Monthly Archives: January 2016

One Day Work Week, Full Benefits, Full Pay and other Fairy Tales

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While conducting social media training sessions I hear the strangest of stories from participants. Some are amusing, some down right scary. But I don’t think I have heard any so unbelievable as the agency that tried to sell its client on the one day work week.

This tale is true, but the names have been withheld to protect the ignorant (there is nothing derogatory about that word, look it up). While discussing the mechanisms of Social Media Optimization (SMO) in a recent workshop one of the attendees made the statement:

“Our agency advised that we should only post twice per week, but we were not happy with the level of Engagement on the posts. They then told us the only solution was to reduce posting to once per week, so that is what we did. Do you think this was a good strategy?”

hello my name is consultant

During workshops I try and maintain a sense of composure and not react noticeably to any questions lobbed at me until I had time to roll it around in my brain. I do this so that everyone feels comfortable to ask any question or share any experience. Goodness knows I have been told some doozies and making a face or blurting out an expletive is the surest way of blowing that trust, but this one tested me to my limits. However, it does not matter what actions they have taken in the past, their presence in my workshop shows they have chosen to follow the light and that is worth respecting.

After a few moments of trying to hide my disbelief and contain my belly laughs, I decided I would use a metaphor to explain why my opinion might differ from their agency’s.  I said:

“Imagine if you are an employee paid to produce a certain level of work and you convince your boss that to achieve optimal performance you should only come into the office twice a week. I would say you have a sweet job. Now your boss starts to wise up and comes to you and tells you that by coming in only 2 times per week your output is not as high as anticipated and considerably lower than your 5 day a week colleagues. But since you are a very smart employee you convince your boss that to increase output you needed to reduce your time to 1 day per week and he agrees. Congratulations you have just won the best job in the world lottery!”

Social Media is a resource like any other. With the proper skills and management it can deliver good rewards. There is usually only 2 situations when advised to cut back to achieve more. 1. Too much: if whatever is working for you is stressed beyond capacity and about to drop dead, 2. Too little: if the skills of the resource are lacking, the resource is not being used correctly, or the management is not qualified. Social Media Optimization (SMO) is about finding that sweet spot in between.

Much success,

Doug

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Messaging Apps and the Butt Bomb? Mild NSFW

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Has messaging app photo capability entered in to a new age of cyber sabotage? As technology continues to evolve and more apps clutter our phones it becomes a challenge to manage them all. I personally have 5 messaging apps and following all the streams of conversations usually receives nothing more than a quick glance and a hastily typed response. I shall now be more aware (imagine suspenseful music playing now). Though most of us use our apps the same way as when we downloaded them, the truth is that they continue to evolve with expanded functionality and those that use them discover new and clever ways to use them. When images are posted to a messaging app they are, by default, saved on your phone. So what happens when someone hijacks a Whatsapp group for less than honorable means?

messaging app photo butt bomb

I often have several Whatsapp groups going and I only pay as much attention as needed to follow the conversation. In a group conversation only the most recent comments show, unless you scroll up (which I never do). It is quite easy to “Photo Bomb” someone without them ever knowing by adding an image to the conversation and then quickly “hiding” it with a few additional comments thereby pushing it up off the screen and out of veiw. Then later, as I did, open the image folder on your phone to post a picture only to be faced with “OMG!”. In my case it was a bunch of men’s asses. So after I got over the surprise of having pictures of some unknown man’s ass on my phone (no giggles) I smiled. . . and then became concerned. These images were planted on my phone without my knowledge or consent, albeit because of my lack of attention. If my phone was backed up to the cloud they would be across all my devices.  Most alarming is that if I had not opened my phone’s photo library, which many of us do not, these would remain on my phone without my knowledge. Hopefully, this little trick will be used for good fun, but there are too many ways to use if to bad. And even the harmless images of a man’s posterior on my phone under certain circumstances would have been just wrong.

Much success,

Doug

 

Mrs. Smith’s 3rd grade class designs Facebook’s Video algorithm, or so it seems

It is no secret that Facebook is competing with other social apps in a determined effort to be all things to everyone and the last app standing. A short time back they took on YouTube in an attempt for most video views. To accomplish this they rewarded Fans who uploaded video directly rather than using a YouTube link with better looks, autoplay, metrics and, most importantly, increased Views and Reach. If you upload a video directly to Facebook you get an algorithm bonus and Facebook pushes you higher and wider so more people will see your post. This was like magic to many small businesses that saw the views on their posts 10’s, 100’s and even 1000’s times higher than ever before.

This client had a modest 2,000 Fans on their page. These results are Organic

facebook organic video results

Facebook video statistics for Organic video results

This all seems like an incredible gift, and it is, but there are complications created by Facebook that are outside the control of Page Owners. First it is about reasonable expectation setting. Videos receiving many times their normal expected Reach and Engagement can put a shop owner’s head in the clouds. And all too quickly the realization that this was an anomaly not likely repeated can be a real let down. But lack of control is probably the most disconcerting. The two charts below paint a queer picture of how Facebook chose to twist this client’s marketing efforts.

Facebook Demographic of Fans on page and those reached by video post

Facebook Demographic of Fans on page and those reached by video post

The chart on the left shows the Fans of the Page. The breakdown is as the client requested with a greater focus on U.S. and a smaller number for their Hong Kong headquarters. Additionally, India is a focus for select inventory. The demographic targeting is accurate. However, the Fans Reached in the month of the “great” video shows a markedly different Reach with Malaysia, a non-target country, receiving 50% of all views. Small businesses benefit from precise marketing to make sure money and effort is not wasted. So it is curious why Facebook’s video algorithm decided that a country excluded from the client’s target market now be included? As this action was created from the Facebook algorithm there was no way for the Page owner to influence, redirect or even object.

As we see Facebook and other social sites try and increase Engagement rates to demonstrate relevance we will likely continue to see marketing actions that are outside the Page owner’s control or wishes. Taking this to a logical conclusion of how does Facebook make money off of this I can only conclude that as Facebook takes more control away from non-sponsored ads they will be encouraging Facebook page owners to regain control through paid targeted promotions. And of course there is social media optimization which continues to be a powerful marketing tool.

Much success,

Doug

http://www.PRDA.Asia

PRDA Asia

http://www.PRDA.Asia is a leading social media management agency