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Widget Marketing Runs Wild on the Web
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
It's been a while since we posted anything on widget marketing. But then we came across this great article from USA Today.com. The article begins by discussing the success that iLike has had by using widgets. Try this on for size:

In May, iLike had 3 million registered users of its music website. After its widget became available on Facebook, it ballooned to more than 10 million users on Facebook, 15 million overall. And iLike is now growing to the tune of 3 million users per month. I'd say that is a pretty successful use of widgets.

Widgets are simply pieces of embeddable code that can be found on one site, and embedded in another that can be used to promote your own site or blog. They can be things like a slideshow, calculator, or any other mini-application that users can add to their website or blog. Widgets have become popular with users of online communities as a result the business of marketing via widgets is a great way for site owners (including B2B sites) to promote their content and business. Marketers are using widgets to advertise their products and services. Earlier this month, MySpace and Facebook expanded their services for targeted ads, including widgets designed by marketers. When you think about it a widget could be anything. Check out Google Gadgets for some examples. According to reports, "As the popularity of widgets grows, so does their potential as a source of revenue. Ads on social networks are expected to haul in $1.2 billion worldwide this year and $1.9 billion in 2008, says researcher eMarketer."

According to the report from USA Today, Social networks have taken note of widget popularity:

• On Nov. 1, Google (GOOG) created a consortium of social-networking sites, including LinkedIn and Friendster, that could expand their ability to advertise. Google won't try to make money from the OpenSocial network right away but hasn't ruled out the possibility of eventually inserting ads into the applications.

• On Nov. 5, MySpace — the largest social network, with 110 million users — expanded its program for letting marketers tailor their pitches using personal details on users' profile pages. Many of those details were gleaned from widgets used by its members. More than 50 marketers have signed up, including Procter & Gamble and Taco Bell.

• On Nov. 6, Facebook unfurled new advertising initiatives. Marketers will be able to create their own profile pages. They'll also be able to target Facebook members with ads based on the details it collects about community members' likes and dislikes. That information could allow Facebook to sell ads that are potentially more effective and possibly more lucrative to the website. Coca-Cola and Blockbuster were among several dozen marketers who signed on.
It's true that there is no limit what marketers and developers can use widgets to do. If I were you, I'd be jumping on the bandwagon pretty soon.


posted by Jody @ Tuesday, November 27, 2007  
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