Tag Archives: online networking

Using online video ads? Use subtitles

The online video market is growing exponentially. By 2012 the U.S. online video audience alone will reach 190 million, almost 88% of the country’s Internet user population, according to eMarketer estimates.

“As with most everything else online, where the eyeballs go, advertising follows,” say the eMarketers.

In just the next four years, online video ad spending is predicted to reach almost $6 billion. Driving the incredible growth is more trust in video content and larger advertisers entering the online video market.

“The use of videos for advertising online is unquestionably growing—except among B2B marketers. They face a huge hurdle. Most of their targets—businesspeople—don’t have audio turned on in the office. Talking heads or voiceovers that no one hears are not very effective.”

The solution? Captions.

Use online video subtitles

Use online video subtitles

PLYmedia, a provider of closed-caption solutions, studied user response to videos where subtitles and captions were included on online videos. Overlaying subtitles and captions increased the amount of time users spent watching videos by almost 40%.

Additionally, videos that had subtitles were watched 91% to completion, compared with 66% to completion for videos without subtitles.

“As more and more online video is consumed in an increasing variety of settings—from office environments to noisy bars to mobile phones—it makes sense to add closed-captioning and subtitling features to digital video files,” said Paul Verna, eMarketer senior analyst. “These enhancements expand opportunities for viewers to enjoy online video, even when it’s impractical for them to have the sound turned on.”

Read the full eMarketer article.

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Signs of what’s to come? Marketers plan to increase social media spending

Despite the economic recession and marketing budgets being slashed to pieces, almost every social media marketer (95%) plans to maintain or increase social media spending.

Forrester researcher Jeremiah Owyang recently released his study called “Social Media Playtime Is Over,” based on a survey from December of 2008.

Marketers will increase social media spending

Marketers will increase social media spending

Some of his key findings reveal that:

  • More than 50% of interactive marketers plan increases in their social technology spending. Only 5% plan to cut spending.
  • The fastest growing categories include social networking, blogging and user-generated content.
  • Social media spending is small compared to other types of marketing efforts. While the marketers surveyed came from companies with at least 250 people, 75% are still spending $100,000 or less on social technology efforts.

From the report’s executive summary:

These inexpensive tools can quickly get marketing messages out through interactive discussion and rapid word of mouth, and properly managed, can deliver measurable results.

Though you may not have someone in your organization with the title of ‘Social Media Marketer’, the study shows that social media is a strong marketing investment, even when our economy is in the dumps.

Like the report says “Social Media Playtime Is Over,” it’s time to get serious.

Is your company planning to increase spending on social media efforts? Why, why not?

All you need is love. Link love, that is.

Have you found love on the Internet?

No, not the eHarmony, Match.com type of love. We’re talking about a different type of love – link love.

The kind of love that is critical to the performance of your business to business website.

Link love “is a term used in the fields of search engine optimization and blogging to describe the effect that web pages rank better when they have more and higher quality links pointing at them.”

So, why is link love so important? According to Rick Burnes at Hubspot:

  • Your business needs to get found.
  • Search engines are the place to get found.
  • Links get you found in search engines.

To better understand the process, Rick says to pretend search engines are like hiring managers:

“If you’re a job candidate, a hiring manager will interview you and check your resume, the same way a search engine will check a page’s keywords and title.

But the hiring manager doesn’t stop there. They want to make sure all the information on the resume is correct, and they want an impartial third-party opinion on your potential, so they check references. A search engine does the same thing by checking links. For search engines, links from big, trusted sites are a signal of quality.

Quality inbound links, just like recommendations, are hard to get, but critical to your success.”

Wondering how to get started on spreading the link love? I recently came across the “world’s greatest list of posts dedicated to the fine art of Link Love” in a post at Problogger. The post may be slightly dated, but the advice is still just as good.

Friday business humor: Taking Twitter too far

More than one in ten (11%) online adults in the U.S. say they have microblogged, on Twitter or elsewhere, to share personal updates or view updates about others, according to new research from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

Those who use Twitter are more likely to use other social media. Both blogging and social network use increase the likelihood that a person also uses Twitter, according to the study.

The study also revealed that Twitter users are also heavy consumers of blog content. About 21% of Twitter users read someone else’s blog the day before they participated in the survey and more than half (57%) have ever read a blog.

The research provides just a few more reasons why your B2B organization should be involved in social media and networking. But at what point does using Twitter for business go too far?

Maybe when you find something like this in the office:

Taking Twitter too far

Taking Twitter too far

Does B2B have a place in social media?

Is it “appropriate” for business to business organizations to use social media techniques?

The question comes from another great post from PR Squared. (Yesterday, we talked about an awesome ebook they put together.) Today, I wanted to share the question with our readers to try and get a better inside perspective.

Some may say that social media does not have a place in business to business interactions, arguing that “we already know our customers,” or “we have a very technical, specialized product,” or even “our customers are very conventional.”

But many organizations can discover the answer by starting with another question, “are our customers online?”

Nine times out of 10, the answer to that one will be “yes.”

Whether your customers are doing business online or not, they’re there. Your customers are online – checking e-mail, using Google, researching topics for an upcoming presentation.

If our customers are there, we should also be there. B2B’s MUST have a place in social media.

Check back tomorrow for more information on how to find organizations involved in social media in your industry and how to stake your claim.

What do you think? Is it “appropriate” for business to business companies to use social media techniques? Why or why not?

Growing your fan base on Twitter: What not to do

Using Twitter for business has proven to be a valuable tool for many companies, but like any growing media, the rules are still developing and constantly changing.

In a recent post at Mashable, blogger Atherton Bartleby compares the interaction between people on Twitter to that of a fabulous party:

“We’ve all been there: You’re at a party hosted by that one fabulous friend, and populated with the best of your mutual circle of friends. The atmosphere is almost carbonated with excitement; the guests’ personalities flawlessly compliment each other; and the conversations that abound are infused with intelligence, caustic wit, and a wide variety of knowledge that ensures the complete absence of any pregnant, awkward pauses. Then, it happens: someone appears who just doesn’t…fit.”

A similar situation occurs on Twitter when someone starts following you and doesn’t fit into the conversation. “This is the person whose follow on Twitter you simply cannot bring yourself to return,” and what Bartleby calls the “follow fail.”

If you would like to grow the number of followers you have on Twitter and get Bartelby to start following you too, here are a few pointers from his list of top reasons why he doesn’t follow some people in return:

  • No user avatar. You may think that tiny 48 x 48 pixel avatar is insignificant, but it may have a lot to do with whether people choose to follow you or not. Create an avatar that is either a personalized photograph or reflective of your brand to help users associate your Twitter account with your company.
  • You profile is lacking. Take a minute or two to make sure your Twitter profile includes your location, website and a short bio. Remember, you want people to follow you – so explain why they should.
  • It’s all about you. By using Twitter, you hope to increase awareness of your brand to drive more people to your site to buy your stuff, but you don’t have to make it so obvious. Show that your account is worthy of followers by sharing valuable content, not just product updates.
  • You’re not engaging. Engage and interact with the people who are following you. “They aren’t called ‘social’ networking and ‘social’ media for nothing.

And that’s not even the half of it … read more Twitter tips here.

Like any other aspect of your business, Twitter should be used to create value for your followers. Twitter has the potential to improve your business if you work to engage the people in your network, start interesting conversations and share valuable information.

Co-op, online collaboration without distraction

Co-op is a new, free web application that is similar to using Twitter at work, but makes it even easier to update and stay connected with co-workers.

Using Co-op, co-workers can post status updates on what they’re working on and check to see what their colleagues are busy with. Co-workers can ask each other questions, share knowledge, track time and update agendas all in one place with Co-op.

Instant messages can be distracting and it can take time to scan through a list of Tweets, but Co-op allows teams to quickly update each other and stay connected without disruptions.

For example:

Sue in Marketing needs someone from Creative to help with a small task. Instead disrupting the team with an e-mail, instant message or friendly visit, Sue can login to Co-op and take a look at each designer’s status messages. In seconds, Sue can find out who is busy and who looks like they have some time to help her out.

On one screen, teams can see an overview of what they’re working on, their daily agenda and what was completed yesterday. Created specifically for the workplace, it could be a great communication tool for coworkers and a new way to interact in the office.

And the best part – it’s free! Visit Co-op and find out if it can improve how your team works.

Co-op Anatomy

Co-op Anatomy