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The Next Big Thing In Podcasting

One significant storyline from the world of social media this week includes the devaluing of Twitter
The Marketing Brief
The Next Big Thing In Podcasting
By Rob Bettis • Issue #2 • View online
One significant storyline from the world of social media this week includes the devaluing of Twitter & Facebook. As both networks garner publicity by purging thousands of artificial accounts (like the bot accounts used by Russian forces to influence the 2016 election), Wall Street responded strongly. Both price drops also coincided with earnings reports, as both companies are continually experiencing plateaued growth.
There are three short take aways we should gleam from this:
  • Both companies are largely valued on users. When user growth begins to slow, analysts look at user engagement numbers as a secondary metric of company health. The current climate represents a perfect storm for social media giants because growth is slowing and the public perception of their advertising channels is limiting both networks from using advertising to prop up user engagement.
  • The fact that purging fake accounts has any impact on stock price points to some significant flaws in how Wall Street values social media companies.
  • Neither company is out of the woods yet, with continuing reports of foreign governments interfering in mid-term elections and public opinion of both networks being near all-time lows.

After years of notable absence, Google recently announced and released a native podcast app. Interestingly, the app is largely baked into the Android operating system, which means the podcast market just grew a lot bigger.
Why the new Google Podcasts app is a big deal: and why there are no auto-downloads
Digital Citizenship
Nick Heer recently published a great essay on the state of the internet. His call for civility by major web properties is echoed by everyone who understands why it takes so long for news stories (text articles) to render on the web. Heer also shines a light on modern web design trends and Google’s AMP project which is designed to cover up the mess, rather than fix it - at the expensive of user data.
The Bullshit Web — Pixel Envy
Matt Weagle
Web: We noticed you're using an Ad blocker

Me: I noticed you're using 32 tracking services.
10:46 AM - 1 Aug 2018
Out Amazon-ing Amazon
As a quick aside from my Amazon article which appeared in last week’s digest, a new Amazon competitor recently secured $240 million investment from SoftBank. The company is Brandless Inc. And as you may expect from their name, they are hyper-focused on retail commodities.
It’s tough to wow Masayoshi Son with a bargain, but during a meeting this spring, Brandless left the SoftBank Group chief executive officer a bit flabbergasted. Yes, the startup’s founders assured the billionaire, every product he picked up from the table, from the extra-virgin olive oil to the carbon-steel eyelash curler, was just $3. The trick: It’s all store brand, and there’s no alternative. The site will sell only one kind of toothpaste, or coaster, or tree-free toilet paper. Hope you like it! 
Inspired by Japan’s Muji, Brandless Inc. keeps things simple. It sells about 300 items on its website, all generic household staples, mostly for $3 a pop. Despite the understated packaging, the merchandise includes a reasonably wide range of upscale-sounding products (organic pasta sauce, nontoxic dish soap, gluten-free veggie chips) that usually cost less than their equivalents on Amazon and elsewhere.
Everyone's Attention Turns To Attention
Following in the steps of Android & iOS, Facebook has become the most recent platform to provide users a way to measure & mange their usage. This is obviously very counterintuitive for a business which is evaluated (and valued) on user engagement and who pioneered the very “addictive feedback loops” that are now labeled as detrimental. Facebook needs all of the good publicity they can get and this is an easy sell to investors, as the ability to throttle the use of Facebook & Instagram will soon be available to most users at the operating system level of their phone.
Facebook and Instagram add dashboards to help you manage your time on social apps - The Verge
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Rob Bettis

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