Monthly Archives: April 2012

How many megabytes did you use today?


With the proliferation of mobile devices used by today’s consumers, the amount of data that is accessed and downloaded each day can reach staggering proportions. After all, do we really know how much data we use each day on our mobile devices? Probably not. And even if we knew, what would we do about it, and what does it mean to marketing today?

The New York Times recently interviewed people on the streets of Manhattan, asking them “What is a megabyte?” Their answers indicate just how little consumers know about their daily data access on smart phones and mobile devices. (Hint – there are 1,000 bytes in a kilobyte; 1,000 kilobytes in a megabyte; and 1,000 megabytes in a gigabyte.)


Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Before showing this video, ask students to define a megabyte.
  2. How many megabytes do students think they download every day?
  3. How many megabytes are in a movie, a song, an email, a Web site, a document?
  4. Now, show the video clip from the New York Times:
  5. Expand the discussion and have students explore the complexity of this topic. Have students list the variety of (1) phones, (2) providers, and (3) service plans. Discuss the different plans and how they are marketed? Are data limits easy to find? Why not?
  6. Ask students if they know the amount of data covered by their cell phone plan.
  7. What are the implications to marketing when using, or selling, multi-media services and products?

Source: New York Times, 4/19/12

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Ad Age’s Viral Video Chart

This activity is guaranteed to keep students engaged with the content.

Every week Advertising Age, in conjunction with company Visible Measures, publishes a list of the week’s top performing videos. The weekly chart highlights viral video ads that appear on online video sites. Each ad measures viewership of brand-syndicated video clips as well as social video placements that are driven by viewers around the world.

Visible Measures uses a measurement called True Reach™ to quantify the total audience that has been exposed to a viral video campaign, no matter where the campaign videos travel online. The measurement combines data from brand-driven seeded video placements with results from community-driven viral video placements – spoofs, parodies, mashups, and more.

There are three key factors required to achieve viral video success:

  1. Reaching the tastemakers
  2. Building a community of participation
  3. Creating unexpectedness in the video

Check out this week’s top videos at


Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Bring up Ad Age’s weekly Viral Video chart:
  2. Have students examine how the ads are measured by Visible Measures.
  3. Divide students into teams. Have each team select an ad on the top video chart and analyze the ad.
  4. What is unusual?
  5. Who will it interest?
  6. What is the key message?
  7. How effective is the ad at getting the company’s brand and message across to viewers?

Source:  Advertising Age – weekly update each Thursday morning

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Unusual places – unusual spaces

Consumers see hundreds of ads and promotions every single day! Much of it occurs in the usual places such as ads in the morning paper, television commercials, radio pitches, billboards, bus stop signs and more. From the time we start our days with a morning cup of coffee, to the late night programs watched before we retire to bed each evening, consumers are inundated with messages and images. There’s a ton of clutter surrounding consumers.

This of course brings challenges to marketers. What are new venues for promotion? Where can we break free of the pack and have a consumer’s attention? Some crazy examples used have been:

  • Billboard Magazine placed seven strings and an amp inside a urinal to people could make music when they pee.
  • Publicis Mojo Auckland used a ketchup packet and sauce for an award-winning campaign against land mines.
  • Accounting firm Ernst & Young pasted its logo on kids’ faces using a service from
  • Folgers’s Coffee placed stickers over manhole covers so that the rising steam appeared to come from a cup of piping hot coffee.
  • Advertising on the gates that guard parking ramps.
  • QR codes on the rooftops of buildings.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Have a 2-minute drill: Divide students into teams of two or three people (sitting by each other). In two minutes, have them list ALL the places they have seen advertising, especially unusual places.
  2. Show examples for unusual placements as noted in the Ad Age article:
  3. Click on the links in the Ad Age article to view the media placements.
  4. Encourage students to think out-of-the-box. What would be wild places that ads could be placed?
  5. Have students do a quick Internet search for “unexpected” or “unusual” ad placements. (Make sure they expand their search boundaries outside of the U.S.)
  6. Have students examine the Web site: to learn of an unusual business by two broke college students.
  7. Have students practice their skills. Give them a list of common products (e.g., Tide, Coach purse, Nike shoes, Hershey’s Chocolate, Jockey underwear, etc.) and have them come up with three very unusual places for advertising the products. Be creative!

Source:  Ad Age Daily, 4/30/12


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