Archives 2013


It’s hard as a business to understand how to navigate your customer’s feedback online – whether it’s negative or positive.  Many of my clients are paralyzed when left to respond to posts or comments on their page and when it’s negative feedback – all hell usually breaks loose internally.

Business owners need to understand how best to respond to these types of social scenarios and Facebook recently unveiled the 6 trends they found after a full day dedicated to Compassion-focused research.

Facebook’s 4th Compassion Research Day was held Thursday December 5th at their Menlo Park, Calif. HQ.

Here’s what was on the agenda:

  • What happens around the world when somebody uses emoticons,
  • The things they learned about how teens navigate cyber-bullying as well as suggested tools to support them.
  • Providing tools to veteran users and affiliation.
  • What does and does not work in what they learned about difficult status updates.

In this event, the compassion team discovered six important trends, while working with researchers from from Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, Yale’s Center for Emotional Intelligence, Stanford University, Northeastern University, Claremont McKenna University, as well as other institutions.

Prior to the introduction of the six trends, Facebook said that:

Conflicts, as well as other challenges in relationships are impossible to avoid, in both online and offline situations. As these are the realities of life, researchers are now beginning to discover how non-verbal rules in human interaction affect attitudes and behavior online.

Facebook, while working with top researchers studying the science of emotion, is now digging into how conflict affects users’ lives on the web – transcending language, culture values and social norms on how they define as respectful behavior.

…the six trends were:

  1. Users can create a safer, more respectful online environment.
    In situations in which Facebook’s community standards are not violated, but people are still unsatisfied, Facebook will suggest utilizing messaging tools and engaging more to pro-active conversations. According to Facebook, 85% of the time users are asked to remove photos that other users find embarrassing, 65% of message recipients feels positive, and 25 percent feels neutral.
  2. People accept feedback graciously.
    About 63% Facebook users reacted positively on messages about the controversial posts they made. 62% said that they have no issues on being asked to delete posts of concern.
  3. Most people do not mean to offend others.
    Only 1 out of 10 users who are asked to remove a post update admitted that they made it such to provoke others or get a message across.
  4. People will use the tools offered to them, if they are effective.
    Facebook’s team said that when they began to implement solutions to help alerting users about controversial content, it only provided a blank message box to fill in, with just 20% users would send a ticket. Now, about 3.9 million conversations weekly are being facilitated using updated tools.
  5. Emoticons help people express themselves better online.
    Facebook reported that users uses emoticons with “impressive levels of accuracy”. This is especially helpful to people from South America and North Africa.
  6. Approaching an old problem with new tools:
    The social network mentioned its Bullying Prevention Hub, as well as “new contextual resources are the heart of the Facebook product.”

Watch the event presentation here:

As a company, business or brand: have you encountered an uncomfortable situation on Facebook? How did you handle it?


Does Reach matter to you?  I know I’ve seen a pretty steep decrease in my fan reach since the new announcement.  But, just as I told a group that I presented to last week – Facebook is a Marathon not a Sprint and if you’re doing it right – engaging your audience and being consistent with your posting plan, you don’t really need to worry.

After Facebook released this PDF report, they became more straightforward that marketers will have to start paying to play if they want to be seen in the newsfeed.

Facebook’s filtering algorithm, also known as EdgeRank aims to show more of what users care the most about and less of what they are not interested in.

The result: expect a slow decline in the organic distribution of business Pages’ posts as Facebook continues to work towards more relevant user experience on the site. Your posts will have greater chances of showing-up organically in your fan’s (as well as their friends’) news feeds if it is relevant to them and they are engaging The Facebook News Feed is evolving now into what we call a personalized newsletter. It simply means that Facebook gives priority to a brand’s posts if the fans and their friends engage more on the content the Page publishes: the number of likes, shares and comments.

According to Ignite Social Media, “Facebook once said that brand posts reach approximately 16% of their fans. That number is no longer achievable for many brands, and our analysis shows that roughly 2.5% is now more likely for standard posts on large pages. So, a year ago a brand could expect to reach 16 out of 100 fans and now that brand is lucky if they get 3 out of 100. Chilling news for brand pages who have invested resources to “build” a large following of fans.”

As a test, Facebook guru Jon Loomer did some experimenting. Of the 373 stories loaded in his timeline, it was distributed as follows:

  • 239 Stories from Friends (64.1%)
  • 106 Organic Stories from Pages (28.4%)
  • 25 Ads (6.7%)
  • 3 Stories from Lists (0.8%)

Read more about the results of his experiment here…

How will this change affect business owners?

Of course, getting people to pay for something they had for free before can make some people angry or worse – make them steer clear of Facebook marketing altogether.

One claim is that there will come a time that brands can no longer be seen in the News Feed without paying for ads. As of now this is not the case since in the experiment, 28.4% of the contents are organically from Pages.

Another concern is that Facebook is trying to prevent brands from being shown to people who are actually following their posts. However, Jon discusses in his post that if you are engaged with brands, you’ll still see their posts.  He mentions brands he follows such as Mashable, TechCrunch are still showing in his News Feed.

Obviously, Facebook makes their own rules as their platform is free to users and we all know they need to make their shareholders happy.

So what does this mean for business owners and their pages?  Here are some tips you can follow to ensure you get the best reach possible:

  1. Post Consistently – a general rule of thumb is 2x per day
  2. Get to know your fans – ask questions to get them engaged
  3. Run Ads – try running some ads and see how it impacts your organic reach.  Who knows, you might just like running ads and see some great results

I’d love to hear from you guys in the comments if you’re seeing a decline in your reach (and if you are about reach at all!)


Do you struggle with finding interesting content for your Facebook page?  This is the NUMBER ONE issue my clients are having with their Facebook content strategies.

It’s hard (not to mention time consuming) trying to find interesting content to write each day but it’s proving even more difficult to find the right content to share that is relevant to their fans.

The Facebook News Feed is placed on the center of the home page for a good reason: to highlight what your friends are doing –especially the links they share.

News links increase the relevance of the post and the more links are shared – the better as far as Facebook is concerned.

As a matter of fact, more people are now tuning in to Facebook for stories about things they care about; from live news coverage, to Miss Universe, to sports scores, to the latest meme images and inspirational quotes.

It was reported in October that Facebook’s average referral traffic to media sites has increased over 170%, which was 3x more than the previous year. Facebook has enhanced the newsfeed with more controls and the #hashtag to help you keep track of the topics that matter and are relevant to your page.

Facebook is using an algorithm (known to some as Edge Rank) to determine which stories matter, which includes the number of likes, comments, who posted it as well as the type of post (whether it is a photo, video, or a status update). It enables people to discuss and share what’s happening. With the algorithm, Facebook focuses more on what makes high-quality content, particularly when it comes to mobile.

But why does Facebook need to sort out stories and why do they determine which stories get “bumped” in your newsfeed? Why don’t they just serve up everything to our newsfeed? It is because of relevance. They want to give people a better user experience by just showing what people want to see. In the near future, the News Feed will be able to determine the difference between high-quality articles from any mediocre content hosted outside Facebook. This means that the News Feed will give more prominence for valuable news related links and articles over other types of content.

How to find stories to share for your Facebook Business Page?

  1. Log-in to your Facebook account and switch As Your Page
    Facebook Page
  2. Like and follow as many people/page relevant to your niche. Include reputable news and media sites.
  3. While posting as the page admin, click on Home. There you will see what companies, brands and the people you follow are talking about.
  4. Select the stories you want to share. You can share it at that time, or better yet, pre-schedule to post at a later date (this helps you get more posts ready for later!)

Facebook just launched – Similar To – which is a simple feature that appears under a post on your page.

To make the News Feed more suitable to people’s interests, Facebook is now suggesting articles or posts that are “similar.” Once you click on the post, about three more articles similar to what you have read will show up beneath the post feed. This will help you discover more content you may find interesting and shareable on your own Facebook Page timeline. You will never have to miss out on the topics you care about.

See it in action here:

The key to all of this is to know that Facebook’s research shows that people prefer links to quality articles or news vs. just an image or meme and they will start showing more of this type of content in people’s newsfeeds so take note and start created AND sharing this type of content.

You should see an increase in your reach of your fan page if you start following these rules.

I’d love to hear in the comments below this post if you guys have seen a drop in your reach with these recent changes.


This holiday season is a great opportunity for YOU – the business owner to share the holiday spirit with customers and fans.  You can boost your sales and engagement by getting your holiday-themed campaigns and page content ready.

Here are several ways to get your Facebook campaign ready for the holiday season:

Plan Ahead
Decide which types of activities will help you achieve your holiday marketing goals. Utilize your Facebook page insights to determine whether you are going to conduct contests, promos, content, freebies etc. With Facebook Insights you can discover more about your fan demographics: gender, age and location, as well as the similar pages your fans like. With better understanding of the numbers, this tool will help you fine-tune your holiday marketing efforts. It is also important to determine the end of your promotions. This way you will have plenty of time to stock up your products or hire additional staff.

Pre-schedule Posts and Use Call to Actions
Action words such as “Post”, “Comment”, “Take”, “Submit”, “Like” and “Tell Us” help boost engagement rates on Facebook – so make sure to combine these keywords into your holiday-related posts. Take note of the following holiday spending days in US:

  • Black Friday (November 29th)
  • Small Business Saturday (November 30th)
  • Cyber Monday (December 2nd)
  • Green Monday (December 9th)
  • Free Shipping Day (December 18th)

It’s easy to preschedule the posts using Facebook’s scheduling tool.

Post Restock Alerts
Know which products or service packages your company has offered in previous holidays.  Let your fans know that because they were so popular, you are restocking the products and offering them again and they will ONLY be available this season only. Start your post or ad with content that says something like “back by popular demand….”

Use apps for your holiday campaign
There are TONS of Facebook apps that you can use to promote your activities. Select 3rd party apps that offer sharing and refer-a-friend features already built-in. Refer-a-friend allows users to increase their chances of winning (like additional entry points) every time someone joins the promo through the referral link they share.  I use ShortStack apps and have been super pleased with their apps and their service!

Be like Santa: Give Away Free Items
There are a number of ways to share the holiday spirit:

  • Build a list of your most loyal clients and page fans then send them an early gift.
  • Grab the chance for your company to partake in social work: donate to charity or render free services for the needy this holiday season.
  • Offer coupons for everyone -especially those who Like your page.
  • Offer free shipping on special items.

Use Custom Audiences to Target Your Customers
Tailor ad copy that is custom-made for your customers rather than just creating a generic copy for all. This will make audiences feel special as the message is directly addressed to them.  You can upload your email address list and create a custom audience on Facebook that you can then create an ad campaign for.  This feature is available when creating ads using Power Editor.  Not sure how to use Custom Audiences?  I can help you.

Share your store hours
There might be changes in your store hours during the season so make sure to announce it early. This will allow your customers to conduct business with you before you close down for the holidays and might even get you some extra sales if you’re a local shop and have extended hours.

Timeline Cover Photo Ideas

Having a holiday themed cover photo can leave your fans feeling jolly!  Here are a few ways to get your timeline cover photo ready for the holidays:

  • Use the cover photo to promote your holiday app.
  • Showcase new products or services.
  • Promote your giveaways.
  • Say thank you for their business.
  • Use the cover photo to inspire audiences to take action.
  • Promote your homepage, other sites or links.

Optimize Your Page for the Holidays

  • Create an editorial plan for your posts
  • Use the appropriate Call to Action (CTA)
  • Share images of holiday related products
  • Include fine prints: disclaimers, rules into your verbiage.
  • Promote your posts with Facebook Ads
  • Use an app to collect data/email addresses from contest entries.

Pay attention to Facebook’s Page Guidelines
This should be on top of your list when creating any kind of Facebook campaign. However, I thought it would be a good opportunity to remind you as there are daily changes to Facebook’s page and ad guidelines.  Here are a few to consider:

– Avoid inaccurately tagging people, as well as encourage people to tag themselves in a promotional photo if they are not included on the photo themselves.

– Covers can’t be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else’s copyright.

– Choose an expiration date for your offer. You can also add optional terms and conditions and advanced options, like a redemption link, redemption code, claims limit and reminder time.

– Promotions may be conducted on Pages or within apps on Facebook. Personal timelines should not be used to administer promotions. So, encouraging people to share on their timeline or share on their friends’ timeline is prohibited.

I hope this gives you some great holiday marketing ideas for your Facebook page. You don’t need to do it all – simply select a couple and focus only on the activities that will help you achieve your marketing goals this season.

Happy Holidays!


Have you seen the new star ratings review on your Facebook business page?

They previously were shown on the right hand side of your business page and you typically had to scroll to see it.  However, the new star reviews are shown directly under your timeline cover image for all to see.

Facebook Reviews

The Good…
The stars are placed in a more prominent place –just beneath the page name. They are now more prominent than any other element of a brand’s fan page such as the number of Likes and “talking about this” metric. This can be great for some brands, as it is much easier to showcase positive reviews.  Page admins will now need to focus on and pay special attention to improving the quality of their pages, thus naturally encouraging positive reviews from fans and potential followers.

This also makes monitoring metrics more simplistic. It leaves out the focus on geeky statistics –like counting number of reach or virality. Page admins can promote a more positive and authentic engagement by simply making fans happier.

The Bad…
The stars can be too prominent because it can appear, not only on the page itself but could also end up on other apps such as Like boxes, Profile badges or anywhere else on the web through embedding codes. If you are able to ensure great reviews, then your less likely to have issues, But let’s face it, it’s not always easy to get a 5-star rating!  For instance, I only have 5 star ratings on my page but Facebook is only showing 4 stars. Therefore, we have to assume they are using additional algorithm scoring such as fan engagement to determine the star rating,

Let’s talk about how the rating is determined..

A like is only counted as one vote, whereas star reviews count into averages.

If your page does not allow fans to post on your Timeline, the review feature can be the easiest, most convenient way to leave poor feedback. When people want to contact your brand on Facebook, they can only send you a message, leave a comment or better yet leave a review. If they are trying to reach you over a customer-related issue, then chances are you will accumulate some bad reviews.

How to enable or disable reviews on my Brand Page?

Based on Facebook’s Helpdesk, admins can only allow reviews by adding your address. If you would like to disable reviews on your business page, you can remove the address which will remove the reviews option entirely.

If your Page has a location, star ratings and reviews will appear once you have updated the page info with a business address.

  1. At the top of your Page, click Edit Page
  2. Select Update Page Info
  3. Click Address
  4. Edit your address
  5. Click Save Changes

How to add a review to other Facebook Pages?

  1. Just visit the Facebook page of the business you want to review.
  2. Find the review section by scrolling down, on the right hand side of the timeline.
  3. Fill in the number of stars (total of five) that reflect your experience with the business.
  4. Write a written review on the space that says “What do you think about this place”.
  5. You can select your review to go public or select the friends, acquaintances or other connections so they can see it as well.
  6. Click “Review” when done.

FB Reviews