Twingly connects Bubbleroom and fashion bloggers

Fashion bloggers regularly link to clothes and accessories on e-commerce websites. With eTrade we offer online shops a great solution to increase the number of incoming links from blogs. Dozens of major e-commerce sites are already integrated with eTrade, and today we have the pleasure to announce one more: The Nordic fashion retailer Bubbleroom. Since this week, every Bubbleroom product page contains the Twingly widget which shows incoming links form fashion blogs (example here). Apart from the benefits for the shop, it’s an added value for its customers as well, who can get opinions on specific fashion items from fashion bloggers.

We used this occasion to ask Kaja Braendengen, project manager at Bubbleroom, a couple of questions about the importance of the fashion blogosphere for Bubbleroom. She is also the co-founder of the Norwegian fashion website/blog Modette.no, so she is really an expert on this topic.

Why did Bubbleroom choose Twingly? What are your expectations?
We chose Twingly because we want to work closer with bloggers and it’s a really great service that benefits both us and the bloggers. Our goal is to get more links from bloggers and increase the knowledge of our brand. The links we’ll get will hopefully improve our search engine visibility even more.

Kaja BraendengenHow important are blogs for your business?
The blogs and especially the fashion blogs are very important for us – bloggers today have a lot of power in the fashion business and they have a major impact on our target audience, women 15-35 years old.

What would happen if all blogs would disappear from one day to another?
That would not be good at all, and we would lose a big channel that affects what people know about Bubbleroom and which also is a big sales channel for us.

How do you encourage bloggers to link to Bubbleroom?
We have a lot of collaborations with different fashion bloggers and they often write posts about us and our products and link to our site.

How much time does the company invest into the work with social media in general and blogs in particular?
I work with both social media and blog collaborations. Every day we keep in touch with our customers and style setters through social media, it’s very important to get feedback from this channel as people are honest and direct, and we can respond quickly to their questions. I spend at least a couple of hours a day with these channels and in contact with bloggers.

In Sweden, many of the leading blogs are about fashion. Is it similar in Norway? What are the main differences between both (fashion) blogospheres?
Yes, it’s similar, all the biggest bloggers in Norway write about fashion as the main subject and that is the most popular theme. The blogospheres are quite similar is my opinion but the blog phenomenon is much bigger in Sweden.

Do you think that the impact fashion blogs have on the fashion industry and sales will increase even more in the future?
As more and more people get access to the internet, the blogs will become even more influential. Sales will depend on your visibility online so therefore it’s crucial to build loyal relationships with powerful bloggers.

Now providing API clients with 12 month of blog data

A few weeks ago we announced a few initiatives to make our blog data even better so that our API clients can get even more compelling and complete insights into the world of the blogosphere. As we put it: Our goal is to have the best blog data in Europe in terms of coverage, quality and immediacy.

Now we again have good news for our API clients: Until recently we have only had 4 month of historic data available through our Analytics API. As of now, we extend that data to a full 12 month, with no extra charge. With that change, we can provide companies and organisation with even better, more complete data.

At the same time we also upgraded our search language which will make it possible to search for single characters. Previously two character words were the shortest query. This is something that our customers have requested and we are happy to finally release these features. This upgrade will also make the data available faster. Before it took up to 15 min from finding a blog post to making it searchable in Analytics, going forward it will only take seconds.

And by the way, our goal is to make all our data starting from 2006 available through our Analytics API, so there is more to come!

For all users of Twingly.com the upgrade means that the public blog search can provide 12 month of historic data as well.

As predicted, blogging platform Posterous is shutting down

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We saw it coming, and now it is happening: Posterous, one of the first mini-/fast-blogging tools of the past years, is closing its doors on April 30. At the end of October we described how there were an increasing number of signs that suggested an upcoming shutdown. Half a year earlier Twitter announced the acquisition of Posterous. Already back then many observers saw this as a talent acquisition rather as a product or platform acquisition. With the official announcement on the Posterous blog that the team will focus 100 percent on its efforts at Twitter, this theory turns out to be true.

Even though Posterous was quite unstable and full of bugs back in October, the service didn’t provide its users with a proper backup tool. Fortunately, that has changed. All remaining Posterous users can go to https://posterous.com/#backup to access a .zip-File with all blog posts and comments. For everybody who plans to transfer their blog to WordPress, WordPress offers an internal Posterous importer. In our October post we explained how to use it in order to move all Posterous content to a WordPress blog.

The demise of Posterous does not say anything about the state of blogging. Tumblr, which launched during the same time as Posterous managed to grow exponentially and is going strong even today whereas Posterous never left its early adopter niche. An while Posterous will be history soon, a couple of new contenders such as Quora, Svtble, Medium and even LinkedIn have entered the blogging space in various ways.

Posterous lost because it couldn’t keep up with the competition. It’s probably better that Twitter finally pulls the switch instead of keeping it online while at the same time completely neglecting it.

Blogs have bigger influence on purchase decisions than Facebook has

Technorati, the famous, decade-old blog search engine and blog portal, has released its 2013 Digital Influence Report, which replaces the historical State of the Blogosphere report and deals a lot more with branding and social media marketing. You can download the full PDF here, it’s an interesting read as usual.

We want to highlight one aspect which the Technorati report uncovers and which we find quite fascinating: On page 16 Technorati published a diagram showing which online services are most and least likely to influence online purchases (in the U.S.). The top spot goes to retail sites, where the likelihood that they influence a purchase for obvious reasons is very high, 56 percent. Brand sites do also influence people’s buying behaviour with 34 percent. But close behind, with 31,1 percent, come blogs. In other words: Blogs influence purchases on the web more than Facebook (30,8 percent), YouTube (27 percent) or Twitter (only 8 percent).

That is quite an astonishing result and proves once again the power of blogs.

Technorati

Because of the relevance that blogs do have when people make purchasing decisions, the distribution of brands’ social marketing budgets doesn’t seem to follow any logic, as pointed out by Patrick Lambert on his blog. He highlights another chart from the Technorati report that shows the social budget breakdown of brands. The main share of brands’ social budget is being pumped into Facebook campaigns: 56 percent. YouTube and Twitter each get 13 percent of the total money spent on social media marketing, and only 6 percent are being put to use on blogs.

So while blogs have a bigger impact on purchasing decisions than Facebook, they only get a fraction of the brands’ advertising dollars.

That obviously doesn’t make sense, and it presents a big opportunity for all companies and brands that understand the power and relevance of blogs in the social media marketing mix.

All that means that 2013 could be the year when blogs get back into the brands’ focus. According to the statistics above, they should.

via Bisonblog

Twingly helps your organisation to launch a blog competition

From time to time some of our clients ask us whether it would be a good idea to launch a competition or sweepstakes involving blogs. Often, our answer is “yes”, since we know how much awareness about specific topics, products or initiatives can be raised through blogs. And many bloggers enjoy the occasional competition, especially if they can win attractive prizes.

Because of that, we decided to offer blog competition as a service primarily to our clients but also to other companies. If your organisation is interesting in engaging bloggers in a specific issue or campaign, we can support you in making that happen.

This is how Twingly helps you to launch a blog competition:

– Twingly creates a unique profile with your organisation’s branding on Bloggportalen.se, one of Sweden’s biggest meeting places for bloggers and blog readers, with over 118.000 registered bloggers. The profile also includes instructions for bloggers on how to participate in the competition.

– Twingly sends a newsletter to about 10.000 bloggers within the target group of the campaign, telling them about the competition.

– Twingly uses other high-traffic-channels such as the Bloggportalen.se homepage to promote the competition.

– Twingly keeps track of the participation and provides your organisation with the material you need to select the winner as well as with statistics on how the competition went.

Blog competition


One of the companies that launched a blog competition with our help is the leading Nordic e-commerce site CDON.com. The campaign asked bloggers to write a post about their favourite movie or TV show, including a link to the movie’s or show’s product page on CDON.com. The community of Twingly-owned bloggportalen.se got then the chance to vote for their favourite blog post. The winner of a gift card worth 15.000 SEK was chosen by CDON.com based on the number of votes and the movie/TV show review. The bloggers ranking on position 2 to 5 were each given a gift card worth 1.000 SEK. Here is the final top list.

Blog competitions are a great tool to spread the word about your organisation, product or issue, while at the same time giving something back to the bloggers.

In case you want to learn more about blog competitions and how to launch your own, drop us a line at sales@twingly.com! We look forward to hear from you.

“All changes should make things better”

To create great products for our users and clients, we need the best developers. Recently, two new hires have joined the Twingly development team. You already “met” Magnus Hörberg. Today, you can learn a bit about our latest addition to the team, Johan Eckerström.

Hi Johan. Please introduce yourself.
I’m a 26 year old guy originally from the Swedish town of Norrtälje, but for the last six years Linköping (where Twingly has its headquarter) has been my hometown. I still think of myself as a student, even though I quit studying and started working almost a year ago.

Why did you quit studying?
Well, I simply got tired of it and wanted to get practical experience instead. So I joined a small consulting company here in Linköping. We worked on customer specific software systems. It was great fun but I’ve always wanted to work on an in house product. So when I heard that Twingly was hiring I got excited, since Twingly has several products and great knowledge how to handle lots of data. I thought it would be a great fit.

So handling of data is your special area of interest?
Yes, I get the most satisfaction from software development when I’m building software that refines data and produces some kind of result that can help humans learn more or process more information. Writing something that can handle data in a smart way or at a scale that isn’t possible for a human is a lot more interesting than just automating simple tasks.

When did you start to become fascinated by data?
I think it all started when I learned to program a computer. I wasn’t really into computers and software until I was around 15, when I discovered Unix systems. Shortly after reading about Unix I installed OpenBSD. Once I got exposed of the Unix environment I got really interested in programming and what you can get the computer to do. From there it was a very natural step to work with data and think about what you can do with it. One of the first actual useful programs I wrote was a small manager for my digital photographies. Since I’m a very enthusiastic photographer I get loads of image files, so I needed something to analyze and sort the data. It was pretty basic and just used the EXIF data but still it helped me manage loads of files. At the university I worked on a few projects outside of the curriculum for student organisations, and I learned a lot from building those systems.

Do you still work with own projects?
I probably start a new project every week, but only a handful ever get completed during a whole year. : ) It’s mostly small tools that helps my everyday life. Like analyzing my inbox for digital receipts and summarize my costs in a spreadsheet, or an SMS service that can aggregate what the nearby restaurants menus have to offer and help me decide what to eat for lunch. I’ve stopped trying to build software for my photos since Aperture and Lightroom do such a great job helping me to manage it.

At Twingly, what tasks will you focus on?
I’m primarily a backend developer so everything behind the scenes. All members of the development team here at Twingly are working with both development and operations. One of the great benefits of working at Twingly is that the tasks are so diverse. During a work day I might be deploying new servers, make infrastructure changes for the systems and develop new features for our products. We have a lot of interesting projects planned for 2013, there will be lots of changes made to the infrastructure and to support new features for our customers.

What motivates you the most, what helps you to find the best solutions and creative ideas to solve problems?
My primary motivation is that of the end user, I want to build services that help others to do their business and simplify their workflow. All changes should make things better, and this applies to the software I write, if the solutions are small and elegant, I can more easily make changes and improve the experience for the end user. Since we are a small team it’s very easy to use different tools and find the right tool for the job. I prefer to discuss the hard problems during a cup of coffee with my peers, to find new angles to attack the problem. I get a lot of inspiration and ideas from following the developer community on GitHub, I try to read all technical articles I can get a hand on. Even if it has nothing to do with the work I’m doing right now, it always comes in handy in the future.

How will the web look like in five years? and how will that influence your work as a developer?
I hope the web will continue evolve as it has during the last five years. I sincerely wish that the standards for making web sites will keep evolving and that the browsers and tools will evolve in a coherent way, since that would make my work easier. : ) As for new services and sites, I think that the HTML5 standards will enable people to build a lot of awesome products that haven’t been possible in the past. As for my work as a developer, I will be able to build new solutions that are even more useful and easier to use. I have great hopes for the future on the web!