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Introducing the SO ME Academy

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It’s been a while since i’ve blogged here; i’ve been busy building and blogging over at our social media risk blog. I promise i’ll start blogging again, so to kick things off I thought you might want to know what i’ve been up to.

Last week I launched the SO ME Academy with the aim to enable anyone in an organisation to become social media confident and attain the skills required to go from social zero to social here. Over the next few months we will be creating courses and classes that will help enterprise users, college students and unemployed people understand social media in their line of work or for their future career plans.

You can click above to play a video introduction to our company or find out more on our website here.

landlords

The end of the estate agent?

Rent your property

The renting industry is a complex and sometimes costly field to do business in. With off-putting admin fees for tenants and over-priced marketing fees by high-street estate agents it can leave a sour taste in your mouth. Not to mention then having to buy a legal contract and source references.

The technology start-up world is full of useful applications that help solve age-old problems. I recently needed to rent out my apartment in Coventry after finally being fed up of my 1.5 hour commute to Birmingham during rush hour. I had one thing in mind; I didn’t want to pay over the odds for a letting agent to manage my property, and I certainly didn’t trust the dodgy potential candidates that were leaking through on Gumtree.

I stumbled across OpenRent. They describe their service as “the safer, faster and cheaper way for landlords to advertise on Rightmove” – I add- without any of the high-street estate agent hassles.

What Openrent offers:

  • Advertise your property on rightmove for £20 free (when I first wrote this post, it was £20, now they don’t charge for listing your property).
  • Reference each tenant for just £20
  • Openrent handle all the deposit and contract needs

Click here to visit openrent.

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Kony 2012 – why is it such a huge social media success?

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It’s a glossy video that has Hollywood qualities, made by charity Invisible Children, this Youtube success story was seeded into Twitter and exploded from there. By the end of the first day this video had received over 3 million Youtube views.

The video features key attributes that make a successful viral. It begins with very emotive scenes of child-birth and unconditional happiness, it even features humor with film maker Jason Russell’s son bringing a smile to the viewer’s face. But very quickly this video takes a turn the dark-side gripping its viewers with a scene of a child and soldier sending shivers down your spine.

Most successful virals tend to be short, few are less than 30 seconds long. Nine out of Ten of the all time most popular Youtube hits are also music videos.

So what made this video such a hit?

  • Viewers are shown ‘Share’ buttons in the first few seconds almost subliminally, now i’m not a psychologist, but one could hazard a guess this helps plant that seed.
  • This video is emotive, its a roller-coaster of happy to sad to shock
  • Film maker Russell invites the viewer to participate in an experiment, and the use of the word ‘We’ and ‘Us’ instantly builds a sense of community and is very personal
  • Another point to note is a younger Russell from a clip a few years ago makes a ‘promise’ to a child, and I personally was amazed he could make such a promise, you feel that you almost want to help
  • The end of the video provides clear instructions on how you can help, leading with financial ones first, then powerfully suggests that the least you can do is ‘Share’ the video
  • There has also been critics who are shouting that the facts are wrong, this sort of debate and emotive reactions are simply more fuel to the fire for this social media blaze.

This is my verdict live on the 10pm news for Al Jezeera TV

pinterest

Pinterest Glossary

There’s a lot if interest in Pinterest, and I’m sure I’m not the first blogger to say that. But it is true; Pinterest is the new buzzword in social media, even though it has been around for nearly 2 years now.

Below I’ve prepared a glossary of terms, enjoy.

The Pinterest Glossary

Pins – Pins are images from around the web or those uploaded from your PC that are then added to Pinterest.

Boards – Boards are collections of pins. Just like a noticeboard in your office, it can have lots of Pins attached to them. Boards are sorted into subjects like architecture, cars, weddings, interiors or brands.

Repin – To repin on Pinterest is to copy a Pin to a different board, such as one you have created yourself, you could move a lovely plant from a board called ‘Green things’ to your own board called ‘For my garden’.

Like – You also have the option to “like” a pin. When you “like” an image it is added to the Likes section of your profile, but is not added to one of your boards or shared with your followers.

Pinner – A pinner is a user of Pinterest.

Follow a pinner – On a user’s profile you can either follow just one of that Pinner’s boards by clicking the “follow” button at the bottom of the board. Or if you’d like to follow everything a user pins, click the “follow all” button under their profile picture.

Mention a pinner – Just like Twitter, you can mention fellow Pinterest users in the comments of your pins by using the @ symbol and the username of the pinner you want to mention.

And of course, follow me on Pinterest here.

facebook-insights

Facebook metrics change

As you may know, I am the co-founder of social media software CrowdControlHQ. Part of our software allows brands to understand the metrics and data around their Facebook pages. Recently Facebook made a change to some of their metrics, therefore I thought it might be handy if I gave you a summary here courtesy of one of our developer.

Some of the metrics have been removed, and some new ones were introduced. On the 15th of February 2012, the data for the removed metrics was permanently deleted. Here’s a roundup:

Demographics

While the ‘active users’ were all the users who viewed or clicked on any content on your brand’s page, the new metrics introduced the ‘storytellers’. Storytellers are those people who engaged with the page and as a result a ‘story’ about their engagement appeared on someone’s news feed. Engagement that generates stories includes any of the following actions: posting on the brand’s timeline, commenting on a post on the brand’s page wall, liking content on the brand’s wall, mentioning the brand page or checking on the Facebook place set up for your brand.

Sources

Facebook will not provide sources for comments or likes anymore, but instead has introduced a detailed breakdown of how your fans are distributed:

- Page suggestion: People who liked your page through an invite from an admin
- Timeline: People who liked your page from the likes section of their own timeline or someone else’s
- Ads: People who clicked “Like” in an Ad or Sponsored Story pointing to your Page
- Registration: People you added to your page as admins will be a separate category
- Mobile: People who liked your page from a mobile device
- Wizard suggestion: People who liked your page in the New User Wizard when registering for Facebook
- Profile connect: People who liked your page on the page itself or in a News Feed or ticker story
- External connect: People who liked your page from an external site using a Facebook social plugin
- Recommended pages: People who liked your page from a Recommended Pages unit on the right column of Facebook
- Favorites: Other brand pages that have liked your page
- API: People who liked your page through an app developed by a third party
- Page browser: People who liked your page using Facebook’s Page Browser
- Hovercard: People who liked your page from the pop-up window they get when they hover over a link that leads to your page
- Search: People who liked your page from their search results
- Page profile: People who liked your page on the page itself
- Ticker: People who liked your page from a story they saw about it in Ticker
- Like story: People who liked your Page from a story they saw about a friend liking it
- Video flyout: People who liked your Page from a video flyout
- Page creation: People who liked automatically by creating your Page
- From coupon: People who liked your Page from a coupon

Engagement

Facebook insights will not explicitly provide the number of posts, comments, likes, link clicks, photo views, video plays anymore. Instead the link clicks, photo views and video plays and other clicks can be found under the number of consumptions which represent engagements that did not generate a story in a news feed. The exact number of posts, comments or likes as well as the number of people that did these actions will not be available directly, but under an aggregated form: the number of stories that were generated by each of these actions.

Negative Feedback

Perhaps the most important change to Facebook’s insights is the introduction of the concept of negative feedback as a result of an engagement. Negative feedback includes the following types of actions:

- People that hide all stories related to a brand page
- People that hide a certain story
- People that unlike a brand page
- People that report an object as a spam

Our software will reflect these changes in the way it collects Analytics for your social media activity. We will also continue to provide the number of both incoming and outgoing posts, comments, post likes or comment likes, which won’t be visible directly from the Facebook Insights anymore.

cadbury

Cadbury – Protecting a family brand on social media

Cadbury is a global confectionery brand that treasures its local marketing and communications strategy.
It is a well-known house-hold name. Its sub-brands such as Green & Blacks have loyal customers and its campaigns such as Spots vs. Stripes have a huge fan base. Cadbury prides itself on finding new and fun ways of interacting with consumers who want to engage with the brand, discuss a campaign or simply just talk about chocolate!
googleplus

King of search vs King of social

King of search vs King of social – who will win the community insight arms race?

Google; the site that gives us what we want when we want it.

Search for pizza, you get pizza. 545 million lots of pizza to be almost exact. Starting from what Google thinks is relevant moving to the not so hot.
Search for a plumber in London, hey presto, you got plumbers.

And now Facebook wants to do exactly that – give us what we want, or at least what it thinks we want- but, its an educated guess, taught by you.

The difference is- Facebook is doing it socially, with your friends and the apps you interact with.

But is ‘educated guessing’ what Google has actually been doing for years? The answer is yes. Today Facebook announced that it is implementing a ‘content algorithm’ to deliver us content based on the people and things* we interact with, like and want to see. We can refine this by staring and hiding stuff we do and don’t want.

Google has gotten good at doing this by analysing data by the masses, who clicked what; did you come back for more search results, or was it content you found what you wanted? And they’re getting publically more personal – +1 etc.

Facebook is doing this for your friends.

It’s now tuning into our exact needs through the same data mining and clever insight that Google has used to deliver its search results, except it just got a whole load more personal.

Now as you’d expect, everything today is social.

- We arrange events (on Facebook)
- We post photos to Flickr, Instagram (and Facebook)
- We download voucher codes on VoucherCloud (and Facebook)
- We connect with brands (on Facebook)

So of course Google wants a bit of the action, and so it should, it’s simply where the world is going. Hello Google+.

Is Facebook rushing to react to Google+ by releasing lots of ideas?

My answer is probably not. Zuckerberg has had that look on his face that tells me this has been his vision from day dot- think back to the beacon days- data mining of your online habbits to deliver you ads and content.

You’ve seen the chaos Facebook has faced when they release tiny amendments, so in essence it looks like they’ve been drip feeding their massive user base (half a billion active daily users) where as Google has the joy of just simply dropping in and saying ‘hey’ look at us.

Who will win the community insight race? It’s too early to tell.

It’s the king of search (what you want when you want it) vs the king of social– and the boundaries are bluring.