Weekly Digital News Roundup: July 18 – July 22
To Pique Interest, Start-Ups Try a Digital Velvet Rope
- Demand for Google’s new social networking service, Google+, has been intense since its debut last month in a limited test mode. To get in, you must be invited by someone who is already a member, so Facebook and Twitter are peppered with requests for invitations to the service – they have even been sold on eBay.
- The secret: knowing that people usually want what they can’t have. These days it can be hard for a new website to attract attention, which has led many companies to try creating a sense of exclusivity by putting up a digital velvet rope.
- Typically companies will parcel out the initial sign-up invitations to a select few, asking that they provide feedback on the service in exchange for members-only bragging rights, which encourages early adopters to provide glowing reviews that attract more mainstream users.
How StumbleUpon is Winning on the Web
- At nearly ten years old, StumbleUpon is certainly well past the point of attracting users by being a new and hot trend. But the San Francisco-based web discovery engine has proven that slow and steady growth can still lead to success: earlier this month, StumpleUpon surpassed Facebook to become the biggest traffic driver among social media startups in the U.S.
- Being unseated by the lower profile discovery engine has taken some people by surprise, but the leaders of StumbleUpon maintain that it is because the website has earned its slow-but steady success.
- StumbleUpon is just starting to reach the stage where more people are recognizing its merits, and the technology behind the engine can easily be translated into other mediums like television, gaming, social networking, and beyond. The recommendation service is set to continue growing due to its easily translatable technology and ease of use.
Most Mobile Budgets Under $50K, Growth Expected
- When it comes to mobile advertising, just over half (51%) of brand marketers say that they have built mobile into their ad strategy, either as part of wider campaigns or as a stand-alone effort.
- But mobile budgets are still small, with 55% spending less than $50,000 this year and only 7% planning to spend more than $300,000 according to a surgery of 300 top brand marketing executives.
- Still, dollars allocated to mobile are expected to increase, with 35% looking to boost budgets by more than 50% in the next two years. A branded mobile site was the most common type of mobile advertising at 83%, with display advertising a close runner-up at 77%.
How Google+ Will Transform Search and Search Marketing
- Industry expert Dave Williams states that Google+ is gaining users faster than any social network ever before, and the numbers prove this. So far, a lot of coverage of the new social network has debated its value, but less scrutinized is the way the launch of Google+ could end up enhancing the competitive positioning and value of Google’s search business.
- This is because Google+ gives users an unprecedented view of consumer interest, social graph, intent data and conversion data. Adding brand pages to Google+ will finally give Google a branding engagement platform.
- Right now, the company’s big revenue business is search. Google+ can offer a branding platform where the campaign goal is engagement rather than immediate ROI, but time will tell which direction Google chooses to take the new social network.