What’s the latest glitch on Twitter? Read the details from this Mashable article.

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Some Twitter users have been unable to send direct messages containing links, according to multiple reports.

The issue, which was first reported on Wednesday night, comes a few days after the social network rolled out a new option that lets you send direct messages to anyone, even those not following you. This new feature led to speculation that Twitter was blocking links in direct messages to stop spam spread via URLs contained in direct messages, perhaps by hacked accounts.

On Thursday, Twitter posted a note on its direct message help page, stating that the glitch was due to technical issues.

“We’re restructuring back-end elements of our direct message system. As a result, users may be unable to send some URLs in direct messages. We apologize for the inconvenience,” the note read.

However, we wouldn’t be surprised if the link-blocking was Twitter’s response to a deluge in spam links sent via direct message. Twitter did not respond to our request for comment.

“Twitter has a lot of security issues,” Andrea Stroppa, an hacker and security researchers who has exposed the businesses ofsocial spam on Facebook and fake Twitter followers, toldMashable. “It’s spammers’ and phishers’ favorite platform.”

According to reports and our own tests, it seems that verified users can indeed send links via direct message, even to non-verified users. But non-verified users can only send certain links — presumably white-listed ones from websites like Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

On TweetDeck, trying to send a Mashable link via DM returns the following error message: “There was an error sending your message: Text contains malware.” On Twitter’s web site, a reply to the same direct message simply reads: “Sorry, an error occurred while sending this message.”

Social spam is an increasing problem. In the first half of 2013, the amount of spam on social media networks increased 355%.

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Keep abreast on the latest news about social media by following this John Bohan Facebook page.

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What’s new with Pinterest? Read this Telegraph.co.uk article for the details.

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Pinterest is a pinboard-style photo-sharing website that allows users to create and manage collections of image that are organised around certain themes. Users can browse other pinboards for images, “re-pin” images to their own pinboards, or “like” photos.

Retail companies already take advantage of Pinterest for advertising and style trending, by creating “virtual storefronts” to promote their products, but Pinterest has never accepted payment in exchange for advertising before.

Pinterest photoImage Source: Telegraph.co.uk

However, chief executive and co-founder Ben Silbermann, has announced in a blog post that the company will start experimenting with promoting certain pins “from a select group of businesses”.

This means that a pin for a Darth Vader outfit from a costume shop might be promoted in a search for “halloween,” explained Silbermann. However, he promised that the promoted pins will always be relevant to users’ interests, and It will always be obvious if someone has paid for a pin.

“I know some of you may be thinking, ‘Oh great…here come the banner ads.’ But we’re determined to not let that happen,” said Silbermann. “Nobody’s paying for anything yet – we want to see how things go and, more than anything, hear what you think.”

The model mimics similar monetisation models used by Facebook and Twitter. The idea is that this form of native advertising is more elegant than right-rail or banner ads, because they appear in a user’s stream and appeal to a user’s interests.

Pinterest has about 46.9 million monthly unique visitors worldwide as of July, down from a high of 54.2 million in April, according to figures from comScore. The analytics firm says the majority of Pinterest users are female, and 60 per cent of its traffic comes from the United States, compared to 20 per cent from Europe and 10 per cent from Asia Pacific.

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Want to get updated about the latest on social media? Follow this John Bohan Twitter account.

 

Those who are in sales might feel the blood rush of success. The traditional grit of selling gives the profession intensity. These days, however, selling does not require the same fulfilling grunt work. It used to be that direct sales, ads, and commercials do the selling. Now, the trend is using the power of the Internet and social media to channel sales talks.

People are looking to the Internet and social media for information on products. However, for sellers to understand what their target customers want, they need to listen and connect with people. Additionally, they have to exploit social media channels to share to their potential customers at the right moment useful content about their products and related trends. Creating a personal brand and choosing the right content to share are the first steps of setting up a social media campaign.

Influencers are incorporated next. These are personalities or individuals who dictate market trends and make effective brand ambassadors. By connecting with influencers, sellers and marketers can shorten the amount of time it takes to connect with potential buyers. For example, phone manufacturers can follow influencers who are into mobile devices, or visit mobile tech forums to connect with mobile phone owners. By joining conversations at the right moment, sellers can glean consumers’ preferred phone features and recommend phone models that would please markets.

The Internet, social media, and influencer marketing are great tools for enhancing selling techniques and strategies.

John Bohan’s company, Socialtyze, empowers brands through the use of social media. Learn more about social media marketing through this site.

Although most marketers today know the importance of creating informative and market- relevant content in social media, not many of them know that linking and tweeting about other peoples’ content are equally important.

 

twitter court

Image Source: digitaltrends.com

 

Why is sharing great content important?

Sharing great content is key to inducing follower growth. Great content, however, takes a lot of time and research to create and promote. Content curation is the best stopgap measure, especially if marketers are pressed for time and resources in releasing solid camaigns.

Before marketers can determine which content to share in Twitter, they should identify the online habits and dispositions of their social media communities. Their followers’ favorite blogs, websites, and tastes should be considered in the planning stages of the campaigns.

 

Image Source: ereleases.com

 

Once marketers have mapped out the demographic features of their target markets, they could proceed with content curation using popular content aggregation tools like Fever, Prismatic, and Feedly. These tools allow marketers to search for relevant content and categorize them. Some of these tools are even integrated with other online tools like Evernote, Google Plus, and Instapaper, making curation easier.

Measuring the results of the curation provides insight on content that get the most clicks, retweets, or favorites in Twitter. This is where social management tools like HootSuite and SproutSocial come into play.

With the Internet crawling with great content, marketers can easily leverage their campaigns using existing, catchy ones to buy them time for their own content generation.

 

Image Source: theguardian.com

 

John Bohan is the founder of Socialtyze, a company that empowers brands through the use of social media. More information on the company can be found at this website.

How can a company’s social media strategy be tailored to drive sales? This Forbes.com article provides the answer.

Vision Critical’s recently published “From Social to Sale,” about how social media activity — particularly Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest — can drive transactions. (For a detailed discussion of this, see my earlier post “How Social Media Moves Consumers from ‘Sharing’ to ‘Purchase’” )

In an effort to drive discussion and real information in this critical area of research, the company has created a sample template to help companies conduct their own research — and to compare and contrast what they discover to Vision Critical’s findings.

Co-author and Vice-President of Social Media Alexandra Samuel says the product category and the demographics of your audience will make the results vary tremendously. “There are really interesting and very specific kinds of stories you can get from your own customers.” She suggests that the questions should be posed about ‘the most recent purchase’ as the respondents “will have a good recollection and they are not trying to generalize across ungeneralizable experiences.”

Samuel says they are seeing differences in how long a user has been on a particular social platform. “One of the things that is really useful when you are interviewing people about a social platform is to know how long they’ve been on it. Because the purchasing patterns of people who have been on Pinterest a short period of time, for example, “are quite different than those who have used it for a long period of time.”

And research can go stale quickly and usage patterns can change quickly. “If your product is skewed young or if it has a high frequency of purchasing, like the recording industry, I would look seriously doing a study every quarter,” she says. “For example, look at the relaunch of MySpace. That is a huge deal for this industry. So the reason you want to have a study in play every quarter is that when something like that comes along you already have a plan to field something and get answers pretty quick about how it is coming on stream.”

John Bohan has carved a name for himself as one of the most trusted social media marketing experts of today. Know him more by visiting this blog site.

Cola-cola is now turning its focus toward direct engagement with consumers via social media. This Forbes.com article has the details.

 

Image Source: forbes.com

 

Gone are the days when companies like Coca-Cola KO +0.61% could rest on their laurels and rely on their global brand image to capture market share. As Noreen O’Leary cites in her Adweek Article “How the World’s Most Iconic Brand Was Saved From Itself”, Coke ‘recognized the dire need to get back into the cultural conversation in order to become relevant and modern’ and appeal to a new generation. Through dramatic projects such as Coca-Cola.TV, Coca-Cola.FM and live-streaming music events, Coca-Cola has shown the world how revolutionary they can be and how this type of marketing evokes emotional, long-lasting customer engagement.

I’ve previously written about Coca-Cola turning its focus toward direct engagement with users via social media infrastructure and big data and how embracing social software has empowered big brands like Coke to leverage the powers of social. With marketing communication strategies evolving, Coca-Cola is looking to capitalize on the ever-changing landscape. Wisely recognizing the power of owning its own content and democratizing access to it, Coca-Cola has partnered with Thismoment to design a concept called “Pantry.” As communicated in a joint press release, “Pantry provides Coca-Cola with the ability to consolidate valuable content and democratize access to it. Through a central registry, regional content rights, analytics, discoverability, collaboration, future-proofing and a simple, easy-to-use interface, Pantry provides Coca-Cola with the ability to execute the revolutionary strategy it envisioned.”

Successful brand marketers like Coca-Cola understand that traditional marketing disciplines must be supplemented with new models rich with content, engagement, conversation, and analytics – the essence of social commerce. As big brands need to create an even better brand experience and empower their marketers with tools that will allow them to do so simply and effectively, more and more companies are turning to social software solutions to provide them the advantage they need to stay ahead of the curve.

In speaking with John Bara, the CMO of Thismoment, about how companies like Coca-Cola are able to continuously stay on top of the brand marketing pyramid, he shared “The youth audience is on line all the time. The ultimate objective of savvy social marketers is to reach and engage the audience anytime including on mobile devices. Marketers need a social marketing system which can help them and their agencies share, re-use and distribute content across all social end points and devices.”

As Javier Sanchez Lamelas, former Vice President of Marketing for Latin America and current Vice President of Europe at The Coca-Cola Company, espouses in the release – to continuously develop successful strategies that break new ground and lead to deeper engagement, powerhouses like Coca-Cola must align themselves with technology companies that enable them to crystalize their ultimate vision and go beyond the unexpected.

Social media marketers, such as John Bohan,  are always on the lookout for the newest trends in social media to ensure that they keep up with efficient strategies to boost their company’s or client’s online presence. Visit this Facebook page for more updates. 

For some time, Facebook derived a portion of its meager revenue from its sponsored search results. Surprisingly, they’re scrapping it out in favor of moves to simplify its advertising scheme. Learn more by reading this Inside Facebook article:

As part of its recent advertising simplification push, Facebook is eliminating its sponsored search results ad unit. A Facebook spokesperson told Inside Facebook that the reason why the sponsored results will be nixed is because the most common marketers for them were app and game developers, and Facebook feels that the mobile app install ads and page post link ads are more efficient ways to reach this goal.

Image credit: Inside Facebook

A Facebook spokesperson announced the news to Inside Facebook:

In keeping with the goal of streamlining our ad products, starting in July advertisers will no longer be able to buy sponsored results. We’ve seen that most marketers were buying sponsored results to advertise their apps and games, and we already offer mobile app install ads and Page post link ads on desktop to achieve these same goals.

Facebook noted that this won’t happen immediately. Starting in July, Facebook will no longer offer sponsored search results as an ad unit and by mid to late July, users will stop seeing sponsored search results.

The company is placing an emphasis on search and continuing to develop it. The Facebook spokesperson noted that sponsored results were rolled out before Graph Search, so the site is now figuring out the best way to tailor ads specifically to Graph Search. Advertisers can still buy search products, specifically with ads on search results pages.

Image credit: Inside Facebook

Facebook is trying to think about how to take advantage of its unique search product and figure out new ways that marketers can benefit from Graph Search.

It’s a little odd why Facebook is eliminating this now. Advertisers have said that the sponsored results offered a high clickthrough rate at a low cost-per-click. Nanigans wrote in September that the clickthrough rates of sponsored results were 23 times greater than those of marketplace ads, with a 78 percent lower cost-per-click.

When asked about potentially having sponsored results in hashtag searches (for which Facebook launched support on Wednesday), the Facebook spokesperson told Inside Facebook that the company couldn’t comment on speculation, but one could imagine how it could work. Right now, the company is focused on figuring out how everything fits together with regard to advertising and search.

Image credit: Inside Facebook

Learn the most effective way to market your brand using social media by logging on to this John Bohan Facebook page.