August 23rd, 2012 by Sten Franke
A service between funny office fooling and serious quick check: The Status People Fake Follower Check finds out how many true followers, inactive or fake followers any twitter account has.
In fact the tool often is more than just a game. It helps to find out about a Twitterer or a twittering brand. Which Social Media Manager does not seriously want to know whether he communicates with real humans or whether they are mostly fake or inactive users.
That’s how the service works: “We take a sample of your follower data. Up to 500 records depending on how ‘popular’ you are and assess them against a number of simple spam criteria“ its Find Out More section reads. „On a very basic level spam accounts tend to have few or no followers and few or no tweets. But in contrast they tend to follow a lot of other accounts“.
>> via Buzzfeed.com
May 2nd, 2012 by Sten Franke
A literally beautiful mapping and monitoring tool for Twitter: Mentionmapp. Professionals will hardly take it seriously. Nevertheless it looks damn cool and is fun to web and marketing experts – at least for the moment.
Vancouver-based Mentionmapp does one thing alone: It designs a graphic out of the tweets, replys, and retweets of a twitter profile. This way a visual overview of your personal micro-blogging communication is generated. Well done: When clicking on another twitter-user in your map, his 140 character communication is shown.
Contrary to many similar offerings not only your own personal twitter account can be analyzed and picturized, Mentionmapp also draws each different twitter account you wish. Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, Lady Gaga, Barack Obama, you just need to type their twitter account into the search field, and the tool draws their twitter maps. This function can be quite useful to monitoring professionals, who want to get a glimpse on their competitors.
Mentionmapp still is in Beta status, but a demanded business for long. It already has been acquired by OverInteractive Media Inc. The Vision of the Canadians: „Take information beyond columns and rows, graphs and charts and create engaging interactive data stories.“
When they succeed in living up to their vision, we can look forward to many more great tools!
April 3rd, 2012 by Sten Franke
In the social web the boss can make a difference. According to a study by Brandfog the social media perception of a brand is influenced positively, when the CEO engages on Twitter, Facebook & Co. personally. 78% of those questioned hold the opinion that it has positive consequences for the business, when the chief hits the keyboard of his computer or the touchpad of his smartphone. 71% reckon that it improves the brand image, and another 64% are convinced that the business in question is perceived as more transparent, when the manager facebooks or twitters.
Once being asked after it, 82% answered that it is “important” or even “very important” when the CEO engages in social media. A particularly astonishing result of the study furthermore is that a CEO, who is representing the interests of his enterprise on Twitter or Facebook, increases the trust of his employees in the respective business. At least that is the persuasion of 82%.
Nevertheless it is of major difference, whether the boss twitters, comments, and posts personally or has entrusted it to an external agency. At least a current Swiss study by Zurich-based Bernet PR proves once again that authenticity generally is one of the most important currencies in the social web. “This only works with the personal voice”, Micheal Walther writes. “It is possible to depute concepts, strategies, and programming, on your own you should speak.” In the beginning it would suffice, if a spokesperson or a close colleague would do the talk.
German chancellor Angela Merkel and her spokesman Steffen Seibert constitute a good example. Since the former ZDF journalist twitters, she is – at least perceived – closer to the citizen.
In the end – at least in businesses – it always is about sales and profit. Here, again, a CEO can assert improvements. The study by Brandfog concludes that around 77% of the questioned buy a brand’s or business’ commodities, whose marketing team engages in conversations with the consumers about their own products.
Having read these results, we ask ourselves: Which CEO of a enterprise twitters personally? Not many, that’s for sure! Although it is apparent which huge potential almost all businesses leave untouched.
>>CEOs and Top Executives on Twitter:
March 27th, 2012 by Sten Franke
Google has identified the signs of the time. The question to Return on Investment (ROI) in social media campaigns probably is one of the most important topics this year, as many enterprises crave for simple and working solutions.
For instance a recent research by Iron Mountain concludes that most European businesses yet don’t know how to handle data of social networks like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. “Indeed 94% of the questioned German companies (Europe: 86%) are aware to file communication in the social media channels as a formal business process” the paper states, but “at the same time 72% of the German businesses (Europe: 63%) don’t consider themselves as capable to capture the shared data and information of social networks accordingly”.
In fact tools and solutions that measure the ROI of almost all social media campaigns exist for long. Our gridmaster is an example to mention here.
Offers like ours and those of other monitoring tools satisfy an ever growing need. Google wants to have their share of the market and consequently drill with Google Analytics. Soon it is supposed to measure ROI, only on least significant sources like Blogger.com, however. It cannot perform a deeper analysis of top players like Facebook or Twitter yet.
“Google Analytics claims to close the gap between social media and hard business KPI’s”, t3n writes. “It shall be accomplished by not only measuring the traffic that arrives via different social media channels, but also tracking it further.” That’s how direct inferences onto conversion rates become possible.
Though, the ROI is only one side of the coin, the other are Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s). They cannot be neglected in relevant and traceable measurements of success of social media campaigns. If you want to quantify the latter, Google Analytics doesn’t help you yet. Then you better turn to established monitoring tools, like our gridmaster for instance. They can assess buzz, demography, sentiments and semantic data on top of it. Only they enable you to place activities sustainable and targeted. Considered globally it’s all about the increase of brand awareness, sales, profit, customer satisfaction and loyalty. Still countless businesses evaluate the success of their social media campaigns with the mere mass of the three f’s: Friends, Followers, and Fans. Whether on Facebook or Twitter – the bare amount of them doesn’t indicate their interaction rate.
The new Google tool apparently can’t handle the Standard KPI’s. I.e the new tool only touches the surface of social media data. As easy to navigate Google Analytics may be, it can’t replace a complex professional tool. Indeed, the new service of the web company can possibly give the lots of rudimentary monitoring offerings lacking depth a hard time.
March 23rd, 2012 by Sten Franke
A topic has been neglected a little in the many discussions about social media ROI’s or the proper direction of social media campaigns that is of immense importance to businesses, especially in the social web: the credibility or online reputation.
Every company that takes care of their image and web awareness is using social media monitoring tools like the gridmaster for long in order to be sensitive of their actual online reputation and to be able to identify those issues that could worsen it. Microsoft, in collaboration with the American Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, published an interesting study to this topic.
The scientists and the software architect examined which factors determine the credibility of a tweet or its twitterer. Briefly: the determining factors are the profile picture, the follower, and the quantity of orthographic and grammatical mistakes.
In respect of the profile picture those users are trusted the least that use the standard twitter-egg. Following this are pictures of avatars or cartoons. Ranking on top regarding the credibility are twitterers who use photos showing themselves. “Concerning the name, users trust those twitterers most with a topic-related name, ordinary names coming next, and the least trust is put into users having internet fantasy names”, WirtschaftsWoche summarizes a further result of the study.
Additionally, the amount of followers is important. Twitterers following more accounts than they are followed by are seen as less trustful. This is seen as a hint on artificial reputation building on twitter.
It is important for your own authenticity and the standing in the community that you only retweet at best persons you know or are sure to trust.
Very interesting: “84% of twitter users direct their attention to posts via the twitter search and the same number via by twitter recommended topics. Another 72% by Google and 82% by general web searches” WirtschaftsWoche writes. I.e: In fact most twitter users do not only read the statuses on their twitter own stream.
Who wants to raise his number of followers should therefore engage in twittering all trending topics.
March 21st, 2012 by Mathias Buerk
Networks and videos dominate in social media. They combine for more than 50% of the worldwide usage of the Top 20 social media platforms. Wikis, blogging platforms and micro-blogging services follow. The aim of ethority’s study about the usage and importance of the variable platforms and channels was: Which platforms are being used most each month and how high is the number of unique visitors? The latter tells more about the success of a platform as, for instance, the number of registered (active/inactive) user accounts (e.g. facebook: 850 Mio) or of page views.
The Top 5 surprise little: Facebook ranks 1st place with 950 Mio unique visitors, YouTube ranks 2nd with 880 Mio, and Wikipedia is 3rd with 410 Mio unique visitors. Blogspot, accounting for 340 Mio unique visitors is the biggest blogging platform worldwide and takes the 4th place, Twitter being 5th with half of that, 170 Mio unique visitors.
Google+, which has been written off by many, at least conquered a respectable 8th place considering their short existence. Soon, then, a channel hardly known in most of the Western World follows: Dailymotion, in Tunesia, France, Turkey, Belgium, Morocco, Algier, and Pakistan according to Alexa among the Top 50 sites, in the USA only takes 214th spot. Badoo, popular in the Mediterranean region, Cameroon and Latin America, and Orkut in Brazil are further channels to be mentioned here.
The graphic shows in the first place, which platforms the Top 20 social media platforms are. Furthermore it lays out how the usage is distributed among variable categories of social media usage. Networks account for 36% of it, and 27% to video sites. Blogging platforms surmount Wikis in their importance, 15% and 12% of social media usage respectively. 5% is allocated to micro-blogging services. Others is made up of picture platforms like flickr and Photobucket, pinning site Pinterest, review site tripadvisor and the content platforms Scribd and Slideshare.
Related to this we want to point to the fact that very common apps like Foursquare and Instagram do not appear here. The do have relatively few unique visitors (5.6 Mio and 9.9 Mio, respectively), but many more registered accounts (15 Mio and 27 Mio, respectively). As they are used on mobile devices they do not require a visit to their website. This is why the number of unique visitors is not as relevant to those services as to others to capture their significance. In future articles we will consider the numbers of the mobile use of apps we do not have at the moment, though.
March 20th, 2012 by Sten Franke
How to reliably measure the success of your own social media campaigns? Still many decision-makers take the numbers of fans and followers as a serious indicator for your brand’s success in social networks.
Return on Investment (ROI) in many businesses is set as a Standard-Key Performance Indicator (KPI), not including social media campaigns and activities, though. King Fish Media found out not even half of businesses measure the ROI of their respective social media campaigns.
This is a fact irrespective of social media intelligence or rather monitoring tools like the gridmaster that are available for a long time already and can analyze your ROI or KPI’s easily. In addition to these tools, the free ethority Social Media ROI Calculator may be used.
These 5 Standard-KPI’s can be applied to most relevant social Networks.
1. Rate of interaction (Conversational exchange) – Amount of replies and comments
The amount of Replies to a tweet for Oosterveer is the most important social media KPI. The answers to a tweet of your brand show how many are willing to engage with the brand, to interact with it or rather exhibit an increased interest in it.
2. Direct Reach – Amount of fans and followers
Even though you should be careful not to take the quantity of your fans too serious when they have been amassed via lotteries and other campaigns, the reach – i.e. the number of individuals who might be reading each tweet or post – remains an important indicator.
3. Sharing or content amplification
The number of shares per post. Each post or tweet creates its own tiny social network, as it is shared, retweeted, or given a +1 via Google+. Each recommendation by a fan reaches out to his entire personal network. This number depicts how often a post has been shared, retweeted of recommended on Google+. No matter where you posted initially.
To measure the sentiment or tonality of a post or tweet a complex analytical tool like the gridmaster is required. A decent analysis of tonality long ago had to become a standard at reputable measurements of KPI’s in social media campaigns, as everybody should be interested whether those innumerable conversations about your brand or campaign tend to be positive or negative.
5. Likes or content appreciation
This is a factor especially for twitter. How often did somebody favor your tweet? This shows inhowfar your messages are useful or entertaining. Only those tweets that entertain or contain relevant information are being favored.
March 7th, 2012 by Sten Franke
We have been teaching it a while already, in the meantime most businesses seem to have understood. The acknowledge that their own social media activities, and of their employees, are a huge treasure of data that yet has to be heaved, ordered an analyzed.
Latest research supports this thesis. For instance a new Iron Mountain study concluded that most European businesses still do not know how to deal with data stemming from social networks like facebook, twitter, or linkedin. “Although 94% (Europe: 86%) of the German businesses asked in this study are aware of the fact that communication via social media channels can possibly be classified as a formal business process” the paper states. “At the same time 72% of German businesses (Europe: 63%) do not consider themselves as being able to capture the data and information exchanged in social media accordingly”. The authors see this as one possible reason why 90% of businesses ban the use of social media while working to their employees.
However, this hardly affects ever more individuals using social media. A current analysis by Statista depicts how regularly users surf their favorite networks by now:
In their examination the colleagues of Iron Mountain picture the situation very negative. They believe that facebook and Co. constitute a similar problem to companies than when email was introduced to the business world. Nevertheless, this example convinces only partly. Even though when emailing started it posed a difficulty to businesses, then firms could not handle the data for analysis properly.
The data and information social networks can provide surmount in importance multiplicately. Social media monitoring and intelligence tools (e.g. the gridmaster) allow the analysis of tweets and posts extensively and to continue working with the gained data.
At Iron Mountain the generated data is perceived as highly huge and unstructured that it is hard to control. Hera again I have to object and refer to our gridmaster. Nevertheless the study is right in remarking that the immediateness and informality in social networks raise the risk of violating copyright or revealing confidential information.
March 2nd, 2012 by Mathias Buerk
We are honoured to interview Lon Safko (@lonsafko) in today’s Friday5. He invented “the first computer to save a human life” (Steve Jobs) and numerous other software and hardware solutions for the physically challenged. 18 of his inventions and more than 30.000 papers are in the Smithsonian Institute, Washington. Furthermore he is the author of “The Social Media Bible” that ranked #1 in both marketing and business on Amazon, and is available in four languages. Moreover, Lon Safko founded 14 successful companies.
1. Which 5 recent numbers in social media impressed you most?
1) Of course the number of Facebook members always impresses me, especially as they approach their 1 billionth member.
2) Myspace is still out there and growing with over 200 million members.
3) Twitters is still going strong with their 106 million users and active use.
4) It’s China that surprises me. Their Qzone has 190 million members and RenRen with 170 million members. This surprises me because Facebook is still banned and doesn’t compete, and they also have 1.3 billion people! I would have thought their two largest social networks would have larger memberships.
5) Lastly, the number of people calling themselves “social media gurus”.
2. Social Media Trends – which is the “next big thing” in your opinion?
It’s what my next book is about, “The Fusion Media Bible”. If you are still calling yourself a “Social Media Expert” then you’re announcing to the world that you have been left behind. Fusion Marketing is the next step that brings our 6,000 years of traditional marketing, the exciting digital marketing tools of the Internet, and social media together, and fully integrates them into one seamless tool set that will accomplish every goal you set. Fusion Marketing is about looking at all of your campaigns, conversion strategies, tools and tactics as one integrated marketing strategy. If you have a V.P. of social media, then why don’t you have a V.P. of billboards? Traditional, Digital, and Social Media is all just media; technology that allows us to communicate with our customers.
3. Will mobile use change social media?
It already has. The Nielsen Company announced in 2011 that for the first time in history the number of televisions in America dropped from 98% to 96%. We are rapidly moving to mobile for our news, television show, movies, and social connections. The rest of the world is driving this phenomenon as most of the world’s population cannot afford a desktop, a laptop, a tablet, and broadband, but they can afford one smartphone. Smartphone marketing is growing exponentially and smart marketers today have to embrace mobile.
4. Will Google+ challenge facebook seriously?
I think so. This is reminiscent of the Apple vs. Windows battle of the 80’s and 90’s. When you have $24 billion in contextual advertising at stake, there will be war. Both Google and Facebook have been knocking off each others features / benefits for the past three years. This also part of a trend where the technologies are also integrating such as Google Hangouts Skype like video chat and Twitter like chat. When you have the kind of budgets that Google and Facebook have, you can afford to reverse engineer the best features of each others platform. This is only the beginning of the battle.
5. Social Commerce – what do you expect in the future?
Absolutely! We’ve seen the power of “reviews” and “Others who have purchased this has also purchased these…” what technically isn’t social commerce, but it was the beginning and heavily influences purchases. We will see more NFC (Near Filed Communication” or “Tap-&-Go” payment systems. Again, Europe is way ahead of of implementing NFC than the U.S. The smartphone will someday replace the credit card much the same way the credit card replaced the personal check.
April 21st, 2009 by Mo
Original Article by David Nelles
There it goes; Twitter has become a substantially relevant PR tool. Hence, within only few months a number of brands have experienced, how fast a crisis can spread – thanks to this channel of the 140 characters. The American painkillers Motrin had encountered the anger and resentment of few well networked moms. The E-Commerce Gigant Amazon had to experience a hacker attack over Easter, which erased literature offers regarding gay and lesbian themes. And last but not least, the Domino’s pizza delivery service has its share of experience in regard to the short distasteful video of two employees on YouTube. The three cases show that even in the U.S Twitter has definitely become more and more relevant for company’s communication. Yet, how could these three companies avoid the big disaster to their reputation before it even started? Maybe these three tips below can help a little:
Only listening does not suffice
Important is also knowing, who talks about the brand in Twitter, and how badly he/she speaks about the brand and the corresponding company. Therefore, the following few priorities should stand out in foreground:
Priority No. 1 has to be the people who make up the majority of your brand’s customers. And that will be the question for Domino’s as it plots the best plan of response: The pizza chain needs to know not only how many people saw the video but who those people are and how likely they are to be current customers.
A monitoring is not only a quantitative analysis of the relevant brands mentions, but it’s also about the qualitative analysis like the segmentation and the creation of user’s typologies. Only a qualitative analysis ensures an effective potential crisis analysis. Thereby, it’s not only decisive, how often a tweet or retweet comes out but it’s also important, whether the tweet fits into my target group or not.
Don’t hide uncertainty – Transparency is a must
Companies should engage themselves in the discussions with quick and fast manner towards the emerging crisis in Twitter&Co. even if the companies do not actually know, what is happening, just like in the case with Amazon deleting the whole product groups. A short PR statement would only ignite more fire to the unfavorable situation. A transparent answer in Amazon’s case would be to inform users that the mistakes are not known yet and people in charged are doing everything in their power to resolve the problems. Through this kind of behavior, one shows that critical voices in Twitter are being taken seriously and that one does react to the voiced sentiments. This kind of strategy can smooth the situation and best example for it: the action taken by Scott Monty after a notice of one of the Ford fan’s communities:
Monty logged onto Twitter and asked people to hold off: there was “more to the story.” That slowed down commentary. A little later he added, there was counterfeiting of Ford trademark properties involved. That froze the conversation and bought him some time.
“Some time,” in a PR crisis a few years ago used to translate into about four days. Times change. Monty figured he had bought Ford a few hours.
The above example show that through the announcement of the brand alone of something is being done in respect to the circumstances can definitely slow the spread of crisis significantly down.
Exercise precautions and build your own Twitter community
This basic doesn’t only apply for Twitter but it applies as well for the whole area of social media. In case of a crisis, a strong brand community can be a life insurance for the brand.
Strong, emotional brands that have built up years of consumer goodwill seem to be more insulated from long-term hurt. Few consumers judged much-loved Whole Foods when its CEO was caught posting comments on financial sites under a fake name. Another consumer darling, JetBlue, has recovered valiantly from its Valentine’s Day massacre, which left passengers stranded on board on a runway for eight hours.
It appears quite advantageous for brands alone, out of the perspectives of crisis prevention to build a strong community around its brand. An authentic and long lasting dialog with users, and tying customers emotionally to the brand will make sustainable damage of brand reputation very unlikely. Furthermore, a big brand community i.e. a big Twitter followers guarantees a real sense of hearing in the target group of user generated channels. At least, Domino’s Pizza now understood how essential own Twitter community can be.