Here are the Top 10 stories in Social Media this week;
1) We are all social
Forrester’s latest round of technographic data shows that social media is truly mainstream and stable, with little change in the US and Europe from last year’s figures, aside from an increase in Joiners (people with a profile on a social network – Forrester’s social media usage scale ranges from Spectators to Creators, depending on how actively they are creating and participating in social content).
However, the area of key interest this year is Asia, notably metropolitan China and India where 76% and 80% of internet users respectively are Creators (compared to 24% in the US and 23% in Europe). This means that almost 8 out of 10 people are generating social content, so look to Asia for the next big social trend…
2) The importance of brand response via social media
According to research from Conversocial, customer service from brands via social media is key. Over 80% of respondents said they would be at least a little put off from buying from a brand that they saw ignoring other customers.
3) Social campaigns improve long term brand advocacy and purchase intent
BzzAgent have found that advocates’ likelihood to recommend a product is dramatically increased from 39% before to 61% directly after exposure to a social media marketing campaign. Even one year later, 55% of brand advocates are more likely to recommend a product.
As for brand advocates own purchase intent, before a campaign 38% said they would purchase, however immediately after the campaign this dramatically increased to 69%, and remained this high for 3 months. Still yet more impressive, after one year, purchase intent was as high as 61%. This demonstrates that social media campaigns are effective at improving metrics which directly affect the bottom line.
4) Marketers’ relationship with Wikipedia to change
It all began with an open letter to Jimmy Wales and Wikipedia, stating how PR professionals and Wikipedia have to work together to ensure Wikipedia is an accurate and available resource to the public, and another blog post from Stuart Bruce drawing the same conclusion – Wikipedia’s current guidelines need changing.
Fast forward two days and Wikipedia had agreed to work with the UK’s Chartered Institute of Public Relations to that end. Roger Bamkin, Chair of Wikipmedia UK, commented:
Recent incidents [...] show that in some parts of the PR profession, a lack of understanding on how to engage with the Wikipedia community persists. We will work with the CIPR to ensure that their members, and through them the wider PR Profession, have access to the clearest possible guidance on the best way to work with Wikipedia.
It will be interesting to see how the CIPR and Wikipedia work this one out…
5) Google applies penalty against themselves
Google recently violated its own guidelines against paid links, when unbeknown to them, Unruly Media conducted a sponsored post campaign on their behalf to promote their Chrome browser, and one of the campaign’s participants failed to use the ‘no-follow’ attribute when linking to the Chrome homepage. After an investigation, Google then applied a penalty against themselves so that searches for “browser” now no longer bring up the Google Chrome homepage, with Chrome’s PageRank lowered for at least 60 days. Our very own Robin Grant commented:
I have a lot respect for Google for taking this action against themselves – although you could argue a two month ban is rather lenient compared to action they’ve taken against transgressors in the past. This incident goes to show the importance of the recently released joint IAB and ISBA guidelines on paid promotion in social media – had Google and Unruly followed these, they wouldn’t have come a cropper, and it does highlight the very real dangers of non-compliance.
6) Facebook’s flagged photos … offensive or just unattractive?
Facebook have determined, that last year, the majority of photos its users reported as offensive were not actually offensive, in fact they were just unattractive or unwanted. The difficulty lay in the fact that often these were photos that friends had posted, meaning the user couldn’t delete themselves, so they resorted to clicking flag instead. After Facebook noticed that the flagging tool was being used for these reasons, the company changed its photo reporting process, allowing users to message the person who posted the photo and complain with the following options:
What vain creatures we are…
7) Instagram allows you to share larger photos… and welcomes the President
Now when you choose to share your photos to Facebook through Instagram, the images will be instantly uploaded to an Instagram Photos Facebook album. These will appear in their full size in user’s newsfeeds and on the Timeline. Instagram also has a new VIP member, the one and only Barack Obama. Not only is he sharing photos through @barackobama, but he also urges supporters to share their photos from the campaign with the tag #obama2012. A clever way to give the public an insight into the daily life of the US President and to observe behind the scenes footage of the upcoming US Presidential Election.
8) Path is the new place to be
Path is where all the tech A-listers hang out these days, at least according to Seesmic’s Loic Le Meur. This new mobile-only social network, with a limit of 150 friends, has created a small, private, place where you can hang out online at any time of day with your close friends, and get notified about them constantly. Path has also recently added the option of sharing to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Foursquare all at the same time. When people are tired of everything being public, Path just may be their point of call…
9) Levi’s use Instagram to find their latest model
Levi Strauss have opened up the casting to their 2012 Brand Campaign via the world of Instagram. Anyone around the world can upload a photo of themselves with the tag #iamlevis in the hope they will be the next star of the fashion brand.
10) Olympics Games volunteers’ social media restrictions
The Olympics organisers have released social media rules for the 70,000 Games Maker volunteers during the 2012 Olympics. Volunteers are not allowed to mention their role, location, celebrities and athletes, including a ban on photos or posts featuring backstage VIPs. Progressive!