We Are Social’s Monday Mashup #49


The challenges facing brands as they begin to invest in social media
The ISBA and IAB have conducted an anonymous survey with around 50 of the UK’s top advertisers to investigate the challenges that UK marketers face in terms of investment in social media.

According to the survey, the most popular use (69%) of social media amongst ISBA members was as a PR tool to outreach to bloggers and online influencers. The second (63%) was using services such as Twitter and Facebook, followed by using social media for research purposes in third position (52%). Only 30% are using social media as a customer service tool. The qualitative part of the study found the five biggest challenges for brands in social media were:

  1. Monitoring and control
  2. Measurement and ROI
  3. Policy and regulation
  4. Social media strategy
  5. Where social media sits within organisations

Fortune 500 nearly doubles use of Twitter
An annual report from the Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research at The University of Massachusetts has found that “3 in 5 Fortune 500 companies now have active Twitter accounts, compared with 35% in 2009.”

Why Facebook browsing annihilates web browsing
More specifically, what’s described as ‘social browsing’ (e.g. reading status updates, clicking and watching video links, shuffling through photos of friends) has largely replaced other forms of web browsing in certain demographics, such as females 21-29.

When it came to idle Internet time—the kind of behavior we’d typically associate with reading news, or blogs, or gossip sites, or just trolling around “killing time”—Facebook had almost entirely monopolized their attention.

The big implication for marketers, is that when many of these consumers need to look something up, they will do so in the location where they are spending most of their time. Of course this behaviour has only been observed in young adult women, but “young users have typically set the trends on online social networks.”

Facebook now letting brands claim community pages
Brands are now able to claim Community Pages as their own on Facebook, something they were previously unable to do. Over the weekend a number of Help pages confirmed that brands could now merge up to five community Pages into their own page by submitting a merge request. This is a great opportunity for brands with several unofficial pages to create and control an authentic hub for their Facebook fans.

BlackBerry gets Facebook Places
A week after its Android debut, Facebook Places is now available to BlackBerry users as part of Facebook for BlackBerry 1.9 (available from BlackBerry App World). BlackBerry users can now checkin to Facebook Places within a 1.25 mile radius of your location, tag friends, view where your friends are, show checkins in news feed, and integrate with GPS and BlackBerry Maps.

Facebook dominates the US display ad market
comScore has reported that almost 1.3 trillion display ads were delivered to U.S Internet users in Q3 2010, a 22% increase on last year. What’s more, the review identified Facebook as the top ranking display ad publisher in Q3 2010, with 23.1% of the market share. That’s almost a quarter folks, and matches similar findings in the UK market.

Twitter sees impressive growth in Japan

Over the past year, Twitter has grown and astounding 428% in Japan, reaching 13.2 million visitors. This makes it the second largest social networking destination in Japan, just behind the market leader Mixi with 13.5 million visitors. Facebook is in a respectable third place with growth of 78% to 5.3 million unique users in Sept 2010.

Vaseline crowdsource a spokeswoman
Unilever’s Vaseline brand has conducted a crowdsoured campaign in search of their latest spokeswoman. Listening to conversations through social media, they outreached to a pool of 75 bloggers who spoke about topics such as dry skin, lotions and skin issues. From there, three bloggers with the most compelling stories were invited to tour with the brand as their ‘Dry Skin Patrol’.

KLM ‘spread happiness’
In keeping with the holiday season, KLM have launched a campaign to gift customers through social media, in the hopes of easing the stresses associated with air travel. Whenever someone ‘checks in’ at Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport, their team gathers as much public information shared by the person through social networks as they can, to then surprise them with a personalised gift. Seems tis’ is the season for cheerful giving, with other bouts of generosity though social media like the recent We Are Social led Interflora campaign.

The McRib catches fire
McDonald’s recently announced over social networks that the processed-meat laden ‘McRib’ sandwich would be making its ‘triumphant return’. Despite the McRib’s cult following, it was met with a reaction in the twittersphere that left much to be desired. Spending $80,000 on a promoted trend announcing the revival of the McRib, a backlash against the sandwich ensued with top terms including ‘mcrib shame’, ’nasty’, and ’heart attacks’. Ouch.

New VisitBritain app ranks attractions by check-ins
VisitBritain has become one of the first brands to utilise Facebook Places in an application. Using the location based service, the app ranks the UK’s top attractions by the number of checkins, and allows individuals to see if people in their social networks have also checked in at the attraction.

Social media facilitates online political and topical debate
Last week saw a number of online reactions to current affairs, which reaffirmed social media’s status as a key channel in driving discussion, debate and protest.

Using the hashtag #IAmSpartacus and #TwitterJokeTrial, Twitter users launched a tongue in cheek backlash against the lost appeal of Paul Chambers against his conviction for ‘threatening’ on Twitter to blow up Robin Hood Airport in Doncaster as a joke. The online protest gained considerable momentum, with Stephen Fry offering to pay for all of Paul Chambers’ court costs.

When the Facebook presence for the British Monarchy was launched last week, it was met with a surge of ’Likes’ and thousands of comments. The page has fueled debate between monarchists and anti-royalists, as well as garnering quite a few comments in distain of The Dutchess of Cornwall.

Finally, and perhaps most seriously, a 240,000-strong Facebook mob have expressed a strong reaction to the recent interruption of the Remembrance Day silence by a Muslim group, with a barrage of racist comments before the page was then removed from Facebook.