April 30, 2011
Facebook Deals launched on April 25 and already the limited city release is proving to be a positive venture for the world’s largest social networking website.
On its face there is very little different between Facebook Deals and competitors that include Groupon, LivingSocial and Google Offers, they all offer vast discounts on various deals, sometimes more than 50% off certain offers, however the way in which the site is attracting businesses, site members, even musicians could very well give Facebook a leg up on the competition.
Let’s start with the cost of entry. Facebook at this time is not charging businesses to advertise their products, instead businesses are encouraged to purchase ad units to target customers in their demographic. If you have ever used the Facebook advertising system you know that you can choose to target members by age, city and other demographic information which means you won’t be wasting time selling dentures to an 18 year old male outside of your cities advertising scope.
Second, Facebook Deals is sharing deals through emails and user profiles (specifically through the Newsfeed), adding a social element that their competitors can not possibly match. For example John Doe buys a new Hurley t-shirt, that t-shirt which was discounted by 50% is then shown in their friends newsfeeds and more than likely at least some of their friends share the same interest in clothing as them, perhaps they have a lot of skateboarding friends for example. It’s this element of social sharing that Groupon and other social buying sites lack. read more
Tags: Facebook Deals, Social Buying
NuevoStage wants to do for band bookings what Groupon has done for retail shopping. The site, currently in Alpha testing allows bands to sell tickets for their shows through the website, while sharing those upcoming gigs with fans.
Site founder Maxwell Wessel and co-founder Chris Allen came up with the idea when they realized that many venues (approximately 30,000 throughout the United States) have at least one night in which their stages are been underutilized, a fact that leads to a loss of revenue for club owners and a loss of a gig for bands who would love to book a spot.
The site works by allowing artists to post tickets for their show, just as company’s can do with Groupon. The band then spreads their message through social media sharing options, begging fans to buy their tickets. If for example 100 tickets are required and that number is met, the band has a gig, however if only 10 tickets can be sold the show is cancelled and the customers credit card is never charged.
NuevoStage plans to make money from the program by charging a small ticket processing fee, much in the same way TicketMaster makes money from their sales. read more
Tags: NuevoStage, Social Band Booking
April 29, 2011
Copyright is a notoriously confusing and complicated area of law, but one that also impacts nearly every part of our daily lives. As such, it is pretty much inevitable that well-intended people are going to make mistakes.
However, with copyright law, blunders can be very costly. In addition to the threat of a lawsuit, one can have their site shut down, access to some of their favorite services revoked and lose a lot of credibility. Even if none of those things comes to pass, a copyright dispute is still a major headache and one that most, if given the choice, would prefer to avoid.
As such, it’s important for bloggers to be aware of some of the more common copyright pitfalls that come from blogging and, more importantly, how to avoid them.
With that in mind, here are three of the most common copyright blunders bloggers make and what can be done to prevent yourself from falling into them. Fortunately, all are easy mistakes to see and avoid, if you know to look for them. read more
Tags: Blogging, copyright, creative commons, DMCA, fair use, images, Photos, takedown
April 28, 2011
Pepsi is taking social sharing to a whole new level. The company on Wednesday announced the world’s first “social vending machine” which allows users to insert money and send refreshing beverages to friends who can then access their free drinks through other social vending machines around the country.
The system is simple enough to operate, first a user walks up to a machine and chooses a beverage to “share” with a friend, they then insert their cash and enter a personalized text message, while some machines will even have cameras for video messaging.
After the users send the drink they’ve paid for the receiving party can access their beverage from any social vending machine they can find.
Pepsi will also be offering random free drinks to social media users in a program they call “Random Acts of Refreshment.”
Here’s what Pepsi had to say about their social vending machines: read more
Tags: Pepsi, Pepsi Social Vending Machine, Social Sharing, Social Vending Machine
April 27, 2011
News Corp. is currently prepping one-time internet social media darling MySpace for sale and various venture capital firms and other privately held companies are expected to place bids for the entertainment hub.
The website, purchased by News Corp. in 2005 for $580 million has been prepping for sale since the company spoke with shareholders during their February earnings call.
According to Mashable:
The company “recorded a $275 million pre-tax charge for the impairment of goodwill related to the Digital Media Group and an organizational restructuring at MySpace.”
The Wall Street Journal (also owned by News Corp.) is predicting that the site will fetch somewhere in the vicinity of $100 million with several frontrunners vying for the site including Redscout Ventures, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Criterion Capital Partners LLC. Criterion you may recall also owns social network Bebo. read more
Tags: MySpace, news corp, Website Sale
After news leaked out that Yahoo! was shutting down Delicious (then announcing plans on selling the social bookmarking service), it looks like the former internet titan has found a new lease on life under new leadership.
Today, we’re pleased to announce that Delicious has been acquired by the founders of YouTube, Chad Hurley and Steve Chen. As creators of the largest online video platform, they have firsthand experience enabling millions of users to share their experiences with the world. They are committed to running and improving Delicious going forward. (Official Delicious Blog) read more
Tags: Delicious, Yahoo, YouTube
April 26, 2011
A leaked embargo notice posted by the New York Times and picked up by TechCrunch is claiming that Facebook Deals is in the process of launching in the United States, a move that could be realized in all initial launch locations by Monday night.
The program which launched 3 months ago in Europe is seen as a direct competitor to Groupon, Living Social and Google Offers among other social buying platforms.
According to the report the program is first launching in Atlanta, Austin, Dallas, San Diego and San Francisco with other cities to follow in the near future.
Much like their competitors, Facebook will offer deep discounts to customers of their service, discounts provided by company’s around the country who want to sell their products quickly and introduce new users to their offerings.
While there is no certain future for Facebook Deals, the company does have some huge advantages against their competitors which in turn could signal major trouble for Groupon. For example, rumors are circulating that retailers may not have to pay for the service. Under current business models businesses must pay social buying sites a percentage of their sales in order to secure their services, however Facebook may decide to profit only when Facebook Credits are used to buy products, allowing retailers to keep more of their upfront profits when users pay with credit cards and other payment services outside of Facebook’s virtual currency.
According to the report, Facebook Credits will be allowed to be used as payment and let’s be honest for a moment, how many users who meant to buy “in-app” products are going to unload their virtual real world cash on a really cool deal they see on Facebook Deals before they buy that next Farmville add-on they were planning to grab. Impulse spending is the name of the game and with their Facebook Credits making a huge splash for the company Facebook can already tap into users who with a few simple clicks may be willing to buy products from their deals platform. read more
Tags: Facebook Deals, Groupon, Social Buying, Social Coupons
Swayable wants to take away your own ability to make choices and that’s not necessarily a bad idea. The program, developed by Lindsey Harper allows users to upload two side-by-side photos, while giving their friends the ability to vote on which option the user should choose. For example, you could be looking to buy a new barbeque for the summer and by taking photos of both options you are deciding upon your friends can help you choose which barbeque to purchase.
Users can choose to access their Swayable accounts through the web or by downloading an iPhone app (iTunes link). Using the program is then as simple as taking two photos (one of each product) and uploading them to the program as either “Public” or “Private” displays. Users can then share their side by side photos by sharing them with their social networks, by emailing the link to their photos or by sending an SMS that will include a link to the Swayable page. Users can even choose an embed code where their photos will be included directly on their websites.
Note: private pages are only accessible through a URL given to the uploading party.
Friends immediately begin voting on a users choices and in the case of the iPhone app push notifications will immediately be sent to the users phone, while web users can check their results online.
Users will see how many sways each product has received, while their friends, co-workers and family members can also leave comments about each product, allowing for even more help in the decision making process. read more
Tags: iPhone Apps, Social Decisions, Swayable, Swayable iPhone App
April 25, 2011
Facebook on Monday rolled out several updates to their Group feature that makes it easier to share content with small networks.
As part of the updates Administrators for groups now have the option to implement a “new member approval” system, allowing Admins to ensure that groups do not grow larger than they would like to administer.
Also added is the ability to share entire albums with group members, rather than going through photos one by one as was the case with the older Groups setup.
Groups can also now implement the Facebook Questions system which was left off the last update to the Groups system.
Finally a Group Search function has been added to the mix which allows users to perform searches within each group they are participating in, allowing for a much more streamlined option. Users should be aware that this final feature is rolling out to different members throughout the week and may not be available in your account immediately. read more
Tags: Facebook, Facebook Groups, Social Sharing
Not content with dominating the like button wars and invading our comment sections, Facebook is launching a new feature that could make sharing posts and webpages by email obsolete.
The Send button drives traffic by letting users send a link and a short message to the people that would be most interested. They don’t need to leave the web page they’re on or fill out a long, annoying form. Compared to the alternatives, the Send button has fewer required steps, and it removes the need to look up email addresses by auto-suggesting friends and Groups. (Facebook Developer Blog)
Facebook is also planning on integrating their real time metrics system within the Send button, which will make the feature much more attractive than traditional email sharing options.
It may also help the social giant to convince more blogs and web masters to rely upon Facebook stats (which report in real time), instead of rivals like Google Analytics.
Currently users have to manually install the Send button upon their sites until a geek free solution can be devised, although if anyone knows of an easier way of installing the code (without placing it within the footer), feel free to comment below.