The Social Landscape: 14.10.18
As is always the case when thinking of updates about the social landscape, lots has happened since the last post here.
Google+ has ended…. a platform that never really took off, even with the power of Google behind it, the honest truth is it never looked th sort and was never going to compete with the other sites, especially facebook, so whilst it has hovered around doing nothing for a long time, it has now closed (or is about to). My advice, if you have a Google+ account attached to any of you rote platforms, remove it and let it die its own natural slow death.
Facebook Stories…. Not sure how this one slipped past my ever eager ‘social’ eye, but discovering that ANYONE can see your FB stories was quite a revelation. We all have people who we don’t want to see our posts, lots of people have the privacy setting turned on for such reasons, but it doesn’t matter. Stories is visible to everyone. Make sure you are very careful with what you post.
Instagram…. the new ‘scan’ element to the app is confusing and annoying, there are already enough ways to ‘find’ people without adding a ‘snapchat’ rip-off. Ignore it, use your normal methods of inviting people to find you.
Twitter…. Nothing to report, it’s still there, it’s still used but it seems to be struggling to get lots of people to engage with it. There are (of course) some people who use Twitter very successfully, but most of us struggle to get responses to anything. Stick with it…. just in case.
Blogs…. There is a definite upturn in people ‘reading’ blog posts, so if you have one on your website, start posting information, news and views, at least once every two weeks , more of possible. There are some complicate elements to getting your blog noticed, thanks to search engines algorithmic measurements, if you are not sure how to compose or build blogpost, let’s talk!
Facebook and your business page
Aside from all the political to and froing going on with Facebook at present and the revelations that have harmed the platform and its founder Mark Zuckerberg, the world’s favourite (?!?!) social platform has been changing yet again, especially on business pages.
Unfortunately, it appears that the changes are all based around FB wanting you to spend money on your posts, using ads to generate engagement rather than the normal organic post, like, share, comment route.
Lots of companies who specialise in the understanding of social media are reporting that this is good for businesses, but I disagree.
Whilst I struggle with some of the posts I see on pages across all different sites, I understand that there are a lot of people who are using social as a means of marketing their business as it is (or can be) an inexpensive way to promote services and products. Not everyone has a budget that can be allocated to professional social media activities and marketing, so when spending is down on the high street and on-line, and the purse strings need tightening many people have to (and choose to) promote their business themselves in the best way they possibly can.
Facebook originally was the ideal platform, it was simple to use and simple to get engagement from, irrespective of the information and image in any given post, followers would see everything relatively easily.
And then everyone decided they needed thousands of followers so liked and followed anyone and everyone… therein is the first problem, the ore people you follow, the more people who follow you, the more posts get lost in the scrolling world of social viewing.
Then FB became more complicated and many businesses had to change their personal page into a [business] page and this had a negative impact on the day to day engagement.
LIKES, SHARES, COMMENTS, we are all obsessed by them, everyone wants a viral post #pleasegoviral, everyone tries competitions to bring in new viewers, in general everyone is trying lots of different ways to prove that their social platforms are successful. All of them, tend to fall flat, if you are Beyonce you might get great responses, but Beyonce we are not!
So, the way social operates for your business has to be addressed and the changes that involve you spending money have to be looked at.
Ads and boost posts work in a limited way. It’s worth a try, that’s my advice. Set yourself a limited budget and don’t go past it, it is so easy to be drawn in to spending more than you recoup. Use the formatting for ads and boost posts to be very specific in what you promote and who you promote it to. Run a mini campaign and check the feedback and responses (use the new FB pixels app). If the promo works, as in it brings people into your business or people buy from your website, brilliant! If it doesn’t sue the following simple steps to make sure your posts are still being seen by your existing and potential new followers.
CHECK IN: Always check in when you arrive at work.
CHECK IN: Ask your clients to check in when they visit you, it’s a great way of their followers seeing your business.
CHECK IN: Did you know if you hit the name that has been ‘checked in’ you will be taken to that FB page.
CHECK IN: Always add an activity or how you are feeling …. It’s the smiley face emoji next to the check in icon.
FOLLOW: Ask …. ASK your clients to follow you.
FOLLOW: Tell your clients you will follow them in return.
FOLLOW: Make sure to remind clients about the ‘turn on notifications’ tab found just below the header pic on their page and reassure them this doesn’t mean they will be inundated with posts from you.
LIKE: Encourage clients to like posts and reciprocate…. Especially if they post selfies which are still a very important way of your name getting shared on FB.
COMMENT: Oh how we hope that someone comments on a post. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does make sure you like or comment in return.
HASHTAGS and ATS # @: Be consistent and different with your #, use your own unique tags #emil #mrH #caretaker and add a couple relevant to your post #facebooknews #changes. @ …. If you use @ and type in a name after it, only use it if the letters change colour as you type the word (usually into a pale blue overlay on the font). This means FB algorithms have recognised the name and created a link. Use relevant @ to the post and if you are promoting a product add that companies @ too.
I’m always flabbergasted when I see posts from companies saying FB / Insta made them a millionaire overnight, I’m more shocked when I see sensible people buying into these posts. Don’t fall for these posts they are invariably companies wanting you to spend money with them in return for a video blog or pdf that offers little help. If you want more information, google it.
PS: I do offer a one to one, face to face training session on social media which can help you get on the right track. Call 07885 985843 for more info.
You will no longer see posts from Facebook business pages on news feed of connected followers.
Facebook wants you to actively pay to get exposure on your followers’ pages.
Targeting via ads and boosts are the way forward but cost money. Try it out and see what happens.
If budgets allow, a small ad campaign will help you promote your business to a wider audience.
And help your business by actively encouraging everyone to CHECK IN, FOLLOW, FOLLOW, LIKE, SHARE, COMMENT and use # and @ wherever possible.
FACEBOOK / INSTAGRAM CHANGES AND HOW TO DEAL WITH THEM
It seems that every week something happens to our tried and trusted Facebook and Instagram platforms. Usually the changes are not we are all hoping for, the little annoying things that both platforms seem to ignore, and usually these irritations are linked to the commercial aspects of the sites that flood our pages with unwanted adverts and promotions.
But no, the genius teams who look after these ‘free’ sites decide they want to make changes that affect what we see and what our followers see, algorithm’s are altered to stream most popular posts based on key words, or how many likes an image may get first meaning some of your posts get LOST in the mix. It’s very frustrating but never lose sight of the fact that your followers WILL find your posts as they SCROLL through their pages, so don’t be too disillusioned with the constant changes.
FACEBOOK NEWS FEED CHANGES
Mark Zuckerberg has announced that Facebook was reverting to its roots as a site for online socialising. The changes will start to take effect more or less immediately and you will see a change in how your homepage looks.
There will be a definite move toward site sharing more personal content – which basically means you might get to see friends pics much quicker and before the obvious news stuffs. FB is also requesting data from users to discover which news sources people trust and want to see posts from. In essence what Zuckerberg is doing is making facebook more human again and with the negativity surrounding some of the recent fake stuffs it’s going to be a major game changed for the platform. BUT, what they also expect from business pages is a more concerted budget allocation to promotions and averts on the pages, after all it might be free but [FB] still wants to earn revenue from it.
SO WHAT DO YOU DO?
My advice, at the moment is nothing, aside from making sure your followers actually FOLLOW you, encourage them to hit the LIKE button and to turn on notifications
One of the biggest problems you will have is that there are so many variations of what people see on their own pages, based on how they set up initially, but as a general rule, if they hit the ‘following tab’ they will find the right parts to click …. btw, not many people will click ‘see first’, that’s a bit like the business nirvana but it rarely happens.
As the changes roll out expect to see more changes to the way business pages operate, and if your [business] page is a general FB page set up on the back of your personal one you can expect this to have to change so that the human side, YOUR page become less linked to YOUR business site.
It’s early days so keep a close eye on what happens and try to arrange your posts accordingly.
With thanks to metro.co.uk for a very informative piece.
click here for even more info: https://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/facebook-news-feed-changes/
WHAT’S GOING ON AT INSTAGRAM
Late last year Instagram announced that users could follow hashtags on Instagram. (HALLELUJAH)
Now, use simply follow a hashtag to have content regularly land with them.
Just as there is a “people” feed, users can also create a “hashtags” feed where this content will appear.
Brands can take HUGE ADVANTAGE of this for several reasons.
With great hashtag research, and STRONG HASHTAGS you can improve the potential of showing up in more people’s feeds, whilst sharing pics and info they want to see. of course Instagram wants you to have separate personal and business pages which can be challenging and is actually something I try to encourage clients to stay away from as having one page allows you to humanise your business world with personal stuff intermixed in it. However, Insta has different ideas and will use it’s algorithmic equations to make sure you are not just throwing out a stream of constant business posts that clog up the algorithms, that’s why there’s talk about slowing down repetitive hashtags.
I personally use #emil #mrH #caretaker on 99% of my Insta posts as Well as FB and Twitter, this will have to change and whilst it won’t stop the # will have to be more varied to suit the nature of the business proposition. It’s still critical for you to have a powerful business # and to sue it as often as possible, but watch this space.
Also coming soon to Insta is at the introduction of posts sharing content that [they] think you might be interested in.
This link takes you to an awesome article that explains all that’s going on in Insta world.
Don’t worry, the changes, like every other change that happens will end up being seamless and less disruptive than initial fears suggest. I am )by no means) an expert but take each new challenge as it comes and I try to logically work with it to keep everything running smoothly. My suggestion to you is…. do the same and also link up to sites that offer help about the ever changing social world.
Understanding how social media changes (on a day to day basis) can be challenging.
Here you can find snippets of information that can help you understand what is happening and how you need to respond to the different platforms.
Don’t worry about how many LIKES, SHARES, FOLLOWS & TAGS your social posts receive. Whilst it’s great to se them the reality is most people SCROLL through social sites, this means that they see your posts even if they don’t hit any of the tabs linked to them.
Asking people to COMMENT invariably leads to disappointment when no-one does. Comments are your followers way of adding to your daily posts, let them decide when they do it, don’r ask, unless you are running a competition where comments are a must have!
# and @ are becoming more important.
@ has always been used to find people and organisations that you can link to, never forget to use them as they create a wider spread for your posts.
# can now be used to search and link from, make sure you use your own specific hashtags that link to your business and generic ones that help spread the post even further (for example #emil #mrH #caretaker #education when used on FB, Twitter and Instagram help create awareness).
KEY SOCIAL SUBJECTS
Create a mix of posts that cover every aspect of your business and then occasionally post random, fun posts that are frivolous and irrelevant, pets, snapchat images, they add the human touch.
The average amount of time spent on Facebook daily is 20 minutes. Your posts need to be engaging and visual to ensure your followers don’t scroll past them. Think about the content, what it says and how it looks before posting. Be consistent and make sure there is a blend of messages and images shared at all times.
The demographic users of social media are changing. Whilst most age groups are staying more or less the same in the amount of users and how much time they spend on different platforms, the 65+ age group is embracing technology and are the fastest growing sector. This is important to recognise as you must offer social activities and posts that appeal to them.