Social Gets More Mobile in 2013

emarketer social mobileTwitter was designed as a method of delivering short, spontaneous messages to a group of friends. It worked beautifully with mobile because it allowed you to express your thoughts while things were happening.

“I just saw Brad Pitt at Starbucks.”

“These lunch truck tacos are incredible!”

And not long after, we had the ability to take and share pictures of Brad and the incredible tacos to back up on our story. Now, thanks to the rise in smartphones and tablets and the forethought of social network app makers, mobile is becoming an even bigger factor in the social media game.

As you can see from this eMarketer chart, social media users are slowly cutting down their dependence on the PC in favor of the mobile phone and tablet. There’s even been an increase in Internet-enabled TV, game console and ereader use – devices that aren’t well suited to updating Facebook.

Google Providing Phone Support For Google+ Local Verification Issues

Phone SupportNo folks that was not a typo.

‘Google’ and ‘phone support’ were used in the same thought as it relates to one of their free services. Normally I would be very skeptical about this kind of claim but in this case the source is non other than Mike Blumenthal. Let’s put it this way, if you can’t trust Mike to be telling the truth about Google Local changes (or least as close to the truth as Google will allow to be known) then you might as well hang up your local search hat and call it a day.

In a post from yesterday at Mike’s Understanding Google Places and Local Search blog he says

Twitter Turns to Real Live Humans To Help Search Efforts

Twitter and search have never really gone hand in hand have they?

It’s not easy to index millions (well let’s make that billions) of tweets especially since the nuances of language can make context a difficult thing to understand.

Twitter knows that its search must improve and its latest efforts are laid out in painstaking detail in a post on the Twitter engineering blog. We’ll get to the words in a minute. First, you may (and I emphasize may) want to watch this video that is part of the post. If you want the 3.5 minutes of your life back after watching us don’t complain to us. You have been warned.

Now to the words. Essentially, Twitter is using real-time work by real humans to help categorize the mountains of tweets which, in turn, help with making Twitter search more effective. The trick is doing the categorization as close to the trending ‘spike’ in tweets that occurs around subjects and events in real time. The post tells us

News Feed Declines Have Studios Thinking Twice About Facebook

gangster squadA new article in the LA Times states that, “72% of movies and network TV shows experienced a drop in the number of people who saw new Facebook posts after the new algorithm launched.”

23% of studios said they saw a drop in engagement (clicking, sharing, commenting), even worse 45% of entertainment pages saw a drop in reach (number of people who saw their posts.)

Those are pretty big hits, especially when you consider the short marketing window for movies. Sure, you can start building up brand awareness a few months ahead, or up to a year if it’s a big property, but it’s those three weeks before, during and after the theatrical release that really count.

CES 2013 Kicks Off With ‘Born Mobile’ Keynote

Steve Ballmer, Paul JacobsWith a tagline like “Born Mobile,” I was expecting Qualcomm to use Bruce Springsteen as part of their CES 2013 keynote address, alas they went with Maroon Five, Guillermo del Toro, and Big Bird. Surely, an unprecedented mix.

The real star of the show was crazy Steve Ballmer, the CEO of Microsoft. Once he hit the stage, it turned into a late-night infomercial for the new Windows RT tablets. Those are the ones where the tablet snaps into the keyboard giving you the best of both worlds. They are nifty little machines, almost cool enough to worry my iPad.

The keynote host was Paul Jacobs of Qualcomm. His overreaching point was that mobile is now ingrained in our lives and it’s only going to expand from here. Already, 84% of people worldwide say that can’t go a day without mobile. He also noted that most people look at their mobile phone 150 times a day. Yowza.

Three Stupid Simple Ways To Brainstorm Content Topics

In my last post I talked about how to gain crucial insights from SERP analysis. Through proper SERP analysis, you can put together not only an SEO strategy, but content marketing strategy as well. In today’s post I want to talk about three ways of coming up with dozens of ideas to fuel your content strategy. We will start off talking about word association.

Word Association

When putting my content plan together, one of the very first things I like to do is build a big mind map of all the potential topics I can think of. I do this through word association. For those unfamiliar with word association, this was originally a game in which an original word is chosen and each player finds a different word that they associate with the original word. At the end of the game you might have hundreds of words associated with the original word. It is a great way to brainstorm content topics.

When going through this exercise, I start with my primary or head keyword and then branch out from there. As you can see in my example below, I used photography as my main keyword. In five minutes I was able to come up with 28 different topics I could write about.

word-association

This is a very simple, yet powerful way to get your creative juices flowing. If you need a mind mapping software to help you with this exercise, I suggest XMind. It’s free and quite robust. Now let’s talk about the second way to drum up content ideas, internal research.

Social Media Ninjas, Gurus and Mavens, Oh My! Enough Already.

GuruTiny rant here that will likely upset some but that’s OK. We’re all big kids here and wear long pants, as they say.

AdAge’s B.L. Ochman reports that SEOmoz’s Followerwonk shows there are some 181,000 profiles in Twitter that use the terms that have made the social media industry look sophomoric as compared to other professional disciplines. These include guru, maven, ninja etc. Ugh, it hurts just typing them out again. Whether these are actual people or bot generated whatevers it is a little sad to see this is still happening to this degree.

As a public service, I like to periodically check in on the number of self-proclaimed social media “gurus,” “ninjas,” “masters” and “mavens” on Twitter. Why? Well, it seems like an important metric, an indicator of something.