Do the Big Brands Have an Advantage When it Comes to Social Media?

Social media is the great equalizer; Lady Gaga (VEGAS tonight, gambling and inappropriate attire to ensue ) Tweeting alongside Taylyr, the junior high school student with a band (:/ im in QUIET the awful state. im pretty sure i dont want to go to school in the morning). Facebook, where you can have updates from TV vampires right next to reminders from your mom. Age, race, socio-economic status, celeb or regular Joe — there are no barriers in social media.

So why is it that the big brands are dominating when it comes to social media marketing? That’s the question Brian Sheehan is asking over at AdAge.

YouTube Removes Time Limit for Some Users

YouTube made an interesting move this week that appears to be a portent of things to come. Only a few months after raising the maximum video time from ten minutes to fifteen, they’re now removing the cap completely — but only for the privileged few.

To see if your account has been selected, log in and click the upload button. Chances are you’re still stuck on fifteen but for how long?

In the past, limiting video time might have been related to bandwidth issues both on site and for the average user. But with faster processors and the switch from dial-up to cable, downloading and watching a fifteen minute video isn’t a problem for most users.

Google Still Rules as the Most Used Social Media Login

In an average day, I log-in to no less than twenty different websites. Some of these are blogs I work on. Some are communities I follow. Then there’s Amazon, eBay, Gmail, Facebook and Twitter.  Each place has its own username and password and some make me change my password on a regular basis. Firefox remembers most of them for me, thank heavens, but it’s not an exact science.

So in comes social media logins. These are the sites that allow you to bypass their own login system by using Facebook, Twitter, etc. At first glance, it seems like a great solution. You only have one front door key to your house, so why not one “key” for the entire internet. But which key?

Is it Time to Say Goodbye to Counting Clicks?

Click.

That’s the sound of another consumer moving from the webpage they’re on to your page via a display ad they found in the sidebar. Hooray!

Unfortunately, these days, the sound of the click, click, click is less of a tap dance and more like the lazy snap of a pleased beatnik. ComScore says that the average click rate on a display ad is 0.1%. Compare that to the average click rate on a paid search ad campaign (3.5%) and it’s easy to see why the digital intelligence company is calling for an end to counting clicks.

The Most Watched Videos and the Rise of the Video Ad Dollar

With only a few weeks left in 2010, it looks like the trailer for Twilight Eclipse will take the title of Most Viewed Video of the Year with more than 220,000,000 hits.

Every week, AdAge posts a list of the most popular viral videos. Since they’re primarily interesting in brand marketing, they don’t include movie trailer and game trailers because they’d take top numbers every time.  This week, however, they decided to switch it up and let the chips fall where they may.

Has Internet Marketing Made the Meet and Greet Obsolete?

There was a time when marketing men were like politicians. They had to shake hands and kiss babies, take district reps out for a lunch meeting and have dinner with the guy who could open up new territory but those days have gone the way of the piano lounge in the airplane. Now, we video conference with the reps, connect with customers by email and Facebook and use Linkedin to network with the guy who can help you open a store in Kansas.

Yeah for the internet! But Renee Huang of The Globe and Mail says that the internet is a poor substitute for the old fashioned meet and greet.

“Research in the business-to-business world suggests the No. 1 reason for selection of a supplier is the personality of the sales team or seller. This is above the technical specs, marketing form, anything else.”

Free Shipping is the Battle Cry This Holiday Season

Free shipping! Online retailers are shouting it from the rooftops and it could be the key to staying out of the red this holiday season. ComScore worked the numbers and discovered that unlike last year, the percentage of transactions with free shipping continued to rise after Black Friday. Last year, free shipping orders dropped to 45% late in November, but this year they climbed to 55.1%.

I do the majority of my holiday shopping online and I noticed this trend long before I saw this report. Nearly every online store I visited was offering free shipping on any size order. That’s not just a boon for people buying a whole sleigh full of presents from one retailer. A no threshold offer encourages people to buy small items that would have been too pricey with shipping included like a $5.00 pair of slippers from Kohls.