Archive for April, 2009

Google, MSN rumors to Hollywood addiction: It's the week in Twitter

Posted by Mario Sgambelluri on April 10th, 2009 at 12:00 am

Here's a wrap on the week's Twitter news. And what a week it was. Um, let's start with last week.
 
Last week ended with rumors that Google was in "late-stage negotiations" to scoop up Twitter. (iMediaConnection) And by the middle of this week, Microsoft had stepped in, setting the stage for "yet another [Google v. Microsoft] pick-me face-off." (All Things Digital) (My gut tells me Twitter's not going to pick a side, by the way. They're smarter than that. They'll find clever ways to leverage both giants to the mutual advantage of all three.)
 
What's muddling acquisition, merger and partnering talks right now is the revenue question. Twitter's not making any money. But they're drifting in that direction. Last month, Twitter confirmed "they'll [someday] sell commercial accounts to power users and companies." (Silicon Alley Insider) But advertising is sure to play a big role in the future, too. 
 
Last week, Twitter announced an integrated search product (dubbed Discovery Engine) that will launch "as soon as possible." This sets the stage for AdWords-ish advertising. And this week, Twitter announced a stake in "Twitter Partners," which handles more complex marketing ops on the platform. The group (which has already worked with Universal and Virgin) "will help media clients develop marketing strategies around Twitter through services... Read more

Thin and inexpensive netbooks. Coming to a household near you.

Posted by Doug Schumacher on April 9th, 2009 at 12:00 am

This article in the NY Times highlights how there is a wave of new smaller, lighter, and most importantly, cheaper, laptop computers coming onto the market. Appropriately called ‘netbooks’.
There a lot of change indicators on the Internet’s horizon. Mobile is certainly a big one, as is higher broadband rates. But I think the laptop trend could change things quickest of all.
Accessibility can’t be overestimated when it comes to the Web. Time and again, we’ve seen as computers and technologies get cheaper, simpler to use, and easier to transport, there’s a resulting surge in usage.
I remember my first home WiFi network in 2001. Spectacularly liberating. Suddenly, instead of being sequestered in an upstairs office, the computer could now move down to where the people were, and quite literally join the conversation. Simple online tasks improved noticeably. Receipes were researched online in the kitchen, where you could quickly check the ingredients needed with what was in stock. Looking up TV schedules could be done while actually watching TV! And simple things like planning a vacation happened on the couch instead of the office, an environment far more fitting for the task.
With the netbooks slated to practically be given away with an accompanying... Read more

Howard Stern discovers immediate return on Twitter

Posted by Matt Kapko on April 9th, 2009 at 12:00 am

Howard Stern has been having a digital awakening of late and he's sharing it with millions of listeners on Sirius XM.
After getting a handful of one-on-one demonstrations with many of the top-of-the-line smartphones available today (including some not yet released), the radio icon has been hooked ever since selecting the BlackBerry Bold for his new favorite toy.
Springing from his selection, and not surprising, has been a greater introduction to social media, particularly Twitter.
On this morning's show, Stern spoke with Jeff Jarvis -- author of "What Would Google Do?" -- about the immense opportunity presented by Twitter and how Stern could leverage the platform to increase his reach and influence.
Like many not yet ensnared in all things Twitter, Stern has been vocally reluctant to join or spend any time on sites like Facebook or Twitter, but he seems to have acquiesced somewhat, at least when it comes to Twitter.
Jarvis urged Stern to use the platform in his free time to post videos and photos shot from his BlackBerry on Twitter. A few ideas sprung from that conversation and that's what Twitter is all about: brainstorm an idea or create content, then tell the... Read more

The Worst Reason Some Agencies Still Aren't Doing Digital

Posted by Jay Friedman on April 8th, 2009 at 12:00 am

Most readers on this site are way, way beyond whether or not to "do digital."  For thousands of agencies out there this is not the case.  We've met hundreds of small and mid-sized agencies in our travels. Here are some seriously startling facts from these encounters:

An educated estimate would be that about 60% are not consistently doing digital at all.  
Among all agencies we've met with, the most common response to the question, "What have you done online?", the answer is "Oh, we've definitely done digital.  We've run with the local newspaper a number of times."  These are agencies in large markets, by the way.  Not agencies in DMA #153.
When asked how they ad served these campaigns, 100% of respondents say, "what do you mean?"
When asked if they're aware their campaigns could be short 20% of impressions by not third party serving, 90% say, "We don't know what you mean."

But the degree to which you've cringed at any of the above won't compare to the answer we get about 50% of the time when we ask why digital isn't a part of every plan: "Our clients aren't really asking for it."  Any agency who waits for their clients to lead... Read more

The smartest man in digital marketing

Posted by Jodi Harris on April 8th, 2009 at 12:00 am

...is apparently Trent Reznor, lead singer of Nine Inch Nails -- at least when it comes to navigating the intricacies of music marketing today.
The latest demonstration of his genius is a soon-to-be-released iPhone app that puts all things NIN at the disposal of fans. This includes music, photos, videos, message boards, behind-the-scenes footage, tour info and GPS-enabled connections to other fans across the globe.
Oh, and did I mention that Reznor is offering this app for free?
Since extricating his band from its contract with Universal Music Group's Interscope label, Reznor has embarked on a series of innovative promotions that provide fans with the means to support and follow his work on a deeper level. An alternative reality game with elaborately staged fan scavenger hunts, strategically placed (i.e., dropped in rock club bathrooms) flash drives of new music,  and a crowd-sourced website that offers unprecedented access to everything -- including the band's latest album, The Slip, for free -- are just some of the experiments Reznor has embarked upon in the last two years. 
And his efforts are proving that if you respect your consumers, and let them participate in your brand on their terms, you will benefit as well. For example,... Read more