Facebook Acquires Social Veterans in FriendFeed Deal

Jeremiah Owyang

[Posted by Jeremiah K. Owyang]

Facebook makes a play and acquires Friendfeed, a sharing and aggregation tool that helps people find out what their friends are doing. Read Friendfeed's announcement, and Facebook's blog post

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When Bloggers Have Their Own Agents

Jeremiah Owyang[Posted by Jeremiah K. Owyang]

I recently spoke to a brand that sells women's products, and told me that a few bloggers approached them to sponsor their travel costs to attend uber popular Blogher. This particular brand didn't accept the offer, but I do know of others, such as Intel sponsoring the lovely Sarah Austin (I've been on her video) to attend SXSW, likable Chris Brogan was sponsored to attend CES. They aren't alone see this ever growing list of bloggers and brands that are involved in exchanging products, services, and even money for editorial influence.

Bloggers, which have been receiving an incredible amount of attention as the new influencers continue to grow in importance. Reading about the events at Blogher, it's clear that brands are kowtowing to these household influencers and offering them products, samples, and other events. It's not just the women bloggers category, but all over, tech bloggers are now part of the regular media/PR outreach list for tech, security, and device conferences.

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Yahoo's New HomePage Integrates Applications --and Dabbles with Social

Summary: Yahoo's new homepage is more like a feedreader and application platform for users to do more without leaving Yahoo.com. It's a much needed update as Yahoo keeps up with the modern web, but think of it as evolution --not a revolution.

Last week, a handful of Forrester analysts were briefed and given a demo of Yahoo's much needed homepage redesign --here are my observations from the demo and conversation.

Outdated Yahoo.com in need of redesign

The old version of Yahoo is in serious need of a refresher as the main page navigation hampers users with two sections of tabs with even more content and links. For the most part, the content not as personalized, and no integration of social. Perhaps the biggest missed opportunity is the page is designed for people to click through --using it as a pass through only.

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Report: Companies Should Organize For Social Media in a "Hub and Spoke" model

I often get asked by brands: "How should we organize our company for social media?" or "Which roles do we need", or "Which department is in charge". So for our latest report (clients can access all the details) answers just that, it has data and graphs about spending, brand maturity in the social space, which department 'owns' the program, and how companies are organizing.

Companies organize in three distinct models

For this post, let's focus in on how companies are organizing. There are three basic models that I've observed and surveyed brands:

  1. The Tire (Distributed): Where each business unit or group may create its own social media programs without a centralized approach. We call this approach the “tire,” as it originates at the edges of the company.
  2. The Tower (Centralized): We refer to this centralization as the “tower” — a standalone group within a company that’s responsible for social media programs, often within corporate marketing or corporate communicaitons.
  3. The Hub and Spoke (Cross Functional): Like the hub on a bicycle wheel, a cross-functional group that represents multiple stakeholders across the company assembles in the middle of the organization. The hub facilitates resource sharing and cross-functional communications (via the “spokes” in the wheel) to those at the edge of the organization (or the “tire”)
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The Future of the Social Web: In Five Eras

[By Jeremiah Owyang]

Expect the Groundswell to continue, in which people connect to each other --rather than institutions. Consumer adoption of social networks is increasing a rapid pace, brands are adopting even during a recession, so expect the space to rapidly innovate to match this trend. Clients can acces this report; but to summarize what we found, in the executive summary we state:

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Marketing Forum Theme Day 2: Engaging the Innovative Customer

Forrester's Marketing Forum in Orlando Florida, see other photos tagged FMF09

Yesterday's theme was to take risks and engage in innovation --even in times of economic hardship. Armed and excited with examples from the speakers and panels, the conference was now focused on the 'how to', with a focus on engaging your customers to be involved, guide, and lead your company in tandem with your own leadership.

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Marketing Forum Theme Day 1: Do Marketing Differently: Innovate During A Recession

Written by Jeremiah Owyang, Zach Hofer-Shall 

Forrester's Christine Spivey Overby kicked off the conference, first reminiscing on how
great innovation comes out of times of economic struggle. Her example, which is
so suited for Forrester’s marketing conference in Orlando, is Walt Disney’s creative genius to
develop an iconic entertainment franchise. She stresses that now is the time to
do marketing differently by thinking differently and embracing innovation.

Marketers should innovate now, despite
the perceived risk. 

Why innovate now:

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See you in Orlando: Forrester's Upcoming Marketing Forum, April 23-24, 2009

Jeremiah Owyang[Posted by Jeremiah K. Owyang]

The Forrester team is gearing up for yet another great Marketing Forum, this time, in Orlando, Florida. We've carefully selected speakers to take on the hard topics of the recession, ROI, and taking risks.

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Boomers Adopt Social Technologies: How Marketers Should Respond

Left: The Social Technographics of Baby Boomers

One of the most common misconceptions I hear is that social technologies like Facebook, blogs, and Twitter is just for kids. Yet in reality, our data on social technology usage of Boomers indicates that there's adoption in many generations.  With Obama's campaigning to reach middle America with Facebook, Blogs, and YouTube, he continue to reaches the citizens in his ongoing administration --this ain't kids stuff no more!

To learn more about how Boomers use social technographics, read our latest report How to reach boomers with social technographics, including examples of how some brands have reached the growingly active boomers in communities.

Now, if I can just get my parents to join me on Facebook.

Forrester Wave Report: The Leaders in Community Platforms for Marketer

Clients can access the full report The Forrester Wave™: Community Platforms, Q1 2009 on the Forrester site, however the high level findings are available below, as with all of our reports, we stand by our products.

Communities are a powerful way for businesses to grow
Used correctly, communities can impact the top and bottom line of company's financials: from brands encouraging customers to self-support each other (reducing costs), to spreading word of mouth to each other (efficient marketing and increased sales) to crowd sourcing innovation (streamlining R&D) communities matter more than ever --especially during a recession. 

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