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Our monthly roundup of inspiring PR and digital marketing campaigns, smart new tech and cool events…

#1 BigStig

Stig

So the long awaited Top Gear is returning to our screens with the new line-up of presenters previously announced. To mark its comeback, the BBC unveiled a giant Stig in and around central London… unmissable! The iconic Stig racer was positioned outside the BBC Broadcasting House and Top Gear shared the news on Twitter, saying: “They call him #BigStig”.

#2 I can see a rainbow

rainbow

‘Red and yellow and pink and green, I can see a Rainbow, I can see a Rainbow too…’ Whether it is eyelashes, hair, bagels or even cheese toasties, it’s all about the rainbow right now. Inspired by the unicorn trend last year, people are going crazy on social media for everything rainbow and we love it!

#3 McDonald’s embraces VR for interactive farm fun

Mcdonalds VR

Fast food joints traditionally have a hard time with PR, however McDonald’s is teaching everyone a lesson, using VR to improve public perception of the brand by educating about the brand’s farming practices. The experience will take customers on a tour of factories and farms (they know cute animals are always a winner), and you can even drive a virtual tractor! This is a grand example of a heavyweight chain using the latest tech developments to stay ahead of the crowd, and marketers embracing all that VR can do; pull your audience into your world and give them an experience they want to tell other people about.

#4 Digital make up

Beauty brand Benefit UK is doing a sterling job in leading influencer-style content, with their recent plans being to turn their staff into vloggers. Content which will be managed through video platform ‘Seen It’, will offer customers a digital experience of visiting the make-up counters themselves. Benefit has also hinted of a leap into promoting fan-generated content, which we can’t wait to see!

#5 Unboxing Chewbacca 

This month there has been one video that everyone has been talking about. In case you haven’t seen it, this unboxing of a Chewbacca Mask smashed Facebook Live’s viewing record, with over 50 million views in just a few days! The 4 minute clip shows mum Candace in hysterics at her most recent purchase, a Chewbacca Mask. And there is nothing more catchy than laughter. Of course, this provided a perfect product opportunity, with Chewbacca Masks sales rocketing. PRs around the globe quickly got in touch, and since going viral, Candace has been asked to unbox more Star Wars merchandise, given tons of store gift cards, and was even invited to Facebook HQ. In the days when exploding watermelons, ambiguously coloured dresses and sneezing pandas sent the internet into a craze, PR’s need to take these opportunities seriously and act quickly.

#6 World’s first language-translating earpiece

Waverly Labs have created the world’s first an in-ear translator, named The Pilot. How it works is that you would wear one earpiece and the person you are trying to communicate with would wear the other. From there, speech will be translated into the other person’s language, which they’ll hear in their earpiece. The earpiece pre-orders will cost between $129 – $179. When it officially launches, the retail price will cost $250 – $300. Definitely an incredibly innovative piece of hearable tech!

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Weekly social scoop

Latest news and developments on social media including Twitter, Facebook, Google and Snapchat – just in case you missed them…

social media

#1 Twitter rumoured to relax 140-character limit by excluding photos and links
By The Telegraph:

  • The social media company is making a major shift in how it counts characters in posts, giving users more freedom to compose longer messages
  • The change could happen in the next two weeks, although the decision isn’t yet public
  • Links currently take up 23 characters, even after Twitter automatically shortens them. The company declined to comment

#2 Facebook introduces interactive Live Video map
By The Drum:

  • Facebook has begun the roll-out of a global interactive map designed to visualise the location of live video feeds from strangers around the world, marking the latest move by Facebook to put video at the heart of its business
  • A clickable screen allows browsers to choose from a live ranking of the most highly rated feeds on a left-hand column or travel the planet by clicking on a random blue dot from others around the world
  • It is intended to improve navigation and search by enabling people to more readily source content from new broadcasters, without having to directly follow that individual person or group

#3 Twitter is introducing a Periscope live-streaming button in its mobile apps
By TechCrunch:

  • Twitter is fighting back in the streaming war with an integration between Periscope, its live-streaming platform and the Twitter mobile apps
  • As part of a gradual rollout, a small number of Twitter for Android users have a ‘Go Live’ button alongside existing media options, such as record video or attach image, when they create a tweet
  • Those with the app already installed on their phone are directed to Periscope when they click the button, all others are sent to the app store where they can download the live-streaming app
  • Beyond redirecting users to another app with this integration, it’ll be interesting to see if Twitter explores a more seamless, straight-to-broadcast, option inside the Twitter app in the future — because Facebook is already doing that

#4 Google’s latest app, Spaces, aims to simplify group sharing
By The Verge:

  • The company has announced Spaces, an app for Android, iOS, and the web that’s designed to make it easier to share in group conversations without hopping between apps to copy and paste links
  • Spaces comes with built-in Google Search, YouTube and Chrome, looking partly like an everyday messaging app, but also sees some influence from Google+
  • The app’s search feature lets you pull up previous images, videos and comments that have been sent along

#5 Facebook testing tool that lets users reply to comments using videos
By The Drum:

  • Video commenting is being tested in several countries on Facebook’s iOs and Android apps as well as in-browser
  • Select users have been served notifications highlighting the new feature and are being given the option to click the camera icon to add video comments
  • Facebook has confirmed that video comments won’t autoplay and will appear in exactly the same way on the platform, as videos published via status updates currently do
  • The move is part of Facebook’s aggressive video strategy, which it has been giving greater focus to of late with the roll out of real-time streaming service Live, tweaking its algorithm to favour live videos, pushing them to the top of newsfeeds

#6 Snapchat called out over skin-lightening selfie filters
By The Drum:

  • Snapchat has found itself at the heart of social media criticism over its use of the Coachella skin tone lightening filter, which reportedly ‘whitewashes’ facial features to give those with darker skin a lighter complexion
  • This has sparked criticism from some who believe it reinforces stereotypical notions of beauty
  • Such concerns haven’t dented the popularity of the filter, as many share their pre and post filter looks on social media

 

 

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Killer B2B PR tactics for lead generation

B2B PR Tactics for Lead Generation

Do you struggle to prove ROI from PR due to a lack of qualified inbound leads? Never fear, as we delve into B2B PR tactics to improve lead generation outcomes.

The trouble is there are so many B2B lead generation tactics out there – email marketing, infographics, eBooks, personalised offers, social media posts – it’s hard to know exactly where to invest budget and how to slice the pie to achieve the highest impact on your company’s bottom line.

At onechocolate, we believe in integrated PR and social campaigns that close the loop with lead generation activities and create results that match business objectives.

Post PR content on landing pages with clear CTAs

Posting PR content like top tips pieces, blogs, opinion articles, whitepapers, infographics onto landing pages with clear a Call-To-Action (CTA) and simple forms for downloading the content, can drive conversions and increase sales leads. The more landing pages the better – according to a recent marketing benchmark report surveying HubSpot’s 7,000 customers: “Companies see a 55% increase in leads by increasing landing pages from 10 to 15. The more content, offers and landing pages you create, the more opportunities to generate more leads for your business.”

Create engaging lead gen content through news hijacking

Hijack the news agenda and trending conversations your customers are having on social media to draw up engaging content your customers would love to read. Speak the language of their peers and end customers. Be the trusted advisor. Use PR comment from interviews and news releases for social media posts, email marketing and eBooks, integrating digital tactics into the overall PR campaign.

For example, if your business delivers improved telecommunications, device management or network planning, why not use the Annual Ofcom Communications Market Report to draw up a blog, an eBook and social media posts with your CEO’s opinions on the smartphone society?

PR optimisation for SEO

Everyone knows SEO is essential – but it’s essential for PR content too. Align your headlines to what your audience searches for. Avoid corporate speak and run with the rule: less is more, keep it simple.

Buying cycle on all channels

We know you know the buying cycle well and we know you know your audience… but sometimes it’s easy to forget this needs to flow through all of your PR content and social media posts too. It’s not just everyday tweets about media coverage or industry articles, it’s taking the buying cycle a step further and doing things like direct influencer engagement on social networks. We’re often working with spokespeople to post comments in appropriate industry LinkedIn groups and on their own LinkedIn Pulse pages. The aim is to deliver the PR message directly to prospects and lead them to click onto the company’s website to find out more – driving traffic from a range of sources.

Measurement should underpin everything

There’s no point even embarking on any of these B2B PR tactics for lead generation without linking your deliverables to real KPIs and business objectives. You can’t learn what content works to drive sales if you can’t see the results on different channels. It’s the “test, test and test again” method. We’re looking to see how PR outreach drives website traffic more and more, like seeing if paid social boosts traffic, or if a story on the Guardian’s website is a bigger driver.

Don’t be afraid to refine your strategy and explore new B2B PR tactics for lead generation over time.

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Weekly social scoop

Latest news and developments on social media including Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr – just in case you missed them…

social media

#1 New report finds young users aren’t fans of targeted social ads
By Econsultancy:

  • New study by Harris Poll for Lithium Technologies reveal marketers that are using targeted social ads to reach members of these groups may be shooting themselves in the foot
  • Out of 2,000 consumers, 74% took issue with marketers targeting their social feeds and 56% said they were cutting back or stopping use of social platforms because of these ads
  • Facebook grew its ad sales by a whopping 57% in the first quarter of 2016

#2 Pinterest brings back affiliate links
By Business Insider:

  • Pinterest is bringing back the top way that its users make money from the site, affiliate links, which gave Pinners a cut of the sale when other users bought one of the products that they had posted
  • Pinterest says it decided to bring affiliate capabilities back because it has strengthened its spam technology enough to weed out bad behaviour and it wants to reward its users
  • Pinterest depends on its users to create all the content that it can sell ads between, so it needs people willing to put a lot of time into its platform, and the company admits that it wasn’t doing enough to support the people it relied on

#3 Facebook trialling music video product to rival YouTube
By The Drum:

  • Facebook is testing a music video product, Slideshow, that allows users to share photos and videos, now with accompanying music from Warner Music Group
  • This year has seen Facebook bolster efforts to host video and music content within its walls, as Zuckerberg announced in the company’s earnings call: “We’re at the beginning of a golden age of online video”
  • In December last year Facebook announced a partnership with music service, Deezer, in a deal that will allow the social network giant to integrate music sharing into the news feed

#4 Zuckerberg denies Facebook news bias
By The Drum:

  • Mark Zuckerberg has spoken out against allegations that Facebook suppressed right-wing news stories from its Trending Topics section, and has invited leading conservatives to discuss the matter in the near future
  • The Facebook chief took to the platform last week to say his company had found “no evidence” that claims made by former employees to Gizmodo around the social network’s censorship policies were true
  • The move to address the issue follows on from a letter sent to Facebook by senior senate republican John Thume, requesting Zuckerberg reveal the processes by which Facebook selects content for its Trending news bar by the end of this month

#5 Tumblr invites users to play around with experimental features with Labs addition
By The Drum:

  • Tumblr has invited its 110m registered users to play around with a variety of experimental features still in beta testing in a bid to iron out any kinks before the changes are enacted for real
  • Amongst the initial batch of features available for testing are graphs displaying posts’ re-blogs, advanced scheduling options for queue posts and the ability to colour coordinate posts with an individual’s Tumblr theme
  • These amount to a little more than tinkering around the edges of the existing Tumblr interface, however, those hoping for a more extensive overhaul of the micro-blogging platform have to wait a while yet

#6 Facebook, YouTube and Twitter sued for ‘failure to remove homophobic content’
By The Telegraph:

  • France’s largest anti-racism group, its Jewish students’ union and a gay rights movement are suing three social media networks for failing to remove racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic content
  • The groups found 586 examples of such content and only 4% of this hate content was removed on Twitter, 7% on YouTube and 34% on Facebook

 

 

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Weekly social scoop

Latest news and developments on social media including Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn and Twitter – just in case you missed them…

social media

#1 Instagram pilots dedicated brand pages with direct contact button
By The Drum:

  • Instagram is piloting a number of updates that will let companies build dedicated brand pages complete with a contact button for users to get in touch by email or obtain directions
  • Built along similar lines to Facebook Pages, the profiles will be categorised by type and utilise the familiar blue tick verification system, pilfered by Facebook from Twitter several years ago, to add a degree of trust
  • However, the system is only being trialled amongst a limited subset of users for now and companies are limited to engaging directly with the public via likes, comments and links

#2 Snapchat users paying up to thousands for custom filters to celebrate life events
By The Guardian:

  • Snapchat is offering to tailor its social media service for specific users so that they can celebrate a special event e.g. prom, birthday or a wedding on the service in their own unique way and tied to where the event is taking place
  • Businesses are piling in too and Snapchat appears to have found a way to earn revenue directly from everyday users by getting them to pay to create their own content
  • Snapchat confirmed that weddings, events and local business ads are the most popular on-demand geo-filters so far

#3 LinkedIn in talks with major publishers to launch Facebook-like Instant Articles feature
By The Drum:

  • LinkedIn is attempting to strengthen its news offering and is reportedly in talks with a number of major media outlets to introduce new publishing features to dramatically boost page loading times for articles
  • LinkedIn has increasingly worked to position itself as a leading platform for business news and in doing so purchased Pulse, a news reader that is now embedded into its main platform
  • If publishers were to partner for the Instant Articles-style feature, the site would significantly strengthen its reputation as a go-to source for business news

#4 Yubl social media app overtakes Skype, Pinterest and LinkedIn in UK App Store rankings
By Mirror.co.uk:

  • A new app called Yubl has claimed fourth position in Apple‘s UK ranking of free social networking apps, just 10 weeks after launching on the App Store
  • Yubl users can create animated and interactive posts by combining text, stickers, video, photos “buttons” and then share their posts with groups of friends
  • The app won’t carry intrusive advertising now or in the future, the company said

#5 Twitter launches Connect tab to help you find accounts to follow
By The Verge:

  • Twitter is revamping its tabs at the top of your feed today by launching Connect, a new feature aimed at helping you figure out which accounts to follow
  • The Connect tab will pull together follow recommendations based on where you’re located, who you already follow and major events happening on Twitter
  • As Twitter continues to fail to appeal to a mainstream audience, Connect is likely an attempt to make it easier for users to figure out what to do when they’re on Twitter

#6 Snapchat invites UK users to share an election selfie with ‘I voted’ filters
By The Drum:

  • Voters were encouraged to share election day selfies via a series of filters designed to show they had paid a visit to their local polling station
  • In 2014, the Electoral Commission had to issue a warning against voting booth selfies, for fear of voters posting them on social media and threatening the secrecy of the ballot

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