In the News

Feb 16

Impact Analysis: Facebook Reactions

Yesterday we saw the addition of  “angry”, “sad”, “wow”, “haha” and “love”  join the familiar ‘like’ when it comes to user response to Facebook content. While previously content was measured by a single like or negative action (unsubscribe, report, unfollow) this new set of engagements brings a new layer of complexity to the simple Facebook post.

Effects on the newsfeed?

What Facebook has yet to describe is the effect that each new reaction has when it comes to ranking content. Will content receiving more “Loves” get higher newsfeed priority over content that receive just “Haha” or “Like”? What does getting an “angry” mean?

Content Considerations

With a  previous focus on getting single engagements, whether its more video views, comments etc., adding 5 new reactions could throw content strategy for a loop. A brand with a focus on humor related content could instead now rank posts by how many “Haha”s it gets.

Another thing to consider is when would “angry” and “sad” reactions come into play. Are there particular moments when a brand wants to generate particularly strong emotions?



How to Track? 

Measurement structures will also be affected by the introduction of these new engagements. By having the ability to chose the ‘angry’ engagement, measuring by total engagements doesn’t necessarily prove if a post is more or less successful anymore. Already a ‘Love’ may have more value than a simple like, and a post made to engage fans with ‘Haha’s could be deemed a failure if instead it received ‘Angry’ and ‘Sad’.


We still need to see the full impact of  how the new ‘reactions’ feature alters content flows.  An observation I’m already seeing is that a as a single click option (versus a hover and select) general ‘like’ engagements are still the most dominate engagement.  After a week or so (once initial excitement has died down) there should be enough data to evaluate the impact and see what (if any) changes to tactics and overall strategies need to be done.

Oct 11

Why the iPhone 4S Was Not For The Early Adopters

Its now been a few hours after the much anticipated iPhone announcement.  The upcoming  iPhone 4S has been announced and the general sentiment I’m seeing from those with a vested  interest in Apple (ie: Investors) and those who are fans of the brand (early adopters,iPhone users) is of general disappointment. No there aren’t any huge innovations. No the iPhone hasn’t been completely redesigned. Without a shiny object they all can swoon over of course they are disappointed. For Apple at this moment  though that’s not  really important. This launch wasn’t a showing of Apple’s latest and greatest. Simply put this launch was designed  for everyone else!

Keeping Up With Competitors:

Apple is smart in realizing that the market is making a small shift. Previously phones with single core processors were good enough but soon that won’t be the case. With competitors like LG and Samsung bringing out phones with Dual core processors, consumers consumers will see two things when they buy a new phone over the next year: phones with 2 cores and phones with only 1.

As a tech company, Apple needs to have this upgrade because when they are being compared to other high spec’d phones they definitely don’t want to be seen as one of the firms in the second column with only one core. What could it mean for Apple if they did? This would be seen as a slow weakening of the brand. For a company that has built a brand on being innovative to be seen as falling behind is a big deal and in this sense the iPhone 4S ensures that Apple in the short term is able to keep up with ‘the Joneses’.

Getting the rest of Consumers On Board:

In selling phones Apple is also  unique against its competitors that it sells just one brand. For a company in Apples standing only to have one phone means that the market  it can target is very limited. Much like the release of the iPhone 3GS  sold along side the iPhone 3, the addition of the iPhone 4S opens up a new product line for Apple which allows them to sell to different segments (along the lines of the “Technology Adoption Lifecycle‘).

Looking at this cycle its easy to see that Apple’s early adopters are already very settled into the iPhone 4 product line (as well as into multi-year contracts) and aren’t very likely to buy anything just yet. What the iPhone 4 will do is grab tech consumers  who need a phone now and  are neutral to what phone they get as long as its  the latest technology. They will see that Dual Core is the latest and greatest and in their research Apple hopes that these consumers will go its way.

Moving back down to the iPhone 4 this is a phone for those who are more so  in the middle ground and would probably be considered the Early or Late Majority. In their eyes they know that the iPhone is a solid product but they are a bit more sensitive to price and not as sensitive to technical specs. They like that they can get the iPhone 4 at a cheaper price and are willing to give up that its only about a half generation off of what the latest model is.

Last but not least is the iPhone 3GS which is the bottom of the barrel phone. Not to be mistaken as a bad phone, this phone is now considered aging and is primely targeted at the Late Majority and Laggards who don’t care for the latest and greatest technology but are more so price sensitive and will see having an Apple Phone as an added bonus to a purchase they make more so out of necessity.

Early Adopters and Apple Fans Will Have Their Turn:

As disappointed Apple Fans and early adopters are that they don’t  have a new shiny product they can swoon over, I think its safe to assume that come early 2012 (if not sooner) Apple will have some  new product announcements to make. Of course its key that for Apple to stay relevant they need to be constantly innovating and giving customers an opportunity to invest in its brand. Looking outside of this though  something just as  important for Apple to grasp onto is an expanded market share. By expanding its product reach along all lines of technology consumers  they ensure that a larger audience has its hands on their products and supply them with the incremental cash flow they need over the longer term.

Oct 10

A Look at the “It Gets Better” project

On the web randomness happens. A word. An image. A website. One day it could be just like everything else on the net and then almost instantly it becomes something big (anyone remember 3 wolf moon?).  In this randomness it happens perhaps less often  that something with meaning and that does  good takes off .That’s why I found it really interesting to see a video labelled “It gets better”  get as much interest as it has.

The Background: After a series of recent youth suicides related to gay bullying, famous (infamous?) sex columnist  Dan Savage known for his straight talking, no holds barred sex advice column “Savage Love”   posted  with his partner the  video  “ It Gets Better”  which can be found below:

As it stands his video has received close to 1,000,000 visits from over a 4 week period. From  a viral video  standpoint this may be a little  slow in growth but results from this video alone only tell half the story of its success. Growing off this video is the countless response videos from average people and a multitude of celebrities. With over 2,640 video’s created against this video ( according to YouTube search using the term “it gets better project”) and over 7.78 Million video views from the first 40 videos ( excluding the original) this has received some serious attention. Most notably one video has even eclipsed the original receiving more than 2.1 million as of this writing (below):

What does all of this mean? That this original video has inspired action and in a way a ripple effect. Unlike say a fail blog video or any of the other top viewed videos that you’ll see on the front page of YouTube this video caused users to further spread this message through the creation of their own content. This works to further spread the video to not only a larger audience but a much more diverse one than the original as its then seen by these users’ pre-established viewership through channel subscriptions and regular channel visits .

Measuring further success: If I had to measure the full success of this impromptu campaign ( and had full access to any data I wanted) I would do the following:

  • Measure the web and telephone traffic of the Trevor project over the long term ( a few months). As this group recieved a large amount of mention in follow up videos it would be a strong measure of awareness if there was a significant and long lasting increase in the use of the services from this organization
  • Measure the increase in creation and use of teen support services. While teenage suicide was a major driver in this campaign there are too many variables that could get in the way to see if these numbers have improved. But looking at whether there is an increase in support for teens and whether its actually being used would be a stronger sign that the message of `It gets better` resonated with its intended audience .

Do you have a question or comment ? Feel free to reach me at@kevrichard or

Feb 09

Google Latitude: Stalker or Business tool?

         So this week the all mighty Google *bows*  released  its new mobile application called Latitude.  Interestingly it fits  with Wired Mag’s  recent article named “Inside the GS Revolution”  which is of a similar theme.  So what is this new possible killer app from Google?  Through the use of a mobile browser ( only through certain OS’)  a user can access this app and  and through the use of invites basically tether themselves to thier friends or family through the use of GPS.  Users can find out where and what their contacts are doing and  have the option to contact them through phone or Google talk.

              The general consensus I’ve been hearing in discussions of this new project is ” That’s a Stalker’s dream tool!”  and truthfully if you think about it today with people handing out friend invites so easily if someone really wanted to they could follow someone else around town. But there is also the thought that you are also giving Google the ability to know where you are and more knowledge of your communications.  This gets into some questionable discussion areas.

         Thinking about this app in a business sense it could hit some interesting ground though. Looking at it on a firm by firm basis it could be used to track sales staff and know the location of employees who are often out on business trips.  It could be used at conventions and large business to tell customers of the location of key employees for tours, discussions or service. But on the marketing side of things I think is where things can get really interesting.


            Looking back to my Wired Magazine reference, in the late 1990’s the company brought forward the idea of convergence and push media. This tool could be used in combination with an application such as Twitter where not only do we learn a friend/colleagues location but also have that added dimension of a  micro blog post.  Look at this program as well on a commercial level and a person could explore an area and be pushed coupons or promotions based on the proximity of the store or company. Allow for the  micro blog postings  of customers within a certain store and it could also be communicated outwards the quality of products, or the thoughts about certain aspects of a store( this would probably need to be tweeked…. a system like this could probably cause screen clutter really fast!).


          Looking at this application on a privacy sense it is a little scary but Google does work to ease fears a bit by allowing a hide feature . But how are you going to hide from Google?! With the increased usage of smart phones there are many opportunities coming up in the future for people and businesses to interact with one another adding an increased layer of choice and knowledge for the customer and another measurement tool for the firm. Lets see how widely accepted this program is in the months to come……


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Dec 08

British Bankster's: Not Sorry They F@#*ed Up Your Christmas!

I came across this sad bit of news while surfing the net ( check it out here) .The journalists at the London Sunday Express came across a video on Youtube from a group of British Bankers with a little Christmas carol of their own for the people of the UK to ‘enjoy’. Calling themselves the “City Bankers” they identify themselves as local bankers and  stock brokers with one claiming to have worked for the now defunct Lehman Brothers. 

This video follows the walk of a cartoon child describing the sad change in this years Christmas because of the financial meltdown. After a while of this, a group of obviously drunken bank workers go into chorus stating:

“Sorry we F@#*!ed up your Christmas, but really we don’t give a s#@t! Cause we have made loads of money, in fact we’re swimming in it” 

This video goes on to more creudness including a man urinating, overall not giving a ‘shit’ about  all the people that are suffering as a result of this financial meltdown.  The creators claim that this video came about because they were tired about people bugging and harassing them about this financial meltdown.

Although this isn’t linked to any one firm ,if this story grows legs this can potentially become a reputational problem that could turn into a customer relations firestorm. Any inaction in this case could cause problems for the UK banking industry as it then would be seen that  the opinion of this small group represents the general sentiment of the banks, something at this time  they obviously don’t want happening. Overall  I’m personally pretty disgusted with this video and don’t have much sympathy for these bank employees should they face consequences, I’ve embedded the video below to check out: