The Power of Words Changes Eating Behavior

Restaurant Food Marketing Picture
a small pad thai please..??

The Power of Words to Influence Behavior

Ever wonder why a medium soda at Jack in the box soda is a size of a tub and why Starbucks insists calling it’s small drink a tall?

Well here is something to chew on. A new study from the Cornell Food Brand Lab found that simply calling the same portion of spaghetti “double-size” caused the diners to eat considerably less. The group thinking they were eating double-sized meals left 10x as much food leftover. Yes, just the IDEA that they were eating a large portion made them eat less! (Some diet strategy gem is here somewhere…)

Words, especially those found in advertising, can be powerful in shaping our behavior. Another finding showed that drinkers who thought the wine they were given was expensive, thought that it tasted better then when they thought it was inexpensive.

Whether in advertising, branding, or simply creating product names, words can be a powerful influencer of consumer behavior. You may be eating more simply because the portion is described as “small”. Another way this manifests itself in the restaurant world, is the increasingly high price tag coupled with the ridiculous large portions that should feed a small family. Yet marketers know, if they can set the expectation, then people would come to think it is normal to expect large quantities and eat larger portions.

  • Know of any “odd” product size names?
  •  Does a “tall” instead of a “small” at starbucks make you feel you are getting more for your money?
  • Can anyone guess where that picture of pad thai is from?
Continue Reading

What Happens Online in 60 Seconds [Infographic]

Online in 60 Seconds Infographic

In our hyperconnected world and ever growing presence of social media, the question is asked – what exactly happens online in any given minute? How about…

  • 2 million searches on Google
  • 72 hours of video uploaded on youtube
  • 1.8 million likes on facebook
  • 11,000 searches on linkedin
  • 20 million photo views on flickr
  • 278,000 tweets on twitter
  • 204 Million emails sent
  • $83,000 worth of Sales on Amazon

see what else below!

  • Which online activity statistic do  you contribute to the most?

Online Internet 60 Seconds Infographic
Infographic by Qmee

Continue Reading

Watching Puppy Videos increases Performance! Scientifically Proven?

Welsh Corgi Cute Puppy Pic Video
I feel my productivity rising!

Cutest Baby Puppy Videos on Youtube

It’s the justification you have been waiting for. You don’t have to feel guilty about watching puppy & kitten youtube videos anymore, because they make you better at your job. Dog lovers have always had a hunch this was true, but now science can officially back it up.

What if you could reap the benefits of dog or puppy ownership without all the hassle? Although spending Saturday morning on yard duty and shopping at Petco or Petsafe isn’t so bad, there are alternative ways to get your puppy fix without spending the time and money. Pets have been linked to increased health and happiness for years, but new data suggests that the mere act of looking at baby animals can give us an edge-up in life.

The Cute Animal Video Study

The Power of Kawaii (kawaii means cute in Japanese), a study by the University of Hiroshima, set out to analyze the effects of cute images on your brain. 132 university students were divided into three groups and given different tasks. The groups were asked to perform three sets of tasks: a game similar to Operation, a mathematical exercise with number sequences and exercises that determine one’s ability and willingness to work with others. Three separate studies showed that looking at cute baby animals causes your brain to concentrate better. One portion of the study determined whether participants were more mindful of others, and another tested their ability to think, concentrate and complete tasks. The group that looked at cute pictures of puppies and kittens showed a 44 percent improvement in performance and 13% improved accuracy in the numerical sequence exercise over those who looked at pictures of cats and dogs. Not only was the cute pictures group able to complete tasks more effectively and attentively, they completed focused tasks more quickly. Ipso facto, it is in your best interest to watch these videos of puppies playing. Your boss will thank you.

(Watch videos at your own risk! We hold no liability if you choose to watch videos at work and get in trouble!)

Below are videos for your enjoyment productivity.

  • Share your favorite cute animal videos in the comments!

Bath Time For Baby Pugs Video

The pug might be the most ridiculous-looking dog around, which makes for even more ridiculous puppies. The pug has dominated the pages of Buzzfeed and made many a cameo in blockbuster films, and it’s easy to see why.

Corgi Puppies Playing Video

There is nothing like watching a disproportionate puppy try to find its way in the world. A Corgi makes an excellent family pet, but they may try and herd you and your family. As you can see in the puppy video, they thrive on farms, but can adapt to just about any setting as long as they’re exercised.

Continue Reading

Product Placement: A Reflection of Reality or Sneaky Advertising?

TV Product Placement Advertising - Subliminal

Product Placement: Reality or Sneaky Advertising?

Love it or hate it, product placement in television, movies, music videos and even Broadway plays is here to stay. Product placement is the art and science of getting a company’s brand featured in a popular movie or television series with the implied endorsement that goes along with the placement. Broadcasting & Cable reported that two-thirds of advertisers use product placement as part of their marketing plans, most of which (80 percent) is used in television, according to an Association of National Advertisers survey. With this proliferation of products in the media, it’s difficult to know just how such use of products in media affects the general public.

The Best and the Worst of Product Placement

Opponents of product placement contend that this practice is unfairly influencing the American buying public. However, not all product placement in movies and television is divisive. Some placement is just plain fun. In fact, there are even awards for the best (and the worst) use of a product in a movie or television program. In 2010, Toyota Prius was recognized as “Best Role in a Supporting Product Placement.” Its award got us thinking: when you see a Prius in a movie, does it help or hurt Toyota sales? It is hard to say without seeing the figures but we do know that Prius is by far the best-selling hybrid in the U.S., capturing more than 50 percent of its market.

One very well known product placement comes to mind is when Mars famously passed on allowing M&Ms be the candy that lures E.T in the film. Hershey’s agreed to have it’s Reeses Pieces be used and soon after the film debuted, their sales went through the roof. Other examples are Exxon paying $300,000 for it’s name to appear in Days of Thunder. Pampers paid $50,000 to be featured in Three Men and a Baby. Ray-bans also benefited from it’s exposure in Risky Business.

Apple, whose products appeared in 17 of the 40 top-grossing films of 2011, received more than twice the exposure of the second most visible brand. Apple maintains that it doesn’t pay for placement. Still, its mention in the top seven films of 2011 amounted to approximately $50 million in free advertising, according to BrandChannel.com.

Where Product Placement is Worrisome

Proponents of product placement argue that real people use branded products; why shouldn’t movie and television characters use similar products? They say that to use fake labels makes the production look fake. However, where product placement crosses into that gray, uncertain area is the fact that these ads (and aren’t product placements really ads?) aren’t labeled as such. Unsuspecting viewers (like our children) might just assume that everyone uses an Apple computer or drinks a Pepsi. Perhaps the most worrisome aspect of product placement, as discussed rather eloquently by Edward Wasserman in “The Ethics of Product Placement,” is that it blurs the lines between art and advertising. Would Hemingway write a special scene into a novel just to accommodate an advertiser? Would Francois Truffaut insert a scene especially for product placement?

The Bottom Line

Eliminating product placement in media is probably not realistic, or maybe even desirable. After all, brand names are a part of every day life. We—and our kids—see them everywhere. However, like all media viewing, responsible parents need to be aware of what their kids are watching and help to counter the endorsements inherent in product placement with real life common sense.

Share Your Thoughts!

  • Do you think Product Placement just a reflection of reality or sneaky advertising?
  • Do you know of great product placements in tv shows or movies? The Good and the Blatant?
Continue Reading

Three Easy Ways to Protect Your Child on Facebook

Kids Social Network Facebook Connections

The Parent-Kid Cyber-Safety: Facebook Edition

From the bus stop to the home computer, kids are vulnerable little creatures. Even in the comfort of home sitting right beside you on the couch, your child is essentially exposed to online predators and Internet dangers while playing on a laptop. And the moment they log onto Facebook, they’re open to whole new world that, without boundaries and limitations, threatens their safety. While accepting your child’s plea to join Facebook, keep the following in mind:

Familiar Friend Requests

As part of your child’s Facebook privileges, explain that every friend request will be run by you. Kids should treat social interactions on Facebook just like they do in real life, which is why enforcing the “stranger danger” rule for Facebook is a good approach. Communication can only move forward if the child knows and trusts the person with your approval. After a quick friend request, kids can become targets of stalkers, sexual predators, a phishing scam and identity theft. Know your child’s Facebook login and password and regularly monitor their account. You can also manage your child’s social media habits by keeping the computer in an open space in your home. Permit them to log on for a certain amount of time during a particular time of day.

Cyberbullying Online

No longer is bullying restricted to buses, playgrounds, cafeterias and beneath football stadium bleachers. Adolescents, tweens and teens are cyberbullied or cyberbullies themselves — and Facebook becomes the weapon of choice. Insulting status updates and photos can create serious personal anguish, resulting in low self-esteem and anti-social behavior. Cyerbullying can be so detrimental that school authorities and police officials become involved. Earlier this year, a 15-year-old boy in Colorado cyberbullied another student using the photo-sharing app Instagram. Photos were captioned with “derogatory or sexual comments,” explains CBSNews.com.

Create an open forum about malicious communication on Facebook and the topic of bullying on the Internet, whether you suspect that your child’s a victim of bullying or bullying others. Foster a relationship with your child so that they feel comfortable coming to you to handle a cyberbullying scenario.

If you suspect that your child’s the bully, the first step is to avoid denial. No parent wants to admit that their kid is causing harm to others. Do your best to not turn a blind eye to your child’s behavior. The consequences of cyberbullying are far-reaching and can even become fatal. A decisive lack of attention and responsibility for bullying behavior is practically advocating verbal violence and psychological harm among your child and peers. Avoid avoidance.

Facebook Friend Your Kids

Becoming friends with your child on Facebook invites you into their social network. Your child may even feel more protected and secure having you on their side. As mentioned by SociallyActive.com, the most harm children experience on Facebook isn’t caused by their own actions but rather the actions of their connections. Even if children don’t act like it, adolescents and teens actually need and want structure and boundaries set before them. During such impressionable ages, children feel safer and more in control with parental guidance. A presence in your child’s digital life, whether you’re initiating open conversations or installing online controls to safeguard information, creates a harmonious relationship between the Internet and your family.

 

  • What are some other great ways to protect your children online? Please share!

 

Continue Reading

Django Unchained Movie Review

Django - Jamie Foxx

Django Unchained: Review

The movie “Django Unchained” was one of the more popular movies from 2012. And it wasn’t only popular with general audiences either, as it also won 2 Oscars, and 26 other awards. The movie doesn’t have a shortage of famous names attached to it either, with Quentin Tarantino directing, and actors like Leonardo DiCaprio and Jamie Foxx starring.

Overview

Django is about a slave who is granted freedom in order to help a bounty hunter identify and ultimately capture a slave owner. Throughout the course of the film, the bounty hunter and the ex-slave become friends, and decide to try to buy freedom for Django’s wife from her current master. Most of the second half of the film focuses on the pair’s efforts to achieve freedom for Django’s wife Broomhilda.

Appropriate for Children?

Anyone who’s seen any of Tarantino’s films would hesitate to call anything he writes and directs as something that’s appropriate for all ages, and Django is no exception. The film is extremely violent and even gory at parts, and there is no shortage of adult situations. For example, there’s a part where one of the characters is hanging upside down in chains with the threat of castration being waved very visually over him.

It’s hard to imagine scenarios less suited for children. Django certainly earns every inch of its “R” rating. But on the other hand, these depictions show the realities of slavery, and they are a part of a larger picture that a lot of children would have trouble really picking up on anyway. But even so, many younger audiences will be drawn to the movie if only because it’s known as exclusively for adults, and because it’s frequent gun battles might seem exciting.

Themes in Django

One of the biggest themes in Django is that of freedom and equality. The laws of particular areas, such as the slavery laws of the south, or the federal laws of bounty hunting and killing, are contrasted with the higher laws of basic human morality. The bounty hunter in the movie, named “Schultz” goes through a moral transformation throughout the course of the movie that illustrates this theme. By the end, he appears to care even more about this higher morality than he does his own life.

The theme of the equality of man is definitely a large one in the film. Even beyond the obvious idea that no man deserves to be enslaved, the film takes us into the conflicting ideologies of Leonardo’s character, Calvin Candie versus that of Django and his companion regarding the intrinsic nature of people. Master Candie contends that Black people are all intrinsically subservient. This is an assertion that even goes beyond morality.

Even if Django was doing something wrong in his actions throughout the movie, you’d be hard pressed to call his gun rampage “subservient.” The film is saying something about the intrinsic sameness of people in this way. No one is subservient or dominant based on race. Each character speaks for themselves.

:: Author ::
This is a guest post by Lindsey Mcmahon. She likes to travel, play and read in her free time. Her interests are entertainment, television, parenting and health but she is constantly extending her field of view to incorporate interesting news suggested to her by her readers. She currently works for Direct TV.

Continue Reading

Children TV Shows Options on Amazon & Netflix

What are our kids learning from television? The Federal Communications Commission says children currently spend more than three hours a day watching television. Although the FCC has enacted provisions that require broadcasters to improve and increase the educational content of children’s television, there is no consistent way to ensure that what children watch has any redeeming qualities.

Child Watching TV

flickr image by Jerine Lay

57 Channels (And Nothin’ On)

Children’s television, by and large, neglects education and jumps right to banal programming. Although “Spongebob” is entertaining, there isn’t a lot of educational value in watching Mr. Crabs or Patrick wade their way through thirty minutes of silliness. Of course, “Spongebob” is just one of dozens of examples of children’s television that is simply there for entertainment and not to teach children lessons.

There is even less family-friendly programming during traditional family viewing times in the evening after dinner. There are reality television shows in which people run around half dressed, sex is implied if not practically explicit, and there are comedies that might be funny for adults, but are inappropriate for kids.

Enter Amazon

Amazon is combating the current state of children’s television by attempting to create shows that will also be educational. The company is developing “Sara Solves It,” a show in which two friends, Sara and Sam solve math-based mysteries each episode. In some ways, this may be a 30 minute episode reminiscent of Electric Company and other similar television programs. “Creative Galaxy,” described as an interactive art adventure series, is another program Amazon is developing.

Parents who are interested in finding quality programming for their children will be able to vote with their pocketbooks to determine whether more programs and episodes will be made. The won’t be at the mercy of networks and their advertisers, forced to watch what is already on television. Parents can order these programs directly into their homes and watch them with their children any time they like.

Netflix is Following

Netflix is producing a TV adaptation of the upcoming Dreamworks children’s movie “Turbo.” The show, called “Turbo F.A.S.T.” is about a snail who dreams of being a racer and the glory that would come from it. Then, through an accident, he is able to achieve his dream.

Streaming services are significantly less expensive than cable packages, though more limited in many ways. But if you don’t watch very much TV and are comfortable with content options of Amazon or Netflix, you can get them for as little as $8 a month, compared to approximately $30 a month for a bare-bones cable package, notes Direct2TV.

If children are going to watch television for hours a day, it looks like they will have plenty of educational options moving forward.

  • Do you know of any good children shows on Amazon or Netflix? Please Share!
Continue Reading

Harlem Shake vs Gangnam Style [Infographic]

Harlem Shake vs. Gangnam Style Tweets Infographic

Everyone loves infographics. Everyone is curious about things that go viral. Combine the two and you get this interesting infographic of useless information!

Below is an infographic comparing the twitter “virality” between two internet phenomenas: Harlem Shake vs. Gangnam Style. Bear in mind, this is an apples to orange comparison. Harlem Shake consist of numerous videos compiled by multiple peoples and groups. Thus the more videos that were generated, the more it is talked about and seen. An example is when the Miami Heat players created their own version, millions of viewers who were Miami fans swarmed to take a look. Many schools and teams created their own versions, significantly increasing the twitter chatter. Gangnam style is technically only one video, though many parodies were created it probably would not have been titled with “gangnam” thus may not have been pulled into the data set seen here.

Either way, this isn’t science but just a fun way to look at the data and the power of social.

Harlem Shake vs Gangnam Style Infographic

  • Were the results surprising to you?
  • What was your favorite spoof of either video? (keep it clean).
Continue Reading

FCC considering allowing F-Words & Nudity on Network Television

FCC to allow Profanity & Nudity on Network TV?

Federal Communications Commission FCC Logo

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that it is considering dropping current broadcast decency standards that ban explicit profanity and “non-sexual” nudity. This means that if enacted, the new FCC policy would allow networks to use profanity and frontal female nudity regardless of viewing hours. This includes times when children may be watching.
You can read the full press release in this PDF.

What can I do to help stopt his?

The FCC will accept opinions and comments regarding this proposal during the month of April. I urge you to let you voice be heard. Moral & decency standards on television and in movies have degraded over the years. What is considered the norm of “acceptable” has shifted many notches for the worse. This would be a huge blow to those who want to protect their children (and themselves) from being exposed to profanity and nudity.

Current broadcast laws prohibit expletives and nudity, even if brief. Networks like NBC and FOX has worked to overturn it over the years, but the Supreme Court has upheld the law as constitutionally enforceable by the FCC. Thus it is ultimately FCC’s decision.

Step by Step instructions to Submit FCC comment

Submit your comments to the FCC during the month of April urging them to reject such changes and why it would be a horrible idea to remove such a crucial boundary of decency. You must make a formal comment via the FCC site.

Here are some instructions.

1. Go to this FCC FORM
2. Enter the code “13-86” in the “Proceeding Number” box and fill out the few remaining required fields.
3. Enter your comment in the text box provided and click “Continue.”
4. From there, review your comment and click “Confirm.”

Here is a sample comment you may submit via the American Family Association:

I oppose any changes to the current FCC indecency standards that would allow television and radio stations to broadcast expletives and nudity on the public airwaves, even if brief or “fleeting.”

The Supreme Court has confirmed the FCC’s authority to enforce policies regarding expletives and nudity, especially during times when children are likely to be watching or listening.

Relaxing the current policy would not serve the public interest and I urge the FCC to reject all proposals that would allow for the broadcast of expletives and nudity on FCC-licensed stations.

Continue Reading

Is Marketing why Samsung got so big this year?

Samsung Outspends Apple in Marketing

Apple iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 2

This past year there was a significant shift in the smartphone world. Samsung has vaulted up the charts and have become a huge player alongside Apple. With the launch of Apple iPhone, the smartphone industry was for a while a one big-player industry. As blackberries and palms faded into obscurity, there was Apple and everyone else.

Was their increased market share due to marketing?

Here’s a question: How much of that has been due to Samsung’s increased marketing spend? No one likes to think that just seeing more advertising is affecting them in anyway, but companies would not spend millions of dollars if there was no evidence of it working. I see Samsung ads everywhere I go. They’ve plastered billboards and their commercials are all over the media. Not long ago, Samsung was just another player, but now the attitude of most is that Samsung is very good alternative – perhaps the only real alternative to the iPhone.

Samsung made a strategic play to attack Apple directly in their ads as well as blanket media with their brand. Check out the new spend figures below. Samsung increased their advertising by 5x.

Samsung Apple Ad Spend

What do you think?

  • How much do you believe marketing played in the role of their increased brand awareness?
Continue Reading

Amazing Social Media Image Size Infographic

Social Media Image Dimension Infographic

For social media marketers as well as social media ethusiast. Check out this beautiful infographic displaying all the graphic image dimensions for the Facebook Timeline, Twitter Profiles, Google+ Pages, YouTube Branded Pages, Linkedin Profiles and Pinterest Boards. What a great resource.

Have you spruced up your social media pages?
Drop a word on our facebook or twitter and let us know so we can take a look! Perhaps we’ll highlight some of the most creative ones we find in a future post.

Social media Image Cheat Sheet Infographic

Social Media Graphic Dimension Infographics

Continue Reading

2 of 9 Tweets about Superbowl ads, not the Game!

Superbowl Tweets: Game vs the Ads

Social media nerds and marketers! Some fun superbowl twitter statistics only someone like you would enjoy.

There were 20.9 million superbowl related tweets on superbowl sunday and a whopping 6.1 million of those tweets were about the ads rather than the game. GoDaddy’s ad led the way with 290,000 tweets, nearly 6x more than audi, but also had the distinction of having only 14% of those tweets being positive. Tide had the best responses with 86% positive sentiment. Godaddy was at 14%.

Would you consider godaddy’s ad “successful” considering the most of the high buzz was negative? Or is any press good press as the old adage would say?

Taco Bell’s “Viva Young” ad scored the highest in terms of positive sentiment tweets and increasing followers.

Check out the Superbowl Social Statistics infographic below and let us know which ad you expected to generate the most buzz!

The Superbowl Social Statistics

Or might as well “tweet” it to @cleancutmedia!

Superbowl Tweet Infographic Statistics

Continue Reading
1 4 5 6 7 8 30