social networking

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Prohibition delivers innovative social media ‘tweet shop’ for national housing organisation Keepmoat

Last month, we were lucky enough to work alongside Keepmoat, one of the national market leaders in sustainable community regeneration and housing, to help them to stand out at key industry trade show, CIH, held at Manchester Central.

Briefed by Keepmoat to make its presence at the conference stand out amongst the crowd, we were tasked with creating something to differentiate their event stand from competitors at the event, and achieve a measure of event amplification which would make the organisation stand out in terms of visibility.

Through taking a strategic approach to social media, we created a blend of exciting stand themes, and event commentary which increased the footprint of Keepmoat’s stand, in turn driving footfall and creating a real buzz around the company’s offering.

The strategy we undertook centred around a ‘Tweet-Shop’ on the Keepmoat stand, which gave CIH visitors the opportunity to pay for multiple food and drink items by simply tweeting. Creating a large presence in the social media sphere, the stunt succeeded in providing online visibility of Keepmoat’s presence at the event, prompting social media users to head to the stand and promote it.

In addition to encouraging guest participation in the tweet shop, we worked throughout the event to provide a live commentary of goings on inside Manchester Central, letting interested followers on Twitter know of keynote speakers and demonstrations taking place at the Keepmoat stand.

Is 2013 finally going to be the year MySpace makes a big splash again?

Talks have recently turned to the once trendy and dominating social network site MySpace. Preparations have been taking place for the sites return next year which Specific Media, the new owners, have promised users a bigger and better site. Focusing on music, movies and the fans – it believes that “artists are really tired of sending their fans over to one platform to listen to music, another to watch a social stream, and a different place to watch videos, buy merchandise or even purchase tickets”. The owners seem very convinced and it seems they are planning for a huge success. However, it has to be pretty good if they are preparing to dominate the social media world again!

I remember as a teen, the two big social sites that we used religiously were MSN chat and MySpace. MySpace was definitely the new big thing for my generation however, over the years it has received a lot of criticism, and the spotlight has turned to other social media platforms as it failed to innovate. I have to say it is going to be interesting to see how the new beta version will take to music fans, musicians existing and potential users, and will it welcome back old users?

A few pros and cons of MySpace as we know it:

1. MySpace was the birthplace of those hideous profile pictures that we still witness on Facebook.

2. It started a trend where users can collect friends in once place and choose their favourites (not all REAL friends)

3. You have a choice to customise your background profile.

4. A profile song will start playing every time you visit a another person’s site

5. It was the first huge social network site for music lovers to listen, share and learn more about their favourite bands.

6. The irritating constant messages from bands getting you to connect to their profile pages.

The new site definitely looks a lot more user friendly than the previous version. The site centres on the use of great graphics and stunning visuals, it has new features like a player which sits at the bottom of the page, letting you sort your playlist and listen to songs. It is obvious to see that they have taken inspiration from a mix of Twitter, Facebook, Spotify and Pinterest combining them all in one. Is that what we need, one big social site instead of several different ones? It will make things a lot easier, but if this hits off would it mean deleting your Facebook and Twitter accounts? I know I would find it that hard to do as I have had years of photos and contacts to delete and add again.

With all this in mind it may not become THE best social network site, but the promises and expectations that have been set it has a pretty good chance at least within its competitors i.e. Spotfiy.

So if you’re interested you can request for an invitation here.

And see for yourself if MySpace is going to be the next huge hit in 2013.

The PR benefits of Google Hangouts

We are all aware of the Skype and FaceBook video call, but the latest of social networking platformsGoogle+ has recently released its own version of video calling “Google Hangouts“.

Facebook’s video calling is only one-to-one calling, with limits on the other activity that you can do on the site once on a call, and on Skype you have to be a paying user to use group video chat. However with Google Hangouts the video chats are free, and up to 10 people can take part, with lots of different apps available (free) to have fun with during your calls, from poker to quizzes.

For purely social uses hangouts are great, they are free and simple to use, you just need to have a Google+ account (is it time to really jump on the Google+ bandwagon?). Michael Arrington at TechCrunch has written a great piece, that really gets into the social benefits of Google hangouts, compared to the other options available.

As well as the personal benefits of hangouts the option to stream your session live on YouTube, personal websites and blogs (all at the same time) means that Google Hangouts has got some great possibilities for small businesses. At this stage live hangouts are being tested by large corporations and organisations. From live hangouts with President Obama to live gigs the possibilities with hangouts are endless; and from a PR and social media point of view this could be a really interesting channel to get your message across.

For the world of PR, this could mean live interviews with CEO’s and key spokespeople from your clients, live product reviews from bloggers all around the world, live instruction sessions showing customers how to use clever products, constant streaming of shops, businesses, and events that people all around the world can join in with. Google hangouts could also really help with crisis management, as you will have the ability to reach your public almost immediately and most importantly affordably.

With Google Hangouts in its infancy it will be interesting to see how it is going to be adapted and utilised by business, especially in the PR world.

Has anyone used Google hangouts already? It would be great to hear what you thought of it.


How to visually connect your Linked-in contacts!

Chris Norton's NetworkI have just read a post by PR blogger Sherrilynne Starkie in which she highlights a new tool which has been launched called InMaps.

Basically the new service allows you to visualise your connections on Linked-in, it accesses the api and creates a pretty graphic grouping your connections by different colours. Then you the user have to go through these colours and decide what they show and how useful they are. I think the graphic is really clever and pretty but I am not sure how much added value I would actually get from sifting through the colours and tagging up each one in the legend. I have enclosed the YouTube video which explains what its all about.

What is the future of Facebook? It’s in this video.

Here is an interesting concept – everyday we hear more and more about Facebook growing and I read a lot of posts of people asking for new features or making recommendations on how Facebook can change and get better.

This has prompted Venessa Miemis to create “The Future of Facebook” project which is basically a campaign to gather enough money together to interview a huge amount of big hitters and ask the big question “What is the future of Facebook?” Let’s hope it’s better than that of Friends Reunited.

For the record my view on the future of Facebook is that it will become a mobile hub that allows us to buy, interact, share and post wherever we are without us needing our credit cards. I also believe that to do this the ongoing battle with Google will be resolved eventually and the garden walls will be removed and we ‘the users’ will be able to share our content wherever and whenever we want.

I think this is quite a clever way to get the funding to do a video which is going to be watched by millions – so it gets a tick from me. They need to raise $5,000 and they have 42 days left on their deadline having already received $3,356. Let’s hope the video is worth it and doesn’t go on for too long when it is finished.