Mobile Coupons Stalled at the Gate

The latest eMarketer graphic shows that 85% of mobile phone users have never used a mobile coupon. That’s not where we thought we’d be by now. With the wide spread of Smartphones and the rise in mobile marketing, cell phone coupons should be a given but something has stalled the concept at the gate.

Even Cellfire, who’s main purpose was to promote the use of mobile coupons now leans heavily on their club card coupon technology with no sign of a cell phone on their front page.

So what happened?

One problem is the technology. As smart as we, and our phones, are, downloading mobile coupons isn’t as seamless as it should be. My one attempt at using a mobile coupon was for a discount at my local car care center. The coupon showed up on my phone a week after the work was done.

German Street View Is Up, Blurred Houses and All

Usually in Germany things along a roadside are blurry because of driving at excessive speeds in the German engineered rocket car of your choice. Well, now courtesy of Google you can stroll virtually along streets in at least one German city, Oberstaufen, and experience that same blurring of the sites but for a very different reason.

The picture below is part of the Street View offering being rolled out by Google in Deutschland.

As you may or may not know, the road to this point in Street View’s German presence has been a rough one for the search giant. As Search Engine Land’s Matt McGee points out

You’ve Got a Clean Design! AOL Gets a Facelift

AOL has joined the ranks of many aging divas – she got herself a facelift in hopes of looking young and stylish.

The new design which launched today, still has way more content than one person needs on the front page, but it’s cleaner than ever before. They’ve done away with the heavy color header bars and they’ve pushed down the menu on the left so the first thing you see is content.

They’ve also done a better job of integrating local news and social media feeds. In the “Classic” design, (seen here on the left) they looked like embedded widgets, but now they’re a part of the page. Sort of. The social media feeds come in via AOL’s Lifestream page which they hope you’ll use instead of HootSuite or TweetDeck to monitor your accounts.

Twitter Promoted Ads Show in HootSuite Timeline

Look what I found on HootSuite this morning.

It’s funny because I went there to get some information about the new Promoted Tweets program and lo and behold — I got one.

As of this morning, Twitter has begun inserting Promoted Tweets into the timeline of HootSuite users only. When I visit my Twitter home page directly, the ad is nowhere to be seen.

According to the Twitter Blog, the ads are targeted, only appearing in the timelines they deem relevant based on who you follow and what you talk about. Since I talk about movies and TV a lot, and I follow several studios, this particular Tweet makes sense and I don’t mind it. But I don’t think everyone is going to be as tolerant as I am about these ads. Depending on the frequency and how closely you follow your account, these could become annoying and fast.

blekko’s Two Biggest Challenges

There’s a new search engine kid on the block: blekko

blekko is different because it uses what it calls “slashtags” to help the searcher refine their search results.

There are two major problems that will prevent blekko from reaching mainstream success. I’ll reveal both, after this video intro to blekko:

OK, so the two big problems? You just watched one of them. Any search engine that requires a video tutorial is not destined for mainstream success. When was the last time you had to explain how to conduct a search on Google? If I had to explain slashtags to my mom, sister, or just about anyone, I’d likely get a ton of questions and they’d ultimately end up going back to Google. Google became popular because it was easy to use and did all the heavy lifting for you.

Twitter Still Logging Impressive Growth Numbers

Twitter continues to grow at break neck speed according to some recent numbers that were revealed in an interview with founder and ex-CEO Evan Williams. Usually the term ex-CEO has an incredibly negative vibe but as we talked about when Williams stepped aside to let Dick Costolo take the lead it was actually a move that was filled with smarts and refreshingly humble. Let’s put it this way, it doesn’t seem like the move has hurt the deal any.

TechCrunch reports

In a New York Times profile on Twitter co-founder Evan Williams, the company revealed a few interesting stats showing the growth trajectory of the network. Twitter now has 175 million registered users, which is up from 145 million users in September. That means the startup added around 30 million users in just under two months. And Twitter has added 70 million users since April.

Millennials Shout for Brands but Don’t Listen in Social Spaces

I admit that the headline here may be a little harsh but if the data that is being presented by a study performed by Edelman is any indication it seems to ring true. Millennials are those folks born between 1980 and 1995. There is apparently a push to name this group the 8095ers but I vote right now to remove that because its just plain dumb. Anyway, back to the data.

eMarketer tells us about the survey and how Millennials build and use their relationships with brands in the online space. First the overall take is that they like to share their opinions online.

They like to share their opinions online for sure as the article even says: