There seems to be no limits on what technology can do and definitely are completely comfortable creating things that to most would seem odd.
In Japan, Hiroshi Ishiguro, a professor and robot designer just created “Hugvie.” It is a huggable body pillow that adds a physical sensation with someone you are on the phone with. If you are in a long distance relationship or just for some reason can’t be with your partner at the moment it could be somewhat of a great filler for when you’re lonely. This still seems very odd to me.
Let me explain how exactly it works, first you place your cellphone in the pocket of the hugvie which is located on the head and then you just squeeze, hold, hug it while you talk on the phone. This is where it gets creepy (if you’re not creeped out already) there are two vibrating discs that can simulate the caller’s heartbeat.
It’s hard to tell if it will actually be a popular product. The Hugvie does make sense to create now more than ever since people are not always with one another, but personally I just could not see myself using one and I wouldn’t really want my significant other using one either.
It will be interesting to see the success of this product and if it will make it into the US markets. What do you think of it?
There are many stories of companies losing their crediblity and fan base from cause marketing scenarios gone bad. Many times it is hard to rise from a failure and prove that the company has learned and is wiser than before.
Are you reading this wondering what am I talking about? Well, cause marketing is a commercial activity that aligns a company brand with a cause to generate business and social benefit. It loves to involve the consumers emotions.
Haagen-Dazs ice cream, besides being delicious and a wonderful treat has made some great cause marketing moves lately. Since honeybees are disappearing at an alarming rate. According to Hubpages.com, “So if honey bees disappear and we do not find replacements that can do the work they do then foods that we take for granted will decrease in supply and increase in price.” Foods such as watermelon, apples, almonds, cantaloupe, avocado, blueberries, etc.
So, Haagen-Daz made a “microsite” to raise awareness and let this epidemic be known to their consumers. Besides making the problem known, they decided to donate a portion of their honey bee brand to research. This led led to a huge Twitter campaign craze where they raised $7,000 in two days by using the hashtag, #HelpHoneyBees.
This is a great example that with genuine care and interest in a matter, a company can make cause marketing work and hopefully make a difference.
Check out this video Burts Bees made about the honey bee epidemic:
I decided to buy a Farmville virtual good card. I signed onto Facebook, typed my code in and received 55 dollars in farm cash, (unfortunately, this is not real money) and let the madness began!
I decided to play until I used all my money and was decently satisfied by how my farm turned out. To summarize, I planted 10 crops, bought two animals a sheep and a brontosaurus, and I planted four trees. After taking care of my crops, I ran out o money and felt that it was time to end the game. It never really interested me. Fake realities never and will never excite me even if it is just a game. At times it depresses me to be honest.
While playing Farmville, I had two of my virtual neighbors stop by to join them in a picnic and later I was invited to a tea party. If this was real life I would be estactic and very intrigued manly because people do not take part in activites such as that as much anymore. But when these avatars invited who are complete strangers who are really just sitting in front of a computer screen probably showing zero emotion invited me it turned me off.
I enjoy communicating with people in person, face-to-face, I’m not even a big phone person because of this reason, but a phone is neccesary at times. People nowadays have problems communicating with others in person and I think it is only getting worse. I like to be active and actually go OUTSIDE and have a picnic then attend one on a computer. People are living this fake life maybe because they do not feel fulfilled in their actual one, but they should just try a little harder to interact with out a screen in front of them.
According to Facebook, Farmville has 26 million users monthly! That number is insane, think of the life you could be living off the computer instead of spending hours lining up your crops just right and earning tons of coins.
Fellow readers, do you agree with my long (and meaningful) rant? Or are you plowing your fields as we speak?
When we were assigned to buy virtual goods to play games online, I thought that this was a bit ridiculous. I have never been a fan of online gaming and anything that is virtual, for example second life. I feel as though people that have this “other life” online and interact with people only via the Internet have something wrong with them. Why not live your real life out to the fullest instead of making friends and connecting with people in this essentially fake world.
I’ll stop being so cynical for a moment and try to understand what it all really means. A virtual good is a “non-physical object purchased for use in online communities or online games.” This always stumps me, why in the world would someone buy a card for 15 dollars to use on a game and buy things with it that are actually fake? This never made sense. Personally, I would feel as though I am wasting my money on fake things that will never amount to anything.
On the other hand, there seems to be positive points to using virtual goods. In 2010, Zynga had limited edition items in games such as FarmVille, Mafia Wars, FishVille that users purchased and the proceeds went to victims of the Haiti earthquake. Users from 47 different countries contributed to it. they received over a half a million dollars in donations.
All in all, there are positives in virtual gaming that I never knew about until recently. Maybe when I start to actually play the games I will understand why it is such a lucrative business.
I received my first cell phone when I was 14 years old for strictly a safety device since I was traveling to and from school by myself. I didn’t really start texting until maybe freshman year of high school. This all seems crazy to imagine the beginnings of cell phone use, but it’s true. Cell phones are everywhere we go now and at times this terrifies me. For the past two summers I have been a camp counselor taking care of kids ages 5-12. There were three kids in my group who at the oldest were 7 and already had an iPhone or blackberry besides also owning either and iTouch, iPad or macbook. And two out of three of these kids lost their mobile phone at some point during camp. To me, this is ludicrous, I even think a middle schooler would be too young for devices such as these. Why are we giving kids mobile phones that so expensive that they do not even know the real cost of it.
I guess I just miss simpler times. There are days when I just shut my phone off and leave it home or keep it away from me so I can just relax and actually talk to people in person and try my best to pretend for a few days that there is no such things as cell phones. Unfortunately this is nearly impossible. According to CNN Tech, there are about “5 billion phone connections in the world.” So, with numbers like that you’re lucky if you see only two phones a day.
I guess I just need to accept the fact that cell phones are changing every aspect of how we interact with others and the world. I guess when you think about it, it’s a pretty amazing thing that technology is doing in this day and age.
I first heard about Pinterest about three months ago from my friend that was already obsessed and had over ten boards filled with her interests. So I signed up, was later invited and joined, but that was that until this week. I went back onto the website to find something to write about for my blog I realized how useful it is for organizations and for people trying to build their brand.
Personally, I feel as though I am a part of too many social networking sites that at least for right now Pinterest is not really interesting me. But millions of pins are added weekly and just recently it drove more traffic to its site than YouTube, LinkedIn and Google+ combined. Now that’s really saying something!
According to Pinterest’s website they “want to connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting.” I think they are doing just that.
Most companies, stores and organizations now have a Pinterest which is very worthwhile to them. They are able to spread their product to a wider audience now and create more traffic to their website since everything is linked to avoid copyright issues.
Since it is still a relatively new website, I guess we will have to wait and see who if anyone really will benefit from Pinterest. What do you think?
Obama has some big shoes to fill in the case of running for re-election this year and it is his own. In 2008, Obama was all over every socail media tool you could think of and on every screen around you. Now that he is president you don’t hear as much from him anymore which is understandable, but now since he is running for another term he needs to step it up.
According to Mashable.com, his voters ages 29 and younger were his main supporters and it is often hard to keep a steady connection with them. Generation Y’s bounce back and forth to certain social media tools and it is not always simple to figure out which one has a stronger following.
When Obama became president there was so much hope in our country (and do not get me wrong there still is) but the economy has not changed much since then and the job market has only gotten a tiny bit better. One of his main goals are to “put Americans back to work” but according to the 2010 Census Bureau 1 in 3 Americans ages 20-29 are unemployed. Also with the Occupy movements over the last few months it would be in his best interest to try and connect with the 99%. He somehow needs to appeal to these people and bring back the hope they had in him in 2008.
Another obstacle he faces is how the social networking world has expanded. Facebook now has 700 million more members then 2008, 48 hours of video are uploaded every minute on YouTube now. In 2008 it was 13 hours. The list can go on and on, some socail networking sites that are prominent now never existed then, example Foursquare.
Obama needs to find new, creative and innovative ways to use his social media outlets to connect with his supporters. He needs to stand out among his competitors.
Voters need to have a distinct reason and trust in a person to vote for them. According to the Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) voting has dropped by 60% in 2010 within the 18-29 age group. This is a huge problem since these are the people that were Obama’s biggest supporters in 2008.
With these challenges that Obama faces, he needs to connect with his followers in a way that he never has before to really stand out and make his non-believers believe in him again. What do you think Obama should focus on in his re-election campaign?
According to Wikipedia, crowdsourcing is “outsourcing tasks traditionally performed by an employee or contractor to a large group of people.
Print magazine publications have been on the decline for a while now because of the rapid growth of social media. People think that there is no point in buying the printed magazine when they can get the sane issue on their laptop, iPad, smartphone, etc. Magazines needed to think of a way to catch their audience’s attention again. And some have done just that.
The August 18, 2011 issue of Rolling Stone magazine sparked interest from thousands of fans. Rolling Stone decided to have a contest similar to American Idol. The winner would appear on the cover, received a contract with Atlantic Records and preformed on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.”
The catch was that in order for fans to vote for their favorite artist they had to go on their website and during the contest Rolling Stone had almost two million people visit.
The band that won was The Sheepdogs from Canada. Currently they bumped Adele for the number one position on the charts there and two of their albums are in the top 5 in Itunes. Rolling Stone is planning on holding the same contest next year.
Being on the cover of Rolling Stone use to mean that you made it in the music industry, you were a true rockstar, but now having contests such as this only show how these companies are just desperate to gain more followers.
Companies are starting to think of new and innovative ways to catch their readers attention and crowdsourcing will definitely help.
Social media is an ever changing tool and because of that advertisers and marketers need to be on the look out for the most innovative ways they can reach out to their audience.
The 46th annual Super Bowl will be this Sunday, February 4th, 6:30 ET on NBC. Which means, over 100 million people will be watching the game with bated breath. During the breaks when people are conversing with one another about if they thought a certain play was fair or not and eating tons of chicken wings, commercials will be airing.
Super Bowl commercials are always one of the most exciting parts about the Super Bowl, but this year they became modernized in a way. Companies such as; Cheverolet, Coca Cola and Toyota are reaching out to their viewers through a “second screen.”
Toyota is using Twitter as a marketing tool by asking people to use thier hashtag “reinvented” for their new Camry and tweet about products that should be reinvented.
According to the Washington Post, ” There will be more than 70 TV ads during the Super Bowl battling for attention.” Companies want their viewers to be discussing their commercials on any and all socail networking sites. Because any buzz is good buzz, right?
Volkswagon released a 30-second clip of their commerical that was posted on YouTube.com on January 18th and since then has over 10 million views today. What will happen when the commercial actually airs on television? This brings an interesting question to the table, How long will the hype last?”
By the time the commercial airs, will people completely disregard it since they watched most of it YouTube multiple times that there is no reason watch it on television. Or, it could have a completely positive result and generate tons of hits and continue to air even after Super Bowl Sunday.
In reality, this is all just an experiment. Companies need to find new and creative ways of reaching out to their audience and the only way they can do that it is going for it. The most popular Super Bowl commercial lies in any companies hands.
Check out a snippet of the Volkswagon commercial:
I am finally onto my second day of not using facebook and it has not been easy. Every time I open a new tab on my laptop I immediately press the “F” on my keyboard. Instantly, I press the backspace button and take a sigh of relief that I was able to stop myself.
Most times I never have any reason to be on Facebook, but if I’m bored, my mind (and my fingers) often wander there.
Since this famine I’ve realized how much facebook is a part of my life. And I can say that I’m not proud of it. To me, it is so meaningless to have such a tie to a social media site. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great that you are able to connect with anyone in the world, but it is unnecessary to be on it once a day let a lone multiple times.
Since we live in such a social and digital world now it is almost impossible to say that it is wiser to use less of it. Our world is way too fast paced that unfortunately we are not really able to slow down. Personally, I think everyone should take a break at times and relax and connect with people the old fashion way, face-to-face.
Leave the phones, computers and even MP3 players at home. Take a deep breath; they will be there when you return.
Instead, enjoy everything around you. Literally laugh out loud instead of just typing “LOL”.
As I sit here on my computer one day into my famine, I take comfort in the fact that in less than 12 hours I’ll be able to go right back on to facebook, but now I know I won’t be wasting time. And two days without it isn’t bad at all. Who knows, maybe next time I’ll try a week!
I advise YOU to do the same, take a break from some kind of social media site that you love for a few days and let me know how it went.