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NBC Earn Their Comedy Hotspurs With Digital Viral Video

NBC Earn Their Comedy Hotspurs With Digital Viral Video

Our digital hats are off this week to… NBC!

On Sunday, the sports network released the video: ‘An American Coach in London’ – well, actually it’s comedian Jason Sudeikis, but the idea is that he gives a frightening glimpse of what might happen if a football team ever did decide to take in talent from the USA!

The hilarious video shows the coach (Ted Lasso) playing clueless when working with Premier League football club, Tottenham Hotspur.

Footballer Gareth Bale gets a special feature when Lasso asks: “Gareth Bale, where’s he from – England?… Wales… wait that’s another country?”

The video was made to advertise the Premier League coming to NBC and to date it’s had over 3 million views, 17,000 likes on YouTube and 2,400 comments!

We particularly LOL’d at his appointed nickname from the team. If you haven’t watched it already, do so now! It’s Friday after all.

Royal Baby Fails to Spice Up Twitter

Given the day and age that we live in, it may have been more appropriate had Will and Kate took to Twitter to announce the birth of their new-born son. Perhaps something along the lines of: “OMG! Just given birth lol. Check out this selfie of my little prince” would have generated a much larger online buzz rather than a placard erected outside Buckingham Palace. But such is tradition, as us Brits would say.

At its peak, just after the birth was announced, a total of 253,000 tweets were posted each minute. In its own right, that is a very impressive amount, as is the 900,000 times that the hashtag #royalbaby was used. Compare that, however, to two other events that have gripped the world this year and the birth of the wee man who would be King pales in significance. Jorge Bergoglio’s election as Pope Francis garnered 132,000 tweets per minute, whilst Barack Obama’s second election victory generated a massive 237,000 tweets per minute. To be fair, it might seem harsh to pit a new-born child up against the President of the USA and the head of the Catholic Church, but these are the standards we should be setting for the future monarch.

Even the Spice Girls, that Great British institute, managed to generate more tweets per minute (116,000) when they reformed earlier this year. Usain Bolt’s dash to Olympic victory last year in London produced 88,000 tweets per minute, so the yet-to-be-named prince has a bit of catching up to do…

Either way, the buzz that has been generated elsewhere-from constant surveillance of Kate Middleton’s hospital to continuous parades across the UK and endless bandwagon campaigns from brands online-has been astounding. And like it or not, it will come to dominate headlines for weeks to come.

Share a Coke

For the first time ever, Coca-Cola has altered the script on 500ml and 375ml bottles to read the names of customers – and we love the idea at PHA Digital!

Coined as The ‘Share a Coke’ campaign, shelves across the country have been stocked with 150 of the most popular names, from Aaron to Zoe – it’s intention to capture the nation’s imagination this summer and drive growth for retailers.

Starbucks launched a similar campaign last year and awarded customers with personalised name inscriptions, but did you ever find yourself unwittingly annoyed at the misspelling of your name?

Yeah, us too.

Coke have overcome this hitch by giving customers whose names are not available on the pack, the chance to create their own virtual can online.

Be sure to Tweet us pictures of your personalised bottle and in the meantime, Happy Sharing.

Share coke

Cover image courtesy of Mike Mozart,

Is Bitcoin a Bit-con?

Of all the talk over the past month about failing currencies and bailouts, there seems to be a virtual light at the end of the tunnel in the shape of Bitcoin. The digital currency has shared the headlines in recent days alongside a certain nuclear-laden despot with news that it has been valued at $1Bn. The turn in fortune of Bitcoin has been nothing short of astounding; in 2011, 1 Bitcoin was valued at $2. Today, 1 Bitcoin is worth an incredible $139, and it’s largely thanks to the uncertain economic climate in the wake of the Cypriot meltdown. More and more people are starting to view Bitcoin as a more secure form of money.

The concept of Bitcoin is a lot simpler than it appears. It is defined as an alternative currency and many sites online use it as their preferred currency, including Reddit. As opposed to ‘normal’ currency, there is no central banking.  On the face of it, Bitcoins are no different to the Pound or the Euro. All currencies have a value so long as it is traded. If people were to stop trading Bitcoins, the value would reduce to zero, much as the Pound or Euro would.

Whether or not Bitcoin will become a prominent part of our lives is yet to be seen. Though interest is undoubtedly sky-high at the moment, people see it merely as the ‘Harlem Shake of money’; a fad that will disappear from our minds as quickly as it arrived.

There is also a sinister side to the currency. As it is untaxed and pretty untraceable, there are certainly criminal undertones that can be very easily exploited by those who want to. Either way, given the ever-present uncertainty of today’s financial system,-which every week seems to be reaching new lows-Bitcoin’s big secret is out. But is it a bubble that is about to burst?


Image courtesy of Jason Benjamin,

Social Networks Vital For Professional Success

Social media has changed the landscape of looking for a job – it is now no longer about looking for a job, social media allows a job to look for you.

Since 2008, LinkedIn has become integral for business executives and due to the increasing importance of your digital footprint… others such as Facebook and Twitter are in close pursuit. It is possible for a whole recruitment process to be done and dusted online and many recruiters are now forgoing traditional methods of sourcing candidates. In addition, Research shows that over 90 percent of hiring managers will look at your LinkedIn profile, so it is increasingly important that you have a near perfect profile. Twitter is also a great resource for both candidates and employers; due to its real-time nature it is vital for freelance/last-minute vacancies and ‘spreading the word’.

Your LinkedIn profile should be an extension of your CV, including a professional profile picture and all the extra information that won’t fit on your CV. Although securing recommendations and endorsements are important, the keywords you select to include in your profile are critical. If you have created a great profile and used the right SEO keywords you will rank higher on general Internet searches (the easiest way to determine which keywords get the largest number of hits is by using the Google Adwords Keyword Tool – focusing on skill words with numbers in the midrange). Also look at how others in your industry are marketing themselves, especially the words they are using to highlight their skill-set. Your profile photo is also an immensely important feature, make sure you are dressed as though you are going to a job interview and that your personality shows through your smile. Be proactive… constantly make connections and upload/comment on key industry articles.

Social media channels are a fantastic way to shout about your presence, showcase your talents, show the world what you look like, and share your thoughts. But make sure you are always monitoring your digital footprint. If your Twitter profile (or any alternative Social Profile) is easily found ensure that you are happy for your tweets to be seen by a potential employer – candidates may be rejected because of the content on their personal pages.

Here at The PHA Group we always post job openings on Twitter and LinkedIn so make sure you are following us!

Is That My Instagram in My Klout Score?

Instagram images will finally play a role in your Klout score. Although you have been able to connect your Instagram account to Klout for some time. Your Instagram influence did not play a role in your overall Klout score, until now.
Your Instagram images will now join the likes of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to measure your social influence. Your most influential updates will feature in the ‘Your Moments’ section of your Klout profile.
Klout is a San Francisco based company that provides social media analytics to measure a users influence their social network. Measuring the size of your network, the content created, and how others react to that content. Klout scores range from 1 to 100, with higher scores corresponding to a higher social influence.
In addition, Bing has been made a Klout partner that will result in high-profile influencers having their scores displayed on search results. So if you are searching for a particular individual you can see at a glance not only their score, but also where their influence lies.
Here in the digital PR team, our personal accounts increased by an average of 3, thanks Instagram. Has your score been affected?
Image courtesy of: Kevin Sablan,

Looking Vine: New App Is Growing On Social Media Users

unnamed (1)Another month, another new app. This latest one, however, may just be a sleeping giant. The Twitter-backed Vine allows users to record six-second long clips and upload them instantly to social media.  Think tweeting, but in video form. Released last month, Vine already has a thriving support base and plans are afoot to launch a version for Andriod.

The basis of Vine is very simple. You simply launch the app, press the ‘create’ button and record away; there is no play/pause button, nor an opportunity to edit or ‘scrub’ the clip. Once recorded, you upload to Twitter and wait for great fanfare.

Not only is Vine a fun app to share amongst friends, the potential for brands is huge. In short, it’s another social media opportunity for marketers. The likes of Gap and Malibu have already shared their first Vine video, and the simple nature of the app means that creativity and quirkiness are key.

Social Video has never been an attractive feature for social media users. People prefer a simple tweet or a Facebook status to share their thoughts and whereabouts. Vine is threatening to change all that. Instead of tagging your location on Facebook, for example, a Vine user may rattle together a very brief clip detailing what they’re up to.

From a brands point of view, Vine can be used to great effect. Behind the scenes, clips are a popular way of creating more intimacy and interacting with your audience. Although six seconds may be a brief time-limit, it’s more than enough time to show off your product, and so it’s up to brands to decide how best to present themselves.

Pretty soon, we may not be able to walk down the street without passing someone Vine-ing away, but the potential for exposure is great and so it’s undoubtedly worth keeping an eye on.


The ‘Kate Effect’. How Can Beauty and Fashion PRs Maximise on the Princess’s Popularity?

Last week Kate Middleton hit the headlines again. Not with Royal visit news and not with pregnancy rumours but for a haircut. Whilst the Duchess’s re-style was nothing particularly drastic (the addition of a heavy side-swept fringe), her ‘new-do’ covered inches of magazine, newspaper and website space. As a result, her new choice of bangs is the perfect opportunity for beauty PRs to promote their own products and services for the thousands of copy-Kates wanting an easy way to achieve her new look.

Image Courtesy of MGMER, flickr. com

Image Courtesy of MGMER, flickr. com

It is estimated that Kate Middleton is worth £16bn to the UK fashion industry. Not only does she have a direct impact on the fashion companies whose clothes she wears, (Whistles, Reiss, Alice Temperley and so on…)  the ‘Kate Effect’ also impacts those companies who sell items of clothing similar to what she wears.

This is obviously facilitated by online social media and technological developments. Twitter ensures that we know what Kate is wearing as soon as she is wearing it. It is therefore important that Digital PRs for fashion and beauty brands are vigilant of what Kate wears and when. Furthermore, since the announcement of her engagement to Prince William back in November 2010, What Kate Wore has been the source of all of Kate’s public wardrobe choices, with links to buy each of the items. Most of these items sell out in hours, allowing for copy-Kate versions from more affordable retailers to thrive.

Moreover, it is not only the fashion world feeling Kate’s influence, but that of the beauty world as well. Kate’s fuller eyebrows have sparked a trend for £5,000 eyebrow implants and eyebrow thickening gel. One Harley Street clinic spoke out about the rise in patients wanting to undergo implant surgery. Eyebrow cosmetic products are up 600% as women rush to recreate the Duchess’s full bushy brow. It is important that for the world of Beauty PR to react to this consumer trend and anticipate the Kate-trends to maximise exposure for their clients.

PHA responded to the Duchess’s ‘new do’ with a press release promoting a new volumising product, which saw excellent cut through. With the majority of the media focused on Kate, it’s important to react and pre-empt this to ensure that your client’s products/services are associated and promoted in association with the nation’s most treasured icon.

Natwest Social Media Crisis – The Importance of Immediacy in a Social Media Crisis

In the digital age we live in, when we are not happy with the service a company has provided us, more often than not we turn to Facebook and Twitter to seek immediate support.  But what happens when the right information isn’t readily available to us?

natwest-5 A new report from Birdsong:  Social Media Reconnaissance reveals a number of failings by Natwest in actively supporting its customers via Twitter during the IT collapse in late June.  Despite the surge in followers and influx of mentions of @natwest_help, extended branch hours and weekend openings, the bank’s Twitter account did not actively extend its social media presence or increase replies until very late on in the crisis, choosing a ‘business as usual approach’.

The new report from Bird Song: Social Media Reconnaissance showed numerous elements which shows that Natwest failed to increase its Twitter support to match the measures taken by branch staff and call centres.

As the problems unfolded, the followers of @Natwest_Help escalated at a rapid rate, growing by over 200% during the crisis, taking the bank from one of the least followed to one of the most followed UK bank accounts.  During this time the number of mention @natwest_help grew 8 times more than its original amount.

The report also reveals the slow reaction time from the bank.  Despite the influx in followers and mentions, the bank maintained standard tweeting hours of 9-5 at a time when branches were being opened later.  It took a week for the bank to start maintaining a later presence on Twitter, until 7p.m.

In addition to this, for the weekend that the bank opened, the Twitter account was left to broadcast automated messages, offering no active support, only a link to direct followers to online help.  The tweet alone generated 800 links ( of people seeking support.

This has also been the case for both Virgin Atlantic and British Airways in December 2010 and was the case for O2 last week.  Since the start of the national coverage disruption, the @O2 account has grown by 50%.

National crises such as the Natwest fiasco, demonstrate just how dependent we are on the web and computer networks, and the ability to adapt to the consequences of a major systems breakdown.  Therefore it is imperative that companies such as Natwest act immediately, enforcing a social media strategy that would see to support those who have been affected.  Putting social media on the back burner could have a detrimental effect on the reputation of the brand, resulting in a leap of unwanted negative comments, which ultimately could lead to customers taking their business elsewhere.


Cover image courtesy of lamoix,


 The social pin-boarding site has only been on the social scene for two years (not even a year yet in the UK), and already it’s taking the digital world by storm – doubling its number of unique visitors to 4 million since January.

In case you’re not familiar with the site, Pinterest is a place to organise and share online images that you may find interesting or inspiring.  Once uploaded or shared on Pinterest, these images become known as ‘pins’, which the user can place on customised themed boards.

Some people use the site to share images they find on the web, while others use the site from a more creative perspective. For example, many artists use Pinterest to arrange inspiring images for their work. While bakers may use the social networking site to showcase images of their creative cake collection and interior designers could use it as a platform for different design themes.

Brands, on the other hand, are using it to communicate to their audience through the use of images that best reflect what the brand is currently up to.  An example of a brand that is using Pinterest particularly well is Ikea.

The Swedish furniture store has 15 pin boards, including product ideas and ‘pin it to win it’ competitions hosted weekly – a great way to get people engaged and grow their existing community.

The site uses striking images to represent theme ideas for different rooms.  Some of the images also include price information for each product, so it essentially acts as an extension of its catalogue.

One of its more eye-catching boards for its ‘True Blue’ product range is inspired by Indian Culture, this however, doesn’t seem to be linked to its homepage which could minimise their efforts.