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With 300 million users, Instagram adds celeb verification and fights off spam

Instagram 300 millionInstagram, that photo sharing app that everyone thought was something only teens would use, just hit 300 million users.

The app launched back in 2010 and was bought by Facebook in 2012. That was a move that nearly scared all the trendy posters away but they stayed and the app continued to grow. 100 million in 2013, 200 million earlier this year and now 300 million. Not sure if they’re breaking any records for growth but it’s truly amazing.

With great popularity comes great responsibility. Instagram plans to do “everything possible to keep Instagram free from the fake and spammy accounts that plague much of the web.”

Since there are a lot of celebrities on Instagram, they’re finally installing a verified badge system.

The silent social majority: what social media analytics don’t tell you

If you’re getting flack over the lack of engagement on your company Facebook page, here’s a fact that you can use to fight back. 90% of social media engagement comes from only 30% of your social media audience.

I even have a graphic from Vision Critical to back it up.

visioncritcial volumeVision Critical’s new report “What Social Media Analytics Can’t Tell You” tells us that there are a lot of lurkers out there who aren’t being counted. For the report, they surveyed the followers of three companies —a major motion picture studio, a renowned broadcasting company and a cross-category apparel brand. What they found was that a whopping 52% of Facebook followers on those accounts were lurkers — people who post once a week or less. 19% were dabblers posting 2 to 4 times a week.

FOBO (Fear of Being Offline) is real for teens around the world

mmXr7ocThis past weekend, I took a rare, almost two day vacation from the internet. I knew I’d only be away from home for less than 48 hours but I still brought my iPad (I convinced myself it was for the games) and my husband thought about bringing his laptop, too.

One night in the hotel, I said. And we’d have to pay for WiFi, so let’s forget it and take a break from the email and the internet. It wasn’t easy and we didn’t make it. By Sunday morning, my husband was begging the desk clerk for the WiFi password so he could check out eBay sales and I could look up thrift shops. The only reason I wasn’t jonesing was because I had my cell phone and 3G service. Yes – I cheated, too.

Internet advertising to grow 15 percent, with display taking the lead

A new forecast from ZenithOptimedia tells us that global ad spend is likely to top $545 billion dollars in 2015. That may sound like a reason to celebrate but it’s actually a slight step down in growth compared to 2014. (4.9% in 2015 vs 5.1% in 2014)

ZenithOptimedia Growth Adspend 2014

Part of the reason for the decrease in the increase is the lack of large, global events in 2015. In 2014, advertisers took advantage of the huge audience that tuned in to follow the Winter Olympics and the World Cup but 2015 is going to be a quiet year. That’s good, we need the time to rest up because 2016 is going to be a wild one with the Summer Olympics, the UEFA European Football Championship and the US Presidential elections. Wow. The news media is going to have to hire a lot of extra help.

You know that Facebook post from last week, now you can find it again

facebook search cardsYou know that Facebook post you saw last week, the one with the great recipe for chocolate chip cookies? The one you’d like to find again because now you have to make cookies for a swap at work? Guess what, you can now locate that post using only a keyword. . . .well, you will be able to sometime in the coming week if you’re using Facebook on a desktop or an iOS device.

2 years ago, Facebook upgraded their search filters to include relationship and location filters; pizza places in Burbank, movies my friends like, people I went to high school with who still live in the same neighborhood. . . .

Are you making these 5 social media mistakes in your business?

Bianchipr Auto SuppliersSocial media can be a very effect marketing tool for every type of business but people underestimate the amount of thought and effort it takes to do social correctly.

Bianchi PR, a firm that specializes in automotive suppliers, studied the social media efforts of their top clients and found that there was plenty of room for improvement.

James A. Bianchi, firm president said,

“Auto suppliers – like many other business-to-business sectors – are using social media, but most of them are way behind consumer-oriented sectors in terms of strategy, content and engagement. Every supplier I’ve talked with is intensely curious about how his or her company compares with peers and what they can do to boost engagement.”

If you’re not in the automotive biz, keep reading anyway; these are tips everyone can use.

New report sheds light on the dark side of social sharing

Radium One Dark SharingOnline sharing has a dark side. It’s covert, silent and it’s almost completely untraceable. It’s also a good thing. Dark Social is any kind of inbound traffic that can’t be accounted for. This usually happens because the sharer copied and pasted a link from public point A to private point B such as on a forum, instant message, text message, email or chat.

Radium One just published the results of their survey on the subject called ‘The Light and Dark of Social Sharing – Harnessing the Power of Consumer Connections’

They discovered that 91% of consumers regularly use Dark Social channels in addition to traditional social sharing. 27% of consumers said they only share through dark channels with the percentage rising along with the average age. 46% of those over 55 use only Dark Social vs 19% of those under 35.