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10 links that point to the future of digital marketing:

Separating You and Me? 4.74 Degrees – NYTimes.com

This really demonstrates how quickly any brand-related message could peel through the Internet, eventually hitting a large percent of the FB user group, while also likely generating multiple impressions for many people.

How to Turn Your Instagram Photos Into Wall Art

This is a nice partnership deal between the fast-growing Instagram and a photo printing service. Both should benefit from this ‘clicks-and-mortar’ combo. Companies without a natural online-offline relationship should consider such partnerships to expand their touchpoints.

Facebook Tests More Variations On Sponsored Stories

If there’s one ad format I’m most curious about, it’s sponsored stories. This is the leading edge of content marketing, and while the creatives are less than dynamic, they’re bringing together interesting elements: The story, the people related to it, and even what they’re saying about it.

Steve Jobs Was Right: Google IS Turning Into Microsoft

If you follow the tech battle among the 800 lb gorillas, this is a good read.

Here’s How People Look at Your Facebook Profile — Literally

This really replicates much of what’s been known about website page viewing (e.g., content at the top gets viewed the most), but it’s a quick read and is certainly worth the separate social media analysis.

Can Gamifying a Restaurant Get You Better Service?

Gamification has garnered a lot of buzz, and many of the projected use cases proposed have been pretty obvious. What I like about this is, it’s employee focused instead of customer. That may sound backwards, but employees are far more likely to use it when they’re the ones getting the potential bonus.

Is Content Marketing an Asset or an Expense?

A very simple premise — is content an expense or an asset. I really like the way this post frames content as an asset. While I’m not a CPA, it continues providing value long after it’s posted, which seems to be the trait of an asset.

A Note to Our Readers About Comments – NYTimes.com

Henry Ford said something to the effect of “If we’d have listened to our customers, we’d have designed faster horses”. Steve Jobs was known for paying very little attention to what his customers said. A quick read of the comments shows how resistant people are to change. Comment threading has been widely practiced on numerous leading online publications, and from experience, I’d say to good effect.

Daily Wrap: Path is Awesome and More

Path is an app with a very fluid timeline presentation. I think the UX definitely needs some attention (but then what startup’s UX doesn’t).

‘We Are the 99 Percent’ Joins the Cultural and Political Lexicon – NYTimes.com

A fresh look at the 99% meme, which is as close as the OWS movement came to a clear position.

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10 posts that point to the future of marketing:

The Brands That Survive Will Be The Brands That Make Life Better | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation

I think this POV, but I do think there’s a big difference between making a difference in the world, and making a difference in consumer’s lives. While both are obviously great, at the end of the day, I think most people are shopping for the latter.

Reserve items, check yourself out with the Apple Store 2.0 app

A great blend of traditional and e commerce, from Apple. Another use of technology that both enhances the consumer experience and saves the brand money.

CouchSurfing – Participate in Creating a Better World, One Couch At A Time

Another idea out to change the world. This one’s arriving via the jetstream of AirB2B.

Why My Kids Love Ed Sheeran – Forbes

Social media is a channel, not a strategy. That can’t be emphasized enough, and it’s examples like this that companies need to follow. It’s not about just showing up on social media, it’s about showing up in a way that resonates.

80% of Smartphone Users Multitask While Watching TV

I like how an equal percent of multi-taskers find it productive as find it distracting. It doesn’t seem like they asked the obvious question, though, which is “When do you multi-task during a show?” During commercials?

Twitter / @adtech: Your employees are the most authentic story tellers you have.

Sometimes a simple tweet is all that needs to be said. This is quite true.

New startup wants to be ‘Google Analytics for the real world’

Interesting concept and indicative of the tracking potential around mobile, although I have to think at some point this level of invasiveness will get the plug pulled on it.

Google’s Chief Works to Trim a Bloated Ship – NYTimes.com

Interesting to see how large companies like Google placing an emphasis on quick decision-making and streamlining operations.

Gary Morgenthaler Explains Exactly How Siri Will Eat Google’s Lunch | TechCrunch

A million blue links from Google is worth far less than one correct answer from Siri. People don’t really want search engines. Rather, they want “do” engines.

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10 links that point to the future of marketing:

Daily Wrap: Scott Berken’s Mindfire Free Until November 3 and more

You can’t beat the price, but act fast. You have about 2 more hours as of this send.

Is It Old?: The easy way to check if that cool web link has already done the rounds

This is fun. Kind of like a Snopes.com for viral content connoisseurs.

Could Google Plus Lose The Battle Against Facebook?

I think the challenge for Google+ has been that it’s very difficult to catch a competitor in a social network by instantly adding complex features when people aren’t already familiar with a simpler version of your tool. Google needs to focus on taking all the info they have on us, giving us good content recommendations, and then making that easier to share — not giving us more complicated ways of segmenting our fans and then sharing our info.

Google+ is not a social network, but it’s not a graveyard, either | VentureBeat

A longish article (by blog standards), but an interesting view of how Google sees the data game differently from Facebook. It makes sense, but I think they still have a big concern around Facebook stealing so much computing time from other sites.

5 Reasons Google+ Could Win the Social Enterprise Battle

An insightful POV on the potential behind Google+. What I like about these advantages is that they’re consumer-centric in that they could go a long way to make my social life both easier and better. Better through making it easier to generate quality content. Early adopters will likely lead the charge on this, and if they find Google+ to give them faster access to better data, then Facebook will have a formidable challenger.

Want to see the connected future? Check out this video. — Broadband News and Analysis

A kind of mini-doc on the future of the Internet of Things, from Ericsson. Part informative, part inspiring, and part reassuring that technology isn’t spiraling out of control.

The Competition Between Google, Amazon, Facebook And Apple : NPR

These four have been popping up a lot in conference discussions. Probably the most spectacular battle going on in corporate America.

You, the Brand. | The Drift from Upstream

A good reminder that while social media has given us the ability to scale our personal branding, the underlying fundamentals haven’t changed.

Deutsche Post Reinvents Services in a Digital World – NYTimes.com

Imagine the post office as a progressive organization able to adapt and, yes, pivot as technology throws it’s business model curveballs. This should be motivation for any brand concerned about changing business models.

How Old Spice Revived a Campaign That No One Wanted to Touch

There’s little more difficult in advertising having to create the follow-up campaign to a runaway hit. This is how Weiden took on that challenge.

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The latest in new media marketing strategies, tactics and technologies:

100 YouTube Videos Come Together To Cover Led Zeppelin [VIDEO]

More than anything, I think this shows how something as seemingly simple as video sharing has impacted so many people in so many situations and environments, and draws a common thread across all of them.

This iPhone Survived a 13,500-Foot Fall

A great brand story, irregardless of what a freak event this may have been.

Track that bias: New app visualizes cable news topics live — Online Video News

The first 2 paragraphs of this are all you need to read to get a nice sense of how text analysis can be used to add depth and perspective to a batch of data difficult to otherwise get a good grasp of.

How Bing’s Editors Choose Sexy Images To Seduce You Away From Google | Fast Company

A battle of the page design strategies between Microsoft (Bing) and Google. While Bing has supported their page launch with a significant paid media effort, I can see how this more emotional greeting is a great shot at Google’s supposed strength; simplicity. It’s like the political debate strategy of attacking, not your opponents weaknesses, but their strengths.

AmEx Links Up Facebook With Coupon-less Deals, And Lets Merchants Go Social | TechCrunch

I really like how AmEx understands their value in this corner of the market — creating a coupon experience with less friction for the end consumer. The less behavior changing you have to do, the better.

Why are web workers happier? — Online Collaboration

Agencies often struggle with the idea of an out-of-sight workforce. This is an interesting counter to that.

Game Insight Shuns iOS for Android, Prepares to Tell Facebook Crime Story

If you were a Mac user in the 90s, you have to remember how slowly, developers started investing less and less effort in their Mac apps, relative to the PC versions. Android is looking more and more like the new Windows. Better? No. But cheaper, more widely available, and thus gaining a larger customer base? Yes.

Facebook Asks Users to Help It Get Local Business Owners to Claim Their Places

Using their community to build their database of businesses. Smart move.

REPORT: How Google Plus Stacks Up Against Facebook

Given Google’s lofty brand status and massive reach in the technology world, I’m not surprised to see them come out of the blocks this strong. I don’t think 10% of Facebook’s US traffic is really the traction point for them. But the next few months could be very interesting.

New Filing Shows Zynga-Facebook Exclusivity Goes Far Beyond Credits – Liz Gannes – News – AllThingsD

A revealing, if not interesting, exploration of the relationship between these two. Facebook clearly has little to lose in this deal, and it shows Zynga’s heavy reliance on Facebook for the success of it’s platform. Like all the brand pages themselves, Facebook has put themselves in a position where they’re the only game in town, and if it weren’t for Facebook, the reality is, companies like Zynga would likely be a shell of their current selves.

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The latest in new media marketing trends:

Cannes Cyber Lions: The Winning Case Studies | Digital Buzz Blog

The headline says it all. Good stuff.

Three senior executives on the future of marketing – McKinsey Quarterly

I like the bookend effect of the first and last projections. Firstly, the CEO of Virgin Atlantic reminds us that big, mass media still packs a lot of power. And then a Yahoo! Research scientists tells us the future of marketing will be more and more scientific. Of course, both are correct, and like the influx of technology into marketing, the ones who can blend the analytical with the emotional will have the most consistently good ideas.

Note: To read this you need to register, but it’s free.

The Compelling (or Creepy) M2M World of Verizon Wireless

If you’d like a quick glimpse of the future of the internet, this is your article. I’ve posted on the “Internet of Things” before, and this is a good outline of what parts of our lives that will touch. It’s also good to see a more buzz-friendly term, “M2M” emerge. Stands for “Machine-to-machine”.

First look at HTC Status, the Facebook phone – CNET

I’m not digging the design, but have to say the FB button is nice functionality. The messaging is well integrated to the FB experience, as well. It also looks more rugged than most of the large screen smartphones. All that, combined with the $50 pricing, should make this a good product for you mobile users who primarily use texting for their communications.

Microsoft Licenses GeoVector Patents For AR Navigation, Digital Watermarks | TechCrunch

Where MSFT spends their money is where they think the future is. I really like how the explanation of this technology sounds so simple. Simplicity is undoubtedly an even bigger factor for mobile than it is with desktop computing.

Shapeways | Passionate about creating

3D printing has been making big strides, but this site has a lot of potential for it’s speed, cost and tools enabling the creation of products. This space should get very interesting fast.

REPORT: Facebook Click Ad Rates Rose 22% In Quarter

Firstly, keep in mind that stats on Facebook ad CTRs are very new, and there’s an obviously broad range to the data. But it’s not surprising to see money going into Facebook’s paid ads to support the money going into brand pages. Additionally, Facebook has made recent hires to improve the performance of their display ads, so this could be the start of a longer trend.

The Most Engaged Population In Europe Is Dutch But The Future Is Russian

This is an interesting projection of future Internet influence by European country. If true, it will take a few years to play out, but definitely something to read and keep in the back of your mind.

Are There Already Half As Many Users On Two-Week Old Google+ As There Are On Twitter? – AllTwitter

The data is a little thin, and Twitter is not Facebook — Google’s ultimate target — but nonetheless, this is an impressive start. If this is even close to accurate, it indicates Google has done a good job leveraging their size and influence to generate both buzz and desire (or in social stats terms, Mentions and Positive Sentiment  ;) for Google+.

Smartphone Adoption and Usage | Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project

A good update of figures around smartphone penetration in the US. Most interesting is that while accessing the Internet daily is common among smartphone users (68%), that could be in part because about 1/3 of them report not having high-speed broadband at home.

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The latest in new media marketing trends:

New Apps for iPhone & Android, June 2011

What RWW selected as the best of the new mobile apps to hit the market in June. A good, quick, scan.

Op-Art: Like it or Unfriend It – Graphic – NYTimes.com

Loved this Independence Day piece in the NY Times. Probably an effective history lesson for teens, as well.

iPads Generate 1% Of the World’s Web Traffic [STATS]

Given that iPad sales are ‘only’ 25m to date, this is remarkable. Then again, if you have you, you probably realize how much leisure browsing you do. Or maybe you don’t, because it happens so naturally. This really drives home the prediction that tablets will be our main form of consumption, and that desktops and even laptops will become relegated to the routine and power-hungry tasks.

EXCLUSIVE: Google To Retire Blogger & Picasa Brands in Google+ Push

Interesting to see how Google is ramping up their social efforts around +. Unlike so many of their previous product launches (ahem, Wave) where it felt like they were casually tossing a new product into the ring, you can tell they know they’re at a key crossroads, and don’t have a lot of margin for error this time around.

How a Google-Hulu Tag Team Threatens Facebook’s Future – Technology – The Atlantic Wire

More pieces that are seeming to fall into place around Google’s social push.

Twitter Testing Facebook-Like Message Wall [PIC]

If anything, Twitter has proven that just because you have a simple product doesn’t mean you have a simple user experience. What I find more interesting, though, is that Twitter has been blatantly positioning itself as a content consumption platform, but this is a strong move towards user-interactions. Perhaps they’ve realized that the key to the future of content consumption also involves a large sharing component.

Where in the World Are Google Plus Beta Testers? [Map]

If you’re launching a social product, what regions of the world do you need input from? Here’s Google’s answer.

Experiments on Google+ and Twitter Influencing Search Rankings | SEOmoz

A case study on how different social media channels impact search rankings. The SEO Pyramid at the bottom of the article is worth the entire read.

Beck’s Goes Virtual in ‘Green Box’ Art Campaign | CMO Interviews – Advertising Age

An interesting campaign, assuming the artwork revealed is good. My only question is, downloading an app often requires WiFi, so hopefully that’s something they’ve thought out. Perhaps most interesting is where the Beck’s global marketing manager states that they are leading with experiential and supporting that with paid media. That approach has been a long time coming.

Harnessing the Power of Feedback Loops | Magazine

Interesting case studies on the challenge of trying to change behavior. The key takeaway for me is that when you make people part of the process, it greatly improves the long term results.

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The latest trends in digital marketing:

Why Do People Follow Brands? [INFOGRAPHIC]

As I’ve stated, I’m always a little skeptical of surveys, but this does indicate Liking a brand leads to good results.

5 Ways the Advertising Industry Is Preparing for a Digital Future

Some interesting videos out of Cannes that capture emerging trends in the advertising biz.

Facebook hires iPhone, PS3 hacker – Topix

How are things changing in corporate culture? “Hacker” is seen as a good resume tick.

Facebook Experiments With Comment Ads

This is an interesting move, but I’m not sure it addresses Facebook’s real display problem. The issue I’ve seen is that the ads get low response but high conversion rates. That indicates they’re not getting noticed, or aren’t compelling enough. I think the lack of a clear, impacting headline or message here will make these less visible than their current display offering. Of course, these will also go onto people’s Wall, which offers good visibility.

Facebook Marketing Statistics, Demographics, Reports, and News – CheckFacebook

A good general reference tool for Facebook’s global impact. Some of the “% Online Population” numbers feel a little off, but overall there’s some valuable info on here.

Does Social Media Have A Return On Investment? | Fast Company

If speculation about a tech bubble proves correct, ROI will become a hot topic fast.

Silencing Speech With Propaganda – NYTimes.com

A look at how broader communication trends impact large civilizations. While the online marketing world tends to get caught up in individual messages and their perceived impact, this article goes into why the bigger trends happen at a much higher level.

Criteria for Choosing a Full-Service Content Marketing Agency

As a recent Roper survey stated, 9 out of 10 CMOs see content marketing as the future of advertising. Time for brands to figure out what it is.

Stay N Alive: The Power of Google+: Privacy “Circles” the Entire Experience

It’s going to be interesting to see if Google can pull off Google+ better than their previous social endeavors. Reading this, though, the first thing that hit me is, it sounds complicated. The second thing is, I’m not sure it’s a good idea to force people to make more choices when they go to post, other than just ‘Share’. Time will tell, and these days, it doesn’t take much time.

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The latest in new media marketing strategy and tactics:

Thousands RSVP for Global Group Run on Meetup

Yet another example of a seemingly very effective campaign idea that was done with a small budget and that just about any sports or healthcare brand could have done.

Carolyn Davidson, who designed Nike’s swoosh in 1971 | THEINSPIRATION.COM

A touching clip from 1983. Great to see a company that at the time seemed like a big success already, and this was just before they really exploded.

Experian Hitwise – 1 Facebook fan = 20 additional visits to your website

It’s good to see evidence of Facebook brand activity generating corresponding site visits.

What Drove Expedia’s Facebook Fans Past 1M?

A very effective campaign for gathering fans. Now they need to figure out how to engage them.

The Future According to Eric Schmidt at Cannes Lions | Adweek

Google’s ex-CEO lays out a clear roadmap for how mobile is going to change everything. And within in a short period of time.

Big data leads to a big revival for display ads — Tech News and Analysis

There’s no question the more you know about someone the more effectively you can target them. This lift they report in performance is nothing short of remarkable: 7.5% click-thru rates, and a 4.5% conversion rate. What I’m curious about is if targeting technologies will diminishing returns as the volume increases, the way most new media marketing tactics do. After all, people only have so much to spend.

$41 Million Startup Color Is Forced Into An Early, Buzzword-Laden Pivot

When Color launched I doubted it’s odds and mentioned I’d be curiously following the story. Here’s how it’s evolved. This is the same issue big businesses are running into every day. The question is, Why would a startup ever saddle itself with the baggage of a big business?

5 Ways To Crowdsource Your Brand Using Facebook

I completely agree with the stated value of insights that can be pulled from a brand’s Facebook Page. However, I’d emphasize less about specifically requesting input, and more on simply observing what your fans and your competitors are responding to over a period of several months. Both can be insightful, but the latter will be more objective.

Now Your Embarrassing/Job-Threatening Facebook Photos Could Haunt You For Seven Years – Forbes

I doubt this will stop anyone from using Facebook, Twitter, etc, but it should have them reconsidering what they post.

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The latest in new media marketing strategies and tactics:

Facebook Gets Roasted By Google, Twitter & Foursquare [VIDEO]

Funny stuff with good VO’s by Penn Jillette and Gilbert Gottried

Seven Things Human Editors Do that Algorithms Don’t (Yet) – Eli Pariser – The Conversation – Harvard Business Review

With aggregation-slash-curation coming on strong, there are options as to how that’s accomplished. Algorithms are tempting, but they definitely fall short in a few areas, as outlined here.

One-Quarter of Tablet Users Report the Bathroom as a Popular Place to Log On | Adweek

I like the shifting of tablets away from mobile. While I get the mobility, I think the “lean back” and “immediate access” features are more compelling.

Man Ordered To Tweet 100 Times For Defamation – Slashdot

Truth? Fiction? You tell me which is stranger.

New Mobile Marketing Study: What it Means for Content Marketers

A lot of useful stats, as well as some good general directions for ways different business models can apply mobile to their marketing mix. Right now, mobile solutions are highly contextual to different business models, but there are a lot of options for companies to get involve

Intel® The Museum of Me

This has been going around a lot, but it’s definitely worth another post. A nice shift from the usual stunts linking people to various gag headlines.

Groupon Counts on Writers and Editors to Build Its Audience – NYTimes.com

If you’re in the creative field, this is a must read. It’s in line with the broader trend of crowdsourcing in that creative is more and more viewed as something that can come from a much broader set of people than previously thought.

Best quote of the article: “My dream,” says Mr. Weiner, 26, “was to get a job writing comedy and make more than minimum wage watching dogs die.”

IDC: Google Overtakes Yahoo In Display Ads For First Quarter Ever

This is key because Google’s entire approach to advertising is the elimination of media buyer/seller friction. Paid media is going to be around for a while, but Google’s self-service approach has enabled it to move into the nooks and crannies that small and medium size businesses can take advantage of. Perhaps even more interesting for the future is that Google’s responsive, on-the-fly approach to advertising is well-suited for connecting paid media budgets to social media and content marketing efforts.

MTV Launches Tumblr As Part of Digital Expansion

Tumblr’s been showing strong user base growth, so it’s interesting to see large brands adopting it. Tumblr still appeals to the early-adopter set, but if that’s a large portion of your target audience, then it makes sense to take your content there.

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The latest in new media marketing strategies and tactics:

Conan O’Brien’s Guide To Creativity | Fast Company

Great read for anyone involved in creative thinking for a career.

Amazon Sells More E-Books Than Paper Ones | Fast Company

The big story here is that the ad-supported Kindle is the top seller. That’s quite a statement, given the book world is probably the most staunch opponent of mixing advertising and content.

Landing Page Basics: Making Your Content Marketing Convert

I like case studies that share conversion data.

Content Marketing Case Studies: 5 Companies that “Get It” [Video]

Highly recommend this 3 minute video. It demonstrates how brands in a range of industries are moving past messages and into engagement.

The History of Advertising on Twitter [INFOGRAPHIC]

What this highlights to me is how little Twitter has really emphasized advertising on their platform.

Official Google Blog: Mining patterns in search data with Google Correlate

I could definitely see this leading to some interesting consumer behavior insights for brands.

DIGIDAY:DAILY – Skimming Over the iPad

This is good information for anyone in the content marketing business. A reminder that a change in medium can mean a required changed in the message. Isn’t there a famous line about that?

Square’s Disruptive New iPad Payments Service Will Replace Cash Registers

Square is definitely in my top 5 ‘companies to watch’. And while enabling mobile credit card payments is great, I think the data they provide merchants is going to be what really pulls customers over from existing merchant accounts.

Groupon Staying Ahead of the Game: Rumored to be in Talks with Foursquare

When a gorilla like Facebook comes into the location-based services fray, it’s interesting to see how the previous leaders in the space respond. Groupon’s trying to work deals through numerous LBS players, which should help them get a quick understanding of where the possible sweet spot is in this market. I still think it will be tough for any of them to beat Facebook, as I see LBS and coupons as more a byproduct of whatever mobile app people use most innately. And that, of course, is Facebook.

The Secret World of Apps | Adweek

While there are a lot of developers complaining about Apple’s app approval process, the real question is, What types of developers are driving app use? That’s what Apple is most certainly gleaning from it’s massive data tracking. And Apple is going to do everything they can to keep those developers and those types of apps in the spotlight. It’s an interesting situation, because while Apple only creates a small sliver of apps, they’re trying to levy their taste on their entire community of developers, for the (supposed) benefit of their customers.

 

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