Wednesday, 22 December 2010


PepsiCo's Head of Digital, Shiv Singh, discusses the success and results of the PepsiCo Refresh Project - Mashable

Dell is hosting a Social Innovation Competition for college students who want to solve current social issues through innovation. Non-registrants can also participate in the contest by commenting on and sharing the submitted ideas - Dell Social Innovation

In between broadcast seasons, ABC Family, NBC, and Lifetime are all encouraging viewers to check-in, earn badges, and share their interest with friends online - DMNews

This year, Gap's holiday deals depended on eight live reindeer in Minnesoda. GPS systems measured the reindeers' location closest to the North Pole so that fans could track and tweet about the reindeers that represented their favorite promotions - Project Reindeer

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is launching "CPSC 2.0," a social network that will inform consumers of important safety issues faster and more frequently - Kids Today

Todd Carpenter, Social Media Manager of the National Association of Realtors, has been recognized by Inman News as one of the 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders of 2010 in the field of online blogging and social media - Inman News

P. Diddy is teaming up with Microsoft Tag to launch their social media campaign, "12 Days of Tag," that will let Facebook and Twitter users choose which charities will receive a combined total of $50,000 in the days leading up to Christmas - Look to the Stars

State Farm is launching a new ad campaign within Facebook's "Car Town" game by adding virtual item giveaways and branded challenges that let players earn virtual currency - Insurance Journal

Northwestern Mutual is posting a new video series on Facebook and YouTube called "Life Stories" that features customers sharing their personal insurance stories - Business Wire

Gillette's YouTube Case Study (Italy) -

If moms weren’t already an attractive enough target for marketers, a Keller Fay study of US internet users and their brand conversations has found that they are more responsive to word-of-mouth than other adults and more likely to help pass on brand messages – More 

Crowdsourcing? Location Based Services? QR Codes?  Firstborn's Dave Snyder looks into his crystal ball to predict what digital trends will flourish—or die, in the upcoming year - More 

Since it’s the Holiday’s, here are some fun examples of agency Christmas Cards we’ve found:

Wieden+Kennedy (Amsterdam) makes it possible for you to sit down with your family and friends for a holiday gathering - even if you live thousands of miles apart! Check out -

Nation brings us this mash up Christmas Card generator that uses Google’s Blacklisted words - 

Auto-tuned sleigh bells? Geo-located dreidels? Augmented Reality snowflakes? Nope. EVB goes old school - letting users celebrate analog by sending friends a good ol' holiday fax! -

Lean Mean Fighting Machine's odd Holiday Greeting experience - Snowman or Fatman Holiday Greeting

Submit your (through-the-line) case studies:

♔ Digital Trends in 2011 (by Firstborn)

As published on (Creativity’s) Creativity and Technology (CaT) - Firstborn's Dave Snyder looks into his crystal ball to predict what digital trends will flourish—or die, in the upcoming year.

I've always wanted to do one of these... a predictions list! So here it goes, a little bit of what's to come: digital soothsaying for the annum two thousand and eleven. Please enjoy.

1. Crowdsourcing: People will finally realize that the Crowdsourcing future they've been hearing about isn't really crowdsourcing at all but, rather, a ruse perpetuated by some to navigate an economic and financial downturn. Yet "some" will continue to preach it. And for reasons no one in the industry can comprehend, one of those "some" (someone with no credentials other than a moderate Twitter following) will be named Chief Crowdsourcing Officer of a global agency.

2. Privacy: The stall doors are off and we don't care. We will say goodbye to privacy. Actually, that happened long ago, it's just that people will stop caring. I mean, what can you do? That being said, we still love to complain about it... more than a good Facebook redesign.  Your "junk" will be fondled and you will like it.

3. "The New Agency Model": Both sides will continue to beat their chests. Digital screams, "Hey, we've got ideas too." Traditional yells, "Keep your silly named company (but here's a buyout offer for you), we've got tech figured out!" and as BBDO Chairman Mr. Lubars puts it, "We're kicking their butts!" [Sigh.]
Both are right (sort of). But wait, what's that? You in the back... say that again. "But we're 'Post Digital'!?!" someone sheepishly squirts. Digital and Traditional look at each other and respond (for once in unison), "That is the stupidest thing we've ever heard."  Post Digital is a farce. It's the red herring of 2011, part of the overflowing hype that leaks from the duct-taped side of the perpetual buzz marketing machine.

4. The Buzzword Ban: Across the country agencies and brands alike band together and ban certain marketing buzzwords from the boardroom, mainly: synergistic solutions; passion points, robust eco-systems; social-capital; what's the added value; encourage social advocacy; harness social currency; and who are our brand evangelists? Please add your own in the comment section below. These are always hysterical. But first ask yourself, what is the added value?

5. Flash vs HTML5: Believe it or not, no one actually cares how content is delivered. I know, shocking, right? But that won't stop HTML5 developers from making all the same mistakes Flash developers and designers made previously. Both sides need to reconcile and remember that both are at the mercy of the public. We serve their needs. Not some myopic and overly engineered vision of what things are "supposed" to be.

6. On Millennials: "Say 'Millennial' again! C'mon, say 'Millennial' again! I dare ya, I double dare ya motherfucker, say 'Millennial' one more goddamn time."  Can we start talking about the Net Generation already... please?

7. Mobile: This one is easy. Mobile will finally become ubiquitous. As ubiquitous as what the "You Need to Upgrade Your Flash Player" page was, and what the "You Need an HTML5 Capable Browser" page will be.

8. Location Based Services: We got it right, but man-oh-man did they get it wrong. LBS will continue to be huge. It's just that, in 2011, everyone realizes how NOT exciting Foursquare and Gowalla were and are. Keep your badge; people are cheap and just want coupons. As I predicted last year, the current Location Based Services (the ones that survive) will become little more than the modern day equivalent of a coupon book. And guess what Foursquare, Gowalla and the rest, you don't have the numbers to make marketers care: Facebook Places has rendered you impotent. It was fun (sorta, kinda) while it lasted.

9. Frivolous Technologies: QR codes may have been big elsewhere around the world but the technology is going to be leapfrogged here in the States. QR Codes (and the ilk): your tombstone is waiting for you in the lobby. You've been replaced by label recognition. "This conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye."

10. Advertising is NOT dead: It's just different... and that is a good thing. It's becoming interesting again. I like what Phil Knight said about advertising a long, long time ago: "I hate it."  He's right. So often, it's so terrible. In fact, at times I can't f'ing stand it. Alas, the ad world is turning toward something meaningful. Even if, at times, it's just a laugh—it's better, however, when it's something useful.  I'm happy to report, this will continue and find more and more traction inside the boardroom.  There it is, ten items to help you start your two thousand and eleven season off right. Let me know what I've missed. With only ten items I know I missed plenty.

Dave Snyder is an associate creative director at Firstborn.  

Monday, 20 December 2010

What’s your brand doing on YouTube?

There was a time when YouTube was considered a wild-wild west of content — a place where marketers shied away from uploading their commercials, let alone building a branded channel. But these days, YouTube has become more mini-van than stagecoach. From Toyota Sienna’s high-profile television commercials urging consumers to visit their YouTube channel, to (what might be considered the anti-minivan) Harley Davidson’s fan-centric YouTube universe, there has been a noticeable shift in corporate adoption of the platform.

Billions (literally) of people are watching today – so I'm sure you agree that YouTube provides a unique opportunity for high-profile brand placements. Not sure where to start?  Check out YouTube Trends to get an idea of the types of content currently being consumed.   Also, think of your YouTube channel as an extension of your brand that lives and breathes. You’ll need someone who is dedicated to tending to that page, building your audience by reaching out to fans, and managing your profile online.

Start by searching your brand on YouTube and see what the existing conversation looks like. Then try reaching out to people who already have an affinity for your product or service by commenting on their videos and/or “friending” them. Remember that YouTube is an online community, and if you’re not participating in the dialogue, then you are missing the opportunity for true engagement.  More tips and tricks or for good examples by content type, select the area of concentration below:


How-to / Education

TV + Film