Tag Archives: twitter

Twitter’s Mute Is Bad News for Brand Reach

twitter-bird-blue-on-white.pngLast week Twitter rolled out a new feature that’s as much good news for the everyday user as it is potentially bad news for brand publishers: The new Mute button will allow people to essentially hide updates from an account that they feel over-publishes or has otherwise become an annoyance more than a source of new, interesting and engaging material. This may be that person you met at the airport last week and who you now know is a fan of the most extreme theories on every topic. Or, more troubling for brand publishers, a brand account that someone has now lost interest in.

What’s problematic for brand publishers are a couple of things:

First off, some metrics will stay the same while others could change drastically. The number of people Following an account will, presumably, remain the same but the number of people who are actually seeing those updates will be much less, thus making that Followers metric even dicier than it was before.

Followers have always been a weak number since it never truly represented the number of people who see published updates. Reach has been slightly better, but even it isn’t perfect. That’s why it’s been so necessary for so long that Twitter start providing better native metrics that better show the number of users for whom a particular Tweet was actually loaded or something similar.

Second, there does not appear to be a way to see who’s muted an account’s updates or how many have done so. There’s an opportunity here for a metric that, while it may not be the most positive, is still an important number to learn from. After all, these are people who have signaled, in a round-about way, that an account is still important to them even if they don’t want to receive their updates.

Along with that, there’s no way to contact these people outside of a DM, which may not be welcome considering they’ve muted the account now trying to DM them. So there’s no way to ask them what the reason behind the Mute was or make an appeal for them to come back. That means not only is a lot of interesting feedback being left on the table, but that person may not ever think to unmute an account unless they see it in someone else’s update.

With all that in mind, this is a good time for brand publishers to take another look at their Twitter publishing strategy and make sure it’s working, not just for themselves but for the audience as well. This is a question publishers should be asking regularly, but given how the audience now has a whole new way of signaling their discontent with content volume, tone, topic or other factors.

Twitter updates coming to theater pre-shows

Trending and interesting entertainment content from Twitter and Vine are about to start showing up on movie theater screens thanks to a deal between Twitter and National CineMedia, according to Variety.

The deal will add a segment to NCM’s “First Look” pre-movie programming that will include curated material from Twitter and Vine, the latter being owned by the former.

While I have issues with the NCM side of this – I don’t know why mainstream media outlets like this, MSNBC or others think pulling in social media will somehow help them be more relevant – it makes a ton of sense for Twitter. For that company this marks a big stake in the ground in the fight against Facebook (and so some extent Tumblr) as they battle for supremacy in the media conversation circle. Each one wants to be *the* place people talk about movies, TV shows and more. If Twitter can get the content people are publishing there in front of a big audience it goes along way toward that goal, as well as the more fundamental “What is Twitter?” issue that has hampered mainstream adoption.

Twitter feeds your ego to get your attention

An interesting experiment from Twitter that’s meant to make you feel good about how you’re doing with your publishing there. On the one hand this makes a lot of sense, even if it is about three years late to the “gamification” trend. On the other, this is so clearly going to be primarily interesting to super-duper power users (who are likely already doing alright engagement-wise) it’s hard to see this having much value for others.

Twitter has begun experimenting with an account, called @AchievementBird, that will direct message you ‘achievements’ that you earn with your tweets. The account is protected but has granted follows in the past few days.

via Twitter Toys With Ways To Boost Engagement With ‘@AchievementBird’ Experiment | TechCrunch.

Twitter Achievement Bird

Digital/Social’s role in marketing and forecasting

If I were still writing MMM on a regular basis I could have a field day with this story about social media’s impact and usefulness in not only movie marketing but box office prognostication.

Twitter has claimed a decent impact on water cooler conversations, Buzzfeed has reinvented (or at least smartly repackaged) native advertising and Tumblr has used the momentum after its acquisition by Yahoo to position itself as the new echo chamber for fan engagement. Budgets have been steadily shifting towards digital media, and digital savvy has become the new must-have. Overall levels of relevance, mass reach, sophistication and smart spending have increased tremendously in 2013.

via Digital Data on December Movie Releases: 47 Ronin, Anchorman 2, More | Variety.

Very few of us are talking to…well…anyone

This is a super-interesting look at the number of Twitter accounts and how many people are actually hearing what people are saying:

In comparative terms, almost nobody on Twitter is somebody: the median Twitter account has a single follower. Among the much smaller subset of accounts that have posted in the last 30 days, the median account has just 61 followers. If you’ve got a thousand followers, you’re at the 96th percentile of active Twitter users.

via Tweets loud and quiet – O’Reilly Radar.

Two things of note:

First – Almost every brand account on Twitter would, by this measure, fall into the 98th or higher percentile. Which should help you provide some context the next time your client is hassling you about the size of the Twitter network you’re building.

Second – What this study doesn’t look at is a number that’s been occasionally promised but which has yet to surface: The number of people who actually saw a tweet. By which I mean, sure, I have 2,400+ Followers right now, but only a percentage of those people are A) Still active on Twitter or B) Actively looking at Twitter when I publish. So of that 2,400+ group, maybe 5% actually sees what I publish at any given time. That sort of detail would help brand publishers not only gauge their ideal publishing times but also provide some additional context to existing engagement metrics.

Everyone wants to help you distribute your photos

First up we have Twitter:

For the first time, you can share and view photos via direct message (DM) on your mobile phone. We’ve also introduced a new tab in the navigation bar that makes it easy to access DMs –– they’re just one tap away from wherever you are on Twitter. You can also view photos in DMs on twitter.com.

Then we have Instagram:

There are, however, moments in our lives that we want to share, but that will be the most relevant only to a smaller group of people—an inside joke between friends captured on the go, a special family moment or even just one more photo of your new puppy. Instagram Direct helps you share these moments.

Both of these seem like solutions to a problem that may not exist outside the heads of executives who are concerned about losing users to Snapchat and other photo-messaging services. But both also seem like they’re not quite the solution to stem that tide.

Twitter’s is a bit wonky in that you still have to use the Direct Message functionality, the main problem of which is that it takes you outside the core Twitter stream experience. Instagram’s is a bit better in that it’s presented as another option when publishing the photo.

Both, though, don’t answer the core question of “How is this better than what I’m using right now?” Basically, how are these options a better choice for people who would otherwise text, SMS or whatever those photos to their friends?

For brands the answer is at least a bit clearer on the Instragram front. It’s easy to imagine how a brand publisher could Instagram Direct as a way to reach out to influencers with exclusive artwork, a first look at a product or something like that.

Either way, it’s obvious the social network powers that be are looking to get in on the direct photo-sharing game. Let’s see what comes of it in 2014.

Twitter’s ads now about network growth

Twitter’s advertising products are now no longer about promoting breaking/trending news or important updates that need a paid boost and have moved into the realm of fan acquisition tools. From my perspective this only puts this more squarely in the hands of the PR-based social publishing team since it’s their program that will have to support and speak to all those newly acquired fans.

After a successful test with a number of advertisers, we are excited to expand this beta to all advertisers globally starting today. This option is available in addition to the existing Promoted Accounts format that runs within the Who to Follow section.

via Announcing Promoted Accounts in Timeline | Twitter Blogs.