Archive for the ‘social media’ Category

Battle Royale:Twitter Kills Facebook

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

In online marketing, Facebook is the name of the game. The conversion rates are typically higher, making people less inclined to try other methods in their social media efforts. But online marketingis not a one-trick pony – you have to explore all of its vehicles to be completely successful. No certain network should ever be counted out.  In some of our own campaigns Twitter is continuously used to drive conversion as part of client online efforts – sometimes seeing similar ROIs as Facebook. Twitter can still compete with the social network giant, and quite possibly kill the competition.

In order to make Twitter effective for your campaign you need to assess the three tiers of Twitter users and see how they can access your brand. These tiers being:

  1. Magazines, celebrities, Oprah
  2. Heavy-hitting bloggers and opinion leaders
  3. Everyone else

For most cases you might as well stay away from the first tier as they are extremely hard to access and rarely participate unless they are contractually obligated. If you combine the next two tiers, however, you could actually tap into an influence that far outweighs the first tier in the long tail. Only a small percent of users will actually engage in your campaign while the rest sit back and watch. If you can get this small percent to be users from the second tier, you can get tap into their reach and create a great number of impressions.

This method can give a campaign a lot of clicks and for dirt cheap. Even without paid Twitter, using a little elbow grease, you can organically grow your campaigns and receive results. With Facebook, unless you have paid advertising in your budget, you will see very little growth organically. However, when you follow hundreds of related users on Twitter, usually about 80 percent will follow you back. After this point, you can appease them by engaging their messages and sharing their tweets, encouraging them to ultimately participate in yours.

In our work with personal development and coaching client, Freedom Personal Development, Twitter has proven to be extremely beneficial in gaining awareness of their programs and ideas. In fact, 40 percent of their clicks come from Twitter alone. What makes this especially gratifying is that they focus only 20 percent of their budget on Twitter.  Had we not originally pursued Twitter, we could have spent a greater amount other vehicles, creating a lower ROI.

Of course, with any method there are certain circumstances that need to be present for it to be carried out successfully.  For instance, Twitter campaigns will only work effectively on a national scale. If you geotarget your efforts, you will end up with very little engagement and a waste of money. A rule of thumb is to start with spending $500-$1,000 on paid Twitter, and if you see even a three percent conversion continue your efforts.

Twitter is not for the end user, merely to be used as a resource. In this age where Facebook rules, Twitter is usually left in the dust. But why should you disregard something that is far cheaper and still a helpful resource for you campaign. With Twitter you can grow your campaign organically and get clicks cheaper than you would by spending all of your money on Facebook. Facebook is the reigning champ of the online marketing game, but Twitter is that older underdog that can strike back and kill the competitor.

A Cause to be Thankful for: #foodthanks

Friday, November 18th, 2011

A lot of the time during the holidays we take for granted all of the things we are truly thankful for. So it is great that there are campaigns such as #foodthanks that can bring everything into perspective. AGchat’s twitter campaign asks those who participate to tweet about what they are thankful for while directing attention to the farming and food communities.

Working with several food clients, JB Chicago has had to rely heavily on these communities to interact and promote certain clients and campaigns. These are hardworking members of society that can really get behind a movement to affect it in a positive way and for that we are extremely thankful. SO along with your family, friends and good health, the staff at JB Chicago asks you to also take some time to think of the people in these communities who help to provide the food on your plate all year long.

Be sure to tweet using the #foodthanks hashtag to share what you are truly thankful for and bring attention to a community that is truly giving.

For more information visit http://foodthanks.com/

I’m Steve, and I use Google+

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

The social media tool on everyone’s lips these days is Google+ (Google Plus). Basically, it’s an expanded, more relevant Twitter, or, as I also heard it described, “Facebook’s older brother.” Whatever you want to call it, you can’t deny that it’s definitely gotten a lot of people’s attention: Google+ already has 10 million users, according to the Chicago Tribune article “Google Plus adding value to life or guilt?” And this doesn’t even include the number of people who want to join, but have to wait for invites from their already-invited friends.

One of the great things about Google+ is that it gives you the ability to allow you to put your friends in different “circles,” categorizing the people you know in neat, easy compartments. Google+ initially give you generic categories, such as “friends” and “families,” but also let you create and build up circles personally catered to your needs.  What’s nice is that you can decide whether you want to see everyone’s updates, or just updates from a specific circle, and vice versa when it comes to posting your own updates. This concept of the “circle” is brilliant, and is more in-your-face as Facebook’s “groups” and friend categorization. It’s the first thing you see when you add a new person, making Google+ more persona-based, and putting the focus on people and actual social interaction, as opposed to just the user themselves.

One other cool thing about Google+ (that I have yet to try) is the concept of a “hangout.” Users can get together with members in their friend groups and video conference with as many people as they want. This is a feature that Skype users have been lusting after, and, if used correctly, may add to Google+’s growing reputation. Google+ also gives you the option to instantly upload photos from your phone to a private album (and you can customize who you want to share them with later). Huddle, another unique feature, is a way to group-chat via text from your phone.

I feel like the only thing Google+ needs now is to take action and open up its doors to everyone, and allow businesses to create their own pages. They’re in the trial period right now, so the seeming exclusivity is understandable, but as soon as Google can, they should start to grab as many people and companies right away. Since Google+ is the talk of the town, it would be wise for them to move and engage everyone in profiling and huddling and +1ing (a feature similar to the “like” button on Facebook that allows you to show what you like all over Google), now, while they’re still intrigued and (for some) fed up with Facebook. The good news is that Google seems to recognize that. According to Patch article “Tech Trends: Google Plus Forges Ahead, ” Google+ is making businesses one of their top priorities, and “site developers are tweaking the platform for the business community.”

With all the popularity it’s gaining, it’s easy to forget that Google+ is actually a Google beta app, which means it’s still in the developing stages and that there will most likely be some glitches from time to time. However, that’s no reason to diminish its value. Here at JB Chicago, we are excited to see where this new social platform will fit into businesses’ marketing strategies and personal users’ lives. The geniuses at the Google Lab should be proud.

Clearly, we're all really. Really excited.Find

Find me on Google+: gplus.to/stevegaither. Also, check out TechRepublic’s article on the “Four ways Google+ will end up in your workplace.”

Less “restricting,” more opportunities

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

On May 11, we noticed that Facebook put out a statement citing changes they made in their Promotions Guidelines—the rules for governing the way business pages run their contests for users. Like anything that has more than four bullet points and contains the word “guidelines” in the title, it’s easy to pretend like it doesn’t exist.  However, in the past few weeks, pages have been shut down due to their resistance to follow the changes, so it’s a good idea to take a closer look at the terms of service.

First of all, think of the Guidelines not so much as “completely revamped,” but “more defined.” A lot of the terms of service spelled out in the recent Promotions Guidelines were also in the “old” version as well. For example, the fact that you can’t “use Facebook features or functionality as a promotion’s registration or entry mechanism” (“liking” a page, for instance) is something that was established already. This clause is there because, well, a: there’s a chance that they don’t want to “win a lifetime supply of coffee” (or something equally wonderful), and b: Facebook wants to cut down on the amount of “‘spam tactics’” businesses could use to “promote their pages,” according to Advit Sahdev in his article “Understanding Facebook’s Promotions Guidelines.” The contest is about the business itself, not the fact that the business has a page, and Facebook wants to cut down on the spam so users don’t get annoyed. Another part of the guidelines state that businesses can’t notify winners of a contest through any Facebook means, like posts or messaging, which, again, was already an establish rule. It’s only done to protect winners from essentially getting harassed. As an extreme example that properly illustrates this point: writing on Katherine’s wall “Congratulations on winning a brand new airplane,” may look harmless, but what happens when people start to bombard Katherine with requests to be flown around everywhere? Maybe this is news Katherine would like to keep private.

The way it worked before is that a user would like your page, then to enter in the contest, would be taken to  your contest page where they would be prompted by Facebook connect. This would get their permission to give away email information, and would take them to the contest site. It worked, though it was a bit of a hassle. Now, thanks to the creation of iFrames, you can run your whole website into FB, i.e., you can stick your whole contest page into a box.

Click to enlarge this handy-dandy, simplifying chart.

Because this makes things easier, Facebook wanted to make sure that businesses follow all the guidelines, especially the ones about how a like does not equal an entry, or how businesses can’t inform users that they won via Facebook. So nothing has “changed,” per say; they’re just cracking down and making businesses take a harder look at the fine print, which is a fair deal, considering they’ve given us iFrames and made putting sites on Facebook pages, making contest sign-ups and sharing a heck of a lot easier than it used to be.

See the Facebook Promotions Guidelines.

Social Media and the Holidays: A Good Cause for Doing Good

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

As social media continues to gain a real part of our lives, this highly interactive platform also provides an excellent marketing tool to businesses small and large. There is a valuable opportunity in social media that a lot of people are still missing out on, and that is charity.

We’re all about marrying charity and social media here. As a board member of multiple Chicago non-profits, and more recently, the New Millennium Orchestra, JB Chicago has found all kinds of ways to give back and get involved in the community. After all, business is about bringing people together, so we figure why not make it better and bring people together for the greater good.

Our pursuits of good will also extend to our clients, and they can to yours too. Whether giving legs to an idea or spreading awareness through social media, we’re all about building relationships between good- causes and the good companies that support them. The Halloween applications and social media communication developed for Tetra Pak was a huge success. Motivated by fun and good feelings, every click in Facebook or Twitter, and every e-mail sent, landed a donation straight to World Wildlife Fund. Catalyst’s charity work with designers from across the globe land on their Area 3 blog, Twitter feeds and eventually around the world again.

Building these types of relationships provide great marketing directives, leading your business down the path you want. By giving people the incentive to share, you’re name goes right along with it. Any time of year, giving is genuinely a good thing that people want to be a part of. Providing the vehicle to help others through social media gives back and gives everyone a voice.

Share your charity and internet good doing experiences in the comments below. And remember, businesses of all shapes and sizes benefit from tying up with the right causes. So whether you’re new to philanthropy or want to make sure you find the right cause for you and your business values, here are a few great places to get acquainted with:

New Millennium Orchestra

Looking Glass Theater

Network of Strength

Gateway Green

Network For Good

Your Cause

Causes

Change

Top 10 Oddly Entertaining Twitter Moments

Thursday, January 8th, 2009

1. http://www.vimeo.com/1426538.
Actress Felecia Day of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Bring It On was in attendance at a Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog panel. She had a part in the internet musical, and the stars were in attendance to talk about the movie. When asked a question, however, Felecia appeared caught off guard — then admitted she had been “twittering” under the table. Laughs ensued (come on, you know your mind went there too), and her reaction just makes you want to give her a hug… or two.
2. http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/2009/01/twits-get-phish.html
First, let’s set the record straight: the Britney Spears and Barack Obama tweets sent out by a hacker – not so funny. However, while we do not in any way condone phishing of any type, the Bill O’Reilly “is gay” tweet just has to make even the diehard Fox News fan chuckle  – especially when you imagine the rage that inevitable followed .
3. http://mashable.com/2008/10/31/great-twitter-moments/
So a girl is on a date, thinking everything is going great. Conversation flows, laughs are shared and a follow-up is already planned. Since he mentioned he is a Twitterer, she logs on to thank him for an evening well spent – only to discover every time she got up from the table, he was tweeting about how, well, not great you are. Sound like a nightmare? It happened to Andrea (real name and Twitter ID withheld). Moral of the story? Aw, heck who cares… let’s just leave it at this: he’s not going home to mother.
4. http://twitter.com/MeanBot
For those out of the loop, Twitter Bots are Twitter users that basically generate information, whether that be by request or just whenever it becomes available. There are Bots that give stock market updates, Bots remind you when you have an important meeting and Bots that tell you how much you should tip. But there is one that stands out from the pack – it is guaranteed to make you laugh (ok, or cringe). With the moniker of MeanBot, it should be no surprise that comments include“…is wondering: Why is it that most nudists are people you don’t want to see naked” and “…has teeth that are so yellow that when she smiles the cars start to slow down.” Follow at your own risk.
5. http://www.quickonlinetips.com/archives/2008/11/girl-in-your-shirt/
Girl in Your Shirt like the classier sister whole of the “getting tattoos of a company’s name for major moolah” craze. For as little as $75, Jenae will wear your company’s T-shirt, talk about your company, and create promotional postings for Twitter (as well as Flickr, YouTube and various others). While the idea might seem crazy, it has taken off like crazy – and even spawned some copycats (yes, Jason Sadler, we are talking about you). Getting paid to wear T-shirts might seem funny… but don’t you wish you had thought of that?
6. http://www.alleyinsider.com/2008/12/getting-fired-at-yahoo-a-twitter-log-reprise
Instead of going out to the bars for three nights straight like some might do when fired, Ryan Kuder decided to make his experience enjoyable to others by tweeting about it. During a time most others would be maintaining a delicate balance between rage and fear, he released such gems as “On the plus side, my commute just got a lot shorter,” and “Thanks to everyone sending the positive tweets. I’ve got plenty of free time now so just let me know if you want to meet up for lunch.”
7. http://garyvaynerchuk.com/2008/04/02/april-3rd-2008-is-good-people-day-pass-it-on/
Here’s a trend with a heart: April 3, 2008 was deemed “Good People Day” by Internet celebrity Gary Vaynerchuk. He thought it was due time to give credit to those people who are important but might not get told they are appreciated. Gary told others to use various forms of social media (hello, Twitter!) to sing the praises of the great people in their lives. Using the idea that “we are the media,” he pushed others to take control – and that they did, as the day was a success. (Thanks to Doriano Carta at Mashable for this one! http://mashable.com/2008/12/19/twitter-2008/)
8. http://lordmatt.co.uk/item/1219/
The Lord Matt Borg is another attempt at a Twitter experiment, though this one is less game-oriented and more, shall we say, alter ego focused. Lord Matt (I kid you not) created this account to showcase how it works when you try to completely automate social networking profiles and responses. Matt hopes the Bot will eventually @reply and make sense, as well as be seen as fun and useful – much like himself, though less cool, of course. This is one experiment worth following.
9. http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/03/16/a-funny-moment-at-the-flickr-party-tonight/
Michael Arrington was @ a flickr party when Dan Farber, editor in chief of CNET, mentioned he recieved an e-mail saying his company bought another for $58 million. The report came from a post seen on Twitter and was definitely news to him, so he and others at the party began making some calls, sending e-mails and contacting people at Digg. The rumor was squashed, but it was enough to send the party into a downward spiral for a handful of people – and enough to bring some Twitter ridicule to the man who posted the rumor that sent shockwaves. (We will have some pity on the poor guy and leave him unnamed!)
10. http://colorwar2008.com/March 2008 brought about the launch of an experiment by Zefrank. The premise for Color Wars was simple: internet teams compete for prizes (a la color wars at summer camp – remember that?). Hundreds of teams formed, and games such a rap battle remixes and scavenger hunts quickly became all the rage. However, the sensation was short lived and chaos ensued – bringing an end to what might have been the supreme adult playground. (Thanks again, Gary! http://mashable.com/2008/12/19/twitter-2008/)