Hello boys, girls and cephalopods. Welcome once again to the weird and wonderful world of the snappily-titled Future content content marketing, social media and tech industry news round-up (did I do all the keywords? Good). This week was the 50th anniversary of the death of the wartime Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill (Happy belated Deathday, Winston). The scowling jowls, the iconic cigar, the peace signs and his bullish temperament have left an indelible mark on this country, of that there can be no doubt, and whatever your political bent, you can’t deny his impact and legacy.

Hailed as a hero during wartime, the electorate unceremoniously dumped him almost immediately following World War II, his strong leadership having served its purpose and no longer relevant to a country aching for peace. He still holds a special place in our hearts though, a representation of England’s bulldog spirit from a bygone era. In 2002 he even topped a BBC poll of the 100 Greatest Britons EVER, beating the likes of former Pentonville prison inmate, Boy George, squeaky-voiced ball-kicker, David Beckham and pop twatlet, Robbie Williams (I’m not making this up). Esteemed company indeed.

He was also famed for his vicious wit. Here are some of our favourites:-

  • To MP Bessie Braddock, who took offence to his inebriation: “My dear, you are ugly, but tomorrow I shall be sober, and you will still be ugly.”
  • On men: “Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.”
  • On Clement Atlee: “A modest man, who has much to be modest about.”
  • On Americans: “You can always count on Americans to do the right thing — after they’ve tried everything else.”
  • On death: “I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.”

On with the show.

Local news

“The Cleggster is in the house. Brapppp!” That cry could be heard across the Engine Shed yesterday (Jan 29) as Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg bowled up to announce further investment into the LEP, a chunk of which will go towards further expansion of the tech hub. Here’s Engine Shed Director, Nick Sturge with more details.

And in other local news, Digital TV Labs, the world’s largest independent, specialist digital media and device testing company, and SETSquared Bristol member for 6 years, has been acquired by Eurofins.

Social Media

Twitter is changing, poking its little blue beak into the already busy world of direct messaging. Or so it seems. Their new DM service allows you to private message a group of up to 20 people without the whole world seeing. It’s an interesting turn for Twitter, its USP was always the openness and public discourse, while this takes things behind closed doors so to speak.

And in more mild pivoting news, Snapchat is also looking at new ways to keep its audience interested. We briefly touched on ‘Discover’ a couple of months back, a partnership between Snapchat and various media channels to provide content to users. Well, it’s finally launched and, well, it all looks a little underwhelming.

On the Snapchat front, reports from a recent Comscore Mobile Metrix suggest that user numbers peaked in March 2014, and achieved flat growth for the rest of the year. A rather large HOWEVER though, this report only took info from over 18s and given the apps well-publicised popularity with tweens, it’s probably rubbish.

Another millenially-popular messenger app, Kik Messenger, announced a recent partnership with Bristol-based mobile ad service, Samba Networks. Samba recently bagged a not-to-be-sniffed-at $377,000 from a recent investment round, and the future looks bright. Funnily enough, we recently wrote a profile on Samba for TechSPARK. Have a read…

Content marketing

There’s always some smartarse showing off about their incredible growth, without the need for marketing. And you know what? It’s not that impressive. Here’s Ben Yoskovitz to tell us why.

The blog is becoming more and more ubiquitous these days, and with good reason. But should startups really blog? A thoroughly insightful essay (with stats and everything) from Jay Acunzo. tl;dr: Yes.

Ben Horowitz wrote an awesome book called The Hard Things based on the blogs he used to start their VC firm. He loves hip hop and always includes a quote before every blog. You should definitely delve.

Fuckity shit balls. Using swear words in your marketing is a delicate art and one which should be used wisely (if at all). The infinitely fun Velocity Marketing has drawn up a helpful guide for the foul-mouthed amongst you.

Tech

Not sure how aware you are, but Apple is a pretty big company? But how big? Luckily the Wall Street Journal is on hand to tell us.

Steve-IBM

And the iPod is dead! Or is it? Arguments abound over on Twitter at the moment, but if rumours are correct, it could be the end of Apple’s groundbreaking MP3 player. MacWorld (probably just to be contrary) think not. And here are the reasons why.

That’s it for this week. Tune in next time for more news and all that. Have great weekends one and all.