What I’m thinking about today:

1.Facebook hashtags
2.Sports viewing is changing before our eyes
3.LifeHack sounds scary…what is it?
4.Lucky number seven for John Williams
5.Breaking Bad…and then what?

1. Facebook hashtags…are they working? AKHIA recently launched a new weekly trends report called Quick Bytes (email me if you’d like to receive it) where I found this interesting read about Facebook hashtags. They feature three examples that ‘worked’. And as much as I love the Starbucks example (I really do; very engaging, very simple, very easy to track) the other two on the list (MLB, Cover Girl) are very encouraging when it comes to how people are gauging social success.

Both MLB and Cover Girl launched their hashtag campaigns to engage with and talk to their communities. With MLB it was simple – connect fans, in and out of the stadium (novel concept that I talk about a little further down the page). With Cover Girl, the idea was similar but it was more about the conversation itself as experts and fans talked about product and application.

In all three examples the objective was clear – and the tactic’s purpose was perfectly defined. This made the hashtag easy to measure and its impact on expanding / raising awareness for the brand easy to see. This comes from an understanding that there is a tool for everything, not one tool for everything. Hashtags won’t work every time—and it’s a relief to see that brands are starting to realize that.

2. Check out this infographic (from Sports Media Consumption Report) that shows how fans are ‘consuming’ sports. The biggest point of interest for me is the ever so slight dip in people attending live events. Franchises are investing in their stadiums to make them more social media friendly but I have to wonder if the real secret is establishing ‘private’ networks for fans to view your games anywhere. Check out the stats that show how people are viewing sports – traditional methods are dipping, such as TV, as non-traditional are really rising, specifically online and mobile.

Think about if teams created their own digital networks, literally connecting you to the stadium on game-day, and vice versa. Sure, it’s cool to post pictures and tweets from the stadium, but what if the game experience reached beyond the actual stadium? What if tweets and pictures from parties around the state and the country were featured? And if the teams had someone to manage chats and in-game questions, whether you’re at the game or not? There are so many ways teams can make the game an event beyond the confines of the stadium. And if attendance at games continues to decline, they may not have a choice.

3. LikeHack? Has anyone tried LikeHack? I learned about it on twitter yesterday – someone was talking a lot about it. It looks like an alternative to Flipboard with the exception that you can filter it a little more. They have a video on their site that explains it pretty quickly.

The hook seems to be that you can filter information in a way that ranks what is important to you and feeds you only that. A great concept, however, for me, sometimes it’s the things I find when I take that extra minute to hit up my lists (which is how I found this, ironically). But, I do worry that for every one random thing I find I’m missing another five. So, I’m going to check it out. Stay tuned…

4. John Williams is in..are you? There are a lot of ways for the new Star Wars movies to get messed up. But you can just cross one off your list – John Williams is back and will compose the music for Episode VII. Really, his scores were the best part of Episodes I, II and III. I liked what they decided to do with the soundtracks, giving each one a signature song.

A comment Williams made in this interview is of interesting note, where he talks about agreeing to do the score without seeing a script yet. Williams says “I can’t imagine that there won’t be some references to the existing stories that we know that would necessitate and make appropriate the use of earlier themes.” Might I suggest the Imperial March?

5. ‘Breaking Bad’…still counting down. I know I’ve been talking a lot about ‘Breaking Bad’. And with good reason. It’s the final season. I have no idea how it will end (but only one idea of how it should end). It’s the first show I may watch live/the night it originally airs since I got DVR. And maybe I’m so desperate for it to be here that I’ll take anything that AMC feeds me. Which brings me to this announcement from the network that it has two new dramas for me to get addicted to: ‘Turn’, a Revolutionary War-era period spy drama set among a group of childhood friends who become espionage agents for the future United States during the 18th century. (I’m in.) and the Texas-set ‘Halt & Catch Fire’, another period drama—one set in the 1980s during the computing boom.

The bad news is both of these shows debut in 2014. The good news is AMC is launching its newest drama, ‘Low Winter Sun’, the same night ‘Breaking Bad’ returns (August 11 – have I mentioned that?) Here’s hoping AMC continues its hot streak!