Three new Facebook Features

Here are three new Facebook features, which I thought I would share with you.

1. Trending: Facebook has cottoned on that people like to post links to news stories on their timelines. In fact, according to a recent Ofcom report on News Consumption in the UK, 82% of people use Facebook as their daily news source. (And ‘news’ as in proper news, not what your friend had for lunch) Apparently Facebook will be prioritising news stories in their ever-changing algorithm…

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2. Pages to Watch: If you manage a Facebook page, there is a new feature in the Admin panel called ‘pages to watch’. You can add up to five of your competitor’s (or other brands you manage) pages to monitor how many ‘likes’ they get and then get tips on how to keep up* (*What happens if you have more likes than them?). Apparently this feature is being tested so may not be available yet to all page admins. Thanks to Dawn Newton for letting me know about this feature.

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3. Changing a Facebook page name: Now… I’ve saved the best for last as this has been a REAL headache in the past. If your charity/brand has had a rebrand and you need to change your Facebook page name, then take these steps:

  • On “edit profile” there is the option to change your name. It will ask the reason for the change
  • To validate the reason, Facebook will email you to say the request has been received and will be assessed but that documentation is required, by email, to confirm a name change (eg a scanned utility bill)
  • Following the documentation being sent, Facebook will email confirmation that it has been approved
  • You will then be able to log in and change the URL

Thanks to Jazmine Sandison for that one!

Initial thoughts on Jelly – the new kid on the social media block

Co-founder of Twitter, Biz Stone, has developed an App called Jelly (cue ‘I don’t think you’re ready for this jelly’ quips). The concept of Jelly is to ask questions by taking a photo of something and getting answers to your question. In fact its tagline is Point. Shoot. Ask.

I’ve been using it for about a week now and here are my initial thoughts. Note, I am NOT a Guru/Ninja/Jedi on Jelly… these are merely observations and a bit of a ‘how to’.

  • The look and feel of the App is sleek, clean and simple. Possibly a little too simple…
  • You post a question and (hopefully) people answer. As you have to link your Twitter, Facebook or both to use the App, you don’t actually have a profile. So there is no concept of how many Jelly users are ‘following’ you. For brands, this will be a problem
  • There’s always around 11-13 people ‘looking for answers’ (see the bottom of the photo) but you have no idea how many questions there are to answer beyond those 13 and there is no way to search a topic

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  • When you swipe on ’13 people want help’, a question comes up. This is the only charity I have spotted on Jelly so far, however I expect more to follow

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  • You can choose to answer the question or forward it. This is what happens when you click on Forward (note there is no option to tweet the question or post on Facebook)

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  • If you choose not to answer a question, you just swipe it away. The problem is, you can never get it back again. Which is a bit silly really
  • When you do answer a question, the only interaction you can have from the person who asked it is for them to say ‘thanks’, or someone else reading your answer can say it was ‘good’, forward it (and this is where you can tweet or post on Facebook), report it as inappropriate or say you don’t like it (not really sure what that achieves)

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  • So far I have asked five questions. This one had the most answers, some of which were great. For example, one person told me that their local telephone box has been turned into a 24/7 library. Another told me they had a wee in one last September…

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  • Once someone answers your question, all you can do is choose to thank them or share their answer on Twitter, Facebook or by email. What you can’t do is reply. I’d quite like to know where this library telephone box is!
  • You could of course ask the person who answered on Twitter as you can see their Twitter handle. But then this takes the conversation off Jelly… perhaps as this is owned by the co-founder of Twitter, it’s all a cunning plan?

To be honest, I’m not sure yet how brands would benefit from Jelly – it’s too new and soon to say. Perhaps they could use it as a way to test new products or get people’s opinion on something like a policy change. At the moment there is no way to easily measure your results. When you click on your ‘profile’ you just get a rolling list of your activity (see below). You don’t get a snapshot of how many questions you have asked, answered or how many people thought your answer was ‘good’. The only thing that is clear is how many ‘thank you cards’ you received

photoDo you use Jelly? I’d love to hear your thoughts so please comment below.

Brands, take note! This is how you do Social

Man tweets brand, brand replies. Nothing unusual there right? Wrong. This is one of the best Twitter exchanges I’ve ever seen (read the whole exchange here) and well done David for showing that brands can have a sense of humour!

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What can brands learn for this?

  • don’t be afraid to let your social media person/people show their personalities
  • broadcasting messages is boring… have conversations instead (even silly ones)
  • take advantage of these kinds of spontaneous situations. Had a funny/odd tweet? Don’t ignore it… be creative! Like David….
  • take a risk (but be sensible) – waiting for sign-off on tweets will kill the exchange dead. Sometimes you’ve just got to (salmon*) roll with it

*sorry!

Are you social media obsessed? Then volunteer for a charity!

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I spotted this in the February edition of Glamour magazine and it gave me the rage. Ok, maybe not ‘the rage’ but I was jolly well annoyed.

There are so many things wrong with this… I made a list

  1. Just because you are social-media (and why does it have a hyphen?) obsessed does NOT mean you know how to do it well
  2. Social media for a charity/brand is a full time job. Any person doing this professionally will attest to this. And by full time I mean way beyond the 9 – 5, Monday – Friday. Could a volunteer realistically commit to this?
  3. Volunteering for a charity, local or otherwise, should not just be a means to boost your CV
  4. Last time I checked, volunteering was *mainly about a passion for that cause and wanting to do something good for man or animal-kind. (* I am not naive, of course it also helps your CV – you learn new skills and employers like it)
  5. Social media is about knowing your charity/brand and your audience inside out and how to position your messaging. It’s also about conversations, not just ‘spreading a message’
  6. Also, it’s a professional job. Not one where you get to sit at home in your PJs with one eye on the telly … (unless it’s at night of course during a relevant show and you’re live tweeting. Then PJs are allowed)
  7. Lastly…. and this is quite an important point – charities don’t have the time to invest in a volunteer who isn’t invested in the charity. Please don’t take Glamour’s advice and apply to a local charity because you think it will boost your CV and they’ll be grateful to have you.

On a more positive note…. if you really are interested in volunteering then find a charity and a role that’s right for you. Check out the opportunities section on the website of a charity you have an affinity for or take a look at these organisations :

The year that was

As we delve head-first into 2014, let’s take time to reflect on the year that was.

For me, both personally and professionally, it was a great year – I got married and I took the plunge and went freelance. I really can’t wait to see what 2014 holds… it’s only the first week of January and already it’s full of promise.

Here’s a great video on Social Media in 2013 (Hat tip to Paul de Gregorio) Can’t wait to see what 2014 holds for Social…