KONY 2012 & The Social Media Revoltion Explained!


Can Social Media stop a War? You decide..literally

 

 

KONY 2012 from INVISIBLE CHILDREN on Vimeo.

Social Media has the power to make people famous overnight through the use of videos posted on sites like YouTube or Vimeo. These videos are then spread through Social Media through website link sharing using Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, to name a few.

For the past 26 years the leader of the LRA army in Uganda Joseph Kony has built his troops and power through the use of child soldiers. Over the years, over 30,000 small children as young as three years old are kidnapped, brainwashed, tortured, raped, recruited into his army, and in many cases forced to kill their own parents. Thousands of people have been mutilated by this child army. In December of 2011, the United States sent 100 troops to provide assistance to the Ugandan government. To put pressure on the U.S. to keep our troops there, a campaign called KONY 2012 has been formed.

Filmmaker Jason Russell begun a nine year campaign to bring awareness to this issue, and created an video which now has over 100 million online views as of today.

Kony 2012 Facebook image

Social Media such as Facebook helps spread Videos for Kony2012

 

Social Media is being used in two ways:

1) Using Videos spread through Social Media: Turning Joseph Koney into a well known public figure to bring awareness and arrest him, stop the kidnappings, and return these children to their families.

2) An an online web portal has been created and is promoted using Social Media to encourge people to contact 20 famous U.S. celebrities (i.e. Bono, Stephen Colbert, Oprah, George Clooney, Bill Gates) & 12 influential politicians (both Democrats & Republicans including George Bush & Bill Clinton) and ask them to bring awareness to this issue.

 

By making a donation of only a few dollars to an organization called TRI, one can get an Action kit with fliers, stickers, posters, bracelets and marketing materials. These fliers & posters will be up simultaneously on April 20th nationwide to bring awareness to this issue.

 

A response to Criticism from the film was addressed here by the CEO of Invisible Children: http://vimeo.com/38344284.

 

The KONY 2012 Video and Information can be found on:

Kony 2012 Website: Kony2012.com

Invisible Chilren Website: http://www.invisiblechildren.com/

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

Vimeo: http://vimeo.com/invisible/kony2012

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/invisiblechildren

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/invisible

Blog on Tumblr: http://invisible.tumblr.com/

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/invisibleinc/

Invisible Children, Central Africa, Northen Uganda, Joseph Kony, Jason Russell, April 20th, Bono, U2, George Bush, Stephen Colbert, Oprah, George Clooney, Bill Gates, Lady Gaga, Mark Zuckerberg, Angelina Jolie, Bill O’Reilly, Jay-Z, Justin Beiber, Rick Warren, Ellen Degenwres, Ben Affleck, Rihanna, Ryan Seacrest, Tim Teabow, Rush Limbaugh, Bill Clinton, Mitt Romney, John Boehner, Harry Reid, Condoleeza Rice, Action Kit, TRI, Ban Ki-Moon

IZOD IndyCar Series Sets A Social Media #hashtag Agenda


This photo is evidence of a fan led social media involvement through Twitter. The photo was posted at IZOD IndyCar Series blog pages on May 5, 2010 and urged fans traveling to Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama to log in to, and follow tweets on Twitter through the account set up presumably by the cable media outlet (VERSUS) carrying the race that weekend. Image Credit: IZOD IndyCar Series Admin (2010)

IZOD IndyCar Series Sets A Social Media #hashtag Agenda

Here in 2012, this will not be your father’s IndyCar … or CART/ChampCar for that matter.

Last year (2011) was the last year for a bunch of IndyCar-ism’s, not the least of which was the continued running of a tired and old formula that utilized an old Dallara chassis that was optimized to work well on ovals and adapted for use (with many engineering and driver complaints) on road and street courses with all teams using the same naturally aspirated engine from Honda. The first year of the new DW12 Dallara chassis has a frame that has been designed to be more balanced for use on road and street courses and the teams will run turbo-charged engines manufactured from three manufacturers of Honda, Chevy, and Lotus.

One of the strongest changes, however, concerns itself with the communications medium of New Media and the sub-set known as Social Media. To illustrate the change of visibility and understanding from the top when, during the announcement that F1 standout driver Rubens Barrichello was joining KV Racing Technology’s three car team for the 2012 season, IZOD IndyCar Series CEO Randy Bernard went to one of Barrichello’s test sessions to meet the Brazilian. He said last Thursday it was an exciting day for the series ”and a positive step to start” the year.

“There’s not a person in the world who knows racing that wouldn’t tell you that Rubens Barrichello is one of the greatest drivers of all time,” the series CEO said in a statement. “That will create great competition and expands our international platform.”

What Randy Bernard was alluding to was that Barrichello brings with him an ardent and strong New Media fan base … his 1.47 million followers on Twitter is one million more than Kanaan’s … who leads all IndyCar Series drivers with 448,000 Twitter followers.

So basically, as was written in the article titled “Brazilian Changing Of The Guard, Barrichello In As Meira Leaves IndyCar“, what we will expect to be hearing from the PA speakers in the stands, at every 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series venue during the season is – “Ladies and Gentlemen … start your ‘Tweets’!”

The IZOD IndyCar Series has set an agenda to utilize the Social Media platform of Twitter that allows fans to communicate to one another in 140 character (or less) messages known as “Tweets”. If one were to use their smartphone, iPad, tablet, or laptop to post the messages, and wanted to follow what others who were following the comments and on-track action of a particular race, all one would need to do is employ the search method of locating messages through the use of a “HASHTAG”. A HASHTAG takes the form of an indexing tool utilized in real-time to send messages and look at messages on Twitter … it opens the door to the discussion room of that IZOD IndyCar Series race so socially, we all can participate in the process.

Mario Andretti, always in command, three generations of Andretti get a kick out of Tweet’n on Twitter. Image Credit: More Front Wing

This excerpted and edited from Pressdog –

IndyCar Sees More Twitter Integration, Hashtags, Driver Engagement in 2012
Pressdog – March 05, 2012

IndyCar fans can expect Twitter handles on race broadcasts, much stronger at-the-track Twitter presence and a set of event-specific hashtags in the 2012 race season.

The series is also trying to provide teams with resources and expertise required to engage fans through expanding social media avenues including Twitter.
—-
Kate Guerra (@kateguerra4), public relations coordinator and manager of social media for IndyCar (@IndyCar), said last week NASCAR (@NASCAR) may have made a big social media splash in Daytona, but IndyCar also recognizes the value of social media like Twitter to engage fans and has been building its Twitter efforts since late last season.

Guerra said last fall IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard (@RBINDYCAR) and COO Mark Koretzky “said to me we want you take over our social media and we really want you to just go for it. We want you to do anything you can to help us out. We want you to reach out to everybody in our atmosphere — teams, drivers, sponsors, tracks, local social media influencers and more. We set goals where we want to be every month.”
—-
IndyCar has four primary social media thrusts planned for 2012.

First, more integration of Twitter handles into race broadcast. Guerra said after she saw how SPEED integrated Twitter handles into graphics during the Rolex 24, she met with producers for ABC and NBC Sports who were very willing to do something similar on all IndyCar broadcasts.

Second, Guerra hopes to create “hashtag communities” for each race.
—-
For example, leading up to and during the IndyCar race at St. Petersburg, tweets that include the event hashtag — #gpstpete – will be collected under that tag. By clicking on the hashtag in your Twitter stream, you’ll go to a listing of all tweets that contain that hashtag.

“They really create a sense of sense of community,” said Guerra. “People who click on a hashtag see everything anyone is sharing on it and at the same time see who is

sharing their opinions. It’s really a great place for IndyCar fans to interact with each other about whatever certain event we have going on. Hashtags were something that were asked for and demand by our fans. They are out there now and have been shared with our teams and drivers and tracks. It’s almost like creating a forum, but it’s on Twitter which is such a user-friendly medium.”

Third, IndyCar and Guerra continue to offer help and guidance to teams and drivers who want to up their game on Twitter. In that regard, Bernard invited Omid Ashtari from Twitter to speak to teams and drivers during the State of IndyCar meetings last month.

Guerra said Ashtari’s talk stirred many inquires of her from teams looking to increase the effectiveness of their use of Twitter. Guerra expects Ashtari to be involved in talks with IndyCar’s television partners on ways to best optimize the use of Twitter during broadcasts.
—-
Teams and drivers are also starting to incorporate their Twitter handles into their uniforms, car paint schemes and more. Examples include the Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing hauler that features a HUGE “@SFRHindy” on the side to EJViso (@EJViso) doing things to rapidly increase his Twitter followers.

Fourth, IndyCar is trying to increase its at-the-track Twitter presence. “I feel like the second people step onto a track they should be absolutely surrounded by everything social media,” said Guerra. “Whether in our fan village or at autograph sessions when there are massive lines and people playing on their phones. All the name plates we have and use for autograph sessions will have the driver’s twitter handle right underneath the name. It’s little things like that that people tend to underestimate that I feel like could make a huge difference.”
—-
The newness of IndyCar this season also gives drivers an opening to reintroduce themselves to fans. “It’s almost a new sport,” she said. “There’s so much new — with the car, with the engines, with some new drivers — they may want to rebrand themselves and really make this a reintroduction to the sport this season. Nobody has said that specifically, but I really feel they really want to grow and help us grow.”
—-
Race car drivers’ nature may also help fuel Twitter growth. A driver who has half the followers of another may feel the need to pick up the pace. “As you well know, drivers are a very competitive breed,” Guerra said. “So, yeah, it’s even a little bit of that I feel. I haven’t heard any Oh, man, let’s see who can get to 50,000 followers first,’ but maybe it’s something I could push needle on.”

Guerra said she and others are determined that IndyCar will also ride the wave of Twitter s well. “It’s definitely something I am working very hard on,” she said, “something that is very important to me. It has always been a dream of mine ever since I realized I wanted to work in sports that I handle a league’s social media.”
[Reference Here]

Over the last three years or so (2009), we at The EDJE pioneered posting race action blogs that featured selected comment and reaction “Tweets” with posts labeled “Tweet-By-Tweet”. Using Twitter, Facebook, twitpic, Pinterest, YouTube, and any other New Media communications platforms that allow people to have free access to words, photos and action in realtime, of events as they happen, can only expand ones interest and fanbase knowledge with the result of a stronger experience and racing series.

People experienced in using Twitter have expanded their access to message input through the use of “TweetDeck” which allows the user to set up and follow several #hashtag streams … check it out on Chrome (download application) and a laptop.

2012 IndyCar Series Official Race Event Hashtags (16 races) = #name

RACE *** (TWITTER ACCOUNT – @name) *** = #hastag

1.) Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg (@GPSTPETE) = #gpstpete

2.) Honda Indy Grand Prix of AL (@BarberMotorPark) = #higpa

3.) 38th Annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (@ToyotaGPLB) = #tgplb

4.) Sao Paulo Indy 300 (@IndyemSaoPaulo) = #saopauloindy

5.) Indianapolis 500 (@IMS) #indy500

6.) Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix (@DetroitGP) = #detroitgp

7.) Firestone 550K (@TXMotorSpeedway) = #texas550

8.) Milwaukee Indy Fest (@MKE_IndyFest) = #indyfest

9.) Iowa Corn Indy 250 (@IowaSpeedway) = #iowa250

10.) Honda Indy Toronto (@HondaIndy) = #hondaindy

11.) Edmonton Indy (@edmontonindy) = #edmontonindy

12.) Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (@followmidohio) = #midohio

13.) Streets of Qingdao, China = #Indychina

14.) Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma (@InfineonRaceway) = #igps

15.) Baltimore Grand Prix (@BaltimoreGP) = #bgp2012

16.) Auto Club Speedway (@ACSupdates) TBD – Suggestion = #fontana

Again, what we will expect to be hearing from the PA speakers in the stands, at every 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series race venue during the season is – “Ladies and Gentlemen … start your ‘Tweets’!”

Happy tweeting.

… notes from The EDJE

** Article first published as IZOD IndyCar Series Sets A Social Media #hashtag Agenda on Technorati **

The Automating QR (Quick Response) Code, Smart Phones, And You


Loyal customers, who are less likely to shop online, can be enticed by QR codes to come into the store after they have scanned a code and experienced rich videos, images, or in-store contests. Recently luxury retailer Ralph Lauren matched up with Red Fish Media to design a custom QR code placed in windows at various Ralph Lauren locations. Once scanned, the customer was enticed to enter the store for a chance to win tickets to the 2012 men’s US Open finals and a $3,000 Ralph Lauren wardrobe. Image Credit: Ralph Lauren

 

A cellphone with a camera isn’t a communications device with a way to capture pictures and share them with friends … rather, it’s a web enabled handheld data scanner with a display which automates the way to reach out, get information, be involved socially, and get things done.

In order to have one’s phone behave more like a tool than a personalized toy, all one has to do is download a simple program into the cellphone and presto – the camera takes a picture (scans) of a symbol printed on a billboard, flyer, magazine, or TV/Computer display screen then decodes it and has the phone access a “(dot) mobi” webpage on the internet through a series of pre-scripted commands. Quick, Simple, and Easy.

Image Credit: Ralph Lauren

So why hasn’t this form of consumer automation taken off in the larger way it has in Japan and other countries? Hard to say, but get ready because the symbology revolution will be vying for your attention at a cellphone, real estate operation, bus stop, television screen, website, or specialty retail store around the corner from where you live, right now … it’s that weird square with squares in it.

There may be many codes (symbologies) offered by program automation developers, each with their own strengths and benefits, however, if your phone has limited memory space in which to store the software necessary to decode the symbology, then the one code program the cellphone should contain is the QR Code … the best code ever.

Image Credit: Ralph Lauren

This excerpted and edited from Multichannel Merchant Magazine –

R U Ready 4 QR Codes?
By Tim Parry, Multichannel Merchant

CONSIDERING MOBILE MARKETING? Then you should probably start thinking about quick response (QR) codes. These two-dimensional barcodes can provide a vital link between print or broadcast media and mobile commerce.
—-
WHAT ARE THEY? QR codes store information — namely mobile Website URLs — that can be read by devices with cameras, like cell phones. A user with a Web-enabled camera phone equipped with the QR reader software can scan the image of the QR code; decoding software reads the information and prompts the phone’s browser to go to a programmed URL.

WHAT’S THE BENEFIT TO YOU? Let’s say you have a QR code printed on an advertisement or catalog. A customer could scan it with his cell phone to be directed to your mobile site — and hopefully start buying immediately.

IS ANYBODY USING THEM? Upscale apparel brand Ralph Lauren, for instance, burst onto the mobile commerce scene in August using the technology. The merchant put QR codes on print advertisements, store windows and mailers so that with one wave of a Web-enabled camera phone — with QR reader software — the user is whisked away to a landing page at m.ralphlauren.com.

The mobile site was initially launched back in 2008 with a showcase of its limited edition U.S. Open Collection and other Ralph Lauren classics such as polo shirts, oxfords and chinos. Mobile users could also check out a Ralph Lauren style guide, watch tennis videos, and read articles about the U.S. Open in real time.

“We see mobile as a key channel for marketing, advertising and commerce for all of our brands and retail concepts,” says Miki Berardelli, Ralph Lauren’s vice president, global customer strategy and retail marketing. “QR codes are part of the strategy and they serve as a conduit, providing an easy way for people to access the mobile Web.”

Users can download the QR reader application for free from Ralph Lauren; the technology is also available from numerous other sources online.

David Harper, founder/CEO of Website development firm Engagelogic and mobile content management and social networking software company Winksite, hopes the Ralph Lauren launch will encourage others to incorporate QR codes in their mobile commerce campaigns. But the early adaptors like Ralph Lauren may need to do more to educate people about the technology.
—-
Why aren’t more using QR codes? Creating a basic QR code is easy enough: Multichannel Merchant generated the code that appears on this issue’s cover in a matter on minutes on Winksite.com. (Test it with your cell phone camera.)

Dave Sikora, CEO of m-commerce provider Digby, blames a lack of consumer awareness of the technology, and the inability of phones to accurately read the codes.
—-
But Harper contends that adding a QR code reader application to a phone is no harder than downloading software to your personal computer. You can do a search for “QR code reader” on your mobile browser and find a site you want to download it from. Once installed, the reader application will show up in the applications folder, and its icon will appear on the screen.

And the QR reader does not have to point perfectly perpendicular for the QR code to be correctly translated by the mobile device, he adds. Even a wave over the code can bring the user to the correct mobile site.
—-
Big in Japan

QR codes can be seen everywhere in Japan — no surprise, since Japanese firm Denso-Wave created the technology in 1994. Cell phone users in Japan can click a QR code printed on a poster at a movie theater and view its trailer.

It helps that QR code readers come as a standard feature on many smart cell phones.
—-
“When a customer scans the barcode with their phone, it launches a mobile-ready product detail and ordering page,” says Nina Matthews, marketing coordinator for CBC America. “This enables the customer to grab the page for follow-up while on the go or for sharing with others.”
—-
Once consumers embrace the technology, Harper envisions some merchants using QR codes on the covers of their catalogs. Eventually, they may generate individual codes to be used for each product offering.

Technology notwithstanding, Digby’s Sikora wonders how some merchants would handle the creative elements of incorporating a QR code into their print advertising and catalogs.
[Reference Here]

Image Credit: Ralph Lauren

FAQ’s from Ralph Lauren –

Frequently Asked Questions (very basic)

What is a mobile site?
A mobile site is simply a normal web site formatted to fit your mobile phone or device.

Is it necessary to download anything to shop the mobile site?
No. Just enter m.RalphLauren.com into your mobile phone browser and voila…

Can any phone access the mobile site?
Any phone equipped with a web browser can access m.RalphLauren.com.

Will it cost me on my phone bill to use the mobile site?
This service is free from Ralph Lauren but charges from your carrier may apply. Be sure and double-check your plan.

Is it secure to shop from my phone?
Yes. Shopping via mobile device is just as safe as shopping from your home computer.
—-
What is a QR code?
These are two-dimensional bar codes—just like you’d find at the grocery store—that direct you to a specific website when you scan them with your cell phone.
[Reference Here]

 

** Article first published as The Automating QR (Quick Response) Code, Smart Phones, And You at Technorati **

New Media Communications Strategies For Small Business Awareness & Growth


From Facebook to Twitter, blogging, YouTube, LinkedIn, and more, discover the new principles of communication that apply across all networks and how these specific social networks work and their possible inherent uses for your organization. Caption & Image Credit: Saginaw Valley State University (svsu.edu)

New Media Communications Strategies For Small Business Awareness & Growth

Ever since the advent of Microsoft Windows in the mid-nineties, which made the computer as a mode of communication more accessible to most everyone, people have been trying to figure out how to leverage its communicative power to have their business interests grow. In other words … How can one use New Media communications to make money and have their businesses grow to meet the needs of more potential customers?

The next layer that has developed over these last one and a half decades are programs that help people to connect with additional ease to share interests, ideas, information, and just plain communicate on a broader field more quickly. This layer is called social media, and when used properly, social media can help a growing business boost brand awareness, improve customer relations, garner market research, even bolster sales. As the number of people who use social media rises, many marketing experts believe it’s essential for even the smallest of companies to consider developing a strategy to utilize this resource.

The worst effort a small business can put forth in this arena is to enter the world of New Media communications without a focus or a plan upon which the small business can leverage its limited resources to take advantage of the many social media communications opportunities that exist. As always, a business desires to place in motion a plan that will have a great chance at success, otherwise, why bother … just run an ad in the local paper which fewer people bother to purchase, let alone read.

Logging on to a computer just takes a few clicks to potentiality connect one with thousands of business contacts and customers … in addition to setting up networking strategies, business owners can use social media to glean useful insights by reading comments made by customers, industry experts, even competitors.

THE BURGER WAS ONLY THE BEGINNING. Research shows that one cannot live on burgers alone. That's why we offer a wide selection of chicken sandwiches like the grilled or crispy Avocado Chicken Club. Think of it as a Smashburger's equally awesome partner in crime. Image Credit: Smashburger Master LLC

This excerpted and edited from the Tucson Citizen –

Small businesses use social media to grow
by Laura Petrecca on Feb. 16, 2012

Hamburger chain Smashburger has become a smash hit, growing from three Denver locations in 2007 to 150 outposts nationwide. And while its Angus-beef burgers and unique toppings have helped to propel its success, its secret sauce is social-media outreach.

Smashburger offers coupons and trivia contests for its 67,000 Facebook followers, replies to questions and complaints on its Twitter and Facebook profiles, and actively reaches out to bloggers who might write about the new Smashburger restaurants opening in their areas.

“The brand was really built on social media and PR strategies,” says Jeremy Morgan, senior vice president of marketing and consumer insights. “Social media is an opportunity for us to engage with consumers and have a conversation, which is different than paid media, when you’re just shouting through a bullhorn.”
—-
“Everybody should take a look at it,” says Dan Galbraith, owner of marketing support company Solutionist and a National Small Business Association board member.

“Whether they chose to jump into social media or not is a question that only they can answer,” he says, but all firms should at least explore how social media could work for them. “There’s a lot of good information floating out there,” he says.
—-
A time investment

It takes dedication to achieve social-media success.

“The common misconception about social media is that it’s free,” says Morgan. “Facebook and Twitter accounts are free, but for small business owners in particular, time comes at a premium.”

To keep from feeling overwhelmed, business owners should decide how much time they can dedicate to this burgeoning arena, says Galbraith. Some may need to hire social-media help.

Either way, business owners should first set goals, he says. For instance, an owner might want to increase store traffic by 20% by offering coupons via Facebook or another social-media site. Or a business-to-business company could plan to reconnect with 10 former clients and re-establish solid relationships in the next three months.

The goals should be clear-cut, but as many business owners have learned, the initial strategies might have to change.
—-
Consistency counts

While marketing experts advocate joining the social-media conversation, most say that doing it poorly — such as combining personal and professional updates or not posting information consistently — is worse than not doing it at all.

“Consumers won’t stick around, and you won’t get much traction,” says Morgan.

There are some basic social media tenets to keep in mind, says Sabina Ptacin, co-founder of ‘Preneur, which provides tools and resources for small businesses.

She first suggests that business owners “baby step it out,” to see what feels comfortable to them and is do-able. Those who can’t contribute on a daily basis might want to hold off on creating a public profile.

“You can’t post once a week and think it’s going to make an impact,” she says. “You need to constantly be contributing, definitely every day.”
—-
She counsels social-media users to think of it as circulating during a cocktail party.

“I always tell people to pretend that they’re at a party and (act) how they would behave,” she says. “No one wants to talk to the person who is always talking about themselves. … They want you to ask them questions and engage in conversations.”
[Reference Here]

A business should also understand that the communicative strata of social media is as varied as there are concepts and interests held by humans themselves. Most are aware of social platforms as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the like but many could gain from understanding other social communications platforms such as SodaHead, Pinterest, Google+, Stumble, as well as other syndicated message and image sharing environments.

A business must decide what niche(s) it speaks to, and can participate in upon which they can contribute so as to receive the benefits of engagement. A well placed pebble thrown into a pond sets up a communications wave that can reap incredible benefits … social media environments are just well placed ponds for well placed communications pebbles.

 

** Article first published as New Media Communications Strategies For Small Business Awareness & Growth on Technorati **