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Facebook testing paid status update highlights

Facebook may have a long way to go in proving that it can monetize its rapidly growing mobile audience, but with its IPO just days away, the company is making it clear that it has plenty of options for generating revenue.

Case in point: the world's largest social network is experimenting with a "Highlight" option that allows users to pay for a status update that may be more widely distributed and seen for a longer period of time.


Is SEO a science?

Is SEO a science? Yes, says Mike Baxter, Lead Consultant on Econsultancy's Digital Certificate in Search Engine Optimisation

Econsultancy recently launched the UK's first university accredited Digital Certificates, which focus on strengthening digital marketing skills for those looking to begin or develop their careers in this industry. 

Here, Mike discusses the value of the certifcates, and explains why SEO is a science, not an art...


Harry Potter is coming to Amazon, the Kindle

The Harry Potter series is one of the most popular series of books ever written, but if you're looking for your fix of wizardry, you'll have to put your Kindle down.

That's because Harry Potter's author, J.K. Rowling, has refused to sell her books in digital format directly through companies like Amazon.


Google+ brand pages seeing adoption, engagement growth: report

The future of Google's greatest social networking effort to date, Google+, may be debatable, but the search giant hasn't found it very difficult to lure brands to Google+.

And for good reason: Google+ has been Google's most respectable social effort to date and brands have learned that getting on board services before they get big is often a far better strategy than waiting until it's too late.


How to survive the transition to digital direct response

The social media revolution was an over-hyped lie. Digital marketing is forcing marketing communications to evolve, not re-invent itself.

Mass media ideas that aren't working anymore (like branding) are winding down as "what works" is becoming increasingly evident: direct response marketing. Like it or not, whether you're a small business owner or a brand manager, surviving this evolution means embracing and practicing traditional direct response marketing.


Facebook changes send social reader apps into a nosedive

A couple of months ago, Tanya Cordrey, the director of digital development for the Guardian, made a statement that raised some eyebrows. "It’s only a matter of time until social overtakes search for the Guardian," she told attendees at the Guardian Changing Media Submit.

The impetus for that comment was the Guardian's Facebook app, which enables Facebook users to share the articles they read on with their Facebook friends.


Twitter showdown: Ford vs General Motors

As the newest Fortune 500 list came out this morning, we've pulled two of the top 10 to be today's competitors in our Twitter showdown: General Motors (ranking 5th on the list) and Ford (who came in 9th). 

Everyone knows how passionate people are about their cars but will their standings on the Fortune 500 reflect how they are doing in the social space? Let's find out.

screen convergence

How many screens are there really?

The number of screens we interact with depends on who you ask. While we, as marketers, would like to think tablets have already replaced couch laptops, the reality is that consumers today are more likely to be looking at their smartphones while watching TV. 

Mobile devices may very well be the third or fourth screen, but that is assuming TV is the first one, and that assumption may be more wrong than right as screens converge and content follows.

In that context, it is difficult to develop proper multiscreen strategies, when ordinal numbering doesn't necessarily help us identify which specific device is being used by consumers and, most importantly, what is their current state of mind.

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Zynga brings brands to Draw Something

When Zynga shelled out $200m for OMGPOP, the maker of Draw Something, the social gaming giant was buying what was, at the time, the owner of the hottest mobile game in the world.

But despite its popularity and the fact that it was generating hundreds of thousands of dollars each day in revenue, the steep price Zynga paid for a company that was once on the brink of failure naturally raised questions about whether it overpaid.


The cloud: where your games go to die?

For consumers, the cloud's appeal is hard-to-resist.

From music to documents to applications, and everything in between, the ability to access our 'stuff' anywhere we go on any device is an extremely attractive proposition.

Until it isn't.

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Facebook Edgerank: what marketers need to know

It's been nine months since I wrote the original Ultimate Guide to the Facebook Edgerank Algorithm. I was amazed to see the reaction to the piece.

It clearly seemed to strike a chord as it went on to be the most popular guest post on Econsultancy in 2012.

But a lot has changed since then in the world of Facebook. As I'm currently putting together a presentation for the upcoming Econsultancy Digital Shorts event in Manchester on Edgerank and other social algorithms, now seemed the perfect time to revisit the piece to update and expand it.


Yahoo launches dashboard for small businesses

Yahoo may be putting 50 of its properties on the chopping block as new CEO Scott Thompson looks to make the once-dominant internet portal a little leaner and more nimble, but apparently small businesses are important enough to Yahoo that it will create new products.

Today, Yahoo did just that by launching an online dashboard designed specifically for small businesses.