drive  allows multiple users to edit the same document, once the plan is outlined, all of the other members in the team can work on their individual sections and use the research pane to quickly access and cite source data.

If you were presenting your plan to investors, you could link slideshows, show maps (if relevant) and include all of the relevant documents in one easy to access folder on Drive, saving trees, ink, and a ton of headaches.


Pinterest’s Last Funding Round Puts it’s Value it at over $1B

News Article In Question: The Next Web

Earlier this week, virtual pinboard “Pinterest” raised $100 Million dollars from Japanese ecommerce Giant Rakuten.

This round of funding put the fast rising social network’s worth between $1-1.5 Billion (yes with a B) Dollars.

Rakuten CEO Hiroshi Mikitani said:

“While some may see e-commerce as a straightforward vending machine-like experience, we believe it is a living process where both retailers and consumers can communicate, discover, and curate to make the experience more entertaining.

We see tremendous synergies between Pinterest’s vision and Rakuten’s model for e-commerce. Rakuten looks forward to introducing Pinterest to the Japanese market as well as other markets around the world.”

Drew Olanoff, editor of The Next Web says about Pinterest

“Pinterest has huge potential for ecommerce firms, as I recently explained when I wrote that Amazon should seriously consider buying the service…

…The site’s popularity has surged over the last year, with statistics showing that itstraffic grew by more than 6,000 percent over the final six months of 2011, turning it into a service to rival Facebook, Twitter and other established social networks.”

Why This Is Important To You:

Pinterest, has literally gone from completely unknown to the third largest social network in the world in just two years, so there’s a ton that you could learn from their growth alone.

However, what’s more important here is to focus on the more immediate opportunity, and possible paradigm shift this might represent.

So far, no company has been able to really crack the “social commerce” side of social networks. Sure, Facebook has Credits, but those are primarily used to purchase virtual goods.

Pinterest, having such an image heavy focus creates perfect synergy for selling real tangible items if that’s your thing.

However, if you’re a graphic designer, or photographer, there is also a huge opportunity for you here too. There are plenty of lack luster promo shots, and a ton of sellers that could benefit from better “packaging”.

The opportunity is ripe if you’re willing to put in the work to prospect for your clients.


Nielsen: U.S. Consumers App Downloads Up 28% To 41; 4 Of The 5 Most Popular Still Belong To Google

News Article In Question: Techcrunch

According to a new report by media research firm Neilson, over 50% of American’s are using a smartphone.

As a by-product of that more people are downloading more apps.

In just a year, the average number of apps per smartphone has jumped 28 percent, from 32 apps to 41. Not only is the 2012 smartphone owner downloading more apps, they are increasingly spending more time using them vs. using the mobile web — about 10 percent more than last year.

Nielsen notes that the time spent on the top 50 apps is actually down compared to last year: the top 50 apps today get 58 percent of our app time, compared to 74 percent in 2011.

Why This Is Important To You:

Mobile, particularly smart phone usage, has only been trending upwards over the past few years, and is likely not going to die down.

You don’t have to make the next Angry Birds to make money off of apps.

Consider there are people out there who have made their livings with “to-do” lists, flashlights, reminders, and other basic functions. Apps often represent a quick fix to a simple problem.

The more common the problem your app solves, the better chance of success it has.

Want To Reach Light Tv Viewers? Put Ads On Youtube

News Article In Question: Google Blog

According to a study between Neilson and Google, Around 31% of adults 18 to 49 consume less than 2 hours of television per day.

It’s not that they’re not watching, but rather they’re spending more of their time online.

“And this segment is growing – households that opted for broadband internet instead of cable TV grew 22.8 percent over the past year.

According to the report, it actually costs 92% less to target the “light Tv viewer” through Youtube and the Google Display Network in combination with television ads.  This sort of cross platforming targeting is more effective as 63% of light tv viewers report they don’t even see Television Ads.

Why This Is Important To You:

18-49 year olds make up a good percentage of anyone’s target market, and their spending power is pretty vast.

This might go without saying, since you’re on a blog about making money online, but if you’re using video and graphics to target your market, your marketing dollars are going to be better spent using Youtube’s promoted videos, and Google’s display network.

On the flip side, that doesn’t mean you should abandon the idea of using television at a marketing platform all together.

27% of viewers do still see television ads, and if you’re being wise about what time slots you’re buying, your messaging can be significantly reinforced to that 27%

Ultimately, this means you could end up spending less, and getting more.

Facebook Redesigns Mobile NewsFeed, Makes Photos 3x Larger

News Article In Question: Inside Facebook

One of the underlying themes of all the news this week is that the web is becoming more visual.

Like the headline says, photos are now 3x larger on Facebook Mobile, which also means they will take up more real estate in the Mobile news feed.

“…pages should consider sharing square photos to maximize the amount of space their posts take up in the mobile feed and increase the likelihood that fans Like or comment on the activity.”

Like Josh said in his “10 Facebook Tips You Don’t Know About” post, images are a great way to get more clicks to your content on Facebook.

Why This Is Important To You:

Facebook’s mobile usage is only increasing. Facebook mobile is the number 1 downloaded app on the major app stores, and with the increase in smartphone usage that we saw earlier, that trend isn’t likely going anywhere.

By adding compelling images to your posts, you greatly increase your chances of earning valuable clicks, which is always the first step to earning more leads and sales.

Social Ad Spending to Reach 10 Billion Soon (but it’s not all on Facebook)


News Article In Question: Fast Company

“A new survey from BIA/Kelsey has looked at the trends in advertising on social media and concluded that by 2016 it’ll be a market topping $10 billion per annum, mainly as display ads.

For context, some $3.8 billion was spent on these ads in 2011, so phenomenal growth is predicted.”

However, data from Wordstream suggests that Facebook Ads (in their current state) have less reach and lower click through rates.

So where will that money be going?

“…richer formats and creative elements, like video, will be the principal social ad market growth drivers,” says Jed Williams, analyst and program director of Social Local Media for BIA/Kelsey.

Read: Not Facebook display ads, which could be one of the major reasons GM pulled out of Facebook 3 days before it’s IPO.

Why This Is Important To You:

All trends indicate a shift in the way the masses are consuming content.

One of our regular commenters Servando Silva said about last week’s wrap up

“So, what can we learn from this? Work hard and think on the future. Prepare things and make all your goals so that finally, you make a bigger goal with the mix of all you have done?”

Which really got me thinking.

The point here is not to see the trend, acknowledge it, then carry on.

Rather, I’m reporting the news that exists now to show you where things are headed. Not so you can “think on the future.” but rather so you can start getting ahead of the curve and be the one that sets the trend, not struggle to figure it out when it’s too late.


Shifting Serps: “It’s not Penguin” says Google

News Article In Question: Search Newz

Some of you may have fallen victim to Google’s infamous “Penguin Update” latest rollout of the “over optimization penalty” which is basically an attempt to level the playing field for websites with an “unnatural link velocity”

A major shift in search engine rankings occurred this past week, enough where multiple webmasters speculate that Panda 1.1 was let loose on the world.

However, Google states that the shift from the 24th was not as a result of Penguin.

Regardless, Matt Cutts, chief of Google’s Web spam has gone on record saying about Penguin “It’s been a success from our standpoint.” Which means the big scary Penguin isn’t going anywhere.

Why This Is Important To You:

Many, many, many sites have been affected by Penguin, and as a result have lost a good percentage of their rankings overnight.

Obviously, for some this is a travesty, but for others, an opportunity.

Google’s whole purpose for their search engine is to “deliver the best results” and previously that would mean “the best” could mean the person who knows how to manipulate the search engine the best, not necessarily the site that deserves to be at the top.

For those who lean rely heavily on their “Seo-ified” content to drive traffic, Penguin is terrifying. (if you’ve been pecked by accident, Google has a form for that)

However, if your focus is more on delivering outstanding content, here are some linkbuilding tips in the post Penguin era.

Facebook Releases Mobile Page Manager (in Australia)

photo 3 520x780 Facebook launches dedicated Pages Manager app, making it easy to, well...

News Article In Question: 9 to 5 Mac

The headline really says it all, Facebook has released a separate page manager app for iPhone users in Australia…

Why This Is Important To You:

If you manage Facebook Pages, you already know doing it on your phone is kind of a drag.

Having a dedicated Page Manager app makes that updating on the go just a little less cumbersome.

No word on when it will be released to the rest of the world, but I know I’ll be looking forward to it.

Google Commissions 6 Developers To Hack on It’s Hangouts API for 2 Weeks

News Article In Question: The Next Web

Google is very serious about making it’s Hangout Product something very special.

Recently they’ve updated the Hangout’s Api and have said it is capable of the following:

1. Overlays you can statically fix to the screen, not just a person’s face. It’s now possible, for example, to create “lower third” effects (, borders, and captions like you see on news shows and live interviews.

2. Apps that can respond to facial movements in real-time. Now when participants tilt their head side-to-side, look right and left, or lean forwards and backwards, your app can react accordingly. You might decide to let participants’ faces control gameplay, for instance.

3. A new way to keep high-activity apps in sync for all participants. Certain hangout apps (like games) need to respond to lots of actions from everyone in the room, all at once. (Think collaborative whack-a-mole.) v1.1 includes a new method to propagate high-frequency, low-latency updates across the hangout.

Yesterday, they announced a Hackathon where 6 developers will “hack” their Hangouts Api just to see what it can really do.

Why This Is Important To You:

Hangouts have been becoming increasingly popular all by themselves. With the Api, the right development team, and a little bit of creativity, it’s theoretically possible to create easily accessible augmented reality games, interactive game shows, or an infinite number of other applications.

If you’re a developer, I would start experimenting with this now. You have first mover advantage to creating extremely useful, and very cool applications.


Key Takeaways This Week

The web is getting increasingly more visual, more social, and more interactive.

If you take advantage of these trends before they become the new standard, you can set the example, not struggle to keep up.

Paying attention to your audience, being where they are, and giving them experiences they’ll remember is quickly becoming the new paradigm of web marketing, and that’s not going away any time soon.


  1. eToro is the #1 forex broker for newbie and advanced traders.