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Google Chrome: Lady Gaga. Niche Social Networks Deliver Big Results. This post originally appeared on the American Express OPEN Forum, where Mashable regularly contributes articles about leveraging social media and technology in small business.

Niche Social Networks Deliver Big Results

When small businesses contemplate a social media strategy, Facebook and Twitter get lots of attention. However, niche social networks and online communities offer additional opportunities for brands to connect with consumers in an environment that’s highly targeted and often less congested. Let’s look at how a different brands are using Instagram, Pinterest and Foodspotting to reach out to potential customers in novel ways. 1.

Instagram: “Mod” Photos Take Center Stage Instagram is a photo-sharing app that makes it easy for anyone with an iPhone to snap a photo, apply a filter and share it with friends on Instagram and other networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Tumblr. How to Hold a Google+ Hangout and Why You Should. As Google’s latest foray into social media, Google+ has brought some new tools to the digital table.

How to Hold a Google+ Hangout and Why You Should

My personal favorite is Hangouts. The 1% pro bono design program of Public Architecture - Home. Chelsea @ #NewhouseSM6. San Francisco's Alternative Online Daily News » Occupy Movement Enlists New Activists for Social Change Struggles. I visited Occupy Wall Street last week.

San Francisco's Alternative Online Daily News » Occupy Movement Enlists New Activists for Social Change Struggles

It was the day before a San Francisco federal judge upheld the United States Post Office’s claim that it can legally discriminate against the poor in delivering mail, and also the day before the Congressional Budget Office announced that “the top 1% of earners more than doubled their share of the nation’s income over the past three decades.” My visit also just preceded the New York Times/CBS News poll that found the public believing the Obama Administration favored the rich over every other group. Thanks to the Occupy movement, it now seems the media cannot talk enough about staggering U.S. income inequality. But more importantly, Occupy has gone beyond the usual suspects and given a new generation of activists a desperately needed vehicle for advancing progressive change. During my visit to Occupy Wall Street I was struck by the lack of official organizations with tables, signs etc. NBA Lockout Forces Fans to Tweet Weird Sports Reactions.

The latest NBA lockout news is definitely hopeful.

NBA Lockout Forces Fans to Tweet Weird Sports Reactions

Social Media Users In Love: Romance Update [INFOGRAPHIC] Here's why all Twitter users should tweet with accountability and without the delete button. Chelseaaures. Is Mark Zuckerberg’s New Puppy The Most Popular Pet With A Facebook Page? Www.onedaywithoutshoes.com. In 2006, TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie befriended children in a village in Argentina and saw that they didn’t have adequate shoes to protect their feet.

www.onedaywithoutshoes.com

Wanting to help, he created TOMS Shoes, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes for a child in need. One for One.® In 2011, the One for One model was expanded and TOMS Eyewear was launched. What Google+ Brand Pages Could Look Like [PICS] A few weeks ago, Mashable contacted some ad agencies and asked them to imagine how brand pages on could change in light of that platform's planned redesign.

What Google+ Brand Pages Could Look Like [PICS]

Just as Facebook was announcing its tweaks, though, Google was on track to add brand pages to Google Plus. Though it looks like that will happen any day now, the integration hasn't been announced yet. Meanwhile, a handful of brands, including Ford, are already enjoying the possibilities. There are several barriers to designing brand pages for Plus. Pinterest stands out in crowded social media field. It's bad for a tech startup when the founder wakes up to a barrage of emails saying the website crashed, or some part of it is broken.

Pinterest stands out in crowded social media field

But Ben Silbermann, the West Des Moines native and founder of social media site Pinterest, said there's something even worse: silence. Which is what greeted him when a Pinterest iPhone app went down earlier this year. "It's a hundred times worse to wake up to nothing, because no one noticed," he said, laughing. Those days are over. Time magazine called Pinterest — a website where users post collections of images of their favorite food, clothes, places and everything else — one of the five best social media sites of 2011, along with Google-Plus and Klout. Feedly. feed your mind.

Syracuse University posts on Twitter more than any other college [Infographic] Best Education Sites screenshotBest Education Sites singled out Syracuse University as the most heavy Twitter user.

Syracuse University posts on Twitter more than any other college [Infographic]

The school's official account has tweeted more than 10,000 times. Syracuse University may have slipped in their Klout ranking last month, but they're winning in at least one social media category: Twitter. Forbes posted an infographic Tuesday created by Best Education Sites that shows which U.S. colleges and universities are using the web and social media the best. It turns out @SyracuseU, the university's official Twitter account, has tweeted more than any other school in America. Their 10,800th tweet, posted Tuesday morning, said, "We got a shout out from @Forbes for being the most active University on Twitter! " According to the Best Education Sites infographic (posted below) studies have proven "increased engagement between educators and students via email and social media has a positive effect on learning.

" Facebook Friend Count Linked to Brain Structure [STUDY] All those hours you spend on Facebook may be adding grey matter, signifying greater density, to the part of your brain linked to social skills.

Facebook Friend Count Linked to Brain Structure [STUDY]

Or, perhaps, people with larger areas of the brain for social skills may just have higher than average Facebook friend counts. That's the chicken-and-egg problem researchers at University College London are grappling with after finding a connection between brain structure and Facebook activity. LinkedIn Launches "Classmates" for Alumni Networking. LinkedIn has launched Classmates, a professional networking tool that gives college graduates a high-level look at where their fellow alumni work and live, and what they do.

LinkedIn Launches "Classmates" for Alumni Networking

Classmates is designed to help LinkedIn users make and renew professional connections based on their college and university affiliations. Twitgoo. NFL symposium. Twitgoo. 13 Ways for Bloggers to Make Money with Advertising. Trends: Social Media Advertising. While social networks amass huge audiences and are the most dynamic sector in digital advertising, they tend not to bring in revenues to match. Study shows how we’ve been sharing content for the last 5 years. The social bookmarking site AddThis have released research to celebrate their 5th birthday, that shows how we've been sharing content online for the past 5 years. Introducing a 10,000 square foot QR code - The world's biggest. Linked Influence.

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Resources. Classmates. Inspiring & Funny Interview With Comedian / Actor Dane Cook on Storytelling & Social Media In AtGoogleTalks.