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09
Oct

Changi takes off!

Connect via Changi

Circul8 is proud to announce the launch of our latest campaign for Changi Airport Group Singapore, called ‘Connect Via Changi’.

Visitors to the campaign website (connectviachangi.com) stand the chance to win S$10,000 to spend at Changi Airport by creating their very own Changi banknote. Included in the prize are 2 return flights through Changi to a destination in Asia of the winner’s choosing.

This is the first phase of a 6-month campaign designed to introduce Australian consumers to the Changi Transit Programme, through which Singapore Airlines and SilkAir passengers transiting at Changi Airport are automatically entitled to S$40 in vouchers to spend on either leg of their journey.

Changi

The programme is a key point of difference for Changi Airport, and a viable strategy to further bolster Changi’s position as South-East Asia’s most popular transit hub.

Please stay seated until the seatbelt light turns off – more of this campaign is coming soon.

09
Oct

The iPhone 6 Plus bent into various yoga poses

The new iPhone 6 Plus ‘phablet’, measuring in at a staggeringly clown-pocket-sized 16cm long, has a little known feature which the Internet recently guaranteed everybody in the civilised world knows about. It bends.

Historically, ergonomics have been a principle of solid product design – but we think this may be an inch (or 4.7 to be precise) too far.

But while the iPhone 6 Plus’s added flexibility isn’t ideal for consumers – it’ll do wonders for the phone itself.

To demonstrate, we’ve taken a decidedly Surry Hills response to bring you a series of silly pictures of the iPhone 6 Plus bent into various yoga poses. Breathe in – class has begun…

 

iPhone6_Yoga_1

iPhone6_Yoga_2 iPhone6_Yoga_3 iPhone6_Yoga_4 iPhone6_Yoga_5

 

And breathe out.

Until next year’s iPhone release – namaste, grasshoppers.

01
Sep

Circul8 Welcomes a New Client

If you’ve ever flown through Singapore on business (or pleasure), chances are you’ve crossed paths with our newest client. That’s right – we’ve been appointed as the Australian digital and social media agency for the Changi Airport Group.

Spacious, luxurious, clean and refined – Changi Airport Singapore is one of the busiest transport hubs in South East Asia, and with plenty of activities and facilities, it’s probably the best place in the world to miss your flight. See our ‘research’ piece from our trip to Singapore below…

We have some exciting campaigns from Changi launching very soon. Stay tuned!

28
Aug

Status Check: How You Can Save a Friend by Checking Their Facebook

 Screen Shot 2014-08-28 at 10.19.39 AMThis is one of the last images post to Robin Williams’ Instagram account before his passing

What resurfaced recently in the wake of Robin Williams’ suicide is a truth beat into us, but whose implications are all too often ignored – depression doesn’t discriminate.

It can affect anyone, at any stage of their life. Certain segments of the population are more at-risk – young adults seem more susceptible than others – but no one is immune.

There is no single reason it happens either. For some it’s a series of shitty circumstances. For some it’s changes in the brain or prolonged sickness. For others, it’s nothing at all. There is no starting gun – you only know it’s happening once it is. And there’s no tape at the end to tell you when it’s over.

Depression just happens, as the author of this post can personally testify. And it’s that exact ambiguity which makes it so scary.

Equally scary is the fact that there is undoubtedly someone on your Facebook friends list right now who is stuck inside that terrifying ambiguity. About 15% of Australians suffer from a form of depression. That’s 3 in every 20.

This is a post about how to help.

rrThe last image post to Robin Williams’ Instagram. Williams and his daughter, Zelda.

Look closer

Perhaps the most frequent way depression presents itself is in absence. The urge to retreat, become reclusive and socially withdrawn is a large part of depression’s pull. In that regard, your friends’ social media profiles can be a particularly powerful diagnostic tool.

That is, only if you’re looking closer – the very nature of social media means that your newsfeed won’t show when someone posts ‘nothing’. The first step is to go through your friends list and open the profiles of people you haven’t heard from in a while. Start from the bottom and work your way up.

If you notice your friend’s activity has bottomed out over the course of a few weeks or months, or is very minimal, it could be for many reasons, one of which may be depression.

rrr

Images: http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com.au/

Is there a change?

Silence is not the only warning sign. It’s more one type of a much broader behaviour – a change from the norm.

We all have that person who overshares on social media. But have they kept inexplicably quiet for a bit now? What about that friend who always used to post pics from music festivals, clubbing nights or get-togethers? Have they been posting a lot of pictures taken from home? Or predominantly text-only posts?

It’s noticeable when normally extroverted people become relatively introverted, but it’s important not to ignore the opposite. Some naturally introverted sufferers swing the other way, and overcompensate for their social withdrawal by doubling their social media efforts. Are they reminiscing a lot more than usual? Liking? Commenting?

We all change over time – that’s undeniable. However, the difference between healthy changes and unhealthy ones is hard to parse from afar. None of these are sure-fire ways to tell if your friends are experiencing depression. Only you can really tell.

rrrrr

Images: http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com.au/

 Say hi

I want to preface this next bit by saying, I’m not a doctor. I’m not a clinician. I’m not a psychiatrist – I’m a copywriter. I’m a human. That’s it.

For professional advice, please refer to one of the organisations listed at the bottom of this article. You should probably do that regardless.

But as a human, I do feel qualified to offer this piece of advice. If you think, or even just suspect, that someone you know on your friends list could be depressed – say hi.

Send them a private message. Don’t make depression the leading question, because it might be the case that everything’s fine. Just say something along the lines of,

“Hey, how’re you going? Haven’t heard from you in a while.”

Or tag them in something to make them smile. A status update. An old picture. A Buzzfeed list. Anything.

At worst (if you can call it ‘worst’), you’ll have a little idle chitchat with a distant mate. At best, your single act of outreach could mean the world to someone who is right now feeling desperately and impossibly alone.

And it might light up that tape at the finish.

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Images: http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com.au/

Support and information is available for the distressed or those requiring assistance online regarding mental health issues at Lifeline, beyondblue, Reach Out Australia and Headspace or by calling Lifeline on 131 114, Mensline on 1300 789 978, the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467 and Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

By Mark Starmach

27
Aug

The 8 Most Noteworthy ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Videos

If you haven’t heard of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge by now, allow us to thaw you out of the ice age and welcome you to a new one.

The premise is simple enough – pour a bucket of ice water over your head and nominate some mates to do the same in 24 hours or less.

And in doing so, raise funds for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) research. The crippling disease is known as motor neurone disease (MND) here in Australia, and is characterised by the onset of muscle atrophy across the entire body – first in the extremities, then toward the core and vital organs.

To date, the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised $55 million for ALS research in the US, and countless more in earned media. Locally, MND Australia has received more than $110,000 in donations, as compared to $12,000 for the same period last year.

Now, let’s take a look at 8 of the most noteworthy Ice Bucket Challenge (IBC) videos to flood front lawns, driveways and social media networks alike, all around the world.

1. Buckets of water are heavy, as Connor Riley discovered.

2. A mistake which wasn’t repeated by banana man. 

http://youtu.be/doFDx31aL0w

3. …Or the ever-innovative Bill Gates.

4. …Or Jamie Oliver.

5. Samsung Galaxy S5 also participated, showing off its waterproof design in the process…

6. Regional newsreader Lincoln Humphries used his nomination to promote other (very) worthy causes.

7. Patrick Stewart did his with trademark class.

http://youtu.be/5vpbm7ehr_4

8. Jeremy Clarkson’s was strangely satisfying, as he unwittingly participated…

…And while it mightn’t have gotten as much coverage as other Ice Bucket Challenges on this list, Katrina Jeffery and several other locals who’s loved ones suffer from motor neurone disease (ALS), staged their own event in Lismore, far north NSW.  See the video here.

Which just goes to show, no matter how big or how small you are, when it comes to diseases like MND, challenges like the Ice Bucket Challenge can give many who feel like they can’t do anything, the means to do something for the sufferers who can’t.

Please consider donating to MND Australia.

RELATED: Nominations: From Indulgence to Charity

27
Aug

Snapchat’s Totally (un)Expected Announcement

This shouldn’t come as a shock, at least not at first. Creative messaging app, Snapchat, is reportedly working up a service called ‘Snapchat Discovery’, which will soon allow users of the platform to ‘discover’ marketer’s content.

Or in short, Snapchat’s getting ads.

There’s tonnes of brands who already have Snapchat accounts and are using them well, to send their followers snaps, teasers, exclusive content and promo codes.

But Snapchat Discovery will be different in that it will allow marketers to target disposable ad messages to users of a specific demographic on a naturally disposable medium. Never will that elusive ‘Gen Z’ audience be easier to channel.

What’s odd is the timing of this announcement and the form these ads will take. Snapchat was valued at $10 billion during investment talks with Alibaba Group in June, and active users have more than doubled in just under a year. This is pure conjecture here, but could Snapchat’s CEO Evan Spiegel be preparing to sell the platform?

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This suspicion seems to gain some quantity when considering the quite brazen form these ads will take. For a particularly ad-adverse audience, the way Snapchat Discovery has been pitched, and is set to be integrated with the app, isn’t particularly delicate. Backlash and mass abandonment could be considerable.

We’ll provide more commentary as more details appear. Until then, we just hope Snapchat doesn’t become a ghost of its former self.

RELATED: Are All Social Media Platforms Looking the Same?
RELATED: Don’t Be Spooked: Why Snapchat Works For Brands

24
Jul

Facebook Makes 62% of Ad Money from Mobile

Only two years after Facebook debuted its first mobile ads and adopted a mobile first strategy, earlier this week they announced that their once-struggling mobile business now accounts for 62% of all advertising revenues, reinforcing the fact that Facebook is quickly becoming largely a mobile company.

“We had a good second quarter” said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, vastly underplaying the $2.91 billion revenue Facebook earned in the quarter ending 30th June. (This is an increase of 61% over the $1.81 billion reported in the same quarter last year.)

Mobile advertising accounted for $2.68 billion of this $2.91 billion spend, showing how powerful mobile advertising is, and an opportunity Facebook is grabbing hold of with both hands. (Also worthy to note that two of Facebook’s largest acquisitions, Instagram and WhatsApp are mobile apps. We’re interested to see Instagram adverts coming soon.)

With 1.5 million active advertisers on the site and Cheryl Sandberg (Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer) reporting  “We’re seeing our existing advertisers spend more and we’re seeing new people come on to the platform,” it’s more important than ever to be clever and tactical with your Facebook advertising, to stand out from the clutter to reach your target audience successfully. And with mobile being at the forefront on our users’ minds, the need to create adverts that appeal to our consumers, (often with their smartphones glued  to their hands) is more important than ever!

Unexpectedly a large percentage of users check Facebook daily on their tablets or smartphones, with Facebook reporting 1.07 billion mobile users and 829 million general daily users. In fact 30% of Facebook’s monthly users only check Facebook on their mobile devices.

That’s a heck of a lot of Facebook addicts! Though Zuckerberg may not agree. He stated that people spend 9 hours a day on digital media, but less than an hour on Facebook “One thing that’s exciting is there is still so much room to grow.”

Zuckerberg’s obviously not been to the Circul8 office where we spend approximately 15 hours a day on the channel! 😉

Interested to discover more about Facebook’s latest earnings and reports? Read more

Written by Rosie Apps

 

24
Jul

How Are Consumers Using Social Media for Travel?

Last week we spoke at the inaugural Travel Industry Exhibition in Sydney, on ‘Social Media and Travel’, giving attendees insights on how travel brands can successfully utilise social media and mobile technology to cater to consumer demands and trends.

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Social media now plays an intrinsic role in every aspect of the travel and tourism industry today and it simply cannot be ignored, (no matter how hard some people are trying!) 😉

During the day we shared some of the insights and trends we’re seeing within the social media and travel sector, and amongst this were some eye-opening statistics crucial to be across, if you’re a travel brand or business. We revealed how consumers are using social media like never before:

Dreaming:

  • 52% of people used social media to find inspiration for a holiday (and say photos posted by their friends inspired their holiday choice and travel plans!)

Planning / Booking

  •  93% Travellers say their booking decisions are impacted by online reviews
  • 33% of travellers changed hotels based on what was being said on social media channels. (Even when you think you have a booking confirmed, people will change their hotel based on what is being said on social media. So it’s important to keep the positive content flowing. If other businesses are doing better then you on social media, they actually could be taking you business!)
  • 92% of consumers say they trust social media or WOM more than all other forms of advertising. (So get your advocates talking about you!)

ipad_beach

Travel

  • 72% of people use social media whilst on holiday. (So don’t stop the conversation!)
  • 72% of all social media users access their social media sites daily whilst they are travelling.
  • 85% of leisure travellers use smartphones whilst they are travelling abroad.
  • 46% ‘Check in’ to a location (i.e. Facebook or Foursquare) whilst on holiday. (Make sure you’ve created a ‘check-in’ for your business/location.)
  • 44% of travellers use their phones to research travel whilst they’re actually travelling

 iphone-beach-620p

 

Post Travel

  • 76% post holiday photos to a social network. (…And these photos become holiday inspiration for their friends and fans!)
  • 55% ‘Liked’ a Facebook page, or followed a Twitter account related to a recent holiday experience.
  • 76% posts holiday photos on a social network

 

So there you have it! People are connecting like never before; before, during and after travelling. The travel industry has been transformed in the most dynamic way by internet, social media, mobiles and technology.

It is more important than ever to make social media an integral part of your strategy so you can successfully connect with these travellers! It’s an exciting time for travel and an exciting time for social. Come talk to us if you need a help with your social strategy or want to know more about the travel & social consumer.

Now please excuse me whilst I stalk my friends travel photos and dream of being on a Fijian beach….ahh…… 

 

Sources:

Written by Rosie Apps

23
Jul

The 7 Deadly Tinder Pics!

Tinder-Logo-310x206

If you’re single and smartphone capable, chances are you’ve heard of social discovery app Tinder. If not, you’re missing out. Flick through pictures of potential suitors in your area and hopefully, make a match.

But even if you’ve heard of Tinder, you probably haven’t heard of Tinder Headshots, a service based in New York offering a professional Tinder photo shoot for the humble sum of $75+ (!!)

We at Circul8 question the need to turn your Tinder profile into a high-end production, and so have kindly demonstrated what we term the Seven Tinder Sins – profile faux pas so lethal they’ll smite your odds of Tinder success. Avoid and save yourself a buck.

1. The ‘ring finger’  

ringfinger

If there’s a ring on it, get off Tinder.

 

2. The ‘crop’ 

crop

Pictured, an ego so big it couldn’t fit anyone else in frame. The only thing you’re cutting out by cropping out a friend of the opposite sex is the opportunity of ending up with a stranger of any.

 

3. The ‘snapped back’ 

lean

An awkward lean so awkward, it’s horizontal.

 

4. The ‘not-selfie selfie’  

selfie

Mirror mirror on the wall, who’s the lamest of them all? The one taking a picture of themselves while trying to look like they’re not (See also: Bae caught me slippin).

 

5. The ‘definitely a murderer’  

murderer

No words.

 

6. The ‘group’   

group

‘Guess Who’ was fun to play in primary school. Not so much on Tinder.

 

7. The ‘not even my face’ 

mug

From what I can tell you’re comprised entirely of machined ceramic. Nice handle.

 

There you have it. Seven of the deadliest Tinder sins. Come into our studio for further consultation on upping your game on Tinder – or any other social media channel for that matter.

RELATED: Amnesty International takes over Tinder for women’s rights

Written by Mark Starmach.

22
Jul

3 Ways to Drive Website Traffic Using Instagram

As you probably already know, Instagram does not support clickable URLs anywhere other than in a single, lonesome link on a user’s profile. That’s it. Nothing new there.

Many speculate this is to pre-empt spam, a real possibility given the platform’s relatively open access to users. Not even Instagram’s new ad types are granted a sneaky URL . Much like a vegetarian restaurant, spam is something Instagram vigilantly shields its users from.

No Spam!

But as with all blocks of vegan Swiss cheese, there are holes in Instagram’s defences. Here are three ways to get around the single URL decree.

 

1. Work with what you’ve got

As stated, your Instagram profile contains one clickable link. A well-known exploit is then (naturally) the ‘link in profile’ method, whereby this profile link is changed in accordance with your most recent post. Mention that there’s a  ‘link in profile’ in the caption and you’re in business.

Combine this method with a link to something regularly updated (for example, your company’s blog or Facebook page) and work is cut on your end.

Other than that, short, memorable, custom links might pass the memory test, if your followers are invested enough.

 photo

2. Think outside the box

When in doubt, get creative. IKEA recently launched its 2014 PS Designer Collection by creating the world’s first ‘website’ on Instagram.

Here’s how it worked. Each product in the collection was given its own Instagram profile. The URL in that product’s profile linked to a site to buy it. Then, each product was tagged in photos on the PS Collection’s own Instagram account.

Other barebones features like geotags, hashtags and @replies could be hacked in a similar (or completely different) way.

3. Get help elsewhere 

Like To Know (LTK) is a simple service, employed particularly by fashion bloggers and Instagrammers. It’s straightforward enough – sign up to  with your email address, then, when you ‘Like’ certain photos on Instagram, you’ll receive an email with that photo and a series of custom links.

It’s a bit clumsy but it works, so much so that @Vogue has been popularising the use of LTK for a while, and just recently, paired it with rewardStyle  (an invitation only monetization tool from style publishers,) to become the first brand to successfully monetise Instagram  – Items bought through LTK links earn Vogue a commission!

For now though, that’s it. Persist, innovate, or eagerly anticipate Instagram’s ever changing updates and potential cave to mounting pressure by advertisers and brands alike.

instagram1

Written by Mark Starmach