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About 18 months ago I read an article about the new types of jobs the world of digital communications and transactional services had created. What stood out to me was something it named as possibly the newest, and quote, “sexiest” job in the near future and that was the role of a digital communications data analyst. I made mention of this in a presentation I was doing to a group of fledgling digital agency people on the importance, understanding and application of analytics. Not just the platform or tools, but the action of analysis and turning raw data into decisional data for planning and execution of digital marketing and communications activities. The audience seemed surprised that I insisted that job could be called “sexy”.
So how “sexy” can data be? As a digital marketer working before and through the advent of social media I had learnt that web analytics dashboards were my decisional instruments in triangulating metrics data and measuring the effects of digital media and CRM campaigns, search optimizations, tweaking website performance. I was adjusting and actioning responses to the communications and pushing for maximum campaign successes. The dashboards were also my tools for reporting the successes, holding my agencies to account and justifying increases in digital spends and re allocation of media budgets to activities of deeper audience engagement. I was, in fact, an iterative and precision driven campaign driver, watching and measuring the actions and responses of our digital communication activities day by day and adjusting them to get the best results. If I had an end goal in mind it was not only to maximize the efficiency of our spend in digital channels or prove the ROI of digital activities but more overtly to track and digitally prove a sales conversion in the “Path to Purchase” through digital channels.
I wouldn’t call myself a “digital communications data analyst” and I don’t necessarily believe the role of the data analyst is all that “sexy “ unless it’s clearly defined as, or, contributes as a decisional role. Frankly the “platform jockeys” get boring with their “ it does this, how cool is that”; the excited bells and whistles talk. Let’s face it, collating data for the sake of collating data, is boring and makes no sense at all unless it can be turned in actionable insights. Mapping it and graphing it only collates it into readable forms. While we are also beginning to see more creative interpretations of data, like information flight paths, and geo mapping the real foundation to the role is that intelligence is “sexy”. Intelligence gained through interpretation and, sometimes, the extrapolation of data points can be very “sexy”.
The opening up of the internet through the enabling tools of web 2.0 or the social web means consumers talk about, associate with, and can experience your brands and their communications across a whole range of touch points that have you as a brand have limited or no control over (and be careful they can interact with you). Through a shifting of digital behaviours the consumer in this environment seems to be in an ever moving target of new social media communities and technologies. The sphere of analytics in recent years has widened to accommodate the shifts and began to include “Listening” platforms or aggregators of the conversational consumer generated content and news sources. What interesting to me is that while the technographic behaviours change, the language the consumer uses and the way they converse remains consistent. If I was just doing Listening I would have to look hard into the mirror as ask myself is the action of just Listening enough to remain “sexy”?
Social Intelligence is superseding the thinking behind the practice of Listening. Today it’s the new realm of text analysis, semantic understanding and sentiment analysis of the actual data itself. I believe in the next step, which is to really harness the intelligence in this data not only for brands but also for companies, as a whole, and taking the “Voice of the Consumer” to the next level. It will be not only informing marketing and brand business decisions with insights but applying it to innovation, business investment decisions and strategy, PR and company image in crisis and reputation management and even market management by undertaking competitive intelligence reviews. As we know in today’s world digital communication is not only effecting marketing and communication but also touching many aspects of a company’s operations. Social Intelligence and its insights might cross the entire enterprise. Now that’s what I call “sexy”.
The INFLUENCERS movie has arrived ! – INFLUENCERS is a short documentary that explores what it means to be an influencer and “how trends & creativity become contagious” today in music and fashion, or for that matter in other industries too. In its own words “The film attempts to understand the essence of influence, what makes a person influential without taking a statistical or metric approach.”
What I find very interesting is the commentary surrounding the film and few salient points mentioned in the film. Lets start with some of the commentary. Film maker Ryan Fitzgerald poignantly writes “A very interesting film. If you read the fine print “by R+I Creative” you may realize that this is a clever advertisement for the creative agency itself. As a filmmaker I understand that media is the ultimate manipulation tool, and by making a film about what an “Influencer” is you are essentially creating yourself as the authority on how to influence people. According to this film, things that are “cool” are eventually things that spread to the mainstream. Which is how creative agencies make money; by bringing “cool” to the masses.”
The other and more pertinent fact is that is that the film about our times and how trends, trendsetters are tapped into but what’s also clever is the buzz and the very special social elements which are part and parcel of the film convergence media model. Its shareable, its available across multiple access points and on other devices ( ipad, smart phones, facebook, twitter, blogs ) people can comment on it. Over and above the veneer of New York hip and cool at the 12 and quarter minute mark as the film comes to its riveting conclusion Rob Cohen of Cornerstone starts to talk about social media effect of influence and the many touchpoints social technologies have opened and will continue to open. This leads to the one very final and relevant piece of interview with fashion editor Josh Peskowitz, where he underscores that the importance of the consumer is paramount and that they are influencing the establishment .. “who knows where that will lead, no of us do…. we got to wait and see”.
So while the film is the latest or newest thing on the social block, back in 2009 the concept or the use of the word “Influencers” began to the rear its head as a trend in the social media vernacular. In May 2009 I wrote another blog post titled Understanding the Influence Landscape and 2009 the Year of Influence based on the commentary by Ross Dawson (Trends in Living Networks). Its was no accident that this time old marketing concept had come back to the fore. This time it was not dressed up as the media attractive celebrity and brand ambassador and the concept or relational or relationship marketing, it was based on the social influence, a confluence of aggregators, networks , and mechanisms which, was best summed up as:
* The democratization of media, which gives everyone a channel to propagate theirs or others’ opinions.
* Peer trust, which places far greater faith in individuals than corporate advertising and marketing.
* The ongoing fragmentation of mass media, which takes away the power of traditional marketing channels.
* The aggregation of social media, which gives a far stronger voice to the many individual conversations.
I think these still prevail today as elements of convergence culture and Ross’ work cleverly put together the following diagram on the Influence Landscape which while only a beta v 1 still stands the test of hyperspeed in today’s networked world. Its 18 months old and was released almost at the same time as Twitter’s rise to accepted popularity and verging acceptance as mainstream media.
A very interesting view from Pete Blackshaw, The Nielsen Company, on what to do and how to prepare for the future of online marketing. Responsiveness is key to success, but also being aware of what you need to respond to and planning for what the consumer might do next. Pete suggests “that there is a new accountability standard that has been put on the table by consumers and that may lead to better advertising” . He also cites the Nielsen research that suggests that “consumers trust each other more than they trust advertisers” , ” if advertisers can figure out a way of co creating with consumers, everybody might win”. Brands should be both reactive and proactive in planning for what consumers might do through better websites and better feedback loops.
At the last SM@RT event in Geneva , I presented The Tiziano Project via Jon Vidar, the Tiziano Projects Executive Director, to group of journalists, digital marketers , PR and communciations professional as a project that was breaking new ground in transmedia storytelling and social media from the humanitarian angle. The resulting piece of work the Tiziano project has produced just won an award in the New Media Awards web site awards competition.
I think its worth taking a look at. I do think that convergence media will take lots of forms in the next few years. In the realm of media and photojournalism we are already seeing some profound changes. The Tiziano Project is one of these new media empowerment projects that breaks down distance, misunderstanding and creates a vibrant local voice for Kurdistan.
The Tiziano Project | 360° Kurdistan presents the journalistic efforts and personal accounts of 12 Iraqi citizens living in the Kurdish north alongside the stories of their professional multimedia journalism mentors. This is a documentary effort by The Tiziano Project, which provides new media tools and training to community members in conflict, post-conflict and developing regions.
The purpose of The Tiziano Project | 360° Kurdistan is to provide you with a robust and complete understanding of life, culture and news in present-day Iraqi Kurdistan.
SM@RT , the social media roundtable conceived and put together by John Horniblow, digital convergence and marketing 2.0 expert, while working at LABEL in Geneva recently hosted its fourth event in partnership with the US Mission to UN. Among the guests were a great number of Geneva-based international organizations’ representatives, some members of the Geneva Press corps as well as several participants from the Swiss based watch and food industries , P&G, and HP. The days preceding started with Dr Matthew Mc Dougall, CEO of Sinotech, who explained to SM@RT’s participants the status and uptake of social media and avenues for digital marketing and ecommerce in China.
craig duncan UNISDR
The afternoon was deeply imprinted by the humanitarian touch with a talk about the use of social media for humanitarian purposes with the intervention of UNISDR (United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction) Craig Duncan and UNHCR Alexandra Eurdolian, and the introduction to two humanitarian projects, one in Iraq, the other in Afghanistan. With one foot in Iraq, the Tiziano Project aims at providing “community members in conflict, post-conflict and underreported regions with the equipement, training and affiliations necessary to report their stories and improve their lives. The World I See | The Tiziano Project from Grant Slater on Vimeo. Jon Vidar, executive director of the Tiziano Project, made a live intervention from Chicago to introduce the Tiziano Project | 360° Kurdistan, which promotes « the journalistic efforts and personal accounts of Iraqi citizens living in the Kurdish north alongside the stories of their professional multimedia journalism mentors. The goal of this initiative is to enable the rest of the world to better understand and apprehend more completely the life, culture and news in present-day’s Iraki Kurdistan. This Is Iraq | The Tiziano Project from Grant Slater on Vimeo. SM@RT’s participants were deeply interested and impressed by the quality of the reports and the originality of the project. Some were then overwhelmed by the presentation of Skateistan by Oliver Percovich, the exsecutive director of this Afghanistan-based organization. Skateistan is a non-governmental organization, which aims at bringing young Afghans, boys and girls, from all ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds, new opportunities in cross-cultural interaction, education and personal empowerment through skateboard. Skateistan connects students with instructors who will help them develop their skills not only in skateboarding but also in languages, arts, information technology, civic responsibility, etc. Students choose for themselves what they wish to learn.
The project attracted a lot of sympathy and a dozen schools and skateboard associations around the world (Australia, Germany, United States, UAE, Peru, UK and Switzerland) became partners. Finally SM@RT concluded with an animated discussion between the participants and Chris Hoofnagle, from the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology at UC Berkeley, on privacy in a networked world.
This blog is published and maintained by John Horniblow AKA BladeDigital ™ : On the Cutting Edge
There is this great campaign being launched as I’m writing, and I thought you’d want to know about it.
But knowing is not enough. They need your support to be able to get governments involved. Read, sign the petition, share (on Facebook, Twitter), and ask your friends to share too. Please.
Born HIV Free
We need millions of people to make their voices heard. To reach them we will ask you to spread the message. How many online friends, fans and followers do you have? 100? 500? 10,000? Use ‘suggest to friends’ on the left of this page and invite your friends to join. Let them all know about the campaign. Who wouldn’t want to do their part to ensure a AIDS-free generation?
And now, the official press release for those who want more. (Contact details at the end)
What is it?
The BORN HIV FREE campaign has been created to mobilize public support for the work of The Global Fund and for a world where no child is born with HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) by 2015. Originated and supported by Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, Global Fund Ambassador, this is the largest ever digital media campaign of its kind. At the core of the campaign is a series of entertaining films and events intended to inspire people to sign up online in support of The Global Fund’s mission.
Transmission of HIV from mothers to their children has nearly been eliminated in Europe, North America and other industrialized parts of the world. In contrast, in developing countries, 430,000 children are born with HIV every year – that is well over 1,000 every day. The campaign’s main message is that “We can put a stop to this in the next five years. A world where all children are BORN HIV FREE is now possible”.
Launched on 19 May 2010, in five languages: English, French, Spanish, German and Italian. the campaign uses a set of innovative and imaginative animated films across digital and traditional media platforms to spread awareness about the opportunity the world has to ensure a virtually HIV-free generation by 2015 and to generate support for this goal – and the Global Fund’s wider mission of fighting AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. The campaign appeals to all viewers to show their support by signing their name on the campaign’s “virtual wall of support”.
The campaign will run until October 2010.
Why is The Global Fund promoting this?
This year the Global Fund is requesting its donors to pledge contributions for the next three years. It has estimated a financial demand for up to US$20 billion for these three years. The Global Fund currently channels nearly a quarter of all international resources to fight AIDS, but more than half of the resources to prevent transmission of HIV from mothers to children, as well as more than half of the people receiving AIDS treatment around the world. In addition, the institution channels around two thirds of the resources invested against tuberculosis and malaria.
By focusing on a world where virtually all children can be BORN HIV FREE, the campaign is drawing attention to one of the many ambitious goals the world can achieve if it continues to increase investments in global health. By signing up on the “virtual wall of support”, people can signal to their country’s government that they approve of the use of public resources to fight these global pandemics and to achieve ambitious global goals, such as a virtually HIV-free generation.
Given that The Global Fund relies predominantly on public funding for its resource needs, the campaign is not a direct fund-raising campaign and does not ask individuals to contribute money. It simply asks people – by the simple act of clicking a button – to register their support for BORN HIV FREE and for the work of The Global Fund.
The Global Fund will publicize the levels of interest, awareness and support as the campaign progresses.
How has the campaign come about?
The campaign was conceived by Julien Civange at the request of Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, and co-produced with The Global Fund. The campaign films were produced by Oscar-winning production company H5, as well as by Passion Paris, TWA/MAP and NEXUS Productions, focusing on the promise of life fulfilled for children who are protected from HIV. The animations will be distributed through various social and mass media platforms and be supplemented with a film by the award-winning Swedish animator Jonas Odell showcasing the tremendous advances made in the fight against the three diseases since the inception of The Global Fund in 2002. The campaign web site was designed and developed by red design, and the YouTube channel was developed by type3.
A number of official partners have joined together to support this cause: Google, YouTube, MSN, Orange and JC Decaux.
Why launch the campaign now?
On 5 October 2010, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will chair a meeting of donor countries in New York where they will pledge financial support to The Global Fund for the next three years (2011-2013) to fight the three diseases. Given the Global Fund’s large share of global financing for the fight against the three pandemics, the level of financing secured will largely determine whether the battle to virtually eliminate mother to child transmission of the virus by 2015 – as well as other targets, such as a end to deaths from malaria and dramatic reductions in the burden of tuberculosis – will be won or lost.
A majority of The Global Fund’s financial resources come from public sources. The United States is the single largest donor and of the top 16 government donors, twelve are from Europe. Japan, Canada and Australia are the other major donors.
Strong support from the public is needed to enable donor countries’ leaders to continue increased investments in The Global Fund so that a HIV-free generation can become a reality.
The Global Fund is a unique global public/private partnership dedicated to attracting and disbursing resources to prevent and treat HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Since its creation in 2002, The Global Fund has become the main source of finance for programs to fight AIDS, TB and malaria, with approved funding of US$ 19.3 billion for more than 572 programs in 144 countries. It provides a quarter of all international financing for AIDS globally, two-thirds for tuberculosis and three quarters for malaria. For more on the Global Fund see www.theglobalfund.org
What is the link between Carla Bruni-Sarkozy and the Global Fund?
Carla Bruni-Sarkozy became a Global Ambassador for the Global Fund for the Protection of Women and Children Against AIDS in December 2008. At the announcement of her ambassadorship, she declared that one of the ways she wanted to act as an ambassador was to engage the world of art, culture, fashion and entertainment for the cause of ensuring that virtually all children are BORN HIV FREE. The campaign grew out of this commitment.
I think this article is a must read – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8590306.stm
At the F8 conference in San Francisco, Mark Zuckerberg unveiled a number of products he says are aimed at putting users and their friends at the “centre of the web”. It will surely work on the further unseating of Google being the site or service synonymous with internet usage and the webs most used or visited service.
“One of the points Mr Zuckerberg was making was that the web has become a lot less anonymous and Facebook is definitely positioning itself as wanting to be the owner of that information,” said Maya Baratz of the Huffington Post. (Given Facebook’s growing and highly influential size the Huffington Post online publication has dedicated a whole section of its site to news surrounding Facebook which you can read by clicking here.)
Zuckerberg told developers at the f8 conference that the experience will mean a more personalized, social, smarter Web. As quoted from an another article on Huffington Post “Facebook is spreading its wings to the broader Web with new tools that will allow users to see personalized versions of websites they visit elsewhere.
The move could change the way people experience the online world, though it could come with deeper privacy implications. By accessing Facebook’s tools, websites will be able to customize the experience based on the list of friends, favorite bands and other things users have shared on their Facebook profiles.
“The Web is at a really important turning point now,” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at the F8 conference for Web and software developers in San Francisco. “Most things aren’t social and they don’t use your real identity. This is really starting to change.”
In its first steps Facebook has changed the semantics surrounding fans “people who like this” – has replaced the former term of “fans.” Facebook has added these new features to its site,
In conjunction with this step it also launched the concept of what it calls Community pages. The concept of Community pages is to revamp users’ profiles to emphasize the pages for bands, books and businesses that users have become fans of. Facebook has started prompting users to essentially combine the two ( a users “Faned” page , and their profile page ) So if you listed The Clash in the “favorite music” section of your profile, Facebook will now ask you to join his page, if you haven’t become a fan of it already.
Facebook has also announced its working to eliminate the FB Connect ‘brand and replacing it with OAUTH – OAuth (Open Authorization) is an open standard that allows users to share their private resources (e.g. photos, videos, contact lists) stored on one site with another site without having to hand out their username and password.
Its also working on projects such as social plugins whch they call GDP (granular data permissions) and continuing to work on user privacy settings. Zuckerberg said Facebook made sure that its new tools don’t intrude on their privacy. Users’ preferences won’t be logged unless they choose to press the “like” button on websites. If anything, Zuckerberg expects the “like” tools to give people more control over what they want to share with their online entourages.
If users embrace it, Facebook could gain valuable insights that could help it sell more advertising, potentially rivaling online ad leader Google Inc., which typically tailors ads based on keywords in search terms and Web content.
“If I were Google I would be really scared because Facebook might end up with a lot more intelligence than them,” said Alain Chuard, Founder of social marketing firm Wildfire. “Google is just an algorithm, but Facebook could rule the Web.”
So there’s obviously and lot more planned for the near future as the battle for social dominance increases. I wonder what Google will do now since its Buzz launch looks like a knee jerk re action to Facebook’s growing importance and it incremental loses in market share of audience time and visitation online?
Reposted from http://blog.label.ch LABEL Communications
In terms of SEO Facebook has become one of, if not, the largest influencer in organic search today. This is something not to ignore for any SEO oriented marketer or communicator. Its very easy to work out what is driving this .. the sheer size of its user numbers pages and content links have driven it to prominence.
400 M registered users with 200 M logging in each day
More than 3 billion photos uploaded to the site each month
More than 5 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) shared each week
Here is a simple list of tactical steps on how to benefit from using Facebook’s SEO advantage (adapted from All About Facebook)
1. Start with a good URL
URLs are critical in search engine optimization. Google (and other search engines) use as much information as possible to determine the relevance of a particular page for a given search. Currently Facebook enables those pages with over 100 fans to get a vanity URL. A vanity URL is the short Facebook URL that helps people easily access your page.
2. Configure Your Default Tab or “Landing Page”
Ensure your landing page contains relevant text. You can set the default tab by clicking the “Settings” link on your Facebook Page and then selecting the tab you’d like to have displayed by default. You can create this page using Facebook’s endemic markup FBML
3. Generate Links To Your Page
If you are looking to drive traffic to your website for organic search the most important variable is incoming links. The number of links, the influence or ranking of the referer and the relevance in content. An easy way to boost your Facebook page rankings is by linking to your page from your existing website. Additionally, any way you can get links from other sites will help increase your rankings. On their own, Facebook Pages rank highly, a little additional work will improve this significantly.
4. Link To Other Relevant Pages
Linking to relevant content helps boost your ranking. Google takes into account the relevance of pages you are linking to when calculating the relevance of any given page. Try linking to a few relevant sites like your blog or website content . You’ll not only help out your readers but increase your overall Google rank.
5. Use Facebook For Inbound Links To Your Company Website
One of the most important components of search engine optimization is generating inbound links. Generating a link from your Facebook page is extremely valuable. Take advantage of landing pages and the information tab to link back to your company’s , or brand’s website.
6. Select A Good Name For Your Facebook Page
The name of your Facebook Page is extremely important. Name the title after your company or whatever phrase will be most effective for fans that are searching for you.
7. Post Keyword Rich Content in the “Info” tab in the page
The Info tab in the navigation bar on your Facebook Page is one of the few areas on your page which is accessible to search engines. It’s also relatively high up in the page HTML which means that search engines will give the text priority over text that’s further down the page. Take the opportunity to ensure that in the Information editing box for yoru fan page you use both links and relevant keyword, rich content. The detailed information can be just that, very detailed.
This blog is published and maintained by John Horniblow AKA BladeDigital ™ : On the Cutting Edge
Monkeys with Typewriters – Myths and realities of social media at work.
There seems to be a lot of books that are be published about social media, the new digital marketing paradigm, and they are propagating as fast that the exponential growth of social media and networking. Most are, unfortunately, the non-descript how to do, or dummies guide to social media or how to use particular tool or a book rushed to print on hype. For the most part these serve their purpose but will be outdated by the time they publish or contain nothing more that are dry set of repetitive studies presented as a mind numbing, blunt string of wide eyed testimonies that say the “times are a changing”. I must say, save the print and spare me the drudgery please. Then I also must concede, I am not the target audience or buyer of such books.
Jemima Gibbons recently published book, Monkeys with Typewriters is quite different to those aforementioned book types. Its a new and refreshing read, a sparkling gem in a field of proliferating drudgery of “read this now and it will change your life” books. It also poignantly marks the period we are experiencing. Read more…
The most important reason for the meteoric growth of Social Networks is something called “The Network Effect”. This equates to a tipping point when the value of a communications network to its users rises exponentially with the number of people connected to it. In the past year, we have witnessed one such rising star, Facebook ( but it begs the question is it the only one? ). It took 5 years for Facebook to reach 150 million users and then a further 8 months to double that number. Today, according to Facebook Statistics, it has 400 million users. In 2009 we saw Facebook become almost ubiquitous in every conversation swirling around Social Media and social networks. It was the year in which Facebook exploded into a global phenomena, dominating the Social Networking market worldwide as it became an international social network giant. While its dominated the english speaking press and displaced MySpace its not the only Social Network in the world.
To believe that Facebook or english speaking social networks are the only “players in Social networks” worldwide would be nothing short of one sided owed to very narrow perspective of the hyper connected world we live in. According to Wikipedia, there are some 1.5 billion members worldwide. Across the world there a number of culturally, language, local and regionally driven social networks , that both singularly and accumulatively pose the question whether Facebook can dominate the world in Social Networking. As startling as it is, the ” Facebook Network Effect” is not only a Facebook phenomena and its also occurring across other Social Networks in the world , albeit with different speeds.
When in logged into my Gmail a few nights ago I got a screen that introduced me to Google’s Buzz. At a first glance I skipped over it not wanting to go to deep into a distracting setup that stopped me from doing what I had originally set out to do : check my email . In hindsight I am left questioning whether Google’s BUZZ has any buzz? Buzz will probably have impact on the digital marketing world overtime but its not that apparent at the moment. However, we should take notice of this change. Buzz is a service that aims to compete in the social networking space not unlike the services of Bebo, Orkut ( owned by Google) Facebook, Twitter to take on the likes of Facebook and Twitter, across devices like the PC and mobile phone.
What Buzz is attempting to do is add the social networking features in the burgeoning number of Google’s services, over the top of the existing number of contacts a person has in their Gmail accounts. It has 97million users at its disposal to do this but it does pale in consideration of Facebook’s 400 million users, Myspace’s 130 million user and Friendster’s 115 million users. Google’s published rationale for Buzz is to work a more centralised and sorted approach to social services, sorting out the noise and organising information into a a relevant experience for users. On its blog it says ” With more and more communication happening online, the social web has exploded as the primary way to share interesting stuff, tell the world what you’re up to in real-time and stay more connected to more people. In today’s world of status messages, tweets and update streams, it’s increasingly tough to sort through it all, much less engage in meaningful conversations. “
Last week Gartner released five predictions for social software for 2010 and beyond. What is interesting for me is that the fast moving, consumer driven, internet always finds itself leading the technology shifts that are ultimately or stubbornly embraced by IT departments for the remodeling of enterprise communications, information exchange, information publishing and distribution. Enterprise 2.0 while in its nascent days has had a steady stream of adoption inside a large number of companies. They have adopted certain collaborative and social technologies into or in addition to their existing intranets, team rooms etc. The emulation of the consumer web inside companies allows the speed and ease of information distribution and social communication and work collaboration inside enterprises to increase significantly . These can be enterprise to employee or employee to employee communications or working groups spread across many locations.
Gartner predicts that :
1. By 2014, social networking services will replace e-mail as the primary vehicle for interpersonal communications for 20 percent of business users.
“Greater availability of social networking services both inside and outside the firewall, coupled with changing demographics and work styles will lead 20 percent of users to make a social network the hub of their business communications. During the next several years, most companies will be building out internal social networks and/or allowing business use of personal social network accounts. Social networking will prove to be more effective than e-mail for certain business activities such as status updates and expertise location.”
Coca-Cola has launched it first viral video , and in getting a rare success in this type of media play. There is no proven method that ensures a success in viral video marketing other than it has to be entertaining. Funny always seem to work well as a formula, shocking as well, bad taste ( but that could seen as bad for a brand) , unreal or just unbelievable also works. Coke’s Happiness Machine, while only no more than a week old , has close to 800,000 views.
In what seems to be too incredible to be true a Coke machine setup in a university or college campus delivers more than just bottles of Coke. Flowers, balloon animals, a huge sandwich, and an endless supply Coke bring delight and happiness to the students.
As reported by iMedia Connection this is Coke’s first official experiment in viral video following on from another teen connection campaign the “Happiness Factory”.
written for http://blog.label.ch
The rise of the importance of the Facebook fan page has become an integral part of companies social media campaigns or presence. Its not hard to understand why. Facebook is the web’s most popular destination after Google ( it is number 1 in Indonesia, Philippines , Malaysia and Singapore ) where the average user spends in the order of 33 minutes per day and its registered user numbers are upwards of 350 million. As the use or entry to a brand’s website are in decline due to a shift in how consumers use the web this days it makes common sense to to add Facebook into the online marketing mix. With number of brand, star, cause or business fans ranging close to 5.3 billion , that means News Feeds to user’s pages are carrying a range of brand content and updates.
Last November “The Big Money” part of Slate Magazine, ranked 50 brands that they see as making the best use of Facebook. The ranking is based on factors like number of fans, page growth, frequency of updates, creativity and fan engagement, not just numbers of fans. According to “The Big Money” Coca-Cola is ranked as the brand that makes best use of the social network thanks to its “organic fan-centric page without a corporate feel” and some extremely good apps the currently coin the phrase “Share Happiness” in a campaign to boost the diffusion , awareness and contact with the brand in social media.
When it comes to using Facebook as the primary point or integrated into the marketing channels, some brand are beginning to find there feet by working with the endemic functions of the service. Lots of brands have also begun an integrated approach to engaging with their consumers to build buzz, distribution and awareness of their campaigns either through or surrounding Facebook. The reality is that Facebook has become the perfect supplement to any website and online marketing efforts and in some cases become a pivotal or primary focus. While not all efforts are excellent here are some that we think are working extremely well.
IKEA’s Facebook Propagation Planning Campaign has used the concept of tagging in an online competition to support the opening of a new store. Some call it a genius use of one of Facebook’s inherent functions. While some of the best campaign strategies in Facebook are simple, and nothing should be simpler than using the default “tagging” tool on Facebook to help create a bit of buzz for an online competition. Users were drawn to the new Facebook profile page of the store manager, who’d uploaded pictures of his new showrooms in a store Ikea was due to open.
“People were told that the first to tag their name on any item, would win it. With the way tagging works on Facebook, the moment you tagged anything, everyone in your network instantly knew what was up for grabs! Subsequently, thousands and thousands of people were flooding the Facebook page in search of freebies!”
Written for and Reposted from htttp://blog.label.ch
Amongst the daily exchange, promotion, and web of connections woven into the fabric of the online movement of social media specialists, yesterday I read a post by Jason Falls, on his blog the Social Media Explorer. It extolled that the social media pragmatist would prevail over the social media purist.
It is one of the most sensible commentaries I have seen in this space cluttered by the usual virtuous publishings – listen first, stop shouting, transparency, need for spontaneity and speed of action , or the big question on how to measure Social Media ROI. Why does it standout as a poignant comment when all we hear is the importance of engaging in conversations and building relationships ( they still are of pivotal importance ) ? For me it’s the action associated to doing and making an impact on the bottom line that Jason is highlighting. You have take notice of the old direct to consumer or relationship adage – “Call to Action “ – what do you want your consumers to do now? ( it is an interactive environment after all ) Buy, learn more, fulfill a service or need, or be entertained?
As the digital shift continues to move marketing communications to more direct and dialogue driven channels companies should adopt a simple methodology in identifying what will work for them and their consumers. The dialogue idea is as unifying concept that aligns relationship or socially driven programs with other communications as a part of an integrated marketing approach. As more participatory channels for consumers are developed the need to establish consistent, non-campaign driven dialogue points becomes critical in the marketing mix. These are not just limited to the direct channels, as we know them; (CRM, DM, email, websites), but really extend across any personal contact that can be associated to the “ brand experience”; customer and consumer services, in store demonstrations, events etc.
A real world experience with a brand is only mirrored in the participatory platforms online and this mirroring reflects the sentiments it arouses in real world conversations. Read more…
The most interesting thing I read all week in the myriad of information I digest was the posting for eMarketer titled Marketers embrace Twitter over Facebook with and insightful tag line “Follow me” replacing “friend me”? eMarketer reported that “Facebook may have recently passed MySpace as the most-visited social networking site in the US, but it’s facing stiff competition for the attention of social media marketers.” So why is it so interesting for me and why should it interest you?
Marketing and advertising in Facebook is problematic. In fact its inherent culture is anti advertising and its user base have in the past voiced disappointment and disapproval of the introduction of targeted advertising. There is an high emotional attachment to the service as it relates to sharing amongst friends, family, and having fun in a protected environment. They don’t want the intrusion or interruption by advertisers. They will choose whether or not they want to be associated to you. Marketers need to learn a new approach in social networks like Facebook. (In MySpace its a different commercial proposition, brands can advertise and “own” or design their own space. )
I do believe that in the classic brand ownership argument, Facebook – the brand, is owned by it consumers, not the other way round. Facebook does not own it users it provides a service to them . Its how the consumers adopt and use the platform and what the platform provides to them that makes it so successful. Facebook has to be very careful not to upset or dis-enfranchise its consumers or it will suffer dramatically. Selling out its user base to advertisers would lead to its demise. Brands and companies operating in this environment must also be mindful of “adding value” to their fan bases and inspiring some open and fun dialogue that piques their interest. Do not assume that its a broadcast channel for self interest. You have to ask why would you, or someone else for that matter, want to befriend a brand ? What is interesting for me is that Facebook fan pages represent an emotional not a rational connection and affiliation to brands. e.g. I love / like you therefore I want to be associated to you! If you offend this sensibility you will loose your most valuable asset, your loyal and emotionally attached consumer.
written for and reposted from http://blog.label.ch
Like good old fashioned direct to consumer communications such as CRM, Social Media Marketing is also about managing the relationships between a brand and its consumers and the consumer expectations of that brand. The shift in the relationship from direct to dialogue is the key difference between the two. In many recent iterations of CRM the shift to dialogue has also become the norm. The principals behind CRM and Social Media Marketing (SMM) are in fact the same, managing and nurturing relationship through a value proposition or value exchange. Whether it’s an actual product, entertainment, services, dialogue or even intangible forms of social currency such as inside information or a virtual asset, consumers expect more from brands today, and they expect it for free. The key to sustaining the relationship is to manage the expectations of the brand in the consumer interaction with the brand. This management needs to be supported beyond the experience of consumption or use to include the experience of consumer services and other brand associations as well.
The brand benefits of CRM and Social Marketing Programs are obvious. Value exchange creates loyalty and potentially advocacy – By providing a benefit you will be most successful if you also consider the value expectations of your audience. Providing value will ensure your customers continue engaging with your brand in the social landscape. In the sense of making brand advocates of your consumers your exchange might even inspire them to share the value you provide with others. Read more…
In a list of aspiring and inspiring new entertainment based services and applications SoundCloud won this years coveted Best Entertainment service or application award . Competing in a highly competitive field SoundCloud beat eRepublik, Moshi Monsters, Playfish and WeeWorld, a category largely dominated by online games and virtual worlds . SoundCloud is an online audio platform catering to music professionals enabling them to collaborate, promote & distribute their music. A music sharing and listening service, based on social network technologies .
The music industry is clearly under attack these days as it failed to change and adopt to the new distribution paradigms and the consumers preferences as the old models of music promotion , sales and distribution have been dismantled over the past 9 years . In this new connected world SoundCloud provides a efficient and simple way for music professionals to exchange music they are involved with in private settings allowing for easy collaboration and communication prior to a public release. I think its service that has a bright future and over the past year since its launch its user adoption grow 600 % to close at close to 60,000 users. What is very clear is that SoundCloud has an audience that spans the globe , not just an audience that is largely US based .