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(Adweek)   Social networking gurus announce users increasingly have brands as their friends - 29 this year, compared to 7 a year ago - but hardly interact with them as friends. "Clearly, brands could stand to do more to keep consumers interested"   (adweek.com) divider line 39
    More: Asinine, data points, swords  
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456 clicks; posted to Business » on 16 Jan 2013 at 2:20 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-16 02:39:14 PM  
Clearly, brands could stand to do more to keep consumers interested

I complained about this in the taco bell facebook thread last week. Most of the "brands" that I've liked don't interact at all. Peoples questions go unanswered, if you post something on their page they delete it etc.. It's stupid. If you're not going to interact with your customers on social media why bother being there? I can go to your site, see the exact same updates and be ignored there. I don't need your useless spam clogging up my news feed.
 
2013-01-16 02:50:32 PM  

abhorrent1: I don't need your useless spam clogging up my news feed.


This.
 
2013-01-16 03:01:00 PM  
Or is this part of the fake 'like' issue that is hitting Facebook? The one where anarchists are 'liking' Wal Mart.
 
2013-01-16 03:05:04 PM  

abhorrent1: If you're not going to interact with your customers on social media why bother being there?


I'll take "Hollow PR ploys" for $200, Alex.
 
2013-01-16 03:13:09 PM  

abhorrent1: .. It's stupid. If you're not going to interact with your customers on social media why bother being there?


I imagine it must take like 12 departments for any corporation to approve an official response to anything on the internet. They see interacting with customers as dangerous -- especially in any manner that's not a prepared statement -- for it risks upsetting and offending people and causing a media circus. They like to play it safe, they can't just have any intern man the Twitter account, and if they do, he probably has to check and double check everything he says with his boss, his boss' boss, his supervisor, his operations manager, his department team lead, the board of directors and the CEO. And good luck getting anyone along that chain to agree to anything.
 
2013-01-16 03:24:04 PM  
Clearly, brands could stand to do more to keep consumers interested

Jeebus Christ, how? We're buying your products, wearing your logos on our clothes (and our skin), interacting with you on social media, watching your commercials/web videos, viewing your ads on our computers, phones, and eReaders...I can't walk a hundred yards in any major city without being told to buy something by a billboard, bus, taxi, or any blank piece of wall bigger than a phone book. It's quite literally impossible for me to be more than 100 miles from a McDonalds. We eat, sleep, breath, and fark to corporate identification;  you have to change your entire life to get away from it.

And you're worried that we're not identifying with your brand enough?
 
2013-01-16 03:29:49 PM  
I don't "Like" that many companies / brands on Facebook (probably fewer than 10, and some of those were because a friend needed help with something), but I tend not to interact with the bigger ones because they have postings with hundreds or thousands of comments on them, and I don't want to post in a thread that I'm probably not going to read. I have the same policy with Fark threads too.
 
2013-01-16 03:39:28 PM  
users increasingly have brands as their friends ... but hardly interact with them as friends

Because a brand isn't your "friend." You don't interact with a brand the way you interact with your BFF Jill: "OMG, Levi Strauss & Co., did you see that photo Jackie posted of us from High School?! Mortified! Anyway, see you at Ryan's party this weekend!" -- it doesn't really make a lot of sense. People "like"ing brands is just a way of saying "these are the products I use, so my friends can get a sense of who I am." It's not an invitation for the brand to have a conversation.

And besides, how the hell is a brand going to "interact" with you anyway. Beyond "we're having a sale soon" or "here's a coupon" or "try this new product we're introducing," a brand doesn't have much to say to us. "Hey, Bob, it's me, McDonalds. I had the weirdest dream last night where there was a children's marching band in my lobby, and my restroom was full of shar-pei's. What do you think it means?" Or worse, "McDonalds agrees with the NRA on this one. Obama is just a gun grabber." And most companies don't have anything relevant to say very often -- nobody's going to post "just got out of a meeting with R&D -- the new Prius is going to need a shiatload more work before we're going to be able to release it, and our carpeting supplier is being a real asshole."
 
2013-01-16 03:50:31 PM  
Most people put their like flag on a company to get some free crap or a discount coupon. Are there really people out there longing for a friendly relationship with Dunkin Donuts?
 
2013-01-16 04:01:07 PM  

Uzzah: And besides, how the hell is a brand going to "interact" with you anyway


Customer support. Sometimes people have questions or problems or issues with their products, and want answers. Moreover, I think it would be fun to have an actual dialogue about the business decisions that went into making the product (this goes for any tech device with an odd user interface, so I can ask them "why did you make it this way?"), but I'm weird like that.

I think it would be fun if a company actually addressed these things. It would certainly build better brand loyalty.

Uzzah: "Hey, Bob, it's me, McDonalds. I had the weirdest dream last night where there was a children's marching band in my lobby, and my restroom was full of shar-pei's. What do you think it means?"


There are some companies that will answer those very questions. Some of them even encourage it. Pizza Hut and Jack in the Box are some of the funniest. Too lazy to link, but Skittles, Charmin, the Baconator and of course Old Spice (via Old Spice guy) interact with their fans all the time.

These are corporations that get it, and understand that the internet is not a one-way medium to spam your product but rather a two way interactive dialogue to keep in touch with your followers. And it really helps boost PR and prestige to hire a media firm to run these programs, and I think more of them should do that.
 
2013-01-16 04:09:42 PM  
i2.ytimg.com

Only 29 friends?
 
2013-01-16 04:14:10 PM  
You people actually friend advertisements? Dam, Millennials are stupider then I thought.
 
2013-01-16 04:17:30 PM  
Who are these psychos? Seriously. They're friending corporations? Are their brains just broken?
 
2013-01-16 04:31:18 PM  
The only worthwhile corporate facebook campaign ever was the one that gave you a free Whopper if you defriended 10 people. It's great to be able to publically announce to people that they're not worth 1/10th of a mediocre sandwich.
 
2013-01-16 04:32:05 PM  
i only friend certain companies because they put me in a lottery for free stuff by friending them. i know that makes me a sucker, but it costs me nothing and i don't even use facebook, so who cares.
 
2013-01-16 04:43:39 PM  

HotWingConspiracy: to get some free crap or a discount coupon. Are there really people out there longing for a friendly relationship with Dunkin Donuts?


Free crap or discount coupons is part of why I do it. I'm not longing for a friendly relationship with any of them. It's nice though when you have a question about a product or service when you can post it on their facebook page and get an answer. As much crap as people give AT&T, if you go to their uverse page with a problem or question you'll usually pretty quickly get a response from an AT&T employee. It's better than fighting through the voice prompts and spend 40 minuteshaving to go through the same things over and over with every person they transfer you too.

If I have a question about a product, sale or return policy or something it would be nice to be able to go to say, Sears, target or what ever page and just ask. Again avoiding 20 minutes on the phone fighting through the prompts for something that probably has a quick, simple answer. I see no reason why they couldn't assign a couple of their customer service people to just respond to requests on their facebook page. They don't have to be funny or witty or carry on a conversation but Just to answer a farking question or give direction on an issue.
 
2013-01-16 05:14:19 PM  
Yeah people like these things for free stuff, and only for free stuff. Lots of local tech companies here do discounts and one hour sales and prize draws. Saved me a few bucks and who cares if they are on my 'friends' list?
 
2013-01-16 05:16:50 PM  

Ishkur: I imagine it must take like 12 departments for any corporation to approve an official response to anything on the internet. They see interacting with customers as dangerous -- especially in any manner that's not a prepared statement -- for it risks upsetting and offending people and causing a media circus. They like to play it safe, they can't just have any intern man the Twitter account, and if they do, he probably has to check and double check everything he says with his boss, his boss' boss, his supervisor, his operations manager, his department team lead, the board of directors and the CEO. And good luck getting anyone along that chain to agree to anything.


You work in advertising, don't you?

I do. And you're spot-on.

Small and irreverent companies probably have better luck at the two-way interaction. Large companies have too much to risk with the customer feedback.
 
2013-01-16 05:29:31 PM  

fickenchucker: You work in advertising, don't you?

I do. And you're spot-on.

Small and irreverent companies probably have better luck at the two-way interaction. Large companies have too much to risk with the customer feedback.


So when they post a new or sale product, and someone asks in the comments "Does it come in this size?" or "Does it come in this color?", you're saying that it would be too risky for them to have a CSR on there to say "Yes it does" or "No sorry." ? Like I've said multiple time that's all I'm looking for. I don't want to make them my pretend girlfriend. It would probably save them some cost.

And as far as large companies having too much to risk, as I said above, AT&T does it. As does Taco Bell. Don't recall any scandals by either. I assume they'd qualify as large companies.
 
2013-01-16 05:35:48 PM  

fickenchucker: You work in advertising, don't you?


Hell no. Marketers and advertisers are slimey, scumsucking purveyors of lies, evasion, folly, obfuscation, deception, mistrust and manipulation. They are kleptomaniacs of truth and devourers of culture. They produce nothing of worth or value -- they only corrupt.

I'm just media savvy.

fickenchucker: I do


kill yourself.
 
2013-01-16 05:47:45 PM  
i have a niece who 'Likes' movies that aren't even released yet. why yes, she does have huge knockers.
 
2013-01-16 05:57:29 PM  

abhorrent1: And as far as large companies having too much to risk, as I said above, AT&T does it. As does Taco Bell. Don't recall any scandals by either. I assume they'd qualify as large companies.



Averages are there for a reason--some take the time to do it as well as they can, but most won't because of the layers and overhead mentioned earlier.

Ishkur: kill yourself.


No, I'd really prefer not to. The pay is good, the work hours aren't strenuous, I get six weeks of vacation, all bank holidays off, many in-office celebrations where one is encouraged to drink, a relaxed dress-code, and still have time to FARK around.

Heck, we have a dozen stoners here and about a quarter of the people have booze bottles in their desk drawers.
 
2013-01-16 06:08:15 PM  
"Social networking gurus"

More useless than search engine optimization gurus? Discuss.
 
2013-01-16 06:15:32 PM  

snowjack: "Social networking gurus"

More useless than search engine optimization gurus? Discuss.


Just increase the number of meta keyword tags. And try put some in there that aren't related to your content at all. AltaVista will still pick them, though Infoseek may penalize you.

/When was the last time those mattered, anyway?
 
2013-01-16 06:26:26 PM  

fickenchucker: Heck, we have a dozen stoners here and about a quarter of the people have booze bottles in their desk drawers.


That should tell you something about your line of work.

But I guess you're the only one that sleeps well at night. That means you're a sociopath.
 
2013-01-16 06:26:37 PM  

Nexzus: /When was the last time those mattered, anyway?


2004 or 2005?
back when you could still make money on adsense impressions. Don't remember what it was called.
 
2013-01-16 06:26:56 PM  

abhorrent1: Clearly, brands could stand to do more to keep consumers interested

I complained about this in the taco bell facebook thread last week. Most of the "brands" that I've liked don't interact at all. Peoples questions go unanswered, if you post something on their page they delete it etc.. It's stupid. If you're not going to interact with your customers on social media why bother being there? I can go to your site, see the exact same updates and be ignored there. I don't need your useless spam clogging up my news feed.


But you don't.  So they pay you with a coupon to let them spam your news feed.
 
2013-01-16 06:49:22 PM  

Nexzus: snowjack: "Social networking gurus"

More useless than search engine optimization gurus? Discuss.

Just increase the number of meta keyword tags. And try put some in there that aren't related to your content at all. AltaVista will still pick them, though Infoseek may penalize you.

/When was the last time those mattered, anyway?


Well, there's a little more to it than that, but not much. The company I work for has an outside consultant on retainer by our marketing department, (which also has supposed internet marketing "gurus" on salary), to provide ongoing suggestions for improvements to our web site.

Every suggestion we received from the outside consultant was available for free:
http://www.google.com/webmasters/docs/search-engine-optimization-sta rt er-guide.pdf
http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html
If a job can be replaced by someone spending twenty minutes reading publicly available documents, that expertise shouldn't be worth very much.
 
2013-01-16 09:09:12 PM  

Ishkur: abhorrent1: .. It's stupid. If you're not going to interact with your customers on social media why bother being there?

I imagine it must take like 12 departments for any corporation to approve an official response to anything on the internet. They see interacting with customers as dangerous -- especially in any manner that's not a prepared statement -- for it risks upsetting and offending people and causing a media circus. They like to play it safe, they can't just have any intern man the Twitter account, and if they do, he probably has to check and double check everything he says with his boss, his boss' boss, his supervisor, his operations manager, his department team lead, the board of directors and the CEO. And good luck getting anyone along that chain to agree to anything.


And then after all that he forgets to log out of his work account before tweeting a racist joke to his friends.
 
2013-01-16 10:34:25 PM  

Ishkur: fickenchucker: Heck, we have a dozen stoners here and about a quarter of the people have booze bottles in their desk drawers.
That should tell you something about your line of work.
But I guess you're the only one that sleeps well at night. That means you're a sociopath.


Oh, he's in advertising. That explains....yeah, that explains it.

Foxxinnia: Who are these psychos? Seriously. They're friending corporations? Are their brains just broken?


I won't even take the adblock off on here.
I gave it a try, and the pages took a lot longer to load. Plus the ads are pretty bad. Plus---fark ads. fark every bit of advertising, ever.
 
2013-01-17 12:12:44 AM  

Ishkur: I imagine it must take like 12 departments for any corporation to approve an official response to anything on the internet.


Have you seen Tesco's twitter feed? I think they're doing it right.

/Benedict Cumberbatch can be found in aisle 12
//But is currently out of stock
///Please try again next week
 
2013-01-17 02:14:50 AM  
I tried to imagine the best Facebook brand friend. I tried to think of the most harmless thing. Something I loved from my childhood.

That's right...
 
2013-01-17 05:03:48 AM  

jayhawk88: Clearly, brands could stand to do more to keep consumers interested

Jeebus Christ, how? We're buying your products, wearing your logos on our clothes (and our skin), interacting with you on social media, watching your commercials/web videos, viewing your ads on our computers, phones, and eReaders...I can't walk a hundred yards in any major city without being told to buy something by a billboard, bus, taxi, or any blank piece of wall bigger than a phone book. It's quite literally impossible for me to be more than 100 miles from a McDonalds. We eat, sleep, breath, and fark to corporate identification;  you have to change your entire life to get away from it.

And you're worried that we're not identifying with your brand enough?


I am sure they could - I dunno, Coke could get someone like Zynga to make them a basic farming type game, but where you get access to extra seeds/crops/animals by scanning codes from cans and bottles, and lets you trade animals and types of plants with your friends on social media - you would get people encouraging their friends to "like" or whatever (so they can join the game and play/exchange with their friends/family), you can get people to try out more of your range of products (if you have it so each product line has different seeds you can't get from anything else - although maybe diet/non-diet versions would be the same to avoid getting dinged about that potentially), people would want to scan friends and others cans/bottles and thus spread the game virally, you build brand loyalty/knowledge (as Pepsi's cans/bottles won't unlock anything, and also it means, say, more people will find out/remember Sprite is part of Coke's offerings, etc.), maybe have minor prizes for certain achievements in the game, etc.
 
2013-01-17 06:24:32 AM  
Geoge Takei has shown how to build a brand using FB. Engage, be funny, be respectful, and be relevant. He could sell books with the amount of goodwill he's garnered with his FB page.
 
2013-01-17 06:45:28 AM  

snowjack: Nexzus: snowjack: "Social networking gurus"

More useless than search engine optimization gurus? Discuss.

Just increase the number of meta keyword tags. And try put some in there that aren't related to your content at all. AltaVista will still pick them, though Infoseek may penalize you.

/When was the last time those mattered, anyway?

Well, there's a little more to it than that, but not much. The company I work for has an outside consultant on retainer by our marketing department, (which also has supposed internet marketing "gurus" on salary), to provide ongoing suggestions for improvements to our web site.

Every suggestion we received from the outside consultant was available for free:
http://www.google.com/webmasters/docs/search-engine-optimization-sta rt er-guide.pdf
http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html
If a job can be replaced by someone spending twenty minutes reading publicly available documents, that expertise shouldn't be worth very much.


As someone who works in digital marketing with a specialty in SEO, I take offense. Those guides just tell you the "101." SEO is about helping search engines to index your website thoroughly and rank your website accurately while attracting quality traffic and converting them as per your desired marketing and business goals. You need to know (just off the top of my head):

-- how to minimize page-load time
-- when to use "rel=canonical" tags in internal links
-- what "rel=nofollow" and "rel=follow" mean and do
-- how to do conversion testing (A/B and multivariate)
-- how to build a quality brand online in general
-- how to analyze data in Google Analytics and Google Webmaster tools
-- how to create and promote quality content
-- how to measure and optimize sales funnels
-- how to use Google+ and "rel=author" to make your site stand out in search-result pages
-- how (and how NOT) to use keywords

It's not spam. It's not anything bad. Google encourages it. Anyone who does use SEO for evil will eventually get slapped down by Google, and rightfully so.
 
2013-01-17 07:11:41 AM  
"Dear Die Hard..."
 
2013-01-17 09:01:35 AM  

Ishkur: fickenchucker: Heck, we have a dozen stoners here and about a quarter of the people have booze bottles in their desk drawers.

That should tell you something about your line of work.

But I guess you're the only one that sleeps well at night. That means you're a sociopath.


Meh--maybe I am. I sleep really well.
 
2013-01-17 09:45:36 AM  
I don't friend businesses. After some update, I started seeing posts based on what was in my profile. So I deleted the profile info. I get how answering questions is a useful service, but I just don't want to interact with the businesses I support for the most part.

I only post on friends pages. I should get a fake account to comment publicly, as I don't want digital traces of my opinions floating around.

As others have mentioned, if you aren't offering me a discount, STFU.
 
2013-01-17 04:12:29 PM  
Going to check, because I have no idea brands I've tagged. Alright, so, none friended and a handful of likes:

* Pub from college town - They deserved the eyeballs
* Newegg - Sometimes they post deals
* Sony Entertainment Network - PSN maintenance notices
* NZXT - Bought a case from them, sometimes they post interesting custom jobs
* Maker Faire - It's fun, go to one.

Yup, that looks like that's about it for 2008-2013. As far as I'm concerned in these cases, Facebook's just an RSS reader.

AverageAmericanGuy: Geoge Takei has shown how to build a brand using FB. Engage, be funny, be respectful, and be relevant. He could sell books with the amount of goodwill he's garnered with his FB page.


I've never bothered subscribing to him because it's inevitable that 90% of his posts get reshared by at least one person I know anyway.
 
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