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Archive for December, 2009

What’s next…?

December 28th, 2009 Comments

…in Social Media:

“At least one of the dominant tools for social networking will wind down and decline and people will leave it nearly as quickly as they joined it. I have no idea which one it will be, but not even Facebook or Twitter is immune from the possibility. The viral effect works in both directions.” — Jim McCarthy, Goldstar

“Many social network sites starting to charge for memberships for more quality control due to the amount of spam we saw in 2009.” – Mirna Bard, NuReach Global

“Location-based social media applications like Foursquare, Gowalla and Brightkite. Social media moving to the next level of interaction.” – Charles Harris, Coast2Coast Expert.

“Integration between platforms. Things like ping.fm, Google Wave and other utilities out there centralizing the interface and use between Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Plaxo and all the others.” – Chip Ahlswede, RegalStrategies.com

“Mainstream media will actually change their 20th century business models to meet 21s century needs. Otherwise, they are toast.” – Ron Ploof, ronamok.com

“Measuring the return on investment on social media efforts will become the norm in 2010. This will mean some companies will not be able to justify their current efforts. – Jim Marks, Virtual Results

“People using social media for civic engagement with those public agencies using social media and to encourage governments that haven’t adopted social media to use these tools to have meaningful dialogue with their constituents.” – Ted Nguyen, Orange County Transportation Authority

“Growing number of things which aren’t strictly people on your buddy lists. Suddenly I think we will see people friending their laundromat to see when machines are available, the roads they use to watch traffic, and groups of their friends at once. The latter will be interesting because you will only see updates when all of your friends agree.” – Don Patterson, quub.com

“A plateau of people flocking to Twitter. This year it was the new shiny toy on the street, but soon the Twitterverse will become saturated with push marketers, spammers, and in-genuine marketing campaigns.” – Justin Moore-Brown, Mobo Media

Social video. “We may start to explore social video, not only user-generated but also brand-generated.” – Tracy Marks, Souplantation

“Google and Facebook will do something major to completely change the game, and take over the world.” – Rochelle Veturis, LPA architects

“I think that pitching stories to the media via social networks, or the media picking up stories they heard about via social media, could be the next big thing.” – Jen Dwyer, thecutekid.com

…in Media:

View more presentations from neilperkin.

…in Search:

Ciaran Norris:

I think that next year will see the continued convergence of technologies and channels, particularly TV, mobile, search & social. The real-time search movement will continue in some way, shape or form, though the engines still need to perfect ranking & filtering.

The continued rise of mobile web, pulling in GPS & augmented reality, means that people will expect geo-results. And as TV gets webbed up (Yahoo TV Widgets etc…) people searching and chatting on and around shows will become a new way of reaching people, or at least learning about what they want.

Will Critchlow:

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that I think 2010 will see the beginnings of a backlash against Google. There have been murmurings for some time among the tech community about their all-pervading presence, ambition to gather everyone’s data for their own marketing purposes and effective monopoly.

It wouldn’t surprise me to see them take a step too far and face political push-back over their expansion into the desktop and mobile phone markets. If they use market power in one arena to manipulate another, that’s classic monopolistic behaviour. Personally, I’d love to see Bing gain some market share. I think a strong competitor would ultimately benefit everyone.

Andrew Girdwood:

We’ll see continued improvements in visual search. Google Goggles is one example but we’ll also see mobile applications that affect an augmented reality that combine search and location-aware search. These will let searchers show the engines what they want help with and get back results.

Privacy will also be a hot issue in 2010. Targeting becomes ever more important to companies and yet the ability not to be targeted becomes ever more important to people. It seems impossible that we’ll avoid tension on this front.

Of particular interest will be looking beyond the last click. DoubleClick offers Click Path Analysis. Atlas offers User Engagement Mapping. There will be other offerings from alternative technology providers who wish to remain competitive against these search engine owned offerings. 2010 will see sites wrestle with tagging and tracking but invest in the required technology in 2010 with the ambition of not having to return to this fight for a while.

As real-time search helps surface social media sites in the blink of an eye the aspects of ‘search’, ‘marketing’, ‘public relations’ and even ‘customer care’ will all get drawn together. We’ll see different types of agencies pitching against one another for the first time. We’ll see corporate departments defending their turf and fighting for budget against their colleagues across the hall.

Kevin Gibbons:

Google page speed is going to have an influence over organic rankings in 2010 and is likely to have a strong impact on designers/developers as well as SEO’s. At the moment there are unanswered questions, such as how heavily will slow sites be penalised? Will fast sites be boosted in the search engines? So it will be interesting to see the impact this has.

Now that the Microsoft/Yahoo deal is now all tied-up, advertisers will need to start thinking seriously about Bing’s more sizeable market share and start to prepare for when this is integrated with Yahoo search.

Google Wave has been slowly rolled out to users so far during 2009, this has a lot of potential, which is unlikely to be truly realised until it reaches a greater audience. There’s a lot of uncertainly about how popular Google Wave will become at the moment, so it will be very interesting to see if this can really take off in 2010. I’m sure they’ll be new social media sites coming onto the scene too, along with developments to many of the current top social media sites; Twitter business accounts, for example, will be a good one to look out for.

Shane Quigley:

Rumoured for a while, and discovered live on the web by a clever person over at Gizmodo, there is a new Google Interface on the way for 2010. Being referred to as the three panel layout this change will mean it will become increasing important to rank highly in Image, Video and other search results as Google gives more prominence to these sections within its interface.

Real Time search has huge implications in terms of brand protection, what results people will click, as well as creating new opportunities to rank. Google also announced earlier this month that everyone’s search results are now being personalised (to an extent) based on your previous search behaviour, regardless of whether you’re logged in or not. Are the days of the ranking report now truly numbered?

(via Econsultancy)

…in Marketing:

Other Trend Predictions for 2010 in 140 characters:

View more documents from Taly Weiss.

Traditional Media vs Social Media: outlook for 2010!

December 17th, 2009 Comments

We’re in a new age of realtime information. Earthquakes, the San Diego fires, the shootings in Mumbai, the situation in Iran, and even Michael Jackson’s death. The realtime web beat the mainstream media easily to each of these stories.

But, will this disparity increase going forward?

In 2008, the terrorist attacks in Mumbai were communicated more quickly on Social Media sites than on the TV screen.

Few weeks ago, it took CNN 45 minutes to give to its viewers the same level of information about the car crash of the famous golf player.

Tiger Woods Breaking News Twitter

30 years ago, our only source of information was TV, newspapers and magazines, all controlled by big organizations and governments. In the 90s, Internet arrived enabling faster flow of information. But the real revolution came from social media ‘blogs‘. Information wasn’t controlled any more by big organizations. Everyone could start a blog and share his opinion about anything, with others having the power to comment, to talk back.

But, the question that most people ask themselves: Why this global Social Media phenomenon will be (is) changing our world, although there are cultural differences around the globe?

Clay Shirky explains it well in this video: “How social media can make history” at Ted.com (it’s 17 minutes).

MG Siegler goes even further, asserting that the Internet and Twitter are better news and information delivery channels than traditional TV, radio and print – and will ultimately lead to their demise (This is Why the Internet (and Twitter) Wins):

Of course, there is something to be said for these outlets independently verifying the news, but the the fact of the matter is that there was a report out there, filed by the police department and BNOnews was able to get it and send it out via Twitter much, much faster than any traditional news source.

Information wants to be free, and the web, with services like Twitter, provides the easiest way for that to happen.

What about ethics and accuracy? When talking about social media, people always question the validity of information.

In their recent study, ‘An Analysis of the Increasing Impact of Social and Other New Media on Public Relations Practice’, Donald Wright and Michelle Hinson from the Institute for Public Relations got the following responses to the question:

“Do you agree or disagree that social media (including blogs) . . .”

Analysis of the Increasing Impact of Social and Other New Media on Public Relations Practice

Social Media and Traditional Media seem not to be in conflict with each other. For Clay Shirky, accountability seems to be the urgent point.

The Emerging Media Ecosystem

Last month, News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch, have been picking on Google for destroying their business, blaming the Google for giving away their content for free and stealing their ad revenue. Eric Schmidt has responded with a column in The Wall Street Journal, saying:

Google is a great source of promotion. We send online news publishers a billion clicks a month from Google News and more than three billion extra visits from our other services, such as Web Search and iGoogle. That is 100,000 opportunities a minute to win loyal readers and generate revenue – for free. In terms of copyright, another bone of contention, we only show a headline and a couple of lines from each story. If readers want to read on they have to click through to the newspaper’s Web site. (The exception are stories we host through a licensing agreement with news services.) And if they wish, publishers can remove their content from our search index, or from Google News.

The potential of social media (such as Twitter) is transforming the way we communicate in our respective countries. Information are exchanged within seconds. But I don’t think it will replace YET traditional media, because important vs popular news will only be considered credible once traditional media have confirmed it (and indeed, Google and Twitter could help to drive readers hungry for information to news sites).

Predictions for 2010?

FOLIO: has reached out to a wide selection of magazine/media industry professionals—publishers, editors, chief executives, dealmakers, bloggers—to channel their inner Nostradamus and work up some predictions. I’ve selected two. One from Bob Cohn, editorial director, theAtlantic.com and the other from Amanda Ernst from FBNY.

Amanda Ernest, from FBNY writes:

Media companies will also be looking to partner up in order to pool resources and keep costs low. Non-profit journalism organizations and Web sites that rely on citizen journalism are a good place for traditional media to look for partners.

Bob Cohn, editorial director, theAtlantic.com, writes:

Two indisputable facts: editors are constrained for resources, while the stories we’re facing-war, recession, terrorism, climate change-are not easy or cheap to cover. I predict that one way magazines will try to resolve this problem is through more frequent collaboration. Journalists have been trained to compete, not cooperate. But pooling resources, whether it’s money or reporters or technology, can make good sense for outfits that want to remain ambitious in lean times. We all still want to beat the other guy, but sometimes the best way to unpack a complex and multi-dimensional story may be to forge ties with like-minded colleagues.

Other related posts:

What will the next newsroom looks like? (by Peter Bihr)

Twitter and the Internet vs Traditional News Media (by Tom Watson)

Why Social Media is Killing TV News? (by Mike Elgan)

Real time, real discussion, real reporting: choose two (by Kevin Coldeway)

115 Magazine and Media Predictions for 2010 (by Jason Fell of foliomag.com)

Communities, Word of Mouth, Real Time at #leweb: what else!

December 11th, 2009 Comments

LeWeb09LeWeb this year was greater than ever.

More than 2,500 participants from 46 countries attended the event in Paris. More than 100,000 followed the event live from their desktop or iPhone via Ustream. All the major internet players were present on stage: Google, Microsoft, Twitter, MySpace, Orange, BT, Facebook, Ning, SixApart, Nokia, PayPal, FON, Meetic, Deezer, Zappos, Netvibes and many others.

Le Web has become a great platform and opportunity for entrepreneurs to learn about the latest web trends, to share and test their ideas/concepts and to meet the different actors of the web (i.e. bloggers, users, consultants, business angels, product specialists).

It will take me too long to write about the different subjects discussed during those 2 days, which details (videos, news, official bloggers) you can find here. I have however selected two keynote speakers (Chris Pirillo and Jeremy Owyang) which subjects I think are very relevant with what we (as consumers and businesses) have been experiencing lately in our every days’ life: real time is becoming predominant and online communities are growing faster than ever.

Chris Pirillo gave us his ‘original’ thoughts about the essence of ‘community’. Community …

  • …lives inside us. Where I go, community goes. We create it based on our preferences, like dislikes and the people we link up with.
  • …is becoming increasingly distributed, as we distribute our ideas and thoughts across social networks.
  • …requires tools that can’t be built (so don’t try), ie if its us, we can’t scale ourselves.
  • …is a commodity, but people aren’t. It’s easy to set up a website or blog, but the people and voices behind it are what makes it unique, special.
  • …cannot be controlled, but can be “guided”.
  • …is no longer defined by physical boundaries. You probably have more in common with a geek living on another continent than your next door neighbor.
  • …grows its own leaders. the best leaders come organically out of a community, and is not an appointed one. It’s crucial that communities grow it’s own leaders for credibility and respect reasons.
  • …is the antithesis of ego. Community is myself and everyone else, not just me or my Twitter stream.
  • … is everywhere, inside you. It’s what you share, your passions — and it’s this that will spell success.

But what I see often as well nowadays is this confusion between the concept of social media and the concept of community. They are often used interchangeably and they are not the same thing. Social media helps foster communities (examples of online communities in the TV industry, healthcare, financial services, travel industry).

Businesses entering the social media space must first figure out where their audience is (isn’t it the beginning of any type of strategy?). Working with communities of any kind, whether it’s a forum, a group on Facebook, or a bunch of people on Twitter discussing a particular subject every week, takes care and time. It involves developing true relationships with the audience by helping community members with information they need or solving their problems. A lot more goes into developing the type of respect, authority, and relationships in communities that generate successful strategies and attained goals for companies.

90:10 Group

This brings new opportunities for people to get information when they need it and opportunities for the companies that want to provide contextual information. But information are now ‘real time’. Information is moving quicker than ever between members of communities. Data is exploding at a rapid pace with the influx of status features and mobile devices. Jeremiah Owyang says:

Yet, despite the opportunities, most companies are unable to keep up with the “Slow time” web as it is.  In fact, those that can’t keep up risk missing opportunities, or worse –heading off detractors before they become mainstream.
To best leverage real time data, companies must adopt three strategies:

1. Start listening now, and quickly offer social personalization features
2. Develop an unpaid army of advocates who can respond when you’re not there, and
3. Start to invest in systems –like social CRM– that can support their overall strategy.

There is a great opportunity for businesses to use social media to enable conversations and to create communities that extend their capabilities and engage their constituents in richer ways that results in higher retention, lower risk, increased ROI, and faster operational capacity.

David Cushman 90:10 Presentation

Communities have enormous strategic benefits to companies but require considerable investment (in resources, time, and tools) and are difficult to implement because they have a significant impact on business processes.

Twitter in France

December 9th, 2009 Comments

While the site of micro-blogging is to offer a French version to its users, we still know relatively little about its uses. L’Atelier and FaberNovel unveiled today at a conference the results of a study conducted jointly.

Conclusion: 60% of French Internet users confirm knowing Twitter (results of a recent poll done for L’Atelier by IFOP). This reputation does not extend to other micro-blogging sites such as FiendFeed and Yammer, where less than 5% of French have heard about them.

Categories: Twitter Tags:

Survey Reveals Shift in Media Consumption Habits Across Generations

December 5th, 2009 Comments

Generation Y

The latest Media Engagement Barometer commissioned by Motorola’s Home & Networks Mobility business has revealed a shift in consumer influence that hasn’t been widely recognized yet:

Age no longer dictates a consumer’s willingness or

ability to use media technology or services

In fact, all generations – Millennials (or Generation Y) (75 percent), Gen Xers (74 percent) and Boomers (66 percent) – recognize the role entertainment technologies play in helping them keep their lives in order, which helps explain why Millennials (80 percent), Gen Xers (78 percent) and Boomers (78 percent) are equally likely to desire to be constantly connected. Consumers are interviewed in relation to a new study that reveals a disappearing generational gap in media consumption habits. The purpose of the study was to explore how different generations engage through technology products and services with family, friends and colleagues.

Top Three Takeaways

  • Connectivity is more of a lifestyle issue. The desire to be accessible at all times is seen as a necessity across generations (Millennials 79%, Gen Xers 64%, Boomers 65%).
  • There is a two-way dialogue between consumers of all ages, as they engage with technology products and share their experiences. The majority of Americans report influencing the decisions of their children (75%), friends (74%), colleagues (67%), and parents (58%).
  • Parents, grandparents and children alike are actively engaged in the tech sphere of influence. Gen X and Boomer parents reveal that they are influencing their children’s tech habits (87% Gen Xers and 79% Boomers) even more than their Gen X (62%) and Millennial (76%) children influence their habits.

Connectivity is a Necessity

  • Millennials (80%), Gen Xers (78%), and Boomers (78%) are equally likely to be constantly connected.
  • Seven in ten Americans (70%) feel it’s “important for me to always be accessible” and nearly eight in ten (78%) feel they are constantly connected with family, friends, and colleagues, regardless of physical location.

Demand for Content, Anytime Anywhere

  • In spite of their everyday use of technology, 70% of those surveyed are still excited by the ability to live a connected lifestyle and, regardless of where they are, have become reliant on the ability to access and share content including video images anytime, anywhere.
  • 66% of Americans expect to be able to access the same content no matter where they are.

Universal Need for Customization

  • A strong majority of Millennials are interested in personalizing their television viewing experience: 71% are interested in customizable applications for their televisions (vs. 56% Gen Xers, 46% Boomers).
  • The majority of Americans (57%) have received a customized recommendation from a program based on their individual tastes and roughly half of those have received a customized suggestion (44%) and they have acted on it.

Sphere of Influence – Now it’s about “My Community,” not “My Generation”

  • Roughly four out of ten Boomers and Gen Xers are reaching out to their colleagues (43% Boomers, 45% Gen Xers) and significant others (43% Boomers, 43% Gen Xers) for advice.
  • Men are more likely than women to be influenced by their friends (60% vs. 51% women) and colleagues (44% vs.
    30%). Women say they receive it from their significant other (48% vs. 34% men).

Contrary to the image of Generation Y as the “Net Generation,” internet users in their 20s do not dominate every aspect of online life, as found out as well by another study published by Pew Internet & American Life Project earlier this year. Generation X is the most likely group to bank, shop, and look for health information online. Boomers are just as likely as Generation Y to make travel reservations online. And even Silent Generation internet users are competitive when it comes to email (although teens might point out that this is proof that email is for old people).

Generational Differences in Online Activities

Other related articles:

How Teenagers Consume Media: the report that shook the City

How Teens Use Media

Marketing to Gen Y: What you can’t afford not to know

How Effective are Video Ads On Social Media Sites?

December 1st, 2009 Comments

In 1895 the Lumiere brothers played one of the first videos in history. The film, lasting only 50 seconds, showed a train arriving to the train station at La Ciotat, a serene town in southern France. When the film was first publicly shown, the audience was so overwhelmed by the moving image of a life-size train advancing directly towards them that they rushed to the back of the room, trying to avoid being run over.

Nearly 115 years later, audiences respond more mildly to moving pictures; nevertheless, video has remained one of the most engaging forms of media. Video is now the fastest growing sector of internet advertising, with the Internet Advertising Bureau revealing that digital video generated $477 million in the first half of 2009 – a 38% increase year-on-year. Few years ago, Jim Stengel, ex-CMO of P&G said:

In 1965, 80% of 18-49 year-olds in the US could be reached with three 60-second TV spots. In 2002, it required 117 prime-time commercials to do the same.

With the dominant $5 billion online advertising market of search expected to grow only marginally, advertisers are looking to video as the major growth sector for the next five years.

Charles Tillinghast, the president of MSNBC.com, a joint venture between NBC Universal and Microsoft said

The Web is fulfilling this promise of being a medium where you can enjoy video as much as you can see it on TV. The difference online is, if you want to do something with it — share it, stick it on a blog, post it on a Facebook page, or mark it and save it — you can do all that. And that was never possible before.

Online video advertising spending in the US is projected to grow from $1.1 billion in 2009 to $4.1 billion in 2013 – quadrupling in four years. But digital media buyers may want to think twice about where they place online video ads. While Nielsen Online recently released data showing that time spent watching videos on social networks has risen almost 100% in the year to October, 2009, according to a wide-ranging report produced by third-party ad server Eyeblaster – which examined data from thousands of campaigns it executed for brands over the past year – has shown that social environments aren’t necessarily the best for video advertising.

Key highlights from the video report include:

  • In-Stream video ads have the highest proportion of ads fully played compared to any other format.
  • Creative decisions play a significant role in ad performance: Rollover user-initiated video performs best followed by auto-initiated video; click user-initiated performs worst.
  • Weekdays from 9 am to 5 pm is users’ preferred time to watch In-Banner and Floating video ads.
  • Relatively few users un-mute video ads; auto-initiated video has the highest un-mute rate.
  • An increase of video length by five seconds reduces Video Fully Played rate by 2.8%, on average.

In fact, Eyeblaster focused on two metrics:

  • Dwell Rate, which measures the proportion of ad impressions resulting in users engaging with an ad, such as mousing over or clicking on them
  • Dwell Time, which measures the amount of time users spend engaged with a particular ad.

They found that overall, online video boosts both Dwell Rate and Dwell Time when compared to other forms of online advertising. However, online video tends to perform better when adjacent to content or email than in social media and gaming environments—both areas of high interest to advertisers.

Ariel Geifman, research analyst at Eyeblaster, said the company was somewhat surprised by their findings.

What we found is that people browse social networks really quickly. People spend a lot of time in social networks, but it’s not on the same Web page. People don’t browse as they do in news and finance, where they read an article and have more time to look at an ad.

Users may log in and out multiple times per day, or browse between pages more quickly. As a result, the performance of video ads in these environments is inferior as compared to other environments.

But given the popularity of websites such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and Linkedin, many large and small business owners are exploring the various options for advertising on social networking sites. While social media presents an opportunity for ads, it’s been difficult to measure ad effectiveness when the social media audience is so fragmented. It may not be as effective as hoped. Social media Marketing (vs. Advertising) seems to have more success within all size and type of companies, whereas the main difference between social network advertising and social network marketing is their ability to interact and engage with, and receive feedback from potential and devoted clients.

So should brands pull their online video ad dollars from social environments and stick to content? No, says Geifman. Rather, they need to consider users’ attitudes and behavior when running video ads in different environments, and adjust accordingly — ideally with custom ads. “Video is still a very much emerging medium,” said Geifman. “It is changing as we speak. This is a picture of video right now. People will find ways of engaging people in different environments . . . they need to make adjustments.”

The jury is still out as to which is the more effective method. Only time will tell.

Related articles:

Online Advertising through Social Media

Closing Out 2009: Trends In Video

Digg CEO: Profitability Is Not A Problem Anymore