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By: Patrick Lupinski

Twitter was roaring on Tuesday night when Mitt Romney’s campaign released their iPhone app with a pretty huge spelling mistake. A text overlay that was meant to read “A Better America” was, instead, released as “A Better Amercia.” The hashtag #Amercia generated thousands of tweets along with its very own Tumblr turning the mistake into an instant meme. But I wonder, was it intentional or a genuine mistake? After all, even Photoshop has a spellcheck functionality these days. Regardless, the mistake definitely made the campaign look silly but at the same time he’s become an internet sensation – for better or for worse. I’d also be interested to see how this mistake increased the amount of downloads the App received.

By: Rachel Metter

While watching an episode of “The Pitch” the other day, something intriguing caught my attention. No, it wasn’t the creative, the strategy, or even this particular client’s insanely huge ego (but good guess!). It was, of all things, a Home Depot spot.

Amidst a slew of people happily gardening, the spot featured a Shazam cue on- screen, which prompted viewers to “Shazam for Vertical Garden How-To Video.”

Shazam is well known as a music app that contains technology to identify songs it “hears.” In the context of TV, it “listens” to the commercial’s soundtrack and takes the viewer to the brand’s website, a Youtube video, or social media (known as a “second screen experience”). It transcends a widely accepted one-dimensional medium and brings the viewer to a place where she can further explore the brand on her own terms.

Here’s an SAT analogy for the 21st Century: The QR code is to print, as Shazam is to TV.  The QR code has been around for some time. In 2011, 22% of Fortune 500 companies were using QR codes in their advertising (source). However, Shazam for TV is fairly new. This year the company integrated the app into spots during a few live events, including The Super Bowl, The Grammy’s, and American Idol. In fact, there’s been buzz around the fact that most future Shazam revenue will come from TV commercials.

And that shouldn’t be a surprise. While traditional print and TV ads are somewhat targeted, they are still mass media. Advertisers are careful not to get into too much product detail beyond what’s going to grab the consumer’s attention. With the QR code and Shazam as devices to transport the consumer to a second-screen experience, advertisers have the opportunity to sell their product to people who have already optedinto the brand. Therefore, they can go into much more detail about the brand or particular product, which provides consumers with more reasons to purchase.

On the other end of the spectrum, QR codes and Shazam offer consumers an easy way to furtherexplore products and brands that intrigue them.

While these apps could be more user-friendly (and they probably will be in the near future), they mostly facilitate win-win situations between advertisers/brands/products and their consumers.
Check out the Shazam app if you don’t have it, yet!

By: Carina Liebmann

Imagine walking into a large store and knowing exactly where to go to find what you’re looking for. In addition, you know any deals and offers available in the section of the store you are in. Macy’s flagship store in New York has an iPhone app that does just that. With the help of Meridian, a software startup, the app uses GPS to give turn-by-turn directions to get you to the products you’re looking for. You can also see available deals for nearby products.

Black Friday just got a little more interesting. I wonder if rerouting based off of in-store traffic will be an option? Get it here.