Digital 2013: Workshop 5 Gaining attention in a crowded space

14.45-15.45 and again at 16.15 – 17.15

Exploring the roles of perception and reality in the
context of today’s social media landscape, can reality
be changed by challenging perceptions? With real
world examples the workshop will look into whether
individuals and brands should embrace social media
to help shape their perception, or, rather alter their
reality. Attendees are invited to join in for a deep and
critical look into the ever changing landscape that is
social media.

Speaker: Andrew Burnett, Head of Social at Yard Digital

Twitter: @andrewburnett



(The below are Christie’s notes from Digital 2013.  They have been posted during the session and will be tidied up later – more Digital 2013 here)

The video from this workshop is below these notes.


 platforms subversion

  • @smartarg have an inovate use of Twitter which has a wide reach
  • In Isreal an anti drug campaign was set up shortly after the timeline was set up, showing a year in the life of hell in his spiral into drug addiction friend requests were sent. (profile no longer there)
  • Boone Oakley used YouTube for their website
  • Twitter can be used as a website or as a presentation tool

Platform subversion gain attention are out of the ordinary and cant be done everyday but they gain more attention than your standard marketing material.

gaining attention

@Oreo created the ‘Powerout? No problem’ picture during the power outage in the Superbowl which had massive coverage and attention.

@O2 replied to a customer in slang – this got picked up in all sorts of media outlets

There is a caveat in working like this and starting a social relationship, it works up until the point where something financial happens. If you have been in a social reality with them when something goes wrong you feel even more betrayed when something goes wrong. Also there are numerous social media mistakes in hashtags and business tweets (susanalbumparty and RIMjob are just two!)

perception vs reality

The Dove advert shows that women perceive themselves different from others.

If you change the reality then the perception will change too. E.g. – a few good Trip Advisor reviews will not change all the bad ones for instance.

Social media is perceived to be a  really new evolving thing, the messaging used in perception vs reality has actually been around for a very long time, Rolling Stones used a print campaign in the 80’s of Perception vs Reality in the 80’s.


Notes from questions:

  • Discussion over if  Trip Advisor reviews should be cut off after 3-4 months to give businesses the chance to sort out any problems? Many small businesses are not able to constantly monitor it and Trip Advisor is owned by a travel company.
  • For smaller businesses identifying KPI’s of social media and where the value will come is essential.
  • Remember arguments will be there on social media for all time! If it is that bad take it to a phonecall or face-to-face, it is all indexed and there for all eternity!


Links to all of the resources mentioned in the workshop:



Digital 2013, Gaining attention in a crowded space – subverting social media platforms, Workshop 5 from Interactive Scotland on Vimeo.

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