Facebook Updates News Feed Algorithm to Show More Relevant Ads

facebook news feed relevancePutting your ad in front of thousands of Facebook users sounds like a nice way to boost your biz. But what if everyone who sees your ad lives on the West Coast and you sell flowers in Boston?

Facebook’s updated News Feed algorithm should help with that.

I give Facebook a hard time, but they have a tough job balancing the needs of the marketers with the needs of the users. They have to accept enough ads to keep the profits rolling in but not so many that users get annoyed and leave.

They also have to deliver an experience that results in a good return on investment for marketers while at the same time appealing to the interests of the user.

Promoted Pins Coming to Pinterest

Pinterest LogoHey, you knew it couldn’t last forever, right?

No social media player worth its salt can keep going without generating revenue via some form of advertising / promotion and it looks like Pinterest is no different.

In a post on the Pinterest blog, CEO and Co-founder, Ben Silbermann, promises that these pins being promoted from certain businesses don’t announce a new ad littered Pinterest experience. Obviously, the folks at Pinterest are expecting a little backlash and are doing what they can to nip it in the bud.

I know some of you may be thinking, “Oh great…here come the banner ads.” But we’re determined to not let that happen. While we haven’t figured out all the details, I can say that promoted pins will be:

Enjoy Your Ad Free Instagram While You Can

facebook-icon 1 Instagram is owned by Facebook.

Based on that fact alone, did you think it would be ad free forever? If you did I have some ocean front property in Kansas you need to give me a check for right now.

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal you can expect your ad free Instagram experience should expire within a year or so if all goes as planned. We learn from the article that a Ms. Emily White will be one of the pivotal players in this change.

As director of business operations, the 35-year-old Ms. White effectively is the new chief operating officer of Instagram, the point person charged with turning a billion-dollar acquisition that has never made a cent into a real business. Mr. Systrom, co-founder of Instagram, still makes the ultimate decisions, but it is Ms. White who is responsible for courting brand marketers and laying the foundation for advertising.

Acxiom Hands Over the Controls to Consumers’ Data to …….. Consumers

aboutdata-hed-2013Call this move whatever you want (and most are calling it a move to get out in front of regulators which isn’t exactly altruistic but hey) one of the world’s largest data brokers, Acxiom, has created a site that allows consumers to find out what data they have on them.

I haven’t checked it out but the idea is certainly not one you would expect. Or would you? Adweek reports

Hoping to keep regulators at bay, Acxiom, one of the world’s largest data brokers, today launched a portal that shows consumers the data that the company has on them and lets them make changes or opt out.

Facebook Data Use Policy Updated and Facial Recognition Gets Bigger

facebook-icon 1OK, let’s review.

Facebook is free to users. As a result users are implicitly giving permission to Facebook to do whatever it needs to with a user’s data. Because the service is free users really can’t complain even though they do vehemently on a regular basis about any and everything the service does.

Having established these ‘facts’, we can now look at the new changes to the Data Use Policy (once referred to as the Privacy Policy but that implied there was privacy so the name has been changed) and commence griping.

The Washington Post reports

Get Ready for the Tweet and Shop Twitter of Tomorrow

twitter logoTwitter is making major strides toward becoming an ecommerce powerhouse as they hired their first Head of Commerce, Nathan Hubbard. Hubbard is the former CEO of Ticketmaster and he is now charged with turning Twitter into an ecommerce player. Bloomberg reports

“We’re going to go to people who have stuff to sell and help them use Twitter to sell it more effectively,” Hubbard said in an interview. “One of the hallmarks of Twitter’s entire approach has been partnering. We’re going to take the same approach with owners of physical and digital goods.”

That’s all well and good but it was the next line in the Bloomberg article that really got my attention.

Hubbard, a Princeton University graduate with a masters in business administration from Stanford University, was formerly a touring and recording artist, and has released five albums.

B2B’s Love Social Media But Can’t Get Too Specific As to Why

Call it a gut feeling that B2B marketers feel strongly that social media is good for their business. Why a gut feeling? Well, according to a report published by eMarketer (available for their subscribers only) there is plenty of ‘feel good’ around the social marketing channel but B2B marketers are still having a rough go directly attributing social to critical business metrics.

In an article eMarketer says

B2B marketers know intuitively and anecdotally that social media brings them good leads. But when it comes to proving that social marketing shortens the sales cycle and delivers revenue, things get hazy. According to a new eMarketer report, “B2B Social Media Lead Generation: Best Practices for 2013,” B2Bs still haven’t found a proven formula for exactly how social helps close a sale.