Retweet ≠ Thank You

Yes, you have had a great event and those overwhelmingly positive comments about you are pouring in with no intention to stop. Or, a customer of yours has had a really great experience involving your brand. I’m really glad for you. It’s ok to want to share your happyness with world, but sorry to disappoint you- retweeting every one of those reviews isn’t the way. Here’s why: You annoy the hell out of people who follow you You make yourself seem self-centered A simple reply with simple and sincere “Thank you” will do the trick There is no need to try to sell yourself to your followers, they already follow you, you got them- now prove you are worthy of their attention. No, retweeting messages like “Hey, @yourbrandname are the greatest!!!” isn’t it. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t retweet any mentions at all. If, for example, your customer is positively surprised because he/she has found that your product has application beyond those you have specified, or tweet includes other kinds of added value (specific information), you should retweet it- it might help your existing customers/followers. So, choose visely and ask yourself a question: “Is this retweet going to help or entertain any of my followers?”

April 22, 2012

This is Pinterest. Now, calm down- the same rules apply

via If you have a popular website, it’s quite reasonable to believe that you are already represented on this hot thing called “Pinterest”. And that’s good- it’s free traffic! First things first: users there love fresh, good and relevant content. Easy- the same rules as on other social networks. What should you do now? Find out what kind of pictures are “pinned” to Pinterest from your website until this point. Here: That’ll help you determine what your visitors value most & on what you should focus when using Pinterest. Next up: I can’t stress this enough- don’t set up account if you’re not ready to spend time on keeping it updated & content curation. If you believe that your content is worth pinning, add “Pin it!” buttons to your website, that’ll work much better than promoting, keeping up & updating your account. Let your site visitors do the work for you. The pin button will work as call to action and will let you see if your users agree with you on fact that your content is “pinteresting”. If you decide to create account, be sure that: You’ll have content (with pretty pictures) for frequent updates to your streams (called boards) and they will be relevant You’ll not get tired of pinning after one month- nobody wants you to see you quit like you did in Google+ There is no better way to use your resources (time & work)

April 18, 2012

Dear Android users who are now on Instagram, I would like to have a word with you- Here’s one tip

via Instagram isn’t about sharing photos to twitter, Facebook and/or other social networks. It might seem like a nice little photo sharing/distribution app, but it is also a social network on its own. Read on to know what these tips are all about. No, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t share photos to other networks. It’s the contrary, I believe that you should do it. Beautiful moments are for sharing and to inspire others- share them if you find it appropriate. ;) What concerns me is the content and frequency. Instagram is about sharing beautiful moments in a colourful, expressive fashion to like-minded people who are also on the network. Don’t put on Instagram everything you see, just for the sake of sharing. It is also more artsy than informative. :) Latvians have this have this wise proverb- talking is silver, being silent is gold. When thinking about frequency- it’s like twitter. Too much noise will result in unfollows. 3 photos a day is enough and don’t post them one after another.* Mobile phone screens are as big as they are and no one likes to browse through 10 photos with no context just to see more than one person’s posts. The saying from previous paragraph applies here as well. For casual, informative photos use twitter’s own picture hosting or the services you used previously- that should do the trick. Don’t feel frustrated, you’ll get it. There is enough photos to take for all of us! ;) I hope I didn’t put anyone down. * This is in no way obligatory, just a number from the top of my mind. If you believe you have more to share and it will be taken willingly by your instagram followers- go on and share! P.s. For the sake of simplicity I didn’t go into too much details- ask you questions and leave your thoughts in comment’s section!

April 18, 2012

How to make brand more personal on social media (twitter)

Today, after noticing that initials in the end of every @Bitelv‘s tweet annoy me a little bit, I tweeted that I don’t see point in doing so, especially when 99% of tweets are written by the same person. It sparked quite an interesting discussion whether it shows more personal attitude towards brand followers and other with whom the brand communicates.  It looks like this: @brand: tweettweettweettweettweettweettweettweettweettweettweet ^AB Overall, I lost. Most replies from people working in social media contained positive atitude against such form of “personalising” tweets. Anyways, I still do disagree. Both if one or several persons communicate to followers from one coroporate account. From average Joe’s perspective I believe it doesn’t make a lot of sense. It still is public communication on behalf of brand. I think that there are more followers who don’t get this concept than those who benefit emotionally from it. If the goal is being personal on person-to-person level, I would recommend communicating from semi-personal/professional accounts. Something like- @JohnBrand (replace “Brand” with any brand you can imagine to get the idea). Few days ago I tweeted “Brands are not people. People are not brands.” (I’m not author of these words) and I do stand by it. Brand’s twitter account will always be brand’s twitter account. It won’t turn into person, from time to time it will tweet official news etc. It will always have logo instead of smiling person’s photo, it will have officiall bio with the most essential information, it will have professionally designed background. And people will follow its updates because these updates are (or might be) in some or other ways valuable for them. Few replies to my tweets contained suggestions like “Should we drop signature fields in our representative’s emails too?” or “Do you suggest that our phone operators don’t introduce themselves after picking up the phone?” No. I do not. Do you sign weekly newsletters (those who contain information about special offers & discounts) with random employee’s names too? Or your ads? Just to make them more personal? I believe that you do not. Unless it is some kind of announcement which is signed by CEO or head of some kind of department which is in charge about the information covered in the announcement. And still, such announcement is one-way communication, it is in no way a conversation. ^AB at the end of a tweet makes communication as personal as signature field in an e-mail does.  Communication is social media (in my view) is somewhere between e-mail and speaking to a representative in person. It definetely should be more personal than email. It also can be more personal than talking to a call center representative. At least because, for apparent reasons, we can’t (actually we can, but we do not) ask our representatives to add their pictures to every email we send. If I tweet that my TV doesn’t work and get reply from @SonyOfficial, it’s nice, it’s customer service. Even, if the tweet has this misterious ^AB in the […]

April 18, 2012

Is the place to grow social media presence with content marketing?

Lately there is a visible increase in number of blog posts about social media scene in Latvia. Overall, I believe that it is a good sign. Deep, professional conversations about this field is what Latvian social media scene really needs. The one problem with these blog posts is that as far as they are about twitter, facebook and other global social networks, they mostly reproduce opinions of recognized experts of the field. There are almost no opinions from Latvian advertising professional’s point of view. Ok, to be true, most of them mention that is the most important social network in Latvia & the others are less relevant in today’s situation. But that’s it. No more talking about how to communicate in Draugiem and questioning whether it is effective and a necessity. The only ones I have seen that show some expertise are Laura Lasmane’s blogs about reach of brand messages in Draugiem, published in Latvian advertising vortal So what questions should we ask? When the discussion is about Facebook, everyone cites research on EdgeRank, preferred brand behaviour, suggested frequency of posts, techniques how to achieve engagement and other relevant stuff. When the discussion is about twitter, the expressions are the same, except for the EdgeRank part. When the discussion comes to Draugiem, it usually stops right after- “Draugiem is the most relevant social network for Latvian advertisers, since it has the biggest user base, biggest reach and effectiveness.” No comment on that last one. It is true. What troubles me is lack of opinions about content marketing in Draugiem and how effective it actually is or can be. Is it worth to continue communicating to fans after an end of a campaign? How many people brand will reach with its messages? What I would like to talk about in this blog post is content marketing within from brand’s perspective. Draugiem differs from other social networks with it’s multiple information streams. If Twitter and Facebook (there are other social networks which display content in similar way as these two, but for sake of simplicity & getting my point accross I will use only these two as examples) seem to be built arund one central information stream (wall- which was improved by purchase of FriendFeed & tweet stream), with Draugiem it’s a little bit different. You see, in Draugiem there is “runā” stream (below some static sections with no relevant content), but its importance for user is far from that of twitter’s or facebook’s (on this a little bit later). Anyways, this stream is the only way brand can speak up to Draugiem user from its brand page (they are similar to those on Facebook). Since this stream is a mess (cheap jokes, pointless pictures, other irrelevant stuff) of everything user’s friends do/share on social network and as well as other pages, brand messages are gone pretty fast (the rate of new messages is pretty high- depending on how much friends one has and how many pages he/she follows). […]

April 18, 2012

Brands need to evolve culturally and become social brands

via via: As Jeff Benjamin said, “Brands need to evolve culturally and become social brands. When a brand is on Facebook and you feel like it probably shouldn’t be there, it’s that the brand hasn’t figured out how to communicate in 2011. If that brand wants to survive, it needs to become a more social brand and figure out how to communicate socially.”

April 18, 2012