Google Spaces: The Next Best Thing?

Google is obviously not backing out from social media. The one-time undisputed web champion launched Google+ to compete on the social media but so far, it hasn’t been so impressive. We suppose the failure of Google+ has prompted Google to launch another social media platform called ‘Spaces’.

We installed the app and here’s our review.

LESS IS MORE

The first thing you notice about Spaces is that it is designed to allow a network of people communicate about any topic that interests them, in any format they choose.  Spaces is just about you and your select few who are in your ‘”space” to talk about your subject, whatever it is. Now, its application transcends student groups tackling a professor’s assignment to a small start-up discussing marketing and advertising.

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VIDEOS, IMAGES, WEB LINK, ANY FORMAT

Unlike other platforms that are quite clumsy in integrating different formats and files – we love twitter but sometimes 140 characters is a limitation; Instagram is built for images, so sharing and opening links is quite difficult – Spaces allows users to discuss in images, videos, web link, loops that can easily be accessed.

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CHROME, YOUTUBE AND GOOGLE SEARCH BUILT-IN

The icing on the cake, Spaces comes with these complimentary features. We don’t need to explain the utility of these features, it’s just comforting to know that you can use these features on your space without leaving or exiting the app to a YouTube video. You can do this while on your space “without missing a beat”.

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That being said about the features, there are a host of criticisms for Spaces and Google from the tech community. First, it is said that hundreds of platforms like this already exist, why must Google spend its time building another one? Another critic is of the opinion that Google should just stick to what it knows best and what works for it – web search. According to the critic, ‘Besides, Google has not yet given me a reason to abandon Whatsapp group chat for Spaces’- now this comment got us, but who are we to say?

With over a thousand downloads on Play Store in 24 hours, it’s no doubt a slow start for Spaces but only time will tell if it will gain traction and momentum over time, probably enough momentum to give Facebook a good run or it will be yet another futile attempt by Google to get a slice of the social media pie – only time will tell!

 

 

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INSTAGRAM ALGORITHM: YAY OR NAY?

Last month, Instagram’s post notification update caused an online uproar which many are yet to understand. According to Instagram, “to improve your experience, your feed will soon be ordered to show the moments we believe you will care about the most.” What Instagram is saying is that they are abandoning the chronological feed the app has used since its inception. All the Instagram posts that you love to see and share will still be there, just in a different order based on this new algorithm.

 

Just like everyone else, we have decided to weigh in on this development; some of us think it’s quite unnecessary while others think it’s an impressive idea.

 

Here’s what we, the Matchmakers, think:

Velma

“It looks like a move made with the intention of growing their advertising spend. Facebook did the same thing. Let’s wait and see.” –  Velma Richards (Media Planning & Buying)

Edmund

“My opinion, it is a welcome idea as it means I get to know what’s trending online and stop seeing posts that don’t make sense.” – Edmund Adegbotolu (Business Development)

 

Bimpe

“It’s upsetting, as posts will no longer show in a chronological order. If someone posts something on their feed, you need to go and search for the post. Long thing!” – Bimpe Odulana (Account Manager & Strategy)

Sam

“I think this new update is unnecessary. The popular posts will get more popular and those trying to get more likes will get less likes and stay unrecognized forever.” – Samson Adewole (User Experience)

Victoria

“I don’t like the idea of the most liked and the most popular posts coming up first on my Instagram timeline. I think it’s unfair and it doesn’t give everyone equal chances to be seen.” – Victoria Olaifa (Community Manager)

When will we be seeing this change? Instagram says we will be seeing this change in the coming months; however, they will take time to get it right and listen to our feedback along the way.

How do you survive this change as a business? Keep creating great content, post a lot of videos and support your great content with advertising to raise your popularity.

Till then, we observe.

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PSYCHOLOGY OF ONLINE PERSUASSION

An important element of marketing is engaging with consumers emotions. This can be done through the use of images, storytelling, persuasive statements and compelling copy. If you can engage a potential buyer emotionally, then they can unconsciously rationalize their decisions.

 

Marketing is no longer about the stuffs you make but about the stories you tell. Being able to tell a compelling story lies in being able to convince the person being told.

 


PSYCHOLOGICAL PRINCIPLES TO INCREASE CONVERSION

According to Pardot, the way consumers interact with products / services is determined by a ‘pattern of behaviors which are derived from a set of psychological principles which include;

SOCIAL PROOF: Nobody wants to feel like an outsider from a social group. Sometimes, the behaviors of others influence our decisions. If a customer feels like their friends approve a brand or product, they will feel a desire to approve as well. For e.g. positive reviews at conversion points and shares on social media are ways of influencing favorable customer decisions.

LOSS AVERSION: Humans are terrified of loss. We try to avoid loss as much as we can and it motivates the decisions we make. Your marketing strategy can benefit from creating a perception to your audience that there is a potential loss in not taking the action you required of them. A good instance would be using phrases like “Limited stock available” or giving a discount for just a day.

ANCHORING: The human brain is constantly looking for comparisons. Individuals use the first piece of information they receive to make choices. For example, bargain hunters who shop for sale items that cost much less than it’s worth or when you get the chance to buy 2 for the price of 1.

 

60% of Millennial will buy a brand that isn’t their favorite if the price was right –   Wall street journal

FOOT-IN-THE-DOOR: Humans are social beings and we tend to be compelled to honoring a bond when we create a new social connection. Basically when a consumer ‘opts-in’ to something small then it’s hard for them to say ‘no’ later. A typical example is when you interact with fans on social media and they respond to you, it creates an affinity for the brand and they are more likely to consider you in their next purchase decision.

 

People are driven to keep their actions in line with what they have done or said in the past. We don’t have the energy to evaluate every decision in isolation- so we use past decisions to inform future ones.

 

AUTHORITY: As humans, we tend to trust people who we perceive as leaders or figures of authority. That is why many brands take advantage of online influencers, celebrity endorsements and also share relevant content to establish thought leadership. ‘Authority’ is powerful.

No matter how much technology advances, the triggers behind human behavior remain the same. With the right planning you can use psychology to increase conversions and improve your bottom line.

The Making Of Viral Music

Quick confession – this piece was written with Korede Bello’s #Godwin blasting in the background. LOL! Music is addictive, especially when you don’t discriminate against any genre.  That said, this piece is not just about music, it is about how the love affair between music and digital is birthing a whole new world of excitement and opportunities.

Now that you have an idea about where this piece is coming from, let’s dig in straight away.

Of course it is no more news that the rise of digital technology has changed every industry. Think about it for a second and you will realize just how true this is. Checkout the entertainment industry, especially the music sector and you would realize just how fast it has evolved since digital became ubiquitous. Everything has changed and is still changing – from the music label’s business models to how music is consumed by fans. Just in case you are in doubt, you only need to remember that Justin Bieber became a YouTube sensation before he became the hot shot that he is today. From internet sensation to international super star. WAOW!

Okay let’s focus. The concern here is not Justin Bieber. The concern is about how some songs go viral and some songs don’t. Haven’t you ever wondered? Pause and think about it for a second. How many hit songs go viral? Viral here doesn’t mean the mere popularity and acceptance of a song, rather, it means the total experience of the audience, more or less hijacking a musical piece and owning it in such a manner that it attains a new life of its own. To put this in perspective, Kukere by Iyanya was a hit monster track, but Surulere by Mavins was a viral beast. Another example, Gobe by Davido was a super hit track but Dorobucci by Mavins was a super viral hit.

Before you begin to wonder if this is a Mavin promotional piece, be sure to know that it is not. However, it would appear that some people have realized the importance of (and mastered) the art of going beyond making hit music, to making viral music. Here in Nigeria, Don Jazzy and the Mavin are the most consistent case-studies available. Oh well, I stand corrected.

To define the concept of viral music, “they infect us so much that we don’t only want to share them with our friends; we also want to customize and use them as tools to tell our stories before passing them on to others”. Think Oliver Twist and the exciting viral dance competition that revolved around it or Surulere and the viral “before and after” picture contest that revolved around it or even Olamide’s ‘gunman’ pose and the viral trend of gunman pose that spun out of it. This is about taking music to the level where your audience can enjoy it, own it, customize it and share it. But you must lead the way and this is how.


Tips For Making Viral Music

Whether you are an artist or a producer or a record label, these tips will work for you:

(1)    Know your audience: To achieve success selling your product, you must know what your people want and give it to them. Sometimes the audience can’t articulate what they want, so your ability to study them discover and leverage their desire and aspirations to make your music, is gold.

(2)    Understand Trends: What’s the latest? What’s happening in town now? Things are evolving at a pace never seen before.  Get on the trend wagon and if you can go a step forward to either create new trends or predict one with your music, then you are closer to making a viral song than you know.

(3)    It starts from the writing: A viral song is not just about using social media to promote your song and making it trend on twitter. Nah bruh! A viral song starts from when you start stringing the lyrics together. What’s the keyword in the song? How often do you repeat it for memorability sakes? Are you creating a new slang or leveraging an existing one? How simple are the lyrics and melody? These are some of the elements to be considered.

(4)    Strike an emotional chord: If your music is not making me cry, laugh, mad or feeling some emotional high, then why are you even in the game?

(5)    Tell a clear simple story: This is key. Your verses must tell a story that your hook can sit on. Don’t just sing; tell a story with your music.

(6)    Make a sick beat: Do I even need to talk this?

(7)    Go beyond music: Now when all the above is done, then it’s time to go beyond music to develop engagement ideas around the song. This goes beyond PR and Twitter questions. This is the #Surulere picture idea epicness. What ideas can you come up with here that will go beyond the song to connect with your audience with such profoundness that your song becomes evergreen in their hearts and minds? This is why (5) above is critical.

(8)    Crowd source: Whatever the idea you come up with, ensure it has a crowdsourcing twist to it…and maybe a juicy reward as incentive.

(9)    Consult a digital expert: Who will help you better understand your online audience and digital trends? Who will help you search out keywords and trending conversations among your online audience? Digital experts are penetrating every industry at all levels fast. So embracing us early enough might be the difference between a hit track and a viral track.

Welcome to the era of viral music! Now its your turn to tell me what you think about the idea of viral music. Waiting to hear from you in the comment section.

Cheers!