In-App Proposal’s A Winner

When Brett Little decided to propose to his girlfriend Alexandra Szava-Grundler, he wanted to find a way to propose that would stand out. “I decided I would find a more unique way that fit our personalities,” he said. “I carried the ring around in my pocket everywhere we went waiting for the perfect moment to present itself. Nothing ever felt right.”

Brett and Alexandra had been living together for about six months when Brett had his big idea. They played mobile games every night, and the game Phrase Friends (a guess-the-phrase game similar to Wheel of Fortune) was a regular ritual. Brett emailed Jericho Games, creators of Phrase Friends, to see if they would create a special ‘proposal’ puzzle especially for Alexandra. A few hours later, Jericho Games sent back an email saying they’d love to help.

“It was our first marriage proposal on record,” says a spokesperson for Jericho Games. It took them about six hours to finish the custom code. “They told me all I had to do was start a new game with her and no matter the category, that would be the puzzle,” he remembers. Brett started the game, but it didn’t work the way it was supposed to, so he decided to hold off. Jericho Games worked on the problem, and the next day Brett tried again.

This time the puzzle worked, even though Alex had trouble figuring it out. She finally guessed it and looked up at Brett, who dropped to one knee and proposed. “It was the most wonderful day of my life,” Brett said. The wedding is set for July 12, 2014.

Jericho Games was smart to say yes to this idea, not only because it was a nice thing to do, but it also has given them positive PR. Perhaps there’s a new product feature in there — custom game phrases for special occasions!

Source: Forbes

WWE 2K14 Taps Fans For Key Art

2K Games is running a contest letting fans create artwork to be featured in packaging and promotional material for WWE 2K14.  The fan art will be used in marketing and become the inside cover in retail copies of the game.  The game’s official cover features WWE star and Hollywood a-lister, The Rock.

Fans of the wrestling game, fans of commercial art, and fans of wrestling and art can enter the contest on the game’s web site, where they can also presumably access ready-to-paste designs for WWE stars.  We don’t know what that art entails because at the time of this writing, the web page {link no longer active} to get and submit art was down.

The Rock on the official cover. Are you ready to WRRRRRRRRRRRESTLE

On the upside for 2K, that snag with the site might have been because the contest is being well received.  Also at the time of this writing, the hashtag #WWE2K14Cover was trending on Twitter.  That’s where contest entrants are supposed to showcase their entries.  From the looks of it, 2K knows they need to be ready for anything, and they’re ready to be good natured about what people submit.  This one made their Twitter cover photo.

2K says the winning entry will be chosen on “creative merit,” and that the image will become part of the game’s marketing on social media and in other promotions.

Amazon’s Advertising Business Outsells Twitter

According to estimates from eMarketer, media giant Amazon has raked in a whopping $450 million in advertising revenue last year: and it’s expected to go up by another half to $660 by the end of this year. In comparison, Twitter’s advertising service is expected to generate $580 million for themselves from advertising. In the grand scheme of things, advertising is only a small part of the site’s income: it brought in an impressive $61.1 billion in income last year alone, although profits have been hard to come by. The rate of advertising growth for Amazon is significant as it continues to skyrocket in sales.

The majority of these ads come from advertising on its own site, running multiple ads on every Amazon page. In addition, Amazon is selling a massive amount of stock on the site for almost any conceivable interest, so it can reach a massive audience of people across a broad demographic. The biggest generator of ad revenue for Amazon comes from ads placed on search engine result pages, leading to consumers looking for a product on Google right into Amazon to purchase their goods.

Marketers would do well to remember that it’s not just about who views your ads, it’s about their likelihood of purchasing your product. Amazon is clearly scoring well on that axis when people move directly to the sales page from seeing an ad.

Source: Mashable

Aiming At The New Influencers

Advertisers are again struggling to increase engagement with their online and digital campaigns. The answer may lie in a new approach to social and earned media that moves from chasing merely influential users to targeting celebrity influencers.

After a decade of watching engagement with traditional digital ads strive for the bottom, marketers had a brief reprieve with social media and how it enabled easy sharing of branded content. Not anymore. The big social nets are now far more concerned with selling placements and generating ad revenue. That means tighter conduits to their members. At the same time, heavy social users are gravitating towards niche nets and even becoming selective about what they post and share.

As one answer, brands are putting greater importance on what kind of content they create. Want people to engage with your campaign? Make sure what’s being communicated is engaging to begin with — make it relevant, timely, and easy to share. More importantly make it either useful, entertaining or both. It’s not guaranteed to drive up engagement, but it does set the stage for it.

On the other side of the equation, the formula for ramping up engagement may lie in how digital natives, and especially millennials, increasingly seek out product information from online experts with common interests. Online bloggers/vloggers, commentators, product reviewers, social media gurus and even bona fide celebrities who’ve carved out online clout are showing increasing reach and authority on the internet.

They’re the new influencers.

For many, they’ve become their celebrity product endorsers, speaking directly to them through the various channels they’ve come to trust for information, and often playing a pivotal role in their purchase decisions. They’re authentic in that they connect to the right audience and deliver branded content in the right context. That gives them credibility with both fans and brands.

At Ayzenberg, we’ve seen proof where harnessing digital influencers can propel campaigns to far exceed expectations. In one campaign we ran last year for Microsoft, we supported the launch of four Xbox Live products with an online video and social media program built around four YouTube stars. Each ‘YouTuber’ delivered a live cast show featuring one of the products, with promotions targeting their subscriber base and social networks. Engagement was through the roof, yet the proof in the pudding was how the games performed at launch. Granted, the lineup was a solid one — it included the now blockbuster hit Minecraft Xbox 360 Edition — but thanks to day-one awareness, two of the games set launch sales records. That included Minecraft breaking the record for a Xbox Live Arcade launch.

More recently, we ran a digital campaign for Warner Bros.’ Injustice: Gods Among Us, a fighting game based on the DC Comics universe. We mixed digital influencers with comic book experts and celebrities to promote a virtual tournament dubbed “Injustice Battle Arena,” where the game’s superheroes and villains squared off in face-to-face battles, and fans voted on the outcomes. The campaign garnered nearly 19 million views over ten weeks and more than 850 percent ROI in earned media value.

After these and other campaigns we’ve charged up a new weapon aimed at the new influencers – the Influencers Outreach Network, or [ion]. It’s the product of three years of experience running these types of programs, but it’s more than a wrapper on proven methodology. It’s a proprietary platform designed to first connect brands with the right influencers, then accurately measure results. The results are authenticated to put a ROI metric on campaigns. That’s whether they’re based on impressions and earned media value or go deeper down the conversion funnel.

Once a brand activates an [ion] campaign, they have the opportunity to partner with a custom built network of popular community operators and channel owners. Currently more than 7,000 affiliate influencers are part of the [ion] program, and it’s growing daily. These are YouTubers, bloggers, industry professionals, theatrical, television and other social media influencers. Their reach is staggering, with audiences in the hundreds of millions and engagement metrics measured in billions.

Ayzenberg [ion] Demo Reel

For targeting, [ion] is categorized by content specialty to best reach a specific audience, whether gaming, entertainment, technology, music, parent or beauty. In every category, Ayzenberg’s [ion] enlistees have shown to excel in acting as real-life product endorsers. They share what they know with their subscribers and sell a brand or product as an experience they found worthwhile.

That’s one part of [ion]. The other is the platform’s proprietary analytics tools that allow for precise measurement of campaign metrics. KPI can be built on goals for impressions and brand awareness, such as cost-per-view (CPV), or the complete journey down the funnel with conversion and cost-per-acquisition (CPA). Whether it’s earned media value or CPA, results from [ion] campaigns are authenticated by a third party company similar to traditional media buys.

We know how fast targets move when it comes to digital and social media. Influencer outreach isn’t a silver bullet but it’s a powerful way to engage consumers. Why? Because when these campaigns are executed properly, they reside somewhere between social and affiliate marketing. That sets them up to not only generate significant awareness but engage and grow through their own volition. At the same time, access to data at every step of the way equips stakeholders to evaluate individual parts of what they’re running mid-stream, so there’s even an agile component to it. Dial in what’s working, turn off what’s not, and keep doing it until all efforts and resources are focused where they need to be and you’re getting the most out of your spend. That’s one BFG to have in the marketing arsenal.

For more information on [ion] contact Kristin Bruno at

Source: Ayzenberg

BioShock Infinite – False Shepherd

Booker DeWitt is just one man, but between his arsenal of weapons and the powers granted by Vigors, he has the fighting power of an army. While he’s initially tasked with rescuing a girl, he finds himself wrapped up in the fate of Columbia itself – check it out in this trailer set to Evil Ways by Blues Saraceno.

Digital Billboards Too Distracting, Says Study

A study in Traffic Injury Prevention says that digital billboards hold the gaze of drivers longer than two seconds. Many studies have shown that anything that takes a driver’s eyes off the road for longer than two seconds increases the risks of a crash.

“This study validates what is common sense when it comes to digital billboards,” said Mary Tracy, president of Scenic America, a national nonprofit group that seeks to limit billboards. “Bright, constantly changing signs on the side of the road are meant to attract and keep the attention of drivers, and this study confirms that is exactly what they do.”

The report will be presented to a national transportation conference in Washington, D.C. Last month a three-judge panel ordered the removal of 100 digital billboards in Los Angeles, and Denver has banned them. Currently 39 states allow digital billboards.

“We would need to review more research, so it’s premature to call for a ban,” said Jonathan Adkins, executive director of the Governors Highway Safety Association. “There is a role for digital messaging such as that employed by states to convey Amber Alerts and other safety messages.”

There are more than 1,800 digital billboards nationwide, more than double the number in 2007. While there is no solid data that indicates an increase in accidents caused by the Bay Area signs, many drivers are opposed to them.

“The brightness is by far too bright for at night,” says insurance agent David Whitlock. “When the advertisement switches from a brighter color to a darker color, your eyes cannot adjust fast enough and you end up losing vision of the roadway.”


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Gears Of War 3 Trailer Grinding Out May 28

Microsoft have revealed that a new trailer for Gears of War 3 will release on May 28. This new look at the game will come during two of the most matched sporting events of the year.

This action-packed trailer offers a riveting look at the epic-scale campaign in the Gears of War trilogy finale, and debuts on May 28 during the Champions League Final Match at approximately 9:45 PM GMT around the world, and during Game 6 of the NBA Playoffs on TNT in the U.S, reads the release by Microsoft.