Monthly Archives: May 2011

Must Have New Ustream Facebook Application

When you broadcast live on Ustream we make sure that your event is viewable everywhere – on your Ustream channel page, on our mobile applications, and on embeds in blogs and websites throughout the internet.

Today we are excited to announce that you can showcase your Ustream events on your Facebook Page – giving you yet another place for your fans to view your content. It is viral, it is customizable, and it is absolutely free for everyone.

Install the Ustream Facebook Application now

dmin Features

Dead Simple Installation
• Login with your Ustream account and we will automatically populate the application with your content.

Showcase all of your Ustream Content on your Facebook Page
• Live, recorded and upcoming events.

Customize your Application
• Banners, background images, text colors, and more.

Social Features

Build your Crowd
• Viewers can join your crowd with just two clicks to receive email notifications every time you broadcast live.

Remind Me of an Upcoming Event
• Viewers can choose to share  and be reminded via email for an upcoming event with just two clicks.

Increase your Facebook Fans
• Choose to require viewers to like your page on Facebook before accessing your live events.

Invite Friends to Watch
• Viewers can quickly share your live event to their Facebook wall or specifically choose friends to send invitations to.

Social Media: “Et tu, Brute” ?

I have worked as a Social Media marketer for the past six years. During that time I have done some exciting and very creative work.  When I first read the article “Why I Will Never, Ever Hire A “Social Media Expert” by Peter Shankman I thought… “Et tuBrute”!  I thought Peter was one of us. After all Peter is a top marketing consultant and the founder of Help A Reporter Out (HARO). Most people realize that Help A Reporter Out is one of the fastest growing social media services.

I wished it was not true. Say it ain’t so. However, there was no denying it. Here was “Brutus” and his blog post, “Why I Will Never, Ever Hire A “Social Media Expert”.

Then I read the whole post and ended up agreeing whole heartedly with everything Peter writes. There are way too many people out there who think they are a social media guru, rockstar, or savant.

I just moved back to the U.S. after living and working in Europe. When I got back and started looking for jobs, I was genuinely surprised by the number of job postings that were looking for a social media guru, rockstar or savant. I was also amazed at the job descriptions that said things like, “create viral marketing campaigns using social media”.

No doubt, I have a few viral campaigns under by belt. I know firsthand the commitment and creativity needed to generate these campaigns. Unfortunately, the companies looking for a social media guru, rockstar or savant don’t have a clue.  These companies use “social media” buzz words without ever knowing their true meaning. These companies just want to check the social media block. These companies are not dedicated to social media. They are anything but serious.

Personally, I avoid these companies like the plague.

Click to read the article “Why I Will Never, Ever Hire A “Social Media Expert” by Peter Shankman.

Photo Creidt:  Some rights reserved by Rosaura Ochoa : flicker

Tools but no Social Media Blue Print.

I enjoyed the article “Most Companies Are Still Clueless About Social Media”  by Meghan Ennes . The article caused me to have a few flashbacks from some of my recent job interviews. I have been looking for a Social Media marketing job in the San Francisco bay area for about two weeks.

During that time I have had some really good interviews. I have also had some really, really, really bad interviews.  Some of the companies I have interviewed with love the idea of Social Media. Unfortunately, they have no real clue how to leverage Social Media for their specific business.

There was the HR company  that did not want to use LinkedIn.  Excuse me?

Or the industrial photographic firm that did not like the idea of using flicker.  Was? Really?

I most cases it was oblivious that the firm’s had picked their social media tools (Facebook & Twitter) before the understood what they truly needed.

I thought  Meghan Ennes‘s article hit the nail on the head and provided some interesting stats.

Social media has arrived, but companies still aren’t sure what to do with it.

Fifty-eight percent of companies are currently engaged in social networks like Facebook, microblogs like Twitter, and sharing multimedia on platforms such as YouTube – but research from the Harvard Business Review Analytics Services report “The New Conversation: Taking Social Media from Talk to Action” [Report PDF; sponsored by SAS] finds that much of the investment in social is future-oriented.

In the slides that follow, we’ll dive into this research, showing how most companies really use social media – and what the most effective users do differently.

Read more at:

Is it more Twilight zone or Twitter?

After much hoopla Twitter has rolled out a new feature that lets users see the world through the perspective of other users.

My question is why?   Is it more Twilight Zone or Twitter?

I love Twitter as much as the next guy, but we all know the Social Media platform has problems.

Why enter the Twilight Zone before solving these problems? After all the fixes are going to appeal to users more than new kitsch.

Twitter has begun rolling out a new feature that lets users view the world through another perspective, specifically through the perspective of other specific people on Twitter. The new feature will appear on the /following page of any profile on the site and will display the most recent messages from the Twitter users that a profile owner is following. The page currently just shows who they are following.

In other words: if you look at my profile on Twitter you can see not onlywho I am following but you can also see Twitter as I see Twitter. This might seem like a small change, but phil

osophically it’s a big one. Two words come to mind: Empathy and Privacy.

This feature is quite like one called With Friends, which Twitter removed two years ago next week, for reasons of computational efficiency. It’s a good sign that Twitter is feeling confident enough in its scaling now to bring something like that back.


One notable difference between the new Twitter feature and is that requires users to opt-in to having their streams read inside the app. “If Sarah Palin has a tweet stream full of Justin Bieber articles, that’s not really anyone’s business,” Borthwick told me when was under development. (He did say that Palin in particular might be an exception, but you get the idea.)

If you are following say Howard Stern, Britney Spears or @NaughtyPlayboyBunniesFromHell on Twitter – that was always publicly visible information. But now it’s all the easier for other people to see.That’s something Twitter probably ought to allow users to opt-out of.

If you are following say Howard Stern, Britney Spears or @NaughtyPlayboyBunniesFromHell on Twitter – that was always publicly visible information. But now it’s all the easier for other people to see.

That’s something Twitter probably ought to allow users to opt-out of.

Either way, Twitter is a fascinating public stream of semi-structured information. Every link on the page exposes another pathway to slice and dice real-time social information. To expose the Tweets that a given account is following is just one more logical field of data to expose. It may have very interesting consequences, though.


Space Shuttle Twitpic Launches Woman to Tweeting Fame


When Stefanie Gordon boarded her plane in New York City to visit her parents in Palm Beach, the captain noted there was a chance passengers would witness the space shuttle Endeavour’s last launch during the flight. But she never expected to play a role in documenting it.

As the plane descended toward Palm Beach and the Endeavour’s launch became visible, Gordon pulled out her iPhone and snapped a few photos and a short video. On the ground, she posted one of the photos to her then1,800 Twitter followers.

In a few hours, she was fielding phone calls from ABC, the BBC and CNBC. She had accumulated about 1,000 new Twitter followers, and she had to turn the @mention push notifications off on her phone so they wouldn’t drain the battery.

“I don’t have that many Twitter followers, and I basically tweet about sports,” Gordon tells Mashable. “I really didn’t expect it to go as viral as it did.”

Although other people on the plane also took photos, the 33-year-old event planner says it seems that she’s the only one who posted them to Twitter.

“To be able to see the last shuttle launch of the Endeavour was aweinspiring, and to have a different view of it was just amazing,” she says.

The new Twitter friends aren’t bad either. Gordon, who is looking for a job, recently tweeted her LinkedIn resume — just in case chance continues to work in her favor.

Children Fail to Recognize Online Ads, Study Says.

“Hey kids, this is advertising.”

A thin banner with those words, or some variation of them, appears on various game sites that are aimed at children and sponsored by food companies like General Mills. The companies say such banners alert players that the games are a form of advertising, meant to encourage loyalty to cereals or junk food whose images often appear somewhere in the game.

But the banners and other notifications do not work, according to a studypublished in the spring edition of The Journal of Advertising. The paper finds that, despite the presence of the banners, children fail to recognize the games as advertising.

The banners “do not raise awareness of who put the game up or why they put the game up,” said one of the paper’s two authors, Susannah Stern, an associate professor of communication studies at the University of San Diego.

My Thursday story documents how food companies are seeking to reach children through “advergames.” Critics argue that such tactics blur the line between marketing and entertainment, while the companies contend that they have clearly labeled their sites as advertising.

Ms. Stern and a colleague looked at the reactions of 112 fourth-graders who played “Be a Popstar,” a game focused on the Honeycomb cereal brand that was available on Postopia, a site sponsored by Post Foods. The research found that the advertising notifications — which the study refers to as “ad breaks” — didn’t succeed in communicating the commercial nature of the site to most of the children.

Some children played a version of the game with ad labels, and some played a version with the labels removed. When the children were asked to identify the source of the game, there were no significant differences in the responses of the two groups. Thirty-four percent of all participants said the site had been created by a pop star or celebrity — the most common response. Some children even named particular stars, hypothesizing that the site was the product of, say, the Jonas Brothers. Only 10 percent correctly identified the source as the cereal maker or the Honeycomb brand.

In fact, researchers found that the children were more likely to believe that the site was trying to turn them into a pop star than that it was trying to make them want to eat Honeycomb cereal. (However, the research also showed that students who saw the ad labels were significantly less likely to believe that the site had star-making intentions.)

Even children who identified the cereal company or brand as the site’s sponsor tended not to recognize that it was intended to sell cereal. Only one participant picked up such “selling intent,” while 35 percent said the site was meant to be entertainment and 40 percent said it was intended to be informative.

Ms. Stern said the research suggested to her that companies or policy makers needed to consider some way to standardize notifications about advertising online so children understood what they were seeing.

Is Facebook Going to Buy Skype?


Two reliable sources say Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is talking to Skype about either buying the company or forming a joint venture, according to Reuters.

One of the sources said Facebook is considering a buyout of Skype at a price of between $3 billion and $4 billion.

The other source told Reuters the deal won’t be a purchase by Facebook but rather a joint venture between Facebook and Skype.

Skype and Facebook are no strangers. In October, when Skype released its version 5.0 software for Windows, it included a Facebook tab that let users chat or call Facebook friends via Skype, right from the Facebook newsfeed that can be viewed from within the Skype application.

Facebook isn’t the only one chasing Skype. One of the sources talking to Reuters added that Google was also in “early talks” with Skype about a joint venture.

LinkedIn IPO to List on NYSE.


New in today’s updated LinkedIn IPO filing: the social networking company for business professionals has decided to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange.

The LinkedIn IPO — one of the most high profile tech-stock debuts of 2011 — is a big psychological boost for the Big Board, which is fighting off a unwanted acquisition overture led by the Nasdaq stock exchange. Nasdaq,  of course, is a traditional haven for tech stocks and would have been an obvious choice for LinkedIn.

Other recent tech-stock listing wins for NYSE include today’s debut for Chinese Internet giant RenRen, often referred to as the Facebook of China. Online-music service Pandora Media also has applied to list on the NYSE, under a coveted one-letter stock symbol, “P.”

NYSE and Nasdaq fiercely fight over prominent stock listings, and take joy in poaching listing companies from the other. Listings also have become a battering ram in the heated war over a NYSE acquisition. An annoyed-sounding NYSE CEO Duncan Niederauer last month lashed out angrily at Nasdaq for suggesting the Big Board was losing ground in stock listings.

“You’ll also read some stories that says, the NYSE isn’t competitive anymore going after IPOs, or NYSE Euronext: we’re not well positioned,” Niederauer said last month in a message to his troops. “More than 80% of IPO issuance in the US in the last couple years has happened at the NYSE.  You can do the math and figure out where the other less than 20% has gone.”

For its NYSE listing, LinkedIn has chosen the stock symbol “LNKD.” Steve Rubis on Twitter reminded Deal Journal that a perhaps more logical ticker — LINK — already is taken by a small company called Interlink Electronics.

Also in the updated IPO documents, LinkedIn disclosed that its first-quarter revenue accelerated a bit from the growth pace of 2010. LinkedIn said it generated $93.9 million in net revenue for the three months ended March 31, a 110% jump from the same three-month period of 2010. For all of last year, the company pulled in $243 million in revenue, about 102% more than in 2009.

LinkedIn eked out $1.28 million in income from operations for the first quarter, down from $3.2 million in the same period of 2010.

LinnkedIn also disclosed it has more than 100 million members, up from more than 90 million when it last filed its IPO materials a month ago.

50% Open Rate On Social Media?


When Content Science sends their quarterly e-newsletter to their mailing list, their email open rate is 50%.

“Well, of course,” I hear you saying. “Sending an e-newsletter to subscribers who have opted in would most certainly have a fairly high open rate.”


So why would you want to broadcast your online message to millions of people who couldn’t care less, and be happy with a 3% click-through rate? Why are you still marketing online the same way you marketed offline?

2010 article in Harvard Business Review states the case clearly. “To compete in this aggressively interactive environment, companies must shift their focus from driving transactions to maximizing customer lifetime value. That means making products and brands subservient to long-term customer relationships.”

So how do you create long-term customer relationships in an online world?

clout“The way to get results online is clout—influence or pull,” writes Colleen Jones in her book, Clout: The Art and Science of Influential Web Content. “On the web, clout allows you to attract the right people and, at the right time, change what they think or do. Achieving clout demands new thinking and a new focus on web content.”

Because content is what people want. Content is what they spend much of their online time reading, listening to and viewing. Content is what they share with their social networks.

But you can’t just create any old content. You have to create influential content. Content that will grab people and make them change their behavior.

“Because people use the web now more than ever to make decisions, everyone from big brands to small businesses to individuals has the opportunity to influence those decisions,” writes Jones. “My goal is to help you make the most of that opportunity.”

According to Jones, if you can create online content that literally changes people’s behavior, you have achieved clout.

But Developing Clout Isn’t Easy

In fact, Jones calls this marketing technique “the hard road” to business success. “Even though the road to influential web content is hard, it’s the right road for lasting results.”

Because creating web content that influences people means using the principles of rhetoric and psychology to send the right message to the right people at the right time. If they get to know you, like you and trust you, they might just become your customer for life.

That’s what Jones means by “lasting results”—creating long-term customer relationships. Remember that it’s much easier and cheaper to keep an existing customer than it is to attract a new customer.

But did I hear some of you groaning when I mentioned the words “rhetoric” and “psychology”? Not to worry. Jones summarizes these principles in just two chapters. In those two chapters, you’ll learn the art and science of persuasion.

If you need more information, she recommends many other sources throughout her book. And she has a recommended reading list at the end.

The rest of her book will show you how to:

  • Plan a content strategy
  • Handle roadblocks in your climb to clout
  • Evaluate your content strategy
  • Use quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods
  • Adjust your content strategy when necessary
  • Use clout responsibly and ethically

Her book is filled with lists and questions to guide you on this harder road to business success. And she includes success stories from many companies, universities and government agencies that have used the same principles to achieve clout.

Think of her book as your roadmap to successfully creating lifelong customer relationships by publishing influential content. You start by raising awareness of your business, becoming liked and trusted and inspiring and motivating changes in people’s behavior.

Always remember that people are more likely to buy from someone they know, like and trust. And they buy from people, not corporations.

Instead of blasting advertising messages at millions of people who don’t care, try attracting people who do care. Create content that they care about. Show them you’re trustworthy and you have a solution to their problem and then help them move toward that solution.

So save yourself the expense of getting a degree in psychology and pick up a copy ofClout: The Art and Science of Influential Web Content by Colleen Jones.

Shipley, R. (2011, May 4). Do you have social media clout? [Web log message]. Retrieved from

Should Google Buy LinkedIn, Now Before It’s Too Late?


Google’s new CEO Larry Page is all about winning in social, tying every Googler’s bonus to the success of the company’s social strategy.

And he’s right: Google absolutely needs to win in social because social is driving an ever increasing share of online traffic, and traffic is power and money.

An obvious shortcut for Google to win social is buying other successful social companies.

The company that most often comes up as a potential target is Twitter, because it’s the biggest Facebook rival and it’s struggling to find a good business model, which means Google could be a long term home for it. But Twitter doesn’t want to sell.

One that gets less talked about is LinkedIn, because LinkedIn is more “niche” (albeit a huge niche). But with yesterday’s news that LinkedIn is becoming a traffic firehose with its new focus on content, we should note the big reason why LinkedIn would make a very valuable social property for Google.

LinkedIn has one thing that no one else except Facebook has: REAL IDENTITIES.

The focus on real identities is one of the biggest factors in Facebook’s success. At the beginning, you could only sign up with a college, and then a work email, which made people sign up with their real identities. Today Facebook still enforces its only-real-names policy.

Real identities are why people go on Facebook all the time. It makes the site feel more trustworthy. It makes sure people have their real friends on there with real photos. Being an online identity repository and system is a huge competitive advantage for Facebook, and something it’s doing effortlessly despite every big company trying and failing to get people to use their real identities online. Real identities are what makes social networks “stick” and be so valuable.

With LinkedIn, Google would instantly get a database of 100 million real and valuable identities, which it can then cross-pollinate with Google Profiles, its own ho-hum effort to get people to give it their own real identities.

LinkedIn can then evolve its focus slowly and progressively away from “merely” professional networking. The barrier between personal and professional identity online is getting blurrier and blurrier anyway. Services like Twitter and are already hard at work obliterating that distinction. That would be bad for LinkedIn as a standalone company, but great for a Google-owned LinkedIn.

Sharing content is another big social network activity that LinkedIn is already shifting to, and combining Google’s new sharing service +1 with LinkedIn would give it that instant boost. LinkedIn would stop being a resume database but become a sharing hub for information like Facebook and Twitter.

Integrating LinkedIn profiles and Gmail, like third-party tools like Rapportive already do, would also be a big boon: opening an email you would see not only a person’s email and “name” but their real identity. Integrating LinkedIn and Gmail that way might cause privacy jitters (but again, some tools already do this using publicly available info and APIs) but it would improve Gmail and drive a huge new wave of signups to LinkedIn.

In time, LinkedIn could go from being a social network for execs, to a social network for people who have jobs, to a social network for everyone. That would be a real threat for Facebook.

If Google wants to buy LinkedIn, it had better do it soon rather than before it gets a huge IPO pop. So it’s something to think about.
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