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10/9 2012

Leahy Group Management

About a year ago I started a holding company, Leahy Group Management, to manage all my consulting, management, and investing needs. I have nicknamed it LGM, and have taken about a year to nab the URL leahygroupmgmt.com. But here we are!

For more information, email: info AT leahygroupmgmt.com

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02/24 2012

Idea Pit #1

My friends tell me that I should work for a creative digital agency, because tend to generate ideas for various brands, companies, startups, or projects. I actually tend to agree with them, and would love to be an environment where I could vet / think up creative projects for brands and people all day. Sounds pretty great to me, where do I sign?

At any rate, here’s a compilation of 7 ideas I have had over the past few weeks. The last one I came up with while sitting in my kitchen typing this up.

#1 – Allyall.com – Share it with the South

Tumblr-meets-Huffington Post site that is completely tailored for the South and it’s content / values. From Taylor Swift to Ludacris to Travis Tritt, the whole idea is that this the content king of the South. “hey ALLYALL, check it out!” or “Share that with ALLYALL!” – it rolls off the tongue really nice and would be a great brands and users to share content . I told my boy Chamillionaire about it , and he seemed to dig it but wanted to see a plan for execution (obviously! which was nice, and validating).

#2 – Male-entines Day

Gentleman, let’s be honest. The expectations for Valentines Day and your girlfriend (or the girl you like) can be pretty overwhelming. But what if the day after Valentines Day, February 15th, was your day to bask in the center of attention with all the things your little heart so deeply desired? I can guarantee you this would be a day of beer, hot wings, the TV on sports when you get home, and other super guy related things that you’ve always wanted your girl to do. Valentines Day would be so much easier to get into, right?

#3 – San Diego Zoo and WATER COMPANY XYZ

Check in with Foursquare, Facebook, or the San Diego Zoo native app to receive a free (or $1) bottle ofwater at the entrance of the Zoo. Depending on how many people come through the San Diego Zoo on a given weekend, your brand messaging could be tweeted and facebooked out to millions of people over the course of the campaign. {{Location + Check-In w/ social + Product}} marketing can happen at just about any venue and with any brand, but has to have enough scale to make it worth the effort.

#4 – Brands Sponsoring Badges on Social Games / Check-In services

An agency should approach FourSquare to find out how many times a day/week/month a person earns “drinking related badges”. Once they find out this number, they could pitch a company like Budweiser to sponsor the badge. Each time someone earns the badge (usually when they are AT the bar), they get the imprint and top of mind awareness of that specific customer at the bar, while capitalizing on that user’s social sphere when that message goes out to Twitter and Facebook.

#5 – Discounts for sharing

Online retailers and sellers of anything should give “10% Off Your Next Purchase” if the purchase is shared on a social network. This is customer / social loyalty marketing at it’s easiest. It’s the same as being able to validate someone at a brick-and-mortar store who told 10 of their friends how good the establishment was and came back to buy something. I’ve seen it here and there in the marketplace, but this would be a wise tool for any company starting up in any sort of purchasing capacity online.

#6 – Robust apps for clothing or retail stores

When I walk into Gap and check my phone at a kiosk, they should know my size, what clothes I currently own, what type of styles I typically go for, or even what I’m looking for at the mall that day. I should get a discount for using the Gap app because I’m sharing my deeply relevant data with them, and the discounts should vary based on promotions, as well as individual buying and social behavior. In addition, it’s a value add for the customer because I get personalized experience at every store I go to, even if I don’t know that particular worker that day. How’s that for service?

The common trend throughout these ideas (minus AllYall.com, which is really a startup) is that there is a TECHNOLOGY and a BRAND that exist to bring a user or CUSTOMER closer to the BRAND through core EXPERIENCE that the person truely WANTS.

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02/20 2012

Mobile Trends – US Online Mkt Spend

Lot’s of opportunities out there in mobile!

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04/26 2011

Social Commerce: A closer look at the numbers

Article on Social Commerce from Eventbrite.

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Here at Eventbrite, we are fascinated by the mechanics that drive social commerce. We carefully track sharing behavior in an effort to help event organizers tap into a new world of distribution for their event promotion. But the findings apply broadly to all eCommerce businesses, because the foundations of ecommerce are shifting as the social graph becomes a meaningful influence in driving transactions.

Effective distribution and promotion is no longer reserved for those who can afford expensive media buys. Instead, social media has leveled the playing field – allowing event attendees to become promoters by easily and effectively sharing the events that they are excited about with their friends and colleagues. Thanks to mass consumer adoption of social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, tapping into our online social graphs is virtually free. Optimizing social distribution, though, requires careful testing and study.

As we’ve said before: we believe that because events are inherently social, telling your friends about events that you care about is a natural behavior. Social media hardly invented word-of-mouth, but it provides a powerful accelerant and a means to measure its impact. That impact is what we call Social Commerce.

Social Commerce is the intersection of social media activity and eCommerce – where sharing leads to real dollars and cents, where a transaction can be traced back to a Facebook “Like” or a Tweet.

A CLOSER LOOK AT THE NUMBERS

Last October we released our first look at Eventbrite’s social commerce numbers, reporting that the average DPS (dollars per share) across all our social media platform integrations was $1.78, and Facebook shares specifically generated $2.53 in ticket sales.

Our aggregate data has remained consistent since October, but now with greater volumes of activity, we decided to take a deeper dive into the last six months of data to help understand the mechanics behind social commerce.

The point of sharing

People share events for many reasons: to gauge friends’ interest in attending, to show off something really cool or unique that they discovered, or to encourage others to attend with them. Depending on that motivation, people will be more or less likely to share either at the point of discovery or post purchase.

On our event pages, users want to share before they’ve made a commitment to purchase a ticket or attend an event. To support that initial, exploratory behavior we feature the Facebook “Like” button, the lowest-friction social sharing tool on the web. On our order confirmation pages, we integrated the higher-friction but stronger “Publish to Facebook” tool. It requires more work from the user to share than with a Facebook “Like,” but this is what we’ve discovered:

  • Over the last six months, 40% of sharing through Facebook occurred on the event page (pre-purchase) vs. 60% of sharing which occurred on the order confirmation page (post-purchase). This tells us that the motivation to share is higher once the purchase is made and the attendee is committed.
  • To further underline this point, our BSR (browsing share rate), is 1% — meaning that of the people who look at an event page before purchasing a ticket, 1% of them share that event. Conversely, our TSR (transcation share rate) is 10%, which means 10 times more people share an event from the order confirmation page.
  • Not only is the motivation to share post-purchase higher, that share is more meaningful than a pre-purchase one. A post-purchase share on Facebook drives 20% more ticket sales per share than a pre-purchase one.

The sharing channel: FB vs. Twitter

In our first report, we noted that there was a meaningful difference between social media platforms and their propensity to drive social commerce. We decided to take a closer look:

  • Over the last six months, sharing activity on Facebook equaled almost 4 times the amount of sharing on Twitter.  We attribute this to Facebook’s reach (right now there are simply more people that use Facebook than Twitter) and the fact that connections on Facebook more closely mirror real-world, personal relationships.
  • The disparity between Facebook and Twitter is also highlighted in the raw dollars generated per share. We offer and track multiple types of Facebook sharing options including “Likes,” wall posts (stream publish), and publishing to a Facebook Page or Event. A Facebook “Like” (the closest comparison to a tweet) drives on average $1.34 in ticket sales, compared with a tweet that drives on average $.80. We’ve also seen the value of the Facebook “Like” steadily increase as adoption of it has taken off. Facebook has recently changed the way “Likes” display in the news feed, and we’ll be watching closely to see the impact of this new formatting on dollars per “Like.”

Sharing by event type: not all events are created equal

When we looked at sharing activity and impact by type of event, we found that both propensity to share and dollars per share varied more than we expected:

  • Networking events had the highest share rate, followed by business events and conferences and seminars.
  • When we look at dollars per share by type of event, though, we find that shares are most valuable for music events and concerts, at over $12 per share. Next most valuable are shares for fundraisers, social events and mixers, and food/wine events. When we look at the bottom line of social commerce, it’s social events that represent the highest DPS. So while people are more likely to share business-related events, sharing information about social events drives the most sales.

As we continue to learn more about how social media drives real transactions, we will share what we learn with the community. We’re big believers in the power of social media and its promise to disrupt stagnant industries. But it’s not blind faith; the truth is in the numbers.

METHODOLOGY

We use a custom suite of social analytics tools that we have developed entirely in-house. Our reporting lets us track and analyze not only which sharing options our users leverage, but where on our site each share action takes place. These tools also tie back into our conversion funnels, so we are able to attribute ticket purchases to the specific social distribution channel that drove them. So, for example, we can compare not just the value created by a Facebook “Like” vs. a tweet, but also the performance of shares initiated before or after a purchase.

For the purposes of this report, Eventbrite defines social commerce as transactions that are driven through sharing on social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and through email sharing via the Eventbrite “email friends” application.

We are tracking a new set of metrics that measure social commerce success and are excited to share them with the industry. In doing so we hope to spark conversation and begin to set standards and benchmarks around this new marketing channel.

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04/19 2011

6 Smart & Effective Email Marketing Tactics

Thought this was a great article on Mashable!!

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Although consumers’ communication habits have evolved with the rising popularity of social media and smartphones, brands are still turning to their dependable friend — email — to attract and retain customers and boost their bottom lines.

There’s no denying that email is showing signs of decline — the number of visitors to web-based email sites fell 6% in 2010 compared to the previous year, and email engagement declined at an even greater rate, according to a report from digital analysis company comScore.

In response to these changes, brands are quickly adapting by combining email, social media and even mobile marketing tactics.

Despite the decline in email, new communication channels won’t replace email. “Email is actually more important than ever with the ground swell of social and mobile,” says Greg Cangialosi, CEO of email marketing company Blue Sky Factory.

“When you think about the social ecosystem out there, there isn’t a tool or network available that doesn’t allow you to sign up without an email address. Email actually drives a lot of the social web activity, through notifications, alerts and more. Email is a great complement to social in that it allows marketers to extend the reach of their messages and identify influencers on their list,” he adds.

And successful brands are doing just that — cross-pollinating email marketing strategies via email clients, social platforms and mobile devices. Ultimately, brands still find email effective because it’s inexpensive and universally accepted by people all over the world.

1. Tap Into Current Events & Pop Culture

2. Use Twitter & Facebook to Promote Opt-In URLs

3. Segment Your Database

^that one is really really important, don’t see it often enough

4. Provide Incentives to Email Subscribers via Social Media

5. Expand Email Lists With SMS Promotions

6. Optimize Emails for Smartphones