Fashion embracing blogs

Twingly integrations – part 1

Fashion sites have been fast on embracing the blogosphere. They are in general very good in supporting bloggers in the same way as supporting journalists in traditional media. They also stimulate the bloggers to link to them by linking back, as well as finding creative ways by sharing their pictures in an easy way.

halens1

Haléns, a Swedish fashion retailer with business in several countries, is on their front page using Twingly to show what products most bloggers have linked to during a certain time period. They also show the latest products that people have blogged about, which gives the visitors the latest buzz. It is a really nice integration showing pictures of the products.

Ellos

Ellos is another Nordic fashion retailer that links back to the bloggers by each product. This doesn’t only stimulate the bloggers but it also gives the visitors additional information about each product.

lindex3

Lindex was a pioneer in connecting with bloggers and was awarded most blog-friendly site in Sweden last year.

Not only using the same solutions like Haléns and Ellos, they also provide an html-code for each picture with a link to the product.

That makes it easy for the blogger to just copy the code into their blogpost. This spreads pictures of their products, and with more incoming links directly to their products, they get a better position in the search engines as well as generate traffic to their site and extra sales.

Rohnisch

A more niche retailer is Röhnisch who just recently launched their online shop of sportswear. They have designed their new shop to make it easy to blog about, and are also using Twingly to link back to bloggers.

veckorevyn1

Not only the retailers but also fashion magazines are connecting with blogs. Veckorevyn is the biggest magazine in Sweden targeted for women age 20-25 and is linking back to bloggers by editorial articles and fashion tips.

If you have other samples of how fashion sites are embracing the bloggers, please let us know.

Connecting the dots between old and new

The internet is not a channel, but a carrier of channels. That is a phrase that I’ve been using for ages. After working as a consultant with media companies for a few years, it still needs repeating now and then. And perhaps the phrase should be adapted to something more media related to make it stick: the internet is not distribution for your content, it is a carrier of channels for your content to be distributed in. And more importantly: you don’t have to own all of the channels.

Even when I worked at an online newspaper, I was always an internet person working with journalism – not a journalist working with the internet. This explained quite a lot of the discussions that we had at the newsroom. For me, us as an online newspaper were part of a greater whole. We were a part of the internet that happened to be focused on local news. For others, we were the only relevant news source on the internet. Just as the morning paper was the only relevant source of news at the breakfast table.

This was clearly no place for an internet person. I left, and started my own consultancy. In hindsight, I have thought of three fundamental things that we disagreed on. Things, facts actually, that I think old media needs to accept in order to adapt:

Before: Content was tightly interlinked with distribution
Now: Content is separated from distribution

Before: The journalist produced for the consumer
Now: Producer and consumer have merged

Before: Media was the only outlet for news
Now: Media is a small part of a bigger whole reporting on events

It may sound easy, but out of experience I can safely say that it isn’t. Accepting the facts above means completely redefining the role of your media company. That’s not going to happen over night, and arguably it shouldn’t either. It should be done in steps. The reason why I have chosen to join Twingly´s board is that I believe that they are one of those steps.

Think of it as a classic connect-the-dots puzzle. Each blog, social media or old media is a dot in the puzzle. Combined they give the full picture. That is how I think media is consumed by a modern person today. They combine several different news outlets and create their own selection.

If old media accepts the fact that they are a few dots, rather than being the finished picture themselves, then I think old and new media will have a fantastic future side by side. And Twingly will be there as one of the tools to help connect the dots together.

Twingly Among Top 7 Hottest Web Companies in Sweden

The Twingly Team (although Pontus is missing)

Twingly is one of the top 7 Internet companies in Sweden, according to a study co-published by Swedish weekly magazines Ny Teknik and Affärsvärlden (“New Technology” and “BusinessWorld” in English) . The study lists the top 33 hottest technology-driven companies in Sweden and seven of them (including Twingly) have their primary businesses on the web. The study does not give a ranking among the 33 companies.

It was very brisk this morning, far too cold to be comfortable this late in spring. But the sun was still shining down from a bright blue sky! Ny Teknik (one of the very few magazines that I subscribe to the paper version of) arrived to my door confirming the news that Twingly are among the top 33 hottest tech companies Sweden!

The top web companies in Sweden are according to the study (in alphabetical order):

The companies in the study were selected by the editorial staff att Ny Teknik and Affärsvärlden. Over a hundred companies were reviewed and interviewed in the study. Requirements for the reviewed companies were:

  • To develop a unique product or service
  • Have a large international potential and be a game-changer for their business sector
  • Based in Sweden
  • Be at the most seven years old (started in 2002 or later)
  • Privately owned

Out of the 33 companies, about 23 have external financing summing up to 1,2B SEK ($150M USD). Adjacent to the study, several of the VC companies were also interviewed, most of them stating that they currently have limited activity in early-stage financing. Twingly recieved Series A financing from Servisen in 2007. 

The other 26 top tech companies are (in alphabetical order):

It is an absolute honor and thrill to be selected among the top tech companies in Sweden. Although we’re not even half-way to accomplishing the technology and user-value we envision, receiving this kind of recognition always gives a great feeling!

Are we heading towards a new standard in customer relations?

We are heading towards something that might be a new standard in customer relations online. The old fashion way to communicate with companies let’s say if you have a suggestion is to look up the website, find a form to fill in, a number to call or an e-mail address to send your opinion to. Most likely knowing that you will not get any response.

The new standard could be to just tweet: “I would have bought a Canon EOS 40D if they were available in dark red instead of black only”. With Canon instantly replying “@bill_the_photographer Thanks a lot for your suggestion, it is passed on to product development. Phil, Canon.

Twingly response on TwitterJust by including the brand name Canon in the tweet, Canon should be notified of your request and respond instantly. Note that you as a customer should not need to keep track of the company’s user name, because it is much more in the company’s interest to keep track of their brand.

This will also help some part of current customer relation easier due to the limitation in length of the communication. Since the customer only has a limited number of letters to use, he also expects a response in the same short manner. Even though the communication at this level might be brief it will increase the companies’ goodwill and the companies that are not listening to this communication will eventually lack behind.

It is very easy for a company to set up this monitoring. Just go to the Twingly Microblog Search and do a search that is relevant for you, and add the result to your rss (to the right, “Subscribe to RSS”). Then you will get the entries in your regular rss-feed and can respond accordingly. By using the Twingly Microblog Search you can monitor all major microblog platforms.

With the massive number of posts featuring major brands it is of course difficult to keep track and follow up on everything. New services will be vital for larger brands to sort out and manage information. First they need to get posts with their brand sorted our correctly to be as relevant as possible.

Then they need to get them prioritized by monitoring the number of followers the user has, or the number of followers the user’s followers have, to track the user’s influence to also include the importance of potential re-tweets.  There is also a need for major companies to manage the replies to the tweets, so they can keep track internally. Several players in CRM is also keen on including microblog monitoring, like Salesforce that is about to include it in their product Service Cloud.

blogbild_090324_21

In the mean time before all this falls in place for the major companies, we challenge you to start to try this to increase your customer relations. Start monitoring your brand and you are more than welcome to tweet us samples of the responses you have given, and the effect you have achieved.

If you want to see how it works in action first, you are more than welcome to try with us. Just put the word Twingly in your tweet and see how fast we respond. It can be a general question, a question regarding specific search at Twingly.com or that you are just curious to get the average shoe size of the Twingly employees, or wants to know what color our CTO has on his car.

Twingly Web Slices and Accelerators for Internet Explorer 8

I got a call last week from a girl working at Microsoft here in Sweden. She asked us if we would like to be one of the first Swedish web sites with their new features web slices and accelerators when they are launching Internet Explorer 8 this week. We were in the middle of an iteration and had a lot of things to do but our CTO Björn gave it a try over the weekend and came up with some cool web slices and accelerators to show us. So we decided to make it work at Twingly.com and to be part of the IE8 release.

Microsoft launched Internet Explorer 8 today and our web slices and accelerators are working. You find them at the official gallery or at Twingly.com if you are using IE8.

Install Twingly Search Accelerator Install Twingly link Accelerator

So what can you do with Twingly’s web slices and accelerators?

Link accelerator
My personal favourite is the “blogs linking to this page”-link accelerator. When you are on a page and wonder if there’s any blog posts linking to that specific page, or a site if you’re on the front page, just right click and you will see a little box with the latest blog posts with links to that page. A lot like Twingly Blogstream but working on all sites.

If you want to install the link accelerator, go to Twingly’s front page when you are surfing with IE8 and click on “Install link accelerator”. Or simply click at the green button here in the blog post!


Twingly Link Accelerator

Web slices for search results
If you would like to monitor a search result at Twingly.com there’s RSS and Email Alerts for that purpose. From now there’s also web slices for users that are using IE8. Is working both for our blog search and microblog search and is found to the right when you are searching at Twingly.com under “With result”.


Web slice example for Twingly Blog Search


Web slice example for Twingly Microblog Search

Search accelerator
Search accelerator is a neat function that is searching for the word or sentence you have marked. If you for example are visiting a newspaper and are wondering what blogs are writing about “Twitter”, simply mark it and choose to search with Twingly. The easiest way to install Twingly search accelerator for IE8, go to Twingly’s front page when you are surfing with IE8 and click “Install search accelerator”. Or simply click on the large green button in this blog post!


Twingly Search Accelerator

Niclas Heurlin and Björn Jeffery new members of the board

We’re very pleased to welcome Niclas Heurlin and Björn Jeffery to our board of directors!

Niclas Heurlin has been CEO of inWarehouse and has a lot of experience of e-commerce business. He’s senior partner and founder of Enferno AB and is a member of Twingly’s, Ztorm’s and Yacht Equipments board of directors. We think his 20 years experience of strategical business development will be very important for Twingly’s future. He’s blogging about e-commerce at Enferno’s blog.

Björn Jeffery is CEO and strategist at Good Old and has earlier been working at SVT, Sydsvenskan and Göteborgs-Posten. Besides great knowledge of social media he has unique experience of media companies that we think will be very important for us. Björn is also founder of two of Sweden’s most popular blogs in their niches, Manolo and Discobelle. He is nowadays more active blogger at his blog Good Old Trend.

Niclas Heurlin, who’ve been co-opted of the board since last summer will now be permanent member and Björn Jeffery will be co-opted member until next annual meeting. The other permanent members of Twingly’s board of directors are Björn Milton (president of the board and founder), Niclas Wiström (founder) and Lars Hallenius (investor, Servisen Investment Management AB). Alternate members are Anders Lönnqvist (Servisen Investment Management AB) and Martin Källström (founder and CEO).


We welcome Björn and Niclas to the family and hope they will enjoy their stay!