Archive for March, 2012

Ambient Social Networking needs smart devices – at locations not in phones

Ambient Social Networking with dwinQ and RFID EpicMix

This is Vail's ambient social networking application called EpicMix - a massive success.

What I’ve witnessed this past winter at Vail, Breckenridge, Keystone and four other resorts owned by Vail Resorts (NYSE: MTN) is an extraordinary testament to my theory that for social networking to be ubiquitous it has to be frictionless. Vail has cracked this code with the EpicMix system using RFID embedded in every ski pass (YouTube). It’s effortless to track your location, vertical feet skieed, virtual pins earned and more. 

At South by Southwest this year, people were referring to solutions by dwinQ and Sonar that brought social media  into the real world frictionlessly – but there was a big difference in theses two ambient social networking examples.

With the Sonar app – it requires the user to have the intelligence, interface with the app, use the data carrying capability and have an expensive smart phone. The dwinQ app required a fifty cent RFID tag. The intelligence was at the location – looking for tags. The result of both is passive, although the dwinQ app is ambient social networking’s killer app because it captures the moment in photos and can tag all the people in the photo automatically without friction. 

If people want ambient social networking, or social media experiences in the real world the quickest way to adoption is put the burden on the location not  the user. Today, RFID is the easiest path there. 

, , , ,

Leave a comment

One picture is worth a thousand Likes on Facebook

If you are trying to use social media (Facebook or Google+) to amplify your brand, event, or venue, keep this one simple rule in mind – one picture is worth a thousand “Likes”.

Facebook Likes are not nearly as good as a tagged photo

This rule is not only figurative but it’s not far from literal as well.

If you provide fans with a picture of them engaging in a highly enjoyable activity (even better – at one of your events or venues) this becomes a valuable gift from your brand to them. This gift, as studies have shown, will not only be a valuable tool in building brand equity but also having outreaching impact on engaging fans to the brand.

Using social media to build brand equity requires high quality engagement. Most brands get it wrong – they offer something in exchange for a fan  “Liking” their Facebook brand (a discount or coupon). But the problem with that approach is that after the one-time “Like” that brand page never sees that same fan again. So when the brand posts something on their fanpage, most of their fans never see it because it doesn’t make it to the fan’s Wall, Timeline, or Ticker.  In other words posting to a brand page is useless unless you have lasting engagement; and you need quality posts to build engagement.

Facebook’s algorithm that determines what appears on a user’s Newsfeed, Timeline and Ticker is called the EdgeRank. The variables that make up the EdgeRank can be highly optimized/manipulated to ensure your brand will get noticed. Easiest way to achieve that is by capturing a fan at an event and then tagging that photo of them (with their permission of course).

So remember, if you really want to create a powerful marketing campaign around social media, use photos from actual events with real people. One of the best ways to start is giving them a photo on Facebook for free.  If you want to make it easy you can create a social media experience without your customer doing anything at all.

Leave a comment

Social Media isn’t generational, it’s personal

This week dwinQ activated one of the most exciting and eclectic events anyone can attend – Bike Week in Daytona Beach using RFID to automate the social media experience. It’s the world’s largest motorcycle rally and festival. A week long montage of sales, performances, voyeurs and artisans.

Harley-Davidson wanted to help their owners share the experience. One thing that was clear after a very successful activation: social media is all about sharing with your friends. It doesn’t matter what your age is or what your vocation is.

Here are two photos that were automatically posted to Facebook (in real time) thank’s to dwinQ’s photospot. One is a 70-something long time Harley rider who wanted his friends to think he bought a new bike, and the other was a family of kids who wanted their grandparents to see them on a Harley.

Different motivations, different outcomes – but all using the platform of social media and all allowed to share in real time while engaged thanks to a great social media experience leveraging dwinQ’s platform driven by  sophisticated

Social Media Experience using RFID

dwinQ's automated photospot captures a great moment without friction for Facebook and Harley Davidson

software and RFID. But they don’t know that – they just know it works like magic.

Biker Dude using social media dwinQ

An automated photo booth from dwinQ posts to facebook using RFID to eliminate friction

Leave a comment