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What South Park Taught Me About Social ROI

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If you’re like me, you enjoy watching South Park.  The episodes are a no holds barred take on current events, fearlessly making light of anything and everything.  If you’re a fan, you may recall an episode from an early season where the plot centers on what are known as “underpants gnomes.”  The basic storyline is that the boys of South Park discover gnomes are stealing everyone’s underpants in an attempt to turn a profit.  When Stan, Kenny, Kyle and Cartman confront the gnomes on their stealing ways and question how they can turn a profit from underpants, the gnomes don’t … Continue reading

3 New Must-Reads: Google vs. Amazon, Facebook Measurement Faux Pas & more

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Ladies and gentleman, the time has come for our latest round-up of the can’t-miss industry and social news as of late. In this installment: Facebook Login success stories, Google’s most recent move to compete with Amazon, and a call to question how we measure Facebook’s impact on consumer behavior. Enjoy! 1. Driving Social Commerce with Facebook Login For those of you fence-sitters out there — and we know there’s still a few of you out there — here’s yet more proof that you should get with the Facebook program. Since implementing Open Graph actions like “bought” or “faved” on its website, … Continue reading

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Social Gone Wild: Navigating the Social Jungle at #IRCE 2012

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A couple of weeks ago, Business Insider published a graphic showing “how ludicrously complicated social media marketing is now.” The sheer volume of social tools available today can be overwhelming, and navigating the wild world of social is one of the major inspirations for our upcoming theme at this week’s Internet Retailer Conference – SOCIAL IN THE WILD. (That, and the fact that one of our employees is a up-and-coming reality star on NBC’s Love In The Wild, but that’s another story.) The social landscape today is massively complex. There are your typical social networks, social marketing management solutions, social commerce … Continue reading

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Why Facebook Stock is in Free Fall; and Why it Doesn’t Matter.

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Well, Facebook stock has been in a free fall since it IPO’d and no one can seem to pinpoint the culprit. Is it lack of confidence in their mobile strategy? Is it their bet on advertising?  Is Wall Street scared of the CEO who really doesn’t care what they think? Yes, It’s all this and more. But none of this is unique to Facebook. People asked similar questions about Amazon and eBay and others.  A key difference here is the concept of perfect and imperfect information. An Imperfect Storm From Wikipedia: In game theory, perfect information describes the situation when a player has available … Continue reading

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6 Can’t-Miss Stories: The Rise of Social Shopping, Massive Tech Deals, and How To Squat at AOL HQ

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Since we’re coming off a long weekend, here’s a little amuse-bouche to start off your hectic work week. Our latest round-up stories from the past few weeks that you might have missed… 1. Meet the tireless entrepreneur who squatted at AOL We all know startups inspire their employees to work long hours and give their all. They attract creative improvisers and people who will go to crazy lengths to get their businesses off the ground. Well, 20 year-old entrepreneur Eric Simons just one-upped them all: he spent two months squatting — undetected! — at AOL’s Palo Alto campus, eating the … Continue reading

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Skechers and Teleflora go from Super Bowl to Super Social (2 Free Studies)

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If you’re like me, you’re as much as of a fan of the Super Bowl commercials as you are of the game itself. You may even recollect two memorable 30-second spots from Skechers and Teleflora from this past year. To refresh your memory, the Skechers ad features the loveable Mr. Quiggly, a French Bulldog, who rocks red Skechers running shoes as a late entry a Greyhound dog race. The Teleflora ad features the “not-so-unfortunate-looking” Miss Adriana Lima, who proceeds to dress herself after… umm, better leave it at that I guess. Today, the two leading retailers are back on the national … Continue reading

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The Facebook IPO: How to Succeed in Business by Breaking Stuff

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“Move fast and break stuff.” That’s Facebook’s mantra. While unconventional, there’s no denying that it’s this unorthodox approach that has helped the social giant amass nearly 1 billion users worldwide and claim the title of consumers’ network of choice. With a much-heralded IPO looming (any day now), and a rumored valuation of $100 billion, it’s worth taking a look back at how they got here, reflecting upon the critical decisions that they’ve made along the way. The following are 5 principles that have helped shape Facebook over the years, along with key takeaways that can be applied to nearly any business … Continue reading

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Did you hear the one about measurable social ROI? From punchline to reality.

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There’s an old joke about two marketing people.  They’re talking about work and one says to the other, “I know 50% of my budget is wasted, I just don’t know which 50%.”  For most marketing people, the joke is a little too close to home. Sure, almost any marketing person can measure the easy things; I spend X on a webinar, it generated 1000 leads so my cost per lead is $20, it should generate 50 meetings and 10 closed deals. Calculating the ROI on traditional marketing campaigns is relatively straightforward.  But what about the tough things to measure?  Especially … Continue reading

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4 Must-Reads You Can’t Afford to Miss: Group-Gifting, Essential Social Strategy & more

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Another two weeks have come and gone, and you know what that means, right? It means that this May Day, we’re bringing you the latest round-up of industry news from across the social/e-commerce universe that you might have missed when blinking. In this installment… 1. Social Gifting: The New Buzzword in E-commerce Daily deals, flash sales, f-commerce – every day, there’s some crazy new trend that mashes social and e-commerce together. The latest arrival to the party is the phenomenon of group-gifting. And the darling of group-gifting is Wrapp, a startup based out of Sweden that has some notable backers like … Continue reading

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The Crowd in The Cloud: Marketo, Crowd Factory, and The Value of Social Integration

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It was great to see our friends at Crowd Factory make the choice to join the excellent team at Marketo. Marketo continues its history of innovation in marketing automation by adding social marketing campaign capabilities; and Crowd Factory gets instant access to Marketo’s customer base to further bolster their growth. This acquisition also further legitimizes social’s important role with marketing automation and CRM.  (Also see SalesForce.com’s acquisition of Radian6 and subsequent rebranding of the company as delivering the “social enterprise,” for another example.) Marketo’s customers now have a strong partner that will help them to answer the key social questions … Continue reading

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