Wednesday, 14 January 2009

14/01/09 - Your Very Own Social Network - Google Friend Connect

Nugget 14-01-09

Google launch on 3rd December a neat application called Google Friend Connect. This enables webmasters to add social components to their site. To get this up and running doesn't requrie any programming skills as Google have made it very quick and easy to setup. They offer some standard gadgets to customise your mini social world but their is only a currently a handful.

Below is a video from Google showing a brief overview.

The current gadgets that are available are:

Members gadget

The Members gadget is an all-in-one gadget. It allows visitors to:
-Join your site
-Sign in and out
-See pictures of other site members
-See pictures of their friends
-Explore other members’ profiles
-Invite other people to join your site

Sign In gadget
The “Sign In” gadget allows visitors to join your site, sign in and out, and invite people to become members. It doesn’t have all the features of the Members gadget, but it can fit neatly in to a small space.

Wall gadget
Allows viewers to post comments, or links to videos on your site.

social-wall Instant Social Network: Google Friend Connect

Review/Rate gadget
Allows viewers to rate a page, or a section of a page. Viewers can use this to rate videos, articles, books, photos, songs, or anything else you can imagine. You can put multiple Review/Rate gadgets on one page, one for each item you want viewers to review.

Google Gadget Rate And Review

You can put this gadget on your home page and choose the size and colors that fit best for your site.

Google are using the OpenID for sign in which means even if you only have a Yahoo/AOL account you don't have to register to gain access.

I have read quite a lot around this and there doesn't seem to appear to much analysis about how this could be used conversion function.

I do think that there is great potential to give users the chance to talk to each other when looking at products and reviews. You see alot of sites that offer basic out of date FAQ sections this could be seen as a great way to source what your customers want.

I will continue to watch this to see what gadgets come to the surface that could benefit a commerce site.

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

13/01/09 - First Online Marketing Daily Post!

Nugget 13-01-09

I wanted to start this blog to challenge myself to come up with Online Marketing 'Nuggets' weekly. I'm sure I will look back and think why the hell did I start this, but as I always like to say, "If it isn't hard, it's not worth doing".

So the plan is to post my thoughts about the world of Online Marketing everyday. I know there is a wealth of other blogs that revolve around this subject but I thought it prudent to put my two pennies worth in. This will also act as a brainstorm session that I have to complete every week.

Right down to business......

This nugget revolves around the new phenomenon that is IPTV (Internet TV) and in particular the advent of Google TV. As the BBC iPlayer is attracting 2.5 billion hits this is a clear indicator that there is overwhelming demand for this type of media.

This is set to launch IPTV into the mainstream as Google have signed up numerous big American networks to bring you the latest hit TV shows on demand and are in talks with the BBC about integrating their content. No doubt Google will be levying a 'small additional charge' for the premium content, but I suspect there will be a wealth of free content available.

This is currently in a BETA phase in America only. Google have cleverly hidden the BETA subscription within the Gmail account. Below is a video which explains how to sign up (only works for users in America) - Maybe a HOAX but worth a try.

If you are a regular user of Google Adwords you will have noticed the Google TV Ads BETA that allows you to start advertising on the TV networks. This is only the first step because when Google roll out IPTV they will look to integrate this advertising channel and exploit the demand for such content.

This provides great opportunity for marketers, as IPTV advertising can be truly targeted and measurable.

You will be able to control you advertising efforts through the familiar Adwords Interface and tender out your requirements and target demographic. You can then search for the relevant programs and demographic, set your budget and your off.

Google will deliver your TV Ad when relevant, track the click and then wait to see if you get a conversion. All neatly managed and measured from the one interface.

It is inevitable that more and more advertisers will move away from the traditional TV channels in favour for the cheaper, measurable and targeted IPTV advertising.

This begs another question.....can the existing internet handle the increase in bandwidth that is needed?

No doubt ITV will rollout advertising via the ITV Player with also 4OD getting in on the act.

There are few smaller sites launching IPTV services and two worthy of note are:

TV Catchup:


Well first post done.

Andrew Kirkcaldy
"Information is meaningless without context"