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Snapchat: Sharing Stories Between Strangers Around the World

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Snapchat, an app that hosts 10 second long user pictures/videos and aggregates content into live stories with a 24-hour shelf life, has grown into a mobile-first visual-based company with 100 million daily active users, 65% of them uploading at least one snap a day.

Over the past few months, Snapchat has increased its viewer base by targeting users based on their location. Users get a look into other people’s daily lives ─ music festivals, sporting events and reactions to breaking news. Snapchat recently made it easier to view content when they launched a Tap to View feature where users only tap their screens to view snaps rather than holding down their screen to view.

As a way to diversify content and broaden their reach, Snapchat launched City Life in April 2015 as a feature that collects moments from various cities. In the span of 24-hours, moments are picked and strung together to show what everyday life is like in that city. Users that select their photos or videos to be included in their city’s story become part of geo-tagged content that Snapchat’s team chooses to display.

The City Life feature can inspire people to consider those cities as future travel destinations by promoting the city and various attractions in the area. To date, Snapchat has featured users’ snaps from over fifty cities in thirty countries including Brazil, Singapore, South Africa and the United States.

Snapchat’s travel features help the world see how users’ are communicating and living their lives. The 10 second moments connect users by allowing them to look into other’s lives and share in their unique experiences, if only briefly. As an outlet for displaying global experiences, Snapchat can be a tool for travel brands to effectively convey travelers to visit their cities, musical festivals and restaurants by wanting to share in locals’ experiences. Using Snapchat’s excessive outreach, users can easily connect to others and see how people like them around the world are living.

Chevrolet Shakes Up Their Latest Press Release

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Chevrolet is bringing things further into the digital age with an all-emoji press release. Emojis are small pictures frequently used in text messages to convey emotion.

The new 2016 Chevrolet Cruze was announced in a press release Monday, and was decoded the next day for those who were unable to read the emoji message.

Why did Chevrolet decide to write an emoji press release?

Previously, Chevrolet’s attempts to reach a younger demographic have been underwhelming. Creating an all-emoji press release was their way of appealing to the demographic that would have the greatest likelihood to buy a car that is priced around $16,000 such as the 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.

According to PR Daily, Chevrolet’s new technique will likely bring in more interest from the targeted audience for the new Chevrolet model. With this departure from a normal press release, PR Daily said Chevrolet is trying to attract younger consumers who use emojis often.

Chevrolet was able to create a press release that not only drew the desired attention, but required active participation for those who were interested in attempting to decode the emoji message. The car brand also took to Twitter to tease their press release by using even more emojis and the hashtag: #ChevyGoesEmoji. Commercials starring celebrities Norm Macdonald, Zendaya Coleman, Jamie Chung and Ashley Benson were posted on Chevrolet social media accounts. The commercials show the young celebrity women teaching the older generation how to use emojis.

Chevrolet’s goal was to reach a young demographic who can afford a car like the new Chevrolet model. Because consumers respond more favorably to celebrities that they recognize, Chevrolet chose young celebrities that are popular right now and are heavily followed on social media for the campaign. The celebrity and consumer interaction on Twitter is evidence that Chevrolet succeeded in making their announcement interactive. Twitter was torn as to whether the press release was effective, but it definitely drew attention and sparked a discussion.

The method was attention-grabbing, but even though this was the first time that emojis have been used in PR, other companies have used emojis as part of their marketing strategy. According to Mashable, today’s marketers have to “speak their language” to appeal to the younger generation—and emojis are part of the language.

According to Digiday, many companies are trying to be more appealing to the younger generation. Companies are using trendy words like “fleek” and “bae” in attempt to appeal to the younger audience. The incorporation of pop culture into marketing shows that marketers have realized that the younger generation is becoming increasingly important to business.

Will other companies follow suit and get creative with their press releases?

Twitter Hashtag #JeSuisCharlie Demonstrates Global Solidarity over Paris Shootings

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Last Wednesday, Paris and the world were both shocked and devastated after the recent attack at the headquarters of satirical French magazine, Charlie Hebdo. While this is not France’s first threat on its national security, the shooting is currently the worst to date. Like so many others, this tragic event has sparked vast media attention and people around the world expressed their support within hours of the massacre. This article written by The Huffington Post explains how the #JeSuisCharlie Hashtag is “a message of solidarity” and the powerful effects of Twitter after the shooting at Charlie Hebdo.

Hashtag activism allows a simple phrase to turn into a powerful utterance that embodies sympathies of goodwill. The phrase #JeSuisCharlie or “I am Charlie” which emerged in the after math of the attacks on the Charlie Hebdo office is proof alone to cite the ever-growing presence of current events being integrated into social media. Twitter has become an online forum where people have the ability to connect to vast networks with updates of breaking news as well as free expression of their emotions and according to the Huffington Post, “thousands of Twitter users posted the hashtag in support of those killed and freedom of the press.”

In the past week, #JeSuisCharlie has become the trending hashtag bringing together journalists and citizens alike in support for the victims. Looking back to other past political movements in the last few years, such as the Arab Spring uprisings (#arabspring) or more recently, the Occupy Wall Street (#occupywallstreet) protests, hashtags are becoming increasingly powerful as they become a symbol for a global voice.

Read the full article written by The Huffington Post here:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/07/jesuischarlie-charlie-hebdo-shooting_n_6429712.html

 

Guerilla Marketing Tactics of the 2014 World Cup

Fortune 500 companies are shelling out big bucks to advertise the 2014 World Cup, this summer’s biggest sporting event. In this Main Street article, Jason Notte reports that Adidas, Coca-Cola, Sony, Visa, Hyundai/Kia and Emirates paid $100 million each to become official World Cup partners. McDonald’s, Johnson & Johnson, Anheuser-Busch InBev’s Budweiser and BP’s Castrol each paid $20 million for second-tier sponsorship. Despite these huge expenses, many of these companies are being outshone by guerilla marketing tactics from direct competitors.

The most-viewed World Cup advertisement (at 80 million views on YouTube) is “Winner Stays” by Nike, a direct competitor of World Cup partner Adidas. This marketing battle was simply one of star power. While Adidas features several recognizable players in their ad “The Dream” (35 million views on YouTube), including Argentinian Lionel Messi, Nike compiled an all-star team of celebrity players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar, Wayne Rooney and Gerard Pique. Nike’s celebrity endorsers are familiar outside of the soccer sphere and created more activity on social media. Ronaldo tweeted the commercial to his millions of followers, while Messi doesn’t even have a Twitter. “Winner Stays”, which turns a group of average kids in a pick-up soccer game into star players at the World Cup, also appeals to a much broader audience than “The Dream” which, while dramatic and exciting, makes the World Cup the central focus.

Guerilla marketing is continually present during large-scale sporting events like the Superbowl and March Madness. By excluding all World Cup logos from their advertisement and relying on the power of implication, Nike has proved that partnerships are not worth the hefty price tag. While Adidas may have edged Nike in soccer sales last year ($2.7 billion to $2 billion), Nike has come out on top during soccer’s most important event.

Here are the two ads, watch and decide for yourself which is more effective.

Adidas, “The Dream”

Nike, “Winner Stays”

6 Ways to Irritate a Journalist or Blogger and Blow Your Chance at Big Time Exposure

Journalists and bloggers are constantly receiving pitches from PR pros working to get their clients media coverage. An online mention from a respected journalist or blogger can mean big things for a client, but irritating them and losing the opportunity is extremely easy.

Christine OKelly from Dashburst recently asked a group of journalists and bloggers what people do that drives them crazy when they submit pitches or material and then compiled them into a list for the rest of the PR community to take notes from. Below are the six reasons your pitch will definitely be skipped over: Continue Reading →

New York Times and other Media React to Anthony Weiner’s Latest Scandal: Too Much Bad Press to Run?

Mayoral candidate and former congressman Anthony Weiner is once again in the middle of an embarrassing sex scandal. After taking a break from politics and public life to let the last scandal blow over, this second indiscretion could be the nail in the coffin for his public support and career. Matt Wilson’s article on PR Daily about Weiner’s PR woes questions whether the politician is working for the good of the people, or just his ego. Continue Reading →

"Who is Running this Magazine?" Rolling Stone’s PR Nightmare

After Rolling Stone magazine released its August cover featuring Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the legendary magazine was met with a storm of backlash. Retailers are boycotting the issue and musicians are expressing their distaste, while social media is overflowing with outcry.

The cover of Rolling Stone magazine has long been a determining factor if a musician has achieved pop icon status. Alongside its commentary of the music industry, the magazine also has a tradition of serious reporting on the current cultural landscape. However, it isn’t an article about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s descent into radical Islam that is offending people, its Tsarnaev’s rock star looking cover photo. Continue Reading →

Steve Jobs: His Lasting Impact on Media Consumption

It’s hard to imagine a world without laptops, iPhones and iPads.  These gadgets have become as central to American culture as baseball and apple pie.  It seems everyone has an iPhone or some protype of one spurred on by the original.  The genius creative force behind these products was none other than Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

The Apple innovator passed away Wednesday, leaving behind not only a slew of products and devastated admirers, but a legacy that changed the face of media consumption across the nation.  With their laptops and iPhones on hand, people have increasingly turned to online media outlets instead of their paper counterparts for the latest news.

This change didn’t happen overnight, though.  It was a long journey, beginning in Jobs’ garage.  Him and a colleague built their first personal computer there in 1976, pricing it at $666.66.  The Apple II was launched a year later at the West Coast Computer Faire to overwhelming praise, leading to the first true Macintosh computer in 1984.  Since then, Jobs has continued to revolutionize the technological world with new, innovative products.

“Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives,” Apple said in a statement.  “The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.”

For more information about Steve Jobs: http://articles.cnn.com/2011-10-05/us/us_obit-steve-jobs_1_jobs-and-wozniak-iphone-apple-founder?_s=PM:US