Monthly Archives: March 2014

The Most Active Categories Sponsoring F1 Teams

Excluding official suppliers, the auto, technology and auto aftermarket categories are the most active sponsors of F1 teams.

Automotive aftermarket and technology companies provide F1 teams much more than technical expertise.

The auto aftermarket category is the most active sector sponsoring F1 teams followed by technology companies, according to an IEG analysis.

Auto aftermarket companies are 6.5 times more likely to sponsor an F1 team than the average of all sponsors, while technology companies are 4.2 times more likely to sponsor a team.

The apparel; heavy equipment/machinery; sports apparel/equipment; and auto categories tie for third place. Each sector is 2.4 times more likely to sponsor an F1 team than average.

Excluding official supply categories, auto makers are the most active sponsor of F1 teams followed by the technology and auto aftermarket categories.

Most Active Categories Sponsoring F1 Teams
Most Active Categories Sponsoring F1 Teams
Auto aftermarket companies are 6.5 times more likely to sponsor an F1 team than the average of all sponsors.

Most Active Categories Sponsoring F1 Teams (Excluding Official Suppliers)
Most Active Categories Sponsoring F1 Teams (Excluding Official Suppliers)
Automobile manufacturers are 3.8 times more likely to be an associate or primary sponsor of an F1 team than the average of all sponsors.

Official Sponsors of Formula 1
Official Sponsors of Formula 1 (F1)


Authored by IEG Inc.


The Greatest Trick Netflix Ever Pulled Was Convincing The World HBO Is Its Rival

Richard Plepler and Reed Hastings are frenemies. Reuters/Fred Prouser, Richard Brian

It will surely go down as one of the great CEO quotes of 2014. Netflix’s visionary CEO, Reed Hastings, was asked about his counterpart at HBO, Richard Plepler, who had recently said he was not concerned about people sharing passwords for HBO’s online service, HBO Go.

“So I guess Plepler, the CEO of HBO, doesn’t mind me sharing his account information. So it’s and his password is Netflixbitch” remarked Hastings.

The apparent tension between Netflix and HBO, the two iconic companies behind some of America’s most loved shows (and Americans do love their television) has captivated the media, ourselves included. It’s not difficult to understand why. In many ways, it symbolizes the classic 21st-century business story: an upstart challenger from Silicon Valley disrupting an incumbent with a compelling and well-priced product, underpinned by impressive technology.

But the rivalry is grounded less in reality than in clever marketing.

Last year was by any measure a resoundingly successful one for Netflix, which added a 6 million paying users, a 25% increase, in the US market. But how many did HBO lose over the same period? None. In fact, it added 2 million subscribers, its best performance in 17 years. Media analyst Rich Greenfield earlier this year dismissed (registration required) the notion that Netflix’s growth was coming at the expense of premium channels like HBO. “We believe over-the-top video households are among the most passionate about video content—meaning you subscribe to HBO and Netflix, not HBO or Netflix,” he wrote.

The best evidence that this is not a zero-sum game comes from viewing patterns. Asurvey of nearly 10,000 households by TiVo last year found that those that watched the first season of Netflix’s political drama, House of Cards, watched 85% more HBO content than non-Netflix households did. HBO itself publicly argues that it does not compete directly with Netflix, often describing it as a complementary service.

So why does Hastings keep on fanning the rivalry? According to a report by the New York Times media columnist David Carr (which Netflix has never denied), Hastings has privately told executives at Time Warner that the “comparison benefits Netflix” and that he sees the banter as “harmless mischief.”

But it also serves a subtler purpose.

Americans love HBO shows—the channel’s hits over the past two decades include The SopranosThe WireGame of Thrones and this year’s True Detective. But they also hate their cable companies, who force them to pay for expensive bundles of hundreds of channels in order to get the few, like HBO, that they actually watch. And the cable firms do this because media companies like Time Warner, HBO’s parent, make more money if their channels are all bundled. So the Netflix boss’s quips at HBO are also part of a broader narrative that resonates with almost all Americans: their dissatisfaction with how the pay TV industry works.

A Netflix spokesman describes the rivalry between the two as being like that between baseball’s New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox (“We push each other to do great work”). But as businesses, at least, HBO and Netflix are very different beasts, and that doesn’t look like it’s about to change. At an investor briefing last week, Plepler was again asked whether the company would consider selling HBO Go on a standalone basis, which would make it a lot more like Netflix. (Currently, only subscribers to HBO on cable can use its online service). “We have the capacity to do it. We have the ability to pivot, and if we think that makes sense, we’re going to do it,” he said. “But right now, there are four billion reasons or so to do it the way we’re doing it [now]“. (HBO generated $4.4 billion in revenue last year).

There are, of course, ways the two companies compete directly. They have both tried to acquire the same content in the past: Netflix outbid HBO for House of Cards. They compete for critical acclaim, although at this juncture, HBO retains a commanding lead. But as Jeffrey Katzenberg, the CEO of Dreamworks, succinctly summarized the situation to the New York Times last month. “I think there’s a fiction here that somehow Netflix gains are HBO losses.” And it’s a fiction that Netflix seems quite happy to sustain.

By: John McDuling (Originally Posted at Quartz)

‘Who Rules the Mobile Social Media World: Men or Women? [INFOGRAPHIC]’

“Men are generally known to lead the space when it comes to adopting new technologies, but it is us Women who are heavily influencing future mobile technology trends.

Not really a surprise since we know that it is women who are the more social gender and use Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter to check on family, friends and favourite brands multiple times a day. Women interact with brands more often than their male counterparts and for a wider range of reasons. They consume and share news, events, things they love or hate more frequently then men – who are more likely to be visiting news and sports websites.

Alex Hillsberg from Finance Online forwarded their Infographic to me earlier today which highlights some interesting points:

  • 12% more women than men use tablets for social media interactions
  • On Pinterest women outnumber men by 25% which makes them vital part of the company’s $7.7B value
  • Women are the biggest sharers of images and videos in the internet via Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest

Traditionally, Tech is a man’s world, but it would be nothing without a Woman. Take it home James Brown!”

By: Sharn Kandola

(I’m a Digital Communicator (Corporate web, social media strategy, Interactive apps) for the public and private sectors. Exploring the intersection of technology and communications!)

‘How This Famous Oscar Photobomb Defines Twitter for Marketers’

Ellen's famous Oscar selfie

“Last Sunday, Oscar host Ellen Degeneres broke Twitter with the most epic of all selfies. The picture was retweeted more than 1.3 million times in less than an hour, breaking President Obama’s 2012 victory photo which had 780,000 retweets. The star-studded photo included famous actors like Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lawrence, (half of) Jared Leto, Channing Tatum, Kevin Spacey, Lupita Nyong’o and surprisingly, Lupita Nyong’o’s non-celebrity brother, Peter. The media was ablaze shortly, calling attention to Peter’s photobomb. What Peter did in this opportunistic moment happens thousands of time each day on Twitter, as the “normals” interact directly and in conversation with the celebrities of their field. That’s the power of Twitter and marketers can take a lesson.

The Shared Experience

Ellen’s tweet created a shared experience with millions of people around the world. Like Peter, we felt we were participating in history because we were doing this together, even if most of us have never met one another, let alone Brad Pitt. Famed media analyst, Brian Solis spoke about the phenomenon of the shared experience in an early 2013 interview:

Shared experiences form an influence loop that is connected to each moment of truth. It’s what people find that guides them. It takes more than Google now. People are talking and connecting. Experiences are shared in tweets, posts, videos and reviews. You’ve optimized search, your website, your mobile app, but you haven’t optimized for shared experiences. Shared experiences affect customer impressions and next steps in each moment of truth. Shift from impressions to expressions.”

Do Us a Flavor

Marketers can leverage this concept by creating opportunities for fans from around the world to participate together. For example, recently Lay’s Potato Chips crowd-sourced a Do Us a Flavor, contest to determine the next flavor of Lay’s Chips. Nearly 3.8 million submissions were created in 2013 and more than a million votes were cast to select Cheesy Garlic Bread as the winner. This not only engaged millions of Lay’s fans together, it also generated hundreds of marketable assets and press (and one tasty bag of chips).

ShareBloc recently attempted a similar tactic, creating a contest to determine the Top 50 Content Marketing Posts of 2013. In our first two weeks of our company’s launch, we saw more than 600 people vote more than 7,000 times to determine the winner. We’re planning a similar contest in March for the Marketo The Marketing Nation Summit so go to on March 11 for more information. The winner of the contest will get a FREE ticket to The Marketing Nation Summit on April 7-9.

Ask Your Audience to Share

When Ellen boldly asked the audience for her tweet to break the retweet record, fans around the world complied. Ellen asked people to share so we did. Hubspot’s social media scientist, Dan Zarrella,studied 2.7 million tweets and found asking your followers seven simple but powerful call-to-actions on Twitter materially increased the reweet-per-follower ratio. Asking your followers to “please help” was by far the most effective, showing a 160% increase from the average. Famed marketer Jeff Bullas suggests three additional calls to action in addition to a retweet: Ask for a download, Ask for a follow and Ask for a reply.

Retweets-per-follower by call-to-action from HubSpot

We employ a similar strategy at ShareBloc. We tweet twice a day the top posts from @ShareBloc, most of which are the best posts on social media, content marketing, SEO and technology. This garners dozens of favorites and retweets from different accounts each week, most of whom we suspect are automated. We track to see if any new accounts engage with us on Twitter and ask them to join ShareBloc with calls to action like “don’t forget to join” or “check out ShareBloc”. So far, the engagement percentage is encouraging with more than 10% of our conversations clicking through the link.

We are all Peter Nyong’o Now

When Peter Nyong’o photobombed Ellen’s selfie, it was not dissimilar from when fans insert themselves into a conversation between two known celebrities. For example, Arby’s famously tweeted at musician Pharrell Williams during the Grammys about his now infamous mountain hat. Thousands engaged with the celebrity and fast food franchise.

Arbys and Pharrell Williams

Twitter is also the ideal medium for reaching directly to your user base. While some personalities havegotten in trouble with this type of outreach, often times it can create engagement and new marketing assets. For example, Taco Bell’s twitter account is famous for its fun attitude and timely retweets. They’ve recently run a campaign for their breakfast menu with the hashtag #TacoBellBreakfast and have gotten even celebrities like Ashton Kutcher to participate.

At ShareBloc, we encourage a dialogue with our users on Twitter. Oftentimes, we’ll tweet at the author or the person who posted a top content post to let me know they’re reaching our Twitter following (not a lot for now) and our registered users (a lot more). Here’s a recent example of our interaction with SEO expert, Brian Dean of Backlinko.

@Backlinko @ShareBloc Twitter discussion

If you’d like to insert yourself into Ellen’s selfie, here’s a website that lets you do that. Also, don’t forget to check out on March 11 for more information. The winner of the contest will get a FREE ticket to The Marketing Nation Summit on April 7-9.”

By: David Cheng

(I’m CEO and co-founder of ShareBloc. ShareBloc is building a community of like-minded professionals who share, curate and discuss business content that matters to them.

In my prior lives, I worked in investment banking, venture capital, and ran the online research platform for the leading cleantech market research firm.)

Dr. Seuss Inspired Guide to Twitter



Authored by: Evan LePage

Evan is a Social Content Writer for HootSuite. He writes features, news items, releases and all things HootSuite.