Tuesday, December 27, 2011

100 Things to Watch in 2012

JWT: 100 Things to Watch in 2012
View more presentations from JWTIntelligence

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Making Social Media Pay

Download by clicking here.o

Friday, December 16, 2011

The 21 most horrific social media facepalms of 2011

Read about them by clicking here.

Thanks Phil!o

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Do Consumers Prefer Brands that Appear on their Facebook Pages?

You are likely to identify with a brand that advertises alongside your personal information on a Facebook page (especially if you have high self-esteem), according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research. The same ad will have less impact if you view it on a stranger’s page.
“The vast majority of marketing exposures are experienced under conditions of low attention and little cognitive involvement,” write authors Andrew W. Perkins (University of Western Ontario) and Mark R. Forehand (University of Washington, Seattle). “The current research demonstrates that brand identification can form even in these low-involvement conditions if the brand is merely presented simultaneously with self-related information.”
This concept, called “implicit self-referencing,” suggests that consumers don’t need to own, choose, or endorse a brand to identify with it. The authors believe this occurs because most consumers possess high self-esteem and when brand concepts are linked to consumers’ self-concepts, some of those positive feelings rub off onto the brands.
In one experiment, the authors asked participants to sort fictitious brand names with terms related to “self” or “other”; their attitudes toward the “self” brands were more positive. In another experiment, they found that the effect was stronger for individuals who had higher self-esteem. And in a third study, they demonstrated that the effect occurs when brands are simply presented near consumers’ personal content on a social networking site.
Participants were instructed to compare the interfaces of two social networking sites (Facebook and hi5) while fictitious car ads rotated through banner ads. Later, participants reported that they much preferred brands that had appeared (without them being conscious of it) on their own pages. “These results show that the car brands did not benefit from Facebook directly, but rather from their proximity to the consumers’ personal content.”
“Consumers are increasingly comfortable posting a wealth of personal information online, and such digital extroversion certainly creates opportunities for marketers to effectively target and embed their appeals,” the authors conclude.

The paradox of gift giving: More not better

Holiday shoppers, take note. Marketing and psychology researchers have found that in gift giving, bundling together an expensive “big” gift and a smaller “stocking stuffer” reduces the perceived value of the overall package for the recipient.
Suppose you’re trying to impress a loved one with a generous gift this holiday season, says Kimberlee Weaver, assistant professor of marketing in the Pamplin College of Business. One option is to buy them a luxury cashmere sweater. A second option is to add in a $10 gift card.
If their budget allows, most gift givers would choose the second option, as it comprises two gifts — one big, one small, Weaver says. Ironically, however, the gift recipient is likely to perceive the cashmere sweater alone as more generous than the combination of the same sweater and gift card. “The gift giver or presenter does not anticipate this difference in perspectives and has just cheapened the gift package by spending an extra $10 on it.”
Weaver is part of a research team that recently discovered, through a series of studies, what the team has called the “Presenter’s Paradox.” The paradox arises because gift givers and gift recipients have different perspectives, Weaver says. Gift givers follow a “more-is-better” logic; recipients evaluate the overall package.
“People who evaluate a bundle, such as a gift package, follow an averaging strategy, which leads to less favorable judgments when mildly favorable pieces (the gift card) are added to highly favorable pieces (the sweater). The luxury sweater represents a generous ‘big’ gift. Adding on a ‘little’ gift makes the total package seems less big.”
The same contradictory effect can be found in other situations, says Weaver, whose research article, “The Presenter’s Paradox,” co-authored with Stephen Garcia and Norbert Schwarz of the University of Michigan, has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Consumer Research.
“People who present a bundle of information assume that every favorable piece adds to their overall case and include it in the bundle they present,” she says. However, notes Garcia, associate professor of psychology and organizational studies at the University of Michigan, “this strategy backfires, because the addition of mildly favorable information dilutes the impact of highly favorable information in the eyes of evaluators. Hence, presenters of information would be better off if they limited their presentation to their most favorable information — just as gift givers would be better off to limit their present to their most favorite gift."
Weaver and her co-authors found that the paradox was strongly evident in seven studies across many product domains, from bundles of music to hotel advertisements, scholarships, and even “negative” items such as penalty structures.
When asked to design a penalty for littering, for example, those who were put in charge preferred a penalty that comprised a $750 fine plus 2 hours of community service over a penalty that comprised only the $750 fine. However, perceivers evaluated the former penalty as less severe than the latter, Weaver says. “Adding a couple of hours of community service made the overall penalty appear less harsh and undermined its deterrence value.”
The discovery of the Presenter’s Paradox sheds new light on how to best present information, says Weaver. “Whether it is a public relations expert pondering which reviews to include on a book jacket, a music producer considering which songs to include in a music album, or a legal team building up arguments for a case, they all face the important task of deciding what information to include in their presentations. So do consumers who apply for a job and homeowners who try to sell their house.”
All of them, she says, run the risk of inadvertently diluting the very message they seek to convey by their efforts to strengthen it. “Fortunately, there is a simple remedy: take the perspective of the evaluator and ask yourself how the bundle will appear to someone who will average across its components. Doing so will alert you to the fact that others will not always share your sense that more is better.”
“Prompting consumers to consider the overall picture entices them to adopt a holistic perspective, which allows them to correctly anticipate evaluators' judgments,” says Schwarz, professor of marketing and psychology at the University of Michigan. “But when left to their own devices, presenters are unlikely to notice that evaluators do not share their more-is-better rule.”

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

2012 Digital Trends


Battlefield 3 Management Tips


JWT Trends - the easy version


Monday, December 12, 2011

Holiday Shopping? Why Does Rubbing Elbows Turn Consumers Off?

Although holiday sales and events try to drive as many customers to retail stores as possible, a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research shows that the crowding may drive them away as well.
The issue arises when crowding results in people actually touching one another. “For managers, a stranger’s touch in the store means the money walks out of the store,” writes Brett A. S. Martin (Queensland University of Technology). He conducted a series of field experiments in stores in southern England.
While in a store, half the consumers were briefly brushed lightly by a fellow customer as they walked out of the aisle. The other half had a fellow customer stand near them but not touch them. The “fellow customers” were relatively attractive people in their 30s. When the customers left the store, their time in the store was recorded, and they completed a questionnaire on what they thought of the store and the item they were looking at when they were touched.
The belief that men like being touched by women they don’t know is not true, Martin finds. His experiments found that customers, men and women, who were touched by male or female strangers while looking at a product quickly left the store and did so with a negative view of the product they were looking at.
“Rather than cramming a store with goods and having narrow aisles, managers should think about giving people space to consider products without the risk of being bumped into by strangers,” says Martin.
“For the brand manager of the product, it is vital that how products are displayed by retailers is considered in a brand’s marketing strategy. It is not just about grabbing a customer’s attention in-store with a good display or price promotion,” Martin writes. “Brands that want to increase sales need to find ways to let customers view a product without being touched by others. If they are touched, they don’t buy, and they leave store with a bad impression of your brand.”

Why Does Stating Your Intention Lead You to Purchase Your Favorite Brand?

If you say you’re going to buy something, you’re more likely to do it. But why is that? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, stating an intention leads consumers to action—and makes them more likely to purchase their preferred brands.
“Simply responding to an intention question has the potential to activate an intention,” write authors Anneleen Van Kerckhove, Maggie Geuens, and Iris Vermeir (Ghent University). “The activation of an intention next changes how easily certain brands come to mind, which then influences brand choices.”
In a series of studies the researchers had participants fill in a questionnaire on their preferences among fictitious or existing candy bar brands. Some participants answered an “intention question” (How likely are you to purchase a candy bar in the near future?), while others answered an attitude question (How positive or negative are you about the candy bars available to you?).
“Those who responded to an intention question were more likely to choose the brand they previously indicated they preferred the most, irrespective of whether they were asked immediately after the intention question to make a brand choice decision or whether there was a delay between filling in the intention question and making the brand choice decision,” the authors write.
Consumers are motivated to fulfill their intentions, and this motivation narrows their focus. “The intention puts the intention-related brand to the front of consumers’ minds and pushes other well-liked brands to the back until the consumer has accomplished the intention,” the authors write.
“To the best of our knowledge, these research findings provide the first evidence for the role of a motivational component in the occurrence of the question- behavior effect,” the authors conclude.

Online Brand Comments: How Do They Affect Consumer Decisions?

Consumer reactions to online comments depend on the number of comments and the reader’s orientation (whether it’s positive or negative), according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.
“How individuals make decisions is influenced by their self-regulatory goals,” write authors Yeosun Yoon (KAIST Graduate School of Management), Zeynep Gürhan-Canli, and Gülen Sarial-Abi (both Koc University). “According to regulatory focus theory, promotion-focused individuals are likely to be sensitive to gain-related information that involves the presence or absence of positive outcomes. On the other hand, prevention-focused individuals are likely to be sensitive to loss-related information that involves the presence or absence of negative outcomes.”
In the authors’ first two studies, participants read either two or six consumer commentaries responding to a news story about a newly introduced fictitious brand of MP3 player. The participants then responded with their overall attitude toward the brand, indicating the extent to which they relied on negative and positive commentaries.
When provided with a large number of mixed commentaries, promotion- and prevention-oriented individuals were biased in expected ways, positively or negatively. Under high information loads, individuals’ processing capacity was limited so they relied on only a subset of available information to simplify the judgment process. But this changed when only a few commentaries were provided. “When information load is low, individuals have higher cognitive capacity to process inconsistent information,” the authors write.
The authors also found that brand names affect consumers’ motivational orientation. Favorable brands, like Sony and Sylvania, activated promotion orientation, while less-favorable brands triggered prevention orientation.
“When individuals are provided with few commentaries, they are likelier to process information that is inconsistent with their motivational orientation,” the authors write. “We suggest that when consumers read commentaries by others they pay attention to the extent to which they selectively focus on positive or negative information.”

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Interactive mirror

Reveal Project - Personal Data Mirror from NYT R&D on Vimeo.o

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Download this McKinsey paper by clicking here.o

Scary Market Forecast...

Grantham Qtrly Lettero

The Changing Face of Risk Management

Download it by clicking here.o

2012 Trends


Friday, December 2, 2011

The Moment of Truth


Would you kill one person to save five?

Imagine a runaway boxcar heading toward five people who can’t escape its path. Now imagine you had the power to reroute the boxcar onto different tracks with only one person along that route.
Would you do it?
That’s the moral dilemma posed by a team of Michigan State University researchers in a first-of-its-kind study published in the research journal Emotion. Research participants were put in a three dimensional setting and given the power to kill one person (in this case, a realistic digital character) to save five.
The results? About 90 percent of the participants pulled a switch to reroute the boxcar, suggesting people are willing to violate a moral rule if it means minimizing harm.
“What we found is that the rule of ‘Thou shalt not kill’ can be overcome by considerations of the greater good,” said Carlos David Navarrete, lead researcher on the project.
As an evolutionary psychologist, Navarrete explores big-picture topics such as morality – in other words, how do we come to our moral judgments and does our behavior follow suit?
His latest experiment offers a new twist on the “trolley problem,” a moral dilemma that philosophers have contemplated for decades. But this is the first time the dilemma has been posed as a behavioral experiment in a virtual environment, “with the sights, sounds and consequences of our actions thrown into stark relief,” the study says.
The research participants were presented with a 3-D simulated version of the classic dilemma though a head-mounted device. Sensors were attached to their fingertips to monitor emotional arousal.
In the virtual world, each participant was stationed at a railroad switch where two sets of tracks veered off. Up ahead and to their right, five people hiked along the tracks in a steep ravine that prevented escape. On the opposite side, a single person hiked along in the same setting.
As the boxcar approached over the horizon, the participants could either do nothing – letting the coal-filled boxcar go along its route and kill the five hikers – or pull a switch (in this case a joystick) and reroute it to the tracks occupied by the single hiker.
Of the 147 participants, 133 (or 90.5 percent) pulled the switch to divert the boxcar, resulting in the death of the one hiker. Fourteen participants allowed the boxcar to kill the five hikers (11 participants did not pull the switch, while three pulled the switch but then returned it to its original position).
The findings are consistent with past research that was not virtual-based, Navarrete said.
The study also found that participants who did not pull the switch were more emotionally aroused. The reasons for this are unknown, although it may be because people freeze up during highly anxious moments – akin to a solider failing to fire his weapon in battle, Navarrete said.
“I think humans have an aversion to harming others that needs to be overridden by something,” Navarrete said. “By rational thinking we can sometimes override it – by thinking about the people we will save, for example. But for some people, that increase in anxiety may be so overpowering that they don’t make the utilitarian choice, the choice for the greater good.”

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Why Do Some People Never Forget A Face?

“Face recognition is an important social skill, but not all of us are equally good at it,” says Beijing Normal University cognitive psychologist Jia Liu. But what accounts for the difference? A new study by Liu and colleagues Ruosi Wang, Jingguang Li, Huizhen Fang, and Moqian Tian provides the first experimental evidence that the inequality of abilities is rooted in the unique way in which the mind perceives faces. “Individuals who process faces more holistically”—that is, as an integrated whole—“are better at face recognition,” says Liu. The findings will appear in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science, a journal published by the Association for Psychological Science.
In daily life, we recognize faces both holistically and also “analytically”—that is, picking out individual parts, such as eyes or nose. But while the brain uses analytical processing for all kinds of objects—cars, houses, animals—“holistic processing is thought to be especially critical to face recognition,” says Liu.
To isolate holistic processing as the key to face recognition, the researchers first measured the ability of study participants—337 male and female students—to remember whole faces, using a task in which they had to select studied faces and flowers from among unfamiliar ones.
The next two tasks measured performance in tasks that mark holistic processing. The composite-face effect (CFE) shows up when two faces are split horizontally and stuck together. It’s easier to identify the top half-face when it’s misaligned with the bottom one than when the two halves are fitted smoothly together. “That’s because our brain automatically combines them to form a new”—and unfamiliar—“face,” says Liu: evidence of holistic processing. The other marker of holistic processing is the whole-part effect (WPE). In this one, people are shown a face, then asked to recognize a part of it—say, the nose. They do better when the feature is presented within the whole face than when it stands on its own among other noses: again, we remember the nose integrated into the whole face. The researchers also assessed participants’ general intelligence.
The results: Those participants who scored higher on CFE and WPE—that is, who did well in holistic processing—also performed better at the first task of recognizing faces. But there was no link between facial recognition and general intelligence, which is made up of various cognitive processes—a suggestion that face processing is unique.
“Our findings partly explains why some never forget faces, while others misrecognize their friends and relatives frequently,” says Liu. That’s why the research holds promise for therapies for that second category of people, who may suffer disorders such as prosopagnosia (face blindness) and autism. Knowing that the mind receives a face as one whole thing and not as a collection of individual parts, “we may train people on holistic processing to improve their ability in recognizing faces,” Liu says.