Application Downloads Continue to Rise

Have you built a mobile app to promote your business yet? If not, add that to the To Do list for June, because according to the latest MilennialMedia S.M.A.R.T. report, application downloads are still on the rise.

Application downloads popped up 26% month-over-month with entertainment, retail and travel being the major users. Mobile Social Media (aka Mocial) is also on the rise with marketers looking to up their Facebook and Twitter followers.

Looking only at mobile retail, the report says that mCommerce doubled month-over-month, and Mocial grew 115% in that same time period.

Need some mobile app inspiration? Check out 5 Crazy Things You Can Do With Your iPhone and before the next full moon, download the Werewolf Locator app. You’ll be glad you did.

Official Google Webmaster Central Blog Feed Hacked, Busted, or Just Strange?

Who wants to provide an explanation as to what just happened in my Google Reader this morning?

I subscribe to the¬†Official Google Webmaster Central Blog’s RSS feed to keep up-to-date with the 2-3 posts the team publish each week. Except this morning, the feed looked like this:

What the fudge?

OK, maybe I’m seeing things. Maybe this is not actually coming from the Google Webmaster Central feed. So, I went to “Manage Subscriptions” to take a look. Nope, it shows the same items, take a look:

 

OK, I thought, maybe someone found a way to hijack the feed, Maybe China is redirecting Google’s RSS feeds to phishing or spam sites. Well, maybe not, because those new items above all go to the same personal site of a photographer. I’m guess they have no idea that this happened.

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Groupon Numbers Should Cause One to Pause

I am not trying to rain on anyone’s IPO parade. What the people at Groupon have done is pretty amazing. But just because there are big revenue numbers associated with the company, it’s important to see if the thing is profitable. As of yesterday’s IPO filing, it is not. This chart from SAI tells the story.

And remember when Groupon raised $950 million not so long ago? Guess what that did? It simply paid out the early investors in handsome sums. It did little to build the business. You can get the details in the All Things Digital post.

Groupon IPO Is Finally A Go

Finally Groupon has announced its IPO. We could talk all day long about what this means but I think it might be best to just read the letter that CEO Andrew Mason wrote to future stockholders. It went something like this. Buckle up, apparently Andrew likes to write.

Dear Potential Stockholders,

On the day of this writing, Groupon’s over 7,000 employees offered more than 1,000 daily deals to 83 million subscribers across 43 countries and have sold to date over 70 million Groupons. Reaching this scale in about 30 months required a great deal of operating flexibility, dating back to Groupon’s founding.

Twitter Buys AdGrok Team To Work on Monetization

Twitter is making a serious bid to compete in the online ad space, this time buying up a small company called AdGrok whose tagline is “we make internet marketing simple.” Actually, their interface was designed to make Google’s AdWords simple and if they did that, then it’s no wonder Twitter wanted to scoop them up.

The AdGrok system included a GrokBar, the Grok-o-Matic and the Groknoculars, all of which made you a Pro-Groker for only $59.00 a month. And I tell you all of this only because I like the word Grok as much as they do. But now, sadly, the time has come to move on to a world where everything happens in under 140 characters, which is enough to say Live long and prosper six times in one Tweet, so it’s all good.

Amazon Gets in on the Local Game

It was inevitable really, Amazon, who pioneered many of the currents trends in online retailing is now a follower. Introducing AmazonLocal! Likely coming soon to a city near you, but right now, only from Boise.

Now, I’ve got nothing against the folks of, what I’m sure, is a lovely city in Idaho, but really? According to TNW, Amazon chose the city because they liked their sense of whimsy, as demonstrated by BSU’s blue football field. Got me on that one, but everything has to start somewhere so why not Boise.

When I went to check out the service, it already knew my name, which always creeps me out. Obviously it pulled my name from my Amazon login, but it still wanted to know where I lived. As I moved through the process, I had this strange feeling of deja vu. TNW says that’s because Amazon isn’t sourcing their own deals (yet), they’re getting them from partnerships with other sites such as LivingSocial.