Category: Twitter

How Twitter is Creating a More Human Experience Through Audio

If in this period of social distancing you’ve grown tired of typing, Twitter has some good news. In a new update, you can record your voice and share that audio as a tweet to your followers. A perk? These can also be listened to as you multi-task such as checking email or working on a document — comparable to a micro podcast.

For those keeping tabs, this isn’t Twitter’s first foray into the audio space. In 2018 it launched audio-only live streams in its native platform as well as Periscope and just last month, its design team shared a mock-up of audio tweet display options that they called “Hear and Now.”

Adding a human touch to conversations

“Over the years, photos, videos, gifs, and extra characters have allowed you to add your own flair and personality to your conversations. But sometimes 280 characters aren’t enough and some conversational nuances are lost in translation,” explained Maya Patterson, Staff Product Designer, and Rémy Bourgoin, Senior Software Engineer in the blog announcement. Put simply, sometimes you just want to say what you have to say versus trying to get the tone exactly right in a written out tweet. There’s a lot that can go unsaid or uninterpreted via text, so the platform’s goal with the newest offering is to bring a more human experience to conversations.

Adding 140-second audio clips to tweets

To start, ensure you have the latest version of Twitter installed on your iPhone then open the app. If you’re included in the platform’s beta group, you’ll be able to see a purple wavelength icon next to your camera icon when you begin a new tweet. Once you select the wavelength icon, you’ll then be able to tap a red microphone icon — over a photo of your profile picture — where you can begin to record your voice. Each audio tweet can last up to 140 seconds — or two minutes, 20 seconds. If you exceed the time limit, the app will create a new recording, stringing together a thread of voice tweets.

When you’re finished, hit “Done” in the top right corner. For some added flair, add any contextual words, photos, or GIFs before sending out your tweet to your timeline. To listen to your tweet or someone else’s, just tap the image in your timeline. The audio will appear like an embedded video with a start and pause option with your profile image as the visual. If you’re using an iPhone, the video will be displayed in a new window so you can listen while you scroll through other tweets. The process, as described in the official announcement, really is not all that different from tweeting with text.

A couple of caveats to note: audio tweets will keep playing in the background if you happen to switch to another app and you can’t include audio tweets in replies or retweets with a comment — only original tweets.

Moerdation hurdles

In a recent tweet thread in conversation with accessibility advocates, Twitter software engineer Andrew Hayward revealed the company doesn’t have a team dedicated to accessibility, instead they rely on employees who volunteer their time above and beyond their usual duties. A separate spokesperson for the platform, in a statement to The Verge reiterated that the concerns are heard and that Twitter is committed to building out its advocacy resources across all products including a more stringent accessibility review and establishing a more “more dedicated group” to focus on the problem.

“We missed around voice Tweets, and we are committed to doing better — making this feature more accessible and also all features in the future. We’re constantly reviewing both the functionality of our products and the internal processes that inform them; we’ll share progress in this area.” the company shared. With the influx of audio content online driven by podcasting, this won’t be the last time accessibility comes to the forefront of decisions and it’s critical that they listen to their audiences with empathy so they can ensure an equitable and meaningful experience for all.

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The post How Twitter is Creating a More Human Experience Through Audio appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/06/how-twitter-is-creating-a-more-human-experience-through-audio/

How Major Platforms are Standing in Solidarity with the Black Community

For roughly 10 days Americans have gathered to protest the issues of systemic racism, violence, and brutality that our POC communities have suffered at the hands of the authorities. Protests have erupted in virtually every American state, in small towns and major cities alike, and even overseas in Europe and New Zealand.

Social media platforms have also taken action spanning financial support to organizations fighting against racial inequality and promoting education so we can create a pathway towards better education and understanding of how we can support the cause with empathy.

Here’s what we’ve seen from each of the major companies:

Twitter #Allyship Overview

Beyond updating its main profile to reflect its support for the protests, Twitter is also leveraging its #StartSmall initiative to allocate several grants to support organizations designed to address racial inequality. This includes Colin Kaepernick‘s “Know Your Rights Camp” aimed to advance the liberation and well-being of Black and Brown communities through education, self-empowerment, and mass-mobilization.

Most importantly, the platform shared its top insights around how people can improve how they respond to racial inequality in a new guide for allyship. In order to respond, people first need to “understand the historical and structural contexts that have led to racism and discrimination…At Twitter, our principles of allyship are simple: Learn, Ask, Show up, and Speak up,” Marium R. Qureshi and Jade Williams explained in a recent blog post. By this definition, allyship is not about who you are but a commitment to be authentic and consistent in your education around these critical topics.

When you ask questions of friends and colleagues, do so empathetically and avoid coming from a place of disbelief. A couple of example questions following these best practices include “If you have the time/energy, do you feel comfortable sharing your experience with me?” and This week is heavy. How are you feeling/coping?” As far as speaking up and showing up, consider donating to organizations fighting for racial justice and police reform to help further the cause and exercise your voice and right to vote. Conduct a self-audit of whose in your circle and who you interact with online.

LinkedIn Learning: A Pathway to Inclusivity

We must invest our time to become better informed and develop a deeper understanding and awareness that will allow us to properly empathize with black communities who are suffering. This is key in gaining true perspective on the current movement, and the more people are educated, the better equipped we’ll be to enact effective, long-term change.

In this vein, LinkedIn has released several free courses within a “Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging for All” track, covering key topics spanning unconscious bias, addressing culturally sensitive issues, how to hire and retain diverse talent, and more. “Investing in our own learning to understand and confront bias, communicate about topics of difference, and create change can help us individually contribute to building a better workplace and society,” said Hari Srinivasan, Vice President of Product for LinkedIn Learning.

Beyond this, the platform also acknowledges that being a strong ally begins with listening, so it is utilizing its social channels to share stories that amplify perspectives from the Black community. Pathways to better understand are integral to success and LinkedIn is positioned well to bring the awareness needed at the moment via its widespread access to professional and educational insights that can help underscore gaps needing to be addressed.

Pinterest: Elevating Content on Racial Justice

Pinterest is taking a broad approach to its efforts starting with its platform and internal team and extending to external audiences directly supporting the movement.

More specifically, within the app content on racial justice is being elevated as a means to help people stay informed. This includes tips for assessing and adjusting your own mentality and how to approach younger children on the subject. There will also be content guiding users to organizations to support and various resources to learn more about the history of systemic racism in the country. Generally, the platform is committed to growing the diversity of content on the platform and avoiding distraction from serving as a hub to support and learn. In this regard, the platform is not serving ads on Black Lives Matter results.

The company is also donating 25,000 shares of stock to “organizations committed to racial justice and promoting tolerance” and investing $250,000 to help rebuild local businesses damaged in the protests. It is also providing $750,000 in paid media to organizations that support racial justice.

TikTok’s Creator Diversity Council

June is Black Music Month and to celebrate TikTok announced it will offer dedicated programming to celebrate Black artists on the platform who “bring new music, shape culture, and help build the community.”

The platform is also doubling down on technology and strategies around addressing potentially harmful content and creating a more user-friendly appeals process. Along these lines, TikTok plans to develop a creator diversity council to lead impact-driven programs led by the voices driving culture, creativity, and conversations necessary in making an even bigger impact on the problem.

Outside of its team and community, TikTok is donating $3 million from its “Community Relief Fund” to non-profits that help the Black community and an additional $1 million toward fighting racial injustice and inequality that we are witnessing in this country. Also in the music space, YouTube is financially stepping up by offering $1 million to organizations seeking to address injustice.

Leading with Empathy

Finally, the leaders behind Snapchat, Reddit, Facebook, and Instagram have all taken a personal approach to their response leading with emotion-driven memos.

Facebook is committing $10 million to racial injustice and lifting Black voices in addition to partnering with civil rights advisors in its efforts. Along with Instagram, it has also switched all profiles to black and white colors in support of recent events. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri uploaded a personal IGTV response on his own profile underscoring his eagerness and drive to channel frustration, hurt, and anger into positive change.

Similarly, Snapchat’s Evan Spiegel in his own statement called for the creation of an American commission to address racial injustice, and comprehensive tax reform as the way forward. Taking even more drastic measures, Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian has resigned from his position urging the board to replace him with a Black candidate and will use future gains on his Reddit stock to serve the black community, beginning with a $1 million donation to Kaepernick’s ‘Know Your Rights’ initiative.

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The post How Major Platforms are Standing in Solidarity with the Black Community appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/06/how-major-platforms-are-standing-in-solidarity-with-the-black-community/

Humanity, Trust and Communication: The Keys to Balancing Creativity and Data

Collaboration between data and creative experts requires early and clear communication. For marketers, this entails exploring beyond the traditional industry disconnect between data and creative. A sound strategy is often the bridge between the two disciplines, but early data integration future proofs a creative success for brands.

During #SMWONE Grey‘s Justine Armour, Beth Rolfs, and Kenny Gold were joined by Twitter’s Tom Chirico to explore the challenges and proven solutions to a successful partnership of the two disciplines for insight-driven creative and why this balance, now more than ever, is integral in driving meaningful engagement.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Bigger doesn’t always equal better
  • Balanced communication and trust lead to work that impacts culture
  • Data needs humanity now more than ever

Insights are Breadcrumbs of Human Behavior

“An insight is built from observable human truth — and it uncovers the why,” shared Rolfs. This “why” can carry many different meanings depending on the context — but it’s a why that offers audiences that information that makes them have the special realization moments of “I feel that deep down,” or “why didn’t I think of it that way?”

Chirco, in agreement, offered an example of where insights truly served as the breadcrumbs of behavior when Twitter partnered with Disney to launch the new Frozen II trailer resulting in a live event that streamed for 24 hours where people could watch at any point and tweet along with fellow Frozen fans as well as the cast and creative directors behind the film. “In this instance, data gave us these really interesting nuggets of behavior and layering these on conversations and in real-talk, with parents, we realized we were onto something.”

The underlying power of data partnering with creativity is being able to break category norms, connect with new audiences, and gain a foundational knowledge that translates into a powerful cultural dialogue. This applied in this case study and also applies when you’re building creativity off of purchasing behavior explained Gold pointing to Grey’’s work with Gillette in the “We Believe” campaign.

Debunking the Rivalry

All of the panelists agreed that the conjured up image of a magic versus logic battlefield simply wasn’t accurate and there are no winners. Both Gold and Rolfs reiterated that the work is stronger when done in collaboration and there is a recognition that they are chasing the same dream. “As a data person, there’s a tendency for me to get too in the numbers. Creatives have taught me to focus on the audience you’re presenting to on a deeper level.”

Chirco described his merged team that merges both data and creative functions into one line of reporting in a “hand-in-hand” Batman and Robin fashion. “In real-time, we’re tweaking their ideation and research fluidly in early rounds and there is an implicit trust between both groups in this process.”

Echoing the notion of fluidity, Gold added, “Creating amazing campaigns is like a symphony…Every movement in every song is different…Our ability to understand when to move together and give the space to breathe is when we make the best music.”

Humanized Data Brings the Spark

What makes data interesting? When it humanizes the story. This doesn’t always necessitate using the data that has the most volume. “Bigger isn’t always better. The data that has the most volume is often the most obvious and therefore not the most useful,” explained Rolfs. Rather, the smaller data points and conversations on the surface are more impactful.

“Data helps you understand that social media is nuanced and the creativity you build needs to be nuanced to land better once it’s out in the world and reach people in the right way,” added Gold. In short, data allows you to pick the right channel at the right moments. With this said, there needs to be balanced communication and implicit trust between the creative and data parties in order to navigate this journey.

Chirco offered the analogy of data as putty, serving as the mold that forms the creative instincts. Alone, it simply won’t come up with the idea but serves as the critical foundation that gives shape to the campaign and keeps it whole. Armour added to this reiterating data’s role as inspiration, the spark, as opposed to a mandate. When this happens, the work feels too scientific and lacks room for the spontaneity that will allow the message to cut through the clutter.

The Evolution of Data and Creativity: Post-COVID

When reflecting on the current state of marketing and what a post-COVID world would look like in respect to balancing data and creativity, the group was unanimous that more than ever data needs to be grounded in humanity.

“Data needs to have that counterbalance of humanity and creativity to help it fit the times we’re dealing with. If we just go out there with the gut emotional feeling you’re going to get what you’re seeing is a lot of montages.”

Rolfs agreed underscoring marketers should look to the fringes for more meaningful information and put the challenge on unearthing consumer behaviors “Behavior is our richest territory. Right now culture feels a bit muted, but so many interesting new behaviors evolving outside of everyone just staying home and connecting with our family. It’s bigger than the obvious message and immediate data.”

A key takeaway from these points: As we look ahead, it’s incumbent on marketers, especially creatives, to think outside of the box to use data to create not re-create.

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The post Humanity, Trust and Communication: The Keys to Balancing Creativity and Data appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/06/humanity-trust-and-communication-the-keys-to-balancing-creativity-and-data/

Moving Forward Together: Tracking COVID-19’s Impact on Influencer Marketing

It’s safe to say there is virtually no industry that hasn’t been affected by COVID-19. This global pandemic marks arguably what is the first time we have truly banded together as a global society to address a crisis with unprecedented unity and focus. We are in this together, despite the fact that we are all impacted in different ways and we are separated from each other.

As we continue to navigate what is happening in our businesses and chart a course that takes us to a place where we can reimagine the future of our industry, many are looking to influencer marketers to navigate the disruption. By nature the industry is resilient, built on creativity and innovation, and accustomed to radical change. If one thing is clear in this storm we currently face it’s that humans are moving forward and so are brands — purely by fueling human connections inclusive with compassion and empathy.

Open Influence is dedicated to making sense of the uncertain shifts and transitions. Leveraging technology, the company is tracking the current coronavirus conversation allowing professionals to stay up to date with the latest resources and trends necessary to inform their most important decisions.

Here’s a quick breakdown of what exactly is being traced:

Post activity:

Open Influence analyzes hundreds of thousands of sponsored posts across social media platforms as well as a large sample of organic posts from influencers actively engaged in campaigns with the company.

Consumer sentiment:

A major focus for not only marketers but a variety of other businesses is grasping the sentiment and emotional changes of their audiences during this extraordinary time. Open Influence’s tracker monitors for these changes over time using conversations with the hashtag #Coronavirus — looking at updates week by week and based on a full month.

Platform activity:

Unsurprisingly, social media platforms are experiencing record-levels of activity, particularly around topics labeled under the umbrella term “new normal.” On Twitter for example, Open Influence’s tracker shows a spike since February 15th of conversations using the hashtag #StayHome.

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The post Moving Forward Together: Tracking COVID-19’s Impact on Influencer Marketing appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/04/moving-forward-together-tracking-covid-19s-impact-on-influencer-marketing/

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Jack Dorsey Set to Retain Twitter CEO Role Amid Investor Group Challenge

Twitter has negotiated an investor 'ceasefire' of sorts in order to ease pressure on CEO Jack Dorsey. 

https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/jack-dorsey-set-to-retain-twitter-ceo-role-amid-investor-group-challenge/573765/

9 Great Content Marketing Tips (Blogging & Social Media Narketing Tips), From Buffet

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>We’ve experimented with lots of different content marketing methods at Buffer, so I wanted to share with you 9 of the best ways we’ve found to increase engagement and improve your content strategy.

Especially after launching Buffer for Business recently, a lot of business approached us, asking which practical tips we had for them to improve their social media and content marketing.

So here are our best and most practical ways to see a big impact from your actions on social media:

1. Share Images on Twitter: Increase Retweets by 150%

Since Twitter announced inline images, we’ve been experimenting with this change by adding images to a lot of the tweets from our @buffer Twitter account and have noticed a big difference in the engagement we’re getting. To get a better idea of what a difference inline images has made, I took the last 100 Tweets including a link from our @buffer account (not including any Retweets) and compared the averages of the tweets with and without images included.

Using Buffer’s built-in analytics, I was able to look at the number of clicks, favorites and Retweets each of our Tweets received.

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The first data point we looked at was clicks:

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Our click-through rate did grow, but not by very much. My theory on this is that with an inline image, there’s more content for the user to consume without leaving Twitter (which is probably what Twitter wants), so they’re not much more likely to click-through. Of course, that’s just a theory so it’ll be interesting to see what the data says over a longer time period as we keep experimenting with this.

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Favorites increased quite a lot. Along with Retweets in the graph below, this shows a lot more engagement with the Tweets themselves. Clicks, on the other hand, show engagement with the original content.

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2. Share Content More Than Once

We often share our blog posts multiple times on social networks, for a few difference reasons. Some of the biggest benefits we get are more traffic, reaching people in different time zones and sharing our content with people who’ve followed us since we last posted it.

1. More Traffic

The first, and perhaps most obvious, reason to share your content more than once is to drive more traffic that the initial share.

Tom Tunguz did an experiment on his own blog to show how reposting the same content helped him to boost traffic.

To get an idea of how many people were seeing and sharing his posts, Tom looked at the number of Retweets he got when Tweeting a link to one of his blog posts. We can assume from this that actual visits to his posts increased with each Retweet, as well.

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With each subsequent Tweet of an existing blog post, Tom noticed that he got around 75% as many Retweets as the time before.

We’ve also noticed that Tweeting posts from the Buffer blog more than once gives us more traffic and more engagement (favorites, Retweets).

Here’s an example where we’ve done this:

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2. Hit multiple time zones

Guy Kawasaki is known for posting the same content multiple times, and one reason he advocates doing this is to reach your followers in different time zones. He’s found that this increases the traffic to his content, particularly when Tweeting the same link several times:

The reason for repeated tweets is to maximize traffic and therefore advertising sales. I’ve found that each tweet gets approximately the same amount of clickthroughs. Why get 600 page views when you can get 2,400?

Guy generally repeats Tweets of his blog posts (with minor variations) four times each, to hit different time zones:

We provide content repeatedly because people live in different time zones and have different social media habits.

3. Reach your new followers

Something we’ve noticed at Buffer is that a lot of our posts are still relevant months after we publish them. The other thing that changes after we publish a post is that more people follow us on social networks, so if we repost content from our blog that’s six months old, many of our followers will be seeing it for the first time, so they’ll get value out of it even though it’s old content.

You can use a tool like Twitter Counterto track your follower growth, so you know when it’s a good time to repost some of your older content.

3. A/B Test on Social Networks

Since we usually post the same content to Twitter multiple times, we take advantage of this opportunity to test out what headline works best for the blog post.

Here’s how we usually run that kind of experiment:

  1. Find 2 headlines for an article that you think will perform well.
  2. Tweet both of these headlines at roughly the same time, at least 1 hour apart. We’ve found that posting the two Tweets both in the morning or both in the afternoon works best.
  3. Compare the data for each Tweet to find the best headline for your blog post.

Here’s an example of the analytics from a headline experiment we did on this blog post:

First tweet:

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Second tweet:

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The second Tweet clearly performed better as we found out through our social analytics and Buffer’s algorithm also identified it as a top Tweet. In fact, you can clearly see that the second headline got double the number of clicks.

When we see a big difference in engagement on a different headline like that, we usually go back to the original post and change the title itself (the URL never changes, just the heading of the post).

4. Reframe Content to Suit Your Audience

Something we try to do each time we post a piece of content is to slightly reframe it so we’re not just repeating ourselves.

Here’s an example of how we might do that on Facebook.

First, we post the actual link:

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Then we go and post only one image to explain part of the post:

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This way we can sometimes get double or even triple the amount of engagement by highlighting different elements of the content each time we post it. We often do this on Twitter as well.

First we publish it as a link:

Then, taking advantage of Twitter’s new expanded images feature, we publish it as an image and reframing it:

You can simply right click any image on the web with Buffer’s browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome to share a new image post on Twitter or Facebook, that according to the latest social media statistics, will garner significant more clicks, Retweets and favorites.

We also try slightly different wording each time we post the same thing, like this:

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5. Re-Buffer Posts and Buffer Native Retweets

A fairly recent feature we added to Buffer is the ability to drag-and-drop updates. You can now easily copy updates from your Twitter account to your Facebook account. For example:

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And you can also copy past updates back into your Buffer queue, which is really useful for getting more out of popular posts:

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Another neat feature of Buffer is that you can schedule native Retweets from Twitter.com. This is super easy and works with the click of a button. To get started, you just need to install the Buffer browser extension.

Now, whenever you see a Tweet that’s worth sharing, you can hit the Buffer button:

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This will let you easily schedule a native Retweet from any of your Twitter accounts:

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Plus, you can easily change the Retweet to the old school “RT @username: Text of the tweet” format. If you hover over the composer, you’ll see an option to “change to quote”:

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That’s all it takes! Now you’ll see that Retweet in your Buffer queue, waiting to be published. Of course you can still edit the update to delete, change it to a quote or move it around in your queue:

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6. Keep on Top of Your Brand and Find Great Content with Mention & Buffer

Mention is a great tool to help you keep on top of your brand all over the web. It lets you monitor mentions of your brand specifically, as well as industry keywords, competitors and more. When you sign up for an account, the first thing you’ll want to do is create a new alert. This is as simple as naming your alert and adding any keywords you want to monitor:

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To get the most out of the recent integration of Mention + Buffer, you can now add your Buffer account to your Mention alerts so you can publish results to social networks. You can do this when you create a new alert, as well as adding your Facebook or Twitter accounts:

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If you add your Buffer account, you’ll be able to publish to all of your connected social profiles and pages, just like you can from the Buffer dashboard or browser extensions.

Inside your alert results, you can filter by source including images, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, videos and more. If you choose blogs, you can find some great content to fill up your Buffer account:

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Once you’ve found a post that you want to share, just click on the “React” menu and choose “Add to Buffer”:

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7. Use Followerwonk to Tweet at Optimal Times

Followerwonk is a tool that we love using at Buffer to work out when is the best time for us to tweet.

To get started, head over to Followerwonk and click on “Analyze followers”

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Next, pop your Twitter username into the box and select “analyze their followers” from the drop-down:

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When your report is done, you’ll see a graph that shows when your followers are most active:

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If you use Buffer, you can take advantage of this by creating a Buffer schedule based on your Followerwonk report. Just choose how many times you want to post each day, and hit the “Schedule at Buffer” button.

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8. Transparency

Something we’ve found that’s really helped us to bond with our readers and build up a community around Buffer is to be really open about how we run the company. We share details about Buffer on our Open blog, as well as in interviews and on other sites.

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We share details about our support team and how we handle customer support each month:

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And about our revenue:

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And we’ve even published a deep-dive before on how we manage our content strategy for the Buffer blog:

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9. Set Up Google Authorship

Google Authorship is not just the photo and byline that appears on search results pages, thought that’s a large part of it.

Below is a search results page for the term “Google authorship” showing many entries that have taken advantage of authorship:

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In addition to the byline, there is a strategic layer to Google authorship. The tie-in with Google+ profiles creates verified connections between content on the web and the creators of the content. This gives Google the ability to identify quality, human-created content.

There are several benefits of setting up Google authorship for your content:

1. Your authorship byline will get you noticed.

Look at the below heatmap generated by eye-tracking studies. As you might expect, the top results on the page get a lot of looks, but so too do the results with rich snippets (and not so much for the results in between).

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2. Entries with rich snippets have higher click-through rates.

A study performed by search marketing firm Catalyst found that clicks improved 150% with Google authorship.

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3. Authorship is an advantage to the little guy.

Authorship offers a competitive advantage. A recent study found that only 3.5% of Fortune 500 companies are actively using authorship. Until they do, they are giving a big opportunity to the rest of us.

Authorship may be the future of search.

Don’t take it from me. Take it from Google’s Eric Schmidt. He sees a future where identity plays a big part in search results.

Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in most users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results.

To get started with Google authorship, you can check out this step-by-step guide on the Buffer blog.

That’s it! I hope some of these might be useful for you here. We’ve recently introduced the brand new Buffer for Business too, so in case you’re looking for a powerful social media management tool, take a look, we’d love your feedback on it.

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Image credits: Tomasz Tunguz

For more see –

https://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/9-best-from-buffer/

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

100’s of populer twitter hashtags…

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Please find a list of 100 top twitter hashtags (100 top general twitter hashtags) followed by some of the most used and most popular hashtags on twitter chosen for a few popular industry sectors on twitter.

These Twitter hashtags and so many more, are used millions of times daily on twitter.

Though these hashtags are good for you to use on some tweets, if you want to generate more likes for your photos, images and tweets, they are not the best when it comes to helping you reach engaged potential customers on your social platforms. You should loom through the list to find the hashtags that are most relevant to your business, and sprinkle them in with other, more industry-specific hashtags.

  • #love
  • #instagood
  • #photooftheday
  • #beautiful
  • #fashion
  • #tbt
  • #happy
  • #cute
  • #followme
  • #like4like
  • #follow
  • #me
  • #picoftheday
  • #selfie
  • #instadaily
  • #friends
  • #summer
  • #girl
  • #art
  • #fun
  • #repost
  • #smile
  • #nature
  • #instalike
  • #food
  • #style
  • #tagsforlikes
  • #family
  • #likeforlike
  • #igers
  • #fitness
  • #nofilter
  • #follow4follow
  • #instamood
  • #amazing
  • #life
  • #travel
  • #beauty
  • #vscocam
  • #sun
  • #bestoftheday
  • #music
  • #followforfollow
  • #beach
  • #instagram
  • #photo
  • #sky
  • #vsco
  • #dog
  • #l4l
  • #sunset#f4f
  • #ootd
  • #pretty
  • #swag
  • #makeup
  • #foodporn
  • #hair
  • #cat
  • #party
  • #girls
  • #photography
  • #cool
  • #baby
  • #lol
  • #tflers
  • #model
  • #motivation
  • #night
  • #instapic
  • #funny
  • #gym
  • #healthy
  • #yummy
  • #hot
  • #design
  • #black
  • #pink
  • #flowers
  • #christmas
  • #blue
  • #work
  • #instafood
  • #fit
  • #instacool
  • #iphoneonly
  • #wedding
  • #blackandwhite
  • #workout
  • #lifestyle
  • #handmade
  • #followback
  • #instafollow
  • #home
  • #drawing
  • #my
  • #nyc
  • #webstagram
  • #sweet
  • #instalove

Now, let’s take a look at the top hashtags for a couple of the most popular industries. These are way more likely to help you achieve success on social media, because they work well to connect you with people within your target market, boosting your reach and engagement.

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Fitness Industry


People love to share pictures of themselves at the gym. So much of social media is sharing the best side of you – and showcasing your healthy, fit lifestyle is a big part of that.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for fitness:

  1. #gethealthy
  2. #healthylife
  3. #healthtalk
  4. #eatclean
  5. #fitfood
  6. #nutrition
  7. #fitquote
  8. #fitnessmotivation
  9. #fitspo
  10. #getfit
  11. #fitfam
  12. #trainhard
  13. #noexcuses
  14. #fitnessaddict
  15. #gymlife
  16. #girlswholift
  17. #workout
  18. #fitlife
  19. #gymlife
  20. #sweat

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Food Industry


How many times have you (or the people around you at a restaurant) taken a picture of their food before they eat it? Or what about when you cook something amazing and are just so proud of it you want to share it with the world?

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for food:

  1. #foodie
  2. #foodporn
  3. #foodgasm
  4. #nom
  5. #food
  6. #pizza
  7. #foodporn
  8. #foodstagram
  9. #menwhocook
  10. #sushi
  11. #yummy
  12. #foodcoma
  13. #eathealthy
  14. #instafood
  15. #delicious
  16. #foodpic
  17. #cooking
  18. #snack
  19. #tasty
  20. #cleaneating

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Travel Industry


Again, like with fitness, travel posts are all about showing people the best side of your life – and being on away on holidsy is always the best time of your life.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for travel:

  1. #travel
  2. #instatravel
  3. #travelgram
  4. #tourist
  5. #tourism
  6. #vacation
  7. #traveling
  8. #travelblogger
  9. #wanderlust
  10. #ilovetravel
  11. #instavacation
  12. #traveldeeper
  13. #getaway
  14. #wanderer
  15. #adventure
  16. #travelphotography
  17. #roadtrip
  18. #mytravelgram
  19. #igtravel
  20. #traveler

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Technology Sector


When you have the newest gadget or want to show off your most innovative tech idea, there’s few better ways to do it than with a hashtag.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for technology:

  1. #technology
  2. #science
  3. #bigdata
  4. #iphone
  5. #ios
  6. #android
  7. #mobile
  8. #video
  9. #design
  10. #innovation
  11. #startups
  12. #tech
  13. #cloud
  14. #gadget
  15. #instatech
  16. #electronic
  17. #device
  18. #techtrends
  19. #technews
  20. #engineering

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Fashion & Beauty Sector


People love to show off what they’re wearing or the fashions they love.

They love to show the social media world their best face, and what better way to do that than with their on-point makeup?

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for fashion and beauty:

  1. #fashion
  2. #fashionista
  3. #fashionblogger
  4. #ootd
  5. #style
  6. #stylish
  7. #streetstyle
  8. #streetwear
  9. #fashioninspo
  10. #trend
  11. #styleoftheday
  12. #stylegram
  13. #mensfashion
  14. #lookbook
  15. #todayiwore
  16. #beauty
  17. #makeupaddict
  18. #hair
  19. #instafashion
  20. #vintage

Conclusion


Hopefully this article will serve as a resource for you to come back to and take advantage of.

The hashtags in this article have millions and millions of impressions every day. Not using them is a massive social media missed opportunity.

If you have any questions about how you can use these hashtags in your own social media posts, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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Please find a list of 100 top twitter hashtags (100 top general twitter hashtags) followed by some of the most used and most popular hashtags on twitter chosen for a few popular industry sectors on twitter. These Twitter hashtags and so many more, are used millions of times daily on



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How to Get the Most Out of Your Twitter Ads With ‘Flight School’

Originally launched in 2014, Twitter Flight School is an online resource released geared towards inspiring creativity and guiding brands and agencies of all sizes as they look to get the most out of their marketing efforts on the platform.

As companies moved from asking “why Twitter” as an advertising outlet, the dominant questions became “How do I take my content on Twitter to the next level?” and “How do I use promoted products and other tools to get the right message to my target audience in the right moment?”

Content is tailored to meet the needs of various roles and functions spanning senior leadership, account planning and campaign management so you can work towards broader milestones or focus on something specific. Amongst the first participants in the program were Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG), WPP and Omnicom.

What is the revamped program comprised of?

Fast forward to 2020, Twitter is looking to continue the success of its Flight School by adding to the courses and subjects that marketers can explore.

“Flight School [is] your one-stop destination for everything you need to know about advertising on Twitter. We’re bringing you new coursework, a better platform experience, and achievement badging, allowing you to showcase your newly acquired skills,” the platform explains.

More specifically, the expanded program includes new courses targeted towards helping marketers find relevant audiences, measure campaign performance, and establish their strategies and voices when it comes to video. Overall, it’s a one-stop-shop for help in planning best-in-class campaigns, igniting a creative idea, and supercharging your own career.

Below are a few highlights of the expectations Twitter has mapped out to the public as it looks to take the education hub to new heights:

  • Bite-sized lessons
  • Choose your own learning path
  • Evolving coursework
  • Actionable recommendations
  • Achievement badging

How do I navigate the courses?

Flight School is organized into modules, all of which give you a time estimate for completion before you dive in. Examples reflecting new elements added to line-up include ‘Twitter Ad Fundamentals,’ ‘Getting Started with Ads Manager,’ and ‘Creating and Executing Video Campaigns.’

Courses dedicated solely to video make sense given it remains the fastest-growing advertising tool on the platform. There are over 2 billion video views on Twitter each day, a 67 percent increase year-over-year. In addition, tweets containing video content attract 10x more engagements compared to those without. Promoted tweets with videos report saving more than 50 percent on cost-per-engagement. The moral: using video addresses two birds with one stone including affordability and increased engagement.

A few of the specific lessons you can choose from include:

  • Defining your demographics
  • Balancing targeting and reach
  • Comparing campaign objectives and establishing your ideal structure
  • Interpreting and customizing campaign reports
  • How to use Twitter’s Live Brand Studio
  • How to collaborate with Twitter’s Content Creation team

How can I access the lessons and track my progress?

You can begin your Flight School education, for free, at www.twitterflightschool.com/ and using your account credentials to gain access to the courses. By doing so, the platform will keep tabs on your progress so if you need to pause a lesson and return to it, you don’t need to start from the beginning.

Badges’ are offered for the completion of coursework and assessments which you can add to your other social platforms including LinkedIn or be printed. Generally, badges take up to 4 hours to earn or as little as 2 hours depending on the lesson and your expertise. If you don’t pass an assessment with an 80 percent or higher, don’t sweat it, just review the material and try again.

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3 Ways Platforms are Tackling Cyberbulling

The decline of empathetic behavior on social media is a growing issue. Our industry has the opportunity to push for an agenda that offers teens and young adults the ability to understand the choices they’re making behind their devices. Platforms are exploring ways they can play a role in this process and create productive interactions through shared experiences and understanding.

Here are a few recent examples unpacked:

Collaborating with Suicide Prevention Programs

On the heels of its test to remove “likes” from posts and a feature called ‘Restrict’ that allows users to seamlessly shadow-ban others posting harmful or offensive comments, Instagram is continuing its effort to support the fight against cyberbullying.

The photo-sharing platform recently unveiled a new AI-powered feature that notifies users when their captions on photos and videos could be considered offensive and gives them the opportunity to edit their post before it’s live.

Beyond aiming to limit the reach of bullying, a key goal of the tool is to provide education around proper Instagram etiquette and what violates the platform’s community guidelines. In order to create the new system, Instagram partnered with suicide prevention programs.

“Earlier this year, we launched a feature that notifies people when their comments may be considered offensive before they’re posted. Results have been promising, and we’ve found that these types of nudges can encourage people to reconsider their words when given a chance,” the company shared in the announcement.

The stance is an important one that prioritizes limiting the reach of bullying but, more importantly, is one primed to foster more education. The app hopes to inspire people to care about their words and choices online, and understand how they can affect other people negatively and deter from the growth of a positive, diverse community.

Expanding Definitions of Harmful Misinformation

Yet another app putting education at the center of its decisions to combat bullying and harmful misinformation is TikTok.

The video-sharing app recently overhauled its Community Guidelines to incorporate a specific section dedicated to the sharing of misinformation within the app intended to add transparency to how harmful or unsafe content is defined and regulated on the platform. “It’s important that users have insight into the philosophy behind our moderation decisions and the framework for making such judgements,” the announcement stressed.

At its core, the updates outline how violations are grouped into 10 distinct categories, each of which contains an explanation of the rationale and several detailed bullet points to clarify what type of misbehavior would fall into that category. While TikTok’s rules against misleading content have been in place for a while, until this expansion the focus had primarily been around scams and barring the creation of fake profiles.

Here’s a quick outline as to the additional types of content the app is targeting:

  • Content that incites fear, hate, or prejudice
  • Content that could cause harm to an individual’s health – such as misleading information about medical treatment
  • Content that proliferates hoaxes, phishing attempts, or “manipulated content meant to cause harm”
  • Content that misleads community members about elections or other civic processesOne critique that has surfaced since the announcement is that the expanded guidelines don’t explain how TikTok will decipher harmful, “misleading” content and appear to be open for interpretation regarding enforcement decisions.

“Our global guidelines are the basis of the moderation policies TikTok’s regional and country teams localize and implement in accordance with local laws and norms.​”

It will be interesting to see if there are further iterations based on this feedback and how the language and structure of these guidelines will evolve as the community continues to grow.

Letting users define the audience of their content

As part of a broader discussion about the rise of ephemeral messaging and its potential for Twitter, the platform is looking to specific dimensions, such as control around who can see or participate in tweet conversations.

During CES 2020, Suzanne Xie, Director of Product Management, outlined several key changes that are in the works aimed to address these issues and promote a more healthy, positive user experience.

Twitter product lead Kayvon Beykpour articulated the rationale in an interview with WIRED’s Editor in Chief Nick Thompson. “We’re exploring ways for people to control proactively, not reactively hiding a reply…The philosophical approach we took here is, when you start a conversation, as the author of a tweet you should have a little more control over the replies to that tweet.”

During the presentation, Xie showed the below images illustrating the new process in development. Fundamentally, it allows users to define the audience for each of their tweets, directly from the composer window.

The four core audience settings are as follows:

  • Global: Anyone can reply to the tweet
  • Group: Only people you follow or mention would be able to reply
  • Panel: Only people you directly mention within the tweet text itself would be able to reply
  • Statement: No tweet replies would be allowed

Let’s break down a couple of pros and cons with this move.

Primarily, it seems to go against the idea of Twitter serving as a larger, public square where everyone is given a say. Contrarily, it could pave the way for easier facilitated interview-style conversations or live chats featuring celebrities or influencers that often are overwhelmed by spam. In this way, the conversations can feel more familiar and authentic without all of the secondary noise.

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4 Major Brands and Platforms Addressing Digital Literacy and Fake News in 2020

The majority of marketers realize the issues presented by fake news and “deepfake” techniques in skewing the information we’re exposed to and the implications for determining what is fact from fiction.

We face a critical point in our industry where many brands and platforms are facing increased pressure for setting a benchmark for detecting these types of conversations.

Here are a few that are taking action in 2020.

Tumblr’s Digital Literacy Initiative “World Wide What”

With the 2020 election on the horizon, social media platforms are making moves to update their strategies to curb the spread of information. The latest to join the bandwagon is Tumblr, which recently launched an internet literacy campaign targeted to help younger demographics entering the voting scene spot fake news and unsavory posts.

The initiative, World Wide What, was developed in partnership with UK-based internet literacy organization, Ditch the Label. The campaign’s structure emphasizes six core community topics in video form that include fake news skewed views, authenticity, cyberbullying, the importance of minimizing screen time, how much we share online, and creating a safer internet through moderation.

Unlike traditional literacy materials, the platform is tapping into visual, more culturally messaging such as GIFs, memes, and short text in line with imagery native to the Tumblr brand. Videos will also leverage outside experts and industry leaders to tackle certain subjects through a series of Q&As in the coming weeks and months.

“We are constantly striving to learn and utilize new ways to create a safe place for our communities,” Tumblr shared in a statement on the World Wide What site.

Google x Jigsaw Visual Database of Deepfakes

In September 2019, Google tapped Jigsaw in an effort to develop a dataset of visual deepfakes aimed to boost early detection efforts. The tech giant worked with both paid and consenting actors to record and gather hundreds of videos which ultimately were crafted into deepfakes. The final products including both real and fake videos, were then incorporated into the Technical University of Munich and the FaceForensics benchmark and made widely available for synthetic video detection methods.

Fast forward to November, Jigsaw has continued on this momentum by releasing what it refers to as “the largest public data set of comments and annotations with toxicity labels and identity labels. “ This includes the addition of comments and annotations with toxicity and identity labels. The goal with incorporating these details is to more accurately measure bias within AI comment classification systems. Traditionally conversations are measured with synthetic data from template sentences that often fail to address the complexity and variety of comments.

“By labeling identity mentions in real data, we are able to measure bias in our models in a more realistic setting, and we hope to enable further research into unintended bias across the field,” shared in a recent Medium post. The key in the ever-evolving deepfake tech space will be a healthy and growing research community.

Twitter Policies Targeting Synthetic and Manipulated Media

Twitter is looking to its community for support in fleshing out its strategy for addressing synthetic and manipulated media, what the company defines as “…any photo, audio, or video that has been significantly altered or fabricated in a way that intends to mislead people or changes its original meaning.

As a draft to its policy, the platform has outlined that it will:

  • Place a notice next to Tweets that share synthetic or manipulated media
  • Warn people before they share or like Tweets with synthetic or manipulated media
  • Add a link – for example, to a news article or Twitter Moment – so that people can read more about why various sources believe the media is synthetic or manipulated

The platform also vowed to remove any deepfake believed capable of threatening someone or leading to serious harm. This raises the question as to how it would address these types of manipulated conversations spurring a falsity but not technically causing harm or that use newer creation methods that lag behind the detection techniques.

To garner feedback from users, the platform created a multiple-choice survey that addresses the broader preference of removing versus flagging (e.g. should altered photos and videos be removed, have warning labels, or not be removed at all). To date, the survey is closed and the platform is reported to be working on an official policy that will be announced 30 days prior to roll out.

Facebook’s “Deepfake Challenge” and Ban

This past fall Facebook teamed up with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, and academics from Cornell Tech, University of Oxford, UC Berkley, University of Maryland, and SUNY Albany to launch the Deepfake Detection Challenge. The DFDC as its referred to includes a data set of 100k+ videos using paid actors — as well as grants and awards —aimed to inspire new ways of detecting and preventing AI-manipulated media.

The DFDC will run to the end of March of this year with the goal of “…producing technology that everyone can use to better detect when AI has been used to alter a video in order to mislead the viewer.” According to the official website, a winner will be determined based on “a test mechanism that enables teams to score the effectiveness of their models, against one or more black-box tests from our founding partners,” the company shared.

‘Deepfake’ techniques, which present realistic AI-generated videos of real people doing and saying fictional things, have significant implications for determining the legitimacy of information presented online,” shared Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer in a recent blog post.

In addition to these efforts, the platform followed up with a new policy that would remove synthesized or edited content in ways that “aren’t apparent to an average person and would likely mislead,” or deepfake posts that use AI technologies to “merge, replace, or superimpose content onto a video, making it appear authentic.”

Again, the issue becomes how we as an industry will move forward walking the fine line between malicious deepfakes and those with less-harmful intents of creative parodies or satire.

Learn more about this topic as part of our 2020 theme HUMAN.X through the lens of the subtheme Privacy Matters. Read the official announcement here and secure your early-bird discount today to save 20% on your full-conference pass to #SMWNYC (May 5-7, 2020).

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The post 4 Major Brands and Platforms Addressing Digital Literacy and Fake News in 2020 appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/01/4-major-brands-and-platforms-addressing-digital-literacy-and-fake-news-in-2020/

Netflix’s Horny Tweet Inspires Brands To Deliver Their Most NSFW Sex Lines



Image via Bogdan Glisik / Shutterstock.com

Netflix has decided to put other brands to the test with their raunchiest comments. The streaming platform’s account posted a tweet, which read, “What’s something you can say during sex but also when you manage a brand Twitter account?”

This led to a plethora of replies from the Twitter accounts of various brands, leaving their users bewildered by the chain of NSFW comments.

Tech firm Ubisoft playfully responded with, “Ubisoft,” while competitor site Hulu joked, “Netflix and chill?”

Paramount Pictures also joined in with, “I’m not sure we want to touch this,” and makeup brand ColourPop Cosmetics sneakily replied, “Use your fingers for best results.” Gaming site cheekily commented, “Player [three] has entered.”

However, not everyone on the platform is pleased. One user tweeted, “911, the brands are at it again,” hinting at an immediate action to stop this atrocity.

The joke went a little off-track when IMDb tweeted, “The Mandalorian continues to dominate,” and Netflix responded, “more of a Baby Yoda lover myself.” It’s probably not the best idea to put the beloved Baby Yoda in a sexual context.

Scroll down for some thirsty one-liners from brands.

what’s something you can say during sex but also when you manage a brand twitter account?

— Netflix US (@netflix) December 5, 2019

netflix and chill?

— hulu (@hulu) December 5, 2019

Double tap.

— Instagram (@instagram) December 6, 2019

Haters will say it's Photoshopped… pic.twitter.com/OIISexKwEG

— Adobe Photoshop (@Photoshop) December 6, 2019

Use your fingers for best results 😉

— ColourPop Cosmetics (@ColourPopCo) December 6, 2019

I'm not sure we want to touch this.

— Paramount Network (@paramountnet) December 5, 2019

The Mandalorian continues to dominate

— IMDb (@IMDb) December 5, 2019

more of a Baby Yoda lover myself

— Netflix US (@netflix) December 5, 2019

Player 3 has entered.

— R Λ Z Ξ R (@Razer) December 6, 2019

"This is delicious"

— Aviation American Gin (@AviationGin) December 5, 2019

View this post on Instagram

Presenting: the best Twitter thread of 2019. Curated for your viewing pleasure. #CommentsByCelebs

A post shared by Comments By Celebs (@commentsbycelebs) on Dec 6, 2019 at 9:57am PST

911 the brands are at it again pic.twitter.com/xlHAN15Gcg

— peytøn (@peytnhaag) December 6, 2019

[via Ladbible, images via Bogdan Glisik / Shutterstock.com] http://www.designtaxi.com/news/407759/Netflix-s-Horny-Tweet-Inspires-Brands-To-Deliver-Their-Most-NSFW-Sex-Lines/

How to Leverage Twitter’s Event Calendar to Map Your 2020 Content Strategy

Marketers alike recognize that Twitter is a central hub for the latest conversations on breaking trends and news, and as more conversations unfold it can be easy to get distracted in the hustle and lose sight of the core events and dialogues your brands can lead.

To help guide your future strategies, Twitter has launched its calendar of 2020 events that will unfold including the Olympics and #WorldEmojiDay.

Here’s a high-level breakdown for navigating the calendar’s features:

Categories are a marketer’s friend

As depicted above, the calendar illustrates each event categorized by topics spanning “Sports,” “Entertainment” and “Holidays,” and assigns each a color for easy tracking and deciphering. Disclaimer — the platform does not provide relative tweet volume stats as previously offered in editions but further insights into specific events and holidays can be found via your Twitter Ads tools.

For December and January, a couple of examples of tips and tricks when mapping out your content include:

“December is a month of holidays — and a month of travel. If there is content you want people to read or listen to, consider framing — or even creating — it as a way to pass time en route.”

“Get in on the fun of award season (we see you, #GoldenGlobes and #Grammys) with some ‘awards’ of your own. Use Twitter Polls to have followers vote for their favorites — this could be research-driven, like their favorite type of content or something purely fun, like their favorite emojis.”

Brevity, targeting, and other best practices

Additional examples reinforce best practices like brevity and how to take advantage of the platform’s core features. Specifically, always seek to condense your copy to its core message and hook and have fun with visuals like GIFs and video. Internal research has shown Tweets with video attract 10x more engagement and posts with GIFs gained 55 percent more engagement than Tweets without them.

For e-comm brands Twitter offers ways to diversify your ideas with gift guides, how-to videos, product spotlights, and pre-order campaigns. For more educational content, consider crafting a video tutorial, host a webinar or Periscope, and utilize Tweet thread to answer FAQs.

Finally, audience targeting and conversation targeting are also important to keep in mind while you plan and can help you refine your message and who it is being delivered to. You can choose from over 25 categories and more than 10,000+ topics.

Support your efforts in the next year and enhance your strategy whether for a single day or a several-month campaign by downloading the calendar here.

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The post How to Leverage Twitter’s Event Calendar to Map Your 2020 Content Strategy appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/12/how-to-leverage-twitters-event-calendar-to-map-your-2020-content-strategy/

How The World’s Leading Brands Are Crafting Highly Engaging Campaigns on Twitter

Let’s take a trip down memory lane to the year 2014. Twitter is eight years old and primarily represents an alternative to micro-blogging, compelling users to fit within the confines of a 140 character limit per Tweet.

Fast forward to today, the conversations have evolved and increased in importance, binding people by shared values, causes, and interests. Images, GIFs, and videos give users a richer, more emotive way to communicate.

More marketers are beginning to understand the critical value of interaction and what makes people genuinely want to participate with a certain idea or message. It isn’t a case of luck. Rather, the success stories begin with listening. Putting this knowledge to work is what ultimately gives brands the best shot at success today and those that don’t simply fall victim to deaf ears and eyes.

It may sound simple enough, but to make it even simpler let’s break down six key insights, inspired by Twitter’s Influencing Culture: The Participation Playbook, that you’ll need in order to craft campaigns that people will want to engage with.

Don’t underestimate the power of social listening

Image via Twitter Marketing

There’s no rhyme or reason when it comes to the ideal marketing plan, but what most have agreed on is that it begins with acutely understanding what it is you want to achieve. Are you focused on a targeted group of people? Are you looking to bring new customers to your brand or business?

For answers, you need to tune into what is being said about your company and its competitors. When done right, you can leverage this information and apply it across business development across R&D, customer service and real-time campaigns.

An exemplar brand that recently used this insight to its full advantage is Burger King. In 2017 the restaurant chain introduced spicy chicken nuggets to its menu conveniently after seeing people on Twitter complain about Wendy’s ditching its own. These comments became the exact inspiration for its ad campaign on twitter which helped sell three months’ worth of nuggets in only four weeks. The campaign was shortlisted for a Social & Influencer Lion at Cannes 2018.

Prioritize communication over consumption

Image via Twitter Marketing

In 2015, REI and Venables Bell & Partners initiated a campaign #OptOutside, which centered around its decision to shut all stores on Black Friday to encourage people to explore the wilderness.

The result? More than 1.4 million people used the brand’s hashtag in conversation REI signed up a record number of new members to its co-operative that year.

In this example, a brand’s story was used to create a movement, not just a conversation, and it can best be explained by looking at the principle of self-identity. Put simply, it was easy for people to express their distaste for consumerism and get behind the campaign and communicate their innate sense of innate adventure and fitness in line with REI’s mission “to awaken a lifelong love of the outdoors, for all.”

Think beyond the metrics

Image via Twitter Marketing

Much like the conversations on Twitter have evolved, so too have the metrics that marketers are using as measures of determining success. The primary cause of this is the rise in bots and click farms causing distrust amongst users.

Indeed, the best margins for advertising are on the lowest cost content, typically favoring content that is fake, negative or sensational but marketers today must think bigger and more holistically. Instead, winning brand stories now hinge on real-world outcomes and deeper connections with consumers.

What this boils down is digital marketing that prioritizes the human experience, communicating deep and profound respect for a person’s time and attention, and being proactive in how you address pain points and frustrations when they occur.

For instance, In 2018, Verizon cheekily, and helpfully, responded to people’s frustrated Tweets about rival broadband suppliers.

When the company noticed people taking to Twitter to complain about dropped signals while they were trying to stream college basketball games, Verizon seized an opportunity to demonstrate it was better than its competitors by sending users written reports of what they weren’t able to follow. The campaign, which was ultimately supported by NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, was shortlisted at Cannes Lion the same year.

Cultivate lots of little ideas

VMLY&R‘s Jen McDonald hit the nail on the head when she said, “If you’re trying to hit a home run every single time, you’re going to strike out.”

In a digital landscape where competition is paramount and attention spans have never been shorter, it’s easy to default to the expectation that everything you do has to break the internet. Quite the contrary, some of the biggest successes seen on Twitter began by steadily engaging a base of fans with fun interactions.

For instance, Wendy’s ‎#NuggsForCarter challenging a fan to get 18 million Retweets in return for a year of free chicken nuggets became the most Retweeted Tweet of all time until earlier this year when a Japanese billionaire offered cash prizes to people who shared his Tweet. It also won a silver PR Lion at Cannes in 2017.

The takeaway here is that generally, crafting stories to appeal to lots of people tend to only gain traction amongst a few. Alternatively, creating something more micro-level, that appeals to more specialized tastes and interests, increases the likelihood that your content will spread faster and farther. Bear in mind the term “ripple effect.” Start with a pebble, not a huge rock.

Be fearless in your Twitter tone

Let’s face it, composing that perfect Tweet is a mind game. No one wants a jargon-heavy piece of writing and at the same time, no amount of clever phrasing is going to trick people into talking about your brand if your idea or campaign does prioritize their needs and interests.

In 2017, McDonald’s took to the platform to share, “All Quarter Pounder burgers at the majority of our restaurants will be cooked with fresh beef.” Wendy’s saw this and wittingly replied, “So you’ll still use frozen beef in MOST of your burgers in ALL of your restaurants? Asking for a friend.”

The Tweet received more than 175,000 Retweets and started a follow-up chain of discussion that garnered more than 7,000 replies. The main insight to take from this example is that seizing the moment of impact can be powerful. Strive for speed and take inspiration for how you want to craft your tone based on how people are actually talking.

In yet another example, Crock-Pot abandoned its usual tone of voice in 2017 when the company was blamed for [SPOILER ALERT] the death of Jack Pearson on the TV show This is Us. The Twitter damage control that ensued relied on a lot of emojis and vernacular to resonate with the show’s fans and communicate authenticity and genuity.

The campaign, created in partnership with Edelman, generated 3.7 billion impressions was awarded a Silver Lion in the PR category at Cannes. Crock-Pot also enjoyed a $300,000 bump in its February sales.

Put the customer first

Indeed the largest obstacle with social media is that we obligated to succumb to vanity metrics. The likes, retweets, and follows, and in the process comes a desire to please as many people as possible. It’s easy to know when you’re doing this well and when you’re not.

“Getting good isn’t hard. It’s a symptom you did something else right,” per the philosophy of author, entrepreneur and marketer, Seth Godin. When we chase these metrics it can be a trap of false progress and in actuality dilute our power. The focus should always be on creating and sharing the stories that matter for people who care.

“You can seek out the people who care, or you can yell at the people in the middle who are ignoring you,” says Godin.

For more insights from Seth, check out his episode of Social Media Week’s Leads2Scale podcast where he discussed the keys to getting at the heart of great storytelling, why empathy is overlooked as a core marketing strength, and much more.

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The post How The World’s Leading Brands Are Crafting Highly Engaging Campaigns on Twitter appeared first on Social Media Week.

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How to Bring Groups and Personalized Experiences Into Your Marketing Strategy

Marketing is grounded in authentic storytelling that aims to solve real-world problems for audiences. In an age of over information abundance, a very critical obligation for our industry is respecting people’s time and attention and delivering them tailored experiences that will shape their lives in meaningful ways.

Let’s take a look at how a few major platforms are incorporating updates to help users engage authentically and accurately.

Pinterest is looking to help its community in the content discovery space by making it easier to communicate with group members directly via a board.

New tools recently launched aim to achieve this goal include more reactions to elicit feedback, the ability to sort pins, and a central hub for communicating with group members.

“We spend a lot of time talking to Pinners, and whenever we hear from creative professionals — whether hair and makeup stylists, interior designers, wedding planners, or architects — one common theme comes up: they use Group Boards constantly to collaborate with their teams and clients,” the company stated in an official blog post.

New reactions

Pinners already have the ability to “heart” a pin they love. Now, with the addition of a pair of clapping hands, as well as thumbs down, question mark and lightbulb options, users have a much more specific and emotive way of engaging with content. These will display in a new pop up panel alongside a Pin once it’s tapped or clicked on.

Here’s a visual of what you can expect to see:

Sorting Pins

Also part of its slew of Group Board updates, Pinterest is giving users the ability to sort their Pins by “Most Reactions” and “Most Comments” so popular and unpopular ideas can be more easily traceable and differentiated. Ultimately, the goal with this move is to help projects move forward more swiftly. The company is also expected to launch a tool that would reveal the person behind the idea of Pin and the date it was saved as well.

Redesigned collaboration spaces

Finally, Pinterest is promising the rollout of a new space in which users can connect directly with contributors without ever having to deviate from the board. Users can already engage with one another via the activity tab, but with a new dedicated chat option with group collections, it’s clear the social network is eager to take their dedication to commenting even further.

Ultimately, the motive is to make the tool more engaging and maximize the time spent within the platform. To be clear, however, this isn’t for broader social connection, the emphasis still remains devoted to product engagement and discussion within smaller groups. “In fact, 98 percent of Group Boards have five or less people, and 77 percent of Group Boards are between two people,” the social network reported.

Yet another major platform making a push towards helping its users effectively sift between content that matters to them and posts that don’t map to their interests and needs is Twitter.

Multiple timelines

Twitter users are now able to add up to five lists as alternative timelines within the main app, enabling them to swipe between groups of accounts that they’re following directly from their home screen. In short, think of these as filters to your overall following base and chronological timeline where you can keep tabs on certain groups, perhaps old college roommates or coworkers, that you may not necessarily want to follow regularly.

On iOS, access Lists by tapping your profile to open the Home menu and select the ‘Lists’ tab. Next, pin or unpin certain profiles and create a List from the Lists tab.

Paired with this update, Twitter is adding a fresh landing page for newly curated lists, which, depicted below, incorporates a header image and more context about your customizable timelines, including the number of members and subscribers.

Per The Verge, as you build your multiple timelines, general platform rules and standards apply. Specifically, you can opt to make them private or public and follow any public lists created by other users. Lastly, a person can remove themselves from lists they no longer want to be a part of by blocking the list’s owner.

Facebook Watch Party

Finally, earlier this year Facebook launched Watch Party, a feature that allows members of Groups to watch live or pre-recorded videos together and comment in real-time.

“We’ve been focused on building new ways to bring people together around video, create connections, and ignite conversations; Watch Party is the next step in bringing this vision to life…If people can start a Watch Party directly from their profile or from a video they’re watching, the experience of watching video on Facebook can become even more fun and social,” the company shared in the announcement.

In this way, the Group becomes the TV station and the videos serve as the programs or lineup that can be viewed collectively with your friends.

Small groups continue to be the fastest-growing areas of online communication and it is important for marketers to understand that as they look to identify new ways for engaging their audiences, connecting privately in safe and trusted spaces is a dominant preference. As these examples demonstrate, group culture provides creative ways to encounter new ideas, interact with content with greater accuracy, and identify people with similar interests.

Looking ahead, marketers have a unique opportunity to innovate for a more personalized, curated future in a way that acknowledges a deeper respect for a consumer’s time and attention.

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Twitter’s Agency Playbook: Your Complete Guide to Crafting Effective Campaigns

Last Tuesday Twitter published its Agency Playbook targeted to serve as a one-stop-shop guide for improving campaigns developed by marketers and agencies.

“Digital advertising is hard. With new targeting tools, lightning-fast trends, and constantly-changing best practices, it can be overwhelming and challenging to stay on top of the game. Especially when you’re managing campaigns for multiple clients,” explained content coordinator Michelle Lee in an official blog post.

To simplify this process, the Playbook is divided into sections breaking down various campaign types, interest-based targeting and analytics tools, and creative ad specs. Rounding out these tips and best practices are actionable insights from the platform’s Business team and success stories from brands and agencies.

The guide kicks off addressing a fundamental and overarching question: what exactly is Twitter’s specific role in a holistic marketing campaign? In response, the Playbook points to the marketing calendar and events dashboard to help you optimize the planning of content.

To improve your conversations and delivery, the Guide stresses the use of the most clever, conversational and bold version of your brand voice when composing Tweets and breaking any and all brand news to reinforce your timeline around launch updates, promotions, or sneak peeks. Finally, incorporate both a healthy and balanced mix of organic and paid content.

Managing client expectations & setting up a brand account

As far as managing client expectations is concerned, the Playbook points to benchmarking data in addition to other targeting capabilities and stresses that success on Twitter is about reaching the right people—not reaching the most people. It also reminds readers that as with any platform, patience is a virtue and it takes time to build a loyal presence and following.

When setting up a brand Twitter account, key pieces of advice shared in the guide include filling keeping the bio as clear and simple as possible underscoring why a user would want to follow your company, maintaining visual consistency and choosing the best-pinned tweet. Think of your Pinned Tweet as the answer to someone asking your account “what’s new?”

Crafting an effective tweet

Aside from your pinned Tweet, additional dos and don’ts to keep in mind include avoiding more than two hashtags in a single post, keeping copy clear, concise, and bold, and embedding images and media such as emojis, pictures, and short videos when possible. Another habit you’ll want to steer clear from? Setting your campaigns and then forgetting about them. Check on a newly launched campaign every few days to gauge progress.

Choosing a campaign type & identifying your target audience

There are several campaign types offered by Twitter and selecting one boils down to a firm understanding of what you or your client is trying to achieve. The Playbook breaks down, for example, campaigns ideal optimizing for followers, website clicks or conversions, application installs, example app re-engagement, tweet engagement, and video views.

Hitting the right mix often takes multiple campaigns running at the same time in a trial and error system. To help you navigate these decisions, subsequent chapters of the Playbook break down specifications for tweets, media, and various ad formats and cards, as well as important statistics and data points aimed at helping people pitch Twitter to their clients.

As you hone your approach, you can begin to define your target audience through a combination of demographic and behavioral characteristics. Keywords, interests, events, conversation, and engagement are just a few options. You can also create tailored audience lists and use conversion tracking to monitor performance.

Measuring your results

The tweet activity dashboard, audience insight dashboard, account homepage, and campaign dashboards will be your go-to sources for viewing month-to-month performance reports and helpful metrics including impressions, engagement, profile visits, new followers, and mentions.

As Lee underscores towards the closing of the post, the goal of publishing this piece of content is to address the common pain points surrounding Twitter ads and “consolidate the necessary, must-have information in one place.”

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/twitters-agency-playbook-your-complete-guide-to-crafting-effective-campaigns/

4 Major Platforms Pushing to Overhaul Vanity Metrics and What This Means for Marketers

The internet was founded on the promise of a digital utopia that would enable a natural flow of information sharing and connectivity. Today, however, we face an inflection point in which there are growing concerns that we’ve squandered this opportunity in lieu of chasing reach and scale and prioritizing content that distracts and interrupts, in turn promoting divisiveness and narcissism.

When a post doesn’t perform with big numbers, people instantly feel bad. Conversely, when they see a high volume of interaction they are triggered with an instant feeling of satisfaction equivalent to a hit of dopamine.

Several platforms are hoping to make radical changes addressing this issue. Let’s take a look at some of the latest updates making headlines and what they mean for marketers:

Instagram

Image via Instagram

Following the recent F8 developer conference this past April, Instagram announced that it would be conducting tests for a new feature that would hide users’ public like counts on videos and photos. Kicking off the process with Canada, likes would be hidden in the Feed, permalinked pages, and on profiles.

In a quote shared by The Verge, Instagram stated the motive behind the decision was that it wants followers to “focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get.”

Initially, the test was met with uncertainty regarding how it would impact how it would influence the way the platform was used, particularly by influencers who heavily rely on such metrics as a measure of how their content is performing. After a few months of testing, however, sentiments have seemed to shift with people acknowledging the benefits of the feature.

One user, Matt Dusenbury, shared, “Without seeing the likes count on feed posts now, I find myself more clearly focused on the actual quality of the content being posted.”

Instagram has yet to officially publish data around how effective hiding likes has been on people’s posting habits, but last week, as of May the test has expanded to six more countries: Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand.

Individuals who are part of this test group can still the number on their own content as long as they tap through it, but must opt-out in order to show the likes publicly.

Facebook

— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) September 2, 2019

Fast-forward to this month, Instagram’s parent company is taking a few notes and confirmed to TechCrunch the platform is contemplating hiding the Like Counter on News Feeds posts in an effort to dissuade censorship and inhibit sentiments of envy. In other words, there is a desire to take away the popularity contest that comes with engaging on the social platform.

The test was first reported by Jane Manchun Wong who took to Twitter to reveal that she had spotted Facebook prototyping the hidden Like counts within its Android app.

No further details have been shared by the platform regarding exact motives, or any schedule for starting testing but one can assume it would be gradual to allow for implications with respect to response and ad revenue from brands to be identified.

USA Today recently shared some feedback that has already surfaced on the Internet regarding the potential move.

“Bad thing,” said Facebook user Phil Leigh, “Likes give the poster a way to measure whether her content is useful to others, especially as it is tracked over time.”

On Twitter, reviews were mixed, some claiming they have since stopped using Facebook, others pointing to a reduction in scalability. Monica Reddy, however, is an advocate for pushing back against the notion that dominant the social landscape of ‘keeping score.’

YouTube

Per a recent Marketing Land report, as of this month, YouTube will begin showing abbreviated subscriber counts for channels with 1,000 or more subscribers.

“Beyond creating more consistency, ​this addresses creator concerns about ​stress and ​wellbeing, specifically around tracking public subscriber counts in real-time.​ ​We hope this helps all creators focus on telling their story, and​ experience less pressure​ about the numbers,” explained a YouTube team member on the site’s Community Forum Blog.

Creators and Developers instantly had questions and expressed a desire for more details about how the YouTube Data API Service would change. The platform clarified describing that Creators will still be able to see their exact subscriber numbers in YouTube Studio and YouTube analytics. Examples outlined how public-facing subscribers counts would now appear. For instance, channels with 12,345 subscribers would show a subscriber count of 12.3K, channels with 1,234,567 would show 1.23M, and channels with 123,456,789 subscribers would display a subscriber count of 123M.

As far as reactions, one individual, Martyn Littlewood pointed to the impact this would have on brand partnerships and their accuracy stating on the forum thread, “Business partners could go elsewhere if they believe their quota can’t be met — alternatively it could low ball initial offers from them and undermine brand deal opportunities. Sure, you could argue that they [brands] will get in touch, then you can send accurate information, but what if they never call at all?”

Another, Terry Ghast, raised similar concerns about authenticity claiming, “If this is to discourage ‘cancel culture,’ make this an optional setting that is defaulted to abbreviation but still allow viewers the ability to turn it off so they can track sub count to celebrate milestones together…Showing full sub count would be a badge of authenticity, and more believable than abbreviated. Please listen to the community and not be caught in your echo chamber.”

LinkedIn

This past Spring LinkedIn rolled out a new assortment of reactions targeted to provide ‘more expression ways to respond to the variety of posts you see in your feed.” Added options including Love, Celebrate, Insightful and Curious also serve the purpose of helping users better understand the impact your posts are having and additional insight into why someone is engaging with the piece of content.

“We took a thoughtful approach to designing these reactions, centered around understanding which ones would be most valuable to the types of conversations members have on LinkedIn,” said LinkedIn’s Cissy Chen in the official announcement. She pointed to examples as to how each could be used for instance using Celebrate to praise an accomplishment or work milestone, Love to express deep support around topics of work/life balance and mentorship, and Insightful or Curious when you encounter a thought-provoking idea.

What does it all mean?

Now that we’ve broken down the latest proposed and existing changes across these major platforms, let’s dissect what this means in the grand scheme of marketing.

Influencer content specifically will pivot to more higher quality content as metrics they’re accustomed to leaning on won’t carry as much weight as they previously did. What the hope is with this transition is that we will ultimately see cases of deeper, more meaningful engagement through incentivizing users to focus more on the content and not on the competition. For instance, it may pave the way to a spike in commenting behavior which arguably is more productive than a simple ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down.’

On the flip side, without such easily trackable metrics, influencers inevitably become harder to scout.

For brands, hiding the number of likes makes it more challenging to legitimize their partnerships and in fact, may discourage them from working with influencers and instead lean on targeted ads as guaranteed drivers of the results they’re after. If they do decide to collaborate with an influencer, they’re more likely to put paid media support behind their influencer posts, and also opt for ephemeral content that has a finite lifespan before it disappears.

Ultimately, there are pros and cons to this movement but one thing remains clear: it has the potential to radically change the social media system we’ve come to know over the past decade.

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Twitter Testing Reply Subscriptions to Streamline Busy Conversations

As Twitter threads and “tweetstorms” have surged in popularity, users have long lamented the intricate lengths one must take to follow a poster’s tweets. If Twitter’s latest test feature is adopted by the platform, that challenge stands to disappear.

If you see a tweet ending in a notation like “/1,” users will have the option to “subscribe to replies,” ensuring that later additions to the thread won’t go missing. You’ll also be able to see how other users are responding to the poster’s tweets. “While users can already get notifications for all tweets shared by an individual account,” The Verge reported, “users in the test can now choose to get notifications for replies to individual tweets, too.”

For social media managers wanting to monitor tweets calling for user-generated content, this could be an easy way to keep track of submissions. Similarly, if one wanted to track the replies to the similar tweet of a competitor, the feature could be similarly useful here. And for those curious about the reception that a prospective influencer might receive on certain tweets, this could be one of a few methods used to track their reported impact.

Lest you worry that such a move would inundate the subscriber with all replies indiscriminately, TechCrunch reports that responses would be algorithmically sorted, and “top replies will include those from the author, anyone they mentioned, and people you follow.” The move is one of several Twitter is making to allow conversations to be more focused, followable, and fun to be a part of.

This last trait is one that Twitter continues to work to provide, as accusations of hate, harassment, and toxicity continue to barrage Twitter’s support and developer teams. Tests like this and their also-in-testing option to hide replies, are all “focused on making conversations on its platform easier to follow, participate in and, in some cases, block.”

And while measures like this are designed to show that the company is listening to its most aggrieved users, fixes like this do more to isolate conversations of interest than they do crackdown on harmful behavior’s origins. Put another way, The Verge’s Jay Peters notes, “Twitter seems to be focusing on getting users to spend more time on the platform, but still isn’t doing enough to ensure a better experience while they’re there.”

The feature is currently being tested on both iOS and Android, with no official word on when the decision will be made to adopt the feature across all operating versions.

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Is Your Brand’s Social Media Strategy Anti-Social?

How do you define your brand’s social media strategy? Do the words “community” or “conversation” come to mind? If they aren’t immediately a part of your answer, it might be time to reevaluate.

This year, LUSH Cosmetics UK announced their move from multiple social handles to a single brand hashtag, #LUSHCommunity. This news quickly became a topic of office conversation. How would LUSH contact their audiences? How would they share updates? Make announcements?

But then, we stopped. We took a second look.

Traditionally, brands have treated social media as a megaphone. But, by using social media as just another tool to expand reach, brands overlook the reason that social media exists in the first place: to cultivate a community for conversation.

For brands, social media should be a starting point. Brands need to remember that social media is a shared space, and for consumers, its value isn’t monetary. It’s the social currency users gain when they engage with each other that matters more.

If the people using social media care more about content, conversation and clout than they do about click-through rates, then brands should care more about those elements as well.

So, what if we started treating brands on social media as communities?

What if we decentralized the brand’s social media presence to let its community curate its story?

Would we cultivate more human connections?

Building customer content into the brand’s social media strategy

Sabine Schwirtz, Community Manager at LUSH Cosmetics North America, discusses a shift in brand identity. She states, “I think many marketers who have been in the industry for a long time are worried about maintaining the voice of the brand. But, the voice of the brand is not always the same as the voice of the customers. We’re moving closer to times where a brand’s identity is the same as their customers’ identity.”

And, Stephanie Buscemi, CMO at Salesforce, recently reiterated that sentiment. She states, “In the future, the content won’t come from the brands. It will come from the communities.”

LUSH has simply given customers a place to discuss, ask questions and interact with each other. The community becomes a place for customers to lean into their passion for the brand and its products.

It’s a disruptive decision. There’s no denying that releasing control of your brand’s narrative in this way is a risk. But, it’s undoubtedly a trend. If you’re too nervous to let your customers take some control of the conversation, it’s possible that you actually don’t know them as well as you think.

Shifting from social listening to social understanding

When a brand shifts from driving the conversation to letting customers take the wheel, the brand’s social media strategy moves from communication to collaboration. In doing so, the brand moves from social listening to social understanding.

Social media isn’t the only place where a marked shift to understanding is happening. Up and coming technologies, like voice search, artificial intelligence and voice robots also require a deeper level of understanding to be effective. It’s a trait that has always differentiated the computer from the human. A computer can listen to provide output, but a human can understand to provide input.

By cultivating community, brands can listen and contribute, but more importantly, they can understand. They can act accordingly.

Creating a community-driven roadmap

When brands better understand customer needs, they can shape their R&D and product roadmaps to solve for those pain points. That level of personalization nurtures loyal customers that in turn organically advocate for your brand.

When a brand’s social media strategy focuses on community, brands acknowledge customers as content creators. This shift replaces a brand’s inauthentic social presence with a content strategy driven by real, lasting relationships.

By recognizing social media as a gateway, brands tap into the world of possibilities that the user-generated content created there provides — and the immense amount of value it adds to brand identity.

The post Is Your Brand’s Social Media Strategy Anti-Social? appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/is-your-brands-social-media-strategy-anti-social/

Facebook Follows Twitter’s Footsteps, Ranks Comments to Lift “Meaningful” Contributions

Twitter isn’t the only company learning from the experiments taking place on its twttr app; it would appear that Facebook is borrowing a page from this partially hidden playbook.

Late last week, Facebook announced that it would be ranking comments on Pages and profiles with a lot of followers, with the goal of making conversation more “meaningful.” By that, they likely mean less contentious and polarizing, if the details of the feature are to be believed.

Said Facebook Product Manager Justine Shen in the feature announcement, “ranking […] promotes meaningful conversations by showing people the posts and comments most relevant to them.” Some of the ranking factors are intuitive ones, like boosting comments that have a number of reactions, comments that the original poster has interacted with, or comments that come from friends of the original poster.

Additionally, Facebook will be pulling details from their recently deployed surveys to determine what sorts of comments people want to see.

But some factors seem a bit more vague. The most nebulous is “integrity signals,” an impressive yet vague sounding phrase on the same level as Twitter’s oft-pronounced “platform health,” that will allegedly filter out posts that violate Facebook’s terms and conditions as well as what Shen calls “engagement bait.” Though what engagement bait precisely entails goes unaddressed in the post, I would imagine the team will use a combination and machine learning to identify combative or abusive language. Further, Shen closes the post by saying, “We will continue to take other signals into account so we do not prominently show low-quality comments, even if they are from the person who made the original post or their friends.” I have to wonder what sorts of comments would fall into that category? For example, the relative who uses your posting as a cue to tell you something – however random – in a comment below. Would their remark be lost to the algorithm?

The feature is being deployed automatically for “Pages for public figures, organizations, and businesses,” as well as for select individual profiles that have a lot of followers. However, other users can opt in to use the feature in Settings. Curiously, the ability to rank comments on posts in Groups is unmentioned in this post – an interesting omission in light of the platform’s pivot toward these virtual gathering places. A likely reason? The sorts of contentious comments that are happening “in open air” like Pages or personal profiles, can be less common in Groups. So for now, product managers are focusing on the spaces most likely to breed contempt and aiming to quiet it.

After all, as Shen says early in the announcement, “We’re always working to ensure that people’s time on Facebook is well spent.” In their eyes, reducing the time and energy one spends wading through toxic or combative comments is an effective way to do that. Here’s hoping the feature’s beneficiaries come to agree.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/06/facebook-follows-twitters-footsteps-ranks-comments-to-lift-meaningful-contributions/

Testing Reveals Twitter and Instagram’s Efforts to “Reduce Herd Mentality” on Their Platforms

“All of social media is at a crossroads, having built platforms that cater to engagement over health and safety; they’re now trying to backpedal furiously ahead of increased regulation.”

With this quote, TechCrunch’s Sarah Perez nailed the crux of the many announced changes we’re seeing on social media platforms. For a long time, engagement was the buzzword of choice; site founders and developers pushed for new features (and ignored problems) in dogged pursuit of this metric at the highest levels. But now that its consequences are coming into sharp focus, a new direction is being pursued. In the past few weeks, we’ve gotten more clarity on how Twitter and Instagram plan to address parts of this large and complex challenge.

Instagram: “Exploring Ways to Reduce Pressure”

Developer and app detective Jane Manchun Wong uncovered a feature hidden in the code of Instagram: an option to hide “likes” on a photo. Engadget reports that Wong shared news of “a version [of Instagram] that doesn’t let the audience see how many likes a post gets.” They go on:

The person who posted it still does, but as the app describes it, “we want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get. During this test, only the person who share [sic] a post will see the total number of likes it gets.”

For the average user, this could be a beneficial way to reduce some of the competitiveness that seems to arise around using Instagram. As Josh Constine points out for TechCrunch, it will likely reduce the temptation to “like” something because everyone else is liking it (and phenomena like World Record Egg will likely be a thing of the past), and the temptation to delete posts with low like numbers will abate. However, it could present a challenge for influencers; while likes are becoming a less valuable metric when assessing their value and impact, the invisibility of this measure could make identifying bankable partners more difficult.

An Instagram spokesperson has confirmed that these tests are happening, but there’s no target for a release of the feature, or even if it’ll be released officially at all. But previous features uncovered by Wong in this fashion have gone on to be released. So now we wait.

Twitter: New Control Over Conversations

Meanwhile, over on Twitter, a well-received test feature in their prototype twttr app appears to be coming to life in the full version this summer.

“Hide Replies” will allow the original poster on a thread to alter the visibility of replies on the timeline. Unlike Facebook or Instagram, which allow the original poster to delete replies outright, Twitter will instead permit them to “hide” them, requiring an additional click to be viewed as part of the conversation.

This is a pro for those who find themselves attracting any sort of distracting response: at best, extraneous or off-topic responses; at worst, abuse or trolling responses. However, a need for an original poster to sift through replies that fall into the “worst” category is among the potential cons for the feature. Another possible downside? This feature allows for the silencing (or, at the very least, temporary obstruction) of dissenting opinions—or even factual additions to a conversation.

The “hide replies” measure is among several Twitter shared as part of an update on their pursuit of the ever-elusive and ill-defined metric of “platform health.” Other changes include clearer explanations for tweets designated to stay on the feed despite their violation of the rules, and more ease in sharing specifics when flagging tweets that threaten user safety. In all of this, the goal seems to be twofold: to reduce the burden of those most vulnerable on Twitter for keeping themselves safe, and to distance themselves as a company from their reputation for being negligent toward these users.

Will These Measures Work?

It’s hard to know whether the measures each platform is taking will make a dent in a culture that has already shifted so dramatically as a result of these apps. And it’ll take far more than this to cure the ills that each site suffers from. Instagram, thanks to its parent company Facebook, was part of a major news dump for its vulnerable password storage system. And even as these changes were being reported and progress was being shared, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey found himself under fire at TED 2019 for the site’s glacial pace of change.

But for the time being, the focus is on how to make these sites better for those who have made them part of their daily lives. And what these measures seem to have in common, is returning some control over the experience to the user. It’ll be interesting to see how, when given some power in these spaces that often make many feel powerless, the experience starts to change for all involved.

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The post Testing Reveals Twitter and Instagram’s Efforts to “Reduce Herd Mentality” on Their Platforms appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/04/testing-reveals-twitter-and-instagrams-efforts-to-reduce-herd-mentality-on-their-platforms/

How To Caption Your Content Across All Social Media Platforms

Video is now an essential part of the social media experience. It provides a highly compelling vehicle for storytelling, and captures the attention in a way that eclipses static content like text or photography. So it’s not surprising that, according to a study released by We Are Social, 70% of companies are planning to focus on video this year. However, video needs to be more than just visually stunning and competently produced—it needs to be enjoyable for all, including the 466 million people globally who are deaf or hard of hearing. Increasingly, this means including closed captioning and subtitling for the videos you produce and post on your brand’s behalf.

Thankfully, a number of leading social media platforms are shouldering part of the responsibility for this task. In creating these options, their hope is that more friends, followers, and partners will be able to enjoy and learn from your content. If you’re looking to get started captioning video, here’s how to do it.

Twitter

Twitter’s support for native subtitling is the newest of the platforms we’ll discuss; it was added to their suite of accessibility options within the last month. Available in the Twitter Media Studio, the process requires the uploading of an SRT (SubRip Subtitle) file, composed with relative ease via Notepad or Text Edit on your computer.

Once you designate the language of origin, you’re now ready to release a video that can be easily understood. Given that 93% of Twitter videos are watched without sound, it is a highly advantageous feature for your video content.

Facebook

Reportedly, 80% of social media users react negatively when an ad or other video auto-plays with sound; captioning content that shows up in these feeds can help you grab attention without arousing shock or ire. Facebook has a few options for subtitling video; the company released an “auto-caption” option in 2017, but it has come under occasional fire for its accuracy. They’re not alone in this challenge (YouTube faces it as well) – any site’s automatic option is subject to the interpretation of the technology used to decipher it. Should you wish to avoid these flubs and upload your own, you can do so after uploading the video.

Once the upload is complete, click “Subtitles and Captions” in the right hand column. You’ll be asked about the native language of the video; select the one that is appropriate for the content you’re sharing. Then, you can upload the SRT file containing your video’s script and captioning timestamps. And if you do want to chance the discretion of an auto-subtitling, you can select that option here as well.

YouTube

As you might expect, the streaming video giant places a high premium on accessible video. A less expected development: as of press time, the Beta version of their Creator Studio doesn’t support the subtitling or captioning of uploaded video. Users wishing to assure a video’s accessibility for the hearing-impaired have to revert back to the “Classic” version of the studio and complete the task there. Looking to help advocate for the change? When you toggle from the Beta version to the Classic edition, report your need for captioning and subtitling support as the “reason” for switching.

Once in the Classic version of the Studio, go to the Video Manager and select the video you’d like to caption. Next to that video, click the drop down menu near the “Edit” option. Select the Subtitles/CC option; from there, you’ll be prompted to either allow auto-subtitling or to upload an SRT file containing your video’s text and timestamps. A benefit of YouTube’s subtitling options is the “in-between” option of sharing a video’s text, and having the platform help you “auto-sync” your words to the video’s timing needs. It serves as an elegant solution for those with a transcript but no sense of how the words are timed in the video.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the newest platforms to support video, but the delayed gamble is paying off- now that the format is prioritized in the News Feed, video posts are reportedly being viewed at a rate nearing 50%. Given the newness of their support for the medium, it makes some sense that their support for subtitling is currently only available for desktop users. But given the rapid pace of innovation for the platform, this is likely to change soon.

Upload your video as you normally would. When the video preview appears, click the Edit icon in the upper right corner to reveal the Video Settings. From here, you can “Select File” and upload your SRT file. Save the file addition, and click “Post.” From that point forward, your video will appear with subtitles.

Who’s Missing?

It may seem as though the major players have addressed this challenge admirably, but there is one notable omission to the lineup: Instagram. Despite the popularity of video on the platform, and its exponentially increasing use, there still is no support for native subtitling on the platform- much to the frustration of accessibility advocates and activists. More motivated users can seek out third-party tools to fill this gap, but a lack of native capability might provoke the question: why won’t Instagram make it easy for its users to communicate with the deaf and hard of hearing?

Speaking of third-party tools, it should be noted that many common dashboard tools, designed to streamline social media posting and scheduling (i.e. Buffer, Hubspot, TweetDeck) are ill-equipped to help its users easily caption video. For this reason, native capability on respective platforms is crucial. If you are a user of these tools, advocate to their support teams for the addition of these features. Their tools – and the platforms they want to simplify access to – have the power to streamline and simplify storytelling for us all. But those stories should be ones that all can enjoy. And until these options are made compulsory and easy to use, that simply won’t be the case.

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The post How To Caption Your Content Across All Social Media Platforms appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/04/how-to-caption-your-content-across-all-social-media-platforms/

Twitter Finally Adds Native Subtitling Options for Video

Around the world, 466 million people in the world are deaf or hard of hearing. And while social media platforms are making strides to create experiences that can level the playing field for these users—image descriptions, facial recognition, and alt-text tools that work seamlessly with screen readers—deployment of these features has been slow. Twitter’s support for subtitles is among the latest advances that will equalize the user experience for these users.

It should be noted that Twitter currently supports the closed captioning available for users who opt into accessibility tools in their settings. But closed captioning differs from subtitling, which the company defines as “transcripts of the dialog or audio in a video in .SRT files that are attached to videos.” These files can be attached via Twitter Media Studio, Twitter Ads, or Twitter’s application-programming interface for developers.

Given how much Twitter use takes place on mobile devices (93% of Twitter video views take place on mobile), the ability to effectively and easily subtitle videos is beneficial to deaf and hard-of-hearing users, but also for individuals viewing this content without sound. Further, in the highly competitive landscape of mobile-optimized social, platforms that can accommodate the needs of users with disabilities will ultimately win out. By comparison, for example, there is no native mechanism by which to caption Instagram videos or Instagram Stories. It will be interesting to see if availability of these utilities on other sites will pressure them into creating their own native tool for doing so.

But in the meantime, Twitter continues to shine in the area of making content on their platform accessible. To utilize this option for your own video, select a video in your Media Studio, select the “Subtitles” tab in the displayed pop-up window, select the language you’d like to subtitle the video in and upload the .SRT file that holds your video’s transcript.

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The post Twitter Finally Adds Native Subtitling Options for Video appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/04/twitter-finally-adds-native-subtitling-options-for-video/