New SEC Ruling Plays It Safe on Corporate Disclosure Via Social Media

Instituional Investor, May 2013

… Those roadblocks don’t thrill Lou Kerner, the first-ever social media equity analyst and New York based portfolio manager of the Social Internet Fund at National Asset Management, a division of National Securities.  “Broker dealers won’t let me tweet,” gripes Kerner, stressing the irony of his predicament as a social media analyst who can’t use the tools of the trade”.  “It’s great for regulators to say you can do it” he says  “But until they say, here’s how you can do it, you won’t”.

For the full text clcik here

Facebook outlook still muddled one year after IPO

By Rob Lever (AFP)

Lou Kerner, manager at The Social Internet Fund and a longtime Facebook bull, said the company is “executing quite well.”  “They’ve come up with better mobile apps that people engage with, and they have shown some ability to monetize that,” Kerner said.

In the past year, Facebook has ramped up its advertising efforts, especially for mobile, has tweaked its News Feed and launched Graph Search, a way to find postings within the network. It has also launched its own smartphone platform called Home which puts Facebook on the start screen for Android handsets.

Kerner said that as Facebook has matured, “it isn’t cool anymore” but that many people need to use it to connect with friends, brands and celebrities because of its reach.

“I invest in companies that leverage the Facebook platform and those companies are doing very well.”

To see the whole article click here

The Social Internet Conference Call Series – Social Commerce: How Social Media Is Changing The E-Commerce Landscape

Host:        Lou Kerner

When:      Thursday, May 9th, 2pm-3pm EST

Where:     Conference Call

Click here to go to the slides

Speakers:

Wade Gerten – Founder and CEO of 8th Bridge

Arnie Gullov Singh – Chief Revenue Officer of Polyvore

Stefany Moore – Senior Editor of Research for Internet Retailer

Orit Hashay Founder and CEO of Brayola,

Please join us for a conference call featuring four thought leaders on the current state and future direction of Social Commerce (i.e. the use of social networks and social tools to drive e-commerce).

On April 29th, China’s largest e-commerce company Alibaba paid $586 million for an 18 percent stake in Weibo, the Twitter of China, becoming just the latest indication of the growing importance of social media in driving e-commerce.  Walmart leads all retailers with more than 28 million Facebook Fans, and Whole Foods Markets leads all retailers with 3.4 million Twitter followers.  But are all those fans and followers leading to sales?  Is Pinterest driving sales?  How are social tools being successfully integrated in to websites?   How well are Amazon, Walmart and Target leveraging social, and what can they learn from sites like Fab.com and Petflow (the #1 and #2 companies on Internet Retailers Social Commerce 300).
Each of our speakers is looking at Social Commerce from a different perspective, and they are each awash in data about what’s working and what’s not working, and who is winning and losing and why. Each of our speakers will be presenting for 10-12 minutes, which will be followed by Q&A from the audience.

Speaker Bios 

Wade Gerten, Founder and CEO of 8thBridge, a social commerce pioneer that helps brands create social shopping experiences on their websites and monetize social graph data. 8thBridge has been at the forefront of social commerce since completing the first ecommerce transaction on Facebook in 2009.

Arnie Gullov-Singh, Chief Revenue Officer of Polyvore  Polyvore is changing the way people discover and shop for fashion, beauty and consumer products online. Polyvore’s global community of 20 million users mixes and matches the products they love in unique, creative ways, driving sales for merchants and deep consumer insights for brands. Arnie is responsible for Polyvore’s revenue growth, overseeing strategy and operations for its social engagement and performance marketing businesses. Prior to joining Polyvore, Arnie was CEO of Adly, a leading Twitter marketing platform and EVP of Product, Technology and Operations at Fox Interactive Media.

Stefany Moore – Senior Editor of Research for Internet Retailer Stefany oversees data gathering, product development and analysis for the company’s research publications, including the Social Media 300, which ranks the leaders in Social Commerce. Stefany also writes for Internet Retailer magazine, Top500Guide.com and InternetRetailer.com. Previously, she has covered renewable energy, the industrial construction industry, the police beat for The Boston Globe and national politics for United Press International. She has a B.S. in journalism from Boston University and lives in Chicago.

Orit Hashay Founder and CEO of Brayola a personal bra discovery engine that enables women to find their own perfect bras without “having a fit”.  Orit is a serial entrepreneur. She was a co-founder of Ramkol, Israel’s leading local reviews site, and mit4mit, Israel’s second most popular consumer wedding services reviews site. She has over 10 years experience of software development, business development and consulting experience.  Orit is also a former investment manager, having worked at Carmel Ventures (a leading Israeli VC).  Orit made the top 50 Most influential women list by the Globes Israel 2012 and was picked for the top 100 Girls in Tech throughout Europe by Girls in Tech Network  2012.

Facebook ‘Isn’t Cool,’ and That’s Actually OK

“Facebook isn’t cool,” said Lou Kerner, founder of the Social Internet Fund. “It’s like that old Yogi Berra line about a restaurant, ‘Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded.’ ”

But that doesn’t trouble Kerner. “The water company isn’t cool, but a lot of people I know get a lot of water from the water company,” he said. “Not because it’s cool but because it gives utility. And Facebook is the one place on the planet where everybody is connected.”

The full story at CNBC can be found by clicking here

Netflix nudges closer to Facebook

March 15, 2013 – By Thad Rueter, InternetRetailer.com

…Lou Kerner, managing partner of The Social Internet Fund, which invests in social and mobile companies, says the service will make the Netflix experience “much richer and engaging” for consumers. But, he adds, “unfortunately for Facebook, the default experience on Netflix does not share your (information) to Facebook, unlike other apps like (online music service) Spotify. While Netflix users can change the defaults, few are likely to.”

The full story at Internet Retailer can be found by clicking here

The Social Internet Conference Call Series – Facebook Fatigue – Fact or Fiction?

Host:        Lou Kerner

When:      Thursday, March 14, 2pm-3pm EST

Where:     Conference Call

Click here to go to the slides

Please join us for a conference call featuring four thought leaders on the current state and future direction of Facebook.

A search for “Facebook Fatigue” on Google yields 48 million results, and Google Trends shows that the search term has never seen more volume then has it did February 2013.  In a just released (February 5th) survey of U.S. adults 18+ by the Pew Research Center, 34% of current Facebook users say the amount of time they are spending on Facebook has decreased over the past year, with the number jumping to 42% for those adults 18-29.  However, with comScroe recently reporting that Facebook is the #1 website in terms of total digital time spent (at 10.8%), with 83% market share of time spent on social networks, are people saying one thing, and doing another?  How much of a threat are other social networks like Twitter, Tumblr and Pinterest?  What about the new sensation, Pheed, which recently rocketed to the #1 position in terms of most downloaded social networking app on Apples’ iTunes charts.  Are marketers concerned?  What have they been experiencing in terms of engagement on Facebook?  While Facebook Fatigue has long been a concern (“Why Do We Have Facebook Fatigue” was a popular blog post by uber blogger Om Malik in July of 2007), the question feels more relevant today then ever.
Each of our speakers is looking at Facebook from a different perspective, and they are each awash in data about user opinions and marketer experiences across geographies, demographics, and devices.   By looking at trends over time, each of our speakers will bring additional context to the rapidly evolving Facebook universe and what it means for the future of Facebook and digital marketing.  Each of our speakers will be presenting for 10-12 minutes, which will be followed by Q&A from the audience.

Speaker Bios

Lee Rainie – Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project – The Pew Research Center is a non-profit, non–partisan “fact tank” that studies the social impact of the internet.  The Project has issued more than 350 reports based on its surveys that examine people’s online activities and the internet’s role in their lives.   In addition to his work at the Pew Research Center, Lee recently co-authored the Networked: The New Social Operating System, a book about the social impact of technology.  Lee has also co-authored Up for GrabsHopes and Fears, Ubiquity, Mobility, Security, and Challenges and Opportunities – a series of books about the future of the internet.  Prior to launching the Pew Internet Project, Lee was managing editor of U.S. News & World Report. He is a graduate of Harvard University and has a master’s degree in political science from Long Island University.

Rob Leathern – Founder & CEO of Optimal – Founded in early 2008, Optimal is the leading multivariate ad platform for Facebook, and the first ad tech company to be both an approved Facebook API tools vendor and have its own robust real time bidding and audience infrastructure, integrated with all major ad inventory sources. Given Optimal’s position in the center of the Facebook ad ecosystem, Rob has emerged as a thought leader with regards to Facebook and its massive ad opportunity. An early social media pioneer, Rob was one of the first 30 employees at LinkedIn where he started the advertising team. Before LinkedIn, Rob built NexTag’s display ad and media business, growing he firm to a top 5 US online advertiser in 2004.   Rob began his career as a banking analyst in New York with ING Barings/Furman Selz, then joined Jupiter Communications as an e-commerce analyst, before working at Nielsen//NetRatings as the director of commerce analytics, where he led strategic engagements for Nielsen’s financial services, retail and Internet clients.   Rob holds an AB degree in computer science and economics from Dartmouth College.

Mike Vorhaus – President, Magid Advisors – Mike founded the Magid Internet practice in 1995 working with media clients like Warner Bros., Disney, and Gannett on digital transition issues.   Magid also provides consulting services focused on strategy, investment opportunities, product development, and marketing to a number of leading Internet and gaming companies. Mike also provides advice to venture capital and private equity firms in regard to investments in the media space. Mike has also been very involved with many start-ups in the new media and technology industries. In addition, Mike has consulted on a number of film projects such as You’ve Got Mail and The Matrix, appears on CNBC and regularly writes columns for Ad Age, USA Today, Reuters and others. Mike holds a B.S. in psychology and sociology from Wesleyan University

Chris Tuff – SVP, Director of Earned and Emerging Media, 22squared – As the fifth largest independent ad agency in the U.S., 90-year-old 22squared has rapidly evolved in to one of the leading full service agency’s in the country, having been named iMedia’s coveted “Best Agency For Social.”  Chris started his career at Moxie Interactive where he was one of the first marketers to work directly with Facebook, beginning his relationship with them in 2005. At 22squared, Chris brings his 8 years of digital marketing experience and six years of social media and emerging media technologies experience to help lead the social media team in strategy and execution for it’s clients. His recent Facebook-related projects include growing Buffalo Wild Wings’ fan base from 50,000 fans to five million in just over a year, and taking Baskin‑Robbins’ fan base from 400,000 fans to 5.6 million.

 

Facebook Gets More Visual to Keep Its Users Engaged

March 7, 2013 – By Rachel Metz, MIT Technology Review

“What we’ve learned from Pinterest and Instagram is the Internet today is a really visual experience,” said Lou Kerner, managing partner of the Social Internet Fund, which invests in social and Web startups. “Making the news feed more visual—Facebook’s more following, I would say, than leading, but better late than never.”

Facebook also carried over various elements of its mobile design to the desktop version of the News Feed. This is reflected in the overall look of the main feed and in details like a little bubble that pops up to let you know there are new stories in the feed.

“It’s amazing how much more modern and clean this feels just because we’ve adapted a lot of the design principles from the phone and brought them over to the Web,” said Chris Cox, vice president of product at Facebook.

The full story at the MIT Technology Review can be found by clicking here

 

Pinterest in talks to raise funds at up to $2.5-billion valuation

February 05, 2013|By Jessica Guynn, Los Angeles Times

….Social media investor Lou Kerner says Pinterest has earned the high valuation. People across the country flock to Pinterest to pin images to virtual boards. Pinterest’s monthly unique user visits shot up to more than 28 million in December, up from 7.5 million a year earlier, according to research firm ComScore. Investors are counting on surging traffic to deliver big revenues down the line.

“Pinterest is rapidly emerging as another major social network, their niche being sharing ‘what I like,’” Kerner said. “Pinterest usage and engagement continue to grow at impressive rates. We’ve seen the other major social networks [Facebook and Twitter], both further along than Pinterest, grow to valuations of $68 billion and $9 billion, respectively. So at $2 billion or $2.5 billion, there is still lots of upside for investors.”

The full story on LATimes.com can be found by clicking here

As mudanças que Marissa Mayer já fez no Yahoo!

February 2, 2013 – Bárbara Ladeia  São Paulo Times

Especialista em empresas digitais, Lou Kerner, elogia as ações da CEO em sete meses de gestão, mas lembra que o mercado ainda espera produtos revolucionários

…Lou Kerner, americano especialista no mercado digital, fundador e gestor do The Social Internet Fund - fundo de investimentos em empresas mídias sociais e digitais, afirma que as ações recentes de Marissa têm cumprido o objetivo de “revigorar” o Yahoo!. Para ele, a mudança no site é mais uma parte deste processo de recuperação, que “será muito longo”. “Eles deverão continuar tentando novas tecnologias e, principalmente, novas abordagens para os serviços de internet.”

Uma das principais estratégias, segundo Kerner, deverá ser a simbiose do site com outras plataformas conectadas. “Eles precisam se concentrar no engajamento dos usuários, caso contrário, esse esforço não terá validade”, diz Kerner. Veja as mudanças que a gestão de Marissa Mayer trouxe para o Yahoo.

Usabilidade e mobilidade

Uma das metas da CEO do Yahoo! é transformar a empresa em uma líder do mercado de serviços para tecnologias móveis até 2015.

No entanto, Kerner afirma que Mayer ainda não mostrou nada de revolucionário nesse setor. “Todos os negócios de internet têm um ponto de atenção no mercado de tecnologias móveis e, por enquanto, Marissa não trouxe nada diferente do que o mercado já pratica”, diz.

The full story in the Sao Paolo times can be found by clicking here

The Social Internet Conference Call Series – Internet Video at the Inflection Point?

Host:        Lou Kerner

When:      Tuesday, Feb. 5, 11am-12pm EST

Where:     Conference Call

Click here to go to the slides

Please join us for a conference call featuring three thought leaders on the current state and future direction of Internet Video.

The world is experiencing the “video-ization” of the internet as publishers, brands and advertisers are actively swapping out black-and-white text with engaging, informative, and trackable videos and related video messaging, driving year-over-year growth in video advertising in 2012 approaching 50%, according to eMarketer.  In Google’s most recent earnings call, the company stated that Google’s top 100 global advertisers spent 50% more on YouTube in 2012 than the year before.  YouTube’s most watched video “Gangham Style” generated more than 1 billion video views, generating over $8 million in advertising.  On January 14th, Lexus’ live video stream from the North American International Auto Show drew over 100,000 viewers in Facebook’s newsfeed.  3G/4G connections are emerging as a powerful catalyst of mobile video growth, where leaders like Vevo are streaming more than 450 million music videos a month over mobile devices, representing year-over-year growth of more than 400%.    
Each of our speakers is looking at the online video landscape from a different perspective, and they are each awash in data about viewing habits, advertiser preferences, and publisher needs across geographies, demographics, and devices.   By looking at trends over time, each of our speakers will bring additional context to the dramatic transformation occurring in how video is presented, monetized, and consumed on the internet.  Each of our speakers will be presenting for 10-12 minutes, which will be followed by Q&A from the audience.

Speaker Bios 

Allen DeBevoise is the Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder of Machinima, Inc., the dominant video entertainment network for young males around the world. Machinima’s global network features original content, premium episodic series, fan-created gameplay videos, official content from game publishers, television networks and film studios, and over 20 original daily and weekly shows, all aimed at the coveted 13–34 year old male demographic. As the #1 entertainment network on YouTube, Machinima reaches over 262 million viewers monthly, and delivers over 2.6 billion video views a month, and growing.  Allen served on the board of directors of LowerMyBills.com and True/Slant through their respective acquisitions, and currently serves on the board of Dealer.com. He is also an active angel investor in several early stage technology and consumer internet companies.  Before Machinima, DeBevoise was President and CEO of TCI Interactive and co-founded Creative Planet, an online resource for film and television production professionals. DeBevoise was featured on The Hollywood Reporter’s “Digital Power List” and was recognized as one of Digital Media Wire’s “25 Executives to Watch.”

Dan Piech leads comScore’s video and social media measurement products and is responsible for ensuring that measurement insights support the growth and development of both the online video and social media industries. To this end, he guides comScore’s video and social products forward by harmonizing internal development efforts with external market dynamics. Dan has spoken at a variety of conferences and events, including keynoting at OMMA Global, the NAB Show, the Digiday:Video Upfront, and Streaming Media West, among others. In doing so, Dan enjoys sharing his unique insights and opinions about the online video and social media industries, as well as advice on how they can best be navigated, with rationales grounded in comScore’s trusted data.  Prior to joining comScore, Dan worked on the interactive strategy teams at McKinney and Success Communications Group and was a project manager at HG Media.  Dan holds degrees in economics and public policy and certificates in film and marketing from Duke University.

Adam Singolda is CEO and Founder of Taboola, the world’s leading content distribution and monetization platform, connecting people with content they love. Taboola serves over one billion video recommendations every day to an audience of more than 200 million monthly uniques.   As CEO, Adam oversees business strategy, execution and development while maintaining Taboola’s unique culture of quantification and innovation.  Prior to founding Taboola, Adam served as an officer in an elite mathematical unit of the Israeli National Security Agency.  Adam is an honored alum of the Israeli Defense Forces’ elite Mamram computer science training program, graduated first in his class at the Officers Academy of the IDF, and was recently named one of Israel’s top “30 under 30” business managers by TheMarker.  Adam authors a column for Mediapost on the video industry and is a regular speaker for Steaming Media, NAB, NewTeeVee, ELEVATE, Meetup, The Israel Conference, MIT (Sloan), Bloomberg West, and others.

RSVP to lkerner@namadvisorguide.com to get dial in information