Major Record Companies Invest $3M Each in Shazam Music App

Music-identification app Shazam has landed investments from the industry’s biggest record labels, including Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment. London-based Shazam’s most recent valuation was $500 million. Its value for the labels involves its potential as a marketing partner. Not only does the app enable users to identify music playing on the radio or TV, but it lets them share a song’s name via social media, download it from iTunes, or stream it via services such as Spotify. Continue reading Major Record Companies Invest $3M Each in Shazam Music App

Chinese E-Commerce Company Alibaba Files IPO in the U.S.

Alibaba, China’s largest and fastest growing e-commerce company, filed for a $1 billion IPO, which could make it one of the most valuable tech companies in the world. The company made $6.5 billion and saw a 57 percent increase in revenue in the last nine months of 2013. Alibaba handles more business than any other e-commerce company, with transactions on its three online sites — Taobao, Tmall and Alibaba.com — totaling $248 billion, which is more than eBay and Amazon combined. Continue reading Chinese E-Commerce Company Alibaba Files IPO in the U.S.

Sprint and Spotify Partner to Promote Streaming Music Service

Wireless carrier Sprint and streaming music service Spotify are reportedly joining forces to push the music service out to Sprint’s customers, similar to a plan already underway between AT&T and Beats Music. The new partnership will include free Spotify trials for Sprint customers and the option to pay for the music service using Sprint’s billing system. Spotify’s premium service costs $9.99 per month, although some Sprint customers will likely qualify for discounts. Continue reading Sprint and Spotify Partner to Promote Streaming Music Service

Pinterest CEO Unveils Revenue Growth Plan for the New Year

Since its launch in 2010, Pinterest has quickly transformed from a quirky website into a social media base used by one-fifth of American adults. To continue nurturing this growth, Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann has announced a new business model that will finally start to generate revenue. Pinterest plans to charge advertisers for promoting their products on the site. An analyst at Wedbush Securities believes this has the potential to earn Pinterest more than $500 million in 2016.  Continue reading Pinterest CEO Unveils Revenue Growth Plan for the New Year

Fake Twitter Accounts Boost Individuals and Trending Topics

Twitter estimates the percentage of its accounts that are fake is less than 5 percent, but some independent researchers think that number is closer to 9 percent. Fake accounts are a big market for those looking to boost their popularity and influence on Twitter, despite efforts by the social networking site to weed out the imposters. One man who manages 10,000 robot accounts for roughly 50 clients offers a glimpse into the market. Continue reading Fake Twitter Accounts Boost Individuals and Trending Topics

Twitter Providing TV Suggestions Based on its User Activity

Twitter is intent on becoming like a social TV guide for its users, and the newest phase of that strategy can be seen in the platform’s latest app update. Now, in the corner of the screen, Twitter promotes television shows to users based on how active those users are. The idea is to drive traffic to TV programs. Down the line this kind of marketing will likely be monetized, but it needs to be done in a way that current and new users understand and do not find annoying. Continue reading Twitter Providing TV Suggestions Based on its User Activity

Twitter Numbers Skyrocket on New York Stock Exchange Debut

It seems that Wall Street loves Twitter. The company set an initial public offering price of $26 late Wednesday, only to see the stock close its first trading day up 73 percent at $44.90 a share, with a session high of over $50. The rocketing IPO set co-founder Evan Williams’ stock value at $2.9 billion and co-founder Jack Dorsey’s at $1.2 billion. CEO Dick Costolo’s stock is now worth $384 million. At about $45 per share, the company is valued at $24.4 billion. Continue reading Twitter Numbers Skyrocket on New York Stock Exchange Debut

Twitter Plays it Safe with Modest IPO, Aims to Sway Investors

According to Twitter’s regulatory filing, the company is looking to raise up to $1.4 billion in its initial public offering with a share-price range of $17 to $20. That would value the social network at about $9.4 billion to $11.1 billion, considerably less than earlier estimates that placed it as high as $16 billion. The modest valuation suggests that the company hopes to avoid the backlash Facebook experienced with its aggressive IPO. The approach could help Twitter win investors who are wary of the network’s mobile business model. Continue reading Twitter Plays it Safe with Modest IPO, Aims to Sway Investors

Comcast Deal Could Turn Twitter into TV-Watching Service

Comcast and Twitter announced a deal yesterday that will allow Comcast customers to access TV programs from Twitter messages related to specific shows. The two companies hope that the “See It” feature will eventually become an industrywide practice. While the feature will initially only be available for Twitter posts published by Comcast-owned channels, the companies are talking with distributors and channel owners about extending it to additional content. Continue reading Comcast Deal Could Turn Twitter into TV-Watching Service

Social TV: Nielsen Measuring Unique Conversations on Twitter

Nielsen is now measuring the “unique audience” for Twitter posts related to television, providing advertising and television executives with a more complete view of social TV. The company introduced Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings yesterday, a previously announced service that intends to measure the reach of Twitter conversations related to television shows. Nielsen expects that networks will eventually promote Twitter TV Ratings the same way they promote traditional broadcast ratings. Continue reading Social TV: Nielsen Measuring Unique Conversations on Twitter

Facebook to Start Using Instagram as New Advertising Vehicle

Facebook announced that it will begin using popular photo- and video-sharing service Instagram, which it acquired last year for about $1 billion, as a new vehicle for delivering advertisements. The move marks the first attempt by Instagram to leverage its growing popularity for revenue (it has yet to generate income for social giant Facebook). The announcement came shortly before competitor Twitter released financial details regarding its planned IPO. Continue reading Facebook to Start Using Instagram as New Advertising Vehicle

Twitter Reveals its Financials and Plans for $1 Billion IPO

Twitter has revealed its plans to raise up to $1 billion in its long-anticipated public offering. Potential buyers finally got a glimpse at Twitter’s financials yesterday, which indicate the social platform’s revenue more than doubled to $254 million during the first half of 2013. However, while the popular messaging service continues to transform electronic communication and public conversation, the company is still losing money while facing hurdles drawing new users and advertisers. Continue reading Twitter Reveals its Financials and Plans for $1 Billion IPO

Pinterest Service Positioned to Become Advertising Platform

Pinterest users typically use the service for ideas, suggesting that they may be receptive to advertising and branding. In contrast, Google and Amazon users may already have chosen what they wish to purchase and use the sites for price comparisons. The number of Pinterest users continues to rise, and the service is positioned to become a money-making ad platform, gaining more attention from venture capitalists and retail companies. Continue reading Pinterest Service Positioned to Become Advertising Platform

Twitter’s Ad Simplicity May Be a Weakness, Despite Revenue

Twitter’s longtime hallmark has been its simplicity, and almost all of the company’s revenue, which is projected to be nearly $600 million this year and $950 million next year, has come from three basic advertising formats. While this simplicity has generated profit, it might put Twitter at a disadvantage, especially in relationship to other social sites such as Facebook that collect more information about individual users in order to sell advertising. Continue reading Twitter’s Ad Simplicity May Be a Weakness, Despite Revenue

Twitter Announces Filing for IPO in Fewer Than 140 Characters

Twitter announced filing its much-anticipated initial public offering last Thursday, in what could become the highest-profile tech stock market debut since last year’s Facebook IPO. The social media giant filed “confidential” paperwork with securities regulators to sell shares, but did not make public the company’s financials, including revenues. Filing confidentially is a new feature in the stock market created by the JOBS Act, designed for companies making less than $1 billion in revenue. Continue reading Twitter Announces Filing for IPO in Fewer Than 140 Characters