onechocolate loves… the view from the US

Our colleagues in onechocolate’s San Francisco office selected this week’s round-up of inspiring PR and digital marketing campaigns, smart new apps and cool events… 

#1 #IllRideWithYou

I'llridewithyou

After the tragic events in Sydney this week, it’s heart-warming to see social media be a cause for good as Australians banded together to support Australian Muslims and immigrants against any possible backlash following the siege. It started when one woman on a train removed her hijab (possibly out of fear), and the lady next to her encouraged her to put it back because she would accompany her.

#2 Enhance, enhance, enhance  

facebook logo

Facebook recently announced that the company will be auto-enhancing photos that are uploaded via its iOS application. While it will also soon launch on Android, it’s nice to know that we’re no longer restricted to the dimly lit, crummy photos so many of us take on our first try. So get to enhancing!

#3 Filters for all

Instagram filters

For the first time in 2 years, Instagram has added five new filters to its service. As more people continue to share their stories and experiences across social channels, it’s clear that there’s still a great deal of competition among the top names. Given Facebook’s new auto-enhance feature, it’s nice to see that the more these social channels improve their platforms, the more their audiences benefit. 

#4 15 Digital Trends to Watch in 2015

Trends to watch 2015

This week, PR News released its thoughts on the 15 digital trends to watch in 2015. The top three on the list: Near-field communications, Internet of Things and Wearables. All of these sound like strong possibilities for the coming year, and we’re excited to see where we land come December 2015.

#5 ‘Culture’

Cultur

Merriam-Webster has named “culture” as the 2014 Word of the Year. According to PR Daily, “The word was chosen based upon its high search rankings on the dictionary’s website, which gets around 100 million page views every month.” The Oxford dictionary, on the other hand, named “vape” (referring to the smoke produced by an electronic cigarette) as the Word of the Year 2014. It’s nice to see we’ve moved passed ‘selfie’!

#6 The Sony hack

 Sony Pictures

 

It’s not something to love, but following the hack of Sony, it’s frightening to see what people can do to large corporations from so far away. The U.S. is now saying that North Korea is responsible, and there are even some industry leaders who think the media was wrong to report all of the gory details of the breach. Could it have been prevented with stronger firewalls and data encryption? Perhaps not naming files “Usernames&Passwords” is one place to start. It will be interesting to see how other organizations react to similar breaches in the coming years.

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CES 2015: Ones to Watch

CES-Logo

 

With only a few weeks left until CES kicks off for another fabulous unveiling of innovative gadgets and gizmos, we thought we share our hitlist of what we’re most looking forward to seeing at the show.

What will be the hot trends for 2015? Wearable tech has been the buzz word of 2014 and is still booming. We have whittled down the list (over 600 exhibitors in this category), to find our favourites in wearables from improving communication, to child monitors, to the best in smart sports tech. So, in no particular order…

#1 Make touch make sense

Novitact designs smart apps and products using the sense of touch. Feeltact, the first wristband to transmit information by vibration, allows users to communicate efficiently and discreetly in ANY situation. It could be used as health alarms, for sports and fitness or even for professionals working in highly crowded, noisy or risky environments.

#2 Looking after your loved ones

Designed with kids in mind, Child Angel is one of the smallest child tracking devices available today. It provides safe and stable location monitoring by combining GPS, GSM and WiFi technologies, helping you find your child wherever they may be via a smartphone/tablet. You can even connect multiple devices to keep track of the whole clan. Best of all, it’s splash, sand and sticky proof!

#3 Simplifying everyday tasks

Hiris is a customisable device that tracks all your activities. With its stylish, wearable design, you can monitor your daily steps, your workout during your training or your last trick on your snowboard. It is also a useful tool for those in need of medical attention: it can be used to measure fever, to monitor potential falls, and alert you as necessary. You can even use Hiris for physiotherapy and rehabilitation as you receive tactile feedback on your training and development. What we love is that you don’t just have to wear it on your body as it can be placed anywhere, and you can use multiple devices.

#4 Quantifying your health

Qardio offers a way of tracking health that fits effortlessly into your life. This simple-to-use device allows you to follow your heart and get actionable insights to improve your well-being. It also provides a smart blood pressure monitor that helps you understand your blood pressure levels, as well as being a medical grade ECG. Users can access all metrics in one place. You can also share your information so that families can be assured with updates on their loved ones’ health.

#5 For the potential athlete in all of us

Jaybird Sport’s new product, Reign, lets you see how and when you get more active over time. Reign knows how much sleep you need tonight to be fully rested and at your best. Incredibly, it also knows when your body wants to be active! Reign comes with a 5-day plus battery life and a soft silicone band that shapes to your wrist, which is both fashionable and super comfy.

We will be visiting CES from 6th-9th January. If you would like to meet with our European / US Directors, please email nadiap@onechocolatecomms.co.uk.

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Weekly social scoop

Latest news and developments on YouTube, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn – just in case you missed it! 

Weekly social scoop

#1 LinkedIn redesigns its home page

By CBR

  • LinkedIn has announced that it will be redesigning its homepage in an effort to improve user experience
  • The changes will include a dashboard where users will be able to see how many people have viewed their profile and a ‘Keep in Touch’ box, which will enable users to comment on posts, while also suggesting people to connect with

#2 Facebook quietly dumps Bing

By Tech Crunch

  • It appears that Facebook will be developing its own search tool, after it quietly parted ways with Bing this weekend
  • Facebook has reportedly been developing its own search tool for a long time in an effort to give users the ability to filter through old comments and other information from friends

#3 Could Facebook be getting a dislike button?

By BBC News

  • During a recent Q&A session, Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, said that Facebook is thinking about adding a “dislike” button, to allow users to dislike others’ posts
  • Zuckerberg said that it had been one of the most requested features the social network has received, but that they are trying to find a way to make sure it does not become a way to demean people’s posts
  • According to Facebook, 4.5 billion “likes” are generated every day

#4 Facebook wants to help you stop drunk posting

By Independent

  • Have you ever posted a picture whilst drunk and woke up cringing the next morning? Well, Facebook is considering inventing a tool which would prevent this happening
  • Facebook’s Artificial Intelligence Research department chief Yann LeCun explained to Wired that the “artificial assistant” would say “Uh, this is being posted publicly. Are you sure you want your boss and your mother to see this?”

#5 G+ allows users to choose infinite gender options

By TIME

  • Google+ is following in the footsteps of Facebook to allow users to choose any word they like to describe their sexuality
  • The new Google+ options will be “Male”, “Female”, “Decline to state” and “Custom”. If “Custom” is chosen, a field will appear where users can choose whichever word they like

#6 YouTube testing out GIF maker

By IT Pro Portal

  • YouTube has opened up a new beta programme which lets users transform lengthy videos into six second length clips
  • YouTube has also included a caption option to allow users to create humorous memes
  • Anyone interested in participating in the beta phase is invited to put forward how they will use the GIF maker and the options are “create GIFs to promote my channel”, “allow fans to interact with my videos” or “Other”

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onechocolate loves… the view from Germany

Our colleagues in onechocolate’s Munich office selected this week’s round-up of inspiring PR and digital marketing campaigns, smart new apps and cool events…

#1 And so this is Christmas…

We are at that time of year again, where we can hardly breathe for Christmas campaigns. Although we love getting into the festive spirit, it’s increasingly hard for brands to stand out from the crowd. However, EDEKA, the leading German supermarket corporation, has released a brilliantly different video which shows cashiers playing Jingle Bells on their scanners, much to the delight of the unsuspecting customers. We love this feel good clip, which has also been picked up by a radio station, Antenne Bayern, to get companies to mimic the supermarket by creating their own Jingle Bells tune – with car sellers honking horns or employees from a fiscal authority stamping.

#2 Grumpy Cat

Grumpy cat

Yes it is true – the grumpiest of all cats has made it; from funny pictures on Facebook, to memes on imgur and reddit, to her own merchandising products, fan pages, two books(!) and even a TV movie. One could say grumpy cat has become too mainstream and now uses her beloved grumpiness just to make money and sell cat food. But who wouldn’t take the money? There are estimations that grumpy cat has earned 100 million dollars so far – although its owner said the number is inaccurate. We wonder if grumpy cat smiles a little when she´s thinking about out-earning Hollywood stars, including leading ladies Nicole Kidman and Cameron Diaz.

#3 Who says German politicians are humorless?

Environmental protection and sustainability are always hot topics in Germany. New videos to promote these vital issues have recently been released by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment – and we’re enjoying its new tongue-in-cheek approach. In one of the clips, a daughter gets home and catches her parents ‘in flagrante’ in the living room. With both parties pretty embarrassed, she turns off the light and leaves. The voiceover tells her ‘thank you’, for turning off the light and being ‘green’. In another clip, the husband gets attacked by zombies, while his wife just closes the window – and the voiceover again thanks her for protecting the environment.

#4 Zombie fever

Zombie

Also on the subject of zombies, we love the branded content campaign created by two German movies students at Filmakademie. In the interactive online game, the player has to help the protagonist who has been bitten by zombies by completing various challenges. The player is able to change the plot of the story depending on how well they play. The game provides a very different brand experience and is a great example of good storytelling. Try it out!

#5 Looking back on 2014 – with Facebook

Facebook

The end of the year brings the inevitable onslaught of countdowns of the most popular trends for 2014; on TV channels, radio stations and, of course, Facebook. It’s not too hard for Facebook to decide which trends and topics shaped 2014; they just have to look into their data pool, to see which topics and events had the deepest impact on the 1.3 billion Facebook users. From the ice bucket challenge to the World Cup – what was the most popular this year? Have a look for yourself and explore the trends 2014.

#6 Instagram works – even in Germany

Instagram

Although Instagram passed the ‘new kid on the block’ status some time ago, there are still many brands in Germany that are skeptical about the value Instagram can bring to their communications strategy. Our suggestion is to focus on the growing number of up-and-coming young instagrammers on the site who are becoming increasingly influential and making a living through their beautiful pictures. One of our favorites is Michael Schulz, who is based in Berlin – which is also the main topic of his photos. His account is a great example of how Instagram can help build brands through influencer relations – even in Germany.

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Five of the best B2B infographics – and what you can learn from them

As we’ve previously emphasised, infographics should be a part of every B2B digital marketing strategy. When done well using interesting and useful data, they achieve higher engagement rates than text alone, are highly shareable, will boost your SEO and are highly measurable for ROI.

But with an increasing number of brands jumping on the infographic bandwagon, how do you make the most of your budget and ensure yours stands out from the crowd? A feat that can be particularly tricky for B2B tech brands that need to convey complex and often quite technical messages. Here are a few of our favourite B2B infographics and smart tips about what makes them work.

#1 Make it shareable

IBM

One of the most shared B2B infographics this summer was ‘The Four V’s of Big Data’ by IBM. The subject matter, which could have been incredibly ‘techy’ and long-winded, is simplified and made accessible to all and is therefore incredibly shareable. Your infographic should contain a balanced mix of useful data and eye-catching visuals to drive online engagement among a B2B audience. 

#2 Tell a story

Madison Logic

Putting data and information into perspective is key to creating a successful infographic. Including plenty of stats and pretty images without any context won’t necessarily help you drive user engagement on social media. However, adopting a step-by-step approach in which the reader is led on the journey on a specific subject, can go a long way to capturing people’s attention. Madison Logic’s infographic on the B2B buyer’s journey is a good example of this done well.

#3 Use a clever idea that captures the imagination

Evolution of technology

Created by Emily Kesselman at Feathered Hat Studios

Using a quirky comparison or an interesting angle can be effective with consumers and business executives alike. The infographic above captures the reader’s attention with a clever explanation of technology evolution and its impact social businesses. We love how the content is explained through an analogy, making the subject matter easy to understand, whilst at the same time injecting personality into the design, which helps it to stand out from others.

#4 Tie it in with your brand (but not too much)

Domo

By all means convey your brand’s personality through the infographic, but don’t stamp branding all over it. Using your brand’s colours is a great way to do this without it screaming ‘marketing’! A great example is Domo’s ‘Data Never Sleeps 2.0’ infographic; the interesting content and eye-catching graphics encourage the reader to check out the website link at the bottom, without it appearing too branded. Another thing we love about this one from Domo is that it was a follow-up to a successful infographic released a few years ago – remember to use success stories as the basis for more content further down the line.

#5 Keep it simple

Smart insights

And last but not least, don’t forget simplicity! Creating a good infographic is all about presenting an idea in a clear and straightforward way, like First 10 and Smart Insight’s useful infographic on ‘The Content Marketing Mix’. Don’t make things too convoluted and don’t try to explain too much in the one infographic. To maximise audience engagement and share-ability, your infographic needs to be easy for the reader to absorb in a short amount of time.

If you are interested in infographic creation and bespoke design services, contact us for more information at hello@onechocolatecomms.co.uk.

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