Facebook Messenger App

I’m not sure why there has been a sudden flurry of scepticism about the Facebook Messenger Android app while I’ve been away (only for a few days) as it isn’t exactly new, it originally launched in 2011!

At Dot-Social we’re all on iOS and want the latest version of most things to keep us all up-to-date.  I personally believe Facebook make changes to enhance what we do, to keep us all on there!  The difference is that the Android version of the app is having to play by Google’s rules and declare all it’s capabilities which, when spelt out, seem quite alarming and possibly intrusive, using all kinds of data from your mobile.

This article from Mashable helps with the detail of what people are concerned about and should help decide whether you should be worried. It’s aptly named, Don’t Freak Out About the Facebook Messenger App.

Facebook’s own blog on this, Why is the Messenger app requesting permission to access features on my Android phone or tablet? explains why they need the permissions stated.  Even if you don’t really understand it all, you can get the gist.

You’ll see in the first blog post that they advise these permissions already applied to Facebook’s main app, and many of them are standard for social media apps like this anyway. It was in April this year when they split the app and started rolling it out.  The app reduces the different ways in which Facebook has to handle messages in its standard app and, “It would be too cumbersome to add to the standard app.”

In very basic terms, within Facebook if you want to send someone a picture from your android mobile, you’ll need to have given the messenger app permission to access your photos.  However, if you still don’t want to use the Messenger app, you can still access Facebook messages by accessing the site through a mobile browser.  You can then access and respond to your messages without using the Messenger app.

New changes to Facebook rules – HURRAY!

Facebook like, dislike image

Facebook like, dislike image

As a user, I was extremely pleased to read about the new Facebook Platform Policy (7 Aug, fully effective on 5 Nov 2014) stopping Pages apps requiring you to like a Page in order to enter competitions etc.  Like-gating, as it’s known, is now prohibited by policy.

What is it?

It’s when competitions and promotions require you enter by following their request of liking their Page.

However, there are many Pages not following the rules that already apply to promotions and offers.  This could be due to lack of knowledge and understanding, blatantly ignoring them or attempting to get hundreds of likes.  The latter doesn’t particularly help your marketing because if the person doesn’t really ‘like’ your Page, they with either unlike it or remain dormant, limiting the reach of your posts.  Remember it’s about quality not quantity.  You want an engaged audience, not huge figures of uninterested people on your Page.  After 5 November even if an existing app requests a Page like, it will be disabled by Facebook (in effect) and not count whether the entrant has or hasn’t liked the Page!  For a new app, we believe this is in effect already (from 7 Aug 2014) and some have 90 days to comply.

There have always been strict rules around competitions on Facebook.  To summaries these:

  • you must show all the terms, rules and eligibility to enter etc
  • must include an acknowledgement that it is not associated with Facebook
  • not request use of personal timelines (e.g. ‘Share on your Timeline to enter’ is not allowed)

See the rules in full in the Facebook Pages Terms.

Hands up if you are surprised by these rules?  There are plenty who don’t abide by them!

Another interesting rule that you may not have heard of is that third-party advertisements on Pages are prohibited, without Facebook’s prior permission.

The new rules that sparked this post applies to apps.  ‘You must not incentivise people to use social plugins or to like a Page.   This includes offering rewards, or gating apps or app content based on whether or not a person has liked a Page.   It remains acceptable to incentivise people to login to your app, checkin at a place or enter a promotion on your app’s Page.’   Read this and about the changes to Games apps here under Changes to Platform Policy .

So, in theory, we should see a lot less of the ‘Like our Page to enter’ competitions in our personal timelines.

As a Page owner if you have created a campaign or social strategy based on incentivising page likes through apps you may find have work to do!  But, in the long run, you will find other actions, probably more effective ones, to ask your audience to do, to replace that one.

The controversy over this is move by Facebook is really interesting. See the comments under the Facebook Blog, and Socially Staked.

When you consider how many Pages each individual has liked, narrowing down who sees what has got to mean users only really do click to like, in the future, those pages that you are really interested in, not just because they want to enter a competition.

We think this is a good move. What do you think?

 

 

Croydon Tech City, Just Croydon and our Tweetup

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On Thursday, Wendy attended the Croydon Tech City season finale meeting at Matthews Yard, Croydon.  This is a movement founded by Jonny Rose, now joined by Sarah Luxford and Nigel Dias, promoting the growth of tech companies and start-ups to come and work in and/or from Croydon.

There are great, free, monthly meetings (though there’s not one in August, hence it being the season finale this month!) with presentations from players large and small involved in tech, tech start-ups or with views or influence over them.  Since the inception, 16 months ago, there’s been a Croydon Tech City Summit and social gatherings, the Code Club movement is expanding, giving the opportunity for kids from primary school-age learning to code and lots of networking and partnership discussions.

There’s always a really positive vibe, interesting people to meet from the large group of technically-minded people to other marketing companies, ideas people, to the odd financier.

We also discovered from one of the presentations on Thursday that the Just Croydon website had launched just 2 days before, a new social site for Croydon, and that their launch night is the same as our next Tweetup.   So, we would really encourage anyone and everyone interested in getting connected and improving Croydon in person, or online, to come down to Matthews Yard on 13th August.   The Just Croydon Launch is from 6.30pm for 7pm start in the studio with talks from Jonny Rose, Councillor Tony Newman and the Mayor of Croydon, Manju Shahul-Hameed.  

The Tweetup is just a social event, free and everyone is welcome to come along.   It starts from 7.30pm, or join up with us after the Just Croydon event, on 13 August.  See full details of the August Tweetup.  

Stephanie Darkes and Wendy Ager from Dot-Social will be there and we’re normally at the bar or outside.

 

 

 

Local social marketing tips

Because us Dot Social ladies come from Croydon, we know people who work or worked at Nestle and/or have a connection with Nestle because they used to have their UK Headquarters here and were the main private employer in Croydon.   They’re now down the road near Gatwick.  The Nestle building is part of the Croydon skyline, literally, and they lit up the Wellesley Road building at night with coloured lights.  They’re an American giant, but we have an indirect connection with them because they are local.

As online marketeers, we know the best way to gain positive attention is to provide great content and be a source of information relevant to our audience.  The problem is that nearly everybody (well, anyone with any sense!) is doing it.  This means even your best content may get lost in the crowd.

A very good way to stand out, especially if you have a local base, or connection with a particular area is by focusing your efforts locally.  Remember the saying, ‘Think globally, act locally‘.   Think about the big picture but if you’re starting out or a small business, you need to start small, and local.

Consider marketing yourself to smaller groups rather than targeting larger ones.  You can do this by joining discussions in local LinkedIn Groups, Facebook Groups, in smaller local Google Communities, or even at smaller business networking events.

People who know you are local are far more likely to read your posts and respond to them, connect with you and remember you if they feel that local connection.   We explained this at our recent Social Media workshop, that it can fall right down to the specific area in a town if you are a small, local business.  London is a big place, as-is Surrey, so although you might be intending to market to a global audience, if you are based in Guildford or Bermondsey, then say so.   Name the particular place and people will think of a connection with it, and it is that that makes it feel more personal and memorable.

With the corporate world and big businesses being seen sometimes in a negative light now and people turning to look out the bespoke, small, local business you’ll find, like us, a lot of people would rather do business with a local business than a big global corporate.  We see this all the time with requests on Social Media for recommendations for anything from a local plumber that needs to be local to a web designer, who doesn’t.

By the way, we can produce beautiful WordPress websites ourselves, but we don’t do plumbing – well, not yet!!

So don’t forget to talk about your specific location, your connection with places and also where you’re heading or where you’ve been.  Mention this on your social media channels as well as looking out suitable places to share your content with people online in smaller localised groups.   Think about your business according to both local and global considerations.

We organise Tweetups, which are a social gathering in Croydon. If you’d like to come to one and/or meet us, see the next dates and any of our other events on our Events Page.

Another successful Social Media workshop completed!

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Us Dot Social girls are very busy working on our client’s online presence lately but we also get involved in community projects, this week has been specifically focused on Purley Festival.

We have all been involved in the festival from its fruition and between us we take care of the music, organisation of the weekend finale, website design and maintenance and all the social media accounts.

As part of the Purley Festival week we thought it would be great if we ran our own event to help local businesses in our community. So on Wednesday, we ran a  Social Media workshop at Christ Church, Purley where I outlined our 6 steps to successful Social Media Strategy and Wendy shared some useful hints and tips on using Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.  Our brilliant creative genius Ania was on hand, as always to take some fantastic photographs.

The session was fully booked with plenty of independent businesses, solo entrepreneurs and a few bigger High Street companies, the workshop was a great success but don’t take our word for it, we had some great feedback…

 

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Future workshops

We will be running workshops later in the year, if you are interested in learning about getting more leverage from your Social Media drop us a line!

 

 

 

 

 

How to see ALL the Activity on your Facebook Page

 

When you arrive at your Facebook Page there’s a menu at the top showing Page, Activity, Insights (stats on who’s visiting etc) and Settings (where you can alter privacy and notifications etc).

If you want to see all the activity, and maybe show some more, delete some or highlight others comments/posts, you can go to the URL at the end add /allactivity to see all of it clearly.

For example; for us, we’d need to be logged into our page and change the URL at the top to be http://www.facebook.com/DotSocial/allactivity

You can then see all your Page Activity in a clear list.  Click on the pen icon next to them to do various things eg Highlight, Allow, Hide, Remove a Tag, Delete etc. Here you can also change their visibility by clicking on the world icon.

This can help you with highlighting positive or useful comments and feedback about your business on page by others, as posts where people who have @Mentioned your page will show up here, as long as it’s not been shared privately of course!

We hope this is useful and if you’d like to share it with others, please click the sharing buttons below.  To connect with us online, use the buttons at the top of this page.

Using LinkedIn for Business

Last night Ania presented and Wendy attended the Purley Business Association meeting.

We were invited to speak on how business users can benefit from being on and actively using LinkedIn to grow their network.  In short, Ania’s presentation explained the benefits of being on LinkedIn for credibility, a detailed showcase of your work and experience, a way to connect and interact, SEO and more.  She explained the process of adding/completing your profile, adding your Company, making up-dates and joining Groups.

One of the main benefits of LinkedIn is being able to see connections of your connections and ask for introductions.  You can also join, collaborate with and share experiences with like-minded people in Groups.  You will also get exposure to other LinkedIn members outside of your connections that you might want to make contact with.  You can easily find local, industry specific and even topic-specific groups and, if not, start your own and invite others to join your group for discussions.

You can either use the search box at the top of any page by selecting Groups from the drop down menu, or go to Interests at the top of your Home page and select Groups from there.

Don’t just be a stalker though!  Join in with the discussions or start your own within the groups. That gets you visibility and credibility if you are able to provide useful insights/information in your field.

There are some limits on Groups and you can see the details here on the LinkedIn Group Help Page.

There was a good vibe about the Purley Business Association group so if you’re local to Purley you’ll find a mix of local business people at these meetings that are FREE to attend on your first or second visit, with speakers on business topics and networking, then they encourage you to become a member of the Association.

 There was great interest in our FREE Social Media workshop for Purley Festival week, on 25th June.  That will be on Social Media Strategy and Improving Your Online Profiles, from 9.45am -11am at Christ Church, Purley meeting rooms.  Email Wendy@dot-social.co.uk asap to register for your place as there’s only a few places left.

 

Connect with us on LinkedIn at Dot Social, Ania Wilk-Lawton, Stephanie Darkes and Wendy Ager.

 

 

 

 

3 Ways to integrate Social Media into your website

 

We regularly see people using Social Media platforms, sometimes really well, but without any real integration into their overall online strategy, connecting one with another and to their website.  Yes, we’ve clicked through to have a look!!

That’s what’s good about Social Media.  People interested in you, your business and what you’re saying WILL sometimes follow the links on your Social Media posts or profiles to find out more about you!  What about the other way round.  When they come to your website, can they find, follow and interact with you socially?

Here’s how you can integrate social media into your website relatively easily.

1.  Add follow buttons.  So they can connect with you, keep in touch or just watch what you’re doing.

2.  Add Share buttons.  So they can share with their contacts what you are posting about.

3.  Show your streams.  So they can see easily what else you are posting on your social media channels.

You can get buttons from each of the social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+.  If you aren’t able to do this yourself, ask your website  developer to do this for you!

There are many sites, separate to the social media networks themselves offering to make all the buttons for you. FREE! For instance, you could try AddThis or Social Button Maker.

Social Media Examiner show here, how to ‘Customize your Share buttons‘.

If you want to create streams (showing the current posts/conversations going on on your Social Media channels) then you might consider creating them individually through the social media platforms themselves again, or try Social Stream Widget.com.   You could even have a whole page of your website dedicated to all your social media platform streams with RebelMouse.

Making it easy for your visitors to connect, share and engage with you on Social Media can only make it work for you quicker, easier and better for you.

You can share this post using the buttons below, or connect with us using the buttons on the top of this page!

 

 

 

What can people see on your Facebook Page?

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When you’re logged into your own business or community Page on Facebook it’s good to keep in mind that you can probably see more than people who are viewing or have Liked your page can see.  There are also a few things you may not be able to see that others can eg a comment that’s been made private between friends about your page.

You can see all the posts on your page, even ones that have been ‘hidden’ but a visitor won’t see them.

Unless you’ve changed the settings, people will also see Other People’s posts to your page, and interactions THEIR friends have had with your page and who of their friends have Liked your page. If you want to change this you can either ‘Require your approval for others posts to your page’ or turn of the Recent Posts By Others box – See how to here!

If you have need to, you can remove someone from you page, or go further and BAN them! See more on that here.  You can also add a profanities filter or even ban the use of particular words!

You can set country and age restrictions of people who see/like your page, decide if you want people to tag photos and all sorts in Edit Settings and even make your page more visible.

At the top of your Page, click Edit Page then Select Edit Settings

Go and have a look NOW and see if you want to add/change anything on your Facebook Page!

 

We’re Dot Social on Facebook.  There we share our blogs and other useful marketing and social media tips. We are @Dotsocialise on Twitter, if you’d like to connect with us individually on Twitter, we are @AniaWL, @StephanieDarkes and I’m @WendyAnnAger.

 

 

 

Post photos from your phone straight a Facebook Album

 

UPDATE – you CAN now post photos from your mobile into albums using the Facebook Pages app- Hurray!!

This came up whilst we were talking at Croydon’s Meanwhile Use marketing day.   I explained that posting photos is great and to do it from your mobile is easy and can create buzz for projects, but to remember to go and upload them into albums on your Page later with dates, descriptions, tags etc and then you can link to those albums and share them etc.   Otherwise they all just sit in ‘mobile uploads’ and that’s a massive mess!

However, I don’t think a lot of people know that, for your personal profile, you can actually add to an Album or even Create an Album on your phone.

After selecting ‘Share a Photo’ on your timeline and selecting them, click the icon underneath (below!) and you can add to an Album or create a new Album.

  • Choose an album

Alternatively, on the iPhone Facebook App, from anywhere just go to ‘More’ then scroll down until you see ‘Photos’ and in there you can upload like you do from your PC.

Both give you the options to add a description, location, people-tagging and privacy alterations as normal.

The only thing we’ve noticed you can’t do is Edit the Album to do things like re-order the photos like you can from your PC.

So, there’s no need to re-upload to organise your photos into Albums.  Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem to be available for Pages Apps yet, but for personal use it’s great.

We hope you find our Blog useful and if you’d like more tips from us please do connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.