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What the F(acebook)?!

WTF? That’s likely a thought running through many people’s minds as they hear that Facebook has just announced one of the biggest changes to the social media platform – ever.

With over 2.13 billion active users each month, there’s no doubt that this news has made a groundbreaking difference in the way that people and businesses use Facebook.

What’s the big news and what can we do about it? Below, we uncover what these changes are, how they will impact the way businesses use Facebook, and give suggestions on how you can adapt your Facebook strategy by creating meaningful content.

We will also share details of a seminar on how to stay up to date with the most popular social media platforms and their ever-changing algorithms.

So what’s changed on Facebook?

Algorithms, that’s what. Complex algorithms are what determines your unique experience on Facebook. Your news feed is catered specifically to you – based on what you like, how you interact and even search history from outside of Facebook.

When it comes to using Facebook for business, many strive to create content that resonates with their audience. Competitions, giveaways, new products – these are all important business updates that are shared on Facebook everyday. Techcrunch reports that there are over 50 million small businesses that use Facebook’s Pages app. For many companies, Facebook is one of their key business assets.

However, Facebook has made some drastic changes that will affect business pages on the platform. On January 11th, 2018, Mark Zuckerberg from Facebook announced algorithm changes that may indicate the start of what Michael Stelzner calls a “Facebook apocalypse”:

  • Personal posts from friends and family will have preferences over posts from groups or pages in your news feed
  • Videos will get less views – this is because video is content consumed passively
  • Focus will be on meaningful social interactions, so comments will be valued more than likes
  • Links to external pages will get less visibility

Source: https://blog.bufferapp.com/facebook-algorithm

As you can see, this is possibly one of the biggest changes that Facebook has ever made to the platform. Zuckerberg himself has even stated that he expects the market price will drop due to these changes. On the one hand, it appears that these changes are purely to improve user experience. But, it can also be debated that these changes are a move to encourage more businesses to turn to paid Facebook advertising to get the traffic they want. And, it’s highly anticipated that Facebook advertising costs will increase following the surge in advertising campaigns.

What does this mean for businesses?

These algorithm changes will start with your news feed, but this is only the beginning. Likely, it will be an update rolled out across all Facebook products.

For businesses, there are a few changes that will invariably happen – something to take into consideration when adapting your marketing strategy to adopt this algorithm change.

For pages that thrive on short, viral videos (think LADbible), they’re likely to be affected the most. Bloggers will also see a hit in organic reach, as will pages that exist purely to share memes, quotes and ‘tag-worthy’ photos.

How to create meaningful content on Facebook

These changes all hold one key goal in mind: to promote meaningful interactions. It’s more than just getting your audience to tag their friends or liking a picture. Meaningful, by Facebook terms, involves interacting with friends, family and other users in insightful conversations.

Here is what will no longer work:

  • Asking people to comment
  • Short text posts
  • Quote graphics
  • Videos

Basically, posts that exist purely to gather likes will be phased out from your news feed.

What can you do to create meaningful content?

  • See first – prompt your audience to change their news feed preferences to see your page’s content first
  • Post less frequently, but with more relevant content
  • Start discussions on your posts that encourage your audience to talk to one another
  • Use Facebook Live to reveal exciting updates and news
  • Adopt a Facebook advertising strategy

This all seems fairly straightforward, but as Facebook continues to make these changes to more than just your news feed, it will be more important than ever to understand these each and every one of these variables that will be affected.

Ultimately, your audience on Facebook isn’t yours – it’s purely borrowed from Facebook. And now that Facebook has set the ball rolling, who is to say other social platforms such as Instagram and Twitter won’t follow suit?

Stay up to date with social media changes

We have a seminar coming up that will cover Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and even Snapchat. There will be an insightful analysis on the algorithms that prioritise content, and what you can do to stay ahead of the crowd when it comes to creating meaningful content.

Click the button below to secure a ticket.

Event info:
WTF Happened to your Social Media Traffic?

Date: Wednesday 18th April, 2018, 7:30am – 9am
Where: Ponsonby Community Centre, Glue Pot room – 20 Ponsonby Terrace
Cost: $30

BOOK NOW
 

Alternatives to Wildfire as they withdraw pay-as-you-go

Wildfire was one of the first apps we found to do promotions on the Facebook platform.  Founded by cool Kiwi entrepreneur Victoria Ransom, they got bought by Google and have clearly been spending time refocusing their work onto large customers who can afford $2,500 per month fees.  The little people will have to go elsewhere in future.

Here’s a list we curated on List.ly of Wildfire Alternatives. Please add your own favourites.

Headline for Alternatives To WildFire
 REPORT
29 items   24 followers   78 votes   2.58k views

Alternatives To WildFire

A list of alternatives to WildFire, a social media giveaway app.

Source: http://creativeagencysecrets.com/alternatives-to-wildfire-as-they-withdraw-pay-as-you-go/

HipRewards

A self-serve tool that allows you to create a new kind of promotion; include digital music rewards for every participant to increase engagement, and only pay for rewards for your fans. HipRewards promotions work seamlessly on all devices, even mobile. You'll gain fascinating insights on who your fans are and what they think.

Easypromos

Easypromos is the easiest way to create promotions on your Facebook page. You can try for free, without any registration.

ShortStack

Build custom Facebook apps and photo contests

Apr 16, 2013 - blog.tidalwaveapp.com - 393
TidalWave

TidalWave 's new premium Customer Service App creates a 'round-trip' solution for your Social Customer Service needs. By combining Social Media and BPMS into Social BPM, you can now address your clients needs directly through a combination of TidalWave for Facebook and TidalWave Process Manager.

Apr 18, 2013 by Zsuzsi Szabo - antavo.com - 340
Antavo − Contest and Promotion Apps for Facebook, Mobile & Web

Create contest and promotion apps to Facebook, mobile and web to engage with customers and generate leads. Sweepstakes, photo and video contests, quizzes, deals, group offers, competitions.

May 24, 2013 by Giancarlo Massaro - viralsweep.com - 432
Social Sweepstakes - ViralSweep

ViralSweep allows you to build, run and manage social sweepstakes on your website.

Apr 16, 2013 - votigo.com - 398
Votigo Social Marketing Suite

Votigo's social marketing suite allows marketers to grow their audiences with contest software, sweepstakes, & social media analytics.

Apr 16, 2013 - rafflecopter.com - 364
Rafflecopter

Rafflecopter allows you to create and launch effective giveaway promotions & sweepstakes across your website, blog, and Facebook page under 5 minutes.

Apr 16, 2013 - strutta.com - 340
Strutta

Strutta provides powerful, easy-to-use DIY social media marketing apps, tools and analytics for contests, promotions and engagement campaigns.

Agorapulse: Facebook Apps, CRM, Moderation & Statistics

High Quality Facebook Applications, Analytics and CRM Engage your fans, qualify them, and measure your performance. Free trial. Paid plans start at $29.

Apr 19, 2013 by Brandon Carroll - heyo.com - 432
Heyo - Contests, Promotions, and Deals for Social, Mobile, and Web

Allows anyone to drive traffic, leads, and sales through campaigns on Fan Pages or mobile devices. Also, with one click, we create a mobile app based on your social data.Our goal is to provide a tool that caters to a brand new business looking to get started, a mid size business or agency focused on growth, or a market leader looking to empower their evangelists.

Apr 25, 2013 by Arnaud R - kontestapp.com - 375
Kontest - A cutting-edge platform to create and spread multichannel promotions

Grow your fanbase and qualify new contacts. Kontest is a cutting-edge platform to create and spread promotions across all channels. Free Access.

Votion - Crafting the future of brand & consumer relationships.

Votion helps Brands and Publishers create & keep customers through content types such as Brackets, Quizzes, Visual Polls, StackUp, Interactive Lists and MatchUps that are crafted for engagement. Our products build dialogs between brands & consumers

14

Woobox

Woobox

Woobox helps you easily create powerful contests, sweepstakes, coupons, and more to grow your fans and amplify your marketing.

Apr 17, 2013 by Mark Schmulen - constantcontact.com - 481
Social Campaigns - Social Media Marketing Tools - Constant Contact

Social Campaigns from Constant Contact makes it easy for small businesses to create promotions and offers exclusively on Facebook. Integrated email and social posting features help to promote your offer to all of your social and email contacts to drive them to your Facebook page. Detailed reports track unique visitors, new fans, offer conversions, shares and new email addresses. Grow your fans and turn them into repeat customers and advocates!

16

Zeus

Apr 18, 2013 by Christine Meyer - zeuspromo.com - 456
Zeus

Zeus Contest and Sweepstakes products are for one-time use and include the technology for either a Facebook Page and/or a standalone microsite (for up to 90 days) and ALSO include the complete Official Rules specific to your promotion. @zeuspromoapp

Aug 08, 2013 by Rajat Garg - socialappshq.com - 422
SocialAppsHQ

SocialAppsHQ is an All-in-One social media marketing and Social media monitoring platform. We have the largest Facebook app store across the planet!

Feb 16, 2016 by Votion Inc - votion.co - 451
StackUp - a swipe to like product

Gain knowledge from your customers all with a few swipes - right if you like, left if you don't.

Apr 16, 2013 - piqora.com - 456
Piqora (Formerly Pinfluencer) - Complete Marketing Suite for Pinterest

Piqora is an advanced Pinterest Analytics Solution that makes it really easy to identify and connect with influential brand advocates, get actionable insights into trending pins and boards, and measure key virality metrics to quantify brand engagement on Pinterest. Sign up for a free 14 day trial at www.piqora.com

offerCandy

Facebook contests are easy with OfferCandy. Create a sweepstakes in minutes with our easy to use, customizable templates. Engage with your facebook fans and track the results. No design knowledge needed. Grow your fans and in turn your business.

21

SnapApp

SnapApp

SnapApp enables marketers and publishers to create quizzes, polls, surveys and contests and distribute them on their websites, Facebook and Twitter

Apr 19, 2013 - wizehive.com - 437
WizeHive - Enterprise Collaboration, Business Process and Workflow

Build and use web-based apps that automate business processes and engage customers, employees and those that matters to you.

23

Privy

Apr 29, 2013 - getprivy.com - 442
Privy

Turn facebook fans, twitter followers, google searchers, and web visitors into real customers using promotions.

Cool Tabs

Create tabs, promotions and contests for your own facebook pages or for your customers. Easily and fast

May 14, 2013 - offerpop.com - 427
Offerpop - Actionable Social Marketing

Launch Facebook & Twitter campaigns in minutes with the most easy-to-use social marketing platform ever built.

[read our interview with List.ly c0-founder, Shyam Subramanyan]

Lightbox or New Window?

I’m sure many of you by this stage have either heard of Lightboxes or have already attempted to implement them on your own website. Lightboxes have replaced “tabbed browsing” as the fresh alternative to opening a new window. This post will give a quick pros and cons list of Lightboxes and discuss both the everyday frustrations and pleasures they bring. In my next post I will advise the best times and places to use Lightboxes based on what I have discussed here, because contrary to what you may read further down, there is a place for them.

A word of warning, if you’re an avid fan of Lightboxes you may want to close your eyes now…

The overwhelming number of reasons to not use Lightboxes surely disheartens even the most passionate fans. By my count, Lightboxes are down 2-10 to opening a new window… Not off to the best start then.

Table

Starting off with the cons (so we can end on a sweet note) Lightboxes are both immovable and modal. This means that if a user wants to open multiple links at once to run a comparison as I often do, this is impossible. What often happens to me though, is I do want to open a Lightbox but it blocks out what I want to compare it to on the regular page. “Open a new window” however does not suffer these issues as they can be moved, minimised and often you can interact with the original page.

Probably the biggest issue any SEO-conscious webmaster would have with Lightboxes is that Lightboxes cannot be bookmarked but more critically, have no search engine crawlability. This means that your users will be unable to find any information you have stored in your Lightbox and worse still, on the off chance they do find it, there is no way of directly bookmarking the Lightbox. From personal experience I can tell you how awkward it is to send a link to a friend and have to add “click the link ⅔ of the way down the page” to my email as it’s near-impossible to link directly to the exact part of information located on a Lightbox.

A major issue faced by novice web-users is that Lightboxes operate in a different way to regular web-browsing. For the novice, it means yet another system to learn and navigate. My grandfather recently acquired an iPad (his first steps online) and while he is making good progress he would never figure out a Lightbox (at this stage I haven’t even told him about tabbed browsing – each time I see him I close his 40-50 open tabs…). My point is that novice users struggle enough with regular web browsing.

So while a major issue for novice web-users is the change in operation, for more experienced users there are equal frustrations – the main one being suddenly the ‘back’ button no longer does as it always has. Rather than simply removing the Lightbox as we expect, it actually takes you back to the page before the page which contains the Lightbox. This is a real concern for anyone hoping to keep potential customers/readers on your site and may account for a low ‘average time on website’ figure in your analytics. Imagine someone Google’s your company and from that search enters your site. If a Lightbox appears and the user accidentally pushes ‘back’, they will be taken back to Google’s search results – which for me personally would be reason enough to not return to that site.

Lightboxes further suffer from often being “too” pretty with their animations etc  that it takes an eternity to actually load. Nothing frustrates me more than a slow fade in for every bit of data or picture that I want to see – It’s right up there with the Powerpoint individual letter fly-in animation. It is largely due to this that Lightbox struggles to encourage long-term usage.

Finally, and perhaps an ever-increasing problem are the compatibility issues Lightboxes have. The main one being on mobile devices. Lightboxes just don’t play nice with many mobile devices, obviously a pressing matter as more and more people browse the web on mobile devices. A more minor aspect is that users who disable javascript won’t be able to view your Lightboxes either (however there is a fix – have the link point to a real page, then use javascript to prevent the link from opening and instead open a lightbox). This may also fix some of the issues with mobile devices as well, however it just means more work for you, the webmaster, having to manage content on two locations as opposed to one.

Well, you’ve survived my rant. Just to help even up the score I’ll give the positive comments a larger font.

There really are only two reasons why you’d consider using a Lightbox over opening a new window, however both are critical. The first is Lightboxes offers a cleaner more professional look than opening a new window. Whilst this is purely based on preference, the general consensus is that Lightboxes look better. The second is perhaps the biggest overlooked benefit: it shows the selected content instantly. With many people opening multiple tabs and windows it can often be a decent amount of time before they actually view the selected link. With Lightboxes however there isn’t this problem as the content opens on the same page.

In my next post I’ll discuss How To Use Lightboxes On Your Website. Be sure to leave your own comments on the value of Lightboxes below!

posters for anniversary campaigns

Anniversary Promotion Campaigns

posters for anniversary campaigns

posters for anniversary campaigns

Celebrating an anniversary whether it be one, ten or a hundred years is certainly something to be proud of. You, as a company should almost be bursting at the seams to tell potential and existing customers the news.

Of course, for customers to get as excited as you, they expect something in return. That’s how the system works. They support you for x amount of years and at each anniversary expect a little appreciation. As Mark Twain astutely noted: “It is better to give than receive- especially advice” and following this I will offer my own – He’s right.

Even the historical dynasties knew of giving to receive, the churches preached it for centuries. “For it is in giving that we receive” (St. Francis of Assisi); is it sacrilegious if it’s true? Yes I am referencing from the 1200’s but the point is timeless. Why do businesses offer sales at anyway? They give a little in order to gain a lot 

The question of course is how to celebrate and promote your anniversary. This can depend on a variety of facets such as the length of time of existence, the size of the company and the type of company.

Types of anniversary campaign

It is for this reason I have come up with 4 simple categories.

  1.  Sales & Giveaways
  2. Promotions & Interaction

  3. Reincarnation (Sticking with the religious theme)

  4. Internal Appreciation

Sales & Giveaways is relatively straightforward. Simply reducing the final bill for the customer will obviously get them interested – more bang for your buck has traditionally been the ‘go-to’ strategy. Giveaways however can work equally effective. The total bill may not reduce however the value perceived would still have increased. Better yet, it means more of your product is being consumed by your customers.

A common tip often acted upon is to link the number of years celebrated to the sale/gift. Whether it be 10% off if you’re celebrating your tenth anniversary or every 5th item is free for your fifth, linking the years to the deal instils that number into your customers brains, meaning they will be more likely to associate your business with success and longevity. As has been hugely publicised, customers who associate success and longevity with your business are more likely to purchase from you.

Remember, you can be clever about it – 40 years 40% off may be too much of a discount for some stores so be clever! 40 = XL in Roman numerals so have an XL sale, whether it be just a larger sale than usual or a sale focused on extra-large items, it will most likely prove cheaper than 40% off but have a similar effect.

Promotions & Interactions. This deals with how your company reaches out to your customers and the general public. Obviously, if no one has heard that it’s your anniversary no one will be excited. This therefore is critical that it is done right. Larger companies may not have to worry about it and let word of mouth do the work. Smaller companies however have their own competitive advantage – personalisation.

Personalised, handwritten notes prove effective time and time again. These interactions will obviously be critical to making your customers aware of your anniversary. Under interaction I have associated cut-cost ways to deliver value to your customer – tours. Customers are always interested in how their favourite good is actually made, so offer it! They aren’t expensive to run as attendees would actually prefer to see the business running as normal as possible and give your business greater exposure to the public..

Buy a brainstorm session with our team of experts

We help you with the thinking – you put it into practice.  Affordable creative ideation from $100.  Get in touch.

Reincarnation – an old classic _/\___/\___/\___/\___________ and we’re back. I’m sure you’re all familiar with the reincarnation of old products and methods when companies celebrate birthdays or anniversaries so I won’t go into any detail about it. However, many don’t even consider replacing current prices with the traditional ones. An example would be if Coca-Cola were to sell cans for 5c each – their original price. You may be thinking, this should be under the sale category and you’re probably right, but as it refers to the original price, it could be seen as the rebirth of the price; ok compromise, it’s both.

Finally, internal interaction. They say nothing is more important than the customer; if that’s true then employees can’t be far behind. When celebrating an anniversary, celebrate your employees’ efforts. They are just as much a part of the company as the customers and therefore, deserve similar recognition and perceived benefits. Traditionally a party always goes down well, however ensure that at least the long-time employees receive a memento, something which they can be proud of and something that will portray your eternal appreciation.

Most successful anniversary campaigns utilise more than one of these categories so for greater success, try and aim to hit at least two. And remember, no matter what strategy you choose, conveying your appreciation for the past and enthusiasm for the future never hurts.

Got any other clever little anniversary tricks?

 

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