Predictions for 2012

Tech Trends by Mashable’s Pete Cashmore (via CNN)

Social Media Trends by David Armano (via HBR)

Consumer Trends by Trendwatching

CES Trends (via IBT)

Cultural Trends by JWT

Cocktail Trends (via Fox Noise)

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Twitter: Inside Scoop, Public Mood, Debt Collectors

Ted Linhart, vice president of program research for USA Network, is better known as @TedOnTV to his 2,900-plus Twitter followers. While USA has its own official Twitter feed — which it uses for more traditional promotion of its shows — Linhart uses @TedOnTV to give fans the “inside baseball” perspective on programming decisions, answer their questions, dole out scoops from upcoming episodes and comment on ratings. SmartBrief editor Liz DeHoff caught up with Linhart to talk about USA’s use of social media.


Using Twitter Data To Track Public Mood
Extracted words from Twitter streams were evaluated by a mood-rating system called Affective Norms for English Words (ANEW). ANEW determines the positive or negative tone of the word and assigns it a mood score. For example, positive words like “love” and “paradise” indicate happiness while “funeral” and “suicide” are negative. Through filtering the tweets by geographic location the scientists rendered a infographic-style video, where viewers can monitor each state’s hour-to-hour trend of moods.

Who Else is Reading Your Tweets?
Social media is becoming a treasure trove for the most unlikely of data hunters – divorce attorneys, health insurance companies and now debt collectors. Yes, debt collectors have begun using social networking sites to gather information about their targets.

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Beyond the Browser: Minority Report, Flipboard, Murakami

Minority Report
As my colleague Chris Paul notes: “finally”… Facial recognition software now allows ads in Tokyo to see faces of viewers and tailor the ads displayed. Very cool (or scary).

Response to social magazine iPad app Flipboard overwhelms start-up
Flipboard, the personalised, social magazine iPad app launched earlier this week, has created such an overwhelming response the company has had to enforce an invitation only system while it works to solve capacity problems.

Novelist Ryu Murakami plans to release his latest novel exclusively for digital bookworms through Apple Inc.’s iPad ahead of the print version. Mr. Murakami, the acclaimed author of over 15 novels including “Coin Locker Babies” and “In the Miso Soup”, replaced the publishers with a software company to help develop the e-book titled “A Singing Whale,” or “Utau Kujira” in Japanese. The digital package will include video content and set to music composed by Academy Award winning composer Ryuichi Sakamoto, according to the Japanese business daily Nikkei. The newspaper reports the e-book will cost 1,500 yen ($17) and will be ready to download pending Apple’s approval. Apple Japan and Mr. Murakami did not respond to requests for comment at the time of publication.
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Social Media: Ben & Jerry’s vs eMail, Cascadian vs FarmVille

Ben & Jerry’s is abandoning its e-mail marketing initiatives to focus exclusively on social media advertising. It will be among the first large brands to make that leap, reports New Age Media. (via Mad Company). Its e-mail marketing initiatives consisted largely of a monthly newsletter – until feedback it received from customers suggested that the majority of them would prefer to be contacted on social media sites. Going forward, it will send one e-mail update each year to customers, and focus on using its Facebook and Twitter profiles to engage regularly.

Cascadian Farm Becomes First Branded Crop in FarmVille
Organic brand Cascadian Farm is becoming the first branded organic crop to be offered in Zynga‘s popular online game FarmVille. Beginning July 19 through July 26, Cascadian Farm will give FarmVille players such benefits as coupon offers, organic farming and green living tips and – per the game’s philosophy – the opportunity to enhance their farm. The campaign was developed with the support of Sterling-Rice Group. The brand has recreated the real Cascadian Farm – located in the Upper Skagit Valley of Washington’s North Cascade Mountains – virtually, with the online fruits and vegetables planted in similar fashion. There’s also an avatar farmer called “Farmer Joe Cascadian,” who’ll serve as the “virtual” tender to the brand’s own FarmVille farm. Users can request to be his neighbor by friend-ing him online on his Facebook page.

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Too Effing Modern: Location Based, Crowdsourcing

Location based social networks are the current darling of social media. Foursquare is leading the way with what seems like a new Fourtune 500 endorsement each week. It is unclear where all these tools will lead us. Foursquare, Gowalla, Whrrl, and even MyTown are getting a lot of attention and a lot of businesses, big and small, are experimenting.So let’s take a moment and capture what all has been done with these tools to date. How are big brands testing the space? What are brick and mortars playing with? Nothing earth shattering here, but the more businesses experiment in the space, the more we all learn.
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Pringles says “Thanks for Oversharing”

Pringles lampoons social media addicts
Pringles is promoting its ‘sharing’ positioning with a light-hearted campaign that pokes fun at social media fanatics. The activity, created by Wunderman and called ‘The Oversharers’, appeals to consumers to name and shame their friends who share things online that are ‘totally ridiculous’. The push centres on the accusation that people who overuse Facebook and Twitter are boring their friends and urges them to share things ‘really worth sharing, like Pringles’. Central to the activity is a website with a Twitter feed showcasing the most banal tweets, such as: ‘Just eaten a sausage roll!!!’ Visitors to the site can download a Facebook ‘Overshare’ button, which adds to the existing options to ‘like’ and comment on friends’ status updates. When users click on ‘Overshare’, the author of the update will receive a message advising them to seek help at the Pringles website.

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Social Media meets FMCG: God of War + Mountain Dew, Bagels + Facebook

God of War III,” the latest installment in one of Sony PlayStation’s premier franchises, is gearing up for battle, and it’s enlisted as allies 7-Eleven and Mtn Dew. It’s the first game in the series that can be played on the PlayStation 3, and though it won’t hit shelves until March 16, the marketing campaign begins next week. Starting Feb. 1, fans of the Greek mythology-based action game can head to 7-Eleven when the Kratos Fury Slurpee flavor, created by Mtn Dew and the convenience-store chain, debuts. The drink will also come with a choice of four different “God of War” artwork cups. The cups will give each buyer a code that allows them to download a variety of content including behind-the-scenes video of the making the game, an animated theme of Kratos’ face, wallpaper for PCs and virtual items that unlock armor to use inside the game. Hanging neck tags on all Mountain Dew two-liter and 20-ounce bottles will also include codes that can be redeemed at slurpee.com.

Get a Free Bagel With Friendship in Facebook’s First Digital Coupon Campaign
Be my friend, get a free bagel! That’s the message Einstein Bros. Bagels is telling potential customers on Facebook, and, at least in visible numbers, it’s paying off. The bagel-and-schmear giveaway started less than three full days ago, and already the bagel chain has increased its Facebook fan count from a measly 4,700 to a massive 336,000-plus. According to the company, this is the first instance of a Facebook advertiser providing a free offer though instant digital coupons. Is free the social media marketing campaign of the future?

National Bagel Day Freebie (suddenlyfrugal.com)
Incredible God of War Collection announced for PS3 (Update) (destructoid.com)
Buy the Kratos Fury Slurpee at 7-11, get free GoW III DLC (destructoid.com)
Einstein Bros and Noah’s Bagels Newest Facebook Promotion: Free Food (insidefacebook.com)
God of War III Slurpee tastes like Kratos’ fury; it’s delicious (joystiq.com)

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2010: Some Trends & Predictions

Trendwatching – Top 10 Consumer Trends for 2010

Companies seeking to reach out to consumers this year need to prove they are good corporate citizens and also need to tailor their products, services and messaging to an audience that is constantly online, according to consumer insights firm trendwatching.com.
While Web 2.0 brought the world interactive information sharing, interoperability, user-centered design and collaboration, software applications provider ICON believes that the next generation of the web, or “Web 3.0″ promises more recommendations, free services, intelligent (semantic) searches, and information that’s no longer random data, but tailored, highly intuitive and delivered in real time. As 2009 draws to a close, and in an effort to heighten awareness about Web 3.0, Gege Gatt, the founder and director of Malta-based ICON recently identified some broad trends that are in tune with Web 3.0. According to Gatt, these trends are…
Sienna Farris, Director of Social Media at Strawberry Frog, spoke with AdWeek about 5 key social media implications that brands will need to respond to in 2010. Recognizing that predictions don’t hold a candle against the fast pace at which technology changes and renders them dated, these are more of a call to action and awareness, and less of a definite prediction.

eMarketer – 7 Predictions for 2010
It’s that time of year again—the season for looking back, reflecting on what transpired over the course of the year, and simultaneously looking forward, to formulate thoughts, and perhaps some hope, for what the coming year will bring.

As 2009 draws to a close, the Web’s attention turns to the year ahead. What can we expect of the online realm in 2010? While Web innovation is unpredictable, some clear trends are becoming apparent. Expect the following 10 themes to define the Web next year:
JWT – Trends that will influence 2010
JWT has done a year-end forecast for the past several years and has just released their thoughts on what 2010 will bring. Here’s a glance at the 10 trends they believe will shape this next year.
Nicola Davies – 2010 predictions
Nicola Davies prognosticates

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    Exploring the Ruins of Friendster

    Exploring The Ruins Of Friendster
    A recent Onion spoof highlights a fictional discovery of the ruins of the “Friendster Civilization.” An “Internet anthropologist” is seen describing a once-vibrant culture that seems to have vanished overnight. It’s a funny but interesting way to examine how we represent ourselves, and how future generations may see us (if having to decipher our culture based on social media profiles).

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