Archives for posts with tag: Facebook

Facebook is constantly reinventing itself, and you can’t blame them. To stay stagnant is a death wish in an industry that changes so rapidly. That said, some of the changes benefit users and some brands. The most recent newsfeed change is one that I believe tips the scale for the user, giving them more control over what they see on Facebook.

A user will soon be able to toggle between different newsfeed streams – Photos, Friends, Most Recent, Music and Following (brand/media pages). Great customization for the user, not so great for brand pages who currently get a coveted spot between posts from friends and families. I predict that the Following newsfeed will probably be the most underused feed, because at the end of the day no matter how clever a post, it’s still from a business versus a friend.

Should brands shut down their pages quite yet? No. Brands can still actively engage with users but they must find ways to get into as many newsfeeds as possible. If they rely just on the “Follows” newsfeed they’re likely to see their engagement levels drop pretty dramatically.

Here are recommendations for staying in the “feed”:

– Include images in your posts. With the popularity of Instagram and Pinterest, it’s becoming more apparent that visual does well on social. As a brand if you post an image with your post, you can then secure a space in the Photos newsfeed.
– Post regularly. If you want to appear in the most recent news feed, you need to post. Simple enough.
– Create engaging content. Get people to engage with your content and it will appear in the Friends newsfeed.
– Consider advertising. It’s not been clearly defined yet, but from early talks it sounds as if ads will get your airtime in all newsfeeds, including the Friends newsfeed which will most likely be the most popular.

Advertisements

There’s been quite a bit of buzz about Facebook’s tweaks to EdgeRank. Are less people seeing your content? Is it all just a big scheme to get more ad dollars? Should your company jump ship to Google + where it is safe?

While we may never know the answers to all of our pressing Facebook questions, I can tell you this…If you do the basics you’ll be able to ride out any EdgeRank craziness.

Think of it in terms of weight loss, if you want to lose weight eat less calories and stay active. I know it sounds waaaay too simple, but I’ve seen it work. When it comes to Facebook you also need to do the basics to stay in the game – post regularly, post engaging content, interact with fans and buy advertising from time to time to get fans re-engaged or to draw in new fans.

In the meantime, Facebook will fumble, tweak and hopefully come up with a solution that makes both fans and brands happy. Your role as a page owner is to do the best you can to ride it out and keep fans engaged.

It seems people have been waiting for Facebook to fail for a while now. Not sure where the anger comes from, but since the social network giant has continued to grow and gain traction, the naysayers have had to remain fairly quiet…until now.

Let’s face it, the IPO hasn’t gone smoothly. Finally, some negative news! General Motors doesn’t want to advertise with them anymore? Hooray, pile it on! eMarkerter has a survey saying Facebook ads don’t influence purchase? Bring it. The LA Times said teens would rather Tweet? Perfect. Teens are the barometer of what’s cool after all.

Facebook may not be around forever, but here’s the thing. I’ve long ditched my address book, I’m horrible at remembering people’s birthdays, and I actually enjoy keeping up with the lives of people I would otherwise never stay in touch with. (I’m talking about the randoms from high school, the ex co-workers and estranged family members). Facebook still holds all my social connections. I know that if at any moment I had to reach out to someone I could and they’d eventually get the message.

Remember, you don’t have to check Facebook every day to use Facebook. Just like you wouldn’t study your address book every day. It keeps your social network in tact for when and if you need to access it. That said, a lot of people still do check it every day out of habit.

You don’t have to love Facebook, you don’t have to even like it. But you do have to admit it is useful for staying in touch with a large amount of people at one time. Until there is another network that provides a similar service, in a better way, I don’t see Facebook going away tomorrow. Even if they’ve received a bit of bad PR.

 

Pinterest recently moved into the Number 3 spot for social networks, which means a newbie like Pinterest is actually doing better than a giant like Google+. Aside from the fact that it is one of the fastest growing websites to ever hit the interwebs, why should you care?

1. The studies are still rolling in, but Pinterest does an amazing job at driving traffic back to web sites. The whole point of Pinterest is to bookmark web sites, but bookmark them in a much more visually interesting way. Whereas Facebook tends to work inside its own eco-system and Twitter tends to link to more news sites and blogs, Pinterest is there to capture more of the lifestyle links. We aren’t necessarily learning about the latest volcanic explosion as it happens, but we are able to see a really enticing recipe or cute new spring dress.

2. The visual world is becoming more important. We’ve seen that Facebook posts with images tend to perform better than text-only posts, but on Pinterest if you don’t have a good visual, you really don’t have much. Remember if you want people to be driven to your site, you have to host interesting visuals on your site. If you’re a clothing store who is constantly updating new images and styles online you are set. For the rest of us, that’s something to think about.

3. The big dogs are already jumping on board. Quite often you’ll see these new networks that never go anywhere, but Pinterest was smart enough to leverage what is already working to gain a mass quantity of users quickly. (In order to create an account you are prompted to use your Twitter or Facebook log-in which then allows you to see which of your friends/followers are also on Pinterest). You’ll also see that some companies, like Lowe’s, have begun using the “P” logo on the bottom of their ads. It’s fresh, it’s new and it’s very relevant to women in their 20s and 30s.

4. Facebook and Twitter have been very popular for a very long time, at least “long” in terms of the tech world. When you see a network explode in the way that Pinterest has, it is something to take notice. Inevitably, things are going to shift. I’m not saying Facebook is going away tomorrow by any means, but I do think Pinterest has made a big enough splash for you to think about the ways your business could leverage it.Image

Pinterest recently moved into the Number 3 spot for social networks, which means a newbie like Pinterest is actually doing better than a giant like Google+. Aside from the fact that it is one of the fastest growing websites to ever hit the interwebs, why should you care?

1. The studies are still rolling in, but Pinterest does an amazing job at driving traffic back to web sites. The whole point of Pinterest is to bookmark web sites, but bookmark them in a much more visually interesting way. Whereas Facebook tends to work inside its own eco-system and Twitter tends to link to more news sites and blogs, Pinterest is there to capture more of the lifestyle links. We aren’t necessarily learning about the latest volcanic explosion as it happens, but we are able to see a really enticing recipe or cute new spring dress.

2. The visual world is becoming more important. We’ve seen that Facebook posts with images tend to perform better than text-only posts, but on Pinterest if you don’t have a good visual, you really don’t have much. Remember if you want people to be driven to your site, you have to host interesting visuals on your site. If you’re a clothing store who is constantly updating new images and styles online you are set. For the rest of us, that’s something to think about.

3. The big dogs are already jumping on board. Quite often you’ll see these new networks that never go anywhere, but Pinterest was smart enough to leverage what is already working to gain a mass quantity of users quickly. (In order to create an account you are prompted to use your Twitter or Facebook log-in which then allows you to see which of your friends/followers are also on Pinterest). You’ll also see that some companies, like Lowe’s, have begun using the “P” logo on the bottom of their ads. It’s fresh, it’s new and it’s very relevant to women in their 20s and 30s.

4. Facebook and Twitter have been very popular for a very long time, at least “long” in terms of the tech world. When you see a network explode in the way that Pinterest has, it is something to take notice. Inevitably, things are going to shift. I’m not saying Facebook is going away tomorrow by any means, but I do think Pinterest has made a big enough splash for you to think about the ways your business could leverage it.Image

Message boards? Those are so 1990’s errr…was it early 2000’s? If I was giving advice to a client I would definitely steer them toward something more modern. Set up a Facebook page, hop on Twitter, Pin something for goodness sake. But I have a confession to make. I’ve been spending more time on Message Boards than I have any other social network lately.

Why the throwback, you may ask? I’m pregnant. Yes, it is true, and I am trolling the mommy boards on the What to Expect When You’re Expecting site like no other. At first I was just a lurker, but now I’m a poster. I’m asking questions about which stroller to buy, whether or not I need to strap my baby on to me and if so, what do I do with the other one? (Did I mention it is twins?)

I have to admit these Boards are extremely useful, and here’s why.

1. Anonymity. I don’t want to be friends with these ladies on Facebook. Maybe it’s their hormones or maybe they always skew toward the unhappy, but there are some “feisty” women on these boards. The Forum / Message Board function allows me to get what I need out of it without getting personal.

2. Common bonds. These ladies are just as obsessed/terrified/excited as me. We are all going through this new experience together. All due in July. And despite differences in personalities, political views, geography, all feeling the same aches and pains. Forums are great for bringing people together with a strong common interest.

3. Separation from my “social” social world. I’m not a big fan of posting every day about my pregnancy. I have a few photos of me pregnant but that’s only because I went on vacation and happened to be pregnant. It gets to be overload when your friends share every moment of their pregnancy, soon to be followed by every moment of their labor and new child. I’ve been on the receiving end of the newsfeed and I swore I wouldn’t do it. The forums allows me to have a place strictly for baby comments and for people who actually care about baby stuff.

4. You get to learn a new language. You know you’re a part of an intense community when you have to learn the lingo to even be a part of it. DD (Darling Daughter), MIL (Mother In Law), FTM (First Time Mom), TTC (Trying to Conceive). I could go on and on. It took me awhile but I am in. It’s kind of a barrier to entry, and inevitably some newbie will get on and actually ask what everything means. Please, you think these ladies are going to take the time to explain? You need to figure that one out. It’s a rite of passage.

5. You get to listen in. Marketers should be here. I can’t help it. Even when talking about my pepperoncini cravings I’m thinking with my marketing hat on. If I was a company in the baby products industry or even a doctor I would be listening on this board like no other. The women are constantly talking about their needs, recommending products, complaining about OB GYNs. It’s like Yelp, Urbanspoon and TripAdvisor rolled up into one for the baby industry. Trust me, you want in on this conversation.

I’m not saying abandon Facebook or Twitter by any means. What I am saying is find the online communities where your hard core consumers are having an in-depth conversation and you’ll find rich insights and feedback to be had. Maybe you can host one yourself (more tricky when they know the brand is listening) or maybe you can just be a fly on the wall, but don’t disregard this space, unless you can’t stomach all the husband bashing, odes to Taco Bell and Mother In Law rants. In which case, I completely understand.

I’m a firm believer that you should treat your Facebook and Twitter content differently. Don’t link them up. They are two different audiences and two different platforms. That’s just being lazy, no matter how much you tell yourself you’re being efficient.

My belief was confirmed as Valentine’s Day rolled around and then Mardi Gras. Something struck me as I saw brands and people posting about the various holidays – on Twitter it benefits you to join in on the conversation, while on Facebook it can hurt you to be the same.

Here’s why: If there are 30 posts referencing Valentine’s Day on Facebook your post may very well be tucked into a grouping of all the others who posted about Valentine’s Day. Facebook groups similar topics together on your newsfeed. Great for the user but for a brand trying to break through,not so much.

Twitter is totally different. If Valentine’s Day is trending because so many people are talking about it, you should leverage keywords like Valentine’s Day. People who currently don’t follow you but are searching the topic or clicking on the trending topic, will then find you.

Long story short – find ways to stand out on Facebook to get your spot in the newsfeed, and find ways to jump in on Twitter to be a part of the larger conversation and gain more exposure.

Just another reason you should really treat your Twitter and Facebook management differently.