Archive for June, 2011

As Efes Non-alcoholic beer has been launched recently, most probably a question mark came up minds of many people: Is it a reflection of prohibition of alcoholic beverages? However, if we look at the numbers coming from “soft drink” market, in other words, “non-alcoholic beverages” market, we can easily see that this is a rising trend in the world. Although beer market in the world grew by 16 % in the last five years, the growth in non-alcoholic beer market realized 81 % and Efes has taken the first step of this ladder in Turkey.

In almost all parts of the world, especially Muslim countries and Europe, soft drink market, which is called “non-alcoholic sector”, is growing and increasing its market share. Turkey is only a small part of this non-alcoholic sector, which has reached a size of $100 million in only Europe. So Efes, which didn’t turn a blind eye to this rising trend in the world, has launched Efes non-alcoholic beer as the 14th brand in its portfolio recently.

Today, one or more than one “non-alcoholic beer” is found in almost all of big beer brands’ product range. Consumers and particularly beer lovers are increasingly demanding non-alcoholic beer. The main reason for this situation is that non-alcoholic beer can be consumed in many atmospheres in which alcoholic beer cannot be consumed or is not allowed. This trend results in an increase in non-alcoholic beer market that is greater than it is in alcoholic-beer market.

There is no doubt that Efes is one of the first brands that come to minds when the word “beer” is mentioned. Efes Turkey Marketing Director Dilek Başarır, who said that they decided to apply this trend in Turkey and add this trend to their product range after a long-standing work, emphasized that Efes Non-Alcoholic took place on the shelves after two years of effort. She added that people mostly liked Efes Non-Alcoholic in the researhes they have done so far

Non-alcoholic beer is a very new market for Turkey. So Efes Non-Alcoholic is a product which creates its own category in a sense. With this innovative feature of Efes Alcoholic, Başarır believes that they will enlarge the general beverage market. However, it is too early to get a feedback from consumers in order to have good reliable data since it has just taken place in the shelves.

I haven’t tried it yet, so I cannot share my experiences. But it seems that Efes Non-Alcoholic gives beer lovers an opportunity to enjoy drinking beer in different occasions because of not consisting alcohol.

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Eileen Campbell, Global CEO of Millward Brown, which has determined “10 golden rules of using social media effectively” with a research on social media, warns the brands that are only interested in increasing the number of their fans. “It is not important how many fans they have, but it is important how much they communicate with their fans.”

No doubt that social media and interactive marketing are very effective tools in today’s fast-moving world. Henceforward, many brands all over the world play their trump cards in the platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, which are the ones of the most effective mediums of social media. Well, about what should brands be careful while managing their social media accounts?

Yesterday, I read an interesting article about 10 golden rules of using social media effectively in Marketing Türkiye, which is a very popular magazine in Turkey and now I want to share some important points and those rules.

After the research “Value of a Fan” conducted by Millward Brown and evaluating the brands using social media in the eye of consumers, they reached some consequences such as required attitudes to establish successful, long-term relationships with consumers and key performance indicators. Moreover, “10 golden rules of using social media effectively” was determined. Speaking in a panel in Turkey, Global Ceo of Millward Brown Eileen Campbell emphasized that social media is not a subject that will be outdated and added that brands as a corporation should be just like friends with the consumers while using social media.

Many brands regard social media as being made up of only Facebook. Although there are millions of users sharing and watching videos on YouTube, most of the time the thing brands want to do in social media is to increase the number of their fans. Within this line, Campbell said that “It is not important how many fans they have, but it is important how much they communicate with their fans. More important thing is fans’ sharing about the brand on their walls. It becomes meaningful whenever fans themselves share the things shared by the brand. When everything about the brand such as a new product launch, a new campaign, awards is shared, it implies that brands reach their fans properly. Also, brands should be ready to respond to consumers.”

As Eileen Campbell put into the words, brands’ expectations increase correspondingly while the importance of social media is increasing. Sharing contents about brands’ promotions on social media is an important factor in terms of taking automatic activation and seeing consumers’ reaction instantly. But it is a prima facie evidence that what brands want to do is to provide a long-term loyalty of consumers. Meanwhile, Campbell thinks that new trends will be incorporated to current trends such as promotion practices, surprise events and guests through social media especially in location-based social media networks.

Let’s look at 10 Golden Rules!

1.      Don’t copy your home page to social media: Consumers want to see and hear new things from brands, not the information and the subjects again discussed on your website. This doesn’t attract social media users’ attention.

2.      First listen, then talk: Create a dialogue. The one of the most important expectations of users is to talk to brands face-to-face. Users want brands to listen to them.

3.      If you become open and honest, you build trust: Transparency in social media has a key role for brands and is the most important factor to build trust. Social media users think that brands hide behind the rules and brand policies instead of accepting their mistakes and shortcomings.

4.      Choose a representative to your brand for social media: Get a face for your brand. Sometimes, brands are damaged in social media since they are not a person who responds to consumers. This prevents many consumers from getting in touch with the brand in social media.

5.      Offer a valuable thing: Consumers are more inclined to respond to concrete things offered nonreciprocally by brands. Although discounts, gift coupons are the most common practices of brands in social media, they might lead to mistrust. Information about new products coming from inside, exclusive shopping and contents attract consumers more.

6.      Content should accord with the users: Users want to see a content that is compatible with their lives, interests and needs. In social media, consumers become more critical and feel that their personal spaces are violated.

7.      Talk to users like friends not like an entity: Users want their brands to talk to them in a simple and daily language. They don’t like technical language or seller speech.

8.      Give users the right to control to some extent: Brands should renounce some of the control they have during the years to work effectively and get used to the fact that they cannot impose what they want to convey. Brands which accept the contribution from the users and insert this to the content will be more effective in managing communication.

9.      Let consumers reach you: Consumers don’t want brands to convey their message by “shouting”. Perception is that brands in social media use “intrusive” and “annoying” advertisement.

10.  Let users speak on your behalf: As consumers defend brands, brands gain more reputation. Instead of acting sales-orientedly, brands should incorporate their consumers to their communication and lead consumers to establish a relationship.

After all, it seems that brands should learn to use effectively current tools of social media before competing for new trends of social media which is ever-improving in today’s fast-moving world.

Protel, which is committed to provide professional business solutions for the hospitality industry (such as hotel, restaurant, cruise ship, coffee shop, theme park or conference center), has presented the new version of the “Protel Restaurant Reservation System” to the liking of guests. This new version was developed in order to control the reservation process as well as increasing the performance in the A la Carte restaurants of the hotels.

Protel Restaurant Reservation (P-Rest) solution allows the hotel guests to make online reservation at A la Carte restaurants via kiosks by using their room cards and obtain fully organized reservation lists. If and when the reservations are priced, the system automatically charges the price to customer’s account by means of its integration with Fidelio. Moreover, price discrimination in accordance with the type of accomodation is applied.

Another feature of the new version of P-rest is “event and gala management”. With this new feature, it is possible to view selection of the tables and chairs in the area of event, capacity and seating plans in real-time. So this makes it easy and possible to finalize the reservation.

It is the most obvious conclusion that P-Rest application which got full marks from the guests in terms of visual quality and functionality provides error-free operation, 100% control and customer satisfaction by carrying the reservation process to electronic environment.

Every color has a special language, every color leaves a different impression on people. Red color evokes passion and dynamism while black color evokes quality and luxury. The colors, each of which offers a different connotation, are the one of the biggest weapon of marketing. Such that, brands make the values they represent meaningful by favor of colors. Well then, which brand embraces which color?

It is the stubborn fact that colors have an impact on the process of brand-building as their sensuous powers are quite high. Most of the time, a color that is identified properly with brand values becomes more effective than corporate identity or vision put into words and entrenches brand in consumer perception.

Color Marketing Group (CMG), which has more than a thousand members around the world, comes together twice in a year and forecasts consumers’ color preferences and colors that should be used in products. In this way, they try to increase the sales of their customers. According to the color statistics published by CMG, colors not only have a critical role to attract the attention of consumers but also play a big part in respect of “salience”, which is one of the primary requirements of communication. Color increases brand recognition by 80 % and readability by 40 %. Colorful advertisements are read by 43 % more compared to black and white advertisements. Furthermore, they might have an impact on purchase of a product by 85 %.

As we all know, red is a color that is associated with spiritedness and dynamism. It is not only a symbol of power but also has an appetizing impact. So most of the food companies in the world such as Coca-Cola, Mc Donald’s and Burger King use red color in their logos.

As for the rest…Green is the color of nature and spring and usually gives comfort and confidence. So it is favorite color for banks such as BNP Paribas. It also represents environmentalism and takes place in the logos of Greenpeace, Starbucks, Healthy Choice and Snack Wells.

The effects of colors are related with social and cultural life as well as some instinctive impulses. Black is the most relevant example. Black color, symbolizing emotionality in some societies, represents power and passion in some other societies. However, the most important connotation of black is luxury. As a result, many brands which are symbol of luxury and quality such as Jack Daniel’s and Johnnie Walker Black Label, use black color intensely.

Blue is the color of the sky, wide horizons and the sea. It represents infinity, comfort and has a calming effect. Facebook, Intel and Skype are the first brands that comes to mind as using blue. That is to say innovative brands from technology sector prefer mostly blue color. In the world of brands, red color is used to increase sales and attract attention while blue color becomes prominent as a corporate color and is used to convey the message of stability.

Orange represents mostly liveliness and energy, so brands appealing to young people such as Fanta prefer this color. Also, some brands use orange in terms of attainability and accessibility.They give consumers the message “There is nothing expensive inside, everything has an accessible price for you”. Advantage Card, Amazon.com, Etsy, Budget and Orange are the brands using this color.

Let’s look at yellow color lastly: Yellow not only is identified with happiness and fun but also connotates intelligence, subtlety and praticability. So it can be said that orange is a color of energy and the youth. Many brands use the brightness of yellow to stand out among their rivals. Axess, Mc Donald’s, Best Buy, Shell, Ferrari and Renault are the most well-known examples.

If we look at the basic color scale, it is obvious that the colors can be counted on the fingers of two hands. So it is not easy to choose and embrace one of them but brands choose the colors –  which mostly identify with their corporate values – and keep on their competition over these colors they embraced.

Almost all of us are “Facebookers”, which I use to define people having a Facebook account and actively using it. Today, it seems impossible for “Facebookers” to be far away from the “Like” button while travelling around the pages, watching the videos uploaded by their friends and looking at their friends’ pictures. Even many companies that make their presence felt in Facebook mostly as official pages organize competitions by asking open-ended questions and choosing the winners according to the number of “Likes” to their post.

Although “Like” button of Facebook is not new, there is something new in this social world: New steps of not-new competitors fighting against Facebook’s like button, which was launched more than a year ago. Google and Twitter have just introduced their own rival buttons for the social web.

There is no doubt that Facebook’s like button increased traffic for all sites which implemented the product since it has been launched. According to Guardian.co.uk reports, the like button has been added to 250,000 sites outside Facebook, feeding information back to the site on the activity and preferences of its 650+ million users.

Twitter, which has 20.6 million US audience in 2011 compared to Facebook’s 132.5 million adults for the same year, announced its “Follow” button and 50 sites including Huffington Post and the Wall Street Journal have already plugged in. Thanks to the follow button, users can easily follow the account on Twitter with one click. By this launch, Twitter, which is also to launch a photo sharing service, expects the innovation to bring more activity on the site and users back to their sleepy accounts. For publishers and brands, adding the Follow Button to your website and using Twitter to stay connected with your audience is a powerful combination,” said Twitter in the announcement.

Google also has launched its new “+1” button to compete with Facebook’s “like” button. With this unclear name, right now it’s not evident how it will impact search results.

Since Google’s +1 invites an explanation and Twitter’s follow is somewhere in between, like button as a concept still seems to be more immediate and understandable it. Moreover, Facebook’s like, which doesn’t require interpretation, seems to remain number one among sharing buttons with its largest user base.

According to experts, it’s good for all web users if this new generation of third-party buttons offers consumers more choice. Otherwise, it might just add misunderstanding of the provided options.

Again “Swedish scientists” and again an innovation that makes life easier… This time it is only a pair of glasses which helps to create a marketing and brand strategy. Who focuses on which part of what product? Thanks to Eye Tracker, it is possible to give clear answers to these questions.

The last innovation of the Scandinavian, who put their signature under many innovations, is glasses. Of course, they are not classic glasses, which we know. Instead, it is Eye Tracker

Eye Tracker is a kind of application following eye movements and developed by Swedish Tobii Technology, which has 10 year history and was chosen as “The Fastest-Growing Technology Company” of Sweden. It is a kind of eye scanner. By benefiting from infrared technology, the system determines where users are looking at and provides right interpretation of data. The data provided by Eye Tracker is used in many areas from market research to advertising, from web design to product design. Moreover, Eye Tracker is used in various areas such as psychological tests, eye diseases, autism works.

However, the most widespread usage area is market researches. In researches that benefit from Eye Tracker, subjects wear the glasses and enter a market. Then, the products which attract the attention of a subject, spaces he/she scans and which parts of the package he/she focuces are recorded and analyzed. As a result, those questions that are vital to determine a strategy find an answer correctly thank to Eye Tracker: Which design left behind its competitors in terms of sales? What short time is package design noticed, how many customers’ attention did it attract? Could customer reach all information given on the package? At which position on the shelves do products attract more attention?

The sale price of Eye Tracker is 24,900 euros and what’s more, Tobii Studio software that analyzes data is not included in this price. The software which has a label around 9,900 euros is sold separately. However, it is possible to hire Eye Tracker and monthly rent, including software, changes between 100 and 3 thousand euros according to the type of services.