Here are this week’s ‘Sunday Musings’ – the top five stories in branding and digital marketing from the past seven days. For those interested, you can find the archives of this weekly write-up under the Blog-Sunday Musings tab at the top of the page.
#1 – “Google Keep Launches … For Real This Time” – Mashable.com
Premise: Google launched its own version of Evernote this week – Google Keep. The service allows you to take notes, create checklists, save pictures, and record voice reminders while you are on the go. Google Keep is available for desktops and across Android devices running Ice Cream Sandwich or higher. The article also includes the official release video from Google.
Thoughts: I am not an avid user of a digital/mobile note keeper, but I downloaded Google Keep to see what it looked like. I have to say that I’m a little disappointed with the service. I don’t understand why it isn’t or wasn’t launched as a part of Google Drive / Docs. It sounds like it will eventually be a part of Drive, but this really should have been an extension or added feature of that service vs. standing on its own in my opinion.
#2 – “Facebook launches hashtag feud with Twitter” – tednguyenusa.com
Premise: Earlier this week, Twitter celebrated its seventh birthday. It is being reported that Facebook will begin using hashtags in order to boost their own search rankings and appeal to advertisers. The use of hashtags will also help categorize conversations. The author also presents a number of facts on the strengths of and rationale for using hashtags. There are also a few paragraphs that critique Facebook and its branding efforts.
Thoughts: They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery and this is another perfect example, as Facebook recognizes the power of the hashtag. The use of hashtags will help Facebook build advertising revenue but will also help marketers better understand and/or target users. It is interesting to see Facebook essentially copy Twitter here.
Finally, happy 7th birthday to the greatest web site out there right now! Twitter has changed the world and continues to be my preferred source for real-time news and information.
#3 – “6 Ways to Build Customer Loyalty” – Entrepreneur.com
Premise: While it is important to look for new business, the author stresses the need to pay attention to your existing customers. Any business needs to ensure that they are satisfying their current customers and the article provides six key steps in order to help drive stronger loyalty.
Thoughts: It is hard to argue with any of the six recommendations the author makes here. While this feels second nature, it is amazing how many companies and businesses don’t follow these steps.
A perfect example of how not to do this happened recently. We set up a large dinner party at a local restaurant. Despite mediocre service (at best), I sent a follow-up “thank you” email to the restaurant. Their response: (Silence). Absolutely nothing. It is safe to say that we will never frequent that establishment again. All it would have taken is approximately three minutes of their time to reply to my email and say “thank you” or similar.
#4 – “Kit Kat Challenges Oreo to Tic-Tac-Toe for Twitter Fan’s Affection” – Mashable.com
Premise: A fan of both Kit Kat and Oreo took to Twitter to profess her affection for chocolate and the two brands. Kit Kat responded with a playful response, challenging Oreo to a game of tic-tac-toe for her loyalty. However, Oreo’s Twitter team came back with a great response (see embedded images in the article).
Thoughts: Whoever is running Oreo’s Twitter feed deserves a raise. They have been producing some witty responses and posts, but also using Twitter as a great source of engagement with fans. I thought Kit Kat’s initial response was also well thought out. My first thought was to check to make sure they weren’t owned by the same parent company (which would have made this more brilliant). Kudos to both teams for well thought out responses.
Premise: Since Superstorm Sandy, the Jersey Shore Convention and Visitors Bureau has been hard at work to promote businesses in and around the Jersey Shore. This is a brief interview with Bob Hilton who has helped spearhead the group/initiative. Hilton provides the hard truths on the impact of the storm and looks to provide more of the facts, versus what has been reported by the media.
Thoughts: There may be a little bit of bias in this choice, but we’re going to have to live with this from time to time. Fair? Good. The Q&A here provides much of the detail in how this area has been rebuilding since the storm, some of the hardships that local companies have faced, and some of the propaganda the media has used. After taking a look at Hilton’s answers, don’t forget to take a look at the Jersey Shore page itself. On the site you’ll find a PayPal link to donate to a number of different initiatives to help rebuild the Jersey Shore. (Please consider this a subtle hint.)
Did anything in particular catch your interest here? What other news did you find particularly appealing from the past week?