Although the social media space seems to be ruled by sites like [Digg](http://www.digg.com), [del.icio.us](http://del.icio.us) and [Netscape](http://www.netscape.com), there is still room for more. Recently a site called [Deals.com](http://www.deals.com) launched which is just like Digg, but for finding deals.
I recently did an [interview](http://news.com.com/The+big+Digg+rig/2100-1025_3-6140293.html) with Elinor Mills from C|Net on [Digg spam](http://bokardo.com/archives/yes-virginia-there-is-spam-on-digg/) and noticed that the article contained a lot of inaccurate information. She quoted me as saying
Neil and I are both leaving very early in the morning for SES Chicago. We’ll be meeting up at the Chicago airport around noon and then heading over to the Hilton where we’ll be staying for the rest of the week. Neil is speaking on the Social Media Optimization panel and I will be speaking on Linkbait & Viral Search Success. Both of our sessions are on Wednesday. Beside that we plan on hanging around during the day and catching a few sessions here and there. In the evenings we can probably be found at the parties or the hotel bar. Hope to see you all there.
Widgets have been a hot topic lately and it seems more and more companies are getting into it due to their effect on website traffic and brand recognition. Although widgets sound like a great thing for everyone to have, the problem with them is that not everyone has the technical know how to create them. Because of this a company called [MuseStorm](http://www.musestorm.com/) recently launched into private beta looking to solve this pain for publishers.
Fear appeal is something that marketers have been using for centuries. When you want people to buy a product you don’t always have to tell them all the benefits of using it, but instead you can show them what will happen if they don’t use the product. If you scare people enough they will remember your product and buy it.
Spamming on Digg has been getting a lot of attention lately because of [URLs getting banned](http://www.pronetadvertising.com/articles/how-not-to-get-your-url-banned-from-digg.html) and [bad stories](http://www.niallkennedy.com/blog/archives/2006/11/spam-farms-social-web.html) making the homepage, but no one is really talking about spam on Netscape. In the last month or two Netscape released a friends page similar to [Digg’s](http://digg.com/users/kevinrose/friends/submitted) where you can see what all of your friends submitted which allows you to vote on those stories with ease. This clearly opens up the door for spammers.
In the past few months it seems that more and more bloggers have been placing the [MyBlogLog widget](http://www.mybloglog.com/) on their blog so they can see who is coming to their blog. The concept of MyBlogLog(ging) is becoming popular and some have gone even as far as [writing guides](http://qureyoon.blogspot.com/2006/11/complete-guide-to-mybloglogging.html) on how to use it. So why is MyBlogLogging catching on like a wildfire?
A few weeks ago Mike Stopforth mentioned in an article that one of his goals before he dies is to drive an Aston Martin. Aston Martin, who was obviously tracking their buzz, saw this and sent Mike an email offering him a day with an Aston Martin. Now, Mike and all the other people that saw this story that are interested in exotic automobiles are now evangelists for life. Aston Martin did not have to do this, as Mike was already an evangelist. But they did and in the process created a little buzz for themselves and also possibly won over a few new customers, or at least future customers.
One good thing that is coming from social media is that it is pushing companies to treat consumers with a higher level of respect. Days when companies can lie to us, cheat us, treat us like crap, or get away with creating crappy products are gone. A few examples we have seen lately include the infamous AOL customer service call and the Comcast technician falling asleep at a customer’s house. Companies that continue to allow these things to spread through social media without managing them will clearly be caught and hung out to dry.
A lot of bloggers feel that the key to increasing their traffic is to get on the Digg front page as often as they can. Most of these bloggers do so by scooping news, writing how to guides or even top 10 lists, but most don’t realize that you have to be careful or else your URL will get banned from Digg.
Links play an important role in search engine rankings which is why webmasters go to great extents to obtain them. Most people think that if you want millions of backward links you have to have a large brand such as [Amazon](http://www.amazon.com), but there are small companies who actually have more back links according to Google, then even Google.com.
Howard Stern is the self-proclaimed “King of all Media.” His radio show reaches tens of millions of people, and has a very strong presence on Comcast’s OnDemand. With this kind on influence, his fitting, yet egotistical tagline makes a lot of sense. Never has it been more true than a few days ago, in his interview with [Heidi Cortez](http://www.myspace.com/heidicortez).
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone from all of us here at Pronet Advertising. We especially want to say thanks to all our readers because without you we wouldn’t be where we are today. We also want to say thanks to all of our families, friends, and colleagues.
Although URLs play an important role for search engine optimization, they also play an important role in [social bookmarking](http://neothoughts.com/2006/08/15/urls-matter-in-social-bookmarking/). One of the most important factors to maximizing your exposure on [del.icio.us](http://del.icio.us) and other social bookmarking sites is the URL of a website.
There has been a great deal of interest in the psychology of customer loyalty and its implications on market strategy. Across industries, loyal customers are seen as a metaphorical “gold mine” and are an essential component of long-term success.
I’m proud to welcome [Ryan Fujiu](http://www.calwineries.com/profile/maverick) to our blogging team at Pronet Advertising. Ryan has been working with [ACS](http://www.acsseo.com) for some time now developing [Calwineries](http://www.calwineries.com/); a social network built around California Wine. Although relatively unknown in the Internet community, he understands how online marketing works.
These days it seems like new social networking websites are popping up like it’s going out of style. The main problem with this is that most of them are being created in the hopes of making the owners rich instead of building a thriving community. Here are the main reasons why most of them fail, and how they might be able to avoid failure:
Last week at [Pubcon](http://www.pubcon.com) I had a discussion with someone on backward links and their importance. His view point was that backward links where only useful for search engine rankings. He also claimed that the context of the links does not matter. I also think links are very beneficial when it comes to search engines, but there is a lot more that can be discovered by analyzing your backward links. Here’s why:
Michael Jordan, David Beckham, and Terrell Owens are all famous athletes that people look up to. If they wear a specific shirt, drink a specific soft drink or even drive a certain car everyone will copy them. No matter what they do people will mimic them in the hopes of looking cool. Because of this, athletes are commonly used in advertisements.
Last week [Text Link Ads](http://www.text-link-ads.com) launched a service called [ReviewMe](http://www.reviewme.com) which competes with [PayPerPost](http://www.payperpost.com). I am not sure how successful ReviewMe will be but their marketing plan has been pretty effective at creating a lot of buzz.