Songs of Innocence: The Apple gift that backfired horribly

I’ve often written about the damage that can be caused, when you push your marketing at people. No matter how great your product or service is, how great your offer is or how good your intentions are, people hate having things forced upon them.

Apple learned this recently, with a poorly judged marketing decision to help promote their new iPhones.

The gift that backfired

As part of the launch for Apple’s new iPhone’s, Apple pushed a copy of the new U2 album Songs of Innocence, into 500,000,000...

By Jim Connelly, 19 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Brands, Opinion, Reputation.

Instagram confirms UK ads are on their way

Instagram is in the process of rolling out sponsored content and advertising alongside its regular content to UK users, according to a BBC report.

The adverts, which have already been launched in the US, will aim to be “as natural to Instagram as the photos and videos [users] enjoy from brands who are already using Instagram”, according to a spokesperson.

Unsurprisingly, reaction from the social community has been somewhat negative. Yet the photo-based social...

By James Bourne, 18 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Brands, Social Media.

If content is king, content distribution is definitely queen

By Olivier Choron, CEO and founder, purechannelapps

We’ve all heard it many times – content is king. This is undeniably a valid fact. Your marketing teams have to create masses of good content, and do so often, to feed your social media activities. Without this regular (and valuable) content, social media simply cannot survive. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Is content production really the only issue you have?  

Who follows you, and how far does your content reach?...

By Olivier Choron, 18 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Content, Opinion.

Evian teams up with Mr Men to create ‘Mr Glug’ brand character

Water brand Evian has teamed up with Sanrio, the Mr Men and Little Miss parent company, to create a brand new Mr Man character – ‘Mr Glug’.

“Mr Glug is a very active fellow indeed,” begins the copy. “His favourite sports include water skiing and roller blading.

“All that exercise makes him very thirsty and the thirstier he gets, the more the colour drains out of him,” it continues. “When this happens, Mr Glug must drink water so that his colour comes...

By James Bourne, 18 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Brands, Community, JustForFun.

Microsoft’s branding: The ship has caught sail, but can it repair its hull?

One of the biggest complaints about Microsoft in recent years is that the company is slow to take advantage of new trends. This is something which appears to have now changed. Windows Phone is the perfect example of this, but even if Microsoft had been quicker off the mark, would their reputation have held them back?

Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's ex-CEO, famously laughed at the iPhone. Most people forget that Microsoft was even in the mobile game before Apple with Windows...

By Ryan Daws, 17 September 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Brands, Opinion.

will.i.am launches eyewear brand, asks for “dedication and passion”

Musician, entrepreneur and general techie will.i.am has today unveiled his eyewear brand, ill.i Optics, with a promotional video and campaign as part of the launch.

The product, created in conjunction with Australian designer George Gorrow, features a video where will.i.am is sat at a recording desk, yet cuts to various eyewear paraphernalia – will.i.am’s personal collection, spanning 20 years.

“I see a gap in the world of eyewear, and this is my instalment of what I feel is missing,”...

By James Bourne, 16 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands, Community.

Why students love Coca-Cola’s “Friendly Twist” marketing campaign

Have you seen Coca-Cola's “Friendly Twist” advert?

If not, we recommend you check it out before you read the rest of this article:

Coca-Cola’s effective marketing techniques show how they have cleverly targeted college students by using their product to create new friendships, to help students communicate and interact with their fellow peers.

Good communication is the best solution for anything to be successful, so you need to know

By Tina Chohan, 16 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

Want users to pay for content? Work harder, publishers told

A new set of research data released by CloudSense has revealed that the trend for users accessing free news content is inexorable – and concludes publishers need to do more to monetise their content.

The research, which gauged the views of 4000 UK and US consumers, found some interesting differences. Even though far more US consumers are prepared to subscribe to content (24% compared to 7% UK), the overall trend is the same worldwide: users are reluctant to pay.

Of course, this has been a problem for...

By James Bourne, 15 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Content.

TalkTalk unveils latest billboard campaign for TV offering

Telecoms provider TalkTalk has unleashed its latest billboard campaign specifically targeting its TV packages – with a more than apparent nod to rivals Virgin Media.

The billboards are being rolled across almost 20 sites in London, including a six sheet banner at Euston Station. The campaign will be seen from Elephant & Castle, Edgware Road, and Waterloo Bridge among others.

This campaign follows ‘The Mission’, a TV campaign “in which five household objects embarked on an odyssey...

By James Bourne, 15 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Brands.

Why Google loves a persona-led approach to content

Google has made it very obvious that in order to succeed at SEO you need to be producing high quality content that is targeted to your audience. One of the best ways to ensure that you are creating this specialist content is to write for a specific persona. Logically speaking, this makes sense as you are writing for a tailored group of people who will be interested in your products and services, but why does Google love it? I’ll explain:

Google’s Affinity Segments

Hang on, what’s this? In plain and...

By Gareth Morgan, 12 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Google, SEO.

Are mobile ads starting to do their job for brands? New research says yes

More mobile shoppers are clicking on ads, according to the latest study from call management provider Telmetrics.

One in three consumers see mobile ads as helpful and informative, according to the report, which represents a spike of 76% from this time last year.

The researchers argue this boils down to different types of content working on mobile today. More than half of mobile shoppers share ads on social media, particularly the youngest age demographic of 18-34 year olds, while there’s been a 40% in...

By James Bourne, 11 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Consumers, Mobile.

Got an iPhone? You’re most likely to be a Brad Pitt fan, according to data

There’s a famous scene in UK sitcom Only Fools and Horses where Del tries to convince Rodney the less than exquisite goods in the Trotters’ garage are worth selling: a pile of Showaddywaddy records, a tyre for a Triumph Herald, and an artificial limb.

“Well let’s find a one-legged Showaddywaddy freak and flog ‘em to him!” Rodney replies. “And if he turns up in a Triumph Herald, we’ve had a result!”

Why did this scene come to mind at MarketingTech HQ? The latest...

By James Bourne, 10 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Consumers.

Applying traditional comms thinking in the digital age

The gloomy reports about dwindling newspaper circulations could lead some to believe that traditional media and the journalism that powers it are on the wane. ABC’s readership stats identified an 8.1 per cent drop in February 2014 compared with the same period last year. While this certainly places traditional publications under pressure, the fact is that journalism itself is now being carried...

By Alastair Turner, 09 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands, PR.

Microsoft reskins MSN for mobile, cloud branding ethos

Microsoft has announced it is to rebrand MSN, bringing the service forward as a new site featuring Bing apps such as News, Sports and Travel.

The new MSN moves into preview mode today – or it should do, as at the time of writing you get a nasty parsing error – with a glut of new features, including the dubiously named ‘services stripe’, linking back to Office, Outlook and OneDrive.

Looking at screenshots of the new MSN (top) compared with the current version (bottom),...

By James Bourne, 08 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands.

Gone in 6.0 secs: 5 auto brands that are winning on Vine

Since it was launched in January 2013, Vine has become a hugely popular video sharing app, with approximately five vines tweeted every second.

Vine's appeal is simple, short and sweet six second clips which play on a loop and offer wannabe filmmakers the chance to experiment with witty one liners, stop-frame animation and creative cutaways, all in an easy-to-shoot and share format.

Not surprisingly then, Vine has attracted a lot of attention from advertisers who see...

By Hurricane Media, 05 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands, Social Media, Twitter.

The half time team talk: A tactical response to social hijacking

In the digital world we live in, the appeal of high-profile sponsorships is irresistible for brands; from London 2012 to the recent 2014 FIFA World Cup, brands can’t resist the mass reach that platforms such as these provide.

The worry is that after months, possibly years, of planning and significant investment, something outside of a sponsor brand’s control may suddenly throw a spanner in the works. So what happens now? How do brands ensure they are flexible enough to re-think a pre-planned...

By Emma Martin, 04 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands.

9 things every online brand could learn from The Wire

Did you know that there are a number of prescient parallels between the world of online marketing and the bloody streets of David Simon's Baltimore?   I’ve listed some of them. Some are more tenuous than others.    WARNING: May contain (starred-out) F-bombs, spoilers and Baltimore vernacular:  "Pawns, they get capped quick. They're out of the game early. Unless they some smart-ass pawns” – D’angelo Barksdale / Bodie 

  The beauty of the internet is that smaller businesses can...

By Gareth Morgan, 03 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands.

The pros and cons of buying followers on Twitter

How many followers do you have? 10s, 100s, 1000s, more? When you first start out on social media, building a following can be slow. And for that reason many people are now opting to buy their friends. But apart from being a bit sneaky, are there any other disadvantages of buying Twitter followers? We’ll discuss that here.

How Do You Buy Followers? 

The most common way of buying followers is through a method called ‘zombie account following’. This is where you enlist the services of a 3rd party...

By Gareth Morgan, 02 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: B2B, Social Media, Twitter.

The four key reasons why your content isn’t getting shared

There are many reasons to be creating content on behalf of your business. Content informs your target audience and establishes your business as a thought leader in the industry which generates trust. This is the top goal of content, but another goal of content should be to get it shared. Content that is shared in the form of links on other web pages or within social media helps to improve your SEO efforts. If you have a respectable social media following but notice that your content is getting very few...

By Nick Stamoulis, 01 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Blogging, Content.

RNIB launches ‘audio logo’ campaign, invites musicians to take part

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has announced a revamp of its branding, with an innovative ‘audio logo’ being mooted to use across all of the charity’s communications.

According to a press release, the audio logo “will need to reflect the organisation’s human, positive and can-do values in just a few seconds.”

“Blind people are at the heart of everything we do, so it makes absolute sense that we have an audio logo as well as a visual one,”...

By James Bourne, 01 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Branding, Brands, Design.