Archives for February 2014

February 25, 2014Published by: Drew

Reddit launches new and experimental news format, Liveupdate

Reddit Liveupdate

Reddit has launched Liveupdate, new type of news reporting functionality that it has been experimenting with recently, where selected users are being given the ability by Reddit staff to work on live news feeds for reporting on news events, something not previously seen on Reddit. Because of Reddit's huge influence online, this is a big deal for journalism and the media agenda in general and is making waves online. If you want to be working with and on the media agenda now, it means working with this core team of influencers inside Reddit.

"Liveupdate is a new type of post..." says the post announcing this feature on Reddit. "The "reporters" for a stream can post updates and anyone watching gets sent those updates in real time. Unlike with self-post or comment based live updates, there's no limit to how many updates can be posted during the course of an event. Liveupdate streams exist outside of subreddits and are designed to be submitted like any other link to whatever (multiple) subreddits are relevant to the stream."

Gigaom's analysis of this feature goes further:

Reddit is beta testing a new feature that allows users to create and update live blogs about breaking news events such as the recent uprising in Ukraine or the war in Syria — a move that could be a valuable addition to the cause of “open-source journalism”.

Will false news reports and other noise be contributed to and/or spread by Reddit’s new approach to live news? Undoubtedly.

...however, the potential benefits of what Reddit brings to journalism outweigh any downside...

Read more here.

February 25, 2014Published by: Anton Perreau

Sina Weibo prepares for IPO

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Last week's news of WhatsApp's purchase for $19bn it seems other social networks are preparing to raise funding for their future. Next up is Sina Weibo - the Chinese social network which is planning to go IPO on the New York Stock exchange later this year with a valuation of up to $7bn - $8bn according to The Financial Times.

For some time the Battenhall team have been working on campaigns which focus on key Chinese social networks like Weibo and WeChat. The experience of Weibo is much like a mix between Facebook and Twitter, with insight into how much a post is liked, or even read by it's 'concerns' (followers). The social network, 71% owned by the Sina corporation is hoping to raise around $500m in the second quarter of 2014.

Image from Quartz

However, as The FT explains, this listing doesn't come at the best time for Weibo - active users of microblogs in China fell by a tenth between 2012 and 2013, according to a recent report by a government-affiliated research group, thanks to increased competition from WeChat, and government censorship. Censorship is rife in China, with the government omitting anything alluding to slightly liberal language, as well as enforcing strong rules that all members must sign up with their actual names - hidden behind branding of 'The Real Name Social Network'.

Sina Weibo's future has become the battle ground for a war between Alibaba and Tencent. The fate of Weibo rests on how that battle plays out and essentially how some of Weibo's key competitors are funded. We'll be keeping a close eye on the final valuation of Weibo, which no doubt has been increased by the recent acquisition of WhatsApp. To read more about this news head to The Wall Street Journal.


February 25, 2014Published by: Drew

Calling all causes: Battenhall’s birthday present is back to you

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Since launching Battenhall we have been trying to disrupt the traditional agency model, a little bit at a time. We are about to turn one year old, and to celebrate, we want to give something back.

As part of the way we work here, we spend 20% of our time on non-client causes. Anything goes, from R&D on new services, to pro bono client work and PR and social media help for charities. We are fortunate enough to count some charities as clients, too, including WaterAid and the International Aids / HIV Alliance. It's fair to say that making a difference makes us tick.

For our first birthday, which is on 8th March, we will be pooling our resources and putting a month of our time to one big, fat good cause.

This is where you come in. If you have something coming up that you need our help with, we would like you to let us know. If could be something tiny and you would just like a bit of advice. Or maybe it's an upcoming mega-campaign, and you need a team mobilised to help out. Perhaps you just want to pop in and say hello and bend someone's ear. Well, we're all ears.

This is a call for good causes, charities, campaigns, whatever you term yourself, to get in touch. Email us on hello@battenhall.net and we'll come back to you with next steps. Let us know what kind of help it is you need and we'll do the rest.

We'll spend the next two weeks waiting for you to get in touch, then on 10th March we'll update this post with what we'll be doing.

Thanks for reading this far and we look forward to hearing from you!

February 25, 2014Published by: Tom Bradley

Data from social media is the must-have brand asset

Courtesy of The Guardian

When Battenhall's founder Drew Benvie was asked to write for The Guardian, he chose the topic of social data. His piece appeared yesterday and details the importance of an individual's data on social media. Drew talks about how business innovation and marketing can be better advanced by those brands being proactive and using the data as best they can to develop their businesses.

As Drew puts it himself, "Social data is incredibly rich. It can show who will win a game show, as well as the general election. It can show product preferences so that brands can make things we don't yet realise that we want to buy. It can also predict world events."

You can read the piece in full here.


February 24, 2014Published by: Tom Bradley

MWC2014: Ericsson and Facebook Innovation Lab

Screenshot 2014-02-24 10.11.02

There is plenty of interesting news and comment being generated as a result of Mobile World Congress this year. A major highlight has been the announcement that Ericsson and Facebook will be collaborating on an 'innovation lab' to support the work of internet.org - a company who's aim is to bring the internet to emerging markets and countries, to expand its usage and broaden its reach.

This new venture aims to optimise devices and applications across the board for the next five billion users of the internet, and utilises Ericsson's mobile knowledge - combined with Facebook's ability to enhance developer access to network environments - come together to make this dream of internet 'for the world' a reality.

There's more on the story over at The Drum, and more to come from Battenhall on all the events at Mobile World Congress.

February 21, 2014Published by: Anton Perreau

Top 5 things we learnt about BuzzFeed

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During the morning of Friday 21 February Battenhall attended the Gorkana briefing from Luke Lewis, Editor of BuzzFeed UK. In true BuzzFeed style, we thought we'd summarise our findings with a few cute gif images:

1. In the UK, always share stuff that's fun and interesting

Luke shared with us that whilst in the USA content that is emotive strikes a tone - the more fun content is popular in the UK.

2. Don't hate, it's just no fun

BuzzFeed even specifies 'no haters' in their job applications. Just don't do it.

3. Niche subject matters are important, not SEO

Focus on small communities in the UK, specific subjects or articles that directly relate to a small community that will share it.

4. Experiment with things all the time

Always say 'yes' to new ideas, if they don't go well, you've learned.

5. Hard news, fun quizzes and silly facts can all live harmoniously in one place

In the future BuzzFeed UK is looking to include more hard-hitting news alongside it's current fun, shareable and interesting content.

 To read more from the Gorkana breakfast briefing with Luke Lewis, head to our LIVE GOOGLE DOC.


February 20, 2014Published by: Anton Perreau

LinkedIn unlocks long-form posting privileges

The LinkedIn iPad app loads up

This week the professional social network LinkedIn expanded to allow all its users to post in long-form. Up until now only a handful of key influencers had been given the exclusive right to publish content on the network, but opening up this feature to all users won't dilute influencers messages, only enhance them. Mashable reported that

'The influencer posts do well, says LinkedIn's Head of Content Products Ryan Roslansky, generating nearly 31,000 views and more than 80 comments on average.'

LinkedIn's recent move to become a content powerhouse included the rebranding of its news curation tool in November and and shortly after opened up showcase pages. The LinkedIn push probably won't stop here, what we're likely to see in the next few weeks is an increasing amount of user-generated content within LinkedIn, driving more traffic through personal profiles and business pages. Part of this being to enhance the overall experience of joining a group or connecting with an influential individual.

Those with the availability to publish in long-form will see a small pencil icon in the top of their share box, allowing them to write a post that could even then be amplified by the editorial team of LinkedIn - provided it's high quality. To read more about this, head on over to Mashable.

February 19, 2014Published by: Drew

The $16bn address book: what Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp means for brands

News just out: Facebook has bought WhatsApp for $16bn. The whopping figure is one of the biggest in any sector in history, and shadows any similar acquisitions in the digital and social media world. In fact, WhatsApp has be bought for more than Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, Flickr, Viber and Yammer were sold for combined, as our chart shows.

WhatsApp bought by Facebook for $16bn - Battenhall

Facebook certainly wants to get current again. Recent reports have talked about its waning youth userbase. WhatsApp is certainly on the rise, and it also has the vote of confidence from the security-conscious.

So what will this mean for the WhatsApp community and for brands? As with everything Facebook works on at scale, advertising should be expected down the line. Currently WhatsApp makes money from small charges too, which we may see change. One thing's for certain, brands will be trying that bit harder to get to grips with using WhatsApp for some of its killer functions, namely:

  • Customer care
  • Feedback forums
  • Closed fan groups
  • Push messaging
  • Opt-in brand engagement channels

The ink is still drying on this deal, so we will update this article further when we know (and think) some more on it.