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Lady Gaga’s New Social Network Resembles Pinterest, Reddit [PICS]

Pop megastar Lady Gaga has pierced her powerful, digitally-willing paws deeper into the online world with the closed beta launch of her new social network.

LittleMonsters.com — the first product created by startup Backplane — gives Gaga’s fans an outlet to create or share Gaga-related content, interact with fellow “Little Monsters” and publicly show whether they like what other users post. You can request an invite to join the network now.

With a look like Pinterest and an popularity-vote feel like Reddit, the Little Monsters website appears to be latching on to what’s hot on the web right now: sharing visuals and rating content.

SEE ALSO: How Pinterest Is Changing Website Design | 100,000 People Visited Reddit at Once

Backplane CEO and co-founder Matt Michelsen told Mashable that this site and future Blackplane projects have one core mission: “Unite people around interests, affinities and movements.”

To help complete that goal of creating communities (they don’t necessarily have to be social ones), Backplane will look to its expanding staff and four co-founders, several of which have tech backgrounds working at Google, Palantir Technologies and Yahoo. The other three co-founders are Lady Gaga’s manager Troy Carter, former Google designer Joey Primiani and former Palantir director of operations Alex Moore.

The social network, which has been around in beta for four weeks now, has doled out roughly 10,000 codes, including one to Mashable. Check out our test-run in the gallery above for specifics.

“Backplane is about bringing together communities and Gaga’s community just so happens to be the community we’re using to learn about proper functionality,” Michelsen says. “We think we can really change the world.”

Backplane, partially funded by Gaga, plans to launch Little Monsters out of beta and unleash more sites in 2012. Once more sites are unveiled, Backplane intends to release a dashboard on its site this summer that would combine the communities.

Gaga’s strong social media presence should work into Backplane’s advantage and help build a large user base — let alone attention to the startup — for Little Monsters. Gaga joined Google+ in January and has already accumulated more than 330,000 followers. That’s in addition to her almost 19 million Twitter followers, which is the most for any user on the microblogging service, and 47 million Facebook fans.

Her involvement with two Google initiatives in 2011 is also a testament to her digital presence: a Chrome commercial and Google Goes Gaga, a sit-down session with Google executive Marissa Mayer to promote Google Moderator. At that time, Mayer said, “At Google, we’ve seen Gaga build her career by embracing technology … as well as constantly innovating for her fans.”

Additionally, Gaga was the first artist to reach 1 billion views on YouTube; she beat President Barack Obama to 10 million Facebook fans; Vogue released a Lady Gaga-focused iPad-only magazine app; and she became creative director at Polaroid.


BONUS: How Lady Gaga Used the Web to Propel Her Last Album


In the months leading up to the May 23, 2011, Born This Way album release — and even now — Gaga has paved a path for stars and brands to get inventive with the ways they use digital and social media to promote themselves and connect with fans. Gaga is no stranger to success on the web. The promotional juggernaut in 2011 ramped up her all-encompassing web presence, fostering partnerships with Zynga for the FarmVille-inspired GagaVille, Starbucks for a massive scavenger hunt, VEVO for exclusive premieres, HBO for a concert special, Rdio for free lifetime subscriptions, iTunes for a promotional countdown, Best Buy and Livestream for an album signing and Gilt Groupe and Amazon Cloud Player for deals.

Below, we’ve compiled a huge swathe of the digital and social media initiatives behind Gaga’s Born This Way, which is now nominated for three Grammy awards, including her third-straight nod for Album of the Year.


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On May 17, Zynga launched the Farmville-style GagaVille, which garnered much ridicule from Gaga haters and laughs from even the most devoted Little Monsters.

Jokes aside, Lady Gaga like other big brands this year found a way to leverage the enormous social gaming population, which is expected to reach 68.7 million players by the end of 2012.

Gamers were able to unlock and stream unreleased tracks from Born This Way and bonus remixes. The game incorporated Gaga’s style and personality with users having access to crystals, unicorns and sheep on motorcycles. The GagaVille campaign also incorporated Zynga game cards (buy a $25 card and receive the Born This Way album and bonus tracks for free); Words With Friends (use a Gaga word of the day and be entered for concert tickets); and RewardVille (win virtual goods to use in other Zynga games).


Starbucks and Mother Monster teamed up on May 19 for “SRCH,” a two-week digital scavenger hunt in which participants can scan in-store QR codes, visit blogs and Starbucks digital properties, decode cryptic messages and answer trivia questions to earn prizes.

Yahoo joined the fun on May 23, helping transform the Starbucks Digital Network into all things Gaga. Visitors to the site had access to a special edition of the Born This Way for one day. They also received a free “Edge of Glory” download and an exclusive video by Lady Gaga singing a cappella.

“Considering that Lady Gaga may be the world’s hottest star right now and an innovative creator unlike anyone we’ve seen, imagine our delight when we learned that she’s also a big Starbucks fan,” said Alexandra Wheeler, global digital strategy director for Starbucks, in a recent blog post.

The hunt ends June 7.


In the this commerical, Gaga is shown at a computer typing inspirational messages such as, “This is our moment. … Stay strong, Little Monsters!”

The video highlights two things other than the capabilities of Google’s web browser: The extent to which fans will broadcast their adoration for Gaga and also Gaga’s willingness to return their positive sentiments.

The song for the video is “Edge of Glory,” a song from the new album.


Gaga fans woke up May 23 to a nice surprise: Amazon was selling the 14-song album as a digital download for a mere $0.99. Fans also received 20 GB of Cloud Drive storage from Amazon.

News of the massive sale spread like wildfire and consumers quickly started experiencing technical difficulties. With servers overwhelmed, people who bought the digital download were unable to immediately access all tracks.

In time, all songs became available, but Amazon users had already unleashed their anger by leaving one-star ratings due to Amazon’s slow service.

To get back on the good side of consumers, Amazon offered the deal again a few days later on May 26. In a tweet, @AmazonMP3 said, “We’re doing it again and this time we’re ready.”

Amazon has not disclosed the number of downloads for Born This Way.


On album launch day, Lady Gaga stayed up into the wee hours of the night to meet fans and sign autographs at a Best Buy in New York City.

Best Buy promoted the event with a live video feed from Livestream. The video was surrounded by interactive features for fans who couldn’t make it to the event.


In March, Google executive Marissa Mayer interviewed Lady Gaga as part of the “Google Goes Gaga” event. She helped promote Google Moderator, a tool that allows fans to submit questions via text or video on the musician’s YouTube channel and subsequently vote for their favorites.

During the QA, Gaga talked about her forthcoming album and revealed that she would make her directorial debut alongside choreographer Laurieann Gibson for her second single, “Judas.”

Through Google Moderator, her fans asked 643 questions about the single.

Near the end, Gaga asked a rhetorical yet fitting question to the audience of Google employees and online viewers, “Don’t you love the Internet?”


In April, Gaga once again dipped her feet into social good by working with the Robin Hood Foundation to launch two Facebook contests in support of the New York-based charity, which benefits the poor and homeless between the ages of 16 and 24.

The contest — to decide how Lady Gaga should split $1 million among five charities — ran from April 26 to May 6 and received 1,057,101 votes.

She also lent her hand to the victims of the March 11 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan, providing an exclusive remix of her single “Born This Way” for the Songs for Japan charity album.

Gaga also donated $1.5 million to Zynga’s fundraising initiative with Save the Children and the American Red Cross via sales of her Japan Prayer Bracelets.


Gilt Groupe offered sales curated by Gaga’s fashion director, Nicola Formichetti, as well as charity sales of a Mugler dress worn by Gaga, entrance into the Paris Mugler fashion show and access to a performance from Gaga.


HBO aired Gaga’s Monster Ball concert at New York City’s Madison Square Garden on May 7.

The 120-minute concert special included the “Born This Way” single and teased the then-unreleased track “Marry the Night.”


Rdio created a BTW playlist and a corresponding contest to give away a free music subscription.


Gaga ended 2010 as the celebrity with the most “Likes” on a Facebook Page with 24.7 million Likes.

She has one of the most active and engaged Facebook Pages not only because of her fans but also because she frequently shares status updates, photos, videos and news through the platform. On May 18, for example, she posted a photo collage that displays her album art on buildings, cars and even in and around a New York City subway train.



The title track of Born This Way in February became the fastest-selling single ever on iTunes stores worldwide.

Capitalizing on her success, Lady Gaga released two additional songs in advance exclusively on iTunes. Fans got to hear “Edge of Glory” on May 9 and “Hair” on May 16 ahead of the May 23 album release.


A fan favorite, GagaVision gives her Little Monsters a behind-the-scenes look at Gaga. In some of the videos, which are posted on YouTube, Gaga candidly discusses the creative process behind BTW. In other clips, fans get to see the people and places surrounding Gaga.


In May, Gaga hit a Twitter first by becoming the only user to rack up 10 million followers.

The messages she posts incite a tweet storm from her followers who retweet and @mention her comments, pictures and videos, as well as promote the hashtags she uses.

In April, for example, she revealed the BTW cover art via a Twitpic photo (seen above). The image garnered hundreds of thousands of views in mere minutes.


As if that wasn’t enough:

  • Gaga scattered QR codes (pictured) on the web that led back to iTunes where users could download a ringtone of “Born This Way.”
  • Tapulous, a Disney Mobile venture, launched Born This Way Revenge, a Tap Tap Revenge app game for iPhone and iPod. The app features 17 tracks from the deluxe album version, access to GagaVision, Lady Gaga’s Twitter feed, three exclusive chat rooms, the official lyrics and Haus of Gaga event lists.
  • Gaga became creative director at Polaroid.
  • Gaga gave comedic musician Weird Al Yankovic permission to include a parody of “Born This Way” called “Perform This Way” on his new album.
  • Gaga won MTV OMA awards for “Most Innovative Artist” and “Must Follow Artist on Twitter.”

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On May 17, Zynga launched the Farmville-style GagaVille, which garnered much ridicule from Gaga haters and laughs from even the most devoted Little Monsters.

Jokes aside, Lady Gaga like other big brands this year found a way to leverage the enormous social gaming population, which is expected to reach 68.7 million players by the end of 2012.

Gamers were able to unlock and stream unreleased tracks from Born This Way and bonus remixes. The game incorporated Gaga’s style and personality with users having access to crystals, unicorns and sheep on motorcycles. The GagaVille campaign also incorporated Zynga game cards (buy a $25 card and receive the Born This Way album and bonus tracks for free); Words With Friends (use a Gaga word of the day and be entered for concert tickets); and RewardVille (win virtual goods to use in other Zynga games).


Starbucks and Mother Monster teamed up on May 19 for “SRCH,” a two-week digital scavenger hunt in which participants can scan in-store QR codes, visit blogs and Starbucks digital properties, decode cryptic messages and answer trivia questions to earn prizes.

Yahoo joined the fun on May 23, helping transform the Starbucks Digital Network into all things Gaga. Visitors to the site had access to a special edition of the Born This Way for one day. They also received a free “Edge of Glory” download and an exclusive video by Lady Gaga singing a cappella.

“Considering that Lady Gaga may be the world’s hottest star right now and an innovative creator unlike anyone we’ve seen, imagine our delight when we learned that she’s also a big Starbucks fan,” said Alexandra Wheeler, global digital strategy director for Starbucks, in a recent blog post.

The hunt ends June 7.


In the this commerical, Gaga is shown at a computer typing inspirational messages such as, “This is our moment. … Stay strong, Little Monsters!”

The video highlights two things other than the capabilities of Google’s web browser: The extent to which fans will broadcast their adoration for Gaga and also Gaga’s willingness to return their positive sentiments.

The song for the video is “Edge of Glory,” a song from the new album.


Gaga fans woke up May 23 to a nice surprise: Amazon was selling the 14-song album as a digital download for a mere $0.99. Fans also received 20 GB of Cloud Drive storage from Amazon.

News of the massive sale spread like wildfire and consumers quickly started experiencing technical difficulties. With servers overwhelmed, people who bought the digital download were unable to immediately access all tracks.

In time, all songs became available, but Amazon users had already unleashed their anger by leaving one-star ratings due to Amazon’s slow service.

To get back on the good side of consumers, Amazon offered the deal again a few days later on May 26. In a tweet, @AmazonMP3 said, “We’re doing it again and this time we’re ready.”

Amazon has not disclosed the number of downloads for Born This Way.


On album launch day, Lady Gaga stayed up into the wee hours of the night to meet fans and sign autographs at a Best Buy in New York City.

Best Buy promoted the event with a live video feed from Livestream. The video was surrounded by interactive features for fans who couldn’t make it to the event.


In March, Google executive Marissa Mayer interviewed Lady Gaga as part of the “Google Goes Gaga” event. She helped promote Google Moderator, a tool that allows fans to submit questions via text or video on the musician’s YouTube channel and subsequently vote for their favorites.

During the QA, Gaga talked about her forthcoming album and revealed that she would make her directorial debut alongside choreographer Laurieann Gibson for her second single, “Judas.”

Through Google Moderator, her fans asked 643 questions about the single.

Near the end, Gaga asked a rhetorical yet fitting question to the audience of Google employees and online viewers, “Don’t you love the Internet?”


In April, Gaga once again dipped her feet into social good by working with the Robin Hood Foundation to launch two Facebook contests in support of the New York-based charity, which benefits the poor and homeless between the ages of 16 and 24.

The contest — to decide how Lady Gaga should split $1 million among five charities — ran from April 26 to May 6 and received 1,057,101 votes.

She also lent her hand to the victims of the March 11 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan, providing an exclusive remix of her single “Born This Way” for the Songs for Japan charity album.

Gaga also donated $1.5 million to Zynga’s fundraising initiative with Save the Children and the American Red Cross via sales of her Japan Prayer Bracelets.


Gilt Groupe offered sales curated by Gaga’s fashion director, Nicola Formichetti, as well as charity sales of a Mugler dress worn by Gaga, entrance into the Paris Mugler fashion show and access to a performance from Gaga.


HBO aired Gaga’s Monster Ball concert at New York City’s Madison Square Garden on May 7.

The 120-minute concert special included the “Born This Way” single and teased the then-unreleased track “Marry the Night.”


Rdio created a BTW playlist and a corresponding contest to give away a free music subscription.


Gaga ended 2010 as the celebrity with the most “Likes” on a Facebook Page with 24.7 million Likes.

She has one of the most active and engaged Facebook Pages not only because of her fans but also because she frequently shares status updates, photos, videos and news through the platform. On May 18, for example, she posted a photo collage that displays her album art on buildings, cars and even in and around a New York City subway train.



The title track of Born This Way in February became the fastest-selling single ever on iTunes stores worldwide.

Capitalizing on her success, Lady Gaga released two additional songs in advance exclusively on iTunes. Fans got to hear “Edge of Glory” on May 9 and “Hair” on May 16 ahead of the May 23 album release.


A fan favorite, GagaVision gives her Little Monsters a behind-the-scenes look at Gaga. In some of the videos, which are posted on YouTube, Gaga candidly discusses the creative process behind BTW. In other clips, fans get to see the people and places surrounding Gaga.


In May, Gaga hit a Twitter first by becoming the only user to rack up 10 million followers.

The messages she posts incite a tweet storm from her followers who retweet and @mention her comments, pictures and videos, as well as promote the hashtags she uses.

In April, for example, she revealed the BTW cover art via a Twitpic photo (seen above). The image garnered hundreds of thousands of views in mere minutes.


As if that wasn’t enough:

  • Gaga scattered QR codes (pictured) on the web that led back to iTunes where users could download a ringtone of “Born This Way.”
  • Tapulous, a Disney Mobile venture, launched Born This Way Revenge, a Tap Tap Revenge app game for iPhone and iPod. The app features 17 tracks from the deluxe album version, access to GagaVision, Lady Gaga’s Twitter feed, three exclusive chat rooms, the official lyrics and Haus of Gaga event lists.
  • Gaga became creative director at Polaroid.
  • Gaga gave comedic musician Weird Al Yankovic permission to include a parody of “Born This Way” called “Perform This Way” on his new album.
  • Gaga won MTV OMA awards for “Most Innovative Artist” and “Must Follow Artist on Twitter.”

Article source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Mashable/~3/e8m3NsPICNI/

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