Is it any surprise that flashy headlines and fake celebrity death memes on Twitter get so much attention? In this era of digital narcissism, where our gateway to content is through the lens of the people we like and admire most, traditional and digital publishers must now grasp for attention in an even flashier way.
I am pretty honest in my photo representation of my life with my children on Facebook. I posted many pictures of my screaming newborns, and when my children are doing something particularly impertinent, I'll post that too. It's not lying to post a happy-looking picture that isn't really representative. It's not misleading.
Facebook has forever changed the way we talk, share, court, and even think. Yet it is also irritating, over-stimulating, and campy -- invasive, censored, and exploitative. And above all, its users are starting to show signs of Facebook fatigue. The collapse probably won't happen any time soon, but it will happen -- nothing can rule the World Wide Web forever.
Graph Search is a bold new Facebook search engine that allows users to search for things their friends and other Facebook users have shared. Integrating sponsored search results into Graph Search is a no-brainer for Facebook. After all, search ads are arguably the most lucrative part of the digital ecosystem.
Social media isn't a replacement for real-world action -- it's a way to coordinate it. The fact that apathetic Internet users who plague our respective newsfeeds cannot click their way to a better tomorrow does not mean that dedicated actors -- those who would be in the trenches regardless -- cannot employ social media effectively.
It's at this time of the year that pundits, tastemakers and futurists start making fantastical predictions about what we will expect in 2013. I started to think about how we, as humans, behave in the new socially connected landscape and how we are happy to accept less in our lives. My predictions are threefold for 2013.
Such dismal click-through rates would seem to indicate that display ads don't work, but, in fact, a display ad can be very effective even when no one clicks on it. Frequently, a consumer will see an online display ad and then visit the advertiser's site hours or days later, often unconscious of having seen the ad.
The speed with which our world now lives could well put an end to the world of iconic brands. Before all of this connectivity, a great brand could stand the test of time. It now seems like insanity. The Beatles were iconic. Do you believe that any of the musicians today that we admire will be able to leave this kind of legacy? What about companies?
For almost as long as email has existed, people have complained about getting too many emails. We celebrate inbox zero as if we just gave birth to a new child. While some lauded the arrival of the first BlackBerry, many saw it as a digital manifestation of the ball and chain that would shackle them to their office.
You know who I'm talking about because you all have friends like this: Couples who, despite the fact that they live with each other and share the same bed, feel the compulsion to constantly tell each other how much they love one another via uploaded photos of them kissing each other, or overemotional love proclamations as Facebook status updates for everyone to see. Barf.
With complex statistical techniques, and a quickly expanding universe of data drawn from an increasing number of our behaviours online and offline, a multitude of organizations and institutions are using predictive analytics to do that which has always fascinated and eluded the human race -- predict the future.