Posts Tagged social media
Social media marketing usually works like this. You have a product and you promote it online through various means as part of your overall advertising strategy. If you’re creative and lucky enough, your efforts will go viral and your product will achieve instant fame and then others will seek to imitate or hang off your success.
But there’s one product that continues to go viral without any organised marketing campaign. Look in your twitter stream, especially on weekends and you’ll find a host of fond tweets about bacon. No one is sure why, apart from being easy to cook and pretty damn delicious, bacon is so appreciated online. Perhaps taste, affordability and its association with the morning after a big night make it a hit with the stereotypical social media demographic.
This mass appreciation for popular cured meat has seen an increase in people using the internet to search for bacon recipes. This isn’t a new phenomenon. In 2009 the LA Times reported that it “posted ‘1001 things to do with bacon’ in December, and it was the most e-mailed link on the site for a few days.
Bacon’s cult following has spawned a host of viral sensations that were unashamedly created to cash in on our love for “swine at nine”. One of most successful Bacon Explosion – a gut-busting 5000 calorie pork loaf that increases your LDL cholesterol level by 30 per cent just by looking at it! This culinary time bomb was invented by a couple of enterprising barbecue chefs, Jason Day and Aaron Chronister, to get traffic to their website BBQAddicts.com. It worked, receiving 400,000 views in it’s first month.
The success of the Bacon Explosion shows how social media can be manipulated to gain exposure for your product or organisation. All it takes is knowledge of what’s hot online, engaging content and a willingness to embrace the notion that no idea is too crazy.
For all the blanket television news coverage of the Queensland floods, I hardly recall any practical information being relayed to assist those who become impacted as the flood waters spread.
The television networks were inevitably obsessed the human drama of it all, reacting to what had already happened in an almost voyeuristic fashion. Of course that’s what news services do, but shouldn’t they also have informative value?
Radio stations, particularly the ABC, did an excellent job in relaying police and State Emergency Service information regarding road closures, evacuations and other safety information. But as the tragedy unfolded it became evident how social media can play an invaluable role in keeping people informed.
YouTube videos of the horrendous flash flooding in Toowoomba were being memed across Twitter and Facebook before the TV networks were able to grasp what was going on. Then, throughout the rolling news coverage, the networks showed videos taken from YouTube and other online sources, often without attribution – old media was using new media, but seemed too afraid to acknowledge it.
To be fair, a lot of people were tweeting what they were seeing on their television screens, and quite a few mainstream media organisations such as the ABC and commercial radio and television stations were relaying news via Facebook and Twitter – some it more informative than was being broadcast.
As the above ABC News story shows, social media was used very effectively by the emergency services to keep people informed and is credited with saving lives. It also helped people track down missing friends and relatives and provided an indispensable tool to drum up volunteers and let people know where they could get help.
But there was some misinformation spread online; such as claims of water contamination and bursting dams and false reports about bodies being found. That said this sort of thing always finds a way into mainstream media reports in the haste to be first with the news. On the plus side the police were able to quash these rumours almost as quickly as they appeared via social media.
The key to using social media in an emergency is to apply your own common sense to decipher what you’re reading and where possible to confirm it via the radio or credible social media sources as the emergency services and radio station Twitter accounts.
And when in doubt, don’t pass on any rumours that you can’t confirm.
I’ve heard a lot of buzz about Sony’s new-ish Facebook app – Media Monster Wars (first hit attention August last year). And with Justin Timberlake headlining the experience, naturally I was intrigued.
It’s a really neat example of an integrated social media game that generates a monster from analysing your own Facebook content. Which means the more active you are (the more likes, photos, comments, shares and interaction you have) the more powerful your monster will be. Then off you go to share the app and battle your friends. And if you’re powerful enough, then why not challenge JT himself.
Or so the promo video shows.
Here’s where I insert a #fail. I’ve tried a couple of times now to make a monster. One both occasions the “generating and optimising media monster” part of the process took well over 8-10 minutes, only to stop and start the process again. From the start….
Which leads me to my belief: there’s one key element to developing a great Facebook apps: keep it simple.
Sure there is room to dazzle people with a fabulous user experience, but don’t risk a botched attempt at brand interaction by doing too much; crashing apps only result in one thing – irritation. Not good for any brand.
Especially not in this case for Sony, who no doubt is paying significantly for JT’s appearance. If users can’t get the opportunity to challenge him with our monsters, then where’s the ROI?!
The mind-snapping pace of digital innovation makes at least one prediction certain. What the trend -watchers are predicting today, will be totally eclipsed well before this time next year.
Still, here’s our take on the possible shape of the digital, social and experiential landscape in 2011.
1. We’ll see the resolution of the debate over the real impact of 3D TV.
2. Android will bite deeper into Apple’s once impregnable brand fortress.
3. High action games will see no let up. (Call of Duty – Black Ops has already hit $1 Billion in sales since its release late this year.)
4. Too cool for school graphic design will be refined in line with the demand for uncomplicated useability.
6. Competing technology will rapidly approach parity; creating the demand for even smarter brand thinking.
7. Smaller closed, or far more selective, social networks will play a far bigger part in the lives of key influencers.
8. Expect far stricter controls and compliance protocols – especially in the mobile area.
9. Twitter will gain an even louder brand voice, as it pursues the dream of reaching Facebook’s figure of 1 Billion users.
10. More brands will create their own social enterprise sites to maintain corporate integrity and confidentiality.
Wishing you a Happy and Prosperous New Media Year.
The pre – New Year stats suggest an ongoing stratospheric rise of New Media.
*Gorillaz has just created the band’s 15-track album “The Fall” on iPad using 20 Apps -each App under $20.
*Windows Phone 7 Marketplace already tops 5,000 Apps. Recently adding 1,000 Apps in just over two weeks.
*Latest reports suggest Android already has over 200,000 Apps available.
*Facebook beat Google to the post on Christmas Day in the UK. Claiming 10.5% of all UK social networking internet visits. Google recording 9.77%.
*Facebook’s value leaps by 56% to $41.2 billion- according to securities firm Nyppex.
Beyond question is the increasing significance of digital, social, mobile & experiential channels. Answering what the stats really mean in these areas will define the true change makers.
Here are a few thought starters
Does mega quantity equal quality response?
Does a first impression really last? (And for how long?)
How does brand dominance translate into consumer relevance?
How do global figures indicate local impact?
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