How Instagram Restored My Faith in Social Networking

If you have not played with runaway hit mobile social network Instagram, you should. Yes, it’s become known as a utility for iPhone users to send pictures to Facebook and Twitter, but make no bones about it, Instagram is its own social network, and a very enjoyable one, too. In fact, it has restored my faith in the media form. With more than 13 million people on Instagram, you can see some fantastic sharing. It is innately personal and wonderful. Gone from the mix is the usual social media punditry and sword fighting. Instead you simply have real experiences throughout the average day. It’s just photos, sharing and comments, and nothing more. Instagram exists on the mobile web, and is […]

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Has Social Taken a Supporting Actor’s Role?

When you look at the iPad app store, one thing becomes clear very quickly. Social networking is not the most popular use of the iPad. Far from it. In fact, just one of 12 of the top paid iPad apps over Memorial Day weekend (as pictured above) was social networking related. The vast majority were games, with a sprinkle of BBQing, music and productivity joining MyPad+ for Facebook. Consumer use of social media on the iPad reflects some startling statistics that show social’s impact on daily consumer life is less than one would think. In fact, only Facebook and YouTube get any serious attention, between 20-50% of Americans use them regularly (depending on interpretation). The rest of the wide variety […]

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Differentiating in a Sea of Sameness

Maturation in social media marketing has created a sea of sameness, where conversations revolve around listening, responding, strategy, ROI, influence, etc. Consider the common complaint that all of the social media books, A-List blogs, and retweeting fans say the same things. The current “state of the conversation” serves as a great reminder that mature markets require differentiation to stand out and capture stakeholders’ attention. It’s only by differentiation can one cut through the cluttered idea market to gain a stakeholder group’s interest. Differentiation distinguishes ideas, services and products. Differentiation gets back to basic product marketing. That means creating an element(s) of uniqueness to an offering that appeals to the marketplace, whether that’s information for marketers, social change theories to attract […]

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Messaging Still Fails

One of the greatest triumphs of the social web remains the open citizen revolt against marketing messages (bored image by Samael Trip). Note how well the Apple iPad name flew yesterday online (ahem, let’s not go there). Nonprofits experience the same disinterest from their stakeholders as companies due. In fact, a recent report by marketer Nancy Schwartz (hat tip to Beth Kanter for forwarding me these stats), 84 percent of 915 nonprofit leaders who completed the survey last month said their messages connect with their target audiences only somewhat or not at all. Nancy’s post includes comments from survey participants explaining why their messages fail to connect: “Our messages need to be more succinct to communicate how effective we really […]

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The Steamboat Cherry Blossom by Geoff Livingston
Potomac Marina Sunrise in Red and Purple by Geoff Livingston
Morning on the Marsh by Geoff Livingston
July Sunrise at the Marina HDR by Geoff Livingston
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July Sunrise at the Marina by Geoff Livingston
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