Archive for Tom Edwards

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

5 Reasons to Consider Flipboard for Your Content Strategy

Posted by Tom Edwards on October 14th, 2013 at 6:56 am

I was recently briefed by the Flipboard team and was pleasantly surprised by how their platform is scaling to support brands. Here are 5 reasons to consider Flipboard to support your branded content strategy.
Flipboard is a content curation and discovery social magazine app that over 85 million people are using. The application visualizes your social feeds such as Facebook & Twitter as well as providing access to curated topical magazines all while allowing the user flexibility in how they consume their content of choice.

From a brand perspective there are 5 key areas of interest to leveraging Flipboard to it's full potential.
Reason #1 - Brand Magazines - Over the past few months more than 60 recognizable brands have launched curated magazines. This includes Callaway Golf, Levi's and more. With such a large user base combined with users appetite for both curated and original content, Flipboard is becoming an ideal destination to aggregate and present information in a unique and compelling way.
Here is an example from the Callaway Golf Team. They created a brand magazine to support the launch of their new Apex Irons.

Flipboard launched an online editor earlier this year. The editor allows anyone the ability create customized titles and over... Read more

Instagram Ads Are Here

Posted by Tom Edwards on October 3rd, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Instagram just announced upcoming support for video and image based ad support. This move was inevitable based on Facebook's ownership of the platform. This announcement is also very timely considering Twitter's upcoming IPO.

Here are a few of the details from their announcement:
"In the next couple months, you may begin seeing an occasional ad in your Instagram feed if you’re in the United States. Seeing photos and videos from brands you don’t follow will be new, so we’ll start slow. We’ll focus on delivering a small number of beautiful, high-quality photos and videos from a handful of brands that are already great members of the Instagram community.
Our aim is to make any advertisements you see feel as natural to Instagram as the photos and videos many of you already enjoy from your favorite brands. After all, our team doesn’t just build Instagram, we use it each and every day. We want these ads to be enjoyable and creative in much the same way you see engaging, high-quality ads when you flip through your favorite magazine.
We’ll also make sure you have control. If you see an ad you don’t like, you’ll be able to hide it and provide feedback about... Read more

Major Facebook News Feed Update

Posted by Tom Edwards on August 6th, 2013 at 11:29 am

Today, Facebook held a press conference to announce more changes to the News Feed as well as a significant update to what was formerly named the EdgeRank algorithm. EdgeRank had been the formula that determines what content is to be seen in a users feed.

In March of this year Facebook announced the first major change to the Facebook News Feed in six years. The theme at the time was reduction of clutter by providing more choice and control over the content and stories users will see in their feeds.
Any time there is an update to the algorithm it is big news as Facebook has stated that 88% of engagement happens via the News Feed. The last major update to the algorithm was September of 2012. A month later there was concern over the changes impacting organic brand reach. Since that time organic post visibility has been stable at ~16% visibility.
This has led to the need to either amplify relevant owned content via paid (Paid + Owned = PWNED) or partner with Facebook & pay for reach generation to "guarantee" reach. With today's announcement it initially appears that these changes will positively enhance a brands ability to impact organic reach.
To date, most... Read more

Pinterest Pin To Save

Posted by Tom Edwards on August 1st, 2013 at 7:52 am

Back in May of this year I attended the first Pinterest Partner Event in NYC. At that time they spoke about a number of topics from the newly launched Pinterest Interest Graph to the launch of new product innovation tied to Rich Pins. Here is the recap of that event.
I recently received word from Pinterest that a new feature would be announced today. The announcement will feature additional functionality tied to Product Rich Pins ahead of the holiday season.
Here is the note I received from the Pinterest Business Team:

To recap, Product Rich Pins create direct connections for retailers with consumers by showcasing active inventory as well as price & source reference directly into the pin. This additional data can take a consumer from simply considering a product to potentially enticing them to purchase based on availability of the product. This in turn can add value for the retailer and create a more direct connection between an item & a retailer.
Example of a Product Rich Pin prior to today's announcement:

Today's announcement shows that users will soon be able to receive notifications when the price of one of their product pins drops. This can help those that may look for savings tied... Read more