Best Practices (Twitter)

Twitter is a veritable proving ground for a message, at 140 characters per tweet people can quickly decide whether they want to interact with you and your brand/app further based on the content you are pushing out. The first best practice comes from Mark Schaefer who wrote The Tao of Twitter, Changing your Life and Business 140 Characters at a Time who points out that you must have a suitable tribe with an initial goal of establishing 200 followers through time blocks of at least 20 minutes a day making connections by following them and generating or sharing meaningful content along with properly setting up your Twitter page with biographies, links to your app, home page or website (Schaefer, 2014)

Mark Schaefer also recommends ‘mining’ competitors lists and determine the users that are following them. (Schaefer, 2014) By choosing to mine a competitor the customers will share an interest in your app and readily follow you if your content is engaging. Hashtags are another way to engage people who are not aware of your brand or are not following you yet. By adding hashtags to your posts anyone searching for a particular hashtag could stumble upon your content.

Engage with your followers, when you engage you create a connection and content that can be shared whether it be a tweet or post or anything of the sort your followers can re-tweet your post which gets your name out to possibly hundred to thousands of people. The sheer size of Twitter’s user base means your content could reach millions in no time. A great example of this is John Ledger, CEO of T-Mobile who is constantly tweeting his followers with promotions, all the way down to his daily activities including one today he dubbed ‘slowcookersunday’ where he cooks a homemade meal in the slow cooker for his family every Sunday. People on Twitter even give him ideas on what to cook. While quirky it works, people are following and interacting with him.

Finally, the most critical part is Tweet often, Twitter is real-time conversations happening all around us. If you want to develop a following and have free advertisement you will have to invest some ‘sweat equity’ into this operation. By tweeting often even through the use of a social media dashboard such as HootSuite which allows for scheduled tweets users will feel that you are interacting with them at a regular interval.

#socialmedia #snhusmm #appdesign #apppromotion

Schaefer, M. W. (2014). The Tao of Twitter: Changing your life and business 140 characters at a time. New York: McGraw-Hill Education.

#slowcookersunday hashtag on Twitter. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://twitter.com/hashtag/slowcookersunday?src=hash

 

 

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To go Social or Not?

When and if to take your brand and app into the sea of social media is one that many developers struggle with. On one hand there is the chance to create an absolute splash and get the companies name out and the product lineup. You can get users talking about the app and hopefully drive more traffic to your brand and website. However, this is somewhat of a double edged sword. Once you get out on social media you open yourself up to a whole new world which will require constant attention. According to the findings of a study done by Lithium Technologies, 53% of Twitter users expect a response to their interactions/complaints within an hour. That number jumps further to 65% within two hours. (Lee, 2013) This type of expectation is fine for companies and developers who can fund an entire social media department and respond to the users’ complaints in this period of time. However, being a small time or part time developer this can be very unrealistic if not downright impossible especially if launched world-wide on one of the major platforms such as the Apple app store, or Google Playstore.

Another item to consider is that if you do not respond to your customer’s other people more commonly known as ‘trolls’ on the social media circles. Target was the target of such an attack by an ‘overly helpful’ consumer who created a Facebook page named ‘AskforHelp’ and had the Target logo as its primary picture. (Nichols, 2015) Target had just announced the removal of gender monikers on children’s items in their stores and this caused an out lash on social media towards Target. Since Target was not responding quickly this consumer was easily believable to many to be an actual Target representative and create posts that while hilarious are not reflective of the image Target was trying to convey to their consumers.

However, going social is not all negative. The upside to taking the brand social is the sheer number of impressions that can be had as a result of engaging on the platform.  A great example of this was the astonishing rise of a simple game ‘Flappy Bird’. The developer, Dong Nyugen bridged out into social media and promoted his game, however, once it began to take hold it took hold fast and within months it went from an unknown game to the most downloaded free game in the world. At its height the developer was reportedly earning 50,000 dollars a day from the ads that were being displayed while users were playing the game. (Rigney, 2014) This all started with a grass roots style series of aggravated tweets about how hard this game was to beat. At the end of the day, delving into social media is a worthy adventure that can put a developer or brand on the proverbial map but one must be ready for the work and expectations that this fame and fortune will entail.

#snhumm #SocialMedia #appdesign #marketing #snhu

Lee, J. (2013, November 1). Brands Expected to Respond Within an Hour on Twitter. Retrieved from https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/study/2304492/brands-expected-to-respond-within-an-hour-on-twitter-study

Nichols, J. (2015, August 15). Guy Impersonates Target On Facebook, Hilarious Trolling Ensues. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/guy-impersonated-target-on-facebook_us_55ce8dece4b055a6dab07edc

Rigney, R. (2014, February 12). Inside the Brief Life and Untimely Death of Flappy Bird. Retrieved from http://www.wired.com/2014/02/flappy-bird/

 

Business to Consumer Transactions and Social Media

These days every company is trying to find new ways to connect with the consumer without outwardly trying to push a product or advertisement on them as the advent of ad blockers and consumers constantly choosing to skip promotional videos on Youtube. So how can a producer connect with consumers subtly?

Instagram

Instagram, the photo and video sharing website can help with this situation. Users of Instagram such as a business can send out pictures of their new products. Many times these pictures are very similar to ones that would have appeared in an advertisement or catalog. In addition to sending to users who have chosen to follow the company and are therefore generally interested in what they are seeing, the company can add a link in the comments to buy the product. One company doing this currently is Nordstrom the high end fashion retailer. Boasting a following of over 530,000 users who find a product they want from the Instagram posts can simply go to their website set up specifically for this reason. (Victory, 2014)

Instagram has enjoyed significant success due to a number of factors. First and foremost, Instagram focuses on image sharing, with nice tools that help edit photos and apply different effects to make the photos shared stand out. Additionally, Instagram makes it incredibly easy to share your photos across numerous platforms. “Using API’s from Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and other services, Instagram lets you share from one single screen.” (Bolt, 2014) By allowing social media users and marketers to get their image out with a way to sell the merchandise through social media is great, but having a method to send it across several platforms at once is a ‘game changer’ in the B2C realm.

In a sea of social media platforms how successful has Instagram been and how can you measure that success? In the social media realm monthly active users are the key to success. This shows how many users are engaging on the platform and all producers hope that number will grow significantly. Instagram took almost a year to reach 10 million monthly active users, 1 year later that number had swelled to over 80 million (“Instagram”, 2016).  A few months later that number had grown to 150 million and to reach where we are today, Instagram has over 400 million monthly active users with no signs of slowing (“Instagram”, 2016).  Their trajectory from starting the business in the fall of 2010 to now has been a staggering climb up. Currently Instagram boasts over 400 million active users per month with over 80 million photos added every day and 40 billion since Instagram started 6 years ago (“Instagram”, 2016). These numbers continue to grow and send Instagram up the leaderboards of the social media rankings, with plenty of room for growth here in the United States as currently 75% of monthly active users reside outside the United States. (“Instagram, 2016).

#snhumm #marketing #instagram #marketing #socialmedia

 References

Bolt, N. (2011, November 27). Why Instagram Is So Popular: Quality, Audience, & Constraints. Retrieved from http://techcrunch.com/2011/11/27/why-instagram-is-so-popular/

Instagram Press Page. (2016). Retrieved from https://www.instagram.com/press/

Victory, G. (2014, September 9). How to Promote Products With Social Media. Retrieved from http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/promote-products-with-social-media/

Tools of the Trade

If you are developing an application whether it is a game, a tool or anything in between you have to be active on social media and have a presence that is prominently displayed. Last week I covered just a few areas to start a social media campaign and get the word out about your app now, that the app is live and you are promoting it we will take a look at how users are interacting.

Social media in the app development area is heavily used for the concentrated user nature social media operates in. When a user retweets, likes, comments or interacts with the developer’s content then that action shows up in their follower’s pages. These followers are likely like-minded individuals making for a strong social media presence to the people who are most interested in the content being shared.

The highest profile social media channel used in the application development realm is Facebook. Facebook has millions of users so many in fact “if Facebook, for example, was a country, it would be the fifth-most-populated in the world (right between Indonesia and Brazil)” (Chapman, 2009). With that kind of exposure many developers are highly active on Facebook and with good reason. Developers can get send out screen shots of new development efforts, and interact with their fans on a platform many are already using daily.

Twitter is another great place to gain short comments on a development or to get short comments on how users like an application. Twitter is also used heavily for promotion of applications and is cost effective because users who are engaged can easily re-tweet your content and help your message spread to follower who likely share many similar interest.

Now that your message has taken root and begins spreading across social media, how can you manage promotional products or determine how effective a promotional campaign was? New social media targeting tools such as SproutSocial allow you to

  • Post regional content, such as location-specific promotions or events
  • A/B testing the popularity of a product in specific locations
  • Publishing translated posts to targeted subsets of a global audience (Cuttica, 2016).

Another tool being used heavily in the application design realm is Google Analytics. Google Analytics is great for determining how users are interacting with your apps and for how long. For instance “You may see, for example, a page or screen in a funnel from which a lot of traffic exits before completing the goal, indicating a problem with that step. You might also see a lot of traffic skipping steps, indicating the path to conversion is too long or contains extraneous steps” (About goals, 2016). This is all important information that can help refine an app to target the users you want the most whether it be the paying customers, users interacting with the ads or whatever the goal is.

References

About goals – Analytics Help. (2016). Retrieved from https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1012040?hl=en

Chapman, C. (2009, July 13). Social Network Design: Examples and Best Practices. Retrieved from https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/07/social-network-design-examples-and-best-practices/

Cuttica, P. (2016, January 19). Your Guide to Social Media Targeting. Retrieved from http://sproutsocial.com/insights/your-guide-to-social-media-targeting-via-sprout/

Getting your app off the ground with Social Media

If you are anything like me, you have what you believe to be a ‘million dollar’ mobile app getting ready to released into the world and with users more connected than ever before the pool of potential customers is limitless. But how do you get recognized when there is seemingly an endless supply of mobile applications? As of February 2016, there were over 2 million applications available in the Google Play Store. To rise to the top of this heap quickly you must be promoting through social media. Today I’ll cover two social media tools that can help get your application noticed.

Facebook

The proverbial ‘king’ of social media boasting a whopping 1.59 BILLION active users spanning the globe. If you want to get your product noticed this is the place to be advertising and promoting it. Facebook has also made it quite easy to advertise and promote using their services. By creating a business account through their easy to use interface you then set can set up an advertising account and fund it. Once it is funded you, set your target audience and the maximum amount you wish to spend per day and in total and let Facebook take care of the rest. Facebook puts your ads in front of consumers who through their interactions and self-proclaimed ‘likes’ will be interested in the your product. In addition to these advertised posts users can follow your page and will see all of your updates and posts from the company account displayed on their timeline for FREE! This is an easy way to reach your customers with new and exciting updates and new applications that are in progress. By further utilizing the power of social media your posts will be seen by friends of your followers who likely share the same interest and through the power of social media your fan base can grow.

Twitter

Promoting through Twitter is a must as word rarely travels faster than through a well placed ‘tweet’. Twitter like Facebook has made it incredibly easy to establish a company page and begin tweeting from virtually anywhere. Twitter allows for several different strategies to effectively advertise your application. Twitter allows for several types of advertisement campaigns depending on the end goal. To quickly have you message spread across the ‘Twitterverse’ you must have a strong user base to get re-tweets moving. To accomplish this Twitter offers a service which is called a follower’s campaign. In this instance, you pay for followers you gain based on the system very similar to Facebook’s where you set the maximum amount to spend and they take care of the rest.Your company’s Twitter name is added to home pages, recommended people to follow and users who have expressed interested and interacted with categories similar to yours.

Conclusion

Regardless of which social media platform you choose to be on, it has never been easier to reach hundreds of millions of impressionable users. Setting up accounts is easy and publishing content to those users is equally effortless and relatively inexpensive when measured against the number of impressions that will be had with users who are interested in the category of market you operate in.

What other ways do you promote your developed applications? Leave a comment below.