Friday, 22 January 2010

Take care with your facebook profile pictures

Without mentioning any names, have you noticed how unprofessional some businesses profile images look, when its a small thumbnail next to their comment?

The text is often misaligned or cropped, so it's a struggle to see who the page actually belongs to. Many businesses simply upload their logo and leave it at that, but as with most things on facebook, it needs a little care and attention. Surprisingly, you even find this with some huge companies. Again, mentioning no names!

The key to making sure your image displays well in thumbnails is that they are always square. If your image isn't, then the thumbnail will automatically crop to a square using the shortest side. This can then cut off your text or image.

To solve the problem, use image editing software, such as photoshop, to square your image in relation to it's longest side. Also, remember to leave a little spare space around the edges, as the thumbnail will still crop a little.

Upload your image and refresh the page to check how it displays in the thumbnails. If it's still not quite right, tinker with it until it is.

A few extra minutes care on this will make the posts and comments you leave appear much more professional and attractive.

12.6 million people in the UK regularly use a Social Network

There are now 625 million active users of the internet, active being those who use the internet every one or two days.

In the UK there are 19 million active users. Of those, 64% have created and maintain a Social network profile. That's 12.16 million people who regularly use a Social Network.

It’s very easy to set up a social network profile, but the key question is whether the excitement starts to pall after a few weeks.

The answer is very clearly not. Consumers are signing up for profiles in larger numbers and spending more time keeping them up to date.

Of these users, 47.9% join groups or pages and 29.9% make contacts for professional reasons.

Social media is also increasingly going mobile. 17% of active internet users globally now access the internet on the move as well as at home, work or college.

Video watching is now at 83% amongst active internet users and is beginning to rival television as the preferred format.

The commercial opportunities are obvious and with a little thought and attention, these can bring real benefits to your business.

UM’s WAVE research into the phenomenal growth of social media is the most robust data set in the world. Affectionately called "Power to the People," this annual social media tracker has mapped key changes in consumer uptake and usage of social media platforms for the past four years.

The latest iteration—WAVE 4—tracked 23,200 active Internet users in 38 countries during Spring 2009, providing an exhaustive study and a wide range of insight. Power to the People provides in-depth understanding into the dramatic changes driven by the uptake of social media.

Download the full report here

Friday, 15 January 2010

Social Media Workshop Feedback

We learn from a young age that feedback is hugely important in the process of getting things right. In business this is just as true, in particular where a personal service is delivered.

Since 2008, eskimosoup’s Managing Director, Chris Middleton has been presenting workshops on the subject of online social networks on behalf of Business Link Yorkshire.

Having presented to over 800 business leaders in the past 12-months alone Chris has met a vast range of people with some fascintating businesses.

Some of the snippets of feedback he has received to his personal email are below. Its great to know that the workshops are providing value for our client, Business Link Yorkshire, and for many of their clients in return. The course is constantly being revamped and will continue to run throughout 2010.
See for more information about upcoming workshops and events.

We all trust that Chris continues to show eskimosoup in such a positive light in 2010, keep up the good work!

For more information about online social network, visit eskimosoup’s facebook page at:

“Firstly many, many thanks for the excellent presentation yesterday at the Business Link meeting in Bradford, I personally found your friendly, approachable, easy going manner perfect for the subject matter of social networking.
Having just gone through your website I have to say it's one of the best around and you certainly have put into practice your presentation is about.”
Gary Greenwood, Blue Sky Marketing

“I was at your session today at Coniston. It was a really good session, punchy and packed with information. It gave me loads of ideas of what we can do. Thanks and I look forward to being able to access some more assistance through your site.”
Pam Hickin, Yorkshire Dales Guides

“I attended your seminar yesterday in York - Online Social Networks - and thoroughly enjoyed it. I came knowing absolutely nothing about social networks other than the fact that my son spends 50% of his spare time on Facebook, and therefore assumed it was the province of students. To be shown that it could enhance a business was mind-blowing, so thank you for that.
You have a great website - I spent a couple of hours last night roaming through it and the various links, picking up loads of useful stuff. Love the humour.“
Sue Dixon, Green Shoots

“Thanks for the seminar yesterday, I found your case studies really interesting and it certainly clarified a few things for me. I hope to hear from you soon.”
Jilly, Brilliant Media

“Thanks for a great presentation, I found some great ideas so I just need to try some of them now. I will certainly be having a go at setting up a facebook page and a blog. Many thanks.”
Mandy Gleave, Crow Trees Park

“I attended your conference yesterday at Bagden Hall Hotel in Huddersfield – Online Social Networks. I found it very interesting and am emailing to request a copy of the presentation and a starter pack that you mentioned in your presentation. Thank you very much for your help and the informative day.”
Wallis, EIAT Creative Education

“Thanks for a very informative and enlightening presentation yesterday – it has certainly given us food for thought. I would be grateful if you could forward me a hard copy of the presentation and notes on creating a blog. Many thanks in advance.”
Liz, Classic Door Panels Ltd

“Just wanted to say how enlightening the course was yesterday. It has certainly changed my way of thinking with regards to Marketing and Networking.”
Deborah Drury, City Book Keeping

Monday, 11 January 2010

NHS Marketing communications – Becoming customer focused?

The NHS has announced that it needs to become more customer-centric. Is this a matter of survival for the NHS?

Here are the views of Zulu’s Ivan Yardley:

Understanding an organisation such as the NHS is a complex business. Many reviews have focused on trying to identify and articulate what the NHS is and what it stands for. The problem is with the number of stakeholders and the historical baggage of the organisation.

The NHS is the largest consumer of UK GDP revenues and is growing year on year Whilst the organisation is deemed to be essential to many individuals within the UK community (if not synonymous with the British culture), it is also coming under severe scrutiny, with its long-term sustainability being called into question.

Even before the current economic crisis, it was well recognised that the investment and proportionate growth of UK resources consumed by the NHS was, in the long-term, unsustainable. There are many who would call for a radical reform of the NHS and the next few years will undoubtedly see a more austere outlook for the organisation. The long-term plan, and the strategic thinking which defines what and how the NHS will be run in the future, remains unanswered.

A recent article, which we re-tweeted through Twitter, suggested a new focus for the NHS communications team, providing a more ‘customer’ focused message. The issue of defining exactly what this means is as complex as determining what the NHS itself is. The customer is wide ranging, but if for the purposes of this article we determine this to be the patient or the service user, we can create more focus and identify potential threats and distinct opportunities that the NHS and local PCT can take advantage of.

It is clear that local PCT will need to radically rethink the way they deliver their services to what is essentially, an ever-changing community. Local communities tend to be more dynamic now than at any time in our history and coupled with the changing trends and expectations in consumer behaviour, we have a complex and dynamic issue for large organisations such as the NHS to confront.

Although there will be no single ‘silver bullet’ to this problem, understanding the dynamics of the consumer and how they interact with an organisational brand is becoming increasingly important in determining how the NHS will deliver its services in the future. The use of integrated technologies and the continuing underlying trend of convergence means that businesses are getting closer (through data capture, profiling and insight) to their customer base than ever before. The successful companies of today are joining up their corporate strategies with customer insight and accurately predicting future trends, behaviours and customer expectations. Those companies and organisations that can adapt and embrace these challenges prosper, even in the most difficult of times. Those organisations that do not or cannot develop this kind of strategic thinking become increasingly irrelevant.

I believe that the NHS and local PCTs can take advantage of the new technologies that are emerging, in order for them to enhance the customer experience whilst reducing administrative and managerial costs, preserving front line capability and providing more resources to the customer. Through understanding the way consumer behaviours are changing, we can apply our commercial thinking to providing a better experience for the NHS customer.

Just as no single local community is exactly the same, nor will the problems/potential opportunities be the same for each of the UK’s many PCTs, through enhanced strategic partnering with commercial companies, there lies the potential to provide innovation and reform at an affordable price.

Article sourced from Zulu:

Friday, 8 January 2010

eskimosoup are seeking a souper Business Development Manager!

We are looking for a motivated team player with experience of new business sales to join us on our adventure of business growth!

Closing date for applications is 12th February 2010.

The Role:

To increase and delight our client base within our specified target markets.

You will be required to develop new business opportunities through networking, client relationship marketing, responding to enquiries, promotional events and creative marketing methods that you’ll develop as part of our team.

You will work alongside our Marketing Director and Managing Director to develop the right type of new business for our company.

Who we are looking for:
A candidate with previous proven experience in a B2B service selling environment.

Commercially aware, with the necessary sales abilities to seek and close new business opportunities.

We are developing markets in public and private sector, so specific experience within health or high-growth business would be advantageous.

Knowledge of marketing, design, social media, and web development, would be valuable though is not essential.

Essential candidate features:
• The ability to work autonomously, but within parameters of marketing strategy.
• Enthusiastic, self motivated and positive in your approach to selling.
• Able to work from our head office in Hull and travel to meet with clients.

Critically, we are looking for someone that understands our brand and ethos. To be successful in this role the candidate must fit in with the culture of our client care team, and relate with our client base.


Salary £20,000 - £30,000 (dependent upon experience and value offered).

Additionally, the appointed candidate can join our generous profit share scheme.

How to apply:

Please send your CV and other information you feel would be useful to us.

By post to:

John Gilbert
Marketing Director
1 Silvester Street
The Maltings

Or by email to

About Us:

Established in 2003, eskimosoup is a creative marketing agency that enjoys working with a variety of key clients including the NHS, city councils, social enterprises, and growing businesses throughout the north of England.

eskimosoup works heavily within job creation, health and mental health sectors, in keeping with our desire to work on projects that create a positive social outcome.

Monday, 4 January 2010

Happy New Year and Good Health to All!

Following some good recharging of the batteries over the festive period the eskimosoup team are returning to an active schedule including the delivery of two major contracts for the NHS.

eskimosoup were appointed by NHS Hull to launch and run the ongoing marketing for the pioneering Health Central premises at St Stephen’s in Hull. Health Central hosts a range of public health services, including health trainers, NHS Choices, smoking cessation, Strength to Change, and the Hull and Humber Breast Screening service.

Doors will open to the public in mid-February, with launch events and promotions managed by our team.

Another pitch that eskimosoup were successful in winning in late 2009 was for the development of the website for the new City Health Care Partnership; provider of NHS services in Hull.

The website will be launched in April and adds to the eskimosoup portfolio of health-related websites which also includes websites for NHS Stoke, Yorkshire Health Improvement Partnership, Stoke Community Health Services, NHS Hull and an upcoming website for NHS Humber Mental Health.

eskimosoup will be expanding our workforce early this year. Having recently appointed another programmer we will soon be advertising new positions in the company.

We wish all of our clients, suppliers, associates and friends the very best for 2010 and look forward to working with you toward a prosperous and healthy year.