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Social News Roundup | August 15, 2014


1. Facebook Releases Cross-Device Reporting for Ads

Facebook mobile ad

Facebook launches a new cross-device reporting feature that allows advertisers to see where a consumer saw an ad, the device they used and then the device they used to buy the product. Read more…

2. Pinterest Adds Vevo Music Videos to its Site

TwitterTrendsUK 730x373

Pinterest partnered with Vevo,allowing users to search for, share and watch Vevo videos on Pinterest itself. Read more…

3. Twitter Launches Data Visualization Tool For Commonly Tweeted Topics in the UK

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Twitter has launched a data visualization tool in the UK that shows exactly where, when and how often people interact when talking about certain topics. Read more…

4. Facebook Closes Acquisition Deal With Video Ad Tech Startup, LiveRail

Facebook LiveRail

Facebook’s acquisition deal with LiveRail is now closed. The video ad tech start-up could help Facebook better target the video ads it runs in the News Feed, and Facebook can help LiveRail with its own targeting of video ads across the web and mobile apps. Read more…

5. Twitter Adds New Features For Verified Users

twitter verified tick

Twitter added two new features for verified users. Verified users can now receive notifications when another verified user follows them, as well as the option to filter their followers so only verified users are visible on iOS. Read more…

6. Flipboard Is Introducing Video Ads in September With Chanel as an Initial Advertiser


Social reading service Flipboard will introduce video advertisements in September, and fashion brand Chanel is confirmed as an initial advertiser. Read more…

Social News Roundup | August 13, 2014


1. Pinterest Adds Messaging Feature

Pinterest Messaging

Pinterest now offers a chat feature designed for group messaging. The messaging feature is meant to encourage collaboration and discussion on the site. Read more…

2. Snapchat Is the Third Most Popular Social App Among Millennials

Millennials Mobile

According to a recent report by comScore, Snapchat is now the third most popular social app among millennials. Read more…

3. Twitter Launches Promoted Video

Twitter Promoted Video

Although the new feature is still in beta testing mode, Twitter has launched Promoted Video, which allows marketers to upload and distribute video content on Twitter. Read more…

4. Facebook Offers Can Influence Purchasing Decisions [Study]

Facebook Mobile2

Facebook offers have proven to be quite successful for local businesses. In a study by G/O Digital, 84% of those polled said that they believe offers or deals on Facebook are important to their in-store purchasing decision. Read more…

5. Australian Dominos Franchise Relying on Social Media and Web For 60% of Sales




Dominos Pizza

60 percent of total annual sales for Australia’s Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Ltd were through orders via social media, apps and its websites. Read more…

Social News Roundup | August 8, 14


1. Embedded Tweets Now Available on

Embedded Tweet

On, users can now embed tweets within another tweet. Read more…  

2. Facebook’s Ad Improvements are Driving Their Revenue Growth

Facebook Ads2

Facebook’s strong Q2 earnings are driven by new initiatives that include improving the quality and relevancy of ads and new tools like ad preferences or interest-based ads. Read more… 

3. Twitter Lets Advertisers Buy Against Campaign Goals


Twitter has released a new tool for advertisers that lets them manage their campaigns based on goals such as driving web traffic, app installs or increasing followers. Read more…

4. YouTube Acquires Video-Editing Startup Directr


YouTube acquires Directr, a mobile application that allows users to create movies from a mobile device. Read more… 

5. 13 Year-Old Came Up With an Anti-Cyber-Bullying Tool

Cyber Bullying

13 year-old Trisha Prabhu has come up with a cyber-bullying tool called Rethink, which would filter messages that may be hurtful to others and ask posters to rethink the contents of their messages. Read more…


Social News Roundup | August 6, 2014


1. Schedule Instagram Posts with ScheduGram


ScheduGram allows users to pre-schedule Instagram posts and manage multiple Instagram accounts through one interface. Read more… 

2. Twitter Partners With Puma to Test “Flock to Unlock” Advertising Program

Flock of Birds

Twitter has partnered with Puma to launch a new advertising program, “Flock to Unlock.” The idea behind the program is that a deal will be “unlocked” only when a certain number of followers retweet a particular message. Read more… 

3. Facebook Adds Ad Scheduling to Power Editor

Power Editor

Facebook added a new feature to its Power Editor that gives advertisers who use lifetime budgets the ability to schedule hours during which their ads should or should not run. Read more… 

4. Twitter Tests Showing Tweets From People Your Friends Follow 


Twitter’s latest test involves showing tweets to users from accounts their friends follow. Read more…

5. Nielsen Data: Mobile Devices and Social Networks Are Making TV Better

Watching TV

Social media is changing the way we learn about TV shows and how we watch them. Not only does it affect the consumer experience, but it also has proven to be a valuable source for advertisers to tap into social conversations. Read more… 

6. Google to Recognize Emails That Use Special Characters

Gmail updates

Google has become the first email provider to allow people to create email addresses using letters with accent marks and characters outside the Latin alphabet. Read more…

Social News Roundup | August 1, 2014


1. Snapchat Valued at $10 Billion


Despite the fact that Snapchat never has made any revenue, the company is valued at $10 billion. Read more… 

2. Facebook’s Project Launches In Zambia

Facebook continues to bring the Internet to those who are not yet online by expanding their project to Zambia. Read more… 

3. Twitter Experimenting With New Hashtag Feature

Twitter Hashtag

Twitter is experimenting with a new feature that would help teach users the context behind trending hashtags. Read more… 

4. Snapchat For Adults: Confide


Geared towards professionals, Confide is a new messaging app that offers encrypted texts that disappear. Read more… 

5. Social Sharing Makes Events Seem More Real

Social Sharing

Sharing news on social media enhances an event’s emotional tone and impact. Sharing positive life events makes you happier and sharing negative news makes it “more real.” Read more…

Weird Al's Digital Masterclass - A Case Study on "Mandatory Fun"


This July, “Weird Al” Yankovic’s “Mandatory Fun” became the first comedy album since 1963 to reach number 1 on the Billboard 200. It’s a momentous achievement for any artist, but how he pulled it off is even more impressive. Using some original content, smart partnerships and a Q&A on an unlikely source, Weird Al was able to consolidate his scattered base and get old fans interested in his work again, even as he gained new ones

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Staying relevant over a 30-year music career is no easy task, and the rise of Internet culture posed unique challenges to Weird Al’s parody-heavy style. In fact, the challenges were so great that many speculated he would not be able to stand out in a digital culture awash in YouTube parodies of every big musical hit. What was largely overlooked in these arguments was Weird Al’s influence on parody culture, and when Al decided to release eight videos from his album, he found that many sites were willing to fund and distribute videos from someone who’s viewed as an industry pioneer. This grew Weird Al’s reach while giving credibility to these sites, and helped to maintain enthusiasm throughout the campaign.

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The music video for “Tacky,” Weird Al’s first single and a parody of Pharrell Williams’ “Happy,” was distributed by the podcast and video entertainment network The Nerdist. Featuring cameos by well-known comedians including Jack Black, Margaret Cho, Aisha Tyler and Kristen Schaal, the one-take video got people talking and widened the song parody’s appeal, and the addition of modern comedians showed that Weird Al was more than just a “legacy” act. The presence of other comedians also increased the range of conversations about the video, as evidenced by the following meme making it to the front page of Reddit the next day.

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Building on the momentum of “Tacky,” Weird Al released “Word Crimes” the next day on his personal Vevo account. The song, a parody of Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” also made it to the front page of Reddit. Not wanting momentum from these two songs to slow, he took part in a Reddit AMA later that day to talk about his new album, which helped sustain interest over the remaining six days.

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His candor with fans struck a chord, and the following releases of “Foil” (a parody of Lorde’s “Royals,” distributed by CollegeHumor) and “Handy” (a parody of Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” distributed by Yahoo!) also made it to the front page of Reddit.

Following four days of parodies, Weird Al released videos for his original songs, which benefitted from residual interest and additional distribution from sites such as Funny or Die and Popcrush. But the campaign saved the best for last with “Mission Statement,” a pastiche of Crosby, Stills, & Nash that skewers corporate-speak. This piece was notably successful because it was distributed within a native ad on the Wall Street Journal’s website, reaching a part of his audience that may have been unreceptive to his work at the start of the campaign but were willing to give him a try because of his current relevance. Yankovic then connected with them using a message they can relate to in a style that they recognize. 

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Getting positive reaction from the Wall Street Journal and Reddit in the same digital marketing campaign is no easy task. We all know how hard it is to make the WSJ audience crack a smile, but it is equally hard to crack the front page of Reddit during a digital marketing campaign. Reddit users tend to have an anti-corporate view and are against the idea of giving free advertising to companies (some Redditors even pointed this out in threads about Weird Al’s videos). The fact that Yankovic’s videos achieved the front page repeatedly is a testament to the video’s virality as well as their ability to connect with the audience, and Weird Al would not have succeeded without his unique distribution.

Over the course of his eight day album promotion, all of Weird Al’s videos were accessible from his website no matter where they premiered, making it a great source of referral traffic to his partners (who received royalties from each view), and driving cross traffic between sites. Yankovic may have been forced into this route because his record company chose not to fund the videos, but in the end the model worked to his advantage. While other artists such as Beyoncé kept with traditional wisdom and consolidated her brand, Weird Al exploded his across the digital landscape, leveraging the “link economy” to benefit his publishers while mitigating production costs. Looking back, it’s a great example of bucking tradition and sticking to what you do best (in Al’s case, connecting people around a common, if a little silly, idea), and the campaign is already proving to be one of the most successful of the year. All in all it’s pretty surprising, especially when you consider that this is the man who gave us “I Want A New Duck.”

Keep being weird, Al. 

Social News Roundup | July 30, 2014


1. Facebook Is Forcing Users to Use Messenger App

Facebook Messenger App

Users will soon be required to use Facebook’s Messenger app in order to chat directly with their Facebook friends on mobile devices. Read more… 

2. LinkedIn’s Mobile App Gets a New Profile Look

LinkedIn Mobile App

LinkedIn revamped its mobile app by displaying more relevant information on user’s profiles based on how much time users have to use the app. Read more… 

3. Facebook Shuts Down Gifts Service

Facebook Gifts

Facebook is retiring its Gifts service and refocusing their efforts on helping businesses and developers drive sales on the web, mobile and directly on Facebook. Read more…  

4. Instagram Releases New Messaging App, Bolt, for iOS and Android

Bolt Instagram

Instagram has unveiled Bolt – a “one-tap” messaging app for iOS and Android that allows users to send their friends a photo or video that disappears once it’s been read. For now, Bolt is only available in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa. Read more… 

5. eMarketer Poll: Email More Effective Than Social Media, SEO and Content Marketing


In a report by Gigaom, 56% of respondents said that email was their most effective digital strategy for customer retention. 37% of the respondents cited social media, and 32% rated content marketing as the most effective. Read more… 

6. Vocalist Emeli Sande Asks Fans on Social Media for Help on Her Next Song

Emeli Sande

To find inspiration for her next song, Emeli Sande is turning to her fans on social media. Read more… 

7. OK Cupid Admits to Manipulating Its Social Network for Social Experiments

Online Dating

OK Cupid admits to manipulating customer data to see how users of its dating service would react to one another. Read more…  

Social News Roundup | July 25, 2014


1. Infographic On What, Where, and Why People Post On Social Media

SocialMedia Posting

On social networks, users love to share photos and opinions, and the majority of users share content to support causes that they care about. 66% of total social media sharing is from the Facebook iPhone app, and posting daily activity updates on Twitter is the most popular activity on the social network. Read more…

2. Foursquare Debuts a New Logo and App

Foursquare Rebrand

Foursquare is rebranding and will move away from “checking in” towards a more “personalized local search.” Part of Foursquare’s rebranding includes a new logo and redesigning its mobile app. Read more…

3. LinkedIn Launches Direct Sponsored Updates

LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn takes a big step in monetizing their feed by launching direct sponsored updates, which allows advertisers to test, tailor and target messages. Read more…

4. Instagram Leaks a Snapchat Rival?

Instagram Bolt

Instagram prematurely leaks Bolt, a “one tap photo messaging app.” Read more…

5. Southwest Airlines asks a father and his kids to de-board.

Southwest Tweet

Due to a tweet by the father, a Southwest boarding agent asked him and his kids to de-board the plane until the tweet was deleted. Read more…

Social News Roundup | July 23, 2014


1. Pinterest Ranks High In Customer Satisfaction


When it comes to user satisfaction, Pinterest ranks as the top social media site. Read more…

2. Twitter Is Making Improvements to Direct Messages

Twitter Mobile2

Twitter plans to update its iPhone and Android app by allowing users to access their entire direct message history on mobile. Read more… 

3. Social Campaign Promotes Boys Wearing Pink

Boys Wear Pink

A new social campaign is working to show support for boys who wear pink to promote acceptance and individual expression. Read more… 

4. Facebook Rolls Out “Save” Feature

FB Save Feature

Over the next few days, Facebook will unveil a new save feature for all users via the Web, iOS and Android. Saved items are listed by category, and users can swipe right on each item to share it or move it to an archived list. Read more… 

5. 55% of Couples Used a Hashtag During Their Wedding


More than half of newlyweds (55%) used a hashtag during their wedding, and 28% updated their Facebook status within hours of tying the knot. Read more…

6. LinkedIn Acquires B2B Marketing Platform Bizo for $175 million  

LinkedIn Bizo

LinkedIn has acquired Bizo, a marketing platform that helps B2B marketers increase their reach across the web. Read more… 

7. mCouple Keeps Track of Your Loved One’s Smartphone Activity 


The mobile app mCouple gives users access to their significant others’ location, Facebook and text messages, photos, videos, Skype activity and even voice conversations. Mutual consent is a requirement for downloading the app onto another person’s phone. Read more…






Social News Roundup | July 18, 2014


1. Twitter Tells Marketers to Focus On Everyday Moments

Everyday Moments

Major events such as the World Cup provide great ways for brands to connect with consumers, but once those events are over, consumers have since moved on. For other content opportunities, marketers should focus on “Everyday Moments” to spark daily conversation and engage users with the right message. Read more… 

2. Facebook Tests Buy Button

FB Buy Button

Facebook is testing a new feature where people on desktop or mobile can click a “Buy” button on ads and page posts. Users can purchase a product directly from a business without having to leave the social networking site. Read more… 

3. Twitter Shuts Down APIs That Allow People To See the Number of Active Twitter Users


Twitter has shut down multiple developers for accessing its API to report the size of their user base. Read more… 

4. Facebook Offers Free Wi-Fi to High School Students 


As part of a pilot program, Facebook is offering free Wi-Fi to high school students. Read more… 

5. There’s a Movement by Vine Users to Call Out Trolls

Vine Trolls

People who stir up trouble and irritate others across the web are labeled trolls, and victims of trolling on Vine are striking back. Viners aren’t afraid to ask the Vine community to report users and will go so far as to call out trolls in their very own videos. Read more…

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