Would The Real Ronald McDonald Please Stand Up? Taco Bell Takes Shot At Biggest Competitor

Taco Bell Ronald McDonald screen capture Taco Bell is taking a direct shot at McDonald's to launch its new breakfast menu, using the fast food giant's favorite namesake "Ronald McDonald" in a series of TV ads. "It's not surprising these guys are loving Taco Bell's new Waffle Taco...what is surprising is who they are," says the voiceover in one of Taco Bell's latest commercials. Who they are turns out to be a number of people named Ronald McDonald, all enjoying Taco Bell's new breakfast menu. In response to Taco Bell's campaign, McDonald's set the record straight on Twitter yesterday, posting a picture of its "Mayor McCh [...]


Twitter Adds Photo Tags That Will Notify Others (Yet Won’t Count Toward Your 140 Characters)

Phototagging-Twitter Imagine Ellen trying to tag everyone in her Oscar selfie and still having room enough to insert a joke about Bradley Cooper's arm length. It wouldn't happen. Until now, the only way to notify a user that they've been included in a photo is to make sure that their Twitter handle is included in the body of the Tweet. Until now. Twitter has announced that users will have the ability to tag up to 10 people in a photo without burning through any of the precious 140 characters. A new feature will soon be rolling out in the updated versions of the app that will allow users to see a "Who's in t [...]


Survey Says: Twitter Quitters Are Looking For More Sorting & Filtering Tools

Twitter-Large While Twitter has been lauded by brands for the ability to provide an unfiltered stream, some users just can't handle it. A recent study from Deutsche Bank suggested that users simply couldn't gather the data they were looking for on the social networking site.  Of the 270 person sample polled, 82% of those that quit Twitter were able to find information elsewhere while 76% thought that there were too many tweets and that "Twitter wasn't helping by sorting or filtering." Even further, the sorting issue was something that would in fact bring Twitter quitters back if fixed. 80% of those that [...]


Twitter Ups The Ante On Impression Metrics, Tests Showing “Views” In Tweets

twitter-app-600 Twitter is bringing more metrics to the people, experimenting with showing users how many times their tweets have been viewed. This test -- another potential tweak to provide positive feedback and encourage more use of Twitter --  was spotted on a users' iOS Twitter app and reported late today by Casey Newton in The Verge. Twitter has long provided analytics to advertisers and selected users about how well tweets performed  but those metrics focused heavily on retweets, favorites and replies. If rolled out to all users, this would move Twitter closer to Facebook Pages in the effort [...]


Celebrate Twitter’s 8th Birthday By Traveling Back To See Your #FirstTweet

First-Tweet-SE-Land It's hard to believe that Twitter is turning 8 years old already. To celebrate their octennial existence Twitter has released a simple tool that allows users to head back in time to view their first Tweeting Experience.  The #FirstTweet tool allows users to look up any account's first Tweet. Users can then quickly share and interact with others using the #FirstTweet hastag. To view your #FirstTweet just head over to the tool or check the official Twitter blog post to view other notable First Tweets.  [...]


Twitter’s Promoted Accounts Moving Into Timelines On Desktop

twitterPromote Twitter's Promoted Account advertising is about to get a bit more prominent. As reported first in TechCrunch, Promoted Accounts recently started appearing in Timelines on the desktop version of Twitter. Twitter confirmed the change with us today, saying it's a natural enhancement to the product it launched in December. It will be rolled out soon to all advertisers. At first, though, accounts that opted for the boost -- which can be targeted by topic or geography -- had had only appeared in Timelines on mobile devices and in the who to follow area in the desktop sidebar. Then last mo [...]


Is Twitter’s Flirtation With Agencies An Effort To Court “Normals”?

twitter-advertising-featured Looking for a higher profile outside its social network, Twitter is turning to advertising agencies for help, according to a post in Advertising Age today. In the last several weeks, the trade journal reported, Twitter has been inviting agencies to pitch creative concepts for marketing Twitter's service and building its brand. Twitter's media spend is expected to be low and it's looking for one-off projects rather than a long-term deal. This move can be seen as Twitter hedging its bets and making itself more accessible to regular (not especially techie) people. Its place as the socia [...]


Arby’s Buys Pharrell’s Grammys Hat, Rides #Oscars Buzz With Timely Tweet

Arby's Logo Arby's garnered lots of attention with a tweet to Pharrell on Grammy's night asking for its hat back. Turns out Pharrell put the now famous Vivienne Westwood creation on eBay for charity in February. In serendipitous -- though more likely brilliantly strategic -- fashion, the auction ended at 5 PM Pacific Time on the day of the Oscars. Pharrell sent out a thank you tweet to the auction winner. Arby's quickly tweeted back with proof it was the auction winner and wished Pharrell luck at the #Oscars in the contest for Original Song. .@Pharrell You're welcome. We're HAPPY to support a great ca [...]


Esurance Awarded Its $1.5 Million Prize: What’s Next & Will The 200,000 New Twitter Followers Stay

Esurance Twitter Sweepstakes Winner It was a risky move waiting until the Super Bowl had ended to advertise the start of a giant $1.5 million Twitter sweepstakes, a risk exacerbated by the fact that the game was a rout. Fortunately for Esurance, it was immediately clear that its late play broke through the noise of the actual game-time advertisers. According to new stats from Leo Burnett, Esurance's agency, there were more than 200,000 entries using the hashtag #Esurance30 within the first minute of the ad airing. Since awarding the palette of cash to the lucky winner on Wednesday night's The Jimmy Kimmel Show, the brand is now [...]


A Sneak Peek Into Volkswagen’s Super Bowl Social Media “War Room” Plans

volkswagen-ad-featured This is shaping up to the most digitally-enabled and interactive of Super Bowls, with many of the advertisers -- and even some non-advertisers -- thinking very holistically about their Big Game marketing. Oreo raised the bar with its rapid-response Tweet during the #BlackoutBowl last year, and, now, such quick wit and equally speedy media creation capabilities are coming to be expected. What does it take to mount a social media operation worthy to accompany a Super Bowl ad in these days of second-screening, mobile video, and the like? To find out, we spoke to Super Bowl advertiser Volkswage [...]


Study: 92 Percent Of Top Brands Tweet Avg. 12X Per Day, Audiences Grew 20 Percent In Q4

twitter-tweet-featured In a new study of how top brands use Twitter, social media analytics firm Simply Measured found 92 percent of brands tweet an average of 12 times a day. Nearly all (98 percent) of top brands are active on Twitter. The study shows that consumers are eager to follow brands on Twitter. Audiences for top brands grew 20 percent in Q4. Nearly 60 percent of top brands now have followings of 100,000 or more. Links Increase Engagement 150 Percent It's not surprising to see that tweets that include photos and links receive more engagements, but the degree to which they outperform brand averages is im [...]


Mastercard #PricelessNewYear Campaign To Feature Consumer Photos On Times Square Billboards

Mastercard logo To ring in the New Year, Mastercard is giving everyone a chance to be featured on Times Square's famous digital billboards during New York City's New Year's Eve events. The company has launched its #PricelessNewYear campaign, asking consumers to post images of their holiday “priceless moments” on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter along with the #PricelessNewYear hashtag. According to Mastercard, it will display "the very best of all consumer generated content" on the famous Times Square billboards from 6:00 a.m. New Year's Eve until the ball drops. Mastercard says this campaign is its, [...]


Smart’s “Who Wore It Better” Twitter Campaign Turns Selfies Into Custom Cars

@smartcarUSA Smart USA, the subsidiary of Mercedes Benz behind the fuel efficient Smart Car, has launched a Twitter campaign asking followers to tweet pictures of themselves donning their most favorite looks for a chance to win a MotoX smartphone. According to yesterday's Tweet from @SmartcarUSA, followers who tweet the brand a picture of themselves with the hashtag #SmartWrapMe will be entered into a contest to win one of eight MotoX phones. Even better, they get a reply tweet with their picture side-by-side an image of a wrapped Smart Car dressed to match. Tweet us a pic of you wearing your fav look [...]


3 Ways Marketers Can #Win With Twitter’s New Tailored Audiences

Chango_Twitter03 Today, Twitter and several platform providers announced the official launch of Tailored Audiences, giving marketers the ability to target individuals using their own first-party data and any third-party data. Until now, Twitter's advertising solutions were based solely on the data they had about their users. Facebook took a similar step to open their inventory to external data with the creation of the Facebook Exchange, a move that brought them a rush of new ad dollars. Tailored Audiences is about giving the marketer the ability to decide who to target based on external data, and it is bou [...]


Twitter Users Now Able To Receive Direct Messages From All Users (Whether They Are Following Or Not)

Twitter logo As Twitter nears their IPO, the features keep on rolling in for marketers. A new setting for Twitter accounts will give marketers the ability to receive private messages from all Twitter users. This will be a boon for marketers who don't want to address customer service issues, hot topics or sensitive material with a public Tweet. This isn't the first direct message change recently either.  Last week it was rumored that Twitter was testing an @EventParrot account that would deliver breaking news via Direct Messages. Prior to news, Twitter tested a @MagicRecs account that would notify user [...]


Doug, Ford’s Hilarious Spokespuppet, Is Missing From YouTube

dougfacebook Ford created my favorite YouTube campaign of all time. It took place in 2011 and starred an orange, irreverent puppet named Doug and his reluctant co-worker, John. The two appeared in several videos about the Ford Focus. The campaign was brilliant and had all the elements you want in a video campaign. Each video was unique, branded, provided value propositions, and made the viewer smile. Ford released a new video each week, and I was always excited to see the new adventures of Doug the spokespuppet. Before the campaign officially launched, a few random YouTube users posted videos of a pu [...]


New @EventParrot Twitter Experiment Delivers Breaking News Via Direct Message

twitter-blue-bird-alert Twitter isn't saying anything officially, but by all appearances the company has launched a new experiment that could increase user engagement and retention. The experiment is simple: Anyone that follows the @EventParrot account will start to get breaking news delivered via direct messages. It functions much the same as the @MagicRecs experiment that Twitter launched this summer. I followed the account late last night, and this DM arrived overnight: A Twitter spokesperson declined to say if the account is official or not, but you can be sure it is. The profile begins with, "Thi [...]


Winning The Social + TV Race: Twitter’s “Live” Beats Facebook’s “DVR”

facebook-twitter-logos-200px This past Sunday's Breaking Bad series finale provided much more than a satisfying ending to loyal fans, it also highlighted the social race for TV integration. After the finale, both Twitter and Facebook rushed to talk about the overall number of updates around the beloved series in an effort to solidify themselves as a credible 2nd screen for TV viewing. Half of Americans visit social networks while watching TV with 1 in 6 Americans posting about it. The "social screen" has officially  arrived. So, who's winning? The New York Times dove into the subject, and it turns out that (at [...]


Twitter Opens @MagicRecs Recommendations To Android, iPhone Users

twitter-new-logo-blue Twitter is so pleased with its @MagicRecs notification experiment -- and it says the user feedback has been so good -- that it's taking that idea and opening it up to all Twitter for Android and Twitter for iPhone users. What it means is that Twitter users on those two apps will start getting personalized recommendations of tweets and accounts that are popular with the accounts you follow. The notifications will show up via push notification, but that can be changed in your account settings. Unlike the @MagicRecs experiment, there's no need to follow a certain account. Although Twitte [...]


Pinterest Dominates Social Referrals, But Facebook Drives Higher Performance [Study]

pinterest-logo Publishers in women's programming verticals such as food and recipes, home and garden, style and health and wellness have found a deep, high volume source of referral traffic from Pinterest. A new study by Yieldbot, which sees over a 1.5 billion page views per month come through its publisher analytics platform, looks at the impact of social referral traffic on the advertising performance of women's sites. The ad technology firm found that while Pinterest sends oodles of traffic, those visitors don't click on ads at same rate as Facebook referrals. The table below illustrates the overwhe [...]


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