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How Brands Are Using Fictional Tales to Foster Real-World Engagement

Once upon a campaign, a big, popular brand was tired of having to choose from the same old marketing channels. The latest social media sensation was too hot. Television was too cold. But then the brand tried using fictional storytelling to entertain and engage consumers, and that was just right. And they lived happily ever after.

  • November 28, 2016

Publishers Are Betting Big on Gift Guides For the Holidays

The holiday shopping season officially kicked off on Friday, and with ad revenue harder to come by, publishers are trying to get readers to spend more money with them this year. For some, that means not just creating gift guides, but working with advertisers on placing product inside gift guides, distributing their gift guides on directly monetizable platforms Instagram and Pinterest, and even launching flash deal sites and storefronts that will last throughout the holidays. Double down on what works.

  • November 28, 2016

What Happened to Social Media Being a Conversation Platform Instead Of an Echo Chamber?

We are what we read online and this can be dangerous. Curated and personalized news feeds are driving us into holes we might not be able to dig ourselves out of – meaning, we’re becoming more and more self-absorbed with those that share our own views. It’s like an episode of Black Mirror, but instead it’s reality. Hard conversations matter.

  • November 22, 2016

Twitter Users Can Finally Fight Trolls With Tools to Mute Keywords, Phrases and Conversations

For years, Twitter has faced criticism for failing to manage online abuse in a way that honors free speech while still protecting its users from hate speech and bullying. Now, it's finally taking a step further in the fight against digital trolls. Today, the company says it's rolling out a way for users to not just block a user, but also to "mute" keywords, phrases and entire conversations at the notification level. Take that, trolls.

  • November 15, 2016

How Your Brain Decides Without You

An increasingly well-supported working hypothesis called predictive coding is when perceptions are driven by your own brain and corrected by input from the world. There is simply too much sensory input to take in, so the brain has to find other ways to work, which means it constantly predicts. When the sensory information that comes in does not match your prediction, you either change your prediction—or you change the sensory information that you receive. We see what we want to see.

  • November 14, 2016

GoPro Helps You Stay in the Moment, Says Brand's First Scripted Spot

GoPro is not a brand you'd immediately associate with mindfulness, but living in the moment is the key thrust behind the wearable tech brand's new global campaign. The company's first scripted spot (it has previously relied on user-generated content) urges us: "Don't stop what you're doing to capture what you're doing," as we see people holding their phones to film amazing scenery, friends doing exciting stuff or their kids playing. Right in the feels.

  • November 14, 2016

Free Luggage Wrapping Serves As Traveling Advertisements

When traveling, it’s important to protect your luggage, and for some, wrapping their luggage in plastic a way of having some piece of mind. Suitcase company Samsonite decided to provide travelers with free wrapping that bore a humorous message. Can’t keep this one under wraps.

  • November 14, 2016

You Can Have Emotions You Don’t Feel

What does it mean to have an emotion? It seems obvious that having one means feeling it. If you’re happy but don’t know it, in what sense could you actually be happy? Even if we do feel an emotion, there are parts associated with it that we aren’t usually aware of. Emotions are complicated things.

  • November 11, 2016

Ad Agencies Accept the #MannequinChallenge

Move over, Ice Bucket Challenge. Step aside Harlem Shake. The internet has discovered the mannequin challenge. As its name suggests, the mannequin challenge entails standing very still. These are videos of groups of people frozen in place — like mannequins — often in elaborate poses, as a camera wanders through the scene and zooms in on the details. We're having a mini-moment.

  • November 10, 2016

The Economist Ditches Pinterest and Tumblr, Renews Focus on Linkedin

In a platform world, publishers face tough decisions on where to place their resources. In August, The Economist faced this head on and axed its ailing Pinterest and Tumblr accounts while ramping up its commitment to LinkedIn. The publisher had been experimenting on Pinterest for the past six months. But even with a social media team that had grown from two to 10 people, The Economist couldn’t make it click. Not for the serious.

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