Twitter hosts Gif booth at the Logies
Instagram launches @music
Instagram has created a feed called @music dedicated to exploring music from around the world. Expect to see musicians from a different perspective as they share snaps from their daily lives.
@TwitterFood makes everyone hungry
Twitter has created @TwitterFood to share tweets about meals, recipes and dining experiences. There’ll be tweets from chefs and food fans alike so get ready to see a feed full of #foodporn. We’re hungry just thinking about it.
More US internet users are mobile-only than desktop-only
The number of US mobile-only internet users has overtaken its desktop equivalent for the first time ever. The former camp now sits at 11.3% to the latter’s 10.6%.
Facebook brings video calls to Messenger
Facebook has added video calling to its standalone Messenger app. The feature, available in the UK, USA, Canada and 15 other countries, will work on mobile connections from 3G to LTE.
Buy promoted tweets and Google ads together
Twitter and Google have formed a partnership that will allow users of Google’s ‘Double Click Bid Manager’ to purchase promoted tweets along with Google ads. This marks yet further interaction between Twitter and Google, which has already given greater prominence to tweets in search results.
Twitter purchases TellApart
Twitter has bought ad retargeting company, TellApart, a move that comes with ‘cross-device’ expertise. This ability, combined with Twitter’s huge amount of login data, could prove lucrative, particularly when Twitter’s ‘buy’ button is thrown into the mix.
Meerkat distances itself from Twitter
Meerkat has added Facebook support in the latest version of its iPhone app. The move clearly shows an attempt to distance itself from Twitter, which has removed the app from its social graph since the launch of its rival streaming app, Periscope.
Absolutely Anything trailer to debut on Snapchat
Absolutely Anything, the British comedy that marks Robin Williams’s final on-screen performance, is set to debut its trailer on Snapchat’s Discover platform. Lionsgate, the company behind the film, has said that it will be looking at further Snapchat promotion closer to the film’s release.
Lego gets kids to invent the kronkiwongi
Lego has launched a Facebook campaign asking children to create an imaginary character called a ‘kronkiwongi’ and encouraging parents to upload their children’s creations. We’re not sure about you, but we think it looks exactly like this.
#DoritosRoulette on Periscope
Doritos has launched its ‘Roulette’ bags, in which one of every six crisps is incredibly spicy, in the US. To celebrate, it has created #DoritosRoulette on Pericope; all viewers are eligible to win prizes, which will depend on where a roulette wheel lands in the live gameshow.
Watching boxing on Periscope
Mashable has released a piece about watching the Pacquiao-Mayweather fight on Periscope, in which it discusses how numerous streams were available, how many were shut down and how it created a unique watching experience. It raises a number of questions about both social viewing and piracy, which are well worth considering as we move into an increasingly mobile and digital world.
Facebook responds to Nepal earthquake
After the tragic news that an earthquake had hit Nepal last week, there was at least some comfort to be taken in the heartwarming worldwide response. Facebook was a part of this, adding a ‘donate’ button to the top of users’ News Feeds and promising to match donations up to $2m. In two days, it had raised $10m.
Child is born
Last week, despite it being the 21st Century, a princess created another princess. Of course, brands were keen to get involved.
— Disney (@Disney) May 2, 2015
— boohoo.com (@boohoo) May 2, 2015
B&T recently published this article by me about why live streaming worked for star wars and how it can work for you. They’ve been kind enough to let us reproduce it in full below.
Star Wars fans must be feeling a little bleary eyed this week after tuning in to the franchise’s 30-hour, four day streaming extravaganza, that kicked off on April 16.
Live streaming is all the rage at the moment and it’s easy to jump on board. But as Admiral Ackbar said – “it’s a trap”. Here are five tips to help avoid the live stream marketing Death Star.
“TRAVELING THROUGH HYPERSPACE AIN’T LIKE DUSTING CROPS, FARM BOY.”
Live content can easily be terrible. Most (with a few notable exceptions from brands) of what we’ve seen on the live streaming apps de jour, Meerkat and Periscope, has been poor quality content that no-one in their right mind would opt in to watch. The Star Wars live stream is pre-planned, well publicised and professionally executed. They extended it to cinemas so that fans in other countries could get together and celebrate the event. They didn’t just rock up on the day with their iPhone and hope for the best.
“SEARCH YOUR FEELINGS.”
Live streaming will work better for some products than others – is yours really right for it? There’s always going to be demand for unveiling a new luxury car or a revolutionary piece of technology from a cult brand. There needs to be a high level of anticipation from the online community. Star Wars has this nailed, with probably the most obsessive fan base on the planet. A live stream was always going to work for them.
“DON’T GET TECHNICAL WITH ME… YOU’LL BE MALFUNCTIONING IN A DAY, YOU NEAR-SIGHTED SCRAP PILE.”
Anticipate the technical issues. When Apple unveiled the iPhone 6 and Apple Watch via a live stream in last year, Twitter was full of complaints about the quality of the feed – or lack of it altogether. This was the first Apple event with its live blog, and reportedly, updating the page may have caused the live stream to fail. The Star Wars stream so far seems to be running without any major issues. Perhaps they didn’t have the same level of demand in such a short period of time, perhaps they were better prepared, but either way, it’s a much more satisfying experience for fans.
“YOU’LL FIND I’M FULL OF SURPRISES!”
Give something away. Even Star Wars, with its massive global fanbase, needed to offer something of value to a community that is obsessed with seeing content ‘first’. Ahead of the event, J.J. Abrams promised the trailer would live stream yesterday at the opening day of the Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim – and when it came to the big reveal, people at home didn’t have to watch a crowd watching a big screen in a convention centre: it cut to the trailer itself. If you wanted to see it before all the other Star Wars fans, you had to tune in.
“STAY ON TARGET.”
We know the Star Wars audience is fanatical about the brand. They are also (sweeping generalisation alert), tech savvy for the most part. They are going to be online and they’ll be ready and willing to tune into hours of content to get closer to the brand. Not all target audiences are happy to sit in front of a screen for such a prolonged period of time (if at all). This, plus all the above factors, will determine whether you should live stream at all and if so, how long you should do it for. Unless the force of the audience is with you, a live stream is a wasted investment.
Hopefully this will help marketers decide whether live streaming is a worthwhile option for them. As Lord Vader said a long time ago “You may dispense with the pleasantries, Commander. I am here to put you back on schedule.”
The Apple Watch is a smash
The Apple Watch was released in Australia on Friday 24th April. Presumably, on Friday afternoon the smashes began. Real world conditions indicate consumers need to treat the watch as carefully as your phone.
Facebook Messenger set to roll out Video chat
A new iOS and Android update will allow users to video chat via the app. The feature is coming to 18 markets around the globe at first, Asia-Pacific countries are absent from the initial roll out.
The nail in the coffin of organic Facebook reach?
Facebook has announced three key updates to its News Feed:
- It is relaxing the rule that stops users seeing multiple posts from the same source multiple times in a row.
- Content from friends that you care about (or regularly interact with) will appear higher.
- Stories about friends liking or commenting on content from outside your network will appear lower.
It’s the latest chapter in the story of declining organic reach on the platform and point three in particular may mean a further reduction; Facebook is continuing its metamorphosis into an entirely paid channel for brands. Indeed, analysis by Locowise has concluded that organic reach is as low as 2.27% for pages with over one million likes. Brands are attempting to counter this by posting more and post frequency has increased 31% year-on-year for Q1 2015, according to Adobe Digital Index, in a study that also states organic impressions are down 35% in the same period, while paid are up 8%.
Facebook reveals Q1 2015 figures
It might not come as a surprise, after a story about the importance of paid media on Facebook, to learn that the network’s ad income continues to skyrocket. In Q1 2015, Facebook announced total revenue of $3.54bn (a 42% year-on-year increase), of which $3.3bn came from ads (up 46%). Mobile ad revenue accounted for 73% of that, compared with 69% in Q4 2014. But this doesn’t mean we’re being served more ads. In fact, in the same period, the number of ads has decreased by 62% – it’s the cost per ad that’s gone up, by a huge 285%.
None of this would be possible without an enormous user base, of course. In the first quarter of 2015, Facebook had 1.44 billion monthly active users (up 13% year-on-year). Of the 1.44 billion, 65% use the platform every single day…
Facebook the clear leader for social logins
It’s been a really good week for Facebook stats-wise. The network retains its title as social login leader, according to two separate studies. Gigya said that Facebook accounted for 63% of all Q1 2015 social logins, with Google+ in second at 21%. LoginRadius put the figures at 72% and 20% for Facebook and G+ respectively.
Facebook says ‘Hello’
So Facebook Home didn’t work out. That’s not stopping Zuckerberg trying to work his way into the smartphone market with Facebook Hello, a new replacement for the Android dialler. It’s not as all-encompassing as Home, but allows users to mine social data for contacts and caller ID details, make calls over WiFi and move conversations to the Facebook Messenger app, among other things.
WhatsApp voice calling comes to iPhone
iPhone users: WhatsApp voice calling is here. The feature, already available on Android, is included in the latest app version, which also adds improved sharing features and a quick camera button in chats.
Twitter shows off its new Highlights
Android users: your iPhone rivals may have caught up with WhatsApp voice calling, but there’s a brand new Twitter feature just for you. It’s called ‘Highlights’ and sends a twice-daily push notification with a roundup of the day’s best tweets.
— Twitter (@twitter) April 23, 2015
Twitter allows users to opt-in to universal DMs
Not getting enough Twitter DMs? Fear not, you can now opt in to allow anybody to DM you, regardless of whether you follow one another or not. The feature will allow brands to receive DMs without having to follow customers first, useful for those who use Twitter for customer service or to exchange private information.
Pinterest to become more brand-friendly
Pinterest has created a new programme that allows certain marketing tech companies to offer account management tools to brands. It hopes that this will make it easier for brands to post to the platform organically and, subsequently, to promote these organic posts.
It’s 10 years since the first YouTube video
They grow up so fast! It’s been 10 whole years since YouTube co-founder, Jawed Karim, posted the first video to the site. Here it is, in all its glory.
Social apps on Apple Watch
NHL bans Periscope and Meerkat
The National Hockey League (NHL) has banned Periscope and Meerkat from its arenas, to prevent users from live-streaming games to their friends elsewhere. It’s a move we may expect to see replicated elsewhere, especially by organisations that are particularly protective of live content.
Airbnb to use Instagram carousel ads
Airbnb has become one of the first brands to employ Instagram’s carousel ads, which allow advertisers to include multiple images and a link. It’s doing so as part of its ‘Never a stranger’ campaign, which includes the below video slot.
Instagram ad series for acne medication
Over-the-counter acne medicine Benzac has commissioned an Instagram ad campaign, which takes the form of a series. In 22 parts, it focuses on the lives of high-school friends and their struggles with acne.
Choose your own Instagram adventure
The Toronto Silent Film Festival has created a choose-your-own adventure out of Instagram videos. Starting with a fight scene, the film compiles clips from a number of the movies on show at the festival.
Age UK launches ‘no friends’ campaign
Age UK has responded to Facebook’s ‘friends’ poster campaign with ‘no friends’, which looks to highlight the problem of loneliness among old people.
Hey hey hey hey, post tweets everyday
Brands dipped into stoner humour for 4/20, the annual celebration of cannabis that takes place on 20th April. Here are a couple of examples.
This just means that I’m looking for @annakfaris today, because I love her and would love to run into her. This isn’t a 4/20 Tweet.
— refinery29 (@Refinery29) April 20, 2015
fork twenty, scramble eggs everyday
— Denny’s (@DennysDiner) April 20, 2015
No action on Guinness tweet
Guinness escaped action last week after a complaint about one of its tweets, below, which was accused of implying that alcohol could improve your week. As the image included the brewery and no alcoholic drinks, it was deemed acceptable by the UK’s Advertising Standards Agency.
Political parties not yet nailing social
In case you haven’t heard, there’s an election coming up in the UK. Social media is a huge battleground for the hopeful parties, but their strategy leaves much to be desired, as We Are Social’s own Paul Greenwood discussed with Yahoo News.
I think it’s a huge missed opportunity. A huge proportion of the electorate are disillusioned and apathetic and don’t vote, and it’s mostly the young ones. They are all spending a lot of their time on social. If someone had one good idea about how to reach out to them and talk to them in a language they understand, how to make politics relevant to them on social, it would be huge. But I’m not seeing that.
Marketing Magazine recently published this article by me about how virtual reality is marketing’s next revolution. They’ve been kind enough to let us reproduce it in full below.
Marketing has moved from the radio to the TV, to the computer, from the Desktop to the mobile in the consumer’s pocket – each one a paradigm shift.
The most recent shift from desktop to mobile created a need for more intimate communications. It’s something that brands still struggle with – a mobile is a very personal space compared to a desktop screen.
Now, commentators are heralding the smartwatch as the new frontier. And in many ways, they’re right. The smartwatch will change the way we consume apps and therefore brand content on social. They offer the consumer more control over and access to certain apps, such as health trackers. They will make using technology an even more natural and habitual than it is already.
But the leap to smart watches isn’t a paradigm shift in the same way that desktop to mobile was. While you don’t wear a phone in the traditional sense, it’s pretty much attached to you and it’s a small, personal space. Smart watches hold many of the same challenges for marketers that mobile does. Small screen, limited real estate, an intimate space; all the problems marketers have been tackling in recent years, but amplified.
This shift will happen with social thinking at the centre. Facebook’s VP of engineering, Cory Ondrejka, was also the CTO at Linden Labs, who created Second Life. He’s responsible for working with Oculus Rift’s CEO and Mark Zuckerberg to bring virtual reality to a billion people. They’ve got the time, the funds and the ambition to make this happen.
Virtual Reality offers the chance for us to share our real life experiences with the people we care about in a way that will make the viewer feel like they were there with us. In the future we won’t just record our lives with photo and video approximations but will invite our friends to be there with us in the moment, no matter where they are.
Initially creating VR content will be an expensive business that only brands and publishers will be able to afford. This gives them the opportunity to pioneer on VR platforms as the medium develops. The NBA will be giving its fans a VR courtside seatnext month, Marriott hotels used Oculus Rift to help consumers explore exotic destinations, O2 gave rugby fans the Wear the Rose experience and we’ve seen John Lewis take an early step into VR using the Google Cardboard model and many more will follow in 2015.
It comes down to choice. Would you, as a consumer, choose TV or Laptop? Laptop or Mobile? A small watch screen or immersive 3D world? When virtual reality goes mainstream we won’t be looking at social media – we’ll be standing inside it.
Social ad spend to hit $23 billion globally
New figures from eMarketer show that advertisers will splash out a huge $23.6bn on social networks this year, a 33.5% increase on 2014. The publication estimates that, by 2017, this figure will rise to $35.98bn, or 16% of digital ad spend globally. Unsurprisingly, a lot of this investment is finding its way to Facebook. eMarketer estimates that the social giant will collect $15.5bn in ad revenues this year – that’s 65.5% of all social network ad spending worldwide.
Facebook owns four of the five largest social networks
Facebook has rather a lot of users. Projected Q1 2015 figures from Business Insider show quite how many, especially when you take into account the other platforms it owns. Of all social networks and messaging apps, Facebook is the largest with 1.43 billion projected monthly active users, followed by WhatsApp with 725 million. In third place we have Facebook Messenger (600 million) and fifth Instagram (300 million). In fact, WeChat is the only member of the top five that Facebook doesn’t own.
Teens still care about Facebook
A new study by the Pew Research Center has found that Facebook is still the most-used social network among American teens aged 13-17, as 71% of respondents admitted to using it. This was followed by Instagram (50%) and Snapchat (40%). Boys use the site marginally more than girls, though respective figures of 72% and 70% show that it’s pretty close.
Twitter homepage attracts logged-out users
Twitter has a new homepage, designed for those who either aren’t signed in or are not using the platform at all. Users can click one of a selection of topics to be shown popular tweets around that subject, with categories including Pop Artists, TV Shows & Stars and (of course) Cute Animals. It’s only available in the US at the moment, but expect a broader roll out soon as internet users demand an easier way to find images of puppies in knitwear.
Twitter suggesting tweets you may like
Twitter is testing a ‘you may also like’ feature on the right-hand-side of individual tweet pages on Twitter.com. The functionality, which you can see below, is currently only available to certain users. Sadly, I’m not one of them.
Periscope is winning the live-streaming war
Twitter-owned Periscope is growing more quickly than its rival, Meerkat, which has actually seen a dip in its monthly active users since the start of April. Twitter’s superior resources are proving decisive, as are some potentially sneaky tactics, such as cutting off Meerkat’s access to Twitter’s social graph.
On another, possibly unrelated, note, if you google ‘Meerkat vs.’, it autocompletes with ‘cobra’ ahead of ‘Periscope’. So there you go.
LinkedIn announces Marketo partnership
LinkedIn has partnered with marketing software company, Marketo, which specialises in automating digital marketing across email, social and the wider web. Its software will be combined with LinkedIn’s ‘Lead Accelerator’, which marries data about visits to brand websites with LinkedIn’s own demographic data. It’s essentially aimed at making adverts more relevant and (you guessed it) more profitable.
Snapchat overhauls its ad offering
Snapchat is changing the way it does ads. First of all, it has announced the withdrawal of ‘Brand Stories’, its first ever ad unit, which essentially allowed brands to put photos/video content in front of users that aren’t following them. It’s hinted that this ad format may be coming back in a different form, but for now the focus shifts to ‘Our Story’ and ‘Discover’. The former is set to be renamed and refocussed on live event feeds, as the platform sets to position itself further as a traditional media outlet for the social age.
Tumblr releases version 4.0 of its iOS app
Tumblr has unveiled version 4.0 of its iPhone/iPad app, along with a number of updates. Some of these are aesthetic, including a new icon, new notification widget and gifs that load in a ‘much more pleasing fashion’. Some allow easier blog management, including the ability to start secondary blogs, delete blogs and more easily include videos. To celebrate, here’s a gif. It doesn’t explain much, but it is very pretty.
Tumblr adds ‘Sponsored Day’ to its ad offering
Tumblr has launched a new ad unit, called a ‘Sponsored Day’, which allows brands to post an ad that will appear at the top of users’ feeds for, well, a whole day. Nike is the first advertiser to get involved, encouraging us all to embrace our ‘uncomfort zone’. Maybe tomorrow, Nike. It’s Monday.
Foursquare unveils location data ad feature
Foursquare has unveiled a new feature called Pinpoint, which uses its location data for ad targeting across mobile devices and the web. Location data is almost certainly Foursquare’s strongest suit, so this could well be a powerful move by the network.
Add Instagram to your Tinder profile
You can now sync your Instagram and Tinder profiles to show potential partners how much fun your life is, or at least that you can choose a good filter.
First Direct and We Are Social launch #SavingCup
First Direct and We Are Social took to Twitter to promote the bank’s SaveApp product, which helps users swap small purchases to save for big ones. They hired illustrator Mr Bingo to personalise coffee cups with people’s saving goals, including this for a follower who wanted to fly to Disney in Tokyo.
— first direct (@firstdirect) April 15, 2015
Lenovo and We Are Social create #LightandSeek exhibition Lenovo and We Are Social created a one-day-only art exhibition, powered entirely by the brand’s Yoga Tablet 2 Pro. Dubbed #LightandSeek, users were encouraged to take photos of their favourite pieces and upload them to Twitter using the hashtag. The event was accompanied by a live Instagram guide.
A virtual Instagram run with Reebok
Reebok took Instagram users on a virtual run around San Francisco last week with ‘Hunt the Pump’. Users who followed @zpump_startingline saw a grid of photos, one of which contained a hidden Reebok Pump logo. Liking the photo and clicking the panel took users to the next destination on their ‘run’, where the quest continued. If only it burned calories at the same time…
Nars adds a twist to Twitter competitions
Fashion retailer Nars ran a Twitter campaign last week, in which it encouraged users to tweet about its latest collaboration with Christopher Kane. Every tweet triggered a hammer to knock on one of two orbs located in Nars HQ, depending on whether it came from the UK or US; the two tweets that eventually broke the orb won the prize inside, the complete Nars and Christopher Kane collection.
Sport and entertainment get us tweeting about TV
When it comes to tweeting about TV, sport is what’s capturing the Brits attention, according to Kantar. It found that 42.3% of UK tweets about TV were related to sports, followed by 38.1% about entertainment. Second screeners were common (63% of respondents) but a large majority of them said what they were doing was unrelated to the TV content they were watching.
Paddy Power tweets joke about police brutality
Paddy Power took its “TOP BANTZ” Twitter strategy a little far last week, making a joke that referenced police brutality against young African American men. It’s the latest in a string of intentionally controversial marketing attempts so, while other brands might apologise and remove the tweet, it’s still sat proudly on the Paddy Power Offers page.
Newcastle have suffered more Kop beatings over the last 20 years than an unarmed African-American male. The stats: http://t.co/GOOdyAszNo
— Paddy Power Offers (@PPOffers) April 13, 2015