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How to Turn a Thank You into Higher Sales, and More: Roger’s Picks

Here’s some of the interesting stuff we’ve gathered during the last 7 days… add your own find in a comment! […]

By |April 4th, 2014|

Hooked by Nir Eyal

Book Review: Hooked: A Guide to Building Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal and Ryan Hoover

Were you surprised when Facebook acquired Instagram for $1 billion? Stunned by their $19 billion Whatapp deal? Both of these companies were young and had questionable revenue streams. What they did have, in each case, were stunningly large numbers of frequent users.

How did these companies, along with others like Pinterest and even Facebook itself, achieve such tremendous growth and stickiness? How did Facebook supplant more established competitors like MySpace and Friendster? Nir Eyal, author of Hooked: A Guide to Building Habit-Forming Products, has the answer: these firms created products with habit forming, even addictive, characteristics. […]

By |March 11th, 2014|

Can Mountain Dew Make You Smarter than Pinot Noir?

When can a Mountain Dew make you smarter than a glass of a nice Pinot Noir? Well, beyond the short-term cognitive boost from the caffeine-rich soft drink, being seen holding a glass of wine can reduce your intelligence – not in real terms, but in the eyes of others. As I posted on Forbes.com the other day in Proof: Alcohol Makes You (Look) Dumb, even a stone-cold sober person holding a glass of wine suffers an apparent IQ drop. […]

By |August 1st, 2012|

Why Business is Different Now

People toss around the terms "thought leader" and "social media expert" lightly these days, but Brian Solis is one of the few people who actually lives up to those names. In The End of Business as Usual, Solis shows how the widespread use of social media is fundamentally changing the business environment.

By |June 6th, 2012|

Our Brains Make Facebook Worth $90 Billion

Those of us involved in social media know that people love to talk about themselves. They seemingly enjoy sharing the trivial, the personal, and occasionally the weird, details of their lives. Sometimes they overshare – as a longtime online community builder, I’ve found that “poster’s remorse” is common – people post something too personal and later regret doing so. So why do people share so much? New research from Harvard shows, in simple terms, that talking about yourself makes your brain feel good. […]

By |May 10th, 2012|

Forget Evil, Don’t Be Creepy!

Three Ways to Avoid Creepiness

Marketers are being offered unprecedented new capabilities to target consumers by interests and behavior. There’s growing evidence, though, that consumers are finding these personalized pitches off-putting. A new survey of UK social media users showed that nearly half “don’t like having ads targeted to them based on information included in their social media profiles, including activities, interests, and other personal data.” While Google’s motto has been, “Don’t Be Evil,” perhaps a more appropriate one would be, “Don’t Be Creepy!” […]

By |February 21st, 2012|

Social Personalization and the Doppelganger Effect

Are you overlooking a way to personalize your ads that goes far beyond the usual “Dear Roger” salutation?

In my recent article, Put Your Customer in the Ad, I mentioned that LinkedIn was using profile pictures for targeted ads. Since then, I’ve been able to capture a couple of examples. The first one surprised me when it appeared, and to generate a second one I had to surf a variety of profiles. Here’s what I like about these ads: […]

By |February 1st, 2012|

Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness

Book Review: Zarrella’s Hiearchy of Contagiousness: The Science, Design, and Engineering of Contagious Ideas by Dan Zarrella

I like Dan Zarrella’s approach to social media. Amidst a horde of social media gurus, experts, mavens, and missionaries, Zarrella relies on crunching numbers to create his insights. Instead of thinking up “10 Ways to Get Retweets,” he analyzes millions of actual retweets to find out what works. (Oddly, putting “please RT” in your tweet actually does work.) Hierarchy is a bite-size book from Domino. With the same small form factor as Seth Godin’s Poke the Box, this book can be read in an hour. The length may be an advantage. Zarrella could no doubt have filled hundreds of pages with data and insights from his social media research. Instead, he presents a modest number of concepts that are readily digested and implemented. […]

By |November 7th, 2011|

Can Twitter Make You Skinny?

Could having many connections on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook cause you to lose more weight than, say, running on a treadmill? The answer is… maybe. Research on mice showed that those individuals who socialized with other mice lost more weight than less social mice even when they ate more food. From the Daily Mail:
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By |September 22nd, 2011|