Speaking at a Facebook headquarters Q&A session on Tuesday, developer Mark Zuckerberg says a ‘dislike’ button is nearing the testing stage.
While many people are going to have their wishes fulfilled with the arrival of a counterpart to the Facebook Like Button, the Dislike Button may be the ultimate undoing for those in business who try to use Facebook as a way of engaging potential customers with a ‘Buy my stuff’ shoutout. After enough slap downs, even the thickest of skulls might begin to comprehend the more “socially” correct form of advertising.
Zuck is trying to figure a way to allow people to show “empathy,” without the site becoming like Reddit. It will be interesting to see if more Dislikes cause a post to dry up or if a wildly unpopular post gets the same boost in organic distribution as a well-Liked post.
There are lots of other buttons I’d like to see. How about a Sympathy Button, useful when someone breaks a leg, their cats dies or their partner unexpectedly dumps them? Or how about a Baldfaced Lie Button, as we move into the political season? Of course some people are pleading for a TMI Button and a Meh Button.
There are plenty of new Facebook users that decide to start creating a business presence by faking a Personal Profile page.
In a short time, most of these business users soon come to realize the shortcomings of such a decision but by then, they may already have hundreds of “friends.” If they are really successful, they will be forced to face the fact that Personal Profiles are capped at 5,000 friends. Facebook Business Pages are privileged with unlimited “Likes” – without fans having to ask and then wait to be granted access.
Businesses that impersonate people are heading toward a life of Facebook crime… by creating an impostor Profile you risk being deleted as a clear violation of Facebook policies. Under Facebook’s terms of service, users are required to use real identities and not hide behind false or anonymous accounts, a violation that can lead to Facebook closing an account. There are a completely different set of rules for Facebook Pages.
“Facebook has always been based on a real-name culture,” says Debbie Frost, a spokeswoman for Facebook. “This leads to greater accountability and a safer and more trusted environment for our users. It’s a violation of our policies to use a fake name or operate under a false identity.”
One of the biggest disadvantages of trying to use a Personal Profile for Business is the loss of Tabs & Apps. You can add all of the silly games you want to your Profile but none of the useful custom tabs or Apps that are available only for use on Business Pages. For example, Facebook apps can automatically showcase your YouTube channel, add a Google+ Tab, an e-mail signup form or even embed a full-blown shopping cart into your Facebook Business Page.
Apps are somewhat harder to find than games. However, Andrea Vahl explains How to Find and Add Facebook Apps to Your Facebook Page in a well-written Social Media Examiner post. In another valuable post, Mari Smith, a widely-recognized social media expert and author, provides an invaluable list of the Top 75 Facebook Apps – “to customize your landing tabs, add your blog, add videos and photos, add chat, add polls, contests, geolocation, scheduling, email and much more.”
Facebook also offers Business Page administrators a variety of powerful tools that help you manage and track engagement, a benefit denied to Personal Profiles.
I have been putting off my LinkedIn research, knowing full well that the LinkedIn team has not been holding back at all in their full-tilt campaign to challenge Facebook.
In the past few months they have expanded LinkedIn’s Facebook emulation to include: status updates, activity streams, company pages, open social apps and Twitter integration. LinkedIn’s latest addition, InMaps demands a closer look.
NOTE:You must have 50 connections and 75 percent of your profile completed to access your InMap.
I like charts and graphs, anything that helps me to visualize lists of data. The threads and connections generated by InMaps create relational groups out of my LinkedIn network and color-codes them in some manner that I am still trying to figure out. People with bigger dots and with names in larger fonts, have more connections in specific clusters. I can label these groups and work within the application. The cool part I discovered, is that by zooming in… all of the dots become real names of people in my network.
Your map is actually a view into how your professional world has been created over time. To get a sense of how that’s true, label each cluster (color) and explore your connections to see who are the major bridges on your map. You can use those insights to measure your own impact or influence, or create opportunities for someone else. So, you might see two distinct groups that you could introduce to become one. Or, you might leverage one person to connect them to someone else. See an area that doesn’t look like it is representative of your professional world? Fix it by adding the necessary connections.
InMaps is similar to Mind Maps that I make to organize social media campaigns. I use https://bubbl.us to build them from scratch. It’s a free cloud service and there are others like it. Perhaps InMaps will eventually allow me to make the groups and associations but for now, it is a great start.
“All media will be personalized in three to five years,” says Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg. “People don’t want something targeted to the whole world – they want something that reflects what they want to see and know.”
Sandberg’s comments, delivered at a conference in September, 2009, may have underestimated the speed at which it the personalization is taking place. Some fear that news aggregators will begin to take over the delivery of personalized content, based on user demographics extracted from your online grid profile. Media personalization is already well underway, but it’s not being crafted by an external source. Leave that effort to the adservers.
The personalization that Sheryl Sandberg describes is being shaped by the the users themselves. As they decide to “Like” a Facebook page, that content stream becomes an element in their newsfeed. Savvy business Website publishers are becoming content creators, learning to broadcast their news feed output to a Facebook page and to every other popular social media site, creating their own content-rich inbound “advertising” grid.
Now, It becomes much more important to “be about something” in order to be “marketing with meaning” as Bob Gilbreath describes. The old days of tell-and-sell, top-down advertising is being replaced by a people-centric model and it’s happening much faster than predicted.
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, “Knowing is Better” on UStream live 09/22/09.
“As news quickly travels, your friends are often the best filters you have for surfacing meaningful news,” says Lucich. “They are how I heard about Michael Jackson’s death, President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize and even ‘Balloon Boy’.”
Creating dedicated “lists” will allow the user to segregate and then display select newsfeed updates from friends and/or from the Official Facebook pages they “Like.” Facebook also provides publishers with Facebook Connect allowing offsite users to login at another Website and interact. After seeing referrals from Facebook grow 680 per cent in 2010, The Independent began redesigning different ways to personalize, aggregate and segment their news feeds into Facebook with a variety of new ‘like’ features on independent.co.uk.
So starting with a few key areas of the site, we’ve been developing the tools to let people get their news from The Independent through social networks in tighter categories, designed to better reflect the parts of our editorial output you particularly enjoy. To that end, you can now ‘like’ all of our commentators on Facebook, and if you do then when they publish a story it’ll appear in your news feed. So if you want to know what key writers such as Robert Fisk and Johann Hari are covering each week, just follow those links and click ‘like’. Commentator’s like buttons are, for now, confined to their author pages, which you can get to by clicking the names in the dropdown navigation visible when you hover over commentators on the Opinion section.
While none of my clients’ Websites nor any of my own publications can compare themselves to a major London news publisher, we can still take advantage of the opportunities presented by Facebook in terms of networking to create a grassroots distribution network. Facebook Apps like NetworkedBlogs permit content to be spread in a viral manner from one to many. With the consolidation of media that has taken place over the last decade, I often compare this community-based effort to Gulliver vs the Lilliputians.
What if you could scan through the status updates of 500 million people to search for any key words you were interested in tracking? How about if you could split it by gender? What would you search for?
YourOpenBook.org says, “Facebook helps you connect and share with the people in your life. Whether you want to or not.”
Created by Will Moffat, Peter Burns and James Home, Your Open Book was developed to demonstrate what they feel is wrong with Facebook’s privacy settings… that they are hard to find and even harder to adjust. The developers of Your Open Book are proposing the addition of a simple privacy slider to each user’s Facebook profile page and they have created this free search tool to call attention to their proposal.
Meanwhile, I think their application can also be used in lots of different ways to connect and communicate. But, it’s a lot like joining the dark side, when you start invading the privacy of strangers. Nonetheless, you might use it to search for mentions of a brand name, a restaurant or a geographic location. The possibilities are endless.
The Recent Searches on Your Open Book are updated continuously and display something like the following typical example:
“Originally, the whole idea, from a script point of view, was that the advertisements would recognize you – not only recognize you, but recognize your state of mind,” says Jeff Boortz, the creative director and creative lead on the “Minority Report” ads. Once upon a time there were only five media types: TV, radio, billboards, magazines and newspapers.
That’s the scene in “Minority Report“, the 2002 futuristic thriller in which Tom Cruise’s character, John Anderson is walking through a shopping mall. With the help of contemporary advertisers like Guinness, Bulgari, Lexus, Reebok, Nokia, Pepsi-Cola’s Aquafina and a “think tank” of MIT futurists, director Steven Spielberg and production designer Alex McDowell painted a fascinating picture of what advertising might look like in 2054. Iris-recognition targets the advertisements directly to John Anderson’s personal preferences… just like Facebook, Google and Yahoo. The future is here now.
“Targeted advertising today is based entirely on keywords, but in the future it will be based on a deeper understanding of the specific personality, desires, and needs of each consumer,” says Ray Kurzweil.
Yahoo calls them “Interest-based Ads” – and now they give you the option of opting out of the behavioral targeting and categories that they have already opted you into.
“If the 2000s was the Google decade, then the 2010s will be the Facebook decade,” says Steve Rubel, Director of Insights for Edelman Digital, a division of Edelman – the world’s largest independent PR firm. “As with the last 10 years, this era will unleash an avalanche of change for media companies and advertisers. You can see the writing on the wall, pun intended.”
Facebook already knows an incredible amount of each user’s highly specific demographic details, because users are continuously telling each other who they are. With more than 500 million users it has the audience and the knowledge to sell targeted advertising that can pinpoint viewers by age, gender, special interests and a number of other selectable measures.
And… over 100 million of those FB users are accessing via handheld devices, Facebook will soon follow Twitter by adding location-based technologies to the mix.
“Location is Everything,” was once a maxim reserved exclusively for the real estate market; now it’s about the Internet.
I predict that within a year SEO experts will rephrase British real estate developer Harold Samuel‘s famous quote about property to say, “There are three things you need in regard to Search Engine Optimization, these are: location, location, and location.”
Advertising is undergoing a rapid and dramatic shift toward location-based targeting. Social networking services like BrightKite, Loopt, Foursquare and Gowalla provide users with GPS-aware devices, to check-in, rate and add tips that other users can reference when in unfamiliar territory.
“There’s a lot of attention being focused on location-based services and mobile social networks right now, and for good reason,” Sam Altman, Co-Founder and CEO of Loopt. “These applications represent the future of social media. They’re expanding our circle of friends online and offline. They’re changing how we meet people. They’re affecting where we go and why. They’re forging important connections between our online networks and real life.”
Altman tells the Wall Street Journal that he calls the set of all places that you go (and information about when you go, for how long, who with, etc.) your Life Graph. The rise in popularity of location-based social networking goes hand-in-hand with the ubiquity of hand-held devices like the Android, iPhone and Blackberry – smart phones that have the ability to determine a user’s current location by employing GPS or cellular tower triangulation.
Steve Rubel says, “Websites will become less important over time. They will be primarily transactional and/or utilitarian. Brands will shift more of their dollars and resources to creating a robust presence where people already are and figure out how to use them to build relationships.”
Here at DesignWise Studios we are continuing to shift with the times as evidenced by our own CMS-driven Web site… not to mention our focus on social media, video production and now, location-based technology. Here’s one last provocative question: Have you seen your own spectacular Web site as displayed on a hand held device? The experience might be chilling. Our design team is also tech-savy in that regard… Contact us if you are ready to enter the 21st century.
“Life is change. How it differs from the rocks.” – Jefferson Airplane
“For the the Times they are a changin’…” The collapse of daily print journalism and traditional broadcast media spells catastrophe to some, opportunity to others.
Today, I had an opportunity to sit in on a marketing pitch being delivered to one of my clients by a local radio station’s advertising executive. I happened to be there for an eventual meeting about the development of a DesignWise plan for an “integrated” advertising campaign – one that would include earned media in the form of traditional press releases, coupled with a strong emphasis on the diverse forms of social network media.
Later, I provided my client with the following quote from Sut Jhally, Professor of Communications at the University of Massachusetts and founder of the Media Education Foundation:
“Advertisers have to go to where the audience is… if they want to sell products. They have no option but to go where the audience has gone. If the audience has gone online, gone to iPods, gone to Facebook – wherever the audience has gone – that is where advertisers must go.”
As I listened to the “old-school” radio pitchman trying to encourage my client to buy a package of “spots,” I envisioned the sharp changes that are sweeping over the worlds of journalism and marketing, as we transit from traditional broadcast to online media. I saw those paid radio spots simply floating away in the breeze much like the dry seeds of a dandelion blossom…
Maybe they would land somewhere on favorable ground and sprout forth as a new plant. Most of them would simply blow away like dust in the wind.
It is time that universities, online or otherwise, update their curricula…
I realized that I had come to help my client plant and grow a garden. That’s the profound difference between traditional broadcast media (radio, TV and newspaper advertising) and networked social media… In the old school, we continually threw out spots, hoping someone would eventually see or hear one. In the new school we intentionally plant and cultivate a growing presence in new media resources that remains there and grows larger in in outreach as time passes.
The online gardener’s new tools include:
a blog-based Web site with an ongoing stream of fresh content,
… the question is no longer “if“ you decide to employ new media. As newspapers shrink and disappear right before your eyes and radio audiences now listen to what they want on iPods and smart phones, it’s now a matter of “when” you decide to plant that garden.
Contact, Stephen Kastner at DesignWise Studios to discuss the most effective ways to plant and grow your social media garden.
Last week I decided to add a specific category called Google Watch to my writing and reporting here in the DesignWise Web Marketing blog. With Google controlling approximately 65% of the search market, coupled with the fact that it is an ever-changing entity, I feel it’s important to pay close attention to the continuous changes taking place at Google.
While searches at Google now include content from Twitter, Friendfeed, Identi.ca, Jaiku and Yahoo Answers, the latest announcement that they plan to include status updates from Facebook and MySpace will be seen by some as an invasion of privacy. I see it as a marketing opportunity. A Daoist would say, “It’s all in how you perceive the cup… half-full or half-empty.”
According to Google product manager Dylan Casey, their intention is to have Google’s organic search reflect what people are talking about right now, the current thought-stream… “real-time search.”
“See what’s being published right this second,” says Casey. “You can select Updates and Latest and actually see that content stream in as its being published.”
Adam Ostrow says, “Now, with one sweeping stroke, Google has grabbed the lead in the real-time search space, and it appears that Facebook and Twitter have both conceded that they aren’t going to outbuild Google when it comes to search.”
Developing a broad social footprint and entering into the dialogue – that means listening as well as talking – is now a given if you expect to have a successful role in contemporary marketing.
Can’t choose a default search engine? Want to compare Bing and Google search results? Google-vs-Bing.com presents the results from both engines side-by-side.