Monday, February 28, 2011

China censors tinker with Linkedin and block all mention of 'Jasmine revolution'


BEIJING: Chinese censors went on an overdrive on Friday blocking mention of US ambassador Jon Huntsman and other foreign officials in Chinese micro blogs. It continued to wipe out any mention of the 'Jasmine revolution' from the internet sites in China. 

Linkedin, the popular networking site, became inaccessible for some time but the service was available in Beijing later on Friday evening. The censors apparently lifted the blockage after Mountain View, the owners of Linkedin voiced their protest. But a discussion group involved in dialogue on a proposed revolution has vanished from the Linkedin site. 

IBM: People-Centric vs. Content-Centric: A Copernican revolution needed to become a social business

For centuries we've attempted to manage our knowledge using a content-centric approach. But the volume of content has overwhelmed even our best technical efforts. New tools have allowed us to take a different perspective. So we, like Copernicus, need to consider a new perspective...maybe content isn't the center of our knowledge universe. What if people were at the center. This presentation shares how taking a people-centric view to managing your corporate knowledge, you can address significant business issues that you cannot address with a content-centric approach.


People-Centric vs. Content-Centric: A Copernican revolution needed to become a social business from louis richardson on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

LinkedIn blocked in China, a happy day for Chinese clones


As of 10pm Shanghai time, reports are pouring in that LinkedIn too has now succumbed to the Great Firewall. I can’t access it from Shanghai without using circumvention technology like a virtual private network. Sometimes such blockages are temporary, but I’m guessing this one has permanent implications.

LinkedIn allows users to connect their accounts with Twitter, so that they can both tweet from LinkedIn and share their tweets on LinkedIn. Until now, LinkedIn was the easiest way to access Twitter in China.


Read full articles



A Happy Day for Chinese Clones

One promising recent entrant is Ushi.cn, a dual English-Chinese network, which has targeted a crowd of tech elite and investors, just as LinkedIn did to start. And to be fair, Ushi.cn does have a fair number of localized features to accommodate its Chinese and China-focused expat user base.


Friday, February 25, 2011

Social Buzz...The New Google Ranking Factor

I thought that we would share some information with you regarding Google's ranking factors.

Social Buzz is THE new ranking factor. In a recent interview, Paolo Pomponi verified that Google's ranking dynamics are changing, as they are tracking things like Facebook "Likes" and Twitter "re-Tweets." Social Media Science, and others, believe that this is actually being downplayed since Google does not own any of these social networks.

Here are some of the interesting excerpts from the post:

- The argument for why social sharing measures, such as Twitter re-tweets and Facebook 'Likes' should form the basis of the social graph is part of the thesis that linking no longer carries the voting power it once did because it is too easily manipulated.

- There is a patent that suggests that Google is investigating author authority as a ranking factor

- Tweets and Facebook status provide little surrounding text and no anchor text. This means that both search engines [Google / Bing} cannot assign any value to the originating page and have few contextual clues about the destination page. Therefore they have to invest in working out 'authority' of an author as a means to generate more relevancy and context around the shared page.

- Re-Tweets may now be the new linking system

From my standpoint, the re-Tweet module is already being used extensively, and the upcoming Facebook modules are in super high demand.

Monday, February 21, 2011

The most hard puzzle I use to play


You in Social Media Syndication
Facebook and Twitter may be more popular than ever among users, but what are they worth? Financially speaking, Web 2.0 has been a total bust, but an illustrious investigation for Internet challenge: the social approach. 

To use social media marketing or not, that is the question.  But what is the answer?  This is a hot topic these days.  There is definitely validity to all the arguments for and against using social media marketing. 

Some arguments against Social media marketing are:
  • Social media doesn’t sell;
  • Social media is all advertising;
  • The ROI on social media marketing can take months;
  • ROI is impossible to determine;
  • Social media doesn’t generate profit;
  • No one is searching for a product or service on social sites like Facebook;
  • It is very difficult to monetize social media;
  • Social media marketing can be unpredictable;
  • Social media marketing takes up too much time;
  • It is too easy to become addicted and wastes time;
  • Much of the information is duplicated;
  •  Most social media marketing does not lead directly to sales;

Some pro-social media points are:
  • Social media isn’t supposed to sell,
  • it is supposed to influence;
  • Social media marketing increases your brand and product visibility;
  • Social media marketing increases website traffic; 
  • Social media is about conversations, not conversions;
  • Social media marketing is about marketing – not selling;
  • Social media is a relationship building function, not a PPC program;
  • Social media monitoring can enable companies to identify potential crisis situations and respond appropriately;
  • Social networking is both free and entertaining;
  • Social media marketing is cost-effective;
  • Social marketing compliments other marketing efforts;
  • Social media marketing gets the message out faster to a huge audience;

The real problem in Social Management is our continuing exercise of achieving goal and objective in tweet format, which requires human involvement, but content becoming old after a seconds and got lost in a blink of an eyes. We need to create algorithms that help in time  and speedily interpreting tweet; we would be able to achieve greater success by organizing all our Social Computing in directory. This would permit higher levels of people negotiation.

Within the material and immaterial bounds of man‘s world, information evolved into meta-information, data into meta-data and relations into meta-relations.  In light of the above mentioned man was going through a new phase of development, reaching a new level of civilization: man became meta-man. What left from a man, is "Cheshire’s cat grin". Also, all these post-modern jokes are a new level of degradation, rather than new level of civilization. And it is a lot simpler with data; Meta-data is data about data. If there is no data, there is no meta-data, so meta-data by itself cannot exist. Information did not evolve; it is our representation of data becoming more sophisticated. This later is also half-truth, our representation of data have reached high level of sophistication long time ago, what is happening now, is that this achievement, semantic wave or whatever, is about to hit "masses" and "business community".

Need to watch what masses the reaction to this wave will be.

Welcome to the puzzle of web 3.0.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Creative Streak: Defining the Audience, Part 2 (Values)


Defining the Audience, Part 2 (Values)

Value tree
I just sat through a brainstorm where the sponsors unloaded volume after volume of tree-killing reports – each bursting at the seams with statistical data about their audiences. But among all this PowerPoint plethora, there was not a shred of information about the audience's values.
Understanding the primary audience's values are extremely helpful in idea generation: they are the ultimate tools to connect your product or service to your key audiences. While advertising has always used values as an integral part of its campaigns, most people in communications rarely consider them – that is, if they have any notion of what they are.
By definition: Values are deeply rooted principles or standards which are universally accepted among the target audience, and which explicitly guide what they believe, their attitude toward a specific topic, and ultimately, how they behave. They are created in all of us by a wide-ranging number of influences during our lifetime, such as (and certainly not limited to) family, culture, society, race, gender, education and socio-economic background. Because they are so ingrained in our psyche, they are – not surprisingly – the most powerful of motivators.
While values are unique to the individual, there are also 'universal values,' which Sir Isaiah Berlin defined as “values that a great many human beings in the vast majority of places and situations, at almost all times, do in fact hold in common, whether consciously and explicitly or as expressed in their behaviour.”
With a trace of irony, there is no agreement on a universal values list. Shalom Schwartz developed the first list of universal values at the University of Michigan in the 1980s. Since then, others have expanded the list to more than 100 values, others to as few as 15. I generally consult a list of 22 values – originally developed by Wirthlin International.
So why are values – more so, universal values – important to creativity?
Universal values are helpful when trying to define an audience by its attitudes or behaviour, specifically to identify what values they may use or tap into when making a decision about a subject, issue, product or service. If you can somehow translate the persuasive value into the idea, it makes the idea that much more compelling and engaging for the audiences.
For example, if you look back to my post, you’ll see that  team is identified – through focus groups – that our primary audience connected to premium wines through two primary values. The dominant value was “accomplishment” – that is, “the wine I serve says everything about me.” The sub-dominant value was “belonging and acceptance,” – that is, “I want to be seen as knowledgeable, so I can impress my friends.”
These values helped us create ideas, they helped to set the tone and style for the campaign, and we used wording in the campaign messages which leveraged these themes to reinforce them to our audiences.
The only way to determine another’s person value is to ask them directly or, less so, indirectly. A focus group is probably the most common method in business, although there are many other effective methods such as questionnaires, surveys, voting and polling.
What you should never do is assume.

Creative Streak: Defining the Audience, Part 1 (Demographics, et al)


Defining the Audience, Part 1 (Demographics, et al)

Audience_Measure_547908890
There's a variety of ways - statistical data - to define a target audience. The two most common are demographics (social science data) and psychographics (lifestyle and attitudinal data). Both can be conducive to brainstorming ideas because both suggest how a specific audience might behave, what they might participate or engage with, what they are attracted to, how they choose to spend their time, either personally or professionally. More importantly, without this audience information, brainstorms are rarely effective because it's impossible to connect the ideas to the audience, and vice versa.
Demographics - Social or vial statistics about a specific audience such as age, gender, university education, family status, financial worth, income, geography (like their postal or zip code). While demographics are helpful to initially define the group, don't rely upon them solely. You also need to define the audience by how they act, which is the point of ...
Psychographics - Statistical data which defines an audience’s general attitudes, behaviors, decisions and opinions. In other words, Psychographics define ‘lifestyle choices,’ or describe how people feel or act.

In addition to demographics and psychographics, another element to consider when defining target audience are Values - deeply rooted principles or standards which are universally accepted among the target audience and explicitly guide what they believe and their attitude toward a specific topic, and ultimately how they behave.
You should absolutely spend the time, energy and money to get as mcuh accurate information as possible in advance of your brainstorm. If you work alone, or are in a team or organisation without regular access to statistical information, try one of these suggestions:
  • If your organisation produces any type of research, it's very likely they have some basic information about your key audiences.
  • If your organisation produces advertising, it's very likely the ad agency - or similar external consultant - will have this information.
  • There are a number of online tools which gather data about audiences, but check their gathering processes to ensure you're getting something valid. Or, you can use websites like www.SurveyMonkey.com to create your own surveys to gather relevant information. (Type "create web surveys" in a search engine and you'll find 10-15 different options.)
  • You can also get quality information about the target audience the old-fashioned way: talk to them. In fact, when was the last time you actually spent time talking with the audience you're trying to reach?
Here's an example of a full audience profile that we created for a wine company. We've also included two other options to define audiences: Influencers and Media Habits
Example: Bruce & Sheila: Wine Drinkers in Europe
Demographics
  • Between 35-44 years-of-age
  • Equal male/female
  • Caucasian (93%)
  • Married (84%)
  • Household Incomes $65K-$150K (63%)
  • Managerial or professionals
  • Graduate degrees (39%)
  • Own residence (62%)
  • One or more child (73%)
Psychographics
  • ‘Aspirers’ – people who aspire to more than they have now, who see themselves as a step above the mainstream
  • Good opinion of self; seeks to improve self
  • Amiable, benevolent, self-assured, gracious, sophisticated and creative
  • Class/status conscious
  • Somewhat experimental
  • Loves going to favorite restaurants, venues, pubs
  • Active in social activities, kids’ activities
  • Enjoys eating foreign food and trying new food products
  • Enjoys entertaining at home by the BBQ
  • Believes worth paying extra for quality
  • Usually buys wine by brand name, but not above shopping by price
Influencers
  • Co-workers, business associates, peers – particularly those who are climbing the corporate ladder
  • Wine enthusiasts – chefs, cooks and “foodies” (people who enjoy high-calibre food as well as the experience of eating); sommeliers, vintners, other wine drinkers
  • Public figures and celebrities, particularly those who socialise in a very public way
Media Habits
  • 48% read at least one newspaper daily, very likely to skim weekend/Sunday papers, particularly those with food and/or lifestyle sections, such as Good Weekend, Sunday, Travel
  • 34% read more than 3 magazines, particularly those which focus on food, gourmet media and lifestyle (as it relates to cooking and entertaining) (both here and abroad), such as Good Living, Donna Hay, Food & Wine, Gourmet, Bon App├ętit, Vogue, Travel & Leisure
  • 29% specifically read or search for cooking, food, wine enthusiasts online, particularly in blogs, chatrooms, website devoted to both food and wine
  • 27% watch approximately 1.5 hours of prime time each day, particularly those with lifestyle focus, home improvement/cooking, if not specific shows about cuisine
Values
  • Accomplishment: The wine I serve says everything about me
  • Belonging and Acceptance: I want to be seen as knowledgeable, so I can impress my friends

Psychographics your customers.

There are a number of reasons why most companies fail in the first five years. Among them I believe is the lack of knowledge about customers. Business owners tend to put a lot of emphasis on their product, which in and of its self is not a bad thing. You have to develop your product. More importantly than developing your product is developing your product and business around what your customers want. The thing that’s most important to them.

Your customer psychographic is one of these most important things you can do at the beginning of your company to further your success. Find out the emotional reason that your customers buy.

We all have our own psychographics that mean a lot to us. Let’s take myself for example. I happen to love maps. I have tons of them. I have old maps, new maps, ancient maps. I can’t seem to get enough of them. Why do I buy them? The reason is simple. It’s not because I really need to know boundaries or where countries are located. It’s because of the adventure that they represent. I like to be able to dream about far away places and all the adventures and mysteries that they represent. That is why I buy. That is my psychographic when it comes to maps.

Make sure you understand what your customers want and why they buy and you will have lasting success.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pikeo is closing

Pikeo was one of the first photo sharing websites to appear on the Internet. We are proud of this and we hope to have contributed to making the web more open and social.

Today, after more than 4 years of existence, Pikeo is going to close. We are very grateful that you trusted us for your online storage and sharing needs during all these years. Thanks to you, Pikeo was a great success with a community of about 500 000 members.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Social Media Makes No Sense For My Company

YOUr Content In Social Media Syndication
After working in internet marketing for the last 17 years, I have seen several trends come and go, but for those of you who think social media is among these trends you might want to think again.
I talk to business owners from hundreds of different industries each month and I’ve observed that a wide variety of companies have begun to take interest in social media.
According to a study done by Cone Business, sixty percent of Americans use social media, and of those, 59 percent interact with companies on social media Web sites. One in four interacts more than once per week.
This means that regardless of who your audience is, chances are at least some of them are on Facebook or Linkedin or on another social media site: Companies today doing: Social Syndication, the art of social Conversation.
Assess here your Social Business Maturity Level. http://tiny.cc/qeyz6

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Assess your Social Business Maturity Level.


As I continue to help my visitors in regards to social business, the need for social media objectives comes with EVERY project. Creating a “SMART” objective for social media initiatives are just as important as creating objectives for any other part of a business or organization. 

In this post I will go over some of the most common social media objectives that are used. However, I am not going to make them as targeted date-wise because this will determine on each person or organizations social media goals.

  1. Grow our blogs newsletter subscription by 25% within 3 months
  2. Produce 2 live episodes (1 per month) of “FAQ’s” and achieve an average viewership of 50 by month 3
  3. Produce 7 status updates for Facebook Fan Page per week in regards to blog posts, questions, and external sources.
  4. Require each team member to leave 3 comments per week on other industry blogs
  5. Generate a friendship with 5 new individuals per week by acknowledging their interests and activities
This is 5 of the MANY social media objective possibilities. There could be 1000′s of them. As I said before, it all depends on your goals. All social media objectives MUST be based off of current goals. Social Media should not be used just because everyone else is doing it and that is where the people are. Create objectives so that your initiatives can be measured.
Assess your Social Business Maturity Level.
If you scored between 0  and 6  , your program is at the Novice level.
If you scored between 7 and 12  , your program is at the Intermediate level.
If you scored between 13  and 18   , your program is at the Advanced level.

If you need help formulating social media objectives, feel free to contact me to assist you.





Tweeting More Than 140 Characters with Deck.ly: Brilliant or Blasphemy?




tweetdeck_logo150.jpgEarlier this month, Twitter client TweetDeck introduced Deck.ly, a new feature that enables users to send long messages to Twitter, bypassing the 140-character limit that is the signature of the micro-blogging service.
The response from users has been mixed, to say the least. Some users are glad to be able to tweet without restriction on length, but many are frowning upon the service's violation of that sacred 140 character limit.

Twitter Opens Translation Center to Crowdsource Its Move Into New Languages




twitter_bird150150.pngThe events in Egypt over the past few weeks have highlighted the important role that Twitter is taking in communicating and coordinating events of global significance. Indeed, over 70% of Twitter users come from outside the United States. And while English has been the service's dominant language, the company does offer Twitter in six other languages: French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, and Spanish.
In order to help make Twitter more accessible to this growing global user-base, the company has just announced the Twitter Translation Center, an effort to crowdsource translations so that Twitter can quickly launch in additional language.

Turn Your Facebook Profile Photo Into a Video




Some Facebook users — myself formerly among them — are obsessive profile tweakers. We edit our list of interests. We reorganize our photo albums and experiment with awesome profile photo hacks. We weigh carefully whether we want to “Like” this Page or that, because we wonder how that information will be inferred. And we’re always just a little bit, well, bored with our profiles.
Enter FlipYourProfile, a new Facebook app slash browser plugin that allows you to replace your profile photo with a video. That’s right. You no longer have to have a boring still image in your profile photo box. You can have a moving, breathing, sound-generating profile video on loop.
The app was built by Cisco and DDB Singapore as a way of promoting the former’s line of Flip video cameras.
The application has two catches: First, only those who have the plugin installed will be able to see your video, otherwise they’ll just see your regular Facebook profile photo. Thus, if you want your friends to see your new profile video, you’ll need to persuade them to install it (and perhaps upload a video to their own profiles as well). Secondly, an ad saying, “Amazing! You can post videos on your Facebook profile. Get the app to view my profile vid,” will be automatically posted to your wall should you decide to upload a video, which is rather annoying.
Still interested? Follow these four steps to upload your own Facebook profile video.
  1. Go to facebook.com/FlipSG and download the browser plugin for Chrome, Safari, Firefox or IE.
  2. Restart your browser.
  3. Connect your profile with the app.
  4. Shoot and send video by e-mailing a video from your Flip Video cam to me@flipyourprofile.com, or by using the Profile Maker to shoot a video using your webcam or to upload an existing video (less than 10MB, .flv, .mp4, h.264 only).*
*Note: If you’re using, for example, your iPhone to shoot video, you’ll need to use a free file converter like Get Miro to convert your .mov file to one of the compatible formats. You should also shoot your video in horizontal mode; otherwise, it will appear sideways on your profile.
Try it out for yourself and let us know what you think.