Archive for Tom Edwards

5 Ways Facebook Paper Could Change the Future

Posted by Tom Edwards on February 5th, 2014 at 10:57 am

With the recent rollout of Facebook’s new mobile news reader app Paper we see the next step in their single purpose app strategy. This post does dive into what Paper is, but more importantly, it focuses how brands can potentially capitalize on Paper now, and into the future.
The launch of Paper is directly targeting Google News, Flipboard, Twitter and other more visually centric news services. The key differentiator for Facebook is by integrating core functionality (engage and post across the Facebook ecosystem, native functionality like messages and notifications) combined with a highly visual curated user experience, it goes beyond the simple utility of consuming news into an engaging experience built on top of Facebook's social graph.
Here is a brief video overview of the app

Having talked to numerous Facebook representatives it appears that there is NOT YET an opportunity for brands to create a unique experience or impact the curated content in categories… the key word is yet. The following section is speculative based on potential directions Facebook may take the Paper application to create value for brands and potentially monetize the platform.
WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL BRAND OPPORTUNITIES WITH PAPER?
Having worked closely with Facebook over the years I am projecting that... Read more

Google Blurring the Line of Native, Traditional & Social with +Post

Posted by Tom Edwards on December 18th, 2013 at 2:02 pm

There is a reason Google is trading over $1,000 a share and closed platforms such as Facebook & Twitter are at $55. Google owns 66% of search marketshare in the US, the #1 online video site with YouTube and Google claims 540 million monthly active Google+ users and 300 million monthly active "in-stream" users. Now Google is looking to change the game when it comes to paid amplification and content discovery by extending social content through their entire network with +Posts.
Here is a graph outlining Google Plus user growth

Content discovery, distribution and streamlining the user experience across the the Google ecosystem appear to be the future and the future is now. Recently Google deployed single sign on across the ecosytem, rolled out new content discovery options within Google+, refined the TruView suite of paid tools via YouTube and further integrated main properties such as Google+ comments embedded within Youtube.
Here is an example of the latest SSO option for Google properties

Here is an example of Google+ comments embedded within YouTube

I recently published what I call Google+ Circle Impact Theory outlining the intersection of social & search. Google+ represents the intersection of search & social via contextual search driven by engagement. The... Read more

Linkedin Showcase Pages Create New Points of Discovery

Posted by Tom Edwards on November 21st, 2013 at 10:09 am

Linkedin has proven to be an incredible asset for B2B Social Media Strategy & execution. With Hubspot defining Linkedin (45%) as the most effective B2B source for lead generation followed by Facebook at 33%.
Linkedin continues to focus on creating relevance for company pages. The latest roll-out called "showcase pages" allows businesses to highlight specific brands or products by creating product centric content hubs that allow users to further align with relevant content.
Each showcase page is setup to exist independently from the company page while still showing (below the fold) a connection to the parent page as well other showcase pages.
Here is an example from HP focusing on their Converged Infrastructure offering with the company & additional showcase pages expanded.

Users can follow specific showcase pages and connect directly with the content they are most interested in. This natural segmentation can create more targeted opportunities for brands to connect with audiences who are interested in specific product lines.
Here is an example from Adobe Marketing Cloud.

Brands can easily create up to 10 showcase pages that also includes access to page insights & analytics. This combined with the 3 million existing company pages can exponentially increase the amount of content in the platform.
It is... Read more

Visual Storytelling Twitter Style

Posted by Tom Edwards on November 7th, 2013 at 10:04 am

In celebration of Twitter's IPO, I recently put together the following POV on the new visual Twitter experience outlining what changed, potential impact for programs as well as best practices directly from the Twitter team.

When: This update was rolled out to the public on October 29th, 2013
What: Images, Videos & Vines in users Twitter feed for both web client & mobile apps are now auto expanded (contingent on users updating their iOS & Android apps to the latest update version of the Twitter app).

Why: Twitter wants to make the service a more visual experience heading into their IPO. One of the core goals of Twitter is mainstream adoption and user growth. In Q3 their user growth rate declined slightly so the goal is to make the product more approachable by incorporating a more visual feel to the timeline similar to Facebook & Tumblr.

Impact: Previously, a user would need to click on a link to see the preview of the image or video. Now, the user will see a preview of the image and have the ability to zoom in or watch the clip in stream. The visual redesign has also streamlined the ability to replay, retweet or favorite a tweet... Read more

Google+, Social Search & The Circle Impact Theory

Posted by Tom Edwards on November 4th, 2013 at 10:47 am

One of the questions I receive a lot is the relation between Google+ and search. I commonly hear “of course Google+ impacts search”, but when pressed most don’t fully understand to what extent. Google+ is one of the more misunderstood properties when it comes to mapping it's value for a social strategy. The key is not to look at Google+ from just a social lens.
Google provides an incredibly powerful ecosystem for a brand but when it comes to strategy Google is often a secondary area of consideration because of the separation of traditional SEO and the entities that manage social properties or the disconnect between paid & owned strategy.

Think about the three primary points of entry, Google, YouTube & Google+. Google is the primary search engine for a majority of the world, YouTube is the #2 search engine and a key point of distribution for video content and the Google+ represents the future of where Google is building the intersection of search & social via contextual search driven by engagement.
You can see more emphasis on the ecosystem via Google's new authentication Messaging

So I thought it would be interesting to test the impact of Google+ content on search and the impact... Read more