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Earth Tipping Point

 

  • Earth Tipping Point (ETP) is a global social network designed to actively transform your idea into an environmental project.
  • Through the collaborative efforts of its members, financing strategies and its free project management planning, ETP transforms its members’ ideas into planned environmental projects.
  • ETP also serves as a knowledge database were people share their knowledge regarding environmental hazards and solutions.

http://www.earthtippingpoint.com/

 

Kamal Al Merhebi (Kamal.merhebi@hotmail.com)

CEO and Founder of Earth Tipping Point

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Which Top 50 Market Research Companies Are Perceived To Be Most Innovative By Clients?

http://www.greenbookblog.org/2011/06/12/which-of-the-grit-top-50-market-research-companies-are-perceived-to-be-most-innovative-by-clients/

by Lenny Murphy

 

As part of the last round of the GreenBook Research Industry Trends Study we asked respondents to name the companies that they consider to be the most innovative. The result was a list of 50 market research firms that are perceived to be the most innovative. You can find our analysis of the results in the GRIT Report.

In preparing for the next wave of GRIT (coming this month!) I’ve been going back into the data to look for interesting trends or insights that could inform the questions we want to explore in the next phase of the study. It occurred to me that a little extra analysis on these companies could be interesting, so below is a table that shows their total mentions, absolute rank, and the mentions broken out by Suppliers and Clients. Take a look:

  Total Rank Supplier Mentions Client Mentions
Brainjuicer 60 1st 45 15
TNS Global 32 Tied for 2nd 23 9
Vision Critical 32 Tied for 2nd 24 8
Synovate 31 3rd 27 4
Ipsos 25 Tied for 4th 19 6
Nielsen 25 Tied for 4th 19 6
Anderson Analytics 21 5th 13 8
Itracks 18 6th 17 1
GFK 17 7th 13 4
Peanut Labs 16 8th 13 3
20/20 15 Tied for 9th 15 0
Communispace 15 Tied for 9th 9 6
Millward Brown 14 10th 9 5
IModerate 13 11th 7 6
Maritz 11 Tied for 12th 6 5
OTX 11 Tied for 12th 8 3
QualVu 11 Tied for 12th 7 4
InfoSurv 10 Tied for 13th 8 2
Revelation Global 10 Tied for 13th 9 1
Toluna 10 Tied for 13th 9 1
Affinnova 9 14th 5 4
Gongos Research 8 Tied for 15th 6 2
Knowledge Networks 8 Tied for 15th 6 2
Neurofocus 8 Tied for 15th 4 4
Research Now 8 Tied for 15th 5 3
Vovici 8 Tied for 15th 4 4
Burke Inc. 7 Tied for 16th 5 2
MarketTools 7 Tied for 16th 4 3
E Rewards 6 Tied for 17th 6 0
Emsense 6 Tied for 17th 3 3
Forrester 6 Tied for 17th 5 1
Gallup 6 Tied for 17th 3 3
Hall and Partners 6 Tied for 17th 4 2
OnePoint Global 6 Tied for 17th 6 0
Insight Express 5 Tied for 18th 4 1
Insites Consulting 5 Tied for 18th 5 0
Nunwood 5 Tied for 18th 4 1
StrategyOne 5 Tied for 18th 3 2
Truth 5 Tied for 18th 5 0
Allegiance 4 Tied for 19th 3 1
Buzzback 4 Tied for 19th 3 1
Copernicus 4 Tied for 19th 2 2
Insights Now 4 Tied for 19th 3 1
KidzEyez 4 Tied for 19th 4 0
Lieberman Research 4 Tied for 19th 1 3
Market Probe 4 Tied for 19th 4 0
Sands Research 4 Tied for 19th 2 2
SPSS 4 Tied for 19th 2 2
USamp 4 Tied for 19th 4 0

 

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OpenIDEO

Who can post challenges?

OpenIDEO is looking for challenges from around the world. Individuals or organizations can sponsor a design challenge, as long as it’s for social good. Depending on the engagement level required by IDEO, we may ask for a contribution to help cover the costs of the challenge. Do you have a challenge idea? Let us know.

http://www.openideo.com/faq

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Facebook steals your visitors

http://searchengineland.com/how-mark-zuckerberg-stole-your-search-traffic-what-to-do-about-it-78916

By Brian Massey is the author of the Conversion Scientist blog at ConversionScientist.com.com

It’s a familiar story: businesses finally getting their search optimization stratgy down, putting in SEO the hours, and creating the content that draws links and Google love. They’ve paid the SEO experts. They know their keywords.

And when the traffic comes, they send it off to Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn.

All traffic to your site has a price. Every visitor costs you something. Even if you’re not paying for PPC (and many of you are), you are paying in SEO fees, in blood, in sweat and in tears for that organic and direct traffic, more than you know.

Just know that the social networks are plotting to take your traffic if you give them the chance.

High Contrast, High Trust, Addictive

It’s not an accident that Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook chose high-contrast blue logos that show up well on many background colors. In fact, these logos are sometimes the most noticeable thing on a webpage.

This means visitors may see them before they see anything else a site has to offer.

These social brands have high-trust levels. Facebook’s brand will be more recognizable to most of your visitors than your brand. If, as a visitor, I have any trepidation about diving into your website, Facebook offers a nice way out.

Visitors are also drawn to these sites by their dopamine addiction.

Attention Management trainer Maura Thomas explains that every time someone mentions us publicly; every time we get something interesting in our email inbox; every time we get a retweet, we get a squirt of dopamine in our brains.

Eventually, we become addicted to this behavior, and find ourselves checking email and our social networks even when we’ve got plenty to do.

That Twitter logo could look like crack cocaine to your visitors. Do you think such a thing might be distracting from your message?

The Little Numbers That Seal Your Fate

Even if you have a pimped-out Facebook page with custom tab, you are playing a losing game. The reason is that there is a little beacon on Facebook and LinkedIn that will generally insure that a visitor will never return to your site.

 

The little numbers tell people they can ignore you.

Facebook’s little red numbers on deep blue background are like little dopamine pills, calling your addicted visitors to find out what their friends are up to. LinkedIn offers a bright orange number on a muted background. Same effect. “Give me a hit.”

 

LinkedIn lets visitors know when they can feed their addiction.

These harmless little chiclets actually scream to visitors that there is news of a loved one, that someone wants to chat, or that someone has purchased a virtual farm animal. So powerful is the call of this image, that I hesitate to include the screen capture here for fear of losing you, my reader.

Twitter doesn’t hold back. All of your most recent tweets are there on display, complete with links to other sites and tantalizing 140 character invitations to click.

Twitter lays juicy links right out in front of us.

Even if you open your Facebook page, Twitter profile or LinkedIn Group in a new window, your wayward visitors will rarely find their way back with the same level of intention. The call of the little numbers is too strong.

This is powerful stuff, but you can make it all work for you, not against you.

Pick The Right Time & Place

If you look at the sites of those brands known for their social success, you will find that they don’t ask you to join them on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn until after you have become a customer. Look at Zappos for example. Dell claims to have sold millions of dollars of computers via Twitter. You don’t see any invitations to join on their home pages or landing pages.

The right time to invite visitors to your social networks is after they have signed up for your mailing list or after they have purchased something. At this point you have a platform with which to continue the conversation – email – that is far more direct than the social networks. Furthermore you own the information. Your contacts aren’t left to the whim of Mark and his cronies.

Place your social media logos on your confirmation, or “thank you” pages, in your confirmation emails, and in your email signatures.

I believe that you should also place them on your Contact page, as often visitors to these pages may want to interact with your business on social networks.

If you are compelled to place them on a landing page or homepage (gasp!) place them at the bottom. Make them small. Hide them.

Finally, you should persuade your competitors to put these logos on their sites, just don’t do anything illegal.

Leverage Their Trust

If you look at this another way, we know that trust is a big factor in your conversion rates. It is a time-honored tradition to “borrow” the brand trust of other businesses. The most common form of this is placing credit card logos near “add to cart” buttons. Vendors often put the logos of their customers on their marketing materials to great effect.

But these logos don’t take the visitor off to the customer’s site, and yours shouldn’t either.

You can do the same with Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, LinkedIn, Twitter or any other social network. Look at the bottom of this page for some in-context social gestures. These allow visitors to share your work without taking them away to Zuckerland.

Consider a Facebook Connect login. One of my clients placed the “Login with Facebook” functionality on his site login form. Few people use the Facebook login, but he saw a significant increase in new leads. The Facebook logo made visitors more comfortable giving this client  their information.

Trust is critical. Don’t be afraid to borrow.

Have The Conversation On Your Site

If social proof is important to your purchase process, have the conversations on your site. Offer your visitors ways to rate and review and comment.

Beware of doing something like putting your Twitter stream on your site, however. The links to interesting articles included in many tweets could twitter away your store-bought traffic.

Know Your Social Media Conversion Rate

The one big exception to all of this is that you rock your social media conversion rate. If you can get your social connections to return to your site and bring a few people with them, then your best strategy may be to send them off to your social landing pages.

If you have data that shows your social media networks are generating revenue for you, then build those social networks. If you aren’t sending email to your house list frequently, you may be better off building a social network. There is no sense in building a list if you don’t have anything valuable to send them.

The Best Traffic Flows From Social Networks

It is conventional wisdom to advertise your social media account “everywhere.” Clearly this isn’t always the truth.

If you are investing in SEO and online advertising, you will probably find that it is cheaper to advertise your Facebook page on Facebook. Conversion rates are higher on Facebook when you keep the visitor on Facebook.

Then, I invite you to find ways to get traffic from social media to your site. Create some content and share it with your friends, followers and connections. When they come, give them some good reasons to stay, to subscribe or to buy. Then, and only then, ask them to share.

This is the way these social networks are designed: to make advertisers happy. Stop sending hard-won visitors to social media oblivion and start focusing on getting more visitors from these social networks. I promise Mark won’t mind.

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

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The Like button is not a social media strategy

 

http://thenextweb.com/socialmedia/2011/06/09/a-lesson-from-zappos-the-like-button-is-not-a-social-media-strategy/

 

Since its introduction, the Like button has provided as many difficulties as it has opportunities for brands. It seems to be largely responsible for the near-meaningless race to numbers we’re now experiencing, as it places a value or an indicator of success against every piece of content it’s installed against. Whether this is your site, a blog post, a piece of clothing, a classified listing – the Like button has become dangerous for brands, as many seem to view it almost as their complete social media strategy.

We’ve seen a proliferation of Like buttons in marketing both offline and online, including the most annoying Facebook Like advert we’ve ever seen, but often the call to action is completely lost or there seems to be no strategy behind its placement. The temptation to make the Like button centre stage because of its ease of use, and the option to tick the social media box when it’s done can be dangerous for brands who risk missing out on the real potential.

Use it strategically

I was reading an interesting post by Brian Massey on how brands are so willing to give all of their potential traffic over to Facebook when it is then incredibly difficult to get this traffic to return to your own site. I’ve seen many examples where referral traffic from social media channels performs poorly on a site, as people generally want to stay within the channel they started in. Yet we’re so tempted to plaster our site with the Like button to encourage social interaction and encourage word of mouth around the content or products we’re producing. In the article, Massey uses the case study of Zappos – often hailed as a leader in social media marketing – and the distinct lack of any social media buttons on its site. A look at its homepage shows that the focus is completely on the products themselves (hardly unusual if you go back 5 years):

This isn’t to say that Zappos doesn’t ‘get’ social media; it simply gets when to use it and when not. This hasn’t affected its social media activity, as they boast a very active Facebook Page with great elements such as a featured fan of the week and have over 128,000 fans. But it isn’t afraid of using the Like button call to action where it fits, as the screenshot from this tab on its Facebook Page shows.

Further to this, as soon as you click on Like, the immediate call to action on the tab revealed is to join the company’s mailing list:

While many brands are resistant to encouraging data capture on their Page for fear of putting fans off, Zappos goes the other way completely and makes it the main call to action on the tab though it’s not a necessity to reach additional content. Zappos are using social media and the Like button in a way that strategically drives transactions on the site without using every available point to push people to its Facebook Page, especially when it has started out on its website. What Zappos does practice is integrating social technologies on its site such as offering live 24/7 support. This could just happen on its Facebook wall, but it has found a way to encourage this interaction on the domain that it owns. This is fairly unique, as many brands push people to Facebook wherever possible. The question of course, comes down to how you are using your Facebook Page. Is it okay to continually push people there, if you’ve actually found a way to drive sales in a new, socialised way?

Backlash against the Like

I recently spotted an ad online (found through Michael Litman, and his picture below) featuring KFC’s latest poster campaign for a new product with the tagline ‘Zero Likes but Good News! Only 99p’. This is a completely tongue in cheek approach by KFC, but is a distinct reference to the brands who focus on the Likes above everything else.

This is a difficult decision for brands to face. When the Like button is so easy to install and adds an instant social feature onto your content, it can be tempting to think it’s doing the work for you. The danger of course, is that it’s not doing anything for you, if the content, products or services can’t stand on their own. It’s easy to think that by adding a Like button you are instantly social and relevant to your audience. The Like button is a mechanic not a strategy in itself. It works when there is a complete social media strategy for the brand that the Like button can facilitate, but not be the key driver of. The Like button is a facility for individual users who want to share and document the content that they Like with their friends. There are still many brands who misunderstand this, for example thinking that if they install a Like button next to items on their site, it will drive numbers to their Facebook Page, as opposed to the Page itself.

Using the Like button

You can’t argue with the fact that people like the Like button as 50 million links are Liked each day. The challenge for brands is in deciding how and when this should be used. This might seem insignifacnt, with the temptation remaining to stick it up everywhere on your site just because you can. But when every placement of this button is potentially a click away from your site (if you’re using it to drive people through to your Page), or a piece of content shared between friends (if you’re placing the Like button besides individual pieces of content), there needs to be more of a strategy behind it. If you want people to share your content for example, how is the article written to consider the fact that all some people might see is the title and a short extract? Have you thought about the image you’re using, or have you thought about how you could convert this potential new traffic that one user could be sending your way? And if you’re driving people to your Facebook Page from your site, have you considered how you can retain them as a consumer once they click through? Are they going to see an offer on your Page that will drive them back for example, or land on a tab that will capture their data?

This is certainly the ‘business’ end of social media, and thinking like this displays an understand of how social media can really drive revenue. This should be at the heart of every social media strategy, or every decision to place a new Like, follow +1 or find us button on your site. Remember this is one step, not the sum of your social media strategy