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Going native: the right way forward for advertisers?

5 Nov, 13 | by Deji Sodipe, Digital Intern

Earlier this year we introduced the concept of native advertising, which in the context of the advertising world, is still a relatively new concept. In the space of a few years it has developed from a burgeoning and beneficial idea to what many believe will be the advertiser’s tool of the future. Initially picked up and tested by leading digital platforms, such as Google and Youtube, native ads are now a totally integrated part of online browsing.

Social networks in particular have assimilated native ads more than any other platforms, specifically with Facebook’s suggested posts and Twitter’s promoted tweets and users:

native1

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Redefining impact – altmetrics now on journals from BMJ

21 Oct, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

In growing numbers, scholars are moving their daily work to the Internet. Online reference managers, such as Zotero and Mendeley, have grown in popularity, the latter claiming to store over 470 million articles (substantially more than PubMed). In addition, as many as a third of scholars are on Twitter and a growing number cultivate scholarly blogs.

As a result of the increasing scholarly use of social tools like Twitter, Facebook and Mendeley, there is a need to track scholarly impact on the social web by creating new filters. The call for new metrics has been answered by a group of researchers who have dubbed the movement as  ‘altmetrics‘.

In support of this year’s theme for Open Access Week, ‘redefining impact’, BMJ has introduced the Altmetric widget across all articles published in BMJ’s portfolio of journals.*

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Are brands the new publishers?

2 Aug, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

Traditionally, brands have interrupted consumers to talk about their product. Whether we’re reading a magazine, watching TV,  or browsing online, the advert that inevitably appears is an unsolicited marketing message from a brand that we may or may not care about.

Consumer research often highlights that most of these marketing messages are indeed irrelevant to our interests and needs. Coupled with the increasing control a consumer has over the marketing they receive (opting-out of telemarketing and direct-mail; unsubscribing from email; skipping TV ads) this has become a cause for concern for brands.

The Red Bulletin from Red Bull

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How can publishers take advantage of Pinterest?

19 Apr, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

This week, Nature Publishing Group announced they had reached 35,000 followers on Pinterest. Given that they had just 127 followers at the end of 2012, this is phenomenal growth. How did they achieve it, I hear you ask? When asked the secret to their success on Twitter, @NatureBlogs replied: “best tip is to continuously update the boards with new images. We make daily (if we can) updates”.  So, given the effort and resource needed to maintain this level of engagement, what can publishers expect in return? Do follower numbers translate into traffic to journal websites?

NPG on Pinterest

Over a year ago, I wrote an introductory blog covering the basic mechanics of Pinterest and the impressive growth it had experienced:  it is still the fastest standalone website to surpass the 10 million mark. Now with more than 48 million users, Pinterest is one of the most popular social networks on the web. So, how can publishers get a slice of the action?

Add keywords

Pinterest is a popular site but it’s not nearly as saturated as Google search results. While it’s true that most people prefer to browse Pinterest than search it, there are a significant number who want to discover something that hasn’t already been repinned many times, and search is where they do it.

With every image you post, you should include a clear description that people will enjoy reading. The key seems to be mentioning a keyword that reveals few results in Pinterest but is likely to be searched for often. This can help get the exposure necessary to be repinned and therefore reach more people.

Similarly, you can also take advantage of Pinterest’s popularity to get your Pinterest page into Google. Link to your pinboard from your website, during online promotions and from established social media channels to improve the chances of it showing up in Google search results.

Repin others

In a similar vein to Twitter’s retweets, build awareness of your Pinterest account by repinning others. Use both the search function and categories to find other pins relevant to your boards. When you repin another’s pinned picture, they will receive an email notification. Hopefully, they will follow the links to your account and see where you pinned their picture, giving you an opportunity to have them look through your boards. The obvious need here is to have boards that interest your new visitor to the point that they consider following your links to the site you are promoting.

Comment on pins

When you hold your cursor over a pinned picture you see the “comment” tab, the “repin” tab, and the “like” tab. When you make a comment is stays with the picture, so whatever you say has the potential to catch people’s attention and drive traffic. You might even consider some kind of “call to action” (if it’s appropriate). Again, Pinterest will notify the person who pinned the picture that a comment has been made and give them a link to respond to your comment.

Check your stats

Pinterest introduced a web-based analytics tool in March, allowing site owners to track users’ engagement with their sites on the social network.

The free tool allows site owners to track the number of pinners and pins collecting material from their sites, and the number of repinners and repins those initial pins received. Site owners can also track total impressions and reach on the network, as well as referral traffic, both in clicks and unique visitors, sent back to their sites. This is key in understanding your audience’s likes/dislikes, which will feed into the future selection of content to add.

Publishers with successful Pinterest profiles

Reaching digital natives with native advertising

12 Apr, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

In last week’s blog I looked at the innovative ways that publisher’s are monetising their products in the face of a shifting digital landscape. One of the most ground-breaking moves has come from Forbes Media, who opened up their content creation platform, not only to external authors but also to marketers and brands.

This idea of interweaving promotional content with both editorial and user-generated content (UGC) is central to a much larger concept gaining traction in the online advertising community; native advertising.

But what is it? One of the biggest advocates of native advertising is Dan Greenberg, CEO of Sharethrough (the agency that runs Forbes Media’s ‘Sponsored Stories’). When asked for a definition, Greenberg offers the following:

It refers to digital ad formats that integrate more seamlessly (yet transparently) into website aesthetics, user experiences and/or editorial in ways that offer more value to both advertisers and readers. Put simply, native ads follow the format, style and voice of whatever platform they appear on.

For a more in depth discussion of Forbes’ collaboration with Sharethrough, take a look at the video below:

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Followerwonk: analyse your Twitter followers for free

8 Mar, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

If you’re looking to connect with people in a particular niche on Twitter, Followerwonk could be just the tool for you. It’s currently free to search Twitter biographies, compare users and analyse followers of multiple accounts, so try it out before subscriptions kick in.

What can I find out about my followers?

By linking a Twitter account to Followerwonk, users can run a number of different analytic reports for free. Below is a list of the most useful for strategically growing a following and connecting with ‘influencers’ in a specific area:

  • Influence scores – how influential are your followers?
  • Follower counts – how many followers do your followers have?
  • Mapped locations – where are your followers located? (see below) more…

Vine: the next generation of animated GIF?

8 Feb, 13 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

At the end of January, Twitter announced a new mobile service called Vine, which allows users to create and share looping videos.

“Like Tweets, the brevity of videos on Vine (6 seconds or less) inspires creativity,” the company said in an official blog post. “Now that you can easily capture motion and sound, we look forward to seeing what you create.”

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RebelMouse vs. Storify – what’s the difference?

30 Nov, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

I’ve already blogged about RebelMouse, the self-proclaimed “social front page”, that pulls in user content from social sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Until it was created,  social data had no central hub and tended to get drowned out and lost as soon as it was published. RebelMouse filled a gap in the market by providing one central location to capture a user’s online output. However, RebelMouse is no longer the only product in this space. Storify launched its redesign last week and many have commented on its similarities.

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BrainSpace: building a social brain

23 Nov, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

BrainSpace, a potential solution to outdated search technology, was demonstrated at this year’s SpotOn London. Launched by PureDiscovery, a big data startup, its goal is to let users find information that matters without having to actually look for it. Instead, the technology is designed to bring data directly to the user.

 BrainSpace is already well-established in the world of archived content; it powers semantic search across more than 350 million documents for LexisNexis. PureDiscovery, however, has set its sights much higher. By not only determining relationships between documents, but also between between people, and people and documents, it is gearing up to create a ‘social brain’ which will revolutionise search. more…

Crowdbooster: when is your best time to tweet?

15 Nov, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower

In a very popular ‘Assessing social media impact’ session at SpotOn London this week, a number of social media tools were discussed. Twentyfeet cropped up (mainly due to the visibility of its automated weekly updates on free accounts) along with Klout and PeerIndex, with varying degrees of enthusiasm from participants.

The most interesting take-away for me personally was an introduction to Crowdbooster. It’s a free tool that lets you pull together statistics for one Twitter and one Facebook account. (If you want to add multiple accounts, you’ll need to pay).

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