Category: Media

02
Apr

The Year Social Media Moves Beyond Social

This essay originally appeared on the Percolate Blog.

Social is entering a new era in the history of its communications potential. In doing so, ‘social media’ companies like Facebook and LinkedIn are briskly redefining their identities, business models and the boundaries they are able to connect people — or brands to people — within. All told, 2015 looks more and more like the year social will formally move beyond social, and the time when advertisers and technologists stop talking about a company, marketing channel, event or job title as ’social,’ and, instead, simply describe it as something that is.

After all, what is or isn’t social anymore? Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are now closely interwoven throughout all modern media — from live event and TV experiences to journalism to federal government policy awareness — and thanks to mobile are now first screen centers of attention.

How do you define a social company? Today, Facebook generates more annual advertising revenue than Fox News, CNN or MSNBC, with a much faster underlying growth rate fueled by mobile device adoption and budget reallocation to digital.

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As we’ve talked about in the past, Facebook is also distancing itself from its own company pages and contest tabs, becoming a modern media company that connects people and serves ads across a network that extends well beyond Facebook.com. And if the definition of a social company is as open-ended as one that creates or facilitates interactive communities, brands as diverse as Amazon, eBay, Uber, Github, Kickstarter, Venmo, Medium, Pandora, Spotify and a litany of other companies are also intrinsically social businesses. ‘Social’ is where people spend time on the internet, it’s what people intrinsically want to do in their lives and with their phones, and it’s been a central element of human behavior for thousands of years.

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28
Sep

How to Win Anyone’s Attention

The average person now consumes twelve hours of media, checks their phone close to 110 times and sees an estimated 5,000 marketing messages each day. When most of us also regularly put in 8+ hours on the job, it’s no wonder our collective attention span is more taxed than ever.

Data overwhelmingly confirms it too. According to MailChimp 80-85% of marketing emails are never opened, and even in digital video — one of the most promising frontiers for marketers — 56% of viewers regularly skip pre-roll and vocally prefer ads that are fifteen seconds or less. The National Center for Biotechnology Information at the U.S. National Library of Medicine finds average human attention span decreased from 12 seconds in 2000 to 8 seconds in 2013, no doubt influenced by the influx of real-time content streams available to us 24/7/365 on social at a moments’ notice.

As a marketer or advertiser, all this is also a reality check and constant reminder about how precious attention has become. If you’re thinking about what this means for your marketing efforts, or you’re producing a lot of quality content but struggling to get noticed, here are four principles you can apply to win anyone’s attention.

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15
Mar

Does Honesty Create Better Marketing?

[This post originally appeared on the Percolate Content Marketing Blog]

Over the summer of 2013, David Byttow, a former Google software developer, started building a mobile app to solve a problem he had. Byttow noticed he and the engineers he worked with were bad at giving each other feedback, and he wanted a way they could comment honestly on each other’s work without professional or personal backlash for saying something negative. Byttow wanted a way to tell the truth, without revealing who said it.

Eight months later, the most talked about content at SXSW 2014 wasn’t a flashy new tech launch, sharing economy roll-out or big-budget event activation: it was a SXSW feed from Byttow and co-founder Chrys Bader‘s two month old app, Secret, that aggregated and shared honest, anonymous feedback about the conference. The feed, coming on the back of Secret’s $10 million fundraising announcement, caused the app to jump more than 500 spots in the Apple app store rankings over the weekend, making Secret one of the fifty most downloaded social media apps, ahead of Foursquare and Facebook’s new Paper.

By itself, Secret is a noteworthy example of product design and community-building in an identity-conscious, mobile feature-unbundling world. But Secret isn’t alone. Its largest competitor Whisper also just raised venture funding, another addition to a Snapchat-led ecosystem of apps that help users create, share and consume content that’s genuine, unedited and in the moment. In fact, I see Secret, Whisper and Snapchat as part of a larger content and cultural trend centered around a key brand pillar: honesty.Continue Reading..

02
Dec

Why Apple Bet Big on Social Data and Acquired Topsy for $200 Million

[This post was originally published on BuzzFork’s social marketing blog]

While Cyber Monday shoppers bought up iPads and Macbooks in droves, Apple did some purchasing of its own, acquiring social search and data analytics aggregator Topsy for a reported $200 million+.

Topsy, known by many as the “Google for Twitter,” offers tools to analyze tweets, social data and consumer sentiment. I’ve featured Topsy hashtag and keyword data previously on BuzzFork’s blog to look at trending terms and topics at events like Advertising Week and the World Series.

Apple confirmed the acquisition, but its representatives have declined to comment on how the company plans to use Topsy. The most probably outlook for Topsy is a public-facing shutdown of its core services as the product and team gets assimilated into various Apple efforts.  Nonetheless, I see Topsy factoring into Apple’s plans across a variety of potential avenues and product applications:Continue Reading..

23
Jan

Why Twitter Isn’t Saving Television

“Social TV” is hot right now.  Twitter is strategically building studio relationships, major consumer brands are engineering Super Bowl ad campaigns around second screen experiences, data companies targeting the intersection of online audience engagement and ad dollars are attracting considerable investor interest and everyone from Microsoft to Time Warner is dipping their toe into the new overnight sensationalism surrounding big media conversation.  But while it’s fairly easy to affirm that the future of TV looks highly social, with tremendous opportunity for fostering content-centric dialogue and [re-]targeting, it’s a lot less clear how much “tomorrow TV” looks like the present in terms of platform, players and economic allocation.  One thing that’s already clear though, is Twitter (and GetGlue, BlueFin Labs et al.) isn’t saving traditional TV from considerable current and future disruption, for three reasons:Continue Reading..