Viacom’s Vendetta Against Google

Does Viacom have a grudge against Google? That’s the topic I explore in my latest article for Business Week. Here’s an extract…

Viacom’s Vendetta?

The media giant is forging partnerships with everyone but Google, a snub that could eventually take a toll on the search titan

What exactly did Google do to create such a fervent enemy-combatant in the media company Viacom? Ever since we learned of the collapse of discussions over carrying Viacom cable content on YouTube, Viacom has been on an apparent crusade to bring Google to its knees.

Marketers Learn the Value of Social Networks

Fox Interactive Media – and about half a dozen other companies – conducted a study to determine the value of social media for marketers. Sampling 3,000 US internet users, they discovered…

  • More than 70% of Americans 15-34 are actively using social networks online, and the research showed social networking sites taking a strong foothold in the primetime hours.
  • 31% of online social networkers claim they spend more time on the Web in general after starting to use a social network.
  • Brands such as adidas and Electronic Arts attributed more than 70% of their marketing return on investment to the “Momentum Effect.”

That “Momentum Effect” is a cute term coined by the study to define “the impact of a brand within a social network beyond traditional advertising impressions to encompass the “pass along” power of consumer-to-consumer communication.” In other words, viral marketing, tipping point, word of mouth, etc.

Video Podcasting Finally Getting Closer to TV Production Quality

R/WW reveals how a new video podcast network called ON Networks is bringing better production quality to the humble online show. While there are a few well produced video podcasts circulating the web, most resemble a video plucked from the rejected pile of AFV.

ON Networks hopes to bring a little TV magic to your computer screen with 8 well produced shows each with great content and entertaining hosts.

ONN boast a lineup of 8 shows ranging from “Zen Living,” in which an attractive host guides viewers toward a healthier life, to “Raw Golf,” which takes an indy band and films them at a golf lesson, to “Budget Health Nut,” a cooking show that would feel at home on the Food Network.

Video: Beginners Guide to RSS

Do you have a friend or relative that doesn’t yet understand how RSS works, show them this video from Common Craft.


Linkbait Isn’t Always Best

I know, it’s sacrilege to say this, but linkbait isn’t always the best way to promote a site. Yes, it’s fun, creative and, when it works, highly effective. But it’s not always the best.

Linkbaiting has garnered a bad name for SEOs, especially among social media sites. Of course, that was just adding to the bad name we already had because of spammy SEOs. It’s well established that Diggers hate the slightest whiff of SEO. Still, getting onto the Digg or Reddit homepage has become a well established method of garnering links throughout the Internet.

But something Rand said yesterday really struck me:

Partial Feeds Don’t Draw Visitors

Conventional wisdom tells us that if you publish partial feeds, people will click through to your site to read the rest of your story. The truth is that it just doesn’t work out that way. FeedBurner’s VP of Publishing Services, FeedBurner’s Rick Klau, noted last week:

First of all, I think the primary justification often given for partial feeds—that it will drive higher clickthroughs back to the publisher’s site—is off-base. As people subscribe to feeds, they subscribe to more feeds. And that means they’re consuming more content, which means that each click out of the feed reader is taking the reader away from more content. In other words, feed reading is consumption oriented, not transactionally focused. We’ve seen no evidence that excerpts on their own drive higher clickthroughs.

comScore and Nielsen//NetRatings Respond to IAB’s Letter

Last week, the Interactive Advertising Bureau CEO Randal Rothenberg challenged comScore and Nielsen//NetRatings to increase their transparency and submit to an independent audit of their outmoded panel-based Internet measurements.

Today, both Internet measurement companies responded. Both said they were in the process of an independent audit; Nielsen//NetRatings is prequalified by the very board that Rothenberg named in his letter.

comScore’s response highlighted the company currently evaluating their research processes and defended the panel-based methodology comScore relies on:

As part of our efforts to achieve transparency, we have opened our methodology and processes to an evaluation by the Advertising Research Foundation. We are in the final stages of this evaluation and hope that the results will be publicly released in the near future.