Posts tagged "twitter"

#SXSW: Twitter Copies Facebook Connect with @Anywhere

Twitter announced a tool called @anywhere at this year’s SXSQ event. The new feature enables users to enjoy the Twitter experience (almost) anywhere and anytime, without signing into their actual account.

Are you reminded of Facebook Connect? Yeah. Us too.

Oh-So-Convenient

Just like Facebook Connect, Twitter’s @anywhere enables users to plug their Twitter credentials into popular sites and share information across platforms. For example, if you see a video you like on YouTube (an @anywhere launch partner), you’d be able to tweet about it from within YouTube’s site, rather than redirecting to twitter.com or your Twitter application of choice.

"When we're ready to launch, imagine being able to follow a New York Times journalist directly from her byline, tweet about a video without leaving YouTube, and discover new Twitter accounts while visiting the Yahoo home page — and that's just the beginning," explained Twitter’s co-founder Biz Stone on the company’s official blog.

We initially caught wind of the possibility of a Connect-like tool for Twitter back in January. Like we said then, considering the number of Facebook Connect fans (today more than 80,000 sites have integrated the tool), it makes a lot of sense to see Twitter following suit. After all, the microblogging superstar has made it quite clear that they’re aiming for a very successful 2010, and this new release proves that.

However, the tool isn’t exactly like Connect. "For example, while both permit easy sharing of content to one's networks, Twitter @anywhere seems poised to do more distribution of content across the Web,” said Forrester Research analyst Augie Ray. "The idea of allowing people to access relevant, real-time information from the Twitter network wherever they surf is a bit different than I've seen done with Facebook Connect, and it promises to open up the Twitter experience to people who as of yet may not have seen a reason to visit, register and participate."

Doomsday?

We can’t help but wonder what this means for third-party developers. We talked a couple weeks back about a cryptic tweet sent out by Twitter engineer Alex Payne:

If you had some of the nifty site features that we Twitter employees have, you might not want to use a desktop client. (You will soon.)

Back then developers worried that Twitter would soon lose the need for them. Payne has since removed the Tweet and told developers not to worry, but now that @anywhere is upon us, it might be worth it to worry just a little.

MediaFunnel Consolidates Social Media Marketing Activities

MediaFunnel, the “Team Tool for Social Media” previously known as TweetFunnel, has rebranded to reflect the company’s focus on providing a single interface from which businesses can manage all of their social media channels.  

All Together, Now

Imagine a funnel. Toss all of the social media outlets you utilize into that funnel. Watch the combination of information flow out the other end in a kind of supreme social concentrate. This is MedaFunnel.

Simply put, it’s a tool for managing corporate or social media network workflow. The company’s streamlined dashboard houses team-generated posts from across the social realm, and allows them to be reviewed before publishing to multiple feeds. 

When in Doubt, Add Facebook

You can probably tell by the  tool's original name that Twitter support has been covered, but with re-branding comes new and exciting functionality, and this time that means—surprise, surprise!—Facebook.

MediaFunnel now allows multiple users to post text and attachments to their company's Facebook Wall, and features that same handy editorial control previously offered (cross platform messages can be posted immediately, scheduled or released in pre-defined intervals).

Businesses can respond quickly to both queries and complaints using MediaFunnel’s nifty assignment feature, set alerts for brand monitoring, submit posts by email/SMS, use co-tags to personalize posts, or review analytics to gain market knowledge. 

“Social media marketing has gone mainstream,” said Andreas Wilkens, MediaFunnel Co-Founder. “What’s important are conversations, real-time engagement and meaningful content, not so much the application it streams on. We’ve seen networks fade and new ones emerge. That’s why we’ve built MediaFunnel—so businesses can concentrate on creating genuine dialogue from one familiar dashboard while we connect the platform to their social networking channel, whatever it might be.”

Social Media Marketing

Yeah, it's kind of a big deal right now. We've seen a good number of solutions crop up this year alone, including TweetShare, a Twitter-based marketing application, Seesmic Look (also for Twitter), and Facebook analytics tools from both Webtrends and Omniture. 

“The ability to have concrete measurement on investments within Facebook and compare them apples to apples with other digital channels is critical to marketers,” said Webtrends' vice president of Marketing, Jascha Kaykas-Wolff, when his company's solution was announced earlier this month. 

We imagine that means good things for solutions like MediaFunnel—especially considering the fact that it's not limited to one network. Ready to try it for free? Off with you.

From Twitter to Yammer to Buzz, 10 Microblogging Must Reads

The tools have managed to touch both our personal and professional lives. The concept has turned journalism, social media, marketing—and the overall way in which we connect—inside-out and upside-down. Yes ladies and gentleman, we’re talking about microblogging.

Naturally, related news comes in heavy, crushing waves, so we’ve put together some must-read happenings that have occurred so far this year. Whether you’re in the mix for business or pleasure, these points are worth the read.

Yammer 

Dubbed by many as Twitter for the Enterprise, and rightfully so. This platform has made some serious movies since January, and the US$ 10 million they landed in funding says they're getting ready for stellar year. 

1. Yammer Goes Beyond SaaS, Offers Self-Hosted Version: Run Yammer on your company's servers, inside the corporate firewall. Why? For security measures, of course. 

2. Doors Open at Yammer, Invites Go Beyond Company Walls: Any of you out there ever feel like sighing up for Yammer but couldn’t because of the required company e-mail address? David Sacks, Yammer’s CEO, said this sort of closed-door policy has been one of Yammer’s biggest problems. Now with Yammer Communities, anyone can join the party.  

Google Buzz

Out of the frying pan and into the fire! Big G's take on microblogging has seen a pretty rough start.

3. Buzz: Google Wants to be a Social Network, Too: Here's an overview on Buzz, in case you need a recap. In short, think of it as Facebook for Gmail.

4. The Buzz Nightmare: Privacy Issues and Profuse Apologies: Barely a week after its release and Buzz had already angered a lot of people. Will Goog's new solution ever be trusted, or has the damage been done?

5. Is Buzz for the Enterprise a Bust?: Remember how Wave kinda died out after all the hype settled down? We wonder if the attitude towards Buzz will be the same. After all, with criticisms about Google Apps already circulating, the outlook for Buzz in the enterprise isn’t exactly great. 

Then again, Buzz's open architecture could make all the difference. This is still just the beginning.

Twitter

Ah, the pioneer. How will the founding team keep up?

6. Twitter Takes on Facebook Connect With New Tools for Website Integration: Word on the street is that the microblogging champs are planning to release a set of tools that will enable third party websites to integrate Twitter features directly into their websites and services.

7. Twitter to Add New Features, Third-Party Clients Beware?: It's undeniable that Twitter is prepping to make 2010 a very different kind of year, starting by going corporate, and releasing a set of tools that may or may not blow third-parties out of the water.

Etc.

These guys aren't as famous, but you'll want to take note of the things they're doing. 

8. New Seesmic Web Makes Twitter Even Easier: Seesmic's revamped Web application is aiming high, and now features threaded Twitter conversations, a contact manager and drag and drop list creation. Check it out if you have zero interest in downloading, installing or signing up for new accounts. The app works directly in your browser and all you need is your Twitter credentials to use it.

9. Seesmic Look: Social Media Marketing with Twitter: Marketers, this one is for you. 

For regular users, Look seems just as simple as using Twitter. For companies, it's visually compelling (the tool is more like channel surfing than anything else), feeds in one of the largest audiences in the world, and will eventually offer custom themes. Translation? What an excellent way to get your brand heard.

Check it out! You don't even need a Twitter account to browse the channels. 

10. Socialtext 4.0 Brings Better Collaboration to Enterprise: Socialtext, a purveyor of social solutions for the enterprise, is back with version 4.0 of their platform. This time around they’ve got microblogging channels, filtered activity streams and new tools for group productivity.

TweetShare Markets Your Brand Social Media Style

FuzeBox kicked out a new Twitter-based application for rich media, publishing content, promoting offers, and creating conversational threads. Basically, it’s like Twitter plus FriendFeed, wrapped up in a neat little package for marketers.

TweetShare

The application works by feeding content into what is arguably the most viral stream out there. Users can integrate online video, presentations and images with TweetShare, as well as create polls and lists of followers.

Like Seesmic Look or Facebook fan pages, brands can also use TweetShare to create their own branded pages, which immediately gets fed into Twitter as well. 

Speaking from a marketing point of view, the Chief Strategy Officer at FuzeBox, Patric Moran, said, "We love Twitter, but it is very limited. TweetShare will take Twitter from a useful listening device to a way to truly engage consumers with a brand through compelling content."

 tweetshare_screenshot.JPGTweetShare screen shots

"Content is still king," continued Moran, "but conversations need some kind of context. We believe that context needs to be a piece of video or written content. The suggestion that people are going to come and seek brands out is not the best way to engage business. [With TweetShare] there can be a message from the CEO, an offer from the marketing department and a how-to from the product department."

Product Highlights

Here's a quick rundown of what you'll get with TweetShare: 

  • Create branded Twitter page to host and promote any type of content
  • Generate a landing pages around events, promotions or contests
  • Host an online media room with videos, presentations, images and PDFs
  • Perform market research on new campaigns, post surveys on different topics and get immediate feedback from the Twitter community
  • Syndicate content to the Twitter community concurrently with other fan pages (Facebook, YouTube, blog, PRWeb)

Consumers can join in on the fun as well by providing feedback on tweets or any uploaded content.

Ready to market? The platform is available to anyone with Twitter credentials. Check it out.

Social Media Minute: Twitter Makes a Deal with Yahoo, Passes MySpace on Status Updates

Social media moves so fast, it's hard to keep up. Here are the week's top stories in scan-friendly format:

  • Social Networks Continue To Draw More Visitors
  • Yahoo Signs Partnership to Integrate with Twitter
  • Betty White Has a Shot at SNL, Because of Facebook Fans
  • Twitter Passes MySpace For Number of Status Updates

Social Networks Continue To Draw More Visitors

Nielsen, one of the world's most quoted research companies, has reported that social networking use amongst Internet users has increased sharply over the last year. In the month of December 2009, global consumers spent around 5.5 hours on social networking sites, an 82% percent increase over December 2008.

Also, social networks and blogs still rank amongst the most popular online activities, even beating out online gaming and instant messaging. What sites were the most popular online? Facebook won this honor with 207 million unique visitors in the month of December. An impressive 2/3 of all global social media users say they visited Facebook during the month.

Looking internationally, Australians lead the world in time spent on social media sites, with more than 6 hours per person spent on social media followed closely by the United Kingdom.

These numbers should be welcome news to sites such as Twitter and Facebook. It suggests that not only are they adding more new users each day, but these folks are lingering around more on the site, making social media advertising more attractive.

One figure not mentioned in the Nielsen report is if mobile access to Facebook/Twitter are included in the hours per month.

Yahoo Signs Partnership to Integrate with Twitter

As readers probably know, Twitter is a highly addictive property that gives you instant updates on your friends' status, current events and more. Recognizing this, Yahoo has recently announced a deal with Twitter that will bring Twitter integration into many of Yahoo's popular services and portals. In effect, Twitter users can now update their status from the Yahoo home page, Yahoo Finance, Yahoo News, Sports and many other Yahoo properties. Also, Twitter users will be able to see their Twitter timeline on Yahoo sites as well.

As a second part of the agreement, Yahoo will have access to real-time Twitter results in its search engine, much like the deals signed last year between Twitter and Google/Bing.

It is apparent that with this deal, Yahoo is recognizing that Twitter is a sticky service that is likely to be around for quite some time. The Twitter integration is similar to another social networking partnership Yahoo has already built with Facebook.

Betty White Has a Shot at SNL, Because of Facebook Fans

Not long ago, a Facebook page was set up by user David Matthews. Since launching, the fan page has gained almost half a million fans, all rallied around one cause: to give Betty White the chance to host Saturday Night Live. It appears the former star of The Golden Girls has gained some fans on the popular social networking site and these fans want to see the comedy actress on SNL.

Mashable reports that Betty White is not associated with the page, but that she'd welcome the opportunity if the gig came up.

These types of grassroots efforts show how social networking can really affect mass media and public discourse. Obviously, getting Betty White on SNL won't cure cancer or house all the homeless, but it goes to show that when people rally around a cause and use the new "mass media" that is social networking, good things can happen.

Twitter Passes MySpace For Number of Status Updates

Just a few years ago, MySpace was the top dog in social networking. The site had a large user base and was acquired by News Corp. because of the promise it held. However, flash forward to today, where Twitter and Facebook dominate the news in the social media space.

Recently, Twitter announced that they see an average of 50 million status messages posted each day. ReadWriteWeb looked to MySpace to evaluate their figures, and counted that they have around 33 million status messages per day. In effect, this means that Twitter is updated now more than MySpace — a pretty interesting development.

However it should be pointed out that MySpace is still used to a high degree. 33 million status messages per day is a large number in and of itself. So, the old guy on the block isn't dead yet, but he has been passed up by the new kid. How MySpace responds will be watched carefully, I'm sure.

New Seesmic Web Makes Twitter Even Easier

New Seesmic Web Makes Twitter Even Easier

Do you remember Seesmic (site)? They’re the company that’s got that cool Tweetdeck alternative with social media marketing perks. Now their revamped Web application is aiming high as well, and features threaded Twitter conversations, a contact manager and drag and drop list creation. 

Seesmic Web

Seesmic Web is a web-based Twitter application for those that aren't interested in downloading, installing or signing up for new accounts. The app works directly in your browser and all you need is your Twitter credentials to use it. 

Here's a screenshot of what you'll see when you login: 

seesmic_web_home.JPG

The left column is your Timeline and the right is your list of @ mentions. You can also view your sent tweets, Lists, Searches, Trending Topics, Favorites and Direct Messages (in fact, the number of columns you can have is unlimited). Easy, right? 

The New Seesmic Web 

New features include:

  • Contacts Manager: Highlight a contact and the Contact Manager will display the basic information from that user's profile, including his or her number of followers, tweets, and favorite tweets.
  • Conversation Threads: This feature is useful if you want to see a twitter conversation between you and other users. The option aggregates Twitter conversations into a pop-up chronological view of @replies.
  • Twitter lists: In Seesmic web you can add more members to your lists by simply dragging and dropping them into the specified list. If you want to create a new list entirely, click on New List, and if you want to delete one that option is available as well.
  • GeoLocation: If you're using a browser that supports Google Gears, you can use Seesmic Web to share your location. Whenever you write a new tweet, you'll have to option to attach your location to this message (make sure you have the location feature turned on in your Twitter settings). 

Overall, we see Seesmic Web as a handy and extremely useful Twitter application. That it lives in the browser means it's convenient and commitment-free, and we like the sound of that. Check out a full list of Seesmic Web's new features here, or try it out yourself by signing in here.

Social Media Minute: Facebook Rockets to #2, Mobile is Hot With Socialites

Social media moves so fast, it's hard to keep up. Here are the week's top stories in scan-friendly format:

  • Facebook is now Number Two Site in the U.S.
  • PleaseRobMe Lets Burglars Know When You're not Home
  • Google Admits to Privacy Foul-up
  • Social Networking is Hotter on Mobile than Desktop Web

Facebook Now Number Two Site in the U.S.

The ever-popular social networking site Facebook has moved ahead of a web pioneer company to become the second most popular site in the US. According to compete.com, an Internet analytics company, Facebook is now generating more online traffic than Yahoo.

In January, Facebook was accessed by 133 million unique visitors in the United States, whereas Yahoo garnered 132 million visitors in the same time frame. As a blog post points out, Facebook is also doing very well in the user engagement arena as well. This means that when a Facebook user comes to the web site, they stay on the site for long periods of time, a figure advertisers look to for where to market their goods.

With Facebook crossing the mark of having 400 million users, there is no indication of this traffic growth letting up. With Google ahead of Facebook in terms of monthly traffic, we will all watch and see if Facebook surpasses the search giant in web site popularity amongst U.S. web surfers.

PleaseRobMe Points out When You're not Home

Location based sites (LBS) and games are very popular amongst smart phone owners right now. Services such as Foursquare, Loopt and Gowalla allow you to share your location (and play a game in Foursquare's case) with the public and your social network. If Twitter was voyeuristic, these new class of games take it to a whole new level.

One site, called PleaseRobMe.com aggregates all the updates that folks using these LBS sites and points out "all those empty homes out there." This is because if you're checked in at the Starbucks down the street, your house might be empty for burglars to potentially pay you a visit.

The site has garnered some privacy concerns, but is is pointed out that PleaseRobMe is merely aggregating publicly available information that anyone could find on Twitter. What about you, do you use location based games? Does this site and others alike give you pause the next time you 'check-in"?

Google Admits To Privacy Foul-up

Google launched their Facebook-like social application Buzz and was immediately flooded with privacy concerns from the public regarding the information it allows to see. With Buzz, personal email addresses could be harvested by merely viewing the messages going back and forth between users. Also, without any action by the user, your Gmail and Google Talk contacts were publicly revealed for everyone to see.

At the onset of Google Buzz's launch, many users online protested via Twitter, blogs and other outlets. Google made adjustments over the weekend and now users have more control on what content Buzz displays to the all Internet users. Why did Google let this happen? Buzz was initially used internally to Google, where all email address are available amongst co-workers. When Buzz was made public, they didn't envision the privacy issue until after the public outcry was all over the Internet.

The ironic part of Google's privacy failure is that recently, rival Facebook has received loads of criticism for their handling of similar privacy matters. Users online are very particular about the manner in which their private information is used on the Internet. Google will hopefully take the Buzz incident into mind when rolling out other social systems in the future.

Social Networking Is Hotter on Mobile Than Desktop Web

A study out of Ruder Finn, shows that Americans are using their mobile phone for a period of around three hours per day. That begs the question: what do people do on their phones for that long?

The mobile web is mainly being used to socialize with friends, family and colleagues. Finn's study show that 91% of mobile phone users are making connections with friends. This is compared to 79% who report using their computers for socializing.

These number point to a trend that has been covered here on Social Media Minute, cell phone users are highly social folks who utilize their mobile phone as a gateway for their friends. The mobile phone, therefore, can be seen as the ultimate onboarding device for social activities.

Recent figures show that smartphones now make up around 30% of sales volume in the mobile handset market. It is now 'cool' to have a smartphone and usage models are showing that more and more folks are using smartphones to access Facebook and other social networks. Advertisers and other stakeholders should be on notice: people of all ages are hopping online via their mobile devices: how are you going to reach this new market?

Join the 2010 Vancouver Olympics on Twitter, Facebook

Today marks the start of the 2010 Winter Olympics hosted in Vancouver, Canada. No time to sit in front of the tube all day watching the events? Well luckily for you they will be covered almost exclusively by Facebook and Twitter.

There’s even a list of verified tweeting athletes. Fans can also check out Twitter-Athletes, a site that organizes lists of athletes in other sports who use the service and it links directly to Winter Olympic Tweets.

On Facebook, the IOC has created an Olympic Games Page, which already has more than a million followers. The page plans to feature updates and photos from athletes.

Despite some earlier confusion about rules governing social media at the Olympics, Bob Condron, Director of Media Services for the United States Olympic Committee says that "Athletes are free to blog during the Games," adding that "…Twitter is just a blog that's written 140 characters at a time."

And though an official Olympic hashtag has yet to be announced, consensus among many bloggers says that #Van2010 is the way to go.

So go ahead, cheer on your favorite Olympic athletes. From curlers to ice dancers to biathletes, here’s hoping it’s the 2010 games FTW.