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BLASTmedia’s Top Labor Day Weekend Playlists

Posted by | BLASTmedia, Just For Fun, Music, Uncategorized | No Comments

Top Labor Day Weekend Playlists

As the BLASTmedia office gears up for Labor Day weekend, music echoes jovially over the clickity-clack of keyboard strokes. Once in a blue moon, someone will notice a tune is actually an advert and turn to a member of the digital advertising team to jest about the placement. While many of us BLASTies spend our days optimizing and planning digital advertisements in online music streams like Spotify and Pandora, we all spend a great deal of time listening to their jams. As Labor Day weekend approaches and roadways become parking lots, we’d like to share some of our favorite playlists to get you through that anticipatory Friday afternoon, and weekend travel.

  • Hall & Oates Radio – You don’t have to be a Rich Girl to get down to these classics (you’re welcome to the advert-averse for the free streaming). Get amped up for your weekend, and teach the youngsters what real music once sounded like
  • 90′s Hip Hop – A Friday favorite in the BLASTmedia office, these tunes will have you [w]rapping up your to-do list faster than you can say “U can’t touch this” to your inbox
  • Today’s Hip Hop – Digital advertiser Brian Walker knows what he likes, and it certainly isn’t 50′s big band music
  • Justin Timberlake – No one would dare change the station with PR account executive Francesca Marino’s pitch for the Prince of Pop, “It has a good mix of old and new music, everything is pretty fast paced and will keep people entertained on long a long road trip or for a cookout”
  • Tom Petty’s Greatest Hits – When VP of digital advertising Jeff Gasior isn’t looking for a breakdown of data, he’s getting down to, “without question, the  best travel music” around
  • Coldplay – For those of you looking for a more relaxed weekend, resident social & paid guru Kathleen Blotsky recommends chilling out with Chris Martin
  • Hello WeekendThis playlist on 8tracks radio recommended by social maven Grace Williams was “inspired by/really for that perpetual TGIF state of mind and summer paradise feeling”

 

Are audiences interested in your brand jamming out to online radio stations like these? Contact Lindsey Groepper and make your message heard.

Digital Marketing Download: Instagram Introduces Hyperlapse

Posted by | BLASTmedia, Digital Marketing Download, Social Media | No Comments

Not to be outdone by Snapchat–who was valued you at more than $10 billion this week–other social media platforms are staying in the news with announcements of their own. Missed what’s new from Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, because you were too busy trying to figure out how to use Snapchat? Here’s your 15 second Digital Marketing Download:

  1. Instagram launches Hyperlapse, a new app to capture high-quality time lapse videos
    Less than a week after announcing a brand new suite of business tool for brands on Instagram, the Facebook-owned social property introduced Hyperlapse. The new tool allows users to create as Instagram puts it: “moving, handheld time lapses that result in a cinematic look, quality and feel.”
  2. Facebook cracks down on click-baiting, promotes native link format
    Facebook wants those using the platform to be more transparent about what they’re asking others to click on. After recently introducing the Facebook “satire” tag, the social network is reportedly cracking down on articles that have click-bait headlines according to Facebook research scientist, Khalid El-Arini.
  3. Pinterest Rolls Out Deeper Analytics for Business
    Don’t forget about Pinterest. On Tuesday, the social bookmarking service announced a set of new analytics tools available to anyone who has signed up for a free business account on Pinterest.

Don’t want to miss any of our weekly Digital Marketing Downloads? Follow BLASTmedia on Instagram.

 

Why You Should Add Video Marketing to Your Game Plan

Posted by | BLASTmedia, Digital Marketing, Video Content and Promotion | No Comments

It’s been a long offseason, but college football finally kicks off this week. For fans of the sport, every season is a welcomed fresh start. It’s a chance to see new players and old superstars build on past successes and to see what new tricks the team has in store to help win.

Your digital advertising works the same way. You can’t let your campaign rest on its previous wins. You need to add new pieces into the mix to put a better product out there for people to see, otherwise your competition will catch up. And if online video advertising isn’t part of your digital ad strategy this season, you’re missing out on a medium that’s growing faster than nearly every other format.

Don't let your ad campaign kick off without first looking toward video marketing!

Don’t let your ad campaign kick off without first looking toward video marketing!

Every team has that special do-everything athlete. They aren’t pigeonholed into one specialty, but can be relied on to contribute in a number of areas to help the team. Digital video ads occupy that position in the sales process. They’re right in the middle of the sales funnel, able to generate brand awareness while also converting users who have already had multiple touch points and are ready to buy. They can highlight a brand or product, and provide a specific call-to-action and tailor-made landing page all at once. Combine that with the ability to target video ads to very specific audiences across a growing number of platforms, and you have a new big-time player in your digital ad campaign.

Mobile VideoOld platform, new tricks – YouTube has long been king of online video. The world’s second-largest search engine sees 100 hours of video uploaded every minute! That’s a lot of content you can put your ad in front of, and now YouTube makes it even easier to do so. Ad formats have been simplified and upgraded, allowing you to more precisely target users based on searches and content they watch. You can choose individual videos or channels you want your ad to run on, allowing you to reach the most relevant audience possible for your product. You can also run video ads promoting an app, targeting users in the YouTube mobile app and running your video alongside your app’s icon and description.

Social media gets involved – The major social networks have joined the big leagues to offer their own video advertising options. Facebook now allows video ads and is already testing ways to improve them, including new CTAs to display once the video finishes playing. Not to be outdone, Twitter is also rolling out a “Promoted Video” ad feature to display video ads right in the timeline of targeted users. Even popular mobile apps like Flipboard and Snapchat are getting in on the action with recent news that their own video ad formats are on the way.

Proven success – BLASTmedia is already seeing big wins from digital video marketing. The eye-catching visuals and precise targeting make video ads a magnet for user engagement. BLASTmedia was asked by adidas to create 15-second video ads for their wearable fitness technology line. By targeting these videos to specific fitness-related users on YouTube and the Google Display Network, we have achieved a click-through-rate more than six-times the industry average. The videos have generated substantial awareness of the new products within their most relevant user base while sending more than 4,000 users per month to the product purchase pages for less money per user than any other platform BLASTmedia is running ads on.

If you want to know more about putting your digital ad game over the top with new video marketing efforts, recruit BLASTmedia today!

Four Creative Conferences to Round Out 2014

Posted by | Video Production | No Comments

201408BLASTmedia_Blog-CreativeConferences

It is hard to believe we are rounding out summer in only a few short days (Yes, I’ve already seen Halloween candy on store shelves… gross). As we enter the final four months of 2014, it’s easy to look ahead to the holidays and the start of 2015. But before saying goodbye to 2014 and welcoming the New Year, there are still plenty of things to see and do.

I personally cannot think of anything better than sharpening my design and video production skills. There are hundreds of creative conferences across the country each year. If you think you’ve missed the boat on these experiences, you’re in luck. Today, we’ve scoured the web and found the top five conferences for those creatively inclined individuals. And the best part is that they all are happening in the final quarter of 2014. So pack your bags; let’s go.

Illumination Experience Tour (Sept. 14 – Nov. 15)  - World-renowned cinematographer, Shane Hurlbut, will be leading a series of workshops and master classes across the country this fall. Shane will be primarily focusing on the art of lighting for cinema. Even if you do not particularly create narrative films, the experience gained from his course is sure to add production value to your work even if you’re creating corporate documentaries or commercials. From determining optimal lighting placement to executing specialized techniques for both high-end cameras to DSLRs, the Illumination Experience is one any filmmaker cannot miss. Check out the full list of cities this fall.

Adobe MAX (Oct. 4 – Oct. 8) – From sharpening web design skills to exploring time-lapse photography, Adobe MAX has something for everyone. All of the workshops are taught by Adobe and industry experts and provide hands-on experiences unique only to the three-day conference. Oh, and did I mention Joseph Gordon-Levitt is one of the featured keynotes? If that is not enough and you still need help convincing your manager, here are 10 reasons why you should be attending Adobe MAX.

GAIN Conference (Oct. 23 – Oct. 24) – With more of a business approach, the GAIN conference in New York attracts forward-thinking creatives, business leaders, and marketing executives to explore the role of how the designer can play a pivotal role in changing business models. Attendees will have the opportunity to listen to a wide range of guest speakers as well as receive hands-on experience through a variety of professional development workshops and classes.

Masters In Motion (Dec. 8 – Dec. 10) – Masters in Motion is a three-day event where like-minded creative from all over the country come together to discuss the latest trends, techniques, gear, and philosophies in film and video production. The event is held in Austin, TX and has brought in several highly respected industry experts each year. For 2014, the full list of guest speakers will be announced shortly, so stay tuned to find out what you can expect this year. In the meantime, check out the full list of filmmakers from last year.

So, which creative conferences will you be attending this year? Did we leave any out from the mix? Let us know in the comments!

Top-Tier Coverage for BLASTmedia Clients

Posted by | Blastmedia Clients, Client Successes, PR Industry | No Comments

Media Coverage

The month of August has been HOT for BLASTmedia! From headphones to inventory management, our clients have been all over news. Check out a few of the biggest hits below:

Fair Oaks Farms on Today Show

Today Show featured Fair Oaks Farms new venture, The Farmhouse Restaurant in “Birthing room? Indiana restaurant takes farm-to-table concept to the extreme.”

Stitch Labs funding

Stitch Labs’ recent round of funding was announced by VentureBeat and the piece included the companies upcoming plans for the capital.

TMNT emma email

Who knew Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles could teach us about email marketing? According to Emma’s VP of sales and Huffington Post, Raphael’s aggressive ‘tude actually lends itself to customer loyalty.

FOX News lighting

Fox News talked smart homes and included Connected by TCP in the mix.

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 2.14.00 PM

SMS Audio and Intel’s partnership and consumer electronic plans were announced by The Wall Street Journal.

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 2.15.16 PM

FormStack’s infographic was included in Tech Cocktail’s “Could Ron Swanson or Miranda Priestly Successfully Manage a Remote Team?“ 

 

Would you like to see your brand in the news? Contact Lindsey Groepper to find out how BLASTmedia can help!

Digital Marketing Download: YouTube Music Key, Snapchat Discovery & the #IceBucketChallenge

Posted by | Digital Marketing, Digital Marketing Download, Social Media | No Comments

YouTube without ads? Snapchat with ads? Celebrities calling out other celebrities on Facebook for charity? The world of digital is a crazy place. Have 15 seconds? Here’s our digital marketing download from this week:

  • Google’s new music subscription will reportedly be called “YouTube Music Key.” Watch your back, iTunes. Rumors are circulating that Google is planning to launch a YouTube-branded subscription. According to the Verge and Android Police, the service called YouTube Music Key, will offer “ad-free playback, the ability to save songs and videos for offline listening, and an audio-only interface.” What does this mean for YouTube, the largest ad-supported music streaming service in the world?
  • Advertisers rejoice! Ads rumored to be making their Snapchat debut. ComScore estimates 27 million people used the Snapchat on iPhones and Android phones in June, up from 11 million a year ago. Snapchat Discovery would likely be the first paid promotions sold within the app.
  • Viral ALS awareness campaign, #IceBucketChallenge, has raised over $31 million. According to information provided by Facebook on Monday, over 28 million people have joined in the conversation about the Ice Bucket Challenge on Facebook, with 2.4 million videos related videos shared on the social network. The only thing that can top that? The number of money donated. According to the ALS Association, as of Wednesday, they have received “$31.5 million in donations compared to $1.9 million during the same time period last year (July 29 to August 20).”
  • Runner Up for this Week’s Digital Marketing Download: Twitter’s act of compassion. In a update to their policy, Twitter will now remove photos and videos of deceased individuals at the request of an immediate family member.

    What digital marketing stories and trends are you following this week? Tweet us and let us know.

     

    Digital Marketing Download: Twitter Launches Promoted Video Ads into Beta

    Posted by | Digital Marketing Download, Social Media | No Comments

    From how we watch TV to how we grieve, social media has become an increasingly prominent part of our everyday lives. This week’s digital marketing download takes a look at how Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are changing and how we’ve socially-reacted to a comedic loss. Have 15 seconds? Catch up now:

    1. Twitter launches promoted video ads into Beta.
      On Tuesday, Twitter announced that it will begin beta testing a new ad product called “Promoted Video.” This feature is expands upon Twitter’s Amplify program, but doesn’t require brands to first make big media deals with Twitter.
    2. ‘Genie, you’re free’ tweet goes viral, but sparks controversy.
      In light of Robin William’s death, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences issued what may become the social media post most associated with William’s death. The tweet, featuring an image and quote from Disney’s Aladdin, has been retweeted by over 300,000 people. Although a prime example of viral social media content,  this tweet has also come under scrutiny, because it violates public health standards for how our society talks about suicide.

    3. Could Instagram and Facebook’s integration disrupt the social ad space?
      Instagram is reportedly conducting a test with Mercedes-Benz that allows the luxury car company to target Facebook users who previously saw one of the company’s Instagram ads. With Facebook Regional Director, James Quarles being tapped this week as Instagram’ new Global Head of Business and Brand Development and, according to Re/code, charged with developing new “monetization products,” could this “test” be a sign of things to come?

    Ready to make social media a part of your company’s digital marketing efforts, but aren’t sure where to start? Contact Lindsey Groepper to find out how BLAST can help.

    BLASTmedia-Indiana-State-Fair

    BLASTmedia Visits The Historic Indiana State Fair

    Posted by | BLASTmedia, Just For Fun, The BLASTmedia Team | No Comments

    Here at BLASTmedia, we’re friends not only inside the office walls, but outside, too! After all, our company culture is one of the reasons why people love working at BLASTmedia. We understand the importance of spending time with your co-workers beyond meetings and calls and that’s why we continue the BLASTmedia tradition of visiting the historic Indiana State Fair for fun rides, good company, and of course fried food. Here are some highlights from our visit to the fair on Tuesday:

    Fair fun!

    The Dairy Barn: Where wedding diets go to die.

    Need to find me at the Indiana State Fair? Here's you clue. Cc: @blastmedia

    #Repost from @8marino2 of BLAST at the Indiana State Fair<br />
--- @blastmedia

    Ever wonder how the Indiana State Fair came to be?

    • This 17-day fair is the sixth oldest state fair in the nation! Dating back to 1852, this long-standing event has been held every year with the exception of the Civil War and WWII time periods.
    • Originally developed for farmers to swap ideas and techniques, the fair has expanded into a family event with rides, games, animals, and endless amounts of fair food for the over 750,000 visitors each year.
    • The first State Fair actually took place in downtown Indianapolis’ Military Park. While most people assume that Indianapolis has been the home-base for fair in the past, the fair did not land in the current location of the Coliseum until 1892 after being hosted by other Indiana cities such as Fort Wayne, Terre Haute, and Lafayette.

    Interested in joining us at next year’s fair? We’re always interested in speaking with good people. Send your resume to jobs@blastmedia.com
     

    What’s New In Social Media: August 2014

    Posted by | Digital Marketing, Digital Marketing Download, Social Media | No Comments

    social media

    Facebook and Twitter always seem to be at the forefront of social media news. And while Pinterest, YouTube, and Instagram certainly have news of their own to share, we wanted to highlight some of this month’s most talked-about topics. From Twitter’s new shopping service to Facebook’s widely feared Messenger app, here are our top four social media changes to keep your eye on:

    Android users speculated about Twitter’s new shopping service after spotting a “payments and shipping” option in the settings of their app. Does Twitter have plans to add mobile payments and automatic shipping to their long list of capabilities? We think yes. Although the “payments and shipping” feature is not yet functional, it sure does lead us to believe that e-commerce is on Twitter’s radar (and their semi-recent acquisition of CardSpring only fuels our speculation fire). 

    Facebook phased out chat, and everyone freaked out. In an effort to steal all of your personal data (I’m kidding), Facebook recently started pushing all chat users to download the Messenger app. Here’s the bottom line: Facebook’s Messenger app does not ask for anything different than the regular Facebook app. On top of that, it’s not much different from any other messaging app on the market (See: WhatsApp, HeyTell, Keek, Snapchat, etc.). If you’re one of the worried, read this article from Mashable. It explains why Facebook needs access to your contacts, texts, microphone and more.

    Embedding tweets on Twitter became a reality for desktop users. After launching embedded Tweets for mobile back in June, Twitter has finally made the process available via Twitter.com. Simply copy and paste the link to the older tweet into your new tweet and voila! It’s social media inception, and it makes modify tweeting a heck-of-a-lot simpler. And yes, it works through Hootsuite as well.

    Facebook banned incentivizing users to ‘Like’ Pages. Among a few other changes to their terms of service, on August 5 Facebook announced that ‘Like’-gating third party app content will be strictly prohibited beginning in early November. The reasoning behind the change is valid – creating meaningful connections between people and Pages. The result for businesses, on the other hand, is less encouraging – one less tool for boosting Facebook Page growth without spending ad dollars.

    Get social media news delivered to you on a weekly basis. Check BLASTmedia out on Instagram and follow our Digital Media Download series for quick snippets of info that will keep you on the forefront of the ever-changing social media world. 

    iPhone 6 Rumor Mill Roundup

    Posted by | Just For Fun | No Comments

    With the upcoming Apple iPhone 6 announcement nearing closer to reality, so has the gossip in the rumor mills. According to a survey of US consumers, the iPhone 6 is the most anticipated Apple smartphone ever, with interest easily outstripping that of the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5. To get you pumped for its release, here are a few of the most popular rumors about the new iPhone 6:

    iPhone 6 rumors

    iPhone 6 pictures: ‘Leaked photos’ apparently show smartphone boxed and ready for sale, via TechRadar

     

    • What: iPhone 6
    • Announcement: September 9, 2014
    • Shipping: By September 19, 2014

    The Screen—According to VentureBeat, Apple will release two new phones: one with a 4.7-inch screen and a second model with a larger 5.5-inch screen. However, expect the 4.7-inch screen to be shipping first. Rumors have also been circulating about the iPhone 6 sporting durable sapphire glass, but it looks like that rumor has since been debunked.

    Battery Life—With (the lack of) battery life being a hot topic for iPhone users, the rumor that the iPhone 6 could include a thinner, better battery is exciting. The iPhone 6 battery could be as thin as .24 inches, and could have 15 percent more capacity than the 5s. However, many experts are skeptical about the battery life claim and won’t speculate much on the issue. Others believe that Apple would be required to upgrade the battery to meet power demands for the bigger screens—potentially including a 2,100mAh battery (which would give the device an almost 45 percent increase from the iPhone 5’s 1,440mAh battery).

    Processor—According to Apple Insider, claims are circulating that the iPhone 6 will include a multi-core A8 processor clocked at 2.0 GHz, which would be a major leap from the current 1.3GHz in the iPhone 5s. VentureBeat confirms the rumor with a source, which would give the iPhone 6 noticeably faster response time.

    Design—With the iPhone 6 shaping up to be the most different model in terms of design, luxury modified iPhone vendor Feld & Volk, shared high-quality photos of the purported rear shell of the iPhone 6. The vendor shared new photos with MacRumors that reveal volume button cutouts with a lower profile along the edges. Other photos seem to show what looks like an external camera ring, which reportedly fits perfectly on the rear camera hole of the shell.

    It’s safe to say that many of us will be glued to our computer screens on September 9th as Apple officially makes its announcements. Will you be purchasing the iPhone 6?

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