When are Kiwis most active on Twitter? The answer might surprise you.

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I love my stats and I'd like to see more reports relevant to New Zealand's use of Social Networks like Twitter.

I wanted to know when [on average] people in New Zealand were most active on Twitter.

I recorded the volume of Twitter interactions [from 7am to 12am weekdays] originating from accounts with New Zealand, Auckland or Wellington in their profile under location or timezone.

What I uncovered might affect your social media strategy.

At 10am there is a spike as people catch up on the mornings news and gossip over morning tea. But that's nothing compared to what happens after dinner.

As John Campbell starts at 7pm, Twitter activity soars. From 6-7pm we recorded on average 4500 interactions, 7-8pm 5500 interactions and 8-9pm 6500 interactions. That 6500 interactions per hour continues until 11pm when most people hit the sack.

// An interaction refers to publishing and consuming content including new tweets, retweets, , @ mentions and @replies, but not link clicks or favourites.

How does this insight influence your Twitter Strategy?

For any consumer brands I would seriously be considering asking your Social Media Manager to start work at lunch time or later and finish around 9pm.

"Brands should be fans of the things their customers are doing."

With so much activity in the evening, the opportunity to connect and interact with Kiwi's as they relax, watch TV and debate the day's media is obvious.

Being relevant, engaging in conversations of the moment and putting your brand amongst the day's trending topics are goals of every social media marketer. This is visual proof that [during the week] you need to be fishing where and when the fish are swimming.

The latest Social Media user data for New Zealand published in February [I still can't find the link but will add here when I track it down] was 450k active monthly users up from 350k in November 2013. About 175k actively daily users.

4.7% of your fans generate 100% of your social engagement

EngageSciences built a social marketing platform for building campaigns and publishing, underpinned with an audience database. Every interaction with every fan is recorded against their marketing record.

With over 400 brands EngageSciences has been analysing a huge amount of fan data across multiple social networks.

The found that typically only 4.7% of a brand’s fan base generates 100% of the social referrals. So to put it another way, it is 4.7% of your social media following that generates all of the conversions, not just reach.

Not that we are ignoring the other 95 percent, there is still plenty of value in this large segment. They’re connecting to you as a brand, the active fans are consuming your content and they are 20-30% more likely to buy from you as a result. But if we are looking at social media through the eyes of marketing and we want to improve our acquisition metrics, then it is the top 4.7% that generates all of the earned media results and organic growth.

The result is this group of influencers can give you 176x the reach of an active engaged fan that is interacting with your posts and campaigns. 

Further reading

http://www.mackcollier.com/customers-social-online-word-of-mouth/

http://technorati.com/social-media/article/study-only-47-of-a-brands1/

Posted on March 6, 2014 and filed under advertising, stats.

49% of 16-24s in APAC use search to find out about brands, products and services

What's also interesting is the degree of variation in search use between age groups in Europe and North America vs Asia Pacific. In APAC search use is pretty consistent across all age groups.

The report also stated;

In contrast, 16-24s are the most likely to use Question & Answer sites such as Quora. The total numbers engaging with them are somewhat smaller, but it’s still reflective of how the youngest internet users have embraced new platforms the most enthusiastically.

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Posted on March 5, 2014 and filed under advertising, analytics, stats.

Which social network do you get the most engagement from? #poll

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You have to be on Facebook for friends and family - Twitter for news, research and banter - LinkedIn for work and Google+ for SEO. 

I'd like to know your opinion.

Which social network do you get the most engagement from?

For you personally not for any brand pages you manage. 

By engagement I refer to, likes, comments, replies, retweets, favourites, shares, clicks or any other form of interaction with content you post to any social network.

Take the poll and I'll publish the results in 48 hours

Which social network do you get the most engagement from? *
Posted on February 24, 2014 and filed under social media.

Organic vs paid posts on Facebook

It's important to remember;

Organic posts are never competing with paid posts for newsfeed real estate. Organic posts only compete against other organic posts for newsfeed real estate and the same for paid posts.

As organic posts increase in volume your organic reach is going to fall purely based on the competition for space.

The same is true for paid media. If more advertisers are running ads the prices will increase.

In the last few years the number of FB pages has increased and the frequency those pages post has increased from 2-3 posts per week to 6-8 posts per week on average.

The optimal page post could start with organic reach and then be boosted as a promoted page post. That way you get the best of both worlds.

What I'd like to know is what % of newsfeed real estate is allocated to organic posts vs paid content?

Whether it's organic or paid content we're all competing for social real estate.

That's a good reason to invest in quality branded content.

Posted on February 24, 2014 and filed under facebook, content marketing.

Social real estate is hot property

Content is a commodity. Some brands now consider the content they publish online to be as important as the products or services they sell. 

Good content is a product with intrinsic value, worth multiple times the time and effort to produce it.

Demand for newsfeed space is heating up. Facebook's algorithm makes all publishers compete for attention. Every friend, brand, news service is a publisher where every post ignored means those people are less likely to see their content in the future.

We're all living in real-time. News hits Twitter before any newspaper, radio station. If your brand wants to be apart of peoples lives you too will have to operate a fluid social engagement program. It's not hard, but it does need the right people, the right systems and good preparation to succeed.

Brands need a strong social content strategy and content production program. Establishing this should be the focus of every business in Q1 2014.

Essential elements for brands to consider during this process are;

  • Post frequency
  • Customer experience
  • Mobile integration
  • Content quality and production

PagePost.co.nz is a content production service. We're making it efficient and cost effective for any business to run a content marketing program that works.

Here's two examples from quick fire brand responses to Brendan McCullum's record innings at the Basin Reserve today. Good examples of branded content published in response to a cultural moment.

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Posted on February 18, 2014 and filed under twitter, strategy, facebook.

Robots vs Humans. Let the content wars begin.

Social Networks and changing patterns of media consumption have fundamentally changed how brands must generate, produce, share and engage online.

The types, frequency and style of content required to keep your brand 'top of timeline, top of mind' requires thought, creativity, brand and cultural understanding. 

Crappy content will cost your brand more than making the effort to get it right.

There's an art to creating beautiful page posts, engaging videos and blog posts that start conversations. 

Poor content, incorrect images sizes, poor lighting and sound in videos, weak copy and unconvincing calls-to-action are the quickest ways to make your fans switch off. 

Added to that, every time you post something to Facebook, everyone who does nothing, that is they don't interact with your content at all; negatively effects the reach your future posts will get. Ignoring a Facebook posts tells Facebook you aren't interested in that content, so they're less likely to show it to you in the future.

TigerPistol is a new service that offers to automate your page post content creation

TigerPistol takes your Facebook page data, insights and other information to produce posts and automatically publishes them to your page at the optimum time.

As a Social Media Marketer are you ready to let go of your content production and posting that much?

I've not tested TigerPistol but my first reaction is just how relevant are they going to get the content?. There's a lot to be said for cultural relevance, localisation and familiarisation with your audiences likes and interests that simply can't come through data.

Another service is Perculate

Perculate appears to have a more robust system to connect and engage your people in the content production process. Their software helps you plan, organise and prepare your social content marketing program.

While both services could add value to certain brands many of the companies and brands that I've dealt with, especially in NZ and AU just aren't that heavily invested in social marketing. Their audience sizes are relatively small and content is often created and produced on the fly.

No matter how much planning you do, or how thorough your content calendar is, nothing beats real-time creative. 

Relevant posts, relevant conversations are always going to generate higher engagement rates, more shares and more click-throughs.

Relevance requires the human touch and real-time production requires a small army of content producers ready and waiting for briefs.

There isn't a Small to Medium sized business in New Zealand with that sort of capacity to produce content effectively and efficiently. Even Medium to Large businesses with agency partnerships will struggle.

This is why we've launched PagePost.co.nz, a service dedicated to generating social media for brands to share online.

PagePost has formed a [growing] team of Copywriters, Designers and Video Producers ready to work on generating social content for brands and businesses in New Zealand. 

PagePost's pricing is transparent. Clients know what they will pay for standard image posts [From $85 each], Blog Posts [$210 each and Photography sessions [$250 p/h] before they place their order. Stock images, additional creative time or complicated design projects may require extra time and budget.

With PagePost we wanted to make generating content simple, affordable and efficient for any business. We don't have the overheads of typical design agencies and we have a team to rival any agency in New Zealand.

Social Content should be made with love

It will be interesting to watch the content marketing automation trend evolve. I'm sure it will become extraordinarily smart. But until software can think and interpret like humans content creation will always be better when its made with love, made by humans.

PagePost is powered by FLITTER leaders in digital marketing strategy and activation.

Posted on February 5, 2014 and filed under Pagepost.co.nz.

Today we launch PagePost.co.nz making #HeroPosts for social brands

Today we launch a new Content Production service in New Zealand called PagePost. All we do is design and generate content for brands and businesses to post to their social pages.

A HeroPost is the 'Effort Ball' [Cricket], the kick through the defensive line for a try in the corner [Rugby]. All your page posts matter but Hero Posts require special thought, design and execution to get the best results.

Over the last 3+ years I've worked with dozens of business in New Zealand and Australia. Most have in-house page management and audience engagement but many don't have the resources to produce quality page posts; optimised for each network.

PagePost is building a team of talented freelance designers, video producers and creative sorts [register here to join the team] to create, design and produce beautiful content.

Making the service cost effective for a range of businesses is vital so we've set the initial price range from $85 per page post for images. Video content is quoted on a job by job basis and we also offer blog post creation and photography. 

We're channel agnostic. The PagePost Team can design content for any social network. 

PagePost is powered by FLITTER; who will continue to work with clients on digital marketing strategy, engagement and advertising programs. 

Ideas, Apps, Tools, Insights and Analysis in your Inbox

Posted on January 31, 2014 .

All the stories, all your interests, all your friends: One App

On February 3rd Facebook will release Paper; A Flipboard look-a-like.

It may well worry Flipboard. It should worry many news agencies with standalone apps too.

It changes Facebook from a timeline, waterfall style user experience to a fully integrated real-time paper where stories from your friends are tangled between breaking news, long-reads and stories from what ever topics you like.

I'm addicted to Flipboard. I never open the standalone news agency apps on my phone.

Personally I love this user experience far better than scrolling through a waterfall style Facebook newsfeed.

What's your initial reaction? Meh? Interesting? Or is it the changing face of media consumption?

Posted on January 31, 2014 and filed under facebook.

Engaging on Twitter means you must @ Reply. What's your brand doing?

Engaging on Twitter or anywhere for that matter means you must reply to conversations, questions or comments. That means you'll be sending @Reply tweets. If you're not sending @Reply tweets, you're simply broadcasting.

Broadcasting is one-way, broadcasting is not engagement.

Posted on January 30, 2014 and filed under twitter.

If you don't enjoy your experience on Twitter; Change it

Thought for the day:

Twitter is beautiful. You are the master of your own experience.

On Twitter you can follow and unfollow who you like, when you like.

You can filter conversations with hashtags, search and tools like Hootsuite to create custom timelines.

Listen to who you enjoy listening to, engage with who you enjoy talking to, comment on topics when you want, but-in on the conversations you want to.

There is no one Twitter experience — there is only your Twitter experience

This is why I love Twitter.

Posted on January 28, 2014 and filed under twitter.

Digital Marketing Insights for 2014 and what they really mean

Webmarketing123 surveyed 500 digital marketers about their top digital goals and challenges in 2014. 

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 So what do all these insights really mean?

- B2B Marketers are constantly challenged with connecting their content and messages with the right people. B2B often involves nurture tactics or 'permission marketing', however targeting based on industry/company/job description is flawed. B2B marketers need to move to B2P and target individuals based on behaviour, interests and conversations.

- B2C Marketers still struggle to 'close the loop' to accurately attribute digital marketing tactics to actual sales. It's still hard to measure the value and impact of social proof, brand building and social recommendations which indirectly influence sales on and offline.

- Marketing budgets are still not aligned with where most people spend their time. Media consumption habits have changed but budget allocations are still stuck in traditional campaigns. Hopefully in 2014 we'll see further balancing as brands integrate digital marketing on and offline.

With all the data and tools available there really is no excuse, you should know which channels are delivering results.

Fundamentally online marketing and offline/traditional marketing appear to remain divided, separated by budgets, personal and leadership. This will change in 2014

Many of the objectives and challenges highlighted here won't be resolved until CMO's and the marketing department view traditional and digital holistically and form multi-discipline teams to develop channel agnostic campaigns.

Posted on January 8, 2014 and filed under advertising, Business, analytics, social media.

Christmas holidays delivered stunning #Facebook #ad results

While many advertisers were on holiday a Facebook campaign we’re running for a client has completely stunned us over the last few weeks.

We started the campaign in early December achieving reasonable results. We’re measuring success by Click throughs to the website and finally website form registrations.

However on December 23rd the switch was flicked. CTR tripled and registrations increased 10x. All of a sudden we realised our target audience was home, on holiday and probably board, mucking around on Facebook.

Christmas eve was stella, Christmas day was busy too, Boxing day was manic. This was not expected at all.

We tripled the ad budget, added in a handful of fresh variations which stimulated the campaign even more.

It’s now Jan 6th and the campaign continues to perform consistently well. 

The lesson? 

Don’t under estimate the holiday period for B2B or software marketing because your target audience is likely off-work, thinking about the year ahead and has the time to consider new opportunities.

Posted on January 6, 2014 and filed under advertising, facebook.

Welcome to 2014 - let's get back to work

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Merry Christmas, Happy New Years and Happy Holidays to you.

After a couple of weeks driving around the top of the north island of New Zealand, lying on golden, sandy beaches, lunching at vineyards and a few days #ScreenFree I'm ready to crack in to 2014.

I start the year with three brilliant clients;

Hardys Health Stores - 26 franchised retail stores across New Zealand

Timely - Dunedin based SaaS start-up - Appointment Scheduling Software used by service businesses like Accountants, Hairdressers and Personal Trainers

Taskforce - 'The Future of Franchising'. Taskforce will create a national network of trade and service franchises offering customers One Name, One Number, for Any Job. Currently recruiting registrations of interest from Trade and Service business owners in Australia

And a handful of exciting projects including TEDx Auckland, Ooooby and Personal Style Guide

Insights from the last 6 weeks of campaigns:

  • Facebook ads have out-performed Google adwords 10-1 for Click-throughs and website conversions
  • Facebook ads performed best while people were on holiday. Christmas eve and Boxing day were stella days so don't overlook them from your campaigns this year.
  • On-boarding registration processes should be frictionless and as simple as possible 
  • Facebook is working well for reaching a target audience while Twitter is winning for engagement and out-reach programs

What I'm looking forward to this year:

  • Updates to Twitter's functionality and ad platform
  • Smarter location aware mobile apps
  • Smarter location based advertising opportunities
  • iPhone 6
  • Amazing hacks bringing to life the 'Internet of Things'
  • Nano tech
  • Technology enriched clothing
  • Connecting with more amazing people around the world on Twitter.
  • Deeper social media integrations empowering retail, recruitment and government engagement

2014 is going to be an amazing year, I look forward to spending it with you.

Posted on January 5, 2014 and filed under Business, Blog Posts.

Maybe 'JunkFood' stories are exactly what #Facebook users want

I'm going to wade into this debate about Facebook's newsfeed changes, falling organic page post reach and their motivation to dictate what users should consider is 'valuable' content.

My reading on these topics most recently include;

Paul Adams, the Global Brand Experience Manager at Facebook up until May 2013 once talked about "Many lightweight interactions" as a key element of Facebook. 

That really resonated with me and many other marketers around the world. Our belief was that users often took to Facebook for many short bursts, checking in to keep up with friends, family, trending topics, news and whatever else appeared in their newsfeed.

The beauty of Facebook was the Social Graph. Where [to my understanding] content appeared in your newsfeed as a result of a 'collective consciousness', IE if your friends and friends of friends like'd or interacted with content on Facebook it would be more likely to appear in your newsfeed. Then we moved to the 'Interest graph', a slight modification of Facebook calculations to give weight to content you showed an 'interest' in. A 'like' told Facebook you were interested in receiving similar content or more from the same source, like brand pages or news publishers etc.

In 2013 the term 'Snack Media' has become popular. Highlighting users behaviour to consume many light weight pieces of content, quickly, many times per day. 

Sites like Buzzfeed, Upworthy, Viralnova all curate and publish bite sized pieces of content that run wild through the interwebs fuelled by Facebook and users who crave snack media. 

However now Facebook head honchos are debating whether this is offering any 'value' to the user. 

My opinion is if it wasn't providing any value, people wouldn't be consuming and sharing so actively.

Organic page post reach is dropping

The guys at Facebook say that there is increasing competition for newsfeed space, thus organic reach is dropping. This could well be the case but from a brand's perspective this isn't very encouraging. 

Brands promote their Facebook page through traditional media, Facebook promotions and ads etc, spending money to connect with their customers and fans and getting them to like/subscribe to their page.

Once they've made that investment Facebook is now forcing brands to spend increasingly more money to connect with them. 

This is changing the way users experience Facebook. No longer are users newsfeeds full of content they have subscribed to or their friends have interacted with. It's filled with paid, promoted posts that may have little to no value what so ever. The balance of content in newsfeeds has changed.

Facebook is changing that saying "You don't find the news, the news finds you". Now "Facebook will show you the news it's paid to put in front of you".

Facebook wants to be the new newspaper

That would make Mark Z Chief Editor and frankly thats a very scary proposition.

I'd rather I was my own editor, subscribing to the content that I want to receive creating my own newsfeed of curated content and subscriptions from publishers and friends. 

While that analogy sounds very much like Twitter; the difference for me is fast. Twitter has a much broader scope, a wider lens than Facebook which is mostly tuned to people I know IRL and those brands/publishers I want to subscribe to. Not all brands on Facebook are also on Twitter so the value is shared between the two networks.

Let the people decide what's valuable and what's not

It's simple. 

Facebook's job should be to:

  • Make content look as good as it possibly can. 
  • Show me content I or my friends have shown an interest in before [post likes, comments or shares]
  • Show me content from pages and groups that I have 'Liked' [subscribed to]

Page posts should reach their fans organically over a period of time. If the post fails to gain any interactions then it should naturally fall off newsfeeds. If the post does get liked and shared etc then it will be naturally boosted to appear longer and in more peoples newsfeeds. 

Brands should continue to be able to pay to reach a certain targeted group of users through self service or premium media bookings. The price you pay for that post to reach that audience should continue to be a bidding process based on supply and demand to optimise users experience and variety of content in their newsfeeds.

It appears Facebook's motivation to maximise revenue from the newsfeed and dictate what people should find interesting is altering newsfeed content. This in itself is reducing the 'usefulness' of Facebook.

These are my thoughts and observations. It appears opinions and motivations at Facebook are changing. The last thing Facebook need to do is make it any more complicated for users and marketers to understand or people will continue to increase investment in alternative platforms.

Posted on December 12, 2013 and filed under facebook.