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Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Most Restaurant-Goers Rely on Online Reviews [INFOGRAPHIC]
Facebook Boosts Mobile App With Bigger Photos in Your News Feed
Facebook Privacy: This Service Alerts You When it Changes [INFOGRAPHIC]

What People Really Want vs. What They Share on Social Media
12:25:41 AMMatt Silverman

Take a look at someone's stream of social media updates. Can you determine what they really want out of life?

Now ask them point blank about their aspirations. Will you get the same answers?

Maybe not, according to the comparison below. Social media monitoring company NetBase put 365 days worth of its own data about online conversations up against a recent Harris poll that asked, "What is the one thing you want right now?"

The results show that people are generally emotional sharers when it comes to social media, but they are much more logical when asked a direct question. For instance, 80% of the "I want _____" updates were about food, whereas 50% of the survey responses were related to personal finance (money, financial security, a new car).

Interestingly, when comparing the responses of men and women, there is slightly more overlap when listening to social than when asking survey questions.

Check out the comparison below, along with some additional social consumer insights from NetBase.

Twitter Campaign Donates Your Unused Characters
Monday, May 14, 2012 11:08 PMZoe Fox

Forget old clothing and canned food -- you can now donate your unused Twitter characters to a good cause.

A new application called Hashtags4Heroes auto-populates the unused characters in your tweets with messages raising awareness for the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), an organization seeking to honor and empower veterans wounded since 9/11.

The Twitter application, launched by WWP supporter Raytheon for Military Appreciation Month, aims to increase visibility of the work being done for injured military service members and their families.

"The number one reason we're doing this is awareness -- it has the potential to influence anyone who uses Twitter," said Joe Washburn, a former Army sergeant wounded in Baghdad from a car bombing.

"All of your followers will see what you tweet, and hopefully they click on your links."

The browser plug-in runs in Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Firefox, and the mobile app is available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry browsers.

If you don't want to set your tweets to autofill for the entire month, you can tweet directly from the Hashtags4Heroes website, which will also add messages in your unused spaces.

SEE ALSO: How the U.S. Military Shares Its Rich History With Facebook Timeline

Raytheon had hoped Hashtags4Heroes would hit 30,000 donated characters before Memorial Day. Just one week after launch, more than 125,000 characters have been filled with Hashtags4Heroes messages. The campaign is now hoping to donate 300,000 characters by May 31.

The most common length of tweets is 28 characters, according to one estimate sited by Raytheon -- leaving 112 available for donation in every tweet.

Do you think filling empty characters in tweets is a good way to generate awareness? Sound off in the comments.

Image courtesy of iStockphoto, MTMCOINS

This Is Your Mom on Social Media [INFOGRAPHIC]
Monday, May 14, 2012 9:13 PMSam Laird

Social media: It's not just for college kids anymore. Families use Facebook to stay in touch across generations. Friends well into middle age share photos on Instagram. There's even an 80-year-old grandmother on a quest for 80,000 Twitter followers.

But how does social media's widening reach affect the family unit? The brand-engagement firm GMR Marketing recently polled about 1,000 moms and kids to see how social media has penetrated family life and affected mother and child relationships.

More families have three generations on social media than just one, according to GMR's findings, speaking again to its increasing ubiquity. But there is a certain awkwardness in having so many family members online.

While more than three-quarters of moms said they'd "definitely" accept a friend request from their child, just 43% of kids said they'd do the same. And twice as many kids and moms -- 18% to 9% -- said they'd have to hide some photos or other information before making things official on Facebook.


Teenagers are also much more shy about broadcasting their family connections via social media. Nearly twice as many moms as kids -- 29% to 16% -- said they use public messages on networks such as Facebook and Twitter to communicate with family members. Teens prefer to use private messages more than parents do, 39% to 31%.

Check out the infographic below to see the survey's full results. Are you connected to your child online, and how do you navigate that relationship? Let us know in the comments.

AOL Founder Warns Zuckerberg: Don't Get Distracted by Facebook IPO [VIDEO]
Monday, May 14, 2012 8:38 PMLance Ulanoff

Before Facebook, which is now just days away from a record-busting IPO, there was America Online or AOL. Before Social Media, there was Community. It's quite possible that without the bulletin boards and chat rooms of the 70's, 80's and 90's, there were would be no Facebook or Twitter. No Instagram or Viddy.

Services like AOL were the proving grounds for the digital interaction revolution of the new millennium. Ask AOL founder and former CEO Steve Case. He always believed community was the "killer app."

Today, AOL is primarily a content and online advertising company with fewer paid subscribers than ever and scarcely remembered as the platform that, as Case puts it, "put America online." Case moved on from the then merged AOL Time Warner almost a decade ago to launch an investment company, Revolution LLC, back some memorable startups like ZipCar and work with the Obama administration to help drive entrepreneurship.

Case believes the Facebook IPO will be a huge success and has nothing but praise for Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg.

Still, when Case and company went public with AOL in 1992, the investment community barely understood the Internet. "We were the first Internet company to go public, and the roadshow then was really just trying to explain to people what this was, why it would be important.

"People thought it was kind of a hacker, hobbyist, nichey business."

These days no one has to explain the Internet, social media or Facebook to an investor or Wall Street. But familiarity does not necessarily protect Facebook. AOL had a $17 million value when it went public in 1992, Case says, and was worth $150 billion a decade later.

By 2009, according to one estimate, it had dropped back to just $4.2 billion. "In the last decade obviously lost some of that, its leadership position, which is sad to see and a lot of that had to do with focusing on the product and making sure you had the right people and culture," said Case.

How does Facebook avoid a similar fate? Case thinks it's by maintaining focus on products. Facebook should not let its stock price become a distraction -- or all that fresh cash burn a hole in its pocket.

"Focus ... on where product is going and what customers are looking for," warns Case. "Be careful on acquisitions. Make sure they really are strategic and logical. When you have a large currency there's a temptation to use it to acquire businesses that add some confusion to large business."

Ultimately, Case is not worried about Facebook. "I think the focus Mark's brought and the day-to-day operation expertise that Sheryl provides really has been a great team," he says. "I'm confident it will continue to do well."

Watch the video for more of Steve Case's thoughts on Facebook and the AOL legacy, then share your reaction to his advice in the comments below.

Most Restaurant-Goers Rely on Online Reviews [INFOGRAPHIC]
Monday, May 14, 2012 7:54 PMJoann Pan

In the digital age, finding a scrumptious meal or delectable dessert is only a few clicks away. Food review sites and apps like Yelp and Foodspotting make eating well superbly easy.

Before setting foot outside, about 45% of consumers have already chosen where to eat with the help of an online dining guide. Online reviews are a huge decider of what's for dinner -- 57% of patrons rely on them.

Even more interesting is that despite the rise of online food directories such as Urbanspoon or Menupages, 41% of consumers still wine and dine at a particular restaurant after receiving a promotional email.

The National Restaurant Association drew up the infographic below showcasing how technology is changing the food industry. Plus, check out the kinds of technology consumers are expecting to see in restaurants.

SEE ALSO: Cheap Eats: 5 iPhone Apps for Frugal Foodies

What's the best use of tech you've seen in a restaurant? Tell us in the comments.

Infographic created by the National Restaurant Association

What Are You Worth to Facebook? Val-You Calculator Knows
Monday, May 14, 2012 6:30 PMKate Freeman

Exactly how much are you worth to Facebook, in terms of advertising dollars? A new quiz will help you find out.

Online privacy company Abine has a Val-You quiz that will determine your dollar value to Facebook. The quiz asks you where you live, how often you Like posts, play Zynga games and your plans for your presence on Facebook in the future.

Kristina Kennedy, VP of Marketing at Abine, told Mashable that the purpose of the quiz is to raise awareness about the fact that Facebook uses your personal data to make a profit -- and make quiz-takers question the security of that information.

"It's really important that people become aware of how their information is used and collected online," she said. "The Facebook IPO is making people more concerned about their privacy on Facebook."

The Val-You quiz launched Thursday night and will be available indefinitely. It's part of a campaign Abine is running called "Go Private."

Abine is also launching a product called PrivacyWatch, which alerts users when Facebook changes its privacy settings and provides advice from security experts regarding how to keep Facebook information private.

A couple thousand people have taken the quiz as of Friday; so far the average worth per person is about $50 to Facebook.

Expect to see a lower value if you don't live in North America. "That ups your value because most of Facebook's ad revenue comes from North American companies trying to reach North American consumers," Kennedy said.

Curious how the information was collected? Here's how Abine explains it: "The Facebook Val-You calculator relies on data from the Facebook S-1 Filing, independent financial and market research analysts, data from Facebook advertisers, as well as Abine's internal modeling and estimates. It considers how an individual uses Facebook along with personal details in order to determine approximately how much revenue they may generate for Facebook this year."

Facebook declined to comment.

Last year Facebook reported it made 85% of its revenue from advertising. And an eMarketer forecast estimated Facebook will pull in $5.1 billion in 2012 for ad sales revenue.

On Thursday, Facebook announced it would group its terms and privacy policies into one 7,000 word document, similar to what Google did in January, to make one comprehensive policy.

Another part of Abine's privacy campaign: a flash mob next Tuesday, May 15, in San Francisco and New York City. Participants will walk single-file down major streets at 11 a.m. PT/EST, respectively, to raise awareness that "you're always being followed."

What are you worth to Facebook? Tell us your results in the comments.

Mashable Connect: Highlights From the 'Happiest Conference on Earth'
Monday, May 14, 2012 6:16 PMJennifer Diamond

Building on the success of last year's Mashable Connect, our biggest conference of the year returned in 2012 to explore the future of digital with some of the brightest minds in the industry and Mashable's passionate community. Set in a truly unique setting, Disney's Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World, Mashable Connect 2012 was the place to form meaningful offline connections.

Surrounded by the magic of Disney, speakers shared new ideas and breaking news, ranging from the digital evolution of brands to the future of data in an increasingly connected world. In-depth conversations took place during breakout sessions, the topics of which covered digital branding, design and entrepreneurship.

Onstage we heard from esteemed industry leaders, such as Lawrence Lessig, professor of law and leadership at Harvard Law School, who spoke about a post-SOPA world; Mashable's editor in chief, Lance Ulanoff interviewed Joe Fernandez, founder and CEO of Klout, about the evolution of Klout's tracking system; Cindy Gallop, founder and CEO of IfWeRanTheWorld.com, spoke about why marketing is broken and how to fix it; and Leslie Berland, SVP of digital partnerships and development at American Express, shared the story of American Express's digital transformation.

Our dynamic lineup of speakers truly made Mashable Connect a memorable experience. You can view all of our editorial coverage of the content sessions here, and watch full video coverage of speakers online.

Equally important as the content were the connections formed at Mashable Connect. Whether through the photo scavenger hunt through Epcot, our private access to Star Tours at Hollywood Studios, in honor of "May the 4th," the impromptu dance party that unfolded in the digital lounge, or the evening pool parties, it was clear people had a whole lot of fun at Mashable Connect.

And no one will forget the extraordinary cuisine from Disney's executive chef, who prepared flamed gourmet macaroni and cheese, mouth-watering crab cakes (which became on a hot topic on Twitter the night they were served) and the artfully composed dessert castle that offered an assortment of sweets.

Conversations constantly flowed in-person and online via the #MashCon tag, and the dialog is still going strong in our Mashable Connect Facebook group. We're thankful to everyone who brought his or her perspective to the conversation.

A big thanks to all our sponsors, including Buddy Media, AT&T, Barnes & Noble College Marketing, Hiscox, webtrends, Definition 6, Adobe, Society of Human Resource Management and Starbucks for contributing to the success of Mashable Connect.

Photos of the event were taken by Erica Gannette. Enjoy a photo recap below!


Mashable Connect Sponsors

Buddy Media is the social enterprise software of choice for eight of the world's top ten global advertisers, empowering them to build and maintain relationships with their consumers in a connections-based world. The Buddy Media social marketing suite helps brands build powerful connections globally with its scalable, secure architecture and data-driven customer insights from initial point of contact through point of purchase. For more information, visit http://www.buddymedia.com.

AT&T is bringing it all together for our customers, from revolutionary smartphones to next-generation TV services and sophisticated solutions for multi-national businesses. For more than a century, we have consistently provided innovative, reliable, high-quality products and services and excellent customer care. For more, visit http://www.att.com.

Barnes & Noble College Marketing (BNCM) helps brands thrive on campus. It is a division of Barnes & Noble College Booksellers, LLC., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Barnes & Noble, Inc. that operates more than 640 college bookstores across the country, serving more than 4.7 million students and faculty members. BNCM has the on-campus access and student understanding to deliver superior marketing programs for its brand partners. BNCM's capabilities include: experiential and event marketing; product sampling, sweepstakes and promotions; digital marketing (social, email, web); on-campus advertising and postering; and programs targeting freshmen, graduates, alumni and athletic event fans. Visit www.bncollegemarketing.com.

Hiscox specializes in tailored insurance coverage for a range of professional services firms in industries like IT, marketing, consulting and more. Hiscox Insurance Company Inc. has been protecting clients for over 100 years and is rated 'A' (Excellent) for financial strength by A.M. Best.

We offer professional liability insurance, general liability insurance and other policies direct, either online or over the phone, with customized coverage starting from just $22.50/month.

Visit hiscoxusa.com/smallbiz for a fast, free quote now.

Webtrends powers digital marketing success. Webtrends is at the forefront of real-time digital marketing relevance and customer experience management through unified customer intelligence. Our industry-leading analytics across mobile, social and web enables marketers to optimize campaigns, maximize customer lifetime value and deliver highly relevant digital brand experiences in real-time.

Webtrends dramatically improves digital marketing results for more than 3,500 global brands including, in EMEA and internationally, Lloyds Banking Group, Barclays, HSBC, ASOS, Orange, T-Mobile, Microsoft, BMW, Toyota, Play.com, AllSaints, The Telegraph, and many more.


Definition 6 is a Unified Marketing Agency that creates brand experiences that unite brands and people in motion. Through imagination, innovation and insight, we execute ideas that deliver continued value across all brand interactions. For more information, please visit http://www.definition6.com.

The Adobe Digital Marketing Suite is an integrated set of applications which allow businesses to gather customer insight and optimize advertising, conversion and retention efforts as well as the creation and distribution of content. For example, using the Suite, marketers can identify the most effective marketing strategies and ad placements as well as create relevant, personalized and consistent customer experiences across digital marketing channels, such as onsite, display, e-mail, social, video and mobile. The Suite enables marketers to automatically adjust to customer interactions and better maximize marketing ROI, which leads to a positive impact the bottom line.


The leading resource for human resource and business leaders to explore and discuss the latest workforce and workplace trends including social innovation-providing the in-depth research and insights needed to adapt and take advantage of what's next.


Facebook Privacy: This Service Alerts You When it Changes [INFOGRAPHIC]
Monday, May 14, 2012 6:08 PMKate Freeman

Online privacy company Abine has launched a service called PrivacyWatch, which alerts subscribers when Facebook changes its privacy settings.

The service costs $1.99 per month, and also includes expert analysis of any changes Facebook makes to its privacy settings. Kristina Kennedy, VP of Marketing at Abine, told Mashable security experts will also guide users as to how best ensure their data is actually private on Facebook.

Considering Facebook's impending IPO and the recent announcement that its privacy policies have been combined into one 7,000-word document, consumers want to be in-the-know about how to guard their data, she said.

"Throughout its history, Facebook has made more user information public," Kennedy said.

Facebook's shift in its attitude toward user privacy is seen in the renaming of its "privacy policy" to a "data use policy," she explained. "This is a clear indication that Facebook is using your data." Facebook declined to comment.

In addition to its evolving privacy policies, Facebook has also pushed universal changes on its users -- such as Timeline and the organ donor option. Encouraging more use of preselected data fields also make identifying user interests for the benefit of advertisers easier, Kennedy says.

"If we're honest, most people have not read Facebook's privacy policies," she said. "Nobody has time and nobody's reading them."

PrivacyWatch is one part of Abine's "Go Private" campaign, which also includes a flash mob scheduled for May 15 and a quiz that tells you how valuable you are to Facebook.

What do you think about PrivacyWatch? Would you pay to be alerted when Facebook changes it privacy policies? Tell us in the comments.

Check out this infographic showing how Facebook's privacy policy has changed over time and where it's headed:

Twitter Will Email You Top Stories From Your Feed
Monday, May 14, 2012 5:01 PMSarah Kessler

Twitter will soon begin emailing you a weekly digest of your own feed.

The summary will include tweets and links that are likely to be important to you based on what the people who you follow share.

It will also include the "most engaging" tweets and stories those people saw in their own feeds, if they retweet or favorite them.

"Stories feature a design similar to the recently updated Discover tab, emphasizing who shared each story beneath summaries to help you decide which ones matter most to you," reads a Monday post on the Twitter blog.

"Click any headline to finish reading the story, add your take by tweeting directly from the email, and see related Tweets from the people you follow."

The announcement makes Twitter's recent move to hire the team behind RestEngine, a personalized email marketing provider, less mysterious.

Twitter also acquired a startup called Summify earlier this year, which offered a product similar to this new email digest. Before it was acquired, Summify emailed users five stories that they should read based on what their friends on social networks shared and engaged with.

"You get your stories once a day or every few hours . and then you're done," Summify co-founder Mircea Pasoi told Mashable months before the sale. "That's the feeling that people actually enjoy - that they're done and there's not more that they need to read."

Making information that is shared on Twitter easier to absorb for all Twitter users makes sense for the social network. As of October, 40% of Twitter users who actively log into Twitter don't ever Tweet. They're there to listen.

Email digests are set to roll out to everyone "over the next few weeks."

Do you think a weekly Twitter digest will be helpful? Or will it just create more spam in your already overflowing inbox? Let us know in the comments.

Photo courtesy of iStock, kizilkayaphotos

Facebook Boosts Mobile App With Bigger Photos in Your News Feed
Monday, May 14, 2012 4:04 PMBrian Anthony Hernandez

Facebook is updating its mobile app to make photos appear more prominently in users' News Feeds.

The social network announced the redesign Monday via the Facebook Mobile Page. The changes, which will gradually roll out to users, come on the heels of Facebook acquiring Instagram for $1 billion in April.

Just last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told investors that mobile is the company's top priority.

Facebook, the world's largest social network, has 901 million users.

SEE ALSO: It's Facebook IPO Week: Here's Everything You Need to Know/a>

"Now photos are up to (three times) larger, and all posts will fill your mobile screen from edge to edge," Facebook wrote. "The new design will be available on iOS, Android and m.facebook.com."

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