Twitter skin making you hungry?

We have created a new Twitter skin for Macsween Haggis and a few of you have sent us messages saying that it makes you feel hungry just looking at it! That’s good news! If you haven’t already done so, answer our 3 easy peasy 6 Nations questions on the site and you could win a week’s worth of lovely Macsween 1 Minute Haggis – and with lots of recipes and pics to go with it, we are sure you will enjoy your prize!

Oh and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter

New Macsween Twitter skin

The only slice Chris Paterson likes is…..Macsween 1 minute haggis!

Chris Paterson, Scottish and indeed World rugby legend did a wee shoot with us recently for our lovely client Macsween Haggis.

Check it out below…..and if you haven’t done already take some time to find out about the most delicious haggis in the land!

Gmail Introducing a new feature?

Google is about drive another of its products in the realm of social media.   Gmail will soon be evolving into a content and status update tool for you and your friends.     It has been rumoured that these features are due to be implemented onto the product soon, with announcements imminent.

The biggest anticipation will be around, will the new feature target Google owned products such as YouTube, or be opened out to popular social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter.

Gmail has been primarily based around email contacts, Gmail saves all email contactsinto a contact list to enable functions such as Gmail chat; what the key issue here will be how will Google develop that relationship between your email contacts and those you actually want to share your status timeline with?    The world of social media waits anxiously for the official announcement from Google until then everything is guesswork, however with Google driving one of its biggest products, this new feature is expected not to disappoint.

Julie Ferguson Organic Search

Real Time Web – Real Life Stories

The “real-time” web or “real-time” search results and social media are something that is becoming synonymous with modern day search.   But what impact is this having on the social landscape.  Never before have had we had such information available to us with content and information no longer running in “traditional formats” such as television or newspapers.     In the modern technological age of the internet, news can surface from thousands of sources including twitter, blogs and social networking sites.

The digital landscape has evolved and what we now deem as news and how we share that news has also evolved. We are now in the era of citizen journalism where the news is factual or non factual, real time information, updates and feeds from events are being distributed to the world.   We no longer have to wait until the mid evening news bulletin, or the first edition of the national newspaper to get the latest news; we are getting news updates whether we want it or not.

There are thousands examples I could run through to highlight the change in modern news but I want to highlight a new band of Journalism, know as “Citizen Journalism” this is being propelled to the forefront of today’s news.  The next three stories are examples of “citizen journalism” and how news has been distributed to the world via these sources;

With the integration of real time results into Google organic listings; Twitter updates or (tweets) are a primary source of information.   Take the Fort Hood shooting last year in the United States of America.    This army base was ordered into lock down and army workers and soldiers were instructed to have no communication with the outside world.   However, one soldier took it upon herself to send twitter updates with “blow by blow” account of what was happening within the base.  Traditionally this information would never have been available to the outside media, there would have only be an “official statements” from army officials.

So from this one soldier, the world’s media and indeed the world were told of a terrorist attack within one if its own army bases.  It was only after Twitter updates were released that CNN picked up on the story and the world was then informed of key events.   Later it was discovered that the soldiers chain of events were in fact untrue, however by that point the world didn’t care, they just wanted the story.

YouTube has been a long standing source of entertainment for internet users; however a more sinister aspect of the channel is videos appearing of a more disturbing nature; take the example of the shooting of Neda Agha Soltan’s a young Iranian woman gunned down in the middle of a busy street, due to her political outbursts around the government of Iran.  The world’s media were prohibited from filming in Iran so therefore no official media source could have captured the video of the shooting; however, the brutal killing was videoed and shared with the world.

The cameraman was not a professional reporter, but rather an ordinary person, just like the victim. And what did he do when he saw a young girl bleeding to death? Did he run for help, or try to assist in stemming the bleeding? No he didn’t.  Instead he pointed his camera at her and recorded her suffering, moving in closer to her face for her agonising final seconds. For all of our talk of citizen journalism, and getting the truth out, the last thing that terrified girl saw before she closed her eyes for the final time was some guy pointing a camera phone at her. “Look at me, looking at her, looking back at me”

The world’s most popular website; with over 250 million users most of us on a daily basis in fact for some this is their first activity when they wake up.    This was certainly the case for two twins from Sydney, Australia.   Being their birthday they woke to check their Facebook, expecting multiple birthday wishes from friends, however this day they were met with a more disturbing message.   Their live feeds where bombarded with “RIP Bobby (their brother) and RIP Chris Naylor (his friend).   To their shock they contacted their mother who in turn called the Police, who confirmed every mother’s worst nightmare, that her son Bobby and his friend Chris have been killed instantly in a car accident the night before.  Such is the growth of social media that the Police official chain of command could not reach the mother or the family prior to the viral effect of the web kicking in.

All three examples are very different but all contain the same message; the world has to evolve with online developments.    The internet is growing at an unstoppable rate and with it so is social media and real time information.   There is still a need for quality journalism and quality news however users expectations are changing and at the moment offline publications are not meeting that demand.  Official sources such as news broadcasters, governments and judicial departments have to understand that they have to move with the pace of change or risk being left behind. Social Media and Real Time will continue grow the question is how long will it take offline channels to catch up.

Julie Ferguson Organic Search

Macsween Haggis shoot with rugby ace Chris Paterson

The Storm digital marketing team are very excited at the prospect of  filming with Chris Paterson (the Scottish rugby legend!) tomorrow at Murrayfield. This is for client Macsween Haggis to promote the new 1 minute haggis product and we hope to have some great footage which will be available online soon.

Watch this space! In the meantime, if you’ve not registered on the Macsween site already – be quick! If you are among first 500 to do so since Monday, you will get 10 packs of delicious 1 minute haggis! Yummmmmm.

Google Xistence – making your life easier one app at a time

Was the last time you tweeted before Christmas? Have your blog posts got lost in the post? Can you no longer face Facebook? All that virtual socialising seems like such a chore once the novelty has worn off.  But have no fear, those helpful chaps and chapesses at Google have come up with Google Xistence – the answer to your prayers.  Now you can lead a full and complete virtual life, virtually.

A tremendous parody, Google Xistence claims it will post updates for you, make friends, tweet and take all the pressure out of being someone. Now you can play Warcraft, watch endless HBO box sets and generally footer with impunity, knowing your virtual self is in safe and ubiquitous hands.

Apparently Google wasn’t hugely entertained by this insightful bit of nonsense – the site has been added to their official phishing sites for Firefox and Chrome. Maybe they need to launch GoogleSenseofHumour©

Perfect Storm join Storm ID!

We have some exciting news at Perfect Storm for a Tuesday! Some of you may or may not be aware of the fact that Storm ID (leading full service digital agency) had a shareholding in PS. Well after a very successful financial year for Perfect Storm and some even more successful projects, many of them joint projects with the guys at Storm, we have decided to become a fully fledged brand spanking new division of Storm ID!

We still have the same great staff working across search (paid and natural), social media, media planning and buying, affiliates, lead generation, eCRM, strategy and creative, we are now just part of a much bigger team! The new digital marketing team has been set up alongside the existing specialist divisions within Storm ID – business, creative and technical.

So, same great service, same faces but we now have a whole new set of colleagues who are all pretty much gurus in what they do, which means we have some great expertise to draw on when we need it. We have also worked with Storm on many joint projects over the past couple of years and so it feels like a very natural progression for PS. And since the start of January, we have already been working away on new projects and clients as Storm ID so all is good!

We will continue to work from our West End of Glasgow office in Haugh Road but will now be also working in Storm HQ at the Corn Exchange in Leith for part of the week.

So, business as usual, just a slightly different name and a whole new set of digital colleagues!


Macsween Haggis in the news!

Our lovely client at Macsween Haggis have been in the news lots over the past few days (oh, Happy Burns day today!). Have a look:

And it seems that all those haggis lovers out there are desperate to get their hands on a free pack of delicious Macsween 1 minute haggis. We’ve had over 1,000 entries now! So get entering if you’ve not done already.

And if you’re not already following Macsween on twitter – do it today!

Inner Beauty….Yeah right!!!

Who said inner beauty counts? There is not such a thing according to American based social networking   They recently dropped 5,000 members from their site, deeming them as “having let themselves go” over the festive period.   The site prides itself on being exclusively for the beautiful community and founder Robert Hintze stated “letting fatties roam the site is a direct threat to our business model and the very concept for which was founded”

In the competitive world of online, this was a genius move from Hintz, his controversial comments and statements, succeeded in making the 5th most visited website within social networking and increased its traffic 50 fold in the first week in January, see chart below.

This is a classic example of how controversial PR can benefit your company or organisation. Controversial issues will always create an online stir and the viral effect can be phenomenal, as was the case with

Julie Ferguson, Organic Search

Google to withdraw from China?

Google has announced that it may cease operating its site due to a highly sophisticated cyber attack originating in the country. Google

The attack on Google was directed towards the Gmail accounts of known Chinese Human Rights Activists.   Perpetrators were only able to access limited information including, initiation of the account and email subject matters, no email content was accessed.  This co-ordinated attack also led to the discovery of other phishing scams and malware being placed on the users of Gmail accounts in US, China and Europe, which again targeted “advocates of human rights in China” has been subject to severe censorship enforced by the Chinese Government, working closely with censorship officials; Google has established a strong position within the Chinese search engine market; however this move will have major Google shareholders concerned, with substantial revenues at stake.

So how will this impact Google and other search engines?

The Search Engine Market in China is worth around $1 billion dollars, with Google predicted to make $600 million 2010. currently sits number 2 in China behind Chinese search engine Baidu, which forms the closest relationship with Chinese Government around areas of censorship.

The Chinese search engine market is competitive and is subject to strict censorship laws; however the financial gains if successful are substantial. The decision from the world’s biggest search engine to withdraw will inevitably cause other search engines to revaluate their position.   This is a bold move by Google; however, will they follow through? Or is an attempt to get the Chinese Government to form a stronger alliance with the world’s number 1 search engine. Watch this space……

Julie Ferguson, Organic Search