Posts Tagged ‘Facebook’

What’s Happened in Social Media Over the Year

From WebProNews

As we did last year, we have gone back through our archives and picked out some of the most noteworthy social media items we have covered since 2009 began. Now that 2009 is almost over, it was worth going  back and seeing what all has happened.

If you come across missing items, please feel free to
share them in the comments.
January
In January, Twitter announced that it hired Kevin Thau as Director of Mobile Business Development, and that he would be working on a variety of different fronts as Twitter’s "first official business development guru." LinkedIn introduced a new Polls feature, and launched a bookmarklet for IE. MySpace Music made deals with Nettwerk Music Group, INgrooves, IRIS Distribution, and RoyaltyShare to bolster its catalog by hundreds of thousands of songs. YouTube expanded its e-commerce platform and started letting people delete their own comments. Digg launched the "People who Dugg this also Dugg" feature.

February

In February, LinkedIn launched a set of HR Tools and launched a German version. MySpace launched a mobile redesign, and Digg updated its algorithm. Facebook introduced polling ads, changed its terms of service, made some design changes to profile pages for businesses, opened its corporate blog to comments, introduced the comments box widget, and launched the "like" button. Google introduced the Social Bar and launched Friend Connect integration with Blogger.
March
In March, Twitter brought its search box to most people’s Twitter home page, and changed the "replies" tab to the "@username" tab. Twitter also adjusted the title tags for member pages. Where they used to go "Twitter / username" they would now go "User’s Real Name (username) on Twitter". Mahalo CEO Jason Calacanis offered to buy a spot on Twitter’s Suggested Users list.
Facebook launched a redesign, started including updates from Pages in the news feed, changed pages to operate like profiles, and changed the status box to the publisher box. They launched the ability to let users chat within apps, added ad spots to Pages, relaunched Facebook Marketplace to be powered by online classified service Oodle, launched Facebook Connect for the iPhone and iPod Touch, launched some new ad targeting options, and enabled Page owners to let people sign up to become fans via text message.
Google began implementing Portable Contacts, launched the Friend Connect API, blended user-generated content into search results on Google Maps, made Google Reader more social with commenting, allowed for richer Gmail messages, and started its own Twitter accounts.

YouTube changed the name of some video sections, LinkedIn did some redesigning of its own and enhanced Direct Ads, and MySpace was stamped on a credit card.
April
Google launched an event gadget for Google Friend Connect, the Digg-like "What’s Popular" gadget, and the "Get Answers" gadget for Friend Connect. Google also gave profiles vanity URLS and started putting profiles into search results.
Facebook made it easier to organize friends, opened its stream up to third-party developers, added electronic signatures for public pages, worked with the blind on accessibility, began making app recommendations, and readied its next steps in governance.
Twitter started integrating search into its interface more, and CNN showed that you can buy/sell a Twitter account. Scientists created a brain-Twitter interface.

StumbleUpon broke away from eBay and enhanced its "web stumbling." Digg launched the controversial DiggBar. Reddit launched a video site, AOL launched SocialThing, and Yahoo shifted its focus to social altogether. YouTube launched the beta version of YouTube RealTime. MySpace got some new management.
May
In May, Yahoo 360 went away, Digg dropped shouting, LinkedIn upped usability on the Action Bar, the Wall Street Journal gave its employees social media rules, and the Interactive Advertising Bureau released its social advertising best practices and social media ad metrics.

Google introduced Google Wave, launched a recommendation gadget for Friend Connect, launched comment translation for Friend Connect, and added more social features to Google Reader. Twitter launched full two-way SMS support for Telus, Virgin Moible, and Koodo Mobile, making it available on every major operator in Canda. Twitter also changed how users view replies.
Iran lifted its ban on Facebook, and Facebook rolled out real-time streams, announced an app directory overhaul, added pop-up notifications, and linked accounts with Gmail. YouTube launched a new way for brands to engage audiences, and began letting you log-in with your Google account.
June
In June, Facebook began offering keyword suggestions for advertisers, simplified the inbox, began letting users get friends’ updates via text message, and launched the Live Stream Box.

YouTube launched a page for movie trailers, FriendFeed added file sharing, LinkedIn got a new CEO and updated its search tool for recruiting, MySpace cut a big chunk of its staff, StumbleUpon launched a URL shortener, and Digg started showing Digg Ads.

Digg Ads

July

In July, Google launched its Facebook page, MySpace launched its email service, and LinkedIn introduced custom profiles for companies. YouTube launched its 3D experiment, doubled the size limit of uploads, and gave users the ability to share YouTube Insights stats.
A Twitter documentary was announced, and Twitter itself gave businesses a new resource and started making hashtags link. Facebook addressed privacy and photo use for ads, gave businesses a way to increase their Facebook fans, and added the ability to create events from the publisher.
August
In August, Facebook was readying a new ads manager, made subtle changes to its design, announced plans for privacy improvement, started integrating directly with Twitter, launched its own real-time search, implemented restrictions on sponsored status updates, updated open stream APIs, acquired FriendFeed, and began letting developers sell physical merchandise for virtual currency.

Twitter quietly took a step toward security, and announced plans to launch a feature that makes the service location-aware. Izea launched "Sponsored Tweets," and Tweetmeme brought analytics to retweeting.
Google reader got more social features, YouTube placed more emphasis on search and launched its own AdSense-like promoted videos. Delicious showed off new features for sharing, search, and its homepage. StumbleUpon made some big changes to its toolbar.
September
In September, Google turned the whole web into an exclusive social network with SideWiki. Yahoo launched a new contacts API, Yahoo profiles became social media profiles, and the company launched the Twitter-like Yahoo Meme in English. Microsoft added MySpace activity updates to Windows Live, and Bing announced it was readying sharing features for search results.

A sick poll was discovered on and removed from Facebook, and Facebook announced its translation plans, and that it had roughly the same amount of people as the entire U.S. population. Facebook also added tagging from status updates, and launched Facebook Lite in the U.S. and India.
MySpace Music launched in Australia, and Myspace users started being able to sync updates with Twitter. LinkedIn made profile organization easier, a record label was launched for YouTube stars, and YouTube began readying a friend-finder feature.

Pizza Hut and other brands used Twitter to help feed the hungry, Digg made changes to its nofollow policy, the Washington Post’s leaked social media policy faced criticism, and real-time search engines Collecta and OneRiot launched APIs.
October
In October, Bing scored deals with Twitter and Facebook, while Google scored one with Twitter. Mozilla shared its plans for integrating social media and email into one inbox, and Twitter partnered with its first charity. LinkedIn announced that it surpassed 50 million users.
MySpace introduced new music features, StumbleUpon launched a new design with more of a search focus, YouTube got real-time search for comments, and the only known video footage of Anne Frank appeared on YouTube.

Facebook confirmed testing of a new design, made share buttons more useful, gave groups walls, tried harder to get page owners to verify, and presented new obstacles for application developers. They also launched the Create Application API.
November
In November, Google eased the retrieval of SideWiki entries for entire sites, Google Wave got a feature for following, and Google launched some new features for Google Friend Connect.

Facebook tested new design changes, and continued work on privacy changes. Facebook and Twitter both made their way into dictionaries and onto video game consoles.  Twitter made geotagging tweets possible, and talked about plans which would make its suggested usres list more like Twellow’s. Twitter also changed launched Twitter Lists, gave apps access to people search, rolled out the controversial retweet feature, and changed "What are you doing?" to "What’s Happening?".
LinkedIn opened up its platform to developers, Yahoo began showing tweets for news results, MySpace launched new music charts, Salesforce announced its "Facebook for the enterprise," YouTube connected news outlets with citizen reporters, PayPal launched new APIs to take over mobile and social apps, Microsoft launched a big redesign of MSN, Opera launched Opera Unite, Digg launched Digg Trends.
December
In December, Google, Facebook, and YouTube all got new URL shorteners. Twitter continued expansion into new languages, and announced plans for business features. Google launched real-time search in the search results.

LinkedIn began testing a new design, and launched faceted search, Facebook began giving translators awards, adjusted privacy controls, and formed a board for online safety, MySpace launched new APIs, upgraded users’ mobile experience, and acquired iMeem, Bing launched new maps with apps, and Yahoo deepened its integration with Facebook. Digg released a new version of its API. Also, the new FTC guidelines went into effect.
Wrapping Up
Of course, there has been much more that has happened over the year in social media. I think it might be close to impossible to cover every single thing. Were there things that happened that you think should have been included here? Add them in the comments. That will only serve to make the piece more comprehensive for future readers.

About the author:
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow WebProNews on Facebook or Twitter.

Twitter: @CCrum237



Gain Links Or Make Friends – Which is Better Online?

There’s much to be said about the respective values of social media and SEO, both as individual entities and a collective. A cornerstone of search engine optimization is linking, while social media is all about being, well, sociable. But which is better today?

That’s very much a question that’s open to debate, depending on who you ask, you could expect to hear a whole range of answers. Networking has become ingrained in the Internet marketer’s psyche, building relationships while interacting with your fellow professionals and consumers. But can it really compete with building an impressive linking infrastructure when it comes to marketing your website online?
Let’s start with the positives…

Both techniques work in very different ways. You build links by making requests, payments (only to the right people – directories and the sort) and creating content that causes a stir. Networking can of course help this process. When you get noticed by more people, they may be inclined to link to you; there’s no certainty of course, but social media is a way of raising a profile and showing off your expertise to the world – prime link bait conditions.

There are easy ways to get links and hard ways. Even if you create a fantastic blog, a great new piece of shareware or a stunning design, there’s no assurance that people will find you. Quality links are often those that happen organically, the kind of thing that you can’t force. Article submission and press releases will assure you of at least one (sometimes more) link back to your site; while the every little bit helps strategy is a good one, that link can take time to gain and time is precious, particularly when the outcome doesn’t quite justify the means.

Of course the main reason most people create an article or release, at least in an SEO capacity, is to get it picked up and syndicated across a number of sites. The dream ticket is a major news agency picking up a story on their newswire and sending it global; this, of course, is extremely rare. For this to happen, it needs to be relevant, it needs to be interesting and it needs to provide something new. Regurgitating the same stuff over and over again may save time, but that could well prove to be a false economy.

But once again we’re thrust back into the realms of Web 2.0. If you want to get people talking about your content, you may first need to start shouting about it. Herein lies the weakness though of social media.
…Now for the negatives

There is still a cloud of mysticism that hangs over the social side of the Internet. Just how effective is it? If you have the time to dedicate to interact with the wider community day in day out, then the benefits can’t be argued. Normal people have become celebrities, while the celebrities themselves have been out there growing legions of new fans. All very positive. But what is the value of a follower or a friend? Commenting on blogs, reciprocating tweets and conversing offers a fantastic community spirit; allowing users worldwide to get involved in a continuous conversation.

What all this won’t do, necessarily, is improve your site and its strength. You might get traffic, in fact you will almost certainly get traffic, but if this comes from the same basic group of people, none of whom have the slightest interest in using your business or buying your products, is it really worth the investment of time? Friends and followers aren’t just an ego trip; it shows a level of influence and provides a wider sphere of influence. A strong linking strategy though goes further.
Every link you earn will join a wider group of inbound pointers. Google likes websites that people like pointing to. Therefore, Google likes nothing more than a site with links going to all pages, coming from a variety of sources and in a natural fashion. While there are dangerous links out there, toxic ones that will cause more damage than good, these can be avoided and banished if need be.

Whether it’s on a directory, bolted onto an article or has come from a respected source organically, the power of the link is hard to question. Aside from a permanent new gateway for targeted traffíc to find you, it adds vital strength to your website’s overall profile. PageRank maybe all but defunct, but that doesn’t mean that links are treading the same path.

We wouldn’t ever discourage people from using social media; it has fantastic potential and is evolving all the time. But if website promotíon and search engine marketing is what you’re looking to do, the tried and trusted link may well prove a more constructive use of your time. It maybe a quieter way of going about things, anti-social even, but links get you seen on search engines and search engines get you seen by consumers.

Your online profile may ebb and flow, your popularity wane, but when you build a strong link profile you create stability and open the door to continued development. They are the foundation to any successful site; so while it’s always nice to have flighty friends, the stability and long-term benefit of a link is still very much the method of choice for most.

Stephen Logan works as a Copywriter for leading Hampshire-based SEO Agency Impact Media. They provide a full range of SEM solutions including expert Link Building services.



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