January’s Best of the Web

It feels like we haven’t had one of these for ages. Almost as if it hasn’t been since last year…(ba dum). It’s been a kickstart to the New Year and there’s been a tonne of great stuff on the web over the last month. So here’s our favourites.

Genius Guerrilla Marketing

A great way to advertise and generate brand awareness. Fancy seeing french fries on the road or an innovative smoking warning ad? Well just for you, here they are:

Creative Public Interest Ads

Some of these really are visually clever and compelling to look at, but the main thing is that they make you think.

ACAT Campaign Against Torture: Back of seats

Crisis: Snow Bed

Belt Up

Facebook You Vs Real You

We’ve got to say, we really like some of the illustrations on comicalconcept, but none more than the Facebook You vs Real You. Because we all know it’s true.

28 Ways to Make Meetings More Interesting

Meetings are always daunting whether you’re interviewing someone, being interviewed yourself, of just having a business meeting. But have you ever tried drawing enormous genitalia on your notepad and discreetly showing it to the person next to you? Or how about chewing tobacco throughout, or showing up with a shaved forearm?

As I thought, these ideas probably haven’t crossed your mind (and shouldn’t be taken seriously!), but if you did want tips on how to make a meeting more interesting, then click here for some more ideas!

September’s Best of the Web

It’s been another exciting month at The Gapster, and while we’ve soaked up every last bit of sunshine before it goes away completely, we’ve also been scouring the internet for some unique, innovative and creative things to fill our ‘best of the web.’ So let’s take a look at what the summer brought us!

Stand under my umbrella ella ella eh eh eh

No nothing about Rihanna, but more about umbrellas! Of course we experienced our drizzles during the summer but wouldn’t it have been better if we had some cool and creative umbrellas?! Like these for example:

Couples, dog walkers and the ultra dry will be safe with these umbrellas! Click here if you want to take a look at some more!

Waiter, I’ve got a monk on my cupcake

Ever wondered what really goes on in the mini world of food? Well husband and wife team Minimiam show the chores and goings on of little people on food.

Mini monk 1

Mini penguins

It’s a me, Mario!

Super Mario fans have been busy, creating unique and innovative products, such as Converse trainers, backpacks and earrings! Perhaps Nintendo will be swayed by these to actually start making them?

Mario Converse

Mario backpack

Mario Earring

The Anatomy of a Facebook Fan

Anatomy of a Facebook Fan

Thought you knew what makes a Facebook Fan? Well this infographic we found on moontoast is very insightful:. It really penetrates the different levels of Facebook fans and gives you the inner details of how a fan works, and how things spread through their engagement. Click here or in the image to see the infographic in all its glory!

Social Media is a Budweiser Bottle…


Social ‘media’ has undoubtedly acted as the catalyst in creating a more connected, social world in the digital space, but humans have been ‘social’ long before the advent of Facebook et al.

This brilliant new campaign from Bud Light uses special labels on its bottles that drinkers can etch messages on using a key or blunt object, penning anything from a name or party invite to a mobile number:

Although undoubtedly a gimmick, this is a great piece of marketing that taps directly into our fascination with being social, sharing and communicating with each other – yet the only social ‘media’ being used is a glass bottle!

Needless to say, there’s support for this campaign on the brand’s Facebook page, ensuring that interaction and engagement can continue into the online space through established social media platforms.

But the pertinent point is this: Bud Light started this campaign by creating something that taps into our fundamental psychological fascination with communication and being social.

Of course, social media allows us to reach and engage with consumers in authentic new ways never before seen. But at the very heart of any social strategy, we need to remember that, like the Bud Light bottle, we need to appeal to real people in ways that fascinate and engage them.

Callum Saunders, Digital Marketing Manager

Social by Design: Facebook’s Future For Social Brands

This morning, Callum Saunders, our Digital Marketing Manager attended a keynote presentation by Facebook, examining the future for social brands.  Here is his write-up on the speech.

“Do not think about how you can fit social media into your business: think about how your business can fit into social media.

This morning, I made the relatively short trip to Earl’s Court to have a look around the Internet World expo, but in particular, to attend a keynote speech by Jonathan Harvey, UK Sales Manager at Facebook.

The title of the seminar ‘Social by Design’ promised to look at what Facebook has in store for brands looking to maximise their marketing within this ubiquitous social network.  Harvey delivered a confident, engaging speech and I felt it worthwhile sharing some of his points with you here.

Social media is fundamentally changing the way we use the Internet

This may not be headline news to all of you, but Harvey made the point that social networking truly is changing everything.  From retail sites that now offer social sharing integration and peer reviews / user-generated content (UGC) to sites maximising the opportunity to ‘share’ pieces of information, social is becoming (if not already) ingrained within digital technology and websites.

This has also given rise to the conglomeration of recommendations.  Increasingly, we are utilising our online and virtual networks to actively seek out trusted referral opportunities – and social is the main enabler of this.

Unsurprisingly, our online behaviour is changing according to this, as we can see from our behavioural evolution online:

1990’s – browse
2000’s – search
2010’s – DISCOVER

Harvey announced that in the 2010s, we have entered an age of DISCOVERY – and social networks / peer recommendations are where the majority of us discover new things, be it new products, tickets, events, cool websites, social memes or the latest news.

Industries and businesses are changing their entire organisations to facilitate social media

Social media is not a passing fad – as stated above, social has facilitated a substantial cultural shift in the very way we communicate.  Organisations realise that the way they do business, sell to consumers, target customers, create brand advocates – all of this has to adapt to the new social web.

Industries are now transforming by organising their entire business AROUND PEOPLE.  Businesses are becoming SOCIAL BY DESIGN.  Display advertising online has always been good for brand awareness, but social media allows an authentic, two-way dialogue between businesses and their customers.

Microsites are a thing of the past: one needs only to look at the number of businesses that drive traffic to Facebook pages to realise that this shift is fundamental, it’s happening NOW and it really is the future.

Recommendations are INFLUENCING consumer behaviour

Harvey stated that the traditional marketing steps towards purchase have now had an extra layer weaved in due to social media.  This has changed from an old, static, on-way flow with a defined beginning and an end, to an unending circle of consumer behaviour and influence:

BEGINNING Awareness –> Interest –> Decision –> Action END

However, the Social Web has ushered in a new ‘cycle’ of marketing engagement:

Needless to say, we can see that the power of social recommendation ensures that the consumer marketing cycle is now a continuous loop, allowing brands much more access to consumers rather than this typically ending at the point of purchase.

Key points?

Harvey concluded that brands and businesses need to be aware of three simple points if they are to succeed in social marketing:

1. People first; content second – this is paramount!
2. Make sharing simple and fast – A FEW CAN ACTIVATE MANY
3. Your friends are there – trusted peer-to-peer recommendations – more value than ‘traditional’ one-way marketing communications

So where do we go from here?

Social media is everywhere: it has fundamentally changed the way we behave online and integrating social into marketing strategy is essential for success.  Marketing now consists of:

i) PAID MARKETING (posters, adverts etc.)
ii) OWNED MARKETING (websites etc.)
iii) EARNED MAREKTING (traditionally word-of-mouth / PR – now hugely SOCIAL)

As part of this new digital integration, it is vital that businesses and brands maximise their social activity using the following simple steps:

BUILD your brand following
AMPLIFY your following and make use of friends of your advocates – reach
ENGAGE – this is fundamental to success

Conclusion

For many of you, these findings won’t come as a surprise per se; but the significance of social media and its influence on the fundamental way we communicate cannot be underestimated.

My key finding from this session?

Do not think about how you can fit social media into your business: think about how your business can fit into social media.