MCLC/ CAPS awarded LSTA Grant!

I am thrilled to announce, that the group has been awarded a LSTA grants for working with ASU West to provide Marketing research on 24-40 yr olds that reside in Maricopa County. This is very exciting and more info will be coming!

Who among our customers are gamers?

This is article is from Advertising Age. This brings up a great question. What do we really know about our customers?
Who Is Today’s Gamer? You Have No Idea

Once the Domain of Cellar-Dwelling Teenage Boys, Video Games Hook Fans From All Walks of Life

Published: May 14, 2007

YORK, Pa. (AdAge.com) — Can you guess who’s at the control of this video-game screen? If you said a teenager, you’re only 17% right. In fact, it could be a senior citizen or a young kid, a fan of global multiplayer fantasy games, or a sudoku fiend. Online gaming, in particular, attracts a varied crowd of players.

Look again. Who do you think plays video games?

Look again. Who do you think plays video games?

While console play tends to have more limited ad opportunities, the possibilities in online gaming are endless. Online media offers placement flexibility — marketers can easily craft programs to run only during certain times of the day and only on certain games, or quickly switch out creative if it doesn’t seem to do well or if the product changes. But first you have to know who is playing.

An NPD study released last week, “Online Gaming 2007: The Virtual Landscape,” profiled online gamers in an attempt to understand just that, along with where and what they’re playing. We used those new stats to craft these demographic profiles. With some $200 million being spent in advertising on gaming, you’d better know your player. Prepare for a few surprises.

40%

VIRTUAL SHOPPERS

Real-world purchasing is still the most common way to buy content, but in this case, it’s the potential for digital shopping that is compelling. More than 40% of online gamers indicated they were likely to download content onto next-generation consoles, while 25% said they were likely to do the same on their computers.

44%

CASUAL GAMERS

While massively multiplayer online games get the most attention, the games that really draw crowds are card, puzzle and arcade games. The casual genre is the favorite of 44% of players, followed by family-entertainment at 25% and multiplayer online at 19%.

17%

GAMBLERS

Fans of Texas Hold ‘Em constitute a strong audience. More than 17% of gamers said gambling and casino games were their favorites, ranking the genre behind massively multiplayer games and ahead of shooter games in overall popularity.

1%

PENNY PINCHERS

Online gamers are used to playing for free. “There are a lot of free games out there to play online, particularly on the PC,” said Anita Frazier, who headed up the NPD study, adding that she herself plays free web sudoku. “The challenge for the industry is to keep coming up with innovative ways to convert these folks into paying customers.” Historically, conversion rates have hovered at 1% to 2% for the traditional free-trial-to-paid-premium strategy. Advertising is increasingly being implemented as a more lucrative and creative revenue model.

20%

LITTLE KIDS

The fact that lots of young kids play video games online isn’t exactly shocking to any parent who has lost control of her laptop for a Nick Jr. marathon playfest. What is surprising though, is that the elementary-school set makes up the biggest group of players. That’s right, kids ages 6 to 12 account for 20% of all online gamers, more than any other demographic. Remember when marketers were alarmed by the revelation several years ago that young males spent more time with video games than TV? With stats like this, can the playground set be far behind?

54%

CONSOLE OWNERS

Xbox 360 owners are more likely to play online than any other console owners — 54% — and, at 7.1 hours a week, they also spend more time doing it. While it’s a relatively new platform, the Xbox 360’s online domination is not a total surprise, especially considering Microsoft’s aggressive push of the Xbox Live service. Wii owners come in last in time spent online, but they’re actually more inclined to do it. More than three-fourths of Wii owners have tried online games

41%

MOVERS AND SHAKERS

Portable-game-system sales have soared in the past two years with the debut of next-generation-systems Nintendo DS and Sony PSP. And with those devices came built-in WiFi for online play. Some 41% of portable players are age 13 to 17. They do play online games, but spend fewer hours per week online than console or PC gamers. But as hand-held sales skyrocket, expect wider opportunites for online marketing to on-the-go gamers.

42%

WOMEN

More than 42% of the total online gaming audience today is female. However, women differ from men in that they play games mostly on PCs. Still, any mass audience of females — the ones who influence almost all household purchase decisions — shouldn’t be ignored.

80%

THE MIDDLE CLASS

Online gaming is actually the opiate of the middle class, with average household income hovering between $35,000 and $75,000. Makes sense. Once a consumer owns a PC, the jump to online gaming involves minimal extra cost and tech know-how.

Libraries as third place?

Hello,  Marshall recently read “Long ago — say, 15 years back — our third-place choices were pretty slim. There was the library, where you couldn’t talk.” from the below article. That statement disappointed me and I figured that it warranted discussion.  

Is being the third place a goal that libraries should plan for?

If so, what changes need to happen with libraries and/ or the customer’s perception?  

For a good definitionof third place: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_place 

Howard Schultz memo can be found at: http://starbucksgossip.typepad.com/_/2007/02/starbucks_chair_2.html 

Starbucks Is Still theThird Place to Be

So It’s Let Itself Go a Little — But Where Else Can You Lingle?

By Lenore Skenazy Published: March 19, 2007

So I was reading the Howard Schultz memo, and it hit me: He’s right! I haven’t smelled real coffee beans in a Starbucks for ages! And the baristas don’t make the espresso themselves — they press the button and here’s your soulless coffee. No wonder they don’t look as happy as they used to. They’re drones! And then they’re selling these breakfast sandwiches made with pre-cooked eggs that look straight out of Blimpie, and they give you a pre-packaged blip of cream cheese that barely covers your bagel — how tacky is that? And why does everyone always screw shut the milk container? It’s there to pour out the milk, right? So why do we have to keep unscrewing it? Calling Howard — leave it open!

You know how sometimes a passing remark can have an unduly large impact on your life? (Like the time my friend told me my college boyfriend was so cute that I stayed with him another three years thinking, “Why throw out a cute one?” even though he was actually not that cute.) That’s what the Schultz memo was like. It changed the way I saw things with my own eyes.

I spent the next week just loathing Starbucks. Gleefully, I noticed that the bathroom at the Starbucks nearest me had no coat hook. The toilet paper was on top of the dispenser instead of inside it. The front half of the soap dispenser was actually lying on the floor. That nailed it for me: Starbucks had become as depressing as McDonald’s. “You deserve a break today,” said I to myself. “Leave!”

So I did.

And then …I had no place else to go.

No place but home or work, that is. But like an estimated 30 million Americans, according to a Yankelovich study, I wanted to be in a “third place.” A place where I could hang out, be part of the stream of life and (this is very important for those of us who work at home) read without falling asleep.

Long ago — say, 15 years back — our third-place choices were pretty slim. There was the library, where you couldn’t talk. The diner, where you couldn’t really read (and had to tip). Bars were a sad place to be during working hours. And the gym (for me) was sadder. Of course, there were always the town squares, where young lovers paraded arm in arm and old men fed pigeons. Unfortunately, those were all in other countries. America just didn’t have a public gathering spot, except for the mall. Gag me with an Auntie Anne’s pretzel.

Then along came Starbucks, and suddenly we had the kind of public life we hadn’t had since the death of Main Street. People lingered, mingled. They lingled.Moreover, unlike McDonald’s, which killed off an indigenous American burger culture, Starbucks didn’t have to kill anything to achieve its hegemony. Maybe it squeezed out a few independent coffee shops here and there. But it probably was responsible for the birth of far more.

With this cafe culture — even this somewhat homogenized, corporate cafe culture — came a new way of life. At first, it was almost an illicit thrill to buy coffee that cost as much as a vote. (I’m from Chicago.) But once I got used to it, I became a Starbucks person, with the card and the lingo and the addiction and everything. I made it my meeting place, study hall and place to kill time between other places. To have that kind of a sanctuary where no one gets mad at you for overstaying your welcome and the rent is paid with a cup of coffee — it made me feel rich.

That’s why it really doesn’t matter if McDonald’s wins a coffee taste test or Dunkin’ Donuts is on a roll. Those places gave us fast food. Starbucks gave us an extra living room. If it spruces up a bit, brings back the coffee smell and gives us just a little more cream cheese, it will remain the place
America goes to lingle.
~ ~ ~
Lenore Skenazy is a journalist who lives in New York.

Hello world!

Maricopa County is one of the fastest growing places in the nation. The Committee for Adult Programs and Services is one of the groups within of the Maricopa County Library Council.