SMX Milan 2014: It’s time to give us your best pitch!

Are you working in the digital marketing space and have something interesting regarding search and/or social media marketing and communication to share? You might just be who we’re looking for. The conference program is now out, thanks in part to the many professionals who provided precious input. Take time to review it closely, then let us have your best pitch, in English or Italian.

We’re accepting speaker pitches until July 18th.

SMX Milan 2014 LogoAs you might guess, interest is high in speaking at SMX conferences. We literally sift through hundreds of submissions to select speakers for the show. Here are some tips that will increase your chances of being selected.

How To Create The Perfect Pitch

To increase the odds of being selected, first read the SMX agenda. Then, when crafting your pitch, keep these points in mind:

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Measure bowling returns to Milan on June 12, 2014

On June 12th digital analytics professionals will meet-up in 25 cities across Europe for an informal evening of chat while… bowling!

The event, Measure Bowling, was first held in London in 2011. The organizers contacted me last year to bring Measure Bowling to Italy too. I reached out to Valentina Rampado and Leonardo Bellini who agreed to help. Our first event took place in Milan last November. We were really encouraged by the response (15 attendees) and the camaraderie among attendees. Many have continued to meet-up occasionally for pizza evenings!

The night was great but you were missing! Join us on June 12th at Bowling dei Fiori in Milan for a sandwich, drink, chips/fries, coffee and 3 rounds of bowling for €16. We’ll start at 7:30 pm.

Reserve your place for the next #measurebowling.

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SMX Milan 2014 digital marketing conference: have your say!

Last November the SMX Search & Social Media conference debuted in Italy to great acclaim. I’m really pleased to say the second Milan edition is confirmed for next November 13 and 14.

I’ll continue to curate the SMX Milan program and speaker selection with the support of industry veteran Chris Sherman. But SMX Milan needs your input! Are there topics you’d like to see covered at SMX Milan? If so, now’s your chance to influence the conference program. Let me know what social media, search or related digital analytics topics you’d like to see covered.

SMX Milan 2014 LogoAll suggestions must be submitted via a form by May 22.

A call for speakers will follow the publication of the conference agenda, around mid-June.

If you want to attend SMX, note that discounted early bird tickets are available from the official conference website.

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SO YOU’VE GOT A THING FOR ALL CAPS, DO YOU?

IN MY DAY-TO-DAY WORK AS A DIGITAL COMMUNICATIONS PROFESSIONAL I OFTEN ENCOUNTER A PHENOMENON I’M NOT COMPLETELY ABLE TO GRASP: THE USE OF ALL-CAPS TO WRITE EMAILS, DESIGN MARKETING MATERIALS, FILL-OUT FORMS AND ABOUT EVERYTHING ELSE.

WHEN I WAS IN HIGH SCHOOL WE LEARNED LANGUAGE GRAMMAR, USAGE AND OF THE EXISTENCE OF STYLE MANUALS. WE KNEW, AT LEAST IN THEORY, “PROPER” CAPITALIZATION RULES. WE ALSO LEARNED THERE WERE NOTABLE EXCEPTIONS, LIKE THAT OF THE LOWERCASE LOVER, e e cummings.

BAD NETIQUETTE

TYPOGRAPHY PROFESSIONALS TELL US THAT ALL UPPER CASE TEXT IS HARD TO READ. BACK IN 1995 THE PRESTIGIOUS INTERNET ENGINEERING TASK FORCE (IETF) TOLD US THAT ALL UPPER CASE IS AKIN TO SHOUTING AND, AS SUCH, BAD NETIQUETTE.

SO WHY DO PEOPLE SO LOVE TO TYPE WITH THE CAPS LOCK KEY ON? IS IT A CULTURAL THING? UNLIKELY. PLENTY OF ITALIAN STYLE GUIDES ADMONISH READERS TO RESIST EXAGGERATING THEIR USE OF ALL-CAPS.

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Firefox browser to include advertising, diversifying Mozilla revenue sources

Firefox Logo

I suspect few are aware that besides funding the Chrome browser, Google has been the primary supporter of the Firefox browser by paying the Mozilla Foundation for searches originating within the Firefox search box.

Both parties seem to have benefited well from this arrangement, yet the Foundation has always run the risk of having “all ones eggs in one basket“. In a blog posting the Mozilla Foundation states new sponsorship opportunites will come from its Directory Tiles “start page”, the default view when a user opens Firefox unless they’ve explicitly stated a start page.

Diversifying the Foundation’s funding sources can only be a good thing as long as the advertising isn’t too intrusive. Given the browser’s open source nature, Mozilla will most likely have to provide a way for users to turn advertising off completely, otherwise Firefox browser “forks”, i.e. derivative versions, may gain traction.

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Lotus F1 Team Momentarily Goes Gay for the Olympics

Huffington Post rainbow colors on twitter

Figure 1: Huffington Post

The 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi has posed a quandary for many companies. On paper the Olympic ideal of sportsmanship bringing together people of different colors and backgrounds is too compelling to ignore. Yet Russia’s politically driven discrimination of homosexuals tarnishes that very ideal and runs the risk of incurring nasty comparisons to the 1936 games held in Nazi Germany.

Savvy brands have found many clever ways to distance themselves from Russian discrimination. Google placed rainbow colors prominently on their home page (as a side note, co-founder Sergey Brin emigrated from Russia when he was young). The Guardian colored the G in their logo. Chevrolet is running celebration of diversity tv ads. The Huffington Post applied rainbow colors to their logo on their main twitter account.

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SMX Milan 2013: Thank You!

Now that SMX Milan has closed its initial two day run, its time to thank everyone who believed in SMX Milan and made it actually happen. This includes the 50 or so speakers from across North America and Europe who generously shared their knowledge and insights. Then there are the sponsors without which the conference couldn’t have happened. Behind the scenes Paolo Di Stefano and his colleagues at Fiera Milano Media / Business International did their utmost to insure a quality conference experience for everyone. Elettra Zadra did a great job with press relations. Last, but not least, are Chris Sherman and Chris Elwell of Third Door Media who provided, among other things, much encouragement and wisdom.

As announced during the final sessions on Friday, SMX Milan will be back in 2014 – see you next year! In the meantime, and on a separate note, if you’re passionate about measurement and analysis, join other like-minded professionals at the informal measure bowling event next Thursday, November 14.

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Barilla to Gays: You’re Not Family. Social Media Outrage Ensues

The president of Italian pasta maker Barilla, Guido Barilla, has created quite a fuss in Italy by comments made about gay families during an interview on an Italian business radio talk show, The Mosquito. In discussing who is an acceptable face for Barilla pasta ads, he said

I would never run an ad with a gay family, not for lack of respect but because I don’t think like them, ours is a traditional family where the woman has a fundamental role.

Presumably he means in the kitchen. Later today he backtracked, saying:

Referring to my statement yesterday on the program “The Mosquito”, I apologize if my words generated misunderstanding or were considered polemical or hurt someone’s feelings. In the interview I just wanted to simply underline the centrality of a woman’s place in the family.

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Improve Search Engine Recognition in Google Universal Analytics

Google Analytics LogoSocial media may be all the rage, but search engines are arguably still among the best ways to attract highly qualified visitors to a website, visitors who are explicitly looking for what we’ve got to offer.

For organizations using Google’s Universal Analytics, Analytics automatically reports on merit-based™ organic search traffic from over 40 leading international and regional search engines, including Google, Bing, Yandex, Baidu and Naver. Visits from search engines recognized by Google Analytics appear in the Organic Search Traffic report (Standard Reports → Traffic Sources → Sources → Search → Organic).

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Google Analytics Default Search Engine List

Google Analytics LogoThe following table lists the default search engines recognized by Google Analytics and Universal Analytics. It represents several deletions (e.g. Altavista, Alltheweb) and additions (e.g. 360.cn, avg, babylon, comcast) from what is currently documented (although some are mentioned in a change log if you knew to look there too). The list was derived from an analysis of the Google Analytics Tracking Code (GATC) ga.js.

There is NO need to specify these search engines in the Universal Analytics Administration interface or in the traditional Google Analytics tracking code unless you wish to track each regional variant separately, e,g. google.it, google.de, google.com.au, google.com.mx etc. We’ve documented google search domains and those for bing, yahoo, yandex and ask for your convenience.

We do recommend you consider adding search engines re-branded by ISPs and search engines used in local markets to your Google Universal Analytics configuration.

Search Engine Domain Match StringSite (example)URL Query Parameter
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