Sparks June 2009 -

Sparks June 2009

In the News

Who’s selling in this recession?
Not everyone is struggling to survive the recession. A recent AP article outlined what’s selling:

  • Wine. Drinkers are a little more choosy about price, however.
  • Used cars. Auto part sales are also on the rise.
  • Discount clothes. Goodwill sales are booming, while those at luxury outlets are plummeting.
  • Comfort food! Hershey’s chocolate and Kraft’s macaroni and cheese sales have gone through the roof.
  • DIY supplies. Vegetable seeds, fishing equipment, running shoes, and bike helmet sales are all robust.

The message for you? Re-focus your products and services on thrift and self-reliance. Demonstrate how your services help customers adjust to their new lifestyle.
Read the source article

Who’s buying in this recession?
As noted above, not everyone is hoarding cash in this recession. What single group is still spending? Latinos.

  • More Latinos (34%) than non-Latinos (25%) expect to be better off financially in the next 12 months
  • Only 45% of Latinos have credit cards (versus 71% of non-Latinos)
  • Fewer Latinos consumers have loans (34%, versus 53% for non-Latinos), and they are less burdened with potential debt

How to reach Latino shoppers:

  • Offer discounts. Latinos use cash and are more careful with money than non-Latinos.
  • Target them with TV ads. Latino viewers enjoy TV ads more than viewers in other US households.

Read the source article

More News

Chocolate needs no marketing
It may seem shocking, simply shocking, but research backs it up: chocolate sells itself.

In a test where consumers were given vague information vs detailed information, consumers gave higher marks to the chocolate with vague info.

Do you have an easily sellable product? Re-think your marketing—you may be overdoing it! Give away samples and rely more on buzz.

Source: “The Blissful Ignorance Effect: Pre- versus Post-action Effects on Outcome Expectancies Arising from Precise and Vague Information,” by Himanshu Mishra, Baba Shiv and Dhananjay Nayakankuppam. Journal of Consumer Research, 2008.



This month’s winner: Meryl K. Evans!
Our VisoVerbo champ wins a digital print featuring this one-of-a-kind design. Have a favorite quote or saying? Send it in! If your quote is chosen, you’ll receive a digital print of your custom design suitable for framing! Check out your competition here.

Client Spotlight

Mann Plumbing & Solar Energy Systems
While offering plumbing services since 1992, Mann Plumbing expanded its services to include radiant floor heating and solar panels for heating and electricity. But their website didn’t communicate either their array of expert services or their overall brand. They especially wanted to push their solar energy products.

We worked with power team David Mann and Amie McCarty to develop a new web presence that makes a definitive statement about Mann’s extensive services. Our color scheme communicates the idea of warmth, sunshine, and solar, without the overused “green” look so common in marketing today. Site architecture is clear and straightforward.

We also worked with them on copy to promote the concept that anyone can have the earth-friendly home they deserve. Their portfolio includes an impressive array of projects ranging from commercial to home uses of solar power.

Solar assessment forms are already coming in. Mann is positioning itself much more effectively as “the” place for solar power for southern Indiana and beyond. Check out the website developed by!