Saturday, January 14, 2012

[G] Limber and flexible IT: YogaWorks goes Google

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: Limber and flexible IT: YogaWorks goes Google

Posted by Jay DeCoons, COO of YogaWorks

Editor’s note: Today’s guest blogger is Jay DeCoons, COO of YogaWorks. Renowned for its excellence in classroom instruction and teacher training, YogaWorks delivers yoga training and classes in 60 cities around the world. Learn more about other organizations that have gone Google on our community map.

At YogaWorks, we first and foremost consider ourselves to be educators of yoga. Since opening our first location in 1987, we’ve expanded our reach across the world, which means we’ve had to figure out how to effectively scale a growing organization while continuing to deliver the best training instruction possible. When we first took a look at Google Apps, we thought it would be a great cost savings tool but as we’ve discovered, Google Apps has also allowed us to easily and flexibly connect our business throughout the world.

Prior to Google Apps, we used a hosted Microsoft Exchange server. While on Exchange, we had to set a 2 gigabyte inbox quota and had difficulty achieving a simple, scalable email deployment for our staff’s mobile devices. We also had a lot of offline processes that were cluttering the operations of our studio managers and producing a lot of excess paperwork, which ran counter to our goal of running a sustainable and eco-friendly company. At the time, our IT costs were roughly $130 per user per year.

When we were evaluating Google Apps, we realized that the solution would allow us to further our green-friendly mission by reducing our overall environmental footprint and would enable us to create a truly mobile workforce with anytime, anywhere data access. We also saw the potential Google Apps held for collaboration among team members, with its unique communication and sharing capabilities.

We went Google with the help of Google Apps Authorized Reseller Dito, who assisted us in setting up Apps and training our team. With Google Apps, we’ve been able to reduce our total IT costs by over 60%. The ability to share documents and reach out to teammates quickly has boosted the morale and sense of community across our team. Mobility has also been a key gain for us, as Google Apps allows us to work seamlessly while on the go across our 24 studios and 60 cities where we hold teacher trainings. Through Google Docs, we have been able to save paper and eliminate tedious offline processes, making our day-to-day operation more environmentally-friendly and efficient.

Google Apps has helped us create a more efficient, more excited and more productive workforce, which in turn has helped us focus on what we care most about: bringing safe, compassionate and skillful teaching of yoga to all.

URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2012/01/limber-and-flexible-it-yogaworks-goes.html

[G] Congrats to King Arthur Flour

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Official Google CPG Blog: Congrats to King Arthur Flour

Congrats to CPG Company King Arthur Flour of Vermont for being featured in Ads @
Google's 2011 at a glance "on the map" feature!


URL: http://google-cpg.blogspot.com/2012/01/congrats-to-king-arthur-flour.html

[G] Imagery Update: Week of January 9th

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Google LatLong: Imagery Update: Week of January 9th


It’s a new year and what better way to usher it in than with new aerial and satellite imagery published by the Google Earth and Maps Imagery Team! In this post, we’ll explore several international features captured in this latest update.

Our first example is part of an aerial image acquired last August of the central park grounds, fountain, and wasserturm (water tower) of Mannheim, Germany. Mannheim is the city where Karl Benz built and tested the world’s first automobile.

Mannheim Water Tower, Mannheim, Germany

Our next aerial example, also acquired last August, shows the water parks of Linz, Austria, adjacent to the Danube River. The park makes up part of the "Kulturmeile" ("culture mile") that includes museums and concert halls.

Sun and water bathers, Linz, Austria

The satellite image below shows the medieval grounds and structures of one of the oldest castles in the world, the Citadel of Aleppo in Syria. The citadel sits on a large hill that has been in use since the 3rd millenium BC, and is outlined by perimeter walls and a foundation that reaches 50 meters in height.

Citadel of Aleppo, Syria

This next satellite image highlights a section of the Great Wall of China in Badaling, Yanqing County, China. This site is the most visited section of the wall, and hosted U.S. President Nixon and Vice Premier Li Xiannian during Nixon’s historic visit to China.

Section of the Great Wall of China in Badaling, Yanqing County, China

Lastly, shown below is a satellite image of the National Synchrotron Radiation Research Center, in Dong, Taiwan. Shown at bottom center is the partially built circular Taiwan Photon Source facility, due to be completed in 2013.

National Synchrotron Radiation Center, Dong, Taiwan

If you’d like to receive an email notification when the Google Earth and Maps Imagery team updates your favorite site(s), we’ve got just the tool: The Follow Your World application!

These are only a few examples of the types of features that can be seen and discovered in our latest batch of published imagery. Happy exploring!

High resolution aerial updates:
USA: Baton Rouge, LA; Brady, TX; Downieville, CA; East Bay, CA; El Paso, TX; Greenwood, MS; Greenwood, SC; Kingman AZ; Level Land, TX; Long View, TX; Lufkin, TX; Ozona, TX; Quincy, CA; Radium Springs, NM; San Angelo, TX

Austria: Innsbruck, Linz,
Germany: Augsburg, Mannheim

Countries/regions receiving high resolution satellite updates:
Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Greenland, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lesotho, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, New Zealand, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Svalbard, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, West Bank, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

These updates are now available in both Google Maps and Google Earth. For a complete picture of where we updated imagery, download this KML for viewing in Google Earth.

Posted by Eric Kolb, Geo Data Strategist
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2012/01/imagery-update-week-of-january-9th.html

Friday, January 13, 2012

[G] Beckham kicks it at Google

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Official Google Blog: Beckham kicks it at Google

International soccer phenom +David Beckham is taking off his boots and heading to Google for an exclusive live interview. Have a question you’ve been dying to personally ask Becks? Post it on Google+ with hashtag #GoogleBeckham, and maybe he’ll answer it live!

Watch the interview on Thursday, January 19 at 9am PT on youtube.com/atgoogletalks. And as an added bonus, hangout with him directly afterward on his Google+ profile at 10:30am PT. Add him to your circles now for all the latest updates.



Don’t worry if you can’t make the live interview or Google+ hangout—we’ll post them to YouTube shortly after.

So, what are you waiting for? Punt us your best questions on Google.com/+!

Posted by Andrew Schulte, Product Marketing Manager

(Cross-posted on the YouTube Blog)
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/01/beckham-kicks-it-at-google.html

[G] Beckham kicks it at Google

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YouTube Blog: Beckham kicks it at Google

Cross posted from the Official Google Blog




International soccer phenom +David Beckham is taking off his boots and heading to Google for an exclusive live interview. Have a question you’ve been dying to personally ask Becks? Post it on Google+ with hashtag #GoogleBeckham, and maybe he’ll answer it live!


Watch the interview on Thursday, January 19 at 9am PT on youtube.com/atgoogletalks. And as an added bonus, hangout with him directly afterward on his Google+ profile at 10:30am PT. Add him to your circles now for all the latest updates.





Don’t worry if you can’t make the live interview or Google+ hangout—we’ll post them to YouTube shortly after.

So, what are you waiting for? Punt us your best questions on Google.com/+!





Andrew Schulte, Google Product Marketing Manager, recently watched, "All the FreeKicks from David Beckham."  


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/1IN78FAkJJk/beckham-kicks-it-at-google.html

[G] CDC Birth Vital Statistics in BigQuery

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Google Research Blog: CDC Birth Vital Statistics in BigQuery

Posted by Dan Vanderkam, Software Engineer



Google’s BigQuery Service lets enterprises and developers crunch large-scale data sets quickly. But what if you don’t have a large-scale data set of your own?



To help the data-less masses, BigQuery offers several large, public data sets. One of these is the natality data set, which records information about live births in the United States. The data is derived from the Division of Vital Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which has collected an electronic record of birth statistics since 1969. It is one of the longest-running electronic records in existence.



Each row in this database represents a live birth. Using simple queries, you can discover fascinating trends from the last forty years.



For example, here’s the average age of women giving birth to their first child:







The average age has increased from 21.3 years in 1969 to 25.1 years in 2008. Using more complex queries, one could analyze the factors which have contributed to this increase, i.e. whether it can be explained by changing racial/ethnic composition of the population.



You can see more examples like this one on the BigQuery site.


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/gJZg/~3/LAHkUn-0Jpc/cdc-birth-vital-statistics-in-bigquery.html

[G] Making ads smart -- Adapting ads to the device

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Inside AdSense: Making ads smart -- Adapting ads to the device

As smartphones and tablets become more and more popular, your websites are being viewed on a wider variety of devices - with different screen sizes and features. We’ve recently discussed the importance of having mobile friendly sites and the best ways to monetize them, and also just released Custom Search Ads for Mobile to help you take advantage of this trend. As part of our focus on helping you monetize your content across all screen sizes, we’ll soon also be improving the way ads appear on different devices.

We’re making our text ads smarter and will soon display them differently so they perform optimally depending on where users are viewing them from: computers, tablets, or smartphones. The best part is that our ads do the right thing automatically - without any changes required to your web pages - by detecting what device your web page is being viewed from.

With this change, we’re taking advantage of the unique features of mobile devices to deliver more engaging, better-performing ads.  Since the screens are smaller, we’re reducing the number of ads per ad slot and increasing the size of the text to make them more legible and noticeable.

We’re also providing a big button on each ad to make it easy for users to select the ads using a touch screen. Here’s how the 728x90 leaderboard will appear differently on the different platforms.


Desktop


Tablet


Phone
We’re continuing to look for ways to improve ad performance for publishers, no matter what size screen your users are accessing your site from. Stay tuned to Inside AdSense for more updates.

Posted by Priya Gupta, Mobile Ads Engineering
URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2012/01/making-ads-smart-adapting-ads-to-device.html

[G] Explore your world, start here.

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Google LatLong: Explore your world, start here.


Google has always been on a mission to help organize the world’s information, and our Google Maps and Google Earth teams constantly work to apply this to place and space. A quick retrospective look at 2011 shows a number of improvements to help our users discover and experience new places around the world, both digitally and in person.

To start, we’ve continued to add new satellite and 45 degree imagery on Google Maps and Google Earth, which reached 1B downloads last year, as well as expand our imagery coverage of Street View to Belgium, business interiors, partner locations like parks and even museums with the Art Project. If you want to follow these imagery updates, we expanded Follow Your World so you can get notifications about locations that interest you.

You may have also noticed improvements to the look and feel of our maps, especially with 3D buildings across the world (e.g. Rome, Italy) and smoother transitions with the introduction of Google MapsGL. Using WebGL technology your maps experience is much better with 3D buildings, smoother transitions between imagery and the ability to instantly “swoop” into Street View without a plugin.

Providing the latest map data has also been an important goal, which is why we introduced Google Map Maker in the U.S. and Canada to reach a total of 188 countries where users have an easier way to contribute local knowledge. Up-to-date maps can also enable other organizations be more effective, such as relief and aid organizations who were able to access imagery after the earthquake and tsunami hit northern Japan, and organizations that use Google Earth Builder to build on top of our APIs.

Before and after the earthquake and tsunami.

And of course, your mobile device enables you to take Google Maps with you wherever you go. We recently made indoor maps available with a more accurate blue dot to help you orient yourself, as well as offline maps so you can still see a map area when you’re not connected. The video below shows some of the ways Google Maps can help through all parts of your journey.


In 2012, our goal is to continue making knowledge of the physical world more accessible and tailored to your needs. We want Google Maps and Google Earth to be your sidekick; making travel and exploration smarter and more efficient. Whether you want to map your excursion from point A to point B, find interesting detours along your way, or see new and foreign places, Google Maps can help you explore your world.

To learn more about some Google Maps features, check out our interactive tour at maps.google.com/starthere

Posted by Brian McClendon, VP of Engineering, Google Earth and Maps
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2012/01/explore-your-world-start-here.html

[G] Get Ready for a Grand Slam with Live Tennis on YouTube

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YouTube Blog: Get Ready for a Grand Slam with Live Tennis on YouTube

The Australian Open Series is in full swing, and tennis fans around the world can catch loads of the action this year on YouTube. Tennis Australia is making the series more accessible than ever before by offering full-length match replays, as well as loads of training footage and player interviews.

This week we’ve got live streaming from the Australian Open Qualifying Tournament, and today you can also catch the live Australian Open draw featuring tennis legend John McEnroe.

]

There will be a slew of of on-demand footage from the full Australian Open Series, including the Brisbane International , Sydney International, Hobart International and the Adelaide World Tennis Challenge. This will include match highlights, player press conferences, and perhaps — a few shirtless training sessions.

And if you are feeling nostalgic, you can recap all the Open action from the past decade through the Archive Playlist on the Australian Open YouTube channel.

Last year saw some fun moments like a dead spot in Hisense Arena and John McEnroe with his pants down, so stay tuned to see what this year will bring!

Richard North, YouTube Partner Manager, recently watched "Shaark!."


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/AIF0W3Jl4rE/get-ready-for-grand-slam-with-live.html

[G] Improvements to the Gmail offline Chrome app

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The Google Apps Blog: Improvements to the Gmail offline Chrome app

Posted by Dave Stewart, Senior Software Engineer

When we first announced Gmail offline last August, we told you that it was only the beginning of our HTML5-powered offline journey. Since then, we’ve been listening to your feedback and today, we want to let you know about some of the key updates we’ve made to the Chrome Web Store app.

The first update - and a personal favorite of the team- is the addition of a settings page (look for the new settings icon). You can now choose whether you want to synchronize 7, 14 or 31 days worth of mail. So the next time you get on an airplane, you can sit back and tackle up to 31 days of mail all while offline.


We’ve also made a number of other updates to Gmail offline:
  • Improved attachments: All attachments are now downloaded and available for offline use
  • Keyboard shortcuts support: If you have keyboard shortcuts enabled in Gmail, your setting will transfer over to the Gmail offline app. If you're not sure what you can do with keyboard shortcuts, try pressing ‘?’ next time you’re using Gmail or Gmail offline.
  • Numerous performance enhancements: Messages and attachments now download at a faster rate and some bugs have been fixed.
If you haven’t tried it already, you can install the Gmail offline app from the Chrome Web Store. If you’re already using Gmail offline, you'll see these improvements the next time you open the app. To get the best experience using Gmail offline, please make sure you are using the latest version of Chrome as some features may not work on older versions.
URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/GoogleAppsBlog/~3/N6vpMIFxGfY/improvements-to-gmail-offline-chrome.html

[G] Improvements to the Gmail offline Chrome app

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Official Gmail Blog: Improvements to the Gmail offline Chrome app

Posted by Dave Stewart, Senior Software Engineer

When we first announced Gmail offline last August, we told you that it was only the beginning of our HTML5-powered offline journey. Since then, we’ve been listening to your feedback and today, we want to let you know about some of the key updates we’ve made to the Chrome Web Store app.

The first update - and a personal favorite of the team- is the addition of a settings page (look for the new settings icon). You can now choose whether you want to synchronize 7, 14 or 31 days worth of mail. So the next time you get on an airplane, you can sit back and tackle up to 31 days of mail all while offline.


We’ve also made a number of other updates to Gmail offline:
  • Improved attachments: All attachments are now downloaded and available for offline use
  • Keyboard shortcuts support: If you have keyboard shortcuts enabled in Gmail, your setting will transfer over to the Gmail offline app. If you're not sure what you can do with keyboard shortcuts, try pressing ‘?’ next time you’re using Gmail or Gmail offline.
  • Numerous performance enhancements: Messages and attachments now download at a faster rate and some bugs have been fixed.
If you haven’t tried it already, you can install the Gmail offline app from the Chrome Web Store. If you’re already using Gmail offline, you'll see these improvements the next time you open the app. To get the best experience using Gmail offline, please make sure you are using the latest version of Chrome as some features may not work on older versions.
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2012/01/improvements-to-gmail-offline-chrome.html

[G] Ask your question in the 2012 Google Science Fair

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Official Google Blog: Ask your question in the 2012 Google Science Fair

Are human beings born curious, or can curiosity be nurtured through environment, competition or a good teacher? Everyone’s got a question—that’s ours. But we’re sure you’ve got tons of questions, too. Today, we’re inviting students around the world to pose their most pressing questions about the world around them and answer those questions through scientific inquiry.

Along with our partners CERN, The LEGO Group, National Geographic and Scientific American, today we’re launching the second annual Google Science Fair, the largest online science competition in the world, open globally to students ages 13-18. Either individually or in teams of up to three people, students pose a question, develop a hypothesis and conduct science experiments to test it. The entire process is detailed and submitted online, via a website template participants fill out themselves, so all you need to participate is curiosity, an Internet connection and a browser.



Last year, we received entries that strove to solve a wide variety of needs, from “How can I cure cancer?” to “Can I teach a robot to learn English?” to “Can I build a faster sailboat?” The breadth and depth of these projects was incredibly impressive, and this year we hope to see even more entries from the next generation of brilliant young scientists.

This year’s fair will be even more global than the last: We’re now accepting submissions in 13 languages (Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Spanish and Russia). We will also be recognizing 90 regional finalists (30 from the Americas, 30 from the Asia Pacific and 30 from Europe/Middle East/Africa). From these 90, to be announced in May, our judges will select the top 15 finalists, who will be flown to Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. for our live Google Science Fair final event on July 23, 2012. At the finals, a panel of distinguished international judges (like Vint Cerf, Sylvia Earle and Nobel Laureates David Gross and Ada Yonath) will select top winners in each age category (13-14, 15-16, 17-18).

We’re also introducing a new category for this year’s competition—the Scientific American Science in Action award. We were so inspired by 2011 finalist Harine Ravichandran’s project, which attempted to solve energy surges in rural villages, that we decided to recognize an outstanding project that addresses a social, environmental or health need to make a difference in the lives of a group or community, as Harine’s project did for her grandparents’ village in India. The winner will also be flown to Mountain View for the finalist event in July.

The Google Science Fair opens today, January 12, worldwide, and we’ll accept submissions until Sunday, April 1 at 11:59pm GMT (or 6:59pm ET/3:59pm PT). In addition to satisfying your curious mind, your brilliant project can also help to win you some pretty cool prizes, like a $50,000 college scholarship from Google, a 10-day trip to the Galapagos Islands with a National Geographic Explorer or an internship at Google or any one of our partners. Our Scientific American Science in Action award winner will earn $50,000 and year-long mentorship to make their project goal a reality.

The winners of last year’s inaugural Google Science Fair became something like scientific rock stars. Shree Bose, Naomi Shah and Lauren Hodge met with President Obama, were invited to speak at big events like TEDx Women and were featured in Wired magazine. Shree, our grand prize winner, was named one of Glamour magazine’s 21 Amazing Young Women of the Year. White House visits and Glamour aside, every student in the Google Science Fair has the chance to do hands-on research that can truly change the world.

Visit google.com/sciencefair and ask your most burning questions at the top of your voice for the world to hear. Google itself was founded through experimentation and with the Google Science Fair, we hope to inspire scientific exploration among the next generation of scientists and engineers, celebrate scientific talent, create scientific role models and unite students around the world in the quest for learning.

Posted by Cristin Frodella, Google Education Team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/01/ask-your-question-in-2012-google.html

[G] The AdSense in Your City team is kicking off our 2012 US tour

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Inside AdSense: The AdSense in Your City team is kicking off our 2012 US tour

The AdSense in Your City team is preparing for our first series of North America events in 2012. We’re excited to hit the road and meet with more publishers across the country. At the events, we’ll focus on how to maximize your AdSense revenue, introduce our free DoubleClick for Publishers Small Business product and offer suggestions for monetizing your mobile pages. We’ll also meet with each attendee to review your websites and offer customized AdSense solutions.

Many publishers have found the events to be great ways to meet and connect with other local publishers.

“I traveled hours to attend this event and found it well worth it. The presentation was great and the 1-on-1 session was invaluable. Also, networking with other content publishers at the event added even more value to the experience. A must attend for anyone looking to optimize their websites and increase AdSense revenue.”
    -Craig, AdSense in Your City attendee, California

Attendance is limited, so sign up quickly for one of the following events:

Portland, OR - Wednesday, January 18th
Victoria, BC - Thursday, January 19th
New Orleans, LA - Thursday, February 2nd
Albuquerque, NM - Tuesday, February 28th

Once you register, event details will be sent to you prior to the event. We look forward to meeting you soon!

Posted by Courtney Yamada, AdSense in Your City team



URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2012/01/adsense-in-your-city-team-is-kicking.html

[G] A look ahead at measurement in 2012

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Google Analytics Blog: A look ahead at measurement in 2012

In 2011, we saw marketing follow the consumer to more screens and more platforms - from apps to mobile sites to social networks to tablets. And in response the analytics industry made strides to unify this complex picture for marketers through device and platform specific analytics, and to connect the dots to measure and value the multi-channel customer path.



With the help of mobile devices and the Internet, consumers also flocked online to fill their shopping carts in 2011. According to aggregate numbers from websites opting in to share their data with Google, there was a 63% jump in the monthly volume of online transactions from December 2010 to December 2011, and on average, the number of ecommerce transactions grew about 1.2% every week in 2011. Last year it became more important than ever for businesses to make sure their online presence and digital campaigns were in check, and that they were measuring what matters.



As we turn the page on 2011, here are our thoughts on what’s in store for the industry in 2012:



Mobile shines on the mainstage

It’s been said that 2011 was the year that mobile turned a corner, and consumers armed with their smartphones show no sign of turning back. In fact, aggregate numbers from websites opting to share their data with Google show us that in the last four months of 2011, weekly volume of mobile visits jumped 40%, with mobile traffic growing at an average of 2% every week. And the weekly share of mobile transactions on overall ecommerce grew 60% in the same timeframe.



In 2012, marketers should expect improved tools to measure engagement on mobile-optimized sites and effectiveness of mobile ads that will help them determine what platforms and formats help them catch consumers on the go.



Measuring social media ROI becomes a reality

Social media has changed the way we shop and interact with brands, but marketers still lack a clear way to measure how their social investments lead to more sales. According to MarketingSherpa, only 20% of CMOs think social media marketing produces measurable ROI, while 62% consider it to be a promising tactic that will eventually yield ROI.



In 2012, better measurement tools will help marketers make smarter decisions about their investments in social. Vanity counters, such as friend counts and reshares, will be augmented with bottom line metrics like conversions and purchases, allowing marketers to measure true social ROI of each campaign and compare the effectiveness with other channels. With additional visibility into off-site activity, enhanced campaign tracking and referral analytics, 2012 is the year that social analytics comes to life. 



Moving beyond conversions to a cohesive view of the customer

In 2012, the analytics industry will move towards bringing the disparate pieces of customer insight together into one cohesive view of the customer. How are your search, display, mobile and email marketing campaigns working together over time to bring a customer to purchase? And once they make that purchase, what can their continued interactions with your brand - both online and offline - tell you about their lifetime value as a customer? Marketers will move beyond individual conversions to make smarter decisions once they understand the entire picture of their customer over time, and we see that picture coming into focus this year.



Right ad, right time - applying analytics in real time

With real time data feeding into remarketing, ad content optimization, and real time bidding systems, advertisers are closer than ever to finding the right customer with the right ad at the right time. As these real time systems converge, there’s huge potential to integrate analytics to pull in deeper and richer information about user intent.



For example, if people who come into the site for more than 10 minutes and watch at least 3 product videos are the high ROI sweet spot customer segment for an online retailer, any such users browsing then abandoning the shopping cart page are great candidates for remarketing. Knowing the likelihood to convert as well as the potential ROI from a sale, advertisers can program these variables into the bid they are willing to pay for showing this customer their ad.



Data will become more actionable

We’ve always believed that businesses make smarter decisions when they have the right data at their fingertips, but the real impact of analytics will be seen when we make the jump from mere reporting to more actionable tools. While full scale experimentation is still complex, controlled experimentation is something that every marketer should take advantage of, from site optimization to attribution modeling. Marketers are asking for sophisticated yet easy to use tools that help them make sense of the data, and ultimately make more dollars - and I think the industry will respond this year.



We’ve only scratched the surface in helping marketers better measure the effectiveness of their campaigns, and as marketing continues to evolve, so will our efforts to make it more measurable and actionable. This year is sure to be an exciting one, so happy measuring!



Posted by Amy Chang, Director of Product Management


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/tRaA/~3/0zMM67duIXY/look-ahead-at-measurement-in-2012.html

Thursday, January 12, 2012

[G] Engage with your readers through threaded commenting

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Blogger Buzz: Engage with your readers through threaded commenting

You may have noticed that we’ve rolled out a number of improvements to Blogger recently. The folks over at Technorati referred to it as a “rampage”. Call it what you like, we’re definitely having fun giving Blogger the makeover it’s long deserved, and we appreciate all the positive feedback we received at the recent BlogWorld expo.

If you follow us on our Buzz blog, you’re aware that we publish surveys from time to time. They are one of several methods that we use to collect your feedback about what we can do to make your blogging experience better. A top request on the wishlist is improving Blogger’s commenting system, so we’re happy to announce that we’ve done just that.

Blogger now supports threaded commenting, which means that it is now much easier to differentiate between whether someone is making a general comment on the thread, or responding to another comment on the thread.


What do you have to do to enable this on your blog? Nothing! If you have Blogger’s commenting feature enabled, “Blog Feed” set to “Full”, and are using “Embedded” comments, then you’re ready to start a discussion with your readers. To check, or change your feed settings, select: “Settings > Other >, and then “Full” from the “Allow Blog Feed” dropdown:


To check your current form setting, select: “Settings > Posts and Comments, and select “Embedded” from the “Comment Location” dropdown:


Visit the Blogger Help Center for additional information.

Happy blogging!

Posted by Pat Coleman, Software Engineer
URL: http://buzz.blogger.com/2012/01/engage-with-your-readers-through.html

[G] BBVA banks on Google Apps

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: BBVA banks on Google Apps

Posted by José Olalla, CIO at BBVA

Editors note: Today, our guest blogger is José Olalla (@PepeOlalla), CIO at BBVA. BBVA is one of the largest financial institutions in the world who today have announced they are adopting Google Apps for Business to increase productivity and drive innovation.

BBVA is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in Spain in 1857. We now have over 110,000 employees in more than 30 countries across the world.

At BBVA we see technology as a key sustainable competitive advantage, and staying at the forefront of technology and business practices is key to our success. Today we’ve announced that we’re migrating our business to Google Apps to increase efficiency and to help our teams to collaborate more easily, regardless of location.

We were looking for a technology that would transform our business operations - not just make our workers more efficient. Integrating the Google Apps for Business suite with our own tools will allow us to introduce a new way of working where employees have access to all the information they need with just one click, no matter where they are or what kind of device they use, and can reap the benefits of using advanced collaboration tools.

We will migrate our old email systems to the cloud with Gmail. Google Talk, Google Sites and Google Docs will allow our teams to communicate and share ideas more easily - working in a way that they have never experienced before.

With Google Docs, for example, we’re excited about the real-time collaboration benefits - and we expect to increase productivity by removing the need to constantly update different versions of a document. We are developing our new global intranet (we call it High Performance Desktop) taking advantage of Google’s collaboration tools, changing it from a corporate communications and process management site to a place where all employees will be able to share, contribute and manage knowledge globally.

The roll-out of Google Apps will be staggered, with more than 35,000 BBVA workers in Spain initially using the Google Apps productivity tools. By the end of 2012 we expect to have migrated 110,000 employees across our global network.
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2012/01/bbva-banks-on-google-apps.html

[G] The City of Lewisville has gone Google

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: The City of Lewisville has gone Google

Posted by Jason Kirkland, Technology Projects Manager, City of Lewisville

Editors note: Today our guest blogger is Jason Kirkland, Technology Projects Manager for the City of Lewisville, Texas. Jason is recognized by Google as a Government Transformer for his innovative usage of technology to improve information sharing among city staff.

As part of the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, the City of Lewisville in Texas offers a small community atmosphere with all of the urban amenities. We are always looking for ways to improve our community and the lives of the people who call Lewisville home.

The City is constantly evaluating its IT infrastructure and services to increase efficiency and effectiveness and reduce costs. One area of focus was email and calendar which were provided to our users via Lotus Notes along with a separate Blackberry server to sync mobile devices. After a thorough analysis of cloud-based solutions from various providers, we decided to migrate to Google Apps for Government. The migration not only reduced costs in software license and server maintenance, it also brought robust functionalities for our staff to collaborate better and be more productive. Employees automatically access the most current version of Google Apps, eliminating the need for software patching and upgrades. There is no more confusion caused by the various versions of software people are using. They are also able to gain mobile access to emails, calendars, and documents from virtually anywhere with Internet access.

Google Apps is also more reliable and customizable than the other cloud solutions we evaluated. It provides API access for our developers to harness and integrate with other internal systems. I created an online GIS Map using Google Spreadsheets, Google Maps, and Google Fusion Tables that allowed us to turn a static paper map into an electronic one that is interactive and easy to use. The City is even using Google Video to store and share footage of our water and sewer systems so that we can easily access and analyze this data. For less money than what we previously paid for system maintenance alone, we get much more than just an email and calendar replacement!

Google Apps implementation partner Cloud Sherpas made our migration a smooth process. During a two-week period, we migrated all of our 644 users from Lotus Notes to Google Apps.

The examples above are few of many, and surely more will come as our city continues to use Google’s products to simplify processes from project management to police dispatch. I am honored that Google recognized me as a Government Transformer. With the right tools, my colleagues and I can collaborate and communicate more effectively and efficiently than ever before.

URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2012/01/city-of-lewisville-has-gone-google.html

[G] Think fast in the first Think Quarterly of 2012

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Official Google CPG Blog: Think fast in the first Think Quarterly of 2012

[Cross-posted with the official Google blog]

In the amount of time it takes you to read this blog post, roughly 382 Android phones will be activated, 250,000+ words will be written on Blogger and 48 hours of video will be uploaded to YouTube. The world is moving faster than ever before, bringing us instant access and split-second connections to people and information.


Speed is important in technology, but equally essential in business. Consumer expectations are rising as we learn to take speed for granted; today’s email is tomorrow’s snail mail. In our hyper-real-time world, nanoseconds matter—which means we need to question old assumptions. How will we respond to consumer expectations as the demand for instant access to everything intensifies? How will we keep pace in a world that moves at web speed?

The new Speed issue of Think Quarterly explores these questions and more. Our SVP of Engineering Urs Hölzle shares our efforts to speed up the Internet, while Astro Teller, Director of New Products, dreams about the amazing inventions these improvements will unleash. Paul Gunning, CEO of Tribal DDB, talks about the rise of real-time marketing. And journalist Jeff Jarvis wonders if we’re really that fast after all.

We hope you enjoy the issue. Let us know what you think on +Think With Google. And if you’re at CES this week, drop by our Room to Think in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center and tell us your thoughts live. We’ll also host a Google+ Hangout there with Astro Teller, author of Speed of Dreams, on Thursday at 2pm PST.

Posted by Allison Mooney, Think Quarterly Editor
URL: http://google-cpg.blogspot.com/2012/01/think-fast-in-first-think-quarterly-of.html