Posts Tagged ‘google’

3 outrageous prediction for 2015!


madame soleil

As one year comes to and end and the new year is about to start, we find ourselves in the time when annual reviews and 2015 predictions are plenty.  I am slowly getting fed up with large number of posts about the future.  BTW, which of the 2014 prediction come true?  No one really checks.

It seems everyone has a crystal ball and is a futurologist or trend watcher.  Where did the time go when Madame Soleil was the person to go to to get predictions for the new year.  Nostalgia… I guess I must be a romantic.

Enough of “Video will be the preferred content form” or “Content Marketing finally matures” or “Everything mobile”!  I do not want to hear this anymore, but under the mantra “if you can’t beat them, join them”, here is my spin on the predictions for 2015:

3 outrageous predictions for 2015!


Facebook will disappear this year!

For the last year or so, we have heard more and more people saying they want to stop their Facebook account because of the ever changing privacy rules or abundant advertising .  But guess what?  Facebook is not stupid and saw this coming.  So they are launching Facebook for Business now.  More constant and better money flow? Great move on their behalf except that most people use Facebook for private use (not business) and are shutting down their account.  Why should companies get started on Facebook for Business. I guess death will quick.

Google+ finally gets off the ground

All those sleeping Google+ users (Gmail users, Android phone users, YouTube-ers, Bloggers, et al) finally realize they already have a Google+ account. Moreover, since they are running away from Facebook, Google+ becomes the next safe haven where their friends will be posting their personal updates.  And yes, privacy is much better and less advertising.  So getting to 1.6 billion members in 2015 will be a piece of cake.  Sorry or

Microsoft buys LinkedIn

I can see you shake your head but think about it.  Microsoft already owns the largest Enterprise Social Network (Yammer) which focusses on the intra-company social media so it make sense to add an external social media network to it.  Business meets Business.  And yes, Microsoft has the cash to burn.  A marriage made in heaven for professional social media and networking.  The benefit for LinkedIn will be that finally the company pages really get developed to create more value to the business users.

What do you think? Do you agree with any of these outrageous social media predictions? Do you have any you’d like to share? Please share your comments below.


6 Social Media things to do before breakfast


When you get involved in social media, you quickly learn that it requires regularity and discipline.  Creating a daily routine is of course one of the best ways to approach this.  Over time I have together a 30-minute routine.


Here are the things I do before breakfast:

  1. Email
    1. Delete uninteresting/unwanted emails.
    2. Mark emails to be treated during the workday.
    3. Answer urgent emails.
    4. Check emails from LinkedIn groups for good content and mark for later reading.
    5. Review Google Alerts and mark interesting items with GetPocket.
  2. Social media monitoring
    1. Review social media monitoring dashboard and react appropriately.
    2. Go to Hootsuite and review monitoring columns and react appropriately.
  3. LinkedIn
    1. People Who viewed your profile is a perfect opportunity to start a conversation or even get connected (selectively).
    2. Contacts show people that have a New jobBirthday or Work Anniversary.  This again is a great opportunity to start a conversation.
    3. Review LinkedIn Inbox for messages and connection requests.
  4. Twitter
    1. Check tweets that mention me and act appropriately
    2. Check new followers out
    3. Check who unfollowed me and decide on course of action (recapture or accept)
    4. Quickly review the recent Tweet stream
  5. Facebook & Google+
    1. Check personal and company timelines for posts from friends and fans
    2. Wish friends a Happy Birthday
    3. Check messages and take action if needed
  6. Content sharing
    1. Share my quote of the day or content from others across a number of platforms
    2. Contribute and share content through my Tumblr blog on Social Media tools

Having created this routine, I am able to start my day informed, organized and inspired.   Since I have created this morning, I have also developed a similar approach for the evening routine.  The evening routine focuses more on content generation but I will discuss this in another blog post.

Do you have a similar routine? Why not share it through the comments below.  Or do you want details about any of the steps mentioned in my routine, send me a mail (

How Social Media Platforms make money!


“Social media is free” is a much misunderstood  concept.  Just ask the companies providing the services. Have you ever wondered how these social media platforms make their money and how much it really costs.


We all know that LinkedIn makes its money via premium solutions.  These solutions include Premium accountsTalent Solutions and Advertizing. The Talent Solution packages include individual job postings, recruiter packages, career pages for companies and advertizing (Work with us).

  • Premium Accounts come in 4 flavours (Business, Recruiter, Job Seeker and Sales Professional) with a variety of functionality .  Prices vary and summarized below:

linkedin costs

  • An individual job posting giving you 30 days of exposure will set you 139,95€ (ex VAT) back.
  • The recruiter package will set you back between 5.000€ and 10.000€ annually
  • The career pages on your company profile will cost you 8.000€ annually for a silver subscription and the 16.000€ annually for a gold subscription.
  • Finally, there is advertizing.  You define what you want to spend on a daily basis.  There is a minimum startup cost of $3 and a daily minimum of $10 with a $2 per click or per 1000 views.


In view of the functionality of Twitter, there are not that many ways Twitter can make money. Twitter uses a bidding system. But here what is available if you feel like paying:

  • You can promote a tweet.  Here the cost is based on a Cost-Per-Engagement (RT, Reply, Fav).  Costs vary between $0.20 and $5.  It is rumoured that prices can sour to $100.000 for a single tweet.
  • Next up is the Promoted Account. Same system as above except you pay per follower the same amount.
  • Verified Accounts are available to anyone who spends $5000/month over a period of 3 months or in otherwords $15,000.
  • Finally, if you are really ambitious, you create a Promoted Trends for one day.  This could set you back about $200,000/day!

twitter for business


When it comes to Facebook, we can see 2 types of money streams: advertizing and sale of virtual goods and credits.

  • The 2 advertizing options are CPC (Cost per click) or CPM (Cost per 1000 views).  The amount you are willing to spend is really up to you when you define you daily spend. For each ad you will have to place a bid on how much you are willing to pay for its appearance in either formula.  The minimum bid for is $0.01.  Keep in mind that click rates on Facebook are very low compared with Google.
  • Facebook credits are a virtual currency that you can use to buy virtual goods in any game of app on Facebook.  Again, the user will define how many credits he/she wants to buy and payments are done through credit card or Paypal.  How does this benefit Facebook’s money stream?  They take their cut (it is rumoured about 30%).

facebook ad


Google makes it really simple.  There is advertizing and subscriptions

  • Subscribing to Google Apps will cost you as individual user at least $5/month and as a company $10/user/month.
  • Google Search and Adwords are the main income for Google (96% according to Investopedia) and work on a bidding system.  The user is in control of the budget (no minimum) where She/he decides how much to spend on a daily basis.


Let’s now take a look at the other popular social media platforms that people and companies are using.

  • Slideshare: The free version offers a public space for you presentations, but if you want to protect your presentations or do branding you will need to open your wallet.  The subscription starts begin with silver at $19/month, gold at $49/month to $249+/month for platinum.
  • Foursquare: In order to claim your location you will need to dish out $10.  Foursquare also offers advertizing which starts with a ticket price of $50.000 and up.  Soon Foursquare will also allow “Post Check-in Ads” to be rolled out in the summer 2013.
  • WordPress: WordPress offers a myriad of paid features starting with the hosting of you wordpress blog at a cost of $15.000+/year.  Here are some other features that will cost you:
    • Claim your domain: $13 – $25/year
    • Extra storage: $20 – $290/year
    • Custom design: $30/year
    • Video press: $60/year
    • Guided transfer: $129 one-time
    • Automatic backup (Vaultpress): $180/year
    • Ad free: $30/year
    • Support from WordPress: $2.500/year (for enterprises)
  • Tumblr:  This microblog offers a number of paid components
    • Premium themes: $19+
    • Promoted posts: $5
    • Sponsorship (Radar): $25.000


And then there some social media platforms that do not seem to have a revenu model today, Instagram and Pinterest being amongst them.  However, soon I am certain they will come up with their own scheme.

So, the conclusion is that social media is more and more a Freemium model that can seriously rack up costs.  Now that the summer is in full swing, this might be a good time to start thinking about your 2014 Social Media budget and integrate some of the items listed above.

Of course, there are many other tools (monitoring, amplification, marketing, retargetting, account management,  statistical, etc.) where you can spend money on to professionalize your social media presence.  I will cover those platforms in another post.

So, as a conversation/marketing manager, what social media services are you budgetting for in 2014?

Corporate Social Media Amplified!


One of trends for 2013 will be “Amplification”. The times that companies and people rely on asking others to redistribute their posts and messages is over.  Just like with email, you as a fan are getting too many messages and notifications (many of you are turning them off) and thus ignoring these requests.

brand advocateAs more and more of the employees are becoming active on social media, companies are realizing that they are low hanging fruit when it comes to brand ambassadorship.  They want to enlist them as ambassadors and are setting up awareness sessions in the hope these employees will actually help spread the word.  .

Companies are also looking for new ways to get their messages promoted. Help is on the way in form of Social Media Amplification Applications.  The concept is simple: Leverage employees, partners, customers and fans to share your company’s social media messages on your behalf.  The objective is to drive traffic to websites, campaign or blogs to generate leads.

How does it work?

Step 1: Find amplication application

There are a number of these applications available today.  I predict that there will be more coming in 2013.  GaggleAMP, SocialSeeder, Spread.US and Socialtoaster are in the forefront today.  For more details, see below.

Step 2: Recruit fans

You will invite and recruit fans, influencers and employees to join your distribution community.  You might have to implement some form of gamification (2nd trends for 2013) in order for them to join your circle of amplifiers.

Step 3: Create Messages

Create the content you want to get distributed through the community. And make it easy for your amplifiers to distribute it in their social networks

Step 4: Amplication Process

The amplification application will inform by email (or other forms) your community there are messages ready for distribution.  The amplifiers then can select which messages they distribute in which social network.

Step 5: Monitor & analyze

As with any campaign, you need to monitor the process, analyze the results and fine-tune your next steps. Continue to engage your community of amplifiers.

Who are some players?

GaggleAMP, US based company, is the social marketing platform that lets companies amplify their social media reach by leveraging individual employees, customers and partners. (source GaggleAMP)

gaggleamp logoGaggleAMP empowers a company’s stakeholders (both internal and external – employees, customers, constituents etc.) to promote synchronized messages across social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Users can share these messages on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn automatically, by e-mail notification or from the website thus giving the user full control of what is getting shared where.  The gamification option makes this tool more engaging.

In addition to the message amplification, GaggleAMP provides a myriad of unique analytics about how the messages perform in the various social media networks including message reach, clicks, comments, Likes, shares, re-tweets and more.

Pricing starts at $25/month for 50 messages shared.  There is a 7 day free trail period.

SocialSeeder, a Belgian company, unlocks the power of your true influencers.

As a company tapping into the potential of social media your holy grail is to find and identify super influencers to quickly spread news and create a buzz on new products & services.

socialseeder logoSocialSeeder facilitates employees, clients, fans, partners & other influencers to seed the messages you want to bring across via social media and allows to measure the impact in full detail through a personalised dashboard. (Source – SocialSeeder).

SocialSeeder, is focusing on Social Media Campaigns.  You start by creating your list of amplifiers (Influencers & Ambassadors).  You follow this up with the creation of campaign which will result in an email being created where you ask the amplifiers to distribute via the networks of their choice (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ or even email). The user has full control of which message gets distributed where.

A comprehensive number of statistics are available to both track each amplifier and message amplification by platform and hits.

Pricing starts at 25€ per campaign/month.

SocialToaster, a US based company, allows an organization to recruit supporters to help automatically create word-of-mouth referrals and traffic through Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. (Source – Socialtoaster).

socialtoaster logoSocialToaster amplifies corporate messaging on brands’ social networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and LinkedIn), proving that there is immense value in social media engagement. Loyal fans of a brand called ‘Super Fans’ are mobilized with an email whenever the brand has blog postings, events, articles, or promotions for them to promote. With just one click, Super Fans share the brand’s content with peers across all of their selected social networking sites. The visibility of the message increases exponentially as the content is shared. (Source Socialtoaster)

Socialtoaster allows you to run in the cloud and on your own servers.  Other interesting features are gamification and viral recruitment formulas.

Pricing starts at $399/month., US based company, is a twitter-only tool that allows you to promote campaigns and blog posts. It enables website readers to automatically share and distribute newly published content from their favorite content or blog on Twitter. (source:

spread us logoFirst you enlist the support of your supporters by inviting them.  You then create the perfect tweet which will get distributed automatically via their accounts.  Then you track the performance of the post through a number of statistics.  The biggest drawback of this tool is the lack of control on the user’s side.  Opting out is the list only option for the end user to stop tweets being posted through his/her account.

Pricing starts at $0 for up to 5 subscribers.  Between 6 to 25 subscribers (fans) you will pay $4/month with variable pricing if fans increase or decrease.

I am sure there are other programs out there.  So if you know of any please let me know and I will add them in my next review cycle.

What are your thoughts on these applications?  Good thing or not?

I look forward to your reactions, comments, feedback and input.

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