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Social

  • Banksy and social media: The perfect match?

    Banksy, the world-famous street artist who is considered the scarlet pimpernel of the art world almost had his identity sold in an auction on ebay last week. Bidding reached a dollar short of US$1-million before the attempt to unmask the art crusader was thwarted. But many have been left wondering if this was yet another of Banksy’s elaborate pranks, or whether Web 2.0 came within a hair's breadth of revealing his identity? The saga began when a seller called 'jaybuysthings' made the offer, with a 100% guarantee that the identity was real, after claiming that he had used tax...

  • Social media, before Facebook and Twitter [Infographic]

    Though it might seem like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace invented social networking, they in fact did not. That old antique device of the internet, known as email, is arguably considered by many to be a form of "social networking". Online communication occurred long before we were able to 'write' on each other's virtual walls. Did you know that the very first email was sent in 1971? Did you know that the concept of "trolling" was established in Usenet bulletin boards not Twitter? Social media has a long (40 years or so) and revealing history. The origins of social media...

  • 7 social media lessons learned from hypnosis

    For over a hundred years, all sorts of people, from charlatans to respected academics, have been studying the power and uses of hypnosis. Two forms have emerged recently as the most well-researched and effective: Clinical hypno-therapy and stage hypnosis. In fact there are many therapists who dabble in entertaining stage hypnosis. As social media marketers, there are many lessons we can learn from the field of trance and suggestion. Below are 7 of my favourite. 1. Suggestibility Suggestibility is a measure of how inclined a person is to act on the suggestions of other people. Research has shown that there is...

  • Social media policy in the military

    Last week, the United States Army announced the release of its 2011 Social Media Handbook on its blog, Army Live. The handbook warns troops to think twice before divulging information on Facebook or Twitter that could be exploited by adversaries. Last year the US Army released the 2010 Social Media Book, which the blog post refers to as "an excellent product". However the post further explains that "it only scratched the surface of Army social media use. We decided it was time to produce a document that provided more guidance, additional case studies and more advanced tips and best practices."...

  • World Health Organisation using MXit, JamiiX in disaster zones

    The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) South-East Asia Regional Office (SEARO) has teamed up with popular mobile social network MXit and JamiiX to bring emergency preparedness information to chat users in disaster-prone Indonesia. This new approach is part of WHO’s wider effort to strengthen disaster preparedness in the region and build public awareness of the urgent need for safe hospitals in disaster zones. Indonesians using MXit chat will be able to access personal preparedness information, including what to do in the case of natural disasters like floods, tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and cyclones; how to prepare an emergency...

  • 5 tips on the delicate art of sponsored tweeting

    “Tweet trouble as top celebs face crackdown” squawked the headline in a major newspaper's media and marketing section. I wondered if Lady Gaga was telling her 7,8-million followers about the joys of ritually beating Azerbaijani folk dancers on the soles of their feet but no, as it turns out, various celebrities have offended their followers -- and the British Office of Fair Trading -- by tweeting about brands. This has given rise to speculation that they are being paid to endorse luxury products “in secret deals”. As evidence, the piece offered tweets from Jonathan Ross (“Waiting for plane...

  • Down the rabbit hole into the land of social media

    Like Alice going down the rabbit hole, or Dorothy on arrival in the Land of Oz when she pronounced, "Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore," any new social media user is likely to experience a sense of bemusement and wonder. Regardless of which platform one uses, when entering the world of social media for the first time, a sense of bemusent and befuddled is an understatement. Classic stories such as The Wizard of Oz and Alice In Wonderland provide wonderful comparisons to the world of social media when you consider the grinning cats, mad hatters, munchkins,...

  • Social networking: 4 trends you need to know about

    In early 2010, Facebook passed Google in website traffic. This is astonishing because Google has been the greatest growth story of all time. How could this be? What is fundamentally driving this behaviour? And what are the implications moving forward? U.S. Website Traffic, percentage of Total Visitors (Source: The Economist, Dec. 2, 2010) What distinguishes mammals from other animals is our need for true social interaction. Human beings are not wired to be...

  • Dewani trial: Round one to Twitter in the court room

    The London judge who is hearing the extradition case of murder suspect Shrien Dewani has ordered that the use of Twitter in the courtroom is admissable, providing that the tweeting "is unobtrusive, doesn't interrupt proceedings and is accurate". Dewani is an English businessman accused of plotting the murder of his wife while on honeymoon in South Africa. This is an international story where popular sentiment and opinion have played a key role -- and...

  • Is it a tweet or is it a status update?

    After locking my BlackBerry away for the Christmas break and enjoying the consequent peace and quiet, I’ve decided that 2011 is the year we should start de-cluttering our digital lives, and filtering out the tons of useless information we’re bombarded with on a daily basis. One of the best ways to begin is to learn how and when to use specific social networks to get the best out of them, and still save some time for yourself away from your intrusive technologies. If you can manage to use your social networking accounts as they were intended and to your best...

  • Facebook Pages level the playing field for small business

    Few small business owners and entrepreneurs have the bandwidth or the budget to launch a full scale marketing campaign. Combine this with a lack of critical mass in terms of audience associated with the larger competing organisations/brands, and it almost seems hopeless to try and compete. However, with the dawn of the digital age and the rise of social media platforms and opportunities, the sky has quite literally become the limit. It is no longer just about having the traditional above-the-line campaigns spanning across radio, TV and print, but about creating an online brand presence, about having a conversation,...

  • Facebook: Emerging market countries surge into the top 10

    Only a year or two ago, developed countries were dominating Facebook, but in terms of growth it’s the developing economies that are taking giant leaps forward in Facebook numbers. While the United States seems to have hit a plateau, the emerging markets are going from strength to strength. India has moved up three spots in just two months, while Mexico and the Philippines feature strongly too. It seems fair to assume that as online access increases, so will the Facebook populations of these countries. Here are the top 10 countries on Facebook, as measured by number of users. 1. United States...

  • Facebook: The China challenge

    A few weeks back Mark Zuckerburg was spotted in Beijing, strutting through the headquarters of Baidu - China’s dominant search engine and resident Google killer. A couple of days later similar photos popped up after a visit to Sina.com, the Nasdaq-listed online content and social networking powerhouse. The tech press and the blogosphere went crazy, predicting Facebook’s imminent arrival in the Chinese market and just how this may work given the Chinese government's iron grip on social networking and communication technology. Facebook may have a massive war chest, recently topped up with a US$500 million investment round led by Goldman...

  • Mandela ‘death’ hoax exposes weakness of Twitter as news platform

    The retweet didn't kill the newsman, after all. As it turns out, the growth of Twitter simply reiterates the essential role of journalists in sifting through and filtering the rumour mill that hangs around the neck of the information economy. And a good thing it is, too. This past weekend, users on social network Twitter inadvertently spread a rumour that Nelson Mandela had died. Many contributed to its spread by asking in tweets whether the rumour of his death was correct, thus spreading news of the rumour, rather than the rumour itself, but the end result was pretty much the...

  • 9 top tips for navigating Facebook’s promotional guidelines

    Facebook has undoubtedly become the platform of choice when it comes to connecting the masses – and the statistics are mind blowing. Almost 600-million users worldwide , including 3.5-million in South Africa alone. It is further estimated that users spend more than 700-billion minutes per month on the site and have an average of 130 friends – a captive audience by any marketing standards. However, as much as Facebook is accessible and easy to navigate in terms of setting up Fan Pages, and starting interactions with end users, it doesn’t operate without a set of Promotional...