How To Build a Winning Facebook Page


Buddy Media’s Michael Lazerow delivered a fantastic talk at LeWeb11 on the latest trends for Facebook Pages, and Michael highlighted some of the best ways brands are currently using Facebook to engage with people and grow their business. The entire video is well worth watching and Michael’s deck from the talk is also available in this post. I have highlighted my own notes in bullet form which you can read below.

  • Facebook is massive – 850M active users on one global platform
  • 50% login everyday
  • 94% of digital marketers focus on Facebook
  • 9M businesses have a page on Facebook
  • Successful brands are dominating the wall and publishing to it with a purpose
  • Increases in engagement, lead to increases in impressions which then lead to more engagement. This is Facebook’s virtuous cycle.
  • Tie your posts to what is going on in the real world – Break news!
  • Keep status updates short, with a simple Call to Action (CTA)
  • Simple CTAs are very important, tell your consumers what you want them to do! Don’t make users think
  • Use photo galleries and put the CTA in the photo itself
  • Success depends on understanding Facebook metrics.
    Confused about the metrics?  Just look at what Facebook SAYS is important.
    If Facebook says its important, then then they are optimising it against their algorithms
  • How many people are engaging on your page?  “Talking about this?”   There are people who have created a ‘story’ in the last seven days (comments, likes, responses to events, most commented posts, answered a question, mentioned your page, tagging your page, checked in, etc)
  • Look at impressions, how many people saw your post though the organic news feed? How many people saw your page through paid media?  How many people saw your page through viral actions e.g non fans, who your post through your friends actions?
  • Coupons work! – coupons are the most engaging word on Facebook
  • Lots of brands are using exclusive content – even if it’s non fan gated (Share this with friends and we will reveal something exclusive)
  • Like-Gate content and vote!
  • Like our page to get access to the event, or content FROM the event
  • If you are having events, invite people THROUGH Facebook




You can also see the panel discussion that followed Michael’s talk – Going beyond creating a Facebook page which is also well worth watching.


Microsoft Predicts a Future That I Want

In 5-10 years, how will people get things done at work, at home, and on the go?

Watch Microsoft’s concept video to get a glimpse of the future of productivity. Watch how future technology will help people make better use of their time, focus their attention, and strengthen relationships while getting things done at work, home, and on the go. This video is a follow up to their excellent ‘vision’ video in 2009.

Twitter Refreshed–A Look At The New Site


Twitter has announced a radical new design for their own homepage. Yesterday, to much fanfare they announced “Today, we’re introducing a new, re-engineered that provides an easier, faster, and richer experience”. You can find out more about the enhancements on Twitter information page here. But here are some of the highlights:

  • Enchanced new design. The new has a cleaner timeline and a rich details pane that instantly adds more impact to individual Tweets. The site also now offers infinite scroll — you no longer have to click “more” to view additional Tweets.
  • Embedded Media. You will now be able to embed photos and videos directly intoon Twitter, due to 16 partnerships with DailyBooth, DeviantART, Etsy, Flickr, Justin.TV, Kickstarter, Kiva, Photozou, Plixi, Twitgoo, TwitPic, TwitVid, USTREAM, Vimeo, yfrog, and YouTube.
  • Related content. Click on a tweet and the details pane shows you additional information related to the author or subject. Depending on the Tweet’s content, you may see: replies, other Tweets by that user, a map of where a geotagged Tweet was sent from, and more.
  • Mini profiles. Click a username to see a mini profile without navigating from the page, which provides quick access to account information, including bio and recent Tweets

Mashable succinctly describes the forthcoming update as “…a desktop app minus the download” and I think that makes a very fair description of the new site. You can see an example of the new interface below. For iPad users, the revamped Twitter interface will be familiar. Twitter for iPad uses a very similar display to the new Twitter site.


Lifehacker has collated a list of all of the keyboard shortcuts which will helpful to users, once they are migrated to the new site. You can learn more about the shortcuts below:


  • j/k to move between the next and previous tweets
  • Enter to drill down into or close a selected tweet
  • space to page down
  • Shift+space to page up
  • / to jump to the search box
  • . to refresh and jump back to the top

Actions for Individual Tweets

  • f to favorite a tweet
  • r to reply to a tweet
  • t to retweet
  • m to send a direct message
  • n to compose a new tweet
  • Escape to cancel a compose window, dismiss the help window


The roll out for Twitter users will begin within the next few weeks, so watch out for your upgrade. Personally, I think this is a great revamp. The Twitter experience will become richer for users, and the embeddable media features will save time. Today, I don’t like having to go to sites such as Twitpic and Yfrog to view picture content. However, I do wonder how desktop clients such as Seesmic and Tweetdeck will respond to this update? Are we going to Twitter desktop clients evolving. Or, does the new Twitter upgrade make desktop clients redundant? Only time will tell.

Great job Twitter team!

Google TV – And So It Begins

Social Media Revolution – Redux


Wonderful to see that Erik Qualman has refreshed his Social Media Revolution video. I only wish he had used a difference accompanying soundtrack this time. Fat Boy Slim, so 2008?

Key stats from the video follow below:

Stats from Video (sources listed below by corresponding #)

  1. Over 50% of the world’s population is under 30-years-old
  2. 96% of them have joined a social network
  3. Facebook tops Google for weekly traffic in the U.S.
  4. Social Media has overtaken porn as the #1 activity on the Web
  5. 1 out of 8 couples married in the U.S. last year met via social media
  6. Years to Reach 50 millions Users:  Radio (38 Years), TV (13 Years), Internet (4 Years), iPod (3 Years)…
  7. Facebook added over 200 million users in less than a year
  8. iPhone applications hit 1 billion in 9 months.
  9. We don’t have a choice on whether we DO social media, the question is how well we DO it.”
  10. If Facebook were a country it would be the world’s 3rd largest ahead of the United States and only behind China and India
  11. Yet, QQ and Renren dominate China
  12. 2009 US Department of Education study revealed that on average, online students out performed those receiving face-to-face instruction
  13. 80% of companies use social media for recruitment; % of these using LinkedIn 95%
  14. The fastest growing segment on Facebook is 55-65 year-old females
  15. Ashton Kutcher and Ellen Degeneres (combined) have more Twitter followers than the  populations of Ireland, Norway, or Panama.  Note I have adjusted the language here after someone pointed out the way it is phrased in the video was difficult to determine if it was combined.
  16. 50% of the mobile Internet traffic in the UK is for Facebook…people update anywhere, anytime…imagine what that means for bad customer experiences?
  17. Generation Y and Z consider e-mail passé – some universities have stopped distributing e-mail accounts
  18. Instead they are distributing: eReaders + iPads + Tablets
  19. What happens in Vegas stays on YouTube, Flickr, Twitter, Facebook…
  20. The #2 largest search engine in the world is YouTube
  21. While you watch this 100+ hours of video will be uploaded to YouTube
  22. Wikipedia has over 15 million articles…studies show it’s more accurate than Encyclopedia Britannica…78% of these articles are non-English
  23. There are over 200,000,000 Blogs
  24. Because of the speed in which social media enables communication, word of mouth now becomes world of mouth
  25. If you were paid a $1 for every time an article was posted on Wikipedia you would earn $156.23 per hour
  26. 25% of search results for the World’s Top 20 largest brands are links to user-generated content
  27. 34% of bloggers post opinions about products & brands
  28. Do you like what they are saying about your brand? You better.
  29. People care more about how their social graph ranks products and services  than how Google ranks them
  30. 78% of consumers trust peer recommendations
  31. Only 14% trust advertisements
  32. Only 18% of traditional TV campaigns generate a positive ROI
  33. 90% of people that can TiVo ads do
  34. Kindle eBooks Outsold Paper Books on Christmas
  35. 24 of the 25 largest newspapers are experiencing record declines in circulation
  36. 60 millions status updates happen on Facebook daily
  37. We no longer search for the news, the news finds us.
  38. We will non longer search for products and services, they will find us via social media
  39. Social Media isn’t a fad, it’s a fundamental shift in the way we communicate
  40. Successful companies in social media act more like Dale Carnegie and less like Mad Men Listening first, selling second
  41. The ROI of social media is that your business will still exist in 5 years
  42. Bonus: comScore indicates that Russia has the most engage social media audience with visitors spending 6.6 hours and viewing 1,307 pages per visitor per month – is the #1 social network

Web 3.0 – When Links Start To Mean Something

Web 3.0 from Kate Ray on Vimeo.

A fascinating web documentary describing what the Semantic Web may hold for all of us. Are you ready to put your data on the web yet?

Interviews with  Tim Berners-Lee, Clay Shirky, Chris Dixon, David Weinberger, Nova Spivack, Jason Shellen, Lee Feigenbaum, John Hebeler, Alon Halevy, David Karger and Abraham Bernstein

Britain’s Digital Time Bomb – A Call for University Funding

Yesterday, Prime Minister Gordon Brown outlined a series of initiatives for Britain’s digital future.

These initiatives can be summarised as:

  • The creation of a web portal called MyGov, that will allow individuals to personalise their experience to public services.
  • £30m worth of funding to create an “Institute of Web Science”, which will focus on the economic and social benefits of the web.
  • The publication of an online inventory of all non-personal datasets held by departments, creating a modern day "Domesday book".   
  • All public service contracts over £20,000 will be made available on a free online portal by the end of 2010. Thus allowing any suitable business to bid for them.
  • Roll out broadband access to all, with digital champion Martha Lane Fox broadening her role to set up a Digital Public Services Unit in the Cabinet Office
    Quoting Brown

I want Britain to be the world leader in the digital economy which will create over a quarter of a million skilled jobs by 2020; the world leader in public service delivery where we can give the greatest possible voice and choice to citizens, parents patients and consumers; and the world leader in the new politics where that voice for feedback and deliberative decisions can transform the way we make local and national policies and decisions.

Underpinning the digital transformation that we are likely to see over the coming decade is the creation of the next generation of the web – what is called the semantic web, or the web of linked data”.


Now, whilst I applaud the Government’s efforts in each of the areas above. I do have serious concerns about our IT future in 2020.  For Britain to be a true world leader in the digital economy, the Government must invest in universities for tomorrow’s IT graduates. Funding cut backs are already causing big problems and the disruption is only going to get worse.

Yesterday morning, I was alarmed to read Dr Black’s tweet on the lack of support for Computer Science courses. The link she provides leads to a report on the decline in computing graduates. (Read the full report below).



The report states:

The UK is currently sitting on a ticking time-bomb – all of the evidence shows a significant and increasing gap between supply and demand for IT professionals in the critical IT sector of the UK economy which, if left unchecked, will severely damage the competitiveness of UK industry in the global marketplace, and will hit smaller employers and the public sector particularly hard”.

The recession has caused many jobs within the IT sector to evaporate. This, coupled with the proposed closure of many computer science departments, is only going to make a bleak IT future for Britain. We need the best and brightest computer scientists to help deliver the wealth of opportunities that will appear on tomorrow’s digital landscape. Without a dedicated and passionate IT workforce, we risk a “brain drain”.

I completed my Information Systems degree in 1998. My course was more than than “a short journey into IT”. It has proved to be a true life skill. I’ve been lucky to work with a number of global businesses, in a continued cycle of learning and delivering value. My IS degree gave me the passion for that. Working alongside talented IT colleagues gave me inspiration to work harder, and to provide simplified business solutions.

Making sense of technology, and sharing that with the world is a wonderful and enriching feeling. IT graduates push the technology envelope further each day. Not only in the worlds of coding and architecture. But many, in the worlds of business, engineering and even geek marketing (Just like me!). IT graduates don’t think in black and white, they dream in colour.



Dear Gordon Brown,

Please don’t forget that Britain needs thousands of IT graduates for 2010. To provide them in sufficient numbers, computer science departments need adequate funding. Don’t allow them to close. Overseas expertise will eventually costs us dearly. 

Here’s a worrying paper, with a specific list of recommendations for you to consider.


The Decline in Computing Graduates: A Threat to the Knowledge Economy and Global Competitiveness

Beware of Twankernomics!

A very tongue and cheek response to last year’s Socialnomics video. Very amusing!

Technorati Tags:

Keep It Simple – Coke’s New Social Media Principles


Andy Serovitz posted a very interesting blog post on how Coca Cola have devised a new set of social media principles. Coke have developed 10 “Principles for Online Spokespeople” which make good sense for other brands to follow.  You can read the main set below.

  1. Be Certified in the [Coca Cola] Social Media Certification Program.
  2. Follow our Code of Business Conduct and all other Company policies.
  3. Be mindful that you are representing the Company.
  4. Fully disclose your affiliation with the Company.
  5. Keep records.
  6. When in doubt, do not post.
  7. Give credit where credit is due and don’t violate others’ rights.
  8. Be responsible to your work.
  9. Remember that your local posts can have global significance.
  10. Know that the Internet is permanent.

Watch Andy’s interview with Coca Cola’s Adam Brown, on how they developed the social media principles.

    Coke’s complete policy document can be found below. At three pages, I like this a lot!

Coca Cola’s Online Social Media Principles

Gary Vaynerchuk’s Talk @ The Water Poet – London

Yesterday evening, I attended the Gary Vaynerchuk Crush It event organised by Sprouter, at The Water Poet pub in London. Overall, Gary was on top form and shared some interesting insights with the audience.

My rough notes from the talk follow below. But I recommend that you watch the complete talk to gain all of Gary’s insights.

Consumer Expectation

– Free Shipping was once considered the greatest thing that ever happened when consumers bought online. However, 10 years later, no one cares! It has become a standard and we are used to it.

– Imagine checking into a New York based hotel and discovering that they only had dial-up internet?  You’d want to punch the concierge in the face, and pick up the phone to call home and tell someone about your bad experience. However, we have only been used to a better dial-up experience for only a few years. Our expectation of a better Internet connection in hotels has grown.

– One of the big trends to emerge in 2010 is going to be "Consumer Expectation."
Consumers will expect brands to respond to them, when consumers leave comments on a company’s Facebook wall, or when consumers send tweets to the company. They will expect a response.  Customer Service and actually "caring" will filter out contenders and bullshit artists.

– If customer service is not the backbone of the business the you are looking to build, you are going to be in trouble.

– When Amazon bought Zappos, Jeff Bezos recognised that Zappos was a threat to them and had no choice but to buy Zappos.

– Zappos will make an interesting case study for many people. It was the only company in the retail world that was a threat to Amazon. Amazon doesn’t consider companies such as Walmart, Target and Tesco as real competitors to their business.

– Zappos was a threat to Amazon, because they were beating Amazon on "DNA and culture."  Buying shoes from Zappos were not inexpensive, Amazon beat Zappos on price here. However, they ‘cared’ more about the customer.

– When you called Zappos, they trained their staff to stay on the phone with you as long as needed (to get the sale). They rewarded staff for being on the phone with you for an hour! If a dog barked in the background, and you (the person in call centre) were authentically into dogs, you were to talk about that. If you ordered a large number of shoes that didn’t fit, you could return them for free.

– All the dumb things that our grandparents did, has been lost in history. Everything you do, will be documented forever. You grand kids will know all the silly and ridiculous things that you have done. You have to pay attention to this! In the book, Gary talks about "legacy being greater than currency.”  Think life in the long term, everything is being documented forever.

– Today’s fundamental shift, is that the gatekeepers have lost their keys. The fact that anyone who is connected to the Internet gets a chance to show the world their "stuff" is a game changer. If your “stuff” is good, you can breed word of mouth.

– Today’s social web, breeds word of mouth on steroids.

– The movie Bruno flipped Hollywood on its head. Bruno opened in the States to one of the biggest openings of all time. The next day, it was one of the biggest drop off’s in cinema history. Why? Because nearly everybody who saw the film, walked out and started Facebooking, Twittering and texting that the movie was no good.  In 24 hours the word of mouth for that movie collapsed, and people didn’t go to see it.  In Hollywood, the norm used to be 3 weeks before traditional word of mouth travelled. Due to Bruno’s failure. About 75 movies got shelved this summer because of it. 

Gary makes some very interesting points about Amazon’s purchase of Zappos.  As a bonus, watch the video below which explains the corporate rationale for Amazon’s purchase in July 2009.  Also, the video does a good job to explain how Amazon’s culture compares with that of Zappos.