Gannett, Meredith Tap Ripple6 To Launch Branded Social Nets

headshotMove over, P&G--looks like Gannett and Meredith want in on the branded social network game. The two media giants are the latest companies that have signed on with Ripple6, the social media technology firm that recently developed an online community for P&G's long-running soap opera Guiding Light.

New York-based Ripple6 powers white-label social media properties, complete with user activity and content tracking, as well as traditional demo- and psychographic reports. Users can create profiles and share photos and videos, and Ripple6's proprietary Smart Groups and Ripple tools allow them to form and moderate their own groups and share specific pieces of content, respectively.

For Gannett, Ripple6 is developing a community geared toward generating grassroots support for independent bands. At the heart of it is a "Make the Charts"-style promotion in which members will work together to get their favorite band's tunes played on the radio (and onto the charts). "It's a very local-focused project," said Sang Kim, CEO of Ripple6. "Gannett's giving these indie bands a place to showcase their music and do things like create a fan club."

Meanwhile, Kim dubs Meredith's upcoming project the "first social network for user recipe-sharing." The community will be a mix of user-generated and editorial content (from a number of Meredith publications). "It should launch in a few months," Kim said. "And we're talking about building other communities for them around women's passions."

But according to Kim, Ripple6's relationship with P&G best illustrates the full potential of the firm's capabilities. In addition to the development and maintenance of the Guiding Light community, and a forthcoming project for As the World Turns--Ripple6 crafted P&G's Health Expressions, Home Made Simple and Capessa branded communities.

Ripple6 works with both agencies and in-house brand management to design, deploy and provide analytics for the social networks. Kim said that by the end of the third quarter of 2008 the firm would be maintaining about 100 properties, with a cross-brand, cross-community login (and information tracking) system in the works.

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