Monday, October 25, 2004

Strange, but true

One of the weirder virals to wing its way across the offices:

While sitting at your desk, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.

Now, while doing this, draw the number "6" in the air with your right hand.

Your foot will change direction and there's nothing you can do about it.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Which came first - the Mac or the iPod?

In an interesting piece of circular marketing, this blog was amused to see a recent advert for the iMac G5: 'From the creators of the iPod. The new iMac G5'.

No doubt we'll soon see those Harry Potter films turned into books...

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Blinkx and you'll miss it

Much-hyped desktop search tool Blinkx's meteoric rise as the next big thing in search is under threat as soon as it has begun to reach the public consciousness. Blinkx, which boasts 1m unique users since its July launch, was famously revealed to the world through a humble blog posting, which was followed by excited columns in the print press, which helped to propel its legend.

However, its charmed life is about to get more difficult as Google gets in on the act by launching a beta version of its own desktop search tool - Google Desktop Search. A look into my crystal ball reveals further clouds in the form of AOL and Microsoft entering into the fray.

The question is, can Blinkx survive in such a fiercely competitive arena and will its cult status prove strong enough to keep it front of mind in the face of superiour resources? Google's rise is proof that with a great idea the little guys can take over the world, but can it be done in the field of search? Surely not again.

Friday, October 15, 2004

'There, he moved!' Viral marketing is no Dead Parrot

I was recently asked to comment on the health of viral marketing for a magazine interview. I'm including below some of the questions and answers:

Q: Are people becoming immune to viral marketing?
A: It’s certainly the case that this is an increasingly popular tactic for brands and it is harder to achieve cut-through than it used to be, but viral marketing is still relatively new and well short of the saturation levels of mainstream advertising.

Virals are often a popular form of office entertainment and as long as the quality of the creative is high there is always the potential to achieve high user numbers at a relatively cheap cost thanks to distribution potential of the Internet.

Q: What is the dividing line between mainstream and viral advertising?
A: It’s a good question, as increasingly traditional advertising and PR agencies get involved in virals as part of an integrated campaign. Reebok’s Terry Tate and the John West Salmon ads showed that mainstream advertising can be ‘viral’ in the sense of people passing what is essentially a TV-style advert to their peers, although this is not the norm.

Increasingly major brands are using this form of Internet communications for offshoots of existing campaigns that allow for riskier or pre-release adverts. However, creative is by no means limited to traditional video content, with many potential applications and opportunities to use the unique interactivity of the Internet, such as games, micro-sites and quizzes and it is here that it divides from mainstream advertising.