Posts tagged facebook pages
The following article was written by Barbara Ortutay, AP Technology Writer, for the Associated Press. Read more on the announcement here.
Facebook is introducing hashtags, the number signs used on Twitter, Instagram and other services to identify topics being discussed and allow users to search for them.
Facebook Inc. said in a blog post Wednesday that users will be able to click a hashtag to see a feed of discussions about a particular topic. For example, typing a number sign in front of ‘‘ladygaga’’ or ‘‘sunset’’ will turn the words into a link that users can click on to find posts about Lady Gaga or sunsets.
Facebook said hashtags are a first step toward making it easier for users to find out what others are discussing. The company is not giving exact details about other tools it might introduce. If Twitter’s use of hashtags is any indication, Facebook will likely incorporate them into its advertising business.
‘‘We’ll continue to roll out more features in the coming weeks and months, including trending hashtags and deeper insights, that help people discover more of the world’s conversations,’’ wrote Greg Lindley, product manager for hashtags, in the post.
The hashtags will conform to users’ privacy settings — so putting a hashtag in a post that’s only visible to your friends won’t make it show up for anyone other than your friends.
Facebook said it will make the clickable hashtags available to users in the coming weeks, beginning on Wednesday. Though hashtags haven’t worked on Facebook until now, many people were using them anyway, having grown accustomed to them on Twitter, Instagram and elsewhere.
Using hashtags will help users gain a larger view of what others are talking about, Lindley said.
The following excerpt, from the article Top 10 Reasons People Don’t “Like” Your Facebook Posts, was written by Christopher Litster, SVP, Sales & Marketing / Executive Team Member, Constant Contact and published in the AMEX Open Forum.
Like the final scene in The Social Network, you keep hitting the refresh button, certain your latest Facebook campaign will inspire fans to like, respond and share. Yet there’s been little-to-no response. Completely befuddled, you wonder why no one’s engaging.
If you’re committing any, or all, of the following Facebook faux pas, you may have your answer.
1. Asking questions that are too broad or too personal. Open-ended questions come across as rhetorical, and if they’re personal, they’re easily misunderstood. Instead, ask specific or multiple choice questions that reflect your audience’s connection to your business.
2. The tone is uninspiring. Sure, this is your business, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be conversational or inspiring. Share some anecdotes or customer success stories that also show your human side.
3. Every post is pure text. Break up those pure text posts by adding pictures featuring the latest contest winners, happy employees or any image that’s visually appealing and relates to your post or company. It’s too easy to do, not to do it.
4. There’s too much focus on selling. While an occasional post about a product is fine, especially if it’s new or was recently featured in the news, don’t use Facebook as an overt sales vehicle. Remember, people go to Facebook to catch up and connect—when they want to buy, they’ll go to your website.
5. You only talk about your business. Fans expect news, tips and photos that go beyond your business. For example, a health club may share recipes and workout tips that show its commitment to helping members stay healthy, so keep the bigger picture in mind when you’re posting.
6. The message isn’t in sync with your audience or business. Before you post, ask yourself if the message serves the interests of your audience in terms of being interesting, helpful or funny.
7. You’re not responding. Fans should know their feedback is appreciated, so be sure to respond to their likes, comments and questions.
View even more advice on what not to do on Facebook by reading the full article.
Students are all over social media and one of the newest avenues they’re exploring is Snap Chat, the real-time picture chatting app for iOS and Android. With the app, users can take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients. Users set a time limit for how long recipients can view their photos, up to 10 seconds, after which it will be deleted from the recipient’s device and the company’s servers.
Noticing major brands were taking advantage of the application’s popularity, University Store at University of Wyoming decided the time was right to run a SnapChat contest of their own.
“We keep tabs on other brands’ social media efforts, and Taco Bell is one that seems to be pretty innovative,” explained Ed Hays, assistant manager. “They’ve done great things on Twitter, and now they’re integrating SnapChat, as well. It made me wonder if any of our students were on the app and how we could use it to connect.”
On a whim, Hays decided to create a promotion to find out.
“It was very spur of the moment,” he added. “We like to experiment so I thought, ‘why not?!’”
Using the store’s current audience on Facebook and Twitter as a starting point, he encouraged students to follow their SnapChat account for access to secret promotions. The following day, the store sent all of their followers a picture with instructions to enter the contest via the app.
“We just typed the contest description into a word document and took a picture of it; it wasn’t very sophisticated, but it worked.”
And the race was on! The first person to respond by sending a picture of the store’s mascot, Steamboat, would win an outdoor furniture set, an unclaimed prize left over from a previous store promotion.
“We had a winner within 15 seconds,” Hays said. “It’s amazing how fast social media moves; it definitely makes you feel good – like we must be doing something right!”
With one SnapChat promotion under his belt, Hays is eager to expand the store’s presence on the app. In his opinion, the best demographic to start with is incoming freshmen.
“Their generation grew up on social media, so they’re even more active than our older students and are experimenting with all the newest applications,” he explained. “Freshmen orientation is just a few weeks away, so I have until then to decide exactly how I want to incorporate SnapChat.”
Regardless of which strategy he chooses, the takeaway Hays finds most significant from his recent contest is the need for exploration.
“It’s so important to continually investigate new resources and other avenues to connect with students,” he emphasized. “You never know what works until you try!”
The following excerpt is from an article written by Sarah Johnson and published on Intuit. Johnson offers helpful tips on how to keep tabs on what your customers are saying on social media. View the full article for more of her advice.
Here’s how to stay abreast of what customers are saying about your company on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
1. Set up alerts and conduct regular web searches. To find comments outside of your own established business pages, set up Google Alerts for your name and your business name (put quotation marks around any proper names to get the most accurate results). For the result type, click on Everything to receive email notifications whenever your business gets mentioned on blogs and discussion sites. Meanwhile, use the search tools on social media sites to plug in keywords related to your company and industry. This will pull up what’s being said in the social sphere about your business and businesses like yours.
2. Consider investing in a monitoring tool. “With a small business, you want to make sure you have a pulse on what’s being said about you,” says Andrew Caravella, vice president of marketing for Sprout Social, whose social-media management software includes a monitoring component. The system scours Facebook and Twitter for mentions of a particular brand or keyword. Other useful tools that can find social media conversations: Topsy, Trackur, and Radian6 Social Marketing Cloud.
3. Make people feel as if they’re being heard. Although you don’t want to get caught in the fray of complainers who spend their free time criticizing everyone online, you do want your business to come across as caring and responsive. Often the complainers just want to be acknowledged. A restaurant owner, for example, should respond to a negative comment by saying, “‘We want to make this right’ and offer the person a coupon or something like that,” advises Andrea Vahl, a social media coach for businesses. Look for opportunities to be appreciative, too. When Vahl stumbled across a positive mention of her name on a site, she jumped into the conversation. “I commented on that forum thread and said, ‘Thanks for the shout-out, and let me give you some more insight,’” she says, noting that doing so could catch the attention of potential customers.
The following excerpt, from the article How to Get Noticed on Facebook Without Paying for Sponsored Links, was written by Tim Parker, owner of ECS, and published on intuit.com. To learn even more ways to increase your posts’ reach, view his full article.
If you don’t want to pay for sponsored content, how can you increase the chances that your posts will still gain exposure? Use these tips:
- Turn on “get notifications.” EdgeRank is Facebook’s algorithm that decides which posts will be in front of the eyes of your fans and which won’t. Remember the days when the little red number at the top of your page would alert you to a new posting on pages you liked? That’s now turned off by default when a person likes your page. Have your fans turn it on by going to your business’s page, hovering over the Liked box, and clicking “get notifications.” Then, pin the post to the top of your page, so it stays within view of your new fans.
- Don’t abandon text. Brandon Duncombe, social media manager at Bargaineering.com says, “Regardless of the medium, you’ll still need to have text in your posts that draws users in. Asking open-ended questions and encouraging debate grabs eyeballs. But always make it relevant to what you want the user to ultimately do (click on an image, watch a video, click on a link, etc.).”
- “Like” other pages. View other business and nonprofit pages while using Facebook as your business instead of as an individual. Share their interesting posts or announcements on your page. This may prompt others to share your content, which means fans of other pages will see your name. It also puts fresh content on your page without a lot of work.
Retailers that send emails to customers to promote social media campaigns get more participation on those social networks, a new study from email marketing vendor Yesmail Interactive finds.
Yesmail analyzed 20 retailers’ email marketing campaigns over a three-month period to see how those efforts correlated with their Facebook and Twitter endeavors. Retailers studied include: Abercrombie & Fitch, Aeropostale, American Apparel and American Eagle.
• When a retailer sends one email encouraging consumers to participate in a Facebook campaign such as a contest or to answer a question, 50% more consumers engage (by liking or commenting) compared to when the retailer does not send a message. When a retailer sends two messages, 100% more consumers engage.
• When retailers send one email to promote Twitter, 25% more consumers participate (by re-tweeting a message) than when retailers do not promote Twitter via email. When retailers send two messages, 40% more consumers participate.
“In today’s digital age, marketers must communicate through multiple channels to ensure they provide an opportunity for their audience to interact with the brand,” says Michael Fisher, Yesmail president. “The correlation we found between email and social media is just another example of how marketers can boost the effectiveness of campaigns when they strategically weave each communication channel together.”
Yesmail suggests retailers send an email with share buttons that let consumers forward the message to friends prior to posting on Facebook or Twitter. This makes it easy for consumers to spread the word to friends about upcoming social media contests, posts or promotions, which extends the reach of the campaigns. Additionally, a retailer may want to send emails that occasionally feature links to all the social media sites that it participates in. “This encourages email recipients to connect with the brand on multiple platforms while subtly engaging them and ultimately leading them to conversion,” says Fisher.
MBS Systems inSite’s new email marketing module makes it easy to ensure your store’s message cuts through the clutter with the ability to target segments of customers, utilize attractive templates, and view reports to track effectiveness. Talk to your MBS Representative for more information on how to get started!
Traditionally, the reach of the organic content you post to your Facebook business page has been limited by the scope of Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm. In other words, when you posted an update to your page, that update would only reach a limited number of your fans’ news feeds, because Facebook’s algorithm ranks and shows content based on the likely interest of a given user. But today, Facebook is rolling out a new tool that enables page admins to extend the reach of their page’s organic content.
Introducing ‘Promoted Posts’
Facebook is calling this new tool Promoted Posts, a paid offering for Facebook page admins to promote recent posts, extending their reach beyond the normal exposure they’d get in fans’ news feeds. In other words, using Promoted Posts will increase the percentage of fans your organic content reaches, although Facebook makes no indication of exactly how much more that percentage is:
“Your promoted posts will be seen by a larger percentage of the people who like your Page than would normally see it. It will also be seen by a larger percentage of the friends of people who interact with your post.” – Facebook
You can promote any type of post you can create in your page’s sharing tool, including status updates, photos, offers, videos, and questions. Using Promoted Posts, you’ll generate sponsored stories that get delivered to both desktop and mobile news feeds, not the right-hand sidebar where ads are normally displayed. These Promoted Posts will get shown to users who are already fans of your page in addition to friends of people who interact with the promoted post (i.e. friends of people who have liked, shared, commented, or claimed an offer from the promoted post). These promoted stories, which are marked as “Sponsored” in news feeds, will run for up to 3 days after the post was originally created; so if you decide to promote a post 1 day after you originally published it, the promotion will only run for 2 days.
The tool is reportedly being rolled out to all Facebook pages (regardless of type), provided they have at least 400 fans.
When to Use ‘Promoted Posts’
Why use Promoted Posts? Quite simply, they can help you get more exposure for organic Facebook content they want to put more promotional muscle behind. According to Facebook, fans spend 2x more on average than non-fans. Considering this is a paid offering, you might reserve this extra promo push for content you really want to drive more engagement and interaction for. Here are some examples:
How to Use ‘Promoted Posts’
Interested in experimenting with Promoted Posts to extend the reach of your page’s content? Follow the simple steps at the bottom of the page to promote either a new post you’re creating now or one you’ve already published. To learn more about Promoted Posts and watch Facebook’s overview video, visit https://www.facebook.com/help/promote.
As many social media users know, you can connect your Facebook page and Twitter account with the click of a button. While this feature may save your store time, it has some serious downfalls, as well.
Take a look at five reasons why we recommend that you don’t link the two social networks:
Twitter moves at a fast pace and has a much higher threshold for acceptable posting levels than Facebook. Because Twitter feeds turn over so quickly, your store needs to tweet frequently to keep your message visible to followers. That means that you may tweet as many as 10-15 times a day, without showing up excessively in any of your followers’ feeds.
The same isn’t true for Facebook, however, which moves at a much slower pace. The newsfeed is slightly more static on Facebook and fans generally expect to see your store appear 1-3 times per day. By posting your tweets to your Facebook profile, you may overwhelm fans with status update after status update, and appear more as a spammer than a credible source.
The point of liking or following any page is to access exclusive information or incentives. If you post the exact same content to both your Twitter and Facebook page, then what reason do your students have to interact with both? Try to vary up both the types of content you share and times that you post so that your fans and followers benefit from being a part of both networks.
Lingo – The syntax used on Facebook and Twitter is also completely different. Twitter relies on hashtags (#), mentions (@), and abbreviations like ‘RT,’ while Facebook’s vocabulary is more typical. When tweets post to Facebook, they look out of place and students who aren’t on Twitter may be confused or annoyed by seeing their newsfeed filled with these references. Although it may take a few more minutes, make sure your message includes a format that is appropriate to the social network that you’re sharing it on.
Twitter is limited to 140 characters so posts are meant to be short and sweet, typically with a link attached to the end for more information. With a much larger character limit, however, Facebook posts are usually intended to provide a full explanation. By posting these brief tweets to your Facebook page, fans may not get the full message. Likewise, by syncing your Facebook statuses to post on Twitter, they often appear abbreviated and will have the same unfortunate affect on followers. Ensure that all your content meets the appropriate length requirement for each account.
Twitter and Facebook are two distinct networks with two distinct sets of etiquette and norms. The people you’re connected to on Twitter expect different things than those you’re connected to on Facebook (even if most of them are the same group of people). The culture of both networks is different, so if you combine them you risk losing your audience.
So, what should you do instead?
Just because you don’t link your accounts, doesn’t mean you have to spend an exorbitant amount of time crafting and sharing your content. We suggest using a third-party social media management site, such as Hootesuite or Tweetdeck, which allows you to post across social networks from one central location. These services are typically free and operate as a dashboard where you can write, schedule, and manage your messages.
That being said, it’s important to remember each of the issues above and create unique posts for Facebook and Twitter. At the very least, start by switching up the language and format you use to ensure it fits the platform. Then, work toward creating a social media strategy that guides you in what type of content to share across each network.
The new format also changed the way consumers experience brands on Facebook.
In a webcam eye-tracking study for Mashable by EyeTrackShop, participants spent less time looking at Wall posts and ads and more time looking at the cover photo on brands’ timelines than they did on their old Facebook Walls.
“The new Facebook Timeline limits the effective branding space, and the top portion of the page must be effectively utilized,” suggest the study’s authors.
EyeTrackShop recorded eye movements of 30 participants as they were shown brand profiles — before and after being converted to timeline — from the Dallas Cowboys, Good Morning America, “The Muppets” and Pepsi in 10-second intervals. What participants looked at on each webpage, for how long and in what order is recorded in the images below.
Results suggests a few ways our perception of Brands on Facebook has changed:
- Ads on Facebook Timeline are less visible than ads on Facebook Brand Pages. While 30%-40% of study participants looked at ads on brand Timeline pages, 80% looked at them on Brand Pages. In both cases, ads placed higher up on the page fared better than those below them.
- Cover photos are the new Facebook Wall (at least as far as attention goes). On brand pages, Wall posts were the star attraction. Viewers on average looked at them first and for the longest amount of time.On the brand Timelines, however, viewers always looked at the cover photo first. In all but one case, they spent a longer time looking at it than at Timeline content.
- Everyone will notice your cover photo. It’s larger than anything else and at the top of the page for a reason, and 100% of viewers looked at it. On average, they saw it in 0.5 seconds or less. Meanwhile, only 65% to 92% of viewers noticed profile photos on Brand Pages.
- Viewers see Timeline content last. In every case, viewers looked at either the left or right column of Timeline content last — after ads, navigation buttons and brand logos.
- Information that was invisible is now a focal point.Facebook moved the number of Likes, events and apps to prime top-and-center territory. It now gets more attention than when it was listed on the right-hand side of the page.In the case of Good Morning America, for instance, the show’s 585,000 Likes went from being completely ignored on its Brand Page to being the biggest attention-getter on its Timeline.
- Cover photos with faces attract the most attention. Good Morning America and “The Muppets” have cover photos with faces, whereas the Dallas Cowboys and Pepsi do not. The cover photos with faces attracted more attention.
Still don’t have a cover photo? That’s okay, we have options for you! Take a look at the 16 Cover Photos we created just for college stores and choose your favorite. Even if you decide to design your own, just make sure you have something in place for Fans to focus on at the top of your page – it’s the best way to make a good first impression!
Facebook wants marketers on the social network to make offers that their fans simply can’t refuse, so it published a list of guidelines about their newest feature: Facebook Offers.
Offers debuted last week as a replacement for check-in deals, which are being phased out.
Here are the key points from the Facebook Offers guide:
- Offers can be created free of charge by brands and, when clicked, Facebook users will receive an email that they can then use to redeem the offers at the brand’s physical locations (great for driving traffic!).
- For now, Offers are available only to a select few accounts. However, once they are released it will be easy to create one. You’ll simply go to the sharing tool at the top of the timeline, click offer, add a headline, set an expiration date, upload a small photo, outline the terms and conditions, and click post.
- The number of Facebook users who have claimed each offer will be available under its expiration date.
Facebook also offered tips for how brands can create successful offers:
- Make discounts substantial: The social network recommended discounts of at least 20 percent off regular prices and suggested free goods or services, if applicable.
- Keep it simple: Clearly outline terms and conditions, and don’t expect Facebook users to perform unusual activities.
- Use an engaging image: Facebook said photos of people using a product inspire more engagement than photos of just the product, and especially more than a logo.
- Set a reasonable expiration date: Give Facebook users time to discover and claim offers, as well as to share them with friends.
- Promote your offer: Use sponsored stories and pin offers to the top of the page.
- Train your staff: Make sure your employees know the terms of your offer and how to help people redeem.