Category Archives: Social Media – Facebook

Social Media – Facebook

Facebook Ads: all it’s cracked up to be?

Facebook_July22_CSocial media is without doubt one of the most popular communication platforms. Since its rise in the early to mid 2000s, it has proven to be one of the greatest ways for a business to not only improve their brand, but increase reach and exposure. There are many features that enable this, with one of the best being Facebook Ads.

Facebook Ads is a way for businesses and users to get their content and advertisements seen by other users. There are two main types of advertising on Facebook: Ads and Featured Sponsored Stories.

Sponsored Stories is content created by Facebook users, usually through interaction with your Facebook Page, or content your company has posted (liking, sharing, etc.). Because actions like this show up on user newsfeeds, companies can pay to have these interactions featured on friends of the friends they originally interacted with. The idea here is to increase who can see your content in the hopes of finding new fans or more specifically, new customers.

Ads on the other hand is similar to traditional advertising in that you create and have more control over the advertising content. You can control the imagery, wording, title and even who sees the content. This gives you a great way to create targeted ads that specific customers and users respond to. Hopefully bringing them to your Facebook Page or even website. There are four different types of Ad:

  1. Standard ad - These are the ads found on the right-hand side of most Facebook pages, including: The home page, Photos, events, user profiles, Pages, etc. When you place the ad, you can decide who gets to see it, and where the ad will link to (your Facebook page, or say your website).
  2. Page post ad - These posts on your company’s Facebook Page, that can be sponsored to increase their reach, or in other words who can see them. When you create a Page post ad, it will usually show up on user newsfeeds, but can also show up on the right-hand side of the window. Users can then comment, share and like the post as they usual. The main difference is that more users will see the ad, which brings your Page potentially more exposure.
  3. Mobile app install - If you have created a mobile app that is available for download in the Google Play or Apple App Store, and have connected this with Facebook, you can pay to have the ad show up on certain user newsfeeds, when they browse Facebook using either an Android or Apple mobile device.
  4. Sponsored result - These are sponsored search results that show up in the drop-down box when a user initiates a search using Facebook’s new Graph Search bar. This type of ad is only available to companies who have signed up for Optimized CPM ads.

A common question many businesses ask is whether these ads are actually useful and do in fact pay out. A recent study conducted by Internet advertising company AdRoll, which looked at the benefits and click-through rates (the number of clicks on an ad divided by the times it’s shown) of social vs. traditional search advertising such as through Google, has found that yes, ads do work.

The study found that ads that show up on newsfeeds have a click-through rate 21 times higher than targeted Web ads. What’s interesting is that the newsfeed ads have a click-through rate 49 times higher than ads that are posted on the right-hand side of Facebook. What this means for you, and companies posting ads on Facebook, is that your content will achieve greater exposure if it’s posted on newsfeeds.

If you are looking to learn more about Facebook and how it can help your business, you need to contact us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

When should you post on Facebook?

Facebook_June25_CFacebook has become an important marketing tool for many businesses. Just having a profile isn’t the key to success though. You also need to create content and posts that your audience can interact with. One key element is that they see your post. Often people’s profiles show over 100 posts a day when they log in and if yours is one of these then they may miss this. One way around this is to post when they are actually logged-in and using Facebook.

When it comes to posts on Facebook, timing is everything. It is a good idea to post when your audience is online. With higher relevant numbers available to view your content, your brand exposure and engagement will likely be higher as well.

The tricky part comes in knowing when your audience is online. We came across an interesting infographic from LinchpinSEO, that highlights a number of popular industries and when they saw the most engagement from their Facebook posts.

What exactly is engagement?
Before we go over some of the details, we should look into what exactly experts mean when they talk about engagement on Facebook. In the most basic of terms, engagement is any interaction from your followers. This usually means them liking, sharing or commenting on a post. The idea is that if they are sharing or viewing your content, they are interested, (on some level), in your company, and your products and/or services. The chances of them then thinking of your company the next time they need what you provide will be higher. With higher engagement comes the chance of more sales, or at the very least, increased interest.

According to the results in the infographic, engagement breaks down like this:

  • Likes make up 79% of all interaction.
  • Comments equal 15% of all interaction.
  • Shares make up 6% of all interaction.

Some interesting results on when to post
Looking at the different results by industry, it appears that the best time for most industries to post is over the weekend. The reason for this is likely because fewer businesses post on the weekends, and many people are on Facebook much more during this time.

Some popular industries and days when posts saw the most engagement include:

  • Food and Beverage: The highest interaction is, not surprisingly, on weekends.
  • General Retail: The highest interaction is on Mondays, followed by Tuesdays.
  • Finance: Businesses in the finance industry see the highest interaction on Sundays, followed by Fridays.
  • Technology: The highest interaction is on Mondays.
  • Travel and Leisure: Not surprisingly, this industry saw the highest interaction on the weekend, with a peak on Sunday.

What this infographic and the study that it’s based on found is quite interesting. For most businesses, posting on the weekends is more beneficial. A potential issue you may have is that your business isn’t open on the weekends. You can get around this by scheduling content to be posted ahead of time using a tool like HootSuite. If you would like to learn more about Facebook and how it can help drive brand engagement, please contact us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

All about Trusted Contacts

Facebook_May28_CThe increasing popularity of social media has brought with it an increase in the number of security issues. Facebook, the most popular platform, has integrated fairly robust security measures to keep your account secure. A recently introduced new security feature – Trusted Contacts – uses your friends to help you regain access to your account.

Trusted Contacts was officially introduced by Facebook in early May 2013, after nearly two years in testing. It is a potentially really useful feature that could help you out one day.

What exactly is Trusted Contacts?

According to Facebook, “Trusted Contacts lets your friends help you if you’re having trouble logging into your account.” If you have been previously using the Trusted Friends feature, this has now been renamed and merged with Trusted Contacts.

Trusted Contacts allows users to set up to five Facebook friends who can help you regain access to your account. For example, if you forget your password your nominated friends can send you a phrase to enter so that you can get back into your account.

It is a good idea to set this up, but beware that at least three friends who you set as a Trusted Contact will need to send you a private code before you can regain access. The friends will only have access to the code if they log into Facebook, so make sure you  pick someone who is able to log into Facebook regularly.

How to set up Trusted Contacts

You can set up Trusted Contacts by:

  1. Logging into your Facebook profile and clicking on the cog at the top right-hand side of the window.
  2. Selecting Account Settings followed by Security in the window that opens.
  3. Clicking on Edit beside the Trusted Contacts field followed by Choose Trusted Contacts.
  4. Typing the names of three to five reliable friends. You should see the name of each friend in a blue box below the search bar.
  5. Clicking Confirm.

Facebook will notify the contacts you’ve selected with more information about how the process works.

If you are having trouble accessing your Facebook account you can tell your trusted friends to visit facebook.com/recover to get the code and then pass it to you. Once you have entered three codes, provided by your friends, you should be able to get into your profile.

Trusted Contacts could be a useful tool, especially if you don’t use or access your personal Facebook profile on a regular basis. It’s important to stress that you pick someone you trust, and who is reliable.

If you would like to learn more ways you can keep your Facebook account secure, please contact us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Facebook: 5 ways to leverage your page

Facebook_April30_CFacebook is currently the most popular, and arguably important, social media platform. Many think that if you don’t have a presence on this service, you are missing out or are behind the times. As such, companies have flocked to the service with hopes of reaching more customers. The truth is, it takes more than just a profile to leverage your presence on Facebook.

Here are five tips that you can use to help you get more out of your Facebook page.

1. Don’t be a zombie
Facebook, and all social media for that matter, is more like a talk show than the Walking Dead (a TV show about survival in a zombie apocalypse). You can’t simply set up a profile with basic information and let it ‘wander around mindlessly’. A zombie account that has no interaction, posts, updated information etc, will likely be avoided.

The key to a good Facebook presence is that you are active. This means sharing, posting, commenting, liking, etc. Having an active page will go a long way in cementing your brand. Like a good talk show, if users can interact they will likely stay interested and willing to learn more. This will positively affect your brand.

Beyond being active, you need to come across as human. Actions like signing your posts with your name, making an odd mistake (yes, we know, mistakes? But you are human, you make them), interacting with people, etc., will do you good. A great way to come across as human on your business’s profile is to reply to all comments, even the bad ones.

2. Eat your Wheaties
A healthy body is a regular body; a healthy Facebook page is similar to this: Content is posted on a regular basis. The frequency of your posts will tend to vary depending on which expert you talk to. However, most will agree that fewer than two posts a week will not engage your followers. Many recommend that small businesses post between five and seven times a week – once a day basically.

3. Be a boastful Bob
Many of us grew up being told not to brag. When it comes to social media, bragging is not only ok, it’s a part of life. If something great happens in/to the company, by all means brag about it. Just be careful, it’s still not professional to constantly brag.

A good example of when to brag is when your business is featured in a trusted source (news, blog, radio, etc) or receives an award. Sharing this news makes your business not only look more credible, but more professional; a real expert in your field.

4. Share and share a lot
Businesses often struggle to come up with unique content on a regular basis. If this sounds like your company, don’t worry. The first thing you have to realize about Facebook is that almost nothing is original. Peruse any profile and you will see that people share a lot of content, most of which isn’t theirs.

For businesses, it’s perfectly acceptable to share content that isn’t yours. If you come across a great article that’s relevant to your company and you think your followers will enjoy, go ahead and share it. Have you found a funny comic, picture, video, site, etc.? Share it.

There is no limit on what you can share, as long as you attribute it. Writing a post like: ‘Check out this great article on customer service from this company [use the name].’ is fine. That being said, you should have some original content. A successful strategy may be to have one post out of five being content you have created, three to four shared content and one company news.

5. Highlight and pin what’s important to your company
If you have some important information or news that you want your followers to see, you can highlight them on your page. This will expand the post, so that it takes up the whole width of the Timeline, making it easier to see. Combine this with a bigger image, and the news will really stand out.

To highlight a post/status, hover over the top-right of the post (after you have posted it to your timeline) and look for the star beside the pencil. Press it, and the post will be highlighted.

If you want a post to stay at the top of your Timeline, you can pin it there for one week. This is done by hovering over the top-right of the post and pressing the pencil icon. From the dropdown menu, select Pin to top.

Facebook can be a useful tool in growing your business or establishing a quality brand. If you are looking for more ways you can leverage your company’s page, please contact us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Ready for Facebook’s new News Feed?

Facebook_April02_CThe main way users interact with Facebook is through their News Feed. It shows what their friends are sharing, videos to watch, what companies you have liked are sharing, etc. Despite other changes to the layout, the News Feed has generally remained unchanged. Until now that is, Facebook has recently announced multiple changes to the News Feed.

Here’s an overview of the new changes introduced in Facebook’s News Feed overhaul.

Bigger, more engaging content
The biggest, most obvious change is that the new News Feed is wider. That’s because the menu bar that traditionally has taken up the left-hand side of the window has been more or less removed. It’s now a hovering bar that can collapse to the left-side of the screen. If you’ve seen the recent Android and iPad/iPhone layout, where you can press a button to see your friends menu, it’s similar to that.

Because of the new layout, the content shown on the feed is now larger. This means larger images, news stories, events and maps. To better take advantage of this, it is recommended that any images you upload to your profile be around 600X600 pixels – no smaller than 200X200 pixels.

There is another change that could pose useful: When a friend or local business appears on a user’s wall, they will see the entire Timeline badge and location if they have allowed it.

New feeds
To get the most out the new layout, Facebook has also introduced a number of new News Feeds to explore. Before we get into the new feeds, it would pay to talk about how Facebook has become smarter. Over time, as you comment on posts or share items, Facebook will start to show recommendations based on your past activity. For example if you are sharing news about cloud storage, you will begin to see suggestions around other cloud storage posts, articles or programs that could interest you.

This new layout comes with a few different feeds that can help filter the content you see. The announced feeds are:

  • Music - Shows you posts related to the music you listen to. This likely won’t be the most useful for the majority of companies out there.
  • Photos - Displays only photos that have been uploaded by friends or pages you like. This could be important, especially if you have a visual based profile e.g., restaurants. Because of this new feed, it would be a good idea to ensure you are sharing high-quality images.
  • Following – The latest news and information from Pages that you have liked. This feed could be quite interesting to companies, as it only shows Facebook Pages. What this means for most Page owners is that they had better be sharing good content, as they just became more visible.
  • All Friends – Shows the traditional News Feed namely everything your friends and Pages you have liked are sharing and commenting on.
  • Close Friends - This is a bit of a dangerous view for companies, as it will only show information posted by their friends. All business and ad-related content is not shown.

The same views across all platforms
Finally, Facebook has noted that with this new layout, the News Feed will be the same across all devices. No more looking at a completely different News Feed on your phone or tablet. This is a good move, and should increase your company’s exposure over time.

If you access Facebook on your mobile phone – Android or iPhone/iPad – you have likely seen the new changes, as the apps were updated in mid March and included the new mobile version of the News Feed. The company started rolling out the new layout on March 7 and has noted that the change will take place over a couple of months. Some lucky users may even have it now.

Looking forward to the new changes? Or, perhaps you are a little apprehensive? Why not contact us today to see how we can help you get the most out of any change Facebook introduces.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Perform a Facebook profile audit today

Facebook_Mar05_CFacebook never stays the same for long, always introducing new features for users to gripe about, then fall in love with. The newest function is Graph Search which allows users to search for others based on their likes, location, photos, posts, etc. While this could be useful, it is a good idea to audit your profile before it’s made available to everyone.

There are three main parts to this audit, which will ensure that your personal profile is ready for Graph Search. Bear in mind that this is for your personal account, not your business Facebook Page. This audit is ideal if you would like a more professional looking profile.

Step 1. Check who can search for you
The whole idea of Facebook is to be social, however you may not want to be found by every man and his dog on this platform. You can check who can search for your profile by:

  1. Clicking the Lock icon in the top-right hand side of the screen.
  2. Selecting Who can contact me?
  3. Looking at Who can send me friend requests? By default it is set to Everyone, but you can change this by pressing the downward facing blue arrow.
  4. Looking at Whose messages do I want filtered into my inbox?

Step 2. Check your Activity Log
The Activity Log is essentially a journal for Facebook. It covers everything you have done on Facebook, and provides you with a quick way to edit your profile. You can access it by:

  1. Clicking on the Lock icon in the top-right hand side of the screen.
  2. Selecting Who can see my stuff?
  3. Click on Use Activity Log.

Depending on how active you are on Facebook, it could take a bit of time to look through your activities. If you see something you don’t like, or would like to change, press the pencil at the right-hand side of the activity. This will allow you to edit the post, remove it from your timeline or delete it. Note, that if you remove it from your timeline, the information won’t be deleted.

If you press the Lock icon you can change who can see the post/activity on your timeline too. It would be a good idea to look through your whole timeline and ensure that any unprofessional comments, links, likes, etc. are either deleted or removed from your timeline. It wouldn’t be a good idea to make your profile completely private however, so ensure some posts – maybe ones related to your business, hobbies, interests, etc. – are still visible.

Step 3. Check who can see future posts
Facebook has included an option that allows you to set who can see future posts on your timeline. This will lessen the need for a future account audit. You can set this by:

  1. Clicking on the Lock icon in the top-right hand side of the screen.
  2. Selecting Who can see my stuff?
  3. Pressing the downward facing blue arrow under Who can see my future posts? and setting it to the desired level of security.

In order to ensure your profile is optimized for Graph Search, carrying out this audit would be a great idea. As we stated above, you don’t have to make everything private, after all, this is a social network. Just make sure that anything that is unbecoming of the professional you are is removed or hidden from prying eyes. If you would like a little help ensuring both you and your business are ready for the next big Facebook feature, contact us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Facebook introduces changes. Again!

There’s just something about change that can sometimes bring out the worst in people. Take for example Facebook: Do you remember what Facebook looked like when it first launched, or even two years ago? The Thai’s have a saying, “same same but different.” That just about sums up Facebook. Yes, it looks the same as it did a few years ago, but it’s drastically different today. Every time a change is made people make a fuss for about two months, and then get used to it. Brace yourselves, as Facebook has just introduced some more new changes.

Facebook’s changes should have been made to your profile by the time you read this. If not, you should see them by early January. Below is an overview of the more important features.

Security shortcuts
One of the more common complaints about Facebook was that it’s hard to change or even find your security settings. The update puts a button in the blue bar beside you name at the top of the window (it looks like a lock). When you press on it you are given three of the most popular Security requests:

  • Who can see my stuff?
  • Who can contact me?
  • How do I stop someone from bothering me?

You’ll notice grey arrows beside each choice. Pressing these will bring up the associated options and allow you to easily adjust your security settings.

App permissions
The app is an essential part of not only Facebook but the tech industry. When first introduced apps could collect your data and send it to the producer of the app. This managed to tick off a lot of users, so Facebook started giving users the option on whether the app was allowed to send their information to the app’s producer or allow the app to post on your wall on your behalf.

With the new update, when you try to add an app to your profile you’ll get a big pop-up window asking you to grant the app access permission, or the ability to collect your information. You can then pick the settings you prefer.

Timeline clarification
When Timeline was introduced, the vast majority of users disliked it. Now that some time has passed they have gotten used to it. The big problem most have with Timeline is that anything you posted, commented on or did stays visible on your profile. You had the option to hide stuff but it was terribly confusing as it still stayed on your profile.

The update clarifies this by giving you a warning when you hide something from your Timeline. If you want to expunge something from your timeline, you need to delete it, otherwise it will still show up if someone does a bit of digging.

No hiding from search
In the past you had the option to keep your profile and information from showing up in search results when someone looks for you. Facebook has removed this option, meaning you will now show up in search results. We don’t think this will harm many companies seeing as this is a social network and you really do want to be social and be able to be found by interested parties.

Improved Activity Log
The Activity Log tracks everything you’ve done on Facebook. Keen on Farmville? Every action and achievement is recorded here. The big change here is that Facebook has made it easier to browse your activity by implementing a timeline to the right of the window. Facebook has also made it easier to find specific things like pictures and change them all in one go.

Overall, these changes appear to make Facebook better and easier to use. While not major differences, it’s now easier to maintain control of your profile. If you would like to learn more about how Facebook can help your company please contact us.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Comment and post management on Facebook

Facebook, when leveraged properly, can be a solid online marketing platform, as the way it’s set up is conducive to interactions. You post something and users interact with it by commenting, liking, or even sharing. When this happens, the user’s actions are shared on their walls for other users to see, potentially driving more views to your profile and ultimately increasing the chance of a sale. This open platform can be a double-edged sword where spiteful postings could cause harm. It’s these comments you need to keep an eye out for and know how to control and delete.

Here’s how to delete posts and comments on your Facebook Page.

Delete a post or comment
To delete a post:

  1. Go to your company’s Facebook Page and scroll to the post you would like to delete.
  2. Hover your mouse over the top right-hand corner of the box containing the post.
  3. Press the Pencil and select Delete…
  4. Select Delete from the pop-up window that appears. You can also select Delete and Ban user which will delete the post and ban the user from posting on your wall.

To delete a comment:

  1. Go to your company’s Facebook Page and scroll to the post that contains the comment you’d like to delete.
  2. Hover your mouse over the right-hand side of the comment until an X appears.
  3. Click on the X and the post will be removed and marked as spam.

When you click Remove, a message will be shown telling you the post has been deleted and provide you with some extra options. You can either ban the user, undo the action or delete the post, as well as ban or report the user.

When should I delete?
In an ideal world, you wouldn’t have to delete or remove any posts, simply because the idea of Facebook for businesses is to show the human face of companies and that they are worth interacting with. Some negative comments, when addressed correctly, can help illustrate that you care, and will go the extra mile to ensure people with issues have a way to communicate, and that your company values its relationships.

Sadly, this isn’t an ideal world, there will be times when people post things that should be deleted. These include posts that:

  • Are overly hurtful.
  • Are hateful.
  • Contain information or words deemed to be unacceptable by the local and professional community.
  • Are so off topic they are useless.
  • Sell other products, usually spam messages like: ‘Buy Gucci Bags only USD$11’.

It’s important to remember that some posts, while they may irk you or even make you angry, are actually feedback. If you delete these comments other users could notice and this  could harm your reputation more than the initial post itself. Think of these comments as a chance to interact with your customers and as a warning that you may need to work on some aspects of your company or service.

What about mistakes and typos? Ideally, there shouldn’t be any, but we’re all human and we make mistakes. Facebook allows you to edit comments, which can be done by clicking on the pencil and selecting Edit. Beware that users will be able to see that edits have been made, as Edited is added below the comment. Currently, the only way to actually edit a post is to copy the content, delete the old post, repost it and then change the date back to the original post. This is hardly ideal, so it’s better to be 100% sure about what you want to post and do a quick spell check before you do.

If you’d like to learn more about using Facebook to leverage your company’s marketing potential, give us a shout.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Facebook is big, but just how big?

Just 15 years ago, if you said, “hold on, I have to tweet this and post a picture on Facebook,” people would look at you like you are one slice short of the full pie. Now, it’s the accepted norm and sites like Facebook have become so ingrained in everyday culture that they have changed the way we communicate and share information. Facebook is now so big, that if you’re not on it, you may be missing out. But just how big is Facebook?

Here are some interesting Facebook facts and figures.

Number of active users: over 1 billion.
Number of mobile users: 600 million. That’s right, over half of the users access Facebook from their mobile phones.
Number of likes since launch: 1.13 trillion. It’s crazy, thats 1,130 likes per person.
Number of connections: Facebook’s 1 billion users are connected to 140.3 billion other users. Talk about six degrees of separation!
Number of locally tagged posts: 17 billion. The ability to add your location to posts was introduced in August 2010, and this statistic came from September 2012.

These are just a few Facebook facts associated with the recent 1 billionth active user milestone, reached in October. It’s amazing to think that 1/7th of the world’s population are active Facebook users. Imagine what the number would be if it wasn’t blocked in China?

So, what do these numbers mean for you? Well, first of all, it means a huge potential network of clients/friends. If 1 billion users are connected with 140.3 billion other users, that means that the average number of friends a user has is 140.3. Imagine running an ad campaign on any medium, having 140 of your closest friends see it, and share it with their friends. Your brand has the potential to go global and viral in a very short amount of time.

How do you leverage these numbers? Most companies use Facebook Ads, a service which allows you to place ads that users will see and potentially click on. If leveraged correctly, Facebook is one powerful marketing platform, regardless of the size of the company. If your company doesn’t have a presence on Facebook, you’re missing out on the potential it can bring. Call us. We can help you establish a presence.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.