Warning: This column contains no Facebook IPO news. But there sure was a lot going on outside of that particular media circus, from new product launches by Twitter, Majestic SEO and Hubspot to new rounds of funding for Pinterest, Quora and Bit.ly.
This new email digest also features the most engaging Tweets seen by the people you follow, even if you don’t follow those who wrote them. You can see who from your network retweeted or favorited these Tweets and click “View details” to retweet, favorite, reply or view the conversation around them.
This is the product of the Summify acquisition earlier this year. Twitter understands that they need to improve the signal-to-noise ratio for users in a frictionless way. The use of Friend of a Friend functionality is interesting. I personally love it, but will mainstream users like seeing ‘strangers’ in their digest?
Mr. Rosenblatt told Ad Age that Foursquare is eyeing mid-summer for the launch of its paid-media platform, which will include a product that allows merchants to promote their deals. When users search for local specials, they’ll be able to see offers via paid ads, and those promoted placements will be targeted using the same algorithms that power the “explore” functionality, which recommends establishments based on a user’s check-in history, as well as check-ins by friends and the wider Foursquare user base.
Can Steven Rosenblatt and Foursquare turn their fun geo-location app into a real business model? That’s what we’ll find out in mid-summer when this SoLoMo turns on paid ads.
Majestic SEO are really proud to announce two new and significantly improved evaluation metrics, based on link data. For the first time, we are now able to use an iterative process – flowing through our link map – to give you easy to understand numbers (between 0-100) on how effective a URL is based on the flow of a characteristic through the web.
The SEO community will have a new set of metrics to use when looking at the value of links. The new Majestic SEO flow metrics are an interesting alternative to the established SEOmoz metrics. My advice? Use both.
All-in-one marketing software company HubSpot, Inc. launched a dashboard web app based on its popular Marketing Grader tool. This new interactive dashboard quickly answers marketer’s burning questions at a glance. Are competitors accruing more Facebook fans faster? Did growth of inbound links take a nosedive? Does the competition suddenly have a lot more indexed pages? Has the last 3 months of marketing effort improved effectiveness?
HubSpot has developed a solid business in making
Internet Inbound marketing easier. The new dashboard follows this mission in providing answers to marketers instead of making them dig and find them themselves. That’s a solid strategy.
“In terms of Facebook specifically, while we currently do not plan to continue with advertising, we remain committed to an aggressive content strategy through all of our products and brands, as it continues to be a very effective tool for engaging with our customers.”
Announcing this days before the Facebook IPO is pretty sleazy. As for the news itself, it’s difficult to know if this is indicative of a problem with Facebook’s ad platform or GM’s marketing team. It also depends on whether GM was using this for intent generation or trying to measure campaigns on some sort of direct click-based ROI.
Rakuten will presumably help advise Pinterest on turning their pretty pictures into purchases, as commerce is already starting to emerge naturally on the site.
Rakuten? Yes, Rakuten! The company who, you know, owns LinkShare, Buy.com, Play.com and Kobo as well as running the largest eCommerce site in Japan.
The question here is why does this service merit such a high valuation? I mean, its traffic at best can be described as middling. There is lot more fly-by traffic from search engines, but is that enough to justify their valuation? Its mobile applications is meh and more of an afterthought. The design of the service is forgettable. Some members of the team have left to work for other companies such as Pinterest and Facebook. The only thing that is actually good about the service is some of the content contributions and the discovery of content.
I tend to agree with Om Malik on this one. While I do frequently find high quality content and answers on Quora, I can’t quite see how it’s going to scale. Quora is essentially a content publisher/aggregator and that industry is under a lot of pressure these days.
Apple will drop the Google Maps program running on iOS since 2007 in favor for a new Maps app with an Apple backend. The application design is said to be fairly similar to the current Google Maps program on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, but it is described as a much cleaner, faster, and more reliable experience.
Google Maps is actually the second most used app on iOS, which makes this change incredibly important. Remember that maps is the entry point into local search which is a huge, lucrative and growing market.
Though Alsup said that Oracle was entitled to argue for damages in front of a jury, he frowned on Oracle’s effort to win damages above and beyond the standard “statutory damages,” saying the copyright decisions against Google did not warrant this. “There is no way that the law should allow a disgorgement of hundreds of millions of dollars over range check and decompile,” he said, calling the proposition “hyper extreme.”
Oracle can claim a moral victory … kinda, sorta. It seems clear that Oracle isn’t going to get much, if anything, out of this suit.
Groupon’s first-quarter revenues topped the company’s prior forecast as well as analyst expectations, totaling $559.3 million during the period, compared with $295.5 million a year ago. Operating income was $39.6 million, including an expense of $28 million related to non-cash stock-based compensation.
Stepping on a proverbial LEGO after going public, Groupon has since rallied. I’m still not sold that the deal business alone is enough, but having that part of the business go well while they diversify certainly can’t hurt.
Bitly, a New York company that lets users shorten, share, and track URLs, is raising around $20 million in a new round of funding, we have learned from multiple sources. That’s twice the amount the company raised in its last round, and shows a mature startup closing in on a working business model. We also hear Bitly is about to launch some new consumer products, including a real-time, viral search engine.
I hope the search engine Bit.ly is building is more than just a trending or viral search engine. Because we’ve already seen the rise and fall of real-time search. Topsy is the only one left and I think they’re just hoping to be acquired by Google or Microsoft.