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Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

Companies using social media to connect to people and places need to support the multiple tools and methods that their audiences use. However, if you were to ask 10 media savvy users how they send an update with a photo attachment, you’d probably get more than 10 answers.

LocaModa now supports even more interaction models via mobile or web using email, txt, Twitter and more….

For example, we support all the strange things that mobile phone email clients do, such as unusual MIME structures, or including the numeric mumbo-jumo that many carriers have implemented and include in their email subject lines. So friendly.

If a message includes a URL or short URL which looks like it might point to an image, we can display that image (assuming the message passes our filters and the image is moderated).

We also support a whole host of photo sharing apps on Twitter clients including yFrog (which also supports video), TwitPic, Lockerz, TweetPhoto, Instagram, img.ly, Lightbox and can display JPEG, PNG, BMP, TIFF and GIF images.

We also get requests from customers that want their audiences to be able to email directly to local screens. Every LocaModa-enabled screen has a unique address such as JOESBAR. This address can also be used as an email address for example JOESBAR@Wiffiti.com. In this case, any text in the email’s subject line can be copied into the body of the Wiffiti message. That method can also be used to email a photo to a screen, with the photo’s caption being the email subject line.

Some of this might seem a little geeky, but we now enable networks with over 30,000 venues and our platform has also enabled 80,000 Wiffiti screens for events, as well schools and churches, so we’ve given up being surprised by what our customers want to do with our platform.

If there’s a feature that you want and we don’t support, we’d be happy to consider it for our roadmap (but if it’s too esoteric you might need to bring your checkbook!).

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Once upon a time, American’s didn’t believe in text messaging. Believe me, as a newly arrived Brit, obsessed with mobile tech, my American colleagues used to say I was insane to think a small screen could ever be as interactive or engaging as the Internet. They told me on numerous occasions that what works in Europe or Japan is irrelevant in USA.

I’d seen the roadmaps of the then leading handset companies as a founding exec at Symbian. I believed (and still do) that the human requirement to find the best communication tools, be they cave paintings, morse code or text messages, transcends even the weirdest cultural differences between USA, Europe and Asia.

OK – I was right on that one.

And they do say history repeats itself.

So here we are some 10 years on, and yes, many people are talking about social media, but not so many companies are actually practicing what they preach.

So will the messaging market once again be tipped by Simon Cowell? I think so.

Last week, in his new hit reality pop culture show, The X Factor, he announced that the TV audience (once passive) could start voting via Twitter.

This is more than a sign of the times, it’s really smart.

Voters will have to follow the show before they can Direct Message “DM” their votes. This will create waves of trending mentions (even more than it currently gets) in the “Twittersphere”. That will in turn help promote the buzz around the show.

Mark my words, here we go again. Once a “cool” technology goes mainstream, companies have to do or die.

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Escaping multiple snow storms this week in Boston, I’ve joined James Davies, Chief Strategy Officer, Posterscope on a week long series of thought leadership talks in London with leading agencies about the opportunities and lessons around social media and OOH. James and I had jointly written a paper on the subject which you can download here.

I get pretty inspired when I meet clients and get insights about local issues/challenges/opportunities, and this trip is no exception. Happily, I’ve also been more than a little suprised by the fast pace, innovation, responsiveness and attitude that I have experienced here.

My big takeaway is that the DOOH market in USA is not just attracting global attention, it’s also encouraging global companies to participate and innovate in the market (LocaModa’s partnership with Fujifilm Imagetec is one example). Companies far and wide are inspired by what’s going on in USA and are doing something about it. In many cases, they can move faster – their markets have less baggage, less fragmentation and often (as is the case with Posterscope) already have excellent tools to simplify the DOOH media planning and buying process.

I’ve also seen some beautifully executed DOOH here – for example in major underground stations. My gut feel from just a week in my old stomping ground is that the UK DOOH market is primed and ready to move.

USA DOOH is leading by example – now we need to make sure we continue to innovate, execute and drive a global industry forward.

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Thanks to our partners Fujifilm Imagetec for this great photo of LocaModa’s Foursquare and Twitter in Japan.

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Click picture to enlarge

Not all screens are created equal. I’m not talking about the whiz-bang of 3D or electronic ink, or flexible LEDs or other tantalizing technologies. I’m talking about the connective tissue that relentlessly reduces the friction for media to find a screen near you.

The money is in the HOW and WHO controls the access rights for media to find us.

On private screens, such as PCs or mobile screens, users’ access to media is broadly via search or browsing links – in other words it’s driven by a user’s INTENT. A marketer cannot force their way in front of a user’s face without hoping to influence their intent or be paying (e.g. Google or Facebook) for the results of their intent.

On a public screen, such as a place-based digital screen, access to media is broadly via a user’s “MOBILE CONTEXT” – mobile in this sense is not a technology but a behavior – shopping, meeting, traveling, drinking, waiting etc. Subject to a user’s mobile context, marketers can force their way in front of the user’s face BUT that does not give them permission to go any further. There is no automatic path (push) to a user. The user has to have the intent to pull the marketer’s message in.

Connecting these two paradigms; intent-based screens to mobile-context-based screens is how to unleash the latent value in the DOOH ecosystem.

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