Consider this: how exactly do you behave when you are at a baseball game compared to your presence at a luncheon with state heads (if ever you had such an opportunity)? In the former setting, you’d ideally be yourself. You’d cheer out loud, you’d even swear, wouldn’t you? However, you’d do no such thing at the aforesaid luncheon, board meetings, or the like.
That’s context and your behavior is a function of such context. We go through these motions every day of our lives.
The king of professional social networking reached a major milestone recently when they broke the 250 million user mark.
Since going public in March, 2011, LinkedIn has had an up and down road. This can be expected from any social media site that goes public (just ask Facebook) but LinkedIn has been relatively stable. They’ve had some missteps. They’ve faced challenges. They seem to come out on top the majority of the time.
Here’s what Mashable had to say about the milestone:
LinkedIn now has 259 million monthly active users, up from 238 million in the previous quarter and 187 million a year earlier.
The latest number, which came as part of LinkedIn’s third quarter earnings results, puts the professional social network firmly ahead of Twitter, which had 230 million active users last quarter according to its updated S-1. However, LinkedIn is still well behind Google+ (currently at 300 million) and Facebook (1.15 billion as of the June quarter).
There is a revenue stream that Facebook has been dying to tap into for some time now. It’s one that many advertisers cannot wait to get their hands on and it’s the type of advertising that Facebook users are going to absolutely hate. Facebook autoplay ads are coming. They’re just not coming as quickly as expected.
Facebook started playing with autoplay video ads last year and were expected to roll them out by the middle of 2013. Then, we were told that they would likely come out in November. Now, word on the street is that they won’t be available until 2014. The reason is simple. Users are going to despise them. Some will leave Facebook as a result of them – that’s how obnoxious they will be. They will destroy some of the trust that Facebook has built up around its user experience and they aren’t ready to take that chance just yet.
The good news for users – you won’t hear them unless you click on them. The bad news – they’ll play whether you want them to or not. This will be a huge play for Facebook’s profits, but will it do more damage than good in the long run? That’s the question that they apparently haven’t answered yet, thus the delay.
Sources tell AllThingsD that Facebook has been advising some advertiser clients not to expect a rollout of the much-awaited auto-play video ad product before 2014. The ad format was originally supposed to make its debut in the first half of this year, but that never happened, and its launch has been pushed back several times since then.
Since the beginning, Facebook has been a place where people share what they’re doing. They post pictures, videos, and status updates that let their friends and family know what’s going on in their lives at that very moment. Some use it to post thoughts on things that are happening at that moment. Others simply share the latest joke they heard. For the most part, Facebook has not been successful at driving traffic to websites relative to its size.
That has changed in the last year. People are more open and willing to open links from Facebook. They are willing to use it to see interesting posts on blogs and news websites. This can be most easily seen from sites like Buzzfeed that saw a 855% increase in traffic year over year compared to a “mere” 208% for news site TIME.
The one thing they haven’t mastered is in real-time news. That’s Twitter’s wheelhouse. Despite the shared real-time nature that the sites share, the simplicity and chronological order of posts on Twitter make it a faster way to see the current links of immediate stories. Publications can post much more often to Twitter without losing followers than they can on Facebook where over-publishing can force them to lose fans. Facebook’s new publishing tool hopes to change that.
With the new tool, publishers will be able to see what stories they have on their website that have not been published to Facebook. They’ll also be able to see which ones they should post to Facebook based upon its success in being posted by other users. The immediate goal for Facebook is to encourage publishers to post more often. The end goal is to get them to spend money promoting their posts because of the attention that they’re able to get.
Facebook is already the highest traffic-sending social media site out there, but those numbers are misleading. Relative to their size, they’re actually not sending nearly as much traffic as they could. If they could get more publishers to share more content (something they’ve tried and failed at in the past) then their chances of turning that into additional ad revenue increases.
This is a problem for Twitter. They are banking on major media outlets to pay them for more exposure. Facebook is already making tremendous strides in the business world through their advertising program. If they can take dollars from publishers, television, and other media outlets, it could hurt Twitter in their bread and butter business. Twitter needs publishers to want to promote their posts because they are more effective at the news than at direct business engagement.
Facebook owns business marketing. If they can take over media promotions as well, Twitter might be left with a big chunk of their advertising dollars (as well as their hopes for the future) heading to their nemesis.
The majority of businesses on Facebook fall into one of two mindsets. They either use their Facebook feed for sales and marketing only and wonder why they aren’t getting any engagement or they believe that Facebook is strictly a branding tool and there’s no need to try to sell anything or drive traffic to their website. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to prove that both concepts are incorrect.
I was hesitant to write this story when the concept first came to my attention as I did not want to give people any ideas. I was hopeful that Facebook would make adjustments to this without anyone have to blow the whistle, but it’s been live for a little while now and there are no changes in sight.
I was consulting with a potential client yesterday and started looking at their Facebook and Twitter pages. Once a day, every day, they would post a question that had very little to do with anything at all. “What was the last movie you watched?”
Facebook has a promise that it has made to businesses. It’s not an official promise in writing anywhere on the site. It’s an implied promise. “We have the attention of the masses. If you want to get in front of them, we’re the biggest game in town.”
So, you have a Facebook page for your business. You’re ready to tap into the most powerful social site in the world. You want to get fans, to get people to like your page and hear your messages, to communicate with them in a meaningful way and to help drive more business.