Doug Eng

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    Heard it through the #Vine

    With Vine now being the latest shiny new digital toy that brands want to play with, here's a quick collection of examples of how some brands are using it well (including Urban Outfitters), and a few not-so-much.  Time to get inspired!



    A look back at 2012's biggest brand blunders

    As we head into the end of the year, and the end of the Mayan calendar, Adweek has compiled the 20 biggest brand fails of the 2012.  Some of these I'm sure you've heard of already, but there's a bunch more that are pretty appalling, and disturbingly amusing.  Enjoy!



    #Target betting big on #QR Codes this holiday

    While QR Codes have seemingly fallen out of favor with most consumers, Target hopes they will help them take a bite out of Amazon's holiday business.  Starting October 14th, the top 20 toys of the holiday season will have a QR code on them linking in store shoppers to directly buy them from their website, and have them delivered for free.



    #seyyer technology turns #text into #video

    It's sort of like Siri, except with a face.  And that face could be your mom's. If you're like me, then you probably think of that idea as a bit creepy.  But with Seyyer, it can be a reality.  They've developed a program that can create video models or avatars that read text back to you.  So theoretically, you could see your mom's face as she's texting you (still weird).  Beyond reading texts, the possibilities are pretty limitless.  Want Ronald Reagan to read your tweets?  It can be done. Check out the demonstration video and read an interview with one of Seyyer's founders.  For more info on Seyyer, check out their website:






    #Saga: The future of #social living








    Saga - an app that combines all aspects of Social, Local, and Mobile (SoLoMo) into one experience.  Although the review in this article doesn't seem all that favorable of the app, it does offer a glimpse into what is possible - an app that tracks your life while you live it. Without you having to check in.  It recommends things for you to do, based on where you've already been and writes a virtual diary for what you've done.  It might not be perfect, but lays the groundwork for other apps to follow.  For more information, check out their website  To read the review, check here:








    The Hunt for #HardRock

    Hard Rock (you know...the cafe and hotel chain) is offering a chance to win a dream vacation at their Bali hotel.  All you have to do is follow the clues in their online scavenger hunt, and enter to win. 

    The scavenger hunt is really well put together, asking the user to follow clues and navigate across their multiple digital channels (Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, and their website).  A fun test of rock history knowledge, and a fine example of using digital tools to encourage brand engagement.



    #Apple Reveals #mobile payement App

    Somewhat lost amidst the announcement of the new MacBook pros yesterday was Apple's announcement of their new Passbook app.  Passbook is very similar to Google Wallet, being a digital wallet for gift cards, boarding passes, and eventually credit cards.  Like Google Wallet, it will however require NFC technology which is not yet available in all retailers, or even on the iPhone.  Once NFC is added to the iPhone however, Passbook could pick up where Google Wallet has failed - bringing a mobile payments platform to the masses.




    #Walmart and P&G Bring #mobile shopping to NYC

    Walmart teamed up with Proctor and Gamble to cruise the streets of NYC, promoting online and mobile shopping by selling their products from a "mobile shopping truck".  Similar to the popular food trucks in the city, this one offers consumers the chance to purchase P&G/Walmart products by scanning QR codes.  As part of the promotion, consumers will also be able to request the truck visit their neighborhood by tweeting @PGMobile

    Check it out:



    #Foursquare launches updated app

    Foursquare released a newly updated version of their app, today that includes a significant overhaul of the user experience.  The updated version is designed to be less of a "check-in" game, and more about discovering new places, taking user data and using it to find locations that would appeal to you.



    #Quri App #Crowdsources Store Checks

    The new "EasyShift" app available on iPhone matches anonymous brands with consumers who are willing to take pictures of their in store displays.  Brands who want to ensure that their displays or promotions are executed correctly can tap into this crowdsourcing app which pays its users to take and submit pictures of retail displays. 



    #Guiness #QR Pint Glass

    A neat example of QR Code execution...

    Pour yourself a full pint of Guiness in this glass and reveal a QR code.  Scan the QR Code, and it will "tweet about your pint, update your facebook status, check you in on FourSquare, download coupons and promotions, invite your friends to join you and give you access to exclusive Guiness content."




    Live feed of #ShuttleEnterprise Fly by

    For anyone looking for it, MSNBC has a pretty cool live feed of the Shuttle Fly-by.  Here's the link:




    #Spotify offering branded #playlists

    Music streaming service Spotify is launching branded apps with AT&T, McDonald's and Reebok, meaning brands will now be able to recommend music to listeners.  For example, Reebok's app creates workout specific playlists, while AT&T will recommend music based on where the song was actually written/recorded.  Pretty cool way for brands to partner with Spotify to reach the streaming music audience.  In turn, Spotify can get these brands to advertise and help offset their licensing costs.



    Dads are people too!!!

    As a soon-to-be first time dad, I found this interesting (although not surprising, as I think I'm already guilty of this.)  According to eMarketer, new-dads are just as active in social media as mom's are - they are active in posting family-related photos, status updates, and video.  This data goes along with the trend that many advertisers are seeing - that their message needs to be "gender-neutral", no longer specifically targeting shopper-mom, as the delineation of household roles is becoming more blurred.



    Is that a Fuji or a Braeburn?

    I know what you're thinking..."Great...another Doug Eng blog post."  Before you click "delete", this one is pretty cool.  If you're like me, and use the self-checkout at the grocery store, and can't tell if I picked Fuji or Braeburn apples, habanero or jalapeno's, then this new scanner technology could make your life just a little easier.  Toshiba Tec designed a new store scanner that recognizes what you're scanning by image instead of bar code.  Not yet released to the public, this could be the next best thing in your grocery store besides...umm...sliced bread I guess?


    1 comment

    • Christy Pugh

      it\'d be great if not only it would tell you what the product was but also gave you a recipe for what to do with it. Either at the produce bin/area or at checkout... i\'d love to try something new for a product I use all the time OR even better yet, get me to try something new! :)D


    Walgreens Adds FourSquare Customer Care Feature

    Walgreens just added an "answers" tab to its Facebook page, turning their social media site into an online customer care portal.  As consumers have been turning to brand facebook pages with customer care issues, Walgreens responded, by working with app developer Sharecare.  Now customers can find product recommendations for their specific ailments, or even chat with a live pharmacy rep through the Walgreens Facebook page.



    Social Media Audiences

    Great infographic showing the demographics of some of the major social media sites.  Also shares some stats like time spent, etc.  Helpful to know who you're talking to!



    AMEX plus Twitter equals discounts

    Got an AMEX card?  How about a Twitter Account?  If you have both of these, then you can save online, and in-store just by using select hashtags.  Sync your AMEX card with your Twitter account here:

    Then check the AMEX Twitter feed to find participating online and in-store retailers:!/AmericanExpress/favorites

    For example, #AMEXGulfoil gets you $5 off a $25 purchase using your card.

    Happy Tweeting! (and Saving)



    Walgreens + Foursquare + Arizona = Coupon

    Walgreens is the first retailer to offer a nationwide coupon through Foursquare, offering 50% off of Arizona Iced Tea cans.  Shoppers who check in at one of Walgreens' 8,000 store locations using the mobile app will be awarded a scannable code redeemable at the register.  This geo-social campaign represents another milestone for Walgreens, who has been increasingly targeting "on-the-go" consumers.



    Gender Differences in Smartphone Shopping Behavior

    This is from last week, but still interesting as it shows some data around how men and women use their smartphones differently to shop in store.  Men are more likely to comparison shop - looking up prices, product details, while women are more likely to take product pictures and rely on word of mouth (friends and family) for opinions.



    What do millenials want to see on their mobile phone?

    Not surprisingly, millenials (young adults between 18-24) are attached to their mobile phones (90% spend at least 1-5 hours engaging with them).  And while they are using their devices to interact with brands, they're doing it cautiously; not wanting to reveal too much of their personal info.  This infographic provides stats on what millenials do and do not want to see on their mobile phone, further revealing insight into how marketers should talk to them.