With the Super Bowl just around the corner, it will be interesting to see how brands are leveraging influencers through social media to be a part of the new “creator era.”

The Super Bowl and other live events are the last vestige of a dying era of mass media.


The Case for Community-Driven Content

Consider turning some of your content responsibilities over to your community of fans, and other independent bloggers and influencers. Quite often they'll have the right content for you to deliver at the right time, and give you added opportunities to directly interact with your fans. More often than not their honest opinions and editorial will resonate more strongly with your target audience, and help you start to win some of your content battles.

Our new 'Experts Among Us' forum is a natural evolution of the SheKnows DNA of engagement. Our goal is to offer talented users of all backgrounds the opportunity to collaborate in the creation of the kind of compelling content that has made SheKnows the top women's destination on the web. We're thrilled to turn our large community into an even more open platform.


New Rakuten Publication Whets Shoppers' Chops

Enter Rakuten Essential. Rakuten and social platform provider Tidal have partnered on the venture, leading to the publication of the first "issue" of Essential.

According to the companies the main idea is to replicate the boutique shopping with a "well-traveled" friend experience. The product selection on display on Essential has been curated by a handful of bloggers selected by the companies to provide an "immersive, shoppable editorial experience."

Yesterday’s launch of Rakuten Essential, a cross between a content hub and a visual interest network, gives Rakuten Shopping, formerly Buy.com, a new "discovery" channel for its 19 million products and 4,000 merchants.
Working with Tidal Labs, a startup that connects publishers and platforms like Epicurious and Condé Nast to influential food and fashion bloggers, Rakuten Essential relies on “product-parsing” technology. That technology is layered on the Tidal community-building platform to integrate product information with Tidal’s content management system.

Rakuten, the Japanese e-commerce powerhouse with ambitions to take on Amazon, is today kicking off a new feature on its U.S. site Rakuten.com that it hopes will help the company better differentiate itself from its bigger rival, and also open the door to a new swathe of users. Rakuten Essential, as the feature is called, will bring in content from bloggers on the Tidal Labs network that complements the products that Rakuten sells.

The idea is that by giving consumers more of a narrative behind what’s being sold, they will feel more drawn into buying things, or at the least return to Rakuten.com more to raise the chance of that happening.


Will curated social content bring about the next era of online retail?

American retailers are nothing if not resourceful. In order to compete, they are going back to their content creation roots and utilizing old methods on social media. We’re seeing what I call a “retail reawakening” when it comes to content marketing, ditching outdated tactics and engaging new ways to create content that gives context to their products. They also carefully measure content marketing in the same way they measure traditional marketing efforts, namely tracking how content can drive revenue, not just traffic.

Conde Nast's Details magazine recently tapped its network of outside bloggers to help advertisers promote their new lines, using its editorial photographers to take pictures of nine bloggers in pieces from the fall collections of designers such as Gucci and Prada.

The resulting pictures will run as dedicated blog posts on the contributor's individual blogs and the Details Network blog aggregation page, a spokeswoman for the magazine said. They will also be part of a digital magazine for Details' Facebook page. The designers will use the images on their own promotion and social channels.

The program was part of a larger ad buy and served as an incentive for the advertisers, the Details spokeswoman said. The bloggers weren't paid for their role, she added, but some were able to keep the clothes, depending on the designer.


Details Uses Bloggers for Native Advertising

In the latest example of a publisher blurring the line between advertising and editorial, Details is tapping its Details Network, a collective of 150 men’s style bloggers who share their work with the magazine’s website, to create content for advertisers.

In what Details is calling its version of native advertising, where ads are designed to look and feel like editorial content, the magazine tapped nine bloggers from the network to style outfits featuring fall 2013 apparel from advertisers like Gucci, Prada and Versace.

Video: Lots of websites and apps are using Tid.al to run their communities. Here you meet Matthew Myers, cofounder and CEO, who shows me why Tid.al is being picked to run the communities underneath sites like Epicurious. http://tid.al for more.

Why are content marketing techniques so successful? Nearly 20 percent of people’s time online is now spent reading content. More and more we turn to the Internet to stay informed and be entertained — so marketers are rising to meet this demand. Each of the essentials - in-house content, native advertising and community-driven contributions provide truly unique and engaging material that readers are seeking out. The key is finding the right blend of content.


7 Steps for Community-Driven Content

Successful brands today think like publishers. But how do you successfully implement community-driven content—and more important, do it right? Here are some easy-to-follow guidelines for companies considering creating an online space populated with editorial contributed from fans, followers, influencers and other independent writers.


When Condé Nast & Bloggers Partner, Readers Win

Brands and publishers always have a need to create more quality content for their readers, but there isn't often enough time in the day, budget or expertise to go around. At the same time, frequently released original content is what fuels the web.

Today's hyper-stimulated society demands this frequency of publishing because of a shorter attention span and the plethora of sources to choose from. If you readers aren't getting fresh, interesting content from your website, they'll likely go elsewhere.

Condé Nast publications like Details, Teen Vogue, Epicurious and Lucky are working to solve this issue by curating and publishing content from bloggers to fill the gap and further engage their audiences online.

Partnering with tech startup Tidal, these publications are utilizing this platform to easily pull content from relevant blogs for republishing on their own website.


Random House Launches SF/Fantasy Writing Community

Suvudu, Random House’s online one-stop shop for fantasy, science fiction, manga, and gaming, has announced the launch of Suvudu Universe, a new online community for science fiction and fantasy bloggers.

With it, the community (powered by Tidal Labs), kicks off with fresh content from bloggers covering the universe of sci-fi and fantasy pop culture, literature, film, gaming and more. Suvudu Universe wants bloggers to join the community and connect with fellow contributors from around the world, along with the opportunity to enter contests and participate in Q&A sessions with notable personalities while promoting their own brand and blog.

Suvudu, a Random House online destination for science fiction and fantasy fans established in 2008, announced the launch of a new writing community for its users, Suvudu Universe. The community, powered by Tidal Labs, will begin add original content from bloggers covering the universe of sci-fi and fantasy pop culture, literature, film, and gaming. Bloggers will receive the opportunity to enter contests and participate in Q and As with notable personalities while promoting their brand and blog.

Random House’s science fiction and fantasy online community Suvudu has launched a blogger community called Suvudu Universe.

“The Suvudu Universe is a win-win for all. Readers now have access to even more quality content as bloggers gain recognition, and Suvudu enjoys increased content, reach, and community,” stated Kristin Fritz, content director of Suvudu. “Community-generated content is a great way to highlight more voices and discussion around the areas about which readers are passionate.”


The Standardization Of Native Advertising

Standardization is a good thing. Even if we haven’t established industrywide standards for native advertising, it’s encouraging to see major players standardizing internally. But it begs the question, why now?


The Community Manager is Now the Editor-In-Chief

It’s become evident that ‘Community Manager,’ like typist has become an obsolete title. While still a necessary position, the role has evolved far beyond what the title implies. Long gone are the days when a Community Manager simply maintained an online community on social pages. Responsibilities such as responding to Tweets, forwarding Facebook complaints, and monitoring LinkedIn groups are just the beginning.

Anthony Losanno, 33, joined Tidal Labs as Director of Sales. Mr. Losanno will be based in NYC and work alongside Tidal’s founders, Matt Myers and Burak Kanber, to develop new products and features for the Tidal Platform, and partner with companies and agencies looking to expand their content strategies.


Tidal Labs Passes One Million Contributions

Tidal Labs announced that it has more than one million contributions in its system. The one millionth contribution comes as the Tidal network of contributors also continues to grow and now includes more than 14,000 bloggers submitting 22,000 pieces of content each week.

Tidal Labs today announced that it has more than one million contributions in its system. The one millionth contribution comes as the Tidal network of contributors also continues to grow and now includes more than 14,000 bloggers submitting 22,000 pieces of content each week. So far in 2013, Pepsi, Details. Epicurious, Liquor.com and FashionIndie have launched new communities have launched on the Tidal Community Platform.

FashionIndie is relaunching its site tomorrow as an editorial blogging community dedicated to fashion, beauty and luxury lifestyle influencers handpicked among talents represented by Socialyte and industry personalities. Matt Myers, CEO and cofounder, Tidal Labs -- which partnered with Indie -- stated: "It's a case study for publishers in a new media world, where editors continue to cede control to bloggers and other experts on social media."

Lucky launched its online community in September (2012) using the Tid.al platform, which has allowed the brand to not only generate hundreds, if not thousands of contributor posts everyday, but also support some of its key advertising partners.

The Details Style Network is powered by Tid.al. The Ti.dal platform allows Details editors to manage content via a customized dashboard. With a simple tag, contributors can add content to the editorial cue for approval. Brands will be able to sponsor the network. The launch partner is Mr Porter and Zegna is lined up as the March sponsor.

The Condé Nast magazine Details has launched the Details Style Network, a new "a channel that showcases luxury men’s content" coming from independent bloggers. The editors at Details are working with Tidal, a company that gathers up like bloggers into what they call tribes – the company is working with another Condé Nast title, Lucky, as well as brands like Johnson & Johnson and Neutrogena.

Lifestyle title Details has announced the launch of Details Style Network, a community of men's blogs and online publications. Focusing on fashion and grooming as well as covering travel, design, gadgets and cocktails, the site is curated by the magazine's editors and will be updated several times a day by international contributors. Mr.Porter is the network's launch partner, with Zegna sponsoring throughout March. The Network is powered by Tid.al


Details Style Network Launch

Yesterday, Details Magazine launched their Style Network. The Style Network is a website which features selected contributors and houses their work under one roof. This website is aiming to be the “one stop shop” for online menswear and some of the participants include Liam Saw This, Secret Forts, Monsieur Jerome and myself.


Details Magazine Launching Blogger Network

Details magazine has gathered a bunch of its favorite bloggers — like Bryan Grey Yambao, aka BryanBoy — into what it calls a blogger’s network, a lately fashionable phenomenon among women’s magazines. Lucky and Glamour both launched their own networks, of varying size, two years ago.


Beyoncé Wins the Super Bowl; Pepsi Wins Tumblr

Pepsi definitely nailed the social aspect of social media promotion: nearly everything was crowdsourced. The entries on their Tumblr were from various fashion and style bloggers, of different backgrounds and focuses, all calling for entries into their Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show Contest, which showcased photographs of entrants in various poses and kicked off the halftime show featuring Beyoncé (you can see the finished product here).


Avon Books Taps Community for Site Relaunch

Avon Books has turned to the crowd for its relaunched its website. The site, which is a collaboration between Avon and social publishing company Tidal, is populated with content from readers, reviewers, authors, and the publisher itself creating a community experience around romance novels.


Avon Books Gets Into Crowd Sourcing

Romance publisher Avon Books has relaunched its website and added a new crowd sourced social media platform to it. The site, which is a collaboration between Avon and social publishing company Tidal, brings together content from readers, reviewers, publishers and authors, so that it grows into a living and breathing romance community.

Avon has lauched AvonRomance.com, a romance community Website that aggregates online content, spotlighting an array of user-generated posts and commentary. The site features editorials, book reviews, pictures, videos, news, and special promotions from Avon authors, romance readers, and influential online reviewers, as well as Avon Romance editors and marketers. The site redesign and interactive and social capabilities are powered by Tidal.


Startup News

Lucky users Tidal—a company that creates channels to link users with brands and publishers—and Condé Nast just launched the Lucky Magazine Community, a new site where readers can submit original posts and instantly syndicate content from existing blogs.

Lucky Magazine editor-in-chief Brandon Holley describes Lucky Community as the “third tier” of its content pyramid. “The road map is very big and there’s a lot of investment being made, given what we’ve seen of Community, which is aesthetically pleasing to navigate and easy to manage on the back-end, those investments are being made in the right place."


Lucky Leverages New Community to Grow Digital Audience

With less than 10 percent duplication between print and Web audiences for Condé Nast’s Lucky, the digital side needs different products to keep its visitors engaged. The bonus would be to double monthly traffic to the site and spot emerging trends in the fashion and beauty world.

Lucky, the Condé Nast shopping magazine, is launching an online section that will be entirely user-generated. The section, called Lucky Community, is set to launch in August and will be powered by Tidal.
Lucky, while it was founded on a democratic approach, has been trying to keep pace as fashion bloggers have increasingly challenged magazines as a style authority.
Brandon Holley, the editor in chief of Lucky, said the new section recognizes that readers want to hear from their peers as well as from editors.
“Top-down only takes you so far,” she said. As an editor, she said, “You can only do so much. This allows for much bigger growth.”


Building relevant yet organic networks of new voices

Leveraging the social web is the biggest challenge and opportunity facing digital publishers and brands alike. With everyone now a publisher, the challenge to participate in versus control conversation requires new models, tools and parners. Building relevant yet organic networks of new voices is key and Tidal's model fills this void nicely.
-John McCarus, SVP of Content, Digitas