Social Media

Curator Newsfeed: April 1, 2016

Happy April Fools Day! Big news this week was Instagram's new update on how you're going to start seeing content in your news feed... Lots of people love it, lots of people hate it. What are your thoughts? Take a look at some more industry news and client reads to keep you up-to-date on the latest trends.

Industry News:

Instagram Is Changing Its Feed, but (Calm Down) Not Yet, The New York Times

Why Instagram Extended Its Video-Length Limit To 60 Seconds, Forbes

Time to step up: Instagram's changes mean no more filler content by brands, PR Week

Client Coverage:

Baja California Dreaming, Resident, Page 102

Travel Bliss: The 2016 Tulip Festival, Urban Bliss Life

Creativity, California Centers Magazine

Flush With Tech Wealth, San Francisco Warms to Fashion, Business of Fashion

Racca's Pizzeria Napoletana (Lakewood), 5280 The Denver Magazine

Curator Newsfeed: February 12, 2016

Happy Friday! It was an exciting week at Curator! Not only did the Broncos beat the Panthers in Super Bowl 50, but there were also #SB50 commercial winners and losers too. Curator's own Scott Battishill appeared on Q13 Fox on Monday to share which spots were great and which may have missed the mark. Plus, check out how our clients are celebrating Valentine’s Day weekend and get some great gift ideas for your loved ones!

Super Bowl Ads Draw 476M Views Online, Broadcasting Cable

3 Lessons On How Not to Pull a Red Lobster If Beyonce Boosts Your Brand, Fast Company

These are the Brands Americans Trust Most, Fortune

How the Most Successful People Ask Questions, Fast Company

Instagram Officially Adds Support for Multiple Accounts, Adweek

Twitter Will Now Put Recommended (Not Newest) Tweets at the Top of Your Timeline, Tech Crunch

Facebook Releases New Video Ad Features, Including Automated Captions, MarketingLand

Client Coverage:

February Fun at Las Vegas North and South Premium Outlets, Vegas News

Wildwood Won’t Become a Pharmacy | Chefs Week PDX Takes Over Whole Foods Hot Bar, Eater

Eat It Up: A Look Back at Another Successful Chefs Week PDX, Portland Business Journal

Gilroy Gets C for Tobacco/Win an Outlet Scholarship, Gilroy Dispatch

Whole Foods Market Seattle Food Trends, Seattle Dining

Chinese New Year Rolls Into SoCal Malls, Apparel News

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue…, Stylelogical

Last Minute Valentine’s Gifts for Him, My News 4 & KRNV

Valentine’s Day Gift Guide at Columbia Center Mall, NBC Right Now KNDO

Seeing is Believing

Seeing is Believing [Note: This post was originally published March 3, 2014.]

I had the pleasure of presenting last night at the Stanford Shopping Center annual Merchant Meeting.  Stanford is one of the premier shopping centers in the country with virtually every luxury brand you can think of under one open air "roof."  They bring their merchants together to discuss the focus of their marketing for the year, among other things. We have had the pleasure of representing Stanford, along with dozens of other Simon Property Group malls throughout the west coast, for more than a decade.

I wanted to give the PR teams of their merchants an actionable take-away — something they could begin doing this morning to grow and better interact with their social communities.  I spoke about the ability to optimize visual social media — to understand its power and then tactically, how to create visual content that increases engagement and reach.  As a take-away we shared this infographic.  Take a look.  Hopefully it helps you too.  If you have thoughts or comments feel free to call us or hit us up on Twitter @curatopr.


Download your own copy here: Visual Social


Buffer And Feedly: A Social Media Tag Team That Will Help You Dominate

Edge and Christian  

Last week I wrote about a content scheduling strategy I use by combining Buffer and Feedly. But that's not all these two apps can do. They're both packed with helpful tricks and shortcuts that can make your process of curating content easy and efficient. When you combine them together, they become a tag-team threat that can help you save time and generate more interaction on your social channels. Here are some of their best moves.

Queue up Buffer straight from Feedly

This is the most straightforward combo feature, and it's a great excuse to switch to Feedly from whatever RSS reader you currently use.


Count characters with Feedly and quote to Buffer to double your content

One of the smartest things I've read in the last year came from Buffer's blog. Belle Beth Cooper wrote that you should post content more than once to your social channels in order to test different headlines, different time zones and different content sharing types. Doing this has effectively tripled my output and my incoming engagement.

Feedly makes it super easy to do with its character counter. Let's say you've already Buffered a blog post you like by posting the headline and a link. Go and highlight a quote you like from the post (Twitter loves quotes), and watch what Feedly does:


Now you can see what will fit on Twitter, and what will fit within the optimal number of characters for your other social networks. Plus, you'll have just doubled how many posts came from the content you just found. That gives you more chances to be seen and retweeted/shared.

'Buffer this image' to triple your content

Here's where shit just gets crazy. If you've got the Buffer extension for Google Chrome, you secretly have a feature on your right-click menu called "Buffer this image." Find an image you like in that same found-content in Feedly as before, and you've suddenly tripled your sharing output:


Best of all, you've created three completely unique posts—all from the same piece of content.

(Side note: You're probably noticing that "Pin It" button in the top-left of the image. Yeah, you can pin images straight from Feedly, too.)

BONUS: Stack the deck with IFTTT

One of the things that made wrasslin' tag teams like Edge and Christian so successful was having an ace in the hole—a partner who could sneak into the ring and give them an extra hand when needed. For E&C that was usually Rhyno or Kurt Angle. For you, that partner is If This Then That (IFTTT).

With IFTTT, you can build "recipes" that automate actions across social networks and apps. For instance, I can tell IFTTT to save every link I tweet to Delicious so I have it saved for later. That saves me the step of having to Buffer something and then save it to my Delicious account. Or I can tell it to post a headline and link to Buffer every time I bookmark something in Feedly—now I don't even have to use the Buffer sharing button.

IFTTT can be an insanely useful tool, especially when trio-ed with Buffer and Feedly. Play around with it a bit, check out some of the recipes other users have created, and see what you can implement that works for you.

Put everything together

Again, dovetailing off my scheduling post from last week, here's an example of a morning workflow that could help save a ton of time throughout the day:

  • Check Feedly for shareable content.
  • When you find something good, bookmark it, and make sure you have an IFTTT recipe set up to Buffer your Feedly bookmarks.
  • When you find something really good, Buffer the link with the headline, a quote and an image. Optimize those three types of posts for each of your social networks.
  • You're done!

Six Lessons From My Week at SXSW

Can I take a moment to brag about my job? On behalf of our client Whole Foods Market, I flew to Austin, TX last week to attend SXSW Interactive Festival and soak in the creativity from other social-minded individuals. In one week I marked off my first trip to Texas, a concert with Girl Talk, swinging on the Mashable wrecking ball and dining a few tables down from Jeffrey Tambor (George Bluth Sr. for the Arrested Development fans). To top it off, between endless tacos and celebrity sightings, there was an endless amount of inspiration to bring back and apply to our social media strategies. Screen Shot 2014-03-12 at 2.08.58 PM

1. Images drive actions because they trigger emotion: When was the last time you went to your brand or personal Instagram to evaluate what content worked? Chances are your lowest engaged photos are dark in color and missing context. Before you snap your next social photo, ask yourself, “does this background complete my subject’s story?” Consumers want “snackable” content, and lets face it, images are consumers’ favored snack.

2. Insights should be actionable: Let’s keep it simple. If your reporting isn’t effecting your actions, then your reporting isn’t giving you value.

3. Allow flexibility: For months leading up to SXSW I spent hours reading through scheduled workshops and panels to carefully create a plan. But the exhilarating thing about South By is that you never know who you might meet and where it can take you. The same goes for your editorial calendar. Let your customers modify your content in real-time by listening to how they engage with you. By changing my plans and going against my strong will to stay on schedule, it led to some great memories including a selfie with Nicholas Cage and my first taste of a cronut.

4. Every time you tweet, go read five other tweets from other people: Thanks to Marshall Kirkpatrick of Little Bird for this tip! So often we are self-focused with the obsession of receiving Likes or a retweet on our original content. Curation adds value by giving a unique perspective.

5. Your customers aren’t using #ThrowbackThursday in relation to your brand: Hashtags are incredibly helpful for SEO and engagement purposes, but are you letting them drive your content? If your customer isn’t using #ThrowbackThursday with a reference to your product then you aren’t relating to them. Research your target and find out what tags they are using in relation to you.

6. Be a human being: It all comes to down to this. Write this on a post-it note and don’t you forget it.

How Your Brand Can Be Ready For The Next Big Social Network

Credit: grendelkhan / Flickr I occasionally get asked about this social network or that social network, and whether I think it will still be around in X amount of years. The implied question is whether it’s a network worth investing time in.

Obviously, I don’t know. I follow news and trends as much as the next social media strategist, but I can’t tell whether Facebook is going to be in 10 years what myspace is now.

But here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter. What people – and particularly brands – should be focused on are users’ expectations.

Social networks will rise and fall, and some may stick it out over the long haul. What isn’t going to change is the base level of responsiveness and interactivity that users expect. In fact, it’s only going to go up: ten years ago, a brand didn’t have to answer questions on Facebook; five years ago it was a requirement; now, the expectation is that questions are answered within hours or less.

To be ready, brands need to shift their focus from building presences on networks to building infrastructure within their own organizations. Successful social media is about effectively communicating person to person. A million Facebook fans or Snapchat followers mean nothing if the brand with those followings doesn’t have the institutional knowledge to respond quickly and effectively to their communities.

Brands that have that infrastructure in place are the ones that will flourish – regardless of what social network pops up next.

The Channel Is Where You Make It

Curator PR

We’ve talked for years about the “changing media landscape.”  The question in my mind is whether that shift has become so pronounced as to declare traditional news channels irrelevant? 

In the last few days, President Obama has appeared on "The Tonight Show," and conducted online chats with and audiences.  Compare that with a stat I heard this morning on NPR that the president has only given one interview to the New York Times in the last three years and hasn’t sat down to give a one-on-one to the Washington Post in four years.  Clearly the president’s communication team believes they can reach more of an audience—and have a more unfiltered conversation—through these new “news” channels. 

When was the last time you caught the 5 p.m. TV news?  When was the last time you checked your Facebook feed?

Is it more relevant to you that a house burned down 25 miles from yours and a reporter is showing it from four angles or that your friend on Twitter shared news about a new bakery in your neighborhood?

What do you care about? At Curator one of the questions we ask ourselves as we ideate is whether or not a consumer will really care about the idea – how will it make them look to their social media audience if they “like” a post and what that says about their personal brand.  Do you care about what traditional news channels report in large measure?  From a marketing standpoint our concern has to be where the audience is and if traditional news channels are not providing the type of content that maintains the attention of a group of consumers we have to look elsewhere.  So when the president wanted to talk about housing in America his communication team choose Zillow to reach an audience focused on buying or selling a home. Makes sense.

Last week we purchased an old Seattle P.I. newspaper box from a store in SoDo called Second Use.  They had pallets of them. It’s a striking image of the decline of traditional news media.

We’re going to put an iPad in the box window and show our reel – we like the "old media meets new" metaphor. 


The New York Times isn’t going away and neither is local news or the Washington Post (We’re very interested to see what Bezos does with the Post.) There is definitely a place for traditional news – even in this new environment, and we’d be foolish as communication professionals to dismiss them.

So the question I ask myself is how we prioritize these channels as it relates to marketing.  As we talk about the new media landscape the options to reach and interact with a consumer expand even beyond social media channels and bloggers.  The “channels” are endless. and Zillow became channels.  A channel today can live anywhere your consumer is – anywhere.  This is liberating news for creative communication companies. All that matters is that we make a connection.  What are some of the channels you’re using to do this for your clients?

Curator News Feed: July 19, 2013

Happy Friday, readers! This week, we spent a few too many stolen moments marveling at footage of bears catching salmon in Alaska (hey--don't knock it 'til you try it). In addition to spying on our furry friends in the North, we also did some reading about everything from dragon skulls to a beat boxing. Check out our links of the week: Via AdWeek

Giant Dragon Skull that Washed Up on British Beach is an Ad for Game of ThronesAdWeek. I love cool, unexpected marketing like this. It goes to show the value of smart execution is exponential to the actual cost. -- Dan

Mimi Thorisson Blog. I've had a frenetic last few weeks between work and travel. My wife and I have planned a down weekend — lots of cooking, family time with the kids, and lazy, long meals outside.  Whenever I have one of these weekends on the horizon I love to find something new to cook.  I recently found this blog.  It's beautiful and recipes look great.  I've challenged myself to find a dessert to make for the family from this blog tomorrow.  I'll let you know how it goes.  Have a great weekend! -- Scott

PR Nudges Its Way to the Content TableDigiday. The headline caught my attention and the content was a little surprising. Probably because we don't believe in nudging our way, but rather marching to the table with confidence. -- Jennifer

Beatbox Brilliance: Tom Thum at TEDxSydney, YouTube. I was browsing the TEDxTalks YouTube channel this week and came across this video of the ridiculously talented beatboxer, Tom Thum, at TEDxSydney. WOW, just wow. -- Chelsey

Traveling from your desktop, Mashable. Nothing can replace the thrill of travel. The sense of awe you feel looking up at the Eiffel Tower for the first time, or the connection you feel with history while wandering the courtyards of Edinburgh Castle can’t be recreated by looking at pictures. However, Google’s new street view project is bringing the experience of travel about as close to real life as you can get without getting on a plane. The street view team has expanded beyond the camera-globe topped cars to smaller units that can explore iconic buildings around the world. To get a flavor of the project, follow this link and zoom in to street view, then use the navigation tool on the left to change floors. It won’t replace actual travel, but it’s a great way to explore new places before you visit or reminisce travels past. -- Matthew

Pitchfork: Chicago's Music Festival, In These Times. This weekend I'm headed to Chicago to visit friends and listen to great music, for some of the time at Wrigley Field (I'm considering wearing a Cardinal's jersey just to spite the Cubs.) to see Pearl Jam and also at Pitchfork, a music festival in Chicago. The line-up ranges from R. Kelly to Solange (Beyonce's younger sister) to Bjork. This article reveals more about why Pitchfork thrives in Chicago and touches on the city's music history. It's a more interesting story than you might expect. I'm excited to check it out! -- Maria

PR Pro Habits That Journalists Despise, PR Daily. As a PR professional, I send out a lot of email pitches to journalists. But I also graduated from journalism school, and I know all too well how annoying it can be to receive a totally irrelevant pitch. I always make the effort to keep my pitches highly tailored, but this SlideShare serves as a great reminder for all of us. I think this quote sums it up pretty well: "Be creative, and please, please, please don't bore me." -- Megan

Credit: HubSpot

The Lernstift Smartpen Checks Your Spelling as You Write, CNN. I’m not one to typically geek out too much on new technology inventions, but this one caught my eye. A new pen is designed to actually detect when you make a spelling error. It’s the ultimate cross between the current digital world we live in and the long-lost art of handwritten text. But, with the reality being that we have moved over almost completely to digital, with this still hold value for consumers? -- Annie

Social media crisis management: Be sincere, and verify, Portent Interactive Blog. It seems like social media crises have been happening long enough that people would know how to react (and how not to), but every time I start to think that, another Amy's Baking Company comes along and proves that cluelessness still abounds. One point from Ian Lurie's post crystalizes what I think separates those who get it from those who don't: "Remind yourself that you do not get to decide what an apology is. The audience does." Read this, and for god's sake, bookmark it. -- Paul

Brown Bear and Salmon Cam, The amount of time I spent watching bears fish for salmon seemed to earn itself my link of the week. What about it has us so mesmerized? I'm not sure, but it's definitely something everyone should see. -- Brooke

Curator News Feed: July 5, 2013

Happy Independence Day from all of us at Curator! We celebrated a little early by putting together our own Star-Spangled Spotify playlist, and proceeded to blast it in the office earlier this week to really rev up our creative American spirits. It's a little eclectic to say the least, but then again so are we. Bonus points if you can guess who submitted what. Perhaps you'll enjoy our links of the week while simultaneously giving our playlist a spin. Happy Friday!

Neil Diamond

Happy 25th Birthday to Nike's 'Just Do It,' the Last Great Advertising Slogan, Adweek. It's not only our country's birthday this week, but Nike is about as American as you can get, so I'd say it's fine to celebrate both together. What's really interesting about this article is how Dan Wieden came up with this famous slogan—watch the second video, people.  – Maria

The 30 Most Creative Social Media Marketers, Business Insider. We've all seen a lot of these viral social media campaigns, some have even been past links of the week, like the Lowes vines. This is a great look at the powerhouse folks coming up with them. I love the diversity in their thinking and looking at the kinds of approaches they take based on the brands. I think my favorites from this list have to be Allstate's Mayhem and Oreo. What are yours? – Chelsey

'Normal' Barbie By Nickolay Lamm Shows Us What Mattel Dolls Might Look Like If Based On Actual Women, Huffington Post. What would Barbie look like if she were based on the average American woman? Artist Nickolay Lamm used the measurements of an average 19-year-old woman to create a 3D model. The comparison is really jarring, and makes me wonder whether publicity like this will negatively impact the brand, or whether Mattel's iconic doll is so beloved by brand loyalists that it won't do much damage. What do you think?  – Noelle

The Dieline Awards 2012 WinnersThe Dieline. I wanted to share the Dieline packaging awards from 2012 as the 2013 winners will soon be announced. So, here's some creative inspiration for the day (and some pretty amazing branding). – Kendra

Photo Credit: Stranger & Stranger

Photo credit: Stranger & Stranger

Former Groupon CEO's new album aims to impart ‘business wisdom’PR Daily. So many things about this album, entitled "Hardly Workin,'" intrigue me. I kind of love the fact that ousted former CEO and Founder Andrew Mason is putting himself out there in such a big way. And, no, it's not a joke. But it gets better: he plans to drop business lessons in with his beats, aimed at educating millennials entering the workforce. There's no way I'm not going to at least take a listen. – Megan

Teens aren’t abandoning social. They’re just using the word correctly, Medium. A friend shared this link on Facebook, one of my most frequently used social networks. The piece explores results of a recent study from Piper-Jaffray that asked teens to share “their most important social networks.” According to the study, some of the older, established networks like Facebook and YouTube are experiencing a dip in significance among teens. The writer, Cliff Watson, digs into what’s really going on as teens move on to newer services like Snapchat or Kik. The entire piece is a great read, but here’s the sentence I keep mulling over in my head – “Kids aren’t leaving social networks. They’re redefining the word ‘social.’ Rather, they’re actually using the word with the intent of its original meaning: making contact with other human beings.” – Ann Marie

Vine update for iOS adds redesigned camera, 'revining,' and channelsThe Verge. With Instagram video on its heels, the Vine app moved quick with their recent iOS update! I've made a personal goal to improve my video skills and this update makes it easy. My favorite feature? The ghost button where a light shadow of your previous clip is shown so you can line your next shot up perfectly! With clever updates at this rate I might keep my Instagram video very limited. Well played, Vine. – Brooke

How to Use Google+ to Expand Your Business Influence, Social Media Examiner. Why Google+? If you're thinking that the "more active users than Twitter" claim sounds a little fishy, you're right, but it's still worth your time. For one thing, it's becoming more and more baked-in to search, meaning pages with more followers will be ranked higher in organic Google searches. For another, people are probably already there talking about you, meaning you should be there to respond. Last but not least, some of those people are people who aren't on the other networks you frequent, and engaging with them means a positive gain in your overall social footprint. Once you've gotten started and filled out your profile a bit, check out this link for how to optimize. — Paul

Curator News Feed: June 28, 2013

Summer is in full swing here in Seattle, and this week we're buzzing about clever Guinness ad placements, pantsuits on Twitter, the return of the Twinkie, and even the unthinkable: unplugging from social media. The jury's still out on the likeliness of that last one, but we'll leave it up to you. Enjoy our last links of the week for the month of June, and let us know what you've been reading, too!


Twinkies Are Back! Now What?AdWeek. How do you resurrect a brand from the dead? We’ll find out as Twinkies hit the shelves once again. But, they face one of the biggest challenges of any brand as companies have had the opportunity to introduce alternative products. But, Twinkies may be ready to combat this, starting with a new tagline that plays off of the product’s comeback – “The Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever.” Consumers and marketers alike will have to decide in the coming months if the statement is true. – Annie

Are you Really a Ninja? How to Rock Your Twitter Bio as Hard as Hillary Clinton, Fast Company. Writing your own bio can be hard, writing your own bio under 200 characters is quite the task. I'm taking cues from these celebrities on Twitter and starting to re-think my own Twitter bio. – Brooke

'The Great Gatsby' Visual Effects Reel Unveiled, Huffington Post. If you have five minutes, this is a pretty cool video that shows the before and after of where a green screen was used in filming. If you have a couple hours, go see the movie! (Bonus, the Lana Del Rey song from the soundtrack accompanies the reel.) – Chelsey

Guinness Transforms Office Windows Into Pint Glasses, PSFK. Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest ones. Case in point: Grey Group Canada’s use of window stickers and existing blinds to simulate a pint of Guinness. The result: brilliantly integrated advertising at a fraction of the cost. Check out the photos in the link and tell me you’re not thirsty. – Matthew

10 Social Media Mistakes You May Be Making (Because I Did), Marketing Land. I love this post from Courtney Seiter, one of my favorite new social media connections of 2013. In this post, she lays it all on the table — all the mistakes she's made over the years as a social media marketer, and how to avoid them. This post is packed with good information and insights. I promise you'll find something useful in it. – Paul

credit: Humans of New York Facebook page

Humans of New YorkFacebook. At Curator, we believe that brands should be storytellers. Facebook and other forms of social media are the perfect place to start. What began as a photography project has turned into a chronicle of thousands of stories. I love how this captures tiny yet gripping snapshots. Find their website here. – Megan

Brands Celebrate DOMA Ruling on Facebook, TwitterMashable. On the heels of Supreme Court's decision to deem DOMA unconstitutional this week, I thought I'd share the brands that decided to celebrate alongside millions of Americans in this step towards equality. – Maria

How Instagram Almost Ruined My Life, Fast Company. This is an interesting take on how the Instagram phenomenon has, to some extent, prevented people from actually seeing and experiencing life, instead opting to showcase their glossy version of it for all to see. Kind of makes you think— in today's social media-savvy society, how important is it to unplug every once in awhile? Tell us what you think! – Noelle

Dallas Weather, It’s hot here in Dallas! Matthew and I have been tag-teaming the Seattle’s Best Coffee rollout here for two weeks and we’re now 10 of 14 days with 100-degree weather – Dan