Tag Archives: Marketing

Google doesn’t think I’m funny – Humor, headlines, and SEO

13 May

I once read that you should write for your readers first, search engines second, and your ego third.  I try to consider all of these things when writing this blog, but find that they’re often in competition.  (I try to include keywords like culture, social media, and bog whenever they fit, but sometimes it’s hard to do it without getting in the way of the narrative style.)  Yesterday, I found this on The Awl.  Apparently I’m not alone in my battle to balance all three.

Stack of Newspaper Headlines - Burns out, Storm Kills, Drugs, Recycling, Stem cellsGoogle doesn’t laugh
It doesn’t even titter
It can’t guffaw like Facebook
It won’t split its sides like Twitter

Google doesn’t crack a smile
It won’t respond to mirth
There’s not a single laughing part
Not even Google Earth

Your title might be funny
Forcing chuckles from the chest
But Google sits there stone-faced
Resolutely unimpressed

Don’t try to brighten someone’s day
Don’t aim for “smart and winning”
Your goal is catching Google’s eye
And Google isn’t grinning

Best to stick to SEO
And trade your wheat for chaff
Forget the humor, blogger boy
‘Cause Google doesn’t laugh Continue reading

Do You Have a Personal Social Media Policy?

8 May Social media network logos coming out of megaphone

Recently, I read an article called What’s Your Personal Social Media Policy? Social Media Policy Thought Clouds Many companies have social media policies (some quite draconian, others pretty normal), but those are meant to protect the company’s image and interests, not the person’s.  In the article, Mike Brown discussed his own social media faux pas and how he’s developing a policy to prevent them in the future.

He started off by saying:

Googling “social media policy” returns nearly 5 million hits – obviously a topic getting lots of attention. Modifying the search to “personal social media policy” reduces the hits by 99%. That’s relatively scant attention to how individuals could or should formalize how we conduct ourselves personally across various social media channels.

In an era where people are building (and sharing) their personal brands online, your personal social media policy is important to consider, especially if you’re someone who’s in the business of selling/promoting yourself or your personal brand. Continue reading

Boys want to do battle. Girls want to love. At least, that’s what marketers think.

1 Apr

Today in blogs, The Mary Sue has a very interesting post on Gender Marketing in Toys.  The article is based on word clouds of the terms most used in commercials for toys marketing to boys and girls, respectively.  The word clouds were designed by Crystal Smith, author of The Achilles Effect: What Pop Culture is Teaching Young Boys about Masculinity.

The biggest words in the boy cloud are “battle” and “power”.  “Heroes”, “stealth”, “ultimate”, “rides”, and “beat” also make prominent appearances.  So, I guess boys are supposed to be heroes by using their ultimate stealthy rides to beat… the bad guys?

The biggest words in the girl cloud are “love”, “fun”, and “magic”.  It should probably be noted that “love” is three or four times bigger than any other word.  ‘”Girl”, “friendship”, “change”, “babies”, “hair”, “mommy” and “style” are also pretty big.  So, girls are supposed to have friendships with girls and change their hairstyle to get ready to be mommies to babies?

I guess it should be noted that the boy cloud includes “friends”, but it’s one of the smallest words featured, the same size as “dump” and “nemesis”…  Small words in the girl cloud include “whirling”, “twirling”, and “paisley”.

Interestingly, many of the boy words are verbs or adverbs, and many of the girl words are nouns or adjectives.  Boy toys are marketing towards doing and girl toys are marketing towards being.

Obviously, the discussion of gender and children’s marketing gets into some chicken and egg type questions.  As The Mary Sue put it “Do kids respond to ads because they’re predisposed that way from birth? Or do they respond to the ads because they are taught to, by ads that have people of their gender responding in the same way?”  I’m leaning more towards the latter than the former.

An AppStore a Day Keeps the Lawyers… Involved?

23 Mar

Amazon and Apple are at again, hashing out trademarks and usage of terms that one considers generic and the other proprietary.  Amazon has launched an “AppStore”, which Apple seems to close to its “Apple App Store”.  According to Social Times, Apple has filed a lawsuit and is seeking damages from Amazon.

Towards the end of their article, Social Times asks:

Can the history of the term “app” be traced and attributed? How common is the term? Is “App” the new Kleenex- a brand which has become synonymous with an item? For all the users – who have no stake hold in the term – does anyone really care?

I’ve always been interested in what happens when a brand becomes synonymous with an entire product category, known as a colloquial brand.

I also found this list of The Top 100 Brands Synonymous with Their Product Category.  (Should that be “Their Product Categories”?)  I was surprised by a lot of them, including these:  Zipper, Popsicle, Ping Pong, Heroin, Dumpster, Dry Ice.  More can be found here.

Here’s what I always wonder: is this a good thing or a bad thing for a company?  It’s good because it means that their product is successful, the most successful and well known in its category.  But, it’s bad in that they lose (at least some) control of their brand.  Is this something that brand mangers strive for or fear?

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