Ello, the new social network that whose mandate is to never display ads or sell user data, just completed a round of venture funding where they raised $5.5 million.
Re/code originally reported this news, which they received from Ello CEO Paul Budnitz. According to Budnitz, the funding will be put towards building the back-end infrastructure to better support Ello’s rapidly growing user base.
Ello has gained hundreds of thousands of users in only a matter of weeks. Ello is invite only, and At its peak the social network was receiving up to 50,000 invite requests per hour. Ello even had to freeze signups at times because they weren’t able to handle all the traffic.
That’s exactly the kind of problem the company hopes to solve with this new funding. The deal was reportedly put together very quickly, as a result of the company’s growth exceeding expectations.
Ello is now home to over one million users, but there are three million people said to be waiting for an invite to join the network.
The network is growing so quickly in part due to its unique manifesto. So intent to fulfill their promise of delivering an ad-free social network, Ello co-founders have converted the company into a public benefit corporation in Deleware.
What that technically means is they’re still in business to make money, but the company’s priority is to provide a “benefit to society” while maximizing profits for its shareholders.
Ello’s investors are all said to be committed to Ello’s mission as well, even having signed their commitment in writing. “ “We’ve basically enshrined, in the most powerful legal way possible,” Bunditz says.
Ello’s mandate can be read in full below:
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Re/code reported late Friday evening on a reorganization of Google management. Sources close to the situation tell Re/code that Google CEO Larry Page is transferring leadership of core Google products to Sundar Pichai.
A memo was reportedly sent to Google staff this afternoon informing them of the changes. Pichai will now oversee research, search, maps, Google+, commerce and ad products and infrastructure. In addition, Pichai will retain his responsibilities of overseeing Android, Chrome, and Google Apps.
Page stated in a memo to staff that the changes will allow him to focus his attention on existing and new products. He will continue to directly manage business and operations.
Re/codes sources say that Page has made mention in staff meetings that he wants to focus on the “bigger picture”, which he is unable to do with the multitude of duties associated with each product unit.
Pichai started working at Google in 2004 and has been adding key products to his portfolio ever since. He originally began managing the Chrome browser, which eventually turned into an operating system and a line of netbooks.
In 2012 Pichai took on the responsibility of managing Google Apps, and a year later in 2013 he was appointed to oversee Android as well.
Now another year later in 2014, Pichai has attained his highest level yet within the company. This is another example of Page’s penchant for rewarding Google loyalists. Re/code’s report points out that the top executives in the departments Pichai now presides over have been all been with the company for 10 years or more.
Executives who formerly reported to Page will now report to Pichai, which includes Alan Eustace in research, Amit Singhal in search, Dave Besbris in social, Jen Fitzpatrick in maps, Sridhar Ramaswamy in ads and commerce, and Urs Hlzle in technical infrastructure. Pichai, of course, will still report to Page.
Facebook has announced the launch of new iOS app that encourages users to interact anonymously in a way that’s reminiscent of late 90’s – early 2000’s chat rooms.
The company concedes that’s where the inspiration for the app came from, stating in the announcement that ‘Rooms’ was “inspired by both the ethos of these early web communities and the capabilities of modern smartphones.”
Rooms works by allowing users to create their own identities, with no link to any social media profile, and create a message board (Room) focused on a specific topic. Other users can then join and contribute to the message board by sharing text, photos, videos, or gifs.
Rooms can be visually customized in a similar way to how Reddit’s sub-reddits are customized. You can change text and icons on like buttons, add your own cover photo, change layout colours, create stickied posts, customize admin permissions, and even configure whether or not people can link to your room on the web.
Once you create a room you can send out an invitation to join it using QR codes that can be shared on Twitter, Facebook, SMS, or email. If you see an invitation for a room that you want to join, just take a screenshot with your phone and the Rooms app will open it into a new board.
Here’s an example of what that looks like:
Download the ROOMS app on iOS then screenshot this QR code to access my room. pic.twitter.com/lek8Q7MVoB
— Robert Bowling (@fourzerotwo) October 24, 2014
Rooms is designed to be more of a place to spontaneously meet up with people you don’t know in person and chat about your favorite topics. Rooms is definitely not designed for organizing chats with groups of Facebook friends, or anything like that.
Therein lies a challenge when it comes to the growth and adoption of Rooms. The invite-only system means discussion boards will have to spread by word of mouth. That may make it difficult to find rooms to join, but I could imagine the community eventually creating their own workaround for that.
For example, searchable hashtags could be developed that would help people find rooms to join. If you want to find rooms of people chatting about SEO, you could search for #roomsSEO on Twitter or Instagram. Of course that’s just an idea off the top of my head, not a solution that actually exists yet.
The invite-only system could also end up being a good thing though, helping to weed out the noise and keep out those who don’t want to constructively contribute to the conversation.
If you want to check Rooms out for yourself and what the discussions are like so far, head over to the App Store to download it for iPhone.
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A Very Twitter Halloween
October 31 is only a week away but Twitter says it’s not too late to get your piece of the $7 billion dollar Halloween pie. One of the great things about social is that you can jump on a trend at the last minute so you have plenty of time to whip up some Halloween treats.
Some of the best content will be shared on Halloween, after everyone has donned their costumes, so consider offering a prize for the best pics and vids uploaded with your company hashtag.
Need more inspiration? Check out Twitter’s “Five Halloween tips for advertisers.”
Pandora Shares Stats
Pandora says they have “125,000-plus artists playing on Pandora, and 11,900 of them have over 100,000 unique listeners that have thumbed up their music.” A thumbs-up is nice but demographics are better and now Pandora is sharing that data with every musician on the site. Once an artist claims their own songs they’ll have access to an extensive analytics program so they can get a feel for who is listening and how they’re listening.
Small bands are small businesses which means they can’t just be artists, they have to also be marketers. Access to Pandora AMP should help.
Watch Your Professional Life Flash Before Your Eyes
LinkedIn just released a new feature that could put you ahead of the pack in your field. It’s your entire professional career mapped out on a scrolling SlideShare timeline. Instead of reading what you’ve done and where you’ve worked, potential employers, clients and investors can skim through the highlights in no time at all.
LinkedIn also just posted an extensive ebook that’s worth perusing this weekend, it’s called ” The Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to Thought Leadership.”
The guide covers:
- Three types of thought leadership your business should be creating
- Why your company needs a thought leadership strategy
- How your company can leverage thought leadership on LinkedIn
- How to measure the return on your thought leadership content
- Actionable steps towards your successful thought leadership strategy
It’s a good read, or at the very least, a good skim.
That’s it for me. Have a great weekend and we’ll see you back here on Monday.
But that’s not all! Log on now and you can embed your Vine and Instagram videos absolutely FREE!
I know it looks like I made that cheesy graphic, but it’s actually a screengrab from the bizarre, intentionally (I hope) cheesy video Tumblr made to announce the new features. They do get points for a sense of humor, even their list of new features ends with a laugh. Good for them.
Tumblr has plenty of reasons to smile. On their recent investor call, Chief Executive Marissa Mayer said the company was on track to make $100 million next year. In 2012, the year before Yahoo acquired the site, Tumblr’s revenue was $13 million and they owe it all to an influx of users.
Tumblr’s user base has grown 40% in the past 15 months. They’re now sitting at 420 million users with 206 million registered blogs. What might be even better news is that visitors are hanging around longer than ever before; from 22 minutes to 28 minutes.
So where do they go from here? Tumblr is still a very specific network for a very specific type of user. There’s speculation that Mayer is angling to turn up the volume on videos to compete with YouTube. Video posts are growing twice as fast as the photo posts that are Tumblr’s claim to fame but then, video is growing everywhere. Technology has simply made it too easy to film, edit on the fly and upload. And since Tumblr’s audience is mostly young creatives – video is going to happen.
All this video talk is going to naturally lead to more video advertising. Tumblr runs only native ads so we’re not talking about pre-roll ads like you see on YouTube. If you want to promote your product on Tumblr, you have to make videos that blend in with the colorful, humorous, creative style that is the Tumblr trademark.
If you can do that, you’re golden.
The hard goodbye
This week, searchers paid their respects to legendary clothing designer Oscar de La Renta, who he passed away on Monday at the age of 82. Once called “The Sultan of Suave,” De la Renta was known for evening gowns that regularly graced the red carpets of Hollywood–and the closets of the White House. From Jackie Kennedy to Michelle Obama, de la Renta dressed every First Lady since the 1960s.
Speaking of Washington bigwigs, we also said goodbye to Ben Bradlee, storied editor of The Washington Post. Bradlee is remembered for his courageous journalism; during his tenure as editor of the Post, the outlet published the “Pentagon Papers” and reported on the Watergate Scandal. Always chasing a good story, Bradlee coined the term “mego” (“my eyes glaze over”) for any reporting that bored him—unknowingly foreshadowing Internet-speak.
Is that you Betty Sue?
Back from a long career hiatus, Renee Zellweger stepped back into the spotlight in L.A. and came out with a bang—or shall we say, a new look. People were shocked to see Zellweger… looking a bit different from what they remember. The star’s reemergence caused a spike in searches for her hit movie Bridget Jones’s Diary (that was her, right? ) But Zellweger is taking the stares and comments in stride, stating she’s happy that she looks different because she’s living a happier and more fulfilling life—no shame in your game, Renee–whatever makes you feel complete.
Gone in sixty seconds
If you blinked, you already missed this trend. Toys “R” Us decided to pull a line of Breaking Bad action figures after an online petition asking the store to stop selling the toys received more than 9,000 signatures. So what was all the hoopla about? Susan Schrivjer, the Florida mom who started the petition, felt the dolls–which came with a plastic sack of cash and mock drugs—deviated from the company’s family values. Toys “R” Us agreed and put the figures on an “indefinite sabbatical”–Walter White-style.
Crime and Punishment
It was a week of crime on the trends charts as people were searching for more information about a gunman who shot and killed Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, a soldier of the Canadian army, at Ottawa's National War Memorial. This was the latest assault on a member of the Canadian armed forces in recent times and has stirred debate about extremism in the West.
...As the Black Eyed Peas would say
With the World Series underway, people were ready to scream and shout for their favorite team. Searches for the San Francisco Giants and the Kansas City Royals hit a high as the two teams began their battle for The Commissioner's Trophy. And that’s not the only party going on these days. Diwali, a Hindu holiday also known as the “Festival of Lights,” started this past Tuesday. The celebrations will continue until this Saturday—so you still have time to check out photos of the stunning light displays around the world.
Tip of the week
First there was Angry Birds, then there was Candy Crush, which was swiftly followed by Flappy Bird–it’s kind of hard to stay on top of the latest video game trends. Now when you search for video games on Google, a panel will appear with all the info you need to stay in the know.
Posted by Jenise Araujo, Communications Associate, who searched for [designer for the stars] and [play ball].
Conventional wisdom says that shoppers do not care about brands anymore. Retailers lament that brand loyalty is dead--that customers just search for products now instead of coming to their websites. Where once shoppers cared about Sears, Macy's, or dozens of other names, now they don't care where they buy from. To some extent they are right, but they are drawing the wrong conclusion. It isn't that brands don't matter anymore. It's that what people are looking for from their brands have changed.
Retailers need to think about what built their brands. In large measure, it was reliability and convenience. Consumers could rely on products sold in those big retail chains. Their buyers knew quality and they stood behind those products with money-back guarantees. Having so much selection in one place was very convenient.
Those big retail stores made it easy to get what you want. Those retailers provided a very helpful service. In doing so, they built the power of their brand names. Consumers counted on those brand names to solve their problems with products reliably and conveniently.
And that worked very well, right up to when the Internet became just as reliable and more convenient. At first, people wondered whether the selection was as well-thought-out as the traditional retailers', but they soon realize that everything is there. It was up to them to decide what was quality and what wasn't, and there were plenty of ratings and reviews to do so.
The convenience was never in doubt. Some products still need to be seen and touched and tried on (at least for some buyers), but the Internet is more convenient for almost anything that can be shipped. The Internet brands that win are the ones that make things more convenient. Google's easy search. Amazon's one-click purchase. eBay's ability to find almost anything.
It's not that brands don't mean anything anymore. It's that what makes a brand reliable and convenient has changed. As you think about how your business can adapt to digital marketing, think about whether you truly provide an experience that will make customers come back again and again. If you do, that's brand loyalty.
Originally posted on Biznology.
Mike is an expert in search marketing, search technology, social media, publishing, text analytics, and web metrics, who regularly makes speaking appearances.
Mike's previous appearances include ClickZ Live, RKG Summit, Ticket Summit, Webdagene, the CiTE conference, and the Forrester Marketing Conference.
Mike also founded and writes for Biznology, is the co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc., and sole author of Do It Wrong Quickly, named by the Miami Herald as one of the 11 best business books of 2007.
On Sunday, November 2, some Bing Ads systems will be unavailable from approximately 11:00 am to 12:00 pm Pacific Time due to system maintenance. During this time, your campaigns will continue to run normally and ads will serve. You will be able to log in to Bing Ads but you won’t be able to view performance data and perform certain operations.
Here's a summary of the functionality that will be not be available during this maintenance window:
Bing Ads Web UI
- Performance data and charts will not be available
- Change history and dimensions tab will not be available
- Performance data will not be available in the account dashboard
- You will not be able to perform bulk edit operations
- You will not be able to run reports
- Scheduled reports that are set to run during the maintenance window will be queued and executed after the maintenance is complete
Bing Ads Editor
- You will be able to make edits offline but you won’t be able to upload or download your changes
- Reporting data will not be available for download during this time
Bing Ads API
- Bulk service – bulk upload and download operations will fail
- Reporting service – internal errors will be thrown when calling any of the operations of this service
We apologize for any inconvenience. Thank you for your patience.
Back in August, we announced the availability of the Opportunities tab in Bing Ads with the caveat that it was a US only release at that time. Today, I’m pleased to let you know that the Opportunities tab has now been rolled out to all Bing Ads markets!*
If you’re not already familiar with the Opportunities tab, it’s a feature within Bing Ads that not only provides you with campaign performance optimization suggestions, but lets you preview what the estimated impact of implementing those suggestions could be on your campaigns.
In addition to the Opportunities tab now being available to all Bing Ads advertisers*, we recently made some user experience updates based on your feedback since its release.
Thanks to your feedback, you can now…
- “Hide/Unhide” Opportunities type to customize your summary page
- “Dismiss” an opportunity that is not of interest to you
- Discover Match Type in bid opportunities
- Easily locate a campaign in the alphabetized campaign filter drop down list
To get started, visit our Help Center article on how to Use Bing Ads Opportunities for ideas to improve your campaign, or watch this brief demonstration.
Questions? Comments? Feel free to leave them below, or ping us on Twitter.
Program Manager, Bing Ads Platform
*The Keyword Opportunity functionality currently has limited availability – it can only be accessed in in English and Chinese-speaking markets. Stay tuned here to the Bing Ads Blog for updates on when it will roll out to other languages.
NOTE: The information contained in this blog post is intended for agencies and advertisers that are self-managed or supported by Microsoft. If you are an agency or advertiser managed by Yahoo, the details therein may not be applicable, and you are encouraged to contact your Account Representative for more information.
We are pleased to announce the general availability of Universal Event Tracking (UET) to our advertisers worldwide. UET provides a simple yet powerful way to define and track goals (performance/conversion) that are important for your business. With UET you can associate the success of these goals with your advertising campaigns across accounts, ad campaigns and devices. It allows you, the advertiser, to learn:
- Which ad campaigns are most effective based on conversion goals.
- Which keywords better lead to conversions and lower bounce rates.
- What is the return on investment of your advertising dollars.
- Which customer segments convert better and are more valuable.
- What type of engagement (e.g. bounce rate, pages per visit, duration per visit) your keywords have on your site.
In addition, UET lays the groundwork necessary for audience based remarketing scenarios (coming soon!) such as bid boosting by providing the ability to define custom audience segments and specifically target them.
Universal Event Tracking also replaces the current Campaign Analytics conversion tracking offering. Most of the existing tags created through Campaign Analytics will continue to work and we will continue to report on them. However, tags created prior to July 2013 will stop being supported in April 2015. While current tags will continue to work, they will be read only in Campaign Analytics and any new tags will have to be created with the new tool starting today.
How does UET work?
UET works by placing a small snippet of code (often referred to as a tracking code or tag) on the pages of your website. This code collects and sends data to Bing Ads every time the web page is loaded in the browser. Bing Ads analyses and aggregates this data to provide insights and determines if and when a goal has been met. When a goal is met, Bing Ads will report on it. We follow the last click attribution model for attributing conversions to specific keyword clicks. Any previous click during the conversion window is counted as an assist.
Defining Goals within UET
Goals provide a way to measure and track your site’s business objectives and performance. You can set up goals to track and measure just about anything. For example, transactions and purchase activity; user acquisition via sign-ups; inquiries by contacting help, sending an email, live chat etc.; user engagement via amount of time spent on the site, sharing activity, leaving comments and more.
UET supports four different types of goals that will help you in tracking and measuring your objectives.
Why you should implement
- Simple. Use one tag for all your campaigns and accounts. Advertisers will save time and effort by implementing just one tag that tracks and measures all your goals and audience segments (for audience based buying scenarios such as remarketing). As opposed to a tag for every goal, UET tags are site wide and decoupled from specific goal or audience segment.
- Powerful. UET allows you to track any kind of business objective (from click level to the page load level) with the support of four different types of goals.
- Cross campaigns, cross accounts attribution. Attribution of goals across all your campaigns and accounts allows you to better understand which campaigns drive conversions and how they work together.
- Track conversions across devices. In a world where users are using multiple devices in a day to accomplish their tasks, a “conversion” may not occur on the same device where they saw your ad. UET tracks conversions across devices when we know that devices belong to the same user.
- Enhanced insights. Since we collect data across the site and not from the specific conversion pages, we are able to attribute traffic on your site to your campaigns and report on engagement statistics such as average duration/visit, bounce rates, average pages/visit on per keyword basis.
- Works seamlessly with major tag management systems: Our tags are tested out of the box with major tag management systems such as Google Tag Manager, Adobe Tag Manager, Tealium, QuBit, Signal Digital and Ensighten to make sure they work!
Here are some links to help you get started:
What’s nextBuilding upon the release of UET, we shall soon be following up with audience based remarketing in the coming months!
Comments? Questions? Please leave them below, visit our Feature Suggestion Forum, or ping us @BingAds.
Thanks for reading!
- NOTE: The information contained on this page is intended for agencies and advertisers that are self-managed or supported by Microsoft. If you are an agency or advertiser managed by Yahoo, please contact your account representative about Dot, Yahoo’s tag, which includes and supports the functionality of Bing Ads’ Universal Event Tracking.