Assignment #8 COB Website Analysis

Posted On March 27, 2012

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My method of finding the Interactive Marketing requirements was to start on the COB home page and clicked on the ‘Degrees/Programs’ Tab, then clicked on ‘Bachelor of Science in Marketing’ link under the Undergraduate Programs header.  Then I clicked on the ‘Interactive Marketing; link which lead me to its page and finally clicked on the ‘Curriculum’ link on the left side of the page.  Overall, it only took me four clicks to find the information I was looking for.

Navigation

Rating

Explanation for Rating

Current location within the site is shown clearly.

8

The site uses large and bold headings telling viewers where they’re at on a page, but don’t offer any bread crumbs or a different colored tab to let viewer know they’re on a certain page.
Link to the site’s main page is clearly identified.

10

The site’s first tab in the upper left hand corner is the ‘Home’ tab that takes you to the COB homepage, it also has the logo in that corner as well that takes you back to the university home page.
Major/important parts of the site are directly accessible from main page.

10

Everything necessary for a search is located at the top of the site by the use of tabs for different searches.
Site map is provided for a large, complex site.

10

As mentioned above, the site has the major parts listed in tabs that allow easy traveling to desired material.
Easy-to-use search function is provided, as needed.

10

Along with the tabs, they also have a search box that you can put key words of your search in there to find results.

Architectural and Visual Clarity

Rating

Explanation for Rating

Site is organized from the user’s perspective.

10

It has tabs that are useful to current and potential students.
Site is easily scannable for organization and meaning.

10

It shows the flow of NIU to the College of Business to COB’s slogan in the upper left hand corner.
Site design and layout is straightforward and concise.

10

Everything seems to flow and nothing looks out of place.
White space is sufficient; pages are not too dense.

8

The Home page does a great job of using active white space, however as you go to different tabs, some have a lot more passive white space.
Unnecessary animation is avoided.

10

Nothing is animated unless you press a button to see another drop down or view a video, this allows views to be more in control of what they’re viewing.
Colors used for visited and unvisited links are easily seen and understood.

10

Each page offers the same uniform background and coloring. This gives the viewer a feeling that the page isn’t so busy and more likely to read what’s on the pages.

Assignment 7 LeapFrog Online Speakers

Posted On March 21, 2012

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Our Internet Marketing class was fortunate enough to have two guest speakers from LeapFrog Online come and talk to our class on March 7, 2012.  Thorne Washington is a specialist for LeapFrog and is also an NIU 2011 alum.  Brad Hawk is a manager there as well, but graduated from UIC in 2006.  LeapFrog creates digital sales channels for large brands using many different tools, such as, search marketing, display advertising, mobile and social marketing.  I think it is great when alumni who were in our seats only a few semesters ago come back and talk about their work experiences.  It is something that I hope one day to be able to do.

I got a lot of great key takeaways from this presentation, for starters, it reinforced to me that mobile marketing is really the next big marketing frontier for companies.  I’ve noticed that over the past couple of years companies have upgraded its marketing techniques to match the current trends of its target markets.  An example of this being how when most of the United States population was learning and actively texting, most companies had customers give it their cell phone numbers to text special offers to those customers.  As more people have smart phones, they are making it more appealing to entice more people to willingly join its sites or down its apps.  This allows customers to think they have more control about seeing advertisements, when really, they are making it easier for companies to better target ads to fit the person.  This also allows companies to reach bigger audiences because word of mouth will spread and more people will download the app instead of only getting those customers who come into the stores and are willing to give out their cell numbers to receive several dozen texts that may not apply to them.

Convergence and data is also used by marketers and they consider it the ‘holy grail’ by advertisers.  This method connects multiple touch points together such as when you use your smart phone to do searches and they can target your location to offer your deals in that area.  I was also surprised that they talked about QR Codes, because I thought they were on the way out.  I personally have never scanned one of the codes or have seen someone scan it, so I really don’t know what they do, but from stories by classmates in our class, they seem to not be currently used effectively by marketers.  In all of the techniques Thorne and Brad talked about, they stressed the importance of engaging the viewers of your ads and giving them the choice of ordering online or over the phone.  One of the topics I found interesting was Near-Field Communication, where companies like Google Wallet allows people to pay their bills at restaurants by pressing an app button and the money is taken out of their accounts and paid to the restaurant they are currently at.  Though there are a lot of risks, such as an increased chance of identity theft, it still seems like a cool idea that is most likely going to grow in the next several years.

I really enjoyed listening to these guest speakers and learned more about internet marketing in the business world that enhanced what we are learning in classroom.

HW #6 Paid Searches

Posted On March 7, 2012

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Record Bowl

www.ecoist.com/recordbowl

Bring music back with record bowl.

Free Shipping!

 

Keyword bid: Record

3)

a)      There is low competition for this word.

b)      The monthly global volume is 55,600,000 and the local search volume is 20,400,000

c)      I would try adding other relevant keywords to this search to get a better targeting for Ecoist.com’s demographic.  I would suggest adding recycled which shows a global volume of 1,830,000 and a local monthly search of 823,000 with medium competition and bowl which shows a global volume of 16,600,000 and a local monthly search of 11,100,000 with low competition to the list, because this narrows down the list and makes it more likely your ad and website will be seen.  Using the keyword phrase recycled record bowl is a medium competition with a global monthly search of 58 and local monthly search of 36.

d)     The number of clicks for the keyword Record is 31 clicks per day and the estimated daily cost for Record would cost $31 a day if my bid was a dollar per click.

3)

a)      Ecoist.com is currently bidding on 121 keywords.

b)      My keyword was not in it top ten.  Its major clicks come from its recycled handbag and purses lines.

c)      After looking at the results, I would suggest that it try to focus on its other products as well as its handbags and purses lines.  It is competing against larger companies that have a lot more money they can spend on keyword bidding, so it need to be more focused on certain keywords used.