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Australians are all too familiar with sudden death football when qualifying for the World Cup. But it’s not something the French experience too often. So this week the fans of Les Bleus were on the edge of their seat as their team tried to overcome a 2-0 deficit against Ukraine – something not previously done in World Cup qualifying.

So passionate were they about the cause, that French Weather presenter Doria Tillier said she would present the weather naked if France qualified. I played football all my life, even got paid for the privilege, but I’ve never experienced an incentive like Doria’s. The best we could manage was the odd free beer from a fan if we won.

Doria Tiller

Obviously Doria thought her offer was not going to be redeemed, because when Les Bleus scored their second goal the former model tweeted. “F**k. France 2-0 Ukraine. I start to get stressed”

In case you don’t know, France won the game 3-0 and qualified on aggregate 3-2, so the whole country went into celebration – as only the French can. In the National Assembly, a debate on pension reform was briefly suspended to allow deputies to release their inner footballer and punch the air in delight at the news. Am not sure what Doria’s decided to do though?

French team

And as reported on news.com.au, it was an expensive night for Marc Dorcel, a hardcore France fan in more ways than one. One of the world’s biggest producers of pornographic films, Dorcel offered free access to his online videos in the event of a French triumph. Within a minute of the final whistle his server was overwhelmed by fans eager to take him up on the promise.

There has to be something we can learn from the French response that can be used to help struggling economies, but I won’t go there today…

Instead, I will continue with a French theme and segue to some blindingly obvious French research results released by eMarketer. Apparently the preferred method for receiving marketing messages online is email.

French preferred method of marketing

Consider this for a minute. Your customers and prospects opt-in to receive sales messages from you by email. And when you send them sales messages they buy from you. Sacre bleu! (That’s “bloody amazing” for you Aussies).

Yet despite this knowledge – supported by research from esteemed organisations like eMarketer – there are still those followers of marketing fashion who claim other digi-wonders like social media will replace what has always worked and will continue to work – direct personal communications.

As I’ve mentioned before, if you have a retail store or website you only need the Essential Four weapons to succeed with marketing in a digital world.

Here they are again, in case you’ve misplaced them, but be prepared as they are quite radical:

1. First and last name
2. Postal address
3. Email address
4. Telephone number

The eMarketer research also revealed that social networks are preferred by a measly 5% which I suspect is over-stated, particularly given Forrester’s research based on real links and sales.

And given most people’s ASS Time is shrinking – thanks to the Connection Paradox – social still struggles to be a worthy media for business. It’s obviously a neat customer service tool and helpful for sales promotions, but not cheap.

Apparently the France V Ukraine match is worth watching. I might just check out the French news on cable TV to see what they are covering, so to speak…