Marketing News Roundup - August 12, 2011

What should you be paying attention to this week?

Besides continued uncertainty?

Groupon gets mixed reviews from merchants. 82% of merchants surveyed unhappy with their Groupon experience, but 45% willing to try again. (eMarketer)

The only thing that's certain is more uncertainty.
Photo: Flickr user Patrik Jones.
Your takeaway: The verdict is still out on these kinds of deal sites. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. First, really price this out – you’re going to need to discount your product between 50% and 90% to work with Groupon and similar sites. Do your math ahead of time! Second, customers are loyal to Groupon, not your business, so the number of new, loyal customers you get may not be as high as you think it’s going to be. If you’re OK with both of those things, give it a try, but keep your eye on the news – more and more stories are surfacing that Groupon itself may be financially insolvent.

E-Commerce spending up 14%. $1 of every $10 in discretionary spending now happens online. (Washington Post)

Your takeaway: Take a few moments in the next week to sit down with your web analytics software and examine your shopping cart funnel. Could you lower your abandon rate with an easier sales process, a more noticeable callout about data security and privacy, or a reminder email strategy?

Also, don’t forget that this still means that $9 of discretionary spending happens offline. If you sell your product through both online and offline channels, make sure these work together to capture customers, however they like to buy.

People are starting to experience social network fatigue. Rather than connecting to friends and family, people simply feel pressured to check and update their networks without getting a lot of value out of them. (New York Times)

Your takeaway: Focus on the social networks where your customers are. Don’t waste time trying to sell your homemade scented soap on LinkedIn or your extremely technical e-commerce solution on Facebook. Use management tools to pre-schedule posts to multiple networks, but make sure you do a bit of customization – I can usually tell when something written for Twitter winds up on Facebook (complete with #hashtags) and this is a heads up to customers that you’re taking some shortcuts.

What's going on with you this week? Tell me in the comments.

Have a wonderful weekend, and thanks for reading!

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