SO MONDAY

June 23, 2014

Twitter Adds Translated Tweets to iOS Apps

With World Cup coverage underway, people from all over the world are tweeting about the same topic in many different languages. Twitter wants to make it easier for everyone by bringing mobile translations to its iOS app in partnership with Microsoft.

After downloading the Twitter iOS update, users can click a small globe icon within each tweet to have it displayed in their native language.

Facebook Slingshot

Facebook has launched a photo-messaging app, known as Slingshot. The app’s features include sharing photos and videos with friends in a similar fashion to Snapchat. However, Slingshot’s point of difference is that it is built around a two-way interaction. It uses an unlocking mechanism, whereby photos received from friends must be unlocked by “slinging” a different photo back to the original sender. Like Snapchat, all images are deleted once sent and users can scribble or type over their photos.

On the social media page for the app, the creators said: “With Slingshot, we wanted to build something where everybody is a creator and nobody is just a spectator.”

The Slingshot launch comes as Facebook is trying to fight off threats from other social networking agents, which also contain messaging and photo-sharing tools.

Jelly adds replies to its Q&A app, offering back-and-forth conversations for the first time

Previously, all communication on Jelly was either a question or an answer in response to said questions, but now users can keep the conversation going to add context or just maintain a dialogue.

Jelly launched in January of this year as an answer to crowdsourcing information from your social networks, adding location-based answers in March.

Facebook’s iPad app becomes more of an entertainment hub

On the right side of the new Facebook iPad app, social notifications for Facebook games both native and on the web, along with video trailers of games that users have yet to play, trending videos and new articles will be served.

Facebook’s pick of videos will be based on the most-shared footage across the site, filtered by those in the same general demographic. Similarly, a popular games section will include casual titles that are getting greater than average attention from friends and Facebook users in general.

Amazon Fire Phone

The company debuted its first-ever smartphone at a mystery event held in Seattle on Wednesday. Its US release date is 25 July, although global distribution has yet to be confirmed.

The device has a 4.7in screen, a 13-megapixel rear camera, and an innovative system of cameras and sensors on the front of the phone to track head gestures from users, and change the display accordingly.

The Fire Phone also has a feature called Firefly, which combines a range of media-identification capabilities into one app, for example, Firefly can recognise (similar to Shazam) songs, movies and TV-shows. It uses the microphone to listen into a scene of a show and identify which episode you are watching, (similar to Facebook’s recent app update), and then it also directs people to buy the series from Amazon.

Twitter to buy video sharing site SnappyTV

Twitter is extending its drive into video after it announced the acquisition of SnappyTV, a video sharing website. The social media network has already started to embrace video with its Amplify programme, which allows sponsored video excerpts of televised content to be easily viewed on mobile.

In a statement, Twitter said: “One of the best ways to follow events as they unfold is through real-time videos on Twitter. As we continue to invest in video, it’s important for us to provide tools that make it easy for TV broadcasters, businesses, and event producers to share high-quality videos. To that end, we’ve agreed to acquire SnappyTV.”

The theory is that as people talk about certain TV shows on Twitter, others who see those tweets will be compelled to tune in.

Mobile and tablet video viewing up 532% YoY since 2012

The Q1 2014 Global Video Index revealed that in the first quarter of 2014, mobile and tablet viewing accounted for 21% of all online video plays, up from 3.4% in Q1 2012 and 9% in Q1 2013. Since 2012, mobile and tablet viewing has increased 532% year on year (according to new research from Ooyala).

While the majority of plays on tablets were short-form videos, viewers clocked 48% of their overall viewing time watching videos of 30 minutes or more. Viewing time of live video on connected TVs was 11 times more than on-demand content.

Sky IQ’s new viewing panel is providing data from more than 500,000 Sky homes across the UK

As TV has changed and technologies have evolved, so has the way viewers plan their viewing. Measuring overnights gives us a valuable first impression but can’t provide an overall picture of a show’s success – and the myriad of ways that viewers engaged with it.

Sky IQ’s aggregated and anonymised viewing panel aggregates data from over 500,000 Sky homes in the UK – and offers us a view of exactly how content is consumed – be that live, playback, on demand or via Sky Go.

Figures from Sky IQ viewership for Game of Thrones have recently been published, which I have summarised below:

Last year:

  • Nearly 1.5 million households engaged with the Season 3 premiere, with 85% of viewing via linear (either live or playback).

This year, however, Sky Atlantic did something unprecedented: on 7th April 2014 it simulcast the first episode of Game Of Thrones season four between the US and the UK at 2am, prior to the more traditional 9pm transmission later that evening.

  • Overall, 1.9 million households watched the premiere – up 26% on last year, accounting for 1 in 5 of all Sky households.
  • Linear viewing, both live and playback, is still king, accounting for 85% last year and 82% in 2014, although the increased proportion of catch-up might be due to that 2am simulcast.
  • Sky Go views were up an impressive 139% on last year, increasing share of overall viewing from 4% to 7%.
  • The other main growth area was Sky’s on-demand push service “Showcase” which saw an 89% increase in household viewing than in 2013, from 7% to 9%.

Because viewers can choose from a variety of transmission times and different ways to engage with the show, we can see how viewing of the 1st episode played out across different platforms during the week of the transmission window.

Monday 2am:

  • In total, nearly 60,000 watched the 2am broadcast via their Sky box or on Sky Go.
  • Just over 450,000 set their Sky+ boxes to record the 2am broadcast in order to watch at a time that was more convenient for them.

Monday 9pm:

  • Over 490,000 households waited to watch the episode live when the show re-aired at the more sleep-friendly time of 9pm on Monday evening – perhaps because watching live at the same time as half a million others enables synchronised social commentary via the second screen.
  • In addition, nearly 680,000 subsequently viewed this showing on playback.

In total, half of those that recorded either the 2am or 9pm showing had caught up on the same day, ready to discuss at work the next morning.

Wednesday 10pm:  a repeat of the episode on Wednesday evening attracted a further 165,000 households viewing live.

  • Of those who recorded the show, 20% caught up the following day after the premiere with the remaining 30% watching two to six days after transmission.

SO MONDAY

November 18, 2013

Virgin Mobile ‘Game of Phones’

Virgin Mobile Australia have just launched ‘Game of Phones’ a spoof on the cult TV Show, Game of Thrones, that utilises the core concept made famous with the MINI Getaway campaign back in 2010Players will be challenged to hunt for almost $200,000 worth of prizes in the ‘Game of Phones’ virtual world through a mobile app game that will see live interaction between tens of thousands of people on the streets of Australia. When players come within 50 metres of a prize icon, they can tap to claim it, but it can then be stolen by other players located within 100 metres. Throughout the game, Virgin Mobile stores will act as safe houses – a great way to drive people in-store!

Game of Phones

Game of Phones

The winner who earns the grand title of King will also be rewarded with a $50,000 VIP Virgin dream holiday.

Director of Virgin Mobile Brand & Communications, Nicole Bardsley, said: “Games are now the second most-used application on smartphones, just after Facebook and we are genuinely excited to be able to engage the public in our brand in a truly innovative, unique, fun and inherently ‘Virgin’ initiative that is ‘mobile first’.”

Snapchat turns down billion dollar deal from Facebook

The news that Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel have turned down a Facebook offer of $3 billion cash has surprised some, but talking with the BBC Spiegel says he isn’t that focused on advertising and instead is looking at selling added value services. He points to the success of WeChat who make 90% of their substantial revenue from in app transactions and gaming services. As well as the Facebook offer, Snapchat has lots of investor interest – with WhatsApp owner Tencent offering to lead investment at a valuation of $4 billion. Given the state of the tech IPO market, many think Instagram sold too soon/too cheaply and this belief combined with Snapchats exponential growth will help propel Snapchat to an even higher valuation.

Latest app that aims to increase road safety: HUDWAY

HUDWAY is an augmented reality app that uses smartphones to outline the road ahead with turn-by-turn directions, and displays it on the car windshield using ‘head-up technology’ – details like speed, distance, and driving instructions are displayed in different light.

Head-up technology is a display that presents information without requiring users to look away from their usual viewpoints. The HUDWAY does not require any other equipment other than a user’s smartphone and the user can pre-load all desired routes so that they can use HUDWAY offline.

See the demo video here showing the Head-Up Display (HUD) in action in a rally car.

Internet connection is required to build the route.

EON Power Saving Experiment

e.on in Sweden wanted to find out if they could change customer’s behaviour by showing them how much electricity they were consuming.

e.on recruited 10,000 participants to take part in Sweden’s Largest Energy Experiment. Each person was given an app which connected to their homes and monitored their power usage. The data collected was then visualised in five different ways so that users could find the one most motivating to them. One was a virtual battle between participants whilst another was a furry Tamagotchi, whose health depended on each user’s energy consumption habits. Have a watch of the video hereto see all the different data visualisations.

eon_swedens_largest_power_saving_experiment_1

Out of the 10,000 that participated, their habits changed and lowered their energy consumption by an average of 12%. Marketing isn’t always about pushing messages, but inducing change and it takes great design thinking like this and belief in ideas that invite the participant to achieve something worthwhile and get value back from their involvement.

iPhone setting to prevent car drivers texting

People are notorious for using their mobile and driving. In a bid to prevent this happening, a concept has been designed called ‘Car Mode’. Much like Airplane Mode, this will lock down some of the features of the mobile phone. ‘It saves your texts, emails, and other notifications until you arrive at your destination, and lets anyone who texts you know that you’re currently in Car Mode. This way they don’t feel ignored and you have the peace of mind to know you’re not being rude.’

Whether or not Apple decides to integrate this into their products’ capabilities is yet to be announced.

Foap app: Make money from your photos

Instead of letting companies use your photos as part of their T&Cs, the Foap app has opened up the opportunity for users to sell their photos.

‘Our vision is to let people from all over the world earn money from selling their smartphone photos—simply by downloading our free app, snapping a photo and uploading it to the Foap Market. When someone buys the photo, the photographer can cash out his/her money. And best of all, the photographer can sell the same photo over and over again.’ This app lets brands easily access photos from local areas that they can pay the rights for and will be cheaper than arranging for a photographer. Foap gives users information on how to take great photos so that they have a high standard of photos on offer.

4G comes to Cumbria

EE has switched on its 4G network in rural Cumbria, bringing the superfast technology to more than 2,000 residents and businesses for the first time.

SO MOnday fun: The best Twitter conversation you will read today

Facebook is expanding its mobile advertising offering with a highly specific mobile app format.

Book Now. Facebook Mobile App Ads

Book Now. Facebook Mobile App Ads

It has been introduced to bolster the social network’s fast-growing mobile business and is a key revenue focus for the future. But how effective will they actually be? And how can clients use them to drive business value?

Mobile app ads, which allow companies to promote content within their mobile apps, will encourage users to remain active within the apps beyond the install.

The ad format will show in a user’s news feed and is a development on the app install ad, but instead of directing the user to the relevant app store, (to download), the new format will deep link to content within the app itself.

Previously, we would focus on one metric – cost per install. However, this only shows intent to download. And whilst the number of installs is vital for user acquisition in the infancy of a campaign the challenge then shifts on getting installed users to return and remain active within the app.

If a user has already downloaded the app then they are pre-qualified customers for the brand and more likely to be receptive to further advertising. From the user’s perspective the advertising is relevant to them as they have already signalled that they are interested from installing the app.

For clients, using Facebook’s mobile app ads increases the odds of a conversion and gives them the ability to directly link media spend on the platform to ROI – therefore driving business value.

Facebook’s new mobile app ads demonstrate the shift towards our clients wanting to track and attribute in-app purchases and user engagement metrics beyond the initial installation and these ‘mobile app ads’ help direct the user to the most relevant location within the app once installed.

This is vital to remove an extra stage in the consumer journey (which is often one of the main barriers for continued engagement with mobile and tablet apps) as well as allowing clients to flag a specific promotion or new update to the user.

For example, if a retail client combines its list of existing app downloaders from its own CRM database with Facebook’s custom audiences they can retarget lapsed customers by enticing them with a flash sale or the launch of a new product or range using the call to action, ‘shop now’.

Re-targeting users is nothing new in advertising and it is surprising that it has taken Facebook this long to integrate such a feature to help optimise the funnel beyond the install.

Currently there are limited calls to actions (7 in total) such as ‘book now’ or ‘watch video’, but hopefully more will be added in the future giving our clients more flexibility to entice their users back to their mobile apps.

This blog was first publsihed on the wallblog: http://wallblog.co.uk/2013/10/21/redefining-facebook-how-brands-should-use-facebook-ad-apps/#ixzz2iSMQVBA1

SO MONDAY

October 7, 2013

Bored on your commute? Play some scrabble.

Mattel is inviting people in the U.K. to a “Scrabble Challenge,” where players will have to create words out of letters tweeted by @scrabble2winUK. The tweets will appear on digital screens on the Transvision rail concourse; JC Decaux’s digital screens at stations around the U.K.

Scrabble Challenge

Scrabble Challenge

Using the hashtag #scrabblechallenge, players can then tweet their words, and weekly winners will be displayed on the screens each Friday. The campaign will also have Scrabble “tile-heads” distributing free Scrabble coasters to rail commuters.

IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau UK) 2013 Digital Spends shows Mobile is up by 127%

The IAB released the Half Year 2013 spend review this morning with some interesting highlights. It appears that mobile has really been harnessed by advertisers this year; with mobile accounting for 14.1% of the total ads spend so far (this is nearly double the 7.2% for the same period last year).

‘The great news is that digital advertising in the UK rose by an impressive 17.5% in the first half of 2013 compared to the first half of 2012. UKOM/Comscore data shows us that British consumers average 43 hours a month online – 1 in every 12 waking minutes – and, despite the challenging economic climate, advertisers spends a record six-month total of £3.04 billion to attract their attention’.

Other interesting insights from the review include:

  • Entertainment and social networks/blogs account for over one third of UK internet time
  • Digital ad spend up 17.5% to record six-month high of over £3 billion or £66 per person online
  • Mobile now accounts for 14% of total digital spend; 20% of digital display
  • Consumer goods overtakes entertainment/media as biggest mobile display advertiser

Snapchat’s: Ephemeral ‘Stories’

Snapchat’s latest invention is ‘My Story’, which in my opinion is a strong competitor to Facebook’s most important product, the News Feed. Users can create a ‘Story’ which is a rolling compilation of snaps from the last 24 hours that can be shared with your friends. Unlike conventional snaps, Stories don’t disappear in an instant after you’ve watched them, in fact, you can watch a friend’s (or your own) repeatedly over a 24 hour period. Holding your finger on a friend’s name starts a stream of every snap they’ve shared to their Story within the last 24 hours.

Snapchat Stories

Snapchat Stories

Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, said to the Verge that Stories was first conceived as a way to address perhaps the most common request from users: a way to send a Snapchat to your entire friends list. Spiegel and his team thought that a “Send All” button could destroy Snapchat, and instead sought a more passive means of sharing an image or video with everyone you know. Over the next year they built Stories, which lives inside Snapchat’s “My Friends” page. The final result recalls the early days of Facebook, where the quickest way to catch up with a friend was to visit their profile.

“When you have a minute in your day and are curious about what your friends are up to, you can jump into their experience,” says Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel. By providing users with fleeting, pocket-sized “live profiles” that last at most 24 hours, Spiegel hopes that users will feel free to act more like their true selves. “The internet is a timeless void — you put something in there and it’s there forever and loses a lot of context,” says Spiegel.

SNAP. ADD. STORY.

SNAP. ADD. STORY.

The app currently allows two settings for who can see your Stories: friends or everyone. This opens up opportunities for brands to harness the Snapchat platform. For example, if a celebrity endorsed a brand they could create Snapchat stories with product placement that any user could choose to watch.

Made in Chelsea launches gaming app

All my dreams have finally come true. I no longer have to stalk the streets of Chelsea to get a sneaky glimpse of that oh so charming, Spencer Matthews. No I can interact with him, build up a trusting friendship and even go on dates with him and other members of the cast in the new MIC app.

Spencer in the MIC App

Spencer in the MIC App

Coinciding with the return of a new series next week (14 October on E4), E4’s Made in Chelsea has launched a new gaming app for iPhone and iPad. The game begins in Kensington, allowing users to explore the area and “progress through” to Belgravia and Mayfair.  As users advance, access will be given to some of the cast’s favourite spots, including a range of venues (including The Bluebird, Beaufort House, Amika and The Henry Root). The app also allows players to listen to tracks from unsigned bands, as well as music synonymous with the series.

Join the MIC gang in Chelsea

Join the MIC gang in Chelsea

Join the MIC gang now in London’s prestigious SW6 by downloading the app here. The question is, will you manage to hook up with your favourite character?

Wearable technologies sales have grown 50% YoY; Do advertisers need to address these platforms now?

According to recent research, wearable technology devices will reach sixty four million by 2017. With sales growing ‘at a compound annual rate of 50.6%’ are wearable devices a platform which brands should attempt to harness now?

This market is currently ruled by fitness trackers such as Fuelband, however it is predicted that smart watches and Google Glass will takeover in the next five years.  Will wearable technology follow tablets and smartphones ‘from single-purpose to multipurpose’? And are consumers demanding such technology?

It appears that a number of wearable technologies have been invested in through Kickstarter and other crowd funding sites in order to offer these innovations to people. One study has found that ‘one in five Americans wanted an Apple iWatch’, a design which hasn’t been released publically and has only been rumoured.

It is definitely worth brands thinking about how they could use these devices as ways to interact with their target audience. However, it is important that brands remember that only consumers will be able to influence whether or not these devices become popular so I would definitely recommend that brands have a strategy in place for when this happens.

Samsung has revealed its Galaxy Gear smart watch to great fanfare this week – it’s designed to “enhance the freedom of mobile communications”. 

The Galaxy Gear is a smartphone and fashion accessory that allows users to make calls from the watch and it can show incoming messages and calls on the screen to alert the user. There’s a camera, users can make short videos, and it’s connected to the Samsung smartphones using Bluetooth wireless.

Samsung Galaxy Gear

Comes in a range of colours but the straps are not interchangeable (Source: Wired)

So is this just a gimmick or will it catch on – and is it a valuable new platform?

It is a feature-rich device, with an impressive number of compatible apps (such as Pocket, Path, Evernote & RunKeeper) but, the Galaxy Gear currently doesn’t have support from some popular apps. Samsung says it’s working with developers to bring more third-party apps to the Galaxy Gear.

It’s main benefit, as Matt Warman at the Telegraph rightly states, is that “it seeks explicitly to tether people less to their mobiles and to integrate technology more thoroughly into everyday lives” as well as helping those with nomophobia (people who become anxious if they are without their mobile phone), as the Galaxy Gear smartwatch allows you see the information on your watch without pulling out your device from your pocket or the depths of your handbag. This is the most compelling feature, dubbed ‘smart freedom’ as it allows the user to choose how, why, when and where they are connected. This is similar to Nokia’s Live Tiles on the Windows OS which continually updates as new data is pushed onto the Live Tiles.

A couple of downsides have been cited by critics from limited battery life to users having to speak into and hear from the watch instead of a handset, which is currently an unnatural behaviour. I also find it odd that it lack NFC capabilities as tapping in with you wrist seems more natural than with a phone and would open up advertising opportunities.

The Galaxy Gear currently only pairs with the Galaxy Note III, which is a potential limitation for cutomers. Fortunately, this is temporary as Samsung has confirmed that software updates (to be rolled out in October) will let the Galaxy S III, Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note II work with the Galaxy Gear.

While Apple has given no direct indication that it is working on a similar product (beyond a comment by chief executive Tim Cook earlier this year that “the wrist is interesting“), we expect them to announce an “iWatch” next week at its September 10 event And Google is reportedly developing its own Android-based smartwatch, according to the revelation that the company had recently acquired WIMM labs, builder of smartwatches.

What do you think of the new Samsung Galaxy Gear watch? Are you tempted to purchase the device (Several sources are quoting the US price as $299 (£191) or are you prepared to wait in anticipation for Apple’s iWatch offering?

SO MONDAY

June 10, 2013

‘Points’ The World’s Most Advanced Street Sign

points-628

Points is a connected object in the shape of a standard street sign. The sign is socially connected, allowing it to tap into open API’s and social networks to transcribe what’s happening in the world, and bring the information and directions it finds, right to you via its 16,000 LED’s across 3 directional arms. Pretty cool. Check out the video here.

An Update on Facebook Ads

Facebook have announced an ongoing effort to simplify their advertising offerings. Facebook plans to streamline the number of ad units from 27 to fewer than half of that while mapping all of their ads to business objectives, such as online conversions, app installs, likes etc. To find out more about how Facebook plan to implement these changes, read their blog post here.

See it with Samsung S4

Want people to check out your new product? And stay engaged for 60minutes? Watch here to see a great promotional stunt from Samsung in Zurich.

Vine posts are now shared more than Instagrams on Twitter

Six second video clips from the Vine app — which launched in late January — are already shared more on Twitter than posts from two-year old Instagram (according to insights from Twitter-certified analytics partner Topsy). It’s an interesting trend, considering the fact that Vine has a much smaller user base than Instagram — it has just 13-million registered users against Instagram’s 100-million active users.

The growth of Vine may be influenced by the deep integration it has with the social network as a Twitter-owned app, whereas Instagram images no longer auto-expand, instead only appear as a link sending the user to Instagram’s own sites once clicked. Not exactly the most user-friendly experience.

Smartphone collects coupon from TV using NFC

NFC technology has a new development from a company that specialises in transferring mobile information using NFC (near field communication) which could really open up opportunities for retailers. They have created a Dynamic NFC-screen which is able to communicate through different devices (TVs, desktops, etc) ‘to provide consumers with product information, coupons or navigation through advertisements and presentations’.  This could allow mobile users to simply hold their phone in front of their TV screens and downloads coupons or access extra content. If this technology did catch on, it would be extraordinary to see how many users downloaded coupons from their desktop directly into their Google wallet or Apple passbook and see how many redemptions were made. It has been reported that ‘European telecom giants Orange France and Avenir Telecommunications’ have bought into this service so it could become available soon.

In the UK, one in five use mobile payments

recent survey of UK internet users aged 16 – 65 reveal that ‘more than two-fifths of UK smartphone users already use mobile banking’ with mobile payments becoming an area of interest for smartphone users. Mobile payment technology is constantly developing and growing, and perhaps this year it will take off so brands should be m-commerce ready and really think about how they will include mobile payments into the user journey.

‘The demographic breakdown of mobile payment users showed a skew toward men and especially those in the 16-to-34 age group. Twenty-three percent of male internet users reported using mobile payments vs. 18% of females. And a substantial 41% of 16- to 24-year-olds and 35% of 25- to 34-year-olds also said they made mobile payments. Overall, mobile payments reached one out of five surveyed internet users in the UK.’

Evian’s Baby & Me app

Continuing the Baby &Me theme after Evian’s YouTube went viral in April, the brand have created an app that allows users to reveal what their ‘inner baby’ looks like. The app is available on FacebookAndroid and iOS across all devices. Users upload their photo and the app will focus on the ‘most prominent features of the face and clothing’ to virtually ‘reveal inner-babies’. The brand has harnessed the theme after the viral to allow users to be a part of it and personalise their experience.

SO MONDAY

June 3, 2013

Google & Motorola to release smartphone as well as electronic tattoo technology

Google is planning to release an affordable smartphone onto the market that will be assembled in a factory in Texas, USA, which 15 years ago built Nokia handsets. The company says it is better to work closely to the production of the device, rather than have it constructed in South East Asia. “When your manufacturing is thousands of miles away from your engineers and your designers, you lose the ability to innovate, you lose the ability to make fast changes to how you’re manufacturing things,” Dennis Woodside said, Motorola’s chief executive. “There’s a ton of technology that’s coming in around 3D printing and much smaller-run manufacturing that we think we can take advantage of right here.” The new smartphone will be called Moto X and will enter the market at an affordable price in a bid to drive down the high cost of smartphones on the market.

Electronic Tattoo

Motorola have also been working on some really innovative technologies for users who have forgotten their passwords. Firstly it has been rumoured that they are developing a ‘password pill’ that the user swallows. The pill will be powered by stomach acid and ‘transmits a signal to devices outside the body’. This will allow the smartphone to identify its owner’s needs. Another method they have created is an electronic tattoo. The smartphone would be unlocked simply by being close to the owner’s body.  It will be interesting to see if these technologies are released onto the market embedded in an affordable smartphone and whether or not users actually make use of its capabilities.

Charge your phone at the beach

Nivea Sun Charger

Nivea created a print ad in Brazil that charges your phone using solar energy. The magazine insert has a USB port attached to it that is powered by the solar panels on the insert. It helps to promote Nivea sun with the tagline, ‘With Nivea’s sun protection, you don’t need to leave the sun for anything’. This is a great example of a brand and agency creating a real life product that is useful for their target audience.

Twitter’s TV ad targeting

As a result of the strong connection between watching TV and tweeting, Twitter has introduced targeting based on TV advertising. Using video fingerprinting technology, the system automatically assesses where a TV commercial has been aired, as well as which users have tweeted about the show during which the ad was shown. The selected number of partners who are running national US TV commercials will then be able to target Twitter advertising in order to support their on-screen campaign.

As brands look to find better ways to coordinate their marketing activities, Twitter provides the perfect bridge between TV, digital and mobile. In fact, 64% of mobile centric users on Twitter use it in front of the TV at home. Twitter lets brands continue the conversations they start with their TV advertising by building on the awareness they generate through TV with the interactivity and engagement of Twitter’s social/mobile DNA.

TV ad targeting is currently available in beta for the U.S. market only and only for customers running U.S. national TV ad campaigns.

Yahoo launches new Flickr

On the same day as her company’s purchase of Tumblr, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer announced a wealth of updates to photo-sharing network Flickr. An attempt to become more photo-centric has seen updates to the home page, as well as a new activity feed and photo stream, all of which put photos at the forefront.

According to Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends, 500MM+ photos are uploaded and shared every day and this growth is accelerating, on trend to rise 2x YoY.

Flickr Yahoo

There will also be a free terabyte of space for every Flickr user, meaning essentially no limit on the number of photos you can upload (within reason). The iOS app has been completely refreshed & redesigned to give it a modern look. Users can sign in using their Yahoo account, Facebook credentials or Google account. There are 16 unique camera filters, providing a quick and simple way to snap, filter and share images quickly using Flickr’s own tools, an attempt to lure people away from the 100 million user strong Instagram.

Although Flickr remains as a favourite platform to store and share photos for professional and amateur photographers, the new updates with ease of sign in and sharing may help bring casual sharers onboard.

Penguin takes children’s fiction to Google+ with Storytime Hangout app

new application created by book publisher Penguin uses the Google+ hangout feature to allow children and their families to take part in the classic Ladybird story of the Billy Goats Gruff.

2.Title screen-thumb-400x273-113964

Each participant clicks on the face(s) of the character they would like to play – one of the three billy goats Gruff, or the villainous troll – transforming children into the storybook characters allowing them to act out the story while they read along with their parents with the text displayed on the screen.

penguin-books-find-out-about-g-storytime-billy-goats-gruff-hangout-600-41450

The novelty is that as they turn each page, the story will be brought to life by augmenting special masks over the video feed in Google Hangouts in order to put people at the heart of the storytelling experience, despite being in different locations.

Check out the video to get a feel for how it all works.