Jarter Jargon

Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

As everyone knows, Instagram launched its new video feature. What followed was not surprising. Vine fanatics bashed it, techies discussed whether it was better than Vine, and people everywhere posted the obligatory “My first Instagram video!”

While some believed the new Instagram features “beat” Vine, others argue that the two platforms are incomparable. Personally, I agree with the latter. While it’s obvious Facebook realized the potential Vine unlocked, Instagram’s video capability is very different than Vine’s.

The allure of Vine for marketers and Vine-celebs is the stop motion effect. Instagram video has a much harder time capturing that. It also takes quite a bit of creativity to pull off an impressive Vine.

Conversely, Instagram video has a few things going its way. Instagram is already so well-liked, I personally think the new feature will be widely accepted and make its way into your regular app use easier than it was for Vine to break through.

While I see Vine-celebs sticking to their guns, I think Instagram video will be a staple for consistent users.

Advertisements

First we saw the rollout of Facebook hashtags. Now there are rumblings of a possible Vine-like feature to be added to Instagram.

While Facebook hashtags are a genius way of creating deeper conversations much like on Twitter, the announcement of the new Instagram feature just makes it seem as though Facebook realized how big of a hit Vine has become and wants in on the action.

Vine has become the new arena for viral sensations. 6 seconds might not seem too long, but some new creative personalities seem to have figured it out.

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey was reportedly heartbroken when Facebook purchased Instagram in April 2012 for $1 billion in cash and stock. Looks like the joke is now on Facebook as they begin to emulate the booming Vine app feature.

Updates and developments should be interesting. Obviously, Twitter can’t own the ‘#’ symbol, but I find it interesting the use of the hashtag to create and track conversations is wide open for Facebook to swoop in and utilize (similarly, the 6-second video loop feature of Vine). Maybe Facebook will allow for a *gasp* 8 second clip?

Personally, I think Mark Zuckerberg is starting to feel the squeeze of Twitter and the massive number of people ditching Facebook to get their tweet on.

Screen shot 2013-05-22 at 12.57.07 PM

Recently, I started a blog with a friend of mine, Dustin. I love Milwaukee, and so does he.

Thanks for the Love, MKE is a blog showcasing and documenting the love we have for the city in hopes that those who also love the city of Milwaukee will help us in spreading the love.

After three weeks of reblogging photos and posting submitted photos and love letters, the response has been pretty great so far. We have started to develop a following, and are continuing to reach out to the community to help spread the word of our blog as well as get some pretty heartfelt submissions.

Social media has this power. Connecting people with similar interests has never been easier. It’s a simple idea: a blog for the love of one’s city. It’s a simple plan: engage that community, sharing the love, and encourage people to submit their own photos and testimonials.

So if you’re reading this and you live/d (or have just visited) Milwaukee, feel free to check out our blog, and feel free to submit your own material. You can also sit back and check out the love of others by following us on Twitter, @ThanksMKE.

Spread the love and tell Milwaukee, “Thanks for the love.”

Screen shot 2013-04-11 at 8.23.29 AM

Facebook recently rolled out a new feature: adding emotions, things you’re watching, eating, reading, and listening to (among a few others) to your status post. It seems like a fun way to let people know how you’re doing or what you’re doing. It fosters conversations within your own community and connects you to others who could be watching/eating/drinking/listening to the same. But underneath, it serves a much larger purpose. As Josh Constine notes,

“Along with being fun for users, it could be a big help to advertisers, though Facebook tells me it’s not piping this data into its ad engine just yet. By selecting your current activity instead of merely writing it out, you structure data for Facebook. That could eventually help it to connect you with advertisers who want to reach people who frequently watch TV and movies, or listen to music, or eat at restaurants.”

If you listened to a certain song, ads for the artist’s new album could be targeted towards you. Or if you are the type to watch a lot of movies, Netflix could target ads towards you.

Facebook does a great job of mining information from you without you even knowing. Third party companies track your purchase habits. When you add a new friend, you are prompted with a question about whether or not you know that person outside of Facebook. You can set geo-tags on posts to let people (and Facebook) know where you are. These are just a few of the features that Facebook uses to learn as much about you as possible.

A little creepy, right?

A few months back, Facebook rolled out their Graph Search. It lets you search for people in a more specific (some say “unsettling”) way. You can search for people who like to cycle. You can look for people who like to cycle that live in your city. You can look for people who like to cycle that live in your city and are friends with your friends. You see where I’m going? It puts front and center just how much data we have committed to this social network.

With people freaking out about online privacy and security, it sure amazes me how openly they share information and how openly they allow Facebook to gather information. Although the latter, there isn’t really a way around it. The way Facebook structures itself makes it hard NOT to have your information mined out. Pages you like, people you friend, your interests, everything plays a role into how Facebook crawls across your profile and archives data. Although scary, it can be humorous (second link is now defunct).

So be careful about what you put on the internet. In Facebook’s case, every design mechanism plays a role.

It seems lately that social media marketing is slowly reaching a plateau, at least in my opinion. While there are some leaps and bounds that have been made, we just keep having roundabout discussions about what social media really can do. “No one knows the true power of social media marketing. There’s something there but we can’t put our finger on it.” “Engagement is key.” “Listen to your audience.” We live in a day and age where interconnectivity is thriving and growing rapidly. Brands pay incredible amounts of money to pump out every last drop of their social channels.

But how can we move past survival in this incredibly connected world?

As of late, I feel inspired and motivated to learn as much as I possibly can because social media is, in fact, a learning experience. We all make mistakes in our career. It’s inevitable, however we need to take those mistakes and turn it into something to not only benefit ourselves but the social community as a whole.

I recently read a blog post from 7Summits about how it doesn’t matter what tools you have to analyze and monitor and pour over what people are saying about your brand. News flash: everyone has access to the same tools. It’s how you take that information and apply it to create value for your business. We need to move past survival. One key role in doing so is also moving past ignorance.

This brings me back to the position I am in now. I want to learn. Social media is fascinating because there truly is a wealth of knowledge and power to be discovered. We are barely scratching the surface, but it also seems people are set in their ways: see how people interact with your brand’s channels, analyze sentiment, analyze share of voice, track some other KPIs. Again, there is progress being made, but what can we do to dive deep into the data we are gathering and really create value for our companies? We need to step back and ask ourselves, “Why?”

Asking “Why” is the foundation for any discovery. It is also the beginning of a cycle. When we ask ourselves this simple question, it leads to creative thinking which in turn leads us to solving problems. Through this process we continue to grasp new concepts. We can then ask ourselves “Why?” about these discoveries, and it starts the cycle again. Like I said, social media marketing is a learning experience. We will make mistakes, it’s a given. But we need to keep learning, keep asking ourselves, “Why?”

While we all are monitoring social channels for mentions, follows, likes, unlikes, retweets, and a whole list of other things to worry about, many brands are overlooking a more simple idea: “purchase intent indicators.”

We need to take a look at the broad audience. Sure we track hashtags and certain groups, but what about the small-time, broad-range conversations that go on under our radar? A perfect example is Jason Fall’s experiment one day in Louisville. He tweeted:

Image

These are the kinds of tweets people send out in a heartbeat looking for general feedback. To Jason’s surprise, he received a tweet from a bourbon joint in a Marriott hotel on the city’s east side.

Image

A simple suggestion that grew from some pretty smart monitoring, but it’s something small that should still be considered by brands everywhere. Just because people aren’t directly mentioning your brand specifically doesn’t mean that it’s out of your realm.

It all started about a month ago with a phone call from a friend: “Have you ever been to California? Do you like to watch the Grammys? Do you want to go to the Grammys?” I can’t believe I get to say this, but actually being at the Grammys was awesome.

It’s not every day you get to attend one of music’s biggest events. When I first found out I was going, I instantly started counting down the days. Needless to say, being a social media buff, I planned on documenting the entire trip. My Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook were set and ready to go. I even posted a couple Vines over the weekend. I woke up Sunday with the biggest smile on my face. I knew it would be a long night with a red eye flight back to Milwaukee after the show, but it was well worth it.

While the red carpet wasn’t open to anyone without a press pass, there was plenty to be seen inside the Staples Center. Looking at everyone I walked by, all I could think was, “They have to be famous somehow.” My phone was charged and ready to capture anything and everything, but while going through security, the usher said something devastating: “Please do not use your phone inside.” Wait, what? I had spent all this time researching the official hashtag, creating lists of people to keep an eye on during the show, and planning my whole social media approach for the night only to be told, “No phones?”

We made our way to our seats and met the people sitting around us. Not surprising, looking down into the sea of people who “have to be famous somehow,” all I saw were cell phones lit up. That’s when the executive producer of the whole thing stepped out on stage and gave us the pre-show rundown. We were told it was to be music’s biggest night yet, and we were reminded to use social media as much as possible.

After commercial breaks, LL Cool J reminded everyone to follow the Grammys Twitter account, use the official #GRAMMYs hashtag, and to keep the tweets coming. He also read tweets from fans watching at home. Although, I did think he went a little overboard. At one point he suggested viewers tweet with the #GRAMMYs hashtag and to “stay tuned for performances from #Rihanna, #BrunoMars, #CarrieUnderwood” among others.

While their promotion of social media use was a great way to engage viewers and foster conversation, it was a bit obnoxious. Even more interesting was the Grammy’s choice of social media platform. Facebook wasn’t mentioned once. Instagram had a few plugs, but Twitter reined supreme. The Grammys also taught us a few lessons about social media’s role in big events.

First, they told the audience where they could find the Grammys on social media, and they also told us what we would get for following them. From behind-the-scenes photos to exclusive content, it was worth following their accounts. More importantly, they let the audience know they were listening. Letting it be known that there’s someone reading tweets is a great way to trigger more tweets. They were also very active during the event, asking for viewer input and fostering discussions. However despite the amazing number of online discussions, the on-air impact of social media turned out to be little more than LL Cool J imploring fan participation.

It was over before I knew it, but I did gain some new Twitter and Instagram followers. I was also part of a huge discussion. The Grammys produced 8–13 million tweets, and performances garnered over 100,000 tweets per minute. All in all, the Grammys did a great job of incorporating social media into the night, and they did what any social campaign should do: keep the audience engaged, create a discussion, and facilitate the use of their monitored social channels. Now that my star-studded weekend is over, I guess I should apologize to my followers for blowing up their feeds!