In the outside world: March 8th

And so another Friday rolls around. Time flies when you’re having fun!

Think about getting people to be part of what you do

Google partners with Volkswagen to launch Smileage, a mobile app and web service where you can add photos and videos taken by you and your co-passengers during a road trip, to a live interactive map. An excerpt: “The app measures the fun factor of each trip using a metric called “smileage,” based on signals like weather, traffic, location, time and social interactions (e.g., a long drive on a sunny Saturday afternoon might accumulate more smileage than a morning commute in the snow). You can use it with any car, not just Volkswagens.” It’s getting a lot of positive press.

Volkswagen_Smileage_OGB

The Guardian in the US has launched ‘Voice Your View’, a site for people to vote about what they think on various political, economic, social issues of the day.

Zeebox in the US held a live chat with a contestant of The Biggest Loser TV show.

Tourism Australia has relaunched the ‘Best Job in the World’ campaign with 6 jobs available this time, each for 6 months at a salary of £67,000. Almost too good to be true!

A nice new iPhone app some of you might have heard of, which helps you make T-shirts, vests and hoodies more fun by printing your Instagram photos on them: Exposed.

Tweets will power Doritos’ 62-foot vending machine concert stage at SXSW Music Festival in Austin next week.

Skittles pits you against a random opponent to play a digital version of ‘Rock Paper Scissors’ (called, you guessed it, Rock Paper Skittles!) after you hold up a skittle in front of a web cam and it recognises the colour.

Think about being authentic as a brand

Fab.com does a wonderful thing by assessing whether you’ve opened their marketing emails or not, and if you haven’t done that too often they automatically unsubscribe you.

Brand partnerships

The Marriott group of hotels is launching a new chain of hotels called Moxy, in partnership with Ikea. Ikea won’t be supplying furniture in the usual way, but came up with new ways of construction such as pre-fabricating entire rooms offsite for assembly later, like Ikea furniture.

General

Sony Mobile’s efforts to shine brighter have not gone unnoticed.

An interview with The Economist’s Global Digital Publisher on creating good user experiences across multiple platforms, including how they work with advertisers.

Great summary of The Economist’s Technology Frontiers conference earlier this week on the relationship between humans and machines: some great quotes from the speakers (thanks Katy Garner-Foy for the link).

Links courtesy of Anjali Ramachandran (@anjali28), Head of Innovation

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