In 1962, mixed-up confusion was killing Bob Dylan. His head was full of questions, and his temperature rising fast. Forty years later, amid other rising temperatures, mixed-up confusion is confounding Australia’s efforts to respond to climate change.
One the one hand, the case for action seems straightforward. The debate over whether or not anthropogenic climate change is real is over, at least in the scientific community. Treasury modeling of
the potential impacts of climate change makes it clear that taking action on climate change is in Australia’s national interest. Much of corporate Australia agrees with this. And all major political parties advocate taking action on climate change.
So why, according to figures just released in the Climate Institute’s annual survey of Australian attitudes towards climate change, Climate of the Nation, do 65 per cent of Australians believe that there are too many conflicting opinions for the public to be sure about the claims made about climate change? Where does all this confusion come from?
It certainly does not come from a lack of information. If Bob Dylan had a cent for every media mention of climate change, he would probably never have got the tombstone blues, the freight train blues or even the subterranean homesick blues. Australians have had climate change shoved down their throat. Thousands of views have been canvassed, thousands of views have been offered.
Amongst this discordant cacophony, no one has been able to make their message resonate – not the government, not the opposition, not scientists, not climate science ‘deniers’, not NGOs, not community activists, not the private sector.
This has confused the population, and clouded their response to carbon pricing. Only 28 per cent of respondents in the Climate Institute poll (carried out by John Scales for JWS) said they supported the government’s scheme. However, when basic aspects of the legislation are explained, the number jumps to almost 50 per cent. This is not to make a comment on the merits or otherwise of the government’s particular scheme – it rather illustrates the point that people don’t support things they don’t understand. And they don’t understand carbon pricing.
This is fair enough. As public policy goes, it is complex and nuanced. Even the policy wonks struggle to get their heads round it at times. Several popular criticisms of action on climate change stem directly from misunderstandings about how the government’s scheme might work (these criticisms may also be leveled at other schemes). Here are three key sources of confusion:
- It won’t make a difference because Australia is only a small part of global emissions
- It won’t make a difference because industry will move overseas and pollute from there
- It won’t make a difference because we are going to compensate the polluters – so there is no reason for them to act.
There are very good answers to all three points. But this is entering a level of detail beyond the point at which the public would normally engage in public policy. Debunking incorrect information is necessary. But arguing the toss on the details of particular arguments is pointless – people end up confused and disengaged. Instead, advocates of climate change action would do well to focus on some key communication approaches:
- Appeal to the emotional: Use language and imagery that appeals to people’s emotional rather than intellectual side. This is something marketers have honed for decades.
- Use third-party advocates: There is no academy of science in the world that disputes the science. Other voices lend credibility to your arguments.
- Point to peers: Highlight what others, faced with the same problem, have done. The vast majority of countries have some form of measure in place to combat climate change.
Talk about the alternative: Instead of allowing the debate to focus on the intricacies of different schemes, focus on the costs of inaction.
Make it local: Talk about the impact of climate change on insurance bills and front lawns.
A recent poll by Fergus Hanson for the Lowy Institute showed that 38 per cent of Australians felt they had become ‘more concerned’ about climate change since the debate in Australia began. If this concern is to be harnessed into support for action, we need to do a much better job of telling the story, and a much better job of debunking the myths. “Sometimes it’s not enough to know what things mean,” Bob Dylan once remarked, “sometimes you have to know what things don’t mean”.
By Andrew Ure.
The word internship is often associated with terms such as making coffees, photocopying and stamp-licking. Thankfully for me this was not the case when I joined the Social@Ogilvy team for two weeks. Hard yet rewarding work, incredible advice, teamwork and great people, are in my eyes, the terms accompanying an Ogilvy internship.
Before even stepping into the Ogilvy building, I was made to feel welcome with warm greetings via LinkedIn, anticipating my arrival come the following Monday. With an abundance of great people working around and with me, my understanding of what it takes to be a part of the biggest social team in Australia quickly became clear. From the get go I was given real life experience as my short-term and long-term goals were shifted into overdrive. I had the opportunity to participate in brainstorming sessions for a nationwide campaign, client meetings entailing development of B2B social platforms and research for brands.
I was introduced to ‘Radian6’, an online data collecting tool, a great asset to add to my resume when on the hunt for jobs! I was also given the opportunity to be included in the presentation of the research findings, which showcased how important research is to every task involved with a client. I Working on the development of competitions and community management allowed university theory to transform into physical practice and gifted me further skills which I will utilise upon my return next semester. Joining conference calls to international and local clients, enabled me to learn and grasp how PR practitioners search for insights in all aspects of business to develop the most appropriate strategy to solve a problem.
Always made to feel a part of the team, I was invited to client meetings in the CBD, the annual costume themed David Ogilvy party and learnt how to construct a pitch. Being part of a production piece for David Ogilvy’s birthday celebrations was another highlight of my time at Ogilvy. Not only was the Social@Ogilvy team great, I was invited to a Pulse Communications brainstorm and everyone in the in the building was always extremely helpful and friendly.
Interning at Ogilvy taught me four important aspects to succeed in my chosen industry:
- Research is essential
- Work fast
- Work creatively
- Effectively communicate
Upon completion of my internship I walk away gaining expert knowledge, priceless experience and having met some great people that hopefully one day, I will work with again. Thank you Ogilvy for making the 5:30am starts and two hour train rides worth it!
By Joel West.
Friday June 29, 2012, will mark the day that LinkedIn and Twitter decided that they are just not right for each other. After a three year relationship starting in 2009, direct integration between the two platforms has ended.
The relationship remains on friendly terms with Twitter users still able to tweet through LinkedIn via the optional ‘Share’ button. The way I see it, LinkedIn is just too mature for typical Twitter content and the younger platform has stated that it wants some space from websites and apps “that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience”. Twitter has announced that new guidelines will be introduced over the coming weeks and they will begin to more thoroughly enforce their developer rules of the road, in relation to Twitters API. Will you be keeping an eye out to see which apps will be on the chopping block?
I believe that Twitter now wants users to read and use Twitter via its own platform, not on third party apps and sites using its API. This is possibly due to that fact that Twitter makes most of its revenue from mobile ads. Twitter also has some 500 million users compared to LinkedIn’s 150 million, who are also most likely on Twitter, which begs the question – do they really need LinkedIn?
Has Twitter simply decided to focus their efforts on someone else more suited to their needs? Twitter continues to increase its Facebook integration with better hash-tag, picture and user name support which was introduced just over a month ago. Twitter “needs” Facebook, the cooler, bigger platform, with over 1 billion active users. Twitter is still utilising the lead generation from Facebook to create awareness of its brand through connected tweets and posts, which have the potential to be seen by half a billion more people.
It seems as though Twitter does not want LinkedIn anymore, maybe it was LinkedIn’s ‘slip up’ where up to 161 million users keys were stolen by hackers, but is this the wisest choice for Twitter? The social skinny points out that every second, two new users join LinkedIn, and that 49% of users have an income over $100,000, cha ching!
As Twitter grows over the coming years, will we see it dump other connections like the new Amex integration program? Perhaps we will see Twitter emerge from the shadows of Facebook where it simply buys its integrated connections if it feels a slight threat *cough* Instagram. Although Twitter wishes to remain pure to its online user experience perhaps removing a relationship with a company which is fast growing after just a short three years will see a missed opportunity of user growth surpass them.
Joel West is a third year public relations and marketing student at the University of Wollongong, currently completing an internship with Social@Ogilvy.
By Joel West.
“No”, comes the reply from Richard E. Grant, “we’re here”.
In the storm of words around the introduction of the carbon tax, Australians would be forgiven for being a little lost too.
You might think the major parties don’t agree on anything when it comes to climate change. But they do. In fact, they agree on a lot (though they might not admit it).
For starters, both parties argue that climate change is real, and that Australians need to act. The same cannot be said for many voters of both persuasions.
Crucially, both parties have made an unconditional commitment to reduce Australia’s emissions by the same amount (5 per cent of 2000 levels by 2020).
This is significant in two ways: firstly, they agree on the scale of emissions reductions that Australia should undertake (at least at a minimum); secondly they agree that there is a degree of climate change action that Australia should take, irrespective of what happens elsewhere.
Moreover, while you could live under a rock and still know that the Coalition opposes the government’s carbon pricing mechanism, few people realise that both parties share their support for particular approaches to reducing emissions.
The Coalition will likely release more details closer to an election, but based on its direct action plan and public statements, and the government’s public record, we can build a picture of what is likely to survive regardless of the colour of the government.
Let’s start with renewable energy. Again, both sides are in furious agreement that Australia should encourage the development of the sector through promoting a renewable energy target. They even agree on the amount: 20 per cent of Australia’s energy supply should come from renewable sources by 2020.
Of course, there is some nuance, with the Coalition seeking to carve out a special role for larger projects. But this is a relatively minor difference.
Energy efficiency is another area that is likely to remain a key priority whoever wins the next election. It’s a no-brainer: reducing energy bills and reducing emissions at the same time. This is particularly so in the building sector. After the initial capital investment, many energy efficiency projects become cash-positive within the first few years of operation. It’s a win for owners, a win for tenants and win for the construction industry – oh, and the climate.
Speaking of common ground, land management is another area where both the big parties can be seen shuffling uncomfortably next to each other. Estimates of the mitigation potential of reducing emissions from farming and forestry vary, but may be very significant, and both parties are supportive of efforts in this space. The Coalition estimates that soil carbon measures could represent 85 million tonnes of annual CO2 abatement potential; the government’s carbon farming initiative has been one of the more popular components of its Clean Energy Future package.
Under its ”contracts for closure” program, the government is seeking to support the closure of inefficient power stations. The Coalition’s proposed ”emissions reductions fund” has a provision to do precisely the same thing. The list goes on.
This is a good thing. A recent study by Mercer identified climate policy uncertainty (both international and national) as a significant source of risk for investors over the next 20 years. There is not going to be any certainty over carbon pricing for a while yet – but there is likely to be policy continuity in other areas.
So although the fight over carbon pricing will dominate the airwaves over the next few weeks, it is important to remember that there is a lot more to Australian climate change policy than carbon pricing.
A lot of bathwater will be thrown around in the next few days, but there is good reason to believe that, no matter where this all ends up, there will still be a baby – of sorts – sitting in the bathtub, wondering what on earth just happened.
By Andrew Ure.
Social media historically has been the method in which a customer can forge a relationship with a brand. Since it’s inception as a popular customer service channel, brands have been under increased scrutiny with their products, how they deal with customers and whether or not they trade in an ethical manner. It’s interesting then, to note that we’re witnessing a reversal. The uptake so far has not been huge, however we’re seeing brands begin to push back on their customers. The largest footstep in this direction has recently been from the popular American cookie brand Oreo.
Oreo boast one of the largest Facebook communities in existence with nearly 27 million fans. That’s a lot of fans to be worrying about; it’s a lot of fans to be worrying about if you loved each and every one of your fans equally.
Let’s change tack for a second and think about that. Are all Facebook fans and Twitter followers created equal? Or, for that matter, are customers in general always right, especially when it comes to complaints and customer service related issues on Twitter?
Recently, a colleague of mine mentioned that her mother was currently going through some issues with an Australian bank. The advice was to immediately set up a Twitter account and tweet the bank in order to progress her complaint. Her mother did and her complaint was escalated and was hurriedly resolved.
But, doesn’t this reveal something behind the mindset of customers who simply wish to get something out of a brand? The public nature of social media offers great power to honest customers, and in some instances, more to the dishonest. The spotlight can be shone easily on a disgruntled customer’s issue, and brands – tending to get nervous in the spotlight – tend to back down and shrink away.
I’m aware that all I’ve done is ask questions of you so far, but think of them as rhetorical. We now return to Oreo. Oreo took the big step of posting a rainbow centred Oreo onto their Facebook page and boldly captioned it ‘Pride’. With Barack Obama recently coming out (if you’ll excuse a pun) in support of gay marriage, it seemed only a matter of time that a brand with similar social clout did the same.
But what does this mean for them? This means that they can take back some power. An update such as that allows the brand to see the quality of the fans that are attached to them. Oreo clearly want fans who are open to gay marriage, who aren’t homophobic and aren’t afraid of sexual alternatives. They don’t want to associate with people who have a bigoted attitude toward same-sex relationships, and, as a brand they don’t want to sell their products to people who do.
The update received 207,824 likes, 62,670 shares, 32,729 comments and their Facebook Wall was flooded with well wishers and thanks from existing and new fans alike; many having joined the page simply to thank Oreo for having the courage (as a highly visible brand in social media) to make the statement.
As for those who don’t align themselves with Oreo’s latest statement on gay pride, the update likely resulted in a percentage of fans ‘unliking’ their page. And yet, I believe that’s exactly what they wanted.
By Koby Geddes.
I have been fortunate enough to visit Nepal twice. The first, in 2002, was when I came across the work of The American Himalayan Foundation and through them started sponsoring the Navjyoti Center for Mentally Disabled Children – the first center established in Kathmandu specifically for special needs children.
After a decade of supporting Navjyoti and being kept up to date through reports from AHF, drawings from the children and letters from the staff, I returned to Nepal in December last year and paid a personal visit to the center. I hoped seeing it would help me better understand the work being done there and I wanted to hear the stories of the teachers and students firsthand. Also, selfishly, I wanted to see how I could use this experience to ensure I maintained perspective in my day to day life after I returned from Nepal.
What first surprised me about the school was the overwhelming sense of care, friendship and love that came from the children, the teachers and the parents. Whilst I knew from the letters and the updates I received how well cared for the children were, nothing prepared me for the sense of community I discovered the minute I set foot on the school grounds.
All of the 70 children at Navjyoti suffer from physical and intellectual disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy and Downs Syndrome. There is also one category, “category 4” where children who can not be diagnosed are grouped.
The main aim of the school is to provide services to ensure the children and their families are supported in the child’s quest for personal independence through education and play. Nepalese families generally have neither the information nor the resources to care for a disabled child and the center works hard to fill these gaps. During my visit I began to truly appreciate the financial hardship faced by many of the families and the more than 20 per cent of the children who live in an orphanage and travel to Navjoti every day.
The principal of the center is Sister Suma, a 60 year old Catholic nun from India and a member of the Order of the Sisters of Nazareth. She told me the authorities in Nepal estimate that 10 percent of all children in the country are actually living with some form of disability and explained some of the cultural issues that families and disabled kids have to deal with – many are hidden from their communities due to the shame, fear and embarrassment.
The children are divided into classes depending on their abilities and I spent the day playing games, watching them practice their reading and writing and joined in a music and dance class. I was also lucky enough to help with some of the girls in their bead making which I loved. The school encourages other vocations skills such as candle making and home-made greeting card and envelop production to give the children a way to contribute to their families and increase their self-confidence.
I was deeply distressed by the stories of neglect and abuse that some of the children suffered before being part of this community, yet humbled by their need to be loved, their sense of fun and so much laughter. Probably the simple needs of all of us when we get right down to it.
When the kids all got on the bus at the end of the day and I waved goodbye – I couldn’t help but feel they had more to teach me in one day, that I could teach them in a lifetime.
By Kieran Moore.
One Direction’s recent Australian tour turned into a social media phenomenon, especially for tweens on Twitter – who took to Twitter in droves, professing their unending “advocacy” for the band throughout the month of April.
The traffic on Twitter was huge and it became patently obvious… Tweens love Twitter …and this presents a great opportunity for youth marketers.
An analysis of data drawn form social media monitoring tool, Radian6, clearly showed the impact on social media of One Direction’s Australian tour. In one short month, here’s what happened:
- There were 2,061,902 mentions of One Direction (full list of keywords used for this research below)
- Of these, 2,059,822 occurred on Twitter (99.9% of all conversations)
- These Twitter mentions achieved 1,557,446,086 Twitter impressions (yes – 1.5 billion impressions)
While a total reach of 1.5 billion on Twitter is surprising, it is perhaps less startling that roughly 50,000 tweets about One Direction also contained the acronym “OMG”.
What’s more, Tweens are uber content creators. A closer look at Radian6 revealed that 61% of all of conversations were by users under the age of 20 – meaning they were responsible for 1.2 million mentions of One Direction.
When Tweens are on Twitter, they’re really, really active. In the past, we often talk about how the user demographic of Twitter skews older (53% of Australian Twitter users are aged between 35 – 53 years of age). The “One Direction” phenomenon then raises an interesting question – so if only 17% of Australian Twitter users are under the age of 18 (Source: SocialMediaNews.com.au), how could there have been so much conversation from them on the micromedia platform? Just a year and a half ago, US headlines read that youth “prefer Facebook to blogging, Twitter”. How times have changed!
So what exactly does this mean? It’s a great opportunity for youth marketers – with young users (and tweenage #1Directioners) obviously becoming increasingly active on Twitter, it’s prime time for brands to think about what they will do to engage with these users. What kind of content will they produce? Who will they build partnerships with? And how will it be different?
Some businesses have already cottoned on to this. Two of the most popular hashtags that co-occurred with mentions of One Direction in Australia were Channel Nine’s #TheVoiceAU and Nova’s #SmallzysSurgery. Both were Twitter hashtags that achieved some decent reach by talking about and partnering with One Direction – makes you wonder about the potential of branded content.
And more importantly, will regulations need to be put in place for Twitter in line with the Code for Advertising and Marketing Communications for Children? Facebook has a minimum required age of 13, and there is currently no age requirement to be a member of the platform.
For perspective, there are 22,328,800 people currently living in Australia (a 2010 statistic by the World Bank), 5.7 million Australians under 20 years of age and 1.1 million Australians are on Twitter. That means, in April:
- If you take the number of cumulative Twitter impressions achieved, divided by the entire Australian population, mentions of One Direction would have reached every individual Australian seventy times.
- If you take the number of cumulative Twitter impressions achieved, divided by the entire Australian population under 20 years of age, mentions of One Direction would have reached each individual 273 times.
- If you divide the number of cumulative Twitter impressions achieved, divided by the number of Australians on Twitter, mentions of One Direction would have reached every Australian on Twitter a total of 1,416 times. One thousand, four hundred and sixteen times. Each.
You have to wonder if this means that with all the changes to Facebook, are younger users getting tired of worrying about privacy settings and moving to Twitter? Maybe, but it’s interesting to see how a previously overlooked audience is increasing in size and conversation on Twitter.
So what does this all mean? No one can profess to have all the answers, but as the impact of One Direction’s Australian tour indicates, we have seen an emerging class of Twitter uber content creators, and marketers will have to think about what their progression across multiple social media platforms means for them.
I say…let’s not ‘watch this space’; the smart marketers among us are already engaging with these users and considering their next Twitter strategy.
By Greg Tan.
Q1: Apart from advertsing, what do you think is the best way of increasing fans?
A: Using a structured approach for engagement with conversation calendars that tie into your event calendar and competitions. During these periods you will find a higher engagement with the brand and more opportunities to drive traffic to your community. Additionally cross promotion from other social platforms such as Twitter and YouTube channels can drive more fans to your Facebook page. Have a look through a previous webinar we hosted on “Facebook for Business” which outlines some ways in which you can increase fans through non-paid means.
Q2: How often should we change the cover photo?
A: I think there are two things involved in getting the cover photo right. One is to change it when you are changing the “big story” that you’re telling via your Timeline. That could mean quarterly, or monthly or somewhere in between. Secondly, if you have a large community and lots of brand activity happening throughout the year, you might consider changing things up on a weekly basis – again mapping to the story you’re looking to tell through the Facebook page. Tourism Australia’s Facebook Page was featuring a fan photo of the week, so that’s a great example. I wouldn’t recommend changing it more frequently than once a week, however.
Q3: What’s your feedback on the app? As the comments on the app store are not very positive.
A: We’ve recently tested the app on a few brand pages and it works quite well. It’s a great tool to be engaging on the go, however it shouldn’t be viewed as an outright replacement for web-based Community Management. You can download the Facebook Page Manager app from itunes.
Q4: Any info on how many brands on average a user will engage with on FB on a regular basis?
A: Whilst there’s no info on how many brands a fan regularly engages with, an Infographic from Kiss metrics shows FB users are, on average, connected to 80 community page, groups and events. That’s a lot of clutter to cut through, making it essential to go the extra mile and be really compelling with the content you share. Take a look at the Kiss Metrics Infographic.
Q5: Hi, I was just wondering why some posts can rise above newer posts on the timeline if they run in chronological order? Thank you Verity #FBTL
A: All posts in Timeline will be placed in chronological order, with the except of pinned posts, which will remain at the top of the Timeline for up to 7 days.
Q6: Do you think the introduction of the compulsory timeline is a bit too intrusive for individual users?
A: It has always been Facebook’s way to ensure that all users are accessing the same platform when it comes to both news feed and personal pages. Facebook are typically quite accommodating by offering lengthy ‘trial periods’ where users are told of the upcoming changes, and given the option to change to the latest version when they feel comfortable. Ultimately it is a choice to be on Facebook and Timeline can be utilised as much or as little as users feel comfortable.
Q7: Can you think of any brands that have executed successful competitions using the new FBTL format?
A: There’s a great case study on Red Bull who launched a great scavenger hunt and worked well to stay within FB Guidelines to create a really compelling experience and contest for their fans and new visitors. Check out the Red Bull Case Study.
Q8: How useful is Timeline in f-commerce?
A: F-Commerce is definitely an emerging trend and something that marketers need to understand to determine if it fits their overall sales strategy moving forward. The social proof of your Facebook connections ‘liking’ and purchasing products via Facebook can have strong benefits in generating positive word-of-mouth for brands.
Q9: More on copyright – can you use google images on the feed as part of a post?
A: We would recommend against using Google images in your posts. Try to use sites such as Flickr where you can search for images that have Creative Commons licensing selected by the image owner. These are images you can use freely. Additionally, sites such as Getty Images have huge archives of either free or fairly cheap images. The best advice is to approach the image owner to state your desired use for their image to see if you can gain their permission for use.
Q11: The 90 piece of content on facebook seems high – is this all new content?
A: This stat was reported on by Facebook itself. There’s a great infographic from kiss Metrics that shows this and many other great stats here.
Q12: Is the size of the profile picture adjustable?
A: No, the display size is 180 x 180. For this reason, it’s recommended that you make it as recognisable to fans to make your posts stand out in their news feeds. If you need more detailed information about the specs of the cover photo and an explanation of the other elements of the new Timeline layout, Facebook has a great Facebook Pages Guide (pdf).
Q13: How will it work…reach generator. Is it part of the facebook ad structure?
A: Facebook Reach Generator is a new ad product from Facebook designed to get your updates out to more of your fans. Reach Generator is not yet available here in Australia and will be available only to pages with more than 50,000 fans.
Q14: Hi. When I post on the timeline of my business page it doesn’t appear in the newsfeed of my business page, but it does appear in the newsfeed of my profile page. do you know why? thanks
A: As a community manager, you have access to two versions of Facebook – one as you, one as the business. If you are posting on your business page and using Facebook as the business, you will only see newsfeed content from the pages your business likes. When you post as the business, and you go to the business newsfeed, the content you see there will be from other pages.
Q15: if you are a community organization – without a budget- so cannot afford the ‘reach generator’ – if a key post will only rech 16% of your audience, should you post it more than once?
A: No, we would not recommend posting the same thing multiple times during the day. The key to success is to know when your fans are most active on the Facebook page and to time your posts accordingly. Also, keep in mind that the 16 percent is an industry average, so it might be that your Facebook updates will reach more people. Jeff Bullas wrote a great post that included a tip around the best time to post on Facebook.
Q16: Hi there – can you pin more than one post per week?
A: Yes, you can change the pinned post as often as you like. There can only be one pinned post at a time, and after 7 days it will effectively ‘expire’ with the next post taking the place at the top of the news feed.
Q17: We post 5 messages accompanied with 5 images per day – is that too much?
A: In general, we believe that “everyday engagement” is what is needed in order to cultivate an active and engaged fan community. So that means, in most cases, posting at least once per day. From our experience, we have observed that more than two posts per day begins to have a negative impact on the community – you may begin to see people unlike the Page if you post too frequently. However, if you have a large community of over 100,000 “likes” you could look at geo-targeting your posts so that fans in only certain areas see the customised posts… in which case posting five geo-targeted updates reaching different people per day might be OK!
Q18: I wondered how I can add apps that are not just notes, events and videos… I’m interested in Competitions and additional info but couldn’t see how.
A: There are a range of 3rd party app suppliers that can do the above, and they range from free to quite expensive enterprise level offerings. You’ll have to do some digging to find out what works for you and the budget you have, but Buddy Media, Involver and Wildfire are great places to start, and Short Stack is a free one that might be handy. We also through our partners at DTDigital can develop custom contest apps for Facebook pages. You do get what you pay for!
Q19: Apart from advertsing, what do you think is the best way of increasing fans?
A: A solid content strategy. Engaging updates. Leveraging influencer engagement. Rewarding existing fans. Encouraging them to share the page to their own networks with incentives. Increasing awareness of social media channels on other assets e.g. websites, offline marketing material. The question is – why do you want to increase your fans? Once you have that rationale in mind, it’ll be easier to create a targeted, qualitative strategy rather than just growing the fan base for numbers’ sake.
Q20: As most people use Facebook on their phone these days, do you think that some of the energy creating engaging content is lost?
A: No. As CMs it’s thus now our opportunity to understand the mobile consumption of social media content because it’s only going to grow.
Q21: Most businesses haven’t been around for 100 years. Can you show some examples of young businesses using milestones effectively?
A: Spotify’s Facebook page and the history of music. Check out the Spotify Timeline.
Q22: When you highlight key content, it only changes how it appears on your page, not how it appears in your fan’s newsfeeds – is that right?
A: Yes – but you can then turn it into an ad if you want.
Q23: Hi guys, will the recording of this webinar be available for download?
A: Sure will be! You can download a copy of the presentation deck here on the Social@Ogilvy Australia Slideshare account. And you can view a recorded version of the Facebook Timeline Hidden Implications webinar here, thanks to GoToMeeting which powered the webinar.
Q24: Hi, wondering what the pros/cons are of having number of likes as one of 4 apps displayed?
A: It depends on what you’ve got available on the page in terms of the other apps. Most brands use the “number of likes” on the page for bragging rights – and to be fair, it’s an indicator of success that there are lots of people that like the page, because it means that there’s value in being a fan. That said, if you’ve got an app or campaign running that you’re trying to push your fans towards, you should probably give that precedence over the “number of fans” app.
Q25: For those tabs, any idea when custom tabs will be viewable on tablets and mobile?
A: That’s a question for Facebook, unfortunately! That said, we’ve been assured that it’s in the pipeline.
Q26: Confused if can still set up a welcome page for sign ups. If not, what’s the best alternative for timeline?
A: With the new Facebook timeline, you are no longer able to provide a “Welcome tab” that fan-gates content on the page. All users, whether or not they’re fans on the page, will arrive on to your brand page on the main timeline. That said, there’s a great opportunity for Timeline here in the sense that you can still “fangate” quality content or competitions, which makes brands think about creating quality content – but remember that you are not allowed to use a Facebook “Like” as the sole entry mechanic for Facebook competitions! You should check out the Facebook Promotions Guidelines.
Q27: Re cover page: Can you have keywords re your business?
A: You can have keywords, but they can’t be calls to action, or be about promotional activity – more details are available by Facebook Promotion Guidelines.
Q28: Wouldn’t you think the LV cover photo is a call to action which is against the new rules?
A: It’s a tenuous line, but it’s not strictly a “call to action’ because it’s not asking users to do anything. It’s simply letting them know that events were going to be taking place. You can read more about what’s allowed in cover images here.
Q29: Can you recommend a piece of software for pre-programming Facebook posts?
A: Hootsuite is a great free tool, but you should have a look at the other 3rd party tools available – as it really depends on your needs. Buddy Media is another great (paid) tool to consider!
Q30: Are you able to add a photo when you ask a question on your timeline through the event/milestone/question area?
A: You can for events (once you actually create the event, you can change the event photo after you create it). You can also definitely use photos for milestones. For questions, you won’t be able to use a photo for the official “Question” tool, but if you want to, you can post a regular status update asking a question, and insert a photo then. We’d recommend being clear and concise about the possible answers though, i.e. “Which do you prefer, apples or oranges?”
Q31: Have you heard of plans from FB that will allow brand admin features to be accessed on iphone/ipad FB app??
A: Yes – there is an app called ‘Facebook Pages Manager’ which allows admins to manage pages on their mobile device.
Q32: Hi There…I’ve done this but why can you only ‘pin’ once…I tried to do it a second time for a month-long promotion and it stayed in its original position. Thanks!
A: You can only pin posts for 7 days at a time, and once the 7 days pass, you’ll have to re-pin your post to the top of the page. Also, you’re only able to pin one post to the top of the page at a time.
Q33: should the profile pic change just as often as the cover photo?
A: While that’s really up to you, we’d recommend against it – the cover photo is meant to let you and your brand be creative and provides some “colour” to your Facebook page. Your profile picture tends to be more directly reflective of your brand, which is why they’re often logos. That said, you can consider changing the background of the display picture to match your cover photo (rather than having a plain white background behind your logo)! Check out Qantas’, which is a good example.
Q34: Do you have to pay for conversation calendar? Where do we find it?
A: The creation of conversation calendars is a service that we provide here at Ogilvy, and we’d be more than happy to help you out. That said, you should be able to create a conversation calendar by keeping in mind what’s going on in your industry and region, as well as what’s going on I your regular marketing calendar.
Q35: where do we find out more about the rules and restrictions using a facebook page to ensure we aren’t shutdown?
A: You should be able to find most of the information you’ll need here.
Q36: Why wouldn’t these creative efforts be put towards a brand’s own website? What is the benefit to putting all this creative time into Facebook versus a tailored and credible site?
A: Brands should definitely put a similar amount of creative effort into their own website, but it’s probably come to a point in the conversation now where it’s not an either/or question. The reason why brands are on Facebook is because that’s where the people – their customers – are, and it’s a great opportunity to provide another immersive brand touchpoint with fans and advocates of the brand and interact and continue to build the relationship with the brand and company.
Q37: Do updates with previous dates come up in current news feeds when they are posted? Or do they just get posted into the timeline without going into fans feeds, to be seen by readers viewing back in your timeline?
A: Milestones do not post to the News Feed, only to your page’s Timeline. You can, however, “Pin to Top” a Milestone, if you like.
Q38: Can we have contact details in the profile pic (125×125) square? I work at an automotive dealer and can’t have two sets of locations in my “About” section, so I have these details in the profile pic.
A: The profile pic at 125×125 is very small, and it probably wouldn’t look very good to have both your logo as well as contact details in that small square. Would it be possible to include both address details in your “about” section and say at the top of the “About” section that you have two locations, one in X and one in Y? Users will then know that the address in “Location” is for only one of your locations.
Q39: Would it be against the cover photo rules to add an arrow pointing at the ‘Like’ button (assuming you didn’t make any reference to it in text)?
A: It’s a tenuous line, but probably not. That said, Facebook intended the cover photo to enable brands to have more control over using their Facebook brand pages as part of a larger brand narrative, moving the purpose and conversation away from merely generating “Likes”. Would recommend having a look at something of the examples we highlighted during the webinar as best practice and brainstorm similar ideas, rather than going with simply encouraging users to Like the page. You should also be asking yourself what you’re trying to get out of the fans on the page, and using the answer to that question to inform a broader content strategy – it isn’t always about quantity!
Q40: Are there any initiatives as part of the new timeline feature that will help brands?
A: Completely understand where you’re coming from, but that’s a question many have asked. The reach generator was created for large brands with large fan following to reach more of their fanbase – but Facebook’s regular advertising model has still proven immensely helpful for follower acquisition, especially when it’s centred around a campaign or competition, or other compelling incentive.
Q41: While the ‘important dates in history’ is a nice feature of timeline, is there any evidence to suggest that fans actually have a look at this information or get any benfit from it?
A: Because the “important dates in history” functionality is so new, there hasn’t been a whole lot of research or data as yet that shows actual industry averages. That said, it’s sure to vary from industry-to-industry. Realistically, the historical timeline will not be something that all your fans will spend the time to look through, but is a fantastic opportunity to create an immersive brand experience for the true brand advocates that you have on your page to have a better understanding – and build a stronger relationship with – your brand.
Q42: reach generator – how does this work? Are brands paying to mees with my feed?
A: Reach generator is a tool that Facebook has created for brand pages with more than 50,000 fans and who post more than 7 times a week. Facebook has a great Reach Generator Guide, which is worth checking out. These brands aren’t messing with your feed, they’re trying to increase the volume of engagement that they have with their existing fanbase, and you’ll only see it if you already “like” the brand page. As a consumer and user of Facebook, you ultimately make the decisions over the types of branded content you see on your news feed – and it keeps brands and organisations on their toes to make sure that they deliver the best quality content they can to their fans!
Q43: How much does it cost for a community manager per month for a site like MILO?
A: Unfortunately, this question is very much a “how long is a piece of string” one, as it depends on the size of the community, the strategy behind the Facebook page, what you’re trying to achieve and what’s required of the community manager’s time. If you’d like for us to give you a clearer quote for your needs, feel free to get in touch for a chat!
Authors – Brian Giesen and Mitch Phillips
I got a Facebook message last night from an old friend (actually my first London boss) who I was delighted to hear from. Firstly, for the obvious reason – it’s nice when people get in touch – but more so because she’d read my blog (someone other than my mother emailing me about my blog is a rarity).
She’d been living and working in Spain for years until recently. She said with the recession there, her observation was that some large companies have just stopped bothering with employee engagement. A side effect of filling the work force with short terms contractors (less overhead risk) meant management perceived their need for communication to be less and subsequently their desire to invest in engagement went down. They stopped engaging people in the bigger picture.
As someone who is about to return to the UK (impeccable timing) to continue working in this field, I have to say I was slightly disheartened. Mainly because I think it reveals the knowledge still lacking in many organisations – that continuing to engage employees through the tough times, as well as the good can actually drive greater shareholder return. This is not the fluffy stuff. Getting it right can mean the difference between an organisation emerging stronger from the recession or a casualty of tough economic times. Engagement drives productivity and discretionary effort. Fact. Surely this in itself is enough for leaders to consider the advantages of continuing to communicate effectively through a down turn.
My advice to the C suite (and I say this to those in Europe as well as Australia) is yes absolutely, look at spend and be prudent, however don’t ‘cut-back’ on internal communication. It should be front and centre of your organisation during tough times. Your most powerful communication tool lies within your business – your frontline managers. Galvanise this army; equip them with the right skills, accountability and a powerful story, and you’re half way there. Enable them to have powerful conversations. Remember this should not be one way, the best employee communication is top-down, bottom-up AND horizontal, with a focus on informal influencers. Know who those go-to people are and leverage them.
As for my friend… after many years working in large and small organisations, she’s now busy avoiding mountain goats on a pair of skis in the French Alps.
As for me? Watch out UK. I come armed with a big and persuasive mission to fly the employee communication flag wherever I land (sans skis)…
By Tam Sandeman.
Well, that’s what US chat show host Conan O’Brien reckons. He also thinks social media is good for nothing “time waster”.
Sara James, Dateline NBC journalist and MC at the recent sell-out PRIA Women in PR Forum in Melbourne, certainly put his notion to bed. She, in fact, blew it out of the water.
“Social media is not just changing how we report the news, it’s changing the news and the world,” James enthused.
“It’s fair to say that there would not have been the Arab Spring nor would there have been the Occupy movements seen across the world had there not been a world wide web and all the social media devices we count on today.”
Lelde McCoy, founder of the annual event and Managing Director of Ogilvy Public Relations Melbourne, welcomed 250 senior PR professionals to the forum and said that the ever-changing media landscape provides new opportunities for public relations professionals.
“Social media certainly is not new, however the platforms in which it’s delivered and the integration of these platforms into traditional media channels continues to evolve,” McCoy said.
“The Women in PR Forum, now in its eighth year, aims to discuss and provide answers to new issues faced by practitioners and to hear from some exemplary leaders in our field.”
To bring the point to life, on the panel of this year’s Women in PR Forum was Jeffrey Browne, Managing Director, Channel 9 and Linda Bracken, Head Multiplatform and Content Development at ABC Radio.
As consumers turn to the web for their daily news fix, online content is exploding through a variety of platforms including mobile, web and tablet.
Increasingly, we all want a piece of the action – our 15 gigabytes of fame. This is especially true for our clients and brands.
And now, audiences are heading to the web not to check dedicated online news sites, but to check their ‘feeds’ to see what is trending.
Earlier this week, photographs of Michael Clarke’s ‘secret wedding’ were posted by Michael himself on his Twitter page. The next morning, every newspaper in the country was leading with the story – the Herald Sun had it on its front page.
Consumers are actively searching for alternative and authentic sources of instant news and they’re looking to people they trust to provide it – their friends, their networks.
The creation of content and its dissemination through today’s maze of media channels has become an important part of public relations professional’s job, according to the PRIA.
The internet has changed the media landscape and it has certainly changed the job description of the public relations professional.
James explained: “The new media landscape is really the democratization of news. Of news, entertainment and the way we live our lives.
On the web you can find fact and fiction – so you need to be savvy to distinguish what is what. But also, it allows everyone to comment, to have a say and to be heard.”
Asked if the internet made it easier to know what audiences really wanted and who they really were, Nine’s Browne agreed it certainly made broadcasting decisions easier. However, there are a lot of people to listen to and therefore please.
Browne explained: “The Twitter opportunity is the chance to engage the audience in what was a previously static platform and make it a conversation.”
Take, for example, Channel Nine’s The Voice. The show currently has more than 200,000 Facebook ‘Likes’ and during the live shows, garners some 350,000 tweets a minute.
“It’s an amazing opportunity and definitely has contributed to the success of the show,” Browne continued.
“The Voice shows how free-to-air television has caught up. A lot of people think of the medium as an old fashioned medium and that no one is interested – but social media has breathed new life in TV and its audiences.”
Radio has had to adapt too – probably more so, explains the ABC’s Bracken, “Radio obviously has that captive audience where people might have it on in the background or while they are driving.
“To what we’ve been concentrating on is making our radio brand 360 degree multi-platforms. Triple J for example has been a great example of this given it is a brand people want to align themselves with even if they can’t listen to the station all of the time.”
Triple J has more than 500,000 Facebook fans and almost 100,000 Twitter followers. The station uses the channels to find talent, case studies and of course, distribute its news.
So how can PR’s harness the power of this platform explosion to give their clients the edge?
We need to cut through the clutter and information mushroom cloud with compelling stories that grab attention and can be told across a variety of mediums to a variety of audiences on a global scale.
And, as always, we need to stay one step ahead. Social media certainly doesn’t stop here.
By Melinda Varley