Sources Indicate Twitter is Ready to Launch Advertising API

Twitter is getting ready to launch its advertising API sometime in the first quarter. Many have speculated that 2013 would be the year that the social network would reach the $1 billion mark in advertising revenue. The introduction of mass-market advertising could help achieve this milestone. The API will target large advertisers and their agencies by providing the opportunity to launch scaled-up campaigns across Twitter. Continue reading Sources Indicate Twitter is Ready to Launch Advertising API

Marketing Execs Anticipate Growth in Interactive Advertising

Marketing executives expect continued growth for interactive advertising this coming year. “According to AdMedia Partners and its 19th annual survey of industry leaders, nearly one-half (45 percent) of respondents believe digital advertising will grow by 10 percent to 15 percent in 2013,” reports MediaPost. During the past two years, the median growth rate remained consistent at 13 percent, says the report. Continue reading Marketing Execs Anticipate Growth in Interactive Advertising

Studios Question the Value of Marketing Movies on Facebook

The relationship between Hollywood and Facebook may be showing signs of strain. While the entertainment industry was quick to embrace the social network as a marketing tool, major studios are now expressing doubt. “Some industry executives are increasingly skeptical that Facebook ads and promotional campaigns that ask users to ‘like’ a movie can deliver big box-office returns,” writes the Los Angeles Times. Continue reading Studios Question the Value of Marketing Movies on Facebook

Facebook Graph Search to Open New Doors for Media Companies

As we reported earlier this week, Facebook’s new Graph Search allows users to find answers to questions by searching their own connections and personal network instead of going the route of a traditional open Web search a la Google. According to Variety, the new search tool has the potential to “give media companies more firepower to leverage the social network for content discovery.” Continue reading Facebook Graph Search to Open New Doors for Media Companies

CES 2013: USB Cloud for Customized, Specified Web Viewing

USB Cloud offers small, individually serialized USB keys. When the keys are inserted into a USB socket, it automatically seeks out the USB Cloud registry, which then routes the browser to the webpage that you specify in their registry for that serial number. The Osaka-based firm envisions connecting online stores to physical stores, managing digital content, augmenting direct mail strategies, and more. Continue reading CES 2013: USB Cloud for Customized, Specified Web Viewing

CES 2013: Emotion is the Future of Content Discovery

The future of content recommendation and even of editing movies could be at the tip of your finger. Technicolor is demonstrating an R&D project that detects a viewer’s emotional response to content by way of a small sensor worn against the skin of the hand. Biometric data, including heartbeat and temperature, helps measure viewer response. Continue reading CES 2013: Emotion is the Future of Content Discovery

CES 2013: The Cloud and Digital Disruption in Marketing

“Technology is a continuum. All the technology that you see in those halls will be in a landfill in 10 years,” said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO of Salesforce.com, at the CES Brand Matters keynote. “We’re all in this industry because we love disruption.” He and a panel of chief marketing officers talked about how technology has changed marketing, noting the various challenges and opportunities as companies transition over to the cloud. Continue reading CES 2013: The Cloud and Digital Disruption in Marketing

Social Brand Engagement: Facebook Offers New Marketing Tools

  • In the wake of Google’s announcement last week regarding new real-time analytics, Facebook is introducing changes to Insights, its marketing product.
  • A new feature called “people talking about” combines all the stories generated about the brand — Likes, comments, tags, etc. — across Facebook, and provides a raw number to gauge overall buzz.
  • Also new, Premium ads serve stories generated by a brand to fans’ friends. This ad unit isn’t currently available on the self-serve ad platform, so most likely won’t be accessible for those brands with a smaller budget.
  • The obsession with the number of Likes on Pages will likely decline. “Now brands will be judged not just by how many Likes they have, but through their talkability,” suggests The Next Web, as the new number generated by Insights becomes public.

Are Popular Online Brands Leading to the Rise of Digital Monopolies?

  • France recently banned TV and radio show hosts from naming Facebook, Twitter, or other specific sites unless directly referencing a news story involving the companies. The regulation was created to reduce bias for the popular social networks over other striving, lesser known sites.
  • Apple’s iTunes has benefitted from the phrase “Now available on iTunes” commonly tacked onto advertisements where it was previously customary to simply say “Now available in all good music stores” — which could today be updated to say “online music stores” in order to include other music providers.
  • Additionally, the phrase “Now available on Amazon.com” has become standard for book promotions, which basically provides free advertisement for the site while ignoring other providers.
  • Similarly, “Follow us on Twitter” and “Like us on Facebook” have dominated commerce. “Social networks only work when people use the same ones. In other words, they naturally lend themselves to being monopolized,” suggests The Next Web.
  • Some brand names have now become part of everyday language. Google, for example, has grown so popular that it is commonly used as a verb when describing the act of searching online. TiVo is also regularly used as verb, and sometimes replaces “DVR” in conversation.
  • The article casts doubt on the actual effects regulation would have on social media monopolies: “…users will typically go where all the action is taking place.”
  • “The Internet isn’t a monopoly though. It’s an oligopoly consisting of multiple monopolies from different digital industries, and the reason this is happening really isn’t all that complicated,” adds The Next Web. “Success breeds success, something which underpins most monopolies, whether we’re talking about dominant languages, biological species or, indeed, Internet technology companies. Hegemony stems from success, and it’s certainly not unique to the Internet age.”

Tout is Like Twitter for Video: Is This the Next Chapter in Social Media?

  • Social startup Tout offers a Twitter-like microblogging service, but enables users to publish 15-second video clips instead of 140-character text fragments.
  • “In other words, now anyone can be famous for 15 seconds,” suggests San Jose Mercury News.
  • When asked how it’s different from the Facebook feature that lets users post video chats, CEO Michael Downing explained the “abbreviated and near-instant nature of ‘touts’ makes them like mini-conversations.”
  • Endorsements from high-profile users such as Shaquille O’Neal, Mitt Romney and ESPN are helping the service build momentum.
  • O’Neal is one of many celebrities who have taken to communicating via Twitter (he currently has more than 4 million followers). “But what I’ve been noticing about Twitter lately is that you don’t know who the person you’re talking to really is,” he said. “When you can see my picture, you know it’s me.” O’Neal is so impressed with Tout that he took an ownership stake.
  • Since launching in mid-April, the San Francisco-based startup has attracted 4 million unique visitors. “It took Twitter two years to hit 1 million visitors,” explains Downing. “We hit it in under 12 weeks.”

Facebook Deals Shutdown: Is There a Future for the Social Coupon Biz?

  • Facebook Deals, which offered coupons for local businesses in Facebook users’ main news feeds, officially shut down on Sunday.
  • While some assume the shutdown suggests a failure, sources say that Facebook cut the program because of limited engineering resources the company wanted to place elsewhere.
  • “Groupon and rival LivingSocial are no doubt pointing to Facebook’s withdrawal as evidence that the business is harder to replicate than people previously thought,” reports All Things D.
  • Groupon and BuyWithMe have introduced technology that attempts to track consumer loyalty following their first voucher purchase. Other companies in this space, including Google, are ramping up their coupon platforms, creating mobile solutions that “will recognize when people are close to a deal and allow them to redeem it immediately,” suggests the article.
  • “Last week, Microsoft launched Bing Deals, which is aggregating deals from other major providers to help users browse, find and purchase them in one place,” according to All Things D. “Ironically, that site is being powered by The Dealmap, which Google acquired in August.”

International 3D Initiative: U.S. and Korea Sign Pact, Pledge Cooperation

  • Members of the International 3D Society from South Korea and the U.S. announced they would work together to advance 3D technology through joint development, production, marketing and distribution.
  • The signing ceremony took place at DreamWorks Animation last week.
  • As part of the agreement Sony, Disney and DreamWorks Animation will cooperate with Korean companies such as Korea Telecom, EBS and Skylife in an international effort to boost 3D adoption.
  • “A second agreement was signed between the two I3DS chapters and the Korea Radio Promotion Association to encourage educational programs and exchanges,” reports Variety. “Dr. Doo Hwan Choi, chairman of Korea’s I3DS chapter and CTO of Korea Telecom, which co-sponsored the ceremony, said the society’s educational programs will provide the kinds of opportunities and program development required by the burgeoning business.”

Jonathan Card Remains Optimistic, Despite Shutdown by Starbucks

  • Starbucks shut down Jonathan Stark’s pay-it-forward social experiment by deactivating Stark’s community-giving Starbucks Card.
  • Reps from Starbucks were reportedly rooting for the experiment to be successful (despite the violation of the card’s terms of use), but the company felt it had no choice when it learned that funds were being misappropriated by a hacker, defeating the social adaptation of “take a penny, leave a penny” that Stark originally envisioned.
  • Hundreds of people had donated several thousand dollars prior to the project being shut down, suggesting the experiment was not a failure.
  • The Jonathan’s Card website remains optimistic: “We believe this is the start to a bigger more glowing picture. In the last 5 days or so, we’ve received hundreds of stories of people doing small things to brighten a stranger’s day: Paying for the next car at the drive through. Sharing a pick me up with someone who has had a rough time. Charging up a phone card and sharing it with strangers at the airport… So, tonight we lose our barcode. But of course, we never needed it in the first place.”

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