Category Archives: Uncategorized

Groupon Super Bowl Ad Backfires

[tweetmeme source=”equalman” only_single=false By Erik Qualman

Interesting that a social media company [Groupon] didn’t understand the social media backlash it could receive by running a culturally insensitive advertisement during the Super Bowl.

What social media allows for is  “word of mouth on digital steroids.”  If a company does something bad, things can snowball in a hurry.  Below are just a few of the reactions to the Groupon Super Bowl Ad on Twitter.  @JeremyRSchultz posted “Did Groupon achieve the dubious distinction for spending ad dollars to actually lose customers?”

Groupon Super Bowl Ad

@rohitbhargaya posted “Groupon seems to have achieved the unique feat of paying $3M to lose customers who previously loved them.”

If you didn’t see the advertisement (above) it essentially conveys the following: Ad begins in a serious tone describing the hardships facing the people of Tibet, but then it quickly turns light with a guy in a restaurant stating it’s okay because he got a great Groupon for Himalaya Restaurant in Chicago so it’s good, cheap food for us living in the Western World.   Growing up in the Midwest (Detroit) and living in Chicago this is even more offensive to me as I know how kind  the people are in the Midwest are.

I believe @Reputationista may have put it best with: “Well. Off to buy a new #Chryser, drinka #Coke, switch to #Verizon, unsubsrive to #Groupon and fire #GoDaddy.”  To see the top ads from the Super Bowl click here.

Since Google was rumored to have offered $6 billion to purchase Groupon an appropriate question would be “What Would Google Do?” This is the name of Jeff Jarvis’ book and my answer would be a good start would be to donate some money toward the cause in Tibet.

As a fan of Groupon I hope they realize their mistake and take the necessary actions to correct it. What do you think?


Social Media on The Rise for B2B Marketing

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Source: / The infographic was created for Mashable by Lisa Waananen and researched by Alexander Hotz

Written by Cidney Carver
Cidney is a contributing columnist to Socialnomics helping to give a Generation Y and Z perspective on digital trends.

Not Everyone Can be Social

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Over 25.3% of the worlds population who accesses the internet is affected by online censorship. In a recent 2010 study by OpenNet Initiative and Reporters with out borders discovered that there are 12 countries in particular whose governments have established some type of online censorship.
Source of infographic: Internet Censorship Report
Written by Cid Carver

Cid is a contributing columnist to Socialnomics helping to give a Generation Y and Z perspective on digital trends.

Building Online Consumer Engagement

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With social media marketing becoming ever more established, there are now countless brands battling for online consumer engagement. Whether it is fans on Facebook or followers on Twitter, most major brands are looking to build consistent and useful social media fan bases.
However, although a loyal following is a good start, how this following interacts and communicates is also a key factor in a brand’s social media success. With this in mind, WaveMetrix took a look at the different ways brands have built and shaped online consumer engagement.

  • Premium brands are beginning to talk less about their products and more about lifestyle
  • Other brands are encouraging product specific discussion to drive purchase consideration
  • Campaigns that linked social media back into the real world helped drive engagement
  • Tried and tested competitions and giveaways are continuing to work well
  • Some brands are beginning to monetise social media

Premium brands begin to talk less about products and more about lifestyle
During Q4 2010, a number of premium brands used non-product specific social media content in order to focus consumer attention on their wider brand image, rather than their specific product offering.

For example, Burberry promoted emerging music artists under the slogan “Bands Burberry believes in”, with 28% of Burberry Facebook discussion relating to this Burberry Music project, rather than Burberry products themselves.

Only a minority Burberry Facebook fans focus on products:

Other brands encouraged product-specific discussion which drove purchase consideration
Gucci, Xbox and BMW encouraged a tighter focus on specific products by promoting product related material.  This led more consumers to actively say they were considering purchasing, but also stimulated some criticism of the specific product.
For example, BMW engaged consumers with their new models successfully and this drove some potential owners to explicitly say they were “considering” a BMW. However, high levels of product discussion also led to 34% of product comments being negative, with “impractical” BMW models criticised.

Linking social media back into the real world helps drive engagement
Using social media to promote real-world events and initiatives worked well towards the end of 2010. Consumers showed interest in tangible events and showed that social media can drive footfall in store.
For example, Smirnoff invited consumers across the globe to use social media to share ideas for their ideal night out and then promptly made those ideas a reality through the Nightlife Exchange Party. This scheme drove large amounts of engagement, with 87% of buzz on Smirnoff’s Facebook page revolving around the parties.
Tried and tested competitions and giveaways continue to work well
Mainstay marketing techniques like competitions and giveaways continued to work well in Q4 2010. Corona, Netgear, Sony Ericsson and Pizza Express all used simple competitions and giveaways to drive engagement from current fans and also to capture new fans.
Some brands begin to successfully monetise social media
The end of 2010 saw a few brands take the first steps into monetising social media. Panasonic provided exclusive offers and discounts for Facebook fans and allowed them to purchase directly through an integrated Facebook store.

For further information, please download the full quarterly summary report, which includes all relevant case studies.

Written by Andy Pilkington

Andy works as a senior research executive at WaveMetrix, a social media monitoring company that doesn’t  just capture buzz, but actually reads it.

Spotify Still Not in U.S. – Why Not?

spotify vs. pandora[tweetmeme source=”equalman” only_single=false interesting article by Spacelab’s Corey Tate points out the reasons why Spotify has not delivered on their promise of a U.S. Launch:

  1. Licensing is holding up the Swedish based music service
  2. Spotify is based on freemium model
  3. Spotify offers both paid and unpaid services
  4. 10% sign-up for paid; 90% use free services
  5. U.S. Labels want guaranteed money
  6. Difficult to sign-up enough users to meet labels’ guarantee $
  7. Spotify may look to additional funding to appease labels

The main difference between Spotify and Pandora is that on Spotify you have the option for music on demand – think of a free jukebox without having to be the Fonz from Happy Days. 

Groovshark – based in Gainesville Florida – is a current music streaming site that is similar to Spotify in many respects.  Below is a great graphic courtesy of The Danosphere that compares all three music sites:

compare streaming music sitesBy Erik Qualman

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Read More:  Cory Tate Spacelab | The Danosphere

21 Social Media Predictions for 2011

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  1. Facebook will go public and make the current $50 billion dollar valuation look like a bargain. Mark Zuckerberg remains as CEO rather than hire someone with more experience like Yahoo and Google did in the past.
  2. The Federal Trade Commission (unfortunately) will adopt privacy rules in the hopes of protecting the people. Innovation will be stifled.
  3. Social search will flex its muscle.
  4. Social commerce will flex its muscle.twitter leggo fail whale
  5. Companies will try to determine how best to integrate with the explosion of social gaming.
  6. Twitter will be acquired, most likely by a media company like CNN. Twitter has proven successful when coordinating closely with major events on television (e.g., World Cup, helping resurrect MTV Video Music Awards from the dead, etc.). With its new platform, Twitter is poised to make money. However, can it avoid becoming the next Digg?
  7. Facebook wrestles with its continued international expansion and faces difficult challenges in Japan and China.
  8. If you don’t have a mobile version of your site today, you are already behind.
  9. More and more, a marketer’s job will be focused on getting a consumer to publicly rate a product or service. (See social commerce and social search above.)
  10. Groupon will regret turning down Google’s $6 billion dollar offer when local imitators start to nibble at its market share. Groupon will also realize there is a limit to the number of “wow deals” out there.
  11. Social media technologies will start to consolidate and only the strong will survive: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn. (Sorry, Foursquare, MySpace, Orkut, Gowalla, etc.)
  12. Google becomes the next Microsoft and Facebook becomes the next Google.
  13. Social media becomes core to every business – not just the marketing and PR departments either. It will be central to the entire business strategy and affect recruiting, customer service, sales, etc.
  14. B2B companies will catch up to B2C companies in using social media.
  15. There will be fewer “social media” gurus. Those who can’t drive meaningful results will be left behind.
  16. We will see more practical use of geo-location tools. For example, if you go to Starbucks every morning, as soon as you are in the car and 10 minutes away from the store, your coffee order will be placed and ready when you arrive.
  17. Fifty-four percent of all companies block social media in the workplace. Expect this number to decline as companies start to leverage their employees more and more as media outlets.
  18. Social media activities will increase due to advances in mobile technology and a drop in the price of tablets. This will help to offset some of the social wear out from the older demographics. Baby boomers will still use it, but less frequently. Similar to how portals and e-mail usage trended.
  19. More people will learn they can plug their laptops into their high-definition televisions and watch online content and get rid of their cable television service – and bill. This will only result in the intensification of Net neutrality talks in Washington.
  20. We will see more social capabilities integrated into e-readers.
  21. The trend of marketing dollars moving from traditional media to digital media continues at a rapid pace.

Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business
By Erik Qualman

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Fail Whale image courtesy of Bjarne Tveskov, Denmark

Chartiy Uses QR Codes to Increase Donations

[tweetmeme source=”equalman” only_single=false use social mediaSince it’s the season of giving, we thought it appropriate to highlight a great organization that is using technology to further its cause. Specifically, with demand for emergency food at record high levels, City Harvest is reaching donors with an innovative advertising campaign that uses technology commonly used by for-profit marketers but new to fundraisers.

On advertisements in print, phone kiosks, transit shelters, and on Facebook, City Harvest has incorporated a QR code, which functions like a barcode and can be scanned by mobile phones. As a result they will deliver 8.5 million pounds of food this holiday season.

This cutting edge technology offers donors the highest level of flexibility. Cell phone users that scan the QR code will immediately have the option to go to the City Harvest website, read facts about City Harvest, view a video illustrating City Harvest’s work, and make a donation online or by clicking a button to call City Harvest directly.

Donors can choose the amount they wish to donate and get more information about City Harvest at the touch of a button. QR Codes in Advertising

The QR codes can be found on City Harvest’s new advertising campaign featuring New York City residents that have taken action to fight hunger. Though the food City Harvest rescues and delivers is donated, City Harvest needs cash donations to maintain their trucks and staff that are essential to picking up and distributing food. The advertisements demonstrate the impact of donors who pull out their wallet or checkbook in helping City Harvest feed more hungry New Yorkers.

“In an era of mobile technology, potential donors want and expect to be able to act immediately,” said Jilly Stephens, executive director of City Harvest. “QR codes allow New Yorkers just learning about City Harvest to get more information quickly and easily as well as give.”

“QR codes are changing the future of donor-charity relationships. They allow nonprofits to interact with their donors by exchanging engaging content,” said Irina Skaya, marketing manager at Horizon Media. “QR codes can be used without monthly running costs and function without limiting the dollar amount donors give to the nonprofit.”

Despite other indicators that the recession has ended, agencies served by City Harvest have reported no relief since demand for emergency food spiked last year. City Harvest works to meet greater need at soup kitchens and food pantries by rescuing and delivering food to some 600 programs throughout the five boroughs. Currently, City Harvest helps feed over 300,000 hungry men, women, and children each week. Donate

By Erik Qualman

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