Here are all of the posts in the ‘News’ category.

Mobile+: transcending mobile and the evolution of the digital portfolio

by Paul Napier in News

Marketing Magazine recently published an article by me on the evolution of mobile development and the digital portfolio. They’ve been kind enough to let us reproduce it in full below:

As new offerings from Apple, Google and others are integrated into the digital portfolios of clients, users and agencies, Paul Napier coins a name for the new generation of developers are being given the chance to arise: ‘Mobile+’.

Each year Apple and Google compete to bring increasingly audacious technologies to market. As a marketer it can sometimes be difficult to know who to approach for advice on how these new innovations can help our clients and users. Welcome to the era of Mobile+. But how did we arrive here?

On a chilly Cupertino Wednesday in October 2007 the world was casually informed that their way of life would change profoundly. But beyond the general population, there was a subset of people, myself included, whose lives would be so heavily impacted we would barely be able to remember what it was like before the advent of iPhone. Apple had created an industry: mobile app development.

In 2008, when the first software development kit (SDK) was released, mobile app development was fairly straightforward. There was one device. One screen size. Two orientations. Apps would run in portrait, or landscape or have it transition between layouts and the concept was one of immediate need fulfillment. Brands could integrate an app into their digital portfolio that simply performed a task, which enhanced a user’s life.

Then the likes of Apple, Samsung, Sony, Nokia, Blackberry and others began to add more dimensions, greater functionality, APIs and new devices to their phone portfolios. So we adapted, learned the relevant programming languages, grew. Mobile development became more of an art than a job and each new release gave us opportunities to discover ways of meeting clients’ and users’ expectations through improved speed, functionality and technology.

Tablets were released and a new dimension of creativity began. Apps that were hitherto confined by the space of a standard mobile phone were given free reign in the not-quite-laptop sized arena. Since this technology is something you can pick up and take with you, and since it follows similar rules, structures and layouts as well as the same programming languages and APIs, this was absorbed in the catchall ‘mobile’. And yet this term already began to feel strained as brands had to make choices over how to interact with their users when discussing the creation of apps.

Fast forward a few years to the current day, where the exciting news has arrived of the Apple Watch hitting the stores in 2015. Throughout this time we have seen a surge in technology breakthroughs: smartphones, tablets, clothing, jewellery, cars, watches, glasses and even fridges. Utilities, apparell and appliances all talk to us or help us to perform our daily tasks. We integrate a host of touchable screen sizes on various parts of our body through the day even using biometric data to identify ourselves. Usage across these technologies is growing at an explosive rate with the Australian market penetration for smartphones alone being predicted as high as 90% in 2015 (Australian Smartphone Market Study 2011-2015).

And who do we look at when we think about these technologies? Mobile app developers? Perhaps. But if so, this leaves us with two options:

  • We explore a new way to define the developers that cover these areas – perhaps a mobile developer is just that: one who creates apps for mobile phones, and these new platforms are a separate and new development area akin to the way the role was created for the original mobile development pioneers, or
  • we redefine the meaning of ‘mobile’ beyond the scope of phones – the raw constraint of a mobile developer is no longer applicable, since technology has expanded beyond it.

Truthfully, though, the answer lies in combining both. When we work in any environment, we cannot be constrained by the limitations of a title. Nor can we allow technology to move beyond us. We are living in a time where users are being given exciting new ways for them to interact with the world, their friends and their favourite brands. Now ‘mobile’ development means riding on the crest of technology changes, seeking innovation as we would draw breath. These burgeoning technologies open up avenues and choices for existing mobile developers to grow and transcend beyond the standard definition.

This parallels with our clients, who now seek guidance and advice on the right technologies, platforms and systems to help them express their messages and address their customers’ needs. The idea of the digital portfolio has evolved beyond a simply a website, a social presence and possibly a smartphone app. It is now a living breathing ecosystem, which encapsulates anything from a simple Facebook app, through to a system of integrated cross-platform, multi-device applications and can give birth to a new concept at any time. We must think beyond the means to deliver and focus on the message in a truly agnostic fashion.

So, as we seek to integrate the new offerings from Apple, Google and others into our clients’, our users’ and our own digital portfolios, a new generation of developers have been given the chance to arise: ‘Mobile+’.

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We Are Social picks up silverware at B&T Awards

by Michael Batistich in News

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Set against the backdrop of city lights at Darling Harbour, Friday night’s B&T Awards were indeed a gala affair. Hosted at The Pavilion and emceed by Craig and Chris from The Chaser, over 900 guests - including two large tables from We Are Social - were welcomed to the dinner event by B&T publisher David Hovenden.

There was much anticipation in the air and the night was a big success – we were delighted to receive a Highly Commended award for ‘Specialist Agency of the Year’. With an unprecedented number of entries, this year’s B&T Awards were highly contested, with over 40 entries in the ‘Specialist Agency’ category.

On hand to receive the award were managing director Julian Ward, managing partner David Fairfull and creative director Oz Dean. Celebrations continued with music and dancing after dinner, with a good time had by all.

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Tuesday Tune-Up #167

by Michael Batistich in News

adidas launches #LeaveYourMark campaign
We Are Social Sydney has created the new #LeaveYourMark campaign for adidas featuring brand ambassador Sonny Bill Williams, a rugby player and boxer with some pretty impressive achievements under his belt. We Are Social worked with adidas to create three branded content films focusing on how the sportsman achieved his goals, in the aim of sparking a conversation across social around how fans leave their mark in life. The videos were launched on both Sonny’s and adidas’ social channels and amplified with supporting content and teasers.

Facebook launches new ‘Groups’ app
If there is one thing we all need, it’s another Facebook branded mobile app. So we’re happy to introduce to you the new Facebook Groups app, which launched earlier this week for iOS and Android. In a similar style to the messenger app, it consolidates all your current Facebook groups into one place, allowing for faster sharing within groups, whilst making it easier to find other communities relevant to you.

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Facebook adds structured status feature to pages
Ever wondered if your favourite brands were feeling blessed, loved or sleepy at any given moment? Well, with the introduction of structured status updates for Facebook pages, now you’ll know. The feature provides brands with a drop-down menu of automated emoji-style status updates that can be shared with their page’s fans.

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Snapchat introduces ‘SnapCash’

A selfie AND money? Yes please! Snapchat brings peer to peer bank transfers into the social age. The photo messaging app has partnered with Square Cash to create a new money sending feature. It allows users to link their bank accounts to the app to send and receive money from friends. Currently only available in the US, the new feature has sparked discussions about the future potential of Snapchat, particularly the obvious benefits the update could have for e-commerce businesses.

The intro video is worth watching just for the LOLs…

Snapchat debuts brand-sponsored ad format
Snapchat debuted a new type of ad last night during the American Music awards. A stream of posts about the event played out on Snapchat’s ’Our Story’, a feature that curates user posts about live events. For the first time, these posts were sponsored, with Samsung the brand in the spotlight. Stay tuned for more real-time ad opportunities on Snapchat soon.

Kik buys GIF messaging app
Kik, the instant messaging start-up that now reports 185 million registered users, has just bought Relay, an increasingly popular GIF sharing app. With the ever growing popularity of online video and video advertising, this represents a strategic move for Kik, to both keep up with current trends and make its offering more visual.

Viber messaging app becomes more social
Viber, the WhatsApp-y instant messaging app, has introduced a new public chat feature which will allow users to follow chats and view conversations between celebrities. Perez Hilton and Pixie Lott are already confirmed, so one can only imagine the huge gossip potential. There are currently no plans to put ads in the public chats, but as the content is at the discretion of the celebrity we’re sure brands will soon find a way to get involved.

 

Twitter’s ‘Buy’ button has first Christmas promotion
Twitter’s ‘Buy’ button debuted back in June, and it’s now about to experience its first ever holiday promotion. Starting this week, AMC Theatres will be making the most of the new Twitter ‘buy’ button, offering its US Twitter followers the chance to buy a $30 gift card without ever leaving the platform.

Tesco App scans Twitter feeds for gift suggestions
We Are Social UK has created a Twitter app for Tesco Clubcard, offering to take the stress out of the search for Christmas presents by offering thoughtful and personal suggestions. The ‘app’-tly named “Secret Scan-ta” service analyses Twitter profiles to select appropriate gifts from Tesco, based on who that person follows and what they’ve been talking about. The site links directly to all the products shown for easy purchasing, and encourages sharing across social channels.

Argos creates Tinder-like gift-giving app
Argos has also launched a gift recommendation app; this one lets you enter the basic details of your intended recipient, then provides targeted gift suggestions from the retailer’s catalogue. In true tinder-style, swipe right for yes and left for no – and the app even gets smarter the more it’s used. To provide a more social element, the app also hosts the game ‘Friend or Fraud’ through Facebook, which lets users pick their favourite gifts and see if their friends can guess them correctly.

Lacoste’s #SpotTheCroc Snapchat Campaign
Lacoste continues to experiment with social platforms popular among younger fans with a new Snapchat campaign, asking followers to find a crocodile hidden in a series of five short videos. The videos will be released every fortnight, illustrating various sports such as tennis, golf, skateboarding and rollerblading, in line with Lacoste’s brand signature: “Life is a Beautiful Sport”. Users are encouraged to view the videos, take a screengrab of the exact frame on which the crocodile appears, and send it back to Lacoste for a chance to get 20 percent off their next Lacoste purchase.

We Are Social’s Tuesday Tune-Up #165

by Caitlin West

Facebook creates a donate button to encourage users to contribute to the Ebola cause
Facebook has added a ‘Donate Now’ button that appears to users in their news feeds in an attempt to encourage them to contribute and raise money to fight Ebola. As of last Thursday, Facebook users now have a button at the top of their news feed that enables them to choose one of three nonprofit organisations to donate to. The organisations include The International Medical Corps, The American Red Cross and Save The Children. Facebook has additionally partnered with UNICEF to deliver messages in affected regions, ensuring that lines of communication remain open and that current information is shared.

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Instagram users can now edit captions
Have you ever posted something to Instagram only to realise shortly after that you have spelt that hashtag or comment incorrectly? Instagram has changed its settings so that users can now go back and fix typos without having to delete and then rewrite the entire post. Users can edit captions by tapping the menu button under the post and selecting ‘edit’. Posts with edited captions will include a note showing that a change has been made. Instagram has also added new recommendations to the app’s ‘Explore’ menu.

Instagram update

Lynx launches Social Club in partnership with Vice
Sydneysiders love a good pop-up and that is exactly why Lynx, in partnership with Vice, will be holding one for two weeks in November. The ‘Social Club’, to be held in Sydney’s Darlinghurst, will attempt to boost the brand’s credibility and shed its long standing association with teenage boys, encouraging men to express their individuality in the process.

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This pop-up space will be open for two weeks from the 12th of November and is being hailed as a new meeting point – a mix between a local bar, barber shop and gentlemen’s lounge. There will be special guests, including experts on music, gin, design, hair, scent and styling, on hand to help out even the most clueless of Sydney’s male population!

Together with the Pop-Up, a content series called “coolest guy ever’ will run on Vice, featuring a range of musicians talking about their take on ‘the coolest guy ever’.

Brands go social for Movember
It’s November and the world has been preparing its razor and getting Movember started. Naturally, so have brands. Fancy an example? Good, because you’re getting one.

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Digital to overtake TV ad spending
US Digital ad spending will overtake TV in 2016, according to new research by Forrester. By 2019, digital will account for 36% ($103bn) of all ad spending and, as if that wasn’t enough, next year we’ll have hoverboards and automatic dog walkers. Fine, that last bit’s from Back to the Future.

The graph below breaks down the progress within digital itself. Social media’s growth is set to be the strongest, followed by display advertising and search.

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Facebook users can set limits on content from brands
Bad news, oversharers – Facebook is clamping down on you lot. The network will now allow users to access a list of how many posts they’ve seen from friends and pages in the last week, and set a limit on anyone that’s posting too much. Brands will have to be careful to ensure high content quality, or else find view quantity slips, too. Facebook produced the below video to explain the changes.

Snapchat planning new ad types and partners
Snapchat is planning to up its ad game. It is reportedly planning to introduce TV-style ads in ‘Our Stories’, allowing brands to either sponsor a whole ‘Our Stories’ or include branded snaps within a collection. That’s not all, either. It’s going to launch a ‘Discover’ tab, where users can find articles, music and video from some pretty big name partners. Now, time for a game of ‘name that logo’:

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Subway falls in love with National Sandwich Day
There’s no need to fear loneliness on Valentine’s Day when National Sandwich Day comes just nine months later. At least that’s what @Subway seems to think, as the restaurant chain used #NationalSandwichDay to reply to fans with some romantic, personalised content, in the form of images, gifs and Vines.

 

 

 

 

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We Are Social’s Tuesday Tune-Up #164

by Caitlin West

Home-grown social media startup Spring.me to launch on Australian Securities Exchange
With the hope of encouraging social media users to expand their circle of friends and begin interacting with other like minded folks, Australian social media startup Spring.me is entering the final stage of it’s capital raising campaign by launching on the ASX. The collection of sites and apps, aimed at “online-all-the-time” social media users, aims to encourage users to expand their circle of friends through the sharing of questions and answers. Spring.me already boasts 5 million regular users since its launch in September last year, so it’ll be interesting to see how the social media startup fares in the coming year.

Facebook now available through Tor
Security conscious Facebook users can now sleep easier at night with the announcement that the site is now available to access through Tor, software that allows for supposedly safe and anonymous web browsing. Previously, users accessing the social networking site through Tor encountered a range of issues, including being locked out of their accounts, because of the way it routes connections across the world.

A mixed financial week for Facebook
Imagine you’re a Facebook investor, and you hear that you’re about to be taken on a roller coaster. Great news, right? WRONG. This roller coaster means share price fluctuation throughout the week. First of all, the network announced impressive Q3 figures and share price hit an $81.16 high. MAUs have risen to 1.35 billion from 1.317 billion in Q2, while mobile MAUs have jumped from 1.07bn to 1.124bn in the same period.

Facebook MAUs

Facebook monthly MAUs

Total revenue increased by over 50% for the sixth consecutive quarter, rising by 59% to $3.2bn.

Facebook revenue

Meanwhile, also for the sixth consecutive quarter, ad revenue increased by over 60%; this time, Facebook posted figures of $2.96bn, a 64% increase from Q2. Mobile accounted for 62% of ad revenue.

Facebook ad revenue

Investors saw the figures and everybody was happy. Hooray! Sadly, Facebook then announced that costs have risen dramatically in 2014, and revenue is expected to slow in Q4. Share prices dropped as a result, slumping by almost 10% before settling around the $73 mark. All in all, we’ll give the week a score of 6/10.

The first video ads hit Instagram
Who’s in the house? Instagram video ads are in the house! Well, on the network. Anyway, Instagram has launched its premium, 15-second autoplay spots with a selection of partners, including Banana Republic, Disney, CW Flash and Call of Duty.

Twitter’s revenue increases, even as user growth slows
If you liked the story about Facebook’s share prices, you’ll LOVE this. Twitter’s had a mixed week, too: its revenue continues to show strong growth, despite disappointing user figures. Q3 total revenue increased 114% year-on-year to $361m, of which ad revenue accounted for $320m (85% from mobile). In the same time, though, the platform added just 13 million monthly active users, compared with 16 million in Q2.

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Investors weren’t impressed and the share price dropped by 10%, making Twitter’s week slightly worse than Facebook’s. 5/10.

Tumblr to roll out autoplay videos
It’s been a big old week for fans of autoplay video adverts. Hot on Instagram’s heels, Tumblr has announced that it will launch a similar service, starting tomorrow. It’s limited to a set of partners at the moment (isn’t it always?) but will be open to everyone by mid-November. So far, the lucky punters include Lexus, Universal Pictures, JC Penney and Hulu.

LinkedIn posts strong Q3 figures
We hope you’re enjoying these Q3 reports. LinkedIn is up next, and it’s been a good three months. Total revenue is at $568m, of which ad revenue accounts for $109m – a 45% year-on-year increase. Sponsored updates have been the biggest success story – they make up 31% of ad revenue, and have been described by CEO Jeff Weiner as the “fastest growing business in LinkedIn’s history”. We’re giving LinkedIn an 8/10, making it the proud recipient of the prestigious ‘We Are Social Q3 figures of the week award’.

Disqus to begin advertising
Disqus, which operates the comment sections on 3m websites, has started targeting adverts within its service. It’s mining data about what people post and where to target the ads, which will look like normal comments apart from the word ‘sponsored’.

Taco Bell is @totallynothere
Social media’s no stranger to the odd meltdown. Taco Bell went someway down that path last week, deleting all previous social content to create a ‘blackout’ and promote its new app.

 

A risky strategy, but it seems to have paid off in the short term. After 24 hours, 75% of Taco Bell restaurants had processed at least one mobile order. We’ll see if that continues in the longer term, and keep an eye out for any return to social media.

Epix launches on Vine
TV network Epix is celebrating its fifth birthday (happy birthday). Don’t hold out for any cake, though, the party plan is to launch on a new channel: Vine. The network has partnered with 10 influencers to create Vines around different films. Each makes sense on its own and they join together to create a larger story, which will be shared on YouTube, TV and, most excitingly, THIS MASHUP.

Samaritans Radar searches Twitter for suicide triggers
Samaritans has created an app to help Twitter users find out if anyone they know is posting potentially worrying tweets. The service, named Radar, automatically picks up certain phrases, including ‘depressed’ and ‘tired of being alone’. The charity plans to keep updating its algorithm as time goes on, with the hope of avoiding false positives. At the moment, it’s not the best at noticing when someone might be joking.

Brands get spooky on social for Halloween
Today, dressing up as a zombie and giving sweets to children would be seen as something of a faux pas. On Friday, though, everyone wanted a piece of the Halloween fun, and, as always, brands were no exception. Here are a few examples of social content – though we can’t promise that all of it quite hit the spot.

 

 

 

Through the miracle of the moving image, see how today’s @OreoLab nomster was born!

 

OREO (@oreo) tarafından paylaşılan bir video - şurada:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chevrolet shows how to deal with Twitter mocking
While trying to present a Chevrolet-sponsored baseball trophy, the company’s representative had something of an awkward moment. With lines like “It offers class-winning and -leading, um, you know, technology and stuff”, it was only a matter of time before he became the talk of Twitter. (He’s known as #ChevyGuy, if you must know.) That could have been pretty awkward for the automotive brand, but Chevy showed that it knows how social works. It embraced the awkward.

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