With only 16 holiday shopping days left, I would put good money on the probability that you were out hunting for gifts yesterday. Or maybe you were just doing it from the comforts of your couch using a tablet or your laptop. Whatever the case may be, I think you could use a break.
So take a breather from the crowds of frantic, moody holiday shoppers and looming shipping deadlines, and get caught up with some great marketing stories you might have missed this week, including a social networking soap opera (that image starting to make a little more sense now?), a new feature launch, and tips for planning your marketing in 2013.
The Instagram-Twitter Saga Highlights a Good Lesson About User Experience, as Reported by TechCrunch
Okay, here's a quick recap of the latest social networking saga you may have gotten wind of this week: First, Instagram pulled its Twitter Cards integration. Then, the internet complained, since Instagram images were getting cropped and were no longer optimized to display properly on Twitter. Then, it seemed as if Instagram might renege on its decision, as Instagram images started appearing optimized on Twitter again. But as it turns out, that was just a fluke, and Instagram is sticking by its removal of Twitter Cards. (Sigh.)
The thing is, Instagram can do whatever the heck it wants. Except all of this soap opera-esque social media drama does point out a pretty good lesson when it comes to user experience, as Michael Arrington highlights in this TechCrunch article. Instagram indicated that its reasoning for pulling the integration was based on the evolution of Instagram and where it wants links from its content to go. But shouldn't its users' experience also be a priority? Read Arrington's full article about the Istagram-Twitter saga here to see what we mean.
Foursquare Allows Businesses to Add Events to Foursquare Listings
Straight from the official Foursquare Blog, this week the location-based social network rolled out the ability for businesses to add events to the Foursquare listings they manage. These events will be visible to users when A) they're trying to decide where to go, B) they check in at the business, and C) when they view their check-in history.
Previously, the only events Foursquare users were limited to were movie, concert, and sporting events. With the update, now businesses will be able to add their own, whether it be an author appearance at a bookstore, an arts and crafts fair, a fundraising event, etc. This will give businesses that are active on Foursquare more ways to promote upcoming events like customer user group meetings, networking events, seminars ... the sky's the limit! To add events to your business listings, log in to your manager account at Foursquare.com, and click the ‘Tools’ tab. Check out the full story for more information here.
Google+ Now Lets Users Create and Join 'Communities'
Seems like it's been a while since we reported on a noteworthy Google+ feature update. But yesterday, we covered the latest and greatest from Google+: Communities. Google+ Communities, similar to the LinkedIn and Facebook Groups you're probably used to, are places for people to gather around a specific subject matter. A few use cases for these Communities that are of particular interest to marketers include setting up public or private membership to support or discuss a particular topic or group, finding conversations about a particular topic so you can participate in the discussion, starting Hangouts and planning events with community members, and sharing your community via +1 buttons. Our article covers just exactly how you can set up a Community of your own, so if you're interested in getting more out of your Google+ presence, reference the full article here.
New Study Looks at How Mobile Fits Into Daily News Consumption, From Marketing Pilgrim
Wondering how people are using mobile devices to get news? This Marketing Pilgrim article highlights the recent "State of Mobile News Consumption" report from Mojiva, which sought to answer that very question. The study highlighted widespread mobile news consumption habits, revealing that about 25% of U.S. respondents use mobile to keep up with the news. Furthermore, 70% of U.S. tablet owners and 61% of smartphone owners check two or more news sites or apps every day.
But perhaps the most noteworthy stat is as follows: 65% of U.S. and 69% of UK smartphone respondents -- and 59% of U.S. tablet respondents -- would not pay for a subscription to access their favorite news source from their smartphone or tablet. In other words, people don't find value in paying for a subscription-based service if the news they'd get from it was the same as what they could get online for free. Marketers, take note: If you're thinking about developing a subscription-based mobile news app for your content, you'll need to find a way to differentiate it from the content you're already offering for free on the web. Read the full story on Marketing Pilgrim here.
Template: Determine Your 2013 Marketing Goals
The new year is sneaking up on us ... have you planned and set your marketing goals for 2013 yet? Don't worry -- there's still time, and we've got just the tool to get you going. This week, we launched our newest HubSpot Excel template to help you determine SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound) marketing goals for 2013. And to help you learn how to use the template, we also published a detailed blog post that walks you through it, step by step. With the template, you'll be able to easily summarize your ultimate marketing goal, automatically calculate your greatest marketing need, and set a deadline for meeting your 2013 goals. Download your 2013 Marketing Goals Template here.
What goals do you have for making 2013 a successful year in marketing?
Image credit: psd