5 Ways Brands Can Use Animated Gifs

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GIFs have been around for 25 years, but they're exploding in popularity in a web that caters to visuals and content curators. As once stated in a New York Times article, "GIFs function as glorified emoticons" with the ability to punctuate a moment.

The ad:tech blog has summarized a special GIF-format report from 360i that explores why GIFs are enjoying a renaissance, how to create successful GIFs and five ways brands can use them to their advantage.

Check out the full details here.

by Steve Hall    Mar-29-13    
Topic: Brands



Eric Koston Wreaks Havoc, Catches Baby in Nike Ad

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We suppose it's all well and good for a brand such as Nike to hook up with an athlete such as skateboarder Eric Koston but all we get after watching this Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners- created Nike Koston 2 ad is that, well, skateboarders are punks who break the law.

Yea, Koston does a solid by catching a baby at the end but before that he's all about mayhem and destruction. Is this what Nike really wants kids doing when they strap on a pair of Koston's? And, yes, we understand the ad is the stuff ove roverblown legend but still.

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by Steve Hall    Mar-25-13    
Topic: Brands



How to Hire the Perfect Inbound Marketer

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Are you a little bummed out at your 0.0000000001% response rates for your online ad campaigns? Angered over Mozilla and others turning cookies off by default in their browsers (so you can't properly target your potential customers)? Or maybe your miffed your "blind buys" result in your brand appearing on questionable sites?

Yea, the current online advertising model in totally broken. You need to check out inbound marketing. Better yet, you need to hire an inbound marketing expert. That may seem daunting if you don't truly understand inbound marketing but, never fear. HubSpot has published a pocket guide to hiring the perfect inbound marketer for your agency.

Get with the program. Inbound marketing is where the puck is headed. Don't get left behind. Download this guide and learn how to hire the perfect inbound marketer.

by Steve Hall    Mar-25-13    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Tools



Ford in Hot Water Over Ads Featuring Bound, Gagged, Barely Dressed Hotties

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An ad campaign created by an Indian agency for Ford has come under fire for its creative approach. Three ads, which tout the brand's Indian-made Ford Figo, feature cartoon characatures of women (and men) bound and gagged in the vehicle's trunk.

Ford has issued an apology which, in part, reads, "We deeply regret the publishing of posters that were distasteful and contrary to the standards of professionalism and decency within WPP Group. These were never intended for paid publication and should never have been created, let alone uploaded to the internet. This was the result of individuals acting without proper oversight and appropriate actions have been taken within the agency."

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by Steve Hall    Mar-25-13    
Topic: Brands, Policy, Racy



How Brands Can Monetize Their Content

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Consumers are bombarded with more commercial messaging than ever before from countless sources, but it's also easier than ever to tune ads out. People fast-forward past multimillion-dollar commercials or subscribe to web-based, commercial-free TV platforms like Netflix. They view more content on the web than ever, but online ads have become virtually invisible to them.

New advertising concepts like native monetization are revitalizing online advertising. Connections between brands and potential customers are more effectively fostered when they add value to the user experience, rather than distract or interrupt. While traditional contextual targeting looks at the entire page (an increasingly noisy signal), native monetization can be relevant to the micro-context: the section, the paragraph, even the sentence. This is native monetization at its most effective - and often it's just a humble link.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 7-13    
Topic: Brands



How Inbound Marketing Helps CMOs Give CEOs the Metrics They Need

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A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, Chief Executive Officers hired Chief Marketing Officers to make sure all their ads looked pretty and their television commercials were shot by really cool Hollywood directors. And maybe they hoped for a few sales leads as well, but that was asking a lot.

Flash forward to today, and CEOs are demanding much more from their CMOs. Both because they need to, and because the tools and services available to a CMO make it possible.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 1-13    
Topic: Brands, Opinion, Tools



10 Examples of Brands Newsjacking the Academy Awards

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So while Advertising Age is critiquing the $1.6 million commercials that ran during the Oscars last night, we thought we'd take a look at something a bit less expensive and a bit more inventive -- the real-time newsjacking that occurred last night during the broadcast.

Newsjacking refers to the practice of capitalizing on the popularity of a news story to amplify your sales and marketing success. The term was popularized in David Meerman Scott's book Newsjacking: How to Inject Your Ideas into a Breaking News Story and Generate Tons of Media Coverage.

Check out the full list here in an article we wrote for HubSpot.

by Steve Hall    Feb-25-13    
Topic: Brands, Events, Social, Television



Infographic Summarizes Burger King Hack

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Honestly, we're surprised we haven't been flooded by agencies, metrics companies, social media pundits and research firms shamelessly latching on to Monday's Burger King Twitter hack for a little bit of publicity. But one company jumped on the trendlet. Social media monitoring company Synthesio cobbled together a few stats from Monday's shenanigans.

- Burger King gained 30,000 new Twitter followers (which everyone seems to be cheering)
- There were over 450,000 tweets on the topic
- There was a 300 percent increase in Burger King-related conversation

But here's the thing. Where's the stat that says Burger King Realized an X% increase in Whopper sales on Tuesday?

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by Steve Hall    Feb-21-13    
Topic: Brands, Research, Social



Designer Hijacks Client Site Over Non-Payment of Invoices

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Web designer Frank Jonen, who did web design work for Fitness SF, claims he wasn't paid properly so he hijacked his client's site replacing it with a damning message telling Fitness SF customers the company doesn't pay its bills.

This might be the perfect example as to why no brand should completely hand the keys to its website over to a third party without retaining at least enough control to access the site and correct situations like this. Alas, not everyone knows how to manage a website. And besides, if Fitness SF hasn't paid its bill then this is probably what they deserve. We just hope Jonen requested payment several times through normal channels before resorting to this method.

Below is the full text of the website message.

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by Steve Hall    Feb-14-13    
Topic: Agencies, Brands



Target Turns Tweets Into Everyday Collection Runway Show

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Well this is pretty interesting. On January 24, Target had a live fashion show which involved models reading tweets from people while holding products from Target's Everyday Collection. To participate, people could tweet their witty commentary with the hashtag #everydayshow and the models would stut thr runway and read the tweets. You can see a highlight reel below.

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by Steve Hall    Feb- 7-13    
Topic: Brands, Events, Social










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