Philadelphia Flower Show Springs Forward with Social Media

The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size.   ~ Gertrude S. Wister

Philadelphia Flower ShowA welcome harbinger of spring’s arrival in the Delaware Valley is the annual Philadelphia Flower Show held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.  In keeping with this year’s “Brilliant” theme, the flower show integrated all things British from the Concourse Village, to the English gardens, to the Empire’s signature cuisine.  And there was a definite push by the show’s organizer, The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, to go social.  As Stephanie Policastro, Communications Specialist for the PHS notes, Instagram has been added to its social strategy to further enhance the growth of the Flower Show community as reported by Traci Browne of the Trade Show News Network.

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society benefits by engaging gardening enthusiasts via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube.   As Sree Sreenivasan of CNET News notes there are key takeaways that organizers can take advantage of to maximize the use of social media at events.  For example, the Flower Show’s hashtag and social media platforms were on display for all to see and follow.  In addition, for the purpose of generating interest and excitement during an event, tweets may be broadcast on screen via TweetBeam and Visible Tweets.  After all, social media affords us a bonus opportunity to inform and connect with event attendees.

So, what motivates you to tweet at events?  Do you use any photo sharing sites like Flickr and Instagram?  Tell us about your favorite botanical garden.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2013 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

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Social Media Champions Chobani

To be successful, you have to have your heart in your business, and your business in your heart.   Thomas Watson, Sr.

Social Media Champions ChobaniEver since the early days of Chobani, social media along with word of mouth were integral to the company’s success remarks Harry Smith of NBC News’ Rock Center.  Chobani’s meteoric rise as the crème de la crème of the yogurt industry is due in no small measure to the brand’s ability to make the most of its customer and community focus observes Entrepreneur Media’s Samuel Greengard.  Likewise, the Nothing but good essence of the brand has been integrated into its online marketing efforts.  For example, Chobani’s commitment to the 2012 Olympics included six U.S. Olympians comprising Team Chobani prominently featured on social media.

Continuing the strategy of leveraging its brand ambassadors, Stuart Elliot of The New York Times notes Chobani encourages fans to share on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.  More recently, its social media presence has expanded to include Pinterest.  Photo sharing sites are particularly suited to fostering food conversations online, indicates Chobani’s digital communications manager Emily Schildt in an interview with Fast Company’s Lydia Dishman.  In addition, she comments Pinterest has been helpful in showcasing various aspects of Chobani’s brand, in micro-targeting its customers, and in gaining customer insights.  In summary, Chobani’s experience demonstrates social media’s ability to connect with customers and promote customer loyalty.

So, what motivates you to follow certain brands?  Do you interact with any photo sharing sites like Instagram or Pinterest?  Share your thoughts about your favorite yogurt.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2013 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Target Brands for the Future with Neiman Marcus

Every advertisement should be thought of as a contribution to the complex symbol which is the brand image.   ~ David Ogilvy

Target Brands for the FutureThis year Target is employing a new holiday promotion strategy, teaming up with Neiman Marcus to offer exclusive high end merchandise.  As Laura Heller of Forbes notes the holiday collection is a result of Target’s year-long shift towards multichannel retailing.  And as indicated by Vanderbilt University’s Marketing Professor Steven Posavac during an interview with Nightly Business Report’s Tom Hudson, Target is getting the better end of the branding deal.  There’s a potential upside for Target, appeal to shoppers’ luxury aspirations, while there’s an inherent downside for Neiman Marcus, a loss in brand exclusivity.

Target is venturing that the Neiman Marcus collection will drive momentum forward from the early days of the Black Friday start to the final days of the Christmas shopping season notes Thomas Lee of the Star Tribune.  In addition, according to Target’s Chief Marketing Officer Jeffrey Jones, the future lies in creating content that will enthusiastically be shared by brand evangelists.   Further, Macy’s CEO Terry Lundgren recognizes the rise of the omni-channel consumer in his recent interview with Ruben Ramirez of NBR, which makes the case for appealing to shoppers online.   YouTube’s Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 24 Collection video is one such example of shareable content, which by the way shows the designers are poised to benefit from their association as well.

So, what do you think of Neiman Marcus and Target’s collaboration?  How do you interact with retailers?  Share your thoughts about your favorite brand partnerships.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Social Media Gives 007 and Brands License to Thrill

We should come home from adventures, and perils, and discoveries every day with new experience and character.   ~ Henry David Thoreau

Social Media Gives License To ThrillAfter 50 years, James Bond and the 007 film franchise have become synonymous with Great Britain.  As Nick Clark of UK’s The Independent notes, Sony Pictures has succeeded in promoting Skyfall, the latest installment, in spectacular fashion; no doubt benefiting from 007 opening the London 2012 Olympics with Queen Elizabeth.  In keeping with the need of the franchise to stay relevant and up to date, social media presents an opportunity for a new generation of Bond fans to connect.

Social media has been integrated into the overall promotion of Skyfall reports Geetika Rustagi of the Hindustan Times.  Skyfall’s Facebook  and Twitter strategy includes leveraging the franchise’s existing social media accounts as well as a shareable fan generated photo mosaic.   Brands that rise to the challenge of creatively engaging the fans also have the added advantage of gaining along with the film’s launch.  Coke Zero’s Unlock the 007 in you promotion has experienced a measure of success as revealed by Cision’s conversation clouds analysis of online mentions.  Other brands getting in on the Facebook action include Heineken with its Crack the Case app, Honda Cars UK campaign, and Hotels.com Deals for Me app.

So, which Bond film is your favorite?  Have you interacted with the Bond franchise online?  Share your thoughts about the brands that reflect your aspirations.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Red Bull Takes Branding and Social Media to New Heights

Your premium brand had better be delivering something special, or it’s not going to get the business.   ~ Warren Buffett

Red Bull Takes Branding and Social Media to New HeightsRed Bull, sponsor of Felix Baumgartner’s record breaking supersonic freefall over Roswell, New Mexico, accomplished a marketing tour de force recently, over 8 million views live online.  A longtime enthusiast of extreme sports, Red Bull takes its marketing a step further embodying the very essence of its brand.  As Miles O’Brien noted during a PBS Newshour interview, “It’s 21st century marketing brilliance. Red Bull has cracked the code.”  O’Brien went on to commend the energy drink maker’s ability to reach a mass audience while sidestepping traditional marketing channels, with its successful Mission to the Edge of Space.

Deemed one of The World’s 50 Most Innovative by Fast Company, Red Bull Media House, the content division of Red Bull, has succeeded in making its mark in the new media landscape.  As Teresa Iezzi reports, the company has focused on perfecting its web and mobile outlets and teaming up with YouTube to present original content.  Managing Director Werner Brell insists Red Bull has always placed an emphasis on photographing every aspect of its brand’s storytelling via action sports.  Iezzi also indicates the best approach branding with a creative blueprint in mind.  By extension, Red Bull has succeeded in being social from the start, engaging with its customers on Facebook and Twitter.

So, which brands do you interact with online?  What do you like about them?  Share your thoughts about the brands in sync with your lifestyle.

Vanaja R.

 

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Santa, Social Media, and Holiday Shopping Are on Their Way

The Christmas season has come to mean the period when the public plays Santa Claus to the merchants.   ~ John Andrew Holmes

Santa, Social Media, and Holiday Shopping Are On Their WayIt’s that time of year again, when we are thinking about the upcoming Christmas season and gearing up for holiday shopping.  As Susie Gharib of NBR reports, more of us will be taking advantage of online options than ever before; the National Retail Federation reports Internet sales are likely to be up 15% from last year.  It’s no wonder with the growth of smart phones and tablets.  About a third of online shoppers will be showrooming in search of the best deal, as told by comScore’s Executive Chairman Gian Fulgoni to NBR’s Diane Eastabrook.

Gian Fulgoni also indicates social media’s role in holiday retail is poised to have a greater persuasive impact.  Look for Facebook and Pinterest to figure in as well as consumer site Fancy, organized with product engagement in mind.  Another up-and-comer in the holiday retail space are the daily dealers, like Groupon and LivingSocialSylvia Hall of NBR reports on the industry’s evolution, from the first significant holiday season occurring in 2010 to at least $150 million projected in 2012 (notes Unaiz Kabani, Data Product Manager of Yipit.com). Even eBay is getting in on the act, the launch of a new daily deals offering in addition to the recent revamping of its logo and website to become more appealing as a holiday shopping go-to.

So, how do you plan to shop for the holidays this year?  Do you anticipate mobile playing a greater role in your holiday shopping?  Share your thoughts about your favorite holiday retailers.

Vanaja R.

 

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

In Style in an Instant with Social Media

Adornment is never anything except a reflection of the heart.  ~ Coco Chanel

In style in an Instant with Social MediaFashion designers experienced a social media lift at New York Fashion Week Spring 2013Business Insider reports Instagram and Pinterest especially presented designers a winning opportunity to connect with fans of fashion.  For instance, a behind-the-scenes approach contributed to Badgley Mischka’s Instagram success.  Designers like Max Azria (BCBGMAXAZRIA) and Donna Karan (DKNY), who offered more affordable options, were also well received on Instagram.

Turning our attention to the other side of The Pond, British retailer Topshop transformed its runway into an on the spot virtual store during London Fashion Week SS13.  After all, as reported to Anjali Mullany of Fast Company, Topshop’s Chief Marketing Officer Justin Cooke has a new take on the fashion show, fashion as social entertainment.  Not only were fans able to purchase Topshop’s fashion show playlist, clothes and make-up worn by the models, but also thanks to its Shoot the Show tool (developed in collaboration with Facebook), fans could share photos without show interruption.

Topshop also benefits long after London Fashion Week has ended, both in terms of engagement and content creation.  Its social media strategy included pinning tweets at the top of its Twitter feed as well as a Tweet Off competition, whereby fans reviewed the show until midnight, the best vying for tickets to the next show.  Taking it one step further, Topshop plans to include social data in developing business insights around products and shop locations.

So, how do you follow fashion?  How does fashion figure in your digital world?  Share your thoughts about your favorite fashion looks.

Vanaja R.

 

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Social Media Puts Space Travel At Your Fingertips

That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind.  ~ Neil Armstrong

That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.We live in a digital connected world and it’s no wonder we can travel to space via social media.  As Amy-Mae Elliot of Mashable Tech points out, there are a variety of ways to explore space online, from space agencies (NASA for one), observatories (like the Hubble Telescope), numerous Facebook and Twitter accounts (like the Curiosity Mars Rover and the International Space Station), videos (Science Channel on YouTube for another), to astronomical apps (like NASA’s for iPhone).

Social media provides a way for space enthusiasts to connect, notes NASA’s Veronica McGregor.  This is not the first time NASA has employed social media to highlight a space mission.  As she reported to Dorrine Mendoza of CNN, the Phoenix Mars Lander’s Twitter account was the fifth most followed in 2008.  Interest in space abounds; the Mars Curiosity’s landing tweet at 1:32 am EST on August 6th was retweeted 70,000 times around the world.  Moreover, Linda Holmes of NPR observes Curiosity on Twitter has found its voice, the right mix of science and engagement.

After all, the sky’s the limit for space exploration, and we owe a debt of gratitude to the pioneers of space who make it all possible.  Recently we lost one of the greats Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon.  Twitterers can post comments and photos using the hashtag #WinkAtTheMoon to honor the acclaimed astronaut of the Gemini and Apollo space missions.  We look forward to the launch of the Webb Telescope and all future giant leaps of space.

So, how do you follow your curiosity about space?  What’s your favorite extraterrestrial pursuit?  Share your thoughts on exploring space with social media.

Vanaja R.

 

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Social Media Champions of the London 2012 Olympic Games

All the world’s a stage.  ~ William Shakespeare

London 2012 Olympic GamesThree cheers for the games of the 30th Olympiad!  From start to finish, the Olympics captured our hearts and social media gave us a front row seat to the action as it unfolded.  In the realm of Twitter, the opening and closing ceremonies reigned supreme.  Who could forget the entrance of Queen Elizabeth with James Bond to kick off London 2012?  Overall, the Spice Girls closing ceremonies performance took top honors with 116,000 TPM (Tweets per minute).

We witnessed many memorable and history making moments throughout the Games; Michael Phelps becoming the most decorated Olympian and Gabby Douglas winning the gymnastics individual all-around, to name but a few.  Michael and Gabby showed us that Olympic success can carry over to social media wins.  Gaining an additional one million Twitter followers, Michael entered the pantheon of greats, based on Reuters reporting of data provided by social media monitor Starcount.  Not to be outdone, Gabby has been designated the leading up and comer by marketing firm Wildfire, based on the most fans by percentage growth on Facebook since July 27.

The Olympics is a global stage affording each athlete and event its own moment to shine.  CNN deemed Usain Bolt as the Social Media Olympic gold medalist of 2012.  Usain achieved this feat by being the most talked about athlete on Facebook and Twitter.  No doubt having a prominent Facebook and Twitter presence can translate into a branding bonanza notes Nick Thain, CEO of Sports New Media, with fan engagement being a key distinguishing factor.  Reflecting the global audience of the Games, soccer scored as the most talked about sport with over 5 million Tweets.

So, how did you watch the 30th Olympiad?  Who was your favorite Olympic athlete?  Share your thoughts on the most engaging moments of London 2012.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

WalmartLabs Socializes Shopping

Communications is at the heart of e-commerce and community.  ~ Meg Whitman

WalmartLabs Socializes ShoppingHave you used your smart phone or tablet to enhance your shopping experience?  Walmart, a powerhouse in the retail space, has been focused on making a splash in e-commerce, having been selected by U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s Most Connected Companies.  After all, the largest retailer already has a significant online customer pool from which to draw upon, with 1.5 billion annual website visits and 10% of its global customers shopping on the Internet.  According to David Hatch’s reporting Walmart hopes to best its rival Amazon, by taking its “bricks and clicks” strategy a step further via its innovative research division WalmartLabs.

Retail is all about connections, noted Anand Rajaraman, an acclaimed Silicon Valley entrepreneur, during an interview on NBC’s Press:Here.  To cash in on the shopping trends of mobile and social media, WalmartLabs is developing an e-commerce toolkit that maximizes the product to customer connection.  It all starts with The Social Genome, Walmart’s search for elementary relationships amongst the social universe of tweets, Facebook messages, blog posts, YouTube videos; you name it.  The result is an app such as Shopycat, designed to create a unique gifting experience by analyzing the likes of your Facebook friends.  Not to mention, its social Get on the Shelf competition, offered contestants a golden opportunity to get their products on Walmart shelves.

So, do you check your cell phone for the latest deals?  Have you used any social gifting apps, such as Shopycat?  Share your thoughts on e-commerce and social media.

Vanaja R.

 

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.