Where Social Media And The Real World Collide

By Sheldon Levine - January 13th, 2014

Over the weekend, CBS Films paid (a reported) $70,000 to place a single tweet, taken from a film critic, in a full page ad inside the New York Times. Could this be the start of a convergence of social media and the real world? Or even earned media and paid media? Click here and read the full article at our blogs new home.

And don’t forget that all full content can now be found on our new home, the Marketwired Social Blog. Bookmark that page to easily find it, or you can subscribe to the new RSS feed by clicking this link and have all future content delivered right to you.

See What Was Said At The Social Intelligence Summit

By Sheldon Levine - January 9th, 2014

What happens when you put a bunch of really smart people from some of the world’s top brands in a room together to discuss the future of social media? Well, you get a ton of really great predictions, strategies and ideas.

This is exactly the kinds of things that came out of our Social Intelligence Summit from Las Vegas on Tuesday. We wouldn’t let you miss out on all of this great content, so head over to our blog’s new home to see a Storify recap of the Social Intelligence Summit.

And don’t forget that all full content can now be found on our new home, the Marketwired Social Blog. Bookmark that page to easily find it, or you can subscribe to the new RSS feed by clicking this link and have all future content delivered right to you.

Follow the Great Content From Our Social Intelligence Summit Today

By Sheldon Levine - January 7th, 2014

Want to kick off your 2014 by hearing  insightful social strategies, trend predictions and perspectives from some of today’s social media leaders? Well, you’re in luck.

Today in Las Vegas we are hosting the Social Intelligence Summit, an invite only event that will feature talks, panels and sessions from marketing leaders from some of the world’s biggest brands. Some of these brands include Twitter, Google Cloud Platform, WCG, Unilever, Visa and more.

Don’t worry if you can’t be there in person, because you can still tune into the conversation happening today between 2-4:45pm PST (5-7:45pm EST) by following the #SocialIntel14 hashtag on Twitter. For more information on the event and the speakers see the full post over on our blog’s new home.

And don’t forget that all full content can now be found on our new home, the Marketwired Social Blog. Bookmark that page to easily find it, or you can subscribe to the new RSS feed by clicking this link and have all future content delivered right to you.

Is myApollo A Network To Watch In 2014?

By Sheldon Levine - January 6th, 2014

The new social network myApollo seems to be making a bit of a name for itself these days. Rather than focusing on how people communicate digitally these days, myApollo is using technology to allow people to communicate differently. The network is focused on security, privacy and the ability to share large files with your peers.

Is this a network that digital marketers should be watching for in 2014? Click here to read the full article at our blog’s new home.

And don’t forget that all full content can now be found on our new home, the Marketwired Social Blog. Bookmark that page to easily find it, or you can subscribe to the new RSS feed by clicking this link and have all future content delivered right to you.

What Does 2014 Have In Store For Social Media

By Sheldon Levine - January 3rd, 2014

It’s that time of year. The time when everyone does their best to predict what the new year will have in store for all of us. And we’re no different.

Today, Mark Evans takes a look at some of his ideas are about what will happen in the world of social media in the year ahead. Some of these predictions include Google+ becoming a bigger destination for brands and users and that a new social network will take the world by storm. To read the full article, click this link to go over to our blog’s new home.

And don’t forget that we’ve moved all future content that used to appear on this blog over to the Marketwired Social Blog. You can subscribe to the RSS feed for new content delivered right to you using this link.

We’re Moving. Come With Us.

By Sheldon Levine - December 30th, 2013

Today’s post comes from Kurt Heinemann, Marketwired CMO

Moving truck

The Sysomos blog is getting a big upgrade and moving to our parent company, Marketwired.  All the same great content you have grown to expect plus more will now be at The Marketwired Social Blog.  Make sure to add the new RSS feed to your reader or app so you get the latest posts, insight and information.  We will be migrating all of the historical blog content to the new location so you will always be able to reference and locate all the content you have read here.  All new blog posts from Mark Evans, Sheldon Levine, Jim Delaney and many others will be on the new Marketwired hosted blog at http://blog.marketwired.com/category/social from today going forward.

We will post a reference link and headline to the new articles here for the next few weeks to make sure you have the time to subscribe to the new RSS feed and bookmark the new blog.

Thank you your continued support of our community and we’ll see you over at The Marketwired Blog.

- Kurt Heinemann, CMO, Marketwired

What Everyone will be Whispering about…

By Mark Evans - December 27th, 2013

whisperTo start a new and exciting social network, you need to land upon an unique angle to attract the spotlight.

The amount of times  that brands have attempted to unveil the “next Facebook” is astounding, and generally has been a losing notion.

Digital marketers shouldn’t be looking for the next Facebook. They need something unique, new and a place  their audiences want to spend time on.

When something fits this bill, they should stop and take notice. From the networks that have popped up over the past few years, Whisper.sh might have the best opportunity of finding and engaging an audience over the next year or two.

How come? The reason may be it mirrors current society, user behaviour… and  it is quite unique.

So what is Whisper.sh you ask?

It’s a new social network that’s starting to get lot of attention. Basically, it allows users to share secrets. It’s similar to a digital version of Post Secret but with comes with an extra level where users can connect, share and converse.

It’s also an evolution of the very popular meme; a tactic beloved by digital marketers. Most important, it’s the anonymity that lets Whisper to differentiate itself.

The fact people can stay anonymous is a big departure from Facebook and Instagram. Whether this is an angle that can be replicated by others in an innovative way is something that only time will reveal.

Whisper is clearly catching on as illustrated by the three billion page views a month. The key question is what brands will be first to find the best way to connect with users through whispering? It is difficult to speculate what brands will jump soon but it interesting to consider.

Digital marketers tend to speak more into a megaphone than whisper, so it will be a challenge for them to use something that’s more subversive and off-brand than they might use.

Of course, this isn’t to say that it can’t be done.

In social media, where there’s a will, there’s a way.

Medium or WordPress for Blogging?

By Mark Evans - December 23rd, 2013

mediumDuring a recent discussion on Twitter about design versus content, someone mentioned they planned to use Medium as their blogging platform.

It struck me as an interesting proposition because using Medium means you’re “renting” rather than owning digital real estate. No matter how good the service, you’re still using someone else’s asset rather than something you control.

I’m a big proponent of digital ownership – specifically, self-hosted WordPress for blogging – because if gives you power over your own destiny. You get decide if and when changes are going to happen to the look, feel, content and functionality.

And, at the end of the day, a self-hosted blog is a corporate “asset”.

To be honest, I don’t think own vs. rent is something many people think about when using services such as Twitter or Facebook. They spend a lot of time creating content and building a following but have no control over changes, updates or the rules of engagement.wordpress

If Facebook decides, for example, to change the look and feel (again!), you have to grin and bear it because there’s no way to decline.

So when it comes to blogging, why use Medium? For some people, it’s beautiful, well-design platform for longer-form content. It’s a destination where people can discover content not available in other places.

And the fact that Medium was started by Twitter co-founder, Evan Williams, gives it a good shot at being successful.

For some people – and maybe brands – Medium is an elegant and easy way to blog without the hassles of updates, plugins, hosting, etc. All you need to do is focus on creating content, which is a big challenge.

For individuals and brands who want control over their control, WordPress (or another blogging platform such as Joomla) is a better option because it an in-house entity that can be integrated into your marketing and sales arsenal.


What was the Best Social Network for Brands in 2013?

By Mark Evans - December 20th, 2013

urlWell, it’s that time of the year. The time where we look back and explore what was great, what was mediocre and what we can maybe expect in 2014.

Every year, there is a new contender for the best social media network, and this year the race is that much tighter, especially with the proliferation of new networks that saw good traction.

And the winner is…..

According to  Business2Business, Instagram is the most valuable network to brands and digital marketers according to the numbers.

That’s right…Instagram.

The little network that everyone balked at when Facebook bought it for a $1-billion, has become a tier-one social media player. Without a doubt, 2013 was a huge year for Instagram.

The stats provided by Business2Business show how Instagram evolved over the past  year, and how brands have prospered.

  • Brands on Instagram saw an average of 7% growth in both followers and engagement.
  • Brands on Instagram in the U.S. saw a 1.5% lift in revenue.
  • Brands on Instagram in the UK saw a 3.6% lift in revenue.

Those are pretty gaudy numbers, but are digital marketers still having trouble believing the hype and power of Instagram? The answer is most likely, although it might not be that way for too much longer.

The growth for Instagram in the past year means digital marketers need to start integrating it into their strategies if they haven’t already.

It is refreshing to think that Facebook and Twitter might not be as dominating as they have in the past. The more viable networks, the more opportunities for digital marketers to connect with audiences.

With social media being the way it is, something tells me the conversation in December 2014 will be very different.

What do you think was the best social network for brands in 2013?

What was the Best Social Network for Brands in 2013?

Viral Videos Begin With Good Content

By Mark Evans - December 18th, 2013

large__7996585036Every digital marketer wants to create a video that goes viral. It’s seen as a magical way to drive social media activity.

It is a challenging job which see many brands miss the mark….but not from a lack of effort.

Social media users tend to gravitate towards video in two ways. The first is obviously to watch, enjoy and get information (users tend to learn better through multimedia than text), while the second is sharing it with their networks.

A great video can  have a positive affect on  your entire organization. It is one of the top ways to get your fans and followers talking and sharing.

But here’s the problem:

Digital marketers might be wise to stop using the term “viral video” since you can never really create something with the intent for it to go viral. What we should be talking about is a brand creating videos that can be leveraged via social media to attract viewers.

So what is a branded video? And how should digital marketers proceed to create successful ones?

A branded video needs to be brand “lite” and on message . It should try to reflect a brand’s corporate culture and tell a story that entertains and matters. You can go any route with it – funny, informative or interview style. It can be specific or about just one thing.

But please make sure that it’s also the following:

  • timely
  • proper format
  • well written

Just because your ad goes viral doesn’t mean it can help your brand. There needs to be a connection, even if it is not overt.

If a brand decides to go the funny route, then make sure it is funny. This might sound obvious but think about how many sitcoms and comedies you’ve seen that just aren’t funny. Find writers, animators or actors who have the comedic understanding and timing.

Of course, if a company can push its brand to the background, it will be much better off. Consider Camp Gyno or Chipotle’s brilliant foray into animation as the best examples.

If you do a good enough job and you’ve engaged an audience leading up to its launch, then a video has a shot of going viral. Simply make creating good content should be the goal because it’s the first step.

Photo credit: Flickr