Questo e' l'articolo di ieri sul foglio
L'ansia che mi ha generato questo pezzo e' proporzionale al numero di parole scritte, ognuna delle quali e' sintomatica di quanta ignoranza e presunzione ancora vi sia tra alcuni sedicenti giornalisti che non sanno neanche cosa sia un servizio pubblico.
Lascio a voi ogni ulteriore commento...
Cielo, mio facebook
E’ un aggeggio sfasciafamiglie o il trionfo dell’equivoco? Comunque è un gioco pericoloso
Dopo che una giovane collega ha lasciato il fidanzato con cui doveva sposarsi pochi giorni fa per via di facebook (la follia di una notte del fidanzato ha scritto su facebook alla collega e a tutti i suoi contatti, comunicando trionfante l’accaduto e allegando foto-prova), a questa colonnina è stato chiesto di farsi servizio pubblico e denunciare la pericolosità sociale dell’aggeggio sfasciafamiglie. Ovviamente chi non ha vite private molto complicate (in onore di Rachida Dati, eroina moderna) su fb viaggia sereno, perde una quantità abissale di tempo, ritrova vecchi compagni di scuola, commenta le foto dei bambini, controlla i figli adolescenti, si iscrive a gruppi tipo savedarfur e si sente modernamente umanitario.
Ma evitando di tirare in ballo nuovi linguaggi politici, nuove frontiere della socialità e dell’impegno, si sa che l’essenza di facebook, oltre all’impicciarsi dei fatti altrui, pubblicizzare i propri e mettere le foto in cui ci si sente meno sfasciati, è il rimorchio. Anche solo sognato o frainteso. Un immenso e virtuale mondo rimorchiabile, in cui le ex si mescolano agli amici, e l’amore che strappa i capelli, volato per sempre a New York dieci anni fa, ricompare all’improvviso in forma di foto ammiccante. L’ambiguità di un saluto con puntini di sospensione accanto alla fotina di una ragazza in costume da bagno, schiaffata lì, dove tutti guardano, può far impazzire una moglie già in crisi (quelle che non vanno su fb per non dover scrivere la data di nascita), e trasformare il sabato sera a casa in un incubo. E un ragazzo sentimentale che vede tra i contatti della fidanzata tutti i suoi ex, che propongono rimpatriate in ricordo dei bei tempi, morirà in silenzio oppure farà scenate e passerà per matto.
Un nuovo moltiplicatore d’ansia, un nuovo occhio che guarda ed equivoca, sempre, perché accettare o cercare amici su fb non equivale esattamente a frequentarli o a volerci passare la notte (un saggio gruppo su fb si chiama: che mi aggiungi a fare su fb se poi per strada non mi saluti), ma tutto viene amplificato dalle foto, dalla strana sensazione del pubblico che guarda, dalla sospettabilissima possibilità di chattare a qualunque ora della notte, dalle frasi misteriose che molti gettano lì apposta, e che paiono sempre destinate a qualcuno di segreto ma connesso e incluso fra i contatti. Fingersi liberi, disonvolti, stronzi e bellocci, finché il gioco dura (scriverne, si sa, ne accelera la fine), o finché lei non sfascia il computer con un’accetta.
di Annalena Benini
Thursday, 9 October 2008
Questo e' l'articolo di ieri sul foglio
Monday, 23 June 2008
I know there has been a lot of press, and some false starts, with Facebook's attempts to deliver ads based on a user's interests and what they get up to on the site (or even partner sites).
There was some learning for me recently.
First of all: something I found intrusive
I had posted a review of a hotel on one of my most favourite travel sites, Tripadvisor.com. A small pop-up appeared on the bottom right of my screen saying that a note that I had posted a review on Tripadvisor was going to be posted onto my facebook mini-feed on my profile.
I was surprised and then a bit annoyed. I guess I must have somewhere at sometime told either of the sites I used the other. But this felt a bit like snooping. And I wasn't really sure of the benefit to me.
Secondly: something I thought was pretty cool.
I had received an email from a friend on facebook asking if I knew someone that tracked and managed user generated content to be submitted onto brand or company websites. I started writing him a note back suggesting he speak to Dan Hawtrey who used to work with me who now had his own internet/ intranet content management company called Content Formula. When I typed in the name a small ad and link for the company appeared and I was asked if I wanted to include that in my reply.
I thought it was a really cool, helpful feature. It saved me looking up Dan's contact details and site and gave the person I was sending the suggestion to relevant information. I also did not find it intrusive as it was not personal but triggered by me typing within their site a brand / company name.
This was a good example of getting contextual advertising right. Information relevant when topic and need was there.
Any thoughts? Leave a comment on the blog using the comments button at the bottom of the posting or email me at email@example.com
Friday, 30 May 2008
What is it?
FriendFeed is a new web 2.0 service that enables you to aggregate all of your, and your friends, online activity and conversations in one place.
How does it work?
It uses RSS feeds to pull in the information from a wide (and growing) number of sources and places them in one feed so you can see everything in one place. RSS means that FriendFeed will be scalable in the future as you don’t need developers and open access APIs to create new content, RSS is the common standard for sharing information across the internet.
Why should I care?
The atomisation of the web means that users have pockets of information fragmented all over the web. Just think about a regular person who watches, favourites and maybe posts a few videos on You Tube, puts their family holiday snaps on Flickr, comments on a blog they read daily, shares links from their Google Reader. Multiply this by a blog you write, the comments on that blog, the links to it, tweets on Twitter, Facebook updates, de.licio.us, digg and stumble upon tags. And then multiply by the number of friends you follow and the fragmentation and amount of this information becomes overwhelming to the point of overload.
FriendFeed helps that by aggregating all that information in one place so you don’t have to traverse 5, 6, 7, 8 + websites to keep in touch with the information. It helps you stay on top of what’s grabbing your friends’ attention and keeps you connected. You also get full control of the people you follow and can un-follow at any time.
And because it’s all RSS enabled, you can distribute that content to where you want it: Google Reader, your personal homepage (iGoogle, MSN Live etc.).
But I’ve only just discovered Facebook!
It’s true that FriendFeed is pretty much used by the early adopters at the moment and true that you would have to again subscribe to/follow friends which is a chore. But the benefits of having everything in one place for those who currently suffer web 2.0 overload are worth it. There’s even a feature called “imaginary friend” where you can pull in a feed of someone who you want to read – a thought leader perhaps – but you aren’t their actual friend. This overcomes the limitations and annoyance of Facebook where you do actually need to know people.
FriendFeed gives you control over the web 2.0 noise and lets you consume it in a way that is relevant to you.
More bedtime reading:
My input helped to spawn this article in NMK where I get a quote.
"The atomisation of the web means that users have pockets of information fragmented all over the web. Just think about a regular person who watches, favourites and maybe posts a few videos on YouTube, puts their family holiday snaps on flickr, comments on a blog they read daily, shares links from their Google Reader. Multiply this by a blog you write, the comments on that blog, the links to it, tweets on Twitter, Facebook updates, de.licio.us, digg and stumble upon tags. And then multiply by the number of friends you follow and the fragmentation and amount of this information becomes overwhelming to the point of overload," said Nicholas Gill, planner at headstream PR.
"FriendFeed helps that by aggregating all that information in one place so you don't have to traverse numerous websites to keep in touch with the information. It helps you stay on top of what's grabbing your friends' attention and keeps you connected. You also get full control of the people you follow and can un-follow at any time," continued Gill. "FriendFeed gives you control over the web 2.0 noise and lets you consume it in a way that is relevant to you."
Wednesday, 28 May 2008
Online advertising in Europe grows 38% in one year!!! Europe 27 should finish between 11 and 12 Billion € in 2007 closing the gap with US market (tipped at some 11-12 Billion €).
IAB Europe/PWC early findings show average growth rate year on year
The preliminary findings of our AdEx survey the definitive guide to the size and value of the European online industry, shows that the growth of online advertising in Europe continues unabated. Our members are seeing more companies move their advertising online, including sectors that have until now tended to stay loyal to traditional media, such as fast moving consumer goods. As online continues to grab a larger share of advertising budgets year on year, some forms of traditional media are seeing their share eroded.
Brussels 28th May 2008: The Interactive Advertising Bureau Europe (IAB Europe) has just released the initial findings of its annual advertising expenditure survey for the year ending December 2007. Whilst some analysts are predicting that advertising on traditional media may be impacted by an economic slowdown, online advertising continues to grow apace, experiencing an average growth rate of 38% year-on-year across the three largest European advertising markets – the UK, Germany and France.
The data has been compiled by IAB Europe based on information provided by the regional IAB offices around Europe and then analysed and processed by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
The top line results for the UK, Germany and France show that:
These markets were valued at €5.6 billion euros in 2007, up from €4.08 billion in the previous year (for search and display only)
The German market experienced the highest growth rate from 2006 at 41%
Search advertising continues to account for the lions share of spend, at 63.5% compared to 36.5% for display
The report also shows that whilst the top three markets are by far the largest in value, their growth rates are slower compared to some of the other member countries. Spain and Italy have experienced particularly strong growth rates at over 50%.
The full report will include market size and value information for the full membership of the IAB Europe in 2007 including Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey and the UK.
Come and join us in Berlin;-)
Tuesday, 27 May 2008
Email marketing has surprised me of late.
Maybe it’s because I’ve had the fortune to work on and develop some class-leading CRM programmes in my time but I figure that if you want to be the best, you adopt best practices. And for me, double opt-in is the way to go. I remember spending several meetings and design iterations later to re-word and re-art direct positive opt ins for digital communications for Diageo to be ahead of the curve and live best practice, not just tip a hat to it.
So I was somewhat taken aback to read in eROI’s Cradle To Grave report (there’s no direct link, click on quarterly studies and download the report) that only 30.69% of US companies are using double opt-in. That’s tantamount to spamming if you don’t use that method.
And worse, 59.4% of those companies don’t pass an unsubscribe to other parts of their company when they get one. Two yellows equals a red card! So if you’re a consumer, basically a friend could get you signed up, you receive emails, you unsubscribe and you get them from another part of the same organisation. Aaargh. That’s just not joined up thinking and hardly going to endear your consumers to your brand.
Closer to home in the
When you consider that European consumers receive over 250 emails per week (35 average per day) is it any wonder that 38% use spam filters, over half of promotion emails get deleted without reading and more people are concerned by clicking on ads in emails than on banners? The top two reasons people unsubscribe are irrelevant content and overly frequent emails.
But it’s not all doom and gloom. We just need to up our game and practise what we preach. Don’t let the standards slip and do it the right way. Because if we get it right, consumers do love email.
Consider this information released by eMarketer today. 67% of US adult internet users prefer companies to contact them by email than any other method. And in 5 years time, 67% will still prefer email to any other communication.
Remember, email is a conversation too.
Wednesday, 14 May 2008
PubMatic : AdPrice Index: "eCPMs for large Web sites (more than 100 million page views per month) dropped dramatically by 52 percent from 38 cents in March to 18 cents April. Medium Web sites (1 million to 100 million page views per month) were nearly flat, with monetization dropping from 34 cents in March to 33 cents in April. Small Web sites managed to improve their monetization, increasing from $1.18 in March to $1.29 in April."
You could see this as proof of "The Long Tail". Or it's just a sign that for large websites it's just too much work to offer higher-priced targeted ads. Most "large" websites I know mainly do Run Of Site or even Ron of Network campaigns for their display ads.
Another possible reason is because there's a big gap between pages that attract lots of traffic (like webmail, forums, contests) and pages advertisers want to be on (like portal-style content pages).
In any case: time to move on to more interactive and permission-based advertising.
Monday, 12 May 2008
Last week I attended Marketing 2.0 Conference in Paris. Great opportunity to meet new persons who are part of the leaders in the buzz market like Emmanuel Vivier, CEO of Vanksen group - and contributor of this blog too- and to catch up with a couple of great marketing speakers and persons like Mary Beth Kemp, Forrester principal analyst.
I stole a couple of minutes from their busy agendas to ask them recommendations for marketers willing to 'begin a Social Media effort' as opposed to' launch a social media campaign'.
In the first video below, Mary Beth is explaining Forrester POST approach. POST stands for People, Objectives, Strategy, Technology. If it should stand for only one key message it would be this one: don't start at the end of the process thinking technology is key. Getting to know how your audience is engaging - or not- with existing social platforms and defining objectives are the success factors to determine the foundations of your strategy, then chose the social tools you're going to tap into or develop for your own community. Mary Beth is also referring to the Social Technographics Forrester has been working on: great tool to understand and categorize how consumers are behaving online. For more info on the topic, I advice you to read the Groundswell blog and contact Mary Beth. Start by listening to her 3 min wrap up :
Mary Beth Kemp, Forrester Principal Analyst from Rolling Talks on Vimeo.
As for Emmanuel, I challenged him at the end of those 2 hectic days with the uneasy task to sum up his inspiring 1 hour long presentation featuring best buzz campaigns. He did a great job doing so in a bit more than 8 min. No magic formula, but a couple of viral successful ingredients based on his wide experience with a number of brilliant campaigns. Worth listening till the end.
Emmanuel Vivier, CEO Vanksen group from Rolling Talks on Vimeo.
Thursday, 8 May 2008
Here’s an interesting new way to look at consumer engagement with your online advertising: clickmaps from FlashTalking.Clickmaps are essentially a heat-map showing where consumers interact with your ad above and beyond regular click tag reporting. As regular readers of my blog will know, I’m a sucker for cool visualisations and relate more to pictures than stats.
The creative and strategic implication being that it helps us to garner better understanding of what drives consumer engagement. Or in regular parlance, draws the eye.
Here’s some examples. To make it work, use the fade option - fade out the map, watch or interact with the ad, finally fade the clickmap up again for the interaction view/heat map.
Sony Playstation - the Call To Action buttons seem to be getting the most of the action.
Social networks - see the social media options, especially share trailer being high points of engagement.I certainly know some peers and clients who would also appreciate this more visual representation of data than having to wade through reams of stats to the point where they're pushing pins in their eyes for blessed relief. You get what’s working in an instant.
Be interested to know what you think.
Monday, 28 April 2008
A very detailed worldwide comparative study on Social Media behaviors and - since done by Universal McCann- esthetically very energising. Hat tip to Michelle Blanc.
Research highlights from Trendspotting :
1. Social media is a global phenomenon happening in all markets regardless of wider economic, social and cultural development.
2. Asian markets (not including Japan) are leading in terms of participation, creating more content than any other region
3. All social media platforms have grown significantly over the three Waves: Video Clips are the quickest growing platform, up from 31% penetration in Wave 1 to 83% in Wave 3
4. Social Networks: 57% have joined a Social Network, making it the number one platform for creating and sharing content: 55% of users have uploaded photos, 22% of users have uploaded videos
5. The widget economy – 23% of social network users have installed an application – 18% of bloggers have installed applications in their blog templates
6. Blogs are a mainstream media world-wide and a collective rival to traditional media (184m bloggers world-wide, China has the largest blogging community in the world with 42m bloggers) – 73% have read a blog, 45% have started a blog
Tuesday, 22 April 2008
Dutch journalist, writer and feminist Karin Spaink is not the first one to review Andrew Keen’s The Cult of the Amateur; how todays Internet is Killing our Culture and Assaulting Our Economy. But she sure has some interesting viewpoints. Let me quote two (emphasis in bold is mine):
"If the printed press [...] move to the internet, which many in the end will to do, they can cut on printing and distribution costs, thereby freeing a considerable part of their budget. Money that can be used to pay journalists and editors with. Yes, parts of the newspaper industry will suffer and people will lose their jobs – from paper producers and printers to newspaper delivery boys."
"we are witnessing the private going public. People increasingly use the internet to capture, comment upon and share their lives. And while I’m not always sure what to make of that, in itself there’s nothing new about the phenomenon, only about its scale. People have always kept diaries, wrote updates for their friends and family, made snapshots documenting their life. The manner in which they did so changed whenever technologies changed, but the urge to share has always been present."
For the record: I don't agree with either statement. First of all: there's a lot less advertising money to be made in online than in print media. And secondly: the urge to share is relatively new - simply because only now there's an audience that is large enough to have some effect. Only fifty years ago the biggest amount of people you would preach at would be sitting in a church building.
Buzz, Viral Marketing, and Word-of-Mouth: what’s the difference?
Word-of-Mouth Marketing consists of a number of different forms of communication: buzz marketing, viral marketing, influencer marketing, street marketing, user generated content and so on. These new approaches can quite often be confused due to their complementary attributes, but in the end are quite different from each other.
Prior to the explanation it must be noted that the efficiency of these new techniques remains for the most part undisputed. Cosum-actors are now not only marketing targets, but also potential information relay hubs for your communication actions.
First there is Word-of-Mouth. This form of communication between two people (about brands, products and services, among other things) is obviously not new. What has changed however, is the power, the range and the speed at which word-of-mouth grows in our new online media landscape. This activity mainly takes place via social media, blogs and video platforms… Any available information on the internet, whether it be in the form of image, text or video can be instantaneously reacted upon and propagated around the world in a matter of seconds. Formerly, word-of-mouth was restricted to a certain number of family members, neighbors and colleagues (within a specific social setting). Today, any internet user can profit from certain incredibly powerful communications tools that did not exist in the past.
In recent years, more and more brands have become aware of the power of this phenomenon. The first experiments with word-of-mouth marketing conducted by Hotmail, Budweiser and/or the Blair Witch Project, have now evolved into constructive advertisements. These experiments have lead to a greater awareness; in web 2.0, Youtube users have become a media in themselves! A brief explanation of these marketing approaches can be seen below.
Viral Marketing is one of them. Viral communication is about facilitating the transmission of a message from one person to another. The name "Viral Marketing" very basically comes from the concept. The idea is that it works like a cold, “infecting” one person who in turn spreads the infection to another; thus creating an exponential dynamic.
In order for it to achieve its goals, and not interrupt people like traditional advertising does (where the audience is forcibly exposed to an advertising message), you offer internet users content that is so original, amusing, surprising, inspiring and interesting that they not only enjoy it but want to pass it on to others. A module that is too overtly commercial or conventional will most likely not catch.
Humor, sex and provocation are often ingredients of success, and viral marketing can incorporate all of them (depending on the target, the message and the objective). In B2B for example the publication of a downloadable white paper is a very good example of viral marketing. The personalization of a message (by adding one’s name or photo to a game or video), the incentive (a symbolic or real reward that can be gained in a game for example) and intuitive uses are key elements of success within this type of campaign.
Formats: viral video, e-mail, downloadable module, widget, white paper study, Facebook application, audio and video podcast…Examples: The personalization of the homepage for La Tribune de Genève, Dove and its film “Evolution”, the “NicoMarket” viral videos against smoking, UPS and its widgets, the job website Moovement and its personalizable module “Manager of the Year”, the videos on rugby and existentialism by Coq Sportif , the viral virtual garden by Roxy perfume, or the game “AxeBusters”.
Buzz Marketing is another technique used to generate word-of-mouth. The idea in this instance is to spread information to the consumer via an event, an action in a spectacular, surprising and memorable way that is associated to a brand… A successful buzz marketing action generates word-of-mouth and media coverage. The important thing here is to create a reaction that attracts attention, be it risky, controversial or provocative.
Media coverage (via a PR action) is an essential part of a campaign, it makes sure that your range goes well beyond those who were directly exposed to the original action. You have to facilitate the indirect experience of the action via videos broadcast by the media and video sharing platforms... (the action has to be sufficiently visible and accessible).
This type of action requires a considerable logistic preparation and legal know-how in order to overcome regulations and obtain the necessary authorizations (unless you are prepared to risk paying fines), which can often be complicated and time-consuming. You also have to anticipate that some people or administrations might view these “creative measures” as a forcible invasion of their environment … so be careful with, and prepared for, negative reactions…
Formats: exceptional event or measure, street marketing, guerilla marketing, ambient marketing, ambush marketing…Examples: The latest WWF campaign against deforestation, the street marketing campaign for “Batman Begins”, the vertical rugby match by Société Générale, Jeep and its SUV parking lots , VW Eos and its “solar” billboards, the bank ING and its provocative saga of clothing for the very rich or the “DIM DIM Girls” squatting the ranks at the rugby world cup.
Then there is Influencer Marketing, which is made up of seeding (creating word-of-mouth by letting opinion leaders test products) and community management. The objective is to generate word-of-mouth by involving (online and offline) opinion leaders (bloggers, influential consumers, VIPs, stars) by motivating them to relay a message to their audience(s). This can be done by giving them the opportunity to test products, participate in exclusive events and/or gather in special places such as a blog, a forum, a social network,etc...
This approach requires time and a certain sensitivity but can be hugely profitable in the long run. By exchanging opinions with your consumers and answering their questions, you create customer loyalty and enable their step by step transformation into brand supporters. This transformation will allow you to enhance your recommendation rate and your brands overall notoriety. Unfortunately, brands do not always possess sufficient human and/or financial resources to develop ’involved’ relationships on an every day basis over a long period of time. Influentials need to be handled with care and in contrast to publicity they cannot be bought… A clumsy, overtly commercial approach will in the best case scenario disinterest them, and at worst cause negative buzz (it is therefore important to not try and manipulate them, lie or deceive them in any way).
Formats: Seeding campaign working with influential bloggers organised by BuzzParadise …, sponsored posts and media sales 2.0, creation of brand blogs and social networks, VIP eventsExamples: Distribution of new products to female bloggers by Dim Osmose, the social network of the brand MMMKenzoki, the “Running Club” of New Balance or the blog “Renault F1”, ...
Finally, we come to Consumer Generated Media, also called User Generated Media. This type of action consists of letting the audience participate in the communication of a brand (and in some situations the co-creation of a product or an offer). A certain number of brands have thus urged internet users to post videos and photos in order to participate in a competition or a collaborative module (Wat.tv, Gmail, or Joga Bonito for Nike). Some even go as far as to “ask” internet users to invent the screenplay (Honda for “Superball”) or even create a future spot or billboard (Sony via “Current TV”, or SFR via “BlogBang”).
Although this type of campaign is similar to the new phenomenon of “consumer 2.0” or “consum-actor”, it sometimes falls short or fails. This is most often due to a lack of quality and participation, as this type of action demands internet user’s time. We will certainly have to wait a while until a larger group of people have mastered the tools and necessary expertise to create an effective spot… The number of talented people that possess these skills are unlimited… Unfortunately, not everyone can be a creative genius like Hitchcock ;)
Formats: contributive video or photo competition, collaborative module, co-creationExamples: EBay and its latest campaign, Diesel’s perfume and its co-creation module of customized products or the collaborative video for Gmail (more than 5,000,000 views and more than 1,000 contributed videos).
All these approaches differ slightly from each other in their different strategies (even though they all pertain to the same goal). They can be used independently, complement each other, or even be combined with more traditional communication actions (TV spots, online advertising banners, billboards, press, radio, etc...). In that case we would speak of Integrated Communication or 360° Marketing…
Source: Translation of the article by Emmanuel Vivier in Le Journal du Net on November 15 2007
In 1965, two engineers at IBM invented the scratch and sniff strip, while looking for a way to make carbonless paper. By 1979, the perfume strip was inserted for the first time into a printed magazine. The scent was so strong that "you could kind of smell it before you even opened the magazine," recalled Diane Crecca, vice-president of sales, marketing and business development at Arcade Marketing, which invented the scent strip.
And it doesn't end there.
"With blinking lights, pop-up ads, kiss-on lipstick samples, scratch-off scents, melt-in-your-mouth taste strips, and even pocket squares, advertisers are stuffing magazines full of just about anything to make their advertisements stand out.
One reason for the phenomenon is better technology, which makes it less expensive to put unusual objects in magazines and which helps advertisers create more sophisticated inserts. [...]
But there is another dynamic at work: with so much of the publishing industry shifting toward the Web, magazine executives are trying to use their print products as a tactical advantage."
(Source: For magazines, 'be clever or die' - International Herald Tribune.)
They are forgetting the "product plus" magazine attachments: the books, cds and dvds that are now sold together with many of today's newspapers and magazines. And who sometimes make more money for the publishers than the regular print editions do...
Monday, 21 April 2008
This bitter quote was made a few days ago by web developer and entrepreneur Russel Beatie, one of the founders of mobile web transcoder Mowser. Mowser is closing up shop: "Sadly, Mowser is closing its doors due to lack of funding."
What followed was a blog storm of modest size, based around one question: Is Mobile Web Dead?. The answer is: it's not even born yet, and it's already hugged to death by advertisers, marketeers and mobile operators. To be honest I hope that consumers will run the show this time: most people I know see their mobile phone or smartphone as an extension of their identity. This means they are willing to pay for services that they really want (like staying in touch with their friends), but also that they are very reluctant to receive messages from any party they do not see as "part of their social circle". This is bad news for mobile advertising and mobile marketing. But good news for all kinds of mobile-based social network services.
Tom Fishburne's inspiration after reading SethGodin new book Meatball Sundae. Self-explanatory really. Makes me think about the French movie with Daniel Auteuil 'Mon meilleur ami' (my best friend) on how a friendless businessman in order to win a bet tried to convince some of his relationships to be(come) his best friend. Obviously not working till the day he realised friendship is not about 'proclaiming' but about 'engaging' - such a hype word marketers often proclaim engagement without understanding what lays behind it. Quoted from Sarah Mahoney (Mediapost) : "You don't launch a social media campaign. You being a social media effort".
Friday, 18 April 2008
Interactive Advertising Bureau released the whitepaper "User-Generated Content and Social Media Advertising Overview” (PDF, 3.4 MB), a hands-on guide to social media, focusing on terminology, practices and standarts.
Interesting Snippet by lynetter
The document intends to clear some of the fears that brands and agencies might have on using this dynamic medium, framing the whole UGC movement and reminding brands that user reviews are just like personal recommendation, one of the most effective forms of advertising.
Blogs, wikis, UGC and Ad Networks are described, with several examples how to integrate advertising with social media. The myth that Social Networks it's kids stuff was also debunked, by showing that "more than half of MySpace users were over 35 years old" and "LinkedIn, reports that its average user is 39 years-old and has an annual income of $139,000".
With all the buzz surrounding social media, it's easy for brands to jump into the bandwagon, and try to push their messages instead of engaging into conversations with their audience. Marketing author and blogger Seth Godin brilliantly states it on his latest book "Meatball Sundae", reminding companies that just because they put money into new media that doesn't necessarily translate into effective customers. Be ready to fail, experiment, optimize and most important, be ready to listen.
The document is a valuable first time reading for professionals that want to get acquainted with social media. For a 17 page paper, it manages to get a good overview that you can enrich with several web resources , such as Paul Isackson's recent presentation, or from Fallon planer Aki Spicer:
An article in "The Guardian" on 15 April called "survey shows darker picture for the TV channel" caught my eye. Although the story, for me, stated the obvious - it did make we wonder if others saw the world differently.
The article by Katie Allen starts: "Television remains people's favorite mass communication format but viewers are more loyal to a program than a channel, according to a survey of TV viewing around the world" (The survey was done by Accenture among 7000 people).
Isn't this obvious? Content is always the king. That is what I have always thought. In fact, during the dotcom boom and bust days this was a hot issue and topic. The point being that the survivors would be and were not the ones with clever technology and functions - but the ones with great content (where content may be enabled and realized due to technology like the Amazon "you may also like" content feature). Boo.com, which blew some crazy amount of money ($100 million) being one of the most dramatic examples.
But I have always believed in any interface with consumers that content is the king. Even a presentation that is dry but has relevant and great content will beat the no content showy one.
I guess though that the rapid expansion of the multi-channel mass media has possibly made this more obvious. Any user of Sky Plus/ Tivo knows it is all about capturing the content you want to consume. Not about the channel.
The massive success of the BBC iPlayer that allows people to catch up online with shows they missed in the last week also shows how it is all about content. The study suggests that in the US 46 percent of 18-24 watched a show on something other than a traditional TV.
Content has to be king, and getting the best content has to be the goal. Be it if you are a TV station owner or a brand marketer talking in advertising, PR, booklets and on your website. It is not about how technological advanced your site is, but what the content is.
For more visit my blog Gary Bembridge's Unleashed on Marketing
Thursday, 17 April 2008
eMarketer has an interesting question today: Can User-Generated Content Generate Revenue?: "“Since many of the growing numbers of Internet users creating social media are also consuming it, this is a content chain that feeds on itself,” says Mr. Verna. “There is a seemingly infinite demand for content, and there are legions of Internet users armed with laptops, cell phones and digital cameras ready to deliver.”"
Despite the large usage numbers, advertising revenue for user generated content is still painfully low. Not because, as Andrew Keen puts it, “Nobody wants to advertise next to crap.” But because advertisers and their agencies are not willing to let go of control. They want to keep their eye on the prize: their company or product logo, displayed as BIG as possible. Anything else is only adding more noise to the signal.
Tuesday, 15 April 2008
Wednesday, 9 April 2008
Atomium: "The image of the Atomium is protected since its construction. It's mandatory to gain approval from the asbl/vzw Atomium and the SABAM, before copying or broadcasting the image of the Atomium. It is also necessary to mention 'copyright asbl/vzw Atomium'."
A weird situation, especially with the 50th anniversary of the Anno Expo '58 coming up. Belangrijk bericht aan de bezoekers / inzenders / photoshoppers / lezers: "Maar elk beeld waarin –na bewerking- de contouren of het silhouet geheel of gedeeltelijk van het Atomium in blijven staan, kan toch ook niet zo blijkt. Dus geen “Ceci n’est pas l’Atomium”, “Patatatomium”of “Lamotium”…
Echter, een Patatomium met enkel aardappels en frieten in de vorm van een ijzerkristalstructuur gegoten, en niet met een bestaande Atomiumfoto als basis, kan wel."
Tuesday, 8 April 2008
The 2008 Interact Congress is arriving, so we could relaunch this blog starting with an interview with Ms. Esther Dyson, one of our great panelist during the past Interact edition.
Mauro Lupi: Recently, the Nike CEO said to New York Times: "We're not in the business of keeping the media companies alive. We're in the business of connecting with consumers". Do you think that companies have really the possibility to bypass the traditional media and interact directly with the consumers? They should become a sort of media publisher too?
Esther Dyson: Absolutely, companies will be able to bypass traditional media to interact directly with consumers. But they won't necessarily be able to get consumers to come to their own websites. In many cases, they will have to join the communities where consumers gather - whether it's special-interest groups on Facebook or vertical-market sites. But they will have to participate in the activities of the community (rather than just post ads) - much as Nike might sponsor a local basketball game and send a rep or local sports-store owner. It wouldn't simply post a billboard; it would send someone to congratulate the winners....
M.L.: All around us there are digital contents, and they continue to grow exponentially. In your opinion, what is the more efficient technology that will help people to manage this rising amount of data? Better search engines? Social search? Semantic web? Other?
E.D.: It will require a broad range of approaches - just as it does now. But all these approaches will be built out... Things will be so easily findable, and systems will present them without even being asked... Instead of searching for things, people will have to filter them out.
M.L.: On the last column on The Wall Street Journal, you wrote about the power of social networks to understand user needs and behavior. Do you think that general internet users, especially the younger, are yet ready to understand and manage what this means in terms of privacy? How the good publisher will establish the users' trust?
E.D.: General internet users will have a different understanding of privacy as time goes by. They will not want "privacy" as much as control over their own data. And they will learn how to manage their data, just as they have learned how to pay taxes, buy things online, and do other complex things of modern life. People will. Publishers and merchants can earn users' trust by being trustworthy themselves. They need to be transparent, clear about their motivations, and accessible. They need to listen to consumers, not track or observe them. They need to treat them as individuals, not as market segments.