Tag Archives: smartphones

Valentine’s Day Spending

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!  While today is no Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it is still a major retail and e-commerce event, and a boost for stores and shipping companies early in the calendar year.  With the help of the National Retail Federation, UPS , Ad Age and the American Express Spending & Saving Tracker survey, I’d like to present you with Valentine’s Day by the numbers.

U.S. consumers are expected to spend $18.6 billion overall on Valentine’s Day gifts.

Jewelry is the big-ticket item for gift givers.  $4.4 billion will be spent on diamonds, gold and silver.

$1.9 billion will be spent on flowers today.

$1.6 will be spent on candy; 51% of those surveyed give sweet treats to their loved ones.

Who would have thought- $1.5 billion will be spent on gift cards.

$815 million will be spent on the ones who love us unconditionally- our pets.

UPS will ship 95 million flowers for Valentine’s Day, with the bulk coming from Latin America on UPS temperature-controlled aircraft from Ecuador and Colombia (big rose-growing countries).

6,000,000 are expected to get engaged on February 14; that number is up from 4 million in 2012.

3,000 TONS of flowers will move through a massive refrigerated warehouse in Miami that UPS has set up to keep flowers fresh.

Can you guess what the average U.S. consumer plans to spend on candy, cards, gifts and more this year?  The answer is $130.97- up from $126.03 last year.

So how much is the average woman spending on today? About $88.78, which is less than half of what men are estimated to spend (an average of $175.61 on jewelry, flowers, and a romantic evening out).

40.7% of smartphone owners are estimated to have used their handhelds to shop for gifts.

26.3% of Valentine’s gifts are found online, up from 19.3% last year

29% of those surveyed said they’d post sweet nothings on Facebook.

Americans spend an average of $8.49 on friends for Valentine’s cards and gifts; they’ll shell out an average of $5.12 on colleagues.

7% of consumers who in a survey said they send their Valentine’s message via Twitter in 140 characters or less.

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Don’t Worry, Be Appy!

In this age of smartphones and apps, we use our phones to do so much more than talk. Our mobile devices have virtually eliminated the need for everything from practical items such as day planners, digital cameras and wallets to novelty items that we probably never considered.  I mean, who wants to play Scrabble when you can just play Words With Friends?  (I’m being sarcastic- I played Scrabble about a month ago, as shown in the picture below.  But I know people who couldn’t be bothered with all those chips today.)

According to the Apple, there is over 500,000 apps available on their app store.  In March, the store hit 25 billion (with a “b”) downloads.  While we may not have yet created an app to cure cancer or end world hunger (although I’m sure there are some that are trying), people are now able to do some pretty awesome things from their computers, tablets and mobile devices.  Check it out:

Register to vote.  Candidates already use social media to get out the vote, so why not use social media to register to vote as well?  That question was answered last month, when Washington became the first state to allow voter registration through social media.  Microsoft developed the app at no cost for Facebook.  Registering through the social network makes the process a little easier because personal information such as your name and birthday are already stored.

Play Lazer Tag!  The game has been reinvented and upgraded for the smartphone era. With the new version, sold by Hasbro under the Nerf brand, you insert your phone into a Lazer Tag gun, launch the app and blast away.  The app is free but the blasters are $40 each and are designed only to hole the iPhone 4/4S or iPod Touch so far (sorry, Androids).

Get a cab.  The app GetTaxi allows users to order a cab via their computers or smartphones.  Once their order is made, the cab driver receives a notification with the person’s location.  Smartphone users are even able to track their cab through their GPS tracking.  GetTaxi has already hit it big in Russia, Israel and the U.K. and is set to hit New York City in the next few months.

Gamble.  As if Facebook isn’t addicting enough, its can now use it to gamble.  Available only in the U.K. so far, the app allows adults to play Bingo & Slots Friendzy with their credit card and PayPal accounts.

Check your heart rate on the go- by holding your iPhone up to your face.  Follow me closely on this one.  There is a new mobile app called Cardiio that’s about to be released that uses the iPhone camera sensor to detect your heart rate based off the amount of light reflecting off your face.  The company explains how the technology works on its site:

“Every time your heart beats, more blood is pumped into your face. This slight increase in blood volume causes more light to be absorbed, and hence less light is reflected from your face. Using sophisticated software, your iPhone’s front camera can track these tiny changes in reflected light that are not visible to the human eye and calculate your heart beat!”

Avoid traffic jamsWaze is a free GPS navigation tool for Android and iOS devices that is aware of traffic conditions including weather, accidents and hazards before it calculates a route for the user.  Waze also provides navigation to destinations such as grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants and gas stations, showing the lowest gas prices in the area.

Upgrade your seats.  Pogoseat is a new service that lets fans upgrade their tickets and move to prime vacant seats during the middle of a sports game.  It’s a win-win for fans and the venue: fans get s a better view and the stadium can make a little extra money.  Using Pogoseat, fans can pull up a map of the stadium, and the appt recommends the vacant seats with the best views. After choosing their desired seat, users input their payment details and are able to move to their new spot immediately.

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21 New Statistics About Online Marketing

We’ve all heard over and over again about how important the Internet is and how it is changing the way businesses advertise. HubSpot has recently released some new data about the state of the Internet marketing world that are helpful and surprising. Check it these newly-released facts:

1) The more posts per day, the less engagement — when a brand posts twice a day, those posts only receive 57% of the likes and 78% of the comments per post. (Source: Track Social)

2) The click-through rate on triggered messages is 119% higher than “Business as Usual” messages. (Source: Epsilon and DMA)

3) On average, companies respond to only 30% of social media fans’ feedback. (Source: Factbrowser)

4) The average tablet user spends 13.9 hours per week with the device. (Source: OPA)

5) Text messaging users send or receive an average of 35 messages per day. (Source: Forrester Research)

6) Email opens on smartphones and tablets have increased 80% over the last six months. (Source: Litmus)

7) 27% of TV sets shipped worldwide in Q1 of 2012 had internet connectivity. (Source: Display Search)

8) By 2016, more than half of the dollars spent in US retail will be influenced by the web. (Source: Forrester Research)

9) In any given week, less than 0.5% of Facebook fans engage with the brand they are fans of. (Source: Marketing Science)

10) 45% of the world’s 2 billion internet users live in Asia. (Source: Ecommerce Europe)

11) 61% of emails received at professional email accounts are non-essential. (Source: Mimecast)

12) 20% of Facebook users have purchased something because of ads or comments they saw there. (Source: Ipsos)

13) 17% of the top 1000 search terms on Twitter “churn over” on an hourly basis. (Source: Twitter)

14) U.S. consumers send 2.304 trillion text messages per year, up from 2.052 trillion in 2010. (Source: CTIA)

15) 40% of the accounts and 8% of the messages on social media sites are spam. (Source: Businessweek)

16) 88% of adults in the US have a cell phone, 57% have a laptop, 19% own an e-reader, and 19% have a tablet. (Source: Pew Internet)

17) 64% of smartphone owners are using their mobile devices to shop online. (Source: eDigitalResearch)

18) YouTube users watch more than 3B hours of video per month. (Source: YouTube)

19) About 1 in 3 bloggers are moms. (Source: Nielsen)

20) 73% of smartphone owners access social networks through apps at least once per day. (Source: Lightspeed Research)

21) 91% of online adults use social media regularly. (Source: Experian)

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