When Stefanie Gordon boarded her plane in New York City to visit her parents in Palm Beach, the captain noted there was a chance passengers would witness the space shuttle Endeavour’s last launch during the flight. But she never expected to play a role in documenting it, writes Kessler via mashable.com.

Kessler’s article is a perfect example of what emerging media and technology can create. The last shuttle launch quickly went viral and has the capacity to be seen around the world. Something as simple as this also has the capability of changing Stefanie Gordon’s life/career overnight.

As amazing as this video is, this is only the beginning of what we’ll see in the future. There will be so many more events captured live and broadcasted over the many social media platforms, and it’s very exciting to think about the possibilities.

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Evolution of Consumer Contact

As I’ve been learning during class about all the emerging media and thinking about the next social media tool, FaceTime on my iPhone comes to mind. We all know the number of tools will grow and expand, and most are trying to imagine what the Facebooks and Twitters of tomorrow will look like. But one thing is clear, the presence of a social media tool is inevitable.

Being in customer service, I’m always thinking about the next evolution of consumer contact … letters, telephone, email, chat, social media … FaceTime. It’s a new way of communicating and will be huge for businesses. It’s the perfect way to humanize your brand as more people want to interact with a person instead of a logo. As companies start to do more with video, the dynamics are going to change. It’s going to personalize the relationship. I’m sure the cost will be greater for video than it is for phone or email or chat, but the value that it will bring is the human interaction and trust factor. Consumers like to see and feel a sense of connection with companies.

With the number of executives and senior managers packing iPads and iPhones increasing every day, FaceTime is undoubtedly going to worm its way into the enterprise, even if a business-focused set of features is beyond the horizon. Although it presumably would be in Apple’s interest to open up FaceTime to services beyond its control (or that of its partners AT&T and Verizon), such a move could be years away, according to P. J. Connolly.

It will be very interesting to see the companies that lead the way with video since the risk might be greater, but the reward should be greater, too.

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Tweeting History …

The death of Osama Bin Laden was one of the most tweeted events in history — and generated the highest sustained rate of tweets ever, according to mashable.com.

Twitter has released updated statistics on the usage of its platform last night. Previously, the social media company reported that more than 4,000 tweets were sent per second during the beginning and the end of Obama’s speech. It now says the real number of tweets was about 25% higher.

At 11:00 p.m. ET, just before Obama’s speech, users generated 5,106 tweets per second, the highest single volume of tweets during the night. At 11:45 p.m., just when he finished his speech, Twitter users were sending 5,008 tweets per second.

At 11:35 p.m. ET Sunday, the White House’s Twitter feed posted a quote from President Barack Obama that confirmed Osama bin Laden’s death. But before Obama uttered those words, Twitter was abuzz with speculation and subsequent confirmation from officials and news outlets. (Hernandez)

Between 10:45 p.m. ET and 12:30 a.m. ET, the company says its users averaged 3,440 tweets per second. At its peak, Twitter delivered an average of 12,384,000 tweets per hour. That’s amazing and speaks volumes to what can happen within emerging and social media.

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Measurement by Expression?

Marketing has changed over the years. Information flowed in one direction: from companies to consumers.  When marketing departments created plans and budgets, the key metric was “consumer impressions:” how many people would see, hear or read the ad?

With today’s emerging media, information flows in many directions, consumer touch points have multiplied, and the old, one-size-fits-all approach has given way to precision marketing and one-to-one communications.  The biggest change is how consumers have become empowered to create their own content about brands and share it throughout their networks and beyond.

Consumer impressions will remain the measurement most specifically because they are captured on all major media connection points.  However, impressions give us no real sense of engagement, and consumer engagement with brands is ultimately what we’re striving to achieve.  Awareness is fine, but advocacy will take your business to the next level.

So, in addition to “consumer impressions,” companies need to track “consumer expressions.”  An expression is any level of engagement with a brand content by a consumer or constituent.  It could be a comment, a like, an uploaded photo, passing content into their networks, etc.

Don’t fight this wave of expression.  Feed it with content that touches consumers’ passion points like sports, music and popular culture. On YouTube there’s content created by specific brands, however, the majority of content is created by others.  Companies can’t match the volume of consumers’ creative output, but should spark it with the right type of content. Wilson suggests the media universe comes down to a blend of paid media and earned media, the latter of which is becoming increasingly important in this age of consumer expression and conversation.

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the Cloud

“The cutting edge of innovation is on the consumer side — digital technologies for consumption activity, play, entertainment and social-networked communication — and not in corporations anymore,” observed Timothy F. Bresnahan, an economist at Stanford.

Nowhere is that more apparent than in cloud computing, the technology industry’s buzz term for customers’ accessing information held in big data centers remotely over the Internet from anywhere, as if the services were in a cloud.

It’s hard to read any technology news that doesn’t include an emerging technology or new products with the cloud moniker attached. We’ve all heard the term since it was coined in 2007 and many of us are still wondering, “what is cloud computing?” I’m assuming it’s important to understand since it seems to be the direction of IT.

An application is built using the resource from multiple services potentially from multiple locations. Cloud computing really is accessing resources and services needed to perform functions with dynamically changing needs. An application or service developer requests access from the cloud rather than a specific endpoint or named resource. What goes on in the cloud manages multiple infrastructures across multiple organizations and consists of one or more frameworks overlaid on top of the infrastructures tying them together.

The cloud is a virtualization of resources that maintains and manages itself. There are of course people resources to keep hardware, operation systems and networking in proper order. But from the perspective of a user or application developer only the cloud is referenced.

Dell said that it would invest $1 billion over the next two years to build 10 new data centers and expand customer support, largely for cloud offerings.

Cloud computing is steadily becoming an integral part of the enterprise computing environment. For those interested in learning more, a good resource would be to visit Cloud Expo 2011 or Dell.

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“Everything communicates…everything that is static will become dynamic,” said Wendy Clark of Coca-Cola at the Ad Age Digital Conference, the premier event highlighting how technology is changing the marketing landscape and consumer behavior.

This statement is so true and it’s amazing and fun to watch it all unfold. This new product introduced last week by  Vibrant, the in-context ad guys, shows how amazing and emerging technology can be. The company, which has become pretty well-known for its double-green-line ads is adding video to its display ad product. The concept of what it can do is so cool. Make sure to read more about it because I’m positive you’ll be hearing much more in the coming weeks.

‘The new product, called VIA Dynamic, according to a company statement, will ‘leverage the power of contextual by delivering video that dynamically changes to match the page content.’

“So, think about those double green lines that you’re accustomed to seeing on Business Insider and MSNBC. Now, imagine the ad with video that changes with the content on the page. That’s a pretty powerful tool.”

“Vibrant offers the leading tech platform for understanding content and empowering advertising to become relevant to a Web page in real-time,” said Anna Kassoway, SVP Marketing and Creative.

The Internet is finally delivering on its promise of a more relevant advertising experience for consumers and smarter brand engagement for marketers.


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The Numbers

I talked last week about the amazing 24-hr live Music Session with Maroon 5. I’m following-up this week to provide the numbers to help capture the magnitude and success of the event:

  • More than 350,000 views were logged on the 24hr Session livestream.
  • Fans from 139 countries spent an average of 10.5 minutes on the site.
  • More than 25,000 fans Tweeted their thoughts and messages of support via @Coca-Cola using #withMaroon5.
  • Impressions: Twitter – 107.8 million, Facebook – 47.1 million, YouTube – 87,000+, BuzzFeed – 12.1 million.
  • Expressions: Twitter – 23,000+, Facebook – 64,000+, YouTube – 482,000+, BuzzFeed – 18,000+.
  • The event will be certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest-ever online songwriting session.

The 24-hr Session successfully generated both impressions (the number of fans who saw the content through www.coca-cola.com/music, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media channels) and expressions (how fans reacted to and engaged with the content through comments, “likes” and more).

We purchased a promoted Twitter trend for the first few hours of the session to steer people to the event, however, activity spiked at the end of the session that was not supported with media spending. This shows that the traffic and interaction at the conclusion was completely viral, and that the event had gained traction both through social media chatter and online press coverage.

For the first 100,000 downloads, Coca-Cola will make a donation to The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation’s Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN) to provide access to clean water to thousands of people in Africa. By downloading this song, you will help RAIN achieve the goal of providing at least 2 million Africans with clean water by 2015.

If this isn’t a prime example of emerging media, I don’t know what else is …





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