News & Opinions

Facebook and Google+ Developments and More Digital Highlights

Every month, Fleishman-Hillard presents a number of digital updates relating to the previous month. This month:

  • What do the changes to Facebook mean for organizations?
  • The first updates on the Google+ brand pages
  • The latest social media facts & figures
Facebook is changing…

Mark Zuckerberg recently announced that Facebook is implementing a number of important changes. The biggest changes will be rolled out over the coming weeks. This offers both opportunities and challenges for fan pages. Below is a brief overview. Want to know more? Please contact the Fleishman-Hillard digital team.

  • Updated profile: Your life as a scrapbook The new profile is constructed on the basis of a time line. Image and context will become more important. For brands, this offers lots of opportunities for branding and storytelling. In addition to the increased influence on the look and feel of the page, for organizations the time line can be filled with the brand’s major life events.
  • Fans no longer need to like a page to participateThis means the number of fans will become less important in defining the success of a Facebook community. Instead of fan numbers, we need to measure the results with engagement KPI’s . This is a good thing!
  • News feed & TickerThe news feed will include status updates and the ticker the ‘quick’ updates, for example when someone comments on a post, is listening to a song, likes a page and so forth.
  • Social apps thanks to open graph As a brand, it will soon be possible to become visible in fans’ personal profiles as long as it is a social app with value to fans. Nike, for example, launched a social app which shows where you have been running. This is a great challenge in which the graph rank plays an important role and companies need to focus on offering added value.
  • Lists of friendsThanks to the opportunity to categorize friends into friend lists, you can target your communication on specific groups of recipients. This is very much like the Google+ circles.
  • There is more to life than like In addition to ‘like’, new verbs will also be featured on Facebook, such as listen, watch, read and eat. This adds context to the use of certain brands. David Fischer (Facebook VP-Global Marketing Solutions): “It suddenly gives fans the opportunity to share what business you’re in, the products you’re using or buying and sharing that with your friends”.
  • Subscribe button Until now, it has only been possible to follow the updates of Facebook friends, but the subscribe button changes all that. Now, non-friends (fans, but also journalists, for example) will be able to stay up to date with the organisation’s activities.
  • New statistics Facebook is rolling out new Insights possibilities for pages. ‘People talking about’ has already been introduced, to gain better insight into the involvement and activity of fans. Reach metrics will also shortly be available.
Google+ will soon be adding brand pages

Google+ currently has more than 25 million visitors a day and will be introducing brand pages in the near future. Our US colleagues were able to test this facility with a client. For those who are not yet familiar with Google+ here is a brief summary of the features:

  • Circles: categorize friends into lists
  • Sparks: news feeds to follow based on a specific topic
  • Stream: status updates, sharing likes and responding to people’s messages
  • Hangouts: video conferencing (with max. 10 people at a time)
  • Messenger (Huddle): special page for group discussions
  • Location Based Services: Checking in, like FourSquare and Google Places
  • Homebase for Google products: Gmail, Gchat, Picasa, etc. will be combined

Features for Brands

As with every new platform, the principle is learning by doing. Our colleagues can see opportunities in hangouts, circles and, naturally, the big added value: analytics! They do not expect Google+ to be a Facebook killer. After all, with the new changes, Facebook will be close to the level of Google+ where functionality is concerned. Google is ahead in the area of analytics, however.

What else has been happening online?

Hyves repositioning

While Google+ and Facebook have been vying for media attention, Hyves (a Dutch social network) has faded into the background. Recently, the network came up with news: Hyves will be repositioning itself as a content network. Hyves members decide the topics and daily newspaper Sp!ts takes care of the editorial layer.

You’re a PR crisis manager, but are you a pre-crisis doctor?

A lot of blogs on crisis & online are about what to do if your organisation finds itself in a crisis situation. This article is aimed at the preliminary phase. How to build relationships with online stakeholders and prevent a crisis breaking out.

Studies: Nielsen’s Q3 social media report and InSites study

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