Category Archives: Social Media

Be A Good Social Media Listener

Social media is about more than just musing on the day’s events or staying in touch with friends and family. Social media is also about marketing. Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms open portals for effectively engaging with audiences who could turn out to be consumers.


Business-minded people are known for their ability to think things through. Yet, many entrepreneurs simply create a presence on social media that never really maximizes its potential. Posting material online creates a number of interactive advertisements. Presence does not automatically equate with impact. People looking over the content on a social media page might not really be motivated to react. A disconnect between promotional material and consumer won’t set the stage for success. Social listening, however, just might.


Social listening refers to reading what people are writing and posting on a social media page. The insights delivered by what people reveal in posts are worth a lot. Those running social media sites become far too focused on their own work they never review the responses being given. Even if they do review what others are saying, they do not fully intake the commentary. Such an oversight would be a disastrous result for any business.


Businesses will invest quite a bit of money into producing generic surveys and questionnaires. The value of these market research tools is well-established. Even though social media commentary provides much more insight into the consumer’s mind, the commentary is not always thoroughly reviewed.


When customers are speaking, listen. They have much to tell.


Facebook Moves Toward Longer Video Offerings

Facebook is looking to reward video content creators by crediting them for every view that lasts for a minimum of three seconds. This is likely another shift in Facebook’s approach to making itself a valid video platform. Between the reward system and how Facebook’s default state is to automatically play video, publishers made videos with a focus toward grabbing viewership right out of the gates. As a consequence of that approach, many publishers have noticed abysmal completion rates.


While Facebook is making changes to how its video content classifies “views,” the social media juggernaut is also modifying its News Feed to prioritize lengthier videos in order to prolong viewer retention and bolster promotion. This shift is just one tweak in Facebook’s focus shift to compete with other video streaming outlets like YouTube and even television.


Facebook also plans to play around with their courtship of long-form content by placing mid-roll advertisements within videos that are 90 seconds or more in length. This could easily serve as a message to advertisers that money will come from keeping eyeballs on lengthier clips.


In a public comment, Facebook took a stance that any video that can maintain viewership through to completion or near-completion is a compelling video. It added that while longer videos takes up more time, they will be making the change to no longer “penalize” longer videos. It ended the remarks by hinting that lengthier videos would be more likely to receive a greater degree of distribution and proliferation among users.


Will Business Kill Social Media?

In its early years, social media promised a world where anyone could publish their thoughts about anything, and the whole world could respond. As social networks have come to realize that they are for-profit businesses that must turn a profit, that promise has slowly faded into the background. According to one commentator, that made spell the end for social media.

John Biggs of TechCrunch recently reported that the shareholders of social network companies are forcing them to censor content. Justyna Kieseilewicz, an artist, recently ran a Facebook ad that featured an artistic nude image. As you might expect, Facebook banned the ad. While corporate interests prevent people from sharing freely, journalists (who have business interests of their own) make people afraid to share freely. Biggs notes that CEOs have learned to their detriment that once a thought is posted online (on Twitter, Facebook or wherever), it never disappears.

Will these factors really kill social media though? The ability to share freely is one aspect of social media that people enjoy, but it is not the only such aspect. Even if people cannot share freely, they want to share. Perhaps social networks will simply grow into a service that focuses on a narrow range of communication.

There might be technological solutions to the problems Biggs cites, too. Snapchat, for example, built its business around the fact that many people do not want their messages to exist forever. There might be room for a social network with a credible no-censorship policy.


Facebook Rolls Out New Login Security Feature

Facebook is more than just a social media site. Facebook has become the new frontier of global communications. All members have to do is log into their accounts and post messages to their many friends and followers. And the whole thing is free. Concerns do arise about the security associated with logging into a Facebook account. With so many millions upon millions of members, those with unsavory motivations may be interested in breaching accounts on the social network. Facebook understands these concerns and takes them seriously. The social media kingpin is now taking steps to employ security keys for safer logins.


Security keys employ a “two-factor authentication“, which means hackers cannot breach and account even when they have the username and password. Once word about this new feature gets out, a lot of people are sure to take advantage of it. Mysteriously, many others won’t. Then again, there may not be much of a mystery to their motivations. They simply assume nothing will happen to them.


Nobody should ever take such a lax attitude towards internet security. Hackers are always on the move looking to procure valuable information and data. Hackers truly do follow the “leave no stone unturned” mantra when performing their work. Anyone who doesn’t believe this theory should take heed of the Yahoo! hack. Over one billion accounts were compromised during that fiasco.


Security keys may not be perfect, but the added layer of protection reflects improvements. The added improvements and protections could prevent a lot of hacker-induced grief.


Facebook Ventures Into The Business Of Streaming Content

Streaming media is the wave of the future. Broadcast and cable television may both end up on the proverbial ropes in only a few short years. Facebook sees the direction things are going, which is why the social media powerhouse is planning on purchasing live and pre-recorded programming for an exclusive video feed. Facebook wants to tap into the success found in YouTube and NetFlix’s company coffers.


Facebook has a massive collection of members. Minimal video capabilities are available on the Facebook platform. Expanding the video content would be really easy. Why Facebook had not already launched such a venture is a mystery. The social media company is not really late to the game. The networks and cable channels, however, seem to have gotten a late jump with streaming content. Even though certain channels do stream content, the channels are not primarily known for such programming distribution. As a result, the maximum levels of audiences are not gained.


Facebook already has a tremendous audience. A mere announcement in the news feeds of the social network would capture the attention of millions within hours. Monetizing the video feed wouldn’t be difficult al all. Facebook is not exactly going to find attracting advertisers to the programming feeds to be difficult.


Audiences are slowly drifting away from traditional cable and broadcast television for a simple reason. A more convenient alternative exists. On-demand streaming is much more easily accessible. The audio and video quality on stream feeds is outstanding. In addition to seeing content on Facebook, look for video programming to appear on various startup websites and social media communities in the coming years. Apple is one major company to announce plans to release original programming on iTunes. Really, the march to a new platform for entertainment and informational programming is coming.


Financial Advisors are Creating Business Opportunities With Social Media

In 2016, Putnam Investments conducted a survey of 1,000 financial advisors about their sentiments on the use of social media. The survey revealed that 85 percent of financial advisors have a social media presence, and that 80 percent of them found new clients in 2016 through this communications and marketing channel.


The Putnam survey makes it clear to financial advisors that they should be using social media in 2017. This is not an option; it is a must since prospective clients are using social media, and many existing clients would probably enjoy getting communications from their financial advisors in this regard.


Before financial advisors set out to do business in social media, they should keep in mind that their line of work requires them to be very compliant with certain codes of rules, regulations and ethics. The first step is to become familiar with social media policies set forth by their employers. Once these policies are known and understood, financial advisors must define their target audiences. It is worth mentioning that advisors who specialize in specific audiences such as IT professionals or affluent families tend to do better.


It is also important for financial advisors to define a personal brand that will appeal to prospective and existing clients. This personal brand can be crafted through hobbies, activities and interests; however, topics related to politics and religion should be largely avoided.


Marketing on multiple social networks is not necessary. LinkedIn is mandatory for financial advisors; other networks should be added with the audience in mind. Twitter, for example, is a good choice for IT professionals while Instagram is better for those who work in the fashion, culinary and hospitality industries.


Finally, financial advisors should not use social media as a very large echo chamber. If they follow others, they must engage with them with active dialogue.


Goal-driven Metrics are the Key to Social Media Marketing

For a decade now, company managers have talked about the importance of having a social media presence. Given the recent growth social networks, the focus seems prescient. However, companies have not done a good job of using social networks for business purposes. If they are honest with themselves, though, most corporate leaders still cannot measure the impact of their social media campaigns.

Forbes has published the results of a study conducted by two Duke University MBA students, which recommends a strategy for evaluating social media campaigns. Recognizing that only 15% of marketers report being able to quantify the impact of social media, the students urge marketers to employ “goal-driven metrics” that are tightly connected to desired outcomes.

Like so many best practices in business, this approach requires discipline and strategic thinking. It is not enough for a company to simply gain a social media presence. To be successful online, companies must transition from social dabbling to strategic development of social assets. They must use social media to accomplish goals that matter, while carefully tracking the results.

What goals can social media accomplish for a business, though? There are many answers to this question, including creating awareness of new products and service, building customer loyalty through engagement, and evaluating products and services by obtaining customer feedback. Managers must decide which social media goals are most valuable and most easily obtained.

The days of hiring a social media person or two to manage a company’s Twitter and Facebook accounts are gone. Today, corporate social media engagement requires a coherent business strategy that relates to goals that matter to the company. It is not easy, but it can be valuable if done right.


Why Businesses are Flocking to Social Media

An estimated 81% of small and medium-sized companies are using social media to improve sales and marketing. The world of social media is more than chatting with friends, sharing with family and playing colorful apps. Businesses utilize social media to their immediate advantage because it helps to bring about an increase in client flow (source). Paying for sponsored or paid posts will ensure your company’s advertisements are on their front page. Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter have created a platform where companies can come to flourish over time.


For business owners, it is imperative to join forces with social media to increase marketing potential. In this day and age, owning a website is virtually useless if you don’t have a social media page to back you up. A Facebook or Twitter page engages your clientele, allowing them to provide you with valuable feedback in the form of reviews, comments and messages. This constructive feedback can help transform and improve your company to fit the needs of your customers.


Creating a business page on some of the more popular social media websites is often free, unless you plan on doing some advertising. These sites charge a relatively substantial fee if you wish to publicize your account on their main page. However, considering millions of people utilize social media on a daily basis, the price you pay for front-page advertising can be highly advantageous. Keeping your page updated regularly is vital to the overall success and longevity of your position on sites like Facebook and Twitter. If your page is not kept updated, this causes it to rank lower on search engine results, preventing clients from finding you. Keeping the page up-to-date also ensures better customer support, as you will be able to answer inquiries as soon as you receive them.


New Trends in Social Media Use by Business Entities

The year 2016 was a momentous period for social media in relation to business marketing and promotion. Everything suggests that 2017 will be an even bigger year for the intersection of social media and business marketing, particularly because of the 10-year anniversary of Facebook Pages.


There was a time when business marketing was not allowed on Facebook. Until 2007, only individual profiles were allowed, and the promotion of business activities by individuals was looked down upon. Once Facebook announced that companies were allowed to create profiles, more than 100,000 brands quickly signed up on the first day.


Some of the social media trends developing in 2017 include proposals to no longer embrace this communications channel; such was the call by Geoff Lewis of the Founder Fund, a firm dedicated to funding major digital media enterprises. Lewis believes that social media platform lend themselves to the creation of “scripted reality,” which may have contributed to the election of New York billionaire Donald Trump as President of the United States.


A lot has changed for the social media and business marketing sphere since 2007. Years ago, promoting brands on social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter was extremely effective; the same cannot be said in 2017 due to the higher levels of competition.


One trend that is certain to develop in 2017 is that companies will no longer use social media channels exclusively to drive traffic to their websites. The idea is to deliver tangible messages. For example, a fashion boutique can offer discounts solely on Twitter or Facebook without advertising on its physical store or on its website.


Another trend for 2017 with relation to social media will be mobile advertising. It is time for business owners to invest in sponsored updates and other strategies that allow them to reach beyond their existing followers.



New Changes For Edited Facebook Posts

If you’re the type of person who creates lots of posts on Facebook, a recent change in the website’s editing process may be important to you. A recent online article that I just finished reading tells how Facebook will no longer be clearly identifying edited posts.


Up until now, if you posted something on Facebook, then realized after the post was up that you wanted to change it, a little “Edited” label would appear next to the post after you made changes.


With the new editing policy, you can make changes to something you’ve posted, but the “Edited” label is not openly displayed for the world to see.


Even though edited posts may no longer be openly labeled as such, it is still possible for other Facebook users to know if you edited a post.


All you have to do now to see if a Facebook post has been edited, is click-on the little drop-down menu that is situated at the upper right side of the post. If a post has been edited, one of the options in the drop-down menu will be “View edit history”.


When I first saw this article, I didn’t really think there was much significance to this editing change. The author of the article, however, brings up the issue of transparency in today’s world.


It is mentioned how government officials, celebrities, and brands all post on Facebook. The author makes the point that just allowing people to alter previously posted information in today’s world can raise some eyebrows. The article also mentions how edited comments on posts are not affected by the editing change.