Google+ Usership Grows (With A Catch), AdWords Targets By ZIP Code, YouTube Live Throws A Birthday Party, & More

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled By Rocket Clicks

Target Customers By ZIP Code, Specific City Location In AdWords

Google AdWords location targeting just got granular. AdWords now allows you to target upwards of 30,000 U.S. zip codes and create ad test that changes based on where the searcher is located. This feature is called “Location Insertion,” and allows you to set parameters so a single ad is displayed with a rotating location that changes depending on where the search occurs.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google+ Is Now 27% Richer…With Users!

Google+ is showing signs of life. According to an Experian Hitwise study, total usage of the social network grew to 61 million people in March. That’s a 27% increase over February, and one of the first signs of substantial growth since its hard launch last September.

Perhaps not coincidentally, Google rolled out a Google+ profile signup mandate if you happened to sign up for another Google service. This has netted about 80 million default Google+ users that happen to have a Gmail, YouTube, or Offers account.

Source: Mashable

Google Stocks Boom, Move On Up To That Deluxe Stock Class In The Sky

Google collected $10.65 billion in 2012 first quarter revenue, which is a 24% increase over quarter one of 2011. As such, the board of directors and CEO Larry Page plan to create a new class of stock that would effectively be distributed to shareholders as a dividend. These stocks would be non-voting.

The jump in revenue mostly came from increased clicks (39% higher compared to 2011 Q1), despite a 12% reduction in cost-per-clicks. Part of the cause for this discrepancy can be pinpointed in the rise of tablet and smartphone users (higher click-throughs, lower conversions).

Source: Search Engine Land

The 2012 Larry Page/Google Manifesto

Larry Page recently penned a “State of Google” address, entitled “2012 Update from the CEO.” In it, he addresses some of the biggest developments in 2011 (Google+ integration and its use in improving search), indirectly responds to critic backlash over personalized search, and discusses where he sees Google heading in the future.

There’s no word on whether he gave the address in a speech, and whether that speech featured a sharp partisan split among spurned innovators and bottom line-focused Googlers.

Source: Search Engine Land

YouTube Live Gets A Birthday Makeover

The YouTube Live engineers celebrated its first birthday by giving back to YouTube Partners, opening three new advertising analytical features. These include:

  • Produce and broadcast live streaming.
  • Up-to-the-second analytics.
  • Sell ad space on live streams.

 

Also, The YouTube Partners program is now open to everyone. Hooray!

Source: Search Engine Watch

Google+ Plus Gets A Real Home Makeover

Someone broke in to our Google+ accounts and surprised us with a redesigned living room! It kind of looks familiar:

New Google+ layout

Source: Search Engine Watch

Freedom Isn’t Free, And Neither Is Bing’s Search API Apparently

The SEO world rejoiced when Bing announced it would make its search API available for web developers and programmers everywhere. But in the next five to six months, Bing announced it will begin charging $40 to users interested in running up to 20,000 queries per month. If that limit is exceeded, the price will adjust accordingly.

Source: Search Engine Land

Twitter Takes Legal Action Against Spam Tweeps

Twitter is great for numerous reasons; receiving spam tweets after mentioning a popular product is not one of them. Thankfully, the social network is taking action with a lawsuit that could give them the power to police these companies and any others that pop up in the future. Twitter has primarily targeted five services that bombard tweeters with fake profile follows and annoying @ replies.

Source: Wired Epicenter

And The Most Loved Technology Company Is…

The one that has had some of the biggest problems with privacy! According to an ABC News/Washington Post poll, Google is the top tech company in user favorability (82%). Apple finished second (74%), Facebook finished third (58%), and Twitter brought up the rear (34%).

The most interesting piece of information came via Twitter, which elicited more unfavorable opinions (36%) than favorable. This includes seniors (36% vs. 34%) and young adults (43% vs. 42%).

Source: Search Engine Watch

Facebook Pays $1 InstaBillion For Instagram

Instagram is one of the most popular sepia-happy photo sharing applications. Facebook is the world’s most popular social network. Naturally, they’re now a $1 billion match made in heaven. Facebook claims the acquisition will lead to ‘Instagration’ into the Facebook platform, while still allowing the app room to grow independent of the social network.

Source: Mashable

Pinterest Just Won The Bronze Medal In The Social MediOlympics

According to the 2012 Digital Marketer report from Experian Hitwise, Pinterest has just become the third most frequented social media site on the web, usurping LinkedIn thanks to a skyrocketing user base. The report also reveals high conversion rates for advertisements on Facebook in 2011 (50%).

Source: Search Engine Watch

Five Publishers, Apple In Deep Doo-Doo For Price Fixing Scheme

The U.S. Department Of Justice has accused Apple and five publishing companies of fixing the prices on new and bestselling e-books. The scheme, allegedly orchestrated in part by Steve Jobs, added $3-$5 to the price of many popular e-books, sending Apple a 30% cut in the process.

Three publishers (Hachette, Simon & Schuster, Harper Collins) have already settled, while Apple (surprise!), Macmillan and Penguin are fighting the lawsuit. The entire case is expected to reduce the price of e-books on Amazon’s Kindle and the Barnes & Noble Nook for the next two years. I doubt this story shows up in Steve Jobs’ autobiography.

Source: Los Angeles Times

Google Upgrades Agency Land To Agency Edge

Big G is updating the feel and looks of things all over the place. First Google+, now Agency Land have undergone major makeovers. Google claims the new Agency Edge is improved in a number of ways, including:

  • Fresh course content on Search, Display, Mobile, and YouTube (Social and Analytics coming shortly!)
  • New sales collateral including case studies, vertical research, and infographics.
  • A new look that’s faster and easier to use.

 

Source: Google Agency Edge

Rich Snippet Markup Spam Ranking in Organic Search

Google’s algorithm bias toward rich snippets and schema markups is already causing snippet spam to make a plethora of appearances in organic search. Cyrus Shepard (formerly of SEOmoz fame) digs into the issue a bit. In the comments, AJ Kohn notes how you can report snippet spam.

Source: Google+

Don’t Want Your Employer/Interviewer To Access Your Facebook? Move To Maryland

There has been much hoopla about, but little action against, the rising trend of companies asking for the Facebook passwords of prospective and current employees. The Old Line State is about to change all of that.

Believing this practice violates basic personal privacy guaranteed under the Constitution, Maryland lawmakers have drafted and passed a bill that bans businesses from demanding this personal information. All it takes is one precedential law to trigger a wave of similar regulations among the other 49 states.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Notable Commentary

That Won’t Ask For Your Facebook Password

Long Tail Keywords: Tips For Capturing SEO’s White Whale

Like the agile green basilisk lizard, long tail keywords are extremely hard to catch…unless you know what you’re looking for. Ray Comstock has four easy-to-remember recommendations for researching long tail search trends and turning that traffic into dollar signs.

Analysis By: Ray “Catfish” Comstock, Search Engine Watch

Read How A Company Fought Back From A Hacking

The Next Web gives a first hand account of how they dealt with getting hacked, how they discovered it, and how they are safeguarding against similar exploits in the future.

Analysis By: The Next Web

Pinterest Is Not The Mary Poppins Of SEO

It was only a matter of time before Google began treating Pinterest like it treats Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media websites. That’s the crux of Jordan Kasteler’s recent post on Search Engine Land. He argues that Pinterest’s value as an SEO “tool” is really the same as all other social networks (difference in platform notwithstanding).

Analysis By: Jordan Kasteler, Search Engine Land

Why Did Facebook Buy Instagram?

Just what was it about Instagram, a company with only a few employees and no clear revenue source, that made Facebook want to buy the photo sharing service in the first place? Quora has an interesting discussion on the topic.

Analysis By: Quora

Watch A 9-Year-Old Build His Own Arcade

Kony 2012 isn’t the only short documentary to get the viral treatment. A Los Angeles filmmaker took a journey through the story of a kid that built and runs his own “arcade.” The 10 minute film demonstrates the remarkably effective influence of a viral video, and the impact it can have on the people involved.

Analysis By: Mark Frauenfelder, BoingBoing

Presidential Campaigns In The Internet Marketing World

In 2008, the technological savvy of the Barack Obama campaign played a notable part in his victory. The Washington Post has a write up on how the 2012 Obama campaign is utilizing social media and traditional Internet marketing to solicit votes.

Analysis By: T.W. Farnam, Washington Post

Want To Know Who Lived In Your House In 1940?

A few weeks ago, the 1940 U.S. Census was posted online, and if you have the time to comb through handwritten pages in PDF format, it’s an amazing waste of time. Soon enough, someone will have it distilled to a more 21st Century-friendly format, but it’s an incredibly interesting way to see who lived around your current residence and what they did with their lives.

Analysis By: Gary Price, Search Engine Land

Want To Know Why We Measure Distance In Time?

This minute and a half animated video investigates why people often refer to measurements of distance as a measurement of time. For example, a question of, “How far away is the restaurant?” is often met with an answer of, “About 10 minutes,” rather than the literal distance it is from your house.

Analysis By: Andrew Liszewski, Gizmodo

One Response

     
  1. Nick Haertel

    The advanced targeting options have been a huge issue in the travel vertical. I’m really hoping that can be fixed with the recent update. Thanks for spotlighting it!

    Nick

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