If there is anything that can be said about nostalgia, it’s that its power is unlike anything else. It’s easy for anyone over a certain age to feel it, whether it’s due to hearing a song from his or her childhood mixed tape or recalling a familiar name from the Brat Pack. Whatever the case may be, it seems like nostalgia is among the many aspects associated with Project: MEGAFOOT, one of the latest Indiegogo products that is in the funding process.
For those who do not know, “Megafoot” is an independent horror movie that has been seen as a throwback to movies of old within the horror genre. The star of the movie is a robotic beast of sorts known as Megafoot. While under the surveillance of a group of scientists, something goes terribly wrong. After that, Megafoot becomes, to put it simply, violent. Can the scientists put an end to this project turned awry or will it be the experiment that spells the end for the experimenters?
In 1995, Nintendo released a video game system called the Virtual Boy, which was touted as a virtual reality gaming platform. In short, you would be able to feel as though you were in the environment of every game. This idea, while interesting on paper, was poor in terms of execution and it seemed like no one took a stab at virtual reality in gaming since then. Yes, there might have been rumblings here and there but no company wanted to make another attempt at it.
That was, however, until the entity known as Oculus VR made its presence felt with the Oculus Rift. For those who do not know, the Oculus Rift is a virtual reality head-mounted device that was created in 2012. Since that time, it’s been in development but the support it garnered has been, in a word, tremendous. With a Kickstarter-funded amount of over $2,400,000 and notable names in gaming like John Carmack coming onboard the project, the Oculus Rift is under a perpetual microscope.
When MySpace re-launched last year, it seemed like it found its niche as a music portal of sorts. This wasn’t to say that it would take over the more renowned platforms like Facebook and Twitter in terms of popularity but it didn’t necessarily have to.
All that it would have to do is offer something unique compared to the competition. In my view, neither Facebook nor Twitter explored the music spectrum at length. With this in mind, shouldn’t MySpace be considered a “social music source” of sorts?
If Tumblr has a say in it, perhaps not the greatest.
With certain video games placing more of an emphasis on health than anything else, it’s clear that there is a demand for said emphasis. The typical gamer does not engage in physical activity as much as he or she should, so the idea of games incorporating more active elements is smart. In fact, one can make the argument that Nintendo was one of the companies at the forefront of this, given the success of its “Wii Fit” series.
With that said, the idea of Nintendo’s recent focus on “quality of life” may not bode as well and I believe it doesn’t speak well about Nintendo’s marketing in general.
If there’s one family that’s probably not too fond of social media these days, it has to be the Snays. It was recently reported that 69-year-old Patrick Snay, the former Guillver Preparatory School head, filed an age discriminatory complaint following issues with his contract. Snay came to an agreement with the school that would ultimately wind up with him being granted an $80,000 settlement. When Snay’s daughter took to Facebook to boast, said settlement went out the window. Along with it went the aforementioned sum of money.
The fact that Snay’s daughter’s grouo of 1,200 followers saw the message was bad enough but keep in mind that many of them were in Gulliver at one point or another. One could make the argument that Snay should have been clear with his family, telling them about the confidentiality agreement that came with the settlement. If he did not properly detail it, then it would be nothing short of an oversight on his part. While $80,000 might not seem like much to some people, to others it can practically change their entire worlds.
If I were to tell you that companies like Facebook, Google, and others would have the ability to work together, you might think that it’d be a silly claim to make. After all, these are companies that are looking to make it to the top and the only way that they can be at their best is through competition. That being said, it appears as though they made peace, at least for one day. This is where a particular time called the Safer Internet Day has to be talked about.
Those who have been bullied know all too well about the physical – not to mention emotional – trauma that it can cause. However, these days it’s like the bullying does not end at school, as the online world has been both a blessing and a curse. For as much software as there is as far as communication is concerned, there have been a number of stories of young men and women being harassed through the Internet. Stories like the one about five-year-old Disney star Mia Talerico being sent death threats shows that this problem hasn’t faded entirely, regardless of the level of awareness it’s garnered.
With so many people either heading to their local Best Buy or reputable mom-and-pop shop in order to take care of their technological needs, it’s very easy to forget about RadioShack. Even though there are still a number of stores that are in business, for one reason or another, they are overlooked. One of the reasons, that I could gather, was the store was simply too stuck in the past. In a lack of effort that should raise the ire of any social media agency, RadioShack seemed reluctant to adapt.
This does not mean that the store did not try, though, and nowhere has that been clearer than in its commercial which aired during this year’s Super Bowl. The commercial opened with two sales representatives from RadioShack, one of them hanging up the phone before uttering, “The 80’s called. They want their store back.” At that moment, a series of icons from the 1980’s come into the store and proceed to take every bit of merchandise in order to make way for the future. Here are 3 reasons why this commercial works.
1. Nostalgia is a powerful tool. No matter how advanced things may become, it’s easy to look back on what you grew up with a sense of fondness. Fortunately, there are many different characters featured in this commercial that it is difficult to find one that wouldn’t be familiar. Horror movie fans from the 80’s would most likely remember the possessed doll known as Chucky. Hulk Hogan should also be recognizable, even if non-wrestling fans were watching, given his status as a household name.
2. It has enough entertainment to keep viewers interested. While the object of a commercial is to sell the audience on a product, service, or in this case an entire store, it should be created in such a way that comes across as entertaining. Fortunately, this is an ad where more than one viewing is required in order to pick up on the subtler references. For example, when Cliff Clavin from “Cheers” is stacking boxes around the 0:30 mark, it’s easy to overlook vintage video game character Q*Bert, hopping from one piece of merchandise to the next in the same shot.
3. RadioShack has proven itself to be self-aware. The fact that the company had enough humility to put forth a commercial that made fun of itself should speak volumes. It’s apparent that there are fewer customers going to those stores, especially when given the prevalence of other retailers that may be able to offer more than the same services. Every business has to change with the times or else it stands the risk of being left behind. Whether it’s unknown as to whether or not this ad will result in greater sales, it’s still a bold – not to mention fun – advertising maneuver.
With the current generation of gaming platforms on the market, Sony and Microsoft seem to have so much attention on them that it’s easy to forget about Nintendo. It’s not for any supposed lack of quality, either; the titles that Nintendo creates are still viewed by many as top of the line. With the competition coming up with new ideas and keeping up with trends, though, Nintendo remained traditional for better or worse. With the mobile market in Nintendo’s sights, is the company’s luck about to change?
It’s been reported that Nintendo is looking into the smartphone market, though in a way that not everyone would have expected. While the company is not looking to port “The Legend of Zelda” for the NES over to Apple’s App Store, for example, this doesn’t mean that content wouldn’t be created. Reggie Fils-Aime, the President of Nintendo of America, said that smaller experiences would be seen. The goal of this, according to Fils-Aime, would be to, “…drive you back to your Nintendo hardware.” After the initial reports, I was left hopeful and concerned for the company’s endeavor.
In one respect, Nintendo getting into the smartphone market, at least to some degree, is a sign that the company wants to keep up. Ever since the arrival of the Wii, it seemed, Nintendo was looked down upon for dragging its feet in terms of gaming in general. Whether it’s been the lack of powerful hardware or region-locked systems, a company shouldn’t stay rooted in its ways. In order for Nintendo to keep up with the rapidly changing market, the well-known company cannot simply stay the course.
That being said, is a shift in smartphone focus the best choice to make? Keep in mind that Nintendo’s current home console, the Wii U, hasn’t exactly been lighting the world on fire as of late. In fact, a few weeks ago Nintendo cut the global sales forecast for the system from 9 million to 2.8 million. While the proposed smartphone apps would serve as bite-sized experiences of sorts to drive people to purchase Nintendo hardware, how effective will this be? Can a small experience drive a casual gamer to spend close to $300 on a console – in addition to $60 for each new game – that’s been looked at unfavorably by the media?
Nintendo’s foray into the smartphone market is one that I hold a moderate amount of hope for. To me, there should be more focus placed on the Wii U situation itself as opposed to looking into an entirely different market. Why isn’t Nintendo putting more of an emphasis on creating extra games for that particular system and advertising it in a way that a social media agency would approve of? Even so, Nintendo has fought out of dire predicaments in the past and now it’s a matter of seeing if they can do it again.
It’s easy to say that teens are not quite as interested in Facebook as they were a couple of years back. Between the need to separate themselves from a network where their parents are on, and the advent of newer, trendier networks, it’s clear that their interests lie elsewhere more so. Does this necessary mean that Facebook is out of the eye of a younger demographic for good? According to a recent study, this does not appear to be the case.
On Tuesday, GlobalWebIndex released its social report and it seems as though particular trends have been seen as of late. Instagram, for example, has seen major growth and the same can be h for the mobile side of things as well. One would imagine that, because of these levels of expansion, Facebook would be hindered. However, Facebook – even though altered in some regards – still remains at the top of the social media agency food chain.
It goes without saying that social media seems to shift at a moment’s notice. This may not mean much for those who utilize Facebook, Twitter and pages of that nature for leisurely purposes but what about those who wish to expand their digital presences? What if they want to help themselves or their brand become noticed? In order for social media to be utilized well during 2014, here is a list of the top 10 men moves that should be made.
1. Expect certain networks to gain attention. A recent publication on Digital Trends went into detail about how Pinterest “Pins” have more value to online retailers than Facebook “Likes.” Considering the general scope of Facebook, Pinterest is a site to look out for. Between this and its expanding teenage demographic that seems to deviating from Facebook, it’s clear that some sites will see greater elevation in the public eye than others.
2. Do not count out social media through mobile devices. It seems as though the utilization of one networking page after another is being seen more so through smartphones and tablets as opposed to computers these days. It goes without saying that your typical laptop will offer more in the way of functionality. However, considering the fact that many people are on the move without a place to settle in for long, mobile usage is an attractive alternative that will see growth during 2014.
3. Blogging will become a greater digital monster. From a creative standpoint, blogging is ideal for talking about certain subjects, giving one’s take on the matter in a way that is as level as possible. However, from the perspective of general awareness, more and more sites have risen and it’s easy for budding writers to make their presences known. The greater a platform is in terms of its litany of well-versed writers, the better it will be.
4. There will be a prevalence of job openings in social media. If you are someone who believes that working with Facebook can’t ever result in a career down the road, you may be mistaken. From SEO specialists to community managers, it’s clear that these individuals not only understand well-known networking platforms but systems which function to distribute digital content. The year of ‘14 is looking strong on the employment front for many a social media agency.
5. Posts will retain the “less-is-more” mentality. It’s understandable if, for example, a “Game of Thrones” fan live tweets during a premiere. Apart from instances like this, it’s unwise to flood your page with messages, since those who follow you will be exposed to them. When they see nothing but messages that do not pertain to them, it is all the more reason for them to unfollow. While shorter posts are better able to earn attention, fewer posts typically entail more importance for businesses in particular.
6. Content will see more of a graphical focus. I’m sure that you have stumbled upon one .gif after another while roaming the Internet on a dedicated day, each of them played up for the sake of humor. That being said, I believe it to be a sign that with content taking a more visual approach these days, those who fail to focus on this point stand the chance of becoming irrelevant in the industry they are in. The content that is popular on Tumblr, for example, might just make all of the difference for brand awareness.
7. Video content will prove more effective in displaying brand personality. It’s easy enough to read about the successes that a company has had but what will your perception of them be unless you have been directly exposed to it? This is one of the reasons why videography is integral, as it can appeal to not only one’s visual sense but auditory sense as well. In addition, most people are simply more driven to watch a video for two minutes as opposed to reading a narrative for several more.
8. People will be more careful about what they post on social media. This may be something of a given for many but it’s surprising that adults, of all people, seem to fail at utilizing various platforms in ways that can make them look better. For instance, this past May, Australian batsman David Warner was fined more than $5,500 for his Twitter outburst against two journalists. To put it mildly, the end result was one which displayed that no one wants a “Warner moment” of their own. Not everything has to be made public.
9. Genuineness will be that much more important on social media. It is important to be yourself on any networking platform, though to a degree that you do not simply post anything that comes to mind. It’s important to have a cognitive filter so that you can come across as not only personable but professional. You will not attain a strong digital presence by one blast of outrageous content after another. Stay cautious and, before long, you’ll feel as though you truly earned your social circle.
10. Don’t forget about certain networks. Case in point, Google+ has been heavily supported by the well-known brand but how many people were going to latch onto it as well as expected? With YouTube all but requiring Google+, it expectedly earned backlash, especially with the video website’s commenting system becoming nothing more of a mess. Fortunately, YouTube appears to be making matters easier, implementing a comment system that creators will have better control over. Early into 2014, it’s a welcome start.