social media watch

Pinterest Experiments with Promoted Pins on Road to Monetization

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 20, 2013 03:52 PM

After four years of ‘pinning,’ Pinterest has yet to produce any revenue from its growing community, which reached 46.2 million people in July in the US alone, according to ComScore. But that may all be about to change. .

As its users move from web to mobile, the visual/social platform plans to experiment with "promoted pins"—an ad service that, for now, will be free and function very much like the promoted posts that run on Twitter and Facebook.

“Nobody’s paying for anything yet—we want to see how things go and, more than anything, hear what you think,” CEO Ben Silbermann wrote in a blog post. "We're going to start experimenting with promoting certain pins from a select group of businesses,” in search results and category feeds. "For example, a pin for a Darth Vader outfit from a costume shop might be promoted in a search for 'Halloween.'"Continue reading...

social media watch

Airbnb Debuts Hollywood & Vines User-Created Short Film

Posted by Alicia Ciccone on September 20, 2013 10:53 AM

After months of ongoing legal troubles and renter mishaps, Airbnb is working on taking a step back to focus on user experience. And its first initiative involved tapping its millions of users aroundthe world to create a first of its kind, grassroots campaign made entirely of six-second Vine videos.

The initiative, dubbed Hollywood & Vines, instructed users via Twitter on what to film, including paper airplanes flying and a boat on rough seas. The result is a four-minute short film, which debuted on the Sundance Channel, that not only captures immense creativity, but the adventurous spirits that embody Airbnb users.Continue reading...

social media watch

Go Ahead and Hit 'Like,' You're Protected by the US Constitution

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 19, 2013 08:10 PM

Free speech in the digital age has reached a new milestone, with a U.S. court ruling that Facebook "likes" are protected by the First Amendment. 

The ruling came through the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which sided with former deputy sheriff B.J. Roberts who was allegedly fired for 'liking' the Facebook page of his boss' opponent in a race for city sheriff. 

Chief Judge William B. Traxler Jr. said that the former deputy's action was the "internet equivalent of displaying a political sign in one's front yard, which the Supreme Court has held is substantive speech," according to the Wall Street Journal

The appeal and ruling stems from a previous ruling in 2012 that declared that 'liking' "didn't rise to the level of protected speech."Continue reading...

social media watch

After Hitting User Milestone, Instagram Looks to Ads

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 9, 2013 12:33 PM

Since Facebook bought it for $1 billion in 2012, Instagram has seen a lot of upgrades. The popular photo-editing app turned social network has since updated its editing abilities, added video and now has over 150 million monthly active users

And now, with more eyeballs on the app than ever, Instagram is planning on adding ads "within the next year," according to the Wall Street Journal. The brand will likely face similar challenges as Tumblr, which needed to find a balance between its 'cool' image and being functional after Yahoo bought it and moved forward to monetize it. 

"We want to make money in the long term, but we don't have any short-term pressure," Emily White, a Facebook transplant who now is Instagram's Director of Operations, told WSJ. White, however, has seen Facebook's complicated ad efforts backfire, so she plans to keep Instagram's entry "simple."Continue reading...

social media watch

Airbnb Directs Users in First Ever Film Made of Vine Videos

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 23, 2013 04:16 PM

Virtual vacation rental service Airbnb, recently in the headlines for violating local occupation laws, is looking to turn the tide with a cheery, travel-inspired short film made completely of user-submitted Vine videos.

The campaign from Mullen San Francisco aptly dubbed "Hollywood and Vines" invites consumers to submit six-second Vine videos inspired by prompts from the company.Continue reading...

social media watch

Katy Perry, Pepsi, MTV Team Up for Primetime VMA Reveal

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 22, 2013 11:12 AM

MTV's annual Video Music Awards are this Sunday, and the show, like every year, is reaching higher to engage and entertain fans, whether they're inside Brooklyn's Barclays Center or not. 

This year, pop singer Katy Perry has partnered with Pepsi for a socially-infused promotion built around her secret performance, where fans will get to choose which song she performs, and in turn, what her next single will be off of her new album. Pepsi, MTV and Perry will be giving out clues leading up to Sunday's performance to help fans unlock information, including song titles and lyrics. Fans can listen and vote for their song of choice via a microsite and using hashtag #KatyNow. 

The voting process will conclude with Perry's performance, which will take place somewhere outdoors in Brooklyn (also one of the clues).Continue reading...

social media watch

US Open to Display Real-Time Social Commentary on 50-Foot Digital Wall

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 21, 2013 10:43 AM

Furthering the relationship between social media and sports, the US Open, running Aug. 26 through Sept. 9 in New York, is erecting a 50-by-8-foot social media wall next to Louis Armstrong Stadium to display real-time social media commentary.

The wall, like a digital water-cooler, will aggregate posts from Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and put them on display for some 700,000 spectators expected to attend the tennis event. "It also connects our global fan base, combining them with the live event and the attendee," Nicole Jeter West, director of digital strategies and partnerships for the US Tennis Assocation, told USA Today.Continue reading...

social media watch

J.Crew Takes Fall Catalog Digital with Exclusive Pinterest Debut

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 19, 2013 12:32 PM

Despite being a late-comer to social media, J.Crew is adapting quite quickly. In fact, the retail brand is behind a social media first: debuting its Fall 2013 catalog on Pinterest.

The brand has posted a sampling of its fall offerings to the site, with the added ability to pre-order the posted looks through the company's personal stylists. The effort adds a whole new dimension to the retailer's more traditional sales approach and in turn may garner the brand more fans—and subscribers. 

While J.Crew may be the first brand to pull off such a feat on Pinterest—which has 70 million users, 80 percent of which are women—it's not the first fashion brand to use social media to give fans exclusive access.Continue reading...

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