Last August I signed up for App.net, the social network created by former iMeem CEO and serial entrepreneur Dalton Caldwell and a bunch of other really talented people.
Within a few minutes of using it I discovered a great community of brilliant, tech-focused minds who congregated on the site to connect about building.
Soon after joining the site’s first wave, I saw the community start to evolve with hackdays, community contributed projects designed to build the network, and I found myself learning a lot about how the internet is built.
While App.net hasn’t really gained momentum in the marketing community yet, I could see a prime opportunity for the right crop of brands to build a true community for a few reasons.
1. Targeted User base
The focus of App.net’s current users make it an ideal place for brands to connect with the early adopter, developer, and ‘technorati’ crowd. These highly specialized users are having discussions about companies like Rackspace, Data Sift, New Relic, Amazon Web Services and others regularly.
2. No Ads
You won’t find promoted posts on App.net, which means that brands are actually free to build a true dialogue with other users on the site. As App.net is a paid social network (users pay for monthly or yearly subscriptions) they’re proven to be willing to pay for software, but more importantly they’re seeking out the exchange of a higher value of content.
There are a growing number of publishers and brands on App.net already, including Adobe, CNET, ReadWrite, Ars Technica and more.
Try it FREE
Want to give it a try for yourself?
The creators of App.net have given me 100 free invites to App.net to give away, all you have to do is follow this link.
Today I was on Facebook and happened to like a story from Buzzfeed about the LinkedIn duping of this week. My friend Pam Moore shared the story on her profile as a link, not from the page, and when I clicked “Like” Facebook immediately prompted me to Like the page with a neat little pop-up that I have never seen before.
What’s more interesting is the timing of this. Earlier this week a an article from Digiday that makes the claim: Many publishers are realizing Facebook won’t offer much salvation. Sure, it still drives plenty of traffic, but those numbers aren’t growing as fast — and in some cases, they’re going in reverse. Given a choice, a publisher would much rather have someone sign up for an email newsletter or even follow it on Twitter.
With more and more publishers creating unique experiences on-site or even on microsites, it’s clear that more news orgs are moving away from Facebook alone. Claims of diminished reach by all Page owners doesn’t help their case either.
Is Facebook working to help publishers build more audience? Or are they creating more noise by trying to funnel all content into their system?
What do you think?
For the past month, the social community has been a buzz because Facebook has changed their News Feed algorithm, causing decreased reach for brands. There have been blogs lamenting the latest changes, but in a positive attempt to provide a solution have offered a number of suggestions including changing your News Feed settings to “Most Recent” from “Top Stories.”
Here’s the thing though…Facebook is changing the settings back on you automatically.
I have been testing for a week now and asking other trusted colleagues to do the same, and we all have found that it happens frequently.
While I didn’t sit at the computer 24/7, for the past week I have been trying to monitor various time intervals before the switch took place. I found from my trials it can be anywhere from a half-hour to overnight.
Why is Facebook doing this?
Well for one they are clearly moving to a more curated News Feed and I think ideally they want to give both advertisers and users more social relevance to sponsored stories.
Second, they just like to change things. I think we can all agree on that.
Is it annoying? Sure. Would many people want the option to sort completely chronologically? Probably, but the thing to realize is that there are so many pieces of data that can be injected into the News Feed at any point, there has to be some way to keep order.
Things like activity boxes on the Timeline and a clampdown on “frictionless sharing” have helped to clean up the News Feed, but it’s a vicious cycle of content creation, curation, and then conversation which keeps so many stories flooding your Facebook.
So is there any solution to the News Feed issue? At this point I don’t see one, however one tip that many others have pointed out is to create Facebook Interest Lists. Mari Smith has a great how-to guide on creating interest lists you can read here.
I started a list for brands, you can subscribe to that here.
I’m sure there are plenty of people out there who think they can change the News Feed to “Most Recent” and have everything be ok again, and they probably never checked it again. This post is for you, because I’m sure you have been frustrated like I have.
Have you experienced this problem? Would you want to have a purely chronological News Feed? Would you pay for one?
Facebook announced a number of new features for their “Offers” product on Thursday. One of the most interesting developments was the ability to add a barcode, something that retailers are jumping for joy about. Now many grocery stores, restaurant chains, big box retailers and more will be able to implement the Facebook offer barcode as an additional tracking mechanism into many existing sales systems.
From the Facebook support forum:
When you create an in-store offer, you can add a scannable barcode that will appear in the email people get when they claim your offer. This makes applying the discount at your register and tracking offer redemptions faster and easier.
Keep in mind that the code will be the same for every person who claims your offer and is not intended to be a way to prevent people from redeeming your offer more than once.
In order to use the feature, you’ll need to support the offer with Facebook ads, and use a 12-digit UPC-A or 13-digit EAB code. This number must be properly formatted to include a check digit for the protocol you choose.
Have you seen any ads or offers using these new features yet?
In a new update first discovered by Lauren Gray this morning (I’ve tried to blur names), it appears as though Facebook is rolling out a streamlined messages view, bringing excerpts from those messages into a list on the left hand side sorted by most recent. More details to come I’m sure.
Have you noticed the change yet?
I recently discovered the addition of Facebook Ad campaign icons in the news feed side bar as well the Ads Manager icons that had been there before.
Talk about a time saver!
It has always been hard to access individual campaigns because you had to go through the ads manager screen and then sort your campaigns to see the results for each. Now there’s a quick and easy shortcut.
Have you seen this on your pages yet if you’re running ads?
Always nice to find a brand with a sense of humor and Taco Bell and Old Spice have been going back and forth lately with a number of fun tweets. I’d say we give this one to Taco Bell. Credit to Todd Wasserman of Mashable for posting the photo on his Facebook page.
In a tweet that got the world buzzing last night, Twitter Engineer Pankaj Gupta (who I have the privilege of calling a friend through the NASA Tweetup experience) congratulated his team for a job well done in rolling out new search functionality for the platform. The net blew up.
Today the tweet becomes reality in the form of a new way to search within the Twitter website.
At a glance, you can see that tweets autocomplete with both users you follow, but also recommended searches for popular terms (much like google.) Looking at the example below I searched for Carrie with Children, a popular blogger who is a friend of mine, and not only did I see her pages, but it also suggested Carrie Underwood.
What does this mean? Well for starters your title and bio on Twitter will be very important, as well as your connections. I tried a number of different searches for “Mashable” “music” “social media” and more, you can see the results in the photos.
Update: In a blog post direct from Twitter, they describe the new features in detail:
Spelling corrections: If you misspell a term, we’ll automatically show results for your intended query.
Related suggestions: If you search for a topic for which people use multiple terms, we will provide relevant suggestions for terms where the majority of that conversation is happening on Twitter.
Results with real names and usernames: When you search for a name like ‘Jeremy Lin,’ you’ll see results mentioning that person’s real name and their Twitter account username.
Results from people you follow: In addition to seeing ‘All’ or ‘Top’ Tweets for your search, you can also now see Tweets about a given topic from only the people you follow when you select the ‘People you follow’ view.
Viewing Tweets about a topic from just the people you follow is a great way to find useful information and join the conversation.
The feature isn’t available for all users, as I’ve tried this on Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari browsers on three different accounts, @OnIdeas, @Alarmdotcom (our client) and my own personal @nickcicero – so far only my account worked.
People will share just about anything these days. From pics of their license, to important documents (like X-rays) and of course every last thing they ate. But some things, like Debit Cards, should never ever be snapped.
Enter: @needadebitcard - The account scours Twitter’s search for people posting photos of their Debit card and then serves them up for the world to see.
There have been a number of these privacy projects popping up online for a while now. I remember fondly the foursquare hack PleaseRobMe.com and the recently well-publicized We Know What You’re Doing by Callum Haywood.
Jus got my debit card. Time to ball hard :) instagr.am/p/McAbUFHV_Z/—
$omebody (@IAMTCHEEKS) June 29, 2012
When will people learn that the internet is open for all to see and hear. If you put it online, it will be found…and putting your debit card online is just about the dumbest thing you can do.
After reporting just after midnight EST that Facebook had added an easy switch voice option for brands, this morning we find more updates. It would appear that they have added an address book icon, encouraging anyone to visit a friend’s timeline right from the news feed.
These little cues hopefully generate more page and profile views benefitting both Facebook’s business initiatives of increased traffic and ad revenue, but also their site’s initiatives: keeping people connected.
What do you think of this?