Robyn Pierce at Ignite 2017: Stop and Rethink Social

Here’s your chance to hear from our resident social media thought-leader, at the biggest marketing event of the year!

Joining speakers from Oracle, Adobe and Cisco (just to name a few), The Crocodile’s very own Head of Social, Robyn Pierce, will be in good company, as she takes to the stage at B2B Marketing Ignite 2017, on June 22nd.

In her presentation titled “Stop and Rethink Social” she will be challenging delegates to consider why more personal brand experiences are so rare in B2B social media and to regain perspective on the game-changing role of social as a one-to-one, real-time engagement channel:

  • Consider the strategic roles social can fulfill and the conditions needed to succeed.
  • Stop fearing failure and let the market steer you on what is good and bad content.
  • Tap into the moment and engage in real-time to deliver authentic experiences.

Want to learn how you could successfully harness the power of social for your brand?

Find out for yourself, at B2B Marketing Ignite 2017.

The Crocodile goes 360° with Blend Media

The Crocodile has been appointed by Blend Media to optimise its digital marketing strategy.

Blend Media provides an end-to-end content solution to make the creation of 360˚ video content and immersive campaigns quick and easy for brands, agencies and publishers. With the goal of lowering the barriers to entry the solution includes a drag and drop editor, a large catalogue of premium 360˚ videos and distribution solutions that help to quickly and more easily create engaging formats.

Blend Media also runs the largest 360˚ videos page on Facebook globally: Facebook.com/360vidz

The Crocodile’s team will be working closely with Blend to shape the go-to-market strategy and execution plans across search and social media.

This is a really exciting space and we’re looking forward to helping Blend drive their next stage of growth!

Check out some of Blend’s content at www.blend.media

 

Image courtesy of Blend Media Creator – William Briscoe Photography

Leica snaps up The Crocodile

Not one, but TWO recent product launches from premium brand Leica Camera meant two new projects for The Crocodile.

Video and social media were the common thread.

The Leica Sofort.
With a truly accessible price point, the first instant camera from the brand offers a prime opportunity to hit previously untapped markets.

To reach the right audiences during the saturated Christmas advertising sprint, The Crocodile devised a highly-targeted paid social media campaign to introduce the product to the UK market, with longevity. Careful not to pitch the product as a festive tech fad and keen to demonstrate the instant-print capability of the Sofort, a vibrant product-led video with a catchy soundtrack was created to be the hero visual. Video ads on Facebook are unrivalled for gaining reach and awareness.

The M10
The M is a Leica icon. This new version is the slimmest, fastest, most discrete digital M of all time. The Crocodile helped to capture the real-time excitement of the much-anticipated UK launch with a Facebook Live broadcast from the Leica Store Mayfair, London. Together with Tom Morgan, Reviews Editor of Stuff Magazine and Robin Sinha, Leica Akademie tutor, a brilliant Q&A and demo brought the magic of the M to the public at the earliest opportunity. A series of social content, including Instagram Story continued the buzz beyond the launch event.

Social media continues to be a prime channel for Leica to reach its target audiences and engage its community.

Make 2017 Real-time + Personal – download the paper

By 2018, organisations that excel at personalised customer interaction online will outsell slow-to-act rivals by more than 30%*.

Many marketers already agree that personalisation represents the future of digital marketing. However, most are still struggling to get aboard the ‘one-to-one’ at scale train. This paper is a guide to unlocking the potential of Real-time + Personal to deliver sustainable growth and results.

It’s an approach that can transform your brand into an authentic and trustworthy guide along an omni-channel customer journey – forging deeper relationships and more impactful conversations.

Unlock the potential — download the paper

(*source: Gartner report: “Technology overview for customer journey analytics”)

The @crocbites social media roundup – November 2016

November was a bit of a back-to-basics month, with lots of channels focusing on the actual process of communicating with people. As ever, there’s been plenty of variety too, so read on to see what’s been going on in the social media world over the past month.

Facebook

Multi-channel marketing just got a heck of a lot easier, as you can now have a combined inbox for Facebook, Messenger and Instagram.

Facebook is updating its metrics and reporting – including (hopefully) giving you accurate feedback on your video content.

Twitter

No more sitting on hold for customers – you can set up welcome messages and quick replies to DMs so they can get immediate responses to queries.

Keep the trolls at bay with the ability to mute keywords and phrases, on top of being able to mute and block entire accounts.

Could Vine resprout under new ownership? Twitter could move the channel troubled on to a fresh pasture.

This month’s first Snapchat clone story! People can now follow you by scanning a QR code – handy if you don’t have a particularly memorable username.

Instagram

It’s going to be easier for people to buy products they see on Instagram, with direct links to their pages on retailers’ sites.

Save customers the effort of turning their phones 90 degrees to watch your ads by utilising the new portrait format.

Instagram increases the features on Stories, including Boomerang, mentions and links to get further details.

Meanwhile, on Instagram Direct, you can now stream live videos and um, have photos disappear… which kinda sounds familiar.

Snap Inc

Still, it goes both ways – Snapchat is now borrowing Instagram Stories’ rewind feature, plus letting you put lenses on nature.

In business news, Snap is looking to float on the US stock market at a cool $20-25bn (£16-20bn).

LinkedIn

New Salary feature will let people work out how much they should be getting paid.

Get a better idea about who’s reading your LinkedIn content with a new audience insights tool, among others.

Pinterest

It’ll now be much easier to manage your notifications now they’ve been rejigged.

That’s not all that’s changed – the Marketing Developer Partners programme is now just called Marketing Partners and will focus on four areas: advertising, content marketing, audiences and measurement.

Users can now say when they’ve tried an idea from a Pin, rather than just saving it, which will help you collect feedback.

You’ve now got the option to auto-play your promoted videos as soon as people discover them.

YouTube

You can better interact with commentators on your YouTube channel and draw people’s attention to your favourite ones.

Make your videos more vibrant with support now being added for High Dynamic Range videos.

Virtual Reality has made it to YouTube – how could you immerse your customers in a 360-degree environment?

WhatsApp

WhatsApp is jumping on the Snapchat bandwagon with Status, which lets you share customised photos and videos, before they disappear after 24 hours.

It seems like it should already have been a thing, but video calling has now been rolled out worldwide.

Videos will now play while being downloaded to your device (like on YouTube), which should reduce the chances of people getting bored of waiting and clicking away.

And that’s that – the roundup will be back in the new year to fill you in on any presents that social media Santa may have left in our stockings. In the meantime, don’t be a stranger – get in touch to chat social with us by emailing hello@thecroc.com or tweeting @crocbites.

B2B Awards 2016: Winners with real-time marketing

We like to sing when we’re winning and at The B2B Marketing Awards 2016 we were in full song with Standard Life as we scooped Category 7: Best Use of Social Media for Adviser Voice – The Budget 2016.

This is especially satisfying as the campaign required Standard Life to try a new technique, in a short time frame, and trust in the combined team to deliver.

Susie Logan, Head of Marketing Standard Life sums this up brilliantly:

“The Budget 2016 campaign had a fantastic outcome for Standard Life – both in terms of creating differentiation in the market by delivering great experiences, engagement and sustainable relationships, and using a completely new approach of real-time marketing and user-generated content.

By listening to our customers, being innovative, organised and capable of applying a focused and purposeful real-time model, we dominated during a key event over the competition with a share of voice of 85%.

We assembled the key ingredients of customer understanding, data, technology and people, and then used our creativity to join these together in a way that delivered better experiences for our customers. Thanks to The Crocodile we won a ‘Superbowl’ moment with a relatively discreet budget.”

Read the full case study for a best example of b2b social media marketing.

The @crocbites social media roundup – October 2016

In summary, October was a bad month for Vine but live video continues to dominate with updates to Periscope confirmed and Instagram rumours surfacing. Find out all the details about these stories and more as we round up social media news from October.

Facebook

Messenger is going on a diet to spread its appeal to people with less powerful phones and slower internet speeds.

Facebook takes a swipe at Gumtree and Craig’s List by introducing Marketplace to help match you up with nearby people who want to buy your stuff.

Events from Facebook could alert more people to events you’re putting on by making them easier to find and letting friends recommend them to each other.

It’ll soon be easier for potential customers to interact with your company once they’ve discovered you.

Formerly ‘Facebook for Work, Workplace is now available to any company or organisation that wants to use it. Will you make this your internal comms channel of choice?

Don’t just watch cat videos on Facebook via your phone – you can now see them on your Apple TV or Chromecast-enabled televisions.

Facebook as a broadcasting medium is proving popular, with Real Madrid successfully nurturing its social audience with content from the club’s TV channel.

Remember when everyone was copying Snapchat? It’s still a thing, with Facebook rolling out new photo and video filters for the main app.

Twitter

Twitter’s decision to pour a hefty dose of weed killer on Vine came as something of a shock – albeit a pretty logical one when you think about it.

Vine’s pruning was part of Twitter’s cost-cutting exercise that became all the more necessary when it transpired nobody wants to buy it at present.

Twitter’s eggs now seem to be firmly in one basket, following the announcement that Periscope Producer will let businesses stream high quality live videos via cameras, rather than portable device

Instagram

Instagram’s version of Stories has managed to clock up an impressive 100m daily active users despite only being launched two month ago.

Rumour has it that Instagram could soon let users shoot live videos, not dissimilar to Facebook’s offering.

Want to learn more about using Instagram for business? You’re in luck – there are lots of webinars on the horizon.

Snap Inc

Friends are taking precedence on Snapchat again, with Discover pages being bumped down users’ feeds – auto-advancing stories (and ads played between them) are also on their way out.

Tidying up its main offering seems to be Snap Inc’s latest step towards its proposed $25bn floatation.

LinkedIn

Microsoft’s takeover is certainly helping to freshen up LinkedIn, with endorsements getting an autumnal spring clean.

They could prove useful for people looking for new jobs without telling their boss – which is now also a thing on LinkedIn.

While there are multiple changes happening post-takeover, it actually seems the platform was on the up before it happened.

Pinterest

Good news – UK brands can now use promoted videos, after it came out elsewhere back in August.

Dynamic retargeting is now a thing, so it’s now easier to show potential customers Promoted Pins that they’ll find relevant.

150m people worldwide use Pinterest each month, with 75% of the inspiration coming from businesses.

Want your Pinterest content to pop? Then you need to get in touch with the Pin Collective – creators who’ll help optimise your brand’s messaging.

YouTube

Google has bought FameBit, which helps brands hook up with creators and may be a little bit like what Pinterest are doing.

That’s that for this month – if we’ve piqued your interest, get in touch and we can have a chat about the best ways to use social for your business. Email us on hello@thecroc.com or tweet us: @crocbites.

Cool new appointment for the social media team

The Crocodile has been appointed as the new agency partner for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Air-conditioning Europe Ltd (MHIAE), a company established by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to deliver heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) solutions across Europe. The Crocodile will be providing social media and content marketing support, and has already produced a slick new product video in time for MHIAE’s annual European distributor meeting:

It’s an exciting time for MHIAE as they prepare to take their new premium SRK-ZS and high-end SRK-ZSX units to the European market. They worked closely with an Italian design agency on the new products. It marks the start of a new design era for MHIAE and the business recognised the need for a marketing approach to match.

The brief

MHIAE and The Crocodile will be working together to deliver a social media strategy designed to increase awareness of MHIAE in the market, support new product launches and events, and increase online engagement with the distributor network, installers and end users in Europe.

The @crocbites social media roundup – September 2016

With updates and developments around every virtual corner, there’s no time to rest on your social media laurels.

Here’s a summary of what opportunities September brought:

Facebook

Using Messenger to talk to your customers? Now you can see them too, with Instant Video.

That’s not all – the whole Messenger experience is being refined to make it smoother for businesses to chat to their clientele.

Your videos on Facebook may not have been as successful as you thought after FB realises it’s done its maths wrong.

Riffing on Snapchat was still a thing in September, with a soft launch of Messenger Day, which is essentially Snapchat Stories.

Want to see who’s been reacting (and how) to your posts? It may be getting easier, with tests to include profile photos with thumbs, hearts and emojis.

Facebook is helping shops sell more in-store by tracking physical inventories with Dynamic Ads for Retail.

WhatsApp

You’ll get a notification if you get @mentioned in a group chat, even if you’ve got it muted. Cheerio, productivity.

Twitter

Customer service is getting better on Twitter, with support services being made more obvious.

Twitter takeovers generally involve chosen individuals taking over corporate accounts for a bit of publicity. This Twitter takeover could involve billions of dollars and change the social media landscape.

Instagram

Instagram ads are becoming easier for people to interact with, with more obvious calls to action.

Probably just as well, seeing as there are now over 500,000 advertisers using the platform.

Everyone can now save drafts to work on later, which is handy.

Snapchat Snap Inc

It’s all change at Snapchat – first off, the company will now be known as Snap Inc (the app is still Snapchat, mind), and it’s now in the hardware business with Spectacles, which let you shoot point of view photos and video.

LinkedIn

You can now track conversions on LinkedIn, as Microsoft looks to lure in more advertisers to help the professional platform pay for itself.

LinkedIn Learning goes live; lots of lessons from Lynda.com.

Pinterest

It’s getting colder, so it’s probably OK for Pinterest to start talking about how to ace your Christmas campaigns.

Advertising on Pinterest is getting easier – set up a Promoted Pin in nine seconds (if you’re in the US, but it’ll probably come over here too).

Pinterest’s second screen game is strong, with many users unable to tear themselves away from the platform while watching TV.

Periscope

Twitter’s getting brands more involved with live content on Periscope.

Your followers need never miss your Periscope feeds again, as they can now get notifications when you go live.

There we have it – plenty to look out for this month: will Twitter’s takeover chat continue? How will LinkedIn continue to evolve under Microsoft? Who will be next to copy Snapchat? Discover all this (maybe) and more during next month’s exciting instalment of the social media roundup.

Oh, and don’t be a stranger – tweet us: @crocbites, or email: hello@thecroc.com and talk to us about how these updates affect your social media marketing.

Nectar Business embraces video to champion SMEs

The continued and growing importance of high frequency, low cost video transverses both B2B and SME marketing. Nectar Business recognises this and has sought to take advantage with the launch of its new #MyBiz video series.

The result: a celebration of the brilliance and individual nature of great British business through an evocative and personal series of short video stories that intend to inspire and motivate the Nectar Business audience of small business owners.

The first video in the series features The Pickle House.

Nectar Business understands that running a small business can be a challenge, but also incredibly rewarding. The videos champion four very distinct small firms, with each tapping into themes that are applicable to all small businesses:

  1. starting out
  2. customer loyalty
  3. building relationships
  4. the importance of passion.

The Crocodile works with Nectar Business on its content programme, which includes the creation of Nectar BizHub, a new site to drive a more active conversation with the UK’s small business community.

“The #MyBiz series has allowed us to put video at the heart of our Nectar Business content programme, and it’s a fantastic way to hero and celebrate our small business customers’ stories. It’s very apparent that video is a core format for our audience and we’re aiming to use this to engage more closely with our customers in the future,” says Clare Gazzard, content manager for Nectar Business.

The Nectar Business #MyBiz videos are live now on Nectar BizHub and feature on the Nectar Business Facebook and Twitter channels.

Social Buzz nominations are in!

The annual announcement of the Social Buzz Awards nominations causes a lot of excitement at The Crocodile – more so than ever this time around as we tuned in to watch them revealed on Facebook Live.

This year we’ve been shortlisted in the Largest ROI and Best Use of Social Media Advertisingcategories for a lead generation campaign for laser healthcare provider client, Lumenis Aesthetic. The audience was niche and the return high – currently tracking at 900%.

We also made the cut in the Best Financial Sector and Best B2B Sector categories with client, Standard Life, for Adviser Voice. The Adviser Voice real-time marketing campaign differentiated Standard Life during Budget 2016 by championing the views and opinions of financial advisers to deliver massive reach and win the share of voice battle (85% – as measured by Crimson Hexagon) against Aviva, Royal London and Scottish Widows.

“Since first entering the Social Buzz Awards in 2013, The Crocodile has racked up 13 nominations, more than any other B2B agency in the country,” says Robyn Pierce, Head of Social at The Crocodile.

“We had a clean sweep of the Best B2B Sector category last year – with a win and a commendation – and we’ve won previously for Largest ROI so I’m excited to see what this year’s event has in store. It’s particularly great to be nominated for Best Use of Social Media Advertising as this is an important and growing discipline where we excel.”

The Social Buzz Awards ceremony takes place on 30 November. Click here for a full list of nominees.

Twitter update: ‘Free’ photos and gifs and polls!

Now that Twitter has confirmed its latest evolution, we’re having a look at what the changes could mean if you’re using the channel for your company’s marketing.

What’s happening

“When you add attachments like photos, gifs, videos, polls, or quote tweets, that media will no longer count as characters within your tweet. More room for words!”

Rich media assets really make your tweets stand out, gain attention and drive engagement. However, there’s always been the dilemma of style over substance. With only 140 characters at your disposal, could you forfeit 20 to allow for an image or GIF and still tell your business story? Now there’s no need.

This is both great and a challenge: marketers will need to work harder to stand out – using breathtaking photos or really clever graphics should go some way to setting you apart from the mundane.

It’s not featured in the public-facing blog, but Twitter confirmed in its developers’ one that you will be limited to a single ‘free’ gif, video, poll or quote tweet, while you can have up to four photos without denting your 140 characters.

What’s not happening

Contrary to Bloomberg’s initial report back in May, you will still need to allow 23 characters for site links in your tweet, while hashtags – another candidate for exclusion from the count – will still make up your 140-character maximum.

What might be happening

When Twitter announced the ‘do more with 140 characters’ project, there were other elements included beyond media attachments.

The ability to retweet yourself – and therefore easily repurpose content – happened back in June to little fanfare, but it’s changes to @name usage that are potentially more interesting for marketers.

Not counting @names does mean that you’re able to talk to a group of people without worrying about abridging your message. However, there were concerns that this could lead to a spambot frenzy, so Twitter is still testing that one to try to find a way to make it work.

Dropping the .@ convention at the start of tweets to broadcast them more widely was another possibility, and it would save you a character, but does throw up questions about what if you don’t want to broadcast those tweets.

On the surface, sending a direct message seems to be the answer – particularly now you get read receipts – but dropping .@ seems to have fallen through the gaps of the announcement, which could have something to do with the wider @names discussion mentioned above.

So it looks like Twitter is going to get more visual, as users start adding more rich media in their messaging. What do you make of the changes? If you think you’ll need to up your Twitter game as a result, get in touch with The Crocodile and we can discuss how to optimise your social media.

The @crocbites social media roundup – August 2016

August seemed to be the month when every man and dog decided to break cover and reveal their own take on a Snapchat-killing app. They didn’t have tunnel vision though, with plenty of other stuff emerging too – here’s what happened last month.

Facebook

First up in the Snapchat lookalike contest we have Facebook with Lifestage, which lets teens emote using photos and videos and could be a fantastic way to reach that audience if it takes off.

On the main site, control over ad preferences is changing in an attempt to discourage people from using ad blockers.

You won’t believe what Facebook are going to do to clickbait-titled posts on your news feed! (They’re cutting down on them to improve quality).

They’re also aiming to give stories a rating based on how informative their quality control people think they are, hopefully with a similar effect.

Facebook’s trending topics have been fully automated, although it looks like it’s still a work in progress.

Add music, text, stock imagery and more to your slideshow ads.

Is your mobile site up to scratch? It’ll need to be if you don’t want your Facebook ads to feel the wrath of Zuckerberg.

Could autoplay with sound be a thing soon? Mashable reckons so.

Twitter

Twitter’s swipe at Snapchat comes in the form of building on stickers with promoted ones that brands can create. First up: Pepsi.

There’s a new tool in your Twitter ads arsenal – you can now create cards that allow followers to unlock exclusive content.

Users will now be able to set a quality filter to prevent poorly crafted content appearing in their timelines.

Monetising your Twitter profile will now be easier… if you’re in the US. Hopefully similar changes will happen over here soon.

Instagram

Introducing Instagram Stories, which is nothing like Snapchat, um, Stories. Except that it is – a lot: build your own 24-hour photo/video slideshow with emojis, artworks and such.

Instagram is even copying Facebook now! Or rather, it’s using the same new features for slideshow ads that its big brother has rolled out.

Worried that people may miss the intricacies of your Insta posts? Worry no longer, as you can now pinch to zoom on photos and videos.

Google

Google doesn’t know when to quit trying to jump on the social media bandwagon, so it’s trying out Allo, which offers self-destructing messages, just like… yup.

Apple

Apple’s take is to introduce a video sharing app that lets you apply filters and drawings to your media, then send it to your existing followers on various social media platforms.

Snapchat

So how does Snapchat react to what its rivals are doing? It decides to spend $110m on search start-up Vurb.

It’s also been playing midwife to Stickers and Geofilters, as they’ve had a baby – introducing Geostickers, which offer new options to users in some of the world’s biggest cities.

Geofilters won’t be a stay-at-home parent, though – it’s going to be far too busy now that you can use templates to make your own in minutes.

LinkedIn

Video is so hot right now, even LinkedIn wants a piece of that particular pie, so your feed will now feature 30-second clips from influencers on professional and trending topics.

Find the content you want quickly and easily with the new content search feature on the mobile app.August seemed to be the month when every man and dog decided to break cover and reveal their own take on a Snapchat-killing app.

It’s certainly been a busy month and, not wanting to miss the Snapchat bandwagon, this blog will auto-destruct in 24 hours. Before it does, get in touch with our social team to help you get to grips with all these new innovations – email us at hello@thecroc.com

The B2B Marketing Awards 2016 – in it to win it!

Here at The Crocodile we like to think of ourselves as versatile, problem-solving partners that can help give our clients an edge. We don’t see everything in competitive terms…just most things!

So being shortlisted today for four awards across three diverse categories in the 2016 B2B Marketing Awards underlines the extent of our capabilities and plays to our desire to win – both for ourselves and our great clients.

The nominations

This year The Crocodile had four campaigns shortlisted in three different categories:

The Croc’s MD Adam Wooff commented:

“It’s tough to get a nomination in the B2B Awards, and genuinely difficult to achieve four or more. Only a handful of agencies made that grade, including The Crocodile.

I love the fact that we are being recognised for strategies as diverse as real time marketing, social media-led lead generation, social listening and digital platform development to support an international sales initiative.

It’s a great illustration of the breadth of our skill set and the vitality and inventiveness of the B2B sector right now. Well done to our talented people and visionary clients!”