16 Mar 2018


Social audiences are influenced by authentic posts that make them feel an affinity with the author.

Mediacells can reveal that social media folk respond less to celebrity endorsements and more to meaningful recommendations made by trusted commentators who make them feel special.

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We analysed the latest adidas influencer campaign and awarded a lesser-known volleyball player the highest engagement rate, blocking fellow campaign influencers Lionel Messi, David Beckham and Paul Pogba from the top spot.

Mediacells identified 100+ million social views across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook in the context of the adidas social influencer video campaign ‘Calling All Creators’.

The multi-layered story drew on stars from sport, fashion and music to inspire a creative dialogue in 33 countries, using curated video content across social, TV and adidas.com.

Influencer 18Source: Mediacells

The #1 influencer was a US female volleyball star, called Paige Tapp, who inspired 17% of her social audience to share, like or mention the specific campaign in tweets and posts.

Paige, 22, was most effective on Instagram, where her ‘seat at the table’ post won 7.6k ‘loves’. The reactions to the post were deeply personal, with family and friends showing their support, which in turn created a groundswell of positive sentiment around the Team USA middle blocker’s brand messages.

The closest influencer to Paige was Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, who inspired 7% of his audience to join the conversation, while NFL superstar Aaron Rodgers prompting 5% of his fan base to engage in meaningful interactions about the campaign.

From outside the world of sport, rapper Pusha T converted 4% of his social audience to ‘create’ with his ‘Three Stripe Life’ tweets.

The findings come as influencer marketing is becoming the advertising saviour, at a time when the world’s largest advertising and marketing services group, WPP, announced its worst year since 2009.

Brand conversion is becoming less and less about big numbers and more about attributable, authentic conversions from loyal fan bases. Instagram fan Brooke Schwartz responded to Paige Tapp’s endorsement of adidas sneakers thus,

 “I have been a Nike girl for 26 years and yesterday I bought my first pair of Adidas because of you.”

6 Dec 2017

Excellent marriage between machine and human creates ‘Reuters Tracer’ lovechild


CLIENT: Thomson Reuters

WOW: Social Media News Tracer

DATE: October 2017


Las Vegas shooting, October 2017, 1:22am, 58 people dead. Earliest report on Twitter happens simultaneous to the shooting.

Every news organisation has an acute problem with fake news distorting the perception of events and there is an added pressure to break news stories as they happen.

The new system called Reuters Tracer examines 12 million tweets a day (2% of the daily total), validates news events and assigns a newsworthiness score with a confidence rating on how likely the events are true.

The algorithm  uses data mining and machine learning to pick out the most relevant events, determine the topic, rank the priority, write a headline and a summary. The human involvement comes from a list of Twitter accounts, curated by Reuters journalists.

A citizen journalist tweet at 1:22am about the shooting triggered what is called a ‘Tracer Cluster’ and, after rigorous criteria has been met, the event was included in the news feed at 1:39am

What we love most about the Tracer product is the cooperation between serious data brains in R&D and the human expertise brought in from the Reuters journalists – it’s a lot like how we work here at Mediacells!


6 Dec 2017

Artificial Intelligence-defying writing from Esquire

SECTOR: Entertainment

CLIENT: Hearst, Esquire

WOW: Power of the human word

DATE: November 2017


Progressive US magazine Mother Jones recently reported that Artificial Intelligence (AI) experts are predicting we will have ‘full human-level AI’ by 2045. Artists? Surgeons? Writers? There’s an app, well, a robot for all that in less than 30 years.

However, when you read Kevin Sintumuang’s piece, ironically about driverless cars, there’s little hope for mid-millennium robots mastering the art of magazine writing.

His article on the new Mercedes S-Class is a paean to near-future tech and evokes its benefits with the passion and skill normally reserved for the Times Literary Supplement, rather than a humble car review.

Kevin’s work is indicative of inspired editorial direction at Esquire but also to a bold approach at publisher level, elevating native content above attention-grabbing social media calls to action or the ‘10 celebrity chefs you won’t believe what they cook like now’ clickbait strategies.

Mediacells reckons that even with superior petaflops, your above-average robot won’t ever be able to conclude a car review with:

Are we ready to give up our freedom to take the wheel in exchange for self-driving pleasure pods of the future?

Does a millennial eat avocado toast?


21 Jul 2017

What is it with Austrians and diving records?

There are no two words in the English language more harmful than ‘good job’, said Terence Fletcher, the rhythm-dictating fascist drumteach in 2014 Hollywood blockbusting outlier, Whiplash. It’s alright being good at something but being the best at something is a huge ask for the individual. Not so for countries, according to David McCandless and […]

14 Jul 2017

Your money or your life – what would you stand and deliver?

A mugger accosts you in the street ranting, ‘YOUR CASH OR YOUR PHONE?’ what do you give up? If you hand over your cash, there’s no recompense, you’ve lost your dosh. If you hand over your phone, chances are it has a lock on it and you can cancel it and get a replacement. There’s […]

29 May 2016

Prepare to be thunderstruck by the 2016 Champions League final

By Brad Rees As the Atlético Madrid team bus rocks up to the San Siro stadium on Saturday, the Blaupunckt stereo system will be blasting out ‘Thunderstruck’ by Ozzie MetalGods, AC/DC. It’s an Atléti tradition. Torres and chums will be chanting, ‘Thunder, thunder, thunder, thunder, I was caught in the middle of a railroad track.’ […]

19 May 2016

GEORDIE SOARS… as MTV reality show celebrates 5th birthday with record audience on TV and online

By Brad Rees Love it or hate it, MTV’s licence-to-ill DocuSoap has wiped the floor with all previous traditional ratings records and amassed a vibrant, engaged social audience in the process. An army of digital natives gorge on content, not just for the 42 minutes per episode but 24/7 – as new and old habits […]

13 May 2016

How to retain unloyal millennial audiences as media owners

Start by understanding what makes them tick at work, says Deloitte By Brad Rees We’ve all had that job that never makes it to the CV or LinkedIn halls of fame. Mine was working for Alternative Corporate Entertainment PLC or ‘ACE’, where I was tasked to sell ‘Novelty Entertainment Acts’ (NEAs) to global business monoliths from […]

6 May 2016

Can digital longform content talk to the Buzzfeed generation when under the social media influence?

By Brad Rees Last week I realised the true value of being a follower when I discovered an amazing story by Hillsborough survivor, Adrian Tempany, after it was promoted in a tweet by sportswriter David Conn.  It was 5,000 words long, which meant a lot of iPhone thumbscrolls on a Sunday afternoon when I should have been helping […]

28 Apr 2016

Is Apple on the precipice of going Nokia-wards?

Tim Cook will have woken to the news that Facebook has tripled its advertising revenues. The news has stunned Wall Street in much the same way that Apple’s revenue-drop news, 24 hours previously, had shocked the media world. The surprise came despite an apparent expectation management exercise, masterminded by mister Cook in January. Apple soothsayers […]