Monday, January 31, 2011

Business leaders see need for 'inclusive' Davos

Business leaders rounded off this year's World Economic Forum on Sunday with a call - and in some cases a pledge - to make sure the poor benefit more from any global economic revival.
Executives at the annual meeting of the global elite in Davos, Switzerland, said growth needs to be "inclusive" or the world will experience more of the unrest seen recently in Tunisia and Egypt.
Chanda Kochhar, chief executive of India's ICICI bank, said the challenge was "can we create enough basic facilities" such as schools, roads and housing to ensure growth really benefits everyone.
Jacob Wallenberg, who sits on the board of The Coca-Cola Co, said his company was working to ensure safe water supplies to communities where it operates. Coca-Cola has in the past been accused of exploiting wells for its softdrinks production at the expense of the local population.
Non-governmental groups have been lobbying business leaders in Davos to be more responsible or face greater regulation.
"The time for voluntary standards for businesses in relation to meeting human rights obligations is over," the head of Amnesty International, Salil Shetty, told The Associated Press earlier in the week.
"We now need to have mandatory standards," he said, adding that business leaders risk reaping the same grass roots anger as politicians if they don't become better corporate citizens. "It might not look practical, but don't wait for what happened in Tunisia to happen to you."
China Ocean Shipping's CEO Wei Jiafu said food price rises could eventually force up the cost of other commodities and lead to politically risky inflation around the world.
Wallenberg, of Coca-Cola, told the few leaders who remained for Sunday's closing sessions that the time for deliberating about the state of the world was over.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Business Highlights

The government-appointed panel investigating the roots of the financial crisis says the meltdown occurred because government officials and Wall Street executives ignored warning signs and failed to manage risks.
The crisis could have been avoided, the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission determined in a final report released Thursday that was only supported by Democrats on the panel. Instead the country fell into the deepest recession since the 1930s and millions of people lost their jobs, the congressionally appointed panel concluded.
The Bush and Clinton administrations, the current and previous Federal Reserve chairmen, and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner all bear some responsibility for allowing the crisis to happen, the panel said.
It also criticized bankers who got rich by creating trillions of dollars in risky investments. The deals grew so complex that bank executives and regulators did not understand them, the report found, and banks discouraged aggressive oversight of their activities, saying the government's interference would stifle financial innovation.
P&G, Colgate profit squeeze means prices to rise
CINCINNATI (AP) - Shoppers can expect some higher prices as the makers of toothpaste, soap and other everyday household products see their profit margins pinched by rising ingredient costs.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Business leaders give budget input

A group of female business leaders met with Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose Monday to offer input into this year's federal budget.
The roundtable discussions, held behind closed doors, gave the women an opportunity to share their priorities with Ambrose, also minister for the status of women, as the Conservatives finalize the 2011 document.
Kerry Weiland, vice-president of Titan Contract Welding, said it's important to have a voice.
"I think it gives an opportunity to hear the voice of a diverse group of people," she said.
The Wardlow-based businesswoman said she had a specific list of items to discuss with the minister, including better access to technology for rural entrepreneurs.
Shannon Lenstra, president of Kon-strux Developments, also had budget suggestions. Those included making the renovation tax credit permanent and cracking down on under-the-table contractors.
Lenstra said bringing together female business leaders -- Treasury Board president Stockwell Day held a similar round table on the economy with local business leaders last summer -- also makes sense.
"Women do have different opinions and different strengths," she said before the meeting.

Monday, January 24, 2011

2010 weakest year for US home sales since 1997

The number of people in the United States who bought previously- owned homes last year fell to the lowest level in 13 years. But home sales in December jumped to the fastest pace in seven months.
The National Association of Realtors says sales dropped 4.8 per cent to 4.91 million units in 2010. That was slightly lower than 2008, which had been the weakest level since 1997.
Home prices have been de-pressed by a record number of foreclosures and high unemployment. Many potential buyers held off on purchases last year, fearful that prices hadn’t bottomed out yet.
The poor year for sales ended strong in December. Buyers snapped up homes at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.28 million units, an increase of 12.8 per cent from November and the strongest sales pace since last May.
Still, many economists believe it will take years for sales to rise to a normal level of around six million units a year. And some say 2011 will be even weaker than last year because more foreclosures are expected and home prices are likely to keep falling through the first six months of the year.
The foreclosure crisis has left a glut of unsold houses on the market. That has played a major role in lowering home prices.
For December, the inventory of unsold homes stood at an 8.1 months supply, down from 9.5 months supply in November. That represents the amount of time it would take to sell the remaining supply of homes on the market at the December sales pace. A normal inventory supply is six months.
Even historically low mortgage rates have done little to boost the sales

Friday, January 21, 2011

Spain plans partial nationalization of savings banks

A source familiar with the matter told Reuters the government will force debt-laden savings banks to become conventional banks and seek stock market listings to persuade skittish investors that they are good investments.
The state-backed bank restructuring fund (FROB) would then take stakes in the banks -- known as cajas -- which fail to attract private investment, the source said. Up to now the FROB has functioned as a lender to the cajas.
High levels of bad property loans at the savings banks is seen as a major risk for Spain's government as it aggressively cuts its budget deficit to stave off fears it will need an Irish or Greek-style rescue from the European Union and International Monetary Fund.
Estimates of the cost to recapitalize the savings banks range from 17 billion to 120 billion euros, with consensus falling in the 25 billion to 50 billion range.
Even in the absence of private investment into the weak regional lenders, economists say Spain could afford that level of rescue without seeking outside aid, which could take pressure of the euro zone aid fund the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF).
Analysts say the EFSF could probably not cope with a full bailout of Spain without extending its scope.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Online marketing should become more targeted

Businesses looking to develop their online marketing campaigns could start using behavioural marketing, one expert suggests.

According to Nurun's Amy Manus, writing in a post for ClickZ, behavioural marketing can be an effective way of furthering customer relationships using data already in the company's possession.

Giving the example of brands sending electronic vouchers for their consumers birthday, she notes that simple touches like this can go a long way to retaining people's loyalty.

Walmart Marketing Strategy with the Right Focus

Michelle Obama’s fight against obesity led retail giant Walmart to shift its marketing strategy to a more desired direction: healthier foods. According to The New York Times, the retailer will announce a five-year plan on Thursday to make some of its packaged foods lower in unhealthy salts, fats and sugars, and to drop prices on fruits and vegetables.
To make sure that there were no misunderstandings, Leslie Dach, Wal-Mart’s executive vice president for corporate affairs answered an obvious question before even being asked: “This is not about asking the farmers to accept less for their crops,” and stated that Walmart will be cutting into its own profits but hopes to make up for it in sales volume.
Walmart will press its major food suppliers to follow its lead. For instance, they are confident that Kraft, which apparently delivers 16% of its global sales through Walmart, will also reduce salts, fats and sugars in its line of products.
So far, everything rosy. What puzzles is that Walmart decided to implement this change slowly, over a period of five years. The main reason is obvious: healthier food costs more, and since Walmart decided not to increase prices, but to lower them, they expect some “financial hurdles.” But the company gave a second reason, which is indicative of what they think about their consumers. Apparently, people have to get used to the taste of healthier food… because “It doesn’t do you any good to have healthy food if people don’t eat it.”
I am sure our readers are intelligent enough to understand what’s wrong with the statement above, for those who don’t, here’s the scoop. Walmart believes that their consumers would rather buy food that makes them sick, than choose healthy foods. I am sure many customers go to a store and pick a cheaper product instead of, let’s say, organic veg, because they are trying to save some money. And I bet that, if given the choice at a decent price, people would rather buy healthy foods.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Veteran Media Exec Has History Supervising Ad Sales

Veteran media executive Randy Falco has turned up again, this time as chief operating officer of Spanish-language TV broadcaster Univision Communications.
Mr. Falco, once the second-in-command when Bob Wright ran NBC Universal and later CEO of ailing AOL, is expected to oversee all "revenue-driving functions," Univision said today, including ad sales, distribution sales and affiliate relations, as well as the operations of Univision's TV and radio station groups, corporate marketing, research and business development. He will report to Joe Uva, president-CEO of Univision Communications.
Mr. Falco left AOL in the spring of 2009 after the company's then-owner Time Warner said it was replacing him with Tim Armstrong. Mr. Falco previously enjoyed a decades-long run at NBC, where he supervised many of the functions he will oversee at Univision. Mr. Falco departed the company after Jeff Zucker was named to replace Mr. Wright.
Mr. Falco has an encyclopedic knowledge of the TV business, and has often been counted on as the person to find ways to make all the trains run on time, as it were. At NBC he was involved in decisions ranging from ad sales and the upfront to product-integration deals.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Government Launches Review Of COI And Marketing & Advertising By Whitehall

The coalition government has published the terms of reference for the COI and direct communications review last week.
The review led by Matt Tee, the Permanent Secretary for Government Communications would examine how Government should undertake paid for advertising and marketing campaigns for maximum effectiveness and efficiencies for the taxpayer.
Francis Maude, the Cabinet Office Minister, who commissioned the review last year said: The Government needs to be far more innovative in thinking about how it can best deliver incredibly important public information messages. We need to incorporate the latest ideas from initiatives such as the Ad-Council in the US and the latest thinking from experts such as our Behavioural Insight “nudge” Team."
"If we get this right we can save the taxpayer money and increase the effectiveness of our campaigns, which is why I’m so pleased we have this team of experts on-hand to help advise us."
The review will draw evidence from:
* COI;
* Government departments;
* the advertising and marketing industry;
* commercial partners of Government such as supermarkets and financial service providers;
* media owners; and
* former heads of COI and the Government Communication profession.

Read More

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Power of Online Marketing Now Available to Small Businesses

Small businesses and entrepreneurs who need the power of effective and affordable online marketing tools now have an answer. TNNWC Group, LLC, has launched a suite of online services for its members. Adam J. Kovitz and Douglas Castle, Co-Chairpersons of TNNWC Group, LLC , have announced that member businesses will be able to take advantage of all that the Internet and related media have to offer with their new service offerings.

"Once again, TNNWC has identified an area that is vital to the success and growth of a small business but is typically out of their reach financially,” Kovitz said. “An entrepreneur starting his or her own business has plenty of hurdles to clear in the beginning. Certainly, financing is one obstacle (which we are, by the way, also addressing with our Emerging Enterprise Venture Capital Program™),” Kovitz added parenthetically. “Now, we can help these same companies reach the next level by adding such services as web design and web development to their arsenal of marketing weaponry.”

Leading the division for these services is a veteran of online marketing, Robert Kintigh, whose firm, The Growth Masters Inc., has powered client companies with online services for years.

“Online marketing is the latest and most dynamic evolutionary step in the process we saw years ago in TV or radio advertising,” Kintigh said. “However, back then, you had to write down information on a paper pad. Today, you click on a website or a link and you’re instantly provided the information you want. The result is that an advertiser today has much less time – seconds, really – to pitch a service or product,” he explained. “Businesses of all sizes need to ensure their online presence – e.g., their website – is able to not only capture customers’ attention but make them want to buy from them at virtually the same time.”

And this is where TNNWC’s newest service steps in, giving member businesses the same range and power of marketing reach as businesses many times larger but for a fraction of the price.

Another service TNNWC is making available to its members with this new offering is GIST Video, which helps a business tell its story via video, arguably the most influential medium, traditional or new, today.

“This is yet one more reason why we feel we can confidently state that TNNWC is becoming the new paradigm in entrepreneurship,” Kovitz said. “The only way businesses will be able to survive and succeed going forward is by investing in the types of services available from TNNWC.”

Thursday, January 13, 2011

HOW TO: Market Your Small Business With No Budget

From a marketing standpoint, it’s a great time to own or start a business. The social web makes it more cost-effective than ever to get the word out about your products and services, no matter what industry you’re in. Most social media accounts are free to set up, and many targeted online ad platforms are inexpensive. The most it will cost you to get your marketing campaign rolling, at least in the beginning, is time.

In fact, the toughest challenge facing small business marketers these days is not cost, but finding a strategy to get your message heard over the din of a noisy Internet (Internet). For advice on this, we checked in with a few experienced social media marketers. Here’s what they had to offer.
Advertising is not always the best way to market on social networks. People crave valuable content, and it can be as niche as the very products you’re selling. By blogging, tweeting, sharing, and updating about things relevant to your industry, you can build credibility in your field.

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Internet Marketing Solutions

Our Internet marketing services will increase traffic to your business website and as a result increase sales.

The solutions we provide are cost effective and efficient marketing strategies for your business Internet searchers. It is an essential part of any business to include Internet Marketing as part of the advertising blend. In today's difficult market the Internet is said to be the most important part of any modern business marketing solution.

Phrase One is a UK based professional Internet Marketing Company whose services include business web design, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Pay per Click management. We provide a professional and personal service. Due to being a UK based company we can meet and discuss your project with face to face meetings anywhere in the British Isles. Our packages are designed to be flexible, alternately we can 'taylor make' to suit your business needs.

Our services will help your business succeed at each stage of the customer journey and provide an end-to-end solution that is designed to convert your Internet traffic into customers.

Read More:

link directory

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Top 10 Internet Marketing Strategies

Internet marketing can attract more people to your website, increase customers for your business, and enhance branding of your company and products. If you are just beginning your online marketing strategy the top 10 list below will get you started on a plan that has worked for many.

  1. Start with a web promotion plan and an effective web design and development strategy.

  2. Get ranked at the top in major search engines, and practice good Search Optimization Techniques.

  3. Learn to use Email Marketing Effectively.

  4. Dominate your marketing niche with affiliate, reseller, and associate programs.

  5. Request an analysis from an Internet marketing coach or Internet marketing consultant.

  6. Build a responsive opt-in email list.

  7. Publish articles or get listed in news stories.

  8. Write and publish online press releases.

  9. Facilitate and run contests and giveaways via your web site.

  10. Blog and interact with your visitors.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Businesses to benefit from free online seminar

Where does your business grade when people do an online search? Do you want a high listing without paying a small fortune?

These are just two of many questions people are asking about online marketing. And, The Reporter and Times Herald trust to provide answers to. The organizations will be offering two free online and search engine marketing seminars for area businesses.

The seminars take position on Monday Jan. 17. The first one is set for 9 a.m. at the Times Herald building, 410 Markley St., Norristown. The second one is set for 3 p.m. at The Reporter, 307 Derstine Ave., Lansdale.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Online Marketing Experts & Author Team Up To Launch New Integrated Marketing Firm

Two online marketing experts have joined forces to launch a latest marketing firm focused on helping companies integrate their marketing efforts. Rebecca Ryan, a Search Marketing and Keyword Research & Tools expert and Liana "Li" Evans a Search & Social Media Marketing expert and award winning author of the social media marketing book entitled Social Media Marketing: Engaging Strategies for Facebook, Twitter & Other Social Media have formed LiBeck Integrated Marketing with offices in the Philadelphia, PA and Los Angeles, CA areas.

"Companies are continually looking to become more efficient and smart about their marketing strategies. Rather than employing 10 different vendors to control each channel of their marketing strategies, companies are now looking to one or two companies to pull it all together for them. Our team's combined expertise allows LiBeck Integrated Marketing to fill that need for companies looking to integrate their market efforts," explained Rebecca Ryan, the company's COO and co-founder.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

R.R. Donnelley buys online real estate marketing company

R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. has acquired, a provider of online marketing solutions for the real estate business.

Donnelley told the acquisition would expand its portfolio of Internet-based solutions, in particular its software development and distribution services, as well as add targeted applications for additional industries and vertical segments. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Facebook – the Online Marketing Platform of 2011?

Online marketing specialist Craig MacDonald said this week that Facebook will be the place to be seen in 2011, with an expected surge in the number of companies advertising on the social network.

In an article for Search Engine Watch, Mr MacDonald estimated that online marketing departments are going to devote up to 20 per cent of their entire advertising budgets to Facebook alone.

He admitted that promotions on Facebook suffered from “atrocious” clickthrough rates previous year, but insisted that things are now very different, with the social media platform now competing with established search engines such as Google for conversion rates.

Stressing that Facebook is “huge, it’s global and it’s growing,” Mr MacDonald insisted that it currently operates “dollar for dollar” as efficiently as Google, in online marketing terms.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Online travel firm Expedia drops American Airlines

Internet-based travel company Expedia told it has suspended the sale of American Airlines tickets from its site, calling American's new direct online marketing strategy "anti-consumer and anti-choice".

"As a result, the sale of American Airlines flights on our site has been suspended," Expedia said in a statement, adding however that it remained "open to doing business with American Airlines on terms that are satisfactory to Expedia".

"American Airlines is attempting to introduce a new straight connect model that will result in higher costs and reduced transparency for consumers, making it difficult to compare American Airlines ticket prices and options with offerings by other airlines," it added.

The airlines' AA Direct Connect model "would compromise travel agents? ability to give travelers with the best selection," said Expedia, adding the new commercial strategy "we trust is anti-consumer and anti-choice".