Tag Archives: social media news

Facebook Fights Back?

Hot on the heels of the new Google+ “hangout” video chat release, Facebook has just announced that it will be rolling out a new group chat feature and video chat. According to this post on PCMAG.com, “Facebook’s “something awesome” event on Wednesday included the introduction of video calling with Skype, group chat, and a redesign for Facebook chat.”

Facebook’s video chat will use Skype to connect users, which downloads within your browser. According to Mashable, “The revamped chat system now includes a sidebar with ‘the people you message most.’ It automatically appears when your browser is big enough. and the group chat feature will allow those using the new google groups to start spontaneous group chat sessions.

Given the timing of the release, one can’t help but think that the two technology giants are vying for attention in the social media world. (Incidently, when asked about Google+, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said “he viewed it as “validation” that Facebook is doing something right.”)

Personally, I wonder if both Google and Facebook are going to be facing a branding problem when expanding into other territories.

Consider this post in Business Insider which plays with the idea of “Facebook Spreadsheets.” We’ve come to trust Google to be a place to email and often share documents with work colleagues, and yes even gchat, but will we see it as a social media hub? As Charlie O’Donnell writes on Business Insider “Our friends aren’t there–just a random bunch of early adopters who for some reason want to share their photos with me even thought I don’t know them.”

Similarly, could you see having a video conference call through Facebook Skype? Probably not. Most people still consider it a place to share family photos or private plans with friends, and as Facebook continues to add more features and blur privacy lines they may risk alienating their 750-Million-User fanbase.

Regardless of the outcome, it is certainly interesting to watch these two companies continue to innovate in the social space.

Want to share your thoughts on the developing social media sphere? Why not join our LinkedIn group?

Michelle LeBlanc is a Social Media Strategist at IIR USA with a specialization in marketing. She may be reached at mleblanc@iirusa.com.

Making a profit from social media

Most of us don’t have the ability to buy Twitter; however, we can responsibly invest in social media and see returns. Hilary Kramer of InvestorPlace.com writes that there are investing opportunities that can yield big investment gains from the social media networking world. Persons can invest in public companies that have bought some of these fast-growing social media pure plays and are building and investing themselves in related businesses and public companies that stand to benefit from the explosive rise in social media-driven traffic, ever increasing time spent online and changing online behaviors. Hilary offers 12 Social Media Stocks to ride this changing wave of consumer adoption of social media.

As more and more people not only invest their time but invest their money in social media, will we see a shift in the way social media is used? From sharing personal photos to targeted ads based on social media behavior – what’s next?

Let us know what you think of investing in social media. What stocks or companies are particularly fascinating to you?

Harrisburg University’s week without social media

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology provost Eric Darr is asking his students to do the unthinkable – go one week without social media. According to NPR, access to these popular social media tools will be blocked from campus computers through the week. This is not a disciplinary exercise, Darr says, but an academic one. At the end of the week, students will write reflective essays about their time in social media exile.

What do think think of Darr’s seemingly extreme experiment? Is it simply a publicity stunt or a constructive way for students to think about the amount of time that they spend on social media?

Learn more: University Declares A Week Without Social Media

On to the next one – Google acquires SocialDeck

The giant has acquired yet another social media start-up, SocialDeck. FierceMobileContent.com writes, Founded in 2008 by COO Anish Acharya and CTO Jeson Patel, SocialDeck creates Facebook, iPhone and BlackBerry titles enabling simultaneous play across multiple devices and social networks–the firm’s platform technology also facilitates viral content discovery, distribution and monetization. Just this week Google acquired Angstr??, a start-up dedicated to building applications that integrate with social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

Wide speculation abounds that Google is set to roll out its own social network in the near future. PCWorld.com writes, Perhaps the acquisition of SocialDeck shows the direction in which Google wants to go with its rumored new gaming service–games that work seamlessly across multiple platforms and devices, that is. The WSJ reports that the companies in talks include Playdom Inc., EA’s Playfish, and Zynga.

What do you think is next for Google? Will we see a social network soon?

Google fights spam with Priority Inbox launch

Gmail users rejoice! Thanks to the nifty roll-out of “Priority Inbox” by Gmail, fighting spam has never been easier. We know that Google has rolled out some pretty advanced spam filters; but they’ve never filtered out the bulk of newsletters, store promotions and Aunt Irma’s forwards like they have today. With just a few simple tweaks, you’ll be able to customize your inbox to suit whatever it is that’s most important to you in Gmail.

Here is Google’s how-to video about the service:

Where this news is pretty amazing; Farhad Manjoo at Slate offers a bit of a reality check.

Still, Priority Inbox is a work in progress’even after you train it for weeks to capture important messages, it’s not going to be perfect. Technically, sussing out valuable mail is a very different kind of problem from fighting spam. Spam-hunting benefits greatly from crowdsourcing’when millions of Yahoo or Gmail users flag a message as spam, it (and messages like it) gets filtered out for everyone. But the crowd doesn’t have much to say about what messages you are likely to find interesting; these are more personal decisions, and they’ll require more creative approaches by software engineers. Gmail has made a great start in this effort, but I hope Priority Mail gets competition from Microsoft, Yahoo, and other e-mail companies. We’re all going to keep getting more e-mail, and we’re going to need all the help we can get.

Could Millenials sharing habits benefit organizations?

Older members of the Millenial generation have been in the workforce for a few years now and their unique attitude toward work has caused both frustration and admiration from their Gen X and Baby Boomer co-workers. One tactic that Millenals use is the art of sharing their work and work progress via social networking outlets like Facebook and Twitter. This sort of practice is completely foreign to older generations who tend to privatize their work life. Andrew McAfee of the Harvard Business Review writes that this sharing can actually be a benefit for organizations. McAfee points us to a quote from Matt Gallivan, a senior research analyst for NPR, “there are too many benefits to living with a certain degree of openness for Digital Natives to ‘grow out of it.’ Job opportunities, new personal connections, professional collaboration, learning from others’ experiences, etc., are all very powerful benefits to engaging openly with others online, and this is something that Gen Y understands intuitively.”

McAfee writes that being open in work provides two benefits. First, people who narrate their work become helpful to the rest of the organization, because the digital trail they leave makes others more efficient. Second, by airing their questions and challenges work narrators open themselves up to good ideas and helpfulness from others, and so become more efficient themselves.

How have you see Millenials sharing positively affecting your organization? Are you wary of sharing your work status via social networks?

How Millennials’ Sharing Habits Can Benefit Organizations

Win with social media by thinking small

Although its tempting to cast the widest net with social media, that may not always be the best practice for businesses looking to connect with their target audience. Gail Z. Martin of B2CMarketinginsider.com posts a few examples of “high-value” audiences that will help you in the right direction for your social media efforts.

  • Present and past (inactive) clients plus screened high-potential prospects
  • Your vendors and suppliers
  • A small, highly-segmented niche audience
  • Members of your industry/profession’especially if this is not a large group
  • And extremely local or regional focus

But why focus on a smaller group when you have the opportunity to broadcast your business to the world using a plethora of social media outlets? Martin says that there are several reasons:

  • You need to get frequent feedback and input
  • No one else is providing content that meets a unique need within the group
  • You want to create ongoing dialogue and education to help clients use a product better, get more out of their investment, extend the life of the product they purchased, or address bugs, little-known features or off-the-spec-sheet applications
  • You want to add value post-purchase through education, discussion and the creation of a community
  • You want to capitalize on the local/regional appeal of your product by emphasizing hometown news, personalities, events and special offers that are only of value to people within a very small geographic area

If you have utilized a smaller social media campaign, how effective has it been for you? Have you seen a difference in ROI between a larger and smaller campaign? We’d like to hear your thoughts.

Delta Launches First Airline Social Media ‘Ticket Window’

In a press release statement, Delta Airlines has introduced the first social media “Ticket Window” that will allow passengers to book flights directly from Facebook and other social media channels.

Delta’s Ticket Window allows any of Facebook’s 500 million users to complete a full travel booking using a dedicated “tab” at facebook.com/delta without navigating to delta.com. Delta plans to expand its Ticket Window to other sites, including online banner ads to allow full booking capabilities within the airline’s advertisements.

As a social media aficionado, would you consider using Facebook to book travel? DM us on Twitter @community20 with your answers!

I want my MTV (on Twitter) – MTV crowns 1st Twitter Jockey

In an effort to embrace social media and create a two-way conversation with their audience, MTV has announced its first TJ or Twitter Jockey. The Wall Street Journal reports that Gabi Gregg, a 23-year-old fashion blogger from Detroit, became the network’s first ever personality dedicated to social media. Sean Moran, executive vice president of sales and integrated marketing for MTV, VH1 and LOGO said, “Gabi is really going to be the eyes and ears of our audience. She will be their voice.”

What do you make of the move by MTV to create a post solely for Twitter? Do you think that this move will help to extend the life of Twitter? What does this mean for other social networks who compete for MTV’s target demographic?

We’d like to hear your thoughts.