Tag Archives: facebook

Google Plus – Is the Third Time the Charm?

15 Jul

Google+Rumors have been swirling for more than a year about Google’s new social network to rival Facebook or Twitter. No, it wasn’t Orkut (the social network Google bought that is still surprisingly popular in Brazil, Google Wave or even Google Buzz. A couple weeks ago, Google finally unveiled Google+ (or Google Plus – there doesn’t seem to be consensus yet) to a relatively small network of social media and tech industry insiders and influencers. I was lucky enough to get an invitation from a friend before Google turned invites off and I’ve been able to test out Google+ (I’ll refer to it as G+ from here on) for a couple weeks now and I wanted to give my thoughts on the new network.

Google's +1 ButtonFirst things first: The Plus-1 Button

About a month ago, Google unveiled their +1 button in what seemed like an attempt to compete with Facebook’s ubiquitous Like button. I quickly added the +1 button to several blogs I manage so we could start taking advantage of people starting to use the +1 button. Google first launched +1 as a way to ‘bookmark’  search results that you’ve found helpful. For example, if I search for a Chinese restaurant in Indianapolis and one of my favorites comes up in the list, I can +1 it and it will come up at the top of the list next time I search for a Chinese restaurant in town. Pretty helpful stuff. Now, with the release of G+, the +1 becomes even more useful. Before G+ there wasn’t a way to catalog all the things you +1′ed (search results, blog posts, websites, etc.), but within G+, there’s a +1 tab on your profile page so you can go back through everything you’ve +1′ed in the past – making it a better place to store true bookmarks and pages you’d like to return to than simply liking a site/post/etc. through Facebook (since there’s no ultimate catalog of the things you’ve liked outside of Facebook.com).


Google Plus: Circles

Circles are the foundation that G+ was built upon. While you can add friends to different lists within Facebook, it’s a feature that was added to Facebook after many people joined, so there isn’t a great adoption rate for the lists feature within Facebook.

G+: Add to Circle

Instead of friending people like you do on Facebook or just following them like on Twitter, you add people to your circles in G+. Unlike Facebook, you can add people to your circles without them having to add you back, but unlike Twitter, by clicking on the Incoming portion of your stream (which I’ll get to later) you can see the posts of people who have added you to their circles that aren’t yet a part of your own circles.

In addition to a simple drag and drop feature for adding people to different groups, Google also has a suggested users section to the right of your stream where you can hover over Add to Circles and easily add people to your circles.

You can also easily view content from and share content with specific circles very easily with G+. Say you want to share some photos with just people in your Family circle, it’s simple to do. If you want to share a link to an article with friends from work or share a photo with friends from college, you can do that as well.


Subscribers, Fans and Followers: Mobile Dependence Day

29 Jun

ExactTarget - Subscribers, Fans and Followers ResearchI just got an email today that ExactTarget just released another report in their fantastic Subscribers, Fans and Followers research series. Their ninth report is entitled Mobile Dependence Day and goes into depth about our collective dependence on our smartphones and other mobile devices. (You can see my previous reviews of the SFF research series if you want. I covered report #7 Social Mytbhusting here.) While I was reading the most recent report, I realized that I hadn’t blogged about the previous report: The Social Breakup, so this post consists of reviews of the two most recent reports as part of the Subscribers, Fans and Followers research. If you’re interested in downloading the reports for yourself, check out ET’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers page for the full reports.

Report No. 8: The Social Breakup

The eighth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series focuses on the “social breakup” – how and why consumers “break up” with brands and stop following them via Facebook, Twitter and email. You might be surprised at how much similarity there is across all channels. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Email
    • 67% of subscribers hit the unsubscribe button to end the email relationship rather than just deleting (17%), reporting as spam (8%), ignoring (6%) or setting up a filter to auto-archive the message(2%)
    • Top 3 reasons people unsubscribed from emails:
      • Too many emails from the company
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • Email overload – too many emails in general, cleaning out the clutter
  • Facebook
    • When fans no longer want information from a brand they previously “liked”, 43% of them go to the brand’s page and click “unlike, 38% click the “X” in their newsfeed to remove them from the wall and 19% just ignore the posts.
    • Top 3 reasons people “unliked” a brand on Facebook:
      • Too many posts – too much frequency can overwhelm users walls
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • They only “liked” the brand because of a promotion, discount or deal offered to fans, and “unliked” once they got what they wanted.
  • Twitter
    • Nearly half of consumers who created a Twitter account no longer use it with 52% saying they found Twitter to be pointless, 38% saying it became boring and 23% thinking that Twitter was too chaotic.
    • Top 3 reasons people stopped following a brand on Twitter:
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • Tweet stream became overloaded with marketing posts, wanted to clean up
      • Too many posts – too much frequency can overwhelm users tweet streams

Notice the striking similarity between why people unsubscribe, unlike and unfollow brands? While there are different strategies to employ for brand to get the most out of email, Facebook and Twitter, online consumers – across the board – seem to all be saying the same thing when it comes to ending their relationship with a brand’s digital initiatives: don’t talk too much and keep the content interesting.

Report No. 9: Mobile Dependence Day

The ninth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series really focuses on our increasing dependence on our smartphones and other mobile devices. Even within the past year, the share of US consumers with smartphones (as opposed to feature phones) has grown dramatically. Here are some of the high points about what it means for interactive marketers:

  • 89% of US consumers 15+ own a cell phone. 41% of those have smartphones
    • Android: 33%
    • iPhone: 25%
    • Blackberry: 19%
    • Other: 23%
  • Smartphone’s Big 5 (the five most frequently used functions on today’s smartphones):
    • Phone Calls
    • Texting
    • Email
    • Internet
    • Facebook
  • How important is the smartphone to people who own and use one? Here is the percentage of people who would (if forced to choose) rather keep their smartphone than the following items:
    • Game Console: 72%
    • Dishwasher: 46%
    • Laptop: 40%
    • Microwave: 34%
    • Refrigerator: 13%
    • Car: 8%

The rest of the report gives recommendations of ways you can integrate your marketing efforts across all three communications channels and is definitely worth a read.

Have you looked through ExactTarget’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers series? What do you think about their findings?

Interview: Douglas Karr of DK New Media

24 Mar

DK New Media logo

Welcome to our series of interviews with local (and sometimes national) leaders in the social media and technology industry that will be featured on Social Mediarology. Today’s interview is with Douglas Karr of  DK New Media, an Indianapolis-based, globally-focused new media agency.



Douglas Karr – DK New Media

Below is Part 1 of the interview. See Part 2 at the bottom of the post.

Douglas Karr HeadshotAuthor of Corporate Blogging for Dummies, Chief Blogger/Founder of the Marketing Technology Blog and CEO of DK New Media. Douglas and his team specialize in performing due diligence analysis of marketing technology companies for venture capital and investment firms. DK New Media also consults on an ongoing basis with large companies who wish to leverage online strategies to build inbound marketing efforts using search and social media.

Can you tell me a little about yourself and DK New Media?

I’m Douglas Karr, author of Corporate Blogging for Dummies, and I helped start up Compendium (Indianapolis-based corporate blogging company). I’ve been blogging for a long time on the Marketing Technology Blog – I think I’ve been blogging for about six years now – and have a tremendous following on the blog. We get around 40,000 unique visitors a month on the blog and it’s a very centered demographic. The core of the visitors are CMOs and directors of marketing.

DK New Media is the agency that I built up. I had done email work at ExactTarget and blogging work at Compendium  and started doing a lot with SEO and pay-per-click and all of these other vehicles and what we saw was there was a gap in the industry as far as people who understood how to put all the pieces together and conduct what Forrester calls an omni-channel approach to marketing. DK New Media does a lot of “outsourced CMO” work, where we’ll be your CMO-for-hire for companies that may not have many resources. For other companies like ChaCha, we’re a trusted advisor and for folks like Webtrends it’s a hybrid where we do a lot of the work, but they also have some incredible internal marketing minds.

Our job is basically to prove ROI to our clients. So what we do, more than anything else, is inbound marketing – setting up analytics properly, getting a wholesale approach and adding a piece at a time – and then always showing clients their return on investment and how to measure it. I think that’s a differentiator in the industry because a lot of people, social media consultants especially, don’t actually go for the ROI for their clients.


New Facebook Page Features

8 Mar

New Facebook Page Features

A couple weeks ago Facebook launched a redesign of Fan Pages and I’ve taken that time to go through all the new changes so I can detail some of the most important changes in this post. The new Pages redesign actually follows very closely to the changes that were made to Personal Profiles a few months ago and I think Facebook is really heading in the right direction here.

For the next few days, you can optionally switch to the new Pages format or stick with the old one, but as of mid-March, all pages will be automatically transitioned to the new Pages format, so it’s worth making the switch today.

Facebook Pages Redesign - 3/11

Facebook Pages' Photo RibbonPhoto Ribbon:

One of the most visible changes is the addition of the photo ribbon to the top of the page. Just like user accounts, pages can now feature a random assortment of their recently posted photos. A couple of details:

  • Unlike on your Personal Profile, you can’t specify the order of the photos – it just selects the 5 most recently uploaded photos to display at random.
  • You can remove photos from showing up in the ribbon – simply click on the ‘x’ in the upper right-hand corner of each individual photo.
    • Note: This won’t delete the photo from your gallery, it just makes it so it won’t show up in the photo ribbon at the top of your page.

Facebook Pages' Left-hand TabsTabs Moved to Left:

This was another big change from the way that Pages used to function; but again, it helps Pages mirror the Personal Profiles display and shouldn’t take too much getting used to. Now, instead of seeing your tabs at the top of your page, they cascade down the left-hand side. This also allows for longer custom tab names (see the image at right) and Facebook allows you have more visible tabs.

If you already had a custom landing page, everything should still work fine and users can still be defaulted to whichever page you’d like.

Facebook Pages' Use As Page OptionUse Facebook as Your Page:

This is one of the most significant upgrades to the new Facebook Pages. We actually saw a glimpse of this when Facebook accidentally rolled out the feature to all users for about an hour back in December. When you click on the link that allows you to use Facebook as your page, it literally allows you to use Facebook as your page.

This means several things:

  • Your notifications area (Facebook Page Notifications) now shows new fans added and lets you know when someone leaves a comment on your wall, or likes or comments on one of your posts.
  • You can post on other Pages as your page – very helpful if you’re want to post as your official presence on other pages – just don’t go overboard. This is the feature that has the biggest opportunity for abuse.
  • You can now “share” items from other pages onto your page. You’ve been able to do this as an individual for a long time, but now this functionality extends to Pages and is extremely helpful.
  • You now have your very own News Feed. Go around and Like different pages and they’ll all show up in your custom news feed. Just click on the Facebook logo when logged in as your Page to get to your Page’s News Feed.
  • You can also set up email notifications to be sent to you when a user likes or comments on a post on your wall.
    • This is a great feature for any Page managers who have been looking for real-time notification when their Facebook Wall gets some responses.
    • However, if you manage a Page with a large following, you could very easily become inundated by a flood of email notifications, so it’s probably only really useful as you’re beginning to grow your page.

Facebook Pages' Featured Likes OptionsFeatured Likes:

You can now feature up to 5 other pages in the Featured Likes section on the left-hand side of your page. Click on Edit Page, then go to the Featured Tab to select anywhere from 1 to 5 pages that you want to always display under the Featured Likes section. The other pages featured will randomly generate from all the pages your brand has liked.

This is a great way to feature timely pages, to highlight members of your organization or to give someone an added-value push on your Facebook page.

Move to iFrames Instead of FBML:

This is probably the most important and most technical upgrade that Facebook made with their recent Pages upgrade. I’ll go into more details about how to set up a Facebook Landing Page without using FBML in an upcoming post, but here’s the short of this change.

Several years ago Facebook developed their own simplified version of HTML called FBML (Facebook Markup Language). FBML was developed with the intention of making coding easier for people who didn’t know the first thing about coding. It enabled users to utilize a very simple block of code (see below) to do many things, including specifying which content could only be seen by fans as opposed to anyone who visited the Page.

Fans will see this content.
<fb:else>Non-fans will see this content.</fb:else>

Back in the fall, Facebook announced that they’d be getting rid of FBML in favor of a standard HTML control called iFrames. Essentially, an iFrame allows you, as the programmer, to call in an entire page – created and hosted elsewhere – to display within the iFrame. This actually allows for much more flexibility when creating customized Facebook landing pages, but it is a big departure from Facebook’s old standard of FBML.

Those are some of the biggest changes involved in the Facebook Pages redesign. How will you start using the redesigned Pages for your organization’s benefit?


How To: Create a Facebook Username

22 Oct

Facebook Logo

I’ve recently noticed that while lots of Facebook Fan Pages have created a custom username for their URL (facebook.com/VisitIndiana, for example), there are still plenty of Fan Pages out there that still use their long, cumbersome URL instead of a shortened username (facebook.com/pages/Visit-Indiana-Indiana-State-Tourism/42785429080).

With so many URL Shorteners being used today (Bit.ly, Goo.gl, etc.), it might seem like it doesn’t matter what your Facebook Page URL is,

Luckily, Facebook makes it easy to create a custom username for your personal Facebook account and your business’ Fan Page.

The only caveat is that you have to have at least 25 fans of your page before you can create a username for it. This is Facebook’s way of ensuring that people aren’t creating pages just to squat on popular names.

The video below gives you a quick walk-through to help you create your custom Facebook Username. If you can’t view the video, just click through to the full post and you’ll see text directions to create your username.


Four On Friday: Social Media Recap

15 Oct

Check out these articles to see what you may have missed this week:

1: Facebook Introduces One-Time Passwords Via Text | PC Magazine

Social Mediarology thinks: For as much flak as Facebook has received lately for their lack concern for users’ privacy, this is yet another step in the right direction. Facebook also recently released the ability to log out of other locations remotely and this One-Time Password feature is just another way Facebook really is looking out for their members. If you’ve ever felt nervous about logging into Facebook on a public computer, this is a great way to check in on Facebook without the worry.

2: Klout Now Measures Your Influence on Facebook | Mashable

Social Mediarology thinks: Klout’s influence score has become one of few widely-recognized and respected Twitter influence scores on the web today. You’ll find Klout’s scores baked into Twitter clients like HootSuite. Klout’s foray into Facebook is interesting because while finding a definitive influence score for Twitter or Facebook is nearly impossible, it seems much more difficult to do so for Facebook, where there are many more variables to take into account that for Twitter.

3: Skype 5.0 Busts Out of Beta, Integrates Facebook Friends | Engadget

Social Mediarology thinks: There have been rumors for a few weeks about the integration of Skype and Facebook and half of the equation is now solved. With the 5.0 release of Skype, Windows users can log into Skype and bring all their Facebook friends with them. Then next step will be Facebook pulling Skype into their own chat application to create Skype-enabled text, audio and video chatting. While many businesses are starting to use Skype more and more, their integration with Facebook will bring more users to Skype.

4: URL Shortener Bit.ly Now Generates QR Codes | Mashable

Social Mediarology thinks: QR codes are gaining popularity with the advent of mobile apps that can easily scan this new style of barcode. Foursquare even allows users to scan a QR code that will check them in to a location. While QR codes are still in their infancy, they are becoming more common and Bit.ly has done themselves a great service by making QR code creation so simple (just append .qr to the end of a Bit.ly URL and they’ll display your QR code. Take a picture of the one above using a QR code scanning app on your mobile phone and it’ll redirect you to SocialMediarology.com.

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