The week in content marketing with strategist Lieu Pham
This week, Lithuanian Adidas fans take brand love to another level, we learn about the pet-friendly services in the sharing economy, and we say hello to a tech-enabled Barbie. Elsewhere, LinkedIn releases its crash course in metrics and analytics as a continuation of its popular Sophisticated Marketers’ series, and 99u gives us some serious brainstorming ideas inspired by The New Yorker cartoonists.
We also look at ways to show our support in the wake of the Paris attacks, whether locally or further afield, while Facebook turns on its ‘safety check’ feature for other disasters. Our thoughts are with our Parisian friends.
Media & Marketing
As the world still tries to come to grips with the monstrous attacks in Paris last weekend, many people are taking to social media to show their support. Mashable suggests other ways we can all do our bit, including donating to organisations that are doing some great work on the ground, and, if you’re based in Paris, donating blood and opening up your home to strangers. Keep your eye on social feeds to see how else you can lend a hand.
First came Fon, Liquid, Airbnb and Getaround to help us share our homes, bikes, Wi-Fi and cars; now, we have a range of apps to help us live happier, dog-loving lives. It’s not a dog-eat-dog world any more thanks to pet-focused apps taking the sharing economy to a new level. The new dog-service app Bark ‘N’ Barrow creates a network of dog lovers to organise puppy playdates, and even offers canine time for people who for whatever reason can’t have a four-legged friend of their own. And you can finally kick up your heels and head out of town for some guilt-free fun thanks to apps like Rover and Dog Vacay, which offer people’s homes, instead of kennels, as a boarding options for your pooch.
How much do you love your favourite brand? Enough to decorate your house with its logo? Two Adidas fans in Lithuania are wearing their hearts on more than just their sleeves – they’ve branded their homes with the Adidas signature stripes and emblem. Could these be Adidas’ biggest fans? And will the duo be hit with a copyright infringement, or will they be given the big tick of approval by the sports giant? (Not to be confused with the big Nike tick, which they certainly won’t be getting.)
Social & Tech
Sporting a motorcycle jacket, black flats and skinny jeans, the latest Barbie looks like she might have been watching a bit too much Sons of Anarchy lately. However, within the super trendy necklace around her neck is a speech-recognition feature and Wi-Fi capability that records and transmits all conversations. ‘Hello Barbie’ selects an answer from 8000 pre-programmed responses, and can even recall information, such as a child’s favourite colour, from previous chats. The Kernel sheds some light on the touchy subjects around Barbie 2.0, covering everything from the creepiness factor to artificial intelligence and the issue of brands creating an unfair advantage in marketing towards children.
Following its powerful facilitation of the #OccupyNigeria protests back in 2012, Facebook has been perceived by Nigerian politicians as the public tool for an uprising. The social channel is attempting to educate the Nigerian government that it works both ways, with Facebook’s head of public policy for Africa hosting a demonstration for officials on how to use it as a tool for engaging their constituents. The program plans to show how broadcasting opinions and promises may grab the winning vote in the country’s next election.
Last week we looked at the first two cabs off the rank (TOMS Shoes and The Hunger Games) to test Facebook’s 360-degree videos. Since then, a number of brands have jumped on the VR bandwagon, testing the power of this virtual-reality-like opportunity. AT&T, Samsung and Walt Disney World are just three of the many companies demonstrating their innovative visual abilities on Facebook.
The first time I heard about the Paris terror attacks, it was not through the news or by word of mouth – it was via a Facebook alert notifying me that my French friends Geoffery and Guillaume were marked as safe. If that’s not a direct indication of just how powerful social media can be in times of crisis, I don’t know what is. However, Facebook drew criticism for not extending the same level of support to Beirut, where more than 40 people died in bombings on the same day as the horrific events in Paris. TechCrunch reports on the social media giant’s response.
Tips & Tactics
In LinkedIn’s Sophisticated Marketer’s Series, Megan Golden breaks down exactly what it means to be a data-driven marketer, offering highly intuitive advice for professionals in meeting the consistent expectations to demonstrate accuracy, sales alignment and attribution activities. The downloadable content tackles the metrics-versus-analytics debate and the most appropriate metrics to implement into all marketing actions.
The New Yorker’s cartoon editor Bob Mankoff says he’s always amazed by the number of people who claim to have a single great cartoon idea. With the astoundingly high rejection rates of submissions for cartoonists, generating multiple pieces of content each week is no laughing matter. 99u delivers a highly useful piece on the keys to breeding hundreds of ideas each week, based on advice from leading American cartoonists. The takeaway message here: “One idea is never enough, and it’s rarely good.”
With video mushrooming into an irreplaceable element of digital life, visual content is now a vital communication format that marketers must know like the back of their hand. However, many marketers are struggling to keep up and tailor their visual content. Ragan looks at the metrics to measure visual success.
If you’ve seen the Woolworth’s “snail in a tomato” customer posts or something similar, you’ll have also witnessed the complete brand takedown that usually follows. All that’s needed is a witty comment or hashtag and you’ve got a complete code red in a matter of seconds. The Content Marketing Institute offers some advice for finding the right responses on social, with a little help from Monty Python.