We Are Social's Monday Mashup #78


The News of the World and social media
The News of the World closed last week. Today’s Evening Standard has a good story (with some quotes from us) looking at the effect of brands pulling their advertising. For a more in depth look, we’ve covered the social media element of the story here.

Social media vital for revenue growth
Gartner’s latest report has one key takeaway point: by 2015, the 20% of enterprises employing social media beyond marketing will lead their industries in revenue growth. Boom.

Facebook’s link-up with Skype
The ‘something awesome’ which Mark Zuckerberg had hinted at turned out to be exactly what was rumoured – that Facebook has teamed up with Skype to introduce video chat directly within the browser. They’ve also created group chat on Facebook chat.

Google+ two weeks in
The big question for marketers is what are Google’s plans for brands within Google+. From all the information which has come from Google, it’s clear that brands are key to the project.

Christian Oestlien, who’s the lead product manager for social advertising at Google provided an answer:

How users communicate with each other is different from how they communicate with brands, and we want to create an optimal experience for both. We have a great team of engineers actively building an amazing Google+ experience for businesses, and we will have something to show the world later this year.

The business experience we are creating should far exceed the consumer profile in terms of its usefulness to businesses. We just ask for your patience while we build it.

In other words brands are welcome, they just need to wait a few months. In an interview with AdAge, he expanded on just how much brands are welcome – with Ford, MTV and Mashable said to be the first to create pages:

We want to include everything from small businesses to individual contractors all the way up to the largest brand names in the world. What we’re really looking for is companies that on the one hand have a real rich history of being active in the social sphere, brands that have strong, loyal audiences and are proactive and engaging and who want to spread it out a little more.

The user feedback so far suggests brands will be keen to get on board: over two thirds of users would leave Facebook for Google+ – and with the +1 button already more widespread than the ‘tweet’ button, the future looks positive for Google. How bright largely depends on the number of users it manages to pick up – brands will only spend money on it if it gets enough users. But as Robin pointed out in Marketing this week, Google’s biggest asset is its existing products: “if Google can link in usage behaviour from the social network with search data, that becomes very valuable”. The stock market agrees with this assessment – the value of Google has increased $20 billion since the launch of Google+.

New Twitter ad product
Twitter is to launch a new ad product called ‘Promoted Tweets to Followers’ by early August. The new product will allow brands which are already followed by users to feature more prominently in a user’s timeline – possibly at the top – for a longer period of time.

Facebook and LinkedIn block competitor extensions
Facebook and LinkedIn have both used their terms of service to block competitors who were trying to scrape data from their sites. Facebook blocked a Chrome Extension which made it easy to bring friends with you to Google+ and LinkedIn blocked a service which was using their Messages API to do recruitment off-site, with both of them bidding to protect their core product.

StumbleUpon drives more US web traffic than Facebook
StumbleUpon dethroned Facebook as the biggest traffic driver amongst social media websites in June – the site drove around 49% of traffic, compared to 37% for Facebook. It’s easy to over-egg this story though – blogger Arvind Narayanan has a good explanation of why traffic from StumbleUpon is of an incredibly poor quality.

New milestone for Foursquare
Foursquare reached another milestone this week – it now has 500,000 businesses registered on the site. Check them out.

Portman Group urges alcohol brands to await advice on using social media
The Portman Group (the UK alcohol industry’s self-regulatory body) has urged advertisers to hold caution with using Facebook’s sponsored stories. According to NMA:

Last week the ASA said it was reviewing the use of Facebook Sponsored Stories by alcohol brands, as the use of users images within the ad creative could potentially put advertisers in breach of CAP Code. The ads could potentially breach the CAP Code as although they can’t be served to under-18s, they could include images of friends who are or look under 25. This is a potential issue as the code states ads must not include images of people who look under 25.

Channel 5 to use Facebook voting for Big Brother
In a bid to reinvigorate Big Brother, Channel 5 have introduced Facebook voting – using Credits as a method to pay for votes.

Radiohead join Sina Weibo
Last week Radiohead joined Sina Weibo – the Chinese equivalent of Twitter. With their history of criticising the Chinese human rights record, it will be interesting to see if they act like the karma police on the service.

Versace de-activates Facebook wall
Versace was forced to deactivate the wall of its Facebook page after dozens of activists posted, complaining about their use of sandblasting in the making of their jeans. As rivals Gucci and Levi’s have already given up the practice, it seems they don’t have a leg to stand on.

Theme park uses social media
The Luna Park in Sydney has introduced a cool way of using social media to increase engagement – and hopefully drive return visits. Nice.

Coronation Street actress told off for tweet endorsement
Actress Brooke Vincent has been told off by Coronation Street producers for endorsing too many products on Twitter. According to reports, her rabid endorsement of products has annoyed producers of the show – perhaps they’ll make her wash her mouth out with soap?

PayPal UK #fail
PayPal UK had their Twitter account hacked last week by an angry customer, and eventually the account had to be suspended. With the account no longer online, it’s a pretty bad result for them…

An unlikely winner of a modelling competition…
Thanks to strong support from users on Reddit – and then Twitter and Facebook – Next’s competition to find a new model found an unlikely person at the top of the poll. Somehow, I don’t think he’ll win the judging stage…