Friday, June 29, 2018

Italian Wine Industry Marketing Improvements from E-Commerce

Websites are helpful but many small business owners are not maximizing e-commerce opportunities to gain the most from their businesses. This problem is realized in family own Italian wineries that may not have all of the relevant business management experience or time to keep up with changes. Using simple e-commerce strategies can help them maximize the results of their efforts.

An analysis of wine companies found that most offer their websites and product information only (Iaia, et. al. 2017). Many do not fully exploit the use of e-commerce to build communities and sell products. The authors found that perceived value of these products improve with online marketing.

1. Build Communities: It is helpful to build communities because wine lovers are hard core. They want to engage as much in a lifestyle as possible. Some ways a company can do this is through emails, exclusive specials, clubs, and social media groups.

2. Sell Products: Selling online can be an excellent opportunity for businesses that often can sell cheaper than their distributors. While there may be a few legal hurdles for age verification these are not insurmountable.

Iaia, L., et. al. (2017). Wine, family businesses and web: marketing strategies to compete effectively. British Food Journal, 119 (11).

Friday, June 15, 2018

Two Key Points on How Word-of-Mouth Transforms Marketing Messages

Online virtual marketing, word-of-mouth and social media are important platforms for marketing. Sometimes we just send messages out there and hope that they will be repeated. Research in the Journal of Marketing indicates that this isn't always true (Kozinets, et. al. 2018). Often such marketing messages are adjusted and changed by the people who repeat them creating new meanings not necessarily intended by the marketer.

1.) WOM is not simply an amplification of the marketing message.

Marketing messages may improve the volume of a marketing channel and create more "hit" on a site but they are not simply an amplified message. People who repeat them because the message resonates with something they believe in. As they encode new information they change it and repeat it in a new way.

2.) Marketers should consider how messages transform to resonate.

This changing and repeating information creates a dilemma for some marketers. Some may not want their messages changes or adjusted but it will happen nevertheless. Having a solid understanding of what type of people the message will attract will help to predict the ways in which it will be repeated. 

Kozinets, et. al. (2018). Networked Narratives: Understanding Word-of-Mouth Marketing in Online Communities. Journal of Marketing, 74 (2). 

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Is a Recession Around the Corner? We May Need to Look at Social Trends

The economy is growing and it is easier to find jobs now when compared to the last few decades. However, there is a growing risk that economist see who predict that we are likely to have a recession in the next few years.According to the 45 economists with the National Association of Business Economics the majority predicted recession by the 4th quarter of 2020.

These same economist were less optimistic about the near term as well. They were concerned about trade wars and upheavals in the world markets. As countries restrict and put tariffs on each others products a new level of nationalism and protectionism could take hold.

There could possibly be some truth in what they are saying but even they are not 100% sure. The reason why economists often vary in their opinions is that it is hard to predict and project the future. The models they use are based on antiquated methods and new models have not been adequately developed.

Data will be important in any future models but that data will need to be collected on a new virtual data platform removed in part from physical commodities. Old models never expected to have that much information available to them and are likely to include non-traditional economic indicators not currently considered.

For example, analysis of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media accounts often determine trends. It is also possible to see who is most influential in changing opinion based on people react, comment and cite afterward. Of course, there are others who influence their smaller networks based on their opinions creating long legs to public opinion.

Thus, it is important to include such social analysis in economic valuations because opinion influences political leadership and in turn legislation. Trade wars won't happen if politicians will be criticized heavily by public opinion and may loose their position and power in the future. Social opinion may be more important than inventory levels or financing capacity because it is a root of decisions and purchasing habits.

Socially based economic adjustments become more apparent when we consider that much of what we think of as "truth" in economics is not actually real but socially acceptable values. Gold doesn't have more intrinsic value than coal unless we all agree that it does. Trust me people who are very cold right now might not agree with the rest of society! As the world globalizes the amount of data will inevitable change and the way we as a global society agree, or disagree, with the value of products based on perceptual trends may change indicating future economic booms or busts.