Tag Archives: marketing-pilgrim

Facebook None Too Thrilled With Recent Employer Actions

As you have probably seen recently, there are reports coming out of Facebook accounts being an integral part of job interviews. Of course, we know that if something is public on Facebook it can be found by anyone. That’s fine. It’s the direct requests by employers to prospective employees to give them their login and password for their Facebook account that has many up in arms. Included in that many is Facebook itself.

Facebook released a statement called “Protecting Your Passwords and Your Privacy” that leads with

In recent months, we’ve seen a distressing increase in reports of employers or others seeking to gain inappropriate access to people’s Facebook profiles or private information. This practice undermines the privacy expectations and the security of both the user and the user’s friends. It also potentially exposes the employer who seeks this access to unanticipated legal liability.

The most alarming of these practices is the reported incidences of employers asking prospective or actual employees to reveal their passwords. If you are a Facebook user, you should never have to share your password, let anyone access your account, or do anything that might jeopardize the security of your account or violate the privacy of your friends. We have worked really hard at Facebook to give you the tools to control who sees your information.

Of course, there is plenty of room for cynicism and sarcasm around that last sentence so you can go there if you like. Further along in the announcement, however, is some curious language that has an almost ACLU kind of ring to it. It reads

Facebook takes your privacy seriously. We’ll take action to protect the privacy and security of our users, whether by engaging policymakers or, where appropriate, by initiating legal action, including by shutting down applications that abuse their privileges.

Initiating legal action? Wow. That’s quite a statement. If someone now wrongs you with regard to the access to your Facebook account can you turn to the law firm of Zuckerberg, Zuckerberg and more Zuckerbergs for legal assistance. Imagine the late night commercials now. “If you have been wronged with regard to your Facebook account call Facebook Law immediately.”

This is some big talk from Facebook since they have nearly 900 million prospective “clients” from which these kinds of situations can arise.

I guess the bigger question I would ask is “Is the economy that bad still that people would consider working for a business that asked that kind of question in an interview?”

Have you ever had anyone request your Facebook credentials in order to get a job or move ahead in anything? If so please share. I may need to consider law school of this can of worms cracks open as wide as it could. ;-)

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Facebook None Too Thrilled With Recent Employer Actions

B2B Marketers’ Social Media Efforts Have Much Room to Mature

Let’s just start by saying that the B2C approach vs. the B2B approach to social media marketing is often at opposite ends of the spectrum. Not always but often. Honestly, it should be. Asking you friends about an electronics purchase or the best place to find shoes is an inherently different mindset that finding the right multi-million dollar software and hardware combination for a business. In other words, there aren’t a lot of OMG’s in the B2B social media space (Thank God!).

Recent findings back this idea. eMarketer shows some research conducted in November of 2011 by Pardot that indicates where B2B marketers are spending their social media time.

As you can see, LinkedIn leads the way while good old blogging comes in second with both being well ahead of Twitter and Facebook. This makes sense since business related interactions aren’t nearly as warm and fuzzy as personal interactions. That’s not to say that there are no personal relationships in business. Heck, most sales happen as a result of the personal relationship developed between seller and prospect. When it comes to getting hard core data and information, however, there is less collaboration and more investigation in the B2B space.

Another interesting thing of note comes from research performed by BtoB Magazine. Their findings show that there is plenty of room for growth with regard to how marketers see their social media efforts. Of course, the agencies serving these companies look a bit different but they should.

With 75% of the B2B marketers being in either the early stages of social media or not using it at all this could be the most promising sector of all for social media. It certainly should be an area for serious consideration for those who are consulting on social media marketing.

So why the lag behind the B2C space? It’s the same as it was with the adoption of search marketing by B2B marketers. There are established ways of doing business in the B2B space that can continue on somewhat uninterrupted even in the Internet age. B2B marketers are not leading or bleeding edge types in most cases because their customers aren’t either. There’s nothing wrong with that. It just is what it is.

So rather than whine that B2B marketers don’t get it etc., etc. it might be better to think that they get more than many people think. After all, they have decided that much of hype around social media hasn’t warranted an all out abandonment of things that still work. In fact, one might argue that the slower adoption rate in the B2B space is the smarter way to go.

What’s your take? Is the B2B space just behind the times or is it now positioned to take advantage of social media in a significant way?

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Sure Pinterest is Hot, but is it the Next Facebook?

Is Pinterest the next Facebook?

Fortune magazine is asking the question in their April issue, but they’re not the first one’s to consider it.

The graphically-oriented social media site is gaining popularity faster than a studio-made teen idol. People, particularly young women, are signing up in droves and if we could hear them, they’d probably be shrieking with joy.

Here are a few comments from Twitter:

people ask me how I know @pinterest is here to stay…I think – I’m having a bad night and Ill want to do is go pin/look at pins

Wife occupied for hours while I watch basketball. Thank you Pinterest…whatever you are.

And not complementary but says it:

It’s not until you click into the “Popular” section that you glimpse the Winnie The Pooh sweatshirt-wearing nightmare that is @pinterest.

Pinterest is the internet version of a box of chocolates. Got that. But is it powerful enough to become the next Facebook?

Look at these numbers from comScore:

Pinterest is rising fast, but popularity comes with a set of unique problems. One is capacity. Keeping the servers up during a sudden, unexpected traffic deluge can be tricky. People will only stand for so many outages before they say good-bye.

Next, there are the legal issues. Pinterests entire business is based on people posting photos they don’t own. It’s not a photo hosting site like Flickr. It’s a virtual scrapbook and some content owners don’t like it.

Mostly, there’s the novelty factor. Right now, Pinterest is a fun, new place to play. It doesn’t take much effort to pin a photo and even less to repin. Tumblr has a similar system, but their site is still more about photo-blogging. Pinterest is more like taking a stroll through a museum.

There are no games. There are no rewards. There’s limited text space and it’s not really informative. As much as I dislike Facebook, I learn something about somebody every time I visit. When I visit Pinterest, I get overwhelmed by the clutter.  It’s hoarder heaven.

I’m sure the site will grow and change with time. Eventually, the rise in traffic will cease and as with all social media sites, it will have a loyal core audience sitting on top of 1,000′s of abandoned accounts.

Will Pinterest become the next Facebook? I say the next Twitter but Facebook has nothing to worry about.

Do you pin?

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Sure Pinterest is Hot, but is it the Next Facebook?

Inspiration Alley: Levi, L.L. Bean and Angry Birds

This week we’re taking a look at how two old brands are keeping things fresh and one modern company who went to new heights to promote their product.

Levi’s Water<Less Jeans

Levi’s is a brand that’s been around since 1873. It’s a brand that the world over associates with one thing – jeans. They’re trusted. They’re respected. But they still have to keep finding ways to modernize a product that really hasn’t changed all that much in over a hundred years.

Introducing the Water<Less Jean. Levi’s the average pair of jeans uses 42 liters of water in the finishing process. With their new system, they’ve reduced water usage up to 96%. To date, they have already saved more the 172 million liters of water which is equal to 726,600,812, 8-ounce glasses. Who knew?

To help promote their product, Levi’s has team up with Water.org which brings clean drinking water to folks around the world. They challenged people to “Go Water<Less” for a day. Pick a challenge from the website and Levi’s helps autopost it to Facebook. “I went flush<less for a week in order to help people in need!”

Levi’s Water<Less campaign is effective in two ways. It helps modernize an old brand and it shows that Levi’s is concerned about the world. They reinforce both of these points with their interactive challenges, social media postings and opportunities to submit photos through Instagram.

Now, when you pull on a pair of Levi jeans, you’ll feel like you’ve done something good for the world. That’s great branding.

L.L. Bean’s Outdoor Discovery Schools

L.L Bean is another hundred year old company that has done an excellent job of coming into the modern age. They’re a large retailer that most people think of as a clothier, but they also sell all kinds of equipment for outdoor activities. This month, the company is focusing on the family with events and tips to that encourage outdoor togetherness. To make everyone more comfortable, they offer their Discovery Series of courses where you can learn the basics of kayaking, archery, fishing and skiing for only $20.

Again, we’ve got two pluses here. First, L.L. Bean is positioning itself as a company that cares. They want families to be happy and they want to see kids engaging in healthy, outdoor activities instead of sitting inside playing video games. That’s a powerful message that parents can get behind. Second, by offering inexpensive discovery classes, L.L. Bean tempts people into trying something new. New means you have to buy the equipment and that’s dollars in their pocket.

Craft stores have been using this kind of pitch for ages. But what other kinds of businesses could benefit from a “discovery” class? Cakes shops, flower shops, book stores can offer writing classes. If you’re a mechanic, why not teach basic car maintenance? Teach your customers something for free (or for cheap) and they’ll come back and spend twice as much out of loyalty. Teach their kids something and they’ll pay you back three-fold. I promise.

Angry Birds in Space

From two very old companies to one of the newest – Rovio launched Angry Birds in Space with a radical campaign. They got a real astronaut to explain the physics behind the game while actually floating in space!

To keep it from sounding like a total waste of NASA’s time, they turned it into an educational experience – albeit a slim one. But it was clever, it had viral potential and it suits the brand perfectly.

Takeaway Tips:

1. Charity affiliations are good for business. Pick a charity that fits in with the culture of your business and run a campaign that promotes you by promoting them. It will make people feel good about your company and that means they’ll be more likely to buy.

2. Educate your customers on why they should buy what you sell and you’ll sell twice as much.

3. Getting ready for a product launch? Reach as high as you can to find just the right person to back your plan. It doesn’t have to be a celebrity as long as it’s someone who has a following in with the people you want to connect with.

Did you see a great ad campaign this week, tell us about it in the comments below.

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Inspiration Alley: Levi, L.L. Bean and Angry Birds

Social Nudges Viewers to Watch More Live TV

I love television. That’s not new news to anyone who regularly reads my work. I routinely record up to 4 hours of TV a night, that I can watch back in under 3 hours by skipping commercials, intros and the boring parts.

Here’s something that is new  news. Thanks to social apps, I now watch more live TV than ever before.

For example, last night American Idol was on. Instead of sending it straight to the DVR, I watched live because of app called Viggle. Viggle rewards me with points for watching and more points if I watch live because then I can play their real-time trivia game. They even give me extra points if I stick around for the commercials and prove it by answering questions after the show.

There were moments when I wondered why I was bothering. Why I was sitting through five minutes of car commercials just to earn 15 points toward an iTunes gift card? But sit I did, and I was annoyed when I had to stop watching early because of another commitment. A potential 40 points lost!

This may sound crazy, but I am not alone in this. A new iModerate Research Technologies study shows that 58% of heavy social media users are watching more live TV. (I can hear the studio execs cheering from here.)

The respondents said that interacting through a social app made watching TV more entertaining. They also liked the feeling of being part of a group and virtually hanging out with friends.

Social TV app GetGlue offers stickers for rewards and chatter when you check-in, but no incentive to stay with a program beyond that. Viggle and Peel both keep viewers engaged by using an audio sync to determine what they’re watching and to deliver timed messages. Miso doesn’t use audio sync, but they serve up timed slideshows designed to keep the viewer engaged throughout the length of the program as well. Social plus Gaming plus Technology equals a win.

If social apps can make people watch TV commercials, then you gotta wonder what else it can do.

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Social Nudges Viewers to Watch More Live TV