- Tets+: 30 tutorial videos that walk you through html and css from the very beginning - for free.
- CSS Tricks: Blog w/ designer interviews, code snippets, downloads, forums, and more. The content is pretty advanced, so it’s best suited for those already with an understanding of CSS.
- Lea Verou: An incredible designer who has developed a set of CSS3 tools that showcase and help you develop patterns, gradients, animations, and more.
- W3 Schools: The standard resource for just about all languages. It’s not the easiest to consume, but it has all the information you’ll ever need in text form - and will almost always appear as a top result for any questions you type into Google.
- Colorzilla Gradient Generator: Tool that makes it easy to create CSS3 gradients.
- Box and Shadow Generator: Tool that makes it easy to create shapes and drop shadows using CSS3.
- Amazing CSS3 Animations: List of 47 cool animations using CSS3 compiled by webdesignerwall.com. It doesn’t show you how to make them, but is a great place for inspiration and to see what CSS3 is capable of.
Adaptly offers one consolidated platform to complete a social media ad buy across multiple social networks including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, StumbleUpon and more.
Founded in 2010 by Nikhil Sethi and Garrett Ullom, Adaptly was incubated through DreamIt Ventures and is now based in New York City. Investors include First Round Capital, Charles River Ventures, Lerer Ventures, kbs+p Ventures and more. Adaptly’s clients include brands and agencies such as PepsiCo, Diageo, News Corp., Razorfish and hundreds more.
How It Works
- Planning: Adaptly helps you determine the right platforms for advertising based on your target audience campaign goals.
- Execution: Adaptly executes your campaign from start to finish - optimizing the imagery and messaging in your ads for social effectiveness throughout.
- Analytics: Adaptly provides you with the comprehensive analytics and actionable insights for your campaign.
Who should use it?
Adaptly is good for just about any medium or large brand looking to advertise across social media platforms. It requires a minimum spend per channel, therefore small businesses may not be able to afford it.
New Product: Momentum
Adaptly launched Adaptly Momentum in December 2011. Momentum is a new measurement tool created to help understand how well a brand is engaging with users across social networks.
Momentum combines the 160+ social metrics that come from each of these networks. It enables brands to evaluate how different marketing initiatives impact the overall brand performance across all mediums whether it’s paid or organic, online or offline.
For more information about Adaptly, visit their website at adaptly.com
For more information on Momentum, see this blog post.
CrowdTwist is a social loyalty and rewards platform that engages and activates a brand’s audience wherever the brand is, both online and offline. It’s service gives brands the ability to track, incentivize and reward customer engagement across any online, social or mobile channel.
Founded in 2009 by Irving Fain, Josh Bowen and Mike Montero, CrowdTwist is based in New York City and is a graduate of TechStars. It’s client roster includes Sony Music, Zumiez, JC Penny, and Live Nation.
How it works?
Crowdtwist ties into all of a brands web properties - websites, mobile sites, mobile apps, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and more. Users can then opt-in to the social loyalty platform through the site and receive rewards for their interaction and loyalty. These rewards are determined by the brand.
- Empowers brands to identify their biggest cross-platform influencers and understand how an individual customer is interacting with their online, social and mobile properties.
- Shows a complete picture of user interaction as users connect all their social profiles.
- Grows audiences, strengthens engagement, monetizes users and increases online and offline sales conversions.
Who should use it?
Crowdtwist is best for large brands with established followings and social properties since it is a enterprise-class solution.
For more information, visit Crowdtwist.com
Local Response is the world’s first cross-platform “check-in” based ad network. Founded in 2005, it’s based in Chelsea NYC, and is co-founded by digital advertising pioneers Nihal Mehta (founder ipsh!, sold to Omnicom in 2005 & early investor in Admob), Kathy Leake (co-founder Media6Degrees), and Michael Muse. It has received $6.5 million in funding to date.
How It Works?
Local Response aggregates over 1 billion check-ins a month from over 200 million users. These check-ins include Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Gowalla and more.
Brands and advertisers can deliver real-time messaging to users based on their check-ins for contextually relevant advertising. The service is turn key and has been used by Verizon, Coca-Cola, McDonalds, Walgreens, and more.
Who should use it?
Any company looking to activate a mobile audience based upon geographic targeting. It is a solid alternative to promoted tweets and has seen CTRs up to 60%.
Learn more at LocalResponse.com
Foodspotting is a mobile and web app available for all devices that allows users to find and share the foods they love by sharing photos and knowledge about their favorite dishes at their favorite restaurants. It has more than 1.5 million users and has worked with brands such as Zagat, the Travel Channel, Bravo, and Thrillist.
While some would say “Why the heck would I take pictures of my food?”, it’s actually more common than you think. The food photo phenomenon is taking the world by storm - infographic here.
So how can brands get involved?
- In-App Offers: Foodspotting serves location-based images and tips to users on the go. Within this stream of content, brands can insert ads and deals for a highly targeted campaign that reaches foodies who are likely deciding where they want to eat. Brands with a compelling offer are likely to have a solid conversion rate on such ads.
- Guides: Anyone can build a foodspotting guide free of charge. For example, “Top 10 Burgers in NYC”.
- Build a Profile and Following: For restaurant chains, chefs, food personalities/networks, or food industry councils, building a foodspotting profile and following is a great opportunity. For free, brands can share recommendations and build dish guides, or they can upgrade to a premium profile with a branded design, custom badges for users, creative and technical support, and a listing in their featured user section.
- Beverage Promotion: I also see an opportunity for beverages brands to get involved. For example, a soda brand could encourage people to share their photos and create guides of what dishes are best paired with their drink.
- Restaurant Chain Guides: For owners with more than one restaurant/location, building a guide is a great idea to retain and cross-promote locations to loyal customers. Brands could also host contests where users are incentivized to complete the guide.
- Small Business Promotion: Whether you hire a professional or simply use Instagram, all restaurants should capitalize on the image-based UI of foodspotting to reach new consumers. Sharing Hi-Res images daily on Foodspotting is an easy, free way to create awareness for your restaurant.
Statistical Considerations for Brands
- Dinner is the most photographed and shared meal.
- The top 3 most photographed foods are Desserts, Vegetables, and Poultry.
- Only 12% of posts clearly exhibit a branded product.
- The #1 reason for sharing food photos is simply to have a “Food Diary” of what the person ate that day.
- Women are twice as likely than men to upload, tag and view a pic
- Foodspotting’s users demographics: 42% make over $100k, 65% are college educated, 37% are between 18-35, and 55% are female
- Foodspotting’s active user base is mainly in San Francisco and New York
In short, Foodspotting is a solid media buy to reach people that are passionate and social about food. It’s strengths lie in its location-based intent-driven targeting and its image-heavy user interface; while its weaknesses include its niche appeal and overall reach.
Facebook rolled out its new timeline profile to everyone last week. Like a kid in a candy store, I clicked-through and put mine together.
- It’s Prettier: For the first time, Facebook added a much needed aesthetic touch to its platform. The large cover photo gives people a great way to showcase something epic to represent themself.
- Timeline Functionality: This added functionality is killer. It increases content lifespan and allows users and creepers to easily navigate the entire history of your being on Facebook. Kinda creepy? No doubt. However, thanks to pressure from Google+, Facebook’s privacy setting have gotten much better so you have the option to hide anything you want. Aside from utility, this functionality cements Facebook’s permanency in the lives of millions of people. It is hands down the best way to reminisce and document a person’s life, and something that will be hard to replace due to its ubiquity.
- Action Buttons: Below the cover art there are now four action buttons that make it easy to navigate to some of Facebook’s most important content - friends, photos, maps, and likes. Maps is the new kid on the block. It’s an entirely new feature set that provides an incredibly cool experience for documenting travel. You can say where you lived, where you’ve vacationed, etc, and add photos and stories to each one. In short, Facebook is going to be making a big push to get more location information with every post and photo, and this is a great incentive to do so.
- Cover Photo Repetition: Despite its aesthetic appeal, my problem with the cover photo is that it can be a bit repetitive to set that along with the profile picture. I don’t want to have a picture of my face as my profile picture and then another picture of me w/ friends as the cover art. It just comes off as a bit narcissistic - ideal if you buy into that whole Gen Y stereotype. Hence, why I opted to have a picture of my obnoxiously decorated cube instead.
- Timeline Consumption: The navigation and functionality of the timeline is fantastic, but its overall hard to consume. I don’t like the side-by-side layout. It’s confusing and doesn’t lend itself well to the linear nature of a timeline. I will note that it may just be that its a large change from Facebook’s norm in the past, so its likely my distaste will dwindle the more I use it.
- Activity Log: Why is this separate from notifications? What is its distinct purpose? At first glance, I feel the two could and should be integrated.
Overall, I give the new timeline profiles a B+. Facebook made some huge strides with it, however there’s still a few holes I’d like to see patched up.
In April, I wrote a post completely bashing Twitter for its faults on Tech.li. These faults consisted of the following:
- Content Lifespan
- Dumb People
But after using #newnewtwitter for the past week, I have to admit that the Twitter team has reconciled all their weaknesses and that I am officially falling back in love with the platform.
For those of you that haven’t played around with #newnewtwitter, here’s what I mean.
First of all, conversation is a million times better. Replies are threaded as they should have been from the beginning. You can simply click on and reply and the full conversation unravels right in front of you in-stream.
Second, content discovery is now structured, easy to navigate, and a major focus of the re-design. All you have to do is click #discover at the top of the page and tweets around popular topics are bundled dynamically - regardless of whether or not they include a specific hashtag.
They also added a “Browse Categories” tab where you can easily find the top users in major verticals like music, technology, and more.
Third, the issue of content lifespan has finally been resolved as tweets are now embeddable - meaning that I can simply click a button and embed tweets into any website for permanent display.
Fourth, the dumb people that I spoke about have all disappeared! Well, not really, but this re-design is sure to improve things. By placing major focus on @mentions and #hashtags in the re-design, users will become better educated on the purpose of Twitter and how to use it to its full potential.
In conclusion, Twitter absolutely killed it with their new re-design. I’m pumped about all the changes, and despite recent departures from the company, I’m confidant in the future of this platform.
Cool product that allows you to separate work and personal profile within one mobile device. They provide business class solutions, which would be huge for the BYOD (bring your own device) movement that I’m a fan of. Learn more on their website.