Mobile Advertising – Has anyone got it right yet?

The future of internet use lays with Mobile.  Mobile internet usage is projected to overtake desktop internet usage by 2014. In 2011 over three quarters of a million people in Ireland had smart phones and that figure was rising sharply. With the the changing medium of internet use there is a scramble amongst the big players to try capitalize on the mobile advertising market. Facebook highlighted in their pre-IPO report that their inability to generate revenue from mobile users of the site was a major weakness. It seems that investors agree as their share price has tumbled since May.

mobile advertising, smart phone

Its not surprising that smart phone ownership is greatest amongst younger generations with the 25- 34 age bracket having the greatest share in Ireland.

Social media plays a huge role in mobile internet usage. But increasing numbers are using their smart phones to source information about products or services while on the move. Mobile search is different to desktop, with the majority of queries fulfilled within 3 hours.

Google dominates the mobile search advertising market with 95 percent market share displaying advertising within search results. With the smaller screen size the prominent position of these ads makes them appealing to advertisers. What I have found though is that there is a puzzling amount of companies using mobile advertising that direct traffic through to a non mobile optimised site?

Take for example my search here for pizza in Dublin. I am presented with two options. One is for Dominos pizza where upon clicking the Ad I am invited to download their App. The app is actually excellent and makes the ording process easy. Mizzonis on the other hand simply bring me directly to their standard website where ordering is close to impossible.

Mobile advertising, mobile search advertising

Giving the searcher to ability to click to call is another option which seems logical for local businesses. People are searching from their phone. Make calling as easy as possible. It is also an easy way to track sales.

mobile advertising, mobile search, advertising on mobile

So if mobile search is more likely to be localized what ways can advertisers take advantage of this? According to a study carried out last year by return2sender people are most open to receiving advertising based on location through SMS. Perhaps this is because right now there isn’t too many alternatives. People have concerns for privacy when it comes to opting into location based marketing systems that use push notifications based on location, but this is changing. The emergence of Chirp which uses digital sound bites to send information directly to phones could be of huge benefit to local retailers.

Mobile advertising, location based advertising

There seems to be an increase of mobile advertising directly on apps recently. The which is a progressive publication when it comes to technology have began to features adverts for other apps such as this one

ads on mobile, advertising on apps

But these seemed to be targeted based on the demographic of the apps users as opposed to being related in any way to location or what is being read. No doubt the future will offer the chance for a far greater degree of targeting based on location, content and behaviour. the question is who will be able to provide this package first?


Face Licking Good Viral Video Marketing

Video content is the fastest growing content on the internet. Lets be honest here despite the emergence of video sharing sites like Vimeo and daily motion, YouTube is still the king. Here are some astonishing YouTube video facts

  • In 2011, YouTube had more than 1 trillion views
  • 60 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute.
  • More video is uploaded every 60 days than the three major US television networks produced in 60 years.

viral video, online video content

Video can be a powerful way to convert leads into sales. According to Internet Retailer, 52% of consumers say that watching product videos makes them more confident in their online purchase decisions. According to Comscore, retail site visitors who view video stay two minutes longer on average and are 64% more likely to purchase than other site visitors.

All this is great if you already have a bunch of traffic to your site that you need helped converting. But How about actually reaching new people on a mass level using video?

Creating a successful viral video is something very difficult to do, but with all the social platforms available now it is far from impossible.

Take Little Baby’s Ice cream, who make hand crafted premium ice cream in Philadelphia and currently have four locations. They just created this really basic video… and in the last 24 hours …IT’S GONE VIRAL.

In the last 4 day it has received

  • 63,679 Facebook shares
  • 2,829 Twitter shares

Most of these peaking over the last 24 hours.

Have a watch of the video and see what you think! It’s good, but nothing special. I think the key lies in the screen shot. It entices people to find out what it is about. Make people curious and you are on to a winner! The video is short too which helps with peoples interest generally tapering off about the 30 second mark.

The SEO value that arises from all the blog posts alone is invaluable. But getting people talking about your product and creating a buzz is what will the clever makers of this video will be most happy about.

Just goes to show, if the holy grail of viral video marketing isn’t as out of reach as you might think

How Facebook Says We should Use Facebook To Market!!

There’s no shortage of blog posts and pages out there offering advice on how to use Facebook as a marketing tool. But what was news to me (just being honest) was that Facebook has a whole range of resources to give marketers advice on how to successfully use it as a marketing tool.

Facebook marketing advice, facebook guidelines, how to use facebook to market

  1. Facebook Studio:
  2. Facebook Success Stories:

In reality both of these resources are pretty similar. Facebook studio is meant to be from an agency perspective show casing successful use of Facebook to reach mass audiences and increase sales by millions of percents! There is quiet a handy feature on it though allowing you to search for campaigns based on location, category of product, and the type of Facebook feature used.

Facebook success stories is meant to provide page administrators “in-depth looks at successful campaigns, from inception to execution”. And sure, they certainly do give some great examples where big multi national companies have used Facebook well. But for the average Joe soap advertiser hoping to increase exposure and engagement and eventually sales, there isnt really a whole lot there.The success stories come from American express, At&T, Spotify, Huggies, Pepsi, Diagio, ticket master, 1800 flowers to name a few. For me as a marketer working with a very limited budget thats like saying to a small restaurant  “Why don’t you take a leaf out of Mcdonald’s book they seem to be doing quiet well” !!

Facebook marketing, Facebook big brand, facebook buduget

3. Brand Resources and Permissions Center: This section of Facebook’s guidelines helps campaign managers ensure that they are using the social network’s logos and other images properly. Nothing too exciting here

4. Facebook Demo Tool: Now this is quiet a nice little toy. It allows users to create ads and see how they will appear to others before actually going and paying money for the ads.  It works for sponsored stories and premium ads. The one thing I did find annoying though is the fact that it doesn’t self populate the demo page with your own page info even if you are logged in. Which means that you need to ad a cover photo, a profile photo etc if you want to see how your own page will look.

5.  Facebook Marketing Page: This is an actual Facebook page which you can “like” where they post tips and useful information on an ongoing basis. They just posted a link to pre- designed tent cards, posters and stickers which can be customized with your own URL to let people know about your Facebook page. Useful to hand out at events or have them in shop windows.

Facebook released some new marketing guidelines on Friday. Here’s a quick run down of what they said

  • The overall message is be short and sweet. Body copy should be no more than 90 characters, in an effort to grab users’ attention. Videos should be no longer than 15 to 30 seconds.
  • For videos, Include an eye-catching and action-oriented thumbnail to achieve high video play rates. Be engaging, but make sure the image you select relates to the video content and your brand.
  • For Photos Be engaging, since an eye-catching photo is essential to draw people’s attention. But make sure that the photo relates to the brand. Use a photo that is at least 168×128 and maintains a 16:9 aspect ratio. 
  • For questions only check the “Allow anyone to add options” box if you want to allow user generated responses and you’re positive it will result in a better post.

What is Chirp app and what could it mean for marketing?

British scientists have created a new social tool that could revolutionise the way messages are sent between smartphones. the tool has been invented by .Animal systems a spin off of University College London (UCL).

A new social tool has been invented that could revoluntionise the way messages are sent between smart phones. As we all know there are new tools created for the social environment on a weekly basis, but what made me take notice of this one is that they actually ran a story on our national news, which I wouldn’t exactly classify as tech savy! They actually chirped out a picture of one of our lovely news readers to anyone using the app.

What is Chirp App

It works by sending a digitized chirp, which has been likened to the sound a robotic bird would make, which then prompts other mobiles in reach to download a piece of content.

At the minute the content is limited to pictures, links to websites or 140-character messages but the company are confident that this will expand in the coming months. I think they key to this app though is that it can send data to multiple devices in one go with out the need for a wireless connection. This opens up the opportunity to chirps being broadcast on mass using mediums like radio and TV. This seems like another stepping stone to the integration of more traditional marketing channels with emerging digital technologies.

It could also be used for localized marketing with places like shopping centers sending out chirps entitling discounts and other incentives. The company claim that Chirp’s distinctive sound allows it to work at low volumes in relatively noisy locations such as pubs, clubs or busy streets.

Chrip, smartphone discounts, location based marketing

If the application takes off and there will surely need to be some kind of filter on what kind of chirps you want to receive. I read that chirps will be displayed on your smart phone on a time line similar to Facebook. But a swash of irrelevant offers and information bombarding your phone will only lead to the dilution of the applications potential and acceptance into the main stream.

chirp app, chirp offers, location based marketing

However if I can decide that I want to receive offers on based on criteria such as locality and types of products I think it would be something I would be very interested in trying. there is also the potential data that can analysed of people who opt to listen/look at and redeem chirps.

Certainly here in Ireland there has been a slow uptake of the potential of location based marketing tools like Foursquare and I have seen very little inspiring use of things like QR codes so I think I could be waiting a while!


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Winklevoss Twins Jump On The Venture Capital Band Wagon

Did you see Friday’s CNBC interview with the Winklevoss Twins about them becoming the latest people to jump on the venture capital tech band wagon?

Most of us would be most familiar with them from the film about Facebook, The social network. According to them, they were the ones who came up with the concept for Facebook (then called HarvardConnection) and had asked Mark Zucherberg to coding work on it for them. Of course the Zuch had other ideas and the rest is history.

winklevoss twins, facebook, start ups, mark zuckerberg

They were on CNBC to talk about entering the world of venture capital and how they were looking for early stage disruptive start ups for them to add …well capital as well as “considerable operational experience”.

Disruptive seems to be a sexy term thrown around quiet a lot now meaning anything from way a head of the competition to a brand new type of product.

I have to say the Winkle twins don’t come with a great reputation and didn’t really strike me as if they were at the fore front of the tech industry. Their answers seemed rehearsed and it is possible that they had a private game going on to see how many times they could fit paradigm shift into the interview.

In an absolute cracker of a line the former Harvard president Larry Summers said of the Twins

“One of the things you learn as a college president is that if an undergraduate is wearing a tie and jacket on Thursday afternoon at three o’clock, there are two possibilities. One is that they’re looking for a job and have an interview; the other is that they are an a**hole. This was the latter case.”

The two competed at the Beijing Olympics in rowing and no doubt have got huge drive. But they strike me as a pair that always got what ever they wanted, with their chiseled good looks and rich up bringing.

They studied economics at Harvard and then Business at Oxford so not exactly the tech whiizzes you might expect to become venture capitalists.

Having said that they learned HTML at an early age and had their own web company at 13. They did come up with some version of a social network that Facebook evolved from and as they said ” we were there from the start of Web 2.0″

Probably most importantly though is the boat load of cash they got from using Facebook. The New York Times reported that their equity of Facebook shares were trading at $76 per share in the secondary market, putting the total settlement value at close to $120 million.

Overall the interview didn’t reveal much other than the fact that the host were falling over themselves to lick up to the twins.

They said they couldn’t reveal much about their investments at this time, but admitted that  they were in talks with cloud computing company Yottabyte. Interesting the Twins were able to confirm that the company wasn’t named after star wars legend Yoda, but didn’t seem to be aware that Yottabyte was a unit of measurement in the computer world.

Venture capital, winklevoss twins, facebook, disruptive start ups


Path App…. What is it?

After reading about the second round of investment that Path had received yesterday I was keen to find out a bit more about the social platform I had only heard mummers of faintly in the background until now.

“The smart journal that helps you share life with the ones you love”

The tagline from the minimalist website doesn’t give too much away so I had to dig deeper to find out why investors like Richard Branson and Jerry Murdoch are willing to contribute to a $30 million round of investment, currently valuing the company at $240 million.

Path was Founded in 2010 by some pretty big hitters. Dave Morin (previously Co-Inventor of Platform and Connect at Facebook), Shawn Fanning (creator of Napster) and Dustin Mierau (co-creator of Macster). What that means is that its already older than Instagram…. and it hasn’t really caught on has it?!

Path app review, what is path, path investment

But after downloading the app which is a platform built entirely for mobile use I can see what loosened the investors pockets. Path aims to be a combo of Facebook, Instagram,Foursqaure and maybe Twitter all in one. There is also a strong focus on close relationships, (rather than being connected with every Dick or Harry you went to summer camp with) with Path initially limiting you to just 50 friends. This has recently been increased to 150 friends, but the emphasis is that this is a more personal social network than others.

Users can use take pictures directly from the app and use many of the filters that Instagram has become famous for. Part of the attraction to Facebook of Instagram was its ability to take photos directly from the social platform in as few steps as possible. Path allows you to do it in three steps, which is comparative to Instagram.

Users can also check into places or add location tags to any posts they create. They can also let people know what music they are listening to providing a link directly to both listen to the song and to buy it from iTunes.

And of course comments and updates can be provided too.

What I think is key to Path’s appeal is its amazing user interface design (UI) and user experience design (UX) where ease of use and navigation features strongly. The platform itself is slick and aesthetically pleasing and anyone that I have convinced to sign up immediately likes it and wants to use it.

Creating posts is incredibly simple: click on an icon at the bottom of your screen and six buttons fan out in a quarter-circle. From here you can write whatever’s on your mind whether thats tagging where you are, who you are with, what you are seeing, how you are feeling or what your listening to. These all appear on a single screen along with your friends’ updates.

What is Path?, Path app , Path user experience

I can certainly see why, with its slick interface and focus on a smaller network between closer friends, Path is appealing. Facebook is the master of social networks, but I’m not sure that it is suitable for certain types of posts that I may want to put up. Photos on Facebook tend to be mainly of people and usually of them having a good time. Photos on Instagram tend to be of things. These arty, beautiful photos of a tree you pass feel a bit poncy and unsuitable on Facebook, yet fit in perfectly on Instagram. In the same way I think in a smaller social network letting people know who I am with and what I am listening to seems more appropriate.

The problem with Path is though that it currently has about 798 million less users than Facebook. No one I know was on it until I convinced a few of my friends to try it out and the fact is a social network is only as good as its network. But with such an interest right now on sites with design at its core like Instagram and Pinterest it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if Path comes more and more to our attention in coming months.

If you are on Path let me know. My username is Barrytg! I have included a link to an excellent site about user design called Start ups this is how design works.

Also check out great blog by Shane O Leary.

Path app, What is path, path social platform, path investment

Winding Path to Success?

Ford Gambles On Yahoo To Help Them Go Electric

Every time I fill up my car petrol prices seem to have risen again. A gambling man might say that the time of the electric car could be upon us. Well Ford have certainly taken a bet on Yahoo as they choose them to launch their social media campaign which will spear head their efforts to try connect with the younger more affluent “millennial” market.

Yahoo themselves have been in turmoil in recent years firing three CEOs in five years who havent been able to figure out how to stop sliding revenues and to capitalize on the increasing online advertising industry.

Yahoo decline, Yahoo 1st quarter results, fiesta movement, plugged inGoogle’s annual revenue has increased from $22 billion in 2008 to nearly $38 billion last year while Facebook’s annual revenue has soared from $272 million to $3.7 billion during the same period. Meanwhile, Yahoo’s annual revenue has crumbled from $7.2 billion in 2007 to $5 billion last year.

Yahoo recently lured Scott Thompson away from eBays Inc.’s PayPal in the hopes that he could come up with a better plan. He was quick to lay off 2,000 employees, or about 14 percent of Yahoo’s workforce, earlier this month, and is expected to give his vision for moving Yahoo forward after their first quarter results are announced next week.

Ford’s vote of confidence will come as a welcome boost but only time will tell if it will pay off. The campaign will center around a “reality competition” which sounds remarkably like a mini version of the amazing race to me.

The web series named “Plugged In,” will show two-person teams in various locations following clues and eventually meeting in a Los Angeles finale to try to win a Focus Electric. The ten minute episodes will be broadcasted on Yahoo’s streaming video site starting in May.

plugged in, yahoo, social media, web series

John Felice, general manager of Ford marketing said “I’m not going to say that TV and traditional media doesn’t play a role, but this is going to be exclusively an online launch,” 

Sixty-one million unique visitors come to Yahoo each month to watch videos, Ford said on Tuesday, citing comScore data. Viewers of the “Plugged In” reality show will be encouraged to post comments and engage with the videos. Right now there’s no indication how they will be encouraged….

Its not surprising that ford has turned to social media again after previous success with its “Fiesta movement” campaign where they gave out cars to 100 people and asked them to complete tasks and chronicle their activities on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other websites for six months.

Ford spent $5 million on the campaign to promote the model, which was returning to the U.S. market after two decades, in the year before its 2010 launch. After that campaign, 60 percent of Americans said they were familiar with the Fiesta brand.

Ford highlighted the incredible return on investment at a shareholder meeting that year suggesting getting the same results from traditional media would have cost in the region of  $100 million.

But with so much content available out there now are people really going to tune into a declining web platform to watch some people compete for an electric car?! Especially the mid thirty something year olds with enough money to afford the $40,000 electric car that Ford are aiming at?

Well we will have to wait and see if Ford’s Yahoo gamble pays off.


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Are Google Changing The Rules Again?

As we all know Google is a money making machine. All the more surprising when their forth quarter earnings last year didn’t meet their forecasts. Especially when you consider that its core business, SEARCH, was at the core with an 8% cost per click decline!

Now perhaps advertisers are just getting better at their bidding..but bearing in mind that Bing, with less historical data at the disposal of advertisers, saw a 6% increase in cost per clicks, Google must be concerned.

So what are they doing about it?

Google plan to add to the existing broad, phrase and exact mach terms with near match, Near Match is designed to “enable you to safely extend the reach of your Exact and Phrase Match keywords to cover plural, misspelling, close rewrite, abbreviation and acronym variants only.” 

So what this means is that there is going to be a greater volume of keywords available to bid on, but with less data available on how to do it correctly. Unsurprising then that in some testing done  Google has suggested a 6.5% increase in click volume and a 9.8% increase in impression volume but also a 13% increase in click costs.

Could this be the perfect antidote for Google’s Fourth Quarter losses?

There’s nothing more that I can say, because quiet frankly google themselves aren’t saying anything at all except

“We actually haven’t announced anything on this and don’t have any more info to share at this time”

Google keeping quiet about new near match keyword term adwords




The Dangers Of Driving In Heels!! Pinterest Competition an online website which provides people with online insurance quotes is trying their hand at using Pinterest for a marketing campaign.

The company is trying to highlight the perils of driving in heels using this fun video which you can check out below. Its shows a (fairly) elegant women strutting her stuff a long the high street getting admiring glances from passersby. When she gets to her car though that’s when her troubles begin.

To be in with chance to win a pair of Butterfly Twist lightweight folding flat pumps (very desirable i’m told!)viewers are encouraged to post their own pictures of the most preposterous footwear on’s new Pinterest page.

The ad is clearly aimed to the female market which goes hand in hand with Pinterest usage which is strongly skewed to the feminine side!

According to’s research, British drivers have some odd, and unsafe, habits. Forty percent of women drive in heels, while 24% of women and 22% of men have driven with bare feet. (And 46% of drivers eat while driving.) Not everyone even gets dressed before they get behind the wheel: 25% have driven while wearing their pyjamas.

There only seems to be about 7 entries so far so it might be worth getting out the old electric picnic wellies!

Lets us know what you think!

Pinterst competition,