Category: Social Media

Stale social media

February 20th, 2013 — 3:08pm

I recently (today) came across a vendor website that had their latest tweets – here’s was the latest:

12/23/2012 22:18 - Happy Holidays from all of us here at Company X. May the new year bring happiness and joy.

Ok, it’s late February now. It’s fine if they decided not to bother with Twitter, but at least take it off the site. The bottom line is, if you are going to do social media, do it regularly. Seeing stale posts like this will make prospective clients wonder if the company is still a going concern.

If you try a venue, like Twitter, and decide it’s not really working, at least post a “signoff” message, with a link, so people know you are know longer actively using the account. Better yet, just pick the social media outlets that work for you, and get in the habit of posting there regularly, at least once a week.

Ironically, the company in this outdated twitter message had other news to post over the last few months, but for some reason, didn’t bother sending it to twitter. In the meantime, their site showcases an embarrassing social media misstep to potential customers.

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It is time for your business to Pinterest?

May 18th, 2012 — 1:15pm

Social picture site Pinterest has been taking off recently. It’s a website where people “pin” pictures of things they like, categorize and share them. Doesn’t seem initially like this has much business potential, but take a look at this article:

The article writers did some SEO testing, and found some interesting results. A brand new site started ranking, and getting inbound links after pinning just 2 recipes there.

If your business has any images – products, etc. then you should probably set up a pinterest account and start posting there.

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New privacy button on your browser?

February 24th, 2012 — 8:37am

It looks like the growing concerns over user privacy online are finally coming to a head.  The new proposed “Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights” has gained concessions from Google to add a “privacy” button to its browser.  Firefox already has this.  The button essentially signals advertisers not to track your movements (by turning off cookies for third party ads, I guess).

While this seems like a step in the right direction, the fact is that you still need to be careful about what you share online, and which sites you share it with.  There are many companies flying “under the radar” that collect and track your information.  Google and Facebook collect tremendous amounts of data, and this “Bill of Rights” won’t stop that.

For the average website owner, it’s important to safeguard any data you collect.  Only collect and store what you really need, especially when it comes to credit card information.  Even just one data-breach can destroy your reputation, and your entire business.

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End of the Social Media “free” ride?

February 3rd, 2012 — 1:28pm

This week the big story was Facebook filing for an IPO.  $10 Billion is the estimate of what they will raise in new cash.  The filing unmasks some of the realities of today’s internet.

Well, this guy summarizes it pretty well:

“Two years from now, Facebook should be competing with Google to see who can best use your own data to help marketers target ads to you, no matter where those ads appear.” (Forrester analyst Nate Elliott)

So this is where the internet is finally headed – everything will be monetized – every page view, every “app”, game, etc. will be geared toward to collecting data and using it to sell to you.  I’m not against capitalism – quite the contrary.  But I wonder if there will be a tipping point – where subscription based services (ad free!) will start to gain traction, as people decide that spending a few $$ is worth it to keep their data private.  Of course, it’s hard to break from the idea that all internet content should be “free”, even when we see it’s not really free at all.

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Is Facebook worth it?

December 14th, 2011 — 10:37am

So you’ve taken the advice of the web gurus, and set up your company facebook page.  Maybe you’ve paid handsomely for consultants to do that for you and advise you on how to “leverage” social media.

Great – how are the results?  Customers kicking down the door now?  If you are struggling to see the tangible results of your efforts, you are not alone.

According to the Facebook website:

More than 800 million active users
More than 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day


Ok, let’s see.  The first keyword is “active” – it’s not defined, and it’s not clear what % of the total accounts are active.  For example, are there 2 billion accounts, and only 800 million are active?  Not sure.

The second misleading stat is the “50%” – gee I guess that means over the course of several days, 800 million unique users login to facebook….Ehh…not so.  Power users who login every day will skew the results here.  If facebook defines “active” as someone who logs in once a month, then you can see what happens.  Let’s say 200 million people are “power users” who login every day.  Right off the bat FB can say “25% of active users are logging in on any given day.”  Now, all you need is another 200 million of the remaining 600 to login per day, and you have 50%.  Of course, if an “inactive” account suddenly logs in, maybe FB declares him active and now he counts as well.  Plus new signups, etc.

What is my point in all this?  Simple – when you post your “status” updates – how many of your users see them?  Well, if you have a list of “power users” – maybe a lot of them.  But, if you have mostly “occasional users” – your views might be much lower.  Then consider this – Status updates “scroll down” as new posts come in – so unless your “friends” diligently scour their updates to make sure they see everything, they can miss your update.  The power users may do this, but my bet is that the occasional users do not.  Heck, I check FB every day, but I don’t take pains to make sure I see every update.

My conclusion is this – keep your social media expectations in order.  Email and e-newsletters are still far more effective at reaching your audience than social media.  People check email more often, AND handle each message – at least reading the subject before deleting it.

So don’t buy all the social media hype – it’s nice to do, and may someday be the primary mode for reaching your audience, but that’s just not the case today.

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