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Archive for January, 2011

Pay with a Tweet

January 26th, 2011

I’m not sure how I missed this, but in the middle of last year a really interesting platform was launched. It is called Pay with a Tweet and is 100% free. The idea is simple, instead of a financial transaction you pay with a tweet, in effect telling your community about the product.

If you fancy giving it a go, all you have to do is create a simple download button and add it to your site, preferably near the item that will be downloaded!

TechCrunch have it listed at No. 6 of the top 10 Business ideas that rocked 2010.

Below is an example of how it is being used by The French electro-pop band “The Teenagers” , they are selling their new single exclusively for a Tweet:

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Advertising Standards Authority tightens up regulations for online marketing

January 20th, 2011

As you will probably be aware, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has announced it is extending its remit to cover marketing on websites from 1 March 2011, the full announcement can be found here
and an implementation plan here.

This shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise as it has been in discussion for some time, and according to The ASA the changes mean, “From 1 March, marketing communications on companies’ own websites and in other third party space under their control, such as Facebook and Twitter, will have to adhere to the non-broadcast advertising rules as set out in the CAP Code.” Cap Code is the Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing.

So what does this mean for brands and agencies? Well, put simply it’s a more stringent enforcement of what has been accepted best practise on issues such as transparency for marketing messages online. More specifically, it will extend the rules relating to misleading advertising, social responsibility and the protection of children, to cover marketing communications on organisations’ own websites and in other non-paid-for space under their control.

Personally, I welcome the move, which will hopefully deter underhand tactics and annoying campaigns that do unfortunately blight our sector, and reinforce confidence and trust in online conversations and brand communications.

It should however be noted that the remit doesn’t extend to classified private advertisements, press releases and other public relations material, editorial content as well as political advertisements, corporate reports, investor relations, although it could be argued that it should. This also leaves a bit of a grey area in defining marketing communications, which surely some of the above are classified under.

You may be thinking, what happens if brands don’t comply? And apparently there is no direct legal response, although the UK already has legislation to cover this area. However, the ASA’s potential response to such an issue was outlined in a recent Register article, as follows:

Where there is a breach of the CAP, the ASA will seek “a written assurance that the problematic claim or image will be removed or amended”. In the rare cases that such does not happen in traditional media, they will “consider the application of appropriate sanctions”.

The article continued: A spokesman told us that the ASA has no legal remedies in such a case. However, where an ad made a misleading claim, they would refer it to the Office of Fair Trading and local Trading Standards. In extreme cases, they would write up the case on their own site, and they had found the negative publicity usually tended to bring the advertiser back into line.

To promote the change, the ASA also launched its first ad campaign in five years on Monday, to raise awareness of its extended remit and to call on companies to ensure marketing messages on their websites are legal, decent, honest and truthful.

For further information, The IAB have developed a handy Q&A to assist brands and agencies to understand the changes. The IAB will also be hosting an event on ‘How to be Safe in Social Media’ on 24th February, to educate brands and their agencies about the significance of the ASA’s new remit, alongside the wider legal considerations necessary within any UK social media activity.

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The dangers of Twitter

January 19th, 2011

Here is a real life incident that happened today, which could have, and nearly did, spark pandemonium. It all began here, from this single innocent tweet sent by a fashion assistant for the online store ASOS.

The tweet was totally misunderstood, and quickly snowballed into a crisis. To see exactly the sort of reaction it provoked, check out these tweets.

As a consequence, Oxford Street quickly became a trending topic.

To read more about how today’s events unfolded, click here.

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How Arsenal shape up on Twitter

January 18th, 2011

Even before the Ryan Babel incident on Twitter, many sports personalities have been in hot water for comments made on Twitter. My colleagues won’t thank me for this, due to their differing football allegiances, but I came across a post on a blog called ‘Arsenal Insider‘ titled – How Cesc & Co. shape up on Twitter. The post overviews how the various players from the Arsenal football team use Twitter, with an interesting overview of the sort of things they discuss.

The post goes on to confirm: “So I decided to track down the Arsenal players.  Could there be any worth or insight on the team?  Who’s best mates with who?  Any information on Arsene (manager)?  With no Arsenal players reaching tabloid headlines with inappropriate tweets, (not even the outspoken Bendtner) I could only assume that the team were well versed in Twitter PR, more so than some leading politicians, but that’s another matter altogether…”

Arsène Wenger (Arsenal Manager) has publicly stated that he will talk to his team about the use of Twitter, which basically says to me that the whole team has been versed in the pros and cons of Twitter and its consequences, as indicated by Arsenal Insider. Wenger goes on to say “Personally I’m against banning the players from expressing their views in general. But it has to be in the interests of the Club and not detrimental”

The Ryan Babel incident won’t be the last controversial tweet from a footballer in the coming months. Frustration and ‘heat of the moment’ tweets sent by sports personalities are set to be a rich source of gossip for the media for some time to come.

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Pressitt adds Customisable Newsrooms to Social Media News Release platform

January 12th, 2011

Today, Pressitt, which was co-founded by Liberate Media and Best Served Cold, announces the launch of a customisable newsroom functionality, which is something we’ve been working on for a while.

We’re also proud to announce Eurosport as one of the first brands to try out the new functionality. You can see Eurosport’s newsroom here

For further information you can click on the Pressitt SMNR, or read on.

Please have a look at Pressitt and let us know your thoughts. We would welcome your feedback.

Eurosport becomes the first brand to showcase Pressitt newsrooms

Pressitt, the free Social Media News Release (SMNR) creation and publishing platform, today announces the launch of customisable newsrooms. The newsroom functionality allows users to create their own online branded news environment.

Now journalists, bloggers and anyone online will be able to find news information published by brands and organisations in one central, branded online hub. Additionally, the newsroom template will also serve as a branded release template for all past and future releases that are indexed on Pressitt.

Eurosport, Europe’s leading sports entertainment group, has been quick to jump onboard and become one of the first brands to utilise Pressitt’s newsroom feature as part of its social media plans for 2011.

One individual newsroom is priced affordably at £15 per month, but is free to all registered charities.

Newsroom features include: the ability to customise the header, footer and background of the newsroom to match the brand’s look and feel, and add Twitter and Facebook widgets. Fonts, links and text colouring are also adjustable to create a branded social environment to host a brand’s latest news.

Michelle Gilbert, head of corporate communications at Eurosport, comments: “Pressitt is an excellent service offering companies and organisations fast and effective social media solutions for their digital PR needs. We at Eurosport have been particularly impressed with Pressitt’s enthusiasm, high level of customer service and help in establishing our newsroom and leveraging our social media news releases. We are looking forward to a fruitful working relationship on these and other projects in 2011.”

Andy Merchant, director and co-founder of Pressitt.com adds: “Over the past year the free Pressitt service has been highly successful at giving brands and agencies an excellent multimedia-enhanced alternative to the ageing press release. Now with the addition of the customisable newsroom, combined with a release template service, we hope to encourage brands to use Pressitt as an online hub of information to showcase their latest news.”

Users who blog about Pressitt will also receive a special discounted offer of £12.50 per month for the first year only.

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Liberate Team predict 2011 trends

January 5th, 2011

Two of the Liberate Media team have offered a brief insight into the trends that they think will be prevalent over the next 12 months.

Let us know your thoughts.

Andy Merchant:

1. Remote control – Direct access to services from your remote control. Netfilx is the first to do this. To allow you to view its services through Internet enabled TV’s. Facebook button coming soon?

2. Still on the TV theme with Google TV. This was badly reviewed when it first came out, but 2011 could be its year. Could it bring the disjointed digital family back together, just as the Wii did in the video console market?

3. Checking in – Location based marketing will grow massively this year. A small number of US sports teams are starting to leverage LBM to create loyalty schemes, watch UK based venues, teams, restaurants, etc do the same this year.

4. Remember a few years back when we were told that the paywall will never work! Well this year you will see many more magazines going behind the paywall and making it work, even more so when the new iPad 2 hits the stores this year.

5. No more online/offline social media/traditional PR – It will just become known as PR, encompassing all skills.

Lloyd Gofton:

6. Digital skills begin to evolve away from specialisms such as social/search/analytics and move towards a more general understanding of the digital landscape. A combined skill set will be more valuable to brands and agencies alike.

7. Measurement activities continue to be focused on traditional ROI rather than a relevant and useful combination of digital, social and traditional metrics.

8. Various agencies and disciplines continue to occupy themselves with the fight for ‘ownership’ of social, while the smart agencies understand ownership is irrelevant and continue to learn, experiment and develop services according to need and opportunity.

9. Brands continue to build an understanding that a social approach to business is just that, not a tactic, nor a communications channel.

10. Social meets mobile as we realise the ‘year of mobile’ is no longer important, but mobile facilitating access to the social web is essential, and as a result brands must invest in an accessible mobile offering.

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Keyword start page tool – Echoes

January 3rd, 2011

Echoes is a similar site to the ever popular Addictomatic, a start page showing buzz around a particular topic, based on a keyword. It mashes up a number of APIs in order to generate the most relevant page results.

Additionally users of Echoes can submit their own knowledge of the topic in the form of:
- RSS Feeds relevant to the topic
- Comments
- Useful links
- Add tags to create topic relationships
This way, each topic homepage will be more useful and relevant to other users.

View the Addictomatic page vs the Echoes page for the search term: Napster

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