Digital Media Events
Event Date Location

OMMA mCommerce

08/07/2014 New York New York

CIO 100 Symposium & Awards

08/17/2014 - 08/19/2014 Rancho Palos Verdes CA

Mobile Insider Summit

08/17/2014 - 08/20/2014 LAKE TAHOE CA

Social Media Insider Summit

08/20/2014 - 08/23/2014 LAKE TAHOE CA

iMedia Agency Summit (Malaysia)

08/25/2014 - 08/27/2014 Kota Kinabalu Malaysia

The 6th annual Mobile World

08/28/2014 Seoul

Data+: Analyze, Predict, Monetize

09/07/2014 - 09/09/2014 Phoenix AZ

iMedia Brand Summit: Marketing in an Always-On World

09/07/2014 - 09/10/2014 Coronado CA

Content Marketing World

09/08/2014 - 09/11/2014 Cleveland OH

Video Insider Summit

09/14/2014 - 09/17/2014 Montauk NY

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Hootsuite now suggests content worth sharing, as it rebrands and rolls out a new logo too

The Next Web

Social media management dashboard HootSuite is introducing a handful of new features today, alongside a design refresh that ushers in an all-new logo and name-stylization – Hootsuite (note the lower-case ‘s’).

Besides the new logo, the general color scheme will switch to black and white from the old blue and yellow, which the company says is designed to “reflect the maturity of the brand”. This will be evident across the new dashboard that’s now live.

Launched in 2008, HootSuite Hootsuite lets users manage multiple social networks through a single dashboard, and the Vancouver-based company has grown into a global social media brand used by individuals and companies.

Content suggestions

In terms of features, Hootsuite is launching a new Suggested Content Publishing tool, letting users create an entire week’s publishing schedule based on Hootsuite’s auto-scheduler. This mirrors a move made by Buffer just a few weeks back, with Hootsuite users now being invited to “discover rich and engaging content that is relevant to their business”.

Effectively, this is designed to remove the headache of deciding what to post to your social accounts, with each post automatically scheduled for the most optimum time to go out. Users can tweak the schedule by replacing posts, editing the schedule, and personalizing the suggested messages. Over time, this should get smarter too, as it learns the users’ preferred content-type.

Additionally, HootSuite is also launching a new Custom Education program, which gives its customers a “bespoke education platform to educate their employees on responsibly engaging with social media” – yes, part of this entails mitigating social media risk through discussing acceptable practices. Custom Education delivers tailored content for each organization, including select lessons from its existing Hootsuite University.

HootSuite is making these announcements during its inaugural European business conference, Connect via Hootsuite, in London today, where it will also announce an 87 percent growth in revenue in EMEA since Q1 2013. Though of course, without knowing actual dollar amounts, it’s worth treating such figures with a pinch of salt.

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Pinterest Opens Up Data Firehose for Marketers

The Wall Street Journal

Following in the footsteps of social platforms such as Twitter and FacebookFB +1.03%, Pinterest will now allow marketers to ingest data from its service to help them better understand and interpret users’ activity on the site.

The company will give a handful of third-party marketing technology providers access to information on how its users behave and interact with content across its service. At launch, the technology providers include Salesforce, Hootsuite, Spredfast, Percolate, Piqora, Curalate, and Tailwind.

Pinterest hopes access to this data will help marketers figure out which of their activities on its service generate the most engagement, and which actions they may prompt users to take “downstream.”

“Many businesses use Pinterest to learn about their customers. You might want to learn which of your products are popular, what types of images work best or which Pins are driving the most engagement and sales,” the company said in a statement.

Pinterest wants to prove to marketers they will benefit from being on its platform so they’re more likely to pay for its ad products as and when they become available. It’s already testing a paid ad product it calls “Promoted Pins” with a handful of advertisers, including home décor site Wayfair, hotel chain Four Seasons and UnileverULVR.LN -0.30%’s TRESemmé and Hellmann’s brands, WSJ reported.

The data will also help marketers better use Pinterest to generate free or “earned” exposure by posting content that resonates well with users. It might also help Pinterest avoid hosting brand content that’s of little interest to its user base.

Pinterest is granting access to its data through a new “Business Insights” API, or “application programming interface.” Ad executives predict the company will eventually open up another API that will allow third-party technology providers to place ads on its service on behalf of marketers. Facebook and Twitter currently offer similar functionality.

At launch, Pinterest partners with access to the business insights API are not being charged for it, Pinterest said.

WhatsApp to grow footprint eightfold with new office in downtown Mountain View

Silicon Valley Business Journal

WhatsApp, Facebook Inc.’s $19 billion baby, just signed a major long-term lease in downtown Mountain View that will expand its footprint 700 percent — hinting at the five-year-old instant messaging company’s ambitions.

WhatsApp, acquired by Facebook in February, leased 250 Bryant St., a 78,000-square-foot project that only recently started construction, two people with knowledge of the deal told me. That’s a significant boost from What’sApp’s current digs of about 11,000 square feet at 303 Bryant St. The lease comes mere months after WhatsApp leased a different building around the corner— a 22,000-square-foot project at 900 Villa St. that is nearly complete.

At the time of the Facebook deal in February, WhatsApp had fewer than 60 employees. The new space could conservatively house roughly 400 workers.

Analysts said they weren’t surprised that WhatsApp — which boasts more than 400 million active users — would have plans for significant headcount growth given the recent deal and growing size of the mobile messaging market.

“I’m reminds me of Brody’s comment to Quint in ‘Jaws’,” said John Jackson, an analyst with IDC who covers WhatsApp. “It’s the proverbial, ‘We’re gonna need a bigger boat.’

“They’re hurtling toward a billion people on the basis of 55 brains,” he added. “That math, at some level, is going to need some help. Especially if they’re thinking, ‘What else can I do and layer on.’”

That’s already starting. WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum said in February that WhatsApp would add free voice-calling services later this year.

The new lease is also another sign that Facebook will likely leave WhatsApp alone for the foreseeable future, rather than move the crew into the Facebook mothership in Menlo Park. (Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at the time of acquisition in February that Facebook would leave WhatsApp’s brand and management alone.)

“In the past, when they said they’re going to leave a company alone, they did,” said Brian Blau, an analyst with Gartner who covers Facebook and WhatsApp. “So they have a track record, and this is more evidence.”

Blau agreed that WhatsApp’s apparent expansion plans make sense.

“For a company with the brand and the presence of WhatsApp, having hundreds of employees is not uncommon,” he said. “To be honest, with so few employees, you have to wonder how they got it all done.”

The space grab comes as analysts warm to a purchase that was once derided as too pricey. Facebook stock shot up this week when Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Youssef Squali called WhatsApp a “multi-billion dollar opportunity” for Facebook and reiterated his buy rating on the stock.

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Facebook, Twitter and YouTube Have Different Mobile Ad Strengths


A quartet of panelists speaking about audience targeting at the Mobile Media Upfront this week essentially agreed that Facebook, Twitter and Google/YouTube are going to continue attracting more brand dollars due to their advances in targeting the smartphone-toting consumer.

Earlier this month, YouTube made waves by revealing its Google Preferred platform, which lets marketers buy ads against the most popular 1 percent and 5 percent of the videos on the platform. With millennials watching video on their phones instead of desktops (or even TV) and older folks starting to follow suit, YouTube’s initiative appears to sneakily take aim at future mobile budgets.

But Adam Shlachter, head of media activation at DigitasLBi, suggested that YouTube needs to handle mobile video ads with care. “I think when YouTube looks at their inventory and they see either a younger audience consuming it predominantly on mobile devices—or certainly with content being consumed on the go in different mind-sets in different moments—they have to figure out a way to package that, to work with [agencies] and our clients to take advantage of it appropriately,” he said.

Shlachter added that the Google-owned video site should not “bomb people with 30-second spots that they’ve already been bombed with on other screens.”

At the same time, the data-based targeting being offered by Twitter and Facebook seemed to have brand and agency players particularly amped.

“Twitter Promoted Tweets can be aligned with whatever the objective or goal is,” remarked Cheng, vp of mobile strategy and solutions at M&C Saatchi Mobile. “But what’s really interesting, different than Facebook, is that Twitter doesn’t really have much audience-interest targeting—[it's] more about the behavioral targeting based on what people are tweeting. That’s pretty powerful to start profiling out what type of user they are, for example, with TV ads. A lot of commercials now are having hashtags and TV personalities that align with the brand. Things like that allow you to really extend the [television] experience to do better targeting on Twitter, and that kind of cross-platform stepping stone [represents] Twitter leading the way.”

Mat Harris is head of ad products at Tapjoy, which pitches an incentives-based system that helps advertisers engage on-the-go consumers. He singled out Twitter’s acquisition of MoPub as a potential mobile advertising game-changer.

“It’s more [about] what Twitter can do for MoPub than what MoPub can do for Twitter because it kind of brings us back to a mobile exchange,” Harris said. “Every ad request that comes across, every ad response, which bids are winning, which bids are not winning, we can actually now take that data and have deeper insights about those users because of what Twitter is and how [often] Twitter is on most of our devices. So that amount of data, that amount of clarity in data is just going to be huge.”

During a rapid-fire discussion on Monday in New York’s midtown, Sasha Norkin, vp of marketing at Barnes & Noble Nook, offered that she’s seen success in geofencing tests on mobile networks to drive consumers into her company’s bookstores. She also spoke to positive results from B&N’s direct-response mobile efforts via Facebook, whether to drive the brand’s app installs or encourage e-commerce purchases.

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Instagram could lead in social


Instagram will become the world’s most powerful social platform because of its visual and mobile roots, according to a leading industry figure.

Scott Galloway, of think tank L2, made the prediction based on his organisation’s collection of 850 data points across 5,000 brands’ digital footprints and the innate ability of humans to absorb information in pictures.

While humans have been reading words for hundreds of years, they have been reading visuals for thousands of years and absorb visuals 50 times faster than words, he noted.

And the resonance of visuals was evident in Instagram’s rapid take-up. It was the fastest growing social platform, with 200m users and its engagement of 1.5% was 15 times greater than that of Facebook.

“If you were to take a power algorithm – that being the size of the community times the level of engagement – Instagram is already the most powerful platform in the world,” he declared.

Galloway’s views were echoed in the Social Media Marketing Industry Report, from Social Media Examiner, which surveyed more than 2,800 marketers and found that they were increasingly turning to visual content across all platforms, but particularly YouTube and Pinterest.

The Fast Company highlighted the finding that interest in visual marketing rises with marketers’ experience. Among the least experienced – those with less than 12 months in social media marketing – Instagram (15%) and Pinterest (32%) attracted relatively little use. But for marketers with one or two years’ experience the use rose to 26% and 36% respectively and for those with more than five years in the industry to 47% and 66%.

As well as age, time spent on social media was another important factor in deciding to utilise visual platforms. Thus, marketers who spent more than 40 hours a week on social media were significantly more focused on Instagram (46% more) and Pinterest (37% more) than those who spent six hours a week or less with social media.

Another signifier of the rise of Instagram was the recent decision of Google, one of the most powerful and valuable brands in the world, to open an account – “another advertising vehicle” for the web giant, said The Verge.

Does Facebook Now Embody Maturity?

Eye on Media, Matt Kapko

Facebook had all the appearances and gusto of a grown-up company at F8 last week, its first developer’s conference in almost three years. The company’s rising sophistication was on display throughout the event, but it was even more abundant as founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivered his opening keynote.

The sentiment sounds overly simple and altruistic, but it’s also a far cry from much of the way Facebook was built, designed and operated over the past decade. It’s not like Facebook didn’t care about its users or developers before. It certainly couldn’t have become a platform with 1.2 billion active users if that were the case. It’s just that today’s Facebook is becoming much more serious and business-like in its endeavors.

“We used to have this famous mantra. Move fast and break things,” says Zuckerberg. Those days are mostly gone though, taking some of the thrill and unexpectedness out of Facebook’s sails with it.

Facebook’s New Rallying Cry

“Now what we do is focus on building the best tools and infrastructure in the industry,” he says. Zuckerberg even went so far as to suggest a new rallying cry that tries to stay hip while hitting all the notes one would expect to hear from such a uniquely empowered company. “Move fast with stable infra” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, but that’s how Facebook operates now.

That new theme may not be the best calling card for developers who like to break things before building something even better to put it in its place, but stable infrastructure is important to developers who make their living off Facebook’s platform. Compared to the sometimes abrupt and more controversial changes introduced in the past, Facebook’s gentler approach somehow exemplifies all the experience and struggles of a young startup that is now the largest media channel to ever exist.

Breaking things just doesn’t work for a company that now handles 470 billion API calls a day, a 20-times increase over the last three years. That smash-it-up mentality was ceremoniously supplanted at F8 by more serious developer needs like a promise to keep all APIs stable and operational for at least two years and a new service level agreement wherein Facebook commits to fix all major bugs within 48 hours.

“The best way we can help you improve people’s lives and improve the world is provide you with a stable mobile platform,” says Zuckerberg.

Users appreciate stability too, but that isn’t what creates the emotional connections that make Facebook such an important part of so many people’s lives. It only makes those connections possible and lasting.

Login Gains Privacy Controls and Anonymity

Changes to Facebook’s login product are where the needs and wants of users are most visibly outweighing those of developers.

Now when users click on the “log in with Facebook” button, they’ll be able to select one-by-one whether that app can have access to their public profile, friend list, email address, birthday, likes, and the permission to post to their account.

“People want more control over how they share information, especially in how they use their apps,” Zuckerberg says. “We know some people are scared of pressing this blue button& We don’t ever want anyone to be surprised about how they’re sharing on Facebook.”

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Q&A: The 7 Success Factors of Social Business Strategy

Brian Solis Blog

Last year, my Altimeter Group colleague Charlene Li and I published a series of research reports on thestate and evolution of social business. In our research, we discovered that the most advanced businesses shared seven success factors in developing, launching, and measuring social business strategies.  Our friends at Jossey-Bass asked us to turn it into an ebook and that we did!

The Seven Success Factors of Social Business Strategy

During the launch, we were interviewed by the Amazon team to dive deeper into the difference between social media and social business strategies. It also set the stage for our 2014 research track on Digital Transformation (report here.)

I’ve included the Amazon Q&A for you here…

What does it mean to be a social business?

A social business is more than social media and the Likes of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, et al. Yet, it’s a term that’s often confused with social media strategy. But, there’s an important difference between a social business and a social media strategy.

Each represent distinct qualities where “social” is simply a qualifier. In front of media, social is an adjective that describes the nature of channels, networks, or platforms that facilitate conversations online. When placed ahead of business, social articulates a philosophy or approach.

In this case, “social business” is a philosophy; a way of business where social technologies supported by new approaches facilitate a more open, engaged, collaborative foundation for how we work.

How do you convince companies to see social media as more than just “a necessary nuisance?”

The fact that social media and social business cause debate or even confusion after all these years is understandable. Many executives see social media as a novelty or a distraction for young adults and kids. They haven’t realized the impact of social networks because they either don’t have time, can’t see the value, find it difficult to keep up with all of the networks, or a combination of all of the above.

Coming back to the differences between social media and social business, it’s important for any social media or digital strategist to learn the language of the C-Suite. In the ebook, we share insights from several top executives to understand what it takes to convince them of the true opportunity that social promises. We heard time and time again that their priority and focus is driving business objectives, creating opportunities and solving problems. They don’t make decisions based on technology or trends, yet strategists tend to emphasize social media rather than business goals.

Click to read more and see infographics

Screen Shot 2014 05 28 at 12.01.58 PM 1024x640 Q&A: The 7 Success Factors of Social Business Strategy

Improving Customer Targeting and Personalization Through Social Identity

Brian Solis Blog, guest post by Andrew Jones

Modern marketing is about more than just informing prospects and customers about products, but building relationships with them. The contextual insight available in social media offers an opportunity to better know and engage audiences with compelling, personalized content and experiences across channels. The following is a condensed excerpt from a forthcoming report.

The Fragmented Customer Journey

The customer journey has become incredibly fragmented, moving across various channels and devices, and saturated with more messages than ever. At the same time, customers have been empowered by new technology, increasingly expecting consistent, personal experiences. As a result, it has never been more necessary—yet also so complex—for brands to target and personalize customer messaging.

So why are marketers still sending untargeted, “batch and blast” emails, serving static web pages, and delivering the same ad to everyone (or just a small handful of segments)?

Lots of Data, Limited Context

With the proliferation of customer data in CRM, eCommerce, web analytics, loyalty programs, and other databases, enterprises have troves of information about their customers. Yet companies often understand customers in the context of their transactions and rarely as individuals. Customer identity today is a shattered mirror, with little pieces of it spread throughout the organization. Customer Service, sales, marketing, and loyalty each see a different piece of the profile. Without the right context, brands will never be able to build good relationships with customers.

The Value of Social Identity

Social media has played a major role in compounding the complexity of today’s customer journey, yet is also laden with customer insights unavailable on other channels. Suresh Vittal of Adobe says that, “Social yields sentiment, preference, and influence in ways that no other data source can.” Social profiles contain demographics, age, geography, affinity, influence, and more, while ongoing social signals can provide insight into a customer’s real-time context and needs.

For the purposes of this blog post, I’ll define Social Identity as, “The information about an individual available in social media, including profile data as well as ongoing social activity.” Social Identity can:

- Enable better targeting and personalization throughout the customer lifecycle
- Help provide consistent customer experiences across channels
- Provide a clear source of social media ROI
- Increase the efficiency of marketing and advertising budgets

Continue reading…


What Is The Value Of Social Media Engagement?


“There is no ROI in anything if you don’t learn how to use it.”

-Gary Vaynerchuk, Founder of VaynerMedia

There is a near consensus that social media marketing is valuable because it allows companies to directly engage with their customers, build brand presence, and ultimately sell more products.

However, justifying the value of social has been a conundrum for brand marketers over the last 10 years. Even in the most straightforward cases of ecommerce, there’s still the attribution question.  How much do you attribute to the relationship with the brand versus the last click?

What makes measuring social ROI so difficult is not a lack of data, but identifying which pieces of data matter.

The metrics for social media used to be all about likes and followers. That was the first step. Now social media enables core business objectives and provides so many different metrics and new data streams on customers and their behavior.

I wasn’t surprised to find that there are some really smart people already working to tackle this social ROI problem; in an attempt to get educated on the topic, here’s what I found.

Social media measurement shifting towards measuring conversations

The CMO Survey ran a study that asked CMOs to share the metrics that they were using to evaluate social media. You can see an interesting breakdown of the results below:

The different metrics range across the board from true financially based numbers, such as “profits per customer”, to social media specific actions like followers & friends. In addition, according to the study, ‘voice-based’ metrics such as net promoter scores and text analysis are quickly becoming strong indicators of success.

As Gary mentioned in his Inc 500 speech, word of mouth is a currency that affects your bottom line, and social media allows word of mouth to scale. Thus, it makes sense that companies want to measure conversations about their brand.

Leveraging social to drive core business objectives

Another worthwhile read is the Altimeter Group’sSocial Media ROI Cookbook. The report does a great job of mapping the problem that marketers face. 56% of marketers still list the ‘inability to tie social media to business outcomes’ as the largest pain point of measuring social media ROI.

Click to continue reading

Social Advertising Landscape Is Changing


In April this year, Twitter unveiled its much-anticipated mobile advertising network, with Facebook following closely behind with its Audience Network. These two giants of the social media world are embarking on the next stage of their journey to lure advertisers by using data from their own networks to help marketers target adverts to users even when they’re not on social media apps.

For Twitter, this means that marketers are able to display the same adverts as a promoted tweet to people who don’t even use Twitter, on more than a thousand other apps in the new Twitter publisher network.

With both channels clearly focused on a future of enhanced advertising capabilities, it’s another indication that the end goal is fully paid-for platforms, a long way from the free social and promotional experiments that companies originally signed up for.

According to a recent study by Ogilvy, increased restrictions on building organic reach with free Facebook content has resulted in brand pages only now being seen by between two and six percent, depending on the number of Likes per page. This means that even if your brand page has a million Likes, only around 2% of your fans will see anything you post, unless you pay to promote those posts.

Brands are really left only with the choice to allocate more marketing funds for social or break up with Facebook as delivery service Eat24 did publicly not so long ago.

If you’ve accepted that organic social growth is no longer viable on the major social channels and, as a result, you’ve ring-fenced marketing budget for the future of Facebook or Twitter advertising, you then need to ask yourself two questions. Do you want branding or performance advertising, and who is your target audience?

Some reports would have us believe that teenagers are abandoning Facebook in droves due to increased advertising and the network’s mainstream appeal, which now includes their parents. According to a report from iStrategy Labs, more than three million teens have left Facebook since 2007, while the 55+ age-group has seen growth of 80.4%.

In truth however, with 1.2 billion users and around 27 million Brits, no other website can compete with Facebook’s net reach. Even if the 13-25 year olds now prefer to interact on Tumblr, Snapchat and Instagram, there’s a good chance that they’ll still have a Facebook profile, just be using it in a different, more passive way.

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