free html hit counter Today's Signal - John Battelle's Search Blog

Today's Signal

By - January 22, 2010

Why Do People Follow (or Fan) Brands? (eMarketer) This link has been passed around a lot this morning in marketing circles, despite the fact that the insights are pretty thin (people follow brands to learn about deals and “learn about new products, features or services.”) We’re all eager to understand what it is that might lead a person into “branding” themselves online. It’s certainly a new form of currency – even AdWords has products you can use to drive Twitter followers. But what are they worth, in the end? I’d love to see more substantial research on this. I think people follow brands because they feel connected to them for some reason. Same reason people engage with them in real space. And value creation creates connection. So create value for folks in the context of social media, and they’ll fan or follow you. Then keep giving them value.

Twitter Changes How It Suggests Users – This is an important step, but Twitter isn’t there yet in terms of really harnessing the power of its own ecosystem.

GOOG reports “strong” earnings, stock sags – Google is considered by nearly everyone as a bellweather company, as goes GOOG, so goes the USA. So even though the company reported a strong Q4, the topline revenue number did not crush Wall Street’s expectations. (It only beat them). Stock’s down 20 points as a result, reflecting concerns that perhaps Google can’t grow as fast as folks wish it would. Notable: Eric Schmidt says Google’s next huge growth business is display advertising. Always wondered what Google really means when it says that. Display does not equate to brand, mind you…

Hilary Clinton Speaks Out About Free Speech and China – Along with a number of other California based journalists, I was invited to come to DC to see this speech in person. I was eager to go, but just could not make the trip. As I have written many times in the past, I think this issue could become quite significant historically, and Google’s moves only increase the odds.

An Overview of Facebook’s “Brand Ads” (TBI Research) – Provides a good overview of how Facebook’s direct sold ads work, what the products are, pricing, etc.

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3 thoughts on “Today's Signal

  1. I would love to ear your thoughts on the role of awareness and brand positioning on this conversations.

    As a Media Agency person (@Mediaedgecia Interaction) I often find that brands with low brand awareness, or products with no “sex-appeal” have a harder path to cross.

    PS: Waiting for your next book (for as long as it takes :-))

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  3. martin kelly says:

    re google, clinton and China: politics on every level. For the US govt they have been beaten by China economically and can’t invade the country so will tell it what to do. Plays particularly well to a beaten domestic audience used to global dominance. For Google, a PR masterstroke. In one move it’s gone from being Big Brother reincarnate to a Freedom Fighter. This move is all upside for Google. At this stage a threat, it will play in the world media in Google’s favour for months and allows them to take the moral high ground over US ‘rivals’. Meanwhile the fact it has been censoring results and passing info the Chinese Govt is put to one side… brilliant.