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Here's this week's double-barrelled commentary on Facebook Live.
Upcoming Speaking Gigs
- I'll be keynoting Pubcon in Las Vegas on October 11.
- And then I'll be in Boston for Marketing Profs B2B Forum October 19-20.
- Interested in having me speak at your event? Please check out my speaking page and get in touch.
- The iPhone 7 announcement happened as planned. And people freaked out over the new wireless earpods. All the updates.
- According to an annual Gallup Poll, only 32 percent of Americans have "a great deal" or "a fair amount" of trust in the media, representing a new low. Last year it was 40 percent.
- PwC sais in order to foster online trust, you need to build community. This is kind of Trust 101 stuff, but there are still brands out there that need this wake up call. If no one knows who you are or doesn't participate in anything with you (or more importantly, you with them), trust won't happen. In other words, you can't stand around talking about yourself all day.
- You know what you can trust? That September 19 is Talk Like a Pirate Day. And if you walk into Krispy Kreme, you can get a free doughnut for yammerin' like a swashbuckler. Or a free dozen if you dress like one.
- A coalition of companies have organized to improve social news gathering. The 20 companies include Facebook, Twitter, the New York Times, the Telegraph, Channel 4 News, Washington Post, and BuzzFeed News, among others. Facebook, tell us again that you're not a media company?
- Business Insider attracted 230,000 Line followers in just two weeks. How? By sharing 10 pieces of content a day, putting a focus on tech and finance news, and using emojis to liven up staid content.
- This is the year that digital ad spending will outpace TV in the US.
- Ikea is putting itself out there by talking about divorce, a topic that very few other brands are willing to do. Emotion works when applied in a relevant way.
- GE's CMO Linda Boff talks about GE's secrets to success: first-mover mentality, experimentation, and an insatiable sense of curiosity. And, in her words, "the importance of thinking about the user always, starting with the user, and working back, versus starting with technology or starting with media."
- It takes a brilliance to change the world. It takes something else entirely to wait patiently for people to notice. It happened with the Wright Brothers. It happened with Alexander Graham Bell. When You Change the World and No One Notices.
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FACEBOOK / INSTAGRAM / WHATSAPP
- Messenger's 30,000 chat bots now allow payments. Not terribly surprising in a division led by David Marcus, the former PayPal executive. But it does go to show how apps that were once sub-functions of larger apps are now becoming multi-functional themselves.
- The former editor of The Guardian blames Facebook for a loss of some £20 million in advertising revenue.
- Instagram lets users filter and block comments, keeping friends' comments at the top. This feature is available retroactively.
- If you think you get a lot of notifications, check out what notifications look like when you have 8 million followers on Instagram.
TWITTER / PERISCOPE / VINE
- Is live content the answer for Twitter? The NFL deal netted the company 2 million live viewers on Thursday night (on TV it was 15 million), and Twitter has also inked a deal with the financial news live show Cheddar.
- Get ready for longer tweets: not 10,000 characters long, but now you get to use more of the 140, as @ replies and media attachments won't count against the tally. The feature launches today.
- It's now easier to determine which company accounts handle customer service and how quickly they respond to your issue.
ALPHABET / GOOGLE
- Google adds Lyft and Gett ride hailing options to Google Maps for US consumers.
- Someone has put Nest cameras to good use, solving unexplained mysteries. If only Leonard Nimoy were alive to see this.
- CEO Marissa Mayer stands to receive as much as $44 million in severance pay if she leaves the company after the Verizon acquisition. No wonder she took the job.
- Snapchat ad revenues are on course to reach nearly $1 billion next year, accounting for 2 percent of all social network ad spending.
Collaborative / Autonomous Economy
- Innovation is something of a non-term. It can mean many things to many individuals. Here are 11 ways that startups use innovation to outrun larger established companies.
- Airbnb's aim to combat racism is with a guaranteed place to stay for anyone who is discriminated against.
- Uber gained an upper hand in its battle with drivers, as an appeals court determined that drivers need to settle their complaints individually rather than via class action.
- Lyft and Budweiser are giving away 5,000 ride vouchers to help combat drunk driving. Not sure if this will curb drunk driving or encourage more binge drinking...
- It was a big week in autonomous driving. Uber's self-driving fleet debuted in Pittsburgh, Ford demonstrated its self-driving cars in Dearborn, Ford and the University of Michigan announced a new robotics laboratory, Volvo produced an autonomous SUV, and Velodyne announced a smaller, higher-resolution sensor.
- Meanwhile, Google Car lost a key executive and Apple seemed to be rethinking its automotive strategy. Car manufacturing is a complex business with thin profit margins; the non-manufacturers may be better suited to partnering with traditional companies for solutions. Ford seems to be in a lead position currently.
- As a result, the future of automotive stocks are more speculative than in the past.
- Lyft plans to have a nearly all-autonomous fleet in five years.
- Mobileye, the company responsible for Tesla's Autopilot technology, says Tesla was overly aggressive with Autopilot and was "pushing the envelope on safety." They have since broken ties with Tesla.
- According to a patent filed by Walmart, you might see a self-driving shopping cart at your local Walmart. Autonomous vehicles are everywhere!
AI / BOTS / BLOCKCHAIN
- Google's DeepMind is making major progress on synthesized speech. The result will be much more fluid and realistic text-to-speech sounds.
Virtual Reality / Audio
VR / AR
- Intel is buying Movidius, a maker of vision chips for drones and virtual reality. Expect Intel to be deeply invovled in VR in the near future, just like they've been an essential part of laptops for decades.
- Apple CEO Tim Cook is more excited about augmented reality than virtual reality. He says it's nearer term and it's less isolating. Couldn't agree more.
- Would you pay to listen to podcasts? That's certainly a business model for some, whether it's via Kickstarter, PayPal, Patreon or more. But what about a subscription model like Netflix? That's part of Audible's plan. Part 3 of a 5-part series.
- Shows are moving well beyond a simple MP3 file and an RSS feed. But will new data, targeting, discoverability, and social tools push podcasting in the direction of commercial radio? Part 4 of a 5-part series.
- Podcast measurement is still an issue. And podcasts aren’t yet ready for programmatic buying as there’s not enough inventory to justify it.
- A study from IAB and Edison research found that 65 percent of fans are more willing to consider purchasing products and services they learn about during a podcast. The full study is available here.
- It's getting competitive in streaming music land. Spotify has 40 million paying subscribers, surpassing Apple Music. And Pandora Plus is a new, expanded version of the $5 subscription service.
- Program of the Week. This week, our recommendation is The History of Rome. It's 179 episodes that trace the history of the Roman Empire, beginning with Aeneas's arrival in Italy and ending with the exile of Romulus Augustulus, last Emperor of the Western Roman Empire. Do you have a program to recommend? Add yours to our Google Sheet: smonty.co/yourpodcasts
- And don't forget to subscribe to ours via email or oniTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Spreaker or SoundCloud.
Content / Customer Experience / Influencer Marketing
- Quantity isn't everything in content marketing. Here are six times when less was more.
- Don't believe the hype of content marketing, says Mark Schaefer. Not every business is in need of a content marketing strategy.
- Don't forget email as a powerful communication tool with customers. The email audience is growing, engaged and increasingly valuable. And much more easily measured.
- Life is busy. There are too many choices of publications, shows, media, platforms, etc. That's why the role of editor or curator is highly valued.
- The Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card is on backorder. The metal card sold out in days, despite its $450 annual fee. The reason? One is it's a fancy metal card. The other is that its perks are centered around travel, and more than ever, consumers are interested in experiences over things.
- Influencer marketing agency Clever Girls has rebranded as CLEVER, with the tagline "Real. At Scale." [Disclosure: I'm proud to be an advisor to CLEVER.]
Privacy / Security / Legal
- Is nothing sacred? Instagram is suing an anti-litter app, insisting that they change their name. You can't tell me that there's the possibility of brand confusion. The next thing you know, they'll be coming for innocent little old ladies.
- In the European Union, WhatsApp and Skype are soon to be subject to the same security rules as telecom companies.
Measurement / Metrics / Data
- There's a shortage of data scientists. Bottlenose hopes to solve that by automating some processes, making it easier for business people without advanced tech skills to make use of the latest in business intelligence. Let's be perfectly clear: there's a difference between a data scientist and a data analyst; the functions of the latter aren't quite so easy to automate.
Essential Watching / Listening / Reading
- Can students who are constantly on their devices actually learn? Note-taking is still a valuable skill and actually trains the brain. But distraction and short-attention spans are standing in the way.
- This is a good time to unplug and listen to our inner voice amid the noise of modern life. Henry David Thoreau understood the power of silence with regard to speech.
- Are you a jerk? It may be more difficult to discern than you think.
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