We Are Social’s Monday Mashup #125


Monkey does as monkey says
New research released by Ipsos has revealed that nearly one in four people say they would buy from a brand because a friend engages with the brand through social media. Even better news for our friends in Brazil as this number rises to 39% within the BRIC countries.

Twitter users have sore thumbs
Although it’s common knowledge that more and more people prefer to check their social networks whilst on the go, Ipsos Mori has revealed that in the UK Twitter is what you’ll most likely be checking when out and about.

82% of Twitter users own a smartphone and 22% own a tablet, perhaps reflecting the fact that they are likely to be more affluent. The research also highlights that Twitter is the youngest of all social networks, with two thirds of users aged under 35.

Timeline comes to your smartphone
Keen not to miss the ‘mobile boat’, Facebook has been working hard to implement its Timeline layout for brand pages to mobile. After experiencing a number of speed-related issues on its mobile applications, it’s good to see Facebook offering a more consistent experience. It’s worth noting that changes to the dimensions of the cover photos mean designs that integrate the profile image into the cover art may need to be amended. However, a larger ‘Like’ button in the new app provides a better call to action.

Facebook rolls out new posting options
Page owners can now tag their posts with location in the same way that has been available on personal profiles. As a result, a map of the location of a post will be included when a photo or link is not included, which could help text-based status updates get noticed in the News Feed – though no word yet on whether this improves EdgeRank.

More importantly, Facebook has added an option for pages to make “unpublished” posts. Aside from testing how a post might look before having to hitting publish, this will also open advertising opportunities. Previously, if a page-post ad was to be created, it would have to pull content that had already been published to a page. Now, page-post ads can be created to target new fans without having to post content on the page that current fans may already have seen.

Facebook and Spotify still going strong
Facebook and Spotify have publicly declared their love for each other once again this week after introducing a new level of integration. When visiting an artist’s fan page, fans can now search for a song by that artist and easily share it to their wall. This appears to be a gentle nudge to discourage fans to simply post a YouTube link to the latest song they can’t get out of their head. This can only be a good thing for artists, as it builds their Spotify playcount for which they receive an (albeit small) amount of money.

Promoted tweets not a problem
Twitter is loosening their paid ad requirements. Instead of insisting that a Promoted Tweet also be tweeted organically to followers, brands will be able to create stand-alone content that will only appear as a Promoted Tweet.

New Twitter applications fly onto mobile
Twitter released new versions of their ever-popular mobile applications this week. Despite no plans to increase their 140-character limit, Twitter continues to push ‘Expanded Tweets’, offering followers richer content directly from within the application. They have also worked hard to improve their search function in an effort to make finding people easier.

Can I see some ID please mate…
With so many young Twitter users, being a drinks brand on the platform has previously been problematic. Brands would have to message each new follower they acquired to ensure they were of legal drinking age. This looks all set to change now following a partnership between Twitter and Buddy Media, which allows Twitter to offer brands a much more elegant solution for checking the age of their followers.

Google+ comes to the iPad
Google+ has finally brought its gorgeous iOS app to the big screen with the release of an official iPad app this week. Perhaps they’re smartening up their tablet appearance ahead of the imminent release of the Google Nexus tablet…

LinkedIn pulls its socks up
After the end of the long-standing tweet syndication partnership with Twitter, LinkedIn has announced a raft of new changes to how users keep in touch with news within their network. These include being able to ‘like’ articles as well as seeing what articles are ‘trending’. Sound familiar?

Telefonica tries to reinvent the wheel…
After acquiring Spanish social network Tuenti in 2010 for $99m, Telefonica decided to launch its fledgling social network globally last week. Seemingly unhappy to entrust their social presence to an external social network, Telefonica’s long-term strategy seems to involve wishing to control every aspect of how their user base communicate.

Despite using the tagline ‘Social done simple’, the network seems to offer a convoluted mash-up of Facebook, Twitter and Skype. We’ll be keeping a close eye on this one.

The New York Times’ five guiding principles of social media
News organisations have been scattered across the board on how reporters should talk on social media … and whether they should even be using it at all. But The New York Times has shunned an official policy and instead opted for some delightfully common sense approaches for its journalists on social networks, though these can apply to a wide range of professions:

  1. Encourage our journalists to embrace social media, use it as a tool and be comfortable with it.
  2. Social media is free and journalists must be in their use of it. You cannot encourage journalists on one hand and then overly restrict them with rules and regulations on the other.
  3. Have experts on board who are there to guide and talk to staff and help new recruits as they get to grips with social.
  4. Be thoughtful. Use common sense. Social media is public and not private.
  5. As a journalist your reputation is on the line as well as that of your organisation. Respect both.

CNN get Facebook on board early on
In the buildup to coverage of the 2012 US presidential election, CNN has announced that it will be partnering with Facebook. CNN has released an Open Graph-enabled app, so that users will be able to publish which party they will be pledging their allegiance to and find out where their nearest voting booth is. More notably, the partnership means Facebook will provide CNN with metrics about the discussion of on each presidential candidate online.

NBC and Facebook team up for Olympics coverage
The 2012 Olympics have been branded the ‘Social Games’, and it’s amazing how far the bonds between social media, sport and TV have come since the last Games in 2008. Through a new partnership between NBC and Facebook, NBC’s fans can tell their Facebook friends what Olympics-related videos and articles they are watching and reading, which the two are hoping will spurn more views and shares. But it sounds like the most interesting part will be number crunching the conversations afterward to see who should win the gold for Most Discussed on Facebook.

The Washington Post taps Socialcam for Games collaboration
In another high-profile budding partnership, The Washington Post chose Socialcam as their video app to cover the Olympics. The project, cleverly called London Eyes, features selected user-generated content alongside videos from WaPo’s own reporters.

Wispa revels in ‘time well mis-spent’
What do you get when you take five of your family members and shove them in a taxi with a grandfather clock? I’m not quite sure, but Cadbury’s Wispa has launched a new Facebook app to celebrate crazy ideas like that and vows to make them reality. Fans can view a gallery of goofs or apply for their own ‘goofing off grant’. Sounds like a good way to mis-spend your lunch hour.

YSL wants fans to doll up with Facebook’s colour palette
The most dedicated fans can make their faces Facebook-coloured when Yves Saint Laurent releases new eyeshadow later this week. The colours and design proclaim YSL’s love for its fans … and for Facebook. Just 1,650 palettes will be available to buy on the YSL page for £39.

Travel facts could get you far
Dust off your geography books. Qatar Airlines wants to send a Twitter follower and one of their friends to one of 117 destinations around the world, just by tweeting facts about the destination to earn miles. The tweet-a-meet campaign is a clever way to make the competition viral, but we’re wondering how many of the tweets will just be pasted from Wikipedia.

Twitter users hijack hashtag to promote democracy in the Maldives
While the #sunnysideoflife hashtag was meant to encourage Twitter users who had visited the island country to share their experiences, it was quickly taken over by activists who wanted to shed light on the Maldives’ recent political troubles. And even though this one hasn’t spun out of control, it’s definitely one to watch.

Walmart’s Facebook fans want to ship a musician up north
Walmart may have underestimated the trolling power of its Facebook fans when it asked where popular (so I’m told) American rapper Pitbull should be sent to meet fans at their local Walmart store. The winning location at last count? The Kodiak market, in a small island town off the frigid Alaskan coast. At least it’s summertime?

Two tales of customer support on social
A number of things are hard to go without in the modern world, and money and mobile phones are pretty high up on that list. So when massive failures struck two giants in the banking and mobile phone industry over the last few weeks, it’s no surprise that Twitter was up in arms. After a computer glitch made payments impossible to process, NatWest was flooded with cries for help from their customers, but it did little to actively respond until much later in the crisis.

Compare that to O2’s Twitter response to customers during their outage last week, and similarly to NatWest, those tweets ranged from the good to the bad to the very, very ugly.  Although O2 was slow to reply at first, they eventually responded to every tweet, no matter how profanity laced, in a brilliantly non-corporate way that lightened the mood and took some of the edge off  the crisis.

When brands do battle
And a final chuckle for your Monday: Is there anything better than brands duking it out on Twitter?