PC sales growth suffers at the hands of tablets and game consoles.
The Gartner Group reports that worldwide PC sales gained only 3.1 percent year-over-year in the fourth quarter, a figure that disappointed expectations. Tablet devices such as the iPad and game consoles competed for customer wallet share while representing partial substitutes to traditional PCs for popular functions. PC sales actually declined year-over-year in the US, with the top three US PC vendors--HP, Dell, and Acer--all experiencing sales declines.
TV via Internet continues to experience growing pains.
While media companies continue to pursue the convergence of television and Internet-based devices, the transition continues to run into frictional delays. The latest is the objection of some cable networks to Comcast's plan to deliver programming to iPads and Android devices. The cable networks assert that this form of distribution is not covered by their programming agreements with Comcast.
New survey indicates a push for online simplicity.
Though interactivity and social media have drawn all the buzz, a recent survey of web site and marketing executives found that most think simplicity will be the highest customer priority in choosing their online preferences over the next year. 54 percent of executives surveyed predicted simplicity would be the top customer priority.
Cost-cutting or convergence? Time Inc. combines online and print ad teams.
Time Inc. should be able to achieve both cost efficiencies and business synergies as it combines the advertising units for its print publications with those for its online content. This is a step towards defining its business broadly as content delivery, regardless of the specific technology used for that delivery.
Social marketers to put the spotlight on measuring ROI.
With budgets for social media marketing on the rise, more emphasis is being placed on measuring the return on investment of these efforts. In a recent survey by the Altimeter Group, creating ROI measurements was cited as the top strategy objective, with 48.3 percent of respondents saying this was a goal for 2011.
Digital advertising earns strong growth in a slow market overall.
According to the Winterberry Group, direct and digital advertising in the US gained only 2.7 percent in 2010, though digital display advertising grew at a 10.7 percent rate. At $27.7 billion, digital advertising represented 17.9 percent of the $154.4 billion spent in the US on direct and digital advertising.
YouTube is enjoying explosive growth on mobile devices.
Recent figures from YouTube provide a snapshot of the dramatic growth rate in mobile Internet usage. YouTube is now viewed 200 million times a day via mobile devices, which is triple the amount of mobile views it received in 2009.
Search Engine Watch
Users remain committed to search engines, despite concerns over irrelevant results.
In a recent Rasmussen poll, 89 percent of respondents said that search engines did an excellent or good job finding information. The poll also found users tend to be loyal to their search engine of choice, with 78 percent saying they use the same search engine all the time. Despite these favorable signs, 70 percent did find the generation of too many irrelevant results to be more of a problem than failure to find results at all.
Search Engine Land
Questions arise regarding Facebook's third-largest advertiser switching users to Bing.
A Facebook ad for a site called make-my-baby.com seems to be primarily designed to switch user home pages to Microsoft's Bing, via seemingly innocuous instructions in its "terms and conditions" link. It's not clear who is ultimately behind the subterfuge, though it is especially suspicious that such an obscure site would have emerged as Facebook's third largest advertiser.
2010 saw a boom for websites, social media, and spam.
Among the striking online growth figures for 2010: From a total of 255 million websites now on the Web, 21.4 million were added last year. Facebook added 250 million new accounts last year, and Twitter added 100 million. Of the 107 trillion e-mails sent last year, 99.3 trillion (89.1 percent) were spam.
Search Engine Journal