Archive for Tamara Littleton

Brands and the politics of sponsorship

Posted by Tamara Littleton on February 7th, 2014 at 5:04 am

For brands, sponsoring major events like the Olympics and the World Cup can bring benefits that are hard to ignore. Adidas attributed a boost in sales to its sponsorship of London 2012. Coca-Cola created more than 120 pieces of content as part of its London 2012 sponsorship activity.
Sponsorship gives brands a chance to enter new markets, while promoting the brand on a global scale. Yet when they sign up to sponsor international events, they don’t just get the benefits. They get the politics, too.
The 2008 Beijing Olympics saw sponsors targeted for their association with the event, with protesters putting pressure on them over China’s human rights record. When people took to the streets in Rio over the Brazilian Governments preparations for the 2014 World Cup, the media turned to the sponsors for their response.
Now, at the start of Sochi 2014, some sponsors are finding it impossible to escape political questions over human rights and the government’s controversial law banning so-called gay ‘propaganda’. These are brands that simply signed up to sponsor one of the biggest events in the world, and presumably support the ethics of the Olympics movement (including ‘Principle  6’ of the Olympic Charter which opposes all discrimination).
How, then,... Read more

Five essential steps to successful brand conversations

Posted by Tamara Littleton on December 2nd, 2013 at 3:04 am

Those of us who work in social media are always talking about how brands need to be proactive, to have conversations with their social media fans and followers. It’s lovely to see that some brands are taking this a step further, and talking to each other.

Live events and the virtual audience

Posted by Tamara Littleton on January 11th, 2013 at 6:48 am

Nothing beats standing in a sold-out arena. Whether it’s watching your favourite baseball player hit a home run or singing along with thousands of other fans to Beyoncé’s latest hit, live events can be an exhilarating experience. Now social media has opened them up to a larger audience and fans from around the world can follow an event and feel like they are really participating.
Share the live experience
Social media can help bring the television audience closer to the event, and to each other, making them a greater part of the experience. In 2012 American Idol achieved this by creating a community website for its fans called Idol Nation, which acted as a kind of social media hub, gave a place for fans to come and talk to each other about the show, and highlighted popular community members.
It also launched a Twitter campaign, Flock to Unlock, which encouraged viewers to tweet to unlock exclusive content from sponsors and behind-the-scenes footage from the show. American Idol was so successful at augmenting viewer experience, that the finale reached a peak of almost 24,000 tweets per minute.
Later in the year, the 2012 MTV Europe Music Awards became one of the most social events ever.... Read more

Moderating the electorate: How broadcasters can play fair with user-generated content

Posted by Tamara Littleton on October 5th, 2012 at 11:23 am

Coverage at election time can lead to accusations of bias. If you're a media owner using use-generated content, how can you strike the right balance?

How brands can engage teens online

Posted by Tamara Littleton on May 3rd, 2012 at 6:24 am

Brands are becoming quite good at connecting with adult fans online. Most know the best ways to entice fans into ‘liking’ them on Facebook or replying to them on Twitter. Targeting a teen audience, however, is a whole different challenge. An audience of teens makes for a more volatile, less predictable community. Trends that take months to play out in an adult world can come and go in days. Teens aren’t just slightly shorter adults – they’re a whole different market and should be treated as such. Teens may seem impossible to engage, but it can be done if the brand follows some basic principles (if you’d like to know more, do watch this video seminar on teenagers and social media that includes presentations from Paul LaFontaine from Sulake (Habbo Hotel), Dr Barbie Clarke, founder of Family Kids and Youth and eModeration's own Tia Fisher).
Create an authentic voice which is genuine, non-corporate and human sounding (after all, you’re not trying to engage shareholders here – it’s all about the teens). The voice needs to be true and sustainable (teens can spot a faker a mile off and there’s nothing less engaging than being patronised). Brands that succeed in crafting a... Read more