All posts by Digitally Approved

Halloween 2015 Marketing Stats and Trends

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Co-written: Hannah Redmond, Director of Strategy, and Rita Mogilanski, Senior Content Strategist

Halloween isn’t just a fun time for trick-or-treaters, it’s also a fun time for marketers. More than 157 million Americans plan to celebrate Halloween this year, spending an estimated $6.9 billion dollars. Brands have the opportunity to capitalize on consumers’ excitement and become relevant with deliberate seasonal content. Here are some content marketing trends and stats to consider this Halloween:

Brands are innovating in the digital space this Halloween.
Target launched an app called “Treatster” where consumers can find the best places to trick-or-treat. Users can add in their own houses and “up-vote” houses in the neighborhood to alert other trick-or-treaters in the area which doorbells they should ring.

34% of consumers used online search to find inspiration for their costume. (Statista) Researching and planning ahead online before buying in-store continues to be an integral part of the shopping experience this fall, with almost half of households nationwide researching online before purchasing Halloween-related items in physical stores.

Consumers are more likely to indulge during the holiday, whether they are celebrating it or not. The top 5 candy sales days of the year are in October. This is in part due to the “permissibility” people feel around the holiday – even those who aren’t trick-or-treating or going to a Halloween party still feel more comfortable enjoying a treat more than at other times of the year. Studies show that people think that the same treats “taste better” during the Halloween season (Mintel Reports).

Halloween videos account for 57% of seasonal makeup tutorial video views. (Think With Google)
Beauty and lifestyle brands should consider Halloween a key moment in their video and social marketing strategy.

Halloween-related searches on mobile grew more than 1,000% from last Halloween. (Bing Ads)This is one of many stats that confirms the need for all content to be mobile-friendly.

TechnologyAdvice Expert Interview Series, feat. Tom Edwards

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Tom Edwards, the executive vice president of Strategy and Innovation here at The Marketing Arm, was recently invited to be a guest on the TechnologyAdvice Expert Interview Series to share his insight on the digital marketing landscape. The series, which is hosted by TechnologyAdvice’s Clark Buckner, explores a variety of business and technology verticals through conversations with industry leaders.

Edwards joined Buckner to discuss modern day digital, social, and mobile innovations, the importance of bridging technology and marketing, and the four core elements that bring a campaign to life.

Below are a few of the highlights from the conversation:

TA: Tell us about what life is like at TMA and some of the projects you work on every day.

Tom: At The Marketing Arm, we’re really a consumer engagement agency, so that touches a wide range of project types – everything from digital to promotional to talent to production. A number of different types of projects come across my desk on any given day.

I’m a part of the digital engagement division and we service about 16 core clients, everything from ExxonMobil, to GameStop, to name just a few organizations. So over the last 15 years, my role within the industry has really shifted from starting more on the technology side, and really kind of incorporated being that bridge between technology and marketing.

As digital continues to progress, we’ve seen it all: the end of the dotcom boom, massive portals, the rise of consumer social. All of these different types of trends we’ve seen definitely had a hand in touching and guiding different project types across multiple platforms and different routes of sale. It’s been a fun, interesting ride and it continues to get better. 

TA:  What suggestions do you have for a team trying to compare and find the right marketing automation vendors? What should they be looking for? 

Tom: Portability. If I’m able to either leverage a tool that can aggregate content, redistribute, visualize – things where there is a seamless flow, whether that’s through an API or through an SDK or whatever it may be, that’s what I’m ultimately looking for now.

I’m looking for, “How can this one piece fit into the larger strategy that I’m trying to deploy and continue to add value without adding additional barriers or additional layers?” That’s really the key piece for us as we’re moving forward, because we’re touching so many different channels, everything from top line awareness via digital all the way down to shopper and point of sale. 

So, making sure that we can have programs that can work in scale. Scale is another key piece for us, too, and the data considerations depending upon local versus global, so there are a lot of different pieces that we look at when we’re evaluating. But for me, it’s how can whatever tool that you’re leveraging best provide value for everything as a whole, versus just one specific piece or one specific function.


Connect with Tom on Twitter @BlackFin360 and follow his blog at Be sure to also follow @TheMarketingArm.

Listen to the entire show above in order to hear the full conversation, or download the show to listen later. You can subscribe to the TA Expert Interview Series via Soundcloud, in order to get alerts about new episodes.


This podcast was created and published by TechnologyAdvice. Interview conducted by Clark Buckner.

The Marketing Arm Digital – August Newsletter

Written by: Digitally Approved
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We published our monthly newsletter! Check it out below, and to see it in all its glory with working links, click HERE.


Clios In The House

Written by: Digitally Approved
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In the ad world, there is no higher achievement than the Clio. In Advertising, it is the equivalent to the Oscars. If you are a Mad Men watcher, then maybe your remember when Don accepted the Clio for his work on GloCoat. But Peggy was insulted that he didn’t thank her.  Then Roger held the Clio hostage unless he acknowledged that it was a team effort.  But we digress.


There are a number of Clio awards given for specific industries and they recently handed out statues for outstanding work in Sports. We were lucky enough to receive two of them and we’d love to give a shout out to the tremendous work exhibited by the entire creative teams at The Marketing Arm with special nods to Brandon Stuart and Marc Gilbar who accepted the awards for the Callaway Golf “Hit the Links” and PepsiMax “Test Drive 2” campaigns.

Jimmy Kimmel & Tostitos Partner for Hilarious Integration

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Two weeks ago I shared how much I love when late night shows do clever product integrations.  Following that up, here is one that I love that Jimmy Kimmel did with Tostitos.  So much fun.  (And, full disclosure, while I did pick this because I think it is hilarious, we did have a hand in putting this together). I’ll continue to share these as I see them.



Product Integration on Late Night TV

Written by: Digitally Approved
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The men of late night TV are killing it with viral videos. It’s no secret that Fallon, Kimmel, and Samberg (SNL, Lonely Island) are capable of producing videos for the masses – can you remember the last time you woke up and a Fallon video wasn’t trending or waiting in your newsfeed? We certainly can’t. These men churn out great, shareable content so consistently that brands can’t help but want to get involved. Check out this recent Purina integration from The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. We could watch this all day. (And probably will!)  

Using Behind-The-Scenes TV Content to Create Super Fans and Drive Viewership

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Catie Super Fans SNLIn a time where the future of broadcast television is uncertain and the viral video is king, it is essential that TV shows use social media to retain viewers and turn fans into loyal watchers. Every program ultimately wants loyal watchers, or “super fans,” but few programs achieve it. The key to generating super fans is creating an emotional connection between fans and the show. This calls for programs to go beyond posting segments of the show and to also create original content that is specific to social media.  The most natural way for TV shows to generate this connection is by posting behind-the-scenes content. 

Saturday Night Live, challenged by the departure of veteran cast members like Bill Hader, Fred Armisen, and Jason Sudeikis, has taken to social media to bond fans of the show with its new cast.  Through initiatives like #AskSNL on YouTube,  #Freshman15 on Instagram (short videos that feature first-year members), social profile takeovers, and exclusive backstage photos, SNL has found creative ways to let the cast’s personalities shine through.

Behind-the-scenes content, however, doesn’t always have to be visual. Take Late Night with Jimmy Fallon for example.  During the January airing of their “Best of Late Night” special, writers and cameramen alike took to social media to provide real-time commentary.  Fans who followed #BestofFallon got to read exclusive tidbits of information from the masterminds behind the segments.

Catie Super Fans 1Catie Super Fans 2Catie Super Fans 3

TV shows often forget that their writers are their greatest asset, both on the TV screen and the digital screen. The wit and sarcasm used to write Rob Ford jokes on a daily basis naturally makes for entertaining social content. Because of this, writers sometimes have followings that rival that of the show’s stars. In the case of The Tonight Show, Head Writer A.D. Miles has more than 67,000 followers on Twitter.  If The Tonight Show were to add up the number of followers every writer and producer has on Twitter, they would find themselves with more than 366,000 followers.  Employees should be encouraged to take advantage of their influence and display unique perspective behind-the-scenes, because this will ultimately make fans feel like they are a part of the show’s creation.

Mashable’s Max Knoblauch put it best when he said, “Social media, when done correctly, grants the audience more access, more transparency and a deeper connection to their favorite show.”

Headlines & Stuff

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Here are some cool things we read about this past week:

Facebook Page Managers Will See Names of Admins Who Made Posts and Comments
Facebook announced to page admins today that their names will start showing up next to their posts and comments. The feature, which will only be visible to other admins, will launch on February 20, but will not be retroactive.

LInkedIn Acquires Bright
This week, LinkedIn announced that it has agreed to buy Bright, a data-focused job search service for $120 million. The deal marks LinkedIn’s largest acquisition to date. Bright launched in 2010 and uses data science to match up job seekers with employers.

Twitter Unveils Redesign
This week, Twitter unveiled a new design. Twitter profiles now have a larger, more prominent toolbar across the top, which is now white instead of black, and features a larger font and bigger icons. The change is more cosmetic than functional – no updates at this time are needed for profile images, wallpapers, etc. In other Twitter news, the microblog has partnered with 300 Entertainment to give “full access” of its user data to the music industry.

Google Goes to War on Fraudulent YouTube Video Views
Google has announced a crackdown on “fraudulent views” on YouTube, from channels seeking to artificially inflate their view counts. YouTube has always audited videos in an effort to try to spot inflated counts, but the company is now stepping up its efforts. Starting immediately, Google will periodically validate the video’s view count and remove fraudulent views. YouTube’s motivation for the crack down is partly about making the service more appealing to advertisers, so they can be sure their ads are being seen by real people.

Global Social Media

Despite Claims of a Decline in the West, Facebook is Stronger Than Ever in the Rest of the World
Though some studies suggest that Facebook is losing popularity with younger audiences in the U.S., globally the social network is still going strong. In fact, it is still growing in many parts of the world. In Asia, Africa and other emerging markets, Facebook is THE Internet for the minority of people who have access. That’s to say that they spend the majority of their time using the platform.  And there is plenty of room for additional growth in these areas.   In the Middle East, Facebook is seen by many as entirely separate to the Internet.  Because it’s on their phone, they consider it to be its own entity. Globally the platform is transcending merely being a social network. it’s become like the Yellow Pages and in many places it is simply unthinkable to not be on or regularly use the service.

Noteworthy Campaigns

Hacked Instagram Feed Morphs Into An Interactive Timeline When Sideways
To celebrate Charlie Chaplin’s 100 years on film, the Toronto Silent Film Festival has crated a campaign that uses their Instagram feed to fuse old and new. When placed sideways, the feed acts like a Time Machine to reveal a flowing, interactive timeline, complete with factoids and video clips.  See how it works here.

McDonald’s Serves Up An Answer to the McNugget Mystery
McDonald’s gets a lot of flack for a variety of issues. In response, the Canadian division decided to take on a few of these issues a couple of years ago with its “Our Food Your Questions” campaign that aimed to dispel rumors and misinformation floating around about the company. The chain has tackled everything from the sawdust in burgers urban myth to its salads being fattier than its sundaes. Now the restaurant is tackling the ultimate urban myth: The McNugget.  The campaign takes viewers behind the scenes, right through the production process, from full chicken to ground meat mixture chopped into one of four McShapes, frozen and shipped to your local McD’s. Many are applauding the company for being so open and transparent, but this strategy is a risky one. Showing the slimy meat mixture on camera is not exactly appetizing.  Some of the videos released as part of the campaign have over 2.3 million views on YouTube.

Bud, Bud Light Win the Social-Media Super Bowl
Two Bud ads and Bud Light’s hidden-camera adventure generated the most social media activity out of the Super Bowl ads that aired this past Sunday.  Budweiser’s “Puppy Love” generated over 283,000 social actions and received 4.3 million video views. Budweiser’s second spot “A Hero’s Welcome” generated 210,000 social actions and 2.4 million video views. And finally,  Bud Light’s “Ian Up For Whatever,”  generated 56,000 social actions and 4.3 million views. Despite winning great social media traction, purchase consideration for Bud after the Super Bowl actually dropped according to this study. M&M’s (another Super Bowl advertiser) saw an increase in purchase consideration after the Super Bowl according to that same study.

Expert Series: Influencer Marketing

Written by: Digitally Approved
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We’re proud to introduce a series of posts in which Fanscape social and digital marketing experts explain best practices and recommended strategies in their related areas of concentration. The first will feature Allie Wester who leads us in Influencer and Blogger Outreach marketing.  Having connected some of the largest brands in the world with some of the most influential voices in social media, Allie knows a thing or two about helping get the word out about a brand’s products or events.
Allie has been with Fanscape since 2008, and her guidance, extensive background in pr, blogger relations, and ongoing insight to social media trends has contributed to countless successful marketing campaigns.
Look for Allie’s regular posts including these: