Cup of Joe: I Do It All For The LULz!

lol So this week I am going to toot my own horn a tiny bit, but please bear with me because it’s a bit rusty.

A few weeks ago I created a post on one of my old blogs. Soon after, I submitted it to one of my favorite social sharing sites StumbleUpon. The next day something strange happened. Traffic on the site shot up to over 1,500. The next day traffic hovered at around 1,000 and then the following day shot back up to around 1,500. I was happy at this point for what seemed like a modest increase in traffic for a blog that generally gets around 75 to a 100 visitors a day.

And then the floodgates opened.

It’s Going to be a Happy Mother’s Day for Retailers

Smile mom, according to National Retail Federation, the average person buying for Mother’s Day is expected to spend $140.73 on gifts, up from $126.90 last year, with total spending expected to reach $16.3 billion. That’s a lot of flowers and cards.

BIGresearch conducted the NRF’s 2011 Mother’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions survey and they found that mom will be getting more electronics this year (13.3% up from 9%), including smartphones, cameras and tablets. (Lucky moms)

Look, a chart!

Mothers Day 2011 - Average Spending_small.

FTC Tells Cap ‘N Crunch and Friends to Set Sail

Unless Cap ‘N Crunch can start hawking carrot sticks, this popular advertising icon may have to sail off into the sunset in the near future. The FTC is proposing a new set of guidelines for food advertising aimed at children and there’s no tolerance for anything sugary, fatty or fun.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is quoted as saying,

“Children are strongly influenced by the foods they see advertised on television and elsewhere. Creating a food marketing environment that supports, rather than undermines, the efforts of parents to encourage healthy eating among children will have a significant impact on reducing the nation’s childhood obesity epidemic.  These new Principles will help food and beverage companies use their creativity and resources to strengthen parents’ efforts to encourage their children to make healthy choices.”

Do Google Previews for Paid Search Really Mean Anything?

I have to admit that I am Google’s worst nightmare. I am the searcher who rarely if ever clicks on a paid search ad. I am a total Google freeloader. I doubt I am alone but I also doubt I am in any majority considering the gobs of profit that Google generates each quarter. In other words, they aren’t being hurt by my search habits.

So not being a paid search user I was intrigued by the introduction of instant previews for paid ads that Google announced earlier this week. Instant previews for organic results have been around for several months now but the paid side is a new and curious development.

Content Farm Discontent at Yahoo Too

In the content farm news as of late the focus has been squarely on Demand Media. The most likely reason is that it is now a public company who has had a very public battle as its Google traffic and stock price have had their challenges.

Well, long before the financial coming out party of the content world’s dirty little secret (that secret being that content and quality often never danced together but still benefited from great search rankings) there was Demand Media’s partner in content crime, Associated Content that was bought by Yahoo. Rather than go public they took $100 million from the Internet’s once bright star Yahoo last May.

Where 2.0: Context is Everything

Last week, folks who work in the area of geo-location gathered in Santa Clarita to talk about the future of the biz. When they were done, they left behind a long list of video and slide presentations that you can access simply by visiting the Where 2.0 website.

Since location-based marketing is such a big trend right now, I wanted to introduce you to Genevieve Bell from Intel. She’s a cultural anthropologist and her specialty is human interaction. The speech she gave at Where 2.0 was called “Context is Everything” and it’s all about the concept of “where” and how it differs depending on who you’re talking to.

Fun with Social Media Marketing

To get noticed in this world, you have to do something creative. Here are two brands that are making a fun, new, social media statement.

Conan O’Brien F*Cards

Funnyman Conan O’Brien is bringing his sharp sense of humor to your Facebook page with his new F*Cards. The “cards” are actually short videos that you can use to update your status. Each one features Conan telling your followers how you really feel about a variety of Facebook subjects.

My favorite is the one where Conan explains how I’d rather have hot bacon grease poured into a cut under my eye rather than see another one of your Farmville updates. Other choices include, “Stop photo-tagging me,” “FYI – I just ate some delicious food,” and “Dear High School / College Buddy.” As Conan says, why bother trying to compose something clever when he can do it for you.