Direct Marketing Tips for Consumers in 2011

In looking ahead to 2011 and the brewing economic recovery, it is essential to understand what happened in 2010 and how it will shape the next 12 months.

  1. Don’t take a one size fits all approach – For decades now companies large and small have invested millions of dollars in targeting their audience with messaging that their “gut” tells them will resonate with their target consumer. They fail to do their research and take a homogenous all approach to marketing. Even large global brands like Chevrolet tried marketing their Nova around the world without taking into account regional interpretations of the word. The net result was a sales disaster in South America where the model name roughly translated to “No Go”.
  2. Do your research – Market research is not a luxury, it is a necessity. Today’s consumer base is highly fickle and they often times know your product or your marketplace better than you do. Spending a few extra weeks in your marketing process to understand what makes your customers tick, their likes and dislikes and their perception of your brand can be the difference between an overwhelming success and an utter failure when your product goes to market. When possible involve the target as early in the product development lifecycle as possible, even simple Facebook polls on your brand website can derive valuable information at no cost.
  3. Be where your consumers are – Let’s face facts, the days of targeting the masses via a 30 second spot on NBC or a print buy in the NY Times have long since passed. The last 10 years have created an incredibly fragmented marketplace and the next 10 are likely to increase fragmentation exponentially. With a litany of methods for content distribution, it is now more important than ever that your message is carefully crafted, delivered at the right time and via the right channel. Working with technology that can manipulate your message and deliver it across multiple platforms, in multiple languages is no longer an expense you can’t justify, it is a technology you must justify.
  4. Social isn’t going anywhere – With Facebook being the second most visited site on the web your website alone isn’t going to cut it anymore. Consumers are spending more time engaging, promoting and complaining about brands on Twitter and Facebook now more than ever before. Consumers expect to be heard, they expect to play a role in choosing the next flavor (Mountain Dew’s Dew Nation), they want to participate in helping raise awareness (Susan G. Komen), they want to buy within Facebook (Target, Sephora, 1-800-Flowers), they want to get a great deal (@DellOutlet, @JetBlue), they want to find your mobile coffee, Korean BBQ or gourmet cupcake truck (@kogibbq, @coffeegroundz, @sprinkles), they want to broadcast their problems and get them solved(@bofa, @frontier). Listen, innovate and engage.
  5. Go mobile – Seems that every year since 2005 has been heralded as “The Year of Mobile”, 2011 might be the year. In 2011, the iPhone will become available on Verizon (USA’s largest carrier) and Google Android will shatter the 300,000 units activated per day number. Add the launch of Honeycomb (Android 3.0 OS) to support a variety of iPad competitors coming online and the mobile opportunity looms large. Retailers will be able to sell directly through QR codes, barcode scans and mobile storefronts. Location aware ads will become a reality, imagine getting a 20% off mobile coupon from Macy’s valid for 60 minutes when you enter the mall or a coupon for a free small cup of coffee at the airport food court.

2011 promises to be an exciting year for consumers and advertisers alike. A well-rounded marketing strategy inclusive of targeted campaigns, increased consumer dialogue and a focus on more efficient technology will make you a more effective marketer.

Understanding the Recent Mayhem in the Equity Market

Over the last couple of weeks we have witnessed a series of conflicting reports from all over the media complex as to why equity markets are under pressure. Predictably, as soon as the markets recover a bit these same pundits come up with all sorts of reasons to cheer.Needless to say these hysterical reports, bullish or bearish, are entirely worthless. CNBC, with its ridiculous “fat finger” report, has proved its irrelevance as a financial news source. In fact, this embarrassing story (released with less than an 1/2 hour to go in the trading session) stinks of manipulation and seems to implicate CNBC as a pawn in a propaganda ring.But I digress, my purpose today is to offer a little clarity to the situation. So without any further ado, let’s map the market developments and see what, if any, conclusions may be reached.Support: Government support is the primary reason equity markets have traded higher over the last year. That support has taken the form of, to name a few, “cash for clunkers,” foreclosure prevention, home buyer credits and a myriad of Fed liquidity programs.The result of this support has been the release of government supplied economic numbers that appear promising and suggest GDP expansion (Did you pick up the sarcasm in that sentence? Sorry!).To sum up, large quantities of Fed-provided quantitative easing and rosy economic numbers are the fuel driving markets higher. Now Europe and the European Central Bank (ECB) have joined the fray. Supposedly close to $1trillion of liquidity will be thrown into the gaping mouth of the debt monster.Pressure: Abysmal – as in the size of an abyss – amounts of world debt are swallowing up prodigious amounts of liquidity.China – China’s equity markets have for some time been a leading indicator for US markets and risk assets in general. Recently, the Shanghai Index reached into bear market territory with a 20% decline from the highs of the year. This is not a good omen. Moreover, China’s economic expansion could be labeled the lynchpin of world economic growth and the recent measures by China’s central bank to tighten liquidity is, to say the least, problematic for a world drowning in debt. The recent increase in consumer prices of 2.8% in China only exacerbate the problem as it would appear inflation is accelerating.Goldman Sachs – Common knowledge suggests the markets swooned because of violence in Greece. This is absolutely not the case. We can draw a direct line to the beginning of this most recent market drop and the day Goldman Sachs ( GS ) faced the Senate tribunal. Government crucifying of the financial space is heating up and will only get worse as senators fight for re election this November. GS is the undisputed heavyweight champ of the financial space and if they fall the financials as a whole will experience painful P.E. multiple contraction. In the last few weeks GS’s credit curve has inverted. Credit protection on GS cost more for 1 year than 5 years. If this trend persists a debt downgrade for GS could be in the offing which would in turn send financial shares tumbling.This Just In: As I write this the “Senate Finance Committee votes on amendment to create a new ratings agency; yay’s have it 64-35, amendment agreed to…” Can you hear that? That’s the sound of a GS debt downgrade being written. The congressionally approved ratings body will likely remove the conflict of interest inherent in the current private rating agencies business model. Hence, we would not be surprised to see Moody/Fitch/S&P make a preemptive downgrade.Financial Group (FINs) – FINs have always been a leading indicator for overall market direction. If GS drags the FINs down the rest of the market will suffer. Make no mistake, as the volume of negative news and behavior towards the FINs grows louder the equity markets will suffer.Greece – I would be remiss if I didn’t include this component as part of the pressure on the markets. The proposed trillion euro bailout seems dubious at best. Lest we forget weeks were required to raise just $30 billion and now somehow the finance ministers got together over the weekend and $700 billion was pledged?! Now these ministers must go back to their respective countries and try to get funding. This funding request should be a tough sell. After all, the German people recently voted the ruling party out of one house after the first 40 bil Euro bailout. In fact, rumor has it a reintroduction of the German Mark may be in the offing. How about England? They have yet to participate in any bailout and now elections have created a coalition (read: do nothing) government.The simple fact remains that all this talk of bailouts is actually missing the real point: Greece has a solvency issue not a liquidity issue.Conclusions/Questions: Q: Will liquidity expansion trump debt implosion?Q: Will excess liquidity continue to find its way into the equity markets?Q: Will Chinese tightening and supposed European austerity plans actually drain marginal liquidity?C: As my mom would say, “we must live the questions and the answers will reveal themselves.” So, remain vigilant, defend principal and let the markets be your guide. Don’t force your will on the market and avoid complacency at all costs.C: No matter which is the victor, the Tidal Wave of Liquidity or the Trench of Debt, one asset class will not only survive but flourish. The precious metals, Gold and Silver, are now advancing to new highs against all fiat currencies. I have written repeatedly over the last few years that the true inflection point for Gold and Silver will arrive when their values increase even in the face of a rising US dollar. The time is now. Please hold on to the Bar!Disclosure: No positions

Is Network Marketing a 24-7 Home Business? What Does it Take to Succeed?

Network Marketing is a 24-7 home business. It contains two paradoxes which is an interesting fact to look at. There’s a huge difference between network marketing and pyramid schemes. We’re seeing it change the network marketing industry right before our eyes.

The key to understanding an mlm compensation plan is to understand what events trigger you getting paid. One of the main reasons why people fail isn’t because the industry doesn’t work. It’s actually because they simply haven’t found the best business opportunity for them. The key to understanding a compensation plan is to understand what events trigger you getting paid.

It’s no secret that “marketing” is a skill that strangely enough does not get trained by 97% of network marketing business leaders. If instead you spend some time learning how to attract interested prospects to you, this makes network marketing easier.

Building a business on Google, and making that business profitable, is the ultimate goal of this team. Everyone wants to tie the internet & network marketing together and we should, yet we can fall into the trap of not focusing on the essentials that we need to become successful. This is why the right training is not only necessary but vitally important to your future success.

Network marketing can be beneficial in building a plethora of resources and contacts that you can have at your fingertips to propel your business forward.

All you have to remember is there is work to be done and you always have to be willing to learn new strategies and techniques.

There are many other great tips and techniques available at your disposal by just clicking the link below.

Thanks for reading!