Facebook Timeline Arrives with a Ticking Clock

Facebook unveiled their new Timeline design back in September but since then, it’s only been available to a section of users. Now, Timeline is ready for mass consumption.

As of right now, you can change your Facebook profile to the Timeline style, but once you click the button, the countdown clock begins. Facebook is giving users up to 7 days to review the Timeline layout and make changes before it goes public.

When I first saw the 7-day notation, I thought, so what? That’s plenty of time to erase any incidents you don’t want to revisit. Or not. Zack at ZDnet said it took him four days of tedious work to clean up his timeline. He probably has a lot more on his Facebook than most, but it’s still an indicator of where this is headed. . . into trouble.

LinkedIn Adds Polls to Groups

LinkedIn is:

a. my favorite social network

b. a vital business resource

c. just another time waster

If we were on LinkedIn right now, you could choose your answer and see a nifty bar graph showing how off the mark you are compared to those around you.

Polls have come to LinkedIn groups! Here’s an example straight from their company blog:

Is it me or is this a weird example? Kind of like asking what day does Christmas fall on just to see how many people get it wrong?

All mocking aside, polls are a great way to get information from your community. People love polls and are more likely to spend a second clicking on a choice than writing a comment. The poll feature allows for instant sharing on Twitter, it has a “like” option and a place for additional comments for the voters who want to solidify their position.

Google+ Upgrades Hangout with Recording and More

Google+’s multi-person, webchat tool, Hangout, just got pushed to the front of the line, with a variety of new features that make it more prominent and useful.

The biggest boost for marketers is the upgrade to the Hangout On Air system. On Air allows a person or brand to livestream a performance, chat or presentation to a large number of people. Right now, the service is only available to a select group of celebs like The Muppets and the Dalai Lama but it’s slowly rolling out to others with a large following.

With the new upgrade, broadcasting On Air will be completely self-service and it will have a record option thanks to YouTube. Press the record button when the livestream is underway and a recording will automatically be uploaded to your account.

Almost Half of All Adults Say Couponing is a Thrill

When you offer a coupon for a product, you know you’re helping consumers save money. But did you know you’re also giving them a thrill?

A new survey by CouponCabin.com shows that 49% of US Adults felt a thrill or a rush when using a coupon. The survey doesn’t elaborate on why but from personal experience I can say that watching the numbers drop on the cash register is akin to seeing coins drop out of a slot machine. Kaching, kaching — that’s found money.

Retail Therapy

Shopping isn’t just a necessary evil, it’s also a source of fun, a reward, and a form of therapy. 53% of adults surveyed said they have “celebrated good news by buying something or going shopping for themselves.”

How to Recover from a Social Media Blunder

What do Gilbert Gottfried, Kenneth Cole and GoDaddy’s CEO Bob Parsons have in common?

They all made the 2011 list of Marketing’s Biggest Social Media Blunders. The list, which was put together by AdAge, details the worst missteps and mouth-offs from celebs and brands who are smart enough to know better.

In some cases, it was the brand who suffered the damage after an underling Tweeted without thinking, but sometimes it was the brand itself that messed up (we’re looking at you, Ragu.) And sometimes it was just living proof that the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

Google+ Invites You to Play ‘Find My Face’

Just in time for the holidays, Google+ has thrown the switch on facial recognition for photo tagging. Now, you won’t have to spend hours identifying all those relatives who you won’t see again until next year — Google+ will do it for you.

Matt Steiner, the engineering lead on Google+ photos, announced the new feature a few days ago on his wall. They call the tool ‘Find My Face,’ which is both childlike and creepy. Like a game of Where’s Waldo, only you’re Waldo.

It’s an opt-in program that you switch on and off from your profile settings. Even after you turn it on, the tool still asks for your approval before it tags photos with your name. So, yes, you can avoid being associated with the karaoke crew at the office Christmas party.

Majority of Moms Are Influenced by Blogger Reviews

A couple of days ago, we were discussing book bloggers, reviews and their place in modern marketing. Though blogging may not be as hot as it used to be, it sounds like blog reviews are still worth the time and money.

Fleishman-Hillard and ModernMom.com, surveyed 700 mothers in regard to their online brand interactions.

Overall, the moms said that social media was changing the way they shopped both online and off because it made them better informed about products, deals and coupons.

Where are moms getting all of this info? 84% said they subscribe to brands on Facebook, but 69% said they’re getting branded info from blogs. Online communities came in a close third at 63% and Twitter fell short of the majority with only 48%.