The Social Media Life Cycle provides an insight into the stimuli that propels the process of converting content and conversations – via transactions – into recommendations. The real power of social media is found in earned media: according to Nielsen’s Global Trust in Advertising Report 2012 92% trust recommendations of friends and relatives. Followed by 70% that trust online reviews by other consumers. Although trust is important for any transaction, it is justone step in the social media life cycle.
The four phases in the Social Media Life Cycle are seeding, nurturing, harvesting and spreading. We can’t spread if we haven’t seeded the fruits of our intentions. And we can’t harvest if we haven’t properly nurtured our customers, friends, followers, influencers, ambassadors, promotors and distractors. That’s why we call it a life cycle: you have to take your customers through every step of the cycle in order to get the recommendations and customer reviews that will further propel your social commerce.
To start the cycle we first need to plant a suggestion. A suggestion is a representation of who we are, what we do, how we do it, why we do it and what we have to offer. This will be unique for every brand, as it is the outcome of our specific intentions (vision, purpose, value, commitment and transparancy).
To plant the suggestion we interact in social media by participating in conversations, offer our help, ask for help, share content, react on blogs and so no. If this suggestion strikes a chord, attention will follow, allowing the suggestion to grow into a perception (this product will help me to do this or that).
The second phase is as important as the first one: we now have a perception of what the product can do for us, but we’re not sure yet if the suggestion of suggestor was genuine. So we’ll start searching the internet, ask others, look for online reviews, visit the website and so on, in order to validate the proposition and it’s proposer.
This will lead to an expectation of the risks involved in a possible transaction and the value the transaction is expected bring us.
Doubt will start to arise from every bad review, the lack of recommendations or the quality of your website. We might need some persuasion to move the process forward: introduce scarcity, show consistency, power social proof, etc.
Trust will only emerge if people believe what we believe, that we’re sincere and act in their best interest. The transaction itself will lead to an experience: did you deliver on time, does the product offer the expected value, etc. Simply said: Are you trustworthy? Or did the expectations meet the experience. This is were both party harvest: they have exchanged money for goods or services. How was the fulfilment perceived? Is the customer happy? Can you do more, do you need to take products back?
The final phase is where a positive experience is translated into brand fondness or affection. And where intention, attention, fulfilment and aftercare adds to the reputation of the proposer. By asking a customer to share its experience with others, either through an online review or by sharing the purchase with friends and family, the social commerce process in finalized
Common yet Incidental
A new study reveals that 30% of Americans get their news on Facebook, and suggests that the social network drives people to media sites who may not have otherwise done so. Of that 30%, more than half — 78% — said they click on news links to media sites after initially logging on for unrelated reasons, such as checking out friends’ pictures or updating their statuses. In fact, only 16% of Facebook users say that getting news is the primary reason they log on.
The study, published by the Pew Research Center on Thursday, found that almost half of American users click on news in their Facebook feeds. Since 64% of adults in the United States use Facebook, that means one in three Americans consumes news on Facebook.
However, only 22% of the 30% who get their news on Facebook think the site is a useful source for information about the world, and only 4% of those think Facebook is “the most important way” to get their news.
“People go to Facebook to share personal moments — and they discover the news almost incidentally,” Amy Mitchell, Pew Research Center’s director of journalism research, said in a statement. “The serendipitous nature of news on Facebook may actually increase its importance as a source of news and information, especially among those who do not follow the news closely.”
“Facebook is a good way to find out news without actually looking for it.”
“Facebook is a good way to find out news without actually looking for it.”
The importance of the social network also depends on how much of a news junkie the user is.
Among those who click on news links in their Facebook news feeds, just 38% of heavy news followers think the social network is “an important way to get the news,” but among those who follow news “less often,” 47% consider Facebook as an important source.
On Monday, Facebook announced that it was driving 170% more traffic to media sites this year than in 2012.
This is the first of a series of studies on social media and news published by Pew in collaboration with the Knight Foundation. For this study, Pew surveyed 5,173 Americans ages 18 and older. You can read the full report here (.PDF).
New research from Scott Wallsten, an economist at the Technology Policy Institute in Washington, DC, attempts to show exactly what Americans are missing out on because they’re glued to their computer screens.
Wallsten limits his study to “online leisure,” or time spent online doing things like combing social networks, browsing for non-work purposes, instant messaging, etc. (Online games—even though they can take up a lot of leisure time—are excluded because of the way the data Wallsten used are collected by the US Census Bureau. Despite the data’s shortcomings, Wallsten finds that online leisure time still crowds out other activities.)
Unsurprisingly, the time people spend on the computer “for leisure” has increased exponentially in the last few years. However, computer leisure still comprises a mere 13 minutes of the five hours of leisure time the average American has in the day.
Even so, this computer time has a notable impact, eating into things like sleep, work, travel, and household chores. For every minute that they spend lazing on the computer, Americans spend approximately 16 fewer seconds working, seven fewer seconds sleeping, six fewer seconds traveling, four fewer seconds doing household chores, and three fewer seconds educating themselves. Although Wallsten can’t prove that more computer time causes less sleep, for instance, he concludes, “that online activities, even when free from monetary transactions, are not free from opportunity cost.”
This trend is particularly strong among young people. For example, every minute 15- to 19-year-olds spend online leads to 18 fewer seconds doing educational activities. For Americans 20-24 years old, however, the same minute of online leisure is only associated with losing about seven seconds of educational activity. For older Americans, the impact is even smaller. This data suggests—though does not definitely prove—that teenagers are more likely to devote time that would otherwise be devoted to educational activity to surfing the web or instant messaging than do slightly older young adults.
Last but not least, if one wants to enumerate the effects of the digital age on human relationships, then look no further than the number of minutes the average American spends socializing offline. From 2003 to 2011, the average American cut her offline socializing time by almost 5 minutes.
The countries look funny because each one is scaled to number of Internet users it has.
The results are fascinating: Google dominates most of North America, Europe, south Asia and the south Pacific while Facebook wins out in the Spanish-speaking parts of the America, the Middle East, and North Africa.
Researchers Mark Graham and Stefano De Sabbata note that among the 50 countries where Facebook is listed as the most-visited visited site, Google or YouTube (which Google has owned since 2006) came in second.
Yandex accommodates three-fifths of Russia’s search traffic. Yahoo takes Japan and Taiwan.
And all that green explains why Baidu became the first Chinese company on the NASDAQ-100 index.
Sky has launched a new app which enables users to share information about favourite TV shows with friends via Facebook.
Called Sky Share, the app hooks up with a user’s Facebook account, allowing people to comment on and like TV programes directly within the app.
Users will get TV recommendations based on viewing habits of friends, as well as what is being discussed most on Facebook.
Everyone with Facebook in the UK and Ireland can use Sky Share. Those who subscribe to Sky can also integrate it into their Sky experience by using their Sky login details.
Sky hopes that the app will form another means for subscribers to share and talk about TV via social media.
Twitter recently tested out a talked about TV function, which would display tweets about programmes currently trending on the social network.
The digital camera feature has been a major driver of mobile phone sales for a decade. But Instagram’s sale to Facebook last year was a watershed moment for the mobile photo-sharing industry.
Among other things, it showed that a mobile-first photo sharing service could be worth $1 billion [≈ box office sales of ET: The Extra-Terrestrial, 1982] dollars, and that the app store economy could grow a photo-focused social network at speeds so alarming that an incumbent — in this case, Facebook — would be prompted to neutralize the threat by acquiring it.
In a new report from BI Intelligence, we take a fresh look at the mobile photo-sharing industry and analyze data to see how Instagram has fared since they were acquired, study a few rising competitors including Snapchat, look at how mobile start-ups and established Web-centric businesses are monetizing camera and photo-sharing apps, and examine opportunities for brands to use their engaging networks.
Here’s a brief overview of the mobile photo-sharing ecosystem:
- Instagram is still on top: As part of its new video feature announcement this month, Instagram revealed that it now has 130 million users, who have shared some 16 billion photos. That’s up from 5 billion photos when the Facebook deal closed last September, suggesting a monthly average of more than 1 billion photos shared, or a daily average of more than 40 million photos.
- But others, like Snapchat, are certainly worth watching rising: There are a crop of fast-growing mobile messaging services that include photo-sharing as a core feature. Snapchat stands out as particularly photo-focused, and has an ultra-youthful user base. The company revealed that its users are sending 200 million ”snaps” daily, up from 150 million a couple of months ago. The Flickr iPhone app has rebounded in recent months, and Twitter’s Vine service — 6-second looping movies — aren’t photos, but they’re casually shot and shared the same way mobile photos are. Thanks to Twitter’s support, Vine has been a top 10 app for the past three months, and has already picked up13 million downloads.
- There are various different ways to monetize in the land of a thousand camera apps: Instagram was not the first photo app with filters, and it was hardly the last. A glance at the iPhone App Store, for example, shows hundreds of different types of camera apps, each with its own utility, some without social pretensions. Different monetization categories include paid or freemium apps with one-time purchases to unlock features, free apps bolted onto a paid or freemium Web-based services, free apps designed to build a social network, and ad-supported services and subscription services billed through an app.
- And brands are figuring out how to get in on the action: Many memorable social brand activities have been image- or photo-related, such as the now-famous Oreo ad tweeted during this year’s Super Bowl blackout. These sorts of stunts can provide incredible value if they go viral, generating millions of impressions — with a positive spin — for much less money than a traditional ad placement. Instagram in particular has grown as a place where brands can build significant followings and engagement, sharing beautiful photos and images with their fans on a daily basis. Starbucks, for example, has attracted 1.3 million followers on Instagram, and routinely passes 50,000 “likes” per photo.
Social networking giant Facebook has reported second quarter revenue of$1.81bn [≈ box office sales of Star Wars Ep. IV: A New Hope, 1977], up 53% year-on-year, driven by a significant uplift in mobile advertising.
Ad revenue represented 88% of Facebook’s total revenue in the quarter at $1.6bn [≈ cost of War of 1812], marking a 61% increase over the same quarter in 2012. Of that, 41% came from mobile ad revenues. Payments and other fees accounted for $214m [≈ Mitt Romney assets in 2011] revenue during the quarter, up 11% year-on-year.
The majority of Facebook’s quarterly revenues came from the US and Canada ($848m), followed by Europe ($505m), Asia ($247m) and rest of world ($213m).
As of June 2013, Facebook has an average 699 million daily active users, up 27% year-on-year. It had 1.15 billion monthly active users (+21%) and 819 million mobile monthly users (+51%), with 469 million mobile daily active users.
During the second quarter, Facebook surpassed one million active advertisingon the site, driven by significant growth in local businesses.
Facebook’s year-to-date revenues for 2013 are $3.27bn [≈ total US football salaries for all teams, 2011], up from $2.24bn [≈ total US basketball salaries, 2011] in the same period last year.
“We’ve made good progress growing our community, deepening engagement and delivering strong financial results, especially on mobile,” says Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg. “The work we’ve done to make mobile the best Facebook experience is showing good results and provides us with a solid foundation for the future.”