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How to Make Funny Videos Without Becoming the Laughing Stock of the Internet

tech8-3Humor is a potentially powerful weapon in a brand’s arsenal, but they must be savvy when they wield it in video form. That means in part creating relatable content that isn't too long and tells a brand’s story.

Laughter is often said to be the best medicine, and when it comes to digital marketing, it certainly presents unique opportunities for consumer engagement.

Like the social outcast who discovers he can make the star quarterback laugh and finds himself suddenly catapulted into the upper echelons of high-school society, a funny branded video can quickly engage an audience and raise a brand's social currency.

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Fighting food: Consumers revolt online

food8-3Sitting at her kitchen table in Houston, Bettina Siegel, a corporate lawyer-turned-school lunch blogger and mom of two, had no idea she had the power to spark a massive consumer uprising with her laptop.

But that’s exactly what she did. In March 2012, her petition on Change.org asking the Agriculture Department to stop serving “pink slime” to school kids drew nearly 260,000 signatures. The social media fire, fanned by ABC News and dozens of other media outlets, led retailers and schools across the country to drop the product, formally known as lean finely textured beef, or LFTB, from their ground beef.

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Stop! Yammer time: Microsoft's social biz service becomes one with Office 365

ym-8-2Cofounder David Stacks steps aside as Redmond takes reins

David Sacks, cofounder and former CEO of Yammer, has left his position at Microsoft after having steered the enterprise social networking service for nearly six years.

Sacks, a former PayPal exec who has been an angel investor in various startups and even once dabbled in producing and financing an independent feature film, launched Yammer at the TechCrunch50 conference in 2008.

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What's Next for Enterprise Social Media Software?

ent-8-1The growth of social enterprise software hasn’t kept pace with its consumer cousins, but that may not be such a bad thing after all.

The promise was great at one point: Social media use had exploded on the consumer side, and the thought was that we’d see a parallel adoption on the enterprise side. If social media platforms could make it possible to stoke revolution in the Middle East or help cat videos go viral, imagine what could be unleashed if the powers of social were put to use in the enterprise?

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Did OkCupid send a bunch of incompatible people on dates on purpose?

ok8-1Last month, Facebook got in hot water when one of its data scientists published a paper revealing the company had attempted to alter the emotional content of hundreds of thousands of people's news feeds, just to see how they'd react. For many, the experiment crossed an ethical line, while others, like Vox's Nilay Patel, argued that screwing with your emotions is Facebook's entire business model anyway (personally, I just thought the study's methodology sucked).

But Facebook is hardly the only web company to use its power over what users see for the sake of research. In a blog post Monday (thanks to UNC sociologist Zeynep Tufekci for the link), OkCupid's Christian Rudder laid out three separate experiments the company has run on users.

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