25 March

  • Category: Marketing, mobile

  • Posted By: Team SocialMedia

  • Comments: no commented

connector360 digital outdoor solution with innovative mobile app management system

With our partners, we are launching a new cross-media advertising platform – the first of its kind to bridge the gap between mobile, online and outdoor, packaged within an easy-to-use smartphone app. This iOS based mobile app offers an integrated service to promote a brand or product at any event (such as a festival or football game), or location (from retail stores to bus stops), while activating the mobile enabled community around content and reinventing digital outdoor advertising in a more social and engaging environment.

We believe our new Digital Outdoor service offers a unique real-time mobile to outdoor advertising functionality that allows for seamless integration with existing campaigns and truly engages users through immersive digital technology.

To find out more about connector360 Digital Outdoor, contact us!

 

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24 October

connector360 – Clients & Projects Continue to Grow

connector360, creative agency and sister company to SocialMedia.ie, continue to grow their portfolio with the addition of clients such as Pair Mobile, Flogas, Ridge Consulting and Martino’s Trattoria as well as ongoing work with Eurocycles and Euro Baby, Griffith College and CIS Ireland.

connector360 Case Studies

Pair Mobile - Smartphone covers and accessories: View Study

Allianz GAA – Sponsorship of GAA: View Study

Griffith College Dublin: View Study

Eurotrek Group – Eurocycles & Euro Baby Stores: View Study

Flogas – Natural gas providers in Ireland & the UK: View Study

Visit us at connector360

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08 August

Building your own Mobile App – Where to Start?

Today we will look into a debate raging online that any business looking to develop a new mobile app would be interested to examine – should you use Native apps or HTML5 to create yours?   This came to our attention via a great presentation that Appcelerator.com have prepared around this topic which we have shared below too.  First of all we will give you some background on this hot topic.

Building your Mobile App – Going Native

Native apps, or apps built with the specific toolkit that each mobile platform provides (iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows etc) are currently the runaway leader in terms of usage.  Businesses and brands to date tend to prefer “going native” for their mobile apps as they are

  • easier to monetise,
  • often offer a smoother, better user experience 
  • (For now) often give better data security

The apps you may have downloaded from the Apple Store or Google Play Store are native designed apps.  There are over 1 million apps available through these stores today.   Many businesses large and small have spotted the potential in mobile apps for improving their relationships with their customers.   By developing great apps to improve their customer’s experience and satisfaction, loyalty often follows, so its an investment many companies are making.   We expect to see more and more businesses developing useful apps in the near future.

HTML5 is the next stage of development for the internet as mobile becomes many users preferred method of browsing.  It promises to bridge the gap in experience between desktop, tablet and mobile, so lets have a look at its early reception so far…

HTML5 – Ready for showtime?

HTML5 can allow you to build an app that will work on any platform without having to develop and code a tailored version for each.  This freedom no doubt contains much potential for expanded usage in future but right now, some big hitter brands have deemed it “not ready” for the largest tasks.  Mark Zuckerburg declared it a strategic error for Facebook to attempt to build their mobile app through HTML5.  They have since reverted to using a native approach for this.  LinkedIn also reversed course and within a year, switched their own tablet and smartphone apps to native technology.  They say this isn’t a permanent divorce, but that there are not yet enough tools out there to support larger projects.

Appcelerator.com Presentation – “The Great App Debate”

[hana-code-insert name='Native V HTML5 app presentation' /]

Looking to the Future

It seems that native apps will remain dominant for the moment, with HTML5 still needing to fix its ongoing teething problems before becoming the widely used alternative it hopes to be.  It is surely some food for thought for your business if you have a great idea for a mobile app in the pipeline.   We can assist you with designing and building a great mobile app for your own business, get in touch at team@socialmedia.ie to discuss this with us!

 

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27 June

Instagram Video battles with Twitter Vine – which is best for marketers?

Instagram Video launched on June 20th to much fanfare and media attention.  Now the dust has begun to settle, we ask how has it been received and look at the inevitable Vine comparisons.   Also, what value can it create for marketers in future?

Instagram Video – The Vital Statistics

Instagram Video arrived with a strong array of user functions.  It promised 15 second clips, easily created via any IOS or Android device.  Instagram maestros were delighted to hear that it contains 13 filters, which is arguably the killer app for their existing photo platform.  To place a cherry on top, the on board stabilisation technology ‘Cinema’ is truly impressive function within a free product.

Instagram users can now create quality video and have it online within minutes.  Great news for everyone, from the #catstagram documenters of everything furry and feline, to brands and businesses looking for an easy to use, cheap way of creating visual content and sharing with their audience.  With millions of existing subscribers ready to use this new addition, has Instagram Video changed the game?

Instagram Video vs Vine

Not only are these two video apps vying for your attention, but they are steered by the two social media behemoths – Facebook own Instagram while Twitter are behind Vine.  Vine has a six month head start and now has over 13 million users. Instagram has over 100 million users who (with a simple app update) instantly have video at their fingertips.

The debate over which platform may triumph is mainly centered around the functionality of both and the 6 seconds of Vine content versus the 15 seconds Instagram offers in particular.  Getting your message or story across in these small times is a challenge, but this allows creatives types to get creative!  TechCrunch asked a professional photographer and Viner (who builds Vine content for some of America’s biggest brands) to shoot the same content via both platforms and then polled her followers over which offered the best aesthetic results.  The verdict?   Vine has the edge…  An interesting early blow in this clash of the titans.

Interestingly, just prior to the Instagram video launch, on June 8th, Topsy Analytics noted that the amount of Vine shares via Twitter for that 24 hour period surpassed Instagram for the first time ever, with 2.37 million Vine links to Instagram’s 2.17 million.  We now know that Instagram were biding their time until their video launch but Vine’s growing presence means they will not be going anywhere soon.

Instagram Video For Digital Campaigns

Instagram Video has great applications for business – from the biggest brands to small and medium enterprises too.  You can move from a campaign concept to launch in mere hours, and share your video online with your followers and fans to build social engagement (and maybe even virality if you are lucky!).  Without needing big marketing budgets or specialist expertise to create, shoot, edit and share a visual idea, both Instagram Video and Vine bring content creation into the hands of businesses of any size.  We expect to see more instances of visually creative and quirky story-telling, behind the scenes footage, ‘how-to’ guides and even customer created video content appearing on brand’s social media feeds soon.

The Early Adopters – Brands Taking the Instagram Lead

Burberry Instagram Video

Already there are many big brands active and experimenting with the new platform.  Jamie Oliver (a brand unto himself) announced the launch of his new restaurant via Instagram Video, while Starbucks show you around their first ever cafe (opened in 1912).  Many of the early adopter brands and businesses using Instagram Video are doing so to give a ‘behind the scenes’ view of their business.  This humanises brands and in Starbucks case especially so, they show that even the biggest corporations had humble beginnings.

Other brands have already released slickly edited and gorgeously shot ‘advert’ style content, none more impressive than Burberry.  Just click the image to the left to take a look.  This example is but an early indicator of the stylistic promise that this medium holds in future.

National Geographic Instagram Video

 

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We leave you with the finest examples of Instagram Video so far that we have given a well deserved standing ovation to – Burberry’s slick statement of intent, and then National Geographic’s quirky, fun, made for social sharing approach that we are sure will become a popular use of this medium in future.  Click on the photo to the right to view (Instagram have not allowed off-site embedding for their video, not yet at least).

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If your business would like assistance and guidance in creating and using video as part of a great digital campaign, we would love to offer our advice.  You can get in touch with us at team@socialmedia.ie.

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20 June

Select The Right Digital Channels For Your Next Campaign

For any type of campaign or marketing plan your business has run in the last few years (and certainly in future), digital channels may be playing an increasing role.  They make your audience easier to reach, providing instant delivery and the chance for rapid response.  Any offer or update you deliver digitally also allows easy sharing over social media and possibly best of all, digital marketing channels are so easy to measure.  Digital can now stand shoulder to shoulder with traditional marketing channels in the majority of businesses.

The various types of digital marketing channels all hold different strengths that will make some more important for your own business to focus on.  The mix you select depends on your own goals for your online marketing plan, the type of message you hope to deliver, and of course the audience you hope to reach.  Let’s start with a quick look at some popular uses of different channels.

Digital Channels – The Usual Suspects

Email – For lengthier announcements like new product launches, monthly newsletters, email is often the channel of choice

SMS – Great for bite size offers and updates.  Often includes a prompt or code to redeem on another channel (e.g. purchase online with voucher code).

Website – With the rise of content marketing, a company website often houses important areas like the company blog.  It is now usually the hub for many digital marketing campaigns.

Mobile Apps – Often used by existing customers. GroupOn, Booking.com, eBay are some of the companies keeping customers ‘captive’ while browsing this way.

Social Media: Facebook – Great for awareness based campaigns.  Allows brands to humanise themselves and improve interaction with their audience.  Useful for promoting offers too.

Social Media: Twitter - Useful for building interaction, and for improving customer service satisfaction.  Suited to important announcements, breaking company news and pop-up sales.

Don’t Overload Your Digital Audience

SocialMedia.ie consumer digital overload

As you can see above, some digital marketing channels are more suitable for certain messages than others.  It is important to bear in mind too that many members of your audience may have simultaneous access to several of these channels at once.  The smartphone means that your offer could be received by SMS, email, Facebook and Twitter all at once to the palm of the owner’s hand.  This can reduce the effect of the message you hope to deliver so consider this when planning a campaign across multiple digital channels.

 

The Power Of Measurement

Digital marketing channels offer a reliable, instant and easy to digest measurability that can be key in monitoring performance during and after a campaign.  You can actively monitor digital metrics such as responses and shares, viral reach of your social media posts, click-through rate and many more. We explored metrics such as this in a previous post.  Match what you are measuring to your own marketing goals and all can be useful signposts on the road to a successful multi channel marketing campaign.

Always be testing

It could be seen as conventional wisdom to say that younger consumers, especially ‘digital natives’ are best contacted through digital means.  Will they eagerly share an offer posted via social media, or any digital medium that pops up on their SocialMedia.ie digital metricssmartphone?  Then consider older consumers, do they still prefer the tried and tested ways, loving a letter in their postbox to offer them a discount or bonus?

If you assumed this is the ‘norm’ for these different types of consumer, this may be a good guess, but what about your customers, can you be so sure?  Don’t rest on your laurels and assume you have everyone figured out.  Your own audience will tell you by previous behaviour how they can be tickled with an offer and what digital channels they are happiest to respond by.  Your own findings may even surprise you.  Launch, test, refine, repeat!

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In Summary

Whether your next digital marketing campaign is primed to raise awareness, build customer interaction, increase sales or to generate new leads, you have many marketing channel options to ensure you can deliver your message successfully.  Match your channel mix to your own campaign focus, always be aware of what your customers are telling you by their previous responses.  Don’t be afraid to evolve the process over time.

The next time your business has a new product or offer ready to promote by digital means, delivering it appropriately to your audience is a big step in turning a good campaign into a great one.

 

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11 April

Digital Trends Seminar Launching at 6:30 today

Our Quarterly Digital Trends Seminar is launching today at 6:30pm.

image_DTS

Come spend an evening learning about top trends like Digital Marketing Analytics, Digital Video, Device Proliferation, sCommerce and much more.

This seminar will be available online via Livestream. If you’d like to watch our seminar online, then visit our Twitter account, we’ll tweet the link to the stream at 6:20pm.

Click here to visit our Twitter account so you can join!

 

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08 April

Free SocialMedia.ie Quarterly Digital Trends Seminar

image_DTS

If you ever wanted to know how your consumers will behave in the future you can’t miss the Quarterly Digital Trends Seminar, organised by SocialMedia.ie which will let you know all the latest top trends in digital, social and mobile marketing.

Come spend an evening learning about top trends like Digital Marketing Analytics, Digital Video, Device Proliferation, sCommerce and much more.

The SocialMedia.ie Quarterly Digital Trends Seminar is available online and offline.

socialmedia_ie-digital-trends-seminar

 

What: SocialMedia.ie Quarterly Digital Trends Seminar

Where: Digital Exchange, Crane Street, Dublin 8, Ireland

When: Thursday, 11th April, at 6:30pm

How to Apply: apply here.

 

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28 March

Social Media Academy is launched

Over the last few months we’ve been working with the Digital Skills Academy to produce some amazing content, and here are the results!

SocialMedia Academy

Yesterday the Digital Skills Academy team, BLab, unveiled and launched our new SocialMedia.ie Academy. This web app allows users to learn all about social media and digital marketing. This academy will be updated regularly by the SocialMedia.ie team. So if you want to become a digital marketing master and get kept up to date with the latest trends, then why not visit our academy.

If you’d like to be one of the first to “enroll” in our new system, then simply click this link, or the image below!

socialmedia.ie Academy

Digital Skills Academy Launch Day

The launch day was held in the NDRC and it was a huge success. With lots of guests from all over the digital business landscape, the WebElevate BLab team had the perfect opportunity to showcase their hard work.

Here’s a sneak peak of what the event was like.

[hana-code-insert name='Academy Qik Video' /]

 

Finally we’d like to thank the BLab team from WebElevate that put this together.

They did an amazing job and they were a pleasure to work with. Thanks for everything guys!

To check out the promotional video they made, click here.

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28 March

The top responsive blogs

Having a blog is more important now than ever. It’s the stage from which you broadcast your message, whatever it may be. With more and more users going mobile, your blog could be losing you business, even before they read it.

If your blog isn’t readable on a mobile device, then mobile visitors will leave straight way, losing you potential readers, readers that could become potential sales. Why alienate part of your audience before they even get inside the door?

The solution. Go responsive! It guarantees that your blog is usable, no matter what the device.

For inspiration, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite responsive blogs, have a read and see why we like them and how you can emulate them.

tatly

 Tatly

A site where you can buy professionally designed temporary tattoos. (visit site)

What we like

  • Images are the primary focus, draw attention to what’s important.
  • Easy to navigate and browse the blog
  • Simple, unobstrusive design without a lot of excess clutter.

What we’d change

  • Make the logo smaller, if it were smaller the reader could focus more on the content
  • Turn the menu into a dropdown, it’s not the focus for blog visitors

cognitionHappy Cog

Application and website builders, they have a strong focus on collaboration and digital experiences.  (visit site)

What we like

  • Elegant design that easy on the eye
  • Simple interface that’s intuitive and easy to navigate
  • Easy to search and traverse the blog

What we’d change

  • Make the logo, search box and taglin section smaller. While important, they aren’t the focus of the blog, the content is.
  • Keep pictures visible in the blog, regardless of device, they divide up the article, making it easier to read.

tnw

The Next Web

News site with all the latest news about Internet technology, business and culture. (visit site)

What we like

  • Header takes up minimal room
  • Incredibly easy to traverse thanks to the “next” button
  • Header image clearly shown
  • Content constains minimal clutter

What we’d change

  • Not a thing, as a mobile blog it’s amazing, as a responsive blog, it’s impeccable. 

spitgotSpigot design

A web design agency with a strong focus on user interface, development and content strategy. (visit site)

What we like

  • Clean, intuitive interface that’s easy to use
  • Preview of images and text make it very easy to browse
  • Posts are clean, uncluttered and easy to read
  • Blog images resize dynamically

What we’d change

  • Too little preview text, we’d show a little more and add an ellipsis to indicate there’s more content.
  • Make the search box smaller, or least not as prominent It only appears on the main page, so this is a miner gripe.

A responsive blog needs to be simple, elegant, uncluttered, with a strong focus on the content and the brand. All of the above get this right. Any of our suggested changes are minor and these blogs should be upheld as shining examples of how to do it right. If you intend to make your blog responsive, we suggest you pay close attention to these guys.

If you’d like to know more responsive blogs, or even just responsive design, why not contact us!

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26 March

Make your emails mobile friendly or lose business

Email marketing is considered one of the corner-stones of any digital marketing campaign, without it you’re ignoring one of the most effective marketing channels. The 2012 Marketing Channel and Engagement Benchmark Survey found 63% of respondents cited email as the channel offering the best ROI. So obviously we want to make sure we’re using this channel as effectively as possible. However, there’s one element of email marketing that a lot of companies have overlooked, causing lost leads and sales. The rise of the mobile device.

mobile_device_image3

 

The important of Mobile

According to Payvia 36% of emails are opened on a mobile device. 22% of purchases on mobile devices are in response to an ad or email. Think about that, over one third of emails are opened on mobile devices. You’ve spent a lot of time making sure your emails looks great, but ask yourself, have you spent the time to make them mobile ready?

 

 


Mobile mail. Hi-res digitally generated image.Mobile friendly emails

Users don’t want to pinch and zoom to see content anymore, they want it to be readable straight away. There are a number of ways around this, for instance, you can get a custom template made, but the easiest is to use mobile ready email templates. Thankfully, Mailchimp have a wide selection of mobile ready themes, click here to have a look at what they offer.


Get your site Mobile ready

Of course, there’s no point in putting all this effort into a mobile friendly email if your site isn’t mobile ready. The last thing we want is for users to open an email link, only to leave the site immediately because it’s not optimised for the device. To make your site mobile ready, we’d recommend going responsive, it’s the easiest way to ensure your site looks great on any device, mobile, tablet or PC.

By making sure that your content is tailored to mobile devices, you can ensure that you’re prepared for the coming mobile revolution. You’ll increase lead generation and improve sales, so remember, stay ahead, think mobile.

If you’d like to know more about email and/or mobile marketing, or how you can go mobile, why not contact us!

 

 

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