Forget llamas and blue/black vs. white/gold - it's Pebble Time, the world's most popular brands, the future of mobile search, major hires at Amazon and BuzzFeed, the intersection of porn and marketing, Facebook is concerned about suicides, Twitter hates trolls, YouTube loses money, Roadie and Roadster hit the collaborative street, a boost in podcast listening, using Google Analytics to know if your marketing is working, the number one city for tech and more, it's This Week in Digital.
A roundup of relevant links affecting our industry.
Each week, we compose a newsletter that includes a series of links about current events and trends in the worlds of technology, business, digital communications and marketing in order to keep leaders up to date on changes, newsworthy items and content that might be useful in your job. Please subscribe - either to our full feed just to this newsletter to keep up to date on developments.
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The Content Marketing Institute just announced that John Cleese will be keynoting at Content Marketing World 2015 in September. No mention of whether he'll do a silly walk or a silly talk, but you can register here.
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- The latest shiny object is almost here. Pebble, which got its humble beginnings via Kickstarter, is set to launch its next product - the Pebble Time, a $199 color smart watch with battery life of up to a week, will hit the street in May. (Fast Company)
- This year's list of The World’s 50 Most Popular Brandshas been released; it's based on analysis of billions of online conversations. Top brands include Google, Twitter, Facebook and Apple. (Infegy)
- The brands most likely to convert digitally jaded consumers into purchasers offer the strongest array of digital experiences. It's Digital Darwinism at its finest. (McKinsey)
- You won't believe what the future of mobile search holds - and . (Alex Iskold)
- Do CIOs have what it takes to demonstrate influence corporate strategy? A new survey casts doubts over the ability of CIOs to shift from running IT as a services organization to driving business growth. (The CIO Report - WSJ)
- Looking for ways to integrate the online and offline realms of retail? Here are 8 ways to create a successful multichannel customer experience. (CIO)
- Amazon hired former White House spokesman Jay Carney as their head of public relations and public policy. It has profound implications on their strategy. (re/code)
- Career advice if you want to work for the marketing department of the future: "anyone who wants to get started in real digital marketing should work for a company that sells a specific product to a specific audience." The author of this piece should know; he got started in porn. (Moz)
- Speaking of which, the card-snapping dudes on the Vegas strip may be a thing of the past, as strippers and porn stars are using Snapchat to send images of themselves for a small fee. (New York Times)
- Dick Costolo has vowed to crack down on trolls and abuse that seem so rampant on Twitter. (The Guardian)
- Google may be on the cusp of separating Hangouts and Photos from Google+, according to product chief Sundar Pichai. (The Verge)
- Mobile optimization counts. Google says that SEO will be affected by whether your not your site is mobile-friendly. Also, information from indexed apps will appear in search results for users. (Google Webmaster)
- Despite a 33% growth in revenue, YouTube still doesn't make money for Google. (Business Insider)
- The YouTube Kids App is here, designed to make it easier and safer for kids to navigate the video platform.
- Video star Casey Neistat talks about YouTube versus Snapchat. (GigaOm)
- In an effort to boost use and improve the user experience, Ev Williams announced that some changes are afoot and that a Less Long, More Connected Medium is here. Long form and short form content are both welcome, and the goal is to make content easier to find, Improvements include things like inline editing, tagging and a better preview function in the stream. (Medium)
- More specifics on the product announcement here. (Medium)
- The collaborative economy has friends and foes on both sides of the political aisle. From regulatory disruption to hiring political operatives, there will be plenty for Democrats and Republicans to agree with and debate over. (WSJ)
- Someone worked out a financial model comparing the cost of ownership of a car vs. using Uber. (Medium)
- Roadie is a delivery service that aims to pair road trip-bound college students with individuals who need packages delivered. And in a move seemingly inspired by Crowd Companies, Waffle House announced a partnership in which its network of locations will act as pickup stations. (WSJ)
- The latest collaborative effort is Roadster, a service that is designed to help shoppers avoid the pain points of car buying. Dealerships still remain an essential part of the equation with inventory and service, but Roadster eliminates the salesperson. (The Verge)
- We're always interested in the writing process. Who better then, to learn from than the founder of Contently? (Copyblogger)
- The highly anticipated Infinite Dial 2015 report from Edison Research is expected next week. A preview of the report included this nugget: approximately 46 million people 12 and older have listened to a podcast in the last month. That's a rise from 15% to 17% of the U.S. population. (Edison Research)
Metrics / Measurement / Data
- Social Media Examiner recently had Christopher Penn on their podcast to discuss how to know when your marketing is working with Google Analytics. (Social Media Examiner)
- In our experience, marketers are too self-obsessed. With content as well as with their own data. Marketers should be looking at external market research and data to give "an outside frame of reference and bring that outside-in perspective to their thinking." (Mashable)
- If you're trying to determine who is the most influential as part of your marketing and communications, size doesn't matter; it's the nodes that count. (SHIFT Communications)
Privacy / Security / Legal
- Superfish, the software that can surpass HTTPS technology last week was found in Lenovo laptops. This week, the threat is wider with Trojan.Nurax from Israeli software company Komodia infecting some 14 apps. (Ars Technica)
- Spotify knows a great deal about you and your habits - whether you're a free subscriber or if you pay. According to an executive, they collect an "enormous amount of data on what people are listening to, where, and in what context." (Venture Beat)
When You Have the Time: Essential Reading / Listening / Watching
- The publishing business is heavily reliant on social media. But what does the future hold as social networks cross over into publishing in addition to content distribution? (re/code)
- How's the media industry these days? Walt Mossberg concludes that it's confused, based on recent conversations with titans of music, video and the written word at the Code Media conference. (re/code)
- Austin has outranked San Francisco as the No. 1 Tech City, according to a report that ranks cities on five qualities: property prices, talent pool, business environment, tech environment and quality of life. (WSJ Digits)
- That hasn't stopped BuzzFeed, which hired Wired's Mat Honan to head its San Francisco bureau and poached John Paczkowski from re/code and others. (Venture Beat)
- Related: Your Tech Startup Doesn't Need to Be in Silicon Valley. (Medium)