Social Media Newsfeed: Facebook Lookalike Audiences | Twitter Patent

By Tim Sohn 

 Click here to receive the Morning Social Media Newsfeed via email.

Facebook Officially Launches Lookalike Audiences (AllFacebook)
Lookalike Audiences, which Facebook began beta-testing last month, will launch this week as a targeting option on the social network’s power editor, allowing advertisers to reach out to potential customers with similar characteristics to their current customers. Facebook launched Custom Audiences last fall, which allowed brands to show ads to their current customers who were on the social network. Mashable As the name implies, Lookalike Audiences is a tool that alerts advertisers to similar consumers. In a blog post heralding the new feature, Facebook noted that marketers can buy Custom and Lookalike audiences in conjunction with any ad buy. The Next Web Facebook lists five ways advertising to similar customers can benefit businesses: fan acquisition, site registration, off-Facebook purchases, coupon claims and brand awareness. The company says it has been testing lookalike targeting with select businesses for a few weeks now, and the new tool “worked well” both online and offline. Inside Facebook Lookalike Audiences should be available to all Power Editor users this week. To create a Lookalike Audience, advertisers can select the “Audiences” tab from the left menu of Power Editor. MediaPost “Now with lookalike audiences, Facebook can use attributes like interests or demographics and show ads to people who share common attributes as their existing customers. Advertisers can serve any type of Facebook ad to these new groups of potential customers,” stated a Facebook blog post on Tuesday.

Twitter Scores a Patent for Twitter (CNET)
If you’re thinking about copying the way Twitter works, you might want to get a good lawyer: the technology at the core of the social network is officially patented. As first reported by The Verge, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted Twitter a patent Tuesday for what it termed a “device independent message distribution platform.” The Verge The new patent was issued with Twitter founders Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone listed as inventors, and broadly describes a messaging service in which users follow each other and sent messages don’t have specific recipients, but are rather sent and displayed to those followers by the system itself. Twitter filed for the patent in 2007, but it’s doubtful the company will pursue any litigation against competing services with it now that it’s in hand — the company has very publicly promised to only use patents defensively and last year introduced the Innovator’s Patent Agreement to codify that promise and require permission from its employees before suing offensively. The Next Web It’s interesting to note that Ev Williams, another founder of the company, is not listed on the patent. While it was random timing that the patent was issued now, it’s definitely a boom to the company as it ponders a potential IPO move sometime in the near future.

Britney Spears First to Amass 6 Million Plus Followers on Google+ (SocialTimes)
Pop singer Britney Spears became the first Google+ user to amass more than 6 million followers on the site, GPlusData shows. Spears and her pop rival Lady Gaga, the only two Google+ users to have more followers than Google CEO Larry Page, are helping the site shed its reputation for being primarily used by Google employees.

Google+ Gets Camera App to Take Quick Pics of Your Hangouts (VentureBeat)
In related Google+ news, Google doesn’t think taking a screenshot is easy enough, so it updated its social network Google+ today to include “Capture,” an app that is supposed to make it easier to take pictures of your Hangouts. Since Hangouts arrived on the scene, screenshots have been the only option for capturing funny and memorable moments.

‘Wired’ Tries to Connect the Social TV Dots (LostRemote)
In a massive story released Tuesday, Wired magazine looks at social media and its impact on the TV business. While some of the analysis leaves a bit to be desired (i.e. duplicitous Twitter followers), the bulk of the content is smart, explaining why shows that may be ratings dogs can actually be quite lucrative.

Email Warrants Proposed in Senators’ Bipartisan Reforms To ECPA Legislation (The Huffington Post)
Sens. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, introduced legislation to strengthen email privacy protections on Tuesday, giving bipartisan flavor to the push to reform the outdated Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986. Just as ECPA action heats up, however, a House hearing provided a preview of law enforcement’s objections.

Top 25 Twitter Cartoons (AllTwitter)
Here’s a little Twitter humor to get you through the day. Check out these 25 hilarious Twitter cartoons.

Amazon Launches ‘Send to Kindle’ Button for Web Publishers and WordPress Blogs (paidContent)
Amazon is now allowing publishers to add “Send to Kindle” buttons to their websites and WordPress blogs, the company announced on the Kindle blog Tuesday. It can be integrated into WordPress blogs as well. The Washington Post, Time magazine and the blog Boing Boing are already using the button.

Yelp Helps Local Businesses, Study Finds (SocialTimes)
Yelp drives an average of $8,000 in business to small businesses that have profiles on the site, according to a study conducted by the Boston Consulting Group but funded by Yelp. Businesses that advertised on the social reviews site Yelp drew an average of $23,000 in additional businesses, after spending an average of $4,200, the study found after polling 4,800 small businesses.