Category : Partner announcements

ThingLink Launches Interactive Image Contest for K-12 with Rosen Digital

Students can create digital projects with images, music, videos, and websites to win an iPad Mini or annual subscription to one of Rosen Digital’s online databases

We have joined with Rosen Digital for the first ThingLink Interactive Image Contest. It’s our way of celebrating students, teachers and all the ways that learning can be fun.

Susan Oxnevad, Instructional Technology Facilitator and educator for 26 years said: “ThingLink is one of my favorite and most frequently used tools because it supports active student participation and requires users to construct knowledge as they create.  The tool can be very useful for designing and implementing the types of deep learning experiences required by the Common Core and it is also an effective way to help students develop digital literacy skills.”

Eligibility: All students K-12 are eligible to enter.  Teachers and parents may enter an image on a student’s behalf.

Submission Deadline: Images may be submitted through May 1, 2013. Enter images at ThingLinkContest.com.

Winners will be announced on May 15, 2013.

Categories: There are 10 categories:

  • My Favorite Books or Authors
  • Science — Think Like a Scientist!
  • Health & Well-being — You, Your Family, Your Friends
  • Environment — The World Around Us
  • Community — Volunteering & Making a Difference
  • Money Smarts — Earning, Saving, Spending
  • Art & Music — Express Yourself!
  • Sports — Game On!
  • History & Social Studies — From Yesterday to Today
  • Animals — Furry, Friendly, & Fierce

Students can enter in as many categories as they wish.  All entries are viewable at ThingLink.com.

Voting:  Friends and family can vote on their favorite images by using “touch” icon on a ThingLink image. The most “touches” counts for a portion of the score.  A team of educational advisors will review entries and determine winners.

Prizes: One iPad mini will be awarded to the top winner in each category. The winning school in each category will also receive one Rosen Database subscription for a year (Teen Health and Wellness, Digital Literacy, Financial Literacy or the Power Knowledge Science Suite).  Certificates will be awarded to second and third place winners in each category. 

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How far will people go for Valentine’s Day?

A study released today by Digitas, a digitally-led, global integrated brand agency, and Brandwatch, a social media monitoring and analytics company, analyzed over 1.6 million social mentions of Valentine’s Day taking place on news and general media sites, blogs, forums, Facebook, and Twitter from November 2012 – February 2013. The findings reveal that more than 45,000 conversations mention travel for the holiday, suggesting that Americans are considering Valentine’s Day a time to vacation away from home and no longer celebrating as just a single day affair.

Couples, Families and Friends Are Taking Off to Other Places for the Holiday

Thirty percent of all travel-related mentions referenced traveling by air, while 37% mentioned traveling by car.  Of these two groups, the majority of conversations about air travel were about couples, while groups of friends dominated the conversations about road trips.

Domestic Travel Ranks #1, But Don’t Rule Out Travel Abroad
Our study shows that 70% of people discussing Valentine’s Day travel are considering visits to domestic destinations— the top five being: 1) New York, 2) San Francisco, 3) Chicago, 4) Las Vegas, and 5) Los Angeles.

While traveling within the US leads in conversations, a surprising 30% are discussing trips abroad to international destinations. The study shows that when Americans think “Valentine’s Romance,” their top five international destinations are: 1)Paris,  2) London, 3) Barcelona, 4) Sydney and 5) Vancouver.

Valentine’s Day Celebrations Will Include Plans to be Outdoors
It also appears Americans are preparing for an active Valentine’s Day. Amongst popular activities for vacationing, 42% are looking to relax at the spa as their primary Valentine’s Day activity.  Of the remaining, 33% want sun and beach destinations, 21% are hitting the slopes and 4% are wine tasting.

Despite Interest in Outdoor Activities, Hotel Spa Packages Hit It Big Online
Hotels with spas have been advertising heavily online, and our study shows that their online investments are paying off—and not just to the couples celebrating Valentine’s Day. Singles want hotels with spas as well, and for every four mentions interested in a relaxing destination, either by singles or by a couple, at least one included a reference to a coupon or deal.

This infographic was annotated using ThingLink to give you an enhanced viewing experience.

 

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Introducing interactive lessons on Edmodo

ThingLink allows you to create interactive images enriched with video, sounds, music and more. Now you can also share them on Edmodo to teach, inspire and entertain students as well as teachers. With only a few clicks, you can embed live interactive images on Edmodo for everyone to engage with and learn from. Here are our step by step instructions and you can also watch the video or click through the slide set below.

Here goes:

1. Sign up for ThingLink. It only takes a minute and you can do it with your Facebook, Twitter or email account.

2. Make an interactive image of your own or pick one from the thousands of images that have already been created with ThingLink by using our search function.

3. Click on Share image in the top left corner of any image and select Edmodo. You will see an embed script. Click on “Copy to clipboard”.

    

4. Log in to your Edmodo account. Create a new post and add a link to it.

5. Paste in the iframe code to the field that says http://or<embed>

6. Give the attachment a title and click Attach

7. Fill in the empty fields and click Send

8. Your live interactive image will now show up in your posts and it can be opened and closed by clicking the attachment icon.

 

There are lots of interactive images on ThingLink that you can use for your lessons. Check out these resources:

Discover a treasure trove of innovative ideas and support for using interactive graphics for teaching and learning at the ThingLink Toolkit for Teachers.

 

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What is your dream destination? Win a trip that can change your life.

Graduated and interested in teaching English abroad? ThingLink and AIESEC UK have partnered in a campaign where you can win a trip to your dream destination within the AIESEC network.

 

All you have to do is:

– Tag an image of your dream destination on thinglink.com

– Let us know why this is your dream destination (see examples below)

– Share the image on Twitter and Facebook with #AIESECGRADTEACH

 

Here are some examples:

 

Read more about the competition at AIESEC UK.

PS. Even if you’re not thinking of teaching English, but like tagging images, feel free to share an image of your all time favorite travel destination and we will feature it on this blog!

 

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The ThingLink Twitter Card – How does it work?

This week we released our ThingLink Twitter Card, which allows anyone to browse the live tags in ThingLink interactive images inside a Tweet at  Twitter.com.

You can now create an image on ThingLink with in-image links to video and sound players, share it on Twitter, touch the image and interact with the links without having to leave Twitter.  This innovation opens up for new opportunities for personal expression as well as marketing opportunities for businesses and brands.

ThingLink and Twitter – How to set it up

Now if you haven’t already signed up for ThingLink, do it now. We’ll wait, it only takes 30 seconds.

Then upload or import an image and tag it with any of our supported rich media tags, which you can see in the presentation below:

 

Share the interactive image on Twitter by clicking “Share” or “Tweet” on top of the image or right clicking the image and selecting “Share image”.

 

Any user seeing the tweet can now browse the live tags on Twitter without having to leave the image. Click “View Media” and the interactive image opens up.  The image is also viewable by clicking the date/time stamp on the Tweet and the status update version of the Tweet will appear with the image and interactivity.

 

The image must be shared from ThingLink.com to be viewable inside Twitter.  We also suggest that you set up your own channel on ThingLink to allow for people to easily find other interactive images that you’ve created.

NOTE:  Twitter is still testing Twitter Cards with certain users/sessions. The ThingLink-Twitter integration works on ThingLink.com, Twitter’s mobile client and Tweetdeck’s web version. Hopefully it will work on third party clients in the future.

 

Tips & Tricks

Twitter will scale down any image that you share from ThingLink.com to 280 or 560 pixels on mobile and 435 pixels on desktop. That means that any messages in the image should be written in larger text and be more prominent for users to quickly see them. It also means that it’s better to use vertical images since the height of the image is not restricted.

 

BONUS!

We’ve implemented another fun feature for the Twitter Card. If there are Twitter tags in the image, we will detect them and automatically mention the users when you share the image on Twitter. That way the users in the image will be notified of it whenever the image is shared by you or anyone else. Check out this Twitter example below:

 

Visit ThingLink now to create your own account! 

Read more about ThingLink and Twitter @ Mashable and TheNextWeb.

Read What ThingLink’s Interactive Tweets Mean for BrandsSimplyZesty.

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ThingLink music marketing 101 by ‘stache media

Interview with Ava Ryerson, ‘stache media

stache media has been using ThingLink for artists like Slightly Stoopid, Kate Earl, Ryan Leslie, RNDM, Santana, Steve Vai, Paloma Faith, and many others.  CMO Neil Vineberg recently sat down with Ava Ryerson to discuss fan engagement and ThingLink.

Q:  How are you using ThingLink?

We are using ThingLink as a tool for our media partners and artists.  ThingLink images give media partners added value, interesting content and something cool for their site.  It’s also great for fans to engage with artists’ content in different ways.

Fans don’t have to leave an image to engage with content because all the magic happens within the image.  Fans also don’t have to enter their email address to discover, click on and play content.  It’s very low commitment with high engagement.

Q: What kind of content are you putting into photos?

We put music tracks, videos, social links, and anything we think will be fun for the fan really. If there’s a special or exclusive sound byte from the artist that you can only find within the ThingLinked image, that’s something that we also try to use as well.

Q: What do you find to be the most effective and popular content for engaging fans? I think people want to hear or view content, so audio and video players are most effective. If there’s a personal message from the artist, that is super valuable to the fan. ‘stache media is part of RED Distribution so we partner with retailers all the time. Depending on the campaign and the artist, we’ll tag the image with Target or an independent retailer for pre-orders.  A lot of the time we are tagging images with retailers like iTunes, Amazon, Best Buy, and FYE.  For the band RNDM, we tagged Newbury Comics who had a special pre-order package for the album.  

Q: What kind of engagement are you seeing, and how does ThingLink engagement differ from other media platforms? We work with a wide variety of genres so it depends on the artist. Our highest engagement came from a Jason Aldean Billboard magazine cover that actually lived on the Billboard website, country blogs and radio station sites. We’ve been sharing image performance with artists and it makes them want to get more involved as well. ThingLink is an interesting tool for the artists because images can also live on their Facebook page or band site and its just another way for them to reach their fans, so they dig it.  

Q: Does it always start with a great image?

Yes, the image has to be compelling. It’s a way for us to get the album cover out or an interesting press photo of the artist.

Q: What about the new ThingLink?

It’s important for us to have all of our artist images available within one area where people can find our artists and media tools. I think the new social integration is great , we see new fans engaging and discovering images. I love the fact that I get notifications when I have new followers and when people are commenting on images.

We’re working with Kate Earl on Downtown Records; her album cover is very compelling and beautiful and the video for One Woman Army plays within the image. It’s awesome to see fans discovering her album and video through ThingLink.  The layout is interesting as well…very similar to a Pinterest or Tumblr. There are tiles of the images and its easy to digest for viewers.  Also stoked on ThingLink going Mobile!

Check out the ‘stache media channel on ThingLink.

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Tips For Driving Fan Engagement with ThingLink


Interview with Bryan Vaughan, Wind-Up Records

Wind-Up Records has been one of the most successful users of ThingLink for artists like Evanescence, Seether, James Durbin, Civil Twilight, Jillette Johnson, and The Darkness.  CMO Neil Vineberg recently sat down with Wind-Up Records’ Bryan Vaughan to discuss fan engagement and ThingLink.

Q: What kinds of artist images do you tag?

A: The types of images we use with ThingLink varies. We’re actually starting to create images specifically for ThingLink and its interactions. We’ve been doing more and more with lyrics. We use the album artwork for every band. “The Darkness” has a poster image; the text in the image has its importance. Its kind of fun figuring out where in the image specifically a tag is going to have the most effect, how it ties in with the overall image. It’s not just about putting any tag on the image. It’s more about ThingLink-enabling the image as an entire, whole creative unit.

Q: How do you like the new graphical and color tag icons?

A: The new color and graphical tag icons have made the images stand out more. They drive people to really interact with the image more because they now know what they’re looking at when they hover over an image. They may not want to go to every icon on the page, but if they’re looking to specifically listen to the song or to buy it from iTunes, they can do that inside the image.  Similarly with the color differences in an actual image, you can bold different things with different color tag icons to draw different reactions for the parts of the image you want to point out.

Q: What is it about ThingLink that helps drive traffic?

A: It’s the ease of discovery and the surprise element. Fans are used to searching all over the Internet for content. Now with a little bit of movement and interactivity all that content lives inside an image. Putting that unique content in an image is now really essential. When you see the still image and then hover over it, your attention is automatically drawn to what’s going on inside the image.  It’s curiosity that drives people to not only hover over things, but to actually click through as well. That click-through is really important to us for really driving traffic.

People also have shorter attention spans. It’s crucial to cater to that shorter attention span and get engaged users doing things. With a single ThingLinked image, you can hover to find all the information you want, watch videos, play music, hear a band’s voice – all in once centralized spot. It’s really unique and essential.

Q: What advice do you have for bands who want to promote their music with ThingLink?

A: Find a surprising and fun way to use an image thats never been done before and create unique interaction between a band and a fan all within a single image. It’s a constant exploration of what am I really trying to drive with this image? What is going to catch peoples’ eye. And once we have an image ThingLink-enabled, what’s going to draw fans to the image?  The main thing is focusing on what you’re trying to get out of it, what you want fans to get out of it, and not just adding tags for the sake of it. Keeping an image focused with a limited number of tags versus hundreds — is crucial for marketing.

Q: How’s the new ThingLink working for you?

A: With ThingLink there has been lots of engagement with fans who emailed us and spoke on Twitter and Facebook about what they could do through the images.  Now with the newly launched ThingLink, its crucial because fans can actually share the image with their existing fans and friends.  And we’ve seen quite a few comments on the recent images – “This band is my favorite band…”.  That’s crucial hearing from fans so we know what we can improve on to make ThingLink more efficient with the next images we post.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. With ThingLink, it’s worth about two million.

Follow Wind-Up Records on ThingLink.

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Forbes Partners with ThingLink for the first-ever Forbes 400 Interactive Magazine Cover and Infographic

Forbes.com and Thinglink today launched an interactive infographic for the Forbes 400 that lets viewers touch and discover the philanthropic efforts of 12 of the most philanthropic entrepreneurs of our time through embedded audio, video and rich media, including Bill and Melinda Gates, David Rubenstein, Jon Bon Jovi, Leon Black, Marc Benioff, Marc and Laura Andreesen, Oprah Winfrey, Peter Peterson, Steve Case and Warren Buffett.

This historic Forbes 400 cover image, also featured in the Infographic, was taken at the inaugural Forbes 400 Summit on Philanthropy, which brought together 150 billionaires and near-billionaires – including Bill and Melinda Gates, Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Steve Case, Alex Rodriguez, Jon Bon Jovi and Martha Stewart – to discuss ways to solve some of the most pressing issues of our time. The results of the Summit will be featured in the forthcoming Forbes 400 issue.

Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world’s business and investment leaders.

ThingLink is the largest interactive image network for business and consumers.

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ThingLink and WTF Helsinki Launch Interactive Book for iPad

ThingLink, the largest interactive image community for businesses and consumers, and Helsinki-based advertising agency WTF Helsinki, today announced the launch of an interactive book player for iPad powered by ThingLink.

The book, called Finnish Design Thinking, features 52 Finnish companies within design and technology. The iPad version of the book, powered by ThingLink, features interactive images with branded content, links and videos presenting contextual content on the topic.

”The consumption of the web is moving to mobile and we are pleased to work with WTF Helsinki on an interactive book that combines image viewing with a touch-based browsing experience,” said ThingLink CEO Ulla Engeström.

“The ability to touch and discover content inside ThingLink interactive images delivers a more compelling consumer experience around images that drives engagement and a stronger sense of a brand,” says Pauliina Savolainen – CEO, WTF Helsinki.

 

About WTF Helsinki

‘WTF Helsinki is a creative agency currently operating in Finland and the Baltic region. Our state of mind empowers to define and design new concepts while challenging existing idea. WTF Helsinki is idea driven rather than industry specific, and our customer base incorporates both ends of the business spectrum – from the Baltic’s biggest hotel chain to a small potato farm in Vuojalahti, Finland. We firmly believe that everyone is unique and find divergence a positive attribute that can help a company excel in its field. While we operate out of Helsinki and Tallinn, the world is our playing field’. -Pauliina Savolainen –

www.wtfhelsinki.fi

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ThingLink and MentorMob: Fun Tools for Interactive Learning

We really like MentorMob Learning Playlists which are easy for teachers and students to create, edit and share. MentorMob lets you organize and present content in creative ways and ThingLink images work beautifully inside MentorMob playlists.

Here are two ways to make ThingLink and MentorMob into super productive tools for the school year:

  1. Add MentorMob playlists into ThingLink images
  2. Add ThingLink images into MentorMob playlists.

Add MentorMob playlists into ThingLink interactive images
Transform any photo into an interactive learning experience. Drop a MentorMob playlist html link into any ThingLink tag and your playlist will appear inside the image.  This is a great way for teachers to feature multiple MentorMob playlists inside one image for presentations and lesson plans.

Touch and Discover this Solar System image which features a few MentorMob playlists.

Add ThingLink images into MentorMob playlists.

Want to organize a series of ThingLink images into one playlist? MentorMob is a great tool. One playlist can feature all the images from an entire class. When you’re editing a playlist of content, add a new step, then paste the html link from any ThingLink image and it will appear with all the tags inside your MentorMob playlist.

This playlist features interactive album covers by Van Halen, Haley Reinhardt, Keane and others. Listen to the music tracks on each image. Make your own and share with friends.

Here’s a playlist on ThingLink with links to posts and videos by Susan Oxnevad, an educator who is passionate about using technology as a tool for learning.

There many creative possibilities for teachers and students using ThingLink and MentorMob together. Thanks to Eric Pitt, the MentorMob team and Susan Oxnevad, a data and tech coach in Oak Park, IL, for these great resources.  Follow Susan’s work at Cool Tools for 21st Century Learners.

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