Archive for the 'Social Media' Category


Ambient Intimacy

Rory Sutherland, Ogilvy Creative Director, has written an article on Brand Republic’s website about Facebook and brands.

Rory describes Facebook’s newsfeed and status Twitter-like functionality as ‘semi-addressable’, where ‘the message is not addressed to specifically named individuals.’

I prefer to describe this form of communication as Ambient Intimacy, as coined by Leisa Reichelt on her blog back in March.

In and of itself, a single Twitter feed is meaningless and mundane, but as a continuous ambient trickle of statements about a person’s daily life it can be initimate, personal and insightful. It’s one of the main reasons everyone had such an affinity to Princess Diana. So many column inches were filled with her daily life that we all felt we knew her and had an affinity towards her despite never having physically met her.

This level of communication will become very important, but only as part of a larger set of social communication tools. Were you to have an important sporting event such as a tennis Grand Slam, and have a selection of athletes taking part in the event utilizing Ambient Intimacy in the run up to it, you’d get a very personal view of those people’s fears and hopes which would generate interest into the lead up to that bigger event and an affinity with those athletes.


Mesuring your Social Media Footprint

There have been a number of conversations concerning Attention, Engagement, Influence and Social Media measurement in general. I wrote about one here.

Sixty Second View has attempted to measure your social media footprint via the Social Media Index and it’s another good effort with some reasonable assumptions. Whilst there’s no golden bullet at present – much like search – there’s a set of criteria of sorts to measure against and then the 5% that’s human perception.


trust, word of mouth and the conversation

As Jeremiah Owyang notes:
“Facebook is a closed garden with one-way doors.
This means that data comes in, but it’s not coming out – yet.”

The Inside Facebook blog suggests that Google is not relevant to Facebook since it has it’s own news and feed ranking indexes and systems, its own search tool and its own social network to find information:

“Future information finding systems will evolve to use data from your social network, yielding results based upon your trusted peers” – Inside Facebook, NFO (News Feed Optimization) is the new SEO.

This concept of ‘trust’ is tied to identity and also to the belief that word of mouth advice between friends, families and colleagues is by far the strongest form of marketing around – crucially, it also flies in the face of Google’s current search algorithm which is based on popularity, not accuracy or trust.

If search evolves, will we rely on personal social network features (what do my friends think and recommend) over search? Will we evolve to smaller network based searches?

In many ways, this is what Mahalo was trying to overcome, the problem with that is that I don’t know (and therefore don’t trust) the editors creating the Mahalo data. This is why so many thought leaders are already thinking about their Facebook strategy.

Although Google continues to evolve it’s AI to build better search tools, trust continues to be the leading factor in finding information. Google’s search results have much to be desired: popular is not the same as correct.

The future of search will contain human elements in addition to algorithms.


social media strategy: starting the conversation

Capture the Conversation
Capture the Conversation is a great dource of information and tutorials on setting up and maintaining various Internet social media and search visibility tools such as Digg, NewsGator, Google Reader. The copany won a Gold Peak award in the Social Media category in this year’s American Marketing Awards.

Have a dig around, there’s an enormous amount of info…I found loads of it really useful, particularly in terms of getting started, subscribing to feeds and joining the conversations that are being started.


web video’s ‘Long tail’ is optimistic

According to an analyst report released by Bear Stearns, which takes a look at online video trends, the idea of the ‘long tail’ holds for web video.

This makes all the more sense when you look at Adobe’s soon-to-be-launched video player which creates placeholders embedded within the content to serve up fresh advertising. An episode of Faulty Towers could be free but have a target geo-tagged or profile-driven advert playing half way through, based on a logged-in profile. Offering such targetted advertising creates a much stronger argument to purchase conversion.


Social Media Analysis

Marianina Chaplin, over at Web Analytics Princess, has written a couple of very interesting posts on “Social networking analysis meets web analytics meets marketing effectiveness” & also “Value networking analysis versus social networking analysis“, along with a link through to the Value Networks Consortium articles.

Social Media Visualisation
In it she goes into detail about how a MIT Media Lab/Social Media Lab study has designed a flexible tool for the content driven exploration and visualization of a social network. More specifically, this tool visualizes the true influence of comment flow from MySpace visitors.

Juda Phillips of Web Analytics Demystified writes about “Web Analytics and Social Networks” and also here.

I have no background in analytics, but my interest in it is based on wanting to better serve the audiences I build digital solutions and experiences for. As the metaphor of the page click-through dwindles and we see more thought being given towards monitoring what people are actually doing with their time on a site or within an application, I hope that we’ll be able to substantiate what the knock on effects are for the members of that social network which are touched by it.

I’m intrigued by engagement. I began my social network experience as a lurker. As I have become more comfortable with, and more confident in, using these social tools I am finding myself taking part and engaging in more of the conversation. I’m not alone, as the daily activity on my Facebook newsfeed can vouch for.

I think that many of the people who have signed up to Facebook, but who had not previously delved into MySpace, felt that the interface was a barrier to them i.e. actually doing stuff on it. Facebook is easier to use – ironcially because it doesn’t offer the level of individualism that MySpace was initailly celebrated for. For example, preventing people from changing the look and feel of their profile page and building an online community based on the people you already know cuts to the essence of social networking – which to me is maintaining relationships online with friends you have offline, however distant.

As more and more people feel at ease not only posting their own photos onto Facebook, but also commenting on the photos that others in their network have uploaded and truly engaged in, you’re able to build a detailed picture about the types of people they are, their interests, their likes and dislikes etc…I feel it’s this untapped knowledge which will lead to a much more considered approach to marketing and advertising in general, rather than the traditional method of ramming slogans and broken promises down people’s throats.


Facebook applications

Tony over at Teknision has an update to a post his partner in crime Gabor posted a month or so ago that’s worth reading. In it they both discuss and refine the types of application that are currently being built on Facebook.

I’ve been in a load of discussions at work with people who want to create Facebook applications for clients and the 3 types Teknision have formulated are a good way of describing the current state of play.

However, I’m not sure they go far enough and they also don’t mention the types of application (For Facebook, For the Desktop and For the Web).

The popularity of these applications are really interesting, particularly if you take Teknision’s views on board. Whilst the most popular application for Facebook has just tipped 8.1million, the most popular application for your Desktop, the Facebook toolbar for Firefox, has only 161,000 and for the Web, Jobster has been downloaded a total of 33,000 times.

These figures go to show how confused and untapped the Facebook application landscape is and explains why brands have been slow to create their own branded applications for Facebook…so far.

July 2018
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