Tag Archives: Twitter

Announcing RealTime WebCampLjubljana

It’s been two months after last WebCamp and it’s time for another party. Following the idea of BarCamps with story line, we’ve decided to organize RealTime Social WebCamp Ljubljana.

This time we’ve decided to focus on a single emerging technology space: Real-Time Social Web. If you’re not up-to date with the latest buzzwords, it’s about next generation RSS protocols like HubSubPubBub, RSSCloud, XMPP (that powers GTalk), Synaptic Web, Twitter API and a bunch of other technologies and ways of thinking about the Web and Mobile space.

Intended audience are developers and people who are close to them (e.g. interface designers, product managers, etc.) and will need to innovate in this space in the next 6 months.

We’re doing it a bit more limited this time, just 50 spaces. I’m interested in seeing how a smaller and more focused group changes the dynamics of such gathering.

The rules for the tickets are the same as the last time. Send description of your talk early and you get a ticket, or hope that you can click fast enough for the left-over tickets later. I believe that extra effort should be awarded.

The official language this time is Slovenian since we’ve figured out that locals that are not native speakers understand our geek talk enough that it shouldn’t be a problem and we can understand them as they lecture in their own language.

As always: all the details are at http://www.webcamp.si

Social media presence is not what your product needs

penguins

Today everyone blogs and we expect everyone to have their own blog, Twitter account, LinkedIn profile etc. Being present on as many services as we can. We can then measure measure engagement levels with one of the many different approaches (number of followers, sales, replies or even Klout rank).

What often don’t see is companies taking a deliberate decision not to be present on every social media fad, but instead decide to focus on a few communication channels and spend the rest of their resources on their actual product.

The one company that does this beautifully is twidroid. They make a deliberate stance that they don’t do tech support over Twitter and that you should use email. Their message is simple and it helps drive customer to the right medium.

We can take this a step further and take a look at different ways some of social media tools can be used:

Facebook Page
Is our audience on Facebook at all? Is this a replacement of Newsletter or do we expect to do tech support and discussions here? Do we just count number of fans so we have more than competition?

Twitter account
Do we plan to become a leader and Tweet  about our industry or do we just push announcement every once in a while. Is this account to do tech support over? Do we want followers or engagement? How personal is the voice of the account?

Blog
Do we position ourselves as progressive thinking company that regularly writes in-depth editorials or do we push product announcements and speaking gigs. What would be most useful for our business goals (hyping up vs. consumer focused)?

LinkedIn and everything else
While we all love new social networks the only real question is – do we actually reach anyone on that platform?

Do you know why your social media presence is structured like it is? Or is it legacy setup already?

The Power of Influence – Social Media Club (notes)

Here are some of my notes from the Social Media Club panel discussion that happened tonight:

What is influence?

  • Influence is a capacity to have some people do something. Actionable influence – influence as a strategy, as a process. You don’t master the outcome but you have a feeling what’s happening and where it’s going to end.
  • Influence – facilitating conversations between and with customers. You have to be within the context of the conversation.
  • Brands are today presented in many different worlds and the question is, how to manage all the influence there.
  • Influence – the art of successfully levering what you can’t control.
  • You are more influenced by the person that looks like you. What are the ethical and legal ratifications of using such technology?

How do you measure influence? Is the technology really the solution for this problem?

Don't Look Back In Anger
Image by Fey the Ferocious Feyrannosaur via Flickr

Technique 1: Mapping out all the people that are interesting to us, and then we converse with them (Twitter/Blog/etc.). Then we measure how often they talk about us, and what % of that is positive. After you identify a few thousand people like that, then we measure how many of them we can reach (phone, mail, etc.). Then we measure the reach of their blog and how many people connect through that.

Technique 2 (@Get Satisfaction): Asses the customer satisfaction level: where they are contextually in the conversation (are they angry?) and where they are going.

The role of crowd-sourcing and how does it impact the influence and how does that connect to “Web 2.0”?

  • Twitter is not very influential, because it’s just another broadcast channel. Until we have threaded @replies, we don’t really have conversations.
    Get Satisfaction is a “Social CRM”: There’s a lot of value in deanonymizing your personal data.
  • If you enable your customers to talk to each other, they’ll get value in that and you’ll get value from eavesdropping. But to get real value out of that, you have to engage in conversation with them.
  • Twitter is a lot of time used as a broadcast tool, but there are true customers on there and you can reach out to them (not spam them) and engage in deep conversations with them. Too much focus on the tool is dangerous path to go down so you get too focused on the technology.
  • 140 characters – going back to basics, the value of headlines. They’re teaching us to write short and teach us how to be concise.

Does Brand matter anymore?

  • The brand matters, but it’s changed. Brand has to work in so many more contexts. You have to understand how does the identity form itself, how does the brand act in a funny situation, how does it work in a serious one? You have to allow and understand how it works in these contexts in order for brand to be part of the conversation.
  • We can count on the large portion in B2B that want to be part of conversation that are not ready for that.
  • Conversation is still the same, it just moves faster from one medium to another.
  • Creative marketing can’t cover bad brands and products anymore.

How can companies become more comfortable in the social media space?

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Image by Hillary the mammal. via Flickr
  • The conversations are happening whether you’re participating in them or not. You can be afraid of them and hide from the information that’s out there, or be part of it.

What are the things that can be controlled?

  • What does the technology really change? Technology changes the circumstances in which the crisis happens. It changes who the influencers and important people are. But it also gives you more tools to refine and change your message.
  • The tech that allows you to target your message to a right group of people. If you talk to people about their experiences about social media:
  • Ads for women are very different. It’s increasingly the case that women get very different messages then men.
  • Search engine bias – there’s a big fight right now about the algorithm for search. They’re really important things from the influence point of view.
  • Personalization is a bad influence in Facebook.

What’s surprising about influencing patterns today?

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Image by Ekler via Flickr
  • The media and analysts doesn’t matter that much anymore. The buying influence is coming from the peers. When it comes to lead conversation and getting involved with them – it’s not for sales team but for the whole team. If you’re not willing to expand your role and engage in the peer to peer conversation, you’re not giving your full potential to your company or a client.
  • The user interface matters. Like the recent Facebook redesign that made the user status much more prominent. You can do a lot with cue’s and prompts.

How do you develop your own influence (as an individual?) – personal brand

  • Let people see who you are and what are your interests and just go with it.
  • There’s something in seeing vulnerabilities in people and companies that makes you trust them a bit more.

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You should do Tech support on Twitter

Tech support is something that you have to do as you build and distribute a product or just provide a service. Most of the time, having support email address in form of support@companyname.com and startups like UserVoice and GetSatisfaction make great tools for creating positive environment where discussions and support can happen. These are all very passive forms of support, you sit there and wait for somebody to come by and throw a problem towards you.

Day 328/365 : The Red Wheel
Image by ~jjjohn~ via Flickr

Good news is that Twitter allows you to be proactive in your support efforts as you can monitor/eavesdrop on different conversations and engage with these users, providing helpful suggestions and answering their questions.

This requires a lot of effort on a part of support team, as they need to actively reach out to the people that mention you brand and find the right balance between helpful and annoying or even creepy (a lot of people don’t realize their Tweets are public and searchable).

A few reasons why you need to actively search Twitter, instead of just waiting for support emails:

  • It’s much easier to write a quick Tweet with a rant than write an email
  • You can ask people to send you email with further description of the problem, so you can catch much easier weird problems
  • Honest feedback because they’re friends are listening.
  • If you manage to help them, their happines/satisfaction will be visible to their followers.

Remember to find a balance and that not every Tweet that mentions your company or product should be answered.

What are your experiences with doing tech support via Twitter? Too much effort for the output?

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More Twitter favorites ego-tripping with TwitFave

Everyone’s favorite service built around Twitter favorites – @twitfave just had a great service update. Now you can decide to get notified via DM once someone fave’s your Tweet.tweetiescreensnapz002

While re-tweeting is important indicator of quality of your tweets, faves give you another one that was mostly hidden by now.

Anyway, it’s quick, unobtrusive and it even uses Twitter OAuth so no password is exchanged. Give it a try today.

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