Google+ page vs Facebook page – the battle has just begun…


The first smoke has died down. But the war has just begun. Page vs Page. Facebook vs Google. Two Superpowers against each others.

In the first place these social networks giants was created for people to connect with people. Or “friends and family” as Facebook use to call it. With their “profiles” as a basis for the communication within the network.

Then the time came for the companies to engage with their target audience. With their “pages” as a basis for their communication. And I guess the battle has just begun.

As far as I can see and understand both of these giants have just ended up into a massive clash! Where the value proposition for their users (as companies, brands, and others) is very much the same.

Of course they both have advantages and disadvantages. The SiliconIndia says for an example:

The greatest benefit of branding products in Google plus will be the link up with search engine. The search engine will track the brands on Google plus pages easily and will bring them to the top list in the search engine. Just typing “+Google” will take the user directly to the company’s profile page.
Facebook has again got something that will affect their market. The like button of Facebook is similar to the +1 button on Google plus. The hangout button is simpler to use when compared to video chat in Facebook with Skype. Now Google plus also going corporate will be a tough completion to Facebook pages.

Well – as I said – the battle has just begun… and I’ll will follow this war with great interest.

Now – I’ve just created my own “Google+ page” and I’m looking forward to see yours, and follow your point of view in this matter. Mashable show you how to get started.

How Tumblr is changing the PR industry


Well the original title from the Read Write Web is “How Tumblr is changing journalism”. But it doesn’t really matters. I think content curation activites, and related tools for that, already has, or for sure will change, the way we share stories with each other, as information junkies, as journalists. as PR communicators, as people.

A few month ago I wrote a post about “Why Marketers Should Care About Content Curation”. As a matter of fact I didn’t write it. I just curated another post by Derek Edmond from Search Engine Land with a similar headline “Why B2B Search Marketers Should Care About Content Curation”. And he wrote it from a SEO perspective:

“B2B search engine marketers realize new content creation is a critical tactic in an effective SEO strategy. But it is also realized, as illustrated in the Marketingsherpa chart below, the level of effort required to successfully develop new content may be significant, in comparison to other tactics. Therefore, with limited resources and immediate lead generation goals, it is not surprising when we find that new content generation falls behind other SEO initiatives on the priority list. Enter content curation. While not a substitute for new development, content curation can help B2B organizations provide important information to their market.”

Since Google launched the Panda I don’t know If this matters anymore? Because as you might know, Google Panda is the “filter designed by Google to spot low-quality content”, as Catch Pope from the Australien “Curated Content Agency” put it.

If you’re not sure what “low-quality content” is, maybe Amit Singhal, Google’s head of search, explanation on the official Google blog, make sense? He says:

“Below are some questions that one could use to assess the “quality” of a page or an article. These are the kinds of questions we ask ourselves as we write algorithms that attempt to assess site quality. Think of it as our take at encoding what we think our users want.

  • Would you trust the information presented in this article?
  • Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow in nature?
  • Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?
  • Would you be comfortable giving your credit card information to this site?
  • Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?
  • Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?
  • Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
  • Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
  • How much quality control is done on content?
  • Does the article describe both sides of a story?
  • Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
  • Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?
  • Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
  • For a health related query, would you trust information from this site?
  • Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?
  • Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
  • Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?
  • Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?
  • Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
  • Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopedia or book?
  • Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?
  • Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?
  • Would users complain when they see pages from this site?”

And as you might see, some of these bullets seems to criticize the curated content; or at least some of the curated content seems to be “low-quality content”. And Google might punish your site for that, seen from a SEO perspective? But… I still think marketers (and others) should care about content curation, because that’s a great way to share interesting stories etc with your stakeholders, the people you care about. And not to forget – it’s not just about sharing, it’s about contribution and reflections as well.

Therefore I was not surprised when Richard MacManus recently wrote the article “How Tumblr is changing journalism” for Read Write Web.

As you might know Tumblr is a super easy and smooth blogging tool, but also a sharing tool, or a content curation tool. Becuase that’s pretty much how people are using it. Tumblr themselves says the tool “lets you effortlessly share anything”.

And I don’t know if the curation trend is one of the reasons why Tumblr, with it’s 12 billion page views per month, just hit knockout on WordPress, which is not a curation tool?

So I think it was just a question of time before the journalists, who are already experts on rewrites, would start using the tool (or others) “to power” their news websites, as Richard MacManus put it.

He mention the Tumblr-powered news service, ShortFormBlog, as an example.

“The concept behind ShortFormBlog is very simple: to publish really short posts throughout the day. The site publishes over 200 posts per week, an average of about 30 per day.”

Pretty successful as far as I know.

So now we’re waiting for the trend to really take off in marketers and PR staff’s newsroom.

As a matter of fact, IBM were using Tumblr when they already in November, 2008, launched the Smarter Planet project to help people grasp IBM’s Smarter Planet initiative. The site “uses frequently updated, “microblogging” entries to illustrate how the Smarter Planet vision is unfolding across IBM and across the world.”

Sign up for a Google+ business page now!


Hey PR communicators and others. Do you’ve got a Facebook fan page for your business? And think that’s a great way to get in touch and interact with your audience?

Then you should create a business page for Google+. But hold it! Maybe you should wait for a while, until Google show you the green light.

Some companies like Ford just run into the field for action. They created a personal profile as a company brand. Exactly what business did in the good old Facebook era when pages didn’t exist.

Ford - one of the first business on Google+

Google is of course aware of this, and telling us not to.

Google+ Product manager, Christian Oestlien, says on his profil:

“We have been watching Google+ take shape over the last week and we’ve seen some really great companies get involved. But frankly we know our product as it stands is not optimally suited to their needs. In fact, it was kind of an awkward moment for us when we asked Ford for his (or was it her?) gender!

How users communicate with each other is different from how they communicate with brands, and we want to create an optimal experience for both. We have a great team of engineers actively building an amazing Google+ experience for businesses, and we will have something to show the world later this year.”

But also add that:

“If you represent a “non-user entity” (e.g. business, organization, place, team, etc.) and would like to apply for consideration in our limited program (and be amongst the first to be alerted when the business product launches) you can sign up here:”

http://goo.gl/zq95C

One small paradox is that Christian Oestlien uses his personal profil for business matters like this… 🙂 It’s a mess, isn’t it?

Communication a huge and confusing melting pot


Everybody in communication business talks about it everywhere! The new and ever-changing communication landscape has turned the media industry on its head. The confusion is now complete. Much of what we have learned and become accustomed to is no longer valid. This applies particularly to media, journalism, public relations, marketing, and sales. The professionals within each of these fields are either desperately holding on to their old identities, or are groping around for new ones.

The role of journalists is questioned. Previously clear concepts such as “journalist” and “journalism” have become blurred. The same goes for “media”. What is a media today? And “PR” … what is PR? It’s obviously something else today than it was yesterday. And what about “marketing”…

“Markets (and marketing) are conversations” as the Cluetrain Manifesto puts it. Conversations are based on relationships. Just like PR. Because PR’s is all about relationships, right? It’s all about relationships with both the market and those who influence it, including journalists. However, since all consumers now have access to almost exactly the same “tools” and methods as traditional journalists, it seems like the market has in some way also become the journalists. The market represents a long tail of new journalism and new media that perhaps has the greatest influence on a company’s market and might perhaps be their key opinion leaders. “Put the public back to public relations!” as Brian Solis put it long ago.

People have started to talk to each other in social media at the expense of, or sometimes in tune with, traditional media. They’re no longer writing letters to editors. They would rather publish their news ideas directly on the Web. Media consumption, and production, publishing, packaging and distribution in particular, have rapidly moved in to the social web. And both the PR and Marketing communicators are following, or are at least gradually beginning to do so.

As the market moved to the web, and the web has become social, marketing communication has become “social” too. Companies have started to talk directly with their market. And I mean “talk”, not pushing out information. Campaigns with no social component become fewer and fewer. “Monologue” ad banners, with decreasing CTR and increasing CPC, are becoming less acceptable. Google revolutionized with Adwords, Adsense and PPC. Press releases written by former journalists synchronized with Adwords and presented as text ads, turned things upside down.

Aftonbladet has been very successful with advertorials where only a small ad-mark distinguishes the ad from an article produced by journalists. This method is about as successful – and deceptive – as “product placement” in TV and film. That method has gone from small product elements in parts of a program to a complete sellout of the entire series or film. (In Sweden, think Channel 5’s Room Service and TV4’s Sick Sack.) But what can the television business do when the consumer just fast-forwards past the commercials, or worse still, prefers looking at user-generated TV like YouTube?

What will newspapers do when consumers ignore their banners? They will convert advertising into editorials. Or vice versa: they will charge for editorial features and charge companies to publish content on their platform, without involving any “investigative” journalism.

IDG calls their version of this “Vendor’s Voice”, a medium where companies publish their “editorial material” (it used to be called press information) directly on IDG.se and its related websites. The service is conceived and hosted by Mynewsdesk. It works pretty much like the Apple App Store; it is possible for any media to set up their “channel” (the media) on Mynewsdesk, promote it, and put a price on its use.

Essentially, when companies publish their information in their own newsrooms via Mynewsdesk, they can also easily select any relevant channels for the information in question. The service still has the internal working title “Sponsored Stories”, which today may seem a little funny when that is the exact same name Facebook uses for its new advertising program, where a company pays for people in its network to share information about that company with their own friends.

Isn’t that pretty much what PR communicators strive for? It’s in the form of an ad, but this type of advertising is simply bought communication – just like some PR seems to be – with the purpose to “create attention around ideas, goods and services, as well as affect and change people’s opinions, values or actions…”

But the press release… That’s information for the press, right? Or is it information that is now a commodity, often published in the media, directly and unabridged, much like the “sponsored stories”? Maybe it is information that can reach anyone that might find this information relevant. They might not be the press, but they are at least some kind of journalist, in the sense that they publish their own stories, often in same media as “real” journalists, in platforms created for user-generated content.

Everything goes round and round: side by side are readers, companies and journalists. All collaborate and compete for space and reach.

The causal relationship is as simple as it is complicated. People are social. People are using the Web. The Web has become social. People meet online. The exchange is rich and extensive. The crowd has forced the creation of great services for production, packaging, processing and distribution. These are exactly the same building blocks that have always been the foundation for traditional journalists and the media’s right to exist. Strong competition has emerged, but there is also some  interaction and collaboration.

People have opted in to social media at the expense of the traditional media. They rely on their own networks more and more, which has forced advertisers to find a place in social media too. Traditional ads are replaced by social and editorial versions that are designed to engage or become “friends” with your audience, talking to them as you would talk to friends.

The media are in the same boat and are becoming more social and advertorial. Users are invited to become part of both the ads and the editorials. UGC (user-generated content) is melded with CGC (company-generated content) and even JGC (journalist-generated content). Journalism goes from being a product to being a process characterized by “crowd-sourcing”, before ringing up the curtain on a particular report or story. As the newspaper Accent writes on their site:

“This is a collection of automated news monitoring that we use as editors. The idea is that even you, the reader, will see and have access to the unsorted stream of news that passes us on the editorial board. Please let us know if you find something important or interesting that you think we should pick up in our reporting. ”

This is similar to how companies today present their increasingly transparent and authentic communication in their own social media newsrooms, where the audience is invited to contribute their own experiences and opinions, and partly acts as a source of story ideas for journalists.

All in all, it’s a wonderful, fruitful, but oh-so-confusing melting pot.

Annonser mindre intressanta i nya Google Instant Search?


Jag vill inte vara djävulens advokat, men Google Instant Search kan komma att minska såväl klassiska impressions som CTR (click through ratio) för Adwords vilket kan ställa till det rejält för både Google och dess annonsörer.

Bara för några timmar sen lanserade Google “Instant Search”. Tjänsten föreslår ett relevant sökresultat så fort du har skrivit första bokstaven i den sökterm Google förväntar sig att du ska göra.  De därpå följande nedskrivna bokstäver ger direkt upphov till nya vad Google förmodar vara relevanta resultat av din sökning. Varje ny nedpräntad bokstav ger alltså upphov till nya sökresultat i realtid. Med Google Instant Search kan användarna hitta exakt det de söker efter, betydligt snabbare och effektivare än tidigare. Det enda Google gör är alltså att gissa (med utgångspunkt från avancerade matematiska uträkningar) vad du söker efter, och presentera relevant sökresultat.

Och Adwords hänger med. När sökresultaten visas, visas också relevanta annonser. Men det blir inga “impressions” av traditionellt slag såvida inte användaren trycker på sökknappen eller “enter”-tangenten, eller slutar skriva något under 3 sekunder. Däremot fler nya “impressions” av annonser när sökresultaten flimrar förbi.

Men är det inte så att ju enklare och effektivare Google gör det för användaren att finna vad han/hon söker i det organiska floran av information, desto mindre kommer användarens ögon söka sig till de sponsrade länkarna (annonserna)?

Business Insider skriver i ett inlägg: “Here’s everything you need to know about Google Instant” med glömmer annonsprogrammet.

Mina erfarenheter hittills är att användaren av Instant Search nu snabbt laborerar  fram och tillbaka med bokstäver och söktermer i sökfönstret tills relevant sökresultat erhålls, varefter användaren klickar på en länk i det organiska sökresultatet. Ögonen söker sig till de sponsrade länkarna först när det organiska sökresultatet inte levererar vad användaren söker efter.

Google själv talar inte om några farhågor i detta fall. Såklart inte. Inte för att det är likt Google, men någonstans i baktankarna ligger säkert strategier för att öka såväl Ad impression som CTR. Låt oss se 🙂

Google skriver på sin blogg:

Although Google Instant doesn’t change the way ads are served, ads and search results will now be shown based on the “predicted search.” For example, if someone types “flow” into Google.com, our algorithms predict that the user is searching for “flowers” (the predicted search) and therefore display both search results and ads for “flowers”. However, if that user then adds the letter “c” to the query, our algorithms may predict that the user is searching for “flowchart” and show the corresponding natural and paid results for flowchart.

As a result, Google Instant changes the way we think about impressions. With Google Instant, an impression is counted if a user takes an action to choose a query (for example, presses the Enter key or clicks the Search button), clicks a link on the results page, or stops typing for three or more seconds.

Nya Google “Realtime Search” värdelös utan Facebook


Idag flyttade man över Google real time search från experimentbordet till den egna hemvisten google.com/realtime. Samtidigt passade man på att preppa tjänsten men några nyckelfunktioner som att söka i ett geografiskt begränsat område “nära dig”, alerts med e-post samt enkelt följa tråden av en räcka uppdateringar som sammantaget kan tänkas utgöra en konversation.

Allt det här låter ju toppen. Men… tjänsten haltar rejält utan Facebook.

I skrivande stund upplever jag tjänsten bara som en sämre version av Twitter Search, eller åtminstone inte bättre.  Och sett ur ett globalt perspektiv, sämre än Bing.com/social som ju exklusivt får indexera uppdateringar från Facebook Profiles, till skillnad från Google som endast indexerar uppdateringar från Facebook Pages och enligt SerachEngineLand följande sociala realtidskällor:

  • Twitter tweets
  • Google News links
  • Google Blog Search links
  • Newly created web pages
  • Freshly updated web pages
  • FriendFeed updates
  • Jaiku updates
  • Identi.ca updates
  • TwitArmy updates
  • Google Buzz posts
  • MySpace updates
  • Facebook fan page updates

Varav de flesta av dem sällan eller aldrig dyker upp i sökresultatet då de så sällan används i relation till ex Twitter.

Nej, så länge Facebook dominerar den sociala webben, så blir ingen realtidssöktjänst särskilt intressant utan innehåll från denna nätverksgigant. För hur man än vrider och vänder på det så är det innehållet som utgör det primära värdet inte funktionerna.

En sökning på “Reinfeldt” i de tre ovan nämnda söktjänsterna: