Yanny or Laurel? How Cajam Marketing Listens and Learns

Yanny or Laurel? How Cajam Marketing Listens and Learns

The morning started like any other at Cajam Marketing: project updates, upcoming meetings and Philly sports team bragging or bashing (more bragging than bashing lately). We have all worked together for a while – some of us for over two decades, but who is counting – and we are comfortable with speaking our minds and sharing our unique perspectives. So when the question “Yanny or Laurel?” came up, the office erupted in a discussion full of different tones and pitches, followed by Google searches to prove which side, the Yanny team or Laurel team, was correct.

Apparently the Laurel team is correct, based on the report that this audio experiment was generated by a high school student using the audio clip of the word “laurel” from vocabulary.com. While the Yanny team is not convinced – we are all in awe of the 14.8 million plus views this clip has gained so far.

How A Well-Synched Team Sees Things Differently

Throughout the day, linguistics professors, scientists, and audio specialists have weighed in on social media and television about acoustic patterns, frequencies and other theories to explain the phenomenon. At Cajam, we marveled on how our well-synched team can hear different things – or see different things. Our graphic design team still hasn’t fully recovered from the white/gold vs. blue/black dress debate. As marketers, this is a valuable reminder that even a targeted audience, grouped together because of a common interest, sees, hears, and processes information differently.

Yanny or Laurel –  Who Hears What?

Our unscientific, internal Yanny or Laurel results seem to show the more artistic staffers hear “Yanny” and the analytical leaners hear “Laurel.” Keep in mind, this blog post is being written by someone who took Calculus as a pass/fail class – and the analytics team members would argue our sampling won’t yield significant results…but I think our Yanny or Laurel results could also match with the team’s divide between cream or no cream coffee drinkers or Philadelphia or New York sports team fans.

Strength in Our Differences

The one thing the entire Cajam Marketing staff agrees on is how our company is stronger because of our different perspectives. With every project, we all contribute our unique skills and input. As an analytics marketing partner, Cajam Marketing offers the best blend of creativity, intuition, facts and figures. Yanny or Laurel, we work together to bring fresh ideas and solid numbers to your marketing. Learn more about the Cajam Marketing process.

From Underdogs to Top Dogs – Celebrating Champions

From Underdogs to Top Dogs – Celebrating Champions

Philly! Philly! In the far reaches of South Central New Jersey, the Philadelphia Eagles fans at Cajam Marketing are celebrating the team’s first Super Bowl victory.  DVRs are set for the victory parade today, and a Cajammer or two may take a longer than usual lunch break to catch a few minutes of the parade on TV.Minutes after the final whistle blew on Super Bowl Sunday and the Philadelphia area erupted into a huge street party, Cajam Marketing President Kathy Gould texted our team about the victorious Eagles and the parallels to our business model. Even during a Super Bowl celebration, Kathy’s marketing wheels are turning.

Underdogs Become Top Dogs

Who doesn’t like a good underdog victory story?  As e-commerce marketers, we root for the little guys and gals every day as they go up against the mighty Goliath, Amazon.com. Amazon has transformed the online marketplace faster than most could have imagined. One company, Amazon, grabbed an estimated 50% of all 2017 holiday retail sales.

We’ve seen e-retailers struggle in the wake of Amazon, but we’ve also seen some businesses evolve and strengthen their niche markets and bottom lines. In a small organization, it’s easier to be nimble, innovative and stealth. Just like the awe-inspiring “Philly Special” trick play, the small companies can catch the bigger companies by surprise.  The right marketing capitalizes on a small company’s strengths and tells a victory story.

“…A Team Can Make a Miracle”

In his victory speech, Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson celebrates his team with his words, “An individual can make a difference, but a team makes a miracle.” This sentiment especially resonates with Cajam Marketing’s Kathy Gould. “At Cajam, we celebrate the team every day. At bigger agencies, frequent staff changes and turnover can disrupt the continuity and growth of an account. At Cajam Marketing, we are proud of our team’s tenure. Linda and I have over 50 years of combined experience. Our team members have all worked with us for more than a decade. When you work with Cajam Marketing, you get the stability of a real team — each of our team members is an expert in his/her speciality area, and we come together as a brain trust for your business,” says Gould.

Never Give Up

Even New England Patriots fans have been touched by Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles’ personal journey to victory. In his post-game speech, Foles recounts how he almost quit. With the support of his teammates, and a lot of hard work and dedication, a second string quarterback triumphs in the biggest game of his career.  His story is inspiring on and off the field.  This message is especially important for small business owners. Smaller companies can feel overwhelmed, but with the right team around you and steadfast faith that hard work will be rewarded, the little guys and gals can triumph too.

Photo credit: This top dog has waited a long time to wear this Super Bowl championship hat. Thanks to Cajam Marketing friend Beth for sharing this photo with us. 

Cajam Marketing Receives Small Business Enterprise Certification

Cajam Marketing Receives Small Business Enterprise Certification

Cajam Marketing, based in Millstone, New Jersey, recently received certification as a New Jersey Minority and Women’s Small Business Enterprise.  As a local businesswoman, Cajam Marketing President Kathy Gould is proud of the SBE designation.  “We are honored to join a strong network of women and minority business leaders in our community. Cajam Marketing’s clients include diverse businesses of every size across the country, but at the heart of it all, I am still a Jersey girl. Our local roots and Jersey can-do spirit have helped Cajam Marketing flourish,” Gould shares.

Well Versed in Many Industries

From welding supplies to bourbon, the Cajam Marketing team is well versed in marketing to a wide range of industries. Gould founded Cajam Marketing in 2001 with Linda Delp, a colleague and data analyst. “We combined our creative and analytic strengths to focus on data driven marketing,” explains Gould. “We started our careers in print advertising, before Google Adwords or Amazon shopping were a thing. Our strong foundation in offline marketing has really helped us excel and match pace with the ever-evolving digital marketing ecosystem.”

Delp and Gould are joined by a seasoned staff of writers, graphic designers, web designers, developers, data analysts and digital advertising experts. Cajam Marketing specializes in offline and online marketing, offering an array of services from website development to social media marketing.  “Whether you need a banner and brochures for a tradeshow booth or a targeted email campaign for your business, Cajam Marketing does it all,” says Gould.

Giving Back to the Community

As a small business owner with deep ties to her community, Gould likes to give back. One of her “pet projects” is raising and training puppies as guide dogs for the Seeing Eye non-profit group of Morristown, NJ. Gould adds, “Having my own business gives me a little more flexibility to incorporate volunteer service into the work day. Plus, the Cajam team gets its fix of cuddling puppies, which is a great job perk. We are excited about our Small Business Enterprise certification because this will offer us more opportunities to work within our community and make a difference.”

About Cajam Marketing

Founded in 2001, Cajam Marketing is a full service consulting firm specialized in maximizing offline and online marketing initiatives through analytics. Services include web analytics, web design, email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, digital advertising, affiliate marketing, marketplace marketing, print marketing and brand building. For more information about Cajam Marketing, visit www.cajammarketing.com

Amazon’s Market Share: Why Brand Marketing Still Matters to Retailers

Amazon’s Market Share: Why Brand Marketing Still Matters to Retailers

With Amazon credited with about a third of U.S. online retail sales and estimated to contribute .51 cents of every dollar in U.S. e-commerce growth, (source: Internet Retailer) the relevance of brand – apart from the mighty Amazon® brand – may seem to be eroding. However, considering Amazon’s huge market share, the differentiating value of brand is more important than ever.

To a small retailer, Amazon can be both a friend and a foe. Building a brand is one of the best strategies for concurrently competing with Amazon as a retailer and partnering with Amazon as a seller. A brand name separates a product from the pack and helps a product get found. According to a Forrester Research study, about one third of all online product searches in the U.S. start at Amazon. Brand names have the distinct advantage of showing up in search results, based on the search terms shoppers use.

What Does Brand Mean?

Brand is not just a catchy name or cool logo; it’s the association of good feelings with the name that makes shoppers choose a particular product or service. A common marketing adage is shoppers buy on emotion and justify a purchase with logic. We choose one brand over another because the product looks better, feels better, smells better, tastes better or promises to make us better. We choose a brand because of this personal connection formed by our own senses, a feeling of “it’s right for me.”

Brand is just as important for the shoppers who are less swayed by emotion and more influenced by price. To many shoppers, the Amazon brand is associated with reliable service, value and selection. Value-seeking shoppers don’t always buy the cheapest offerings on Amazon. Instead, they use emotions to sort through the products, looking at reseller ratings, brands they trust and product reviews at a site where they feel they belong. The feeling of brand as a shared community is especially true for the millions of Amazon Prime members who subscribe to brand loyalty with an annual fee.

How Do You Get People to Pay More For a Name?

As a marketing professional, I know brand building strategies. As a shopper, I fall for them every time. Recently, I stood in the grocery store condiments aisle, weighing the pros and cons of which bottle of Worcestershire sauce to buy. The Lea & Perrins® bottle caught my eye, as its iconic paper wrap reminded me of my mom. It’s the brand my mother always bought to make her delicious grilled hamburgers. This bottle costs 50% more than the other Worcestershire sauce brands, but emotion and brand beat budget.

Lea & Perrins sets a great example of effective brand building.

An example of brand building

The iconic Lea & Perrins® paper-wrapped bottle.

Perceived Value

The Lea & Perrins unique packaging adds perceived value and sends the right message of quality: this brand has put a lot of thought and care into their product. Plus, the product looks better than the other brands on the grocery store shelf (or Amazon search results), so it’s easy to assume it will taste better too.

Unique Story

“The Famous Paper Wrap” story is printed on the Lea & Perrins packaging, inviting the consumer to be part of the rich heritage of this brand, which dates back to 1837. This feeling of shared history strengthens brand loyalty. Not only is this the brand my mother used, but it’s also the brand my grandmother and generations before her used. I must continue the tradition.

Consistent Messaging

Lea & Perrins conveys the premium packaging = quality message on all their marketing channels, making good use of the clever tag line “Unwrap the Flavor.” The same messages of quality and tradition (plus the same recipe my mother used) are easy to find on the official Lea & Perrins website – as well as their brand page at Amazon.

Make a Name For Yourself

For a new business that hasn’t been around since 1837, the same principles apply:

  • Make your name synonymous with the value your products offer.
  • Tell a unique story to differentiate your product from the others.
  • Consistently reflect these values and narrative in every detail of your business – your customer service team, your packaging, your emails, your website and your social media channels.

Building a Brand on Amazon

It may seem counterintuitive for new or smaller businesses to gain brand awareness in Amazon’s massive marketplace, but with the right product ads, product listings and messaging, it can be a very lucrative way to grow a business.

With over 24 years of experience, Cajam Marketing can help you develop and nurture your brand. Our online marketplace specialists can guide you through selling and advertising on Amazon, Houzz, Jet and other digital marketplaces. Learn more.

When to Call in the Pros: Lessons in Marketing DIY

When to Call in the Pros: Lessons in Marketing DIY

This marketing tip is inspired by a weekend endeavor involving a ski mask, baseball helmet, ladder, flashlight, can of Raid® and a six pack. As my husband fired up the grill for a relaxing weekend barbeque, he noticed a swarm of industrious carpenter bees buzzing around the roof. “Why don’t you call an exterminator?” I asked as he scrolled through images and information about his new nemesis. “I’ve got this,” he replied. I noted the carpenter bee genus name xylocopa contains “loco” – the Spanish word for insane.

My husband rallied some neighbors to help, and the amateur carpenter bee hunters gathered to strategize their attack. Meanwhile, a group of neighborhood kids assembled to place bets on which dad would fall off the roof first. Miraculously, no one was hurt during the mission (including most of the bees). The carpenter bee hunters heartily congratulated each other on a job well done and fired up the grill.

The next day, I noticed my husband sitting in his car in the driveway for an unusually long time. I followed his gaze to the roof, where the carpenter bees were back at work. I heard his voice from the car window, “What’s the number for the exterminator?”

What DIY Projects Can Teach Us About Marketing

What does this teach us about marketing, other than exterminators are missing big opportunities if they don’t plan direct mailings and paid search campaigns around carpenter bee swarms? The other valuable lesson is determining when to call in the pros.

Effective marketing doesn’t require a medical license or an advanced degree, so it’s often treated as a do-it-yourself project. Just as it takes extensive training and licensing to become a pest control professional, marketing is more than being a good communicator or knowing your products well.

How A Small Business Can Look Big

Selling or promoting a product or service requires experience and know-how in a variety of channels including digital advertising, websites, digital marketplaces, print marketing and direct mail, to list a few. Big companies, with teams of marketing professionals on staff and bigger ad budgets, obviously have an advantage over smaller competitors. Outsourcing some marketing projects to the right agency can help a small business look big on a much tighter budget.

An Informal Google Search Case Study

Google search results for local exterminatorTo illustrate, think about how a local pest control company competes against a national brand. Based on what we know about how people look for information, most will search Google® or ask local friends – and many will ask for recommendations from friends on Facebook – all from a mobile device. Here is a screenshot of a Google search for “local exterminator.” As you can see, national brands with sizeable advertising budgets take up a good chunk of the first page. However, the local business that sets up “Google My Business” correctly visibly has a head start over other organic results.

Next, the pest control shopper will either call the local exterminator, or more than likely continue to research by checking out the website and reviews. Is the website professional looking? Does this look like a trustworthy business? Are there customer testimonials? Most importantly, is the contact information easy to find? Can an appointment be set up online? Is this company using retargeting ads on Facebook and other places to remind the shopper about this business?

Jumping ahead, the local exterminator gets the business, and the customer is happy. The exterminator gets permission to add this customer to the contact list. Now the exterminator can send an email next year to remind the customer that carpenter bees will soon be in his/her area and it’s time to schedule an appointment. The exterminator will also ask the customer to share a review on the website. This customer will more than likely respond to the original Facebook post, thanking all the friends for sharing recommendations and raving about this exterminator.

Allocating Resources and Time

This happy ending – or more accurately, happy beginning of a repeat customer, (plus the new customers this happy customer generates) sounds pretty easy. However, the small business local exterminator is very busy controlling pests and scheduling more appointments, leaving little time for marketing. Plus the exterminator knows a lot about chemistry and entomology, but isn’t as well-versed in digital advertising or email marketing. This is the time to call in the marketing pros.

Cajam Marketing helps lots of small businesses navigate the ever-evolving marketing channels including digital advertising, web services, marketplaces, content marketing and analytics. With over 24 years in the business, we know a lot about marketing – and not much about carpenter bees. Contact us and find out how we can help your business.

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