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We’ve known for a while that Google (Nasdaq: GOOG��) has a sense of humor. The company’s April Fool’s jokes have become about as legendary as our own. But timing? The company that kept Gmail in beta for years and released the Honeycomb tablet operating system before it was ready to make a serious run at the iPad has never been known for timing.

That may finally be changing. Last week, just as the fall TV season was starting to gather steam, the Big G announced plans that could disrupt every major cable and satellite provider, and possibly some of the big studios as well.

A better YouTube

Specifically, the search specialist said in a blog post that it is planning upwards of 100 new channels for broadcasting original content across a variety of categories. The Wall Street Journal subsequently cited anonymous sources who say Google has committed roughly $100 million in advance payments to create the channels.

Several A-list stars are involved, the Journal says, including Madonna, Jay-Z, Two And a Half Men star Ashton Kutcher, Rainn Wilson of The Office, and Sofia Vergara of Modern Family. Each channel will feature its own programming lineup to be broadcast exclusively on YouTube for 18 months. Producers are to take in 55% of ad revenue after Google recoups upfront payments, the Journal reported.

via Say Hello to Hollywood’s New Serial Killer (AAPL, CBS, CMCSA, DISH, DTV, GOOG).

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What are the elements of a great website?  Some good ideas from these former Engadget associates.

 

The Verge, the tech site headed former Engadget editor Josh Topolsky and his crew with backing from SB Nation, launches at 4 a.m. this morning.

The plan calls for smart consumer-focused news that will appeal to a wide audience.

People are eager for the launch. This Is My Next, the site Topolsky and his former Engadget brethren started while figuring out The Verge, got more than three million unique visitors with little promotion.

In advance of the Verge launch, We spoke with Topolsky, SB Nation chairman and CEO Jim Bankoff, and Verge publisher Marty Moe about launching, plans for the site, and where the collaboration might go.�

via The New Site From The Engadget Crew And SB Nation Is About To Take The Tech World By Storm.

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Another reason, local will win the day on the web.

 

 

 

Walmart is launching a Facebook app that customizes marketing for each of its nearly 3,600 U.S. stores, allowing tailored communications about local deals, events or limited-distribution products.Eventually, Walmart also hopes to use the My Local Walmart app to grow its site-to-store e-commerce program and evolve it into an individualized marketing program, said Stephen Quinn, chief marketing officer for Walmart U.S., in a telephone press conference.Stephen QuinnRELATED STORIESTargets Site Plagued by Glitches, Friction Between Marketing and Tech TeamsSix Weeks After Launch, Consumers Are Frustrated; Retailer Plans UpdatesBut for now, the focus is “to allow us to make our stores relevant locally at scale,” he said.He declined to disclose financial considerations or exactly how Walmart will promote the app, but he said it would likely draw on the giant retailers traditional media mix, including in stores. He also said the partnership includes an unspecified amount of advertising with Facebook.The deal brings together two of the biggest institutions in U.S. marketing — Walmart, which gets about 150 million shoppers monthly, and Facebook, with 165 million U.S. users.

via Walmart Goes Local on Facebook With Store-Level Messaging | Digital – Advertising Age.

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This is a great article that explores the roles and value of digital media types.

How Social Media Is Changing Paid, Earned & Owned Media.

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