Monday, August 18, 2014

Amazon's Local Register

A competitor to Square, iZettle and more, but with the reassurance that Amazon's size brings.



I wonder why it took them so long

(US only at the moment)

Full story here

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Push For Pizza - 'Yo for Pizza'



Push for Pizza is one example (I expect there are many) of the influence of Yo.

Yo is an app that only lets you do one thing - send a message that says 'Yo' to a friend.  Nothing else.  As such, the interface is extremely basic and easy to use (but all you can do is send a message that says 'Yo').

Push for Pizza lets you order a pizza to be sent to you.  It's not quite as simple as Yo, in that you need to set up card payment details, address, and so on, and also you get two options (Plain or Pepperoni), but essentially, you press a button for pizza.


More details here

Yes, it's been done before, with a simple fridge magnet in Dubai:



What I think is interesting though, is this follows the trend of simplification and single purpose apps.  If you look at other pizza apps - Domino's etc - they can get quite heavy with different options, 'create your own pizza' and more.  I'm not completely sure that this is a problem that needs fixing urgently, or that people can't get around, but I suspect we'll see lots of apps going through a simplification process.

Update - See also The Pizza Button

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Chipotle's #BurritoWatch Mystery Site of The Day Promo



Chipotle has a promotion happing in the UK where they will give away 2,000 burritos a day for the next 7 days.

Each day they will release a mystery website and the first 2,000 to get there will get a voucher (presumably in exchange for an email address).

Today's first site is given above.  You can slow down YouTube by using the 'cog' icon on the lower bar - but even so it's pretty hard!

Full details of the promo here

Day 2 - an Instagram video



Day 3



Day 4



Day 5



& then...

Day 6



Day 7



Thursday, July 31, 2014

Red Bull's #AirRace Promoted Tweet



I'm not quite sure how Red Bull has done this, but it's possibly the best use of a Twitter Card yet - the promoted tweet bleeds into the tweet above,,,

See the tweet here - sadly embedding it into Blogger doesn't show off what they've done.

The tweet clicks through to this page

Update - apparently it's made with 'unsafe' characters - see other examples here

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Airbnb for...


Airbnb re-launched earlier this month with its new 'Belo' symbol, and the idea of 'belonging'

I think one of the reasons for this is that it can help Airbnb move away from purely accommodation  and into other parts of the sharing economy, where you can also feel you 'belong'.

The classic Airbnb model - you rent something from someone who doesn't need it at that time - is so flexible that it can apply to so many different things.

A few examples from Google Auto-complete:

Airbnb for...

aeroplanes
boats, bikes, business travel
cats, cars, camping, commercial space
dogs, dinner parties, desks
eating, education
food, flights, freelancers
gyms, garages
jobs, jets
kitchens
luxury
meeting rooms, motorcycles
office space
pets, parking, popup shops
restaurants, retail, RVs
storage, skills
tools, toilets, tour guides
venues
workspace, weddings
yachts

There are already companies that offer almost all of these as a business model - in some cases lots of companies (e.g. 'airbnb for retail space' or 'airbnb for (homecooked) food').

Airbnb's new identity should help them move into these areas.

(I did the same on Netflix - because lots of companies are also attempting their 'single regular fee for all you can consume' model, but fewer business ideas came up - anime, audiobooks, books, comics, clothes, games, hotels, and jewellery - although all of these are quite interesting)

Official case studies from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and more

Here are a set of useful links to official case studies:

Facebook Success Stories

Twitter Success Stories

Instagram for Business - & also some more (but more anecdotal) if you scroll through the Instagram Business Blog

Google / Doubleclick Advertising Case Studies

YouTube Advertiser Case Studies

Microsoft Advertising Case Studies

Yahoo Advertising Case Studies

ITV Case Studies

Sky AdSmart

Any more I should add?  Please let me know in the comments or on Twitter - @dancall

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Finding the demographics of Facebook page 'Likers'

This one came up today - how do you find demographics of a page in Facebook, if it's not your own page?

This is one way to do it.

Create a dummy ad, pointing to any url at this Facebook Ads Create page -  (you're not actually going to buy any ads)

Select the page subject as an interest - to demonstrate I've picked Shakira, the world's most liked person on Facebook



Go through changing the age and gender, to see how many fans there are at each level.

Here are the results for Shakira in the UK - it seems to make sense.


(Anyone else know a simpler, free way?)

Note - this may technically be the demographics of people who list Shakira as an interest, rather than page fans, but even so it must be a good approximation of their demographics

Friday, July 25, 2014

Book Review - The Circle by Dave Eggars


The Circle is a satirical novel that was initially published last year, and has recently appeared in paperback in the UK, published by Penguin.

In it Dave Eggars creates a credible world, a few years in the future, where there exists a company called The Circle, which is to most intents and purposes an amalgam of Google and Facebook.

It's a bit like Google because you have a single identity through which you conduct your online life, in the way that Google likes you to have a single identity over all its properties (including YouTube), and in that it is very actively involved in video and 'streetview' style projects, and 'moonshot' ideas like digitising the world's books; The Circle has a project to count all the grains of sand in the Sahara.

It's a bit like Facebook in that it's all about sharing, and over-sharing, people join groups and send each other endless messages... and the founder is a young genius who is well known for wearing a hoodie.

Eggars explores this world through his heroine Mae, who joins the company and explores different facets of it.  The first line is 'Oh my god, Mae thought. It's heaven', describing her initial reaction to the company's campus.

While Eggars claims to have no particular knowledge of the scene, and denies that its based on any specific companies, it's very good in its imagination of the world of the Internet of Things and the Quantified Self.

I particularly liked his corporate mantras, including:


All That Happens Must Be Known

Sharing is Caring (people want to experience things their friends do)

Privacy is Theft (being private denies friends these experiences)

Secrets are Lies (because openness is truth)

He's also very good at finding names for different concepts, including:

TruYou - Your single online identity

SeeChange - Live cameras recording everything, accessible by anyone

ChildTrack - A way of tracking all kids, to ensure their safety

PastPerfect - A system that identifies people in historic photos and videos so that your history can be traced back easily

Conversion Rate - The proportion of your friends who like products that you recommend

Retail Raw - The retail value of these likes - that is if a product you recommend costs £5 and 100 of your friends 'like' it, then the RR is £500.

I have friends who work at both Facebook and Google (& lots of other places), and I respect both those companies.  I would say that it's better in its imagination of social media in a few years time than it is as a novel about people, but I'd definitely recommend it as a thought provoking book.  It deserves to be far better known than it currently seems to be (very few people at a recent Google event I went to had even heard of it) - read it and see what you think.

Buy it - you'll increase my Retail Raw!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Beyonce teases the Fifty Shades Teaser Trailer



Yesterday Beyonce (or, more likely someone at Team Beyonce) posted a teaser for the first trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey on her Instagram account.

It ends with a version of Crazy in Love, which is the connection, but Beyonce is a great person for the brand to have to promote the film.

In this weekend's FT it was claimed that '£4,000 can change hands for each mention of their product in the [a YouTube star's] video itself (it costs roughly the same for a shout-out on Twitter).'  Goodness knows how much Beyonce costs...

Update - & here is the official trailer - 6m views in 24 hours:



Given that it's not released until Valentine's Day next year I think we've got a lot of marketing to come!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Stabilo's World Cup goals flipbook



Very well done!


Heineken's @wherenext local discovery service



This is a fun idea.

If you want to know where is 'hot' locally, you can tweet @wherenext with your location - e.g. '@wherenext Chelsea' - and it will tell you places nearby which are being mentioned in social media.

It also works on desktop or mobile through this site http://openyourcity.heineken.com/#/en-gb/wherenext/venues - see screen grab


It's a fun idea, but clearly it depends on the level of data being produced, which depends on the existence of people like me tweeting their social, food and drink experiences.

It's also clearly game-able, and many of the most savvy venue owners are actively trying to encourage people to post on social media while they're out.

It also comes down to whether you trust machines (I'm assuming that this is automatically generated) or local experts to curate the best of what's on, for example to tell you in the screen grab that The Lukin is a far better place to go to than The Green Man.

But...  It's a good idea and I suspect that that there will be many more shots like this fired in the 'local' war before we find something that works reliably.  Well done to Heineken, who are pioneers in experimenting with location.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Snapchat's Geofilters

Snapchat is introducing lots of new features at the moment.  We've had Stories - including this World Cup #RioLive story sent to everyone's timeline on the day of the World Cup final - and now Geofilters.

Geofilters are filters that can only be applied at certain places - so for a city (to create a 'Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ' style postcard effect), or for specific locations, like Disneyland, as shown on the video.



Very smart, and you'd imagine brands with locations (McDonalds, Top Shop, cinemas, football clubs...) will be using this a lot by the time we get to Christmas.  & why not have a range of special Christmas ones for multiple locations - e.g. LEGO, Simpsons, Quality Street...

Also, you can imagine Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and others following very quickly.

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