Welcome to Digital Marketing (MRKT327)

Welcome to Digital Marketing (MRKT327). Hopefully, you had a fulfilling summer and are eagerly anticipating our first class which is scheduled Wednesday September 6 in Siena Hall room 308.You need to bring your laptop or tablet computer every day to class and arrive on time having completed all required work. All course resources have been posted to Blackboard for your review and will be updated as necessary during the semester.
Prior to our first class on September 6, you will be required to read the following which have been provided on Blackboard:
1) Course syllabus and schedule
2) MODULES-WEEK 1 document that contains information on establishing a WordPress blog and basic features.

By the end of the first two weeks of classes, you should be able to have a basic blog similar to mine below so it is imperative you understand WordPress basics prior to our initial class.

Professor Pepe

Posted in MRKT327-Digital Marketing | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Story A Video Can Tell You: Old Spice and The Scarecrow

Both of these videos dabbled around different strategies. I want to first look at The Scarecrow video and analyze its strategies. The purpose of this video was to provoke emotion, involve present and future consumers about the underlying issues that fall behind the food industry, much that you don’t see so heavily portrayed in other commercials.


You have the simple, kind-hearted, protagonist that is designed to connect with the viewers, to allow them to feel the scarecrow’s emotions. The next strategy that was used effectively in this video was the storytelling of what goes on behind the scenes in food production and preparation, unveiling the many layers that many do not see or have a full understanding (SWOT Analysis, 2014). This storytelling is done in a friendly, child-like animated setting; it was done tastefully as oppose to seeing real life chickens being injected with hormones, something that many individuals would not be able to stomach properly and let’s face it, PETA is already on that game, so it’s obvious that Chipotle wanted to take a different route than that. As the video progresses, the emotion by the end has completely evolved from unsettling and depressing to a much more stable happy-ending type feeling and displaying the slogan “Cultivate A Better World.”


As for Old Spice, they purposely chose the humorous route for the purpose of attracting all audiences. As stated in the video, women were the most frequent body wash shoppers, so how could this brand solicit their name to this particular demographic, well with the immediate idea of making their man smell like a man while using a fairly attractive individual to lure them into the commercial. Isaiah Mustafa was a perfect candidate in selling this brand through his clear communication with viewers through each commercial by nonstop eye contact, short, right-to-the-point messages and the constant discussion of smell. He did not so much criticize the brand itself, but created a whole new aesthetic for Old Spice for present and hopefully new consumers.


Clearly this campaign was effective in triggering millions real-time responses from viewers all over the world. With the constant engagement, various lucky viewers would have the opportunity to have their message featured in some of the upcoming commercials. But with such high popularity that wasn’t always the case and even with that viewers were trying harder and harder to have their messages featured. Keeping consumers constantly engage with what is going on helps build success. The constant production of Old Spice commercial set in the same format continued to lead to the brand’s growth amongst various social media platforms.

REISS, C. (2010). Five lessons from the Old Spice Man. Entrepreneur, 38(9), 22
Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. SWOT Analysis. (2014). Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. SWOT Analysis, 1-8.

Posted in BUS525 | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Siena is the best

_dsc0609the best

Posted in MRKT327-Digital Marketing | Tagged | Leave a comment

M2A1- The tweets about #highered


While monitoring Twitter for the use of #highered there was a large variety of issues and questions that were being posed by users and even articles used by higher education organizations. I saw many tweets about listening to students and their needs and wants and one tweet directed me to an article about the University of Nebraska and their upcoming school elections. The students on the University of Nebraska campus are wanting to establish an annual fee for students that would be put towards environmental sustainability projects on the campus (Dunker, 2015). I find this a breath of fresh air and a showing that higher education officials should listen to their student body and consider the ideas that they have and the money they are willing to put into improving and support their campus.

Another strong theme I saw being promoted was geared towards PhD student studies. I saw tweets about tips for the completion of a thesis to an article about how post doctorate students make the best industry employees. I mean we all know that doctorate students put in a lot of hours towards their education but in all honestly how does your degree level determine that at all. What I did find interesting was the amount of money that doctorate students actually made and how many man hours in a day they put towards their studies and experiments. Many doctorate students have more than twenty years of schooling, work long hours, performing complicated experiments and making around 42,000 a year while doing all this work for their degrees (Cheeky Scientest, 2015). Now an argument could be made that some undergraduate students and even adult learners like all of us, work full time while handling our case load as well. I think any level of education requires sacrifices, dedication and long man hours and any student should be praised for their work and for bettering their lives in the long run.

I will say that Higher Education has its own Twitter account and many of the things they tweet about are being retweeted and favorited by many of their followers. A side note is that Higher Education is the same account that has been catering towards PhD students during this time frame as well. I also saw some diversity pieces being retweeted and favorited multiple times and shared with users as well.

In summation, going into this research I was thinking that #highered was something that wasn’t going to be even mentioned on Twitter but this research proved me wrong. I found that higher education was something that was in full force in the Twitter land and something that many users and organizations feel strong about and support by retweeting and forwarding the articles that take on a meaning with them.

Cheeky Scientist. (2015). Why Postdocs Make the Best Industry Employees.

Dunker, C. (2015). UNL Students Consider Establishing “Green Fund” Fee.

Posted in BUS525 | Tagged | 1 Comment



Cracking the Home Depot Content Marketing Code

Since 2009, Home Depot implemented a social media strategy to stay competitive in their marketing. Initially, the plan was created by the company’s corporate communications department with a final say from the CEO.  Today, content marketing is so crucial that Innovation and Digital Chiefs call the shots.  Social media was integrated to engage with customers by providing stimulating visual content on their website.  This allows the brand to convey a message and let people that love home projects connect.   Videos of actual employees are posted on Youtube, products aretweeted, and relationships are being created online.  Here is a recent tweet from a Home Depot employee to engage consumers: #Springalloutforless .  It shows a photos of house planters and lawnmowers for low prices.

HomeDepot-ArticleSpring products – lower prices

One test is the corporate communications team isn’t able to evaluate all content before it is posted to the Home Depot How-To-Community”.   All subject matter is reviewed within 48 hours.   Plumbing and electrical updates are given extra careful review

Overall the strategy is very effective because the store associates were chosen to provide content, and have in-depth product knowledge.  Also, like-minded individuals can connect in the community where they find value.


Home Depot spokesperson Kathryn Emery told brandchannel, “The power of social media is amplification. Social media allows for trending topics, current events or emerging movements to take off and memes have become one of the main conduits to spur the proliferation”.  Entrepreneur states humor in social media humanizes and surprises, and that is certainly agreeable.



Photo credit: Slideshare. Retrieved from:    http://www.slideshare.net/search/slideshow?searchfrom=header&q=home+depot

Gioglio, J. , & Walter, E. (2014).The Power of Visual Storytelling. Chicago: McGraw-Hill Education.

Posted in BUS525 | Tagged , | Leave a comment

BUS565-M3D1: All about Marketing Mix Modeling, Pirates, and Climate Change   


Marketing Mix Modeling

Marketing Mix Modeling is the process that uses statistical analysis to estimate, maximize, and predict how multichannel marketing tactics are impacting the company (Cole, 2011). It attempts to quantify individual marketing activity’s impact on sales volume and accounts for the effect of controllable, semi-controllable, and uncontrollable external factors. With this information in their arsenal, the company can devote more of its money to the areas in their marketing mix that have the largest likelihood for a positive impact on sales (Weiner, Arnorsdottir, Lang, & Smith, 2010). Areas of waste can be removed, and the marketing process should become more efficient and produce a larger ROI.

[ File # csp4734663, License # 1652303 ] Licensed through http://www.canstockphoto.com in accordance with the End User License Agreement (http://www.canstockphoto.com/legal.php) (c) Can Stock Photo Inc. / iqoncept

Every model is imperfect, though, and the marketing mix model is no exception. In this model, if every possible variable is not entered, its accuracy is decreased. It would be impossible to enter every variable into the model, though. Also, the many facets of PR are not always known, and so important factors might be unintentionally excluded, such as news that might have stifled sales that was out of the control of the company (Weiner, Arnorsdottir, Lang, & Smith, 2010).

Also, the mixed media model mostly recognizes correlations that will describe how related two variables are (“Module Notes,” n.d.). This simply tells us correlation, though, and not causation. The measurement doesn’t say if X causes Y, if Y causes X, or even if they are both caused by an outside variable (Cooper and Schindler, 2014). In the very well researched (I’m sure) graph below, Average Global Temperature is negatively correlated to the number of pirates, with temperature drastically increasing as the number of pirates has quickly diminished. The correlation is strong, but it does not prove causation. Becoming a pirate will most likely not help to curb global warming. Some correlations might be pure coincidence, or there may be a third unidentified variable causing the correlation.


Applying Marketing Mix Modeling to Facebook

In the analyzing of Facebook content that we completed last week, the reliability and validity of the measurements could be questioned, and the time that it would take to conduct a more thorough analysis would probably make the measure inefficient. With marketing mix modeling software, the company can quickly find “forward looking, predictive analytics” (Cole, 2011). In social media, lightning fast methods are needed to be able to consume, interpret, and utlize data to maximize the positive effects of social media marketing (Cole, 2011).


Cole, Z. (2011, December 7). Social Business: Using Marketing Mix Modeling to Maximmize ROI. Retrieved from Social Business News: http://www.socialbusinessnews.com/marketing-mix-model/

Cooper, D. R., & Schindler, P. S. (2014). Business Research Methods (12 ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Module Notes: Standards for PR Measurement. (n.d.). Retrieved from Excelsior College: https://mycourses.excelsior.edu/webapps/blackboard/execute/displayLearningUnit?course_id=_50263_1&content_id=_2296326_1&framesetWrapped=true

Weiner, M., Arnorsdottir, L., Lang, R., & Smith, B. G. (2010). Isolating the Effects of Media-Based Public Relations on Sales: Optimization Through Marketing Mix Modeling. This Institute for Public Relations Commission on PR Measurement and Evaluation. Retrieved from http://www.instituteforpr.org/media-based-pr-on-sales/

Posted in BUS565 | Tagged , | 1 Comment

BUS565-M2D1:The Happiest Place on Earth and Facebook 

Content analysis, which involves “the systematic, objective, quantitative analysis of message characteristics,” may involve coders studying a selected sample of media coverage and systematically noting important traits (Content Analysis, n.d.). The analysis begins with identifying what the coders should look for, vice simply “discovering” the messages. Then, what is seen can be counted and analyzed (“An intro to content analysis,” n.d.). Someone who is analyzing the Happiest Place on Earth’s Facebook page, Walt Disney World, should expect to see a lot of happiness, magic, and fun, customer engagement, and very little that is negative.


To analyze whether a Facebook page is living up to company expectations, a good place to start is to see if they are following marketing objectives. The Walt Disney Company’s marketing plan requires the company to project a brand personality that is happy, lighthearted, and magical, and that can transport its followers to a state of happiness and magic (Carawan, 2013). The company prides itself on this image, and it’s vital that it comes through on its social media campaign. To see if this image is shining through, the following items were analyzed:

  1. The tone of the post or comment is given anywhere from -15 to +15 points. The most positive post is given +15, most negative is -15.
  2. The words “magic,” “happy,” or “fun” in any form were given 0-20 points, as they promote the brand personality. Twenty points were given if the actual words were used, 10 points were given if the words were implied by the message, 0 points if the words were absent.
  3. Any phrasing asking the consumer to engage within the post, such as post pictures or tell a story about a Disney memory were given 0-20 points. Zero points for no engagement, 10 points for asking customers to share an experience, 20 points for asking customers to share a picture. The same points were given to comments that engaged as the post instructed.
  4. If the post or comment contains a picture or video, 15 points are given. Pictures are excellent for grabbing the reader’s attention, and a commenter that posts a picture shows a high degree of trust and engagement (Khare, 2014).
  5. 10 points are given to posts that encourage the customer to take action, such as downloading an app, or visiting a Walt Disney website outside of Facebook. Likewise, 10 points were given to a commenter that indicates that they downloaded the app or visited the outside site.
  6. The length of the post was also analyzed. Studies have shown that the ideal Facebook post will have between 100 and 119 characters (Kuenn, 2014). A range of 0-20 points were given for post length, with 20 points given for a post of the ideal length, and 0 points for a post that differed in length by 40 characters in either direction.


Post # 1 2 3 4 5 6 Total
P1 15 10 0 15 0 18 58
C1 15 20 0 0 0 0 35
P2 15 0 0 15 10 15 55
C2 15 10 0 0 10 0 35
P3 15 0 0 15 10 20 60
C3 15 0 0 0 0 0 15
P4 15 0 0 15 10 20 60
C4 15 0 0 0 10 0 25
P5 15 10 0 15 10 20 70
C5 15 20 0 0 10 20 65
P6 15 10 0 15 10 6 56
C6 15 0 0 0 10 0 25
P7 15 0 0 15 0 0 30
C7 15 0 0 0 0 0 15
P8 15 0 0 15 10 20 60
C8 15 10 10 15 10 10 70
P9 15 20 0 15 0 0 50
C9 15 20 0 15 0 10 60
P10 15 20 0 15 10 20 80
C10 15 20 0 15 0 10 60


The posts that were analyzed ranged in score from 30 points at the low end to 80 points at the high end. The most common deficiency included a lack of customer engagement. None of the posts that were analyzed asked the customer to engage with the company by telling stories or sharing pictures. Wall posts are an excellent opportunity for a company to engage with their customers and show they are responsive (McCorkindale, 2010).  The Walt Disney Company is missing valuable opportunities to engage with their customers and spread their positive message. They rarely, if ever, respond to customers’ comments and posts, showing an unfortunate lack of caring from a company that prides itself on a happy experience. The posts that were analyzed were picked using a random number generator, so there were posts on the Facebook page that were not analyzed that did encourage consumer engagement, though.

The company’s followers don’t seem to be bothered much by the lack of encouragement to engage. The post with the lowest score was simply a video of the Tea Cups with the title “Tea Time!”:



This post had very little of what was looked for in the analysis, but it still promoted the brand’s fun personality. The message had fewer than the ideal number of characters, did not contain any key words, and did little to encourage the engagement of the consumer, but through the magic of Walt Disney, they still managed to represent their brand personality and they had quite a lot of engagement. Even the comment analyzed on the post was positive, despite starting with three emphatic “no’s.”

The post with the highest score contained the key words that were considered to promote the marketing objectives, encouraged the reader to take action, included a very uplifting video, and contained the ideal number of characters. This post had drastically more in the way of engagement than the “tea time” post. This seems to support the accuracy of the weighting that was used in the coding of Walt Disney World’s Facebook posts.

The comments that were analyzed seem to have little to do with the posts they were associated with, but they all upheld a positive tone. The comment with the highest score seemed to have very little to do with the post it was associated with. The post was encouraging a new app, whereas the comment was about a recent trip to Disney. The comment showed very high engagement from the customer, but was not even acknowledged by Disney’s customer support.

A monstrous company like Walt Disney World may not see the merit of engaging with customers, thanking them for their positive comments, or helping them on social media when they have a question, because they already have a very strong base of lifelong, repeat customers. For a smaller business, though, this engagement is vital. Positive engagement from the company builds a good reputation, increases trust, and can attract new customers through word-of-mouth (“How to engage with customers,” n.d.). Despite their lack of customer engagement, Disney is doing an excellent job at encouraging its brand personality and promoting a positive message.


An intro to content analysis. (n.d.). Retrieved from Excelsior: https://mycourses.excelsior.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-2296317-dt-content-rid-20527764_1/courses/GBU.BUS565.Online.201508.201510.s30040687/module_02/BUS565_M2.pdf

Carawan, C. (2013, December 3). The Walt Disney Company Marketing Plan. Retrieved from Prezi: https://prezi.com/_tiw6-z37vuj/the-walt-disney-company-marketing-plan/

Content Analysis. (n.d.). Retrieved from Pew Research Center: http://www.pewresearch.org/methodology/about-content-analysis/

How to engage with customers on social media. (n.d.). Retrieved from CP Communications: https://socialmediasydney.net.au/how-to-engage-with-customers-on-social-media/

Khare, P. (2014, April 16). How To Create A Social Media Strategy (that works) For Your Business. (S. Misra, Interviewer) Retrieved from http://treptalks.com/phyllis-khare-social-media-strategy/

Kuenn, A. (2014, June 2). How Long Should Your Content Be? What Works On Blogs, Facebook & More. Retrieved from Marketing Land: http://marketingland.com/long-content-84370

McCorkindale, T. (2010). Can you see the writing on my wall? Public Relations Journal, 4(3). Retrieved from http://www.prsa.org/intelligence/prjournal/documents/2010mccorkindale.pdf

Posted in BUS565 | Tagged | Leave a comment

BUS565-M1D1: Public Relations Can Be Measured

Public relations efforts by an organization will be difficult to measure results, unless there is a process with measurable objectives.  The traditional successes of PR word of mouth, getting published, placement or reach are not quantifiable.  Setting measurable goals to align with a business strategy is critical to fully execute a public relations campaign.  Predetermined goals communicate with the team, create a sense of purpose, and determine accomplishment (Anderson, Hadley, Rockland, & Weiner 2009).   It comes down to data, creating objectives and establishing qualitative results to track.  PR superstar, and adjunct faculty at Johns Hopkins’ Shonali Burke, will have you ask:  “why are you investing time and money into your campaign?”


Communication aims need to be “specific, measureable, achievable, relevant and time-bound”. Using the goals of a company as a guide, one example is “to increase company awareness from 5 % to 8% over three years”.  Then only those metrics important to that project are pertinent (Anderson, et al, 2009).  An ‘output’ is the first level of measurement only, similar to gathering “friends or fans” on Facebook.  This does not meet any business objectives. An analyst would have no idea of how the number of ‘fans’ increased ROI.  Impressions and gaining followers on Twitter aren’t very strategic (Communication Measurement, 2015).  Create a relationship with your fans so they will take action!



Three Considerations by Institute of PR

According to Paine, Draper & Jeffrey (2008), the points are well known outcome measures among PR professionals:

  1. An output result comes from press releases, sponsored events, promo material, and the web.
  2. An outcome is a measurement of what audiences responded to like ‘retweets’ and customer surveys. It does not measure ROI, it is only the result of an output.
  3. Business results aligning with the organizational goals such as saving money, an improved process, employee turnover, sales, stock prices.  These results are all due to outputs and outcomes.

Measurement in social media intertwines with public relations communication efforts.  Social media is all about relationships, and so is public relations.  Measurement methods can be used to solve issues in companies. Communication outputs in mainstream and social media are coded for analysis to keep up with standards and best practices. Coding sheets are used to assign how important factors can affect the relationship. Tone for example, can have a positive, neutral or negative impact on viewer’s opinions.  Having a company’s selling points mentioned in a blog review scores high.  Defining the audience a company, and having media quote an executive scores even higher in coding (Jackson, 2015).


Anderson, F. W. (2009, September). Guidelines for Setting Measurable Public Relations Objectives: An Update. Retrieved from Institute for PPR: http://www.instituteforpr.org/wp-content/uploads/Setting_PR_Objectives.pdf

Communication Measurement. (2015, Aug 25). Retrieved from https://mycourses.excelsior.edu/webapps/blackboard/execute/displayLearningUnit?course_id=_50263_1&content_id=_2296310_1&framesetWrapped=true

Paine, K. D. (Jan). Institute for PR. Retrieved from http://www.instituteforpr.org/wp-content/uploads/UsingResearch_DriveBusiness.pdf

Posted in BUS565 | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Digital Marketing Education through the analysis of the 2016 Minnesota Vikings Season.

SuperBowl1Professor Pepe at Super Bowl XXXIII in Miami-1999

 Professor Pepe has established this blog for the purpose of marketing education in Digital Marketing MRKT327 at Siena College for the fall 2016 semester. The blog posts will follow the Minnesota Vikings 2016 season and analyze the team’s digital marketing strategy  to relate to marketing education in MRKT327.

Michael Pepe has been an avid Minnesota Vikings fan since 1977 when the team last appeared in the Super Bowl, a 32-14 loss to the Oakland Raiders that left the team with a 0-4 record in the big game. Coming off another season-ending frustrating loss to the Seahawks in last year’s NFC wild card game

after Blair Walsh missed a chip shot kick, there are high expectations as the team should be improved this year while moving into their brand new stadium.

 This blog will be targeted to students in MRKT327 during the fall semester as well as other football fans that wish to enhance their marketing education through their passion of the gridiron. There are several blog post assignments required for the course and the Minnesota Vikings 2016 season will be integrated into each. Digital Marketing, consisting of social media, has revolutionized communication and this blog will analyze techniques such as search engine optimization, web analytics and social media tactics revolving around the Minnesota Vikings season.

 For your initial digital marketing education post from Professor Pepe, please read the Minnesota Vikings fan engagement lesson that details the team’s websites, digital and social media initiatives, merchandise and e-commerce operations, community and special events, marketing partnerships, advertising, branding, promotions, graphic design, fan relations and game day activities.

After a 15-1 season during the 1998 season, Professor Pepe was certain that the Vikings would appear in Super Bowl XXXIII, hence his attendance at the game. But as always, another blown loss.

 Same bullshit every year. Can the team FINALLY not choke this year? Probably not and we will have the analytics to measure the reaction.

Posted in MRKT327-Digital Marketing | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Effective Call to Action thru the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


What causes an individual to dump a bucket of ice water over their head? Could it be a sign of insanity, need for attention, support for a cause, or combinations of all three? This weeks’ module highlights the importance of actively engaging with consumers through the use of calls to action (CTA) techniques.

The #IceBucketChallenge, sometimes called the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, is an activity involving dumping a bucket of ice water on someone’s head to promote awareness of (ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease) and encourage donations to research. It went viral on social media during July–August 2014. The challenge called to action and encouraged nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same. A common stipulation is that nominated participants had 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation.

In an article by Covello (2014), the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge provided a case study for marketers to capture the attention of their audience and provided three basic lessons about content marketing:

  1. It’s unique, simple, and just crazy enough
  2. It hits both ends of the sad-to-happy emotional spectrum
  3. The call to action is fun and free

The Ice Bucket Challenge resulted in over $100 million being raised in 2014 to fight Lou Gehrig’s disease compared to $2.6 million in 2013. Peterson (2014) provided 16 key social media metrics from the Ice Bucket Challenge and serves as a benchmark that all content marketing strategies will aspire to in the future.

Posted in BUS545 | Tagged , | Leave a comment