Sunday, 25 October 2009

Glove Love: The Green Thing

Really cool initiative by Do the Green Thing called Glove Love. The eco friendly social media gang at DTGT are collecting single gloves from around the country and pairing them with other single gloves and selling them on for a fiver.

It's a great example of doing something really simple and smart to cut back on wastage.

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Marketing to digital youth conference

I was lucky enough to attend the Marketing Magazine conference on Marketing to Digi-savvy Youth. There was a lot of focus on social media, as you'd expect, and lots of talk about 'losing control of your brand', having an authentic voice, listening to the audience first. Which was all well and good, but kinda stating the obvious.

Overall, I was a bit disappointed [although this could have been because I was slightly jaded from getting up at 5.15 to catch the train down, there being no usable wifi at the conference and no hashtag]. Although, for a conference about marketing to 15-24 years olds, the youngest presenter was 30. I thought there might have been some young people present to give there thoughts.

However, there were a few notably exceptions. Mark from Durex had some excellent insights [but I guess I would say that, Durex being a client] and I picked up some pointers from's social media manager. I've put together my top ten below [in no particular order]:
  1. At the heart of all successful strategies is content that people want. This was illustrated by Conde Nast use of a backstage video of Lily Allen getting ready for the GQ photo shoot [sadly not embeddable]. Everton FC had similar success by using exclusive content such as player interviews.
  2. Getting celebrities involved in marketing to youth is still hugely successful, perhaps even more so now that celeb content can be shared online e.g. Alliance & Liecester's use of bucket loads of stars such as Danny Cipriani and Trevor Nelson.
  3. Find the things people are passionate about and work out a way to link your brand to those passions e.g. using music to connect with people as per Glamour magazine.
  4. Be prepared to make mistakes and learn from them. You are not going to get it right all the time.
  5. Paid for media owners and traditional advertisers seem to be embracing the power of earned media, natural conversations and authentic advocacy. There was lots of discussion about creating a stream of stories throughout the year, rather than running campaigns - a traditional PR approach.
  6. Reward fans and followers of your brand. Don't just bring them in and try and sell them stuff, give them stuff they really value for being fans and getting involved with your brand.
  7. The biggest challenge with social media and conversation campaigns is dedicating the resources. seemed to have got it right by employing an experienced blogger as their dedicated social media manager.
OK, so it's not exactly ten, but top seven, just doesn't quite sound right.

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Social media stat counter

This is a nifty app - it counts stuff happening in social media. Its called Gary's Social media counter and can be found here.

You can download it or embed it in a site [although I couldn't get it to work on my blog].

Still, its pretty cool.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

First Direct goes all social

I must admit, I am quite chuffed to see a bank embracing social media in a very open way, especially after all the problems banks have caused the world. First Direct has created a new website, First Direct Live, that aggregates all the comments about the black and white bank, good and bad. It's a great initiative and builds on the great word of mouth reputation the bank has created - from providing plain old excellent customer service.
The site has three main areas:
  1. A live display of the latest comments from Talking Point - a comment board where people can post their thoughts about First Direct.
  2. A percentage split of positive and negative feelings
  3. A short list of positive and negative words about First Direct
It's very simple and for me, embodies what First Direct is all about - focusing on its customers and what they think. My only criticism would be that the site doesn't display the actual comments from social media, just a summary of the key words and sentiment.

Still, if only more banks were that customer focused....

Sunday, 4 October 2009

CIPR Northern Conference

I'm looking forward to speaking at the CIPR Northern Conference on Tuesday. I'm doing a session on evaluating online PR and social media. Although I must admit I'm even more nervous than usual when I look at who else is speaking - Alistair Campbell. Gulp.

I still haven't overcome the embarrassment of talking about female orgasms to a room full of people [Durex case study, not a weird compulsion], let alone with such household names in the room.

If you see a red glow around Leeds on Tuesday, that will be my blushing cheeks lighting up the northern sky.