How often do you notice human sign turners when you’re driving down the street? Anyone living in a larger city has most likely seen them. They are the people standing by the side of the road holding up signs for small businesses. Sometimes they are dressed in costume, sometimes they are dressed in street clothes. To gander extra attention, they twirl and spin the signs to attract the eyes of drivers.
That’s how I feel today. @WebmasterRadio.FM has been using Twitter extensively to promote shows, special ad-offers, and Affiliate Convention. The initiative is pushing hundreds of people per day to our various campaigns. It’s all about driving the most relevant traffic possible and, in that respect, the campaigns are working.
We’ve been using Twitter this heavily for nearly nine months. While there are still a lot of aspects of the medium that need to be thought through, it is obvious the era of subscribed instant message marketing is only beginning. Here are a few of our more serious thoughts beyond feeling like sorta like sign spinners.
With Twitter, attention comes in a matter of seconds and drops off just as quickly. Within 15 seconds of issuing a Tweet, clicks are realized. Within five minutes after that Tweet is posted, the clicks drop off dramatically. There is a very short long-tail as people check their personal Twitter streams throughout the day but the real action takes place in that five minute window. That makes an attention cycle of 300 seconds or less. That one fact alone makes campaign analytics more difficult.
I find myself obsessively watching stats and doing instant analytic math. 8 clicks in the last five minutes from a Tweet issued at 2:10pm. The same Tweet issued at 4:30pm the day before drove 12 clicks in five minutes. Retweets of yesterday’s tweets drove more traffic than the original Tweets did but are only driving half that traffic today. Message A worked better than Message B on Tuesdays between X and Y hours but not as well on Monday between the same hours.
A brain-teasing aspect about Twitter campaigns is the sheer speed of the attention cycle makes effective analysis of each effort maddeningly difficult. That speed makes A/B testing almost useless. A five minute cycle means we’re A/B/C/D/E/F/G… testing. It feels more like tracking a multi-ad display campaign than a traditional PPC campaign both in volume and number of unique ads deployed.
We have slightly more incentive to succeed than the typical sign twirler. Digital marketing is our career. Like sign-spinners, it’s all about driving traffic. Unlike sign-spinners, we are responsible for the message as well as the outcome of that message’s reception. Today, Twitter has driven several hundred clicks. How those clicks breakdown into the cycle defined by twelve segment per hour makes for some extremely interesting research and analysis.
Google hosted its second annual Searchology Day at the Googleplex campus in Mountain View California Tuesday. Google used the event to introduce a number of innovations to the world’s most popular search engine.
The first innovation, which is to be released via Google Labs later this week, is called Google Squared. The feature is designed to extract a greater amount of topical information about a website and present it to search users in the grid format of a spreadsheet. Two examples used by VP for search products and user experience, Marissa Mayer outlined how Google Squared might work.
A user could type “Science Fiction TV Shows” and receive a multi-columned table containing information about release dates, actors, directors, story plots, and the networks which carry science fiction content. Similarly, a user might type, “Small Dogs” and receive another list of information detailing different breeds, typical traits such as average weight and height, behavior patterns, and images of different types of small breed dog. Results served by Google Squared could then be saved and shared with other users.
Another feature unveiled at the Searchology event is being called Google Snippets. Snippets will be of interest to search engine marketers as the feature enables extra bits of information to search results such as short reviews, price ranges and user-ratings to be added to search results. For instance, a search for a restaurant might return a review page from a service such as Yelp. If those reviews contain information about the restaurant being researched, elements from those reviews might be included below the link to the restaurant in question.
A third feature called Search Options has the potential to provide far more work for search marketers and web developers. Search Options will create a small below a search result listing other file types associated with that result. For instance, if there is video, blog posts or comments or images associated with the search result, they will be listed under Search Options. The Search Options feature also allows search users to refine their search request by date, incorporating one of Google’s most useful advanced search tools. When a searcher selects one of the search refinement options the overall search results they see will change to incorporate their selection.
The last tool Google announced yesterday is an iPhone application that uses GPS to help guide stargazers seeking their favorite constellations called Google Sky Map for Android. As the user moves their iPhone, the star map changes to account for the direction the phone is facing. The most interesting aspect of this application is Google’s use of GPS coordinates to direct the user towards an object.
More information about the Searchology event can be found on the Official Google Blog.
Register now for next week’s ad|Tech conference in San Francisco and receive a 40% discount on a full conference pass! WebmasterRadio.FM has been offered permission to publish a special registration code to offer our listeners and readers a very special discount.
ad|Tech San Francisco is one of the largest and most anticipated Internet technology shows of the year. As will all ad|Tech conferences, the show will be an eclectic mix of marketing, technology and technique. It runs at the Moscone Center from April 21 – 23rd.
The annual show in San Francisco is one of the most interesting of the nine international mega-conferences ad|Tech organizes each year. This year, organizers have lined up an amazing array of speakers, trade-show booths and evening events, including keynotes from Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia, a Wired.com interview with Kevin Rose of Digg, and a state of the industry round-table keynote from the IAB.
If you are interested in attending ad|Tech San Francisco, please visit the ad|Tech SF registration page and enter the special code: SFCONF2 to receive a 40% discount on a full conference pass.
Today at 12 noon EST on MarketEdge, Larry Weber will be interviewing Beth Comstock, Corporate Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at GE.
Beth will give insight about the kind of struggle that CMOs deal with when it comes to advocating change and developing new marketing plans. She will also discuss the future of global marketing and communications.
Beth Comstock leads GEâ€™s organic growth and innovation initiatives in the marketing, sales and communications functions. Right now, she is focused on building cross-business digital programs and creating a partnership network to extend GEâ€™s ecomagination green technologies.