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The RAAKonteur #1 – All you need to know about Social & Digital this week

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23 July 2010

Welcome to the first edition of The RAAKonteur. Every week we will compile all the best bits of news from the ever-changing media world. Which new Social Media tool is worth knowing about? Which campaigns show a great understanding of the media shift?

With a bit of our own analysis thrown in, for free.

You can subscribe here.

Pushing products with Social Media

Old Spice’s new tv advertising campaign won its agency Wieden + Kennedy a Grand Prix in Cannes. Still, the sales of the tainted ‘man freshener’ apparently went down 7% year on year.

This week they launched an amazing earned media version of those commercials. For a few days they scripted and filmed reactions to actual Twitter messages, both from high profile Twitter influencers as well as punters. A perfect implementation of traditional campaigning with what Brian Solis calls connecting to ‘an audience with an audience’. We have a sneaky feeling that if they continue this way, it will re-position them as a younger brand and eventually increase the sales.

Apart from the 40-odd million YouTube views (!), a most exciting by-product of that campaign was the Old Spice Voicemail Generator. Interestingly, this wasn’t part of the agency’s plan. It was devised and developed in a few hours by a few guys on Reddit who got excited about the YouTube videos. Not every brand manages to engage people in such way and Utku Can has a good post about how this is an example of the importance of making awesome stuff.

From Crisis comms in US to Champion comms in UK

If Old Spice does not shake your doubt about the effectiveness of Social Media in raising the bottom line, then how about this.

Last winter Domino’s Pizza in the US had a nightmare when videos appeared on YouTube showing an employee sticking cheese up his nose and then putting it on a sandwich that was to be delivered to a customer. They were slow to react at first, but as this article explains, Domino’s did a whole lot right to fight the crisis that threatened to engulf them.

But Domino’s UK have gone on the offensive. Mashable reported that the company has increased its pre-tax profit by nearly 29%, which equates to £17.5m (roughly $26 million). The pizza retailer attributes social media initiatives and its Foursquare promotion for the gains.

Is PR starting to eat King Advertising’s cake?

While the Old Spice story is an example of the ad industry starting to understand ‘sociall’, last week Wolfstar’s Stuart Bruce claimed in a talk at the CIPR that the PR world is best placed to ‘do Social Media’. That’s true from a building relationship point of view, but if anything the PR industry will have to become more creative (or team up with people who are).

And PR moguls Edelman seems to agree. They’ve gone all creative themselves and created an Augmented Reality app for Ben & Jerry’s. From the demo video (terrible voice-over by the way) it looks on the gimmicky side of things. But we can only salute Edelman (and Ben & Jerry’s) for a move like this.

Mine is bigger than yours…

Looking for an audience with an audience? A while ago we mentioned why we thought Klout is a better indicator of Twitter influence than Edelman’s Tweetlevel or Hubspot’s Twittergrader. Because unlike many other services, Klout takes into account the difference between the amount of people you follow and those that follow you. Plus your follower’s Klout scores as well as the amount of actual Retweets and mentions you receive.

Hootsuite – our favourite Social Media deck – this week introduced a way to filter Tweets by Kloutscore. And amazingly Dirk Singer of Rabbit Agency tweeted that a client has worked Klout scores into a contract!

PS: Another influence service we think is on the right track is trst.me.

Rabble rousing crowds and Cameron’s “Big Society”

The Treasury announced they will crowdsource ideas with the Spending Challenge website on to how to cut the massive government deficit. Unfortunately the quality of many of the public suggestions and malicious attacks forced them to take down the public ideas.

One commentator opined on the suitability of crowdsourcing for this type of public endeavor and referred to Churchill’s statement that “the best argument against democracy is to ask the opinion of the average voter”. Others (including us) felt that if you ask the right question to the right crowd using the right tools, crowdsourcing can indeed deliver good results.

Co-write the best book about marketing ever

Another example of Collective Engagement. Earlier this year, smart man Bud Caddell wrote one of the best posts about the changes in the advertising/marketing industry. He’s become even smarter now and used the social funding site Kickstarter to raise cash for a book he wants to put together.

We love Kickstarter as site, but Caddell has smartly taken the project further and has made his backers and integral part of the project. If you pledge $100, you become part of the Editorial Board. So if you want to be involved in his Bucket Brigade project, get out your wallet too. You have until tomorrow morning to join.

F@*ck me!

“Twitter is the fastest growing video referrer and its users watch a stream for 63% longer than a Google user.”

The social media word is full of eyewatering stats – like Facebook crossing the 500 million user mark last night – but this one in Judy Sim’s excellent post of why social media has one up on newspapers, was next level.  Why could that be? She says: “Trust: we don’t send our friends crap to read. Relevance: we’re more likely to have common interests with our social network and therefore our links are more likely to be relevant.”

New member at RAAK

We now have a real Creative Technology Dude in our midst. This will now allow us to react quickly with Beta tests & incorporate technology even more into our creative thinking.

His name is Adriaan Pelzer. He dreams in code. He launches websites using Terminal. He reads API documentation for breakfast. But more importantly, he makes music, films and understands creativity. Say hi to him on Twitter and read his full profile.

Tech insight of the week

The Facebook API suite has recently undergone quite a few major changes, one of which is a revision of the way extended permissions work. Countering one of many criticisms against Facebook’s approach to security, the new model requires apps to tell Facebook which permissions Facebook needs to get from the user on the Application’s behalf. Facebook then asks the user for these permissions in the connection dialog.

In the past this was not necessary for a basic set of user interaction, and thus breaks some old applications, unless the application developers implement the new model. This has caused much confusion and a bit of an outcry on the developers forums. In retrospect though, this is a very good decision, one of the few that Facebook will celebrate in future. Read more »

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