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  1. Successful Twitter Campaigns: USA for UNHCR Posted in Heavy Chef News, Twitter, Concocted by Tatenda Mutsekwa July 14, 2011 7 comments

    This case study will look at how a tweetathon was used by USA for UNHCR to help spread the message about their Blue Key Campaign. The Blue Key Campaign was centered around informing the American population of the refugee crisis. This was done by having people go on to the website and buy a blue key pin or pendant to wear.

    Read Further

  2. Successful Twitter Campaigns: IBM Lotusphere Posted in Heavy Chef News, Twitter, Concocted by Tatenda Mutsekwa July 13, 2011

    This campaign is quite interesting as it provided a landing site for people who were interested in all things Lotusphere 2011. To begin with, I will provide an explanation of what Lotusphere is before geeking out on the way the campaign was so successful.

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  3. Now You Can DM Lady Gaga Posted in Heavy Chef News, Twitter, Concocted by Tatenda Mutsekwa July 5, 2011 1 comment

    Stop what you are doing if you have a verified account on Twitter! If you don’t have a verified account, well you have stopped so you might as well continue to read this. Twitter has started to change the privacy settings for verified accounts.

    Read Further

  4. Exclus1ves.co.za Community Building Campaign – A Case Study Posted in Community Management, Digital Strategy, Heavy Chef News, Social Media, Twitter, Videos, Concocted by Mike Perk February 7, 2011 11 comments

    We’ve had a lot of Heavy Chefers asking us to share what World Wide Creative did for the Exclus1ves FlashMob Firesale campaign. So we’ve put together a video case study highlighting the objectives, the thought process, the execution and most importantly the results! Read Further

  5. Twitter: “40% of All Tweets Come From Mobile” Posted in Mobile Marketing, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Yolandi Janse van Rensburg January 11, 2011 1 comment

    Mashable posted a very interesting article a few days ago on the amount of tweets coming from our phones. The estimation was 40% of all tweets are coming from mobile phones. Read Further

  6. How to get your message across in 140 characters on Twitter Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by LouisJvR January 5, 2011 4 comments
    “Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.”
    - William Strunk, Jr. (1869–1946)
    Professor William Strunk Jr, author of the first editions of The Elements of Style* (1918), was one of the first to publish a writing guide to English usage. His objective was to focus on a few essentials relating to the rules of usage and principles of composition. His statement “vigorous writing is concise” rings as true today, whether in writing a novel or getting your message across in 140 characters**.
    <end of excerpt>
    Thus, here are 10 lessons in writing for Twitter – inspired by an academic from the nineteen hundreds:
    1.     Make definite assertions. Avoid tame, colorless, hesitating, non-committal tweets.
    2.     Omit needless words (same goes for use of excessive punctuation marks!!!!!!!).
    3.     Drop the adjectives.
    4.     If you are indecisive or unsure of what to tweet, rather say nothing.
    5.     Use complete words, find shorter synonyms or at the very least recognisable abbreviations. DO NOT use text message lingo when tweeting. EVR.
    6.     Do not break your tweet in 2.
    7.     When asking a question, choose either rhetoric or open-ended questions as they are more conducive for generating feedback tweets.
    8.     Have purpose when tweeting. Know to whom your tweet is meant for and what you are expecting in response to that tweet (if at all). If you want someone to click on a link, tell them so accordingly
    9.     When referencing a link in your tweet, make use of url shorteners to help you make the most of 140 characters.
    10.  Lastly, a point I never get tired of hearing – to borrow from The Cluetrain Manifesto’s 95 Theses: “Whether delivering information, opinions, perspectives, dissenting arguments or humorous asides, the human voice is typically open, natural, uncontrived.” Read your tweets out loud before posting. Do they sound uncontrived?
    So, now over to you – what do you find works well when composing a tweet?
    *you can read the complete version of Strunk Jr’s The Elements of Style (1918) here.
    **have you ever asked yourself the question: Why 140 Characters? Check it out: http://www.140characters.com/2008/11/13/hello-world/

    “Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.”

    - William Strunk, Jr. (1869–1946) Read Further

  7. 5 Twitter Profiles pushing the Envelope – 2010 Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Lauren Potgieter December 15, 2010 6 comments

    When it comes to who we follow on Twitter, it is pretty much each to their own. We follow individuals who interest us, make us laugh or make us think, and as a diverse society, we know that each person has their own preferences of who they wish to fill up their Twitter feed. Here are 5 interesting Twitter profiles of 2010 that will surely offer some substance to your Twitter stream, whether it’s for their wit and charm, intelligence or simple Twitter appeal, here are the top 5 contenders for the Heavy Chef Tweeter of 2010. Read Further

  8. 10 Reasons why people unfollow you on Twitter Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Yolandi Janse van Rensburg December 13, 2010 12 comments

    So, you’re follower count is dropping? Did your followers stop responding to your tweets? Here are 10 reasons why people will unfollow you: Read Further

  9. Should you get your CEO on Twitter? Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Sachin Ranchod December 10, 2010

    In recent years there has been a distinct shift in how many companies use Twitter to build their brand.  The focus is no longer on just creating a faceless corporate account that tweets about what’s happening in the business and industry.  Instead, it is becoming popular for companies to build their brand by focusing on promoting some of the different people (like a flamboyant CEO) within the organisation.   Read Further

  10. How to get your followers to Re-Tweet you Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Ettienne Mostert December 9, 2010 8 comments
    How to get your followers to Re-Tweet you
    Each time one of your Twitter followers re-tweets one of your tweets they help develop your Twitter influence. Retweets can help grow your amount of followers, drive traffic to your website and ultimately create more customer conversions. Here are a few tips and tricks you can put into practice to get users retweeting you.
    1.     Be first
    Where possible try to be the first person to break news. If not first, be one of the first. For example you could be walking in a mall and see a ridiculous promotion or an entertaining situation or even unexpected traffic. This way you are informing your followers of something that is useful, new and relevant.
    2.     Chat
    Tweet about things you can converse about. Even if your Twitter accounts is for your business, talking about topics that you can converse about is far more interesting to your followers than self-promotion and none engaging statements. As an individual be careful about talking about yourself too often or you may end up on Tweetingtoohard.com and users will follow you for the wrong reason.
    3.     Link to something interesting or that adds value
    Give your followers the opportunity to spread your content by adding a link to your tweet. Twitter users love spreading content and interesting links. Also, spread other people’s content that you find interesting in return. This way, your Twitter stream will be filled with a variety of interesting links.
    4.     The golden 25 characters
    Twitter allows you enough space for a 140 character message however, if one of your followers wants to manually retweet you they will need a few characters to add the RT and some commentary. Leave at least 25 characters for them to do this. You need to make a retweet as easy as possible for your users and you will reap the benefits. Remember to also use a URL shortener, this saves you loads of space.
    5.     Unique
    This relates closely to being forthcoming on Twitter. To be interesting enough to be retweeted you should offer some sort of uniqueness. This can be an opinion about an event or a unique sense of humour even if it’s controversial. People love quotes, jokes and funny comments.
    In the end, you need to be original and genuine when sharing with others. It’s simple, if you share something you genuinely find interesting, chances are other like-minded people will find it interesting as well.

    Each time one of your Twitter followers re-tweets one of your tweets they help develop your Twitter influence. Retweets can help grow your amount of followers, drive traffic to your website and ultimately create more customer conversions. Here are a few tips and tricks you can put into practice to get users retweeting you. Read Further

  11. US Embassy Uses Twitter to Create Online Community Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Agnes Sokol December 8, 2010 1 comment

    As Spokesperson for the United States Diplomatic Mission to South Africa, Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau has the job of managing one of the most robust new media platforms worldwide. From the US Department of State headquarters in Pretoria, Elizabeth engages American visitors, students and professionals alike, and has become a trusted news source for expatriates living abroad. Read Further

  12. How do you gain influence on Twitter? Posted in Twitter, Concocted by Jason Bagley December 3, 2010 3 comments

    This is very much a follow up to the post I wrote last week about getting your first Twitter follower. How do you gain influence on Twitter? In other words, how do you get others to almost look up to you and listen? Not everyone is influential so trying to become influential on Twitter, or any Social Media platform for that matter, might not necessarily work for you! That being said, everyone can definitely increase their number of followers and gain respect and possibly influence on Twitter. Read Further

  13. Writing for Engagement and Interaction Online Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Videos, Website Usability, Concocted by Mike Perk December 1, 2010 1 comment

    “Research shows us that, on your web, you have 15 seconds to give your reader the info they are looking for. That’s about 30 words. And then, they’re off. Gone”.

    Tiffany Markman explains how engagement is totally different to print and what you need to do to write in order to build a community, rather than just an audience.

    Read Further

  14. Using Twitter for Charity Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Neerali Gajjar December 1, 2010 4 comments

    Social media has taken over our lives – it has become the new place to ‘hang out’. We can chat to friends who are across the globe and it also allows us to get recommendations from friends about which products and services to use. It is this latter point that has become a new marketing feeding ground that has been coined as crowdsourcing. Jeff Howe from Wired magazine defines it as “delegating a task to a large diffuse group, usually without substantial monetary compensation”. Read Further

  15. Twitter TV: The Future of Interactive Entertainment Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Yolandi Janse van Rensburg November 30, 2010 4 comments

    Ellen McGrit recently wrote such an interesting post on Fast Company titled ‘I Want My Twitter TV!’ It’s all about “why everyone — CNN, MTV, Conan, and even Google — is tweeting about the future of interactive entertainment.”

    Here’s a quick snippet from Ellen’s post: Read Further

  16. Your Twitter Community – Be Nice, Think Twice: Twitter Etiquette 101 Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Lauren Potgieter November 29, 2010

    All of us are impressed with good etiquette. Whether we are called by our surname when signing something at the bank or we are thanked for letting someone in whilst driving – we know that being polite pleases others, especially when you’re representing a brand or even yourself as a brand online. On Twitter specifically, it is imperative to be polite to your community, because even though etiquette is seen as somewhat old fashioned, it will encourage your current community to keep coming back for more. Read Further

  17. 5 Twitter No-No’s: Tips from the ANCYL saga Posted in Online Reputation Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by LouisJvR November 26, 2010 3 comments
    A few weeks back, the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) expressed concern about fake Julius Malema accounts on Twitter tweeting misleading messages. The ANCYL’s militant tone of voice in conveying this concern however made for some nice headline-grabbing soundbites. Soundbites that lead to a barrage of responses from journalists, commentators and the Twitter community alike.
    But, taking a step back for a second and cutting through the ANCYL’s talent for their creative choice of words, their concern is valid. And one that many a person or organisation has flagged before. This the very same reason why Twitter introduced Account Verification in 2009: a lawsuit was filed against Twitter by the manager of a well-know baseball team in the US back then (details of the case can be found here).
    In fact there are a number of cases where Twitter was asked (read: threatened) to shut down fake Twitter accounts:
    · Kanye West posted a rant on his blog saying: “Hey Twitter, take the so called Kanye West Twitter down now.”
    · Ewan McGregor was considering legal action to remove a fake Twitter account that had attracted 20,000 followers
    · Actor/musician Vincent Gallo ordered Twitter to find and shut down fake accounts
    · BP asked Twitter to enforce a disclaimer on fake BP Twitter account @BPGlobalPR
    The list goes on.
    However, as the ANCYL has learned (or not), there are correct ways of dealing with impersonators and then there are the No-No’s that can potentially even exacerbate the problem.
    Here are 5 Twitter No-No’s when faced with a fake Twitter account:
    TIP #1: Be confrontational, aggressive, threatening in trying to resolve the problem
    TIP #2: Stand on a soapbox and rant to the whole world
    TIP #3: Failure to acknowledge your ignorance of the nature of the technology and community
    TIP #4: Stereotype and paint all Twitter users with the same brush
    TIP #5: Failure to setup your own Twitter profile (even if it is only a placeholder profile)
    To the last point, by saying that you should create your own official profile, I’m not saying you should now start using Twitter. Take Tiger Woods for example: he (or more likely, his communications team) setup a Tiger Woods Twitter profile back in mid-2009 which, barring 3 tweets promoting his website, stayed dormant for a year and a half. And until recently served its purpose as a placeholder for Tiger on Twitter. Nothing more, nothing less.
    Bottomline, if fake accounts are your concern it would be worth your while to at the very least have your own profile to inform the general public of, as well as point Twitter to when flagging your concerns with the company. It just makes for good practical sense.

    A few weeks back, the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) expressed concern about fake Julius Malema accounts on Twitter tweeting misleading messages. The ANCYL’s militant tone of voice in conveying this concern however made for some nice headline-grabbing soundbites. Soundbites that lead to a barrage of responses from journalists, commentators and the Twitter community alike. Read Further

  18. Twitter: Getting your first follower Posted in Digital Marketing Basics, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Jason Bagley November 25, 2010 9 comments

    So you have finally joined the world of Twitter and have been tweeting for a few days, but it feels like an echo chamber. Nobody is listening. Here are a few tips to building that niche community of followers – the holy grail of Twitter! Read Further

  19. 5 reasons to Integrate Twitter into your website Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Website Usability, Concocted by Sachin Ranchod November 24, 2010 275 comments
    5 reasons to Integrate Twitter into your website
    As a standalone entity, Twitter is a powerful tool which allows companies to listen to what people are saying about them and actively engage with their community.  However, the advantages of using Twitter shouldn’t stop when you leave the Twitter website. By breaking out of the isolation of the Twitter website and extending your Twitter presence to an existing website or blog, you can begin to see some of the lesser acknowledged advantages of an active social media profile.The real benefits of integrating Twitter onto your website don’t come from just having a link to your Twitter profile on your website.  The link does show people that you do have a social media presence but unless they click on a link, it doesn’t show them what you are really about.  Below are some of the reasons you should make your latest tweets visible on your website:1)  It shows that you are realSeeing an active Twitter stream will help give visitors to your website the comfort that there are real people behind your website.  Proving your legitimacy is often a make-or-break problem for online businesses.  If a visitor is not 100% sure that they can pick up the phone and talk to a real person, then it is unlikely that they will convert from a visitor to a customer.There are many ways in which you can try communicate to the user that there are real people behind a website – you can make the phone numbers clearly visible on the home page, you can use live chat features and you can write an extensive ‘Meet the team’ section.  A live Twitter stream with real conversations between real people, is just another tool to help you immediately signal to the visitor that the website and company are real.2)  It will help keep your website updatedIt is often very difficult for businesses to keep their website constantly updated with new content.  Nowadays, a lot of websites incorporate blog functionality to allow companies to make sure that there is always something new on the home page.  However, writing blog posts and news articles can be time consuming and tedious.  Keeping new content flowing on a website is important as it shows a visitor to your site that you are still active and more importantly, that you are up-to-date with the latest industry news.Twitter updates provide you with the ability to quickly and easily publish content to your website on a regular basis.  However, it is important to note that tweets are not a substitute for blogging – 140 characters is not enough space to adequately discuss a topic and provide in-depth analysis (proving your expertise).3)  You’ll get good quality followersShowing your latest tweets on your website makes it easy for visitors to evaluate the quality of your tweets and decide whether they would like to follow you or not. It is often the case that the people who follow you via your website will be your most engaging followers because they have an interest in your business or industry.  These followers are therefore more likely to read your tweets, engage with you and syndicate your content for you.  Followers who are interested in what you have to say will prove to be much more useful to you and your community than those who follow you because of things like ‘follow our CEO to win’ competitions.4)  People can see that you are knowledgeableIf you tweet about your opinions on the latest industry happening or you tweet back to your followers with advice relating to your business then visitors to your website will begin to see that you are knowledgeable about topics surrounding your business and industry.5)  Visitors will see that you engage with your communityFinally, people visiting your website will see that you have a community or that you are trying to build a community around your brand.  They will be able to see that you take care of them by answering their questions, listening to their complaints and thanking them for their compliments.  Companies often assume that their Twitter profile is only there to accommodate people who are already on Twitter but the truth is that the tweets on your website can bring new users to Twitter itself.  As the Twitter network grows, your community will grow with it.A professional Twitter profile can be used as a powerful tool when it is integrated into your website – your tweets accentuate the existing content on your website and it will show visitors that you are knowledgeable, community-focused and real.
    As a standalone entity, Twitter is a powerful tool which allows companies to listen to what people are saying about them and actively engage with their community.  However, the advantages of using Twitter shouldn’t stop when you leave the Twitter website. By breaking out of the isolation of the Twitter website and extending your Twitter presence to an existing website or blog, you can begin to see some of the lesser acknowledged advantages of an active social media profile.
    The real benefits of integrating Twitter onto your website don’t come from just having a link to your Twitter profile on your website.  The link does show people that you do have a social media presence but unless they click on a link, it doesn’t show them what you are really about.  Below are some of the reasons you should make your latest tweets visible on your website:
    1)  It shows that you are real
    Seeing an active Twitter stream will help give visitors to your website the comfort that there are real people behind your website.  Proving your legitimacy is often a make-or-break problem for online businesses.  If a visitor is not 100% sure that they can pick up the phone and talk to a real person, then it is unlikely that they will convert from a visitor to a customer.
    There are many ways in which you can try communicate to the user that there are real people behind a website – you can make the phone numbers clearly visible on the home page, you can use live chat features and you can write an extensive ‘Meet the team’ section.  A live Twitter stream with real conversations between real people, is just another tool to help you immediately signal to the visitor that the website and company are real.
    2)  It will help keep your website updated
    It is often very difficult for businesses to keep their website constantly updated with new content.  Nowadays, a lot of websites incorporate blog functionality to allow companies to make sure that there is always something new on the home page.  However, writing blog posts and news articles can be time consuming and tedious.  Keeping new content flowing on a website is important as it shows a visitor to your site that you are still active and more importantly, that you are up-to-date with the latest industry news.
    Twitter updates provide you with the ability to quickly and easily publish content to your website on a regular basis.  However, it is important to note that tweets are not a substitute for blogging – 140 characters is not enough space to adequately discuss a topic and provide in-depth analysis (proving your expertise).
    3)  You’ll get good quality followers
    Showing your latest tweets on your website makes it easy for visitors to evaluate the quality of your tweets and decide whether they would like to follow you or not. It is often the case that the people who follow you via your website will be your most engaging followers because they have an interest in your business or industry.  These followers are therefore more likely to read your tweets, engage with you and syndicate your content for you.  Followers who are interested in what you have to say will prove to be much more useful to you and your community than those who follow you because of things like ‘follow our CEO to win’ competitions.
    4)  People can see that you are knowledgeable
    If you tweet about your opinions on the latest industry happening or you tweet back to your followers with advice relating to your business then visitors to your website will begin to see that you are knowledgeable about topics surrounding your business and industry.
    5)  Visitors will see that you engage with your community
    Finally, people visiting your website will see that you have a community or that you are trying to build a community around your brand.  They will be able to see that you take care of them by answering their questions, listening to their complaints and thanking them for their compliments.  Companies often assume that their Twitter profile is only there to accommodate people who are already on Twitter but the truth is that the tweets on your website can bring new users to Twitter itself.  As the Twitter network grows, your community will grow with it.
    A professional Twitter profile can be used as a powerful tool when it is integrated into your website – your tweets accentuate the existing content on your website and it will show visitors that you are knowledgeable, community-focused and real.

    As a standalone entity, Twitter is a powerful tool which allows companies to listen to what people are saying about them and actively engage with their community.  However, the advantages of using Twitter shouldn’t stop when you leave the Twitter website. By breaking out of the isolation of the Twitter website and extending your Twitter presence to an existing website or blog, you can begin to see some of the lesser acknowledged advantages of an active social media profile. Read Further

  20. What’s Trending on Twitter? Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Yolandi Janse van Rensburg November 18, 2010 5 comments

    Today’s trending topics on Twitter would include #PrinceWilliam, #KateMiddleton and many more hot topics that people are talking about around the world. What’s trending on Twitter would change every day and perhaps a few times a day. In other words, trending topics on Twitter are subjects people are talking about. The more popular a subject, the more likely it will be trending. Read Further

  21. How to get your campaign trending on Twitter? Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Ettienne Mostert November 17, 2010

    Trends on Twitter is a quick snapshot of the most tweeted about topics. From sporting events to movie releases to political events trending topics collect what is newsworthy at that present moment. Trends for those of you who may be new to Twitter are created when user’s add hash tags to words relating to a topic. For example, the Formula One championship was decided in a final race on Sunday. Topics such as #Vettel, #Alonso#F1 started trending because of the global popularity of the sport. Read Further

  22. The Real Value of Twitter Posted in Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Fred Roed November 16, 2010

    Something I do regularly nowadays is explain to friends, family, clients and team mates “the real value of Twitter”. My purpose in this post is really to crystallize my presentation in a succinct manner.

    Disclaimer: this article assumes you follow people you respect, aspire to, trust or find entertaining in some way. Thus, some of the people that follow YOU, are people that you respect, aspire to, trust or find entertaining in some way. Read Further

  23. How to create a trustworthy Twitter profile: What do the experts say? Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Lauren Potgieter November 12, 2010 5 comments

    There are numerous articles surrounding Twitter and how beneficial or useless it might be to individuals, businesses and brands. The Twitter versus Facebook fiery debate will never end – but the truth is that they cannot be compared because they are so incredibly different.

    Read Further

  24. Twitter strategy as part of Community Management – Some examples Posted in Community Management, Social Media, Twitter, Concocted by Mike Perk October 14, 2010 7 comments

    Currently, an online community manager, would struggle to avoid using Twitter as part of a community management strategy. It ticks many of the boxes associated with community: Read Further

  25. Monitoring Twitter effectively to find and build a community Posted in Community Management, Twitter, Concocted by Jason Bagley September 6, 2010 1 comment

    So you’ve registered and setup your Twitter account for your brand / company and you now staring at your only follower. You. What’s the next step in finding and building that online community? Use Twitter’s very own built in tools!

    Read Further