Is the @ symbol hurting Twitter? The social network tries to do without

the-at-signTwitter may have 230 million monthly active users but new users aren’t signing up as fast as they used to – that’s a fact everyone agrees on. Why the slow down and how to fix it are two points no one can agree on and it’s got to be making Twitter’s head honchos very nervous.

One thing that comes up again and again is that the average person doesn’t understand Twitter. At a glance, it seems like a massive list of unrelated thoughts with a heavy dose of text speak and random symbols. To solve this problem, Twitter is working on becoming more Facebook. . . I mean. . mainstream. That might include removing the ‘@’ option and the hashtag so the site looks less intimating to the uninformed user.

Multidevice users consumer 7 hours of media in 5 hours a day

millwardbrown multiscreenAccording to a new study by Millward Brown, multidevice users manage to consumer 7 hours of media in 5 hours a day. That’s pretty nifty. I’m always wishing for an extra hour or two and now I know how to get it. All I have to do is work on my iPad while I watch TV on the DVR, while chatting with friends on my smartphone.

When you look at this from a global perspective, the smartphone is doing most of the heavy lifting with an average of 2.5 hours spent daily. In the early evening, smartphones drop off slightly as people switch over to laptops then tablets. By 8pm, TV usages spikes then drops off sharply after 11pm. So much for the late, late, show.

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Twitter adds one-touch ad videos to the mobile feed

IMG_0335Hey, Mr. Marketer. Big piece of news that you can use – people love to watch videos. Especially short, funny or exciting videos on their mobile devices. What they don’t like is having to click a bunch of times because clicking is boring.

Twitter’s got you covered. They just began testing a feature that puts the video clip right in the timeline so all the user has to do is click once. I’ve posted an example for you from my iPhone. I don’t follow basketball, but I navigated to the NBA Twitter account and I found a whole bunch of these mini-videos. I clicked, the screen faded to black and then the clip began to play. It was fast and clean and enjoyable. I would have enjoyed it more if it was a hockey clip but it is what it is.

Mobile ad spending growth peaked in 2012, Google losing ground to Facebook

Sure, most people will look at the new predictions from eMarketer and see a “half full” scenario for mobile advertising spending.

That doesn’t make for interesting headlines. ;-)

What jumped out for me was the fact that mobile ad spending growth seems to have peaked. Not surprising, as any market eventually grows large enough that it can no longer support meteoric growth rates. After 120% and 105% growth rates over the past couple of years, mobile ad spending will grow a “paltry” 75% this year.

2014 Mobile Ad Spend

Perhaps the most important stat to watch is Facebook’s growth at the apparent expense of Google.

2014 Mobile Ad Share

Also noteworthy, just how far Twitter is behind Facebook. Really Twitter? Just 0.2% uptick for 2014? Ouch!

Do you like to watch (video)? Your customers do!

Take a mental picture of your current website in your head. Can you picture it? Do you see your headlines, and text and bullet points and all of those things?

Now, imagine your potential customer visiting your website for the first time and seeing all of those same things. What do you think they’re going to do? It’s probably going to be something like this.

1. Read headline. If headline grabs attention, then…

2. Move on to read first sentence. If first sentence begins to explain what problems you solve for them, then they read on…

3. At this point they are more than likely skipping…

WAIT A MINUTE! STOP RIGHT HERE!

Why are we making a text blog post about how people like to watch videos? Let’s do this in video. Watch below.

Judge throws out Gmail privacy case and it’s another legal victory for Google

cat peeringGoogle’s lawyers are taking a vacation next week now that two big lawsuits are off the table. Yesterday, Google settled a 7-year lawsuit with Viacom over copyright issues. Today, a judge tossed out a class action suit involving privacy and Gmail.

Privacy and Gmail, you say? Excuse me while I throw a Jumbo Shrimp on the barbie.

The issue stems from Gmails habit of scanning your mail in order to send targeted advertising. . . I mean. . . protect you from spam. Gmail users said that this was an invasion of privacy so a small group tried to file a class action suit on behalf of a larger body of users.

According to Bloomberg, a win could have resulted in damages of $100 a day per person for violating federal wiretap law.

YouTube calms angry vidders with new tweaks in Content ID process

content idThis past December, YouTube flipped a switch that instantly caused havoc with anyone trying to make a better living through video. The change caused their Content ID system to go on an aggressive rampage which left a huge pile of (erroneous?) copyright violation take-down notices in its wake.

Gaming videos were particularly hard hit, including those that were part of sanctioned channels – in other words, people who were given specific permission to do what they do, were slapped for doing what they do. Since removing every potential violation would have left YouTube looking like the shelves the day after the day after Christmas, they resorted to simply removing the monetization option.