Archive for Social Media Marketing

Google joins the Check-in War

// February 1st, 2011 // No Comments » // Social Media Marketing, Technology

Google announced today that it will integrate checkins to their Google Latitude app for Android devices.

Google’s mission is to organize the world‘s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

This new addition just adds to the company’s mission by integrating more social interactions into their products. Google has several social products, like Orkut which has been dwarfed by rivals Facebook and Myspace. They even tried microblogging with Google Buzz. However none of their social products have been dominant in their categories so far. With the addition of mobile check-ins Google will be rivalling Foursquare, Gowalla,

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Facebook Places and other social apps that have jumped on to the check-in train.

Google Latitude Checkin screenshot Google Checkin Map

Unfortunately Google has launched the service in their Android Application only, leaving Iphone and Blackberry users waiting to test it out. Another flaw is that users cannot add venues from the mobile app, which negates it’s effectiveness in poorly mapped areas. Additionally Google Latitude doesn’t allow you to share your location with other social networks like Facebook or Twitter. Hey Google, this is 2011, people like sharing content between social networks!

The good thing is that Latitude will support automatic checkins, well sort of, it will pickup your proximity to venues and automatically prompt you to check in. Never forget to check-in again! Also Google has learned from their Buzz privacy issues and have integrated some key privacy options from the get-go which seem to be very customisable.

Overall I think it is too early to tell if this is a hit or miss, with 10 million Latitude users, Google will have a large customer base to try out this new service, even if it is currently limited to Android users only. Let’s see how this will change the geolocation market and how other services will adapt to stay ahead.

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The First Jamaican Foursquare Event

// October 26th, 2010 // 3 Comments » // Social Media Marketing

Monster Foursquare Party Flier at Chilitos Jamaica

Chilitos JaMexican restaurant in Jamaica is a huge fan of social media. They use it actively in promoting specials, events and to get provide better customer service. Chilitos is one of the first restaurants in Jamaica to use Foursquare (what is?) specials, giving away Margaritas to repeat customers. They are also heavy Twitter users, with over 290 Jamaican followers, proving that social media works for niche markets in the island. Recently Chilitos made a first by creating a physical Follow Friday board, to promote their most loyal twitter users:

chilitos follow friday twitter list

With the Monster Foursquare

Halloween Costume Party Chilitos is not only organising the first Foursquare event and meetup in Jamaica, but also attempting to unlock the swarm badge for customers. When 50 or more Foursquare users are checked in to the same place, they can unlock the swarm badge:

Foursquare swarm badgeCurrently I don”t think any Jamaican Foursquare user has the swarm badge, unlocking this badge will be valuable to the users of this popular geolocation service. The event is also being sponsored by Fiction Night Club, who will be hosting the after party and will also feature Foursquare specials all night. As well as NCB Jamaica who with My Elite Grocer will be providing prizes and surprises all night at Chilitos. Other attractions include foursquare specials all night, a taco eating contest and more.

For those planning on attending the event and tweeting, they will be using both #monsterja and #4sqpartyja hashtags, you can use either to see tweets about the event.

For more information please see the Facebook event page, tweet chilitos (@chilitosmexican) or call them 876-978-0537

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A Campaign Like No Other – Developing Jamaica through Social Media

// October 10th, 2010 // 2 Comments » // Social Media Marketing, Technology, Vision 2030 Campaign

Recently I blogged about a recent discussion about Information Communication and Technology development in Jamaica. I found the discussion so remarkable, that there were so many people who were passionate about the cause. The fact is, just talking about it doesn’t help we need greater awareness and action. The more people who know about the plan, the more people discuss it creating a ripple effect for the cause across society. The aim is to create awareness via social media, have it spread to standard social interactions and media to create change. Once the campaign reaches the decision makers: politicans, business leaders, voters, customers, people can demand and expect change. If people don’t know the possibilities or plans in place how can they be executed? This is way bigger than the government, this is about the way society operates. Society needs to adjust their views to the economy, environment, government, ICT use, media etc. The only reason why people settle for the current state of Jamaica, is because they think they cannot change it. One can change it, when we all work together!

Vision 2030 Campaign

The first stage is to create awareness. This is a call to all the bloggers, twitter users, Facebook users. Share the Vision 2030 campaign online and talk about it with your friends, family and coworkers in person. There is no need to re-invent the wheel, many of your suggestions are already outlined in the National Development Plan prepared by the Planning Institute of Jamaica. You can view the development plan at the following locations:

On this blog: http://dmitridawkins.com/2010/10/jamaicas-vision-2030-national-development-plan/

On Scribd : http://www.scribd.com/doc/39056939/Vision-2030-Jamaica-NDP-Full

On Jamaica’s Vision 2030 website: http://www.vision2030.gov.jm/NationalDevelopmentPlan/tabid/73/Default.aspx

Ask your online social community to at least read the outline, send links to it as an email to all of your address book. The aim is that people can make decisions in accordance with the 2030 plan. This is not just a government venture, as individuals we all need to promote

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the development of our country. Share the link once a week, or even just once a month. It will help.

Corporate and Organisation Support

Every business and organisation has a core and followers. We need to spread the Vision 2030 plan to all involved, not just creating awareness but also making decisions according to it’s contents. Let employees and members know that they are responsible for executing the plan, that they each need to be a leader of change.

Greater Social Responsibility

As leaders of change for our nation, we need to hold companies and the government responsible for not following the plan. If a company’s business practices are not in line with the plan then support a competitor who is. If a government office or official is making decisions contrary to the plan then petition them, “loud it up”, or don’t re-elect them based on their policies. The only person in control is you.

Remember this is a people driven change, it starts with you, read the relevant sections to you and decide how you can make changes in your home and office. For this to work it has to be an effort from all involved.

I will write another post about this soon, please subscribe to my blog or just keep checking this category : http://dmitridawkins.com/category/making-jamaica-a-developed-country-by-2030/ for information related to the campaign.

This is a call to action for YOU to make a difference.

Thank you,

Dmitri Dawkins and future generations.

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#FNOJa Success According To Social Media

// September 13th, 2010 // 5 Comments » // Cool Stuff, Social Media Marketing, Technology

Fashion’s Night Out, a sale event hosted by The Jamaica Observer on September 10, 2010 was a huge conversation piece last week on Twitter. The event which was heavily promoted on Twitter, caused quite a stir as over 1600 tweets were made using the hashtag #FNOJa.

Fashion Night Out Jamaica Metrics

I am not much of a fashion person myself, but on Tuesday I realised the importance of this event since we could use a common hashtag to track the influence of this event on Twitter and across the web. By Wednesday I had already messaged the Jamaica Observer to have them encourage all participants of Fashion’s Night Out to use the #FNOJa in their promotional tweets. I also encouraged friends to use the hashtag and shared it via several twitter accounts. Soon most Fashion’s Night Out related tweets were using the hashtag. I must say thanks to The Jamaica Observer for realising the need to track the hashtag and promoting it so well.

@jamaicaobserver Can everyone please use the #fnoja hashtag so we can establish Jamaican users vs. rest of the world? Thanksless than a minute ago via TweetDeck

So what did we learn from this? There were 1683 tweets about #FNOJa from 416 unique authors. 130 web links were shared in those 1683 tweets from 24 distinct domains. You can see more below:

#fnoja twitter stats

416 unique authors may not seem like alot, but those 416 authors had a potential impact of 152,000 views. Additionally this hashtag was specific to Jamaica, most of those 152,000 views were Jamaican. Additionally these views are better than any flier, because it is buzz, people talking to people about the event, creating greater online presence and awareness directly.

Using Hashtags is an awesome tool to help promote a cause, brand, or for tracking. Hashtags organise data to make it usable and easily found. I personally use hashtags to keep up on news on specific topics such as the #JamaicanBlogger hashtag that Jamaicans use when they release a new blog post, content from that hashtag is also retweeted by @JamaicanBlogger. Tweets using the #Jamaica Hashtag are also aggregated daily for an online newspaper using a platform called Paper.li (Thanks @brukins).

On September 10 we made our mark on Twitter with a truly local

hashtag, let’s continue to use them as we organise and comment on more things using social media, to let Jamaica’s presence be known worldwide!

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Facebook Places, Failure to Launch?

// August 19th, 2010 // 1 Comment » // Social Media Marketing, Technology

Facebook Places LogoUsing the Tagline Who, What, When, and Now…Where Facebook has officially announced the introduction of Facebook places. Will this be a killer for geolocation services Gowalla and Foursquare? It’s a bit early to tell however they may have taken a wrong step by not including certain features.

Facebook Places

Places is currently only available in the US first of all, whereas both Foursquare and Gowalla support international venues. Places was also only released with an iphone app and a website for phones that support HTML5, this excludes millions of Blackberry and Android users from using a native app to check in.Facebook Places Iphone appGiven these facts Facebook may not gain traction as quickly since it lacks a single killer feature. Also most smart-phones are not able to use the online checkin since HTML5 is still an emerging technology. The lack of international support really is another issue especially in developing countries like Jamaica where check-in based service Foursquare is one the rise.

Facebook does have one feature that trumps both Foursquare and Gowalla, when a friend tags you at a location you are automatically checked in there. Facebook also shows friends nearby, so you can link up. Both features raise serious privacy concerns though, especially if they are turned on by default. Also if you can be tagged anywhere how is this verified?

Facebook Places

It is clear Facebook plans on

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monetizing the service, with a places for business section under their help page (so they are definately competing with Foursquare). Facebook has also promised to have a read API ready (allows applications to work with Facebook Places) which should allow Foursquare and Gowalla to integrate their apps with Facebook’s new service. By allowing Facebook checkins through Foursquare, Foursquare could increase market share by being THE major app for third party checkins on Facebook, since there is no official app got Android or Blackberry (that would be ironic).

It is still too early to tell but with lack of international support and no native applications for Android and Blackberry this seems like a case of deferred success. What do you think? Please comment below:

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