Yahoo! Reveals New Logo After 30 Days of Change Campaign

Old Yahoo Logo

Yahoo! logo from 1995 to 2013.

Late last week Yahoo! announced and revealed it’s final decision on it’s new logo (below). After 18 years of the same iconic Yahoo! logo (above) the company, under guidance of Marisa Mayer, is attempting to start rebranding itself in a way that might bring new life to the brand and suite of sites so deeply integrated in the internet. Though they weren’t the first internet “search” engine, Yahoo! is one of the 9 remaining search engines of the original 18 that existed BEFORE Google.

New Yahoo! Logo

New logo announced September 5, 2013.

To get there, Yahoo! launched a 30 Days of Change campaign in early August revealing one potential new logo each day leading up to the big announcement on September 5th. On her personal Tumblr, Marisa Mayer states that they wanted the new logo to be “…whimsical, yet sophisticated.  Modern and fresh, with a nod to our history.  Having a human touch, personal.  Proud.” and the new logo clearly shows they put a lot of technical thought into it. Even in this launch video illustrating the new logo you can see the attention to all the little details.

What I feel is missing is all that whimsical, modern, freshness that Marrisa described in her blog and the logo almost feels mechanical even with all it’s swooping curves and the slightly varied stroke widths.

What do you think of Yahoo!’s new logo? Do you think it will last another 18 years? Another 3 years?

Here are some of my favorites from the 30 Days campaign that didn’t make the cut:

Day 4

Day 4

 Day 12

Day 12

Day 16

Day 16

 

Day 23

Day 23

 

Related Articles:
The Next Web – One more variation of the new Yahoo logo, from the company’s design intern
Mashable – Yahoo Finally Unveils its New Logo
Yahoo! – Daily Logo / The New Yahoo! Logo
Yahoo! Small Business Advisor - Yahoo’s New Logo: Great New Look or Another Boring Design?

 

78% of US Facebook Users are Mobile

Facebook has begun to release data on its 1.15 billion users providing usage statistics by country. This comes after a reported 10.3% increase in global daily active users at the end of July.

Facebook Monthly/Daily Active User Chart for US & UK

via TechCrunch

Facebook states:

We are doing this because we believe brands and businesses should think differently about how people engage with Facebook, especially on mobile. A lot of people focus on monthly active users or even registered users to demonstrate their size and scale. We think this is becoming on old way of looking at the media world. In this world, understanding who comes back at least once a month is only part of the picture. Instead, businesses should focus on people who come back online every single day.

You can also see some of this new thinking within the new Facebook Insights for Pages which is slowly being release to page owners. The shift of focus from monthly to daily users is a step in the right direction in identify highly engaged users from those who use the site or application more casually over the course of the month.

It’s good to see Facebook growing despite reports of younger age groups leaving the platform and other reports of how Facebook makes us sad. Now if they can only find a way to monetize the platform without filling my newsfeeds with “sponsored” posts and ads for games.

 

Pinterest for Colleges and Universities

Launched 2010, Pinterest has since become a premier social media tool for photo-sharing. Retailers, like Nordstrom, have integrated the site into both its online and offline shopping experience. Similarly, Pinterest is taking steps to create a path for the pin-happy user to go from “pinning” to purchasing. Even without such innovations, it’s easy to deduce that photo-sharing and merchandising would go hand-in-hand. We know that retailers love Pinterest, and Pinterest loves them, but how can your college or university get in on all this lovin’?

It’s a good idea to understand what Pinterest is being used for most often, outside of the higher ed scope. The most popular boards tend to be event planning ideas (particularly weddings), food, holidays, home decor and DIY projects. In addition, a whopping 93% of users are females. Using this knowledge to build your school’s Pinterest ensures that your school is not only using it correctly, but also effectively. Having some proven board categories will keep your institution’s boards relevant, while allowing you to get creative with your own content.

For example, you can create boards that highlight alumni weddings, events, holidays on campus, restaurants in walking distance, recipes that are dorm-room doable, or creative projects of current students. To help populate your pages, you could also create low effort boards that recycle content already on Pinterest or the web: dorm room décor inspiration or quotes expressing the value of education or hard-work. Once you have a solid base, you can start creating content that is important to your institution’s brand: mascots, athletic teams, bookstore merchandise, publications, notable faculty/alumni, etc.

Many colleges and universities have taken a similar approach and appeal to prospective students, current students, and alumni alike.

Some interesting examples are:

Towson University Bookstore 

University of Baltimore

Johns Hopkins University

Drake University

LinkedIn Launches “Sponsored Updates” Ad Units for Brands

Following in the steps of Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn has launched a new ad unit for advertisers through their self-service ad platform. The new ad units allow brands to promote the content they are publishing on their LinkedIn Company Pages to all 200 million active users on LinkedIn. Previously, the content posted to your brands LinkedIn page would only be seen by those who follow your brand on LinkedIn. This move brings advertising on LinkedIn to a new level by being able to infiltrate a user’s news feed.

The new ad units have many of the same options as the previous sidebar ads had allowing advertisers and brands to target users based on job titles, job functions, company, LinkedIn groups, specific skills,  and/or interests. The ‘ads’ will look just like the other content in the news feed but will carry subtle grey “Sponsored” text next to the company name.

With over 3 million Company Pages on LinkedIn, we can expect to see advertising on LinkedIn start to grow as well as the popularity of the platform for brands trying to engage with customers. It’s already been proven that a good content strategy can be more effective than just buying ads and now LinkedIn has given brands the opportunity to expand that into their platform.

The Hootsuite marketing team had a chance to work with these new ad units over 3 months gathering tons of data and putting the new ad units through the paces of an aggressive marketing campaign. In the end they had 4 major reasons for getting involved with LinkedIn Sponsored Updates.

4 Reasons Why LinkedIn Sponsored Updates Work

1. Precise Targeting
HootSuite experimented with different ad platforms offering varying targeting capabilities. With LinkedIn Sponsored Updates, HootSuite not only has the ability to target by geography but is also able to drill down further into criteria such as specific companies, industry, company size, job title, job function and seniority level. The latter proving especially important in its ability to reach decision makers.

2. Native Advertising
In addition to Sponsored Updates appearing unobtrusively in feeds like ordinary posts, the native advertising model also offers campaign managers the ability to test content and messaging before promoting it.

3. Ease of Use
Analytics junkies will enjoy LinkedIn’s real-time analytics which give an overview of campaign effectiveness. When combined with full control of campaign management, LinkedIn Sponsored Updates provide campaign managers the flexibility to start, stop and make adjustments to campaigns on the fly.

Analytics junkies rejoice! LinkedIn Sponsored Updates provide a full picture of your audience’s demographics.

That last campaign not converting? Don’t waste your company’s money. Stop the campaign and spend those dollars on a different campaign. There are no media buyers, account managers or hoops to jump through.

4. User Intent
LinkedIn members spend time on LinkedIn for a reason. They’re not looking for cat videos or pictures of their co-workers’ babies. Users are on the network for professional purposes and are more receptive to business messages.

via Hootsuite Blog – 4 Reasons to Use LinkedIn Sponsored Updates

If you are already and advertiser with LinkedIn you’ve probably noticed a pretty drastic facelift today when you logged in to check your campaigns, if not, it’ll be coming soon. You can create a new Sponsored Updates campaign by using the same “Create New Campaign” link before, only now you will be taken to a new page and given the option to create a Sponsored Updates campaign, a normal campaign, or to explore other options. Unfortunately we haven’t had a chance to play with these new units just yet but hope to soon and report back our findings.

New Study Answers the Question: “What Social Network Should I Use?”

When the topic of using social media to reach out to customers and prospects comes up, it’s inevitable that one of the first questions we get asked is “what social network should I use?” And it’s not an easy question to answer. While sometimes the choice is obvious – LinkedIn over Facebook for reaching B2B customers, for example—many times (especially when dealing with B2C clients or institutions interested in reaching out to prospective students or donors) the choice isn’t so cut and dried. Considering that nearly 75% of the Internet-using US population now has an account on one social network or another (73% are on Facebook, 24% are on Twitter, and 15% are on Pinterest, in case you’re wondering) it can be tough to target particular networks using criteria other than just simple demographics.

 

Not that there’s anything wrong with that. But choosing the right social network isn’t just about picking the one with the “right” numbers. As you probably know by now after having experienced them yourself, each social network seems to have a different “feel” to it and those of us who regularly two (or more) of the different networking sites seem to intuitively turn to each for different things. Our gut feelings seem to tell us that Facebook is good for staying in touch with people and keeping up on events in our “friends’” lives; Twitter is a great place to stay on top of news, trends, and interesting sites; and Pinterest seems to be a great place to go when we’re in the mood to virtually “window shop” or need some inspiration.

 

But following your gut is one thing: when you’re putting significant resources (both time and money) reaching out to or cultivating new customers online, you probably want to have some hard data. It’s one thing to have an intuition about where to go based on your own behavior, it’s quite another thing justifying it to your boss.

 

Fortunately a new survey of 6,000 folks by Visioncritical  (download page) offers some new and incredibly useful insights on not only what social networks people are using but (more importantly) why they choose one over another.

 

The report is free and is packed with way more stuff than we can relate here and we encourage you to check it out in its entirety. Here are some of the highlights:

 

  • It turns out that your gut feelings about social networks was probably right: Pinterest users tend to use the site for “creative” reasons (inspiration, ideas, and information on things that interest them) while Facebook users are much more about connecting and communicating with their social networks. Interestingly enough, Twitter users seemed to be ambivalent, with survey results falling pretty much in the middle of the “creativity vs. communication” continuum.
  • When it comes to purchasing, Pinterest was the clear winner for driving impulse buys on consumer items while Facebook and Twitter were seen to be much more useful to survey respondents as networks to use when researching considered purchases.
  • People also seem to use the 3 different networks for different aspects of purchasing. Pinterest was the place to go to find more info on products they were already interested in buying, Facebook was the place to go to keep abreast of new deals, and Twitter was used to discover where to purchase products.
  • A large majority (68%) of Facebook users are “lurkers” who rarely post to the site.

 

While this is only one survey (we really hope there are others along the same lines soon), we believe that the finding seem to match a lot of what we’ve observed in our own social media lives. We also believe that the data has some interesting implications for marketers:

 

  1. People use different social networks for different things and the messaging and/or engagement activities we use on each network should match the reasons people are using the networks. Pinterest might be best for reaching out to more visually-oriented prospects who are in the early stages of a purchasing decision and may be looking for something new that grabs their attention. Facebook, on the other hand, is the place to go if you want to offer your customers and prospects an opportunity for engagement. Twitter may be the place to guide customers and prospects to landing pages where they can indicate their interest.
  2. While conventional wisdom holds that social media is all about engagement, a large number of users don’t actively engage by “talking back” through their own postings. With so many lurkers out there it may be time to re-think our “engagement” metrics.
  3. People seem to be turning increasingly towards social networks for information (and perhaps validation) when it comes to considered purchases. It’s vital to be aware of the “buzz” around your brand and be ready to respond if you need to. On the other hand, if you sell something that people tend to buy on a whim pretty pictures on Pinterest might be the way to drive response.
  4. Thinking about “social networking” or “social media” as a homogeneous category is wrong. While the different networks do share some similar “social” features, people really turn to different networks for different reasons. It’s important to understand not only who is on a particular network but why they’re there in the first place in order to get the most bang for your social media marketing bucks.