Search Engines Are Evolving By Getting Social

On October 23rd, 2009, wrote:

The search wars have just been taken to a whole new level. The catalyst? Social media. With the phenomenal popularity of social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook, both Google and Microsoft will now be integrating real-time updates into their respective search engines. In separate announcements made yesterday, October 21, Google said it has reached an agreement with Twitter to include real-time updates – “Tweets” – in a new Google feature called Social Search; meanwhile, Microsoft has signed deals to get full feeds from both Twitter and Facebook. Google cited the fact that “an entirely new type of data has emerged… not only as a way for people to communicate their thoughts and feelings, but also as an interesting source of data about what is happening right now in regard to a particular topic.” The agreement with Twitter means search results will now include up-to-the-minute data and real-time observation from a stream of Tweets, so that users “will find tweets from – Read the full article

Small Businesses Still Reluctant To Social Media

On October 19th, 2009, wrote:

When I come across articles like the one posted on TheStreet.com last week, I can’t help but get excited. Titled “Business Owners Question Social Networking” the article quotes some research that finds that a majority of small business owners haven’t seen value from social media, and that most don’t even use it themselves. A key section of the article reads: Among the 500 small-business executives surveyed, 76% said social networking hasn’t help them generate leads or expand their companies in the past year. And 86% said they don’t turn to these Web sites for business advice or other information. The majority, 61%, depend on big search engines, such as Google and Yahoo!, for business advice and information. Only 13% use social networking sites and only 10% rely on expert blogs. So why on earth would I be excited that small businesses don’t use social media and haven’t seen value from it yet? Opportunity. Plain and simple. For me, there is – Read the full article

Bots, Auto DM and TwitterFeed, Oh My!

On August 31st, 2009, wrote:

For as simple as twitter is, the complexity of using it is nothing short of astounding. Many people strictly update twitter via the web with nothing more than an account of their daily activities. Some “power users” have people that tweet for them, and some even have bots set up that removes the human aspect altogether. Then there’s the issue of the auto-dm. Many users rely on scripted messages to be sent when someone new follows them. Often impersonal and down right cheesy, the auto-dm makes many of us cringe upon receiving them. An extension of this inhuman activity is the use of TwitterFeed, a service that connects RSS feeds to twitter accounts. Users can pull feeds related to their interests and audience and auto-post them on Twitter. TwitterFeed is great when used to pull in your company’s blog posts or entries from your personal site. The problem is that many users rely on this entirely too much and will – Read the full article

Chicago Company Sues woman 50K over Tweet

On July 28th, 2009, wrote:

I wrote a post about social media monitoring last week and in the news today is a Chicago company that is suing one of their tenants for $50,000. This lawsuit is already making waves at popular social media news site- mashable. Within the first two hours of the story being posted their are about 900 people tweeting and 115 comments on the blog. The tenant Amanda Bonnen made a comment on her twitter about mold in her apartment. “Who said sleeping in a moldy apartment was bad for you? Horizon realty thinks it’s okay.” The reason this story is already grabbing the attention of the social media community is the fact that Horizon’s Jeffrey Michael is quoted in the Sun-Times as saying “The statements are obviously false, and it’s our intention to prove that”, adding that Horizon has a good reputation to protect. Bonnen wasn’t contacted before the suit was filed or asked to remove the Tweet, he said: “We’re – Read the full article

Twitter 101 for Businesses

On July 25th, 2009, wrote:

Luckily, we here at Lakeshore Branding are no strangers to using twitter, both personally and for business. And even though we advise clients on using Twitter everyday, it’s still good to be reminded of the basics and best-practices of the popular micro-blogging service regarding business use. That said, we’re glad to see Twitter has released Twitter 101 for Business, an online guide to Twitter. Twitter 101 includes getting started to understanding twitter lingo, complete with best practices and case studies. The guide can also serve as a resource to keep on hand for getting current and new employees up to speed. Twitter 101 won’t be a replacement for social media consulting services, but it will be a good platform for getting a solid grasp on twitter, and being able to spread some knowledge company-wide.

Twitter adds Search Bar and Trends to Profiles

On March 14th, 2009, wrote:

We were poking around making some updates for our client So Cute and Cozy, when we saw that their twitter page was in a beta testing of a new top navagation. Twitter has added a new search feature and drop down that shows the current trending topics. The industry buzz is that searchability is one of Twitter’s killer features, and indeed, it looks like the microblogging service is starting to put it more front and center. It looks like the company is either testing it out or doing the gradual rollout thing. Twitter’s focus on search started when the company acquired Summize, a search tool built using Twitter’s developer API (application programming interface) and turned it into the Twitter Search feature. The search for GreenWerks which is another one of our clients showed the current results we have come to enjoy with search.twitter.com. Hooked Up Installs is one of our newer social media clients and was blown away by the – Read the full article

Bringing Social Media Sites Together

On March 4th, 2009, wrote:

FriendFeed is a utility tool that that collects all the updates from your favorite social media websites. It doesn’t send your info to your social media websites, but it gives you updates on all the sites your friends are using and creates a master feed of all your online activity. It takes feeds from Facebook, Twitter, your blog, Flickr, Yelp to name a few of the accounts your can tie to this social site. FriendFeed also acts as a stand alone social site, with options for posting notes, photos and links, as well as commenting on others’ contributions. You can check out our client GreenWerks and our social media expert Brandon Zeman on FriendFeed.

Shorten Long URLs – Tiny URL

On December 1st, 2008, wrote:

As websites get more and more complex, the length of URL’s (web addresses) seems to get longer and longer. This can cause problems when emailing URLs, using Twitter and other web services, or trying to recite URLs to others. TinyURL.com and other services have stepped in to fix this problem with the innovative new web 2.0 service of shortening URLs. These services provide a redirect from a shorter web address to the long and cumbersome address you need to reach. The website you want to email to a friend: http://digitalprinter.blogspot.com/2008/11/how-to-enlarge-low-resolution-images.html Once entered into TinyURL.com you receive: http://tinyurl.com/6dmz75 They also allow custom short URLs: http://elevateprinting.com Becomes: http://tinyurl.com/elevatep Another added effect of this services is that you can hide the true domain and web address you are sending people to. This can unfortunately be used for some less ethical purposes. Other Similar Websites & Services: bit.ly is.gd Tweetburner (Twurl) urlShort