Web Office update – Google and Zoho make moves

first_imgTags:#web#Web Office Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… richard macmanus Related Posts You can’t go past the Mountain View upstarts as the most likely to challengeMicrosoft. Already they have Writely, a spreadsheet, Calendar, email and a few otherSuite products under their wing. There are signs that Google is bringing it all together– the latest being the release of Google Apps forYour Domain (another poorly named Google product!). This offers private-labeledemail, IM and calendar tools to small businesses. Om Malik is unimpressed,noting the potential privacy implications.I liked Om’ssummary of the Web Office in a previous post: “Web Office should not be aboutreplacing the old, but inventing the new web apps that solve some specific problems.”Exactly! Dan Farber also has some interesting viewson a Google office.For my own views on what should make up a Web Office, check out Analysis: Google Spreadsheet and WebOffice and Why you need a WebOffice. Heck you may as well browse through my Web Office category on ZDNet!😉ZohoZoho is certainly building up its suite of products quitenicely. Recently it releasedZoho Projects, an online project management tool. Butrather than being directly competitive with Microsoft, if anything Zoho Project is takingaim at 37Signals. When I wrote a post entitled Web Office Suite: best of breedproducts in February, I identified Basecampas the best-of-breed online project management tool. I said at the time that Basecamp“continues to set the pace. It features message boards, to-do lists, simple scheduling,collaborative writing, and file sharing.”Marshall at TechCrunch did a good review of Zoho Projects and this quote sums up the maindifferentiator: “The Zoho team told me that if Basecamp targets “the less is morecrowd,” ZohoProjects will be feature rich.”Zoho will also soon release a singlesign-on feature, so that the full range of Zoho products can be used more like a WebOffice suite. Currently they’re separate, although Zoho does have a product called Zoho Virtual Office,which is described as “groupware” and has things like email, IM and calendar.See also my coverage of ZohoShow and ZohoWriter. I certainly think Zohohas all the pieces now, so it’s just a matter of hooking them all together and continuingto improve each product offering.ThinkFreeThinkFree is a Korean company which has also animpressive web-based Suite of products. ThinkFree bills itself as the “World’s Best WebBased Office Suite”. When Iinterviewed ThinkFree CEO TJ Kang in early May, he compared ThinkFree favorably withSun Microsystems’ OpenOffice (a desktop product). TJ Kang said they were more compatiblewith MS Office than OpenOffice – “especially with the spreadsheet and presentation”. Seealso my follow-up post. Insummary, I think ThinkFree is a solid Web Office suite offering – and like Zoho willcontinue to improve in functionality over time.Zimbra I recentlywrote about Zimbra in my web mail overview. Currentlythey have a mini-suite of Web Office products. The Zimbra Collaboration Suite hasemail, contacts, group calendaring, word processing and spreadsheets. The latter two wereadded recently, as part of thelaunch of Zimbra Collaboration Suite (ZCS) 4.0. So Zimbra is continuing to bulk uptheir Web Office Suite credentials.In my full review of Zimbraback in April, I was impressed that Zimbra is packed full of features. They have mashupsand things like “Search Builder” and an RSS reader.SummaryThere is much more to explore on this topic, and more companies to mention, so overtime I’ll be investigating Web Office further on R/WW. For now it seems like Google is the one to watch, plus the reactions of Microsoft to that threat. But don’t discount the small players, like Zoho and ThinkFree. There is a lot of innovation happening in this space, so it’s not all about the big companies battling it out for dominance. Latelythere’s been an increasing buzz about Web Office, something which I’ve been writing aboutfor some time now. Red Herring magazine wrote an article with the provocative headline 17 MSOffice Killers. While it would be quite a story if Microsoft did get usurped by aWeb-based Office, the reality is that Microsoft will – over time – move their Officesuite online. Or at the least end up with a hybrid desktop/Web suite. As DonDodge noted, Microsoft has already made a start with Office Live. So nothing is goingto ‘kill’ Microsoft Office, at least not in the next 5-10 years.There are however viable alternatives to Microsoft Office springing up. Red Herringidentified ThinkFree, Zoho and gOffice (not affiliated with Google) as 3 likelycandidates to create a Web Office suite. Personally I think you can add Zimbra, JotSpot,Goowy and Google itself to that list – even though each of them has work to do yet to get toa full suite. However Aaron Ricadela from InformationWeek makes a good case for Google Office – he says it’s on the way.I’ll be profiling all of them on Read/WriteWeb over the next couple of months. In themeantime here’s a quick overview of some of the leading Web Office contenders rightnow…Googlelast_img read more

Where Does Android Register on Google’s “Evil” Meter?

first_imgWhat it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement sarah perez Related Posts Tags:#Google#mobile#news#web center_img Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces As we mentioned briefly last night, Google is going to attempt to reintegrate Android into the main Linux kernel – the code had been booted in December because it was “no longer being cared for,” according to Greg Kroah-Hartman, the Novell developer who maintains the staging, USB and driver core for Linux. The reintroduction process will take years, says Google open source programs manager Chris DiBona. On the one hand, it’s good to see Google trying to do the right thing by the open source community, but on the other hand, the argument could be made that Google appropriated Linux for its own for-profit ends without giving back.This move has been dubbed by some as “evil,” (in reference to Google’s infamous company motto, “Do No Evil”). The issue: Google forked Android’s development into private branches, implemented a closed code review process and and then trademarked the “Android” name all while providing an incomplete public software developers kit which is missing several key items needed to build a Android-based handset. Open? No. But is that evil?The Arguments as to Android “Openness”…or Lack ThereofVision Mobile’s research director Andreas Constantinou makes these same points and more over on the blog run by the market analysis and strategy firm. The post, entitled “Is Android Evil?” is worth reading in its entirety. But we’ll summarize some of the main points here by snipping out a handful of his top arguments as to why Android isn’t really open source software: Private branches: As noted above, select partners (OEMs mostly) have access to private codelines that are estimated to be 6+ months ahead of the public SDK. This allows them to stay competitive.Close review process: All code reviewers work for Google. Few outside contributions get in with no explanation as to why.Speed of evolution: Google innovates on Android so quickly that OEMs have no choice but to remain close to the company in order to get in on the new features and bug fixes.Incomplete software: The public SDK lacks radio integration, international language packs and operator packs. Android is a trademarked name. Private roadmap: The published roadmap is a year out of date. You have to contact Google to see the private one. Constantinou makes a few other arguments, too, like how the Android Marketplace is controlled by Google for example, but that’s not really as important to this issue – especially since there’s no Apple-like review process when it comes to accepting new applications. Another argument to Android’s not-so-open nature is that Google chose the Apache license so the derivative code doesn’t have to be contributed back. Google’s DiBona dismissed this, claiming differentiation is good and enables commercial vendors to succeed, according to the ZDNet report. Profit Isn’t EvilCommercial success with Linux isn’t a new (or “evil”) idea, though. Distributions like Redhat, SuSE, Oracle Unbreakable Linux – heck, even Tivo – among many others have turned a profit thanks to Linux. That’s not evil, that’s just good business. But the issue here is that Google is succeeding commercially on top of Linux while making changes to Android that are not shared with the community. Meanwhile, they get to promote “Android” as “open,” when, in reality, that doesn’t appear to be the case. The question we ask now is this: does this make the Android business “evil?” Or does Google get a pass since Android is far more open, comparatively speaking, than most other mobile operating systems today? Where does Android fall on Google’s “evil meter? in your eyes? The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technologylast_img read more

Interruption Marketing Not Working? Try Harder!

first_img them for it? Right? ask My guess is your business needs more customers. And, to get more customers, you need more leads. And to get more leads, you really have to get people’s attention. What better way to get their attention than to Check out this video on the Power of Interruption Marketing. If you have not experienced the power of interruption marketing, you’re probably not trying hard enough — or not spending enough. Originally published May 6, 2008 2:58:00 PM, updated March 21 2013 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Facebook Questions Launches: Marketers Cheer

first_imgFacebook recently passed 500 million users and now is adding an important new feature to its platform. Today, the social networking platform released Topics: Facebook Questions is public and will be open to everyone. The feature is currently in beta and only available to a portion of Facebook users prior to its release to all users. Brands that have Facebook pages will be allowed to answer questions. Facebook Questions Yahoo Photo questions: Do you plan on adding Facebook Questions into you social media marketing plan? This is a big one for marketers. Now that a Facebook user can quickly create a poll to answer a question, the amount of available data to mine for industry and business insight will increase. have used a Questions feature for years, this is not an unprecedented addition, but it highlights the possibility for individuals to communicate in a new way with people outside of their direct Facebook network. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Jul 28, 2010 5:45:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Simple Polling: Tagging:center_img Users who want to keep track of certain answers can “follow” a question to see responses as they get added. . This new feature allows users to ask questions to the “entire” Facebook community. As companies like Following: As a marketer, it is critical you understand that Facebook Questions or any other questions platform is not a place for advertisement. Instead, this new feature provides an environment for contributing value and relevance to potential customers and establishing trust between them and your business. As people start using this feature, look for questions and tags relevant to your business and provide answers to questions that you have the experience and expertise to answer. Users can post pictures of objects that they have questions about or have problems identifying and then can receive answers from other users. According to Mashable, Facebook Questions will allow users to do a few things: Marketing TakeawayToday, Facebook made its platform more valuable to marketers. Marketing on Facebook has been challenging because of privacy and a clear separation of profile and business pages. Facebook Questions provides a new way for businesses and prospects to communicate and discover one another in a relevant way. LinkedIn Questions has long been a valuable tool for B2B marketers and it is likely that Facebook will be used in similar ways but on a larger scale. Tagging is the method Facebook uses for organizing questions. The point of tagging is to allow users to easily discover new questions and answer the ones relevant to them. LinkedIn Facebook Updates andlast_img read more

4 Marketing Lessons From Steve Jobs [Marketing Update]

first_img Originally published Aug 29, 2011 8:00:00 PM, updated July 03 2013 Topics: Inbound Marketing In case you somehow hadn’t heard, Steve Jobs, an amazing marketer, presenter, and product designer, resigned as CEO of Apple earlier this week. This week on the Marketing Update, Karen Rubin and Kipp Bodnar discussed lessons marketers can learn from Jobs. The Wall Street Journal published a great article about his best quotes. Below are some of our favorites and how they apply to marketing. Quote #1: Marketing Budget”Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R&D. It’s not about money. It’s about the people you have, how you’re led, and how much you get it.” Fortune, November 9, 1998Marketing Takeaway: Innovation in marketing has nothing to do with how much budget you have either. In fact, this is what makes inbound marketing a much better, cost-effective alternative to traditional outbound marketing. Make sure your team is filled with passionate people who believe in what they are marketing. In inbound marketing, it’s about the size of your brain, not the size of your wallet. Create amazing, remarkable content, and you’ll be amazed at the kinds of results you can achieve. Quote #2: Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing“When you’re young, you look at television and think, there’s a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that’s not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want. That’s a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want. It’s the truth.” Wired, February 1996Marketing Takeaway: More people are ignoring television ads by blocking them with TiVo and DVR technologies every day. At some point, the television networks will catch on that their business model is no longer working. As a marketer, make sure you have started using inbound marketing techniques to stop interrupting people and start engaging with them. Quote #3: Differentiation“It’s more fun to be a pirate than to join the navy.” 1982, quoted in Odyssey: Pepsi to Apple, 1987Marketing Takeaway: Be unique in your marketing! Try new things, and be remarkable and different. Wearing an eye patch and a peg leg could do wonders for your marketing!Quote #4: Passion”And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” Stanford Commencement 2005Marketing Takeaway: Inbound marketing demands passion. You can’t create remarkable content if you don’t believe in what you’re creating. Hire people who are passionate about what your business has to offer, and it will inspire an awesome inbound marketing strategy that features amazing content that generates results.What else can Steve Jobs teach you about inbound marketing? Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

9 Amazing Mobile Marketing Statistics Every Marketer Should Know

first_img Marketing Data This is a guest blog post written by Jamie Turner. As the founder of the 60 Second Marketer, he is an in-demand marketing speaker and is currently writing a book entitled Go Mobile with Jeanne Hopkins, the director of marketing for HubSpot.I attended Dreamforce in San Francisco last week to learn about new sales and marketing tools and techniques.The hot topic this year was mobile. (Okay, truth be told, there were three hot topics – cloud computing, social media, and mobile marketing. But for this article’s sake, let’s focus on mobile.)Of course, all this begs the question: What data do we have that supports the premise that mobile marketing is the next big thing?Glad you asked.Here are 9 amazing facts and figures about mobile marketing that’ll help you wrap your head around why mobile is going to be bigger than radio, TV, and the personal computer – combined.9 Amazing Mobile Marketing Statistics 1. The growth of the iPhone was 10 times faster than the growth of America Online. (Source: Nielsen) (This is an amazing statistic for those of us who remember mailboxes stuffed with AOL discs during the 1990s.) (Tweet This Stat!)2. It takes 26 hours for the average person to report a lost wallet. It takes 68 minutes for them to report a lost phone. (Source: Unisys) (Tweet This Stat!)3. There are 6.8 billion people on the planet. 5.1 billion of them own a cell phone, but only 4.2 billion own a toothbrush. (Source: Mobile Marketing Association Asia) (Tweet This Stat!)4. In some countries, there are more mobile subscriptions than there are people. (Source: Mobile Marketing Association) (How can this be? It’s because some people own more than one mobile phone.) (Tweet This Stat!)5. It takes 90 minutes for the average person to respond to an email. It takes 90 seconds for the average person to respond to a text message. (Source: CTIA.org) (Tweet This Stat!)6. 70% of all mobile searches result in action within 1 hour. (Source: Mobile Marketer) (Tweet This Stat!)7. Mobile coupons get 10 times the redemption rate of traditional coupons. (Source: Borrell Associates) (Tweet This Stat!)8. There are more mobile phones on the planet than there are TVs. (Source: Jupiter) (Tweet This Stat!)9. 91% of all U.S. citizens have their mobile device within reach 24/7. (Source: Morgan Stanley) (Tweet This Stat!)(Source: Mobile Marketing Association)Mobile Marketing TakeawaysTry mobile marketing for yourself. If you’re like most people, you’ve never scanned a QR code or clicked on a mobile banner ad. But you have to use mobile marketing to understand mobile marketing, so dive in.In addition, make sure you have a mobile-optimized website. There’s no point getting into mobile if your business’ website isn’t mobile-friendly.The bottom line? Mobile is here to stay, and your consumers are using it virtually every day of their lives. Given that, isn’t it time for you to get started and dive into the world of mobile? Hopefully, the statistics and takeaways I’ve outlined above will lay the foundation for you to take the next step.Image credit: LGEPR Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Originally published Sep 6, 2011 9:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017last_img read more

Our Top Predictions for Facebook’s Secret January 15th Announcement

first_imgI was perusing Marketing Pilgrim this morning, and what did I find? A little article about some new Facebook rollout.Oooh! Maybe we should newsjack this?Oh no, my friends. The time for newsjacking is premature, it seems, because Facebook hasn’t actually released any news yet. Except for, well, the fact that they’re going to be releasing some news in the future. On January 15th, to be exact. In fact, they’ve already started inviting press to cover the event (my invite must have gotten lost in the mail).So, it got me thinking … just what is this new “thing” that Facebook is revealing? Is it a new feature? A new product or service? An acquisition? It got a lot of us here at HubSpot debating, so I thought I’d share some predictions (some silly, some serious) about what it could be. I hope you’ll share your own in the comments, too!Our Top Predictions for Facebook’s Secret January 15th Announcement1) Facebook to Release a Smartphone!When I asked colleagues about this announcement, the first response I got was that there’s been a ton of buzz on the internet about Facebook releasing its own smartphone (or maybe a landline?). Facebook has received a lot of negative feedback over its poor mobile usability — from consumers and advertisers alike — but they have been taking strides to improve it. For example, consumers recently got a “Share” button so they can share another friend’s update on their mobile devices just like they would on a desktop. And advertisers have received mobile-only ad targeting, allowing targeting for users only when they’re using Facebook from, well, a mobile device.Since Facebook and the mobile world need to get closer and closer together, it’s certainly a possibility, but I think most people are agreeing that Facebook releasing its own smartphone isn’t too likely for the 15th, considering Zuckerberg himself denied it in July of 2012. But hey, that was over five months ago … that’s a long time in internet years.2) Facebook Finally Enhances Much Adored ‘Poke’ Feature!Because of public appeal, Facebook has invested millions of dollars and thousands of engineering man hours into the enhancement of its ‘Poke’ feature. On January 15th, users will be able to not only poke, but also pinch, flick, stroke, trip, slap, punch, or tickle a friend. Businesses will be able to do this to page fans, too.3) Facebook Launches New Gaming Platform!If you recall (I didn’t, until I read some news over at ITWire), during its IPO, Facebook identified gaming company Zynga as a bit of a weak point. Since they’ve been trying to separate from one another, it’s possible Facebook will announce that its built its own gaming platform on January 15th. A gaming platform would be one more way for Facebook to earn even more revenue, on top of their growing ad network.4) Facebook Builds, Launches “Facebot!”Facebook’s been working on building an actual robot, available for purchase, that will follow you around and speak your status updates to you. This eliminates the need for people to spend all day scrolling through their Facebook News Feed to stay up to date on what their friends are posting. For a small monthly fee, robots will display the user’s profile picture on its face.If you’d like to stalk someone, simply speak the name of the friend to the robot, who will tell you what they’re doing, where they’re going, and who they’ve been talking to. If you have a private message, the robot will tap you on the shoulder and lean in for a whisper.5) Facebook Unveils Site Redesign!Facebook’s release of Timeline last year was the talk of the town — some people loved it, some hated it (probably more than “some,” but consumers are always up in arms about Facebook’s changes), but all of us probably have a couple pieces of feedback on the layout. It’s plausible, and many are chattering about this, that Facebook is announcing another redesign. It’s pretty unlikely a redesign would do away with Timeline; you might notice other social networks like Twitter and LinkedIn have adopted the horizontal cover photo because it is actually pretty sweet. Many are speculating it will do away with the two-column update layout we have on our current profiles and pages, and instead will replace one side with more tools and widgets.There’s also a possibility, however, that Facebook really will scrap the whole Timeline design and launch something totally out of left-field. After all, they’ve never been ones to fear experimentation and disruption.6) Facebook Trades in Blue for Pink!While its trademark blue has gotten them far, Facebook’s an agile, forward-thinking company. They know when it’s time to experiment, and embrace change. That’s why, on January 15th, 2013, Mark Zuckerberg will announce that their social network will now be sporting a soft shade of baby pink in lieu of the blue we’ve all become accustomed to. To promote the new skin, Zuckerberg will also be trading in his bluish grayish hoodies for more of a pinkish purplish hue.7) Facebook Launches Dating Site!Ooooh, am I being silly or serious? A little bit of both, I suppose. Facebook has a ridiculous amount of intelligence about its users: music taste, favorite movies, hobbies, profession, education, location, sexual orientation, relationship status. Why not build the option for users to opt in to a paid dating site, bringing over their information from their profiles, and suggesting matches for one another based on that intelligence? Hey, it’s not the most far-fetched idea to solve Facebook’s monetization problems.8) Beast Announced as New CEO of Facebook!It would be foolish to think Mark Zuckerberg could run his Facebook empire forever. And it turns out he’s found new adventures to pursue, and as a result, has named his lovable dog Beast as his successor. He’s supremely qualified for the role, as he’s been maintaining his own Facebook page for several years now, and has amassed over 1.3 million Likes. Originally published Jan 10, 2013 4:15:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics:center_img 9) Facebook Buys Google!In a surprise twist in the M&A world, Facebook has purchased Google for eleventeen billion dollars. Facebook acknowledged the need for a better search function, which Google’s nailed pretty well with their search algorithm, and Google acknowledged they were in over their head with Google+, and that it really isn’t that different from Facebook at all.10) Google Integrated Into Facebook Search Function!It is true that Facebook’s in need of a more robust, more accurate search function. In fact, this is what many of my colleagues settled on as a possible announcement on January 15th — perhaps not Google integration into Facebook’s search function, but a brand spankin’-new search function built by Facebook. If Facebook could truly nail social search, perhaps by using social signals such as Likes, shares, or even user and business tags, it would present a great opportunity for marketers who can figure out and nail SEO for Facebook.What do you think Facebook’s big announcement will be on January 15th? Do you think it will impact business, consumers, or both?Image credit: Tsahi Levent-Levi Facebook Updateslast_img read more

The Definition of Net Promoter Score [In Under 100 Words]

first_img Originally published Feb 22, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a customer satisfaction metric that measures, on a scale from 0-10, the degree to which people would recommend your company to others.The NPS is derived from a simple survey designed to help you determine how loyal your customers are to your business. To calculate NPS, subtract the percentage of customers who would not recommend you (detractors, or 0-6) from the percent of customers who would (promoters, or 9-10).Regularly determining your company’s NPS allows you to identify ways to improve your products and services so you can increase the loyalty of your customers. Customer Success Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

NY Times Does 6-Month Study, Concludes It Needs to Move Faster

first_img Content Marketing Originally published May 20, 2014 3:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack This post originally appeared on the Opinion section of Inbound Hub. To read more content like this, subscribe to Opinion.If you were put in charge of The New York Times, right this minute, what would you do? What could anyone do to save this legendary institution and move it into the digital age? That’s what I keep asking myself after reading about the alarming Innovation Report that got leaked last week.The Times commissioned the report, and put a team, led by A.G. Sulzberger, son of Times chairman and publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr., on the job. The team spent six months to come up with recommendations for how the Times should adapt to the digital age.The report runs for 91 pages and is scathing. Joshua Benton, the director of the Harvard-based Nieman Journalism Lab, calls it “one of the most remarkable documents I’ve seen in my years running the Lab.” The report portrays the Times as an institution that has fallen behind traditional rivals like the Washington Post as well as upstarts like the Huffington Post. The report was supposed to be just for Times insiders, but got leaked to BuzzFeed.The authors have lots of recommendations about what the Times could and should do. Audience development is one thing, which basically means that it’s no longer enough just to publish great content. In addition, publishers need to focus on tools for expanding the reach of the publication by helping readers find the content they want and keeping them more engaged with the publication.Rivals like Huffington Post and BuzzFeed “are succeeding because of their sophisticated social, search, and community-building tools and strategies, and often in spite of their content,” the report claims. (Emphasis mine.) That claim is followed by a quote from Paul Berry, the techie who built the CMS for Huffington Post and then went on to co-found RebelMouse, who says that while traditional reporters hit “publish” and think their job is done, in the brave new world that’s just the beginning. “At Huffington Post, the article begins its life when you hit publish,” Berry says.The lesson is that on the internet it’s no longer enough to have great content. Great content is table stakes. The real heavy lifting is how you manage to get people to find that content, and keep coming back. And that is largely about technology.The media business, in fact, has become a technology business. The problem is that most legacy institutions are simply unable to turn themselves into tech companies.Back in 2010, I wrote an article for Newsweek about Huffington Post, and mentioned that one key to its growth had been its remarkable content management system. What I didn’t say in that article, for obvious reasons, was how far behind we were in that department at Newsweek. Our CMS was a mess, a weird hodgepodge of different programs held together with duct tape and glue.The Huffington Post had 30 engineers writing code. Newsweek had some IT guys who came around and set up your email. Even if Newsweek wanted to build a tech organization, we didn’t have the resources. We were losing money like crazy, and just fighting to stay alive.The Times is doing better than that, of course. To its credit, the company long ago made a real investment in technology. I hope the Times can save itself. The paper is 163 years old, and a national treasure. It is far and away the best newspaper in the United States, and one of the best in the world.The new 91-page report contains lots of advice and suggestions and recommendations. But that itself represents part of the problem. The Times is the kind of institution where, when the company is faced with massive disruption happening at incredible speed, management responds by assembling an eight-member team, led by the son of the publisher, and giving them six months to write a 91-page report.Try to imagine how many new ideas have been tried at Huffington Post, or RebelMouse, or Gawker, or BuzzFeed, in the past six months, while the Times was sending the boss’s kid around a team to do a report. Then ask yourself again: If your job were to turn around the New York Times, what would you do? I’m really not sure that anyone has the answer.last_img read more

Say Hello to Animated GIFs on Twitter

first_img Twitter Images Topics: FINALLY. Following in Pinterest’s footsteps, Twitter made an exciting announcement today: You can now share and view animated GIFs on Twitter.com and on Twitter’s iOS and Android apps. (And HubSpot customers: Social Inbox supports it, too.) Before today, you had to upload GIFs via third-party apps — but now you can upload and view them directly on Twitter.The announcement was made in a tweet from Twitter’s Support team — and, appropriately, it included an animated GIF. (Click the image to animate it.)Starting today, you can share and view animated GIFs on http://t.co/wJD8Fp317i, Android and iPhone. http://t.co/XBrAbOm4Ya— Twitter Support (@Support) June 18, 2014The GIF won’t animate automatically in your News Feed, but all users have to do is click on the GIF for it to play right in the feed — no new window has to be opened up. The white “play” button on the GIF indicates to users that it’s animated, not just a still image. (As you can see in Twitter’s example above, this means you should avoid a white background in your animated GIF.)Why Marketers Should CareYou might be thinking to yourself, “Animated GIFs are cute, but they’re kind of silly. How and why would I use them for marketing on Twitter?”For many reasons, actually. Adding animated GIFs to tweets opens up a new world of content marketing opportunities on Twitter. Have you ever seen Home Depot’s Vine profile? They’ve been posting short animated videos on their Vine account for some time now with promotions, quick tips, and other campaigns — and people know them for it. I’m excited to see how they take advantage of Twitter’s update.So why can animated GIFs be good for marketing on Twitter?They stand out in the Twitter feed. You may already know that adding still images to tweets catches your followers’ eyes in busy News Feeds and makes them more clickworthy. A HubSpot A/B test found a 55% increase in leads when images were added to tweets. Animated GIFs kind of look like images on Twitter, except users can be prompted to click on them because of the white “play” button overlaying the image.They’re easily digestible. It’s hard to capture people’s attention nowadays, especially when they’re scrolling through their Twitter feeds. Not only do users not have to open a new window to see the animation (this is huge), but also they’re short in length, making them quick and easily consumable to your viewers.They can elicit emotions. Have you ever watched a movie or television show and found yourself mimicking the facial expression of someone on-screen? This happens to me all the time. (Yeah, it’s embarrassing.) Whether or not that exact phenomenon happens to you, you can imagine that seeing a video — especially of a human face — can make people empathize or feel some sort of emotion. Take a look at these two tweets and see which one elicits a more emotional response than the other.Tweet 1:Tweet 2:NOOOOOOOO http://t.co/dVEzLrC26I— Lindsay Kolowich (@lkolo25) June 18, 2014Which tweet made you feel like my situation — whatever situation that was — was more dire? Probably the second. Animated GIFs help marketers make your viewers feel something. So think about how you can use popular GIFs or create one of your own to boost your Twitter presence.Finally, a word of wisdom: When it comes to animated GIFs on Twitter, my advice would be to start slow, collect some data about your audience, and then increase the frequency of your tweets with animated GIFs over time if you find they’re successful with your audience. Avoid over posting them on your brand’s account, or you could lose some followers. How To Tweet an Animated GIFTweeting a animated GIF involves the same steps as tweeting a picture. Here’s how you do it:Step 1: Compose a new tweet and put any text you want in there.Step 2: Choose “Add Photo.” Find the animated GIF you want to attach and click “Open.”Step 3: Press “Tweet.” You’re done! Wasn’t that easy? Here’s what it looks like. Remember, you just have to click the paused image to animate the GIF.FINALLY. Twitter supports GIFs. http://t.co/gyRMPpPqQR— Lindsay Kolowich (@lkolo25) June 18, 2014So, do all social networks support animated GIFs now? Nope, Facebook still doesn’t — they thought about it, but decided it would make the News Feed too chaotic. So if you’re an animated GIF lover, you’ve got to hold tight on that platform.Image Credit: Reaction GIFs Originally published Jun 18, 2014 4:22:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more