Twitter? What’s a Twitter?

JoePaEveryone and their grandfather is at least trying to talk about Twitter these days. Or are they? While it’s not fair to use an iconic 82 year old college football coach as the pulse of nation regarding social media, Penn State coach Joe Paterno did make this statement at a press conference that should make you chuckle

“You guys have to talk about something. The fans have to put something on those — what do you guys call those things, Twittle-do, Twittle-dee?”

I bet that his incoming freshmen at Penn State know what Twitter is. What about the rest of the folks though? Last week, Biz Stone admitted that while there is a ton of buzz around the service it has not done a good job of getting people from awareness to engagement.

Microhoo Cares Already!

MicrohooJust so you are prepared, this post is entirely speculation and conjecture based on my following the Microsoft and Yahoo “drama” that has been unfolding over the past century or so. As you may guess from the title, I have had enough. Either make it happen or don’t. Put us out of our misery here.

Think about it. If it takes this long for these two entities to figure out if they can tolerate each other then what will it look like when they live together for real? This whole thing is starting to feel like a marriage that everyone mutters under his or her breath, “I give this one 2 miserable years max”. Couple that general feeling with what is probably a remarkably complex corporate prenuptial agreement and you have a recipe for cordial roommates at best and a complete train wreck at worst.

Google on Short End of Current AOL Valuation

AOL logoJust four years ago Google made a big splash in the Internet space by buying a 5% stake in AOL for $1 billion. Do the math and that placed the valuation of the company at around $20 billion. The fall of AOL from an Internet powerhouse to a “will they ever be influential again?” story is one that Google now knows all to well. Bloomberg reports today that on July 8th Time Warner bought that 5% share back from Google for $273 million. The valuation of AOL is now placed at $5.66 billion. What a difference a few years makes, huh?

Google wrote off $726 million of that investment last year so the pain of the misstep is mostly in the past. It doesn’t mean that it doesn’t sting, however.

Martha Stewart Living for Twitter Not Facebook

Martha StewartIt’s official. Stop the presses. No longer can there be any banter back and forth about the merits of Facebook and Twitter. Your opinions are no longer valid regardless of who you are because Martha Stewart has made up your mind for you. Twitter is the way to go because Facebook is “dippy”. That’s right, dippy. Looks like the folks at Facebook should just fold up their tents and leave the social media camping area because they are not favored by the Queen of All Things Comfortable.

Ok, that was really sarcastic but there may be a little bit of a sting in this proclamation as reported at Mashable. It actually comes on the heels of Bill Gates, the King of All Things in General, stating that he couldn’t tell his real friends from his other ‘friends’ on Facebook. That’s two monsters of the media giving Facebook the thumbs down.

Chinese Search Giant Baidu Posts Gains

Baidu LogoBaidu is the search engine of choice for China, at least for now. PaidContent reports that the Chinese company is experiencing ‘Google-esque” success in the largest growth market online in the world. Meanwhile Google itself is in a rather unfamiliar position

According to Bernstein & Co., Baidu’s share of the Chinese search market increased to 64.5 percent from 62.3 percent during the quarter, while Google may have lost share.

Google and the Chinese government have had their issues in the past but that can’t hide the fact that the Chinese people have spoken and they choose Baidu. The company is reaping the rewards of this popularity by posting some percentage increases that Google used to experience on a regular basis.

Twitter Tries to Bridge the Gap Between Sign Up and Engagement

twitter-birdLet’s try something a little different as the focus goes to Twitter (yet again) and its impact on the free world’s ability to function properly. I have said on many occasions that regular users of Twitter are not the best people to be actually examining Twitter’s success or lack thereof. Why? Mainly because there seems to be this assumption that the rest of the world understands what Twitter is as well as social media ‘regulars’ do. The simple reality is that that kind of thinking is, how can I say this diplomatically….. stupid. The real fact of the matter is that most of the world is confused by Twitter. Fortunately, Biz and the boys (and girls) at Twitter are recognizing this fact and are taking steps to remedy the situation.

Introducing lGoogle (The L is for Lobbyist)

google-logoWe have talked on several occasions here at Marketing Pilgrim about Google’s Washington, DC connections. Some wonder if there is too much Google in the capitol while others just think it’s the normal course of big business. Either way you look at it there is no denying that Google is as much a part of the Beltway Bunch as Democrats and Republicans.

According to the Wall Street Journal Google spent $950,000 in the second quarter on lobbying efforts

The sum tops the $880,000 it spent in the first quarter and represents a 30% increase from the second quarter of 2008, when it spent $730,000.

While Google continues to raise its presence in Washington the money that they spend is still less than Microsoft ($1.9 million in Q2) and AT&T ($3.1 million in Q2).