Case Study of the London Riots

The recent London riots’ has sparked interesting discussions in social media. This case study shows how social media and smartphones helped to proliferate mass crime on various streets of the city.

Social media served as media coverage of the rioting on the streets. It was the key to forming and shaping opinions and discussions by the general public. The riots didn’t reflect the wider community opinion of dissent on Twitter and Facebook.

Driven by the need to belong and be significant these seemingly random riots continued.  For Blackberry, it was a disaster for their brand with Blackberry Messenger (BBM) becoming a key tool for rioters to organize, communicate and distribute anonymously and discretely within groups.

As quickly as these riots took place over social media, so did mobilizing a cleanup afterwards. With no trust in the ability of centralized authority to either protect or clean up the community, Londoner’s turned to social media to spread the news.


Mobile Web?

Mobile devices have a few important attributes; they are always on, always carried and always personal to an individual. This is unlike any other communications device.

In the not so distant future we can see 50% of the developed world owning a “smartphone”. Because of the availability and accessibility of the web on mobile, the development of services will continue to be led by the youth market.

This will result in an acceleration of emerging platforms, which facilitate the need for information sharing and commercial use for all types of experiences.

Youth are discovering mobile services and devices that offer them a way to extend the real life behaviours of connection and sharing with those around them. The sense of ownership and identity that accompany a mobile phone empower the consumer, and allows them to become increasingly connected and informed, providing them with a sense of experience and independence.

Marketing Teens

Tips for targeting teens taken from

1.    Understand their motivations

Young people make decisions and develop brand loyalty based on the following:

  • The need for independence and power
  • The need for approval from their parents
  • A desire to have fun

2.    Instant gratification will get their attention

The youth of today has grown up in the era of technology and a large proportion have grown up with the Internet available to them. Consider their attitudes when planning your campaign with offering instant rewards relevant to their interests.

3.    Simplicity is the Key

Marketing delivered on mobiles are competing with a variety of other marketing messages being sent to your targets in different forms. Ensuring that your message is simple will help it to cut through the noise and make it more likely to have an impact.

4.    It is ALL about the cost

Young people are concerned about cost and they prioritise spending based on what motivates them.

5.    Keep the message in line with current trends

Youth culture changes almost as fast as technology. The line between hip and so-last-week is a fine one, and companies who are not intimately in the know when it comes to what’s currently capturing their audiences’ attention will find themselves on the wrong side of cool.