Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Scarlett Johansson beautifies SodaStream

Just a mediocre actress at best, Scarlett Johansson has such uncommonly classic beauty, and she wins the day for SodaStream.  There is politicking behind the scenes, and the controversy has led, or may lead, to a ban on her ad.  You can Google this story, if you'd like.  But in the meantime just enjoy gazing at this lady's face.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Anna Kendrick does Newcastle Brown Ale

Even when it's a rough take, it's not quite so rough.  Especially when you have Anna Kendrick on set.  Who's pretty funny.  And pretty (period).  It's all fitting promo for Newcastle Brown Ale.  

Friday, January 24, 2014

Creepy-awesome promo video for `Devil's Due

This is creepy-awesome prank-cum-promotion for the film `Devil's Due.

This may be an emerging trend among film promotions (rf. `Carrie, which I wrote about Awesome prank is also a promotional).  

I believe, moreover, that it's a sign of the times that the promo video went gangbusters viral (36,141, 682 views), whereas the trailer itself was just modestly viral (624,890), as of this writing.  

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

From 4Ps to 4Es of social media marketing

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  • Product
  • Place
  • Price
  • Promotion
  • Experience
  • Everywhere
  • Exchange
  • Evangelism

Chris Anderson, author of The Long Tail, writes about the e-democratization of producing, distributing and accessing content.  It's a world populated by intangible stuff, which is experienced, instead.  Social media, and the internet in general, are the platform on which that stuff can be put out and gotten to everywhere, anytime.  

I suppose the exchange is about sampling something, or even fully experiencing something, for free (that is the value).  With the agreement, in turn, that you as the recipient of that value can be advertised to (that is the cost, which is exchanged).  

Once you have volumes of such experiences and exchanges, anywhere and anytime, then evangelism speaks to what happens, I believe, when your stuff takes root online and goes viral.  Which is easier said than done, but obviously it can happen.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Optimize everything about your website

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Web performance is user experience. Fast page load time builds trust in your site; it yields more returning visitors, more users choosing your site over a competitor’s site, and more people trusting your brand.

The bottom line is that your efforts to optimize your site have an effect on the entire experience for your users, including battery life.
Reference:  Web Performance Is User Experience.

My takeaway from this article is that you have to optimize the totality of your website vis-a-vis your target audience.  Your superb layout and creative design do not matter much, if your targets get frustrated downloading and navigating your website.

The takeaway, though, has to do with something the article assumes and therefore does not address.  But it's very much a reality for startup entrepreneurs and small business owners: that is, resources and funds.  You may decide to keep your startup under wraps, until you can secure what you need to do realize what you want to realize in relation to your clientele.

But that luxury of time may not be something you have.  Plus, you want to get something out, and see how it works, and tweak it further.  Small businesses are far from perfect to start with, and far from having the sort of necessities at their disposal, in ways that an established company does.

This article is a very good one in illuminating the criticality of speed.  But it misses the boat on the need to optimize resources and funds, regarding websites.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Userfarm outsources promo video production

With 50,000 videomakers and counting, Userfarm is one of the largest video crowdsourcing companies on the web, with offices in London, Paris, Rome and Madrid.

Besides the live action snippets showcased in the video above, Userfarm produces videos in any genre (Animation, stop motion, etc.) style & format. With emphasis on engaging shareable videos. Be sure to check out the host of other videos we have produced for brands like Nokia, Louis Vuitton, Microsoft, Sony, eBay and Candy Crush. 
Brands can choose to acquire videos through a video contest (Open call) or our curated videomakers (pro activation). 
Userfarm gives you many more videos, at a fraction of the cost and half the time than that of traditional sources.
No limits.  Creativity.  Speed.  Choice.

Userfarm is definitely worth looking into, if you'd like to have a promo video created.

Reference: Userfarm launches new video crowdsourcing promo.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Social media post may affect credit score

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I have periodically encouraged friends and colleagues on various social media sites, and in previous blog articles, to be judicious about what they post.  I avoid obscenities, for example, and approach things - that is, comments, shares and activities - in a positive vein.  It doesn't mean I'm syrupy good or even goody-two-shoes, but I make a point of being discreet, respectful and constructive if my input is negative.  I'm not perfect at it, but there you go. 

The reason I mention this?

We never know who's going to come across whatever we post.  Prospective employers took up social media scouring, in order to get a lowdown on job candidates, for example.  Now, it looks like those who want to surmise your financial standing and credit worthiness can do the same.  

Monday, January 13, 2014

Be realistic with your website design

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In 3 Major Web Design Trends For 2014, Haris Bacic gives a good rundown of key things to keep in mind and illustrates his points with plenty of website examples:

  • Keep things simple and useable, without making your website look or operate simplistically.
  • Tell a story that speaks to, and engages, your target audience.
  • Make sure your website downloads, looks and navigates well for mobile devices  

Remember, websites serve an important purpose for your customers. They are the true users of your website and you need to accommodate their needs, not yours.
This is a very good point from Bacic, especially in crystallizing the purpose you want your website to serve for your target audience.  But while their needs certainly ought to be front-and-center in the design, your needs as a business or brand owner are just as important.

Walt Disney had success in animation film very early on, but it took decades to become the highly polished, well-orchestrated fantasy experience that they are now.  To start, however, things were a bit rough and cobbled together.  My point is, Be realistic about what you have, what you need, and what you want.

For instance, it may be cost-prohibitive right now to have someone design the kind of website that Bacic paints for us.  So your best bet is to be as creative and resourceful as you can, and optimize a website that captures these design trends as best as possible.  Your website may not be as cool as the examples he shares, but it's good and it serves yours and your audience's purpose.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Lynx Excite makes angels fall for you

I ran into this article, and its title was so catchy I had to click the link and read it - Billboards That Drop Angels On Your Head.  This video was one of three it posted.  

To be honest, I wasn't sure what product or brand the video was promoting.  It was simply a cool video with a sexy theme and awesome technology.  I clicked on the Facebook page in the YouTube description box, and learned that Lynx is the brand and Lynx Excite is a deodorant body spray.  

Lynx Excite

I was so intrigued by the first video that I watched it a few times and searched for more of such videos.  See, angels will fall for you, if you wear Lynx Excite!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Medical blogging captures healthcare changes

Westby G. Fisher of the Dr. Wes blog
Westby Fisher, MD
I believe it's because blogging takes time, passion, and commitment. And with all of the changes these past years, most of us are finding less and less time for social media as new pressures mount to produce. Oh sure, a few make real money at this endeavor, but most do not. The reality is that "google ads" just won't offset what a doctor's day job produces. And as doctors are pushed toward more production with more computer screen time than ever, something has to give.
Physician blogger Westby Fisher laments, as he queries Is the medical blog-o-sphere slowly dying?  Life in the Fast Lane staff have a formidable list of their favorite medical blogs, which very much suggests that `no is the answer to that question.  

Still Fisher is on to something that may have wider impact on medical bloggers, especially given how the Affordable Care Act and the consumer-driven, value-based treatment impose major changes in healthcare.  Time constraints and ongoing pressure are par for the course, I'm sure, among physicians, but I sense that many in the industry are trying to get a grip on these changes.   

I'd say the irony of what Fisher laments about all the more makes blogging - and social media, too - a crucial means of sharing experiences and lessons.  Blogger en masse have a collective pulse on whatever is going on around us, which journalists proper cannot necessarily keep up with.  So blogging is a vital platform for knowing.