Web/Tech Feed

Improving Pay per Click (PPC) Conversions

Zodiac Pool Systems, makers of Barracuda and Polaris vacuuming systems, added content specific landing pages to their pay per click (PPC) campaigns in order to serve relevant content and improve response rates. Look for the complete case study that includes detailed metrics of this integrated cross media campaign featuring Personalized URLs (PURLs), landing pages, email, direct mail, and paid advertising. Click here to pre-order.

The features of the campaign were:

  1. Relevant content based on the individual advertisement
  2. Additional opt-in mechanisms
  3. Automated follow up and rebate offer fulfillment
  4. Improved tracking

The benefits of the project included:

  1. Improved opt-in rates
  2. Increased downloads of rebates
  3. Creation of a targeted lead list by product line

Google Advertisement

Zodiac ppc pool offer 

Landing Page

Zodiac ppc pool offer landing page 

Campaign Monitor Shares Mobile Email Stats

The folks at Campaign Monitor shared the following stats about mobile email marketing that I wanted to pass along to our readers.  They analyzed their data from all email clients and more than 3 billion messages from May 2009.  The chart says it all.


The mix of mobile email clients is no surprise either.



I agree with the author of the original study, that it is time to pay attention to how your emails look on mobile devices, including tablets and to consider this as part of your cross media marketing strategy.

VDP Web PURLs Featured in New PODi Case Study

JFM Concepts is pleased to announce that Sexton Strategic's Girl Scout PURL campaign has been featured by PODi, including a custom cookie calculator. From Caslon & CO on May 12, 2011:

Cross Channel Marketing Drives Girl Scout Cookie Participation

Vertical Market:               Not for Profit
Business Application:   Direct Marketing / Loyalty

Business Objectives:

The annual cookie program is a major fundraiser for the Girl Scouts of the Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys Council (River Valleys). Encouraging Scout participation is critical to the success of the program. In the past, staff had provided vital information through a monthly email that only reached the parents or troop leaders. River Valleys felt that communicating directly with girls would be important to growing the success of the cookie program. They needed a communication solution that would:

* Improve communication about the cookie program to Scouts and their parents
* Engage three key segments: 
- Newcomers - Girl Scouts in Kindergarten through third grade who may be new to the Girl Scout cookie program
- Parents of Scouts
- Older Girl Scouts who may need extra encouragement to continue their efforts in the cookie program


River Valleys worked with Sexton Strategic to develop a multi-channel marketing program that engaged their membership in the cookie program. With the targeted program River Valleys reduced their overall marketing spend while increasing the effectiveness of the campaign.

* The integrated campaign contributed to greater Scout engagement, which in turn supported exceeding the council's cookie program goal

* A reduction in the number of calls to River Valleys showed that girls and families felt informed about the program
* 12% of targeted older Girl Scouts visited their Personalized URL and completed an online survey giving their feedback on the cookie program

Read more about how this campaign was structured and why it succeeded.
PODi members can download the full case study and nonmembers: Get a complimentary copy for a limited time here.

Rockefeller Sponsors Do Not Track Legislation

Senator Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, has sponsored Do Not Track legislation that would mandate opt-outs for web and mobile behavioral tracking.

The Do Not Track Online Act of 2011 would require the Federal Trade Commission to create requirementss for a Do Not Track process. The FTC would also be responsible for penalizing companies that violate the opt-out preferences consumers'. According to the bill, collection of consumer information “necessary to provide a service requested by the individual” would still be allowed.

The proposal would also allow the states to prosecute companies that violate consumers' preferences. Fines could reach $16,000 per day with total penalties up to $15 million.

JFM Concepts Nominated for 2011 Companies to Watch

JFM Concepts is proud to announce that it has been nominated by The Edward Lowe Foundation as a 2011 Indiana Company to Watch.  JFM Concepts’ Chief Technology Officer John Fager remarked that “This was an unexpected surprise.  Receipt of this nomination is encouraging for the entire team and confirms that our firm and the VDP Web cross media marketing software as a service is making a positive impact on both the market and the Indiana economy.

Indiana Companies to Watch celebrates high-performing, second-stage companies in the state.  Known for their performance in the marketplace, innovative products, unique processes or philanthropic actions, these companies represent a wide range of industries from all corners of Indiana.  This is not an award of the "top" or "best" companies — the companies selected each year make a point about Indiana's diverse economic landscape. They make an astounding impact on the state's economy by collectively providing thousands of jobs and contributing millions of dollars of revenue.

JFM Concepts is a full service cross media marketing technology firm featuring the VDP Complete marketing system and VDP Web Online. JFM specializes in creating variable data cross media marketing technologies with Personalized URLs for commercial printers, marketing departments and agencies of all sizes.  Since 2004, JFM Concepts has developed and executed national cross media marketing strategies for direct clients, traditional agencies and commercial printers. Campaigns include broadcast and print media, direct mail, SMS-text, email, PURLs (personal URLs) and variable data landing pages with surveys and opt-ins.

New Email Validation Software from VDP Web

JFM Concepts is proud to announce the immediate availability of a new standalone Email Validation Software Module as part of the VDP Complete marketing system.  In response to client requirements for more cost effective and accurate email marketing, the programmers at JFM Concepts have developed a process that uses HELO via telnet to contact mail servers based on a list of email addresses to generate a “Pass or Fail” flag for email. 

This program simply reads and outputs responses from reported mail servers to give a general idea of the quality of the email list. The information in the response column can be instructive in resolving errors.  A qualified data analyst can query the responses and help to make appropriate determinations about which emails should be expunged from a list, thereby reducing negative statistics monitored by the various email service providers.

The software increases the chances for multiple concurrent connections to the same mail servers and improved response.  The software is designed to sort through many of the idiosyncrasies of email servers.  Often multiple runs will return failures when a record received a pass just moments before or vice versa.  The program will run the same list multiple times in order to more accurately assess the validity of email addresses increase the number of “Pass” flags. The following data is an actual sample of multiple run results.

Hard bounce 

Hard bounce 2 

The overall results are cleaners data, better response metrics, and improved standing with email marketing service providers.

Be Careful What You Wish For: SEM Marketing

By Joshua Driver

Recently, an article came across my email from the New York Times discussing a recent blunder JCPenny made with hiring a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) provider to create better natural search results for the firm. 

This service linked keywords across numerous websites that were not associated with consumer goods websites, (imagine those “spammy” sites with little to no content).   While this did increase internet traffic to their site, Google views this type of “Black Hat” marketing as negative.  Naturalized search is based on like-sites linking towards your corporate webpage.  The Google algorithms value the links as a recommendation, and places the target site higher in naturalized search.  JCPenny’s agency used hundreds of links, but not from websites with relevant content .  Google reviewed this issue and ultimately placed JCPenny at the bottom of many search results. 

In light of this situation, we believe it is important to keep part of your digital marketing budget allocated towards SEO.  Marketers need to make sure that the brand is also being delivered across other direct channels as well to guarantee consumers are finding you first.

To read the full article at the New York Times, visit:


New Cross Media Book from Schooner Press

Schooner Press is proud to announce the publication of Cross Media Marketing 101, The Concise Guide to Surviving in the C-Suite by James D Michelson.

Cross Media Marketing 101 is the perfect guide for executives and managers looking to be sure that they have considered the major challenges facing them as traditional marketing methods are eclipsed and even supplanted by new channels.  Taking a completely agnostic approach to the marketing mix, the author offers practical insight into the changing marketing world and how marketing leaders can beat the odds. Order now at https://www.createspace.com/3537914

“This book is a must read for any marketing leader looking to be sure they have a thorough grasp on the current marketing landscape.” Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler

About the Author
James Michelson is an internationally recognized thought leader on all aspects of cross media. He has extensive international experience in the development of advanced cross media and one to one (1:1) marketing campaigns in a variety of verticals. James has developed and executed industry recognized cross media marketing strategies for such firms as Caterpillar, Marriott, Hartford Insurance, California Closets, and many more. Visit his personal site at http://www.jmichelson.com for more information.

2011 Cross Media Marketing Outlook Webinar

JFM Concepts, the industry leader in cross media marketing, is pleased to announce the next session in the firm’s  popular webinar series.  Join James Michelson and John Fager of JFM Concepts for this free educational webinar.  Discover lessons learned in 2010, the trends for the upcoming year, and benchmarks you can use to develop your own strategies throughout 2011. The last session for this topic is Thursday, January 13th at 1:00 pm EST.

Please visit http://webinar1.vdpconcepts.com/ to register.