snapchat

The Web Never Forgets

I recently read an article called "Think Again Before You Post Online Those Pics Of Your Kids" that made me think. It made me think A LOT about what I have been posting about my family and friends on social media. How many of you have posted a funny video of your kids that might be slightly embarrassing for them, but it is just too good not to share? I know I have. But what I have failed to do is to think about how many will view and share that particular video, and for how long it will be available for anyone and everyone to see.  The carbon footprint, so to speak, that we leave behind of ourselves on social media is there for the public to view forever! That ‘fun’ video you posted of your kids will be on the internet for your kids’ friends to view forever, even when they are teenagers and most likely do not want anyone to see it.

In trying to keep my kids safe, I have always been very concerned with what my kids share on their preferred social media platforms (which, incidentally does NOT include Facebook). I often tell them that what they post will be there for an eternity. I have put down a long list of ‘rules’ of what is okay and what is not okay on their social media; there can be no indecent photos, no bad language, no mean comments, no bullying, no connecting with strangers, no rude comments about myself or their dad, and he and I both have to be a ‘friend’ of theirs, so we can keep tabs on their social media activities. But in all honesty, I haven’t given much thought to the longevity and potential reach of what I post on social media. Of course, I don’t post anything about my kids maliciously, but rather to share what is going on in my life, which includes not only my activities but also those of my kids. My family lives in Europe and it is an easy way for me to connect with them and vice versa for them to see what is going on in my life here. But here is the thing: How do my kids feel about what I post about them on social media? I am embarrassed to say that I have never asked them…

Social media hasn’t been around that long (Facebook started in 2004, about the time when most current middle school students were born,) so it is hard to say how growing up on social media can affect your kids’ privacy and security. However, it’s time to consider the issue seriously. What we as parents post on social media about our kids shape their online image, which is there to stay forever. My daughter turned thirteen in the fall. As any other young teenager, she is concerned with her image and wants to be portrayed in a positive light whether it is on my social media or at school.

After reading that article, we decided that it’s time we sit down with our kids and draw up guidelines for what they are comfortable with being posted on social media. Working together on deciding what to post and what to avoid will create a mutual respect and appreciation, and at the same time teach great social media etiquette. In my household, we have set up a family meeting for this Saturday to make sure we are all on the same page when it comes to posting on our social media.

With that said – Good luck and happy posting!

True Life: I am a Social Media Manager

It's that time of the year when everyone is on vacation, so we decided to give our blog writers a much deserved time off and repost one of our top performing blogs of the year. We hope you'll enjoy it, and have a great rest of the summer!

For whatever reason, it seems as if the most commonly asked question when meeting someone for the first time is, “What do you do?” I usually respond, “Well, I am a Social Media Manager (SMM).” This is usually followed by the person responding with, “Oh! You get paid to sit on Facebook and Twitter all day?” Sound the record scratch! While this is partly true, marketers and numerous brands/companies know that this is just scratching the surface. While social media is an ever-evolving industry, it is obviously so much more than just “posting to Facebook and Twitter.” In any given day, I wear many different hats.

In a typical day, I converse with clients and coworkers, create engaging and valuable content, analyze analytics of ad campaigns and content, research and plan future posts and campaigns, and monitor the different networks for engagement and mentions on behalf of my clients.

I recognize that the social media world is confusing for business owners to navigate when they have been focused on their trade for much of their career. Social media for businesses came quick and has turned into a whirlwind of an industry. The thing that some business owners may not understand is that being an SMM is a real, full time position that goes far beyond posting current specials and commenting when someone likes their status.

Creating and analyzing ad campaigns are two of the largest responsibilities for a SMM in more ways than one. Building campaigns properly to get traffic, engagement, and to hit goals, is crucial. My clients have entrusted me with their money and expect that I will use my industry knowledge to gain them results. Once the ad is created, I’m not on coast-mode. I optimize throughout the month to make sure it’s delivering, and if it is not, I tweak it.

I review this information and create content with the goal of resonating with the type of people that are responding to the different posts and ads. My clients provide me with photos and specials they have going on to align with their advertising goals. I also keep an eye on local events that may attract people to the area because my clients are in the hospitality industry.

When I’m not focusing on ads or creating content, I’m monitoring the different social profiles that I manage. I engage with the followers and answer any questions that get directed to the brands. This is one of my favorite parts of my job. It is exciting to see when my content has been a success and the positive feedback that my clients receive. It is also beneficial for me to see when content doesn’t generate any form of engagement. This lets me know I need to try something else in the future.

All in all, I am in a field that is constantly evolving and requires a lot of detail, research, and thought. I consider myself to be a part of the small percentage of people who are paid to do something they are truly passionate about. Like everything else, it is not always rainbows and lollipops. There is responsibility and even liability of speaking on behalf of a brand. I look forward to this challenge, amount of responsibility, and sense of purpose I am embarking on as a newly hired Social Media Manager at Thin Pig Media.

.

Facebook Reactions: Friend or Foe?

Many of us use reactions to express how we feel about a certain post or ad in our Facebook feed, when texting our friends, posting on Instagram, or even when we send a Snap to our friends. Since Facebook Reactions were first introduced eight years ago with the thumbs up ‘Like’ button that later expanded with the ‘Haha’, ‘Love’, ‘Sad’, ‘Wow’ and ‘Angry’ buttons, these little icons have fast become a permanent fixture in the way we communicate on social media. In fact, it seems we have so many bottled up emotions to share that since Facebook first launched Reactions, we have used them over 300 billion times, totaling a whopping 800 million uses each day! 

The Facebook algorithm determines what content users see in their feeds at any given time. However, understanding Facebook’s algorithm is a bit of a science. Fortunately, in the last few years, Facebook has begun sharing more about how their news feed algorithm works, what it favors over what it doesn’t, and what it means for brands. Speculation by users finally got Facebook to admit that using Reactions impacts the way a user’s news feed looks. Furthermore, Facebook’s algorithm seems to focus more on the ‘Love’, ‘Sad’, ‘Angry’ and ‘Haha’ Reactions over the ‘Like’ button, allowing these little icons to decide what will appear in a user’s feed.

Over the past year we’ve found that if people leave a Reaction on a post, it is an even stronger signal that they’d want to see that type of post than if they left a Like on the post. So we are updating News Feed to weigh reactions a little more than Likes when taking into account how relevant the story is to each person.
— Facebook quote via mashable.com

Although Facebook says all Reactions are currently looked upon equally, the ‘Love’ Reaction makes up more than half the Reactions shared. So how can brands use Reactions to their advantage? Through Facebook’s Reactions algorithm we have learned that women use Reactions more often than men, Wednesday is the most popular day for sending reactions, and that people are more likely to use 'Wow' for GIFs, shares, images and videos.

While Facebook continues to work on its algorithm, one way for a brand to ensure social success is to listen and respond to users’ reactions. After all, Reactions on Facebook are probably the best way to analyze your users’ sentiment. Good luck harvesting success using Facebook Reactions, and don’t forget we are only a call away should you require help managing your social community.

Chasing The “Cool” (And Why It May Not Be Your Best Strategy)

Living in an ever-changing digital age has created a desire to capitalize on the next biggest and coolest thing. It is the objective of many brands to stay ahead of the curve and to consistently participate in the newest social media trend. In the race to “chase the cool,” people often ask themselves, "How do I accomplish the next big thing?" Perhaps the more appropriate question is: “Should I participate in the next big thing?”

Know Your Audience

When considering utilizing a specific social media platform it’s important to understand the demographic you are trying to target. Take Snapchat for example. I often have clients and brands inquire about using Snapchat due to its increasing level of popularity. Instead of asking “How can my brand use Snapchat?,” ask yourself “Why should my brand use Snapchat?” Let’s take a look at a few stats:

  • 71% of Snapchat users are under 34 years old
  • 45% of Snapchat users are between the ages of 18-24
  • 30% of US Millennial Internet Users use Snapchat regularly
  • 11% Reach of Total US Digital Population comes from Snapchat

From a quick glance it’s easy to ascertain that Snapchat caters to a younger audience. If you’re a company selling sit down showers for example, Snapchat is probably not the best way to advertise your product.

Establish Clear Goals

It’s important to first understand what you’re trying to accomplish with your brand as each social media platform will help you excel in different ways.

  • Are you a new company who’s trying to establish an online presence?
  • Are you a large corporation who needs to put an emphasis on customer care and relations?
  • Are you selling something?
  • What is the primary information you are trying relay to your fan base or customers?

Asking yourself these questions will help guide you towards the right social channel to ensure you are utilizing your time, money, and resources effectively. For example, if you’re a gourmet restaurant who frequently features unique dishes, Instagram may be the best platform for you. Or, maybe you’re a food truck always on the go, and a quick location update via Twitter is the best way to reach people.

Technological advances are a wonderful thing and while companies should certainly embrace new trends, they should be utilized for the right reasons.

Clips: Apple's Answer to Snapchat and Instagram?

With rising competition between Instagram and Snapchat, Apple has entered this space with an innovative creative camera app that goes about it in a different way. Apple's Clips app lets users film social videos and edit them by combining clips, adding photos and videos, and sharing on any social network. The end result is similar to Instagram and Snapchat videos with filters, titles, and emoji stickers but its key differentiator and perhaps where it will truly shine is that it is social media network agnostic. Whereas a video created in Snapchat can only be shared on that platform, videos created by Clips can be shared on any network including via text messages and iMessages.

Another innovative feature of Clips iOS the ability to record subtitles by speaking into your device. The app will even time the appearance of words on-screen to match the cadence with which you speak including emphasis and speed.

Clips also hopes to succeed by implementing a more traditional user experience design. We have all heard the cliche that nobody over the age of 30 understands how to use Snapchat and Apple is responding by what some people are calling Dadcore UX. As explained by Mark Wilson from Co.Design: "It’s not beautiful UI. It’s by no means subtle. And frankly, there are so many buttons on the Clips screen–with upper and lower menu bars!–that it’s hard to imagine anyone not being a little bit overwhelmed compared to alternatives like Instagram, or even Snapchat. But it is designed with a very specific purpose that plays to Apple’s strengths–a massive user base that, with the right instruction, could learn to use the internet in new ways, too."

Similiar to last year's release of iMessage Stickers, it will be fascinating to see how brands will take this new tool to create engaging marketing for their audiences.