SO GREAT

My top-notch, top five picks from the past week on the interwebs:

1. “How an Unknown Street Artist Used Content Marketing to Build a Global Brand”

An article from Copyblogger that details Shepard Fairey’s ascent to worldwide recognition by evaluating the visual content he creates and how he markets himself:

“It appeared both haunting and hilarious amidst the bland, big-box advertisements for Office Depot and Vons grocery chain. What did it mean? Was it a call to arms, coercion, a warning? I really wanted to know.”

Journalists, bloggers, creatives, anyone generating online content – you need to get on the Copyblogger mailing list.

2. “How Women Burn Calories in France”

A friend forwarded me this video via email, and while it’s not quite new I think it’s still pretty noteworthy:

We say this time and time again upon viewing avant-garde European advertisements, but seriously: Will we ever see commercials like this one in the U.S.? What doesn’t the American Family Association have major beef with?

The above advertisement – whether it was scripted or came about in a flashbob-esque manner – is so effective in encouraging women to be health conscious because it a) is physically engaging by prompting many people to work together toward a common goal, b) reminds viewers that being healthy and getting in shape can be fun, and c) is so large-scale and unexpected.

Compare it to Special K’s advertisement featuring real women stepping onto numberless scales in Central Park:

Reinforcing positive body image is absolutely necessary. But surely, there’s some way to do it that doesn’t involve blatantly ripping off and distorting somebody else’s concept?

According to About-Face, an organization that empowers women to “resist harmful media messages that affect their self-esteem and body image,” Special K did not obtain permission from author and fat acceptance activist Marilyn Wann to use her Yay Scales in the commercial.

Wann holds that happiness and healthfulness are not solely centered around weight loss.

“This is about stealing a clearly brilliant idea, and it’s about twisting a message that is so clearly about accepting our bodies as they are today, NOT only when we lose weight,” About-face says. “Because really, you can’t feel those wonderful emotions until you lose a bunch of weight!? That’s almost worse than saying your worth is measured by a number on a scale.”

3. “From Wall Street Headhunter To Indie Rap Mogul”

I’m a huge fan of Das Racist, and had no idea that frontman Himanshu Suri left a Wall Street career to pursue his pastime full-time, until reading this interview:

(via Forbes)

“Part of Greedhead [Suri's record label] comes from me having this business part of my brain that I want to keep active. Just being in the group or being an artist wasn’t enough for me. The way I work, I still want to chase deals.”

This article is part of Forbes’ annual list, Cash Kings: Hip-Hop’s Top Earners.

4. LinkWithin v. nRelate

Related links beneath each post are a common feature on most blogs, including this one. However, as I learned this week, some widgets that offer this service are more SEO-friendly than others.

If you’ve used LinkWithin with Blogger/Blogspot, you may have noticed widget3.linkedwithin.com as one of the referring URLs under your traffic sources. This seems good, because readers are staying on your site to view more of your content. But it’s actually a hinderance to your internal linking. LinkWithin is getting more hits by redirecting viewers from your blog to LinkWithin, and then back to your blog to view related posts.

Check out this post from Geek in Heels for a comprehensive explanation of how this works. Plus, with nRelate you can:

  • change the size of your thumbnails
  • easily change the title for the related content box
  • specify a default image for when the post does not have any images
  • choose your level of relevancy
  • choose to exclude certain categories
  • …and much, much more!

Needless to say, I’ve switched to nRelate for my related posts and I love it. Getting the widget to look the way I wanted it to was tricky at first, as I’m still learning about HTML and CSS as I go, but the friendly tech support team was extremely helpful. Grab the widget for your WordPress, Blogger or Tumblr blog.

5. Random StumbleUpon find: “Envisioning Disney Characters in ‘Real Life’”

A project in photo manipulation and photo illustration by Finland-based artist, Jirka Väätäinen:

(via Behance)

What links are you into this week?

2 comments

  1. sowmiehomie

    A few things:

    1) Shepard Fairey, wow! I really had no idea that’s how he started. Maybe we should get involved in some militant/ninja style promotion of Kunjulam. I’m 100% in!
    2) You are so right about the campaigns to promote healthy lifestyles for women. I wish that the promotion of loving one’s figure as is could somehow go hand-in-hand with promoting exercise and healthy diet, without completely stigmatizing and negatively labeling certain body types.
    3) “Himanshu Suri left a Wall Street career to pursue his pastime full-time…” Well, maybe following your passions isn’t so awful after all then… I’ll be sure to show this to my mom. HAHA.

    • Seetha Sankaranarayan

      1) You should watch “Exit Through the Gift Shop.” It’s an interesting look at street art culture and it sparked a great debate about whether it was a documentary, mockumentary or prankumentary. I’ve always wanted to get into street art … maybe something for Kunjulam next year after I’ve generated more content? Our final project in graphic design class last semester was guerilla marketing for a campus arts event, you can see photos here: http://udquickly.udayton.edu/scribblings/2012/04/guerilla-tactics/
      2) YES. EXACTLY.
      3) And fa shooo show that article to your mom! I saw an interview with Himanshu Suri online a year or so ago and he seemed like such a chill dude, not the stereotypical Wall Street type at all.

REACT