Posts Tagged ‘social media’

Strobe is Now Tenthwave!

If you haven’t heard the news yet, here’s the press release about our exciting new merger:

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Strobe Promotions, RedStapler and Zezza Network announced on January 14 that they have merged to form Tenthwave, a fully integrated digital marketing agency headquartered in New York.  Lead by former i33 Communications Founder and Chairman Drew Rayman, Tenthwave reunites Rayman with former colleagues Steve Caputo and Rob KaplanBrian Hack and Mike Mazar; and Eric Schwamberger, the respective founders of Strobe, RedStapler and Zezza.

Tenthwave will provide digital and social marketing, promotions, web design and development from ideation through implementation for clients including CBS Consumer Products, eBay, Visa, Pepperidge Farm, Jim Beam, Hearst Magazines, and Sports Illustrated, among others.  Drew Rayman and Steve Caputo will serve as the agency’s managing partners with Brian HackEric SchwambergerMike Mazar and Rob Kaplan serving as agency partners.

“The ways in which brands communicate and engage with their audiences has changed more in the last five years than it has in the previous twenty. Unfortunately, the traditional advertising and marketing agency model has not experienced quite as rapid of a transformation. Agencies need to think differently and act differently,” said Drew Rayman, managing partner of Tenthwave. “In order for brands to compete in a ‘connected’ marketplace they need innovative strategy and direct access to agency talent that is unburdened by corporate procedure. As a new type of digital agency, Tenthwave provides its clients with cutting edge creativity, ideas and work without excessive process, combined with the stability and operational efficiencies of larger firms.”

Rayman, a proven agency manager and operator, is charged with removing the barriers between Tenthwave’s top talent and its clients by enabling the other agency partners, all of whom built successful boutique agencies on their own, to focus less on the operational elements associated with running a business and focus more on what they love to do the most: developing breakthrough work on behalf of their clients and pushing the industry forward through original thought leadership.

“Tenthwave is the natural evolution of our business,” said Steve Caputo, managing partner of Tenthwave. “Client demand for solid marketing strategy in the social media space has increased dramatically over the past year. Our ability to bring that kind of insight and direction to the table will hasten the learning curve among marketers entering the space, and bring those already engaged to a higher level of involvement with their customers. We offer a truly creative environment where the best and brightest can focus on the work while our experienced support staff tends to the details.”

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About Tenthwave

Founded in 2010, Tenthwave is the strategic blend of three award winning digital marketing agencies formerly known as Strobe Promotions, RedStapler and Zezza Network. Headquartered in New York, (with offices in ManhattanLong Island, Silicon Valley and the Washington D.C. Metro area), Tenthwave provides clients with digital marketing and creative services ranging from web design and development, online promotions and sweepstakes, social media marketing and online brand activation. Lead by managing partners Drew Rayman and Steve Caputo, Tenthwave puts innovation before bureaucracy and provides clients with direct access to creative talent. With its focus of maximizing marketing dollars, Tenthwave refuses to embrace “how it’s done” and rather strives to define “how to do it better.”  For more information, please visit www.tenthwave.com.

What You Need to Know About the New Facebook Profiles

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg debuted the new profile redesign on 60 Minutes last night. The new profiles are now live, so what do you need to know? Here’s a breakdown of what’s changed and how you can make the most of the new design.

The old Facebook profiles looked very similar to fan pages, with tabs at the top, a list of friends on the left and a Wall in the center.

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Here’s what the new ones look like:

fb profileRight off the bat, you can see that Facebook did away with the tabbed navigation on top. Instead, there is now a bio section directly under your name that shows the most basic and important information about you: where you work, where you went to school, where you’re from, your birthday etc. Over the next few days as more people get the new profiles, you will see many of your friends updating this info and you should too. Now, you can also easily edit your profile information right in this box.

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Photos also play a big role in the new bio section at the top. The past 5 photos that you have been tagged in will automatically show up here. Don’t worry, you can edit this section as well. Simply roll over an undesired photo & a small gray box with an “X” will appear, click that to remove the photo from your top section. Note that it does not de-tag you from the photo entirely.

You might also notice that I changed my profile picture when I got my new Facebook profile. It’s not just because someone snapped a flattering photo of me this weekend, I did have a logical reason for this. Facebook now features the profile picture in a larger and more prominent space. The low resolution of my old profile picture did not display well in this new environment. Make sure to check your photos when you make the switch, because nothing is worse than a blurry profile pic or embarrassing tagged photo on Facebook.

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The other big changes are housed on the left hand side under your profile picture. The first is how you can navigate the pages of your profile. The navigation options, formerly on tabs and in boxes, are now in a vertical list with corresponding icons. Even though the tabs are gone, you can still get to your profile pages other than the Wall (info, photos, etc.).

Underneath the navigation, you’ll see how your relationships are displayed has changed as well. There is an emphasis on family and close friends as you can even choose who is displayed in your friend list. Think of it as a serious upgrade to the MySpace “Top Friends” concept.

This new design is another example of how Facebook has done a great job of constantly evolving its platform to stay ahead of trends and not become stale like some of its predecessors. While this update doesn’t affect brands as much as consumers, it’s a sure sign of more changes to come.

Don’t have the new profile yet? Click here to get it. Then, stop by Strobe’s Facebook page to let us know what you think of the redesign. We’re looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

Facebook Changes Promotion Guidelines

Big news! We received notice from Facebook this week that they have revised their Promotion Guidelines, effective immediately. The guidelines govern how a sweepstakes, instant win game or contest can be run on its platform. The main stipulation in this document, which has not changed, is that a brand must utilize a third party application (like the kind Strobe creates), in order to administer a promotion on Facebook. Brands also cannot use Facebook’s inherent functions or tools as a promotion entry method, ie: liking a page, posting on a wall, commenting, etc. This too, remains unchanged.

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So, what’s new?

There have been 2 major changes to the previous policy [excerpted from an email from Facebook]:

1. Facebook no longer requires prior approval to administer a promotion on Facebook.

2. Facebook no longer requires a minimum spend threshold in order to run a promotion or contest on Facebook.

This is great news for marketers because it will cut down both project budgets and timelines. It also opens the door for brands of all sizes to take advantage of the marketing opportunities Facebook promotions have to offer. Brands do, however, still need to abide by the existing guidelines regarding how to administer a promotion on Facebook. While these changes are currently in effect, they have yet to be published on the site; Facebook says they will be updated shortly.

If this news is music to your ears and you can’t wait to run a Facebook promotion of your own (even for this holiday season), contact us! We have a selection of turn-key application solutions (all in accordance with the Facebook Promotion Guidelines) to help you increase and engage your fan base.

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UPDATE: Facebook has published the revisions to the Promotion Guidelines.

Strobe Breaks Into the Inc. 5000!

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Strobe was recently named by Inc. Magazine as one of the most entrepreneurial and fastest-growing companies in America. In 5 years, we have grown to $4.5MM in revenue, earning us a place on the “Inc. 5000,” the annual ranking of top companies in the U.S., spanning all industries, reported by the magazine. Strobe enters the top half of the list, ranked #1683, mainly due to our continued growth, a rate of 168% over the past 3 years. We attribute much of this growth to an increased demand for social media promotions, as well as deepening business with long-standing clients eBay, Visa and Pepperidge Farm. Recent additions to Strobe’s client roster include Campbell Soup Company, NetSpend and Tiny Prints, from the brand side, and Edelman and Imagitas, from the agency side.

We are very proud to be recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest-growing private companies in the country,” said Steve Caputo, President of Strobe Promotions. “In today’s challenging economic climate, we have been fortunate to continue to expand our business. We are constantly evolving to meet the needs of our clients and the demands of the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing.

The 2010 Inc. 5000, announced last week, measures revenue growth of privately held companies based in the U.S. from 2006 through 2009. More information about Strobe and its ranking on the list can be found here. The complete list, along with company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found here.

SCVNGR: A New App That Hunts for Consumer Engagement Treasure

There is a cycle to all popular trends, regardless of industry. There are the first to market, either classics with staying power or fleeting successes, and then followers are guaranteed. Sometimes, these are cheap knock-offs, but other times, even better versions than the original. For instance, for all you basketball fans out there, the “Big 3” in the NBA originally consisted of Boston Celtics Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Kevin Garnett, and the league is now led by LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwayne Wade who have teamed up in South Beach for the Miami Heat. In the social media space, Friendster led to MySpace which was eventually followed and overpowered by Facebook.

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The curve for social media trends seems to be shorter than in other industries, new apps are popping up daily. SCVNGR is a great example of this; the increasing popularity of FourSquare and other location based social apps led to its creation. According to its website, “SCVNGR is a game about doing challenges as places.” Much like FourSquare, you are able to check in at various locations using the app on your smart phone. However, with SCVNGR checking in is not enough, the experience is more interactive.  With this new app, you can go to your favorite local spots to check-in and once you’re there, you will be prompted to complete different tasks or challenges to gain points. You may have to take a photo at a park, solve a riddle at a museum, scan a QR code at a theater, or do some other kind of adventurous activity. The points you earn for completed challenges are redeemable for bragging rights as well as unlocking badges and other features. Companies can create their own challenges or hunts  as a cheeky way to involve adventurous consumers with their brand.

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Recently, the New England Patriots tapped SCVNGR for a promotion to get fans excited about the upcoming football season. They have created their own “Trek” and compiled a list of themed challenges for fans to complete at various locations throughout New England, in order to help Patriot player Vince Wilfork find his “stolen” Super Bowl ring. The campaign has received much press for both the NFL organization and the application itself. Other SCVNGR adopters include major universities (such as Duke University and Princeton), city tourism councils (the City of Rochester and Boston are both users), and several museums throughout the country.

Marketers are just starting to jump on board the location-based social media app train, with good reason. The interactive nature of these applications lend themselves to promotions – put an incentive behind these behaviors and the usage rate will surely soar. FourSquare, Loopt, Gowalla and now SVCNGR are great new platforms to attract, engage and reward consumers and I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Goooal! Catch World Cup Fever with Visa GoFans on YouTube

In celebration of the current 2010 FIFA World Cup, Visa has created a GoFans YouTube Channel enabling soccer fans to express their support of their national teams by showcasing their passionate “Goooal” calls, in the spirit of world famous Argentinean soccer announcer Andres Cantor. Cantor himself appears on the Visa GoFans page to provide fans with the tutorial on how to emulate his famous call. The GoFans World Cup Fever is really catching on; within the first two weeks of the Visa GoFans YouTube Channel launch, there have been over 2,000,000 page views, and the channel is in the top 3 of all pages viewed on YouTube!

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Now through July 11 2010, soccer fans can visit www.youtube.com/visagofans to upload and view videos of enthusiastic fans screaming their longest “Goooal” shout. Fans that submit videos are emailed links so that they can easily share their submission on various social media outlets.

Visa also supports its partnership with FIFA in the Visa “Watch Your Way to Brazil” Sweepstakes. Fans that view “Goooal” videos have an opportunity to win a trip for two to the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, or one of 60 $100 Visa gift cards. Strobe supported Visa with this epic promotion by providing content moderation, record/view functionality, email messaging/links, sweepstakes administration and web hosting.

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Show your support for Team USA as they move to the top of Group C and advance in the race for the 2010 FIFA World Cup by checking out the Visa GoFans YouTube Channel! Go USA!


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photo credit: FIFA/Getty Images

New FREE Download – Social Media Marketing Kit

Social media sites like Facebook & Twitter offer a platform for brands to directly connect with their consumers. While brands have begun to adopt this trend, many marketers are still wondering what really works in this space. We’ve put together a handy kit with tips and best practices to adhere to in order to get the most out of any social media campaign.

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Learn how to get started, gain a following and continue to engage that following with Strobe’s Social Media Marketing Kit. This convenient download includes our Strategic Thinker’s Guide to Marketing through Social Media, our Strategic Thinker’s Guide to Achieving Promotion Objectives and tip sheets on how to run engagement campaigns on Facebook and Twitter. The advice in this packet will show you how to analyze and improve any current campaign, and is helpful whether you are a social media novice or a more advanced user.

Click here to download your FREE copy now!

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The New Group Dynamic

We are learning so much about the group dynamic these days. I mean the REALLY BIG group dynamic…What does it say when a record amount of money is donated in a record period of time during a time of economic uncertainty?

This seems NOT to be about party politics or religion, but about humankind displaying a reflexive reaction to the tragedy in Haiti. Thanks to all modes of digital communications, people can direct their giving immediately, by texting, tweeting, posting, through e-donating and e-buying. And these channels, being what they are, provide an immediate accounting of this flood of goodwill. As of this writing, The Red Cross alone has raised $147 million in the US, including $25 million from text messages. That needs to sink in… $25 million (and counting) in two weeks, raised by individuals, reacting on impulse and TEXTING their donations, $10 at time. And that does not take into consideration other channels and organizations, such as this past weekend’s “Hope for Haiti Now” fundraising concert which donated funds to Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti Foundation,  Oxfam America, UNICEF, the United Nations World Food Program, the recently formed Clinton Bush Haiti Foundation, as well as the Red Cross.

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The channels to communicate and contribute are as unfettered as they could possibly be for our time. If 9/11 was the opening chapter of technology-driven news, and the Tsunami (2004) and Hurricane Katrina (2005) relief efforts demonstrated how the internet could serve as a viable donation response channel, then perhaps the earthquake in Haiti is the event that will mark the coming of age of social media. During the past two weeks, “Haiti” has been a consistently trending topic on twitter and ever-present on facebook statuses worldwide. People all over the globe are using social media and mobile channels to come together and help others in desperate need. Never have so many offered so much, so quickly. Over the next weeks and months, we will learn whether or not governments and corporations can mobilize as quickly as the masses that have surged to support the relief effort.

The stories of death and destruction continue to mount in what surfacing as one of the singularly most horrifying natural disasters in history. That our society is attempting to respond in equal magnitude, through untested channels is a testament to the human spirit, and a reason to have unbounding hope.

Free Download: Guide to Social Media Marketing

It’s been predicted that 2010 will be the year in which social media becomes mainstream for marketers.  Facebook and Twitter have experienced a lot of growth in the past year, and are quickly becoming staples of well-rounded marketing campaigns.  If you’re not already planning on joining or enhancing your current strategy on Facebook and Twitter in the coming months, now’s the time to think about it.

Strobe’s new Strategic Thinker’s Guide to Marketing through Social Media offers tips and best practices for planning, executing and analyzing a social marketing campaign. Learn how to attract and engage a following and discover tools to measure your success. Download it here, free!

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