Category : Staff News

Great meeting you at SxSW2013!

We had a great time at SxSW meeting so many ThingLink users among musicians, film makers, brands and agencies.

Read More

ThingLink’s Jonas Forth Discusses How Web Apps Serve the Music Industry

Excerpted from HYPEBOT…An interview with Andrew Apanov of Dotted Music and Stand Above The Noise.

Read More

Thanks to all the people who made a wish to Santa

Now the time to make a wish to Santa is over. We received very beautiful interactive images during these days, was very fun to read and discover your images every day.  We really felt the Christmas spirit during this campaign and we thank to all Twitter friends who helped us to spread the campaign.

During these days we will be deciding who are the lucky winners and will make contact with you so stay tuned for the results!

Here some of the last wishes:











Read More

New feature available: Share your ThingLink images in Google +

Google Plus button has arrived to ThingLink, from now on you can share your scenes with your circles and get many +1 for your amazing creations by sharing with them directly from ThingLink´s webpage.

This is how it works:

Read More

We are recruiting: Trainee in the Art and Design team.

ThingLink, the most popular in-image publishing platform for brands and consumers is offering a position as:
Part -Time trainee in the Art and Design team (possibility of a full time)

As a design team member, you work at delivering the best possible product at www.thinglink.com.
Your main responsibilities are related to graphics creation and user interface optimization.

Working with the leading social service in its field, you will be learning all about the cutting edge environment of SaaS (Software as a Service) and will be contributing to the 4 pillars of social networks: acquisition, retention, virality and monetization.

Main responsibilities are:

 

  • Creation of graphic assets for our product on www.thinglink.com.
  • Creation the user interfaces, menu screens, icons and more.
  • Follow the style determined by the Designer and Creative Director, and maintain it throughout the whole product.
  • Support other part of the business in need of graphics, such as Marketing and community management.

 

 

Desired Skills & Experience:

 

  • 0-2 years experience in the creation of 2D content and/or interactive web content.
  • Fluent with Photoshop, Illustrator and other art creation tools.
  • Degree in Arts or equivalent training.
  • Able to adapt easily to different styles and translate it into his/her work.
  • Strong illustration and graphic layout skills, good understanding and use of color theory.
  • Must demonstrate artistic sensibility and technical proficiency through his/her portfolio.
  • Creative spirit, well-organized and a good critical eye.
  • Self-motivated.
  • Flexible and open-minded attitude

 

We consider as a plus:

  • Can create and edit videos.
  • Training and interest in typography and photography
  • Passionate about internet services
  • Passionate about subject like, or similar to: art, design, fashion, photo, music or education.

 

 

The position is open for people applying quickly. We would like the person to start as soon as possible.
Ideally, the candidate should be able to work until the end of 2012, otherwise, a minimum of 2 month commitment is required.

Possibility of a full time position
Possibility of employment after the initial period.

For further information and applying to the position, please email to cyril@thinglink.com
Check our web site: www.thinglink.com

Read More

Open position: trainee in the marketing and community team.

ThingLink, the most popular in-image publishing platform for brands and consumers is offering a position as:
Trainee in the marketing and community team.

As a marketing and community team member, you represent ThingLink in the online community and in the world.
Your main responsibilities are related to management of our users. You will be in direct contact with our users and you will focus on engaging and retaining our user base.

Working with the leading social service in its field, you will be learning all about the cutting edge environment of SaaS (Software as a Service) and will be working on the 4 corners of socila networks: acquisition, retention, virality and monetization.

Main responsibilities are:
• Manage and grow ThingLink Music, Fashion and Education accounts.
• Own the above thinglink.com profiles and use them to engage and manage our online community.
• Communicate with our user base and understand its behavior and its needs
• Run ThingLink’s Facebook page
• Run ThingLink’s Twitter accounts
• Surface and report findings to the team
• Identify improvement related to acquisition, retention, virality and monetization
• Drive new user and communities to use www.thinglink.com

Desired Skills & Experience:
• Passionate about internet services
• Comfortable using services like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest.
• Passionate about subject like, or similar to: art, design, fashion, photo, music or education.
• Must be self-motivated.
• Flexible and open-minded attitude
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills
• English is a must (other languages a plus: Spanish, German and French)
• Good commend of photo editing is recommended

The position is open for people applying quickly. We would like the person to start as soon as possible.
Ideally, the candidate should be able to work until the end of 2012, otherwise, a minimum of 2 month commitment is required.
We cannot provide a salary during the training period but we offer a nice working environment in a start-up located in Helsinki city center.
Lunch coupon and some other benefits will be provided.
Possibility of paid employment and paid summer job for performing candidates.

For further information and applying to the position, please email to kristiina@thinglink.com.
Check our web site: www.thinglink.com

Read More

Former Digital Chocolate VP Cyril Barrow Joins ThingLink as Chief Operating Officer

Cyril Barrow has been appointed as chief operating officer of ThingLink, the most popular in image publishing platform for brands and consumers. Barrow will lead ThingLink’s global operations and execute the company’s growth strategy.

Barrow brings 13 years of process management, IT, mobile and social gaming experience to the ThingLink, including development of global operations both for enterprise and start-up companies. As a vice president of platform operations for Digital Chocolate, Barrow provided coordination and management for the company’s games development, production and logistics systems. In this newly created position, Barrow will lead ThingLink’s global operations and execute the company’s growth strategy.

“Cyril’s experience and insight will serve us well as we accelerate the growth our interactive image network and engage a global consumer audience,” said ThingLink CEO Ulla Engeström.

In the past 18 months ThingLink has grown its image tagging tool into an in-image publishing service used by over 30,000 publishers across the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, South America and Africa. Publishers include musical artists, record labels, newspapers, film companies, TV networks, music festivals and media agencies, including the National Post, Guardian, MTV, Interscope Records, Pink Floyd, Evanescence, Bruno Mars, David Lynch Foundation and IKEA. ThingLink currently employs 15 staff in Finland and the United States.

For more information visit ThingLink.com and Twitter @ThingLink.

Read More

Salil Wilson – My Journey to ThingLink

By Salil Wilson

On first hearing about ThingLink (a Finnish based tech start up) I have to confess I was less than enthusiastic. Admittedly it was not the best introduction, it was over a meal with no demonstration. Just a good friend leaning forward and eagerly telling me rich media image tagging was going to be the next big thing.

It was one of those awkward moments where you know the person will be disappointed if you don’t respond with equal to or greater than the level of enthusiasm at which the information is being conveyed.

My initial thoughts were “What is rich media tagging?” and, “Why would you want to tag photos anyway?” (If you haven’t guessed I’m one of the 5 remaining people on earth who aren’t active on Facebook.)

I didn’t hear anymore about ThingLink from this fellow for about 2 weeks – he was obviously not fooled by my feigned interest. But, as with all evangalists, he couldn’t resist and sent me a link to the image below.
 

I was fascinated by this apparently quite a famous photo of the original Microsoft staff and all the extra information it contained thanks to ThingLink. I clicked on every single link and got a small sense of how each one of these people went on to live their lives – a little like a school graduation book. The next step for me, as it is for all ThingLink adopters, was to make my first ThingLink(ed) image. So I made one about the World Harmony Run – an event I organize and love.

It was very simple and great of fun. I could easily combine elements that would normally be beyond my reach or take hours of fiddling with html and ThingLink did it in a cleaner more functional and engaging way. (OK I’m not a web developer but neither are 99% of us).

I have since gone on to make quite a few ThingLink (ed) images and info-graphics and am even consulting for ThingLink. You can find many of these images at ThingLink and Learn. Here’s one below I’m quite proud of.

 

 

I continue to be surprised at how remarkably well ThingLink works – many times it does things that exceed my expectations. Just check out how well this Ipad info-graphic meshes with the Itunes rich media tags – I didn’t see that coming.

ThingLink is an idea whose time has come. It brings together many engaging elements of the web, combining them in a way where the whole is so much greater than the sum of its parts.

ThingLink has made me understand what mashup really is – and it is done really elegantly, after all what would you expect from those Finns.

Salil Wilson is Executive Director of the World Harmony Run – a global torch relay dedicated to World Peace. When he’s not running around the world with a torch he consults for ThingLink.

Visit the ThingLink team at the American Association of School Librarians 15th National Conference and ExhibitionBooth #330 – on October 27-30 in Minneapolis, MN.

Read More

Guest Post: Cortney on ThingLink

Going in to my first pitch as a consultant to ThingLink, I have to admit I was a little bit skeptical. Sure, it took about three minutes for me to be completely sold on the product — sitting in a freezing room at TechCrunch Disrupt in New York, I saw a demo and immediately wanted to be part of the team. But would my contacts in the music industry feel the same way? I had set up a nice handful of meetings to showcase the product, sure, but were these folks just doing me a favor because they knew me from my days as an editor at Billboard? What had I gotten myself into, anyway?

About ten minutes in to the meeting, I saw the label president’s eyes light up as she slowly said “this. is. so. cool.” And then I knew I had made the right choice.

We get that reaction a lot, and I joke that ThingLink is the dream client — the product is easy to use, free, and offers infinite possibilities. And people in the music industry are starting to see it that way, too, for the most part. I’m constantly excited by the level of creativity and thoughtfulness in the ThingLinked images labels and managers send me.

In some way, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. People in music are creative types, and if any artist ever tells you they aren’t concerned with and invested in their image, they are lying. Even those who cultivate an unwashed, slacker air, do so with the utmost care. Some, like Lady Gaga and Kanye West, are open about creating and manipulating their visuals, while others pretend not to mind (but you know they paid $200 for that perfect bedhead haircut, and those shredded Rogan jeans don’t come for free, either).

But once an artist had created the perfect visual and hired a great photographer to commit it to film, there was nothing else they could do with it. Until ThingLink. Now, an artist, label, manager, or publicist can take that perfectly crafted, often not-cheap-to-capture image, and use it as a jumping off point for telling a story, creating a puzzle, or driving commerce.

 

Storytelling:

Alex Damashek is great indie hip-hop manager, and used ThingLink within his own site to tell the stories of each of this artists. Where he previously had a list of links, Alex embedded audio, video, and links in photos of each of his artists and let ThingLink tell the tale. It’s a great way to get viewers to explore the page, click around, and listen and learn.

     

 

Commerce: Thanh Nguyen was an early adopter who understood the power of ThingLink and used it to drive interest in the new albums by Simple Plan and Shadows on Stars. He went so far as to have Simple Plan actually make a video explaining the product and driving users to play around and pre-order the new album. In the first few hours, the click through rate for the image was over fifty percent.

 

Social media:

Ed Kiang at Wind-Up is a digital genius, and used Thinglink to tag an image of Evanescence with links to all the band’s social media platforms. It was a great way to announce the band’s new album, get fans excited, and make sure they were aware of all the band’s online properties.

   

 

Ticketing and events: The new Eventbrite tag could be used to sell tickets to the event, as well as embedding video of the opening acts to get fans excited enough to come early and check them out. In the past, there were too many steps between seeing a poster for an event and actually buying a ticket, but with the Eventbrite tag, the process is seamless.

 

And I could go on and on, listing examples, but that seems like a cheap way to flesh out a post. And this is all the process of a summer’s worth of work — who knows what will happen in the next three months (six months, year)?

I think we’re just scratching the surface of what the music industry can do with ThingLink. One idea I’ve tossed around is to break an album cover into six parts, assign a clip of a new track to each, and then spread that all over the web for fans to find. The traffic could potentially go through the roof as fans tried to figure out the puzzle. ThingLink can also be used for announcements and brand partnerships — link up whatever a stylish artist happens to be wearing to an ecommerce platform and watch the fans click away.

Only a few months after that first, nerve wracking meeting, I’ve come to see the disruptive, amazing power of ThingLink for music. And, to quote that cheesy song you’ve heard way too many times, “we’ve only just begun.”

 

Cortney Harding is a music evangelist for start-ups, including ThingLink and official.fm. She was previously the music editor and indies correspondent at Billboard magazine, and knows way too much about the music industry for any sane person. Follow her on Twitter or on Tumblr.

Meet Cortney and the ThingLink team:
September 12th – San Francisco Music Tech Summit, Hotel Kabuki
September 13th – Tech Crunch Disrupt, San Francisco Design Center Concourse

Read More

Why I Love ThingLink – On the Disruptive Potential of In-Image Linking

This post was originally featured  on the Tumblr of the newest member of our team, Jake Cox but we wanted to lift it up for all ThingLink users to see. The post not only presents Jake as a person but it also delivers a great vision of how we think about image tagging and its disruptive nature.

:::::

Why I Love ThingLink – On the Disruptive Potential of In-Image Linking

Some estimates put the number of images online at over 90 billion as of early 2011.  At the same time, brands are starting to spend more ad dollars online than they are through traditional media channels.  The photo sharing and online ad spend trends are unlikely to reverse, given the near ubiquity and rapid adoption of internet and social media on the part of consumers globally.  For publishers, retailers, advertisers and consumers, in-image linking opens up new avenues for how we all interact with web content.  The image has become a platform for engagement.  This paper explores the implications of ThingLink in-image linking and discusses the businesses that are most well suited to capitalize on it.

 

Why I Love It

Publisher’s Perspective

Publishers have been relying on CPM, PPC and affiliate advertising, among others, but ThingLink opens up new revenue opportunities to anyone with a blog.  With the Savalanche and Amazon Associates partnerships, any publisher now has a checkout window within his or her blog.  Adding a layer of point-of-sale functionality to images will allow established affiliate partnerships to become much cozier, and it gives some leverage to publishers who would like to try some affiliate marketing. 

Fashion blogs, lifestyle blogs, you name it—every image you put on your site can now be a surface for advertisements.  If you’re a hotel and you want to give visitors to your site a unique experience, how about something like I’ve done below.  (Links are not for actual hotel products.)

 

You give anyone who visits your site the ability to buy your plush pillows or your Egyptian Cotton sheets—at once you make your brand seem more personal and you open yourself up to additional revenue streams.

Most importantly for publishers, every visitor becomes much more valuable.  As ThingLInk illustrates on its blog, the CTR for in-image advertisement links is between 1.5% and 5%: much higher conversion rates than the <1% CTR banner ads typically see.  In many cases the ThingLink number is 50X higher.  So for publishers who don’t choose to pursue affiliate marketing but prefer CPM campaigns, the number they demand can be much higher.

Also, musicians will absolutely love this product.  See below how the ThingLinkteam has enabled Youtube videos or SoundCloud songs to stream without navigating away from the photo.

Finally, ThingLink opens up all sorts of opportunities for destination branding.  Five minutes with Powerpoint and New Hampshire looks like someplace I’d consider visiting for some summer vacation time. (Though I’ve hardly done the idea justice.)  

This type of strategy could be employed by agencies with destination clients, or the destinations themselves could easily execute on something like this.  By making images interactive, ThingLink can bring something staid an entirely new life, and it’s all so easy to learn.

Writer’s Perspective

This point is certainly tied somewhat into what the publisher will experience, but Writer as profession is undergoing some major shifts today.  The free content on blogs diminishes readers’ necessity for buying a subscription to their favorite paper.  But ThingLink puts a little bit of power back in the hands of any wordsmith.

Including pictures with articles is an simple addition for writers, and it already makes their posts more engaging.  In the New York Times a few weeks ago, there was a story about how sugar consumption might lead to some types of cancer.  The author could have included in it something like the pic below, helping to tell the story.

Lets say you’re not a professional writer, but that instead you work in promotions.  There’s only so much text that potential customers are willing to read.  But pictures can attract a lot of attention, especially when the pictures have extra information inside of them.  Summer Stage promoters could use something like I’ve created below to help spread the word about the festival.

By putting music inside of pictures, you serve the double function of giving your reader more information as well as increasing the likelihood that people will show up at your event.  Bands and brands using ThingLink soon will have the ancillary benefit of positive PR from being an early adopter.

 

Retailer’s Perspective

Since ThingLink turns any image into a potential checkout window, savvy retailers will soon realize they can earn a windfall by placing images of their products on blogs.  Take golf balls, for example.     Let’s say your website sells golf balls, and you’re looking for ways to grow your business.  Why not partner with a photographer who can take amazing photos like the one from your author below.  The partnership would make sense as it might generate revenue for both parties.

Certainly one potential shortfall of broad ThingLink adoption is that photo owners might not want to taint their precious image with dots.  I think there are practical ways around this issue, but its worth pointing out that, as good of a tool as this is, there is some potential for hiccups.   Another interesting application for ThingLink involves restaurants.  People have sufficiently demonstrated that they appreciate food pictures.  So why not do something like the pic below.   Food reviewers can easily make their posts more engaging by putting the information that they don’t want to include in the actual post, inside the picture. Restaurants themselves can even utilize this technique for growing the brand.

 

Advertiser’s Perspective

Not that advertising agencies don’t have enough on their hands, but now that every one of the 90 billion images online has the potential to serve as an ad, I suspect agencies and freelancers will soon be offering “In-Image Linking Ad Solutions” to their clients.  The technology ThingLink brings to the table obviously opens up a massive stream of possibilities, and I am anticipating an ecosystem evolving around this platform.  ThingLink is building the infrastructure that will support a better way to advertise.

Average Internet User

Remember VH1’s “Pop Up Video”?  Well, ThingLink is sort of like Pop Up Video for images.  And just like that was hugely popular, this is going to be hugely popular.  And I think one of the biggest reasons is this: ThingLink makes browsing pictures more fun.

Of course, it’s impossible to say what the adoption curve will look like—will it be a hockey stick spanning this next decade?  Will it reach a plateau in the next year?  To me, both seem possible.  As with any social technology, becoming hugely popular depends on actual, real human beings using your product.  There’s going to be a learning curve for people to figure out how to best utilize this new tool, but I believe that a well-executed ThingLinked image is magnitudes better than a plain image, so the incentive is certainly there for people to figure it out.

Some anecdotal evidence shows that there might be an optimal number of links to include in an image.  About my ThingLinked images, a friend said to me, “When you scroll over a picture and see the dots pop up, it makes me want to scroll over each one to see what it says” [emphasis mine].  There’s a little cloak of mystery around the dots, so optimizing the number of dots we include will be part art, part science—balancing the desire to attract click-throughs with the knowledge that one link is good, two might be great, but 20 is overload.

“In Pop Up Video”, there were usually two or three Pop Ups per scene.  I imagine something in the 2-5 range will be optimal for most uses—and, as a consumer of internet, that’s the range that seems most likely to draw me in—but I could see some scenarios—submitting captions for a New Yorker cartoon, for example—in which the best ThingLink photos could contain dozens of links, especially when the publisher has allowed “Anyone to Edit” the tags.  (Readers, add your best caption to the image below and that would be awesome.  I will definitely give you an @ tweet if it’s good.)

Conclusion

Overall, if I’m a product analyst, I am recommending an investment in ThingLink.  For one, it makes the image browsing experience better.  Products that make the internet better for the average user tend to become fairly popular.  So I say the odds are good that ThingLink becomes fairly popular, and it’s important for all companies to answer the call when innovation rings.

There are tremendous business possibilities when you leverage the ThingLink economics.  I’ve outlined a few of those ways in the preceding paragraphs, but I’m sure I’ve only scratched the surface. Try it out and I think you’ll like it.

ThingLink turns images into an engagement platform.  Pretty cool.

[Find inspiration in the ThingLink Gallery]

 

Read More
1 2 3