I’ve been playing around trying to get Page Insights data directly from the Graph API (usually we just export and process the data from the Insights dashboard.) Thanks to an excellent article by Facebook’s Paul Carduner on Authenticating with Facebook on the command line, I’ve found a way to do it; but if you just need a short term token (for an hour or two’s experimentation), then it’s actually quite simple to get one from the Graph API Explorer tool. Here’s my quick guide.
Someone has just asked whether we have any information on how engaging fans leads to better ROI. Cue the following rant from me.
Caveat — all my thinking here centres around FMCG/CPG brands. You may work in another sector, in which case please bear in mind, while it may still apply, nothing I say here has been tested for your business. Test for colour-fastness on an unobtrusive piece of your business prior to use. Continue reading
A version of this post was first published on Emerging Spaces on 29/08/2013
Until recently, Facebook’s Terms prevented community managers using Facebook Posts as a simple place to run competition mechanics. Now everything has changed in to what some observers predict will be a glorious free-for-all. But what does these changes really mean for social media marketers?
What were those rules again?
Until now, Facebook has not allowed competition promoters to use its native features in their competitions. This meant for example:
- no voting with a ‘like’,
- no ‘first one to comment’,
- no ‘post your photo to our wall to win’.
Why did Facebook do this?
Informed observers believe that — by insisting that separate software was used to administer promotions — Facebook was protecting themselves from risk of litigation (you will recall that Facebook’s early history was beset by legal action). In the very early days, running promotions had even meant seeking prior written approval from Facebook itself, but as the platform grew, this requirement became hopelessly restrictive and unwieldy.
By forcing promotions off the main platform and into third party servers, Facebook was neatly sidestepping the threat.
So what has happened?
A version of this post was first published on Emerging Spaces on 14/08/2013
I’m a huge fan of social logins; and the Social Content team here in London tries to implement these wherever we can. Here’s some background material for you to consider.
The mobile thing
Facebook has recently shared figures showing 83% of Facebook’s daily UK audience use a mobile device to access the service.
This leaves us in an interesting position where the majority of digital marketing experiences are being created by people sitting behind desktop PCs for an audience that’s consuming on a mobile device.
A version of this post was first published on Emerging Spaces on 02/08/2013
LinkedIn recently published a strong Quarter 3 Earnings Report. Taking these in association with previous financial announcements, we can plot the following chart.
It’s notable that over the past three years, they’ve experienced 9x growth in what they call “Talent Solutions” (services and products aimed at the recruitment industry), 5x growth in revenue from Premium Subscriptions, but only 4.7x growth in revenue from “Marketing Solutions” (ad sales.)
While this might call into question their strategic commitment to the advertising market, LinkedIn has introduced Sponsored Updates to their advertising products, potentially increasing their relevance in a social media marketing world increasingly focused on Content Marketing.
A version of this post was first published on Emerging Spaces on 31/07/2013
This is a story about Social Media evaluation, and like most of those stories, it doesn’t have a neat ending. It starts off, though, as a story about Public Relations, but only — I hasten to add — because they’ve been struggling with the AVE problem for a long time, and we may be able to use their experience to inoculate ourselves. In his role as chair of the PR judging panel at Cannes this year, Ketchum’s European CEO David Gallagher tweeted:
Reviewed 200+ @Cannes_Lions PR entries so far. Many are good too many use AVE or impressions for main results.
— David Gallagher (@TBoneGallagher) May 27, 2013
Later still he noted:
too many entrants mistake advertising equivalency value – the estimated value of earned media – as a useful measurement of a result, and some as a result itself.
What is AVE?
Put very simply the AVE (Advertising Value Equivalency) was an attempt to value Public Relations activity by attempting to establish what Earned Media would cost if it were Paid Media. A decade ago, in a brutally simple take down, the Institute for Public Relations’s Commission on PR Measurement and Evaluation pointed out that:
In summary, the use of this technique can perpetuate two major fallacies: (1) that editorial is “free advertising,” and (2) that dollar cost equals dollar value. Many senior managers believe these absurdities, and we marketers should always be looking for ways to debunk them, not reinforce them. If you’re trying to educate your management about how PR works, this technique is counterproductive.
most rational humans in the PR profession have finally rejected AVEs as an irrelevant silly and inaccurate measure.
Where are we now?
Today AVE is widely regarded as a bit of a joke by the PR industry – but like the best jokes, it’s still being told. The place it’s being told most often is in Social Media programme evaluation. This represents a real danger; a metric that has been derided and dismissed by an entire industry has leapt to a new host; a host that lacks the natural immunities built up over time.
Here are the slides and spiel from the presentation I gave today at Digital Shoreditch. You can also download them as a PDF on SlideShare.
This is me. Mediaczar. I have more than 5000 followers, so I’m probably quite popular, and you should listen to me.
Although I’m not as popular as my evil twin, Evilczar. He has twice as many fans as I do, although I have reason to believe he may have bought those followers.
Today’s presentation is a bit of a collaboration between the two of us. I hope that won’t upset you. Or confuse you.
Like other agencies, we have a tendency — when preparing screen shots for our presentations — to take them on our static web PCs. Given the explosion in the mobile web, this feels a bit last-decade. Worse, it promotes an inaccurate story about what’s rapidly becoming the most common user experience. This may be particularly true of social traffic. A year ago around 10% of the traffic we generated from social came from mobile handsets. Today it’s often closer to 30%.
I try to include a few mobile screen shots in my presentations — if only to highlight what is becoming an increasingly depressing truth.
If I were being really careful though, I’d make sure that I used mobile screen shots even when I wasn’t making a point about mobile. Yes, it might add a minute to my workflow. But it might also be the kind of positive discrimination that helps change attitudes (not least my own: I still have to make a conscious effort to think about the mobile experience.)
Now, take a look at the following screen shot:
By placing the experience in context it tells a more compelling story (I believe) about the user experience. It’s more relatable, familiar. I can comprehend it better in terms of my own previous frustrations.
The best thing? It’s easy enough for us all to do… I used a free web service: PlaceIt (from site design & hosting service, Breezi) where you can choose your mobile device (iPad, iPhones 4 & 5, a variety of Android handsets) and a series of near-realistic environments. All you need do is upload a screen shot taken on your phone, and it will be automagically adjusted and placed in situ (/ht Jeff Taylor from the Social Marketers Facebook Group for this great link.)
Do bear in mind that screen dimensions are often peculiar to the handset; so a screen shot taken on an iPhone 4 won’t look good on an iPhone 5 for example.
This is the best thing I’ve seen all month; and I share it with the massive recommendation that you try it out, and consider using it in future presentations.
I’ve also made great use in the past of Fabien Kreiser’s Screentaker — an OS X app aimed at the native app developer. In theory at least, one should be able to create one’s own versions of PlaceIt. And it’s great for telling user-journey stories.
Another useful service (/ht my colleague Laura Cogo) is Google’s Ready To Get Mobile.
And now that Evernote’s Skitch screen capture and annotation tool works on both Android and iOS, it’s becoming an ever more essential app for me.
Are there any others? Recommendations for good, stable mobile emulators that work on OS X and Windows would be particularly gratefully received.
Edit: By coincidence, just after posting this I was listening to the latest Mac Power Users Podcast, where Serenity Caldwell recommended Reflector — an iOS-only screen mirroring app (for both Windows & OS X) that lets users mirror their iOS device’s screen on their laptop or desktop. You can take screen shots (I’m using the CMD-SHIFT-4 + Space bar key combo to grab the whole window) or record a screencast from your handset or tablet. Feels like something that will become a big part of my workflow.