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Tag: social network

Davis ThinkingDavis Thinking

Twitter’s Social Economy

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Immediate search is compelling.  But Twitter has something much more powerful: value-creating disequilibrium in an age of social network equality.

What Will Obama Do With the First Presidential Social Network?

R. Eric Raymond
Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What will Barack Obama do with the first presidential social network once he manages to get elected?

At Issue } essential reading

LinkedIn Launches A Volunteer Marketplace To Extend Its Job Hunting Platform To Free Work

Ingrid Lunden
Jan 15, 2014

LinkedIn, the social network for the working world, has gained a reputation as a place to go when you’re looking for a job, or a person to fill a vacant role. Now the company is expanding on that idea with the launch of a Volunteer Marketplace – a place people can go to post and look for unpaid positions.

7 unique and creative uses for Google+

Jul 11, 2011

Because of its simultaneously private and public approach to sharing information, Google+ is an extremely malleable platform, and as it continues to grow, there will be no end to the creative and unique uses for the site. Facebook and Twitter are much more than social networks, and Google+ with its unique method of sharing information can be whatever you want it to be.

Study of Global Online Behavior Finds Emerging Markets More Digitally Engaged

Oct 12, 2010

The largest ever global research project into people's online activities has released its findings. The TNS Digital Life research involved 50,000 interviews with individuals in 46 countries, covering almost 90% of the world's online population. The study was aimed to uncover how the world's online behavior may be shifting, in terms of both consumption and communication. And among the findings were that online consumers in emerging, rapid growth markets are more engaged than those in mature markets, with Egypt and China, for example, having much higher levels of digital engagement than Japan, Denmark, or Finland.

Marketers' Constitution Tenet #4

Aug 31, 2010

The fourth tenet of the Marketers' Constitution states, "Marketing must become more integrated and proficient in managing expanding media platforms." Marketing must flawlessly weave aligned brand messages across multiple media and marketing channels -- including general advertising, digital, PR, direct marketing, event marketing, social networking, and other emerging disciplines. Including both online and offline functions, this holistic approach to marketing communication guarantees a consistent and straightforward message and a corresponding use of media.

What Happens When Facebook Trumps Your Brand Site?

Jack Neff
Aug 23, 2010

While the tech world obsessed about when Facebook would turn on location and morph into a "Foursquare killer," the social network has quietly become something else: the biggest relationship-marketing provider for many brands.

Living Online: Today’s TEDTalks Playlist

Aug 11, 2010

Chances are, you live a plugged-in life. We connect with Facebook, share through Twitter, watch on YouTube, learn from Google. Today’s playlist explores what it means to live online. We start with a blogging visionary — SixApart’s Mena Trott, the founding mother of the blog revolution. She talks about finding community, relationships and a healthy dose of narcissism in the blogosphere.

Media Companies Must Divide To Conquer

Steve Rubel
Aug 11, 2010

The media is something that for most, if not all, of our adult lives, we have taken for granted. Media giants form the terra firma of the marketing industry, both its paid and earned disciplines. They provide the lifeblood of services and bring us the audiences we need to do our jobs. However, underneath it all, the harsh reality is that there's a new digital dynamic present today. This will mean that many media companies divide themselves into dozens of smaller independent operating companies if they wish to survive. Many won't.

Facebook and Twitter’s New Rival

Aug 2, 2010

By now, plenty of traditional media companies have hopped on the social media bandwagon, pumping out news updates on Facebook and Twitter. But do those companies have the time and resources to work yet another Web outlet into their daily routine?

Sears Targets College Kids Via FB Application

Jul 29, 2010

Youngsters aren't the only ones going back to school -- college students are too. Sears is targeting these students where they seemingly live, online and on Facebook, for a new "Back to Campus" social media campaign.

'DriverVille' To Help Launch '11 Mazda 2

Jul 29, 2010

Mazda is taking to social media to launch the 2011 Mazda 2. A branded game on Facebook, "DriverVille," is a virtual, multiplayer game where players get customizable "Your Inner Driver" avatars and use them to drive virtual cars to win Driver Bucks for virtual products and real weekly sweepstakes prizes.

Google Develops a Facebook Rival

Amir Efrati
Jul 28, 2010

Google Inc. is in talks with several makers of popular online games as it seeks to develop a broader social-networking service that could compete with Facebook Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.

An Amazon-Facebook Alliance to Make Shopping More Social

Jul 28, 2010

On Tuesday, Amazon.com took a step toward making the shopping experience on its Web site more social. For many people, shopping is as much about socializing as it is about buying something — a chance to run into neighbors at the farmers’ market or spend time with a friend at the mall. And people who go shopping with a friend inevitably ask advice before buying. But it’s hard to do that when online shopping. Now, Amazon shoppers who connect their Amazon and Facebook accounts transport their Facebook friends to Amazon — and can get recommendations from those friends on what to buy.

The Future is Another Country

The Economist
Jul 26, 2010

A couple of months or so after becoming Britain’s prime minister, David Cameron wanted a few tips from somebody who could tell him how it felt to be responsible for, and accountable to, many millions of people: people who expected things from him, even though in most cases he would never shake their hands. He turned not to a fellow head of government but to…Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and boss of Facebook, the phenomenally successful social network.

Tweeters Star In Wheat Thins TV Ads

Jul 26, 2010

Kraft Foods/Nabisco Wheat Thins will take social media marketing integration to a new level this week, when it debuts the first of at least two 30-second national TV commercials featuring consumers who have tweeted positively about the brand.

Facebook Credits: The World's First Global Currency?

Jul 21, 2010

Facebook is standing at the foot of a virtual cash mountain. The social networking behemoth recently announced a plan to expand the Facebook Credits program beyond its beta confines. A network-wide rollout of the virtual currency application would streamline transactions online and, in effect, pave the path to the world's first global currency. It's also going to help Facebook scale one of its last major economic hurdles - monetizing its millions of international users. Now translated into more than 100 languages, Facebook will do more than $1 billion in revenue this year. It has surpassed the 500 million member mark, with a surge of interest across Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and points beyond. In fact, adoption rates have soared exponentially in the last year.

Flipboard, New "Social" iPad Magazine will be Powered by Semantic Data

Jul 21, 2010

The stealthy Kleiner Perkins-backed startup called Flipboard has now been revealed to be, as some suspected, a social application for the iPad. The new Flipboard iPad app bills itself as a "social magazine" - that is, one which aggregates status updates, tweets, photos and articles from those you're connected to on social networking sites, like Twitter and Facebook. These updates are beautifully laid out into an easily digestible view which you can flip through with your fingers. But Flipboard isn't just another "Twitter magazine," - it also just acquired semantic technology startup Ellerdale, whose intelligent data-parsing algorithms have previously been used to create a real-time search engine and trends tracker (still available here, at least for the moment). Now that same powerful technology will be used to design a more personalized real-time experience: determining what social updates are important to you and presenting them in an attractive, magazine-like format.

The Team Who Made Old Spice Smell Good Again Reveals What's Behind Mustafa's Towel

Mark Borden
Jul 15, 2010

One of the modern Holy Grails of advertising is to translate a successful TV campaign into a monster viral Internet phenom. Working with their client Procter and Gamble, the advertising firm Wieden+Kennedy opened the ark with its online work for Old Spice. The campaign is simple: The manly star from the TV spots responds to queries on Twitter via humorous 30-second YouTube videos that are being watched and re-tweeted with abandon.

Why Google Me

Aaron Goldman
Jul 15, 2010

The world may not need another social network. But Google does. Google needs a place where people can easily congregate and communicate. A place that's as easy to understand and use as Google.com. A place that people "like." Why?

Facebook Touts Selling Power of Friendship

Jul 8, 2010

Facebook Inc. is trying to rev up its advertising business with a little help from your friends. The social-networking site is aggressively pitching to big advertisers like Ford Motor Co. and PepsiCo Inc. the latest in a series of ad formats that tell users which of their Facebook friends have expressed interest in the brand or product featured in the ad. The so-called social-context ads, which Facebook started rolling out over a year ago, are based on data it collects on the likes and friends of its users.

Declare Independence From Social Media Silliness

Jul 7, 2010

Having established his bona fides as social media pioneer, let me now call upon the ever-humble B. Franklin to offer us instruction on how modern-day marketing patriots can declare their independence from social media silliness. And while this piece is no Poor Richard's Almanac, it will approach the topic at hand with a similar clarity of purpose and simplicity in language.

More Fuel Added to Google Me Rumors

Jun 30, 2010

The big rumor that’s recently been making the rounds is Google Me, Google’s upcoming social network and a full-fledged competitor to Facebook. While there’s virtually nothing official on the record for this project, Kevin Rose recently said it exists, and now more and more people close to either Google or Facebook have been confirming that Google indeed has something along these lines in the works.

Google Me This, Google Me That. Can Google Me Trump Facebook, Or Will It Fall Flat?

Jun 29, 2010

Tomorrow's Web seems to be shaping up for a battle between two major players - Facebook and Google, with Apple and Microsoft holding down their own tangential fiefdoms, and smaller services, like Twitter and LinkedIn, chugging away with their utility-like products. Make no mistake of it - while there is room for innovation and success at these smaller levels, Facebook's goal is to own as much of the Web as they can, and Google would like to make sure they don't. An open Web, however you define it, is good for Google, presenting a myriad of opportunities for search ads everywhere, while a Facebook-controlled universe is not. And the latest rumors, spawning from a simple update by Digg's Kevin Rose hinting at a direct Facebook competitor, dubbed Google Me, have people wondering if Mountain View is preparing another major assault aimed to keep Zuckerberg and crew off the top pedestal.

Bebo Sold To Criterion; Armstrong’s Staff Memo; Tax Gain For AOL

Jun 17, 2010

Per Wednesday’s speculation, LA private equity firm Criterion Capital Partners has confirmed it’s buying social network Bebo from AOL. Criterion isn’t disclosing any deal terms or price, which has been reported at $2.5 million by PEHub or $10 million by TechCrunch, two years after AOL bought Bebo for $850 million.

Social Networks Become Social Entertainment

Jun 2, 2010

A recent survey released by Edelman examined the evolution of consumers’ perceptions of the Internet as an entertainment medium, and not just a source of information. While this broad statement may seem obvious to many working directly in the digital media space, the implications of this evolution for how consumers define and consume entertainment – and the factors they value and are inclined to pay for – merit further consideration for any brand looking to entertain and engage consumers.

Tweetdeck Adds Location Column, Integrates Foursquare

May 27, 2010

TweetDeck, the popular Adobe Air desktop app for social networks (though an HTML5 version is on the way), has now integrated Foursquare into its latest release. The move represents the latest from the startup to grab the “social dashboard” crown against the likes of Seesmic and others, although Tweetdeck seems to be heading towards a kind of “Pro User” space more than anything else.

Gifting as Branding: How Coke & Pepsi Use Social Media

John Sviokla
May 27, 2010

Coke & Pepsi are very active in social media and I think their hard work is helping to build up a “trust bank” with their audience. As has been widely reported, Pepsi took their Superbowl ad budget and instead of creating a set of iconic commercials they launched their “Refresh Everything” campaign, in which they asked their audience to come up with ideas to “refresh the world”, in the categories of health, the planet, art & culture, food & shelter, neighborhoods and education.

Facebook's Culture Problem May Be Fatal

Bruce Nussbaum
May 25, 2010

Facebook's imbroglio over privacy reveals what may be a fatal business model. I know because my students at Parsons The New School For Design tell me so. They live on Facebook and they are furious at it. This was the technology platform they were born into, built their friendships around, and expected to be with them as they grew up, got jobs, and had families. They just assumed Facebook would evolve as their lives shifted from adolescent to adult and their needs changed. Facebook's failure to recognize this culture change deeply threatens its future profits. At the moment, it has an audience that is at war with its advertisers. Not good.

One-to-Some: A New Mode of Communication

Mike Arauz
May 20, 2010

This post is about the future of communication. We’ve had one-to-one communication forever. Mass-media created a revolution in one-to-many communication. And the internet has shown us the power and possibility of many-to-many communication. We are slowly starting to see the formation of a new kind of communication, which – for lack of a better term – I’m calling one-to-some communication. The promise of the social web is a fundamentally new form of communication in which each of us can move fluidly between one-to-one, one-to-many, and many-to-many communication with each bit of information we share.

Togetherville Brings Social Networking to Children

May 19, 2010

Aside from being "against the rules," there are some real problems with younger kids using sites designed for teens and adults. For one thing, signing up requires lying, which is bad in itself. But, as many adults are finding out, knowing how to protect one's privacy on a site like Facebook can be daunting and most young children are not developmentally ready to use these services. There are other issues as well; including how easy it is for kids to cyberbully each other on social-networking sites. Finally, sites like Facebook just don't have the resources for younger children, including the types of videos, games, and experiences that 6- to 10-year-olds find compelling. Enter Togetherville.com, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based company that has built what founder Mandeep Singh Dhillon calls a "neighborhood" aimed at "kids and their grownups."

Four Nerds and a Cry to Arms Against Facebook

May 12, 2010

How angry is the world at Facebook for devouring every morsel of personal information we are willing to feed it? A few months back, four geeky college students, living on pizza in a computer lab downtown on Mercer Street, decided to build a social network that wouldn’t force people to surrender their privacy to a big business. It would take three or four months to write the code, and they would need a few thousand dollars each to live on. They gave themselves 39 days to raise $10,000, using an online site, Kickstarter, that helps creative people find support.

Ning Goes Premium

May 4, 2010

The past two months have been tumultuous for social network platform Ning. In March, longtime CEO Gina Bianchini was replaced by COO Jason Rosenthal. And less than three weeks ago, Ning’s bubble burst — the company laid off 40% of its staff and killed off its free service. Today the company, which ended its free service a few weeks ago, is rolling out the different paid models for its platform, Ning Pro, Ning Plus and Ning Mini.

Pepsi Aims to Reach Consumers Near Restaurants

Laurie Burkitt
May 4, 2010

PepsiCo is making a strong push to reach out to consumers on their turf. In the next two months, the Purchase, N.Y., beverage and snack food company plans to roll out a partnership with location-based social networking company Foursquare and to launch its own geo-targeting mobile application, Pepsi Loot. Both programs, when activated by consumers, will let the app's users know when they get close to Pepsi-selling restaurants and fast food chains, such as Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and Arby's. When they stop by to pick up a drink, Pepsi will reward them with points that can be redeemed for a free music download from artists such as Neon Trees and Katharine McPhee.

The Wall Street Journal Partners with Foursquare

Apr 26, 2010

Foursquare’s bread-and-butter is the partnerships that seed the location-based social network with curated content. Now, that includes editorial tips and badges from the renowned business publication The Wall Street Journal.

Facebook is Evil

Peter Tanham
Apr 7, 2010

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a fan of Google. This isn’t a post to describe my personal affection for a corporate entity, but it is an attempt to describe one element that I find particularly appealing. Don’t Be Evil. This phrase is Google’s infamous, informal corporate motto. I love it. Not only does it help reinforce my romantic, naive teenage dreams that I could become the next Richard Branson or Bill Gates just by doing good in the world, but it also helps prove that in the new business world, evil is bad for business.

Yelp Tweaks Its System For Transparency--And Lawsuit-Dodging

Apr 6, 2010

Yelp has found a work-around for those wicked extortion rumors (and that pesky lawsuit). In a blog post with the no-nonsense headline "We're Increasing Transparency and Eliminating 'Favorite Review'," Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman explains its plans. The "transparency" part is met by allowing users to see reviews that would otherwise have been obscured by the review filtering system. Whereas the Favorite Review part sees this entire segment of the advertising package deleted from Yelp.

Facebook: Next-Generation Niche Search Engine?

Apr 1, 2010

With so many companies launching Facebook fan pages, initiating paid search ad campaigns and developing ecommerce strategies on the site, it's easy to see how Facebook's social network could become the next-generation niche search engine for products and services. Recent data and technology trends point to the possibility of this cultural shift. For starters, Facebook gained the most growth in search queries, rising 10% to 436 million searches from January to February, according to comScore.

Craig Newmark on the Web’s Next Big Problem

Mathew Ingram
Mar 22, 2010

I had the chance to sit down with Craigslist Founder Craig Newmark recently at his favorite breakfast spot in San Francisco, just a block or two from the house where Craigslist was launched 15 years ago this month. We talked about a number of his favorite topics, including the bird feeders he keeps having to replace (because the squirrels he likes to post about on Twitter destroy some 10-15 of them every year), his love of dogs (he doesn’t own one himself, but keeps dog treats with him to feed the various neighborhood pets he runs into during the day, most of whom he knows by name) and — last but not least — what he thinks is the next big problem the web has to solve. And what is that? The question of who to trust online, according to Newmark.

Nail, Coffin, Twitter

Mar 16, 2010

Poor Twitter. It’ll realize its mistake later. The bulletin board/message board/social network has been one of the oldest applications on the internet. It ties into the person-to-person communications functionality of the internet platform, which enables multiple ways — not just one — to talk to people. In the bulletin board/message board/social network environment, the transaction is super simple: A user posts something, people post a response. Sometimes, it can be breaking news — have you all heard of Handbag.com, or Fashion Spot? Probably not. Both have been crashing servers based on news that is important to its users for almost a decade — yet were created long before even Twitter founder’s first startup, long before Word Press, etc. 2.0 ushered in the widespread use of this form of communications on the internet, but it hardly invented it. In fact, it’s heading backwards toward the past more than it realizes. If one were to actually research the history of the message board/bulletin board/chat room/social network, this is what you’d see.

Why Google Buzz Will Be a Hit

Pete Cashmore
Feb 11, 2010

Google Buzz, Google's new social networking service announced this week, isn't particularly original. Just like Facebook and Twitter, it lets you share links, updates and media with friends. Even so, it'll probably be a moderate success.

If Google Wave Is The Future, Google Buzz Is The Present

MG Siegler
Feb 9, 2010

Google has a problem. Despite having their hands in just about everything online, they’ve never been able to tackle what is a key part of the fabric of the web: social. Yes, they have Orkut and OpenSocial, but no one actually uses them. Okay, some people use them, but not in the meaningful social ways that people use Facebook or even Twitter. Today, Google may have just solved their social problem. Google Buzz is easily the company’s boldest attempt yet to build a social network. Imagine taking elements of Twitter, Yammer, Foursquare, Yelp, and other social services, and shoving them together into one package. Now imagine covering that package in a layer that looks a lot like FriendFeed. Now imagine shoving that package inside of Gmail. That’s Buzz. If Google Wave is the future, Google Buzz is the present.

Pepsi Push Harnesses Facebook Potential

Feb 1, 2010

For the first time in 23 years, there will not be an advertisement for Pepsi during Super Bowl next weekend. Instead, PepsiCo, the soft drinks maker, which in previous years has wowed audiences with dazzling spots featuring Cindy Crawford and Britney Spears, is going online. With a $20m digital campaign that features its own website and a heavy presence on Facebook, PepsiCo is betting that a more interactive approach will resonate with consumers in the always-on age of social networking sites. "We're living in a new age with consumers," says Ralph Santana, vice-president of marketing for PepsiCo North America. "They are looking for more of a two-way dialogue, story-telling and word of mouth. Mediums like the digital space are much more conducive towards that."

Brand Impact in 2010

Denise Lee Yohn
Jan 4, 2010

Happy New Year! I hope you had a great holiday and you are as excited as I am about kicking off 2010! After the long hard haul of 2009, I’m eager to see business get off to a fresh start this year. It’s impossible to know exactly what the New Year will bring, but I’m confident more attention will be paid to brands and brand-building. That’s because there are at least three key areas that I see brands having an immediate and significant impact in.

The Future of TV

Brian Steinberg
Nov 30, 2009

In its heyday, "This is Your Life" was seen by a broad swath of viewers tuned into their Philcos all at once, never dreaming that someday it could be rebroadcast, paused live, accessed on another gadget, or that its entire run could be contained on a thin metal disc. Almost 50 years later, we're almost similarly in the dark. Those Samsung flatscreens in our living room might still be the go-to device, but they are fast being joined by computer monitors, laptops, gaming consoles, iPods and mobile phones distributing content once solely accessed by TV, or in some cases, content that competes with TV. It's conceivable—and probably inevitable—that TV/web convergence will lead to us ordering up movies, pizza and even advertising while watching custom-tailored content and interacting with social-network buddies at the same time. The question is how these services will work together and who will manage and monetize them in a world where the TV networks operate with a mass-media mentality and are anxious to keep $60.5 billion in ad revenue from going the way of Philco.

Brands Run After Female Social Gamers

Nov 11, 2009

By now, most marketers have a social network presence. But those looking to capture the attention (and even wallets) of women may want to dig a little deeper to make sure they have a presence in social gaming. "It's grown so fast and so rapidly that brands are struggling to keep up with it," Matt Wise, CEO of Q Interactive, tells Marketing Daily. "If you're looking to find consumers online, it would be hard to find a better opportunity than social games."

Our Journey Defines Our Future in Social Media

Nov 9, 2009

As we look ahead to 2010 in the world of social media, we should first stop to appreciate how far we’ve come in this journey to new found relevance and presence. Social media served as a great equalizer. The technology and the corresponding networks that freely connected us, democratized the ability to publish and share content, weave more meaningful relationships, as well reset the ecosystem for establishing and wielding influence. Perhaps most notably, Social networks made the world a much smaller place. As such, it also set the stage for the emergence of a new caliber and genre of influencers and communities that support their mission and purpose. On any given subject, these authoritative networks can incite change and galvanize action to govern, change, and direct market behavior.

Does the Hard Sell Work on Social Nets?

Nov 9, 2009

The conventional wisdom is that brands should mostly concentrate on listening rather than talking in social media. This may not be totally accurate. Publicis Groupe digital shop Performics has found consumers are actually quite receptive to direct response-style product offers on social networking sites like Facebook. "Companies need to look for ways to do classic push marketing," said Michael Kahn, svp of marketing at Performics.

The Social Network In Your Pocket

Nov 4, 2009

The proliferation of mobile technology and the rapid integration of both access to the web and access to our social graph via our mobile device demands that we begin to design experiences that were previously thought of as "off line" to spread online. Digital technology, and the role that it plays in our lives, has evolved dramatically over the past 10 years. Think about how constantly we now rely on digital technology to communicate with each other, to get information, to entertain ourselves, to organize collective action, and to document our lives. Now think about how many of those experiences now take place within the context of your social graph, within the context of the aggregate of all of your digital relationships. Every digital experience we have now is connected to our digital relationships.

Coca-Cola to Teach the World to Be Happy via Social Networking Sites

Oct 22, 2009

Coca-Cola is no longer content to merely teach the world to sing in perfect harmony - it now wants to teach the world how to be happy, appointing a team of Happiness Ambassadors to show us the way. A team of three young people are to attempt to visit the 206 countries where Coca-Cola is sold in 365 days, finding out what makes people happy and sharing this with the world through social networking sites.

Marketers Salivating Over Smartphone Potential

Oct 21, 2009

Jeff Smith is a diligent social-networking user, but he doesn't own a PC. "I prefer a cellphone and a service for a cellphone," says Smith, 40, a postal worker in Detroit who served as an Army Ranger in Desert Storm and Somalia. For about a year, Smith has used MocoSpace (for "mobile community space") to chat, meet people, search the Web and play games. "Anything else feels like too much." The majority of people who participate on social networks do so from their PCs. Yet a growing number — many of whom can't afford a PC or would rather not use one — are using mobile devices to tell their friends where they are and what they're up to and for sharing pictures.

Twitterers Keep Current

Oct 20, 2009

So what links are Twitterers actually clicking on? Based on a user sample released Friday by Chitika, an online ad network, Twitter users most frequently accessed links directing to information about current events and news (28.49 percent). The sample consisted of about 974,000 impressions collected from Sept. 1-7.

Study: Email Marketing Preferred

Oct 15, 2009

Web users are far more willing to share personal information with marketers via e-mail than on social networking sites, according to new research commissioned by lead generation specialty firm Pontiflex. The new study, conducted by Harris Interactive, found that just 12 percent of online adults have been willing to share information like their Facebook user name or their Twitter handle with a brand in exchange for information or promotional offers. However, a whopping 96 percent of online adults who have actually taken the step of providing brands personal information have shared their e-mail addresses with marketers.

Aardvark Finally Puts Its Social Q&A On The Web

Oct 14, 2009

When you want an answer to a question, you want it now, which is why the social Q&A service Aardvark first launched as an IM client, then via Facebook, then Twitter. Only today is it opening up its Website as a general social search engine. And it’s just a much better interface than the command-line-reminiscent prompts in the IM interface. You still have to sign in or sign up for the service, which sends your question to people in your extended social network (usually on Facebook, but also Gmail or Hotmail contacts) who are also on Aardvark. In the IM client, this results in a somewhat annoying back-and-forth, interspersed with tips from Aardvark about what text commands to use to unleash more functionality (see bottom screenshot). On the new Website, you simply ask a question, and it goes out to find answers, which are then displayed in logical groupings.

The Great Social Divide: Twitter, Facebook Traffic Surges, Myspace Fades

Brian Solis
Oct 14, 2009

Honestly, categorizing human behavior and activities in social networks by financial status appears incomplete and almost insular. If we are learning anything in the study of and participation in social networks, it’s that individuals are forming networks that traverse across multiple social networks – and, they will continue to do so, forming one larger, expansive human network in the process. We’re bound by context and interests and it’s why psychographic data overcomes demographics when assessing how to best reach, engage, and galvanize the people who define our communities online.

The Psychology of Twitter with Dr. Drew

Brian Solis
Oct 12, 2009

Twitter is a phenomenon unto itself. Which is why, in the study of Social Media, Digital Anthropology and Sociology prevails. Technology indeed facilitates interaction while also introducing us to nuances that transcend the parameters governing natural conversations and asynchronous dialogue into new forms of conversational threads and networks. Twitter is among those networks actively studied by many (myself included) as it seemingly defies the laws of natural flow and engagement. The foundation that makes Twitter work is also the very essence that should prevent it from working at all. In Social Media, psychology and the study of the mind now also plays a role in understanding the context to those affecting and affected by online behavior.

Dynamic Signals For Business

David Armano
Oct 8, 2009

Consider how business really gets done. A group of professionals agree to meet for lunch or perhaps dinner to discuss the details of a deal. Each of the members of the meeting is in a constant mode of signaling. Their body language, the tone of their voice, the grip of their handshake, their eye contact. These are each signals that we as human beings send to others. Some of us are better at influencing the conscious and unconscious signals we send. Some of us are more sensitive at picking up and deciphering the signals we receive. Body language experts discuss this signal exchange and measure them in “microseconds” because that’s how quickly a signal such as blink, furrow or nervous twitch can be broadcast. Common sense tells us that there is no substitute for F2F (Face to Face) interactions and while I’m no behavioral scientist, I have to conclude that it has something to do with the intricate and dynamic nature of interpersonal signals which can be picked up on and reciprocated. So what does this have to do with business?

Where's My iPod Made? SourceMap Has the Answer

Oct 6, 2009

MIT's Media Lab has designed a way to help you understand the economic and ecological implications behind different products you buy--it's an interactive map that displays where each component came from. Specifically designed to be a "collective tool for transparency and sustainability," SourceMap's intended to demonstrate how important supply chains are, and what the consequences of each part of the chain work out to be. It's set up like a social network, so that anyone from producers to end-users can take part (as long as you're a registered member).

Social Networking Use Triples from Only a Year Ago

Sep 25, 2009

Obsessed with Facebook? You're not alone. The hours you spend logging on to update your status, post photos, and make comments on friends' walls is not simply a "phase" you're going through which will end sometime soon. It's a ongoing trend affecting everyone these days and it has serious implications for the online advertising industry. According to new figures from Nielsen, the amount of time spent surfing social networking and blogging sites had tripled since last year, suggesting "a wholesale change in the way the Internet is used," says Jon Gibs, VP of media and agency insights at the company's online division.

Smartphone Social Networking Surges

Sep 25, 2009

Although Smartphones come with a multitude of Web capabilities, consumers are more often than not using these mobile devices for social networking. Social networking usage on Smartphones has skyrocketed by 187 percent to 18.3 million unique users in July 2009, per Nielsen. The increase, which nearly tripled the 6.4 users million seen in July 2008, allowed social networking sites to account for 32 percent of all Smartphone activity during the year.

How Much Are You Worth to Facebook?

Adam L. Penenberg
Sep 22, 2009

Some of the most iconic companies of our time -- Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, Twitter -- attracted millions of users practically overnight, by unleashing what's known as a "viral-expansion loop." In plain English, they grew because each new user led to more users. The trick is that each of these businesses created something people really want and then made it easy for customers to happily spread their products for them to friends, family, and colleagues.

Interlaced: Email and Social Networks

Sep 17, 2009

In my opinion, online social networks have three distinguishing features: 1) They have profiles that enable people to express their identity 2) Ability for people to connect to these profiles 3) To be successful, there’s a greater value created by a group of people sharing than as individuals who do not. This week, Facebook announced it has ballooned to 300 million users, far more than MySpace and certainly Twitter. Yet, I want to assert that Facebook isn’t the largest social network, email is.

Phone Calling Coming to Twitter

Sep 17, 2009

Twitter users on Thursday will, for the first time, be able to make voice calls directly to each other through the microblogging service. A new third-party offering from Jajah known as Jajah@call is expected to go into beta Thursday morning that will allow Twitter users to initiate a two-way voice chat with other users by typing "@call @username"--where "username" is someone's Twitter ID--into any Twitter client. During the beta period, the company said, the calls will be limited to two minutes, but the company will evaluate that length during beta. However, it sees the two minute period--after which the call will end--as "the verbal equivalent of a tweet."

Facebook Finds Profitability Despite Nascent Advertising Model

Sep 16, 2009

Scratch Facebook from the list of web 2.0 startups that don't make money: The world's largest social network said today it has become profitable. Co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook had crossed the 300 million registered-user milestone and that it had become "cash-flow positive" in the second quarter, ahead of schedule. Previously, Facebook had said it was targeting profitability "sometime in 2010."

Facebook @dds Twitter-Style Tagging

Sep 11, 2009

Taking another page from Twitter, Facebook is giving users the ability to "tag" friends and Facebook Pages in status updates and posts using the "@" symbol as with mentions on the microblogging service. Facebook has long allowed users to tag photos, videos and notes with friends' names. The latest step extends the popular feature for identifying and referencing people to other parts of the social networking site.

The Dichotomy Between Social Networks and Education

Brian Solis
Sep 8, 2009

Recently, I discussed the validity of whether or not social networking (the verb) and social networks (as a noun) were impairing our ability to learn. A Stanford study suggested that this might be the case. It seems that the initial research and its supporting data is now emerging to help us further analyze whether or not this is indeed true or merely hypotheses based on the various samplings of individuals who may or may not serve as relevant subjects. I do believe that we are becoming an increasingly social society. It could very well be the era of introversion to extroversion.

It's A Good Ning

Aug 25, 2009

Ask Gina Bianchini about the future of traditional media on the Web and she'll point you to a recent experiment by the home-and-garden-focused publishing giant Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. Working with Bianchini's social networking outfit, Ning, Martha Stewart developed an online meeting place for female entrepreneurs on the Ning network called "Dreamers into Doers." Women can post tips about running a small business, share videos about their companies and meet other women grappling with the challenges of building a company from scratch while raising families.

Are Facebook and Twitter on a Collision Course?

Aug 14, 2009

For years, Facebook and Twitter have maintained a friendly coopetition of sorts, with neither one taking a firm stance against the other. However, if you believe that Mark Zuckerberg does not actively contemplate strategies for either acquiring Twitter or rendering it obsolete, please think about the landscape and monetization drivers that aren’t yet readily apparent to us as everyday consumers. This may seem like the “Social Media Summer of Love,” but in the end, there are billions of dollars and users at stake here.

Facebook Slowly Taking Over the World, Now at 250 Million Users

Jul 21, 2009

Mark Zuckerberg proudly announced on the Facebook blog this week that the popular social network continues its global dominance jumping from 200 million to 250 million users. To commemorate the milestone, Facebook created a map that visualizes connections and adoption worldwide.

How Future Social Networks Will Transform Marketing

Randall Beard
Jul 20, 2009

In a recent white paper, "The Future of the Social Web," Forrester's Jeremiah Owyang predicts the social web will soon morph through five stages, wreaking havoc on the way brands market. Owyang states: "Today's social experience is disjointed because consumers have separate identities in each social network they visit. A simple set of technologies that enable a portable identity will soon empower consumers to bring their identities with them ... IDs are just the beginning of this transformation ... Consumers will rely on their peers as they make online decisions, whether or not brands choose to participate. "

Collecta Turns Internet’s Ocean of Data into a River of Real Time Information

Jul 13, 2009

I’m blogging from the Real-Time Stream event in Redwood City, California organized by TechCrunch. I will share more of my thoughts and observations in a series of posts at a later time – there’s just so much too process in “real time.” Let’s just say that the future of search, streams and the concept of the “Now Web” is blindingly bright.

Get Ready As Corporate Sites and Social Networks Start To Connect

Jul 13, 2009

To Increase Engagement, Brands to Allow Users To Login With Facebook, MySpace, Twitter In a recent report titled the “Future of the Social Web” we found that we are entering the era of social colonization, every webpage and experience will be social–even if brands choose not to participate.

Can Social Media Be Taught?

Jul 8, 2009

I imagine there are two camps: those who believe you can teach someone how to use social media and those who think it’s absurd to teach people to do what they can learn on their own. The term “Social Media” covers such a gamut of technologies, approaches, tools and lessons learned that it’s challenging to think about how a training course could be packaged and would stay current, but I’d like to explore what a course could achieve.

Great Wall of Facebook: The Social Network's Plan to Dominate the Internet — and Keep Google Out

Jun 23, 2009

Larry Page should have been in a good mood. It was the fall of 2007, and Google's cofounder was in the middle of a five-day tour of his company's European operations in Zurich, London, Oxford, and Dublin. The trip had been fun, a chance to get a ground-floor look at Google's ever-expanding empire. But this week had been particularly exciting, for reasons that had nothing to do with Europe; Google was planning a major investment in Facebook, the hottest new company in Silicon Valley. Originally Google had considered acquiring Facebook—a prospect that held no interest for Facebook's executives—but an investment was another enticing option, aligning the Internet's two most important companies. Facebook was more than a fast-growing social network. It was, potentially, an enormous source of personal data.

Augmented Reality + Social Networks

Jun 22, 2009

What if you combined existing face recognition software with access to Facebook and other social network sites on a mobile device?

Dell Makes $3 Million From Twitter-Related Sales

Jun 13, 2009

Dell (Dell) says it has surpassed $3 million in sales attributed to Twitter, and the online social network, which has yet to make a profit, is watching closely.

Special Delivery

May 29, 2009

Diapers.com’s innovative Web strategies turn customer acquisition and retention into an art form. Launched by two active but frustrated fathers who grew tired of having to race to stores at all hours of the night to replenish their children’s diaper supplies, Diapers.com has soared to $89 million in sales in just four and a half years. The online retailer’s mission is simple yet effective when carried out properly, which Diapers.com appears to have done: “To make moms’ lives easier by delivering all the necessary baby products in a timely manner with great customer service,” says CEO/Co-founder Marc Lore.

How Social Networks Are Changing Everything

May 8, 2009

When we talk about "gateways" to the Web, most of us tick off the names of four Internet companies: Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft's MSN, and Time Warner's AOL. Collectively (with Google in the lead) they account for or broker 90% of the gross dollars advertisers spend online. And they get huge amounts of traffic, in part because millions of users choose one of these four as their home page. Each of the sites continues to draw well over 100 million monthly unique visitors. But a shift is under way--one that is ushering in the next stage in the battle for influence on the Web. Other players are becoming gateways, too, in a kind of evolutionary advance that will change the way we use the Internet--and alter advertisers' behavior.

Sears Quietly Launches Social Network

May 8, 2009

Insisting it has no plans to face off with Facebook or take the place of MySpace, retailer Sears has quietly launched its own social networking hub. The chain has registered more than 200,000 registered users to MySears, a social networking site it rolled out in late March. This week Sears launched MyKmart, a similar site for its sister chain.

Firefox Could Be the Real Facebook Challenger

Marshall Kirkpatrick
May 7, 2009

Firefox doesn't keep track of the number of users it has but Asa Dotzler, Mozilla's director of community development, said today that the company estimates that there are 270 million people using the browser. That's 35% more users than Facebook has signed up for accounts (200 million), and almost triple the number of people Facebook says log in to the social network every day (100 million). Why compare user numbers between a browser and a social network? Because there's every reason to believe that the two technologies are converging in the near term future. Here's why we believe that Firefox should be Facebook's biggest competition.

Do You Own Facebook? Or Does Facebook Own You?

Vanessa Grigoriadis
Apr 7, 2009

If there were one word to describe what Facebook has added to my life, I would use it. It’s a multidimensional pleasure: It’s given me a tool for exceptionally mindless, voyeuristic, puerile procrastination; crowd-sourced pesky problems like finding a new accountant; stoked my narcissism; warmed my heart with nostalgia; and created a euphoric, irrational, irresistible belief in the good in men’s hearts among the most skeptical people I know—people who should know better.

Chinese Social Networks ‘Virtually’ Out-Earn Facebook And MySpace: A Market Analysis

Apr 5, 2009

Despite China’s massively growing internet market, international giants like Google and Facebook are having trouble making gains with the 300 million Chinese online users. China’s netizens are on average very young – 66.7 % of them are younger than 29 years old and 35.2 % of them are teenagers—with social networking and entertainment applications being the most popular. While companies like Facebook struggle to conquer market share in China and to create viable business models everywhere, their Chinese clones have built lucrative cash machines literally earning billions of dollars a year. Unfortunately, adopting Chinese methods may not help American social networks due both to cultural differences in Chinese user behavior and industry practices.

Another Reason to be Skeptical of "Analysts"

Mar 18, 2009

I agree about one thing - building ad platforms like Tweetsense will be difficult. But nothing valuable is ever easy. Adwords was not easy. Overture was not easy. What Facebook is building is not easy. And TweetSense won't be easy.

What the Young People Say About Social Media

Mar 2, 2009

I had the chance to talk to two classes of undergrads at a major university about Internet marketing. I gave them the typical talk about listening, participating, having a dialog, giving up control, etc, and how social media is a big deal (you know, the standard rap about if you’re not on a social networking site, you’re not on the internet). Then I showed them the various social networking platforms and asked them which ones they participated in.

LinkedIn Skyrockets as Job Losses Mount

Mar 2, 2009

There are two places most of today's laid-off executives are heading: to job-search sites to see what other opportunities are out there and to networking sites in hopes they can reconnect with -- and milk leads from -- former colleagues and business contacts. One site, LinkedIn, offers both of those things in one place.

Advertising To Social Networkers Tricky

Feb 27, 2009

A recent study by InsightExpress, exploring participation trends across social networks, as well as how receptive their members are to advertising, found that  43% of the online population reports using a social networking site.  And, no matter their age or number of profiles, social networkers see advertising as a hot topic.

Do You Belong To Facebook, Forever?

Feb 16, 2009

The blogosphere is abuzz after a popular consumer affairs blog pointed out changes to Facebook's terms of use that the social networking Web site quietly made earlier this month. Consumerist, a blog owned by the publisher of Consumer Reports, published a post on Sunday that summed up the changes with the alarming title: "We Can Do Anything We Want With Your Content. Forever."

Facebook Crushing MySpace in Traffic

Jan 25, 2009

Want to know which is becoming the world's default social network? Hint: It's not MySpace. ComScore data is out and on a global basis Facebook is pulling away.

Group Think

Dec 17, 2008

By applying a decades-old sociological theory that describes the spread of information in social networks to the online world, a Tel Aviv professor has been able to develop a predictive algorithm that identifies musicians who will ascend from local popularity to national stardom..

Health 2.0: Patients as Partners

Dec 5, 2008

Social networks like PatientsLikeMe let people take charge of their own care -- changing the nature of drug research and hte practice of medicine.

Marketing in the World of the Web

Tom Hayes and Michael Malone
Nov 30, 2008

Retailers will eventually recover from the consumption tailspin that threatens this holiday season. But quite apart from the recession, there are other, profound changes underway in the retail sector. As the evidence mounts about the power of social networks to reconfigure individual behavior, the crucial question facing industry is: How to leverage this phenomenon into actual profits?

How Obama Tapped Into Social Networks’ Power

David Carr
Nov 10, 2008

When he arrives at 1600 Pennsylvania, Mr. Obama will have not just a political base, but a database, millions of names of supporters who can be engaged almost instantly. And there’s every reason to believe that he will use the network not just to campaign, but to govern.

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