You are currently browsing the archives for March, 2011.

56 Million Twitter Accounts Don’t Follow Anyone

Twitter graph from SAI

According to analysis of Twitter’s data (see Silicon Alley Insider):

“There were 119 million Twitter accounts following one or more other accounts. There were 85 million accounts with one or more followers. With these figures,Twitter’s claim of 175 million accounts, a little subtraction shows us that there are 56 million Twitter accounts following zero other accounts, and 90 million Twitter accounts with zero followers.”

I would expect lots of accounts with zero followers — plenty of people use Twitter to read stories that others share without sharing anything themselves. No big deal. But Twitter accounts that aren’t following any other feeds? That seems analogous to the New York Times counting as a subscriber someone filling out a form saying they’re thinking about getting home delivery, but never paying for one and never actually seeing a copy of the paper.

Mac & Cheese Turns Your Tweets Into Ads

I guess I’m a sucker for ads that feature guys in pigeon suits named Chas — I sort of like this Kraft Mac & Cheese spot. On a second viewing, though, it sounds more like Chad, which makes it so much less appealing.

From AdFreak:

“On Monday, Crispin Porter + Bogusky began holding quick-fire Kraft Macaroni & Cheese contests, in which anyone who tweeted about Mac & Cheese had a chance at getting his or her tweet turned into a commercial.”

Facebook’s Elliot Schrage Takes Board Role at Pixazza

Elliot Shrage

From AllThingsD:

“Yesterday, BoomTown posted a video interview with Pixazza CEO Bob Lisbonne about the photo tagging service that has nicknamed itself ‘AdSense for images.’ Now, the Mountain View, CA, start-up has added someone who might know a thing or two about it. Former Googler Elliot Schrage — who is now Facebook’s global communications, marketing and public policy head — is joining Pixazza’s board as a strategic adviser and observer.”

From Bob’s post at the Pixazza blog:

“Elliot’s current role as vice president of global communications, marketing and public policy at Facebook, coupled with his previous experience as vice president of communications and public affairs at Google, make him an ideal resource as we work to change the way consumers interact with images on the Internet. In an auspicious coincidence, Elliot previously served as the senior vice president of global affairs at The Gap — one of Pixazza’s long time advertisers.”

Welcome, Elliot!

Ford Taps Doug the Puppet as Pitchman

From Ad Age:

“In the annals of adland Ford is following a well-rehearsed script of using puppet power to help add spice to a brand. Puppets, after all, allow brands to get away with stuff no actual human brand representative could try. Imagine a real actor trying to be as louche as Doug — it just wouldn’t work for the brand. Ford also understands that social media affords brands multiple opportunities for experimentation/edgy engagement with customers. Doug’s behavior could be alienating on TV but in the back-and-forth banter of social-media conversation it is likely to be embraced and shared just as much as it is criticized or ignored.”

Even more fun are these proto-Muppets shilling for Wilkins Coffee:

Rockstars and the Broken Parts of Online Advertising


Watch live video from #theCube from SiliconANGLE.tv on Justin.tv

My favorite part is 52 minutes in, when the handsome and hirsute Ben Roodman refers to me as a rockstar. Ben, the drinks are on me!

Sarah Silverman Spot for Denny’s

Sarah Silverman almost always cracks me up, and I like commercials that aspire to something greater than a sales pitch. So I like this Denny’s spot and watched the whole thing to the end. But I’m wondering if VD jokes goes a little too far for a brand that’s trying awaken its customers’ appetites.

If Doritos Can Sell Cheeseburger-Flavored Doritos, We Can Sell Baby Carrots

.
Packaging Baby Carrots As Junkfood

The above quote is from Jeff Dunn, the former Coke executive who’s now the CEO of mega carrot producer Bolthouse Farms.

Doug McGray’s Fast Company profile (How Carrots Became the New Junk Food) goes behind the scenes on how those offbeat TV commercials came to be. I’m still not sold on this particular spot, but I’m now convinced there’s a stroke of genius behind the campaign’s bigger idea.

After a decade in which peeled and bagged “baby carrots” contributed to a doubling of carrot consumption in the US, in the past few years that growth has gone negative. And it’s not like we’ve forgotten, all of sudden, that carrots are healthy. It turns out the recession has pushed us back to buying them in their natural, un-baby form, and we end up eating fewer carrots when they’re more vegetable-like.

The recipe for revival, says Crispin Porter’s Omid Farhang, is to turn the ultimate healthy snack into junk food. And when you hear him tell it — “They’re neon orange, they’re crunchy, they’re dippable, they’re kind of addictive” — you’re kind of ready to believe.

WSJ's Kara Swisher Interviews Pixazza's Bob Lisbonne

“The Mountain View, Calif. start-up — which is backed by Google Ventures, CMEA Ventures, August Capital, Foundation Capital and Shasta Ventures, as well as from angel investors Ron Conway, Gideon Yu and Maynard Webb — aims to do for Web photos what the search giant did for text.”

From Kara Swisher’s interview with Pixazza CEO (and my boss) Bob Lisbonne.

Morgan Spurlock's POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold

Is it a bad sign that I couldn’t get through the 2-minute trailer without feeling bored?

Not the Same Chas!

The Other Chas

Sure, I like monkeys and Shel Silverstein and walking knee-deep in the Pacific in my skinny jeans. But that’s where it ends. The above Chas is a different guy. I don’t even know him.

However, if he’s your type, drop him a line and make reference to affiliate code #TheOtherChasSentMe so I can collect the $10,000.