Aug 30

Response August: Kiko, no! no!, and More Dough

Response August 2016About two weeks back, Response‘s August issue hit the web (and, since, most subscribers’ mailboxes). Yesterday, we wrapped up and sent our September issue to print. So today I’m taking a few minutes out of the day to get this post up and share some back story on the August pub, which is fronted by our cover story on global cosmetics brand Kiko Milano. The issue also features our annual look at the financial services marketplace, a story on how the marketers behind no! no! battled counterfeiters and won, and a feature touching on the latest trends affecting payment processing. Here’s more on each of those stories — and others:

  • I first met Igor Credali, New York-based e-commerce leader of Kiko Milano’s U.S. expansion efforts, at the eTail West event in Palm Desert, Calif., about six months ago. I’d received outreach from digital partner Linc for a meeting at the event, and during that meeting, the Linc team introduced me to Credali as one of its “star” clients. The story about Linc’s efforts to help Kiko build its brand in the U.S. — a brand that is extremely well known and regarded throughout Europe — was intriguing. When I returned to the office and started digging deeper on Kiko’s work in the U.S. — it’s online marketing efforts and rapid ascension in brick-and-mortar retail — I knew this was a story we wanted to tell. Fortunately, the crew at Linc and Credali himself were up for the idea. If you missed it above, here’s the link: A Beautiful Expansion
  • Another annual staple, our feature on the latest trends for financial services marketers takes a deeper look at the different variations of media — style, content, length, and more — that marketers in the banking, insurance, and finance worlds are using to reach consumers. For years now, financial services marketers have been pathfinders, leading the way for other verticals in showing how offline and online media can converge to drive response from consumers. That’s still true today. What are they up to now? If you missed the link above, click here to check out the story: The Dollars and Cents of Performance-Based Marketing
  • An interesting partnership between skin-care marketer Radiancy and leading e-commerce websites is at the heart of a feature that shines a spotlight on the ongoing problem of counterfeit products. At our DRMA Winter Bash last December in New York, I met Jaimee Given, Radiancy’s marketing manager, who shared openly about the struggles the company was facing with counterfeit versions of its popular no! no! product — especially on websites like Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba. She was working hard at solving the issue and had enlisted leaders from those e-retailers and more for help. The story you see in this issue talks about the incredible results Given and Co. have authored — as well as discussing the landscape going forward. Our Doug McPherson has the story: Beating the Bad Guys
  • The concepts behind processing consumer payments seem to be changing as quickly, at the least, as the outlets where consumers can buy marketers’ products and services. Along with growing e-commerce — and, perhaps more strikingly, m-commerce (mobile commerce) — marketers must continue to address customer concerns about security and privacy. And with new EMV chip cards becoming the norm, online fraud has become even more prevalent. What does it all mean? We asked a trio of payment processing experts about these items and more. Here’s what they had to say: Pay Day
  • Our monthly direct response TV and radio media billings return to the short-form DRTV space for first-quarter 2016 results. Once again — and hopefully for the fourth and final time since they were announced — Kantar Media’s changes to its Hispanic media measurements affect its reported results. Another slide — more than 25 percent — left short-form DR results at what we hope is a new 1Q baseline: $622.4 million. For a full look at 1Q 2016 short-form DRTV media billings, click here: No New Tale to Tell for Short-Form DRTV
  • Other key items in this month’s issue include:2016 DRMA Summer Bash
  • Finally, sometimes when working on my Editor’s Note column, timing is everything. Just days before I sat down to write my monthly missive, two massive deals shook the performance-based marketing world: Unilever‘s $1 billion purchase of Dollar Shave Club; and Verizon‘s $4.8 billion deal to acquire Yahoo. Want to talk about a lay-up? These two deals — and how they each spoke to the growing importance of how marketers are quantifying spend and success — were prime fodder to write about. If you missed the link above, here you go: Verizon-Yahoo, Unilever-Dollar Shave Club Speak to Performance-Based Power

Thanks again for reading and interacting with Response!

Aug 04

Response July: Don’t Call Them Comebacks

Response July 2016It’s been about 10 days since Response‘s July issue hit the web (and mailboxes). Earlier this week, we wrapped up and sent off our August issue to print. So I’m now able to share a bit about the issue, which is led by  a cover story on long-time performance-based marketing leader Nutrisystem. The issue also features our annual look at production and creative work in the TV/video sector and a feature touching on the latest news in the entertainment market. Read on for some back story on the key facets of the July issue:

  • We at Response have a lengthy knowledge of and history with Nutrisystem and its marketing efforts. The 44-year-old company has been a long-time leader in utilizing performance-based efforts — both offline and online — that have merited our coverage in the past. Additionally, we’ve known, personally, a number of the company’s media strategy leaders over the years. But, while prepping for Response Expo 2016 last winter, we reconnected with the company’s PR head, Robin Shallow, thanks to another old friend of the magazine, Karla Crawford Kerr of ad agency Hawthorne Direct. And though the company’s CMO, Keira Krausz, wasn’t able to swing her schedule to speak at the Expo, we were able to grab this cover story. And what great timing, as Nutrisystem is on a three-year hot streak after some lean years — thanks to Krausz’s leadership and its team’s knowledge of omnichannel marketing. At the same time, the company made a key acquisition while also debuting a brand new campaign in late 2015. If you missed it above, here’s the link: All Systems Go!
  • An annual staple, our feature on the production/creative end of the business, used to be centered fully around DRTV production. But with the expansion of new screens, digital media, and more, the story has expanded to include a deeper dive into the wider world of what might now be called video production. It’s clear that video assets are among the most desired by online marketers — and the experience with the success of video in different facets of online marketing is driving many of these marketers to look at linear TV as an advertising option. Don’t worry — even though we have updated how we look at this feature, our annual “cost of” spot and infomercial production charts remain a major part of the piece. If you missed the link above but want to check out the story, click here: Harnessing the Ever-Shrinking Screen
  • If you didn’t get enough about the power of new screens in the production story, well, the entertainment feature has some more for you. Between the growing power of subscriber video-on-demand (SVOD) and over-the-top (OTT) options and the technological breakthrough of 4K ultra high-definition (UHD) televisions, performance-based marketers have a lot to consider these days. Our Nicole Urso Reed, a one-time senior editor for Response and long-time freelancer, has more in her story: Ready for the Next Big Thing
  • Our monthly direct response TV and radio media billings return to the long-form DRTV space for first-quarter 2016 results that continue the sector’s recent run of good fortune. After a three-year losing streak was finally broken in 3Q 2015, results reported in this issue make 1Q 2016 the third consecutive winning quarter. Total time slots purchased rose more than 22 percent, and only fading cable media pricing — which, actually, is a relief to buyers and perhaps a major key to recent success — kept the quarter’s dollar-on-dollar rise below 16 percent. For a full look at 1Q 2016 long-form DRTV media billings, click here: Long-Form DRTV Billings Continue Rising in 1Q 2016
  • I wasn’t all that happy with my Editor’s Note column this month. When you’re tasked with writing a monthly column for 15 years, things can get … stale. And, sometimes — when you’re blocked — the writing gets rather clunky. Anyway, the thing you probably want to take from this piece is that we are working hard — at all times — to build our community of readers and advertisers. One recent development in that is the formation of DRMA Committees. While nearly four-dozen industry executives have joined the committees, there’s still room for more volunteers. Get more info on the committees here: DRMA Committees. And if you missed the link above, click here (if you must) to read my latest: Banding Together Can Create Business Freedom

Thanks again for reading and interacting with Response!

Jul 05

#LOTD2014: January Playlist

#LOTD2014: January PlaylistNext up on the Lyric-of-the-Day project recaps from 2013-2014 is the January 2014 playlist. As a refresher, each day from Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2014, I posted a lyric on my Twitter feed. At the end of each month, I created a Spotify playlist of the songs featured, and throughout much of 2013-14 here on the blog.

Here’s January’s #LOTD2014 playlist (find the Spotify playlist I’ve created from these lyrics linked at the end of the post or on the clickable image at right), with some brief explanations (in italics) for a number of the lyrics.

  • “It’s time to spread our wings and fly/Don’t let another day go by my love” #JohnLennon “(Just Like) Starting Over” #LOTD2014 1/1
  • “But there’s something about us I’ve got to do/Some kind of secret I will share with you” #DaftPunk “Something About Us” #LOTD2014 1/2
  • “Got a 7-inch trigger finger/Don’t know how to stop it” #7Horse “Meth Lab Zoso Sticker” #LOTD2014 1/3 (Memorable tune from Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street,” which I saw on this Friday night.)
  • “Yeah, uh huh, you know what it is/Everything I do, I do it big” #WizKhalifa “Black And Yellow” #LOTD2014 1/4
  • “Cause we were raised/To see life as fun and take it if we can” #TheCranberries “Ode To My Family” #LOTD2014 1/5
  • “Roots that spread so deep/Bring life to frozen ground” #CrowdedHouse “Something So Strong” #LOTD2014 1/6
  • “We never once thought of the fears/For what we’d do when the battle cry was over” #Alarm “Sixty Eight Guns” #LOTD2014 1/7
  • “I’m not the only soul who’s accused of hit and run/Tire tracks all across your back” #JimiHendrix “Crosstown Traffic” #LOTD2014 1/8
  • “Forever never seems that long til you’re grown & notice the day-by-day rule can’t be too long” #Outkast “Ms. Jackson” #LOTD2014 #Coachella 1/9 (Coachella 2014 lineup announced, featuring the Outkast “reunion.”)
  • “These days, days, days run away like horses over the hill…” #U2 “Dirty Day” #LOTD2014 1/10 #Bukowski
  • “Before the teacher and the test/Before the journey and the rest” #BigCountry “Fields Of Fire” #LOTD2014 1/11
  • “And all this science I don’t understand/It’s just my job five days a week/A rocket man …” #EltonJohn “Rocket Man” #LOTD2014 1/12 (Visited the Space Shuttle at the California Science Center in Exposition Park with my Aunt Sue.)
  • “Tough guy, what you got to prove/Moving like an elephant, that’s your favorite move” #BeastieBoys “Tough Guy” #LOTD2014 1/13
  • “Winter’s winners and those summer sons/Aren’t good for everyone, aren’t good for everyone” #EchoAndTheBunnymen “The Game” #LOTD2014 1/14
  • “Yeah, we’re runnin’ a little bit hot tonight/I can barely see the road from the heat comin’ off it” #VanHalen “Panama” #LOTD2014 1/15
  • “This is what they call the life/I’m melting in the sun/Great expectations/Of all we seem to be” #INXS “Melting In The Sun” #LOTD2014 1/16
  • “Just 2 lost souls swimming in a fish bowl year after year/Running over the same old ground” #PinkFloyd “Wish You Were Here” #LOTD2013 1/17
  • “Greedy little people in a sea of distress/Keep your more to receive your less” #RedHotChiliPeppers “Give It Away” #LOTD2014 1/18
  • “Why you all in my ear?/Talkin’ a whole bunch of sh*t I ain’t tryin’ to hear” #Ludacris “Get Back” #LOTD2014 1/19 #Sherman to #Crabtree
  • “Sleep, sleep tonight/And may your dreams be realized” #U2  “MLK” #LOTD2014 1/20 #IHaveADream #MartinLutherKing
  • “Now I’m makin’ them wait/Except for you mama, I’m ready/I don’t wanna be late” #ChildishGambino “Make It Go Right” #LOTD2014 1/21
  • “I remember traffic jams/Motor boys and girls with tans/Nearly was and almost rans” #REM “I Remember California” #LOTD2014 1/22 (USC hoops upsets Cal for its first Pac-12 win of the season.)
  • “Nothing stayed the same/But there were always renegades” #AfrikaBambaataa #RageAgainstTheMachine “Renegades Of Funk” #LOTD2014 1/23
  • “Wrote a nasty letter & I sent it to the Lord/I said don’t you dare come & bother me no more” #TheDeadWeather “Rocking Horse” #LOTD2014 1/24
  • “If one guy’s colors and the other’s don’t mix/They’re gonna bash it up” #TheOffspring “Come Out And Play” #LOTD2014 1/25 #StadiumSeries #LA (L.A. Kings vs. Anaheim Ducks in front of more than 54,000 at Dodger Stadium in the NHL Stadium Series game.)
  • “Seasons change with the scenery/Weaving time in a tapestry” #SimonAndGarfunkel “Hazy Shade Of Winter” #LOTD2014 1/26
  • “I met you on the Palisades/The sun was spilling kerosene/And I was feeling wide awake” #MiikeSnow “Song For No One” #LOTD2014 1/27
  • “You could have a bumper car, bumping/This amusement never ends” #PeterGabriel “Sledgehammer” #LOTD2014 1/28
  • “Sometimes I say stupid things I think/Well, I mean/Sometimes I think the stupidest things” #FranzFerdinand “No You Girls” #LOTD2013 1/29
  • “Painted lies on broken lips/That promise heaven tastes like this” #PsychedelicFurs “All That Money Wants” #LOTD2014 1/30
  • “Flip on the tele/Wrestle with Jimmy/Something is bubbling/Behind my back” #Weezer “Say It Ain’t So” #LOTD2014 1/31 #PhoenixOpen #BirdsNest (After a full day on No. 16 at the Phoenix Open, a group of us stuck around to catch the Weezer concert at the famed “Birds’ Nest” location at TPC Scottsdale.)

Here’s the Spotify playlist if you’d like to listen along: #LOTD2014: January