tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/facebook Latest Facebook content from Econsultancy 2016-08-18T15:17:12+01:00 tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68175 2016-08-18T15:17:12+01:00 2016-08-18T15:17:12+01:00 Will Facebook’s artificial image creation solve our stock photo woes? Dr Janet Bastiman <p style="text-align: justify;">Imagine if you could find the image you have in your head, immediately, without having to search through your content library?</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">What if there was a way to search for your image online in real time? Where you could just describe what you wanted and a perfect high-definition image was returned to you within seconds? </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">While we are able to imagine any situation, we currently rely on manual photo manipulation to turn this into an image that we can share.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">But could we get to a point where we ask our computer: “Show me a picture of me riding a bicycle on Mars,” and a realistic representation is produced?</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">That’s why marketers value creative photographers so highly.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">And there is no doubting the value a modern genius like Rankin has brought to campaigns as celebrated as Dove’s major worldwide hit campaign ‘Real Women’.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8209/rankin_dove.jpg" alt="" width="700" height="362"></p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Some of the most exciting research I have seen in this area is coming out of the Facebook Artificial Intelligence Team and is based around artificial image creation. </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Facebook’s team is trying to create 100% computer-generated images that fool humans into thinking that they’re real. </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">In 2015, Facebook published some <a href="http://arxiv.org/pdf/1506.05751v1.pdf">results</a><a title="" name="_ednref1"></a> which indicated that it could create very small images (64x64px) of landscapes from a random 8x8px grid. </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">When those images tested alongside real images downscaled to the same size, the artificial images were judged to be real 40% of the time by the test panel. </p> <p style="text-align: justify;"><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="http://janjanjan.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/4/2015/06/Facebook-Deep-Generative-Image-Models.jpg" alt="Facebook artificial images" width="780" height="425"> </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Earlier <a href="https://arxiv.org/pdf/1511.06434.pdf">this year</a><a title="" name="_ednref2"></a>, the team built on their earlier success by generating more complex scenes, including bedrooms.  </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">While the images were still very small, they do look very realistic as the examples above show and it feels like we are on the edge of a breakthrough in this field.  </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Personally I expect within the next 6-12 months we’ll start to see images at a larger resolution and slowly there will be the ability to create a realistic image from a text description.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">There is no doubt that this is a very exciting area of research and, while it is a few years away from practical application, it’s something we should watch closely. </p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Until then I don’t see any immediate move away from human-generated content.</p> <h3 style="text-align: justify;">User-generated content</h3> <p style="text-align: justify;">One of the best ways of currently finding an image for your campaign that resonates with your target audience is by using user-generated content (UGC).</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">UGC is one of the most trusted forms of marketing; from YouTube stars promoting products to companies paying people to push their content on social media, this is a form of marketing that actually drives measurable sales.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">UGC is more trusted and more effective for a company than traditional advertising and with new methods popping up all the time, it looks set to continue.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Using on-open live UGC in email can result in a 43% increase in click-through rates, up to 3x conversion rate improvement, and 86% consumer trust rating as an indicator of product/service quality.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Studies show that UGC is 50% more trusted than any other content<a title="" name="_ednref3"></a> and, combined with brand content, can result in a more authentic, personalised and connected <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/creating-superior-customer-experiences/">customer experience</a>.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">One large brand already using UGC in their summer email and social campaign <em>#myholidayhabits</em> is Teletext Holidays, the UK’s longest established digital travel agency in the UK, with nearly 300,000 customers last year.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">Kelly Maher, Head of CRM at Teletext Holidays explains: “Since using UGC, we have seen an unprecedented 2x increase in customer engagement in our campaigns.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">"My team and I are now able to use up-to-the-second user generated content from all major social channels including Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter to populate our emails with truly personalised, highly engaging content for every user on-open.”</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68046 2016-08-18T14:15:04+01:00 2016-08-18T14:15:04+01:00 Five pioneering examples of how brands are using chatbots Patricio Robles <h3>Sephora</h3> <p>Earlier this year, beauty brand Sephora launched a chatbot on Kik, a popular messaging app.</p> <p>The chatbot prompts Kik users who message it to provide more information about themselves through a quiz, and then offers personalised beauty tips, product recommendations and reviews.</p> <p>In addition, Kik users can purchase products that are referenced in chat without leaving the Kik app.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7478/kiksephora-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="298" height="529"></p> <p>While Sephora's Kik chatbot obviously can't provide the same kind of experience the company's customers receive in-store, it saw Kik as a natural fit for reaching a key part of its customer base.</p> <p>"Through our partnership with Kik, we saw an opportunity to engage with new and existing clients, particularly with the highly mobile/connected audience of Gen-Z and younger millennials, through a fun, new social platform," the company stated.</p> <h3>Uber</h3> <p>Need a ride? Well if you're among the 1bn people who use Facebook Messenger, then you can hail an Uber using a chatbot within the messaging app.</p> <p>Rides can be requested by starting a conversation with the Uber chatbot, which will also provide status updates.</p> <p>In addition, Uber's integration allows users to request rides from within their Facebook Messenger conversations with other users by clicking on an address.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Dj4f1d-EZy4?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <h3>HealthTap</h3> <p>Chatbot experiences often leave a lot to be desired, and while this will almost certainly improve as AI technology advances, there is an opportunity for services that combine human and computer interaction.</p> <p><iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/162458358" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <p>Case in point: Digital health upstart HealthTap allows Facebook Messenger users to connect with more than 100,000 real doctors.</p> <p>But understanding that many of the questions those users might ask have been asked and answered before, the company has added chatbot functionality to its Messenger integration.</p> <p>When users ask a question, HealthTap's bot searches for similar questions and can provide past answers that might be useful before it offers to send the user's question to its network of doctors.</p> <h3>Bank of America</h3> <p>Bank of America is working with Facebook to build a Messenger chatbot that will "help clients stay connected to their finances whenever and wherever they choose."</p> <p>Initially, the chatbot will provide functionality such as real-time alerts, but it's not hard to imagine a future in which bank chatbots provide customers with access to account data and allow them to perform transactions.</p> <p>In fact, chatbot MyKai - a "banking bot" that is available through Facebook Messenger, Slack, WhatsApp and SMS - already offers that functionality.</p> <p>Developed by Kasisto, a startup spun out of SRI International, which developed the technology behind Siri, the MyKai technology is <a href="http://www.wired.com/2016/06/new-banking-ai-now-chatbots/">already being used by</a> banks like Singapore-based DBS.</p> <p>RBS, <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2016/03/04/rbs-luvo-ai-chat-bot/">which developed its own technology</a>, also plans to put chatbots to work.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7483/mykai-hereswhat2-1-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="313" height="565"></p> <h3>Pizza Hut</h3> <p>Those with a late night craving no longer have to think twice about picking up the phone to order a hot pie.</p> <p>Pizza Hut, the global restaurant chain that has over 15,000 locations, <a href="http://www.cnet.com/uk/news/pizza-huts-chat-bot-can-take-your-order-on-facebook-and-twitter/">now accepts orders through Facebook Messenger and Twitter chatbots</a>. </p> <p>For Pizza Hut, building chatbots was all about making it as easy as possible for customers to order food.</p> <p>"We are committed to our servicing our customers in the most convenient way and meeting them in the channels they already prefer," Baron Concors, Pizza Hut's Chief Digital Officer, explained.</p> <p>Facebook Messenger users who interact with the company's chatbot will be able to connect their Messenger accounts to their Pizza Hut accounts so that the chatbot will have access to their order history.</p> <p>This enables Pizza Hut to personalise offers and make it easy for customers to quickly reorder their favorite menu items.</p> <p>Rival pizza chain Domino's has also launched its own chatbot. Read <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68184-domino-s-introduces-dom-the-pizza-bot-for-facebook-messenger/">Nikki Gilliland's review to find out more</a>.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68182 2016-08-12T14:23:23+01:00 2016-08-12T14:23:23+01:00 What can P&G and Facebook teach us about the reality of targeting and the future of TV ads? Bola Awoniyi <p>While the CPG giant has said that it won't be reducing its Facebook ad spend, it will be doing less targeted advertising, instead opting to spend more on TV campaigns.</p> <p>So why would P&amp;G be making this move in the face of trends that suggest TV viewership is going down, while Facebook and its catalogue of apps continue to eat up more of our attention?</p> <h3>Facebook targeting is amazing: if you aren't selling to everyone</h3> <p>You only need to look at your Facebook newsfeed to appreciate how well Facebook shows you content you want to consume, organic and paid.</p> <p>While many consumers continue to be entertained by family and friend updates, news on their favourite sports teams and media links, Facebook continues to work at its business, improving ad impressions by 49%.</p> <p>However, the most unique aspect of Facebook (and Instagram’s) ad offering does no favours for the likes of P&amp;G.</p> <p>According to P&amp;G CMO Marc Pritchard, the ability to deliver extremely targeted Facebook ads over-serves its needs:</p> <blockquote> <p>We targeted too much, and we went too narrow and now we’re looking at: What is the best way to get the most reach but also the right precision?</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/p-g-to-scale-back-targeted-facebook-ads-1470760949">This WSJ article</a> goes on to illustrate this perfectly:</p> <blockquote> <p>P&amp;G two years ago tried targeting ads for its Febreze air freshener at pet owners and households with large families.</p> <p>The brand found that sales stagnated during the effort, but they rose when the campaign on Facebook and elsewhere was expanded last March to include anyone over 18.</p> </blockquote> <p>Targeting on Facebook had minimal impact for P&amp;G, but removing targeting revealed its unique reliance on a more blunt from of advertising.</p> <p>P&amp;G’s apparent need to reach “everyone” flies in the face of the general approach taken by many in the digital marketing community, but does provide a welcome lifeline to a stalwart of marketing past and present. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ffebreze%2Fposts%2F10156979726370368%3A0&amp;width=500" width="500" height="608"></iframe></p> <h3>TV still has a place in the marketing mix, at least for now</h3> <p>Facebook’s over-serving of P&amp;G’s need highlights the inherent value in television, despite its general decline in viewership.</p> <p>P&amp;G knows TV extremely well. The <a href="http://uk.businessinsider.com/10-biggest-advertising-spenders-in-the-us-2015-7/#2-att-ad-spend-up-01-to-33-billion-att-was-also-ranked-in-the-top-biggest-b2b-marketers-last-year-alongside-microsoft-and-apple-according-to-adage-last-year-it-phased-out-its-long-running-its-not-complicated-campaign-in-favor-of-a-new-better-network-messaging-swapping-kid-brand-ambassadors-for-geeks-called-the-network-guys-9">top advertiser in terms of adspend in the US</a> (<a href="http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/1289560/top-100-uk-advertisers-bskyb-increases-lead-p-g-bt-unilever-reduce-adspend">and the second after BSkyB</a> in the UK), spent $1.4bn on US TV adverts in 2015 and plans to increase this number in future.</p> <p>More broadly, the CPG leader has built its business over the decades in large part by mastering brand awareness through television, such that when consumers go to the supermarket, they are highly likely to buy a P&amp;G product.</p> <p>The ability to laser-target consumers has rarely been seen as a problem, but this shows that it is relative.</p> <p>Facebook’s granularity “issue” makes it difficult to reach the masses effectively, whereas the effort and effectiveness of television advertising is a known entity to marketers with general use products and extremely large target audiences.</p> <h3>The investment in ROI doesn’t just refer to money</h3> <p>Of course, none of the above is to say that Facebook cannot deliver quality advertising.</p> <p>Its most recent financial results ($6.2bn in advertising sales in Q2, $2.1bn profit) and the countless case studies of businesses of all sizes being built on Facebook speak for themselves.</p> <p>However, in order for P&amp;G and similar organisations to truly make use of Facebook’s unique capabilities, it would have to create unique campaigns and creative for several different segments and sub-segments within its target market.</p> <p>The time, effort and resources that would be required to invest in creating the hundreds of thousands or millions of permutations of creative across all of its product lines, likely doesn’t seem to be worth it when television can reach roughly the same audience in one fell swoop.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/XjJQBjWYDTs?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>Much how P&amp;G has set up its entire business around the television, a similar effort and dedication would have to be made to fully utilise tools such as Facebook at that scale.</p> <p>It’s likely that P&amp;G may even be on its way to this: the organisation is known to have extensive relationships with both Google and Facebook, with the latter saying that its relationship with P&amp;G “grows each year”.</p> <p>Despite that growth, it would likely take a reorganisation of its business, alongside continued advances in AI and programmatic in order for P&amp;G to truly utilise Facebook’s platform at the required scale.</p> <h3>Will Facebook ever steal some of your TV ad spend?</h3> <p>It’s obvious that Facebook is gunning for at least a portion of the budgets allocated to television.</p> <p>Despite the continued growth of the digital advertising industry from $17bn in 2007 to $60bn as of last year, as well as Facebook’s own top and bottom line growth, television still garners the largest part of the advertising pie, <a href="http://variety.com/2016/digital/global/global-advertising-spend-rise-2016-1201735023/">estimated to be worth $579bn globally</a>.</p> <p>While its innovations around video (in particular Live) are seemingly directed at increasing user engagement, it’s not hard to imagine Facebook using this to wade further into the higher echelons of marketing budgets.</p> <p>However, if this episode between P&amp;G and Facebook is any indication, this won’t be easy.</p> <p>While Facebook video ultimately looks the same as TV, the back end is fundamentally geared towards Facebook’s trademark granularity.</p> <p>In addition, will users who have always seen a feed that is tailored to their interests all of a sudden be prepared to sit through the same blunt advertising as on TV, just because it looks the same?</p> <p>The chances of Facebook gaining a share of TV ad spend may have slipped slightly, but it certainly won’t stop trying. And we certainly won’t stop watching.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68142 2016-08-04T14:44:51+01:00 2016-08-04T14:44:51+01:00 Instagram Stories: what do marketers need to know? Patricio Robles <p>Here's what marketers need to know...</p> <h3>They are like Snapchat Stories, but (maybe) better</h3> <p>Instagram Stories are essentially a copy of Snapchat Stories, which <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66015-eight-brands-experimenting-with-snapchat-for-social-marketing/">allow users to weave together a collection of photos and videos to create a narrative</a>. Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom even publicly hinted that Snapchat was the inspiration for his company's newest feature.</p> <p>But some observers suggest that Instagram's implementation offers a better user experience.</p> <p>For instance, TheNextWeb's Owen Williams <a href="http://thenextweb.com/opinion/2016/08/03/everyone-says-instagram-stories-copied-snapchat-but-its-got-a-killer-feature/">wrote</a>, "Instagram took [Snapchat's] confusing interface and did what it’s always done best: Made it useful to the masses, with a number of improvements that make it far more enjoyable to use." </p> <p>If Williams is right, Instagram Stories could bring Snapchat-like storytelling to an even broader audience.</p> <p>Already, as AdAge <a href="http://adage.com/article/digital/instagram-stories-appeal-snapchat-brands/305317/">reported</a>, a Story published by Nike racked up 800,000 views in its first 24 hours according to its social media agency, Laundry Service. The iconic shoe brand's top video on Snapchat generated less than a tenth of that.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7738/Screen_Shot_2016-08-04_at_14.42.36.png" alt="instagram stories" width="591" height="347"></p> <p><em>Image via Instagram blog</em></p> <h3>Stories are temporary, but...</h3> <p>Like Snapchat Stories, Instagram Stories have an expiration date; they go away after 24 hours.</p> <p>Obviously, the ephemeral nature of Stories is a limitation for marketers, but this also creates opportunities for them to use Instagram and engage with their followers in new ways, such as posting more content and behind-the-scenes content for special campaigns and events.</p> <p>At a minimum, marketers can look at engagement metrics for content added to Stories (see below) to make more informed decisions about the content they post to Instagram generally.</p> <p>Instagram even makes it easy to take a photo or video that's part of a Story and publish it as a regular post, so marketers have a lot of flexibility to use content originally created for use with Stories beyond those Stories.</p> <h3>Filters are available</h3> <p>Filters are one of Instagram's most popular features, and they are available for use with content posted to Stories.</p> <p>Initially, seven filters are available, but it's likely that more will be added over time.</p> <h3>Measuring engagement is different</h3> <p>Stories don't have likes or public comments. These are popular metrics by which brands measure engagement on Instagram, so brands using Stories will need to be prepared to measure engagement differently for this content format.</p> <p>Fortunately, Instagram is giving marketers the ability to see how many views their Stories have racked up, and which specific users have viewed them, so they won't be without data.</p> <h3>Marketers can expect ad offerings to follow</h3> <p>Facebook has become a social media monetization machine, generating over $6bn in ad revenue last quarter.</p> <p>Its monetization efforts on Instagram have been ramping up with offerings like <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66314-instagram-carousel-ads-gain-traction-as-social-content-marketing-gets-more-visual/">carousel ads</a>, and it probably won't be long before Instagram rolls out formal ad offerings built around Stories that will give marketers even more ways to use the new feature to engage consumers.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4207 2016-07-27T21:00:00+01:00 2016-07-27T21:00:00+01:00 The Japan Digital Report <p><strong>The Japan Digital Report</strong> aims to provide background for marketers who are outside of Japan and currently marketing in Japan, thinking of launching a campaign there, or even just curious about the country and its digital landscape.</p> <p>Additionally, the report provides detailed information about marketing on LINE, the most culturally significant digital platform in Japan presently.</p> <p>Through the data, the charts and the commentary, the report will help marketers looking to make a case for investing more in the country and provide a foundation for further research.</p> <h2>Topics covered include:</h2> <ul> <li> <strong>Demographics.</strong> How does Japan compare to the rest of the world?</li> <li> <strong>Digital readiness.</strong> What is the current state of internet and mobile technology in the country?</li> <li> <strong>Digital landscape.</strong> What are the main web, social, search, video and ecommerce sites in the country, and how do they operate?</li> </ul> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68075 2016-07-14T15:17:07+01:00 2016-07-14T15:17:07+01:00 Who will win the live-streaming battle: Facebook Live or Periscope? Blake Cahill <p>With an injection of social along with the time-sensitive nature of breaking broadcast, live-streaming is simply an age-old device repurposed for the present times. </p> <h3><strong>What does it mean for all of us?</strong></h3> <p>As traditional social channels are coming close to saturation, tech companies need to build new channels to invigorate their consumers.</p> <p>For brand marketers, this offers a tremendous opportunity to access tech-native early-adopter millennials and post-millennials – the customers of today and tomorrow.</p> <p>Most of whom have foregone broadcast, print, and 1.0 social networks for next-gen platforms.</p> <p>When it comes to advertising value, according to <a href="http://totalaccess.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1014105&amp;dsNav=Ro:-1,N:789,Nr:NOT(Type%3aComparative+Estimate)">eMarketer</a>, digital video advertising spending grew 46% to $7.7bn in the US last year alone.</p> <p>Meaning marketers are increasingly betting on the success of these live platforms. </p> <h3><strong>#SendMeToSleep – the world’s most sleep-inducing social campaign</strong></h3> <p>A good example is the <a href="http://www.philips.co.uk/healthcare/resources/landing/world-sleep-day">#SendMeToSleep</a> social media campaign we rolled out in time for the World Sleep Day.</p> <p>As part of this campaign – during which we actively tried to create content so boring it was capable of sending our audiences straight to sleep – Philips broadcasted what Twitter tells us is the world’s longest Periscope stream.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZzOFWhtxEUw?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>For 41 hours straight, we showed splashes of paint being added to a canvas.</p> <p>And because the whole campaign was engaging and worked as a holistic experience, more than 6,000 people tuned in to watch paint dry.</p> <p>Besides being strangely soothing and entertaining, the campaign has achieved significant commercial success which should be the cornerstone of any good marketing strategy.</p> <h3><strong>Periscope &amp; Facebook Live: A modern day David &amp; Goliath?</strong></h3> <p>At first glance, it might look like Facebook is the obvious winner – it has the size, money, user base and brand trust as a popular advertising platform.</p> <p>Despite all this, however, I wouldn’t count out Twitter just yet.</p> <h4>Four reasons for choosing Facebook Live:</h4> <ol> <li> <strong>Audience:</strong> Facebook has a user base of 1.2bn people.</li> <li> <strong>Brand presence:</strong> Live broadcast can bring life back to Facebook brand pages that have been lagging behind Instagram and Twitter in terms of engagement.</li> <li> <strong>Spending power:</strong> Facebook has been on a spending spree signing over 140 contracts worth more than $50m with the likes of CNN, the New York Times and BuzzFeed.</li> <li> <strong>Pioneers:</strong> Airbnb and Disney teamed up for the Jungle Book premiere, Chevrolet used it to launch its new electric car, and Patron taught viewers how to master the perfect drink. </li> </ol> <h4>Four reasons for choosing Periscope:</h4> <ol> <li> <strong>The “cool” factor:</strong> Twitter’s <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/gadfly/articles/2016-02-12/social-studies-comparing-twitter-with-facebook-in-charts">user base</a> skew younger, more diverse, wealthier, more educated and more likely to live in urban areas. This will drive usage as the two platforms integrate.</li> <li> <strong>Additional features:</strong> The native app offers a dedicated space with broadcast tabs, account tracking and sketch &amp; reaction options that just make it a bit more fun and user-oriented.</li> <li> <strong>Content:</strong> Periscope recently secured partnerships with <a href="https://gopro.com/help/articles/Block/Periscope-Live-Streaming-with-your-GoPro">GoPro</a> and <a href="http://uk.businessinsider.com/twitter-to-stream-nfl-thursday-night-games-2016-4">Thursday Night Football</a> (NFL) to ensure a lineup of engaging content.</li> <li> <strong>Innovation:</strong> Periscope just recently announced a series of new functions such as drone feed integration, search functions, and auto-save through app and Twitter comments.</li> </ol> <h3><strong>What are the downsides? </strong></h3> <p>Live on camera, some products, and even some people, may not work well.</p> <p>It’s difficult to be smartly scripted while still coming across as authentic, and a constant stream of comments from viewers can be hard to manage and moderate.</p> <p>It’s also important that you own what you’re streaming. No brand wants to end up tied in legal battles because they streamed content where ownership and rights haven’t been made clear.</p> <p>As with all new tools, it’s not easy to measure a return on investment. How you measure success – do you look at viewer numbers or drop-offs, likes or the comments?</p> <p>Lastly, live-streaming without a clear strategy and a clear focus on quality and relevance will ultimately disappoint the audience.</p> <h3><strong>Who is the winner?  </strong></h3> <p>At this point, it’s still too early to call.</p> <p>However, the competition is heating up, with YouTube and Tumblr unveiling their competitive offering along with lesser known players such as Live.ly, Livestream, and Hang all releasing their own live broadcast services.   </p> <p>If you’ve already placed your bets then make sure your content fits with the medium and you’re totally clear on ownership, quality, and measurement.</p> <p>Everything after that is just a stream away. </p> <p><em>For more on this topic, read:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67603-what-marketers-need-to-know-about-facebook-s-livestreaming-push/"><em>What marketers need to know about Facebook's livestreaming push</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67712-seven-helpful-tips-for-livestreaming-success/"><em>Seven helpful tips for livestreaming success</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67967-six-things-we-learned-from-using-periscope-to-live-stream-from-fodm16/"><em>Six things we learned from using Periscope to live stream from #FODM16</em></a></li> </ul> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68058 2016-07-12T14:51:07+01:00 2016-07-12T14:51:07+01:00 Has Amazon Prime Day 2016 made up for 2015’s #PrimeDayFail? Nikki Gilliland <p>Despite some initial fanfare, social media was soon flooded with complaints about laughable discounts and naff products, with consumers gleefully using the hashtag #primedayfail to highlight everything that went wrong.</p> <p>Today, the sales event is back, with Amazon promising even more bargains to tempt consumers.  </p> <p>But has Amazon learnt from its mistakes? Here’s the situation so far…</p> <h3>Who’s eligible?</h3> <p>The clue is in the name. The biggest and best deals are only available to Prime members. </p> <p>With last year’s event resulting in the most Prime sign-ups in a single day (and a subsequent 19m US subscribers since) – the event is clearly just a vehicle to grow Amazon's member base.</p> <p>For regular consumers, this has the power to repel rather than pull people in, especially since the retailer has been intent on hammering home the ‘exclusive’ message on all its main email, website and social media copy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6950/exclusive.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="218"></p> <p>It has to be said, there are <em>some</em> deals accessible to all, but they are extremely limited and very hard to find.</p> <p>It took a good few minutes for me to figure out that the ‘Featured Prime Day’ savings were eligible to me (a non-member).</p> <p>And let’s be honest, they’re far from exciting. (Unless vitamins and minerals are your thing...)</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6942/prime_day_deals.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="243"></p> <p>Ironically, if you’re not a Prime member, you’re the consumer that Amazon probably cares about the most today.</p> <p>However, its heavy-handed targeting means that you might feel more inclined to avoid the whole thing rather than tempted to sign up. </p> <h3>Social promotion</h3> <p>If you follow Amazon on any of its main social media channels, you’ll have seen its attempts at building excitement around the event. </p> <p>A series of countdown tweets and Facebook posts means that the event has been well signposted and cleverly executed.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Only 5 days to go!<a href="https://t.co/pRdR7iWm6z">https://t.co/pRdR7iWm6z</a> <a href="https://t.co/6O9TMNVmmD">pic.twitter.com/6O9TMNVmmD</a></p> — Amazon.co.uk (@AmazonUK) <a href="https://twitter.com/AmazonUK/status/751113558352691200">July 7, 2016</a> </blockquote> <p>While the Facebook ads are slick and well-designed (with a simple and effective call-to-action for a free trial on the main site), the fact that it's so heavily geared around exclusivity surely means that non-Prime members are likely to ignore it.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6945/facebook_prime_day.png" alt="" width="550" height="588"></p> <p>In terms of emails, I only received one on the morning of the event itself.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6946/Amazon_email.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="522"></p> <p>Instead of promoting the discounts, I did find it slightly off-putting that it only showcased the products – an obvious attempt to get consumers to click through to learn more.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6947/Amazon_email_deals.PNG" alt="" width="600" height="772"></p> <p>Whether or not that click converts to a purchase, again, probably depends on Prime membership status.</p> <h3>The discounts</h3> <p>One of the biggest complaints from consumers last year was that the biggest discounts were not properly promoted on the site.</p> <p>Eventually, it emerged that Amazon used a broad algorithm to select the deals, leading to a lot of random items such as tupperware and dishwasher detergent.</p> <p>This year, it’s not entirely clear how it’s been set up, but according to a company spokesperson, Amazon has ‘increased the number of deals and at the same time, increased the volume of inventory behind those deals.’</p> <p>With a dedicated homepage, showcasing a variety of categories and filter options, there is a clear attempt to give the user greater direction.</p> <p>Navigation is simple, with good signposts to point customers in the direction of 'deals ending soon' and 'recommended deals'.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6949/amazon_homepage.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="654"></p> <p>In terms of savings, there does appear to be a decent amount of products on offer, with the best being discounts being on electronics and home appliances.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6939/prime_day_deals_tech.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="481"></p> <p>However that algorithm must be working its evil magic again... I also spied far too many irrelevant items for my liking.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6941/Amazon_deals.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="510"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>It’s probably too early to say for sure if this year’s Prime Day has been any more successful than the last.</p> <p>While clearly an attempt to bag even more Prime memberships, what the retailer fails to realise is that the hype might do more to put people off than draw them in. </p> <p>Similarly, there's already an amusing amount of social media backlash, so Amazon clearly hasn't done much to sort out that algorithm issue.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Thanks <a href="https://twitter.com/amazon">@amazon</a>! This is just what I needed! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PrimeDayFail?src=hash">#PrimeDayFail</a> <a href="https://t.co/mIiNUs4l6u">pic.twitter.com/mIiNUs4l6u</a></p> — Martin Untrojb (@MEUntrojb) <a href="https://twitter.com/MEUntrojb/status/752805002884898820">July 12, 2016</a> </blockquote> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68042 2016-07-07T15:04:02+01:00 2016-07-07T15:04:02+01:00 Snapchat’s user base is getting older: How should marketers respond? Patricio Robles <p>According to comScore data, in May 38% of US mobile users aged 25 to 35 and 14% of those older than 35 used Snapchat, a significant increase from 5% and 2%, respectively, three years ago.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6817/snapchat_reference.png" alt="" width="600" height="316"></p> <p>As <a href="http://www.wsj.com/article_email/snapchats-teen-fans-grumble-as-app-catches-on-with-their-folks-1467661872-lMyQjAxMTA2NzA3NDMwNDQ5Wj">noted by</a> the Wall Street Journal's Yoree Koh, "An aging demographic is inevitable for many apps that first catch fire with teens," but the <em>parents-are-joining-Snapchat</em> moment has not surprisingly been the subject of headlines like <em>Adults are invading Snapchat</em>.</p> <h3>Is Snapchat different?</h3> <p>At the moment, comScore's data doesn't indicate that Snapchat's popularity with younger users is waning.</p> <p>The number of US mobile users between the ages of 18 to 24 has hit 67.5%, up from 24% three years ago. ComScore doesn't provide data for users under 18.</p> <p>While it's conceivable that the growth in older users will eventually change the way Snapchat's youngest users view the service, other popular social networks like Facebook have "grown up" and still managed to remain dominant, suggesting that Snapchat's maturation probably isn't the beginning of its demise.</p> <p>And because of the way communication on Snapchat functions, Snapchat's young users could find that insulating themselves from the adults will be far easier than on other services, making it less likely they'll cut their Snapchat use significantly or abandon it altogether.</p> <h3>What marketers need to know</h3> <p>That would be good news for the growing number of marketers spending time and money trying to reach Snapchat's 150m-plus audience.</p> <p>But marketers do need to be aware of Snapchat's changing demographics for a couple of reasons.</p> <p>First, even if the risk of a young user exodus is small, changing demographics could prompt changes in behavior on Snapchat.</p> <p>For example, older users might exhibit different usage patterns than younger users, or younger users might alter how they use the app to deal with the "my mom is on here" phenomenon.</p> <p>Some of these behavioral changes could be of importance to marketers as they work to create effective Snapchat campaigns.</p> <p>Second, the growing number of older users on Snapchat could create new opportunities for brands.</p> <p>Rather than seeing Snapchat as a platform for reaching teenagers, marketers who recognize that the user base is diversifying may be able to target and reach multiple demographic groups on the service.</p> <p>This makes Snapchat an even more attractive and productive platform than it is today.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68022 2016-06-30T14:52:54+01:00 2016-06-30T14:52:54+01:00 What marketers need to know about Facebook's latest News Feed update Patricio Robles <p>Now, Facebook <a href="http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2016/06/building-a-better-news-feed-for-you/">is taking action</a> to ensure that its users not only see the content most likely to be relevant to them, but also that they understand how Facebook selects that content.</p> <p>Here's what marketers need to know about the changes Facebook has made to the News Feed...</p> <h3>Facebook is putting friends and family first</h3> <p>Facebook has undergone a significant evolution since it was launched in 2004.</p> <p>Today, the world's largest social network is not just home to people, but also to brands, and it's a hub for the sharing of all content, not just user-generated content.</p> <p>That has created a tough balancing act for the company, and perhaps recognizing the risk that a less personal Facebook could be less attractive to its users, the company is taking a clear position:</p> <blockquote> <p>Facebook was built on the idea of connecting people with their friends and family. That is still the driving principle of News Feed today. Our top priority is keeping you connected to the people, places and things you want to be connected to — starting with the people you are friends with on Facebook.</p> <p>That’s why if it’s from your friends, it’s in your feed, period — you just have to scroll down.</p> </blockquote> <p>But Facebook isn't just making sure content from friends is present in users' News Feeds; it's prioritizing that content so that it appears "toward the top."</p> <p>In addition, its algorithm tries to identify the content posted by friends that is most likely to be relevant for even greater prioritization.</p> <p>"For example, if you tend to like photos from your sister, we’ll start putting her posts closer to the top of your feed so you won’t miss what she posted while you were away," Facebook VP Adam Mosseri explained.</p> <p>For marketers, the new prioritization of friend content could make competing for attention more difficult, and perhaps even necessitating changes to Facebook marketing strategies.</p> <p><a href="http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2016/06/news-feed-fyi-helping-make-sure-you-dont-miss-stories-from-friends/">According to</a> Facebook engineering director Lars Backstrom...</p> <blockquote> <p>...we anticipate that this update may cause reach and referral traffic to decline for some Pages. The specific impact on your Page’s distribution and other metrics may vary depending on the composition of your audience.</p> <p>For example, if a lot of your referral traffic is the result of people sharing your content and their friends liking and commenting on it, there will be less of an impact than if the majority of your traffic comes directly through Page posts.</p> </blockquote> <h3>Facebook isn't biased, but there are rules</h3> <p>Facebook is adament that it is not biased.</p> <p>"Our integrity depends on being inclusive of all perspectives and view points, and using ranking to connect people with the stories and sources they find the most meaningful and engaging," Mosseri wrote.</p> <p>But he also pointed to Facebook's <a href="https://www.facebook.com/communitystandards">Community Standards</a>, which are a collection of policies the company has created in an effort to protect its users from abuse.</p> <p>Obviously, most legitimate marketers aren't in the business of promoting content that attacks public figures, encourages criminal activity, or contains hate speech or graphic content, so most don't have to worry about running afoul of the Community Standards.</p> <p>But marketers that deal in regulated goods or are considering getting edgy with their Facebook campaigns should familiarize themselves with the rules.</p> <h3>Clickbait and spam is in the crosshairs</h3> <p>Facebook says that its users value "authentic communication," and in an effort to deliver that to them, it's working "to understand what kinds of stories people find misleading, sensational and spammy, to make sure people see those less."</p> <p>As Facebook gets better at that, marketers shouldn't be surprised if the efficacy of clickbait decreases.</p> <h3>Ultimately, users have a lot of control</h3> <p>While Facebook's algorithm exercises a great deal of control over what users see in their News Feeds, users aren't without power of their own.</p> <p>Facebook allows users to suppress content using unfollow and hide features, and they also let them indicate which content they'd like to "see first."</p> <p>The company says that it plans to build additional functionality that enables users to personalize their News Feed experience, giving savvy and proactive marketers the ability to earn attention with quality, relevant content and a touch of encouragement and education.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68000 2016-06-28T01:00:00+01:00 2016-06-28T01:00:00+01:00 Three social media lessons from Asia-Pacific travel sites Jeff Rajeck <p>To help out, here are three examples of Facebook posts which have outperformed, contrasted with three which have not worked out so well and a takeaway lesson from each.</p> <h3>Background</h3> <p>It's easy to find examples of social media posts which have really taken off. There are many lists of these, and they all seem to include 'Don't dunk in the dark'.</p> <p>But these examples are typically one-offs. <strong>What worked for that brand in that instance is highly unlikely to work for your brand today.</strong></p> <p>Additionally, such examples don't help with the day-to-day social media postings. Most brands have guidelines about what type of content should be posted and, hopefully, few say 'post something viral'.</p> <p>So, instead, it's more interesting to look at brands that:</p> <ul> <li>Have a large audience.</li> <li>Post regularly.</li> <li>Rotate content. </li> </ul> <p>Then, have a look at the brand's posts. Compare ones which have a lot of likes, shares, and comments with those which do not, and try to draw some lessons from them.</p> <p>And it's not hard to do. Anyone can do this analysis just by surfing brands on Facebook.</p> <p>To make it a bit easier, though, I used the paid version of <a href="http://www.socialbakers.com/">Socialbakers</a> which makes it easy to find brands which are active on social media and then neatly organises social media engagement data.</p> <h3>Why Asia-Pacific travel sites?</h3> <p>In theory we could use this method across any brand, in any country, but it's sensible to focus on a particular industry and region. </p> <p>The reason is that brands in the same sector are trying to attract the same audience, so it should be possible to see some similarities and elicit trends.</p> <h3>The lessons</h3> <h3>1. Share the fantasy, not the reality</h3> <p>Headquartered in Singapore, COMO Hotels and Resorts offers 'handcrafted hotels and luxury travel experiences designed just for you'.  </p> <p><a href="http://www.comohotels.com/">The company website</a> is stunning and you almost couldn't invent a brand more suitable for social media.</p> <p><strong>So what can we learn from the brand's posts?</strong></p> <p>The posts with a lot of likes and shares show off the fantasy of the COMO Hotels and resorts.  </p> <p>They capture scenes of the brand's properties which people do not see every day and receive comments such as 'I don't know where this is but let's go there'.</p> <h4>High-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6514/test2.png" alt="" width="800" height="270"></p> <p>Those with fewer shares and no comments are still beautiful pictures, but <strong>less popular posts are about things which people encounter frequently in their everyday life</strong>.  </p> <p>They show thingss like food, restaurants, and pretty, yet unremarkable, views.</p> <h4>Lower-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6508/2.JPG" alt="" width="800" height="301"></p> <p>The lesson?  <strong>If you got it, flaunt it.</strong> Don't waste your posts on pictures of everyday things.</p> <h3>2. Highlight what makes you unique</h3> <p>Resorts World Genting is a resort in Malaysia which targets a budget-conscious traveller.</p> <p>Though the brand doesn't have the drop-dead gorgeous scenery of COMO to draw on, its marketers post regularly and the posts have a wide variety of engagement.</p> <p>Through looking at the brand's posts, it is clear that <strong>those which highlight unique aspects of Resorts World Genting do well</strong>.  </p> <p>Its audience seems to enjoy reminiscing via social media about things which they cannot experience elsewhere.</p> <h4>High-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6509/3.JPG" alt="" width="800" height="390"></p> <p>Posts which perform poorly feature things which are easily available elsewhere and do not draw on the unique personality of the brand.</p> <h4>Lower-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6510/4.JPG" alt="" width="800" height="378"></p> <p>The lesson? <strong>You don't have to be fancy to be shareable on social media, just unique.</strong>  </p> <p>You have to emphasize what distinguishes your brand from all the others on social media.</p> <h3>3. Be different, but pleasant. Avoid disturbing, shocking, or disgusting topics.</h3> <p>TravelBook.ph is a Philippines travel site run as a joint venture by a number of large conglomerates in Asia. </p> <p>The brand marketers post regularly on social media about a variety of travel-related subjects.</p> <p>Many of the general travel posts do okay, but <strong>the posts which get the most likes and shares link to original content about places to visit in the Philippines.</strong></p> <h4>High-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6513/test.PNG" alt="" width="800" height="316"></p> <p>Occasionally the marketers will shake things up a bit and post something a bit more challenging.  </p> <p>Posts which are about unpleasant topics tend to perform much worse.</p> <h4>Lower-performing</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6512/6.JPG" alt="" width="800" height="299"></p> <p>One example of a recent post which performed poorly was about balut. Balut is a Philippine delicacy which consists of a developing bird embryo still in the eggshell.</p> <p>It's hard to think of anyone who would appreciate such a photo on their timeline.</p> <p>Other more challenging posts may have their place, of course. But <strong>when engagement is the main criteria, keeping the subject of your posts pleasant is the way to go.</strong></p> <p>The lesson? Be unique, for sure, but also try to fit in with what people want to see in a social media newsfeed.</p> <h3>So...</h3> <p>So the main social media lessons from Asia-Pacific travel sites are that posts on Facebook which are attractive, pleasant and emphasize what makes your brand unique will deliver the highest level of engagement.</p> <p>All of this makes sense, yet it is surprising to see how many brands don't adhere to these rules and have reduced engagement as a result.</p> <p>Low social media engagement is discouraging for the team and also means that more posts will be required to get your audience's attention.</p> <p>Without doing this sort of analysis (i.e. finding what types of post are successful and doing those types of posts more often) marketers will be making an already hard job, harder.</p>