Facebook is a powerful and expansive channel for connecting with your target audience. However, as the number of posts and interactions increase, the likelihood of a specific user seeing your wall post decreases.
Here are 3 ways to change that.
1. Pin or Highlight Wall Posts
Pinning a wall post attaches it as the first post to appear on your Facebook Page’s timeline even when more recent posts are published. Pinned posts will automatically unpin after 7 days if it is not manually unpinned.
Highlighting a wall post enlarges the post to stretch across both columns of the timeline. Compared to pinned posts, highlighted posts still shift lower as new posts are published.
Both options increase the prominence of a post on the Page’s timeline.
2. Encourage Users to Comment or Interact
Newly published wall posts are typically seen by only a fraction of people who Like your Page. If a users comments, likes or shares your post, your post has the chance of appearing in the users’ friends’ news feeds. As a result, your post will be exposed to a secondary audience.
Users who regularly interact on your Facebook Page are more likely than others to see your wall posts on their news feeds.
3. Promoted Posts
Promoted Posts is a Facebook advertising option that lets Page Administrators pay to have specific posts displayed to users or friends of users who like the page. Facebook charges a flat fee based on the number of people the advertisers want to reach. Promoted posts are displayed within the news feeds of users.
Promoted posts may be a suitable option if you have an important event or conversion goal you want to promote.
Crowdfunding is moving at warp speed. In 2012, there were 1 million campaigns that raised $2.7 billion dollars (an 81% increase over 2011). 2013 is on course to nearly double those numbers with funds expected to hit $5.1 billion. (source)
Kickstarter alone has generated $579 million in pledges since its launch in 2009.
In that time, 3.9 million people have pledged to fund nearly 40,000 projects.
So how do you launch a successful campaign on Kickstarter especially knowing the majority of projects don’t ever get funded?
There are many success stories (and candid tales of failure) that we can learn from.
Here are the highlights.
Looking at Kickstarter specifically, in order for a project to receive funding, a fundraising goal must be set and achieved. Approximately 44% of all Kickstarter projects achieve their goals. Funds raised may exceed the initial goal, but the goal is the baseline that must be accomplished. Therefore, it may be strategic to lower the goal amount (but not too low!). For example, if your project requires 150k and you set the funding goal accordingly, but only 120k is raised, you will receive nothing. Indiegogo, on the other hand, offers users the ability to accept funding even when their goals are not met. This comes at a higher percentage (9% underfunded versus 4% for fully-funded projects).
A few important notes:
- Kickstarter takes 5% of all successfully funded projects.
- All projects are required to have US bank accounts and a US mailing address (Kickstarter is working to remove these restrictions to enable Canadians to use the platform more easily).
- There is a limited window in which to raise your funds (approx. 5 weeks). Choose your timing carefully.
- Your project is never removed from the Kickstarter site. It cannot be deleted.
Differences between IndieGoGo and Kickstarter
After funding goals and the reward structure have been determined, and slick multi-media assets have been produced (to post on the Kickstarter project page), it’s time to get down to strategy.
- Create a compelling and engaging story about your project – connect and establish an emotional connection with Backers.
- Raise awareness – identify Key Influencers and establish multiple channels to drive traffic to the Kickstarter project page.
- Pay attention to metrics and adjust accordingly.
- Pay for a PR blitz.
- Empower your fans - consider incorporating fan feedback into the development of your project.
- Consider offering Stretch Goals - it helps keep excitement levels high even after the original funding goal is reached.
- Attract a celebrity popular with the target audience - the celebrity’s endorsement and network goes a long way.
- Be prepared to live & breathe the campaign.
Do you have tips or lessons learned that you can share? Leave a comment.
Comedy Central, MTV and NBC Universal’s Syfy channel continue to muck about in the social TV sandbox – and are seeing successes.
Already there is considerable buzz about Comedy Central’s plan next week to hold a comedy festival exclusively on Twitter. The lineup can be seen here. The hashtag #ComedyFest will be the glue for all the disparate pieces.
Content will be short, to suit the social platform. Comedians (and there are some big names) will post jokes and short video clips – all using the #ComedyFest hashtag. At one point there will even be an online party called “Vine Dining” – leveraging comedic Vine videos for Twitter.
The whole festival will kick off on Twitter with a live stream of Mel Brooks talking about his life, answering questions from a live audience and of course – signing up to Twitter! This event will be moderated by Judd Apatow and Carl Reiner.
It’s interesting for traditional television properties to take bigger chances like this online. And they’re not alone.
MTV is considered one of the leaders of the pack. Most recently, MTV held its Movie Awards show. But to keep its young target audience engaged MTV had to develop several second-screen additions (distractions..? I’m not sure). One such arrangement saw Selena Gomez posting frequent MTV-Awards-Show-related content to her Facebook page. This began days leading up to the show, continued through-out the show and ended when the show concluded. This tactic tapped into Selena’s 42 million+ fans and gave the audience the equivalent of a backstage pass.
Facebook users were also given access to an exclusive Thank-You Cam where they could watch exclusive interviews of the MTV award winners as they came off stage. Additionally, for weeks leading up to the awards, fans could vote for their favourite movie hero using a designated hashtag on Instagram and Twitter: #besthero. In just two weeks, 3.2 million votes were counted.
Perhaps they’re onto something with all these second-screen additions. At a LostRemote conference this week in New York, a GetGlue executive was quoted as saying “Fans are distracted while watching your TV shows. Why not distract them with your second screen instead?”
MTV is constantly testing and innovating in the digital space. Its audience, consisting largely of 18-to-24 year olds, demands it. MTV launched a Tumblr blog dedicated exclusively to interpreting teen-speak. It also offers up a Facebook app that helps students calculate the cost of college.
Numerous other television networks are experimenting with expanding narrative online, and nurturing relationships between audience and cast, online.
HBO’s cast of Veep create and share “Vines” (short video loops for Twitter) on Twitter. NBC Universal’s Syfy Channel has green-lit a series called Fandemonium. When it premieres in the fall, part of the show will reportedly include regular Google Hangouts between cast and fans.
But the bigger attention getter on the Syfy Channel currently is Defiance.
What sets Defiance apart from other shows is its video game component which, when played, can affect events and characters in the show. This gives fans more than just a chance to further engage with the show, they can actually see how the game play alters its course. Syfy is pushing the social TV agenda hard in many of its shows.
Then there are the pseudo-networks that are now creating original “television” programming, like Netflix and Amazon. Even they’re making headlines with innovative approaches to audience engagement. To help Amazon.com develop bullseye programming for its Prime Instant Video portal, it will first post 14 TV pilots online. This means before any show makes the cut, it must first pass muster with online audiences. All pilots will be free to watch – and judge.
The parameters of the social TV sandbox have yet to be defined. Until that time – if it ever comes – it’s fun to watch the dance between the traditional land of lean-back-and-watch TV with the lean-in-and-engage online space.
Irish Broadcaster RTÉ is in its 6th season of Operation Transformation. This show is one of the best examples of a television property with a comprehensive and value-rich online offering.
First, about the show… Operation Transformation is a weight loss competition between Irish residents (aka: normal people, not celebrities, or extraordinarily large people). These overweight contestants (referred to as leaders) are each put on a specific weight loss plan that covers everything from meal planning to exercise regimes.
Using the online tools established for the show, viewers can “follow” a leader. Each leader has his/her own web page that includes their full-body 360 photo, their age, weight, height and personal story. When a viewer follows a leader, they get access to that leader’s weight loss plan as well as:
- the leader’s detailed weight loss journey (a week by week account)
- online videos of that leader’s daily workouts
- online weight loss tools to calculate own body measurements
- daily meal plans for that leader
- PDFs of weekly shopping lists to support the corresponding meal plans (so the viewer can follow along at home)
- online coupons for local grocer
- access to expert weight loss coaches and physicians through the show’s Facebook Page
Operation Transformation also features the successes and pitfalls of audience members following along at home, while an RTÉ Radio show keeps viewers of Operation Transformation up to date on the leaders’ progress in between broadcasts.
In addition to the list above, other online components include:
- downloads of motivational music (to keep you going in your workouts)
- videos of dance troupes and/or other community-based physically active groups
- mobile app to support weight loss and calorie tracking
- listings of local runs and other health-conscious events
And of course, all programs can be watched online.
RTÉ is Ireland’s national broadcaster (think Ireland’s BBC or CBC). It stands for Raidió Teilifís Éireann (pronouced, Rad-eo Tella-feesh Air-ann) which means, Radio & Television in Ireland. Operation Tranformation is the broadcaster’s first crossmedia / 360 degree project.
In our ALERT® digital strategy process we emphasize the importance of measuring your online marketing efforts. Measurement is important because:
- A marketing initiative needs to yield positive returns, otherwise it should be discontinued.
- Tracking and measuring helps you make better business and marketing decisions. For example, see the post about Using Google Analytics to Help Make Business Decisions.
- You need to be accountable to your clients, managers, investors, etc. You need solid metrics to report to stakeholders.
Relevant marketing metrics (especially online marketing metrics) have evolved in the past few years.
- In the early days, a basic ad impression or the number of eyeballs that saw your ad, was the ultimate marketing metric. This measurement was especially important on the broadcast medium (ie. television and radio) because it indicated how much exposure the ad received and subsequently the value of the ad space.
- Next came the ad click or a basic response (eg. newsletter sign up) from the audience. This was a better measurement because it tracked a reaction from the audience, meaning the audience was actually moved-to-action by an ad or message.
- Next came social media and the pursuit to “engage” with the audience. This greatly fragmented the number and types of metrics that could be tracked and reported. Each social media channel and digital property had its own terminology and way of measuring user interactions.
- Finally and most recently, has come the quest to measure user sentiment. Based on the tools I’ve seen and tried, that claim to measure sentiment for you… Let’s just say, we’re not there yet. The English language is complex. How would a computer account for idioms, slang, context and cultural expressions? For example, would you interpret the following statement as positive or negative, “That’s sick!”
As marketing professionals in the ever changing digital marketing space, we are faced with the challenge of making sense of all these metrics and conveying to our clients what really matters. Life would be a lot easier if there was one universal metric that can be used to measure all marketing initiatives.
However, in order to have a universal metric, there needs to be a common factor in every type of marketing initiative imaginable. As it stands, a user could click on a banner ad, or a user could click play on a video, or a user could compose and post a comment on a blog or a user could explore an interactive website — the list of actions and measurables are diverse, and go on and on…
The only common factor is — the user!
No matter what the marketing initiative, online or off, the user is at the heart of it all. Therefore, the universal metric must be measuring the human being.
If we wanted to measure a user’s level of engagement with a marketing message, we’d likely need to measure their level of brain activity. The more engaging the task, the more neuro impulses triggered in the brain. For example, a simple click of an ad wouldn’t require much thinking power, but writing a comment or navigating through an interactive website would. If human emotion could be monitored, we might even be able to accurately track sentiment. All marketing initiatives could then be measured against the level of positive brain activity from its audience.
So… Is there any hope of truly and accurately tracking this elusive and complicated universal marketing metric? With the progression of wearable technology (eg. Google Glasses) and brain scanning technology (eg. EEG), measuring brain activity may actually become a reality. We’ll just have to see where science, technology and society takes us.
Photo Credit: MikeBlogs