Welcome to ‘Ten things you need to know’ – the first in what will hopefully be a fortnightly exploration of…er…news! Interesting and frivolous things from the internet! Occasional nuggets of inspiration for marketers! That sort of thing, really. The idea is that this will be a regular inbox drop of links which will hopefully help with your professional lives and which might on occasion provide you with something that you can amuse and impress your colleagues with. Given that this is the first one, we’d love to hear from you about what is useful, what isn’t, what you’d like more of and what we should never, ever mention again – feedback is always welcome (except the sort delivered with knives). We hope you like it…
Credit: Iggy Smalls – https://www.instagram.com/norsksalami/
Adobe launches Advertising Cloud Mobile App: Remember the original sales patter for Apple when they were launching the App Store: ‘There’s an app for that!’ Well, now there truly is. Witness Adobe’s newly-launched Advertising Cloud App, which brings the power and flexibility of the Adobe Advertising Cloud to your mobile device, meaning you can track, assess and implement campaigns wherever you are, at any time. So, if your campaign is running and you have a little life issue like, say, your kid’s birthday or a touch of viral plague, but you need to ensure that your everything is optimised – well, now you can. It’s the first of its kind in the sector and we’re pretty proud of it. Give it a little whirl and you’ll make our team of devs very happy.
Facebook Trialling Messenger Broadcast: You know how people are getting a bit wise to online ads and how they’re starting to tune them out a bit, even on Facebook? Well NO MATTER, because here comes an exciting new way in which you can entice them to buy your things (or consider, or whichever point in the marketing funnel you and they find yourselves). Only on trial, but I’ll eat my nonexistent hat if this doesn’t become an actual product – Messenger Broadcast, at least in its trial form, will let brands fire promos at a wide group of people using Messenger; “As for who the message can reach, the interface outlines that a certain number of users will receive it at no cost to the business. It’s unclear whether businesses will be able to pay for more reach, but that seems like a reasonable direction for the product” – so, then, a classic and devilishly intelligent Facebook ploy where they’ll attract you with a modicum of organic to get you hooked on that sweet, sweet engagement. Very clever Facebook….very clever (I say as I stroke my virtual white cat).
Join Friends’ Livestreams On Instagram: To quote: “When watching a friend’s live video, simply tap the “Request” button in the comments section. You’ll see a confirmation that your friend has accepted your request, and you’ll have a moment to prepare. Once you’re on, the screen will split in half so you can hang out live with your friend. You can leave your friend’s live video at any time, making it easy to join for a quick hello or a longer chat.” There’s almost certainly some GREAT fan service stuff that famouses and brand ambassadors can do with this; just, er, take care as to who you let join you.
The Snap Redesign: In this video (as an aside, the Snap YT channel is a really good resource for Snap tips, worth looking at), Snap founder Evan Spiegel explains the SNAP REDESIGN, which is largely UX stuff to make it less daunting for new users, but which also presents two separate feeds within the app – one for one’s friends, the other for brands and publishers (much as Facebook trialled to huge concern from media orgs earlier this year). Which seems like an excellent idea for users and potential growth but which, and I appreciate that Evan is the businessman here not me and all that, does strike me as a TOUCH risky. I’m sure ad products will get around that, and maybe that will do the trick – there will be enough brands willing to pay to cross that CONTENT DIVIDE to compensate for those who abandon the platform – but will be interesting to see.
New Types of Snap Ads: New ads! “Promoted Stories which string together multiple Snaps into longer-form slideshows openable from a tile on the Stories page that’s shown to everyone in a given country, and Augmented Reality Trial ads that let people play with an AR version of a product overlaid on the world around them.” These are really quite exciting in terms of the technology and the potential reach, but be warned that I’ve heard it rumoured that the minimum spend on each is likely to be a touch on the high side at first as they work out the possibilities.
Credit: Michael Dumontier and Neil Farber – http://personalmessageblog.blogspot.co.uk
The State of European Tech 2017:The State of European Tech is a report published by VC firm Atomico which looks at the startup scene across the continent – how much is it worth, where’s the money going, what has the deal landscape been like over the last 12 months, that sort of thing. It’s an excellent example of how to take a large-scale research report and turn it into something rather more compelling. The website presents an interactive view of the data, enabling users to see different datasets in simple fashion; the graphs and charts are all shareable; the site works well on mobile…it’s not hugely shiny, fine, but as a ‘this is a solid piece of work to increase the reach and visibility of a piece of research’ link, it’s a good one.
Duroc Tomatoes: I have a very sizeable soft spot for ridiculously overengineered websites for industries that might not be seen as hugely sexy to the outside world; this may well be the ur-example of these. Duroc, I learned this week, is the largest supplier of ‘snacking tomatoes’ (no, me neither) to the UK and a few other European countries; what would you imagine the website of a major tomato supplier to be like? Would you imagine it to have MUSIC and ANIMATIONS and a ridiculously colourful aesthetic that reminds one of the set of Playdays? NO YOU WOULD NOT, and yet here we are. This is just SO wonderfully, riotously amazing, and makes me wonder whether one of their star interns had just completed a course in creative webdesign or something. Wonderful, hugely pleasing and made me actually go out and buy a few toms – so it had the desired effect. I challenge you not to suddenly crave a snacking tomato or two after a few minutes of joyful time spent in their magic online world. This came to me via the The Website of the Year Awards 2017, which feature some truly superb examples of webwork if you’re in the market for some inspiration
Snatch:This week’s BIG HYPE APP comes in the form of Snatch, which is an Augmented Reality treasure hunt – using the app, you stare through your phone’s screen to find virtual packages that you need to collect and protect from other competitors; basically it’s some sort of Pokemon Go variant where other people can nick the Pokemon off you, but with the added incentive of REAL PRIZES. If users manage to keep hold of a box for six hours, they win its contents IN REAL LIFE. Worth a play while the userbase is still relatively small and you might have a chance of actually winning something.
Icebox: This is clever – fine, it’s a PR stunt for price comparison site Finder, but the idea behind this is solid. Icebox is a Chrome extension which, when installed, grants an automatic ‘consideration’ period for online purchases, effectively putting ‘buy’ buttons on a reversible cooldown to make impulse purchasing harder. There are all sorts of twists on this which you could imagine working, particularly for the charitable sector, but I’ll leave you to come up with those.
Just Type Stuff: This is what the web is for – not the bringing together of disparate peoples and viewpoints, not the sharing of ideas and feelings and knowledge and words and music and and and – no, it’s for this, a website which lets you type stuff into your browser and see it pop up in a little virtual world. I first saw this as part of the ‘Now Play This’ exhibition at Somerset House earlier this year, but it’s now available to all; TRY THIS IT IS ACE. Seriously, click the link, type stuff, hit return, see what happens. It’s GREAT, and you will derive more pleasure than you’d expect from creating a tiny virtual universe populated by floating cows and umbrellas and dogs and stuff (no, I know you don’t understand, but JUST CLICK THE LINK).
Credit: Lisa Courtney – http://lisacourtneyfineart.com