10 Lesser Known Social Platforms and How Businesses Can Use Them

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As social platforms advance and users adopt new networking and sharing habits based on evolving needs and desires, brands continue to push the envelope in introducing interactive social campaigns …

As social platforms advance and users adopt new networking and sharing habits based on evolving needs and desires, brands continue to push the envelope in introducing interactive social campaigns using these ever-evolving technologies.

Some of the most innovative brands have already begun to experiment with lesser known social platforms to cater to targeted audiences and test the grounds with new types of advertising models. Many of these campaigns are pure trial-and-error efforts to see what works and what doesn’t works, and there certainly aren’t any one-size-fits-all solutions out there.

At the Social Marketers Summit in Prague, I recently spoke on 10 of the most intriguing, but lesser known, location-based, Q&A, press and microblogging social platforms out there and how more businesses can start using them.

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  • 1. By @ericaswallow Features Editorial Assistant, Mashable 10 Lesser Known Social Platforms and How Businesses Can Use Them
  • 2. Types of Social Platforms Overview @ericaswallow
      • Location
        • Big names: Foursquare, Facebook Places
        • Lesser known: Gowalla, SCVNGR, Whrrl, Loopt Star, Brightkite
      • Q&A
        • Big names: LinkedIn Answers, Facebook Questions
        • Lesser known: Aardvark, Quora
      • Press
        • Big name: PR Newswire’s ProfNet
        • Lesser known: Help a Reporter Out, NewsBasis
      • Microblogging
        • Big name: Twitter
        • Lesser known: StatusNet
  • 3. 1. Gowalla Location @ericaswallow
      • 450,000 users (“passport holders”)
      • “ Keep up with your friends, share the places you go, and discover the extraordinary in the world around you.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Curated Trips
        • Branded Pins & Items
      • Case Study: TOMS Shoes / AT&T
        • Celebrate 1-millionth shoe for needy
        • Prizes for checkins, virtual shoes
      • Notable brands: Chevrolet, NBA, CNN, USA Today , Levi’s, National Geographic
  • 4. 2. SCVNGR Location @ericaswallow
      • User-base stats not public yet
      • “ Go places. Do challenges. Earn points!”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Custom Challenges, Treks, Badges
        • Rewards for completing Challenges
      • Case Study: Eat Pray Love
        • Custom trek with challenges
        • Eat Pray Love badges
      • Notable brands: New England Patriots, Journeys, National Geographic , Resident Evil, Tesla, Harvard University, MetLife
  • 5. 3. Whrrl Location @ericaswallow
      • 300,000 users
      • “ Check in, unlock Societies, unleash your Footstream.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Custom Societies
        • Society Rewards
      • Case Study: Murphy USA
        • Murphy USA National Society
        • Chance to win free gas for checking in
        • Weighted odds based on loyalty
      • Notable brands: Red Bull, Caesars Palace, Cirque du Soleil, Jive Records
  • 6. 4. Loopt Star Location @ericaswallow
      • 4 million users across all Loopt platforms
      • “ Go places, find friends, get stuff.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Custom real-world rewards
        • Coupons, e-mail codes, displayed codes for cashier
      • Case Study: Virgin America
        • 2-for-1 tacos and tickets to Mexico
        • 5th highest sales day in Virgin America history
      • Notable brands: Steve Madden, Gap, Sports Authority, Paul Frank, Burger King
  • 7. 5. Brightkite
      • 5.5 million users
      • “ The simple way to keep up with friends & places.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Highly targeted media placement
          • geography, behavior, time
        • Loyalty programs
      • Case Study: Starbucks
        • Location & competitor targeting
        • Badges, coupons, happy hours
      • Notable brands: McDonald’s, Dentyne, Best Buy, Sharpie, P&G, CBS
    Location @ericaswallow
  • 8. 6. Aardvark Q&A @ericaswallow
      • 90,000 users (56% have asked or answered a question)
      • “ Tap the knowledge of people in your network!”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Demonstrate expertise
        • Networking
      • Notable Brand Advocates:
  • 9. 7. Quora Q&A @ericaswallow
      • User-base stats not public yet
      • “ A continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Custom service
        • Demonstrate expertise
      • Notable Brand Advocates:
  • 10. 8. Help a Reporter Out Press @ericaswallow
      • 150,000 users
      • “ Everyone’s an expert at something.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Free press and exposure
      • Case Study: Ciampa Fray-Witzer, LLP
        • Small law firm in Boston
        • Within a few months, placement in:
          • Wall Street Journal
          • The Washington Post
          • TheStreet.com
      • Notable news agencies: ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox, Reuters , AP , Condé Nast
  • 11. 9. NewsBasis Press @ericaswallow
      • 3,300 sources / 580 journalists “Better media relations for journalists and companies.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Free press and exposure
      • Case Study: Callture (telecom provider)
        • Media placement with eWEEK within a week of signing up (“How Google Gmail Calling Affects Skype”)
      • Notable news agencies: Wired , AOL News , TechCrunch , Milwaukee Journal Sentinel , Crain's Chicago Business
  • 12. 10. StatusNet Microblogging @ericaswallow
      • Unknown number of users
      • “ Bring the conversation to your domain.”
      • Marketing opportunities:
        • Internal or external customized microblogging service
      • Case Study: Motorola
        • Internal, privately hosted social communications platform called Motmot
        • Security, cost-efficiency, easy integration with other internal tools
      • Notable brands: Mozilla, Sacramento Kings, Creative Commons, wikiHow
  • 13. Types of Social Platforms Overview @ericaswallow
      • Location
        • Big names: Foursquare, Facebook Places
        • Lesser known: Gowalla, SCVNGR, Whrrl, Loopt Star, Brightkite
      • Q&A
        • Big names: LinkedIn Answers, Facebook Questions
        • Lesser known: Aardvark, Quora
      • Press
        • Big name: PR Newswire’s ProfNet
        • Lesser known: Help a Reporter Out, NewsBasis
      • Microblogging
        • Big name: Twitter
        • Lesser known: StatusNet
  • 14.
      • Blah
      • blah
    Erica Swallow Editorial Assistant @ericaswallow [email_address] Otázky? Questions?