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I’m about to move house. Which, as is usual, has involved a painful bank transfer and a lot of paperwork.
One of the steps of self-imposed due diligence I did was to check my credit file. Everything was fine, I had a credit score in the region I expected / hoped and that was the end of it. Contracts done. Property secured.
It got me thinking, though. That one little number is very powerful but, given today’s focus on big data, actually very simplistic in its nature.
For something that can dictate major elements of your life (such as helping the bank decide whether or not you are ‘fit’ to buy a home), the process by which the three main credit reference agencies (Equifax, Experian and Callcredit in the UK) apply a sweeping judgement feels flawed.
I wondered if, instead, social data could provide a more accurate picture of people.
A recent Gartner press release suggested a major change in the way we might interact with ecommerce in within the next few years. Their prediction is that by 2015 fully half of retail customer identities will be based on social network identities. The report’s main thrust is on the impact of this shift on IT and security infrastructure, but what is much more interesting is the potential for a more direct connection between purchase and social identity.
The logic behind this potential growth is the frictionless “log-in with Facebook or twitter” option that allows customers to skip the laborious sign up or registration process. But the obvious question that arises is: What happens when social identity becomes purchaser identity? When you consider the potential meshing of purchase data with social data there appears to be a huge opportunity here for e-commerce sites to improve sales and build loyalty.
Social media attribution is BIG news.
Marketers are struggling to attribute revenue to social channels, and lack of definable ROI is one of the major reasons that businesses cut back on social investment.
I spend a lot of time looking at our own social attribution, but it strikes me that in many cases, the closer I look, the less clear a picture I have.
This isn’t because the figures I have to work with aren’t clear.
It’s because, in a lot of cases, they might not be true...
Much of the attention lavished on social networks as marketing platforms focuses in on large brands, many of which have invested heavily in these channels and can boast about large audiences.
One of the most popular social networks with brands has been Twitter, which is now generating hundreds of millions of dollars a year in ad revenue and may go public in the next year.
Despite the huge attention lavished on social media, it still accounts for only a fraction of the traffic and leads for US B2B websites according to a new report from Optify.
Overall, social accounts for 1.9% of traffic compared to 41% for organic search, however there is potential for it to become a more important and effective channel.
This is a topic we touched on recently in a post about how to use social media to widen your sphere of influence in B2B and in an infographic looking at how B2B companies are currently using social.
Optify’s report found that companies that actively manage social media campaigns (as measured by companies who had more than one lead from social or more than 10 visits per month) have seen comparatively high conversion and engagement rates.
Last year, Facebook went public in what was one of the most highly-anticipated and, as it turned out, disastrous IPOs of all time. In the past several months, the world's largest social network has managed to convince Wall Street that it will eventually monetize its billion-plus users.
That's good news for the number two social network, Twitter. Last week, reports surfaced that global investment powerhouse BlackRock is reportedly looking to buy $80m of Twitter shares from early employees, and some believe that the company will look to go public as soon as this year.
In a surprising move, it appears LinkedIn has plans to turn off its 'Answers' Q&A section at the end of January.
The official word is that "As of Jan. 31, LinkedIn Answers will be retired from LinkedIn. We will be focusing our efforts on the development of new and more engaging ways to share and discuss professional topics across LinkedIn" (some users have received emails to this effect, although so far there's little on LinkedIn's official blog about the move).
It appears that LinkedIn will be using this change to drive more engagement around groups and pages, but is this really a good thing?
2013 is the year of content marketing, and that means an increase on eye strain and inbox space for the editorial team here.
As Econsultancy's Content Marketing Executive, I schedule and source content from contributors that might align well with our reports, and there are a few things I'd like to highlight as tips for both PRs and journalists working with Econsultancy.
This includes what we do and do not cover on the blog, and pitching best practice outlined below.
A new report into the use of social media among the UK’s top 50 tech companies has found that while usage has increased since 2011, engagement levels have actually fallen.
EML Wildfire’s study found that LinkedIn proved to be the most popular social network, with 98% of companies in the study having registered an account, compared to 82% on Twitter and 68% on Facebook.
Interestingly, Facebook usage has actually dropped slightly from 70% in 2011 and would have fallen further had it not been for B2B businesses.
In the 2010 and 2011 reports 100% of B2C companies used Facebook, however this fell to 83% in 2012, while B2B usage increased from 32% in 2010 to 65% this year.
Words are the most important tool marketers and ad men have. To prove it, I’ll show you a picture.
The chart beneath the Bee Gees shows that 60% of people prefer a ‘print experience’ to something ‘whizzy’, on a tablet app.
Obviously, 'print-like' doesn't just mean words, it also refers to typography and, to some extent, pictures. However, in this post I'll be focusing on copywriting, on an achingly small scale.
I'll be highlighting titbits of copy that are done well, in keeping with a company's brand, and make a web experience enjoyable, as well as some that aren't so good.
In the spirit of new media, I’m calling this ‘micro-copy’. And, to the dismay of the A/B testers, I’ll posit that some of my examples are qualitatively ‘better’ than others.
Facebook, may not yet be an expert source for advice on consumer internet monetization, but when the world's largest social network talks technology, the industry listens.
So when Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg suggested that his company made a mistake in betting on HTML5 and decided to rebuild the Facebook iOS app in response to user criticism about poor experience and performance, a lot of people took note.
There are loads of ways to stand out on social media platforms, but frankly nothing beats due diligence and knowing what the hell you’re doing does it?
I spend a lot of time monitoring all of Econsultancy’s social feeds, and there are a number of small mistakes that I see pop up regularly.
They’re all easy to remedy and fixing them will make your social posts look cleaner, tidier and all-round more professional.
With that in mind, here’s one tip for each of the major platforms that you can use every single day...