“Facebook found that 15 million people have discussed the Ice Bucket Challenge on the site — ranging from posting videos to liking related statuses, between June 1 and August 13.”
PNConnect Insight – This is one of those things people are going to be talking about and writing case studies about for years to come, not just because of how many people have posted their videos to Facebook but also because of the amount of money that’s been raised. What’s most interesting about it is that this bubbled up from the ground up instead of trickling down from a select number of “influencers.” Also notable is how this has been *so* popular on Facebook and not necessarily on Twitter.
“As pointed out by a few people yesterday and this morning, including Re/code’s Peter Kafka, Twitter looks like it is testing a feature that makes favorites (faves, if you prefer) appear in other people’s timelines…just like a retweet.”
PNConnect Insight - This might be the first move Twitter makes to a more algorithmic Timeline, and many have pointed out that Twitter’s FAQ has already been updated to include things like this. But while it’s already causing much hand-wringing among power users, for whom this is a major change, it’s something that could help Twitter attract and maintain more new users and clear up some of the confusion that often keeps them from participating.
“The shallow desires of the Internet puts Taboola, Outbrain, and publishers in an awkward place. Their algorithms have been finely tuned to offer up the most relevant and click-worthy content on the Web—the “best,” by all available metrics, even if it equally repels us and compels us to click.”
PNConnect Insight – This is just one form of paid media support for owned or earned content, and it can be an important fundamental tactic. It’s an easy way to get some extra exposure for a good earned media hit, or a way for a home run blog post to find even more audience. But it’s good to know the other side too. The other side of the story is that this stuff (the networks like Outbrain and Taboola) have the reputation for being low-quality, link bait type stuff.
“…Tumblr has just inked a deal with Massachusetts company Ditto Labs to measure brand sentiment in images posted to the site. The data won’t be used to market directly to Tumblr users—at least not yet—but the new tool gives marketers a potentially huge trove of information about how people perceive the brands they work for.”
PN Connect Insight – This is a smart move as all online platforms — but especially Tumblr — are increasingly comprised of visual content. Being able to measure brand sentiment through images posted to Tumblr is the biggest step yet to providing genuine understanding and ROI on that platform, and may be the catalyst for Tumblr joining Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn on the Mount Rushmore of social platforms for brands.
“National Geographic is the king of the social media jungle, according to a top 10 list released by Shareablee. The New York-based digital data company has ranked NatGeo as the most effective publisher in the social space for the month of July, with 46.4 million engagements on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.”
PNConnect Insight – While this certainly isn’t the entirety of their strategy there’s a lot to be said about taking advantage of steady access to amazing photography. National Geographic sits on a treasure trove of high-quality pictures and so is perfectly positioned to thrive on a social web where visuals are the native language.
“The company on Wednesday announced a couple new tools for verified users — many of whom are public figures or celebrities — that make it easier for them to connect with one another on the platform. Verified users, those with a blue check mark by their username, can now receive an alert when other verified users follow them. These users can also filter their followers list to see only those other verified users who follow them.”
PNConnect Insight – In what seems to be another effort to increase usage of the social network, Twitter is tapping verified users by offering them exclusive tools, which will help them weed out chatter from important tweets. The thinking here is that by getting more stars to talk with each other, there will be more things for the average user to look at, thereby increasing engagement.
“Every day, millions of people open Vine to share memories in the moment. Today, Vine unlocks a new camera that gives you the freedom to create a Vine in any way you want. The new camera offers powerful ways to edit your videos as well as the ability to import existing videos on your phone and turn them into Vines. Simply put, this release gives you total creative freedom –– and it’s all within the app.”
PNConnect Insight – This is a big update that fundamentally changes the Vine publishing experience. Editing is great, but the ability to upload a video from a device – something that rival Instagram added a while ago – means a lot of publishers no longer have to use third-party apps or other wonky workarounds.
“Twitch, Fark, and Stack Exchange are also part of the partnership that’s launching DERP. That’s a collection of social sites of all sizes, and though none are absolutely gargantuan, they still include some of the most influential and important web communities out there. […]DERP will help researchers study the sites by setting them up with access to publicly available data.”
PNConnect Insight – The name of this initiative is certainly fun, in keeping with the philosophy of the sites behind it. But the outcome could be really useful to data scientists and other teams who are looking to find out more about the information that’s being collected by those sites.
“A new study from digital marketing company G/O Digital shows that compared to Twitter and Pinterest, Facebook is better at driving offline sales for small businesses, with 84 percent of respondents saying that local deals or offers on Facebook heavily influence their decision to make in-store purchases.”
PNConnect Insight – Based on this study, SMBs should focus their advertising efforts on Facebook, since it will get them the most return. The social networking giant drives more offline sales than Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest altogether.
“Snapchat Inc., the mobile app for disappearing messages, could soon be a service for disappearing videos, news articles and advertisements. The Venice, Calif., startup has held talks with advertisers and media companies in recent weeks about launching a service called Snapchat Discovery that would show content and ads to Snapchat users, according to three people who were briefed on the discussions. The product is set to debut in November, one of the people said.”
PNConnect Insight – As with any move like this, Snapchat is trying to walk the tightrope between monetizing their tool and not honking off the users, which now number about half of 18-24 year-old smartphone users. It will have to create ads or other tools that it can sell to brands but which are also positioned to provide value to those users.