THQ has found a way to glom on to Zynga ’s popular “-Ville” franchises without impinging on any copyrights with a new social game, Margaritaville Online . The game, “inspired by the lifestyle of author and singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett,” according to a THQ release , and based on the 1977 hit song, will hit Facebook and iOS devices this fall. The release describes the game as “an immersive 3D paradise, filled with frozen concoctions, music and adventure.” The game’s introduction comes after Zynga has had a slew of successes with FarmVille, CityVille, FrontierVille and, most recently, RewardVille .
The Hangover Part II made its debut on the big screen this weekend, and along with it, made an appearance in Mike Tyson’s iPhone game in a Warner Bros. promotion for the film. Specifically, a free update to the game ( Mike Tyson’s Main Event [iTunes link]) features the ability to fight Mr.
Most smartphone-wielding mothers put their phones to work while they shop, according to a survey by mobile ad network Greystripe. In a survey of 239 mothers, whom Greystripe recruited using mobile banner ads in its network, 66% acknowledged that their smartphones play a role in their shopping trips. Around 45% said they use their phones to locate the nearest store. The next most common use of smartphones was to compare prices. Only 15% of the women surveyed said they actually made purchases using their phones. Since Greylock has an interest in portraying mobile phones as an excellent place to target mothers while shopping (women make the majority of household purchase decisions , and this makes them a favorite target of the advertisers Greylock courts), it’s not the most reliable source of research on the topic. Other research about mobile phone marketing and women has shown more varied results. Last year, a company conducted mobile shopping survey of 1,600 women that found 94% of them were interested in more mobile shopping and mobile marketing. In the same month, social network SheSpeaks conducted an online survey of similar size that found only 10% of women have downloaded any shopping-related applications to their mobile devices, and 62% are not even interested in doing so
If you’ve been disconcerted by the news that Facebook was conducting a smear campaign against Google, perhaps a little look at the financials might clear up a few key points. Both companies have already been in fierce competition for online ad dollars for a few years. Google makes the majority of its income from search ad programs like AdWords and AdSense, but as the incumbent in online advertising, it has to watch its back very carefully. Facebook’s ad revenue hit an impressive $1.86 billion for 2010, and the site may account for as much as one-third of display ad impressions . For 2011, Facebook is expected to bring in $4.05 billion in advertising revenues worldwide, $2.19 billion of which will come from the U.S. market. Also, given Google’s recent launch of +1 — a half social, half traffic-generating web search feature — Facebook might be feeling even more pressure to make sure users are wary of the tool and less likely to use it without overthinking it. After all +1 is a Facebook Like competitor . And both +1 and Likes can generate valuable data used in ad targeting. So if Facebook can convince the web-surfing world that Google is negligent about user privacy, +1 won’t be as valuable as Google might otherwise hope. Ultimately, these two corporations are not making web apps for the pure joy of protecting user privacy; they’re in it to make money
A recent online promotion for LG ’s Optimus phone in Germany highlights a simple fact: 5 million is a lot. The Pixel Hunt effort, by Vodaphone , went like this: A photo composed of 5 million pixels was displayed on a website. Consumers were asked to find 100 photos hidden within that picture. Each of the 100 photos was equal to one pixel. The winners got a 5 megapixel Optimus phone. It took a month for consumers to click all 5 million pixels. Clearly, some tried many times since just 300,000 people visited the site. For such consumers, a pixel might not have been worth 1,000 words, but it was worth a significant portion of their time
Erin Bury is the community manager at Sprouter.com , an expert Q&A site for startup founders around the world. You can follow her on Twitter @ErinBury and read her blog at ErinBury.com . At the end of a long day at a conference, event attendees can hopefully walk away with a few key lessons, some business cards, and ideas they can apply to their work. But often, they also leave with an armload of conference swag from trade show participants, sponsors and the organizers. Common swag items include T-shirts, pens, postcards and flyers with company info and discounts. Swag bags are often filled with the same old stuff, much of which is being tossed in the trash as soon as attendees leave the building. Just because an item is free doesn’t mean it’s desirable or useful, and handing out 100 pens doesn’t mean you’ll convert any of those conference goers into customers or users. Here’s how to make sure your swag catches the attention of event attendees and doesn’t end up in a garbage can. 1
The Modern Media Agency Series is supported by IDG . Marketers should know about two Ps for publishers — personalization and portability are as important to advertisers as they are to publishers. Consumers expectations are rising for information they want accessed on any device. IDG Global Solutions President Matt Yorke says this is new territory filled with a lot of promise. Read more . “Social media engagement.” It’s a phrase that generates a lot of buzz, but what does it actually mean? And, more importantly, why does it matter to companies that are integrating social media into their PR and marketing strategies? We turned to some of the leading communication experts to discover the importance of sparking online engagement and how this new focus has forced PR, marketing and advertising campaigns to evolve. Defining Social Media Engagement Ask five people to define engagement, and you’ll likely receive five different answers. Liz Hawks , SVP and global co-chair of FH Moms Practice , explained it like this: “Engagement is speaking with her (in this case, Mom) where she is, when she is looking for info and in the way she is looking for it.” Rob Clark , Edelman ’s director of insights and measurement, suggests thinking about engagement as the step from attention to action. “This may be a one-click social gesture such as a digg or like , or it may be a blog post written in response with a trackback, or it may be a letter written in response to an online campaign
Facebook management platform Buddy Media has acquired Spinback, a social commerce and analytics platform that launched in October 2010. “Thousands of websites have social sharing functionality, but they don’t understand how this sharing affects their business in terms of direct sales, indirect sales, conversion metrics,” says Michael Lazerow, CEO of Buddy Media
Facebook and Groupon ratcheted up a turf battle Wednesday as the former expanded Facebook Deals , the social network’s new location-based discounts program, and the latter prepared an ad blitz on Facebook. Facebook today announced that users in five test markets — Atlanta, Dallas, San Diego, San Francisco and Austin, Texas — will be able to subscribe to Deals and share them with their friends. (See image below.) Previously, Deals has been available only via Facebook’s location-sharing service, Places , which displayed nearby offers from local merchants. Nine vendors — Gilt City, Home Run, OpenTable, Pop Sugar City, Tippr, KGB Deals, Plum District, Reach Local and Zozi — are part of the program. A Facebook rep says that the offering will be expanded in coming weeks and months to include local businesses from those cities. Facebook launched Deals in November 2010
Every week, Mashable puts together a calendar of upcoming social media and web events, parties and conferences. Would you like to have your conference or event listed here? If so, please request the Mashable Media Partnership Guidelines . If your event meets our requirements, contact us at least 45 days before your event to establish a media partnership with us. For more upcoming listings, check out Mashable’s ‘s Events section . In the meantime, here are some tips on how to network, share your information and/or promote your event(s) using social media: The Future of Event Planning and Social Media HOW TO: Plan and Promote Events with Social Media 35+ Ways to Find and Plan Events Online 8 Ways to Create Paperless Business Cards 5 Useful iPhone Apps for Business Networking Mashable’s Weekly Social Media and Marketing Event Guide is proudly supported by Eventbrite , the Web’s Event Marketplace. Upcoming Mashable Events Mashable SXSWi House — March 13-14, 2011, Austin, TX : The Mashable SXSWi House 2011 will break the mold of the traditional SXSWi events schedule. Working with SXSWi and our partner sponsors, we will create a two-day platform that will include private events, VIP networking hours and large open parties. From Sunday, March 13 to Monday, March 14, Mashable will be hosting a combination of private events, open houses, meet-and-greet opportunities and of course, two nights of parties with open bars. The event is open to all 21+ SXSWi badge holders . Please RSVP on Eventbrite at http://sxswi.eventbrite.com . Mashable Connect — May 12-14, 2011, Orlando, FL : Mashable Connect 2011 will be an intimate experience that brings together leaders from the digital world for a weekend away to share and connect offline. Set away from the distractions of traditional conferences, Mashable Connect will recreate the Mashable web experience on the grounds of Disney World, creating an environment where attendees can truly engage and build lasting connections. The invite-only conference will cover new territory, break news and feature special events, with a touch of Disney magic.