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A regularly updated resource of information and news items.

Archive for May 2013

Is Pinterest Important to My Business?

Posted Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Pinterest wants its users to do three things: consume, create and share content.

People are 60 per cent more likely to consider or contact a business when an image shows up in local search results. Add to that the fact that 67 per cent of Instagram’s over 100-million users are active daily, it seems visual content is fast becoming a primary driver of online engagement.

So why aren’t more businesses embracing the visual web?

A recent study revealed that approximately 70 per cent of brand engagement on Pinterest is user-generated. Marketers are lagging and potentially missing a huge opportunity. Here are a few reasons why:

It’s sharable. Visually appealing material drives engagement and is more shareable than text. Facebook offered proof of this when, just one month after unveiling ‘timeline’ for brands, visual content had a 65 per cent increase in engagement on the site.

Images dominate content being shared and exchanged by consumers online. The most popular social networking tools like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter are designed to let people easily and quickly share and post photos. Because showing people our life experiences brings them into our digital lives in a more intimate and engaging way.

The same should be true for brands. Inspire customers with great visuals of your products and services, don’t just tell them about it. Visual storytelling is way more effective and sharable across all mediums.

It’s discoverable. With the rise of Social Aggregation Optimization (SAO) – doing everything you can to help content perform better around the social web — visual content is more important than ever before to your social media strategy and must not only be compelling content, but also optimized for search and sales. In this sense, the visual web is less about engagement through profile-based social platforms, and more about a powerful, visually-enabled search experience.

It drives consumption. It’s simple, really: visuals are easier to consume than text. That might sound like a lazy statement, but in reality visual make us feel more connected to the content. According to a study, one minute of video is worth 1.8-million words. Just look at Dropbox, a cloud-based storage service that lets users upload photos, documents, and videos that can be accessed and shared from anywhere.

Dropbox developed an “explainer video” in an attempt to cut costs associated with Google AdWords, while still reaching consumers and potential clients. They combined their video efforts with a referral campaign that encouraged users to share the service on social media channels. When consumers visited the website based on these referrals they were greeted with the explainer video and nothing else.

The simplicity of their homepage meant users only had one option to choose from. There were no other links or text to distract from the video which included all necessary information.

Consumers got it. This video, combined with their referral campaign, helped the company grow from zero to 100-million users in just five years.

So Pinterest is a great place to get started. Take a lesson from consumers, and start engaging your customers with highly sharable visual content. Stop telling customers what you want them to know, and start showing them what you’re made of.


25% Of People Say Birthday ‘Success’ Is Based On How Much Social Media Love You Get

Posted Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

A quarter of people say that the number of messages they receive is the main way they would measure the success of their birthday, research from gift card company One4All has found.

The research discovered that 76 per cent will post a greeting to friends on social media, but only 20 per cent said they expected to receive a birthday card through the post.

Declan Byrne, managing director UK of One4all, said: “Social media now plays a huge part in all of our lives and it’s interesting to see how it has impacted on the traditional birthday.

“It’s a social shift that is affecting many businesses who provide a service linked to birthday celebrations. For example, it’s led to us creating online group gifting, where friends can come together through social media to contribute to a joint gift.”

A third of people say that they find their own birthdays stressful and would rather celebrate someone else’s, while only 15 per cent say they would always have a birthday cake.


Apps to get excited about in 2013

Posted Friday, May 17th, 2013

With thousands of new apps being released daily, it takes a lot to stand out. We’ve downloaded and tried five apps that are creating a buzz and offered our thoughts. Lets us know if you agree….

1. Wanelo

The new… Pinterest
Pinterest allows you to drool over pretty things on a photo-bulletin style site that tells your followers what you’re drooling over. Wanelo (short for “Want Need Love”) takes the photo-bulletin style design that has made Pinterest so popular and made it more practical. Click on one of the freshly styled images and the site redirects you to an online shop, where you can purchase what you’ve just added to your wishlist.

Verdict: 2/5 but that’s only because it’s heavily biased to fashion that doesn’t suit me but may well appeal to younger people

2. Vine

The new… Instagram
The app encourages you not to just take a photo, but to film a three to six second clip, and posts it on a loop.  With GIF-based memes everywhere online, the app is a smart and user-friendly way to create your own; whether that’s for promoting a Hollywood blockbuster or just you taking a sip of your beer.

Verdict: 3/5 I think it’s a great tool and could be very useful for lots of puposes but it hasn’t had the uptake you’d expect which suggests it’s not particuarly popular with tweeters

3. Snapchat

The new… Whatsapp
The photo messaging app is on almost every twenty-something’s smartphone and if not, then they’re all talking about it. The app lets you send photos with added captions and doodles – but the killer function is the ability to set a time limit of up to ten seconds for how long recipients can view their photos for, after which it is deleted from the recipient’s device and the company’s servers.

Verdict: 4/5 snapchat has grown quickly and whilst it took me some time to grow a fondness for it, the number of my contacts and facebook freinds who have joined in recent weeks has been huge. It’s a simple app, easy to use and a lot of fun- what more do you want from an app?

4. Tinder

The new… Chat Roulette
The app will show you people in your area which you can either anonymously like or pass on. It then lets the other person know and if your profile tickles their fancy, they’ll like you back and you can begin chatting within the app. You can take it from there…

Verdict: 4/5 I discovered this app in San Francisco when it had just been released and it had a huge immediate uptake. It’s been much slower in the UK but it’s a great app for people a little nervous about using sites like POF that throws you in the deep end

5. #music

The new… Spotify
After the launch of Vine, the second  new app from Twitter is generating a lot of excitement in the music industry.  The app has integrated recommendations that show which artists are trending as well as up and coming musicians.

Verdict: 3/5 potentially I think this app could be huge but right now it’s not quite there yet- maybe because I’m not willing to accept that that my suggested list includes Janet Jackson, Nelly Furtado and Emma Bunton (busted!). A great way to discover music and like you can preview music in the app. Definitely one for the future and it’s rating is likely to increase


Social Media and Online Purchasing

Posted Friday, May 10th, 2013

46% use social media for online purchasing decisions and 35% use it to vent about bad customer service
Over half (55 per cent) of under 35s use social media to share experiences about bad customer service, compared to 35 per cent of all ages, a survey commissioned by online customer helpdesk Sirportly has found.Carried out by YouGov, the survey of 2,000 British consumers found that three times as many people use Facebook to vent about bad customer service than Twitter.It was also discovered that regular social media use means the under 35 generation is 14 per cent less likely to receive a slow response or no response at all.Adam Cooke, creator of Sirportly, said: “Not responding to customers effectively over social media platforms is reputation suicide. With the impact of word of mouth via social media getting stronger by the day, it’s getting more and more important to both avoid annoying customers in the first place and to be able to defend your brand when it’s being publicly bad-mouthed.”46 per cent of people said they now count on social media when making an online purchasing decision.


 
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