Big Brother: The Marketer

By Katie Barrett

iStock 000011362238XSmall e1365168425723 Big Brother: The MarketerLate last year, Verizon filed a patent application for the creation of a new television technology that will listen to viewing audiences and allow advertisers to serve ads that react to those conversations. The patent, “Methods and Systems for Presenting an Advertisement Associated with an Ambient Action of a User”, describes that the system would utilize microphones, 3D imaging, and thermographic cameras to detect what goes on in viewers’ living rooms.

For example, if the TV were to detect a dog barking, the user may be served an ad for dog food. Or, if a couple has a conversation implying they are going out to dinner, they may see a commercial for a restaurant. The system will use words, background noises and even a viewer’s mood to determine what content is relevant.

Is George Orwell’s Big Brother becoming a reality 30 years late? Can society look past potential privacy concerns and let marketers into their intimate conversations? Is there an extension for B2B marketing?
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By IMRE Research

After watching consumer confidence tumble for the past three months and hit a low of 58.4 in January when a payroll tax increase took effect, the index jumped by more than eleven points in February to 69.6. The increase comes as consumers appear to have adjusted to the cut in their take-home pay and developed a renewed sense of optimism for the labor market. Those anticipating more jobs in the coming months rose to 16.7 percent, up from 14.4 percent in January. In fact, consumers’ perception of the job market was correct: unemployment fell to a four-year low of 7.7 percent for February. The U.S. Department of Labor reported the addition of 236,000 jobs for the month.

What remains to be seen is the impact of sequestration. Originally part of the debt-ceiling debates in 2011, sequestration was designed to be an incentive for Congress to come to agreement on tax and spend policies. When the Super Committee failed to act that year, it triggered the automatic federal spending cuts, which were originally slated to kick-in on January 2, 2013. However, during the fiscal cliff negotiations in late 2012, Congress voted to approve a tax relief bill, which not only helped to reduce the amount of the sequestration cuts, but shifted the date they would take effect to March 1.  As these cutbacks begin to take effect across the country, they have the potential to not only lower consumer confidence and increase unemployment, but to slow economic growth overall. Some predict that sequestration can have a negative impact of up to 1 percent on GDP.
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By Social Marketing Team

If you’re not calling upon social advocates as an extension to your wellness brand’s advocacy efforts, it’s time. Nielsen’s Global Trust Advertising Survey found 92% of consumers around the world say they trust earned media, such as word-of-mouth and recommendations, above all forms of advertising. Online consumer reviews are the second most trusted form of advertising. These influential brand ambassadors make up just 1% of a brand’s social community; they are primarily the ones driving the conversation and the shares.

Although 1% of your social audience may not sound like a lot, they can make a big impact. This group of loyalists can drive up to 70% of traffic to any given campaign. Identifying these influencers who are driving the conversations is the first step to understanding the audience in your social community.
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Green & Trendy

By Green Experts Team

GreenBuilding e1359658889821 Green & TrendyEarlier this month, Jerry Yudelson, leading green building and sustainability consultant released his annual list of “Top 10 Megatrends” for the green building industry. Based on these trends, it appears green building will continue its rapid expansion in 2013, despite continuing economic challenges.

So what does this mean for brands? IMRE’s Sustainability experts weigh in on top three things brands should be aware of in 2013.
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Pint-Sized Apartments

By Building Experts Team

MicroApt 300x194 Pint Sized ApartmentsWho said bigger was better anyway?

New apartment complexes coming to cities across the country are now pushing for the idea that smaller apartments are better. The trend in building more compact apartments is changing the way builders are catering to different consumers. Small-scale apartments are on the rise and tailor to Generation Y, those born between 1981 and 1999. These apartments are not only smaller in size, but are promoted as more affordable. These micro-unit dwellings can range anywhere from 220 square feet to less than 500 square feet.

Why the trend? Even though these apartments give up extra space, they also offer some of the most desirable living locations in cities across the country. They offer walkable neighborhoods where everything is easily accessible without the extra cost of a car.

Builders are equipping these residences with high-tech, sustainable elements – catering to the eco-conscious consumer. They are also fully designed from the inside, incorporating smaller furnishings, compact beds and smaller energy efficient appliances.
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By Social Marketing Team

iStock 000019365398XSmall e1356029895791 Navigating the Social Landscape – Top Trends in 2012As we head into 2013, social media continues to establish a strong presence across all industries, with the home and building being no exception. In 2012, we saw increased usage of LinkedIn, while other professionals continued to explore the likes of Facebook and Pinterest.

Additional social trends that emerged included:
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By IMRE Research

With time running out to resolve the impending fiscal cliff, negotiations are in full swing with both political parties offering differing solutions of how to best address the impending federal tax increases and spending cuts set to kick in on January 1, 2013. And, once again this month, concerns over what the resolution will look like, if one is developed in time, ultimately overshadowed a bevy of positive economic news this past month.
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By Building Experts Team
ProductsImage e1354739752193 Decipher Your Customers’ Decisions

Photo courtesy of HTVremodels.com.

You’ve thoroughly researched your target audiences before marketing to them. We’re sure you know them as well as your family (if not better). We recognize how important it is to educate your audience about your specific industry so they can understand the key benefits of your products. But what we don’t always think about is what the most significant factors are in each audience’s consideration set.

The BuildIQ team recently learned some interesting insight into what a few key audiences are looking for when selecting products for their next project. Take a look and let us know what you think.
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By IMRE Research

After a close race, the country has voted to return President Obama to the White House for a second term. While Democrats picked up two seats and retained control of the Senate with a 55-45 majority, the Republicans were able to keep control of the House, 234 to 197 (some races are still being decided), in spite of gains by Democrats. This division in leadership will certainly continue to have an impact on the pending economic issues lawmakers will be turning their attention to now that the election is over, with the most imminent being the fiscal cliff. But, they return to their lame duck session with bright spots in the economy that were overshadowed by campaign rhetoric. The economy quietly continued to show its resiliency, with a surge in job additions, a healthy jump in consumer confidence and significant gains in the construction industry.
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Building inspiration with Houzz

By Building Experts Team

Just as the social sharing site Pinterest has taken hold of consumers, comparable sites tailored to design andHouzz logo Building inspiration with Houzz remodeling audiences like Houzz have gripped pros and DIYers.

Houzz bills themselves as the “leading online platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish – online or from a mobile device. From decorating a room to building a custom home, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world.” Read the rest of this entry »


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