A Newspaper Twitter Feed Run by Actual Human Beings

The New York Times boasts the highest number of Twitter followers among US newspapers (more than 2.5 million — which is more than five times the number for the WSJ), but the paper is constantly refining its social media strategy. Recently, the Gray Lady has been shaking things up by replacing the @nytimes auto feed of headlines and links with real, live humans. Yes, actual human beings. And to everyone's surprise, these humans are posing questions, retweeting content, and curating more active online conversations. You know, social media stuff.
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The Social Media Scientists

Like it or not, consumers are talking about your brand. And while they talk, researchers are taking notes. In an age where consumer-generated content is aggregated and judged for macro-sentiment by a new breed of “social scientists,” customer research no longer means an intrusive site survey or artificial focus group. It’s happening in real time, right in front of our eyes.
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Partners Project: Behind the Scenes with YouTube Fameballs

Seeing as YouTube recently began the transition from simple distribution of amateur videos to full-on production of professional-quality films, it makes sense that they should include some behind-the-scenes content with the viral stars who have made names for themselves through the video distributor. YouTube will now check in with their most successful users in a short weekly talk show called the Partners Project. Not that we don’t already know enough about the lives of YouTube celebs such as iJustine and ShayCarl. According to the show's description, however, the Partners Project “will give you a behind the scenes and intimate look at your favorite YouTube stars who are pioneering this cultural phenomena.” Bravo! YouTube is finally stepping up and taking ownership of their greatest assets. Next stop: profitability. Right?
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Follow That Ad! Geo-Based Marketing Takes Over Your City

You know who takes cabs in New York? The rich and the drunk. And tourists. Can't forget about them. Basically, the audience the Blue Man Group is looking for! So next time your taxi takes you through the East Village, don’t be surprised if an ad for its Astor Place show pops up on the rear-facing screen. Marketers are beginning to capitalize on in-cab, location-based advertising to dictate when and where their commercials should air.
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The Audience Steals the Spotlight

Earlier this year, AdLab critiqued The New York Times’ assessment of Super Bowl advertising, which described a coup of Madison Avenue. It recognized that brands are in the hands of consumers. Imagine that!
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Who Will Profit From the Ad Depression?

Friends of postadvertising are puzzled over conflicting predictions about the winners and losers in the global ad-spending recession. Continuing our series on imperiled ad-supported media, we will now make sense of the discontinuity by letting the investment bankers weigh in. They’re the ones who buy and sell both agencies and media properties; so they have a stake in the debate without having a bias.

We recently reported on the fact that the consensus among media followers is that TV will be a loser, although not as big a loser as print. In an article titled “2009 to be a Transition Year for TV,” eMarketer reported that Barclays Capital sees network TV spending falling 7.8% this year, while Myers Publishing projects a drop of 4%. Other experts see similar negative numbers.

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