Blast From The Past

July 2, 2001

The first AbioCor heart, developed by AbioMed, was implanted in Robert Tools, who lived for another 151 days. The AbioCor heart differs from other artificial hearts in that it does not require wires or tubes to penetrate the skin, and therefore carries with it less risk of infection. To date, fourteen people have been given AbioCor hearts. (The AbioCor medical device also served as a plot device in the Jason Statham vehicle, Crank 2: High Voltage.)

July 5, 1996

Dolly the sheep, the first mammal to be cloned from an adult somatic cell (derived from a ewe’s udder), was born near Edinburgh, Scotland. She lived until the age of six. Dolly was named after American singer-songwriter Dolly Parton, proving that once again even brilliant scientists are basically twelve-year-old boys.

July 14, 1969

Forty years after they were first issued, the five highest-denomination dollar bills were officially withdrawn from circulation, making it far more difficult to consummate major illicit cash transactions. The $500 bill (featuring William McKinley); $1,000 (Grover Cleveland); $5,000 (James Madison); $10,000 (Salmon P. Chase); and $100,000 (Woodrow Wilson) were first issued in 1929 and last printed in 1945.

July 17, 1867

The Harvard Dental School (currently named the Harvard School of Dental Medicine), the first university-based dental school in the United States, was established in Boston in response to the nation’s growing number of teeth. —Jeremiah Budin

TURNING TO FACEBOOK

Now let’s talk about Facebook. In another article on mashable.com, Leyl Master Black writes, “Facebook presents a unique opportunity to connect with and educate your target market in a way that your website and even your blog can’t match. The trick is coming up with meaningful content that people will want to share, and that brings them back again and again.” She offers three helpful tips for B2B marketing on Facebook. (http://tinyurl.com/29utz79)

BECOME AN INDUSTRY RESOURCE

Keeping abreast of industry news can be a great way to get people within the industry interested in your company’s Facebook page. Use the industry knowledge you have at your disposal to update your page regularly.

ENGAGE THE COMMUNITY

With Facebook, Black writes, you can “engage directly with your customers and make them part of your marketing efforts.” You can ask them to talk about your product on your wall, offer rewards or discounts via Facebook, and solicit costumer references for case studies and media opportunities.

EXPAND BEYOND YOUR WALL

You can do much more than just write on your wall—you can set up a shopping tab on your page or use apps like Get Satisfaction, which allows customers to ask questions and receive support through Facebook, or Fan Appz, which allows you to offer special deals to Facebook fans.—J.B. SOCIAL MEDIA

TWITTER
ON TWEETING WELL

While many uses of Twitter are well established (seeing what friends are up to, sharing deep thoughts/jokes/what you ate for lunch), its business potential is still being explored. Todd Wasserman of mashable.com recently offered three Twitter marketing tips. (http://tinyurl.com/3lqrlhe)

USE PROMOTED TRENDS AND TWEETS

Trending Topics, displayed in list form on the right side of the Twitter homepage, signify what is being talked about the most in the Twitterverse—for example, last month “Anthony Weiner” was trending for about two weeks straight. If you want to promote your product or a specific event (without having to resign from Congress) you can simply buy a trending topic. According to Adam Bain, president of global revenue for Twitter, this strategy can yield a much higher engagement rate than more standard forms of online marketing, such as banner ads. Trending Topics and Trending Tweets typically yield engagement rate between 3% and 10% and sometimes much more.

GET A PROMOTED ACCOUNT

If you have a Promoted Account, Twitter will find potential customers for you. Wasserman writes, “With a goal to gather as many followers for a corporate account as possible, Twitter positions promoted accounts in front of users who might be interested in the brand. Twitter gauges interest by noting who said people follow and what they tweet.” For instance, if you follow a lot of athletes, Twitter might suggest that you also follow the promoted ESPN account.

HASHTAGS

Hashtags can be used to promote an event—for instance, during its Roast of Donald Trump, Comedy Central ran a #TrumpRoast hashtag across the bottom of the screen to encourage viewers to tweet about it. They can also be more open-ended, like the #ProgressIs hashtag that Audi included in its Super Bowl ad which was popular on Twitter for about a month after. #GoodLuck —J.B.

EVEN MORE SOCIAL

Be prepared for an invitation from yet another social network near you. Google debuted its “Google Plus” just before the July Fourth holiday— taking clear aim at…well, nearly everybody. In a day-one report, (tinyurl.com/5r6c68y) Engadget’s Brian Heater highlighted the Facebook-challenging “Circles” feature (allowing users to segregate friends into distinct levels of sharing, so work friends aren’t necessarily privy to tales of late-night roistering), “Sparks” RSS feeds, “Hangout” video-and-audio communications feature (aimed at Skype), and a raft of other bells and whistles.

SKYPE

Speaking of Skype: Staci Pies, part of the company’s government relations group, blogged (tinyurl.com/5w4gpa5) that the US Congress has just accepted Skype as an approved medium for conducting official business…letting lawmakers and their staffs “hold meetings with their constituents who are unable to travel to the Congressional office, participate in virtual town hall meetings when the Member is not in her District, and build relationships and collaborate more effectively with other Members on important legislative efforts.” She noted that Skype engineers had worked with House security staff to assure the application’s integrity.

MYSPACE

At the other end of the story arc, MySpace was sold (by News Corp to agency Specific Media). The price tag, according to The Daily Beast (http://tinyurl.com/6lyrq2e), was $35 million…a fraction of the $580 million Rupert Murdoch’s company paid for it six years ago. —J.B.

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