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B2B Buyers Dig Social Media

A new report from Forrester Research, outlined by Groundswell, takes a look at how B2B buyers interact with social media—and by and large, they’re more engaged than their average peers.

The report breaks down the use of social media by Social Technographic role by type of social media involvement (types explained in this PPT):

forrester
The “Overall” column indicates what percentage of those surveyed fell into that type of social media activity. Note that, obviously, there is overlap between roles—Creators, who generate online content, can also be Critics, who leave blog comments, etc.

Takeaways here:

  • 91% of these decision-makers consume social media including blogs, video, and customer reviews.
  • 69% of Spectators use social media for business purposes.
  • 55% of the B2B buyers in this survey are Joiners—they’ve created profiles on social networks.

Social Media Changes Brains

You may have thought that the headline should read “Social Media Changes Minds” because of all the brain-picturewonderful things that social media adds to our lives (I’ll let you determine what wonderful things it does for you). But across the pond there’s concern that social media is actually changing the brains of young users. Of course, this story wouldn’t be any fun if it was simply saying that the kids are getting smarter and smarter because of endless hours in front of a screen while forming ‘relationships’ (more on this one later). Au contraire! Apparently the brains of young folks are, in effect, being rewired by these kinds of interactions and this rewiring is not a positive thing.

I Tweet, Therefore I Am

Deep inside the confines of the Beal household, my wife and I often debate what motivates us–and others–to share so much of our private lives on Twitter.

We discuss the notion of being significant with each Tweet, and often joke about those that seem to Tweet as if their very life depended on submitting 140 characters every 5 minutes (sounds like an episode of LOST!).

After reading the Times Online, it seems that there’s some scientific foundation to our light-hearted conversations:

The clinical psychologist Oliver James has his reservations. “Twittering stems from a lack of identity. It’s a constant update of who you are, what you are, where you are. Nobody would Twitter if they had a strong sense of identity.”

Yelp Extortion: True or False?

yelpWe’ve heard it all before: a shady review site features negative reviews of your company, but (glory be!) they’ll remove them—for a price. It’s more of the same old song this week, but in a different key review site: Yelp. But they’re not taking the allegations lying down.

In a lengthy article generated from a series of interviews with local business owners (all with 3+ star reviews on Yelp), the (Emeryville, CA) East Bay Express levels some serious allegations against the local review site—offering to push negative reviews down on the page for a few hundred dollars, offering to remove negative reviews completely, moving up negative reviews for businesses that declined to use their local advertising.

Facebook, Twitter and Intentions

facebook2This has been an interesting week in social media for sure. Most of the news has been generated around Facebook and deservedly so (I guess). So to close the week it’s only fitting that this story compares Facebook (in my opinion the new F-word) and Twitter. Over at Venture Beat the comparison of these two social media forces reads like the David and Goliath story.

twitter-logoHere’s the gist. According to Compete data from January Facebook had 68 million unique visitors while Twitter clocked in at less than 10% of that (6 million). Those numbers are pretty disparate for sure. What seems to be happening though is that Twitter gets an inordinate amount of press coverage compared to Facebook and the speculation begins.

Facebook’s First Offsite Widget: Comment Box

fconnectesFirst announced in May, Facebook Connect ports your Facebook data to other sites—or, in other words, it’s a way to let visitors to your site comment with through their Facebook profiles. Facebook reported yesterday that over 6000 sites have signed on for Connect.

Facebook also announced its first offsite widget in conjunction with Facebook Connect: the Comments Box. To this point, Connect featured several plugins to extend its capabilities, but this is its first full widget.

fconnectcommentsboxAny guesses what the Comments Box is for? No? FB explains:

The Comments Box is a great way for any website, blog or photo gallery to add social comments to their page in just a minute with a few lines of code.

So if you always wanted your website to look like your Wall, you’re in luck.

Social Media and Sacrifice

Facebook has had quite a week. If it is true that there is no such thing as bad publicity then this week has been a social-media-collagewindfall for the social networking giant. I have even read some conspiracy theorists who believe that the whole terms of service ‘incident’ was intended. I’m not sure I can go there but to be honest it does make some sense. The amount of new traffic and new visitors compared to those who may have de-Facebooked themselves is probably significant. Many fence sitters may have gotten curious enough to finally check it out while those who left had grown weary of it in the first place. It’s the classic case of so many theories and so little time.