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Frictionless sharing: here to stay?

At the F8 developers conference in 2011 Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would launch new services that allow "real-time serendipity in a friction-less environment". One of the first frictionless Facebook apps was the Guardian's, but over the past few months over 50 others were added.
Frictionless sharing is now used to describe apps that "bring life to your Timeline" to express who you are: a runner (e.g. RunKeeper), a foodie (e.g. Foodspotting), a traveler (e.g. TripAdvisor), a music fan (e.g. Spotify), a movie buff (e.g. Rotten Tomatoes) and more.

From Quantifying Future Trends In Online Sharing, a study released by digital agency Beyond Social Media Week:

Frictionless sharing is here to stay, but it will need to get much, much better. Ultimately, just about everything we do in a day will have the capacity to be shared online, but with accuracy and without needing to activly think about it.


Foursquare: interesting, but what is it?

Foursquare is a free app for smartphones that rewards its users with ‘social badges’ every time they use the application to check into different venues. It might sound a bit like a boy scouts movement, but the system actually does motivate people to return often, so that they can win the ‘Mayor’ badge.
Here are some examples from Ogilvy’s keynote entitled ‘How To Use Foursquare for Business’:

  1. Mayor specials: reward your single most loyal customer.
  2. Frequency-based specials: for example, ‘Foursquare users get 10% off every third check- in’.
  3. Check-in offers: for example, ‘Show your check-in to the waiter for a free drink!’
  4. Wildcard specials: for example, ‘Show us your “newbie badge”’ to earn a free night’s stay!’

A couple of days ago, Foursquare uploaded an animation explaining Foursquare in plain English.

Hi! I want to learn more about foursquare! from foursquare on Vimeo.

By the way: Avoidr uses location-based social networking software for the mobile devices game Foursquare to check where your not-friends are, so that you can avoid them.

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Google Plus for small and medium-sized companies

From Flowtown's Small Business Social Media Cheat Sheet:

Google+ is a social network operated by Google with profiles, status updates, circles, hangouts and sparks.

  • Pros: easy way to interact with clients and customers. Can be integrated with other Google applications.
  • Cons: Administration is difficult and some small business owners find most clients don't use Google+

How to begin:

  1. Google+ provides a step-by-step guide to setting up your Google+ pages with the ability to customize your page's public profile.
  2. Add team members, VIPs, and customers to separate Google+ circles to organize your news feeds.
  3. Connect your Google+ page to your website using the Google+ badge.
  4. Begin posting content such as status updates, videos or photos to your Google+ page.


4 facts about online influence

From The State of Social Media and Social Media Marketing in 2012 at socialnerdia.com:

  1. People don't trust brand as much. They are influenced by friends/family/contacts (Source: Vision Critical, “Online Social Networks: Trust Not Included” (.pdf) Sep 15, 2010-
    Active social media users also tend to be influential offline (Source: Nielsen, State of the Media: The Social Media Report Q3 2011)
  2. Influence is shifting from media to individuals. As a consequence, startups are rushing to measure and rank influencers (Source: Eloqua & JESS3, The Message is the Messenger, March 8 2011, Forrester 2010; AdWeek, A Million Little Klouts, Dec 14 2011)
  3. Influential people can spread messages faster than ever.
  4. Today's mega celebrities engage directly with fans; some became influential by spreading content online (Source: Dissecting Justin Bieber infographic by Crisp Social, Mashable Nov 6)

More in this slidedeck below:

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Understanding virality: Metcalfe’s Law

From Understanding viral content marketing infographic @ problogger.net:

Metcalfe's Law is a way to calculate the value of a network. The network effect says that the value of each potential sharer is proportional to the number, N, of other individuals he or she can connect to. [...]
The more interconnections and ways to share between people, the more easily, quickly and widely information can be shared.
Viral marketing is an attempt to get value that goes above and beyond cost. By tapping into the network effect, a marketer can gain far more value than cost. That's because while cost is still a constant, value grows exponentially based on the number of people whom the "viral" touches.


See also:

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Going viral: 7 best practices from the Viral Marketing Cheat Sheet

Viral phenomena are the unicorns of the internet. Some famous examples are:
> Burger King’s ‘The Subservient Chicken’ (2004-2007)
> Cadbury’s ‘Dairy Milk Gorilla’ (2007)
> Cloverfield’s teaser trailer (2008)
> Blendtec’s ‘Will It Blend’ series (2007-2010 and beyond)
> Old Spice’s ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’ + Responses (2010)

More here:

Like a virus, viral campaigns are successful if they are able to replicate themselves – sometimes by changing the objects who are exposed to them into copies of itself.
Unfurtunately, crafting a succesful marketing campaign is more difficult than it looks. It requires careful planning and research. Seven golden rules from the Viral Marketing Cheat Sheet:

  1. Stop being neutral
  2. Do something unexpected
  3. Don't make advertisements
  4. Make sequels
  5. Allow & promote sharing
  6. Connect with comments
  7. Never restrict access


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Research: Driving word of mouth is key reason for social media efforts

Microsoft Advertising just published the results of a survey with 700 major corporation on their use of social media.

What is the most important reason for these companies to invest time, money and resources in social media?

  • 27% Word of Mouth
  • 26% Brand considerations
  • 21% Direct Response
  • 18% CRM
  • 6% ‘inbound’ or ‘listening’

What does "Word of mouth" mean?
For the purposes of this study, it means three things:

  1. Identifying and reaching influencers
  2. Generating word-of-mouth, or conversations about brand, products, or deals
  3. Rebroadcasting word of mouth to target audience

Leading social media marketers, however, believe that almost two thirds of the ‘word of mouth’ they work so hard to generate doesn’t reach their target audience.

There are also significant challenges to be solved in driving ‘word of mouth’ and managing social communities. Specifically, many social marketers face challenges in

  • making sure their communities are target appropriate
  • getting new fans and followers
  • preventing churn

InSites: Location-based services are still a niche application

From Social media around the world 2011 @ slideshare.net/stevenvanbelleghem:

Location-Based Services refers to a broad range of services that are based on information about the physical location of a user and/or device.
Location-based services provide the user with information such as "Where is the nearest ATM?" or they can be push-based and deliver coupons or other marketing information to customers who are in a specific geographical area.
[...] The reach of location-based services (lbs) is limited. Only 12% is currently using lbs, mainly Facebook Places, Foursquare and Gowalla.



Important note: Facebook Places was reported discontinued on August 24, 2011. Facebook users can now add location from anywhere, regardless of what device you are using, or whether it is a status update, photo or Wall post.

More highlights regarding Location-Based Services from the report:

  • People are encouraged by social media to share information, but they seem somewhat less enthusiastic to share their location. The issue is mainly due to privacy and a lack of awareness.
  • Both users and non users expect brands and companies to offer local discounts wherever they go, or advise on things to do /information regarding the place they are.

7 tips to increase your Facebook posts’ EdgeRank

Whether your Facebook Page updates rank high in your fans' "Top News" or not depends on a Facebook algorhythm called EdgeRank.

What is EdgeRank?

From No wall posts, no likes @ conversity.be/blog:

EdgeRank is the algorithm that Facebook uses to determine the order of items in your Feed. In the end, it’s really simple, as it has just three factors: affinity, edge, and decay.

Affinity is basically the connection between you and the piece of content. The more times you’ve interacted with the source of the content (Facebook calls it an “object”) in the past, the higher the affinity. For example, if you comment on your sister’s Wall everyday, content from your sister will have a high affinity score because you interact a lot with her.

Second is “edge.” [...] All that edge refers to the relative weight of objects. For example, a comment on a Wall Post probably carries more weight than a Like because it take more effort to post a comment. [Note: making your Page content mostly text will probably affect your Edge negatively].

Last, and simplest, is decay. This is the time that has past since the object was created.

In their infographic Conquer the Facebook, Facebook App Post Planner calls these popularity, relevance and recency:

These three parameters define how many of your fans see your status. With most Facebook Pages, this usually varies between 3% and, say, 12%.

So how do you increase the EdgeRank for your Facebook Page posts?

From the previously mentioned infographic Conquer the Facebook:

  1. Ask questions. Tip: keep it simple and easy to answer. Ask "Would" not "Why".
  2. Post fill-in-the-blanks. Tip: go for "knee-jerk" responses. One word answers are ideal.
  3. Post photos. Tip: crop your pics before posting. Make the mini, "News Feed" version enticing.
  4. Talk about the news. Tip: be controversial, but not offensive.
  5. Ask for likes. But limit your call-to-action to ONE action.
  6. Talk about Facebook. Facebookers LOVE to talk about Facebook.
  7. Celebrate today. Check out famous birthdays, etc.
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Your blog as the center of your social media solar system

In Content Marketing Institute's recent B2B Content Marketing report [.pdf], blogging was the 6th most popular content choice, behind social media, articles, in-person events, enewsletters and case studies. But of even greater interest is the report’s discovery of a “confidence gap”: only 40% of their respondents rated blogs as effective, while a considerable 60% said it was “less effective/ineffective. ”

What it is

Shorthand for “Weblog, the blog offers an easy way to present brief chunks of frequently refreshed Web content. Backed with easy-to-use technologies for syndication (e.g. RSS), comments and trackbacks, blogs are often the blazing centers of social media solar systems that can incorporate sophisticated SEO strategies and community-building campaigns.

3 key play points:

  1. Encourage conversations: even “bad” comments can be an opportunity for developing good customer relations.
  2. Be a good netizen: participate on other blogs as well as your own. Develop a Top 15 hit list where you need to be “hanging out. ”
  3. Loosen up. Authenticity trumps perfection when connecting with readers.


More where this came from:

Further reading: