Looking at my social media news feeds I can clearly see it is made up primarily of visual content. This is of no suprise to anyone who may have read Cisco’s forecast that by 2019 consumer internet video traffic will be 80 percent of all consumer Internet traffic.
Buzzfeed has been leading the way with video content after the launch of ‘Tasty‘, (and British version ‘Proper Tasty‘) a page on Facebook that posts fast motion cooking videos. The content is only available on Facebook and interestingly, does not divert traffic back to Buzzfeed’s website, instead using Facebook’s autoplay feature as an advantage.
The page was launched on the 31st of July 2015 and has now got over 48 million likes. Similarly, the British edition was launched in December and has over 8 million likes. The video’s featured are no average recipes but contain creative and original ideas to inspire the viewers. Recipes include “Bacon Cheeseburger Wontons” and “Deep-Fried Ice Cream Dogs“. Evidently, the videos are so successful because of the hungry foodies within all of us, but also the simplicity that makes everyone believe they can create the delicious looking goods.
In a bid to replicate the success of Tasty, Buzzfeed has recently created a similar Facebook page for budding DIY doers called ‘Nifty’. Videos featured on the page aim to target all kinds of creative individuals with posts such as “DIY Cat Tent” and “How To Save A Scorched Pan“.
I expect within the next few years that more and more media outlets will be experimenting and developing with video content. Personally, as much as I love a recipe video, I don’t want to consume all my media through a video format and I certainly don’t want to have to dig out my headphones when in a public space to listen to something I could have easily skim read in a minuet.
In light of the new trailer released for season 6 of Game of Thrones I looked back at the stunts used by the network to promote the series.
Season 3: Dragon Skull
Taylor Herring worked with BlinkBox for the launch of season 3 of the show being released on the UK TV-streaming website. In the summer of 2013 a 40-foot long dragon skull appeared on the sandy shores of the Jurassic Coast in Dorset. The show features several dragons, fitting with the history of the Jurassic Coast. The sculpture, which took two months and three sculptures to create, provided the show and on demand service several regional and national news coverage along with a social media buzz to coincide with the release of Season 3.
blinkbox – The Making of the Dragon Skull
Season 3 DVD release: The Wall
In 2014 the release of Season 3 of Game of Thrones provided HBO another opportunity to pursue a stunt. London’s Liverpool Street became adorned with 3D street art of the ‘The Wall’ (for those of you not up to date with GOT trivia, this is a big guarded icy wall that is in place to protect everyone from the White Walkers) that allowed fans to take photos and pretend to scale the wall. Passers by were encouraged to take photos and post them online using the hashtag #ScaleTheWall.
Making of The Wall
Season 3 DVD Release- Kings Landing
In another attempt to promote the Season 3 DVD release of Game of Thrones a producer on the show got a small English town just outside of Watford to rename it’s town from Kings Langley to ‘Kings Landing’ for one week. The residents of the town were encouraged to tweet photos of Kings Landing all week using the hashtag #KingsLandingUK. This opportunity not only provided coverage for the release of the DVD but the small town of Kings Langley to attract tourists.
Season 6 – Snow Art
For season 6 of the hit TV series Sky Atlantic created a stunt that transformed the French Alps into Stark territory. Simon Beck, snow artist, spent more than 13 hours moulding the Stark family’s wolf insignia in the snow as a tribute to the show. The art features the phrase “Winter is Coming” which will excite Game Of Thrones fans everywhere.
Game of Thrones Snow Art
These spectacular stunts not only have me excited for the new season of Game of Thrones but also for the creative content that will come from future seasons of the show. See the trailer for season 6 here.
As usual, when I woke up on Friday morning I immediately turned off my alarm and then checked twitter. I was instantly in a state of confusion since all I could see was a picture of a dress and some people claiming that it was either black and blue while others saying it was white and gold. Never before had I seen quite so many tweets about the same thing. The debate became bigger and bigger throughout the day, the top trending topics for hours being #TheDress #WhiteAndGold #BlueAndBlack.
The viral phenomenon originated from someone who was sent a picture of their mothers dress and was instantly confused as to what colour it was, they then took to posting the picture on Facebook to ask opinions. The photo was then posted on tumblr where it blew up and was reposted everywhere else. People were divided by their opinions, even as I walked into my lecture that afternoon I was immediately asked what I thought the colour of the dress was.
By midday as I checked my twitter once again I started to see responses from different companies weighing in on the debate. This encouraged me to make a list of what I think are the best responses from different organisations.
At No. 3 – Specsavers
– Everyone should have seen this tweet coming. The opticians claimed that anyone seeing White and Gold should take a trip down to see them and get their eyes checked. This tweet was amusing and so I included it into my list, However it should be noted that I was confused by their hashtag at first, I’m assuming they could not fit their whole tagline “Should Have Gone To Specsavers” in a 140 character tweet and settled for “#Shoudve” instead. Not sure it worked but I get the point nevertheless.
At No. 2 – Barry M Cosmetics
– This was actually the first response tweet I saw on Friday and what sparked my idea for writing this blog post. This tweet truly played on the optical illusion of the dress, introducing a new ‘black and blue’ range while featuring a picture of their white and gold nail polishes. The tweet also encourages customer engagement, a great way to create interest in the brand by drawing attention to them.
And at No. 1 – SNICKERS
– This was a great tweet from the brands twitter page. It included a play on their own signature ‘when you’re hungry’ joke combined with the acknowledgement of the hysteria that was being caused. The hashtags “#DressGate” and “#EatASNICKERS” that were used was a nice touch as well.
Organisations who keep on top of the trends can really benefit from phenomenons such as the #DressGate. By reacting in a quick and effective manner they can gain huge amounts of re-tweets by amused social media users who are all talking about the same thing. By doing this they can promote their own products as well as appearing consumer friendly. These were some great examples of PR done by different organisations who saw the opportunity and took it. I love when such a phenomenon comes along and sparks hilarious tweets from the public and companies like these and can’t wait for another one to come about.
Music artists have some great PR, particularly when they have something new they want to promote. However, I believe that the best and most successful artists are those who have worked on their image and reputation all year round. Good public relations doesn’t happen with effort from an artists team and the artists themselves.
Taylor Swift is an expert at professional and personal PR. This country turned pop star has some greatest PR out there. Her latest release ‘1989’ became the best selling album of the year, with over 4 million copies of the album sold in the US alone after only 12 weeks. The kind of success that Taylor Swift has captured is a result of the interaction she has with her fans. Her use of social media really stands her out from the crowd, she is a frequent tweeter, instagram user and “obsessed” with tumblr. She uses instagram and tumblr in particular to interact with her fans, following them as well as sending heartfelt paragraphs.
Furthermore, she had even gone as far as to invite 89 fans into each one of her homes to have a listen to her album before it was released. These “secret sessions” took place at Swifts homes in L.A, New York, Nashville, Rhode Island and even a hotel in London for her fans in the UK. After the release of the album Taylor didn’t stop, she began sending fans she had ‘stalked’ over the internet special gifts that she thought they would like, from designer bags and make-up to $1989 to help one fan with their student loans.
This unique and continuous interaction with her fans from all over the world is what sets Taylor apart form any other artist out there. Even after removing all her music from Spotify, Taylor was still on top as a result of her vigorous personal PR. As a fan myself I cannot wait to see what Taylor has up her sleeve next.
Check out Taylor’s ‘Gift Giving of 2014’ video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3yyF31jbKo
Not a day goes past that I don’t scroll through my twitter feed to find a ‘giveaway’ going on. Its something that I see particularly from YouTube bloggers “Vloggers”. All that happens is they post a tweet asking followers to retweet and attach a picture of the winning giveaways. After a certain period of time or after a certain number of retweets they pick a winner. Popular vlogger Estee Lalonde frequently gives her followers the opportunity to take part in this, resulting in 7000+ retweets.
I personally like entering these types of social media competitions. Back in 2011 I entered a competition run by gossip website Cambio to win a signed Jesse McCartney perfume. I don’t think I even liked Jesse McCartney in 2011; I just wanted to win.
However I can see why some companies or personalities can be hesitant to use them since they do have the opportunity to go wrong. For instance in 2013 EE promised 10 twitter followers tickets to Glastonbury, all they had to do was use the hashtag ‘#WinGlastoTickets’ to be entered. After seeing how successful the campaign was, EE opened it up to Facebook users. The competition ended and EE did not have enough tickets to give to the selected winners. One winner named Terry expressed his outrage on twitter and a new campaign headed by the public ‘#GiveTerryHisGlastoTickets’ began. Tickets were eventually found for Terry but that didn’t save EE from humiliation.
For a successful social media competition I believe the key is to have a plan for if or any problems that could arise. This way you can make sure you are prepared and can minimize any damage. As a consumer I also appreciate the simpler competitions, a quick click on the retweet button and you’re entered. Using a hashtag is also a good way to get the product or brand name out there.
I am all for a social media competition and will certainly continue to enter them in the hopes of winning!