Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Google Me Is REAL & Gunning For Facebook

Yesterday, Digg CEO Kevin Rose tweeted that he’d heard a “huge rumor” that Google was planning to launch a Facebook competitor called “Google Me”, sparking off a wave of speculative reports (Rose has since removed the tweet). Now Adam D’Angelo, who was Facebook’s CTO for years and is now founder of hot Q&A service Quora, is weighing in with more details. And from what he’s hearing, Google Me is indeed very real, and it’s gunning for Facebook.
D’Angelo shared his thoughts as an answer to one of the questions on Quora. Here’s his response:
    Here is what I’ve pieced together from some reliable sources:
  • This is not a rumor. This is a real project. There are a large number of people working on it. I am completely confident about this.
  • They realized that Buzz wasn’t enough and that they need to build out a full, first-class social network. They are modeling it off of Facebook.
  • Unlike previous attempts (before Buzz at least), this is a high-priority project within Google.
  • They had assumed that Facebook’s growth would slow as it grew, and that Facebook wouldn’t be able to have too much leverage over them, but then it just didn’t stop, and now they are really scared.
You can read more responses to the question on the Quora thread here.
This obviously has the potential to be huge, and Facebook needs a strong competitor. But even if Google has an amazing site in the pipeline, creating the next Facebook is going to be easier said than done — nearly 500 million people already have their content stored on Facebook, and despite what Facebook has claimed about being open, I doubt they’ll make it easy for anyone to jump into the arms of a competitor. Not to mention the fact that Google has had shortcomings with its social sites like Buzz, Wave, and Orkut. This could be a very interesting battle.

Coutesy of TechCrunch 

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Sunday, 27 June 2010

New Twitter Record - 3282 Tweets Per Minute

On average Twitter sees 750 tweets per second being sent out says the Blog Herald.   By comparison, a Twitter record was broken twice in succession last week, first during the NBA basketball finals in the States, and second during the Japan / Denmark match in the World Cup.
The Los Angeles Lakers / Boston Celtics game saw 3085 tweets per second being posted…but that record was quickly broken during the Japan vs Denmark 1st round World Cup match to see who would qualify for the 2nd round (Japan) when 3282 tweets per second were sent out.
Two observations around those stats:
1 - It’s another sign of live TV becoming a shared social experience via networks such as Twitter.   Even though they might be watching a World Cup match on their own, people are tapping into a wider network of friends online, exchanging comments with them.   The rise of social TV has been seen around everything from political debates to reality TV show finals (such as X-Factor here in the UK)
2 - Twitter has traditionally been seen as a US based network, but the fact that Japan / Denmark beat the record set in the NBA Finals shows that might be changing.   When Sysomos published its table of % of Twitter users by country in January (the US was on 50.88%), neither Denmark or Japan featured in the top five - Japan was no 10 at 1.22% of the total.
And on that note, with the UK having 7.2% of users and Germany 2.49%, it will be interesting to see if there’s a new record on Sunday during the Germany / England 2nd round game.

Below, the Sysomos chart of Twitter users by country, from January.  It’s not unreasonable to assume that the US total has dropped below 50% since then:

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Friday, 25 June 2010

Yahoo! Acquires Indonesian Mobile Social Network

Yahoo is thinking seriously about its venture in the mobile market and is working hard to mark its presence in the industry. That is because just after a not so great but useful partnership with Nokia, the company has jus acquired an Indonesia based social network for mobile users. Known as Koprol, it extends Yahoo’s social, mobile and local offerings focusing over the intersection of location, community expertise and mobile experiences.
koprolThe Jakarta-based Koprol is an Internet service that lets people use mobile telephones to instantly connect with nearby people and places. It offers very similar features to Foursquare and Gowalla. The major features include the ability to ‘check in’ to locations using Web browsers on mobile phones, see which users are nearby and what they are doing, and share with them tips, reviews, pictures or other information in real-time.
The service helps people find local businesses, such as popular shops or restaurants, based on user ratings including a “thumbs-up” feature to elevate favorite places to the top of the ranking. Users can also start or join discussions based on particular locations and invite friends to participate, creating a unique city-based social mobile community resource.
“Users are increasingly relying on mobile devices to communicate and access the Internet and they are looking forseamless integration between those devices and PCs,” said Rose Tsou, senior vice president, Asia Region at Yahoo!
Koprol is currently available for BlackBerry. Yahoo will continue to invest in the service and soon roll it out into the global market as well. The terms of the  deal remain undisclosed.

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Thursday, 24 June 2010

How Social Media Helps Your Page Rank

Social media is nothing but a special breed of websites where like-minded people assemble around their common interests and participate in creating contents for the website. Users constitute the main driving force for this kind of websites. Primarily, social media websites provide some function-oriented tools to organize people according to their explicitly defined area of interests, managing their houses and sharing their opinions, thinking, hobbies, and views. In other words, social media websites are the platforms where few focused people can interact with one another with ease and flexibility.
Traditional websites offer one-to-many monologue communication, whereas social media websites tender many-to-many web dialogues. Scalable publishing techniques supported with mind-boggling accessible solutions have made these social sites a better choice for today’s webmasters in designing their websites. In the words of Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein, social media is a “group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content“.
Social media websites have proved to be a good marketing place and they assist realizing good Google Rank too. Some of the popular social media websites are Digg, Myspace, Facebook, Orkut, LinkedIn, Flickr, Twitter, YouTube, Meetup etc.
What do you mean by ‘Google Rank’?
Google Rank, or more particularly Google PageRank, is a measure by which a
Credits: bharathreddypunuru
website is compared for its responsiveness to the Google’s search criteria. Higher the rank, higher is the chance for being picked up by the Google leading to obtain higher page viewers. Google Rank is an important issue for a website for it announces how important the site is to the world. Every commercial website leaves no effort un-attempted to grab higher Google PageRank. Google uses a top secret complicated equation to decide a website’s Rank. No body, except Google, knows the exact way of improving the PageRank.
Owing to non-availability of any clear mathematical function, people all over the world use some guessing to increase their Google Rank. A lot of money, workforce, time, and efforts are continuously chasing Google to find the secret and in the process some of them accidentally have discovered that social media helps in getting good Google Rank. Google Rank constitutes a clear and unchallenged index for determining a website’s popularity. While creating contents for a website, content writers focus their writing skills towards obtaining relatively higher Google Rank. Even then, webmasters employ professional search engine optimizers to make their websites Google friendly so that higher Google Rank can be achieved.
What are the factors that help getting good ‘Google Rank’?
What single factor actually contributes greatly in obtaining higher Google Rank is yet to be discovered. However, with rigorous research and keen observation, it has been revealed that several factors together bring higher PageRank. These presumed factors include content writing style and richness of contents, keyword distribution pattern and density, page complexity, availability of back links, traffic, and market demand for the keyword among others. Availability of image and videos also contribute immensely in deciding better Google Rank. Google is too intelligent to isolate a fake SEO content; thereby, make sure your content is exceptionally well written with a keyword density not more than 3 to 4 per cent.
How to measure Google Rank?
It’s truly difficult for a webmaster to estimate the Google Rank in advance for his/her web pages. You don’t know any formula to measure it, right? However, with the help of Google toolbar, you may come to know a comparative status for your website. After opening home page of your website and having the Google toolbar installed, check the popped up numeric value by holding your mouse over the PageRank of the toolbar. The value runs from 0 to 10, 0 being the worst Rank. Value 10 is never achievable and in that essence, 7 may be your highest Rank – the best for a webmaster staying out of Google periphery. 3 is considered as an average Rank figure for a website.
How Social Media helps in getting good ‘Google Rank’?
With keen observation and extensive market research, it has been observed that social media helps a lot in getting good Google Rank. How it is possible – that is a secret, only known to the Google. However, SEO experts say that a mention in social media increases a website’s popularity manifold. The increased market demand automatically enhances PageRank. To understand
Credits: bharathreddypunuru.files
how social media helps achieving better Google Rank, you must first acknowledge social media’s contribution in making a website highly popular. Communities of a social media, say Orkut, play a very vital role in popularizing a website. Based upon their theme of existence, these communities often discuss their priorities keeping a website at centre, thus increasing the site’s acceptability. Besides, most of these social networking website users have their own websites and blogs where they add back links for these websites. All these together contribute greatly in getting good Google Rank. A mention in a blog further enhances life for a website. No SEO effort can become complete without including the concerned website in a social media.
Social media does exactly what Google searches to increase PageRank for a website. It generates lots of bridges for your website allowing traffic to see and land at your pages. Such bridges permit visitors to visit your website without taking references from the search engines. This way, popularity for your web pages increases through the back links making them attractive to Google leading to allotting them good Google Rank. Popularity is a major factor for obtaining Google PageRank more than 3. Users of social media websites also help shaping up contents of a website by means of their valuable suggestions and criticisms, thereby making a website more SEO friendly.
What are the difficulties you may face using Social Media to achieve good Google Rank?
Though, social media websites help immensely in popularizing websites and obtaining good Google Rank, at times they may create difficulties in popularizing a website. Several factors may contribute in this regard and all depends upon the users of the site. If interest of the communities of a social site contradicts with your site’s presentation, a negative popularity may arise. To avoid such cases of undesired web events, you must examine community themes and their interests before releasing your website for their utilization. In addition to this, if a community of a social media website uses unethical practices and known to be as an odious group, websites sponsored by them are bound to receive major setback as far as popularity through back links and obtaining good Google Rank is concerned.

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Google Introduce YouTube Video Editor

Goggle has finally released a much desired feature for its infamous video sharing site YouTube. The YouTube users will now be able to edit their videos and easily trim and join together the video clips that they have uploaded on the site. Also the editor will enable adding a new audio to the video from YouTube’s AudioSwap library of 40,000 songs.
The new Java Script based editor at present offers very basic functionalities like cutting down the unwanted strips of videos or merge clips to form longer ones. But Google promises to dole out more enhanced features in time to come.  Google is also exploring the capabilities of employing cloud based computing for its editor to augment the experience of the users as they edit their videos. The Silicon Valley giant wants its user to stay free from any browser dependency and take over the sole responsibility of managing the backend processes with its massive and efficient infrastructure.
This isn’t the first time YouTube has tried to add the editor into its service. Back in 2007, the search giant launched a more advanced Flash-based video editor called YouTube Remixer, that allowed users to add transitions, captions and images to the video. However it was soon discontinued because of its slow and buggy responsiveness.
The YouTube Video Editor sounds great and personally much anticipated feature on the service. So while I get busy slicing down the unwanted guests from the video footage of the party at home , you may check how the editor works in the video after the jump.


http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Fighting Fraud Within Social

We are talking about web based social media. Primitive web technologies used to offer one-to-many monologues depicting the industrial media. But, with the radical improvement in web technologies and people’s acceptance to it, many to many web dialogues are no more a distant dream. This new
approach of web development has finally led to the development of social media. The web-media breeds itself through social interactions augmented using scalable publishing and incredible accessible techniques. Social media offers an array of options to communicate and manage contacts with the like-minded people over the Internet. It provides customized and cutting-edge tools to manage and grow contact bases by exchanging views, opinions, knowledge, feelings, and emotions.
According to Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein, social media is “a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content“. Social media websites have their own set of priorities and ethics of operation that are markedly different from the traditional websites. Initially, the social networking websites used to offer only a virtual meeting place for its users, but with time, they have changed their role in accommodating ever-changing business needs. These sites are now considered as good marketing place and they help achieve good Google rank too. Few good examples of social media websites are Myspace, Orkut, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Friendster, Flickr, YouTube, Meetup etc.
Social media Search Engines
Social media search engine is relatively a new concept. Seeing the increasing popularity of social media websites, this new breed of engines was development to supplement the increasing search requirements in the sector of social media websites. Technically, there is nothing new in the design of a social network search engine; however, the difference lies in the way they work. This type of search engine uses social network websites to arrange, prioritize or sort search results. Based on how they define social networks, there exist two different classes of social network search engines – explicit social network search engines and implicit social network search engines.
Explicit social network search engines use explicitly defined social relationships as the driving force for their search operations allowing people find their desired contacts based on the said relationships. Implicit social network search engines work differently. These engines, wiki says, “allow people to filter search results based upon classes of social networks they trust, such as a shared political viewpoint“.
One good example of popular social media search engine is the NewsTrove search engine. You may find the others according to your own preferences and geographical locations. But be aware, seeing huge business potential, several fraud engines are actively active now days in the field of social media search engines. Its very difficult to isolate them and you may not receive desired search outputs from these malicious search engines. With experience and scrutinizing search results, you will be able to tell if an engine is a fraud one.
Tell me something more about the Fraud Engines
Existence of fraud engines in social media is not a sudden development.
Credits: http:peakpositions
However, their activities have become more spurious than ever. Seeing huge potential, fraudsters are now actively engaged in manipulating fraud engines producing manipulated and deceptive data. The effect is highly visible in transacting social data affecting financial activities. These fraud engines are highly capable of giving Phishing results taking you into a surprise when you have already lost. Primarily, these fraud engines produce search results over a set input data refreshed periodically. These engines behave similar to the most popular search engines and make you believe that they are part of genuine search engines.
How Fraud Engines affect functioning of Social Media?
Fraud engines have been successful to put a bigger question mark on the future existence of the social media websites. The way some of the social
credits: rmu.edu
media websites function now days needs to be changed and the process of such changing has already started. Social media search engines are highly used to locate personal details and imagine if you end up giving your debit card number to Bayle in place of Baylee. Not only the debit card number, these fraud engines may provoke you sending your confidential personal information to someone not actually meant for. Such undue deliberation of business data may even annihilate your business. Fraud engines have made the social media users highly vulnerable to such insecure online social interactions.
How to deal with Fraud Engines in Social Media
Dealing with fraud engines in social media needs patience, commitment, and security consciousness. Several software applications are now easily available in the market to isolate fraud engines. One should make right use of them. Installation of anti-fraud engine program, such as SAS Social Network Analysis, is a good option fighting fraud engines in social media. Another popular fraud detection system is using the VeriSign solution. As possibility of fraud has increased manifold, one must verify authenticity of the recipient before sending him/her any valuable data. Suitable law may be enacted to stop the menaces of the fraud engines. Any fraud detected must be communicated at once with other fellow members. You must always use trusted engines to traverse the social media websites. Web masters of the social sites must ensure making their sites highly secured by fully implementing security standards. No confidential or sensitive data should be shared with suspicious persons or over unsecured networks.
What precautions are essential to fight Fraud Engines in Social Media?
Staying aware about the existence of fraud engines in social media is the most effective precaution fighting fraud engines in social media. Besides, one must follow basic security standards while dealing with engine results. One must remember that identity fraud is the biggest fraud area in social media websites and therefore adequate measures must be taken in disclosing any identifiable data. Researchers have shown that the fraud engines mostly trap people in the age group of 16 – 24 years. If you happen to be a socialite from this group of people, take extra caution believing engines on their face value! Never respond to queries asking for personal information. Make all of your passwords lengthy, complicated, and hard to guess. Above all, make security consciousness a way of your life.

2010 GlobalThoughtz.com

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

In Social Media Engagement Has It's Rewards

One of the most sought after answers in Social Media is whether or not engagement in social networks such as Twitter or Facebook directly correlates to customer acquisition, retention, and advocacy. Before we can earn customers however, we have to recognize that at any given time, they are also prospects. And, prospects require information and confidence in order to make decisions, in your favor of course. The answer to our question lies in social engagement.
Prospects are not only searching for guidance, comparisons, and experiences through Google, they are also becoming increasingly social in every step of a decision making process. If brands do not identify the various stages of choice and resolution and also the networks where they socialize and explore, opportunities will be missed.
If we’re not part of the decision making cycle, we are absent from decisions.

From Fans and Followers to Customers

In order to connect with prospects online, we must do so where they’re already active. New research reveals that doings so, may have a strong effect on the decisions and activity of your customers. In February 2010, market research firm Chadwick Martin Bailey along with iModerate Research Technologies, surveyed over 1,500 individuals online as well as conducted one-on-one discussions to contextualize social media behavior.
The study found that an astounding 60% of individuals who “like” pages dedicated to brands on Facebook are more likely to recommend the brand than those unaware of the company’s presence within the network. Perhaps even more incredible, is that 79% of consumers who follow the brand on Twitter have stated that they too, would refer peers to those companies they follow.
Since actions speak louder than words, the study sought to answer the question of whether or not engagement actually leads to purchases. The answer is yes. An impressive 51% of Facebook fans and 67% of Twitter followers indicated that they are more likely to buy since connecting online. With 450 million users on Facebook and over 100 million registered users on Twitter, the potential is not only great, it’s exponential.

Social Media is a Tool for Customers and Prospects

What compels someone to fan a page on Facebook or follow a company on Twitter? The survey specifically asked the question of its panelists in relation to Facebook and Twitter and their answers may be surprising to many.
On Facebook, existing customers topped the list with 49%. Following with 42%, consumers felt compelled to show support for the brand. In third with 40%, individuals admitted that they hoped to receive discounts and promotions.
Other stats worth mentioning, 27% and 26% of respondents stated that they would like to be among the first to know information about the brand and also to gain access to exclusive content respectively. And, 17% claimed that they were referred to the page by someone that they knew, which already demonstrates word of mouth at work.
Twitter paints a different picture, but more so than in Facebook, consumers want access.
51% of consumers polled are already customers of the company. 44% stated that receiving discounts and promotions was the primary reason for following. 42% did so for entertainment purposes.
Gaining access to exclusive content and learning about information first with 37% and 36% respectively is also worth noting.
Whereas 17% were referred to Facebook pages, only 12% followed brands on a recommendation. However, as the number two reason for following reveals, Twitter users are ready to make a purchase based on information gleaned from their stream.

Engage or Die

Creating a presence in social networks is mandatory, but it’s also not enough. Actively and thoughtfully engaging consumers in social networks is quickly becoming an expectation. As part of the study, consumers voiced their opinions and sentiment, some of which serves as a wake-up call to businesses everywhere:
“It’s EXPECTED that a company have some digital face – whether it’s on FB or Twitter I don’t know – but they need a strong electronic presence or you doubt their relevance in today’s marketplace.” Female 50-54
“Either they are not interested in the demographic that frequents Facebook and Twitter or they are unaware of the opportunity to get more exposure in a more interactive method.” Male 35-39
“It shows they are not really with it or in tune with the new ways to communicate with customers.” Female 18-24.
“If they’re not on Facebook or Twitter, then they aren’t in touch with the ‘electronic’ people.” Female 55-59
It’s clear. Those brands that focus on prospects and customers through social engagement will open new doors that increase brand awareness and sales through word of mouth. But perhaps more importantly, businesses will also earn expanded relevance in the age of a new and powerful medium.

Have you had a chance to read, 

A fantastic piece from Brian Solis - Author of Engage! - If you have not bought it yet, its a must have! 
Article courtesy of Social Media Today.

http://SocialBusinessToday.net - The Best in Social Business