Banks aren’t all bad

24 05 2012

This is an excellent campaign from KBC Bank in Belgium. Not only does it show the bank in a good light it also helps to do real good and create a sense of community. A huge step up from the typical “if you ‘like’ our Facebook page we will put you in a draw for some tickets” approach to engaging with customers. Well done to TBWA Brussels and KBC.


Facebook is certainly in the news this week.

23 05 2012

You can’t really avoid Facebook at the moment. It is all over the media right now including media that normally is not too interested in social media or IPO’s.

The IPO: a success or a failure?

One of the difficulties of becoming a publicly quoted company is that you can become a victim of the whims of the stock market. One piece of bad news, such as poor quarterly results, can undo years of solid achievement. Equally, one piece of good news can mask all sorts of problems. This is what has happened to Facebook. Questions have been asked about the IPO and suddenly people get nervous. As the court cases and class actions begin we may learn more but the fact remains that the IPO raised a huge amount of money for Facebook and with an initial valuation of around $100 billion dollars even a 50% loss in value would still see Facebook being a very large company.

Problems with future revenue

The news that GM had cancelled its Facebook advertising campaign was badly timed from Facebook’s perspective but does it represent a real problem? There are two arguments here:

  1. Digital media prides itself on being measurable particularly when compared to traditional media. If Facebook cannot deliver results then it is in trouble.
  2. Social media advertising is not like traditional advertising. You don’t just place ads and wait for customers to arrive. You need to engage with them. If you engage and provide really good content then your campaigns will be a success.

Views of GM’s decision to leave Facebook advertising tend to be coloured by which side of the argument you are on. Either GM did a bad job or Facebook advertising does not work. Perhaps it is a bit of both.

Problems with mobile advertising

This problem is real and has been highlighted by Facebook. Advertising on mobile platforms is harder mainly because of the screen size and as we move to mobile devices rather than PC’s Facebook will have to find a solution if it is to continue to drive advertising revenue.

Pinterest: should we care?

15 05 2012

It is the new big thing in social media. Everyone seems to think that brands should be on Pinterest but nobody seems to know what to do, how to do it or why to do it. There is also some speculation that Pinterest has peaked due to a slight decline in the number of users recorded recently.

Some numbers
Pinterest has circa 10 million registered users. Almost all of these are in the US. The most recent figures I could find indicated only about 200,000 users in the UK, for example. I could find no figures for Ireland but it is reasonable to suggest that it is probably only a few thousand at best.

About 9 million of these users signed up through Facebook accounts. This is interesting because it shows that Pinterest is not really bringing new people to social media but simply drawing from the same pool as Facebook and others. Is there an element of boredom with Facebook?

Women are in the majority on Pinterest. The numbers vary but it seems that active users are 80% women and 97% of Facebook likes for Pinterest are from women.

Pinterest and Ireland
Apart from lots of beautiful pictures of Ireland only two Irish brands have set up their own boards. These are Easons and NUI Maynooth. It will be interesting to see what response they get. Two Irish media outlets have added “Pin it” buttons to their sites. These are Silicon Republic and Storyful.

I would suggest that if your site is very visual with lots of good pictures then it might be worth adding the “Pin It” button and see what happens. If you see some results then consider setting up your own board, assuming of course you have the resources to manage yet another social media account.