uCubd’s Social Media Mashups: Enhance Customer Experience

by Michelle Salater on August 19, 2010

As a key player in the field of social network communication, uCubd’s social media mashup template is changing the way social media users interact with social objects. In a nutshell, uCubd’s social media mashup enables social media users to take existing content from social media sites and combine this content to create a unique media presentation.

We recently had the pleasure of interviewing Marat Galperin, a founding member of uCubd, on the benefits that uCubd’s social media mashup provides for businesses.

Below is the exclusive interview:

What exactly is uCubd’s social media mashup?

A uCubd mashup template is an exciting new way for Internet users to create compelling and useful web experiences. By taking existing content from social network services such as YouTube, Twitter, and Amazon, users can combine this content into a new media presentation.

In other words, grab a YouTube video, and we’ll pair it with a related Twitter feed and display them side by side in our mashup. Want to monetize that YouTube video? Our mashup can display an Amazon widget with related products right next to the video. Just give us a YouTube embed code or a topic of interest, and we’ll instantly create a multimedia mashup that you can share on Facebook and LinkedIn or embed on your site or blog. Those users without a site or a blog will be happy to know that we also host all the mashups on uCubd.com as stand-alone minisites.

Click image below to view example:

What was the inspiration behind the social media mashup?

The idea was to break down barriers between different types of user-generated content.  There is YouTube for videos, Twitter for short message updates, Amazon for selling products, and countless other social media hubs that focus on a specific type of content.  As users of these services, we wanted to get the benefit of consuming this content together in one place. It made sense to us to watch a video, read what the Twitter community thought about it, and even purchase related products without having to go to each portal separately. Thus, the social media mashup was born.

What’s the story behind uCubd?

Initially, one of the founders envisioned uCubd as being a portal where users would upload and embed different types of content including video, images, music, documents, and widgets. We would then enable these users to create visual “collages” of content that they could share with others. One of the defining features of that earlier system was the ability to freely share and remix any piece of content between these visual “collages.”

As we kept working on this platform, our vision has gradually evolved into the current version of uCubd. Instead of getting users to upload content into our system, we could leverage existing content sites.

uCubd has become a platform where users can quickly mash together various social media content into visual “collages” and share them with others by embedding them throughout the web or linking to them on our website.

What is the greatest benefit companies receive when they utilize mashups?

uCubd mashups can help companies bring together social media from different platforms.  YouTube, Amazon, and Twitter are three different tools (video, sales, and communication) with some overlapping functionality (sharing, commenting, sales, and communication). uCubd mashups create a unified marketing experience that leverages each tool’s strength while filling in functionality gaps.

For example, you might be interested in selling a product on Amazon by creating a YouTube video that you’d share through Twitter. This is a 3-step process: the customer clicks on the link from Twitter, watches the YouTube video, and clicks on the Amazon text link.

We eliminate this third step where you can lose customers if they don’t want to stop the video or are not attracted to the text link. Instead, sharing a YouTube + Amazon mashup on Twitter is a 2-step process. Consumers see the product while they’re watching your video and can click on the link at any time. Seeing the actual product and price is much better than a text link at the bottom of the video. Similarly, companies can create engaging content through other types of mashups such as SlideShare + Twitter, Docstoc + YouTube, Flickr + Twitter, and more.

How do you think uCubd can help businesses with their online marketing efforts?

uCubd mashups allow companies to create new and engaging marketing experiences from their existing social media. We can also help businesses if they participate in the Amazon affiliate program or have products on Amazon.com. By combining video or other rich media content with Amazon products, they provide their audience with a highly engaging marketing experience.

It is the best of both worlds. The viewing experience is not interrupted by having an advertisement intrude on the video, and yet the products remain highly visible. This media and Amazon combination should result in a higher conversion rate than the traditional Amazon sidebar, which may or may not show content-related products and is not in the main view.

Another advantage of using multimedia mashups over traditional affiliate marketing is the potential to make money outside of your blog or website. As readers embed the mashup on other websites / blogs and social media, your affiliate code travels along with the mashup. The mashup that started on your blog can also generate sales on other websites and help you get more value out of your affiliate marketing.

Companies now have a great incentive to leverage viral content by attaching their affiliate campaign to it. If their mashup goes viral, that means their affiliate campaign just went viral, as well.

Click images below to view examples:

We often hear from companies that they do not have enough time to keep up with their social media pages. How do mashups decrease the time it takes individuals to search and participate on social media, while increasing productivity and exposure?

uCubd mashups can help companies leverage the creative energy of millions of YouTube and Twitter users without investing a lot of time. Given the numbers of videos on YouTube and information on Twitter, it is likely that a lot of relevant data is already available. Businesses can take advantage of this data to help them market themselves and communicate with their audience, by combining it into compelling multimedia mashups.

Who will benefit the most from uCubd’s mashups?

Three groups of users will directly benefit from our mashups:
1. Bloggers and other web publishers who now have a new way to engage their audience, monetize social media, and drive more traffic.

2. The original content creators since their videos or other media can become more compelling when combined with other content; therefore, they have a chance to receive more views as the mashups are being shared. Also, for those content creators without a website, our mashups could become a place where they showcase their creations since all of the mashups are hosted on uCubd.com.

3. Mashup consumers should benefit greatly as they will get to experience social media in a completely new way.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

We are in the process of developing several new and exciting mashup templates, which will fundamentally change the way users interact with and create social media, so check back with us often! We also want to know what you think. If you or your readers have some feedback or an idea for a mashup template you’d like to see, we’d love to hear it. Finally—for the affiliate marketers out there—we invite you to participate in our Amazon affiliate contest going on now at ucubd.com/contest.html.

About Marat Galperin

Since graduating from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) in December of 1999, Marat has worked for leading financial services, technology, and entertainment companies as a technology consultant and application developer.

His experience has been focused in building mission critical enterprise level software applications. In the past ten years, Marat has been involved with organizations that range from well-known financial giants like Transamerica, AIG, Bank of America to successful start-ups such as BenefitMall and GreenDot. He also had the opportunity to work on a cutting-edge image management application at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).  Marat’s strength lies in solving business problems and challenges by using technology to improve operational efficiencies, enable rapid business growth, and increase ROI.

In February of 2007, Marat became one of the founding members of uCubd Inc. At uCubd he has to wear many hats, but he primarily focuses on software development and marketing. Marat is working on building uCubd into an influential company in the social media space.

Visit uCubd online at https://www.ucubd.com/.

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