Archive | February, 2013

Mobile and Social Media Are Hot Marketing Strategies in 2013!

25 Feb

As marketing increases use in digital technologies, traditional media undergoes a huge suffering. According to a poll of US marketing professionals conducted by Inavero for staffing firm Aquent and the American Marketing Association (AMA).

Traditional mass media once offered marketers the most advantages to reach their audiences to a wide scale, but now the situations now basically have murdered the traditional media. What it gives marketers now is fragmented and dwindling audiences, as well as comparatively cruder metrics and easily losing their ground for digital marketing trends.

In this phase of this revolution, print media has greatly suffered the loss in terms of interest; with about three in 10 respondents to the October through November 2012 survey expecting their organizations to decrease attention paid to newspapers and consumer magazines in 2013. 21% of the respondents even expected TV to see decreased focus in coming days. Tradition marketing efforts are to see a big downfall this year especially TV (21%) radio (24%) and direct-marketing (9%). But newspapers still see some hopes with 32%.

On the digital edge, mobile and social media were the two categories expected to see the most increased attention in 2013. In fact, more than three in four respondents polled to mobile media as a target for increased focus, while just over seven in ten ( 76%) respondents said the same for social media. Also, Marketers were less preoccupied with turning more efforts toward paid search (search engine marketing) with 59% and email campaigns with 56%, although more than 50% of marketers still expected to increase their focus on these channels as well. 82% of the U.S. marketers are expected to increase mobile media marketing strategy by 82% followed by social media 76%. Well this co-relates with another report where marketers are not actually ready for mobile marketing.

It’s also observed that social media and mobile marketing are expected as hot jobs in next 2-3 years. But social media jobs are to be the winner of this year with 25%. Mobile media job accounts only for 12% of job opportunities this year and it seems as the existing staff or contractors could handle it this year.

The other report from Econsultancy regarding digital spending in 2013 says, collating and managing data still seems to be one of the key challenges for businesses as 46% of the respondents polled for web analytics and 41% of them chose content management systems. Also, 45% of them opted for CRM, 38% for social media management systems and email platforms, plus 35% for paid search/bid management.

In next 2-3 years company recruits more number of social media marketing employees (50%), 40% chances for mobile marketers.

While marketers expressed a clear understanding of how important is digital media and showed a firm intention to increase many of their online and mobile efforts almost two folds, they also expressed a king of fear regarding the speed at which marketing can now change and how well they could adopt it with this changing speed. Just over 54% of the respondents felt that their marketing team was unable to handle new technologies and trends.

 

Advertisements

Facebook Hacked Though User Data Not Compromised

18 Feb

Facebook is the latest company to reveal that it was the victim of hackers, but the company said users’ personal information was not compromised by the breach.

In a Friday blog post, the social network said its security team last month discovered that Facebook’s systems were “targeted in a sophisticated attack.”

“This attack occurred when a handful of employees visited a mobile developer website that was compromised,” Facebook said.

The website in question was hosting an exploit that installed malware on the computer of anyone who visited it. Facebook said the infected laptops were running updated versions of anti-virus software, and “as soon as we discovered the presence of the malware, we remediated all infected machines, informed law enforcement, and began a significant investigation that continues to this day.”

Ultimately, Facebook has found no evidence that any Facebook user data was compromised by the malware.

The bug was uncovered when the Facebook Security team flagged a suspicious domain in its corporate DNS logs and tracked it back to an employee computer. An examination of the laptop revealed the malicious file, prompting a wider search – and the discovery of more malware.

The file in question used a zero-day exploit that bypassed the Java sandbox to install the malware. “We immediately reported the exploit to Oracle, and they confirmed our findings and provided a patch on February 1, 2013, that addresses this vulnerability,” Facebook said.

Facebook said other, unnamed companies were also hit by this attack. “We immediately took steps to start sharing details about the infiltration with the other companies and entities that were affected,” the firm said. “We plan to continue collaborating on this incident through an informal working group and other means.”

Facebook did not name which other companies were hit, but earlier this month, Twitter said that it detected “unusual access patterns” on its network, which indicated that attackers might have accessed the user data of approximately 250,000 users.

The announcement comes the same week that members of Congress re-introduced the controversial CISPA information-sharing bill. The legislation would allow the government and private companies to share information about cyber attacks. Supporters claim it’s the best way to stop attacks from countries like Iran and China, but detractors are concerned that the immunity provided to companies for sharing information will prompt them to hand over user data without a second thought.

When CISPA was first introduced last year, Facebook issued its support for the bill. “One challenge we and other companies have had is in our ability to share information with each other about cyber attacks. When one company detects an attack, sharing information about that attack promptly with other companies can help protect those other companies and their users from being victimized by the same attack,” Joel Kaplan, vice president of U.S. public policy at Facebook, said at the time. “Similarly, if the government learns of an intrusion or other attack, the more it can share about that attack with private companies (and the faster it can share the information), the better the protection for users and our systems.”

Meanwhile, Facebook and Twitter are not the only ones to fall prey to hackers lately; other victims include Jawbone, a Montana TV station, the Gmail accounts of journalists covering Myanmar, the Bush family, the Federal Reserve, and the Department of Energy.

Instagram’s new Feed feature is easy to use and ad-free for now

11 Feb

Instagram’s new Feed feature is clean, simple and easy to use. And it goes a long way to bolster the website for the photo-sharing social network.

But could the introduction of the tool eventually lead to advertisements on the website?

The Feed page displays to users the latest photos uploaded by those they follow — a feature previously reserved for the mobile versions of Instagram.

In the blog post announcing the new feature, co-founder Kevin Systrom said that if users shrink the width of their browser, the page will shift to look similar to how the Feed appears on Instagram’s mobile apps.

But if users view Feed in a stretched-out window the way they do most websites, the design shares many similarities to that of the desktop version of the Facebook News Feed with one key difference — there are no advertisements.

When looking at the Web version of the Facebook News Feed, ads appear on a column to the right of the feature as well as in sponsored posts that run within the feature. For now, there are no sponsored posts on Instagram, and the space to the right of the Feed, as well as to the left, is totally blank.

But with 90 million monthly active users and counting, that’s valuable real estate.

Social media analyst Debra Aho Williamson of eMarketer said Instagram’s extended website presents it with more space to sell ads that marketers are highly interested in purchasing.

“The images can be larger, the ads can be larger and there’s more space to put ads,” Williamson said. “The mobile environment compresses all that, and I think advertisers will appreciate having that larger palette if and when Instagram rolls out its advertising options.”

Williamson said advertisers want to sell visual ads, meaning large photos and videos, rather than the small text ads you see on the side of your Facebook News Feed. And because Instagram is all about visuals, that makes it an attractive space for advertisers.

“Instagram’s model fits very nicely with what marketers want to do with social media,” she said.

Instagram told The Times it had no plans to sell and place advertisements on the new Feed page.

But Facebook bought Instagram last year for $715 million — its most expensive acquisition to date — and the company may eventually have to justify the purchase.

The Menlo Park, Calif., company has looked at generating revenue from ads before. In December Instagram announced controversial new terms of service that would have allowed it to let companies pay to use people’s photographs in advertisements that would appear within the app.

User backlash stopped Instagram from making that change, and eventually the company introduced different terms of service.

Until Instagram announces ads, users are in the clear, but all signs certainly seem to be pointing toward ads in the future.

5 Daily Habits for Effective Social Media Marketing

4 Feb

The number of recommended actions and suggested tasks that social media managers must engage in can seem downright overwhelming. Not only are you supposed to update dozens of different profiles every day, you have to connect with potential new followers and monitor your company’s branded keywords in order to manage any negative mentions you encounter. And more.

To prevent yourself from becoming overwhelmed and unable to get anything done at all, refocus your efforts on the following daily social media habits made up of tasks you know you can complete. Doing so should help you to form positive brand recognition and responsive follower bases — without driving yourself crazy over everything you could be doing.

1. Check the pulse of your social profiles. As a social media manager, the first thing to do every day is to log into your social profiles. Although this seems like a fairly common sense recommendation, many companies create their social profiles only to let them lie dormant for weeks or months on end. So whether your company has chosen to focus on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google+ — or any combination of these and other social networks — your first step every day should be to simply log in. Once inside, you’ll be able to complete your goals, all of which play an important role in effective social media marketing.

So whether your company has chosen to focus on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google+ — or any combination of these and other social networks — your first step every day should be to simply log in. Once inside, you’ll be able to complete your goals, all of which play an important role in effective social media marketing.

2. Respond to direct interactions from followers. One of the most important things you can do within your social profiles is to respond to any direct messages you’ve received from followers or potential fans. These interactions come in a number of different formats, including:

  • Facebook messages
  • Posts to your Facebook wall
  • Facebook status or picture tags
  • Twitter direct messages (DMs)
  • Twitter “@” replies

What’s important about these interactions is that they represent people who have put forth the effort to engage with your brand on a higher level than simply observing your content. While these interactions may be good or bad (as in the case of negative reviews), it’s important that you respond to them out of respect for the initiative these followers have shown.

3. Post stimulating content to encourage conversation. After you’ve responded to any direct interactions that have occurred since you last logged into your social profiles, take a few moments to post a status update or message that’s designed to encourage interaction among your followers. For example, you could:

  • Ask a provocative question
  • Share an interesting blog article
  • Comment on a recent news item
  • Post an inspirational picture or quote
  • Request follower feedback on the specific products or services you offer

As you create these messages, make your call-to-action obvious, as social followers are often so overloaded with media inputs that it takes a clearly-defined request to encourage action. Pairing your stimulating content with a statement such as, “Let me know what you think” or “Share your thoughts in the comments” can prompt the type of action to make your social profiles appear more welcoming and engaging to potential new followers.

4. Seek out new followers. Ideally, the bulk of your new social profile followers should be coming from people who love your brand and your website content so much that they can’t wait to hear more from you on social networks. But sometimes — whether your website is new or your company hasn’t built the necessary market traction to attract followers naturally yet — you’ll want to be a little more proactive when it comes to building up a follower base for your business.

4. Seek out new followers. Ideally, the bulk of your new social profile followers should be coming from people who love your brand and your website content so much that they can’t wait to hear more from you on social networks. But sometimes — whether your website is new or your company hasn’t built the necessary market traction to attract followers naturally yet — you’ll want to be a little more proactive when it comes to building up a follower base for your business.

One way to do this on Twitter is to seek out the profiles of authority figures within your industry. Then, follow people who are following them, and whose profiles indicate that they’d be interested in your company as well. A number of these people will most likely follow you back automatically, increasing the size of your follower base.

Attracting new followers on permission-based websites like Facebook can be more challenging, but the same principles apply. Seek out those who have demonstrated an interest in your industry and the authority figures you follow, make your introductions through direct message and see what happens.

5. Search for your company’s branded terms. One final daily habit is to conduct a quick search for any of your company’s branded phrases, including any common misspellings or abbreviations you’re aware of.

Specifically, what you’re looking for are instances where users you aren’t immediately connected with are mentioning your company’s name. These mentions could be left as unsolicited reviews or questions seeking clarification. Either way, proactively seeking them out enables you to connect with potential followers and create the impression of an engaged, customer-centric brand.