Tag Archives: social media

Ello….Goodbye

With Facebook traveling further down the path of enforcing real names and identities, and their increasing appetite to sell more and more of your personal information, startups are attempting to replicate the success of the top social networks, while promising more anonymity.  Ello is the latest Social Network to enter the scene, promising a simple clean interface, and no ads – which means no selling personal information.  While this has been their primary talking point, it seems a bit disingenuous.  Ello recently received a round of funding from investors, and unless this is an incredibly non-traditional investor relationship, they will be forced to monetize at some point.  That being said, a social network is only as valuable the relationships and conversations happening there.  Here are our first thoughts on what Ello is, and what we think about its future.

We asked our network of super-influencers what they thought about Ello.  The general consensus is summed up by Kristy Still, “I don’t want yet another social network.”  It seems that for people who enjoy participating in Social Media, and especially those who are leaders in it, there is a level of Social Fatigue happening.  Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram – just to name a few networks, are all places people feel compelled to post.  If you do any video, add Vine and Youtube.  It can be a full-time job just to share your content everywhere an audience could be.

Others found the simple interface refreshing, but a general feeling of confusion prevailed, with most wondering what to do with it, and what use-case it fit in.  “I for one just don’t get it. What kind of platform is it? More like Twitter (microblogging) or more like Facebook with updates and photos and such? My thought is, why would I seek an invite for something that they can’t even clearly tell me what it is?” commented Jamie Smith.  Most of social media mavens we spoke with were simply there to make sure they claimed their user name, but saw no utility in the platform yet.

One interesting thread I noticed is that no one mentioned that they cared at all about Ello’s main selling point – no selling user information.  On Facebook, you and your personal information is the product being sold.  Ello was created specifically as the antithesis to that.  From the people we spoke with, it seems no one actually cares.

My take: Ello is interesting – but only because of the simple, clean, ad-free approach, and the highly over-represented Digerati presence.  Ello is not the thing that’s going to turn Facebook into the next Friendster.  But its concept, and the fervor with which people are adopting it, shows us that SOMETHING is going to be that thing.  I give it a pass for now, unless you really like seeing photos of Robert Scoble’s kids, and would enjoy participating in lots of conversations with social media professionals comparing Ello to Facebook and Google+.

The Social Side of Football Season

Fall means one thing, football season. Both the college and professional football leagues are now in full swing, enveloping football fanatics across the country. But watching your favorite football teams on Saturdays and Sundays no longer consists of attending the game at the stadium or sitting in front of a television. The rise in social media amongst teams, players, coaches, reporters and fans has turned mobile devices and tablets into second screens for the ultimate fan experience all week long.

College athletics have really embraced social media to further develop their respective fan bases. As a majority of their fans are now heavily present on social media platforms, teams and athletic departments at top athletic universities have discovered the need to engage fans on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Vine and even Snapchat. Fans can turn to these platforms to get intimate interaction with their teams by obtaining exclusive, behind-the-scenes information, news, photos, and videos directly from the source rather than wait on journalists and news articles from an outside journalist. Teams are creating new content each and every day and utilizing creative teams to enhance this content with photos, videos, infographics, Gifs, and other imagery to get fans prepared for gameday.

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LSU Football Facebook Page - Alabama Football Twitter Handle - Oregon Ducks YouTube Account

As an alumnus of the University of Michigan, I follow the Wolverine’s football team and athletic department on a variety of social platforms. They utilize these platforms amazingly well, providing exclusive access to the team, including photos and videos of practice and games on Twitter and Instagram, contests and exclusive ticket sales on Facebook, and even the release of a new alternate jersey on Snapchat. The team even had the school’s fan motto “Go Blue” painted as a hashtag on the football field at Michigan Stadium, a trend that is become popular across the country at many schools, including Mississippi State University and the University of Arkansas.

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The University of Purdue is even hosting a “Social Media Game” on September 27th, where the team will feature student photos on the helmet. That’s right, the giant “P” helmet logo will be a picture collage of student season ticket holders.

This season, the USA Today launched the College Football Fan Index, where fans can see which college football programs truly have the ultimate fanbase. This in-depth ranking is calculated from monitoring social media activity, conversation, and photo & video sharing across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. It also utilizes weekly, online polling of different themes asking which college programs have the best tailgates, traditions, stadiums and other relevant questions about the best college football experiences.

Just as college teams have weekly rankings, so do their associated social media pages. On their athletics website, the University of Auburn ranks the Top 25 followed official pages, feeds and social media channels for the overall sports programs and their football specific handles. On Facebook Michigan, LSU and Alabama have the top 3 followed football team pages. On Twitter, Michigan, Alabama and LSU have the top 3 most followed football specific handles.

On the University of Tennessee’s athletics website, you can even see the Top 25 most followed college football coaches on Twitter.

While most of the action takes place on the field, the college football landscape is changing, as much of the conversation moves away from traditional newspaper, television programming and radio talk shows and onto various social media platforms. Teams and athletic departments are finding new, unique ways to engage students and fans to reward loyalty and enhance the fan experience amongst a new generation of fans.

The Hype About Hyperlapse

Hyperlapse technology isn’t new or advanced. The interface is simple and leaves little to be desired. However, Instagram’s new app topped the iTunes charts once it announced the release of Hyperlapse on August 26, 2014.

So what is Hyperlapse? This app is a completely separate entity, owned by Instagram, that allows users to record up to 180 seconds and shows the recording at hyper speed. The user interface is just about as easy as taking a video on your phone. You create a video, then you have the opportunity to increase the speed- anywhere from 1x to 12x. From there, users have the option to upload the video to Facebook or Instagram (notably, Twitter and Vine are not available.) The video also saves to your photos, so you could even upload the video to your Zanga account if you wanted (but that would be some serious desperation.)

Hyperlapse is not without it’s flaws, though. The app is currently only available in iOS, however it is rumored to be in droid stores soon. The interface, however easy, is deprived of some essential tools. You cannot edit the recording, other than the pace of the video. There isn’t a storage bank of your saved videos. You can’t add filters, create special effects, or even add sound within the app. Here’s also the question of why executives released this tool as a separate app, rather than an addition to Instagram. Right on the cusp of social frustration of the Facebook Messenger App (and the all-but forced download by Facebook users,) Instagram took a risk in creating Hyperlapse as a new app rather than including it into their current app. If only Instagram account holders could use it, surely the number of users would increase. However, Instagram created a completely new app. What does that mean to you and your brand? It’s easily accessible. You don’t have to have an Instagram account to create one and you can share it however you choose. And, essentially, you can repurpose these videos for other medias.

Regardless, brands and marketers alike are making efforts to capitalize with Hyperlapse incorporated in their strategy. There are a few things to consider before using Hyperlapse to promote your business:

  1. Start with a plan

Just like you wouldn’t create a commercial without a script, it is ill advised to publish a hyperlapse video that hasn’t been planned out. A simple idea can be executed to it’s full potential if you spend extra time on the front end.

  1. Be mindful of limitations

Too much movement during the recording can be distracting. Too quick of speed can make viewers dizzy or nauseous. Users also have to consider that Hyperlapse only films in 4:3 aspect ratio, where some apps- namely Instagram and Vine- publish square images and videos.

  1. Get creative

In order to make your Hyperlapse video great, you have to work through the obvious limitations. Consider editing and adding sound through a secondary app and spending additional time to revise before publishing.

Perhaps the most important question is how long will Hyperlapse be relevant? It’s difficult to determine the lifespan of an app, as we all saw when Flappy Birds reached its height of downloads and then its discontinuation all within the same month. With Instagram and Facebook backing this new app, it might be around for awhile. But just how long does your brand have to utilize this app to reach a tech-savvy generation?

What do you think about Hyperlapse?

For Brands, Social Customer Service is a Must

With social media and smartphones on the rise, a new kind of customer service has developed.  Consumers are no longer reaching out via phone, they are voicing their questions and concerns by using social media.  With the promptness that social brings, consumers want answers on social, instantly.  Research conducted by Lithium Technologies says that 53% of users who tweet at a brand expect a response within the hour. The percentage increases to 72% for those with a complaint.

While some brands are quick at providing a response, they might not be quick enough. According to Brickfish, 80% of companies believe they provide superior customer service on social media, while 92% of consumers disagree.  Brands might want to re-evaluate their social plan to make sure they are keeping up with the consumers wants.

One industry that is seen to be slow at social customer service is Supermarkets.  Getting in-touch with social could really help this industry gain excellent customer loyalty.  Social Media Today used their Twitter Performance Tracker to look at how 21 North American supermarkets use Twitter as a customer service channel.  The average response time spent on Twitter was 5 hours and 10 minutes.  This is definitely not meeting the customer’s expectations.

One supermarket that is quick at responding is Mariano’s Market.  They had the fastest response time of 29 minutes and 17 seconds.  If a customer is tweeting in store, the likelihood of them still being there within 30 minutes is high.  This gives customers a chance to tweet out any questions they might have.  It could also open opportunities for supermarkets to help customers find recipes with certain ingredients that they are buying in store.

Here is an example of a customer complaining about his store experience. He tweeted at 10:37PM and received a response back at 10:50PM. Though I do not know the outcome, Mariano’s might have saved a customer from becoming un-loyal due to their fast response time and willingness to help.

Here is an example of a customer asking about a new location opening. Within 13 minutes, Mariano’s had responded by providing an answer and then engaging with the consumer.  This is what can drive a consumer to become loyal, and I am guessing that person, along with the nine people who favorited the tweet, will be at the opening.

Consumers want to feel connected to everything and everyone.  By reaching out to someone on social, it can help create that bond between the consumer and the retailer or brand.  According to BrickFish 71% of consumers who receive a quick and effective response are more likely to recommend that brand to others and 50% are more likely to buy from a brand they can contact on social media.

It’s time to stop just posting on social media and to start engaging.  Make people aware of your presence, and give the best social customer service possible! Start now and beat out your competitors.

Do you have a favorite brand or supermarket that has excellence social customer service? Or as a marketer, do you have a marketing tactic that has helped your social customer service? If so, please let us know in the comment box!

The Rise of the Halloween Shopper

Boo!  It’s no secret that Americans are passionate about holidays, and Halloween is no exception. As the second-highest grossing commercial holiday after Christmas, U.S. consumers go all out on Halloween, spending billions of dollars on everything from costumes and candy to greeting cards and party supplies. To avoid digging a grave for missing this holiday, marketers should be targeting shoppers early through social media efforts. From the infographic below, learn just how early consumers start their spooky shopping, how they’ll be spending the haunted holiday and more. Check out  this infographic, The Rise of The Halloween Shopper. 

 Halloween Infographic

Amy Callahan to host BAA Social Media Webinar on September 30th

Today’s shoppers can experience the moment of truth anywhere they can interact with brands-which now happens on a daily basis via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, a website, anywhere they can get Wi-Fi or a cell phone signal. Thanks to social media, brands can build loyalty and trust with these daily interactions. A shopper’s path-to-purchase isn’t just a trip to the store and a decision to buy while standing at the shelf anymore. But how can brands use social content to harness the power of influencers to win over shoppers before they even get to the store? Amy Callahan, Collective Bias’ Co-Founder and Chief Client Officer, shares the details in a webinar, scheduled for September 30th.

The webinar will discuss understanding the implications of social media on traditional marketing, the 5 C’s of the social path-to-purchase, and how brands and retailers use social to drive awareness, loyalty, traffic and sales.  Register for How Social Media Impacts Traditional Shopper Marketing and learn the power of social content.

 

Effective Facebook Marketing for Businesses

Despite losing its “cool” factor over the past few years, Facebook is still the king of social networks with 71% of online adults using it. That is more than triple the usage rate of social competitors like Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter. With this in mind, Facebook should still be a key facet of every company’s marketing mix. Casey Petersen, Director of Audience Development here at Collective Bias, gave insights into effective content marketing on Facebook in a recent podcast with KBInsider.

According to Casey, the key first step in any Facebook marketing plan is seeing yourself as a content producer, not just a content poster. Producing content that is relevant, unique and interactive will get the most engagement from your audience. Make it sharable!
Paying attention to the analytics of each post is also crucial to cultivating a wider Facebook audience. Taking the time to look at what posts performed poorly or particularly well in the past will bolster your knowledge for future posts. To learn how to get more likes on your page, what content works or doesn’t work and more, listen to the full podcast on KBInsider.com.

Connected Moms on the Global Stage

Despite having fully-packed agendas in their hometowns, today’s socially-connected moms are finding the time to voice their concerns about causes based in other countries, continents, even hemispheres. Social media brings the world to one’s fingertips, meaning moms are able to stay in the know about an array of issues that are both locally and globally-impacted.

Holly Pavlika explains just how influential globally-connected moms are when paired with major corporate charity efforts in her latest MediaPost article, “Have You Heard Of The Global Zip Code?” Campaigns such as Girl Up and brands like Johnson & Johnson’s Clean and Clear are achieving powerful resonance with moms and through moms by putting them at the center of engagement strategies that drive conversations around important causes such as healthcare, education and economic development. These unique but ever-increasing partnerships induce principal governments and corporations to listen up and take notice to the causes these moms hold to high regard.

Today’s global moms are highlighting the importance of corporate social responsibility and how it plays into not only current conversation but future support by customers. Learn more on MediaPost Engage: Moms blog.

I Want It All and I Want It Now!

I Want It All and I Want It Now! Aggregation Tool RebelMouse

Do you wish you could have the real-time big picture overview of your social media presence? Do you long to create one place where you can view everything you publish, plus track responses and see the chatter about your brand? Aggregation may be the solution.

RebelMouse, the First All-In-One Publishing, Advertising and Social Conversation Platform, makes it easy for brands to create an organized collection of their social-media posts, articles, videos and other online content. It is a ‘Social Front Page’ of sorts, which can be a useful low cost marketing tool.

RebelMouse, created by former Huffington Post CTO Paul Berry, reached 17 million unique visitors in November 2013. Fast Company recently named RebelMouse one of “The World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Social Media.” They must be on to something with this revolutionary publishing platform.

With its Pinterest-like interface, RebelMouse allows brands to show-off their content in a familiar visual style. That is progress over scrolling through an endless feed. The easily embedded tool, which allows brands to create a Social Home Page, is a prime way to use content as advertising.

Early adopters of RebelMouse, like Burger King and Pepsi, realized the value of displaying thousands of tweets and images from their customers. You can and should find a place in your marketing plan for the powerful tool.

How RebelMouse Works

RebelMouse uses a freemium model—the basic plan is free. The Primetime level costs $500 per month, while the Enterprise level costs up to $5,000 per month.

It is simple and easy to set-up your site. After opening an account, you create a page and decide what you want to share. RebelMouse then captures your feeds from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, etc. You can use tags, keywords or hashtags to cull the information.

You may opt to allow RebelMouse to choose which content is displayed or you can customize your page to fit your needs. You can also add original text, photos and video directly to your RebelMouse page. There are many options for topic-specific tabs and visual themes. You can add multiple sub-pages to your RebelMouse site too for a broader share of voice.

Once established, you use your RebelMouse page(s) to create a stand-alone website or you can add it to your existing website or blog. Your page can embedded in a sidebar of a preexisting page or blog for a real-time feed. There are many uses for a variety of PR needs.

The best way to understand the power of this tool is to look at what brands are doing with it. Here are a few examples:

 

The Wall Street Journal’s Coverage of Fashion Week

T-Mobile #BreakUpLetter

Burger King’s SatisFries Campaign

#SamsungFrontRow

General Electric Social Media Page

RebelMouse for Personal Use

This platform is not just for mega brands. Bloggers will find RebelMouse useful in promoting their content. You can use your social media presence to create buzz and establish expertise in your niche. Some are even using it to find a job.

Any online content (articles, blog posts, guest posts, photos, videos, designs, etc.) can be placed on your RebelMouse page. It is a great way for a web designer or photographer to present their professional portfolio.

RebelMouse is still evolving as new features and functionality are added. It is unbelievably easy to use, yet incredibly powerful while living up to its slogan— “making content more” and its promise to “let your content roar.”

Read More about RebelMouse:
RebelMouse Blog  
RebelMouse for Individuals

 

FIFA World Cup Fever

Written by Ally Haag

Do you feel it? The overwhelming wave of American pride as the U.S. soccer team competes in the FIFA World Cup.  Perhaps you’re not even watching the World Cup or cheering for the US, but you can’t help but feel some sort of enthusiasm and excitement for such a world-renowned competition? It could be that this feeling has suddenly originated as you scroll through your social media accounts. The Hollywood Reporter states that the World Cup has produced more social media content than any other major event ever measured. In terms of Facebook content, the World Cup has surpassed a combined total of interactions from the Oscars, the Super Bowl, and the Winter Olympics. According to Adobe, until the big kick-off on June 12th, the phrase “World Cup” already generated more than 19 million social mentions from 90% of the world.

Forbes comments that Brazil plays a major role in this social media outbreak, as 86 million out of Facebook’s one billion-plus users are only active in Brazil. However, as the World Cup exceeds this social media record globally, it is predicted that America will only contribute a small portion, with only 7% of Americans planning to diligently keep up with the soccer tournament. (We’ll see how this changes after USA’s performance on Thursday versus Germany!) On FIFA’s Live Activity Map, you can track the top trending teams and players, as well as the tweets per minute, mentions per hour, and total mentions. These numbers continually remain in the thousands, and even millions. Fascinatingly enough, depending on the game and team currently playing, these numbers can all change within an instant.

As the World Cup overtakes social media, this can only help the players of the tournament gain even more attention and fame.  Take Cristiano Ronaldo, the soccer superstar for Portugal with over 117.4 million social media followers, for example. According to Forbes, Ronaldo’s vast following has lead him to major sponsorships like Tag Heuer, a personal underwear brand, and Nike.  All things considered, the opportunities are huge for athletes in the World Cup as social media leads them to their ultimate stardom.

Are you interested in following some of the FIFA World Cup’s most famous players? Check out this list of the Top 5 Social Networking Superstars of the 2014 FIFA World Cup: (followers are including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram)

Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal): over 117.4 million followers
Lionel Messi (Argentina): over 62.52 million followers
Neymar (Brazil): over 42.2 million followers
Wayne Rooney (England): over 30.51 million followers
Andres Iniesta (Spain): over 29.61 million followers