Brands are turning their attention to Instagram in 2015, as Facebook’s news feed algorithm pushes them to look for other places where organic reach is still an option. The creative opportunity is still limited, with no write API or even links on image captions and not many campaigns examples besides the catalogue stunt or the usual UGC hashtag contest.
Ted Baker, the clothing retail company, explored a new creative path using photos as a participatory canvas. Every day for the following 2 weeks on their Instagram account they’ll post a new image of Ted’s SS15 range and challenge fans to screenshot the photos and use Instagram filters to reveal what’s hidden within. A clever use of the platform, further explored by regraming or commenting with #Pinch_Me for the chance to win a prize.
The NFL season is back and so is EA Sports Madden 15, and this time they’re not playing nice. It’s trash-talk time with Giferator, an animated GIF generator where you celebrate great plays or just have a little fun humiliating your opponents.
From video game footage, Ea Sports, Google and agency Grow Interactive, created a live stream of memes, showing that even a 27 year old tech can grab the attention of today’s Madden NFL players.
You can create your own by choosing an NFL team, then a specific play, then a background for your GIF, and finally a message.
Now, when can we get one of these for real football ?
Whenever people ask me for great examples of brands on Instagram, i’m always reminded of @bartsfishtales. To promote their sustainable line of fish products, Fishtales invited chef Bart van Olphen to share his tips and recipes on 15 second videos for Instagram.
Natwerk, the agency responsible for the work, has now shared the whole case on their site (video above), so thankfully I can now reference other people to it.
After being asked by several friends and clients on the latest country data for social media in Portugal, and realizing there was no shared information or interest by platforms on sharing the stats, the best thing to do is to post some information here. Please note that this is a first draft, based on data i had readily available, and hopefully more people can contribute to this resource.
66.2% of Internet users follow brands or companies on Social Networks (source: Marktest)
85% have used social networks on mobile (source: Marktest)
36% of organizations use at least one form of social media (source: Eurostat, 2013)
9% of organizations have a formal social media policy (source: Eurostat, 2013)
6% of organizations have a blog or microblog (source: Eurostat, 2013)
How do you end a Facebook Page with over 800k fans?
This was the challenge faced by Fullsix when TMN, the largest carrier brand in Portugal, merged into MEO, the main brand of Portugal Telecom group. With the campaign message “MEO the other life of tmn”, all TMN social presences had to be either migrated or closed.
TMN went a little further and invited each fan to claim and remove one of the 4000+ posts published since 2009, with the chance to win a smartphone for each 250 posts removed. Fans then visited MEO’s Facebook Page, where once all TMN posts are gone, they could become part of another life as MEO fans!
Disclaimer: TMN is a client
Agency: Fullsix Portugal
Creative Direction: Armando Alves
Copywriter: Mafalda Quintela
Art Director: Francisco Chatimsky
Designer: JoÃ£o Travessa
Multimedia Direction: Francisco Coelho
Developer: Paulo LagoÃ¡
Hashtags mutated as users started to use them to add context on their updates, closer to a folksonomy practice than their initial purpose. Later adopted by Instagram and Facebook, they became a part of Internet culture, so it was a matter of time until advertising started to exploit them and, as usually, not having the slightest clue what they are or how to use them properly.
From campaigns that use them just to look cooler to poorly chosen hashtags, it’s the age of #Hashtagploitation.
The stream, as Alex Madrigal points on “The Year the Stream Crested” , has been picking momentum since 2007. Newsfeeds, lifestream, timelines, or other social design patterns which highlights activity and creates the momentary illusion of not missing out.
Information is increasingly being distributed and presented in real-time streams instead of dedicated Web pages. The shift is palpable, even if it is only in its early stages”
– Erick Schonfeld
There’s been plenty of discussion on how this impacts brands, from Mel Exxon to Patricia McDonald, calling for more meaningful content, finding islands in the stream, away from viral mills and hopefully creating more longstanding memories in consumer’s minds.
While I simpatize with the noble intentions, I’m afraid things are only to get messier, with not much room left for stock content to leave their mark. Here’s a couple of reasons why:
The amount of content produced is only going to increase, so is the signal-to-noise ratio. Some brands just rather be heard than concerned with deep experiences (this is more obvious on social media streams, where immersive storytelling is reserved to fandom mostly.)
The web is going mass media. Like it or not, some people just like cheap, dumb and fast content. Just like TV. Which means brands better have deep pockets if they expect only earned media will get them some attention on the streams.
The critique of technology seems somehow stronger nowadays with the likes of Evgeny Morozov and their cyber pessimism, but we’ve been this road for decades or even centuries, if you consider the impact of the printing press or industrial revolution on society. Unfortunatelly the technium has no sympathy for our romantic wish of simpler times and slower content.
The stream is the endless source of gossip, a powerful social lubricant most of us can’t live without. It can also work as social grooming, nurturing light interactions between people.
The stream is here to stay and brands must find their way to embrace it, requiring a new set of skills which make it harder to justify the glorified islands in the stream, when the CMO is mostly worried about the next quarter.
II find the cybernetic metaphor quite appropriate, with the role of stock content more about constructing long term memories (ROM) while flow content about fast access (ROM).
If a brand wants to operate, it needs to find a way to balance both.
For now, we’ll have to do it the Queens Of Stone Age way: