Digital Face Lift #1- Hostess Snack Cakes

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This is the first in a  special series of  Thursday blogs that aims to give familiar but dated brands a digital face-lift by using social media, original videos, article marketing, mobile marketing and blogging.

The Patient: Hostess Snack Cakes purveyors of Twinkies, Cupcakes, and Ho Hos.

The Ailment: Hostess suffers from a chronically lame website, a lack of identity, a dwindling presence online, and a sagging social media strategy.

Prognosis: Grim. If the snack food brand refuses to step into 2010, Twinkies could be a thing of the past.

Recommended Treatment: When the going gets tough, the tough reach out for something fun. Sure, Twinkies are the exact thing films like Food Inc. are warning people against. Yet Hostess Snack Cakes like cheesy action films or reality TV serve their purpose: in moderation they provide a little fun and a little escape. So there’s no reason the classic junk food can’t get an update and survive well into the next decade.

First off, Hostess needs to lighten the heck up. Jeeze. It’s Ding Dongs, not prunes for crying out loud. Their website is a flat, bland affair with little reason to ever return other than the promise of coupons upon signing more

Riding the Facebook publicity train

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When Tyra Banks’ produces several episodes of her talk show devoted to Facebook, you know that the craze is about to end. After all, how much longer can we collectively go on poking one another, playing Farmville, and designing our own flare? Apparently, forever.  Social networking cynics expected Facebook to have a Myspace-like descent into humility when the nation momentarily went Tweet crazy. After all, this seems to be the Internets version of natural selection: the weak get swallowed up or become extinct while the strong continue to evolve.  Facebook falls into the latter catagory much to the delight of folks like Tyra Banks, Time magazine, and every reporter in the country.  In fact, stories about how Facebook can effect a legal verdict, fuel a feud between coach and athlete, and help the US Embassy connect with Iraquis all surfaced within the last week. Even moviegoers won’t be able to avoid the “F” word when the film The Social Network, which chronicles the lives of Facebook’s founders, heads into theaters this October.  While many of us are experiencing a FB OD (Facebook overdose), there is still no reason not  to use the social networking giant’s never ending publicity to our own advantage.
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