Posts Tagged ‘SXSWi’

Most Memorable Quotes from SXSW 2011



Dare To Be Different

Originally posted on I <3 Social Media by Marta Majewska

I’m a girl. Put some pink trees and animated animals on the wall and you caught my attention. I am also a geek. Add technology and fast working Wi-Fi to it and you’ve created an experience I will not easily forget.  Yes, I am talking about Microsoft here. The combination of technology, art, great music has made their event a night to remember.

In today’s challenging and competitive market where consumers are over flooded with information and overwhelmed by brands trying to interact with them and grab their attention, it has never been more difficult but also more important to stand out. Whether it’s an event or campaign, online or offline, brands need to find unique and exciting ways to connect with their audiences.

The HP Mobile Park is yet another original approach that made our client stand out at the SXSW Festival. What they did is create a temporary community, right next to the convention center, open to all SXSW attendees where tech, music and film bloggers as well as artists hang out.  A perfect place to relax in the sun, network, have a drink and listen to a great music. What else can you want, right?

Samsung has made the bloggers’ life easier and so much more entertaining. The Samsung Bloggers lounge is THE place to be if you’re a blogger and need to recharge your batteries, have a coffee with fellow bloggers, meet the ‘geek’ celebrities or have a book signed. There is also some great live music here and some nice food too ;)

If you’re a smaller company or a start-up, don’t worry. Differentiating yourself doesn’t always mean spending thousands and thousands of dollars on big the latest technologies and xxx. Antenas Direct found a way to stand out by advertising their Facebook page during the most prominent digital event worldwide full of AR, QR, 3D … on a cardboard beer case. Trust me, they set themselves apart.



On Furry Animals in the Digital World

Originally posted on I <3 Social Media by Marta Majewska

When I walked into the Hilton hotel yesterday afternoon, a giant squirrel caught my attention.

10% of women are attracted to men in furry costumes, says the squirrel’s sign. I could argue about this one, but let’s be honest, no matter whether you’re 5, 25 or 50 years old, mascots do have an ‘aaaaaw’ effect on people. It turned out the mascot belonged to the session, “Brand Mascots in the Digital Age,” that was about to start so I couldn’t resist attending.

The session started with a question on whether anyone from the audience has already worked on a brand mascot digital campaign. Honestly, except for one campaign in Poland, I couldn’t even really think of a digital campaign featuring a brand mascot in the European market, but it turned out that about 20 people attending the session had already had experience working on a brand mascot online campaign.

That almost made me panic. I am usually on top of things and I like to be the first in just about everything, and now I am sitting here and can’t even think of 3 mascot campaigns whereas 20 people around have already worked on them? Luckily, it quickly turned out that it’s not me. It’s Europe.

I learned that brand mascots are undeniable part of the US culture and brands have a long history using those mascots as a part of their marketing efforts. With the rise of the digital world, many brands are trying to move and translate their mascots to the social space. As seen in the session, some are more successful than others. It looks like when done right, mascots can be a goldmine for a brand, but when done wrong, they fail big time.

I think there is a lot of potential in working with brand mascots. Old mascots have an advantage of people already feeling connected to them, but are at a higher risk of losing the true essence and personality of the mascot when translated to digital media. New mascots need to earn their place in people’s hearts (and wallets) but have an advantage of getting a personality that fits in the digital world.

Whether old or new, mascots give brand a personality, something that is crucial in the digital world. They also create positive feelings towards brands and as I learned, when used correctly they can do wonders for selling techniques. I hope next year, I will be among the people that raise their hand when asked about an online brand mascot campaign. :)


Brave New World: Brand Journalism

Originally posted by Marta Majewska on I <3 Social Media

Corporate publishing, corporate media, corporate journalism, content marketing, branded content, brand journalism … however we want to call, it is happening and it is big. That’s probably about the only thing that all participants of the panel “Brave New World: Debating Brands’ Role as Publishers” agreed on during this morning’s heated up debate.

The publishing world has changed and it has changed big time. In the “old times” (not THAT long ago), the role of publishers and brands were very distinct. Publishers used to act as the information of the reader whereas brands would ‘pitch’ the stories to the media and pay to have their audience-targeted advertising published.

The rise of social media has changed the game. As the role of media as gatekeepers has shrunk significantly and interaction between consumers and brands has become a part of our everyday life, brands do not longer have to rely on publishers to reach their audiences but have an opportunity to use branded content to build a level of trust and differentiation with audiences never before achieved.

But are brands really taking an advantage of this huge opportunity? Even though they are investing heavily in the corporate publishing with 25% of marketing budgets being spent on content creation and distribution, it looks like brands still have a lot to learn from publishers. Main issues with the branded content are the information pollution, confusing content, lack of disclosure as well as the lack of sources.

How can those be solved? According to the panelist, Joe Pulizzi, it’s not that hard: stop cluttering up with crappy content and have a content strategy, think about how your reader is and what is keeping them up at night. Second that. ;)


The REAL fun of checking-in

Originally posted on I <3 Social Media by Marta Majaweska

This morning I woke up at 5am. It might be the jet leg kicking back in but I blame something else for it. I blame Foursquare.

Right before I woke up, I dreamed that I was checking-in and unlocked a Magic Badge that no one else have ever unlocked. Like EVER. Once I was awake, I couldn’t fall back asleep and I started thinking about all the badges I still had to unlock at #SXSW and gift cards I could collect by checking-in … and that was when I realized that this is the first time since I can remember that I got truly got excited about the location-based services.

I’m an early adopter so I’ve been using Foursquare since forever but the only exciting thing about Foursquare in Europe is the fight over the mayorship of my office and hotels while I’m travelling. And occasionally getting a badge. But let’s be honest, the only reason why I actually do it is because I am a geek. I would not be able to make a good case if someone asked me why they should use Foursquare in Belgium, for instance. Now I am in the US, I can see how brands and retailers are using location based services to create experiences, retain customer loyalty and drive sales. And how they bring fun to checking-in. Wherever I go, and not only in Austin during the geekiest festival in the whole world, but all across the country, there are specials available on every corner that include discounts, coupons, gift cards, free drinks and snacks. Here, I would not be able to make a good case on why NOT to use Foursquare.

I have always said that location-based services will only go mainstream if retailers find a way to create value to motivate consumers to jump on the check-in train. Location-based services represent a great and new access point for brand engagement as well as marketing opportunities and it’s killing me that brands do not want to start using it to its full potential.