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Digital News Roundup: April 23, 2010

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The biggest news this week came out of Facebook’s F8 Conference, where the social network announced plans that will change the way content is shared across the Web. Other top stories include Foursquare’s new local business initiatives and the announcement of AOL Ad Desk. Read our roundup for a summary of these stories and more.

Facebook Rolls Out Social Plugins and Open Graph

At the F8 Conference this week Facebook unveiled new features that have instantly made the Web more social. The world’s largest social network – now 400 million users strong – rolled out its Social Logins and Open Graph across dozens of sites, empowering site owners to make any content on their site more personalized and sharable.

Social Plugins – such as a Like Button, Recommendations and others – make it easier for site owners to add social components to any site and empower visitors to share content via their Facebook activity streams. The Open Graph connects websites with Facebook users’ profiles, and allows publisher to reach such users through their News Feed streams.

Pandora is one of 75+ publishers that have already integrated the new Facebook features into their sites.

Though there have been some early privacy concerns, Facebook’s initiatives are primed to help brands increase engagement on their sites, drive traffic, encourage consumer advocacy of their content and products, and potentially improve conversions due to increased personalization.

For a full recap of the news – and what it means for your marketing efforts – read our POV.

Foursquare Announces Businesses Page for Local Advertisers

Location-based social network Foursquare launched a new offering for local businesses this week. The mobile check-in service is inviting business owners to claim their locales within Foursquare and gain greater control over promotions and specials.

Image via Foursquare
Image via Foursquare

According to TechCrunch, businesses owners that claim their establishments will gain access to a real-time dashboard that houses stats on user engagement (number of check-ins, when people are checking in, most frequent visitors, etc.). Managers can also organize special offers and provide special badges to customers upon checking in.

AOL Ad Desk Launches, Giving Advertisers More Control & Transparency of Their Media Buys

On Tuesday AOL announced the beta of the Ad Desk, their new self-service display ad platform that provides marketers and their agencies with direct access to AOL’s inventory. At 360i, we’ve been working with AOL on their beta for some time, providing feedback on the platform and helping to enhance its benefit to marketers and their agencies.

Ad Desk is one of the best buying experiences AOL has delivered to date, and fulfills some major needs for ad buyers today – control, transparency and flexibility. With Ad Desk, performance-driven campaigns can be managed and optimized on the fly. Advertisers can set up campaigns, add and edit targeting and bid prices with the speed and efficiency needed to effectively run high-performing campaigns for our clients. Additionally, marketers can login to the Ad Desk dashboard and see how their campaigns are performing on AOL in real time.

While this offering is already fairly robust, it’s also still new. We expect to see more in the way of reporting, analytics and optimization in future releases of the product and look forward to working with AOL to advance this platform.

For more on the announcement, check out our blog post or read Ad Age’s article on the news.

Study: More Than Half of Mobile Internet Time Is Spent on Social Networks

A new study by mobile measurement firm Ground Truth found that 60 percent of time spent browsing the Web on mobile devices is done so via social networks (both sites and apps).The second most popular Internet destination for mobile users was portals – which comprised 14 percent of time spent.

The popularity of social networks and apps among mobile device users signifies the strengthening bond between mobile, local and social when it comes to how consumers engage with media.

You can head on over to Mashable for more details on this report.

Altimeter Report: Social Marketing Analytics

A new research study conducted by Altimeter Group uncovers several best practices for developing a social marketing measurement strategy. Jeremiah Owyang writes that Altimeter has tapped the brainpower of some of foremost leaders in the analytics space to look into measuring the ever-changing social media marketing space.

The approach is based on Altimeter’s framework for developing a social strategy based on specific business objectives (their language):

  • Dialog: involves starting a conversation and offering your audience something to talk about while allowing that conversation to take on a life of its own
  • Advocacy: activation of evangelism, word of mouth, and the spread of information through social technologies
  • Supporting: customers may self support each other, or companies may directly assist them using social technologies.
  • Innovation: The business objective of innovation is an extraordinary byproduct of engaging in social marketing activity.

View the complete report below:

Which stories piqued your interest this week? Let us know in the comments below.