Twitter suspends Grindr from ad network, Spotify offers pet playlists, and Pinterest surpasses Snapchat

Also: Pepsi teases free soda in Super Bowl score gambit, Burger King offers Bronx residents free burgers, Bose and Mozilla face layoffs, and more.

Good morning, PR pros.

 PepsiCo promised U.S. consumers a free can of Pepsi Zero Sugar if either team’s final score in Super Bowl LIV ends with a zero. The stunt is to promote Pepsi’s “newly desgined can.”

New matte black Pepsi Zero Sugar can

Image courtesy of PepsiCo.

Here are today’s top stories:

Twitter boots Grindr from ad network

The social media platform suspended Grindr from using its advertising network following a report by the Norwegian Consumer Council asserting the app was one of several that shared users’ data with marketers. The report said spreading user data (including location, political views, sexual orientation and more) violates privacy laws in Europe as well as in states such as California.

Why you should care: Don’t wait until you’re forced to comply with regulations and laws to practice transparent data-gathering and use strategies. At the least, you could destroy consumers’ trust; worse still, you could be banned from advertising channels and have to pay fines.


MEASURED THOUGHTS

 A new report by eMarketer revealed that Pinterest is the third-largest social media platform in the United States, beating Snapchat. The visuals-focused platform grew 9.1% in 2019 and is on track to have 86 million users this year.

Pinterest also has a wider audience appeal, with a greater percentage of users across demographics than Snapchat. Though Snapchat’s numbers widely edge out Pinterest for users ages 12 to 24, Pinterest might be the smarter choice for brand managers looking to reach several audiences and age ranges.

Business Insider reported that Pinterest shares rose “as much as 12% on Tuesday morning” following the report’s release.

Spotify introduces playlists for pets

Spotify introduced playlist generator for users’ pets, which creates a personalized set of songs based on your pet’s personality traits. After you create your pet’s playlist, Spotify generates a photo and link to share on social media.

Why it matters: The clever PR and marketing stunt combines visual appeal and personalization, two trends that can quickly capture consumers’ attention. The Verge reported that “the whole thing seems to be designed to go viral.” Spotify also succeeds by offering an easy-to-remember website (www.spotify.com/pets or www.pets.byspotify.com), custom hashtag (#SpotifyPets) and social media sharing buttons along with a tailored graphic. (We’re a bit baffled by the glaring omission of Big Mama Thornton’s rendition of “Hound Dog.”)


TACTICALLY SPEAKING

Burger King is taking a swipe at McDonald’s yet again—this time with a promotion around the increased popularity of a staircase in the Bronx used in filming “Joker.”

The stairs were never a tourist destination—until Joaquin Phoenix’s performance made them iconic. Now fans are showing up in droves to take selfies and recreate that striking scene. Burger King is taking the opportunity to appeal to New Yorkers who can’t stand tourists but still love a fast-food hamburger.

The move has a strong social media tie-in, as the hashtag #JokerStairs has over 9,000 posts on Instagram. It shows that there is plenty to be gained by taking potshots at your competitor online—and newsjacking social media trends.

How are you joining the online conversation on pop culture and more?

Bose closes stores worldwide; Mozilla lays off 70 employees

Bose is shuttering doors on all 119 retail stores in Europe, North America, Australia and Japan. The Verge reported that the decision comes because its products “are increasingly purchased through e-commerce.”

Mozilla Corp., which created the Firefox web browser, also announced that it would lay off roughly 70 employees—many in senior and management roles.

In a blog post, Mozilla’s chairwoman and interim chief executive, Mitchell Baker, wrote:

Mozilla has a strong line of sight on future revenue generation from our core business. In some ways, this makes this action harder, and we are deeply distressed about the effect on our colleagues. However, to responsibly make additional investments in innovation to improve the internet, we can and must work within the limits of our core finances.

Why it’s important: Consumers’ changing behaviors as a result of technological advances and internet offerings won’t affect your social media strategies alone. Find ways to connect your online presence with your in-person locations, and work to meet your audience in physical and digital venues they frequent. That could mean overhauling your business model as much as you overhaul your PR and marketing campaigns.


WHAT YOU SAID

 We asked what you would do at a networking event if a person greeted you by name, but you blanked on theirs. More than 40% would admit to forgetting the other person’s name, while 33% would ask questions in an attempt to remember. Nearly 27% would continue the conversation and stall as long as it takes, but none would ask someone else for help.

Burrelles’ vice president of client onboarding, Tressa Robbins, said her strategy would depend on how familiar the person seemed:

International communications network Consultancy32 said a smile could help break the ice:


SOUNDING BOARD

How do you prefer to collaborate on projects and connect with co-workers as well as outside partners?

Weigh in on Twitter or in the comments. Don’t forget to use our hashtag #MorningScoop.

 

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COMMENT

One Response to “Twitter suspends Grindr from ad network, Spotify offers pet playlists, and Pinterest surpasses Snapchat”

    Ronaldnlevy says:

    Wow, accused by the Norwegian Consumer Council!

    Will Grindr stay in business? It’s like asking whether (regardless of ones political preferences) a president with a record high Dow and employment will keep his job despite pushing Ukraine to investigste corruption, or whether a corporate board will vote to keep an EVP Marketing who has record sales and earnings but smoked pot before it was lawful.

    One reason why you should care is that Beki is right: you could destroy trust and be banned (even if not disfavored by the Norwegian Consumer Council) . There’s another reason you should care. It’s that (a) because Beki is right, and (b) to forestall major reputational injury if someone at your company is found guilty of a no-no, you might consider backing a health-research project so 100 million Americans will love you.

    Voters tend to favor political leaders who succeed, corporate boards want to have and to hold EVPs who get record sales and earnings, and the American public is understandably protective of companies that protect our lives.

    Five of the greatest anti-cancer doctors who’ve ever lived are today doing research that could add years to our lives, and judge whether a company could gain 100 million or more American fans by sponsoring a protective medical research project. The five great New York doctors—and others are all over our country —are (in alpha sequence) Dr. Sheila Donat (Surgery), Dr. Jaspreet Sandhu (Urology), Dr. Richard Steingart (Cardiology), plus Drs. Anas Younes and Andrew Zelenetz (lymphoma).

    An important PR reality is that if we help protect others, they may help protect us. It is said that all have sinned, and it is likely that all institutions may eventually have someone who has sinned seriously. But just as Preventive Medicine may protect our necks, so may Preventive PR. Public inclination is to protect our protectors.