IAB Social Media Council : March 2014 Round Up

Iab social media council meeting – March 2014

Here at Headstream, we are very proud to sit on the iab’s social media council. On Monday we went down to London to find out the latest from the iab.

Three topics of interest were discussed at the social media council that we’d like to share with you, these were Realview, Advertising Week Europe 2014, and IC tomorrow.


RealView is a ground breaking piece of research conducted by the Internet Advertising Bureau in association with the research agency Firefish to understand how people really use connected devices.  It is the most detailed consumer research the iab has carried out, and the research shows a unique view of the role devices play in our everyday lives, whether we’re in or out of the home.  So how did the iab go about conducting the research?


A selected research agency (Firefish) came up with the methodology, which involved 20 participants who wore a fish eye camera for 3 days taking a photo every 5 seconds to understand their device behaviour.
In total there was 600 hours of footage. The same respondents also used a mobile app for two weeks to record the role devices played in the purchases they made, via photos, notes or screen grabs. This was carried out for 2 weeks with 1500 activities logged. There was also a qualitative survey, this included in-depth interviews, and a quantitative survey of 1,400 respondents to scale up the insights to represent the wider UK smart phone audience.

Some of the key findings from the report:

Downtime – 52% of respondents use devices in their downtime.

When things get awkward in conversations or if there’s a lull, 37% of respondents would use their phone.

The results also found that respondents do not only multi screen by using their mobile whilst watching TV. The survey found that 51% used both smart phone and laptop together, and that males were more likely to do this.

Psychologist Dr Simon Hampton gave his thoughts on what the research tells about human behaviour.  1 in 2 said their smart phone is their most personal device.  1 third of people said their smart phone is a lifesaver.

The intimacy ladder was discussed whereby marketing to users on mobile should be like a first date; you need to take it easy.  62% of those surveyed said they are not happy to receive personalised notifications/suggestions before they have purchased anything.  It is OK to advertise after they have bought something.  Adverts via mobile trigger further actions even after purchase.

For more information about the RealView study, you can follow this link, or watch the short video we have embedded below! It really is an interesting study about how people use devices throughout their day, and how we are able to divide our attention between devices.

The hashtag to take part in conversation about RealView is #omnichannel

Advertising Week Europe 2014

The world’s premier gathering of marketing and communications leaders is happening very soon, from the 31st of March to 4th April, London will see 14,000 people attend a weeklong of engaging events focusing on key business drivers that shape and influence the global industry. With a who’s who of the top names in the advertising sector, it’s set to be a week that you do not want to miss.

The iab will be at Advertising Week Europe 2014 hosting two sessions;The first session from iab will be discussing copyright.  Major players from the TV Film and advertising world will be going into depth about the threat of online copyright infringement to the UK’s Creative Economy and the impact it may have on brand safety. Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) will also be teaming up with the iab to deliver the session. The session will also include the positive contribution of the film and television industries to UK Plc. Particularly highlighting the work of those in the industry, rights holders and the City of London Police. If this session seems like something you may be interested in, it’s happening on Tuesday 1st April at 10am.

The second session from the iab will be presenting the RealView study in a session called Omniscreening, which is on Wednesday 2nd April at 2pm. The session will be delivered with research agency Firefish who helped to conduct the research for RealView and Dr Simon Hampton from The University of East Anglia’s School of Psychology will also be speaking at the event. As well as explaining the research, the session will also feature a ‘live’ experiment to demonstrate the projects key findings!

IC Tomorrow – Digital Innovation Contest

The final topic of interest was IC tomorrow, which is a digital innovation contest. With the iab being focussed on helping to define the future of digital advertising, being a partner for one of the challenges for IC tomorrow’s Digital Innovation Contest is something that makes complete sense.

Of particular interest to us at the council was the category ‘next generation social media analytics tools’ which is a frequently discussed topic within the industry.
After judging many entrants, it was announced that the winner of this category was http://www.analyticsseo.com.  Their product will help to identify return on social that will assist brands and agencies to get a better return on their social media marketing activities. The winner will now develop the tool further.

So that’s the round up from the social media council on Monday. Our next meeting is in May so there will be more to share then.

Social Brands 100 – the road show

On Wednesday this week Headstream took the story of the Social Brands 100 to a group of thirty marketers at an ISBA event in Edinburgh.

The beautiful and cultural City of Edinburgh was a suitable place to end our SB100 road show 2012, which has seen us discuss in-depth insights and findings with over thirty-five brands that featured in Social Brands 100 this year.

We’ve had the chance to have some brilliant conversations about social brand performance and benchmarking with lovely people at: Bing, British Gas, Burt’s Chips, Cancer Research, Chiltern Railways, The Great Collective Dairy, Deloitte, Diabetes UK, Douwe Egberts, Estee Lauder, First Direct, giffgaff, Global Radio, Go Ahead Group, Help for Heroes, Holywell Spring, London Midland, Manchester City FC, The Met Office, Mongoose Cricket, Museum of London, National Rail Enquiries, The National Trust, Neal’s Yard Remedies, Nike, PayPal, Penguin Books, RSPB, Sainsbury’s, Thames Water, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Money, Virgin Trains, White Stuff and Wonga.  Phew!

We even dropped in to Number 10 for a chat about how to measure ROI from social activity, (wins prize for meeting venue of the year!)

And we’ve taken the stage at Haymarket’s ‘Driving and Proving Social Media Value’ conference in June, and the IAB’s ‘Great British Social Media Festival’ in July, as well as gigging at some internal conferences with brand teams at global companies (if you’d like us to come to your next team get together give us a shout @headstream).

Reflecting on all of these conversations the following six subjects are the ones that kept coming up as the priority issues around social media for brand and marketing teams: 

  1. There is increasing buy-in from boards around social media, and as a result budgets for social are increasing 
  2. Uncertainty about how to prove the efficiency and return on social media investment is holding back further commitment to social spend at some brands     
  3. Some brands’ social performances remain restricted by legacy structures and ways of working. For example, how does a brand and marketing team built to deliver periodic campaigns now adapt to news-jacking and creating content at the speed of social? 
  4. A training and development challenge exists. Brands need to increase the social media capability in their teams to match the greater number of customers using social media to engage with them 
  5. High performing social brands are investing in real-time content creation teams, with a particular focus on images, video and data visualisation  
  6. Brand teams are exploring the potential for social media to boost organic search results

How does this fit with your latest thoughts on social media? As ever we’d love to know what you think.

Can sponsored tweets win gold from fans?

No surprise, these are going to be the most social of games, and LOCOG will have its work cut out for it, staying vigilant for ambush marketing.  We’ve all seen it done in less than subtle ways in the past, like the incident with Dutch beer brand Bavaria at the last World Cup, but what happens when it’s the community who’s being ambushed?

Continue reading

Best Practice in Social Media with the IAB

It’s seven in the morning and I’m sitting on a train thinking about best practice guides. Actually, I’m thinking about what is best practice for writing best practice guides. Headstream is part of the IAB social media council and we’ve taken the lead on putting together a best practice guide for advertisers deploying social media. By lead, I mean that I have promised to write up what we agree together. The team is a very talented collective of social practitioners, refreshingly not all from agency land. Katy Howell (Immediate Futures), Amy Miller (LinkedIn), Hussain Chowdhury (Habbo), John Pritchard (Microsoft), Daan Jansonius (Socialmedia8), Tom Gray (Imagination) and Sophia Amin (IAB). A useful bunch, which is helpful considering the task.

So best practice. First, the definition:

- Generally accepted
– Informally standardised techniques, methods and processes proven over time to accomplish tasks
– Commonly used when no formal methodology is in place or when what is in place is insufficient
– Through processes, checks and testing the outcome is delivered efficiently, reducing risk and complications
– Best practice maintains quality without formal regulation
– Needs to balance the unique qualities of the advertiser with the practices common to others

At the last meeting, we were asked to organise ourselves into four teams; strategy, measurement, regulation and best practice. Obviously I picked  the last, not because I didn’t want to stand up and move, but on the basis that this is the sharp end of social. The stuff people really need. So next, what should go into the guide? The good news here is at least three of the sections will be covered by my colleagues in the other teams, so strategy, measurement and regulation are in. But what else? Starters for ten:

- Making the business case
– Resourcing
– Deployment
– Campaign or programme management
– Risk and rewards

Thanks to Katy’s Hospital Club membership, we’re meeting up to talk further in one of the few bits of London that I know well enough not to get lost getting there. No guide needed.

Watch IAB Mobile Engage live today

The IAB’s Mobile Engage Conference is being live streamed today. Lots to watch and learn from the comfort of your desk. Watch the live stream and follow the chat on twitter using #iabmobile.

What have we learned so far?

- Almost 30% of mobile users in the UK have a smartphone.  Only 2-3% of marketing budgets are allocated towards mobile.

- The time between search & purchase using a desktop is 1 month, on mobile it’s 1 hour.

- Well done you, if you’ve got your mobile site up and running, but think about what information users on the go actually need.

Lots more to learn today…

Best bits of Figaro Digital

Last week, I spoke at the Figaro Digital seminar on social media. It's always great to hear what others have to say, so here are a few of the best bits for me.

For those who still need a little convincing, we saw some compelling numbers around the adoption of social media by marketers. The rapid consideration and inclusion of social spaces in communication planning and branding is impressive. Also interesting was the number of people who feel training is a key area. It's nice to know brands recognise the importance of understanding what makes appropriate social behaviour in social media, rather than treating it like any other channel.

Tony Effik, Chair of the social media council at the IAB, captured a very simple truth that can be lost in all the noise around social media; people are still people. Some things change, other don't. In social media, we have found another form to express our basic social needs. 

The Dunbar number, the magic 150, was highlighted as a phenomenon that continues to play out in social relationships. 

Whilst we have the capability to reach many, do we have the capacity to maintain intimate and meaningful relationships with such large numbers? Anyone who has experimented with technology to swell followers and friends alike is probably at risk of pushing messages, rather than building relationships.

Nick Jones, Director of Interactive Services at the COI gave an interesting insight into how his clients perceive social media. As the Government's centre of excellence for marketing and communications, how this organisation approaches the opportunities presented by social media, and how it mitigates the risks, is very useful guidance for us all. 

The quote from William Perrin (Policing 2.0 conference, National Policing Improvement agency) perhaps reminds us all of how our fears around social media need to be put into context?

"If you can let police walk the streets with guns, you can manage the risks of letting them use Facebook".