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Posted by
Georgie Hallgate
October 17th, 2014

Social media: Brands we want to be buddies with

by Georgie Hallgate

Whether it’s an acquaintance, a brand, or someone you stumbled across through (innocent) stalking, we all follow someone on social media who we keep a look out for as we scroll. It could be because they consistently post something we find funny, interesting, or even better, completely scandalous. Either way, we can’t wait to see what they’re going to post next.

Last year I found myself following brands and celebrities simply because of their down-to-earth tone of voice on social media, rather than because of what they’re selling or who they are. However, as a result of enjoying reading what they have to say, it has led to me reading their promotional posts – which normally don’t register with me from brands with a boring social media.

Northern-based burger joint Almost Famous (@FamousEats) is a perfect example. The gentleman who runs their twitter is one of the geniuses behind the Almost Famous franchise. Anonymous to his followers, he appears to be living the dream of burgers, bacon, cakes and beer. He regularly posts photographs to show off a monstrously delicious meal he’s having or writes something that gets me giggling. So it’s no wonder he has his followers hooked to know what he’s up to next.

gh

Before following them on twitter, I probably wouldn’t have put Almost Famous high on my list of places to eat. However, through his witty tweets, I’ve been convinced to try a little snap shot of the life he leads by spending an evening chowing down on the burgers he posts pictures of.

With over 39k followers, I firmly believe the majority followed in order to read his daily posts. As a result, Almost Famous now has a very large audience they know will be listening when they decide they want to boost their sales.

Next, James Blunt. You’re probably wondering where I’m going with this but give me a moment to explain.

Like many celebrities, he’s prone to receiving some rather unfriendly tweets. But WOW, if you haven’t seen the brilliant responses he gives to people brave or stupid enough to try and give him grief, it is a fantastic lunchtime read.

As with @FamousEats, I was eager to see the next comeback he had been dishing up recently and in the process, I came across his new album. I decided to see if it really was as bad as his twitter trolls claim and you know what? It’s not bad. Or has he hypnotised me with his funny twitter feed? By putting the occasional individual in their place, he’s created a buzz around the humour of his responses and in return gained exposure for his new album.

blunt

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that all brands need to be rude or brilliantly sarcastic to reap the benefits of brand exposure through social media. It’s actually about being someone the customer wants to follow by posting content they will relate to or want to share with friends.

The more you build up a relationship with customers via social media the more likely they are to stop and read what you have to say every time they are quickly scrolling through their news feed. They will even take note of that great promotion you’ve snuck in there.

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Posted by
Georgie Hallgate
October 9th, 2014

Twitter loving brands who love a re-tweet!

by Georgie Hallgate

With more than 271 million monthly active users and 500 million tweets sent each day, it’s not surprising that brands are increasingly using Twitter as a platform to promote themselves. Quite frankly they’d be stupid not to! Whether it’s to create a buzz around a brand or to launch a new product, there are huge benefits to be reaped by creating a campaign on social networking sites. Essentially, everyone loves a freebie, but many can’t really be bothered to do a lot to earn it. So giving something away for a simple re-tweet is a recipe for success!

To see how well the brands I follow are trying to grab my attention on Twitter (and if I’m missing out on a chance of getting my hands on some freebies) I scrolled through my timeline to see who pops up with anything interesting.

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Posted by
Julian Gratton
August 14th, 2014

7 strategies for dealing with difficult online conversations and feedback

by Julian Gratton

Broken_conversation_iconWe’ve all seen them. The Mr. or Mrs. Angry reviews that litter places like Trip Advisor, Twitter and Facebook etc. How we answer these people online is massively important, especially as a large proportion of people judge a company on how they handle online responses.

So to help you handle negative reviews and comments online, I’ve compiled together 7 tips to help you construct a response. Check them out below and feel free to suggest any others in the comments box at the bottom of this page.

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Posted by
Charlotte Baker
June 23rd, 2014

My placement year: salt cod Tuesday, I’ll miss you!

by Charlotte Baker

Charlie Baker's Student Placement YearThree years ago my college business tutor advised myself and the rest of the class that if we were to choose a business degree it would be a wise decision to take a placement year out. She was right and it’s safe to say that it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I’m just glad I was in college that day!

I was over the moon when I got the placement at Red C but never would’ve thought my year at the agency was going to be such a rewarding experience. I was welcomed with open arms and although often referred to as ‘the student’, I always felt like a valued part of the team.

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Posted by
Nicole Mathews
December 18th, 2013

Five brilliant examples of Goodvertising

by Nicole Mathews

ChipotleCreative advertising with a conscience, that’s Goodvertising in a nutshell. Consumers are becoming more ethically minded; increasingly attracted to brands that demonstrate they want to have a positive impact on the world, beyond just selling stuff.

People are also taking more of an interest in what goes into the products they buy. Are the ingredients ethically sourced? Do the workers who produce them get paid a decent wage? These are the questions being asked, and people want the truth.

It used to be that an ad agency’s job was to tell the world their client’s brand was good. Now it’s also about showing that the brand is doing good too.  Here are five campaigns I have found that show just that.

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Posted by
Wayne Pretl
November 13th, 2013

Implementing Responsive Email Marketing Designs

by Wayne Pretl

responsive_email_designResponsive web design (RWD) has been around for a while now, but the techniques are still relatively new in the way we design and code our content, enabling it to be viewed across the many different devices and platforms our audience use. There are already lots of blogs on the internet that discuss RWD but in my post I’d like to focus on the design and implementation of responsive email marketing designs (RED). I’ll first take a look at the background to RWD/RED, discuss the current state of the web and then finish up with some thoughts on design, coding and testing.

Background

The term ‘responsive web design’ is credited to Ethan Marcotte who first used the term when he wrote an article featured on A List Apart (25th May 2010). The article discusses the transient nature of the web and looks to architecture to see what we may learn from its longevity. Continuing with the architectural metaphor, Marcotte writes about an emergent discipline known as ‘responsive architecture’ where physical space responds to the people passing through it. He takes this knowledge and applies it to web design and suggests ways in which we might take our content and instead of creating bespoke tailored designs, the design and content should respond to the way in which it is consumed. In this way, more people can access our content  where ever they are and our content should have a longer life span.

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Posted by
Andrew Campbell
October 4th, 2013

Newsjacking and Advertjacking both get a new lease of life thanks to social media

by Andrew Campbell

Marketing people love their buzzwords. And the latest that seems to be doing the rounds is ‘Newsjacking’. Which basically involves a brand, product or service responding to news events in ‘real time’ and can result in social media gold or a social media backlash… depending on which end of the ‘taste stick’ your execution is at.

Winslet fire

For example, would you associate A-list actress Kate Winslet with London’s FireBrigade? Me neither. But, last year, Kate was staying at Sir Richard Branson’s private retreat in the British Virgin Islands when lightning struck his home. His place set on fire and Kate had to enter the building to save Branson’s elderly mother.

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Posted by
Josie Campbell
September 19th, 2013

Facebook Graph Search… creepy or useful?

by Josie Campbell

Facebook Graph SearchFacebook Graph Search is a new semantic search engine that has been introduced by Facebook this year. It was first launched in the US in March and then in July it was made available to all users, so it has now reached the UK.

This is a platform similar to the Google search engine, but rather than using ranking algorithms like Google’s PageRank to predict relevancy, Facebook Graph Search uses semantics. These semantics search accuracy by understanding searcher intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in the searchable data-space, whether on the Web or within a closed system, then generate and produce highly relevant search results.

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Posted by
Julian Gratton
September 9th, 2013

When advertising becomes the battleground between brands

by Julian Gratton

Kelloggs takes on ALDOAll’s fair in love, war and advertising. And don’t some Brands know it. Ever since Pepsi and Coca-Cola came out they’ve been at each other’s throats on TV, in the press and through Celebs… all in the quest to be regarded as the No.1 soft drinks brand in the world.

Yet Pepsi and Coke are not the only companies to take the battle from the Boardroom and place it firmly in the hands of their marketing teams. Here are a few examples of brands that have gone on the attack in the aim of increasing sales and loyalty.

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Posted by
Andrew Campbell
July 24th, 2013

Letter writing given a new lease of life thanks to new Lettr smartphone app

by Andrew Campbell

lettrs_tree-a4fa8dba345f5e27bbf000ae66c935ed

Here’s a question for you: when was the last time you sat down and wrote a well thought out, beautifully written letter? I’m willing to bet that it was so long ago that you can’t remember. You might even be whispering the word “never”.

The sad truth is that either of those responses is completely understandable, because thanks to digital technology the ways in which we write has radically transformed in the past 15 years. Emails, texts, tweets, Facebook… today’s communication options are endless and, boy, they are fast. So fast in fact, that it is diminishing the quality of our long-distance communications.

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