Snapchat’s ephemeral selling: can it really work?

Well over in the america’s Taco Bell believes it can. The fast food chain has an impressive track record of social media innovation and last week they became the first major brand to test Snapchat as a marketing platform.It’s all part of what I called Losomopho many moons ago. (Google it if you don’t believe me…. )

But why care about SnapChat – apart from the fact  I predicted this kind of thing and the growing importance of photos and scanning many moons ago…


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Ok I was wrong – but right as well. It’s not all LOSOMOPHO… It’s more social has gone visual.

For the record last year I was training people on how to make their business more SOLOMOPHO friendly. i.e. So – Social, Lo – location, Mo – mobile and Pho – Photography and Scanning in.

This is where all marketing is heading as the technology to do some becomes ubiquitous. I argued that the order would be LOSOMOPHO. And I have got this WRONG!

Social has gone visual. That’s the best way to sum up the new data coming out of Hitwise UK this week that shows how two niche activities a year ago – snapping photos on the go and sharing them with your network  and pinning pics of fashions and recipes and cutting-edge design – have become a global phenomenon.

This means that we are in the world of SOPHOLOMO. Social Photo / Visual  Location based Mobile Marketing. How so…?

As Instagram and Pinterest are by far the fastest-growing social networks on a global scale. Instagram has grown over 2,000% in the last year in the UK and over 17,000% in North America. No wonder Facebook paid a cool billion in cash for it a few months ago.

Pinterest is showing similarly impressive growth figures. Especially in the UK.

Here’s the growth story in chart form:

Instagram, which just topped the 80 million user mark, is likely to continue to see its impressive growth streak continue for some time as its popularity rises alongside the growth of smartphones. Pinterest is less harder to gauge. Its scrapbook style social networking means it is enormously popular with females and collectors (about 90% of the population of Pinterest is female.)

But Pinterest does face competition from a dizzying number of copy-cat rivals, and, it’s yet to figure out how to monetize its user base of more than 20 million.

The big thing for my clients is that these numbers are great and an interesting trend. But how do you get more from them than they cost you in time. In time, I will have the answers 🙂

Still, the success of the past year for Pinterest and Instagram points to one enduring truth: the power of the visual social networks in building a global, loyal and active following. We already saw the appeal of Instagram to Zuckerberg & Co. It will be interesting to see how brands can exploit this phenomenon as well.

Know I love gaming…and business. So perhaps I should launch a mobile gaming business..

Know I love gaming…and business. So perhaps I should launch a mobile gaming business..

I would be in good company if I did. As Zynga seems to be doing rather well.

Zynga Game Network is the #1 social gaming company on the Web. Zynga was founded specifically to add a social element to casual online games. 

A great principle. Which I think I can take into the Business to Business realm with a novel twist. Because people  love games, and people (even business people) love them most when were playing with / against friends! Social games provide a more fun, competitive and contagious experience. Zynga delivers on the promise of social networks, making it easy to connect with old friends and make new ones. But what it doesnt do is allow brands to make games mini promotional tools for them…. It also has rather needed Facebook to be successful.

However, Zynga has just unveiled a new platform intended to eliminate fragmentation and allow gamers to play Zynga games across different operating systems and portals such as Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android,  Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS, Facebook, Google+ and the Web.

During its Zynga Unleashed event today, the company introduced the multiplayer feature that lets multiple gamers across a variety of devices play with, or against, one another simultaneously.  

In addition, the company hopes to grow its collection of games, especially for mobile, with a new Zynga API that allows third-party developers to create games for Zynga. In conjunction with this initiative, Zynga introduced a partner program to bring more developers into the ecosystem and social network, separate from Facebook.

Zynga’s announcements today aren’t surprising considering the company has repeatedly said it wanted to reduce its reliance on Facebook and grow its presence in mobile  Zynga accounted for 15 percent of Facebook’s first quarter revenue.  

The company also reported that it has 292 million users and 22 million mobile users.

So the growth area is mobile with a nod to social.

As i blogged about many years ago – it’s all going to go LosoMopho.

It’s just what bits will go first. i.e. Location, Social, Mobile and Photo.

Perhaps it is more PhoMoSolo 😉