Monday, 31 October 2011

Anonymous social networks

I came across Vibe, a social network that allows you to post anonymously. I'd heard it was used quite extensively in the Occupy movement recently. 

I'm all for new ways of doing things and giving people freedom of expression, but the thought of  anonymous posting just doesn't sit right. I mean, for me, its who you are talking that's interesting. Anyone can post something that is sensational or provocative, but it is the context of the comment that makes it conversation worthy. For example, Stephen Hawking talking about the beginning of the universe, is much more interesting that Katie Price talking about the unifying theory [actually, thinking about it, that's probably not the best example.]

Anyway, I hope you get my point - social media for me is about the 'who' not the what.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Car racing and facebook

Toyota has launched what looks like a really cool car racing game that runs over Facebook, called social network racer. The racetrack is based on the curves in your name and signage coms from your photos and status updates.  You get to race against friends and the winner goes to Japan to see the new FT-86 concept car.
Toyota Social Network Racer
Which is nice.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Can one video damage a country's reputation?

Like many, I saw the horrific video of a toddler being run over by a truck in a Chinese market, then ignored by passers by before being runover by another vehicle. Sadly, the child died from her injuries.

I couldn't help immediately thinking what a horrible country China is, for several of its citizens to callously ignore a injured bleeding child. I imagine I'm not alone in condemning a whole country on the back of this one video. I know it's unfair to judge a whole country by the actions of a handful of its citizens, but we still do it.

China doesn't have the best human and animal rights record and I believe this one video is going to set back its reputation several years.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Free app for live streaming on Facebook

Livestream is a cool free app you can use if you want to stream a video live on your Page. It's pretty straight forward to use and pretty robust - so much so that Mark Zuckerberg used it to live stream his F8 conference.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Changes to Facebook mean brands need to be more compelling

With the recent changes to Facebook, brands need to much more conversational, produce content that people will talk about and give people a compelling reason to interact with the brand. Otherwise, brands will fall off people's social graphs. If no one interacts with a brand's content on Facebook, brands will disappear from people's newsfeeds.
It is probably stating the obvious but, when you are a brand or organization embarking on a social media strategy, it’s good to remember that you don’t own social media, they do i.e. people are the ones who control social media, not brands. It’s a slightly glib statement, but it's good to bear in mind when thinking about your engagement strategy.

More than ever, brands have to behave in a very human way i.e enter into conversation with people: listen and have a two way dialogue. Rather than behaving in a corporate way – broadcasting the brand’s messages to loads of people, just posting a video, or running and sweepstake [although people are going to Facebook more and more for deals and free stuff].

What I find works quite well to plan engaging social strategies that enables brands to have convserations, is going through a short 7 step process:

There are shedload of free and paid for tools to monitor conversations in social media, from things like social mention and technorati on the free side, to sophisticated tracking software like Radian 6 and SM2.

Work out how your audience behaves in social media. Forrester’s social technographics ladder is a good tool.

Define what you want to achieve and how you are going to measure it.

Make sure you know the external rules e.g. industry regulations, and internal rules, e.g corporate policy on sharing information.

How you will change the current relationship with the audience.

What content do you have or easily create with which to engage the audience in conversation?

What channels are best suited to your audience behavior, strategy and content?

How will you respond, who will respond and what are the response protocols.

I've found it’s worth spending time to thinking these things through before joining the conversations.