by Rob Salmon, Director of Digital Marketing at Torchbox
In a very little while I’d like to look at Facebook’s new communications system which was announced on Monday 15 November, its key features and what it could mean for organisations using Facebook. If you’ve not read up on this I’d suggest taking a view of this video to start of with.
First up though, three quick ways I’ve used Facebook to communicate in the past week.
Last Saturday, I tried to fix our dishwasher. I am not like Bob The Builder. He can fix things. I didn’t even have the right screwdriver. So I put an appeal out to my Facebook friends. Within minutes I had had a few sarcastic comments and a few offers of help. Read more…
by , Torchbox ()
The first ‘Facebook for Good’ conference was held yesterday in London, bringing together charities for a wide range of presentations and discussions about how to use Facebook to its fullest potential.
The event was kick started by a keynote speech from Randi Zuckerberg, Head of Consumer Marketing at Facebook.
What I liked about Randi’s speech was that she gave 10 tips that she believes will deliver winning Facebook pages. For some readers, it may seem like relatively common sense style info. However, that doesn’t mean to say everyone is practising what Randi preached so I thought I’d share the tips (they appear within the speech marks) along with my feelings on each as they’re relevant to all organisations not just the charitable sector. Seconds out tip one:
1. ‘Create a public page not a group.’ This is because there are lots of benefits with pages – for example you can get a personalised url, you get option of multiple logins, the posts come from the title of your page rather than an individual, you get access to the Insights data.
2. ‘Customize your Facebook page’ make it represent what your brand is all about. I think this is an interesting one as I reckon some people like entering on the wall and seeing what the page is all about before deciding whether to like. However, there is no reason why tabs can’t be used to deliver content that reflects a brand’s personality. I liked the example given by of iPlatform later in the day (who also runs the ) of the FA’s Support England tab which allowed you to put your name on the back of a virtual England shirt in run up to the World Cup. England may have faIled at the World Cup – but that was a winning campaign.
3. ‘Come up with rules of engagement’ – I guess this covers a wide range of stuff from deciding and stating what’s allowed and what isn’t, to figuring out the best time to post, to whether you’ll be using photos / vIdeo. In short, have a plan. It was interesting to hear that M&S have a meeting to discuss this week’s and next week’s wall updates. Like an editorial team in a newspaper.
4. ‘Encourage community interaction’ – if you can you might just turn from a page that people like to one that people love! I love the way Cobra uses Facebook to lead . Just the thought makes me yearn for a madras, garlic naan and bottle of Cobra – but enough of that. Tip five awaits…
5. ‘Be authentic’- my take on this is don’t try and be something you’re not. Use a tone of voice and imagery that befits the organisations you’re representing. And be polite and don’t say something you wouldn’t say in a public space.
6. ‘Get immediate feedback’ – if you have a community who are engaged, they’re defo going to want to be involved. So if you have a question you’d like feedback on, the community can be a great resource to make that happen.
7. ‘Leverage the power of video’ – I’m with Randi on this one. A little while ago I started up a for fun in my spare time and the most successful feature has been Ask A Silly Question, video interviews with community members asking stuff like ‘if you could be a comic book hero for the day who would you be and why?’ recorded and uploaded from an iPhone. Around 80% of the people that like the page watched the first video!
8. ‘Get creative!’ – effective creativity will result in compelling content that spreads. And if you’re an early adopter, the content can drive a news agenda. The one I’m pondering right now is how to use Facebook Places. Seems other folk are too, take James Blunt’s record label and how they’ve used Facebook Places to reward check ins with free downloads.
9. ‘Make it go viral!’ – tagging can help a post go viral and there’s been few better uses of tagging than ‘the most tagged photo ever at Glastonbury‘ which was highlighted. My view is that it is a combination of compelling content and effective amplification (i.e creativity and hard graft) that results in something going viral.
10. ‘Use insights to guide decisions’ – hear hear Randi. Not everyone uses the free Insights data that Facebook makes available but everybody should because the lessons you learn can help improve the way your campaigns perform. And that’s got to be a good thing…
So there you have it, Randi’s top ten tips! If you’d like to keep in touch about future Facebook for Good events, my tiny tip is head over to the page. If you want more info on best practice with your Facebook page there’s load of info here: .
By , Director of Digital Marketing at Torchbox
Facebook Places has launched in the UK this morning following its US launch last month and I believe its launch will see location-based services go mainstream in a way that the likes of Foursquare haven’t just yet.
If I was to ask you who the Mayor of your town or city is, would you answer with a resounding Churchill like ‘oh yes’ or a game show inspired ‘I’m sorry, I haven’t a clue’? For me it would be the latter. I know the mayor has a big black car and fancy robes. But I have no idea who he or she is.
And that lack of awareness is how I have felt as a mayor or former mayor of various places on Foursquare – the location-based social networking site that allows users to earn points and badges for checking in at venues. If you check in more times over a 60-day period than anyone else, you become the mayor of the venue.
At one point, I was mayor of my local pub, park, church and hospital. I’ve got 32 friends on Foursquare from work and far flung places who may have been aware of this, but none of the friends who I see regularly had any idea about my mayoral prowess because they weren’t using Foursquare.
They do however all use Facebook. And the majority still use it regularly.
That is why I find Facebook’s launch of Facebook Places so exciting. It is quickly going to bring location-based services to a mass market. A load of my Facebook friends have already used it this morning no doubt many more will as the day progresses.
Playing around with your mobile and updating people on Facebook when you’re out and about is a natural part of going out and I believe people will take the little bit of extra trouble to check in on Facebook Places and say where they are, who they’re with and what they’re doing. And you certainly won’t miss the Places icon on the Facebook iPhone app as it is right in the middle of the navigation screen. Facebook are giving it centre stage.
As you’d expect, some people have raised privacy concerns, but I don’t think this will stop it becoming huge quickly.
In terms of Foursquare, it remains to be seen what effect Facebook Places will have. The day after places was launched in the US, Fourquare claimed to have had it’s busiest sign-up day ever and it has announced it has now reached 3 million users. This number is bound to be dwarfed by Facebook before long as its 500+ million users start to use Places. Foursquare does, however, currently have things Places does not – the game play, the badges, the ability to become mayor and perhaps this is what they really need to focus on becoming famous for in a mainstream way.
Brands in the UK have used Foursquare as a way of driving PR stories and to show they are forward-thinking organisations. Early adoption has certainly driven headlines for the likes of Domino’s Pizza. I would be interested to know if it has driven business – there is currently no mayor at my local outlet despite the fact that a free pizza is up for grabs every Wednesday to the mayor.
However, if I worked for a brand, organisation or charity that had venues or shops, I would definitely look into Facebook Places, how it works and what opportunities there are (one downside seems to be you can’t add multiple locations and have to authenticate each individual venue – I feel sure this will be addressed sooner or later).
Early adopters will be able to drive PR headlines but it also has the potential to drive interactions with and insight from the people who visit your destinations.
Facebook Places is definitely going places and you may as well take a look to see if it is worth jumping onboard to help you reach your objectives.
For a guide to Facebook Places for Businesses and Advertisers, click here.
To get started on Facebook Pages, you’ll need the most recent version of the Facebook iPhone app or if you have a mobile browser that support HTML5 and geolocation you can access .
by Rob Salmon, Director of Digital Marketing, Torchbox, Twitter.com/rsalmonuk
Anyone go to Glastonbury and see the Pet Shop Boys or stumble across their performance on TV ? Perfect anthemic festival theatre.
Listening to their 1984 number one smash – West End Girls – got me thinking. Could the lyrics be a vision that describe what you should consider when it comes to a social media strategy? Looking at them literally most definitely not! But with a bit of imagination they can be triggers for important things to take into account…
Too many shadows, whispering voices
Faces on posters, too many choices
If, when, why, what? (OK, I’ve changed this slightly!)
How much have you got?
Have you got it, do you get it, if so, how often?
And which do you choose, a hard or soft option?
Let’s take a closer look from a social media perspective:
‘Too many shadows, whispering voices’
Blatantly a reference to the fact that your brand is being talked about in the social media space. It’s whether you choose to listen.
‘Faces on posters, too many choices’
Faces on posters? They saw the Facebook revolution coming! Too many choices? Oh yes, there are thousands and thousands of social offerings you could choose to utilise.
‘If, when, why, what?’
Now we’re talking. Core strategy questions.
If – is social media something your organisation is ready to embrace? Can it be integrated into wider marcomms programme? Are you clear on who you are targeting?
When – do you have the resource in place? is your wider organisation ready to embrace?
Why – absolutely key. Measuarable objectives that show why you are doing it…
What – and what you want to achieve. Only then are you in a position to think about what to do to meet objectives.
‘How much have you got?’
Good question. You can’t just build it and hope people will come. Can you make funds available to amplify your offering?
‘Have you got it, do you get it?’
More people are. But many more could.
‘And which do you choose, a hard or soft option?’
The soft option is to do nothing.
And what have your customers done to deserve this?!
Rob Salmon will be presenting his Pet Shop Boys infused social theory in a strategy break out group at the IAB UK’s Social Media Forum which is taking place on Thursday 8 July between 3 & 8:30pm. To find out more and book tickets see: www.iabuk.net/socialmediaparty
by Rob Salmon, Director of Digital Marketing, Torchbox,
Did you watch any of the ski cross in the Winter Olympics? The one where four top class skiers line-up before racing down a rocking and a rolling rollercoaster of a track over bumps and jumps at blistering speeds in a quest to beat the rest and make it to the bottom first. Like a James Bond ski chase where you don’t know whose going to triumph. It was incredibly compelling content.
I made a point of watching as much as I could. I told my family. My friends. My workmates. Maybe they too went and watched and then told their circles.
So what relevance does this have to social media?
Well, if you want people to become a fan of your Facebook page, follow you on Twitter or share your iPhone app, I reckon you had better make sure it has a compelling content offer.
Otherwise, you’ll end up with a Winter Olympic discipline akin to watching paint dry. And I don’t think watching paint dry is ever going to command a large or highly engaged audience (although maybe this YouTube link which has been watched 33k time proves that wrong!?). Read more…