Archive for the ‘Top posts’ Category.

FreshNetworks Blog: Top five posts in September

that's five
Image by darren131 via Flickr

As a social media agency, FreshNetworks aims to bring you the best posts in social media, online communities, marketing and customer engagement online. In case you missed them, find below our top five posts in September that you might have missed.

1. How BBC London is experimenting with social media to cover the Tube strike

This autumn London is facing a series of strikes on the London Underground system. These are always very disruptive to commuters and when they happen the need for correct, and instant, information is great. BBC London News (@BBCLondonNews) has been using Twitter for some time as a source information, comment and research for pieces. Most notably through certain reporters such as Matt Cooke (@MattCooke_UK) who have built a presence on Twitter. But with this Tube Strike, BBC London News are doing some things different and truly experimenting with social media.

They have launched and are experimenting with the London Tube Strike Map. Plotting information shared on Twitter using the #TubeStrike hashtag, and submitted by text, email and by filling in a form on the site too. What BBC London is doing is experimenting with different ways of both sourcing and then presenting information and news. It is using social media in the way that many of its viewers are doing and providing them a real service.

2. Social media case study: Cadbury spots v stripes campaign

Cadbury Spots v Stripes campaign is a great case study of how to use social media and shows just why social media doesn’t just take place online. The campaign integrates online and offline touchpoints, and rewards people for things they do in social media and offline. What is interesting to see is that Cadbury has recognised that offline is converging with online – something that all digital marketers need to be aware of.

3. The dangers of brands over-responding on Twitter

One of my favourite podcasts is Listen to Lucy from the FT’s Lucy Kellaway and in September she has a great piece addressing how brands are responding on Twitter. Specifically how the Starbucks UK MD is responding to some tweets about the brand and the regularity at which he is doing this. The example she uses is a Tweet from a UK comedian about the hygiene in one Starbucks store, and Kellaway suggests that the MD should have other things to do than worry about the hygiene in one store, that it is worrying that he only finds out about this via Twitter, and that it appears they are only engaging people with a certain threshold of followers on Twitter.

There is a real danger with social media. Because it is easy to find mentions of your brand online there is a temptation to think that you need to respond to them. Kellaway’s point, and one that brands should take into account when planning their social media strategies, is that overall business strategy should not be driven by what is said on Twitter.

4. 5 ways marketers could use Facebook Places

Facebook Places launched in the US in August and in Europe in September. It allows users to share their location with their friends, find out who is near them and to discover new places nearby. This add another geolocation tool into the market alongside the likes of Foursquare and Gowalla and the reach of Facebook will put geolocation tools in the hands of lots of people.

In this post we suggest five ways that marketers can use Facebook Places - from discounts to data.

5. Learn from Abercrombie & Fitch: Embed social media in every customer touchpoint

When you pay at Abercrombie & Fitch in London, you are asked the same question: “Have you checked us out on Facebook?”. Rather than being just a phatic expression, this is a sign that Abercrombie & Fitch is taking its social media strategy seriously. And a great example of just how to embed social media across your customer touchpoints and with all your staff.

If you want to grow and engage more customers in social media the best way is to embed it into your existing processes. You currently have many customer touchpoints so make the most of them. And let social media complement what you already do rather than sitting on its own.

FreshNetworks Blog: Top five posts in August

number five
Image by Hilarywho via Flickr

As a social media agency, FreshNetworks aims to bring you the best posts in social media, online communities, marketing and customer engagement online. In case you missed them, find below our top five posts in August.

1. Learn from Abercrombie & Fitch: Embed social media in every customer touchpoint

When you pay at Abercrombie & Fitch in London, you are asked the same question: “Have you checked us out on Facebook?”. Rather than being just a phatic expression, this is a sign that Abercrombie & Fitch is taking its social media strategy seriously. And a great example of just how to embed social media across your customer touchpoints and with all your staff.

If you want to grow and engage more customers in social media the best way is to embed it into your existing processes. You currently have many customer touchpoints so make the most of them. And let social media complement what you already do rather than sitting on its own.

2. Social media case study: Cadbury spots v stripes campaign

Cadbury Spots v Stripes campaign is a great case study of how to use social media and shows just why social media doesn’t just take place online. The campaign integrates online and offline touchpoints, and rewards people for things they do in social media and offline. What is interesting to see is that Cadbury has recognised that offline is converging with online – something that all digital marketers need to be aware of.

3. 5 ways marketers could use Facebook Places

Facebook Places launched in the US in August. It allows users to share their location with their friends, find out who is near them and to discover new places nearby. This add another geolocation tool into the market alongside the likes of Foursquare and Gowalla and the reach of Facebook will put geolocation tools in the hands of lots of people.

In this post we suggest five ways that marketers can use Facebook Places - from discounts to data.

4. 5 reasons why people follow brands on Twitter

Every wondered why people follow brands on Twitter? We’ve already written about why people follow the UK’s top brand on Twitter, and a recent report from ExactTarget builds on this analysis  further by revealing why people follow companies on the popular microblogging site.

In this post we look at the top five reasons for following a brand on Twitter, from displaying loyalty to getting discounts.

5. How social media is changing the way we travel

Social media is changing the way we travel. The way we plan, the way we book, the way we act when we are travelling and the way we report on it (in real-time and after the event). We are using review sites to book hotels and events. We are using Twitter and Flickr to find out what people really think of places we are going to or things we are going to do. We are using these same tools to report, often in real time, on what we are experiencing.

In this environment those in the travel industry need to take social media seriously, and find ways to make it work hard for them and their brand.

FreshNetworks Blog: Top five posts in July

number five
Image by TheTruthAbout… via Flickr

As a social media agency, FreshNetworks aims to bring you the best posts in social media, online communities, marketing and customer engagement online. In case you missed them, find below our top five posts in July.

1. Social media monitoring review 2010 – download the final report

Over the first few months of 2010 we conducted an in-depth review of the leading social media monitoring tools in conjunction with our sister company, FreshMinds Research. We compared how Alterian, Brandwatch, Biz360, Neilsen Buzzmetrics, Radian6, Scoutlabs and Sysomos performed when monitoring conversations about global coffee brand Starbucks, analysing over 19,000 online conversations.

Many thousands of you have already read our posts about the review and downloaded the final whitepaper. If you haven’t yet, you can find a more detailed analysis of all these tools and more in our final report – Turning Conversations into Insights: a Comparison of Social Media Monitoring Tools.

2. 93% of the world is not on Facebook

In June, Facebook announced that it had reached 500 million users. This number is incredible, and perhaps even more impressive is the rate at which the social network is growing. Just five months ago they had 400 million users. But whatever we might think and however impressive these numbers are, Facebook is not an all-encompassing social media tool. It does not reach everybody and it is not always right for us to use. 500m is a large number but is only a small proportion of the online population. And if you take the whole global population (as we did more to make a point than for the accuracy of this statistic), 93% of the world is not on Facebook.

What does this mean? Well Facebook is often not the right place for brands to play - just because the numbers seem big doesn’t mean it is the most suited to help your social media strategy.

3. Social media does not just take place online

One of the biggest dangers with social media is to assume that it is only exists online. We see this in the way some brands approach social media – developing a social media strategy that is focused on the tools they are going to use rather than the business aims they are going to contribute to. We also see this in the way some brands allocate budgets for their social media work – associating it with their ecommerce or digital spend can mean that they need to work harder to make sure that social media efforts integrate with what is happening offline.

In truth, the rise of social media for marketing is less about technology and more about brands realising the benefits of closer engagement with customers and others. Social media tools provide a great way to do this but always remember to think how you can get this engagement offline too.

4. Why a museum is the UK’s top brand on Twitter

The Famecount dataset is, like much data, not perfect but it does highlight some surprises that we can all learn from. The brand it has as the top Twitter brand in the UK is one such surprise. Rather than the big FMCG, fashion and media firms they include in their brands ranking, the top UK brand on Twitter for them is a museum, @Tate.

There are some structural reasons why the Tate will attract followers. Twitter is great for events and experiences and a museum has lots of these. But the success and popularity of the Tate is about much more than this. It’s thanks to the way they use Twitter. In this post we look at the three simple characteristics of the way the Tate uses Twitter that all brands can learn from, and that contribute to their success.

5. Developing a European social media strategy

An issue for many brands who are developing a social media strategy is how they translate what they do in one country into other markets in which they operate. As a European social media agency, we are very used to helping clients take a US or UK strategy and then roll this out across the rest of Europe. And in doing this we have looked at organisations who have done this well. And those who have done it badly. The usual mistake is to assume that what works in one country can be taken and implemented in another country with no changes. More often than not this is not the case.

In this video post, Matt Rhodes talks about how to approach developing a European social media strategy and why what works in one country might not work in others.

FreshNetworks Blog: Top five posts in June

Number 5
Image by always13 via Flickr

As a social media agencyFreshNetworks aims to bring you the best posts in social media, online communities, marketing and customer engagement online. In case you missed them, find below our top five posts in June.

1. Social media monitoring review 2010 – download the final report

Over the first few months of 2010 we conducted an in-depth review of the leading social media monitoring tools in conjunction with our sister company, FreshMinds Research. We compared how Alterian, Brandwatch, Biz360, Neilsen Buzzmetrics, Radian6, Scoutlabs and Sysomos performed when monitoring conversations about global coffee brand Starbucks, analysing over 19,000 online conversations.

Many thousands of you have already read our posts about the review and downloaded the final whitepaper. If you haven’t yet, you can find a more detailed analysis of all these tools and more in our final report – Turning Conversations into Insights: a Comparison of Social Media Monitoring Tools.

2. Why a museum is the UK’s top brand on Twitter

The Famecount dataset is, like much data, not perfect but it does highlight some surprises that we can all learn from. The brand it has as the top Twitter brand in the UK is one such surprise. Rather than the big FMCG, fashion and media firms they include in their brands ranking, the top UK brand on Twitter for them is a museum, @Tate.

There are some structural reasons why the Tate will attract followers. Twitter is great for events and experiences and a museum has lots of these. But the success and popularity of the Tate is about much more than this. It’s thanks to the way they use Twitter. In this post we look at the three simple characteristics of the way the Tate uses Twitter that all brands can learn from, and that contribute to their success.

3. The most beautiful tweet ever written (as judged by @stephenfry)

In June, Stephen Fry declared the most beautiful Tweet ever written at the Hay Festival. The winning tweet, from Marc MacKenzie, is a concise but informative tweet and perhaps is a great example of how people are using this new medium. But what makes this tweet the most beautiful ever written?

The beauty in Twitter, and in the tweets people send, is that they convey emotion, opinion, information and expression in a relatively short period, and they, broadly speaking, do so in public. Unlike other conversational forms, Twitter, even when you direct a tweet at a specific person, has a broader audience and often an audience you don’t know. And of course you only have 14o characters with which to express yourself. Marc MacKenzie’s tweet is a good example of this new medium – the audience is unclear and the tweet manages to convey information, opinion, belief and also humour. All in 140 characters.

4. The top ten brands on Facebook

Starbucks is the most popular brand on Facebook when ranked by the number of people who ‘Like’ a brand (’Fans’ as they used to be called). Over 7.5 million people like the coffee chain on Facebook, almost 2 million more than like the second most popular brand, Coca-Cola.

This data comes from Famecount which ranks brands (and people) based on the number of people who follow, like or friend them in social networks. It shows that food and drink brands are in each of the top five places, with fashion brands making up most of the remaining places in the top ten. Consumers are interested in what these brands are doing, or at least want to flag their interest in the brand or product on their own Facebook profile.

5. The problem with automated sentiment analysis

As part of our review of social media monitoring tools we compared their automated sentiment analysis with the findings of a human analyst, looking at seven of the leading social media monitoring tools – Alterian, Brandwatch, Biz360, Neilsen Buzzmetrics, Radian6, Scoutlabs and Sysomos. And the outcome suggests that automated sentiment analysis cannot be trusted to accurately reflect and report on the sentiment of conversations online.

In our tests when comparing with a human analyst, the tools were typically about 30% accurate at deciding if a statement was positive or negative. In one case the accuracy was as low as 7% and the best tool was still only 48% accurate when compared to a human. For any brand looking to use social media monitoring to help them interact with and respond to positive or negative comments this is disastrous. More often than not, a positive comment will be classified as negative or vice-versa. In fact no tool managed to get all the positive statements correctly classified. And no tool got all the negative statements right either. Automated sentiment does not work, and for businesses relying on it can cause problems.

FreshNetworks Blog: Top five posts in May

cinqo de biosci
Image by D’Arcy Norman via Flickr

At FreshNetworks, we aim to bring you the best posts in social media, online communities, marketing and customer engagement online. In case you missed them, find below our top five posts in May.

1. Social Media Monitoring Tools – 2010 Review (intro)

Introducing the FreshNetworks social media monitoring review 2010, a series of detailed tests and analysis on seven of the leading social media monitoring tools – Alterian, Brandwatch, Biz360, Neilsen Buzzmetrics, Radian6, Scoutlabs and Sysomos. The purpose of the report is to provide an in-depth comparison of buzz tracking tools that accurately depicts their individual pros and cons.

We’ve put the tools to the test by tracking well-known international coffee company Starbucks. We compared over 19,000 online conversations, giving us some really unexpected results and highlighting some staggering differences in the way each tool performs.

2. 20 Social media speakers and experts

We’ve spoken at more social media conferences and events in the last three months than in the first three years of FreshNetworks’ existence. One of the benefits of all the talking has been the opportunity to listen to other social media speakers and experts.

We were asked to recommend a few social media speakers for events (particularly in London and the UK), so thought it might be useful to note down  some of the people who have recently impressed us and why.

3. Social media monitoring review 2010: Test 1 results

The second post from our Social Media Monitoring – 2010 review series. In it we give an insight into how we have set up the comparison of the seven tools (which in itself proved rather a challenge) and the volume of online conversations that each social media monitoring tool was able to uncover. And even at this top level, it’s clear the tools are each doing something quite different…

4. Russia: the fourth largest social networking market in Europe

In a post from last year we look at data showing that Russia was the fourth largest market in Europe for social networks behind the UK, Germany and France.

5. Social media + online shopping = social shopping

Social shopping can benefit retailers in several ways, especially if it is integrated with a wider online sales strategy. In this post we look at some examples that were then built on in our social media and retail breakfast briefing.