A quick survey of Hitwise’s list of top UK online retailers shows that adoption of social media is patchy to say the least. The recent hype around Twitter and Facebook has clearly caught their attention with 69% and 50% respectively having a profile.
However, a measly 31% use blogging and social bookmarking and, surprisingly, only 25% use product reviews. Even when social media is being used, it is not always obvious. Debenhams, for example, has a blog, Twitterand Facebook page, not that you would know that from their homepage.
The convergence of the television and the web has been promised for more than a decade now. Anyone remember Microsoft's acquisition of WebTV in 1997?
There were good reasons at the time to see the potential of a marriage between the internet and the TV, and there still are. Like a lot of predictions, however, this one was a bit premature. But is now the time?
Starbucks has invested a lot in social media. From Twitter to Facebook to its own MyStarbucksIdea.com, Starbucks has a highly-visible social media footprint. And highly-visible results: over half a million followers on Twitter and more than 5m fans on Facebook.
Given its social media prowess, if any brand is capable of turning away from traditional marketing channels and reaching out to consumers online, it's Starbucks. And that's exactly what it's doing this holiday season.
Salesforce.com built a billion-dollar company by allowing companies to ditch their CRM software and bringing CRM to the cloud. Now it has its sights set on perhaps an even bigger feat: bringing social media to the enterprise.
Yesterday, the company announced that it will be launching a new service called Salesforce Chatter in 2010. Think of it as Facebook for the enterprise: a social networking service for companies with an application platform to boot.
Green Thing is a non-profit public service that aims to inspire people to lead a greener life.
Founder Andy Hobsbawm and CEO James Alexander will both be speaking at Econsultancy's Online Marketing Masterclasses event tomorrow. (There are currently a few places left...)
I've been asking Andy and James about Green Thing's approach to marketing and social media...
Rage is a common response when social media sites make minor tweaks to their services, and characteristically, Twitter's new retweet change is causing lots of outrage from users (Gawker headlined its post "Re-Tweet Redesign Helps the Rich Get Richer on Twitter").
Trying to solve some of the issues surrounding the "RT" functionality, Twitter has done away with it completely in favor of reposting a tweet from the original twitterer, with a link to the person who retweeted it (an example is above).
There are some drawbacks to the new approach, but helps Twitter do two things that will become increasingly important to its business model: track tweets and make them more reliable for professional users.
Razorfish has released its annual study into consumer behavior online and this year's results have a lot to do with social media. According to Feed: The Razorfish Digital Brand Experience Report, many consumers are engaging with brands online to receive exclusive promotions or discounts.
The study also found that people who actively engage with a brand
digitally — from participating in a contest to downloading a mobile
application — are substantially more inclined to purchase and recommend
that brand to others.
The question for brands is how to create digital events that impress consumers. Because negative experiences online have a bad influence on the bottom line for brands.
Want to break into Hollywood? Try breaking into Twitter first. Just ask 28 year-old Justin Halpern and he'll tell you: Twitter can be your golden ticket.
On August 3, Halpern set up an account, @shitmydadsays. The purpose: share some of his 73 year-old dad's wisdom with the world. You see, Halpern had just moved back in with the folks and figured that some of the things his dad told him might be worth rebroadcasting on Twitter. Turns out he was right: @shitmydadsays now has over 700,000 followers.
When it comes to launching a business model, Twitter has been as slow as molasses. Co-founders Ev Williams and Biz Stone are always quick to point out that their focus right now is on the product, not on making money.
One of the potential business models that has been discussed: brand management tools and data access for brands. But what happens if Twitter takes too long and third parties take over the market?
Marks & Spencer's online strategy has gone through a variety of changes in recent months. As well as revamping their main website, the British retail giant has embraced social media by incorporating ratings and reviews into their website, and using Facebook and Twitter to join the conversation and better engage with customers.
It is encouraging to see a major brand like M&S experimenting with new online channels. By incorporating social media into their strategy, Marks & Spencer has enhanced its ability to respond to customers. Additionally, the brand is better placed to manage their online reputation more effectively.
At a recent iCrossing social media briefing, I asked Business Development Manager, Sienne Veit about the changes that Marks & Spencer has implemented and the impact of social media on the brand.