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  • Conspiracy Media Group is a social research and communication strategy agency.

    We focus on finding insights amidst the noise and guide clients in how those insights can but used to move their business forward.

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Invasion Of The Twitter-Snatchers

We posted recently about the growing volume of bot-generated posts in social in general and on Twitter in particular. Good piece on slate about this “artificial stupidity”. It’s relatively harmless to the average jane/joe but for businesses who are paying for social listening tools it’s a real problem as an increasing quantity of what they interpret as relevant volume is utter bullshit.

Alicia Vikander in Ex Machina.

The vapidness of the results from social listening tools are a dirty little secret of the industry, the equivalent of the fake clicks that are a big part of online media, but eventually this issue puts at risk social listening as a research tool. Hopefully Twitter fixes things before it gets damaged beyond repair.


Managing Editor VS Chief Listening Officer


Very much like the post from Josh Hallett about the “newsroom setup” model. Investing in the Managing Editor first feels like a sensible choice but I always get nervous when the singular motivation for social is finding ways to speak to customers and prospects as opposed to greater focus on listening to serve other purposes.

You can of course distinguish between listening via social to serve multiple purposes within a company and social marketing as it is likely being referenced here.

018-pee-wee-herman-listen-to-reasonDamn though I wish companies would first install Chief Listening Officers (worst title ever) in their groups who would intelligently manage the information available for all possible uses within a company.

Gangham Style Marketing

Gangham Style has brought in over 15 million in revenue for Korean Pop Star Psy over the last three months.  This includes: music sales, ad sales, concert tickets, tv appearances and commercials.

Anyone looking to build a spike in their marketing plan would do well to follow Psy and the K-pop studios cranking out these new stars.

The brilliant use of social and a manic, but methodical, amplification of the initial social success should be inspiring.  The K-pop have done persistent well with their Korean Stars but really did it right when they hit big with Psy.  A hit followed by a military style expansion, all in a matter of weeks.

Difficult to repeat as evidenced by the fact that Psy is the first K-pop artist to break through in the states but really solid.

The Web is Dead (Zuck told me so)

Great post from Dan Lyons on The Daily Beast / Newsweek about the Facebook Instagram purchase.

In the piece Lyons makes the rather obvious point that these mobile devices are turning out to be pretty popular.  So much so that Zuckerberg realized his Desktop Internet system will die if it doesn’t get mobile tout de suite.

We may not like Facebook as a company as much anymore but  this was a smart acquisition in the Andy Grove, “Only The Paranoid Survive” kind of way.  He may turn out to be more Jobs-like than the rest of the desktop-CEOs.

YouTube Ceiling Tile Videos Will Set You Free!

Great write-up by Baljeet Singh, the Group Product Manager at YouTube, about how people use the network.

Interesting Stat number 1: three times more people search for “How-To” videos than “Music Videos”.

Of course most people just search for the artist or song over the generic “music video” expression but the same is true for a search for what you’re trying to do over the generic expression “How-To” so the point holds.

Interesting Stat number 2: Cellume, a company that produces ceiling tile videos, has seen over a million views.  Over a million views of ceiling tile videos.

Note to client and agency looking for a viral video concept.  Are all the basic, instructional, relevant videos produced and in place on YouTube?  If they aren’t then do not bring up the V word until they are.  Now go and do likewise.

Marketing for the 99%

Bob Lefsetz, an influential music industry blogger, wrote a great post recently about music marketing for the rest of us.  He notes that while the Simon Cowell world of X Factor and Idol can power a a few artists down our throats, they don’t stick, and for real staying power you have to get your hands dirty a thousand different ways.   He calls it the DIY world.


This notion of the DIY world feels right for the rest of us marketers.  What we refer to as the Conspiracy of the Masses is just too strong to simply spend your way to success.  Not stunning news for all who’ve been slugging it out in the digital and social world for several years now but worth hearing again.

Iceland and the greatest tourism video ever.

A great tourism video for Iceland was released recently:

It’s fun, Bjork-like I guess, and longish-form.  It will get distributed socially, get tons of links and inevitably do wonderful in natural search results.  It’s perfect.  Every time I see one of these, like the Johnnie Walker video, I am perplexed why more brands don’t tackle long form video.  It’s great for social, digital, search, brand awareness, brand reinforcement, consideration, employee satisfaction, and probably another dozen or so marketing benefits.

So come on marketers, get off your asses.  They’re hard to do well but worth it.