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Unlock your Facebook sweepstakes and other promotions for mobile users

March 28th, 2013

Facebook on mobile devices is the new normal. Did you know over 2/3 of all Facebook users access the leading social network on their mobile devices? Plus, over 15% are mobile-only browsers. We’ve found smartphones are now the leading device for many of our new client Likes. Overall, Facebook’s mobile app is one of the most popular across all smartphones and tablets.

Facebook is also stepping up availability for mobile advertising space. About 23% of all Facebook ads are displayed only mobile devices. But there’s a missing link between all of this mobile activity and your customers: did you know your most important sweepstakes, games or other promotions can’t be viewed on their mobile devices?

Facebook mobile stats Read the rest of this entry »

Super Bowl 2013 – A 2nd Screen Experiment

February 4th, 2013

TV Advertising was said to be dead a few years ago. Life after the 30-Second Spot by Joseph Jaffe was only one publication that comes to mind but the talk was everywhere. Yet, advertisers paid close to four million for 30-second spots at yesterday’s Super Bowl.

The increased online hype around the ads running during the game has helped to drive demand up. Some of them had millions of views prior to the game, did get 10,000′s of mentions on Twitter during the event and their lifespan extends far into the future.

I was particularly interested in any 2nd screen activities during the game.

Just in case the term is not familiar to you: In very simple terms 2nd screen can be defined as an additional device with a display that lets you interact with the content you are watching on your TV.

I decided to fully dive in and had my tablet, smartphone and laptop fired up. Here are some of my findings: Read the rest of this entry »

2013 fads versus substantial developments

December 31st, 2012
RepRap v.2 'Mendel' open-source FDM 3...

RepRap v.2 ‘Mendel’ open-source FDM 3 (source: Wikipedia)

As marketers we are dealing with trends for the future. We always ought to have our focus on separating between substantial developments that can’t be missed and fads that one might better sit out in order to focus on more relevant developments.

Of course the issue of timing is another critical factor. Of course we are early adopters by nature but we need to keep in ind that our clients have a fairly mainstream audience and that many trends will take time time to catch mainstream. This can be due to the lack of hardware penetration (smart phones) or due to slow shifts in users behavior. For example, we at conceptbakery always knew that Facebook would eventually become the market leader for social networks in Germany but we had to patiently wait until people were ready to make the move from the StudiVZ Networks before we could pitch campaigns for mainstream audiences to our clients.

If we look back at 2012 it was full of events but our professional world wasn’t too loaded in terms of breakthrough technologies or other game changers. Yes Pinterest and Instragram were the two rising stars. Twitter’s nature has changed in its process of maturing and focusing more on their bottom line. Facebook went public and had to deal with subsequent struggles. Google + has continued to be a rather lackluster addition to the mix of social media playgrounds. The iPhone 5 and the iPad mini are more evolutions of existing products to us than main trendsetters or game changers and product like Google Project Glass are still in their experimental phase.

Let’s take a little look into the crystal ball and see what could happen in 2013: Read the rest of this entry »

A branded visual content theorem on Slideshare

December 5th, 2012

We were very pleased to see when our latest slideshow was chosen to be the pick of the day on Slideshare.net last week. It deals with the power of images and how to make them work for you. For your reference we embedded it here. Feel free to download and share it with your network.

[slideshare id=15373212&doc=presentationrevised-2-121127122545-phpapp02]

Flickr, why are you letting Pinterest steal your lunch money?

March 29th, 2012

Flickr vs PinterestFlickr was created in 2004, was acquired by Yahoo in 2005, had 51 million registered users as of June 2011, and hosts a total of over 6 billion images. It also has over 80 million unique visitors per month.

Image sharing site Pinterest just came out of beta a year ago and has taken the Internet by storm over the last 5 months, beating Flickr’s in-site traffic statistics (based on unique visitors per month). Pinterest’s concept is simple: users can create boards and pin pictures to it. Those pictures can come from anywhere, unless a site blocks its content to be used on Pinterest.

Jeez, Flickr!!!

You’ve been around forever. You also have a loyal userbase actually uploading original content, instead of merely sharing pictures from third-party sites they usually don’t own.

Why do you sit there and just watch this happen? There are many ways you could take on Pinterest. For example, how about inviting your users to an opt-in pool where they can let other Flickr users share their pictures on their boards? You won’t even have to pay them! Offer them some status rewards such as badges for their accomplishments (for total pins, number of pictures that were pinned or re-pinned and so on).

Make Flickr more social! Haven’t you noticed the focus on the entire web has massively shifted towards images? And aren’t you aware of the gigantic amount of original content you are sitting on? Instead of focusing on that, you’re letting you bosses turn into patent trolls and engage in a pointless battle with Facebook? You are watching a start-up with a dozen people take over a market you  should own with hardly any effort needed? Seriously, what are you guys smoking?

I’ll take everything back if you come out with a convincing master plan within the next two weeks.

How to add an app to a Facebook Page tab (Simple Form Solution)

March 15th, 2012

Facebook Page owners! Are you trying to add an App to a Facebook page? It used to be done with just a simple link click, but Facebook removed the easy “Add to Page” option in the App menu for some reason.

Facebook recommends you use the following URL and manually type in the values:

https://www.facebook.com/dialog/pagetab?app_id=YOUR_APP_ID &display=popup&next=YOUR_URL

On March 15, 2012, they announced this new one-click way, but you must create an App community page to use it. It’s also in the process of being rolled out and not available to everyone. Not exactly an easier solution.

There’s an easier way!

Simply input your info into the form below. You will be redirected and asked to choose the preferred Page(s) for the App.

You can use this form to add an App to any Facebook Page you own.

How to add an app

1. Go to Facebook Developers > Apps. Select your desired App.

2. Find the below information in the Apps > Settings > Information area.

3. Fill out the form below. Click Submit.

4. On the next screen, choose your desired Page(s) to add the App as a Tab.


    App Input Form

  • Your App ID/API Key:
  • Your Secure Canvas URL (or Canvas URL if no secure available):

Not sure where to find your App ID/API key and Secure Canvas URL? See the graphic below. Click to make it bigger.

Where to find the info needed for the form.


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What does engaging content for Facebook Timelines mean in plain English?

March 14th, 2012

Timeline for Facebook Pages was introduced on February 29th. The new format becomes mandatory for all Pages on March 30st.

The topic has been widely discussed on the web already. Nearly every post you will read about Facebook Timeline will stress how important “engaging” content is with the new format. Of course, engaging content has always been important, but Timeline is ripe for new opportunities. Throughout this post, I’ll illustrate a few ways to spice it up. I’ll also explain the main changes of this makeover.

The focus of this post is to provide ideas and strategies to build and manage your Timeline, as well as the still existing remainder of your Facebook Page. Maybe it can also help with figuring out what engaging content really means for you. If you are already familiar with all the updates, you can skip a good portion of this post. Just look for the bold TIPS to find my suggestions .

If you look at any Page that has adopted the Timeline format, you’ll see a much stronger emphasis on visual elements. The first and most noticeable one is the Timeline “Cover Photo”.  Its size is 851px by 315px, much bigger than the (maximum) 180px by 540px picture in the left column of the old format.

The option to set up a default landing tab for first time visitors of your page is gone. So this image is the first visual impression visitors will get of your page. Do we still need to talk about the importance of a first impression?

Facebook’s Cover Photo Rules state some important limitations of what you can NOT include in your cover photo.

i. price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Download it on socialmusic.com”;

ii. contact information such as a website address, email, mailing address, or information that should go in your Page’s “About” section;

iii. references to Facebook features or actions, such as “Like” or “Share” or an arrow pointing from the cover photo to any of these features; or

iv. calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends.” Read the rest of this entry »

A few random thoughts on the famous bill causing sites to go black today

January 18th, 2012


SOPA Resistance Day!

Image by ~C4Chaos via Flickr

Usually we as conceptbakery try to hold back with out political opinions and respect the diversity of our audience. But today is a day where marketers and nearly all other web users can’t really ignore politics. We’re being called to action by sites like Wikipedia, Google or reedit. We wish we were influential enough to turn our site black to make a difference in the SOPA / PIPA discussion. The least we can do is publish this little note.


Trying to just read the law and making full sense out of it is pretty pointless unless you have a very in-depth understanding of the US legal system. We (including the politicians voting on it) have to rely on interpretations of experts. For starters, Chris Heald @Mashable broke it down fairly well.

There are many creative ways of protesting taking place today. The Oatmeal is one that made us smile.

In general we like info graphics. Americancensorship.org has a good one.

OUR TAKE
Information Technology is one of the few innovative growth sectors left in the US. With SOPA/PIPA, we’d make many creators’ lives on the web prohibitively complicated.

By passing this law, our politicians in Washington D.C. would hand over the key to becoming the new lead culture on the web to some other country that wants to grab it. That in return would also hurt Hollywood, which is standing behind SOPA/PIPA. The overall value of our entertainment industry would diminish, as the US itself would diminish. Read the rest of this entry »

Are you missing out on Google Plus?

November 9th, 2011


Google Plus logo

Image by Bruce Clay, Inc via Flickr


I was at Blogworld in Los Angeles last week and a lot of the conversation circled around Google+. Chris Brogan gave a keynote speech and has already written a soon-to-be-published book about it. Keynote partner Guy Kawasaki suggested Facebook is for friends and family and Google + is for connecting with people you don’t know (yet), but have common interests with.

I agree with Guy’s evaluation of Facebook. It works best between people with an existing personal connection. He also said brand pages have also become an essential part of Facebook and offer marketers the opportunity to leverage on the wide array of personal data.

I’m not sure about the second part of his statement. I think many of us are still struggling to understand what Google + really is and what part it will play in our personal and professional lives.

Google already has many great services starting with Gmail, Docs, Calendar, Reader, Maps, Wallet and more, stretching all the way to YouTube and Picasa. (And let’s not forget Chrome and Android!) Google+ will unfold its full power if all these pieces are intelligently being stitched together. There have been some great articles about the potential of a Google social network and tips how to benefit from it, and I’ll try not to be too repetitive or broad.

Will it become a viable alternative to Facebook?
Some early adopters are migrating their efforts from other platforms to to Google+. But unlike some 3-4 years ago, that’s not the bulk of the social web users any more. The migration dynamics would be quite different this time around. This much bigger herd of today is more likely to stay at its current meadow and eat the grass already there, not the grass on the next mountain just to see if it tastes any better. The average social network member will gravitate towards the use of  one platform. S/he will be where their friends are. And for the foreseeable future that happens to be Facebook. This is also key for marketers that want to reach a wider audience. As much as the quality of conversations matter, we also need to reach a critical mass in quantity for many campaigns to make sense. Read the rest of this entry »

Three 2012 Mobile Trends

September 28th, 2011

Note by Klaus: Josh Ortega used to work for Apple and has an extensive mobile phone background. I asked him what he sees as the biggest trends in mobile phones for 2012 from his perspective.


OREM, UT - FEBRUARY 3: Two signs hang in windo...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife


Smartphones have changed dramatically since 2007 when the original iPhone was released. The birth of the consumer smartphone opened up a new era of mobility and spawned a crazy arms race that only benefits us as consumers. Five short years ago few would have had the foresight to know that mobile apps would be as immensely popular as they are, that we could video chat with our phones and that we could connect with millions of people through social networks or games from our pocket. The smartphone market has changed so dramatically that an iPhone, Android, etc. phone is literally a viable option for anybody, wether you are young/old, rich/poor, business/personal or educated/non-educated.

As developed as the smartphone market is today, there’s no telling what we as consumers could see three to five years from now. The next major development in the smartphone landscape is the idea of a “world” phone. Phone carriers still control a lot of the choices we have as consumers because they largely carry their own specific phones built for their network and technology standards. A “world” phone would create a singular device that would work on any carrier in the world. Meaning if you currently owned an iPhone but wanted to switch to Verizon you could, whereas before you would have to buy a completely new phone.

On the software side, the threat of viruses and malware on the mobile space threatens to change how we use our devices. The amount of malware on smartphones has risen by 76 percent and mobile users are largely unprepared. The future will show if Google, Apple, etc will change its software or if consumers will have to change their habits;  more likely both will occur.

Malware and Carrier concerns are going to be continuing developments over the next 10 years. Let’s speculate on some technological advancements that we might see in 2012, some that are further down the road and a couple items on my wish list. Read the rest of this entry »

our nine year anniversary

September 24th, 2011
Felix & Klaus at the start of conceptbakery

Felix and Klaus at the birthday of conceptbakery in Santa Monica 09/24/02

It’s been 9 years today since my brother Felix and I started conceptbakery at a sunny day in Los Angeles. We are getting ready for our first big anniversary next year and will certainly keep some beans in the bank for that day.

Felix is flat out the best business partner I could have ever thought of. He is the person I can blindly trust. Being a 50/50 partner in everything we do has and will never be a problem. Whenever we differ about a subject the eventual outcome will be better than if the conversation wouldn’t have taken place. He is one of the sharpest and most dedicated and focused people you’ll ever meet. It has been pretty amazing to see my youngest brother grow into one of the leading thinkers of modern day marketing in Germany.  I’d wish all business alliances would work that well. Many corporate lawyers would have to look for new things to do, like doing some social media marketing and joining our team.

From the days were Felix and I worked both at home on our desks in Los Angeles (before I moved to Denver) and Cologne we’ve grown to a team of 18.

A few words to the team
Every new member of conceptbakery has been adding more than just their work skills. You go the extra mile and guarantee the success of our company. It is you who should also feel proud today. Take a look at our client list and know that you own a piece of that. Getting them into the door might be a job Felix or I have taken care of. But keeping them as clients wouldn’t be possible without you.

I am privileged to work with all of you on both sides of the Atlantic. It doesn’t matter where you are. Our awesome people in Denver mean just as much to me as everyone in Cologne that I get to see twice per year.

Of course things are shifting a bit as we keep growing. But at the end each single one of you is close to Felix’s and my heart. If we can’t say that any longer then we are loosing what’s got us to where we are today. Read the rest of this entry »

Sample social media conversation with a small business owner

September 21st, 2011
Antique three-column full-keyboard cash register.

Image via Wikipedia

A recent post at eMarketer showed that many small businesses (SMB) are struggling with seeing real value in engaging in social media. In a survey, 43% stated using social media is not necessary to their business, 14% said they don’t know enough about it and 24% said they do it when they have time. Only a mere 12% stated social media is a must and they do it all the time. That’s only 1 in 8 business owners!

You or one of your friends might belong to the vast majority of these owners that are not serious social media marketers or chose to ignore it entirely. I’d would like to acknowledge you and say “I get it”. Whatever you’ve heard or learned about social media so far has, obviously, not made enough sense for you to make it a significant part of your marketing efforts.

Maybe you have heard about some of the success stories of smaller businesses on the web, but they sound like someone winning the lottery. Obviously, that’s not something you’d want to bet your business on.

However, there is value to social media for any business. My conversation with non-social media converts often follow a certain path, starting with a fairly general statement like this:


SMB: “I don’t have time or money for this and I don’t see how this applies to a small business owner like me.” Read the rest of this entry »

Mac App Store: winners and losers

January 7th, 2011
By launching the Mac App Store, Mr. Jobs has effectively taken control of the last piece of software development for the Mac world.

It is going to be hard to make a dime anywhere in the Apple ecosystem without handing a cut to Apple. Apple’s level of control now far exceeds the power Microsoft ever had in its heyday.

As an immediate impact, we will see that people will buy more software. The masses will be leaning toward tools that are in the “micro-payment” price range.

Developers will be tempted to cater to this audience. Software will be written simply for this purpose. Writing software to cater to the (non-existing) needs of a general audience is quite different than writing to a niche segment where you know who your audience is. Read the rest of this entry »

New Facebook Groups: How Could it Affect You?

October 7th, 2010

Facebook just gave its Groups feature a major overhaul. It has the potential to deeply affect user behavior. Facebook is claiming that this is a new cornerstone in their strategy and that new features built around this premise will going to follow.

This 2-minute video by Facebook covers what is new.

Here are some initial thoughts on what could change for you: Read the rest of this entry »

Happy 8th Birthday conceptbakery

September 24th, 2010

Eight years ago today, my brother Felix and I signed the incorporation documents and conceptbakery was born. Ten years prior to this date, the notion of working with my little brother wouldn’t have come to my mind, but 8 years later, I can safely say that it’s the best decision I could have made.

Starting as a team of two, one in each country, conceptbakery grew from there. Today,  we have an in-house staff of 14 and a great network of freelancers that make up our extended family. As a result of our growth, we set up new offices this year in both Cologne and Denver.

We began with one client project and now have a long list of amazing clients that let us do what we are best at: coming up with unique ideas and turning them into reality. A number of our relationships with long-term clients have become true partnerships.

The label of our work has changed. Eight years ago, we mostly talked about guerilla and community marketing. Today, we have more tools at hand. The terms word-of-mouth and social media marketing are often used to describe our work. At the end of the day, though, we are still doing the same thing:

We develop original stories that people like to share amongst each other. We build bridges between businesses and their audience, and we avoid planned advertising that could annoy people. We want to turn a passive audience into active participants in a dialog about a brand or product. We implement our campaigns by interlacing many different mediums — the more channels, the bigger the challenge and the fun.

Another element of our work is to pick up trends in the US and introduce them to Germany before they become mainstream. I still remember the first conversation I had with my brother about Twitter. I could almost hear him shaking his head over the phone. Six months later, a Twitter feed was on embedded one of our large German clients’ homepage.

Here’s a current example: Facebook Places is not yet live in Germany. We are able to play with it here in Denver and are ready to add it to our project flow in German the second Facebook lets us use it.

We have had plenty of ups and a couple of downs; mostly fun and laughter but also moments of disaster and frustration. Overall, we can look back at an awesome time and look forward to an exciting future.

A very special thanks is owed to our entire conceptbakery team. All of you are part of our extended family. Felix and I are happy about everyone that joins us and I love to see everyone’s face. In Denver and of course during my regular trips to our German office. You are awesome! We wouldn’t be where we are today without you!

Back to work…today we are shooting videos, working on two blogs and microsite, creating some t-shirt designs and various web graphics for a new campaign…good times.

Gotta have some cake in the midst of all of this, as well.