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Archive for the ‘Articles & Research’ Category

10 Reasons Apple Ping Won’t Beat Facebook Anytime Soon

Posted by TeamITI on September 29, 2010

You Can’t Import Friends

Right now, while there is ongoing debate about whether or not Ping was previously enabling the ability to import friend from Facebook, the reality is that at this point, you can’t import friends from anywhere. There isn’t even an email import functionality, which was the key tool that made most social networks go viral in the first place.

Ping Isn’t Global

Right now it isn’t possible to connect to Ping in the majority of countries. Instead, the service is currently limite to 23 countries. Given that most of my friends are in the U.S., it’s not a deal breaker for me personally, however it’s definitely going to be an issue if Apple wants global domination. Additionally, Ping only functions on Apple products! If Apple doesn’t open up their product to other companies, there’s no chance they’ll be able to kill Facebook.

Yes, iTunes doesn’t just run on Apple computers, however there are no other mobile devices that have iTunes or Ping available to them. Apple will need a more open strategy if they were to compete with Facebook in the long-term.

Uploading Photos Has Issues

I couldn’t get my profile photo uploading, and more significant is that photos must go through an approval process! That’s like an online dating site or something. Facebook thankfully has automated filtering systems. With all the software engineers over at Apple, you’d imagine the company would be able to come up with a more efficient system which doesn’t require the manual approval of all images.

Certain Areas Freeze

After trying to watch one of Lady Gaga’s videos within the service, I couldn’t figure out how to exit out of watching the video. This wasn’t the only area where I ran into minor user experience bugs that should have been resolved before pushing out the product. Then again, perhaps Apple has accepted the model in which products that don’t work are rolled out first and then the bugs are fixed afterwards.

Did I Mention No Friend Import?

This is seriously a deal breaker for any social network. It blows my mind that Apple would release a product that is missing some of the core features that are necessary for any successful social network. Then again, they released a phone that doesn’t work as a phone, so that’s not too surprising I guess.

Managing Another Social Network Is Annoying

I think Facebook may have been the social network which survived to the point where people aren’t willing to switch to another social network. Additionally, there is a large number of people who don’t use iTunes and they won’t install the software just to find out what music their family and friends are listening to. While many of us grew up on music, there are plenty of people for who music and computers don’t go together (GASP! Yes, those people exist).

I Need To Live In Apple’s World

Do you want to live under the control of Steve Jobs? Many have chosen to let Steve Jobs make their technology consumer decisions on behalf of them, however many people hate this. Just read yesterday’s comments on our Ping blog post if you had any question about whether or not people would make the shift. Even more significant was the numerous comments from our Page fans who said they had no interest in making the jump.

Outlandish Statements

Remember when Apple claimed that the iPad was a magical and revolutionary device? Try to find 100 people who own the device and say they love it. I own it but the only thing I use it for is reading books, and if that’s all I wanted to do on it in the first place, I should have just used my Amazon Kindle. While there are new forms of applications like Flipboard and Pulse, I’m not quite sure what’s magical about the device. Similarly, Apple claims that “Everyone who loves music is on Ping.” That’s a flat out lie. How are they able to make a statement like that?

The fact that Apple makes statements like this frustrates the hell out of me.

Nobody Is On Ping

Most of my friends aren’t on Ping as of right now. While I’ve found about 10 people to follow, every name I search for shows up with nobody, or some random person who I don’t know. Apple has a huge market potential, but just one day after the product launched, a very small percentage of that market has used the service.

Apple Manipulates Consumers

The last thing I hate about Apple has nothing to do with their social network. It’s that they don’t roll out features in certain products for fear of cannibalizing other product lines. For example, right now I have a Mac Mini running my home entertainment center. Yesterday’s Apple TV launched without the ability to browse the internet, simply because they don’t want to stop people from buying Mac Minis.

They clearly have the ability to add a DVD player and internet browsing functionality but they just chose not to. It’s a model that values exploiting the consumer over accelerating the pace of technology.

In Apple’s Favor

While there are plenty of reasons that Apple Ping won’t be as successful as Facebook, there are a few things that Apple has to its advantage. The first is that Apple has access to the largest set of digital savvy consumers. These individuals are likely to make online purchases, and more importantly, they make many of those purchases directly within iTunes. While a large percentage of the world is cut off from Apple, the company has access to the most influential consumers (those who spend the most on digital goods).

There are plenty of factors working against Apple’s social network right now, however the company has a lot of things that make it a competitive threat to Facebook: their payments platform, their large device-based distribution network, and a number of other things. Additionally, the battle to be the leading mobile social network has not been won yet. Facebook is clearly in the lead, however Apple just made their service compatible with the more than 150 million iOS compatible devices worldwide.

The bottom line is this: the battle to become the reigning social network is not over yet.

This article is published by AllFacebook, click here to read the original article.

Posted in Articles & Research, Facts, Figures & Trends, Social Media | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Social Media: Top 10 Reasons Why Your Audience Doesn’t Like You

Posted by TeamITI on September 29, 2010

Are you struggling with social media engagement? Struggling with building your audience? You have thousands of Twitter followers, maybe even 50 or 100 people who have clicked “like” on your Facebook page.

However, even with this early success you’ve seen in social media, people just simply aren’t engaging with your brand? You are not feeling the social media love that others talk about.

Top 10 Reasons Why Your Audience Doesn’t Like You

1. You are not engaging. You spend all day listening or retweeting. You are not genuinely engaging with your existing network. You are on the sidelines watching the game go on.
Tip: Engage. Have a conversation. Get in the game.

2. You are not providing value. Your website may lack content that resonates with your audience. Your tweets are well let’s say, tweets. They look, smell and act like everyone else.  There are more than 10 Billion Tweets sent  in a year.  Tweeting a simple tweet that looks and smells like every other tweeter will get you no where.
Tip: Provide value. Inspire and connect with your audience. Get in their head and learn who they are and what they need.  Provide content that helps them solve real business problems. Provide tips that help them move their business forward with new skills.

3. You are not following people back. If you have people following you and you are sitting on your arrogant Twitter mountain thinking you don’t have to follow them you might want to think again. This thinking drives me nuts. Show the love. Be a good friend.
Tip: Develop a follow-back strategy. There are different schools of thought on this. My personal recommendation is at minimum make an effort to follow people back. Don’t sit high on your Twitter mountain with the expectation everyone owes you something. They don’t.

4. You are not a good social media friend. You don’t retweet. You don’t thank people who show you love. You never follow back. You don’t comment on other blogs in a genuine way. You don’t thank people who comment on your blog.
Tip: Show the social love. Genuinely engage and make your audience and network know that you care about them. At minimum let them know you know they are there! Often times if I don’t have time to thank all of my retweeters or send a series of #FF follow friday recommendations on Twitter I will send a couple tweets during the day thanking my network.  I let them know I appreciate them and all the social love they gave me!

5. You are boring. Sorry folks but it could be you are just boring. I am seeing many people who have a boring profile picture, boring content. They are the same ones who sit all day and retweet news feeds of mortgage rates or market news. They are providing no value and not engaging.
Tip: Brand yourself.  Understand your audience. Who are they and what do they need. Who are you and what can you offer them. Give your business and brand a personality. Dare to stand above the norm.  If you shoot for status quo that is exactly what you will receive, if you’re lucky. It may be less.

6. Your website stinks. If you are boring, your content  is boring and your website stinks you have three strikes and you’re probably already out of the social media game.
Tip: Social media is about conversation. Engage in conversation with interesting content, design and brand.   Hire a web developer and freshen up your website.  If you don’t have the funds to do such then find a self-help site or teach yourself WordPress blog at minimum.

7. Your social profiles stink. If your Twitter background is the default and your Facebook Fan Page has no customization you once again are shooting for status quo.
Tip: Hire a consultant or an agency to spice up your profiles. If you don’t have the funds the leverage an off the shelf service. There are several Facebook Fan Page engines you can use yourself that are affordable.

8. Your Facebook Fan Page is all about you. What are you doing to engage your audience?
Tip: Engage your Facebook audience.  Have fun.  Ask them questions? Do some research. Ask them what they need, what they want.  Leverage the discussion tab to invite people to introduce themselves.

9. People don’t know the real you. You are hiding behind an avatar (social media profile photo). You are not sharing the real you. You are using corporate speak. You aren’t using video, no interesting blogs.
Tip: Let yourself shine. Try out video.  Come out behind the avatar and let people get to know you.  Don’t be afraid of video.  If you use video you will attract people who like you, people who want to business with you.

10. You are afraid. Because of what I said above you are afraid to come out and play in social media.  You have been intimidated by the mean blog posts that are surfacing the net on social media gurus, wannabe gurus etc.
Tip: Don’t let the bullies scare you! Be confident. Have fun. If you don’t you are never going to make it in social media, business or life.

This article is published by socialmediatoday.com, click here to read the original article.

Posted in Articles & Research, Social Media, Tools & Tutorials, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Facebook Surpasses Google In “Time Spent” On Site Domestically

Posted by TeamITI on September 14, 2010

Yesterday, a new statistic based on comScore data showed that Facebook had officially surpassed Google in terms of time spent off all internet users in the United States. While it’s no doubt a major milestone for Facebook, the implications to Google’s business are negligible since the company measures success based on decreasing the time spent on their site.

In August, U.S. internet users spent 41.1 million minutes on Facebook, which surpassed Google’s 39.8 million minutes. However as this stat was revealed, a greater statistic was looming large. Earlier this week Marissa Mayer announced that over one billion users visited Google every week. It’s a number that Facebook has been racing toward, however Google was the first to surpass it.

This article is published by AllFacebook, click here to read the original article.

Posted in Articles & Research, Facts, Figures & Trends | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Five tips for working with PDF files in Mac OS X

Posted by TeamITI on August 12, 2010

One of the best things about Mac OS X is its built-in support for PDF files. Instead of testing your sanity while you wait (sometimes it can seem like forever) for Adobe Acrobat to open a PDF file, you can use Preview.app to open them up quickly. However, built-in PDF support allows you to do other neat things as well. Here are five of my favorites.

Print
At the top of the list is the ability to create a PDF from almost any document. Whether it’s a Word or Pages document, a spreadsheet, or a Web page, in most instances you’ll be able to create PDFs out of them. Many Windows users print to a PDF printer in order to create a PDF file, and in a similar manner, creating PDFs on Mac OS X involves selecting the print option from the app that you’re working in. Within the app, click on “File” and then select “Print.” Then, you’ll be presented with a dialog box with a “PDF” button on the left. Click on this button and select “Save as PDF.”

Annotate
Once you’ve created your PDF, you can annotate it. Open up your PDF in Preview.app, click on “View,” and select “Show Annotations Toolbar.” After doing so, a toolbar will appear on the bottom left of your document. Alternatively, the toolbar will also be displayed if you select any of the annotate options under the “Tools” menu. Annotations include the ability to create text boxes (useful for filling out forms), add notes, or highlight and create shapes (among other things).

Rearrange
You can also move pages around within Preview.app (like rearranging the songs in an iTunes playlist). Simply choose “Contact sheet” or “Thumbnail” view from the sidebar, and then drag and drop your pages as you see fit.

Bookmarks
Let’s say that a couple of pages within a PDF interest you, and you want to revisit them later. To do this, click on “Bookmarks” in Preview.app and select “Add Bookmark” (or use the Cmd+D shortcut). One of the neat things about this feature is that, even if your PDF isn’t open, you can still access your bookmarks.

Crop
I’ve made no secret about my fondness of Preview.app’s image editing ability, and this extends to PDFs as well. One neat image editing feature for PDFs is the ability to select an area and create a new image based on this selection. To do this in the PDF, click on the “Select” tool, select an area, and copy it. Then, in Preview.app, click on “File,” select “New from clipboard,” and voila, your selection is in a new document. This document can be saved in a variety of formats, including PDF, JPG, and PNG.

PDF parsing and rendering are core features of Mac OS X and iOS. While providing for native support for PDF files, it also served as the foundation for the recently released Web-based jailbreak for the iPhone.

This article is published by AllFacebook, click here to get more information and some examples and read the original article.

Posted in Articles & Research, Tools & Tutorials | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »