Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How Bing Is Growing, Innovating, and Competing from WebProNews Video

How Bing Is Growing, Innovating, and Competing...

In an effort to contend in the search race, Bing is continuously rolling out new products and initiatives. The search engine’s efforts appear to be paying off since recent data from Experian Hitwise, comScore, and Compete all show that Bing’s market share is growing. Google, on the other hand, lost a small percentage of its market share.


At SXSW, WebProNews spoke with Stefan Weitz, a director with Bing, about this growth and what the search engine was doing to leverage it. According to him, the search industry is not a “zero-sum game.”

"For us to win, somebody else doesn’t have to lose,” he said.

In other words, he believes that all the search engines can expand on one idea and take it in new, and multiple, directions. Competition is tight, but as a result, it produces more new concepts and experiences. Bing, for example, has recently introduced several new projects. The search engine partnered with DealMap in order to bring great deals from popular sites such as Groupon and LivingSocial to users.

Bing has also launched Project Emporia that puts a new approach on personalization. The project is powered by its Matchbox technology and enables the engine to build profiles that offer better recommendations to users.

Weitz told us that Bing would continue to pursue these areas, along with social search, mobile search, and more, in order to provide a simpler and better user experience.


Friday, March 11, 2011

What’s Your Klout Score Telling You? - WebProNews Video

A new space is emerging that hopes to measure social influence online. The concept is promising but is still very new. One player, in particular, that is making progress in the arena is Klout.

As a service that measures how influential people are on the social Web, Klout looks at the content that users create and analyzes what it is they’re talking about. From there, it examines how people react to that content, thus finding the influence.
“For us, when we think about influence, it’s really about the ability to drive some sort of action,” explained Klout CEO Joe Fernandez to WebProNews.

This new metric has been referred to as an equivalent to Google’s PageRank for the social Web. Because Google continues to tweak PageRank, we can understand how a similar metric for the social Web would be an ongoing challenge as well. For example, one person might be very influential to another person but may not have a very high Klout Score, since Klout measures data for efforts across the entire social Web. 

Fernandez pointed out, specifically, that, according to their data, Justin Beiber is more influential online than President Obama is. While that is hard for some people to swallow, he said that a video of Justin Bieber gets considerably more clicks and links than a video of President Obama gets.

“We just kind of let the data speak for itself,” he said.

In addition, Jeremiah Owyang recently released a report that found that, while Klout is a useful metric, it offers an incomplete view of customers for brands. Fernandez said that, while Klout is a critical data point that adds value to customer service and targeting decisions, businesses should consider other data points as well.

Fernandez also acknowledges the challenge of spam and said that the company takes it very seriously.

“It’s something that we’re going to have to continue to face, and honestly, we have to do a better job at it,” he said.

For people and businesses that want to boost their Klout Score, Fernandez recommends being consistent. Klout Score largely depends on how much the person is involved in the conversation and whether or not he is adding value.

Klout currently measures influence across Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, but it hopes to expand to other social platforms this year.