Archives for September 2014

September 26, 2014Published by: Drew

Battenhall named PRCA agency of the future

We're delighted to end a big week at Battenhall with the news that Battenhall has been named one of the PRCA's five future agencies in the industry body's 'PR Agency of the Future' initiative.

Announced today at the PRCA's annual conference in London, the initiative launch was marked with a set of videos profiling the five agencies. Our video is here along with profiles of the other four - Nelson Bostock, Golin, Octopus and Threepipe. We're in esteemed company as these agencies are biggies, well-established and multi-award winning. We are little over a year old and we're humbled to be in such high regard by the powers that be.

Do take a moment to see how we work and what makes us tick in our video, titled Battenhall the PR Agency of The Future, where Sam Mason, our client service director, and I talk about the Battenhall story so far and our plans for the future.

September 26, 2014Published by: Drew

Internet goes wild for Ello launch


At about 10pm last night the internet was reverberating with word of a new social network. Ello was causing mass excitement as hundreds of people faithfully shared the headline 'the invite-only social network Facebook users are 'fleeing' to'.

Interestingly we also saw a lot of skepticism just two hours in to launch. Some wrote it off as another 'new hipster' network while others said it was doomed to the same fate as Path, and Google +. One thing was clear, loads of people wanted in on the beta launch...we even caught Emily Bell having a little moan about her lack of access, quite understandably.

The gang at Battenhall got in early, bashed things around and have done the reading for you. Here's a quick overview of all you need to know so far:

Ello is keen to let you know, you are not a product. This platform (currently) does not intend to sell your data.

The network is ad free. Sweet relief!

Ello is free to use - as such they plan to introduce special features which users can pay for at some point. We're very interested to see what these will look like.

They make it very easy to delete your page - big fat button, you can't miss it. You are not being forcibly held.

The design of the network is extremely pleasing. Clean, simple and beautiful. It was made by designers and artists at design studio Berger & Föhr - that explains that then.

We've heard people moaning about glitches and it being buggy but we say just a few hours in following a viral 'sign me up' tidal wave...give these guys a break. It's free, pretty slick and they're probably pooped.

So what do you get?

A nice profile as you'd expect (profile pic, header image and a bio), the ability to add friends - there's a nice visual panel of them. You can post status updates, pictures and GIFs, comment on posts and even see how many people have viewed your post.

More features are on the way, they say they'll be coming through daily - but we're satisfied for now - this is a beta after-all. We're just enjoying having a new platform to play with.

Fancy a go, drop us a comment below and we'll add you in...we've each got a handful of invites! We'd love to know what you think of it so far...

September 23, 2014Published by: Drew

Some Battenhall news – awards and events and reports, oh my!

Battenhall awards and events

Battenhall is just one year old still, but this week has been a busy one and we've had some amazing news to share which the team here have all worked incredibly hard on and which together form a bit of a milestone for us as a consultancy.

One big report

We unveiled our second annual FTSE 100 social media report yesterday. The findings proved interesting to us, we thought, but to the press also, as we managed to secure the cover of the Telegraph's business section and a live slot on Sky News to talk about our findings. This was in addition to big showings in City AM, Management Today, PR Week, Marketing more. TechCrunch called us yesterday too and asked us to do some social media data crunching work at the same time as our report coming out, and our findings got covered in this Twitter story here.

Battenhall FTSE 100 report 2014

One main event

To coincide with the launch of Social Media Week, and to link up with our report launch, we held our annual social media trends briefing yesterday morning in the Soho Hotel. It was standing room only for talks from Battenhall's Sam Mason, Steph Bennett and Charlie Sharpe. Some reviews from bloggers in the room including eModeration, Sarah Willis, and Ged Carroll are already up online, and we trended in the UK on Twitter with the volume of mentions coming through online.

Battenhall Social Media Aweek 2014


Next month is the start of award season, and we've just begun entering ourselves for a couple of the biggies. We found out this morning that Battenhall is a finalist for the Social Media Awards as best small agency, which we're absolutely thrilled about. We find out if we win on 23rd October, just two weeks after the PR Week Awards, where we're up for best new agency. So come November we'll either be pumped, pooped or put out, but which ever way these awards turn out, we're excited to even be shortlisted.

In case you'd like to catch up on our Social Media Week event as it happened, here is our Storify of it. Thanks for reading.


September 22, 2014Published by: Drew

Battenhall launches 2014 FTSE 100 social media report

Battenhall FTSE 100 report 2014

This morning we are launching our second annual report looking at how the FTSE 100 companies use Twitter and social media. The research, published to mark the launch of Social Media Week, shows a widening gulf appearing between the social media haves and the have-nots, with some brands streaking ahead and others stagnating or getting worse.

The full report is available to download here.

This is the second year we have carried out this research on the FTSE 100's use of Twitter and social media, so for the first time, it contains comparable stats from last year showing progress over time. The report charts the increase of social media used for customer service, financial reporting, brand marketing and recruitment. A summary of the key stats are as follows:

  • 10 companies in the FTSE 100 do not have a Twitter account at all, this is down from 12 in 2013
  • Only 37 companies that are on Twitter have verified Twitter accounts. This is an increase of 10 from last year
  • 6 of the 90 companies on Twitter have never tweeted, down from 8 last year
  • 10 of those that are on Twitter have not tweeted in the last month, down from 19 last year
  • Only 39 companies have more than 10,000 followers, up from 28 last year
  • 20 companies have fewer than 1,000 followers, down from 21 last year
  • The FTSE 100 companies tweeted 1,459,223 times in just the last year
  • The top performers on Twitter are Burberry, ITV, Marks & Spencer and Sainsbury’s
  • The worst performers are Glencore Xstrata, Prudential, BHP Billiton and CRH

If you have any feedback or if you'd like to get in touch with us, please email the Battenhall team here.

September 18, 2014Published by: Janey Spratt

The UK YouTubers power list

ZoellaThere’s a new breed of digital content producers on YouTube who have amassed fan bases bigger than some of the top celebrities and public figures on social media. Zoella has more YouTube subscribers than Demi Lovato, more Twitter followers than David Cameron and more likes than Innocent on Facebook.

Top YouTubers have become a new brand of celebrity for young people and they’re changing the shape of youth entertainment. Teenagers now watch as much, if not more, YouTube than TV. Perhaps these YouTubers have such large fan bases as, unlike celebrities, young people can relate to what they do and they’re seen as being more ‘normal’ than celebrities who’ve earned their fame through music, film or television.

We’re noticing more and more brands collaborating with these YouTubers. For example, brands like Skype and Krave cereal are using YouTuber talent to endorse their products.

Each YouTuber has their own niche whether it’s fashion, beauty, comedy or family and in recognising their power of influence, brands are actively seeking opportunities for product placement and collaborations as a key part of their digital communications strategy e.g. Mulberry with Tanya Burr and Jim Chapman.

Young YouTube personalities are shaping the future of social media in an ever changing landscape and we’re interested to see how they will adapt to remain successful in their space.

Here’s our power list of the YouTubers we consider to be the key players in the industry:

1Zoella5.8m subscribers
Zoe Sugg is possibly the most recognized female Vlogger in the UK. Zoella has been blogging about her love for fashion and beauty since 2009. The internet sensation has recently announced the launch of her book ‘Girl Online’ due to launch this November. This summer, Jonathan Ford of the FT wrote a very inspiring feature about his lunch with Zoella.

2Tyler Oakley - 5.4m subscribers
LGBT advocate, best friend of Zoella and the only US based Vlogger on our list. Tyler vlogs about pop culture, ‘sassiness, beauty and fabulousness’.

3. Pointless Blog – 3m subscribers
Zoella’s boyfriend, Alfie Deyes posts humorous pranks and YouTube challenge videos. Alfie is an entrepreneur and recently published his own book ‘The Pointless Book’.

4. Caspar - 3m subscribers
The English-born, South African teen, Caspar Lee, vlogs about his life observations and has a passion for acting.

5. Marcus Butler TV – 2.95m subscribers
The hugely popular Marcus Butler vlogs humorous sketches and ‘YouTube tag’ videos and is dating YouTuber Niomi Smart.

6. Thatcher Joe - 2.8m subscribers
The younger brother of Zoella. Joe is a roof thatcher and a newcomer to the scene, building his channel through creative and comedy videos.

7. Troye Sivan - 2.7m subscribers
The Australian actor, YouTuber and singer-songwriter has just signed a record deal with Universal music and has appeared in films such as the X-Men.

8. Tanya Burr - 2.4m subscribers
A beauty expert who has built her reputation through beauty tutorial videos, appearing regularly in the beauty media and working with fashion brands such as Topshop and Mulberry.

9. Jim Chapman - 1.7m subscribers
Tanya Burr’s fiance, Jim Chapman, is one of the more sophisticated male Vloggers on our list, vlogging about life and love. The brother of Pixiwoo and twin brother to The Lean Machine’s John Chapman.

10. Sprinkle of Glitter - 1.6m subscribers
Mummy Vlogger, Louise Pentland vlogs about lifestyle, family, DIY, beauty, fashion and offers advice to her fans. Louise is also best friends with Zoella.

Other YouTubers to check out: The Lean Machines, The Saccone Jolys, Pixi Woo, Fun for Louis, Niomi Smart and Oli White.

Image credit.


September 17, 2014Published by: Drew

New venue confirmed for Battenhall’s #SMW2014 trends briefing


Next week is Social Media Week London, and we are hosting Battenhall's social media trends briefing to kick off the week.

We originally planned to host the event at Battenhall HQ, but the tickets went like hot cakes and we needed a bigger venue. So we'll now be hosting it at the Soho Hotel. If you've registered to attend, look out for an email from us with the full address and timings.

We'll be unveiling our second annual FTSE 100 social media report on the day too. If you'd like to tune into the chatter online, follow #SMWwhatsnext which is our event hashtag, and @battenhall on Twitter.

We do have a waiting list, so if you reeeeally want to come, details are here on the Social Media Week site.

September 12, 2014Published by: Steph Bennett

Facebook’s latest experiment

FB SnapFacebook has once again started experimenting with new capabilities by following in the footsteps of Snapchat and enabling users of the iOS app to produce disappearing posts. The new option allows users to set an expiration date for their posts ranging from one hour to seven days. This new function was not only a response to the ever growing teenage market for disappearing messages, one that Snapchat has led for the last three years leading to an approximate valuation of $10 billion, but also an outcome of the interest Facebook users showed in automatically deleting posts.

This is now the third attempt at a deleting message app that Facebook has produced since June; the first of which was the relatively unsuccessful Slingshot. Slingshot was an app that operated in a similar way to Snapchat but required users to send a picture to view a picture. However, this proved to be unpopular with users and, as a result, Facebook removed the one aspect of the app that made it distinctive from Snapchat. Within a month of this failed attempt to unseat Snapchat the Facebook owned app Instagram released Bolt, another attempt to threaten Snapchats dominance in the ephemeral photo sharing market.

At these early stages the new function for Facebook is only available for testing in New Zealand; however, if this new ability proves popular enough it will without doubt be turned very quickly into a globally available tool for all Facebook users.

For more information read here.

September 10, 2014Published by: Drew

How Apple’s social media strategy with fashion bloggers is taking aim not at the watch, but at the wrist


Those following brand social media trends will find last night's launch of the Apple Watch and iPhone 6 of interest, not just for the shiny gadgets that were launched, but for how Apple courted social media influencers from the fashion industry for the first time and in unprecedented numbers.

As reported here in Reuters, Apple sent a large number of fashion editors and bloggers out to Silicon Valley to attend the launch. Now we can see why, as the coverage of the Apple Watch has ignited discussion around a new category of product, new kinds of store and a whole heap of new ideas for accessories, all of which will be crucial to the company as it looks to diversify from electronics.

An absolute must read is this blog by London's Imran Amed from Business of Fashion, the high profile fashion trends influencer, who was sent out to the event. Amed's piece is long and goes into great depth, but the below section jumped out at me, because it shows how Apple needs to do more than just make its watch appealing. It needs to make the watch as an entire product category appealing to a new generation:

For vast swathes of young people under the age of thirty, Apple’s challenge is different. Today, this demographic rarely wears watches at all. The only expections are youngsters involved in some sort of activity typically associated with the need for them, like watches for diving or racing etc.. Their first instinct is to look at their mobile phones to check the time (and accomplish other tasks). Apple will need to convince young users that there is value in wearing something on their wrists in the first place. Apple is hoping that by positioning their new smartwatch as a companion device to the iPhone, enabling users can scan emails, answer phone calls and check their calendars without having to fish out their mobiles, the Watch will naturally mesh into young people’s lives.

Here Apple is taking aim not at the watch, but at the wrist, which I think will be a fascinating battleground for digital brands in the coming months. I for one am looking forward to getting a hands-on session with the watch, not only for how it will impact how we use social media, but for the digital health aspects too, something which I explored here last night.