Both sides now: the joy of clouds

w00tonomy cloudMoons and Junes and Ferris wheels, the dizzy dancing way you feel and so on and so forth.

Clouds, we love ’em.

We are not here speaking of  thecumulonimbus aggregations of water molecules that are such a feature of Scottish skies but rather the images used to display key terms on a site (or indeed any other collections of words).

We like them because navigation is the key challenge online – and it’s mostly not a challenge that is satisfactorily met by IT taxonomies or rigid hierarchies of data.

Clouds tend to reflect how humans or content behave – either by showing the most popular pieces of content or the most numerous or the most searched for. They present the results in a user-friendly attractive way.

Your browser may not support display of this image.All of which means we’re thrilled to have discovered Wordle . It allows you to create your own clouds, based on text you enter or its search of key terms on a website of your choosing. You can then play around with how the words are displayed: horizontal, jangled up, black and white, coloured. It’s a great way of getting to grips with what clouds are.Your browser may not support display of this image.

What’s a widget?

Web 2.0 is a dizzying whirl of buzzwords, abstract concepts and downright obfuscation.

In 2008, one particular word came to prominence that people flung around with great seriousness and clearly no idea what the damn thing meant.

That word is “widget”.

First and foremost, in this context, widgets have nothing to do with beer cans, though the internet would be a better place if they did.

Nor, despite all appearances, is “widget” a word you throw in there when you don’t really know what a thing is.

So, what is a widget exactly? Well, Wikipedia describes it “a portable chunk of code that can be installed and executed within any separate HTML-based web page by an end user without requiring additional compilation”. This explanation leads us to the question: what is a widget exactly?

It’s a box.

Now, the guardians of the arcane knowledge of the interwebs won’t like us putting like that but it’s true.

It’s a box (or rectangle or whatever) for putting content in. Or a game. Or another bit of software. Think of it as a  window on another bit of the web.

That box can appear on your Facebook page (along with all that “pirate” nonsense) or on your blog or webpage. It’s a simple way of easily adding something extra to your online presence without having to write any code.

It can also be a way of getting your content onto somebody else’s website or Facebook page. If you build a widget to display your content or message – and if that widget is useful or interesting – then people will recommend and spread it for you.

With the rise of social networking, people are increasingly getting their content this way, rather than through the more traditional routes. If you have an online message then you need widgets to get that message to certain demographics.

It is important for content providers (and that includes advertising and marketing) to be aware that, because of things like widgets, content lives on its own.

Thanks to widgets, your content can be spread far and wide without anyone needing to visit your site.

If the stop sign was created today…

A funny wee video sending up the whole creative process in modern advertising.

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Merry Christmas from w00tonomy

Tony, Stewart and I would like to wish you all a merry Christmas and happy new year with our 2008 Christmas video which was created from the wonderful world of web 2.0.

w00tonomy makes Scottish Government digital marketing roster

We are delighted to announce that, in conjunction with our consortium partners The Union and Conscia, that w00tonomy has been selected for the Scottish Government’s digital marketing services framework.

This is a major achievement for a young agency and we are delighted. Along with our consortium partners, we look forward to providing the Scottish Government and other bodies using the roster with our services:

Turbocharge content to optimise appeal to online customers.

Creating messages that interest customers rather than messages they ignore.

We make online spend work harder. We deliver higher returns on online investment through the use of targeted, quality content to build a lasting relationship with your target audience.

If you’d like to know more, please contact us.

Content marketing watch – a new more absorbing Pampers website

Content Marketing Watch is our weekly opinion piece on the latest news from the digital sector.

Pampers logo

The Pampers website is a great application of the principle of content marketing – by providing content that is of real value, Pampers has created an engaging web presence for its customers. There is no hard sell of the pamper range on the site. Product placements are subtly targeted within highly relevant and useful information depending on the options (e.g. baby, toddler) selected.

Called the Pampers village (from the concept that it takes a village to make a child) the website provides articles, videos and newsletter to provide valuable information to help parents such as

  • nutrition and health advice for mothers
  • feeding and development for new babies
  • bedtime and potty training for toddlers

There are web 2.0 elements such as forums, blogs and commenting to create the sense of the village with people sharing experience, rating articles and staying connected. In addition there are a range of practical tools available such as

  • a pregnancy widget that can be downloaded onto your PC
  • a baby name finder
  • an Out and About Guide for those child friendly restaurants and cafes

What we like about this site is that is built around a simple concept of building a long term relationship with the customer through content.

Pampers know that the lifetime of one of their customers is from the time when they become pregnant to when their child is potty trained. The site cleverly provides content that is relevant as each stage of their child’s development allowing Pampers to build their relationship over time

You can read another analysis of the website on David Meerman Scott blog.

Online strategy for Scottish Water – press release

Image of droplet of waterw00tonomy, Scotland’s leading content marketing agency, is delighted to announce that it is providing Scottish Water with online strategic consultancy.

The utility is seeking to create online services that clearly demonstrate its ongoing commitment to providing excellent customer service. w00tonomy is working with Scottish Water to identify an online strategy, through its understanding of people-focused websites, particularly given the changes that have happened to the internet over the past three years.

Chris Wallace, Director of Communications at Scottish Water said “Customers are at the heart of our business and increasingly they look to connect with us in an online capacity. Therefore, it is important for us to continually review what we offer in this area, and we are excited to be working with w00tonomy on preliminary strategy.”

Stewart Kirkpatrick , Content Marketing Director of w00tonomy and award-winning editor of scotsman.com from 2000 to 2007) said: “Our experience has taught us that to reach target audiences clients need to build a relationship with them based on interesting and relevant content – and websites that deliver these effectively. We are thrilled to be working with Scottish Water and are impressed by their vision of the future.