Week 3 Monitoring Current Events

After signing up for the COSI email newsletter, I received a confirmation email within 10 minutes.  The email confirmed signing up for the newsletter as well as welcoming me to the COSI supporters’ community. It included images of the center as well as a link to the homepage and a link to unsubscribe. The next communication I received was on the following Monday with a list of upcoming events and show times for COSI in upcoming months. I have only received the one newsletter since signing up.

Email ___________________________________________________________________________

From: COSI

Subject: 3 Ways to Save on COSI Admission

Hello Valued Guest,

With all of the exciting upcoming summer events, COSI wants to inform you of opportunities to save on admission costs. Please click one of the phrases below for further details.

Do-it-All Ticket

Family Nights

Memberships

We look forward to seeing you during you next visit. Thanks for being a part of the COSI community.

Ariel Saultz

COSI Marketing and Promotions

cosi pic

___________________________________________________________________________

This email uses the “cite a potential benefit” technique (James, 2012). It draws the attention of the reader by using an incentive to get them to open the message. By offering discounted admission, guests are more likely to visit COSI. It initiates a response to read the message and possibly purchase tickets for a future visit.

Contacts to Send Email

A list of contacts to send the email to will be gathered from current newsletter members. The mass distribution list will be sent the message to encourage additional visits during upcoming months. The newsletter distribution will be cross-referenced with the COSI member’s emails to avoid an unnecessary email to these members. COSI members already have included admission, so sending this email to them would run the risk of irritating valued customers. All other guests will be encouraged to purchase memberships to save on future costs as well as explore other options available.

Measure Results

Results of the email will be measured through visits to the links provided in the email that end with purchases. All purchases directly from these links will be logged and analyzed at the end of a specified two week period to determine the overall success of the email. In addition, all link visits will be logged to determine the amount of visits resulting from the email that did not end with a purchase. This will identify the amount of guests that actually acted on the email, but were detoured from making the actual purchase. This group has a high potential for being influenced by email communicate and can be targeted in later campaigns through more effective advertising or different incentives.

Email Marketing

            An article, written by Devaney and Stein, discusses the effectiveness of email marketing. Although social media and various other forms of marketing have increased in popularity in recent times, email marketing still produces positive results. Studies have shown that customers marketed to through email, “tend to shop more and spend more” (Devaney & Stein, 2013). This effectiveness would be very valuable to COSI’s marketing team for a variety of reasons. Email communications are efficient and easy to send. They are low in cost and can reach a large audience in a matter of minutes. Accessing customers in a way that will promote sales and increase attendance is the overall goal of the marketing team. COSI’s weekly newsletters demonstrate the concepts presented in this article and the overall effectiveness of email communication.

References

Devaney, T., & Stein, T. (2013, October 1). Why Email Is Still More Effective Than Social Media Marketing. Retrieved July 14, 2015, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/capitalonespark/2013/10/01/why-email-is-still-more-effective-than-social-media-marketing/

James, G. (2012, September 27). Get customers to read emails: 7 tricks. Retrieved July 14, 2015, from http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/get-customers-to-read-emails-7-tricks.html

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Website Monitoring Week 2

Online Strategy

NCWIT’s website includes many different components. There are separate resources for students, educators, businesses, and alliances. This separation makes it easy for users to access information relevant to their needs. In addition, each resources section includes links to other websites with further information to get involved and links to groups to actively participate and discuss STEM field opportunities for women and minorities.

The student section of the website includes links to resources on social media pages. There are private groups that are accessible only from students registered with the organization. This prevents spamming and encourages safety for the participants, while allowing a convenient medium to post questions and tips on being successful in the industry. In addition, there is a private section assessable from student profiles with opportunities in STEM fields including internships, scholarships, and jobs nationwide. These customized resources allow students resources necessary to locate positions that would otherwise be difficult to find.

There is also a news and events section of the website. This links to newsletters, blogs, videos, and live feeds from tech events. These links are updated very frequently to stay current and relevant. During the annual NCWIT summit, links are posted every hour to ensure each session and speech is added individually for future access. NCWIT employees sort through current news to find information outside of NCWIT events that would be useful for members to be informed of as well.

Capture Data

Data is captured through profiles created on the website. All users are required to create a login for full access to site resources. These logins separate users into groups (business, student, or alliance). Metrics are captured through the initial form input including age, education level, years in IT, and region the individual is located in. This is used to track trends and the amount of resources available in each area. It is also beneficial to partner students with executives and mentors willing to assist nearby their current location.

In addition, surveys are given to members on a quarterly basis. These surveys ask a variety of questions and offer an open-ended response section for suggestions to improve the group and website. Surveys are distributed through email and are optional to respond to. Results are then analyzed and reports are created identify opportunities and strengths for the website and resources currently available.

Business Model

The NCWIT business model is constantly changing. As a non-profit organization, funding is on the terms of investors and is always subject to change. In recent times, NCWIT has been making many new partnerships resulting in increased funding and an expanded business model. Additions to the business model include new programs, resources, networks, and events due to the partnerships being formed. The roots of the business model come down to three basic areas; connections and networking, outreach, and development. Connections include introducing student groups to companies in the industry, tech events, and other networking opportunities for students. Development includes programs and workshops to further the skillsets of students and educators in STEM fields. Outreach includes promoting the awareness of STEM fields to women and minorities.

Web Site Monitoring

NCWIT.org will be the website monitored for this class. It will be monitored for the following reasons:

This website is for a non-profit group that promotes STEM fields to young women and minorities. It is an excellent website to use for the course because it is frequently updated with content, blogs, and current events that promote awareness of the field and opportunities for women. The NCWIT website includes a mobile platform and very easy to use navigation. It has many components that can be analyzed and referenced while learning course content. Overall, the website is very efficient in marketing as the goal of the organization is to promote their goal and advertise to as many indivdiuals as possible. The website also includes information about many affiliate communities. It is something I am very passionate about and will be a great website to monitor throughout this class.

Reaction Post 3

     The final topic we discussed in this course was annual reports. All companies have a report that is compiled annually to reflect growth, change, financial elements, and community outreach. These reports can be audience specific for investors, employees, consumers, etc. However, the information in the report is based off of the progress of the company in the previous year.

    Non-profit reports tend to be geared more for investors, as that is the primary source of funding for the organization. For-profit reports include various items that may appeal more to particular groups. The company that I chose included the annual report on the investors website. There was quick access to the report through a link to a pdf file. Viewers could then search the report for key words or use the table of contents to locate desired sections.

    I found it very skill-building to use the same report in numerous assignments. It showed me the amount of information that annual reports contained while demonstrating the various ways to represent this information to the public. The brochure assignment focused on summarizing key points of the report while being visually appealing. The radio announcements only included information from the report relevant to community service. The whole process taught me that information will be available for businesses. How the information is displayed to the public, influences the message delivered and overall success of the company. The facts will always be the same. The way the facts are presented is what creates a positive or negative reaction from consumers.

 

Ariel Saultz

 

Reaction Post 2

      Another topic dicussed thoroughly in this course was communication channels and types. There are numerous ways to provide a message to a public. The method a company chooses should be the best communication possible based off cost to make the product, intended audience, information the product contains, and time spent making the public relations piece.

       Some of the most common communication channels are radio stations, television, the internet, newspapers, and events. Media items that can be distributed through these channels include radio announcements, commericials, web casts, newspaper advertisements, brouchures, flyers, and press releases. All of these pieces can be customized to fit particular business needs. For example, a radio advertisment can be 10 seconds to quickly spread awareness of an issue or it can be 30 seconds to provide the audience with a summary of the current situation and how they can be involved.

     I found this information to be very interesting. The variety of communication types available is crazy. It is amazing to know how many options public relations members have to deliver a message. I also found it very informative to learn the level of thinking that goes into each public relations deliverable. A brief announcement could take months of planning. That really awakened me to the importance of public relations and the level of critical analysis public relations officials need to  have to appropriately deliver a message.

 

Ariel Saultz

 

Reaction Post 1

When first starting this course I was very new to public relations. The rest of my coursework pertained to marketing and web development. Most of my experience was in the technology field, so I was eager to learn more about the networking side of things. The first couple of weeks in this class really opened my eyes to the extensive process behind public relations. I realized that there are numerous steps to releasing a statement or creating a media piece. When releasing a statement several factors had to be decided on and analyzed. These key components are target audience, statement, summary, timeline, and output.

The target audience could vary depending on the particular business or message being delivered. For example, a tanning company may advertise to college students while a luxury car business may advertise to business professionals. The statement is what exactly the media item is meant to say. It is the message the company wishes to convey to the public. The summary is a few key pieces of information that are necessary for the audience to understand. The timeline is when each item needs to be completed, when media representatives need to be present, and when the media piece would be best released. Referring to the example above, a tanning salon may choose to release a message prior to spring break, while a luxury car company may choose to release a message in the same time tax returns are received. Each business has a specific purpose and goal. Public relations efforts have to be customized for these goals.