What’s All the Fuss About Quora?

For the past month, I’ve seen article after article about how the new Q&A site Quora might be the next social media darling. The site began in “invite only” mode, which certainly helped elevate the buzz. Then Ashton Kutcher started answering questions there, so that was an indication of . . . something.

Now open to the public, the site does appear to have some heavy hitters in the community, particularly those in the journalism and tech areas. I saw the founder of Lifehack, the CEO of Mashable, a former AOL Chief Marketing Officer and the CEO of Netflix. Quite the cocktail party.

The questions on Quora are more intelligent than the ones you find on those other Q&A sites. For example: How did Mint acquire 1.5m+ users without a high viral coefficient, scalable SEO strategy, or paid customer acquisition channel?

Ringback Advertising is on the Rise

Everyone knows what a ringtone is but I admit I was thrown for a moment when I saw this new report about ringbacks. A ringback tone is what you hear while you’re waiting for your call to connect. Usually it’s a sequence of beeps, which aren’t very pleasant to listen to, so why not offer something more fun like the McDonald’s jingle or a reminder to have a Coke and a Smile with lunch.

Ringback advertising is on the rise and according to a new report from Juniper Research, ad dollars are likely to hit $780 million by 2015. Juniper reports that many companies offer airtime credit in return for opting in to the branded content program, so that makes it a win-win on both sides.

Sponsored: Trackur is Giving Away an Apple iPad 2

Now that we have a bona fide managing editor in place at Marketing Pilgrim, it’s probably time to assume that you don’t already know that I’m the CEO of social media monitoring tool Trackur. Hence, the “sponsored” added to this title, just in case. ;-)

Anyway, after much success with our previous Apple iPad giveaways, Trackur has just launched a new contest–this time you could win an Apple iPad 2.

Huh? Say what? I didn’t know that Apple had announced the iPad 2 yet, so how is Trackur giving one away?

Oh c’mon, we all know that Apple will announce the iPad 2 in the very near future, so we’re getting a head start and naming it as the prize for our contest. By entering, you have the chance to be one of the very first owners of the iPad 2. It’s a win-win for all of us!

Social Network Ad Spend Continues to Rise

Facebook may still have its issues (note the recent move to help developers get more data from Facebook users and their rather quick retraction of the effort) but it does generate cash. Of course, no one knows exactly how much because Facebook is supposedly a private company (and Goldman Sachs, those lovable, honest, upright guys of Wall Street intend to keep that way by playing fast and loose with securities laws) but there are people out there willing to guesstimate and then make predictions for the future (what would we do without these predictions?!).

The latest comes directly from eMarketer. US social network ad revenues were very good 2010 with 2011 promising to be a whole lot better.

Netflix Built it, But They Didn’t Come

With all the hype about social media marketing, it often seems like Facebook is the key to instant success. This week, however, Netflix found out that just building it wasn’t enough to make the people come.

Two years ago, Netflix added a Facebook component to their system that allowed you to easily share your movie choices and reviews with your friends. Okay, that’s not exactly true. From the sound of it, the app wasn’t easy to use and “allowed” was more like “forced,” so Netflix shut it down last week.

Director of Product Management, Tim Willerer explained the reason for the shut down on the company blog. He said:

Very few of you have signed on for this so we’re pulling it back today to regroup, which includes testing new concepts, and ultimately finding a more appealing program for all of our members.

Why Don’t People Want Roger Ebert to Make Money?

Roger Ebert, the famed movie critic, has been sending out Tweets with Amazon affiliate links in them. Are you horrified? Apparently many people are and I don’t get it. Here’s the gist of the whole affair.

Two months ago, Ebert signed up for an Amazon affiliate account and began sending out two or three Twitter Tweets a day promoting various products. Generally he points out really good deals on great movies, but has been known to promote other items like coconut water (yuck).

Apple Gets In Front of Jobs Health Leave News

In the past, Apple has been pretty secretive about the health issues of its leader, Steve Jobs.

Today, Apple decided to make an internal memo public on their site. In this day and age of making sure you control your online message, it’s the best policy. Of course, this won’t stop the wild speculation. Here’s the announcement at the Apple site.

As for us here at Marketing Pilgrim, rather than speculate, we’re just going to give our best wishes and our prayers for things to go well for Mr. Jobs, whatever the health concerns may be.