Archive for August, 2009
Aug 09

This great article from the NYT talks about Twitter (and other social media) demographics. Suprizingly, just 11% of Twitter users are aged 12 to 17. The reporter challenges the idea that children are critical to new technology success. It also highlights how Twitter, which was initially built to stay in touch with friends is now becoming a platform to broadcast ideas or questions, or marketing a product.

Aug 09

I was recently attending a presentation by Anton Konikoff from Acronym Media about Search Marketing 2.0. In his 15 mns enlightening pitch, Anton discussed the future of Serach Marketing. These are the kek take-ways:

1/ Organic search is no longer showing 10 or 15 blue links anymore. We should get used to that idea that nowadays a whole lot of other elements will come-up in organic serach. These are local results, videos, images etc … As a result wer should start optimizing these assets to drive traffice to our web site. ”Digital Assets Optimization is gradually replacing Search Engine Optimization”

2/ In addition, Google might no longer be the default search engine for certain clutters of people. Google is really good at ranking an incredible number of web pages. However web crawlers do this on a regular basis (every week for example). As a a result not all Google searches are up-to-date. By opposition Twitter is constantly up-to-the-minute. Anton was making the point that Twitter might become a search engine for some people. Finally Anton discussed how some marketers use Twitter to gather voice-of-the-customer. By having access to the latest trends and language being used by its customers, the Four Seasons hotel chain was able to change some of its Search Engine Marketing keywords.

Overall an amazing presentation. Now let’s get our Tweets, images, old videos out and let’s start tracking Twitter to gather customer insights.
Aug 09

I ran across this excellent article from the WSJ on web advertising. They argue that in a recessionnary economy, marketers would be foolish to move ads away from premium content portal (NYT, ESPN) to secondary portals (ad networks)

The extensive study from WPP shows:
- CPM for ad network can sell for less than $1
- While CPM for web publishers can sell for $10 upwards
- rates have began falling for display ads (by 17% this year)
- overall spending on online advertising will drop 3.2% this year
- ad network

The study does not mention pay-per-click marketing. It will be interesting to know where it provides biggest bang for the buck as Google decreased costs for content network (as opposed to search engine portals).
Aug 09

In a recent TechCrunch quick poll, 73% of respondents indicated they would not like to see journalists on Twitter. Only 18% said they should. 7% still wondered what Twitter was. It is hard to understand why journalists should not be allowed to have a Twitter account:

a/ To post link to their articles in perhaps a more engaging way than current media web sites
b/ To access up-to-the-minute news, announcements and conversations from the institutions or people they follow

Over the last few weeks, I have been experimenting with Twitter myself, as a way to reach journalists, from both national and trade publications. These are my key learnings:

1/ Quite a few journalists are on Twitter and this number is growing rapidly. MuckRack gives you a list of who is tweeting. Not surprisingly there is a fair representation of US national media such as the NYT, Wall Street Journal and Financial Times.

2/ However some journalists have a protected account (they will need to accept your request to follow them), signed up once and have not posted anything since then, or worse do not actually post at all

3/ Now on the other side of the equation, as an institution or individual, Twitter can be used to either disseminate news to journalists and as a established channel for crisis management. Remember when Domino’s pizza management posted a video on youtube to respond to a stupid (but popular) video attacks from 2 employees? Well along the same lines, Twitter can be used to quickly intervene in a similar situation

4/ Some smart institutions and/or journalists out there use Twitter as a way to gather what soon will be called V.O.F., or voice-of-the-followers. As institutions/media struggle to understand they customer language, Twitter is a fantastic way to datamine all these conversations and identify buzzwords and trends.

5/ It is hard to use Twitter efficiently as a channel to reach top media. It is even harder to estimate the influence of a particular tweets

6/ However most current metrics that can be used to measure the ‘impact’ of a tweet are:
- number of click-though (see my previous post on and it powerful metrics)
- number of re-tweets
- how some tweets generate new followers request

7/It is also difficult to measure the influence of the journalists that follows you. They can be influential but it does not necessarily mean they will read your tweets or have a positive attitude towards what you are saying. Some more grassroots bloggers/columnist may actually be your best allies in reading and re-tweeting your press releases (or other announcements)

8/ Twitter is just an additional channel, to complement media outreach, newswire, press conferences, web, blog activities etc … so far its influence might be overestimated.

9/ This being said, it is growing quite rapidly. I was talking to the CEO of a large SEO agency in NYC and he envisioned Twitter becoming a leaner, more frequently updated search engine.

10/ We are all experimenting with Twitter and it is just difficult at this point to assess its potential to journalists. But I don’t personally think it’s a fad and believe most individuals and institutions should take a closer look at it.