Archive for the ‘Social Enterprise’ Category

The Social Stories #51

That’s a Great Plan!

A great new idea from Dutch company PlanSpot, due to launch in September, will offer a comprehensive way to set up and promote events on and off-line. The service can post on multiple social platforms simultaneously. All responses then feed on to one page, making it a lot easier to track feedback. There’ll be a Press Center where users can partner with suggested media partners to raise awareness. All this and it’s free for all to use! As Google+ Events launched this week it will be a welcome package to manage a multitude of platforms.



Now we all love to see someone getting it right and  Uniqlo are consistently up there with the best of the best on social media initiatives. Their latest feat: an incredibly well made, visually impressive, technically bamboozling Pinterest page – and we know, we build them! Utilising the scroll functionality perfectly, this hack is simply delightful. While we’re not sure what it would do for engagement and sales (it’s rather distracting) it’s certainly getting talked about. Bravo.


Close To You

Ford have introduced an interesting initiative, building on their Key Free Technology which unlocks a user’s car when they approach. They’ve taken the idea to the next level and introduced Key Free Log-In. Users download the software from the Ford website and enter all of their log-in info from different online platforms. Your portable device is now the key to your online world, automatically logging you in when you and your device are within range. A great idea to save time without having to remember countless passwords.




The Social Stories #49

Buzz TV

Last week saw Channel 4 announce their new effort in social TV. The idea is to take the shows which create the most social buzz, and repeat them on their very own social channel; 4Seven. The Social Practice’s Steve Parker caught up with Ad Age to discuss the new initiative. See what he had to say here and let us know your thoughts. It’ll be on our screens from 4th July and we’ll be watching to see how it pans out.



Not All Who Wander Are Lost

This week sees the launch of Wander, a new social platform which documents your story through places. It’s one part Yelp, two parts Pinterest and a hearty measure of beauty. Users share places they’ve been, places they love, and places they dream of going to create their Wanderlog. It’s like digitising that old box of memories you’ve got and sharing it with the world. Functionality allows you to follow people or places, all on a variety of stunning templates. As is the way; you need to request an invite. Ours is in the post!


Let’s be Pickie

We’ve all been waiting for a truly social shopping experience to come along and sweep us off our feet. Well, we’ve heard on the grape vine of a platform that may do just that! It’s called Pickie and at its core it’s a shopping magazine for iPad. It pulls in data from your social channels and recommends products based on what your friends are talking about, where your social graph are spending their time and any mentions on blogs you follow. Pickie very cleverly combines product data and social data giving users a super-personalised, very pretty shopping catalogue. Fantastic!




The Social Stories #48

Just Business?

Working at a social agency we hear a lot of opinions about whether it’s right (read moral) for bloggers to accept cash and freebies from brands in return for reviews or endorsements. Does it affect the bloggers integrity and can it sway the option of the writer favourably?  Blogger and influencer outreach is important to brands particularly those who are targeting niche audiences. In the same way celebrities now have to clearly identify their endorsements, should blogs? This article by WWD goes into the argument in details but we’d love to know what you think.


An App That Gives you Eyes…

Introducing BlindSquare, an amazing new app, which aims to help improve blind and partially sighted people’s lives, with the help of FourSquarelocation based information. Developed by Finnish company MIPSoft, BlindSquare uses GPS info, speech synthesis and open source data from 4Square to guide the visually impaired around cities. It can inform users of current location, list places of interest and even help them take the bus! Also this week, 4Square users may have noticed a whole host of updates to the app recently, get the low-down here.


Airtime, do we want it?

Heard of Airtime yet? This week we’ve been reading a lot of rather… interesting feedback in the press about the new video chat service, started by Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning. ThinkChatroulette but with added filters to keep the filth at bay. Users connect to the service through Facebook and can speak to their friends or other random users (linked by mutual friends, location and interests). Even with some pretty negative reviews you’d be crazy to ignore the dream-duo behind the site. Keep an eye on it – whatever happens, it’ll be interesting.




The Social Stories #47

Check-in before you cheque out…

This week American Express and Foursquare have announced that their partnership will be going trans-Atlantic and landing in the UK. The New York credit company have been working with location based check-in service Foursquare for some time in the States and have previously teamed up with Facebook and Twitter. All of this is to prove that they’re serious about becoming a force to be reckoned with in the mobile payment sector. The initiative is really simple: sync your Amex and 4Square account, check in and receive money back offers when you swipe your card. Just in time for the Olympics.


The changing World Wide Web

“Queen of the net”, Mary Meeker has released herquarterly report this week. As usual it’s an incredibly useful go-to-source for anything that is remotely related to the internet. She talks us through the current internet stats and where we stand, as well as looking at the adoption of mobile world-wide, giving us a great summary of how everything has been “re-imagined” in the last 10 years. It even touches on whether or not we are in the middle of an internet “bubble.” It’s definitely worth a read.


Social Drinker

Guinness have come up with a brilliant idea to get people talking. They send round a new batch of Guinness branded pint glasses to local bars which, when you fill with the black magic beer, a QR code appears, as if from no-where! When you scan the code the app will share the news of your drink via Facebook, Twitter, 4Square and Instagram. It also sends out the location of the drinker in the hope their friends will join them for more Guinness drinking fun. Cheers!




The Social Stories #46

Do you Follow?

Ever scrolled down your Twitter feed and been bamboozled by what seems to resemble Greek, Martian or some other, equally bizarre language? Well, the lovely people at E-moderation are here to help. They’ve put together a list of the most common abbreviations that get thrown around the Twitterverse helping us decipher some of the more absurd acronyms. This great dictionary will be useful to all tweeters; from the casual LOL’er to the more serious #CMAD fanatic. Have a look and see if you’ve got any to add. Search

If there is one thing the world needs it’s another social network right? This week Microsoft to the public. They say it’s an experimental social search platform, “exploring the possibilities of social search for learning purposes.” It has all the characteristics of the other networks, with user profiles, sharing, liking and tagging but rather than a 140 character status, photos or videos, it’s all based around your searches. We can see the appeal for group work and students collaborating on projects but would you really want to build a network around your search?


Hear me Tweet

Would you recognise the sound of a Tweet? How about 500 Tweets?  The Listening Machine, a joint project from The Arts Council and the BBC might be able to help. They’ve produced an automated system that generates a continuous piece of music based on the activity of 500 UK Twitter users. The music is created in real time, slowing the tempo to keep it playing even when the Tweeters go to sleep. You can listen from any online device to the sounds of Britten Sinfonia‘s musical interpretation. But who’s behind the Tweets? Not even the participants know…





The Social Stories #45

Your Weekly Feed

Have you noticed Twitter’s weekly round-up in your inbox? The summary includes popular content tweeted by your followers. As well as a personalised digest, it also includes the most popular tweets from around the world. What could this mean for brands? Increased reach for their messages and solving the notorious problem of tweets getting ‘lost in the noise’ are both possibilities. The development comes after Twitter bought social summary company Summify earlier this year.


Drive On By Facebook…

This week General Motors announced they’ll be stopping paid advertising on Facebook. They will, however, continue to pay £19m annually to maintain their brand pages. This could be due to businesses trying to pin traditional ROI ideals to digital, or possibly just a change in approach for big brands online due to the financial climate. To us it seems a shift towards customer retention rather than acquisition for the platform with the value of the paid for ads coming into question.


From #6ftUnder

Ever wondered what will happen to your vast array of social profiles when you pop your clogs? Now there are places you can go to deal with such things. If I die and are just two of the ways that let you schedule posts and share content from beyond the grave. Sound crazy? Well, US government now officially advise you to create a “social media will”! It seems this sensitive subject is important to address, even if it is ever-so-slightly creepy.





The Social Stories #44

A Development for Developers

Facebook have announced the release of the “Facebook App Centre,” a platform within the social network to buy, download and install apps. A blog post on the site’s developer page this week says the “App Centre” will go live in the next few weeks online and on mobile. The new centre will allow for the development of paid-for apps and rely on user rankings, rather than ‘likes’ to push apps up the tables. It seems Facebook are trying to encourage developers to get behind them and help improve the social platform. Your move Apple…


Social Sleep Patterns

Japanese clothing company Uniqlo have teamed up with Yoko Kanno and Grammy nominated Cornelius, to design an app that helps you wake up by singing you a song. The music which shakes you from your slumber will change depending on the time, which day of the week it is and the weather outlook for the day. Users have the ability to share the song the second the alarm has been turned off and their day has begun. Cute, right?! Well – annoying as it may seem, we think it’ll go down a treat with Uniqlo’s target market.


Skies the limit

Online social influence affecting real world situations is here for the long-haul… Klout, the influence scoring site, has partnered with Cathay Pacific Airways, to utilise their newly released iPhone app. Having mobile Klout, (as long as your influencer score is above 40) will get you access to the airline’s first class lounge at San Francisco International Airport. The goal is to garner some social coverage for the airline, encouraging influencers to share their experiences via Instagram, tweeting or checking in. Simply show your profile on the app to the receptionist and you have exclusive access to what’s behind that velvet rope.


The Social Stories #43

Only Getting Better

This week Pinterest have taken further steps to solve these copyright issues we’ve all been hearing so much about and which had the potential to seriously impact growth. The lead Pinners have added the ability to give credit where credit is due, attributing a pin to its creator. Other interesting noise coming from the photo bookmarking people is around brands and how they can use the ‘pin it’ functionality to engage customers. Gilt last month ran a great campaign encouraging social sharing by offering discounts when products received enough pins-it’s an exciting example of how the site can deliver social rewards.


Say No to Mother’s Day

As the US gears up for Mother’s Day (on May 13th) CHI&Partners NY and Every Mother Counts, Christy Turlington’s maternal health charity, are asking mothers to go silent. As a show of solidarity with the 1,000 families left motherless every day due to complications related to childbirth, they ask mums not to accept gifts or phone calls and not to post their status on a day conventionally focused on them. The campaign is centred around a No Mother’s Day Facebook page (where moms can show their support) and publicized by a video featuring celebrity mums. Please help to spread the word.


Tweet If You Want To Go Faster isn’t typically the go to site when it comes to a social media dashboard. Tools like Hootsuite and Tweetdeck added much needed functionality with the result that many users have used third party clients to access twitter… until now. The Social Practice is a huge fan of browser extensions – seamless ways of making our daily work faster and more efficient.  Blogger Jeff Bullas lists 5 excellent Chrome extensions here that’ll make your tweeting smoother. From influencer identification to previewing articles without leaving the page, they’re pretty snazzy. This also comes at a time where Twitter has made some subtle UI changes that some of you may have noticed.

The Social Stories #42

The interest graph versus the social graph

This week we’ve been thinking a lot about the interest graph (what I like, pin or spring) versus the social graph (who I know) and their implications for the on-line shopping experience. In this longer than usual post we outline the key differences and why we believe the interest graph may ultimately be more valuable to retailers. We’d love to know your thoughts.



Bespoke Twitter Ad

This summer’s blockbuster, Ridley Scott’s ‘Prometheus’ has already got people talking with their hugely successful viral clips and now Vizeum are taking the strategy further with Channel 4′s first live broadcast ad  this Sunday. The world premiere of the trailer will be aired during Homeland and fans will be encouraged to share their thoughts about the film on Twitter using the hashtag #areyouseeingthis as well as via Social TV app Zeebox. Twitter responses will then be used in a bespoke ad in the next break, utilising the second-screen habits of TV watchers.



If You Can Share it, You Can Sell It

This week we caught wind of a new idea that may well give social commerce a nudge in the direction we’ve all been hoping for, a little closer to the highly anticipated “tipping point”. Sahil Lavingia, one of the brains behind Pinterest has started Gumroad. Their tag line is “sell anything you can share,” and the idea is to empower the creatives out there by providing them a platform from which to sell anything they come up with. It could be a song, picture, blog or even a packed lunch! Have a look here.



The Social Stories #41

Google Gear Up

This week Google spoke of integrating Google+ commenting on YouTube. Tom Pickett, head of operations at YouTube, announced Google’s push  towards social for the site; enabling shareability and improving comment functionality. It seems like a smart move from the search giant along with their recent re-design and their branch out into TV advertising. It looks like their harnessing some of YouTube’s 800 million unique monthly users for their social networking platform. Keep an eye on this; it’s set to get interesting


Counting Klout

Klout; as much as we love to measure and identify influence, the site has been criticised for being a little blunt. But this hasn’t stopped them introducing Brand Squads (brand pages), using Red Bull as their official launch partners. The new development makes it easier for brands to recognise and embrace their top online influencers and in turn creates competition among fans to get onto the leader boards as influencers on their pages. The clever part is that a user’s klout is measured specifically for the brand in question rather than just their total influence online, opening up opportunities for real, effective outreach and user participation.


Real Social Buzz

We’ve stumbled across a very sweet (pardon the puns) campaign from the people at Rowse Honey. They’re inviting fans to thank the Honey Bees for all their hard work making honey by sending thank you Facebook messages or tweets with #BusyBees. Rowse are then going to hand write every note they get and plant a bee-friendly-flower with it to show their appreciation. They’ll even send you a picture of your flower and note. And, once they’ve reached their 5000 flower target, all the flowers will be sent to community gardens. What a great way to create a buzzz online!