Online sales jumped 26 percent to a record on Cyber Monday - Nov. 29, 2006: "Total online purchases on Cyber Monday, one of the biggest shopping days for e-tailers, jumped 26 percent to a record $608 million, according to the latest numbers from ComScore Networks.
'It [was] the highest single day in retail e-commerce history and the first day ever to break the $600 million threshold,' Gian Fulgoni, chairman of comScore Networks, said in a statement."
|If this video doesn't just sum up a typical day in the world of stains on my clothes...I'm not sure what does! It's hilarious, check out the very end...here's to SAVING THE PANTS one leg at a time!|
The Latest from Brightcove
Brightcove has developed a Flash-based player that delivers exceptionally clean and clear video quality. This blog entry lets you play a music video by Diddy (featuring Christina Aguilera) at both standard and full-screen sizes. Flash 9 is required, which is easy and automatic. But it does require a browser restart.
P&G has launched a Web-centric "viral" campaign for ThermaCare HeatWraps, a line extension for women's menstrual cramps. The ironic twist is the creative is faux-DTC pharma style microsites for the fictional affliction "cyclical non-uterine dysmenorrhea."
The ruse has many fronts, including the fictional MacInnes and Porritt "research and treatment center for men."
A video was posted on YouTube on Oct 17, 2006. So it's almost six weeks old. There are 22K views.
Wal-Mart Plans to Test Online Films - New York Times: "Wal-Mart, the country’s largest seller of movies, announced that next year it will begin testing a video download service on its Web site. Wal-Mart did not reveal its partners, but media executives involved in the deal said that all the major studios are either on board or in active talks with the retailer, and that Hewlett-Packard is providing the technology for the download site."
78 Percent of Consumers to Shop Online for Holiday Gifts: "The survey showed that 50 percent of consumers plan to do one-fourth of their holiday shopping online, while 23 percent said that they will do more than half of their holiday shopping online. Only 16 percent said that more than 70 percent of their holiday shopping would take place online. Thirty-nine percent of consumers plan to spend up to $100 in online holiday purchases, 23 percent plan to spend $400 or more, 22 percent plan to spend $100-$200, and 16 percent plan to spend $200-$400. When asked to select one or more timeframes in which they planned to shop, 43 percent of consumers said they will conduct their online holiday shopping between 9 p.m. and midnight. Fifty-six percent of consumers said they will buy from large, established online stores, even if the prices are higher than at smaller, lesser-known e-tailers"
Now playing on TiVo: Targeted ads | Tech News on ZDNet: "Given the choice, would you watch commercials?
TiVo, maker of the popular digital video recorder (DVR), announced a new 'program placement' feature on Tuesday that offers customers the option to watch a product commercial or a promotion for another show after viewing a recorded program.
Each time TiVo customers view a recorded program, the new menu options will appear alongside the delete or save options. Those new options will include a brand logo or question asking if the viewer would like to watch promotional content, which can run up to two minutes."
MercuryNews.com | 11/29/2006 | BitTorrent cuts online video deals: "BitTorrent users will be able to purchase or rent movies such as ``Mission Impossible III'' and buy TV shows such as ``24'' when the company's service launches in February."
You Oughta Be In Webcasts: "Welcome to the new wave of Web video. Far from the land of dogs on skateboards and Webcam yakkers on YouTube (GOOG ), this online genre of scripted programs is attracting small but passionate groups of fans. The networks and talent agencies are watching closely, and the phenomenon is giving indie filmmakers new ways to get their works seen. At the same time, this emerging ecosystem is creating a tempting--albeit challenging--play for advertisers looking to cut through the chaotic mass of Web pages on YouTube and MySpace."
(Note to self: Why does every new "Web 2.0" site launch in "BETA"?) Anyhoo ... Here's a new-ish site that offers a user-friendly, beginners-can-do-this-easily online app that assembles photos, videos and music files into self-made movies called "iBloks." It's free, so we'll all have to see if and/or when there's a revenue model for this Webware.
Cyber Monday, Marketing Myth: "Contrary to what the recent blitz of media coverage implies, Cyber Monday isn't nearly the biggest online shopping or spending day of the year. It ranks only as the 12th-biggest day historically, according to market researcher comScore Networks. It's not even the first big day of the season.
For most online retailers, the bigger spending day of the season to date was way back on Nov. 22, three days before Black Friday. What's more, most e-tailers say the season's top spending day comes much later, between around Dec. 5 and Dec. 15. "
Record Sales, Traffic For Cyber Monday
The Wall Street Journal (Registration/Subscription Required)
"Cyber Monday" turned in record numbers after all. Maybe people bought into the hype (and the Web-wide holiday sales). Or maybe yesterday's strong sales simply indicate a healthy year ahead for online shopping.
ComScore Networks, which tracks Web traffic, expects Cyber Monday's online sales to hit around $600 million this year, a 24% jump over last year. Meanwhile, comScore said more people eschewed long lines at malls on Black Friday, spending $434 million online, a 42% increase from last year. Overall, consumers have spent $8.31 billion in nontravel purchases on the Web since Nov. 1, the firm said, up 23% from 2005.
Advertisers will note that increased sales have corresponded with higher overall traffic to retail sites. Akamai Technologies, a large Web traffic management firm, reported a 19% hike over last year in the traffic it sent to online commerce sites versus past Cyber Mondays. Shopping.com, an eBay subsidiary, said it was sending 40% more traffic to its retail partners than in past years.
Offline sales, of course, still far surpass that of the online world. "Black Friday" alone generated nearly $9 million in sales, while Saturday added another $5.6 billion to the weekend haul for retailers
FORTUNE: First Virtual Millionaire in Second Life: "Anshe Chung, a real-estate tycoon in the digitally simulated world known as Second Life, has apparently become the first virtual millionaire--i.e., someone whose holdings in a make-believe world are legally convertible into genuine U.S. currency worth more than $1 million"
eMarketer.com - TV Downloads on the Rise: "All the alarmist claims that digital video recorders (DVRs), video-on-demand (VOD) and emerging online platforms will cause the death of TV and result in the loss of billions of dollars worth of advertising dollars are just plain wrong."
Polo Ralph Lauren Launches Interactive Window Shopping: "Polo Ralph Lauren Corp., New York, has launched an interactive window shopping experience at its Michigan Avenue Flagship store in Chicago that allows customers to shop from outside of the store with the touch of a hand, 24 hours a day. The Chicago interactive window follows the company’s successful launch of an interactive window at Ralph Lauren’s Madison Avenue store, where similar technology was employed to create a U.S. Open tennis themed window."
Cyber Monday to Attract 61 Million Consumers: "According to a Shop.org survey conducted this weekend by BIGresearch, 60.7 million consumers plan to shop online from home or at work today in what is expected to be one of the biggest online shopping days of the year."
MediaPost Publications - Pew: Podcast Audience Doubles - 11/24/2006: "ABOUT TWICE AS MANY WEB users are downloading podcasts now compared to six months ago, according to new data from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.
Twelve percent of Web users surveyed in August said they have downloaded a podcast--up from 7% who said the same in a survey conducted between February and April. Those numbers appear to be higher than what was reported in July by media measurement company Nielsen//NetRatings, which found that 6.6% of U.S. adult Web users had downloaded a podcast in the last 30 days.
Pew attributed the increase to the surge in MP3 ownership as well as the vast amount of content now available--more than 26,000 podcasts and 1 million episodes, according to the report."
Study questions popularity of iPod video | CNET News.com: "Less than 1 percent of content items played by iPod users on either iTunes or the device itself were videos. Among video iPod users, that percentage barely improves, up to 2.2 percent.
Even measured by duration of consumption, where 30- or 60-minute TV shows might seem to have a built-in advantage over three-minute songs, video comprises just 2 percent of total time spent using iPods or iTunes among iPod owners. Video iPod users consume video 11 percent of the time."
MediaPost Publications - Study: Web Users More Likely To Stream Video Than Download - 11/20/2006: "CONSUMERS TYPICALLY ONLY PLAY 15% of an entire online video or audio, according to a study commissioned by online audio and video search engine Podzinger. The study also indicated that consumers are willing to tolerate 10- to 15-second video ads as part of viewing online content. However, video ads were considered annoying if repeated too often. The study also found that consumers are almost six times more likely to play content online than to download it, and that entertainment accounts for 36% of all online video play, but only 6% of available video. The Podzinger survey was conducted by market research firm Pathfinder Innovation in one-on-one interviews in September in U.S. markets including Cambridge, MA, Chicago, and Los Angeles."
Interactive Television - TV - Report - New York Times: "“It’s not like I’m sitting there being the couch potato.”
Like lots of other Americans, she rents a digital video recorder, which allows her to time-shift her favorite shows, and she can choose from hundreds of movies on demand. But in other regards Ms. Smith is ahead of the curve.
She is one of 160,000 Time Warner subscribers who, as part of a broad experiment, are living with what may well be the future of television: souped-up interactivity. As a result she gets to choose not just when she wants to watch certain programs, but to a greater or lesser extent what those programs look like on her screen — what news to magnify and what personalized information to call up, where to go deep and what to skip.
If she’s watching CNN or CNBC, she can select short video clips on the latest headlines or market news, just as she might while clicking her way around a Web site. When she can’t sleep, she can turn to the Weather Channel, click on an icon and dip into one of the network’s “Storm Stories,” the popular compendium of meteorological havoc."
creativepro.com - Major Search Engines Unite to Support a Common Mechanism for Website Submission: "In the first joint and open initiative to improve the Web crawl process for search engines, Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft today announced support for Sitemaps 0.90 (www.sitemaps.org), a free and easy way for webmasters to notify search engines about their websites and be indexed more comprehensively and efficiently, resulting in better representation in search indices. For users, Sitemaps enables higher quality, fresher search results. An initiative initially driven by Yahoo! and Google, Sitemaps builds upon the pioneering Sitemaps 0.84, released by Google in June of 2005, which is now being adopted by Yahoo! and Microsoft to offer a single protocol to enhance Web crawling efforts.
Together, the sponsoring companies will continue to collaborate on the Sitemaps protocol and publish enhancements on a jointly maintained website www.sitemaps.org, which provides all of the details about the Sitemaps protocol."
American Copywriter: White pants hunting.: "If the new Web has given us nothing else, it has at least enticed old brands to try to learn new tricks. I'd put that in the category of things that don't suck."
Yahoo Buys Site for Staging Online Contests - New York Times: "Yahoo is acquiring Bix.com, a site that allows users and advertisers to create, enter into and judge online contests. The deal is an attempt by Yahoo to bolster its offerings in social media, an area where it has struggled to compete with sites like MySpace and YouTube."
Old People Like Web Video! - Forbes.com: "The online video audience is older than you might think. And Internet users are still much more likely to tap out an e-mail or play a game than watch a clip.
Those were some of the details in a snapshot of the Internet video market presented Tuesday by eMarketer senior analyst David Hallerman. The analyst used his company's data, along with numbers from other research firms, to sketch out a somewhat surprising picture."
Comedy Central tweaks video platform | Tech&Sci | Internet | Reuters.com: "With uncertainty looming over its presence on YouTube, Comedy Central is refining its broadband video strategy.
The network is launching a revamped version of its online programming platform, MotherLoad, this month with a new syndicated video player at its heart, the network said Wednesday.
MotherLoad will be integrated deeper into Comedy-Central.com while offering a syndication capability allowing users to grab and embed their favorite clips for posting on their own Web pages. The new video player is part of a makeover of the channel's Web site."
FUROR IN SECOND LIFE
CopyBot anger rises - Second Life Insider: "There is a furore going on in the SL forums because libSL have produced a CopyBot which allows complete copying of prim objects with textures and animations, which makes the copier the creator of the object, and have seen fit to release this on the community.
The geeks of libSL react with surprise that anyone could think that this might be used for evil purposes, and helpfully suggest that a DMCA takedown notice will solve the problems it creates. libSL for those who haven't come across it before, is the Linden-supported project reverse engineering SL's code for the good of the community ... or so they would have us believe. In their words: libsecondlife is a open source software project to allow the creation of third-party Second Life applications. They have also been a haven for griefers and exploiters, and many of those have been banned."
MediaPost Publications - Madison Ave: Web Ads Perform Better For Direct Response Than Branding - 11/15/2006: "'Online advertising provides nearly instantaneous metrics, which has led most of us to view online as a direct response medium,' one agency told researchers. 'We know that online ads also have solid brand building power, but this is often overshadowed by TV and other media that promote brand building power because they can't claim more measurable results.'"
MercuryNews.com | 11/14/2006 | Deal adds mobile social networking plan: "In a partnership that could herald a new era in social networking, Palo Alto start-up loopt plans to launch a new service today with Boost Mobile, one of the nation's biggest youth-oriented wireless phone companies. Boost's 3.8 million customers -- who are mostly under 25 -- will be able to create groups of friends and keep track of them using a combination of text messaging, pictures and the GPS technology embedded in most new mobile phones today."
Wired News: The Business SIde of Web 2.0: "Web 2.0 doesn't end with YouTube and MySpace. A new wave of plug-and-play applications shows many of the same ideas can work in business, and undercut expensive custom software typically used by giant corporations."
IBM Relies on Second Life for 'V-Business' · MarketingVOX: "Increasing its investment in Second Life, IBM will spend $10MM on virtual worlds over the next year and is already conducting development for around 20 clients inside Second Life."
It's My (Virtual) World and Welcome to It! - New York Times: "A player -- or resident, in Second Life parlance -- navigates this space through an avatar, a digital persona whose features can be adjusted to suit almost any whim (pointy chin, neon-green irises, the thick and full head of hair I remember having for a split-second in 11th grade).
But unlike other multiplayer online role-playing games, like the insanely popular World of Warcraft (www.worldofwarcraft.com), Second Life is not really a game.
There are no princesses to save nor orcs to slaughter. Instead, the goal is simply to interact with the million-plus other residents, explore the planet and, in a unique twist, create new parts of it.
For Second Life lets residents build objects using small, basic shapes called prims. Almost everything you encounter -- from ice-cream cones to modernist houses to cans of Duff -- has been created by a resident, and much of it is for sale."
Coming Soon via Your TiVo: Internet Video on Television - New York Times: "TiVo plans to introduce features that will allow people to use its digital video recorders to watch some video programming from the Internet on their televisions.
Until now, TiVo has not been able to tap into the explosion of Web video — clips uploaded by amateurs and, increasingly, professional segments made for the Internet. The new features, which are set to be announced today and introduced early next year, are intended to change that."
Growing number of educators explore 'Second Life' online - CNN.com: "A growing number of educators are getting caught up in the wave. More than 60 schools and educational organizations have set up shop in the virtual world and are exploring ways it can be used to promote learning.
The three-dimensional virtual world makes it possible for students taking a distance course to develop a real sense of community, said Rebecca Nesson, who leads a class jointly offered by Harvard Law School and Harvard Extension School in the world of 'Second Life.'
'Students interact with each other and there's a regular sense of classroom interaction. It feels like a college campus,' she said."
Second Life is a preview of the Internet of the future - Nov. 10, 2006: "Second Life, the three-dimensional virtual world, has been getting tons of press lately. In the software, which anyone can download for free, you travel around as an 'avatar' representing yourself (with a different name), through a huge range of spaces - beautiful natural environments, shopping malls, museums, clubs, homes, apartments and cities. So far, it's signed up 1.3 million members.
It's not a game, it's just a place you go to do whatever you want to do. It has been on the cover of Business Week, on the front page of the New York Times Escapes section and in the coverage of Reuters, which has now assigned a reporter to operate full-time inside Second Life."
Other nations could beat the U.S. on the Internet - Nov. 3, 2006: "In the largest such survey ever conducted, 86 percent of a group of more than 1,000 experts on the next-generation Internet say they worry that the head start of other nations will hurt the United States.
They fear that China, India, and many European and Asian countries are moving faster to implement the addressing scheme known as Internet Protocol version 6, or IPv6. The new protocol will enable much longer numerical web addresses, the underlying data which tells URLs like Fortune.com where to go."
Expo TV - Consumer Videos: product demonstration, testimonials, buying experts
Now comes the beginnings of "verticals" within video sites. In this instance a site, Expo TV, that's dedicated to DIY consumer reviews of products and "Everthing Else."
They ask you to upload your "VideOpinions" for a chance to earn cash.
The Diva Marketing Blog
Edelman/Wal-Mart Lessons Learned
Here are instructive and insightful details into a commercial blogging experiment gone awry. Edelman PR attempted to pass off a blog written by its employees on behalf of Wal-Mart. Obviously, transparency in the blogosphere should never ever be compromised.
However, I see a different conclusion to this cautionary tale. Blog-related marketing efforts ... perhaps ... shouldn't be driven by PR goals and tactics.
PR is by definition an intermediary between a corporation and the media, which is in-turn an intermediary to the public.
What differentiates word-of-mouth marketing is that it appropriates PR-like tactics but is not an intermediary. It is a direct channel to consumers via blogs, social networks and special interest usergroups online.
It's splitting a hair. But it's a hair worth splitting.