Turkey Demands Facebook Block ‘Insulting’ Pages

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Earlier this month, a day after the terroristic attack on the offices of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, Mark Zuckerberg took to Facebook and said he is committed to making sure his site is a place where people can “speak freely without fear of violence”.

Well, what about the fear of a court order and a country-wide ban?

A Turkish court has ordered Facebook to block various pages that it says are insulting to the Prophet Mohammad. According to Reuters, the request was made by a prosecutor. Apparently, Turkey is threatening to just block the whole site in the country if Facebook fails to comply with the order.

Let’s go back a couple of weeks and take a look at what Mark Zuckerberg had to say about free expression on Facebook.

A few years ago, an extremist in Pakistan fought to have me sentenced to death because Facebook refused to ban content about Mohammed that offended him.

We stood up for this because different voices — even if they’re sometimes offensive — can make the world a better and more interesting place.

Facebook has always been a place where people across the world share their views and ideas. We follow the laws in each country, but we never let one country or group of people dictate what people can share across the world.

Yet as I reflect on yesterday’s attack and my own experience with extremism, this is what we all need to reject — a group of extremists trying to silence the voices and opinions of everyone else around the world.

I won’t let that happen on Facebook. I’m committed to building a service where you can speak freely without fear of violence.

My thoughts are with the victims, their families, the people of France and the people all over the world who choose to share their views and ideas, even when that takes courage. ‪#‎JeSuisCharlie‬

As Zuckerberg mentions, Facebook does have a history of refusing to ban content some see as “offensive”. In 2010, Pakistan wound up blacking access to Facebook entirely because the social network wouldn’t censor pages about Mohammed.

Then again, Facebook does comply with governments and removes content all the time.

“We restricted access to a number of pieces of content primarily reported by the Turkish Information and Communication Technologies Authority and Turkish law enforcement officials under local laws, especially law 5651, which covers a range of offenses including defamation of Ataturk and personal rights violation,” said Facebook in its latest Transparency Report.

In just six months, Facebook restricted 1,893 individual pieces of content in Turkey. It’s not just Facebook, as Turkey has been cracking down on social media freedoms for a while now.

It’ll be interesting to see how Facebook responds to this one. On one hand, Facebook has no problem regionally banning content to comply with government requests. On the other hand, this is a hot-button issue and the company’s CEO just made a sweeping statement about free speech.

To be continued …

January 27th 2015 Facebook, Social Media

Here’s Victoria’s Secret Super Bowl Ad, and It’s Exactly What You’d Expect

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Victoria's Secret has joined the conga line of brands—including Lexus, Bud Light, Budweiser, Mercedes and Kia—releasing their Super Bowl ads before the game.

This year marks the third game in which the lingerie brand is running an ad, with its most recent appearance in 2008. Similar to 2008's ad, this year's spot (which was created in-house) will run during the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter of the game. Running an ad toward the end of the telecast can be a risky move if the game isn't a nail-biter, which explains why Victoria's Secret is releasing the ad ahead of time with a heavy emphasis on social media.

"This year, we thought we had a lot of momentum and a lot of wind in our sales coming out of the holiday season and it just seemed like a good opportunity," said chief marketing officer Ed Razek.

Last week, Victoria's Secret released a 90-second online video featuring Candice Swanepoel, Lily Aldridge, Adriana Lima, Doutzen Kroes and Behati Prinsloo dressed as football players who win a game. All of the models (plus Karlie Kloss) also star in the final Super Bowl ad. Creatively though, last week's online video is far from Victoria's Secret's in-game ad.

"We're not crazy enough to do a commercial where all of our girls are dressed like football players," Razek said "We do what we do—it's two weeks to Valentine's Day."

Here is the Super Bowl ad:

And here is the online video:

Instead of football players, the final ad pieces together footage from shoots over the past 18 months. Only one shot of Adriana Lima was filmed specifically for the Super Bowl in the beginning of January.

"We only shot one piece of new material for this commercial—we decided to come to the game late and then we wanted to leverage every opportunity," Razek said. "It's the Super Bowl—you're trying not to do something that's a specific product type of commercial."

Razek said the decision to run a Super Bowl ad happened on Dec. 19—10 days after the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show aired on CBS. Viewership for that program among 18-34 year olds grew 27 percent year over year.

Beyond the TV ad, the Victoria's Secret campaign includes social media outreach to millennial consumers via Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

"Social for us—particularly for our customer base—is one of the most significant pieces of our advertising strategy," Razek said. "We've got a very loyal fan base, but the models [also] have a very loyal fan base."

Indeed, Candice Swanepoel has 4.7 million Instagram followers. Adriana Lima counts 4 million, Doutzen Kroes boasts 2.5 million and Karlie Kloss has 1.8 million Instagram followers.

For an up-to-date roster of this year's Super Bowl advertisers, check out Adweek's Super Bowl Ad Tracker.






January 27th 2015 Facebook, Technology, Twitter

How Vevo Found a Workaround to Make its ‘Fifty Shades’ Video Autoplay on Twitter

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Vevo isn't waiting around for Twitter to release an autoplay feature. Instead, it's one of a few media companies already playing videos automatically in users' feeds by making use of a little-known trick.

This week, the digital music video platform posted the video for "Earned It," a song off the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack. The clip plays instantly on desktop versions of Twitter—no clicking required. And unlike on Facebook, the autoplay includes sound.

The studio behind Fifty Shades, Universal Pictures, promoted Vevo's tweet through Twitter's Amplify program for advertisers. Typically, videos shared through Amplify play after a user clicks on them. The "Earned It" post, though, played instantly and even began with a 30-second pre-roll trailer for the movie before going into the music video.

A source said Vevo has been setting its videos to autoplay thanks to a little-known feature in the Amplify program. It's been done before; last year The Weather Channel amplified a video that played automatically. Twitter has guidelines about when Amplify partners can set videos to autoplay, and typically it is limited to those less than 10 seconds long. The "Earned It" video and pre-roll, however, combine to create about five minutes of autoplay. Twitter declined comment on whether guidelines have changed.

Twitter has been working on an autoplay feature that could make its feed more dynamic, and expand beyond what a couple Amplfiy partners have been able to use so far. Facebook launched an autoplay video format last year, and brands have embraced it. Twitter also is developing a native video player for users and marketers, one that lets them shoot and share footage with tools built into the app.






January 24th 2015 Facebook, Technology, Twitter

Zombies Dead Ahead! (It’s Cool, Though — You WANT These Zombies.)

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Contributor Peter Shankman argues how stellar customer service, helped along by social media, can help you build an undead army of loyalists.

The post Zombies Dead Ahead! (It’s Cool, Though — You WANT These Zombies.) appeared first on Marketing Land.



Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

January 24th 2015 Facebook, Twitter

How Facebook Became a Proving Ground for Hyper-Targeted Super Bowl Ad Tactics

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Facebook always says it has a Super Bowl-size audience to advertise against every day—1.3 billion users—but this year for the Big Game it's not just about hitting the whole audience, the social network says. It's about targeting segments of that massive population of viewers.

To do that, Facebook is giving brands new ways to reach Super Bowl fans, breaking them into targeted groups and delivering tailor-made ads based on their profiles (anonymously, it says, of course).

It's all part of Facebook's growing strategy to grab ad dollars from brands with aggressive Super Bowl marketing plans, and to take some of the share from rivals like YouTube and Twitter. Last year, tools to aim ads at specific audiences were still evolving, and formats like video were still nascent. This year these are the main parts of Facebook's pitch to advertisers.

Facebook stands out for advertisers because of how well it knows its users, their interests and their lives.

Last year, Coca-Cola bought a Super Bowl ad that aired during the game, and it featured people from different cultures singing the National Anthem in their native languages. When it aired live for the whole Super Bowl audience, it caused a backlash from some people who thought America's song should be sung in English.

On Facebook, Coca-Cola shared bits of that video to different audiences, only the parts with which individuals of different backgrounds would identify. This was a unique strategy that employed targeting and video, delivering separate creative that catered to multiple Facebook segments, according to an ad executive who was familiar with Coke's marketing strategy.

This year, the targeting tools for marketers are expanding with Super Bowl-specific segments, Facebook announced today. "The Big Game targeting segment is Facebook's first segment that utilizes real-time conversations (updating frequently throughout the game) related to the Super Bowl," a Facebook rep said in a release today. "The segment includes not just football fans who like the Seahawks or the Patriots but also people engaging (e.g., likes, comments, shares) around party planning, sharing recipes, buying a new flat-screen TV, halftime show commentary, chatter about your favorite ads, and more, to identify new targets for the segment."

Toyota, Pepsi, Anheuser-Busch and Intuit TurboTax are among Facebook's brand partners for the game this year. Much like Coca-Cola did last year, Toyota will target different videos to different Facebook users for maximum impact, according to one source familiar with the carmaker's plans. The brand could not immediately be reached for comment.

Anheuser-Busch said it will use all of Facebook's technological and data offerings to best serve the ads. "We leverage all the tools Facebook provides to try them out, see how we're performing and optimize accordingly," said Lucas Herscovici, vp of consumer connections at Anheuser-Busch.

The idea is for brands like Budweiser to serve light beer ads to one group and regular beer to another. Brands also will shape their messages based on the situation in the game, and talk with fans of the winning teams differently than fans of the losing team, said one top advertising executive, speaking on condition of anonymity. It's a level of sophistication that is still new to brands and one still being tested, but they view the Big Game as the perfect proving ground, this source said.

Budweiser is shaping creative to meet each platform. It's showing off a marketing strategy that progresses from one social network to the next, from one TV spot to the next, giving a little something new for users and viewers each time.

"Our main brands Bud and Bud Light, we're activating them in a 360-degree campaign where the TV ad is just one different element in the storytelling," Herscovici said. "So digital obviously plays a huge role in telling the other parts of the story."

Facebook said it reached 170 million people on game day last year. This year, posts will take into account how users interact with the game—are they super fans, watching for the ads, or in it for the parties? 

"The best stories from advertisers are ones that are told in the same way people create and consume content," a Facebook rep said, referring to its ad format that lets brands share the same style of posts already familiar to users. "Facebook has the tools in place to help marketers improve campaigns and create content that is relevant and rewarding for people."






January 23rd 2015 Facebook, Google, Mobile, Technology, Twitter, YouTube

Social Media Advertising for Content Marketers: Insight from Salesforce’s ‘2015 State of Marketing’ report

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Social Media Advertising

Salesforce recently released its annual “State of Marketing” report, in which the company surveyed 5,000 marketers worldwide. Results of the survey point toward a significant investment in social media advertising in 2015.

According to the CRM company’s report (gated download), 70% of marketers will spend more budget on social media advertising this year. As numbers of customers on social channels increases, it is increasingly imperative, as the survey results show, to have a social media marketing strategy in place.

It is clear that digital marketers are increasingly valuing social media advertising to help promote their content marketing efforts. In 2014, 25% of marketers saw social as a critical enabler of products and services. The number leaps to 64% in 2015.

Social media overall is on the rise in both SMBs and large corporations. The 44-page Salesforce report says that 78% of marketers stated that they have a dedicated social media team. This number is up from just 57% in 2014. As digital marketers focus more on social media, it is important stay abreast of the reach and power of social networks.

Here is a look at the top three:

Facebook

Salesforce’s report showed that Facebook had continued to be “the most popular social channel for marketers to engage customers around the world.” With 1.35 billion active monthly users on Facebook as of Sept. 2014, B2B marketers are increasingly looking to Facebook to engage with their audience.

Here are a few stats to keep in mind:

80% of marketers are using Facebook
74% of marketers use Facebook to engage customers
73% rated Facebook ‘very effective’
19% rated Facebook ‘somewhat effective’
8% rated Facebook ‘not very effective / not effective at all’

Facebook is by far no stranger to B2B marketers, even though some still think it’s a place to connect with high school classmates. Facebook for business offers tips for getting started with Facebook advertising. Both B2C and B2B marketers will find resources to help you on your way to create awareness, launch products and services and drive sales. Facebook also offers tips specific to advertising on the social network.

Targeting options help Facebook advertisers reach not only the consumer audience that B2C marketers are after, but the B2B audience as well. Targeting by interests, connections, behaviors and location can help B2C marketers reach an audience that is more likely to include key buyers and decision makers they are after.

The video marketing service Wistia seeks to reach a B2B audience with this ad:

Wistia ad sample

Twitter

Second to Facebook is the micro-blogging social network Twitter. Marketers using Twitter totalled 70% of those surveyed for the 2015 report. However, Twitter ranks higher than Facebook in terms of use by marketers to engage with buyers. Salesforce’s survey showed that 79% of Twitter users engage customers on the platform, more than Facebook’s 74%.

More numbers about Twitter:

68% of marketers rate the platform ‘Very effective / effective’
22% say Twitter is ‘somewhat effective’
10% say Twitter is ‘Not very effective / not at all effective’

Twitter’s 284 million monthly active users also serve as a target-able audience for digital marketers in both B2C and B2B roles. Twitter offers campaigns that work in a number of capacities, depending on your objectives. Twitter ads (some still in beta) can:

  • Grow followers
  • Facilitate conversations
  • Encourage app downloads
  • Collect email addresses

Twitter ads also can feature in-stream video as well as clickable offers. Twitter cards allow marketers to attach media experience to Twitter ads. In the example below, Uberflip uses a Twitter card to gather email addresses for a free eBook download.

uberflip ad sample

LinkedIn

When LinkedIn (a TopRank Marketing client) announced in 2014 that it was going “all in on content marketing” it resonated with marketers. LinkedIn has developed platforms that allow for the promotion of sponsored content. LinkedIn has used content marketing itself to promote the network’s ability to connect B2B marketers and buyers. LinkedIn’s collection of eBooks and videos have helped marketers understand the possibility of reaching a B2B audience.

LinkedIn’s numbers from the 2015 Salesforce report:

62% of marketers are currently using LinkedIn
69% call LinkedIn ‘Very effective / effective’
21% of marketers say LinkedIn is ‘Somewhat effective’
10% of marketers say that LinkedIn is ‘Not very effective / not at all effective’

Through LinkedIn sponsored updates, marketers are reaching a B2B user-base that is highly in tune with the business of the day. Rarely are LinkedIn users on the network to be social. The focus is careers, networking and industry insight.

Adobe uses LinkedIn to raise awareness of digital marketing solutions through sponsored updates.

Adobe ad sample

Many more social channels

Every time a social media network pops up on the scene, there is no doubt savvy marketers will look for the best way to utilize that network. Social network advertising and engagement  to catch up with a buyer base in order to raise awareness and drive buyers toward their products or services. While the top three networks mentioned above are just the tip of the social network mountain, there are certainly others to keep an eye up with, from standards such as YouTube, Google+ and Instagram, to Snapchat and other messaging apps.

Have you found luck reaching your audience through social media? If so, tell us about your experience. If you would like more information about how TopRank Online Marketing can help you reach these audiences, reach out to us here.

Top image: Shutterstock.


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January 20th 2015 Facebook, Social Media

This Week’s Most Intriguing Digital Marketing Stats

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Here are this week's 10 most interesting numbers from the digital marketing space, including a surprising dollar figure from Snapchat, as well as a data point that's going to please the likes of CEOs Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) and Dick Costolo (Twitter).

1. Here's a number: $750,000. That's how much Snapchat is demanding from advertisers to reach the app's huge millennial audience for one day, Adweek sources said. Wow. That rate is higher than a masthead on YouTube, where a day apparently costs about $500,000.

2. Seventy percent of marketers plan to increase social media advertising this year, including mobile promos on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, according to a Salesforce study that surveyed 5,000 practitioners across major brand categories. If the prediction holds true, social advertising's naysayers—which were out in full force just a few years ago—must be dwindling.

3. College football's inaugural national playoff championship game landed an 18.5 overnight Nielsen rating, making it the most-watched cable program of all time. That number translates to more than 33 million households on ESPN. What does all of this have to do with digital marketing? Few brands engaged in actual real-time marketing during the game, despite the fact that it will likely be the fifth-rated television program of 2015, even ahead of the Grammys. So look for more brands to get in the mix next year to score social points like Butterfinger and Arby's did the other night, when Ohio State beat Oregon 42-20.

4. McDonald's created a lot of chatter on Sunday with its "Signs" TV spot, which ran during the NFL's playoff games and the Golden Globes. In a 24-hour period, a total of 6,000 tweets from 5,600 users mentioned McDonald's new campaign, according to Union Metrics. The tech vendor estimates that the tweets reached an audience of 9.7 million accounts, totaling 16.3 million impressions. Some of the buzz among Twitter users was positive, some negative. But with sales at the Golden Arches hurting, it was probably a welcome change of narrative internally for the brand.

5. A strategy exec for Medium, the latest brainchild of Twitter co-founder Ev Williams, told Adweek that the blogging platform drew 17 million unique visitors in December. Expect to hear more out of Medium in 2015 as the digital platform delves into video, while likely making the interactive ecosystem even more fragmented and competitive.

6. While there is little doubt that search is going mobile, Marin Software's data offers further proof for the few nonbelievers left. The digital vendor this week stated that as much as 49 percent of marketers' paid search budget is being manifested via tablet and smartphone.

7. From the same Marin research: Even though 63 percent of Facebook ad clicks occurred on mobile devices during 2014's fourth quarter, just 34 percent of the social media giant's conversions—either a sale, download or completed lead-generation form—came from portable devices. Facebook, though, would likely contend that the study didn't look at cross-device conversions and other factors. Even so, since Marin looked at $6 billion worth of cross-client purchase data, the 34 percent is an interesting number to ponder.

8. From Digiday: Socialbakers, an analytics vendor, said native Facebook videos accounted for 80 percent of consumer interactions when it came to the social platform's video posts, which leaves only 20 percent for YouTube, Vimeo and other video channels.

9. Universal Pictures' Fifty Shades of Grey doesn't go into theaters until Feb. 13, but advanced tickets went on sale Jan. 11. In just the first few days, per an Adweek source, the erotic thriller sold $1 million in online tickets. Fandango said it's the fastest-selling R-rated flick in the digital ticketing service's 15-year history.

10. Bob Newhart's timing during Monday's college football championship was impeccable, as usual. For much of the game, "Bob Newhart" trended nationally on Twitter thanks to lead referee, Greg Burks, who resembles the comic enough for viewers to have fun with the coincidence in their social streams. The 85-year-old Newhart may have had the night's most popular game tweet, inspiring 27,000 retweets and favorites






January 17th 2015 Facebook, Technology, Twitter

Buffalo Wild Wings Turns Your Tweets (Emojis Included) Into Fun NFL Sportscasts

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Buffalo Wild Wings is not a Super Bowl advertiser but has a clever plan to chime in on social chatter during the game.

Last week, the brand started asking its Twitter followers to tweet about the NFL playoff games with the hashtag #BWWPostGame for the chance to be featured in a series of social videos that are posted to YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. Agency Periscope is using social listening tools to pick up on football-related chatter during games that becomes fodder for a series called the Buffalo Wild Wings Post Game Reports.

"Going into the 2015 Super Bowl and the playoffs right now, we want to beef up our live, real-time engagement around these sporting events," said Bob Ruhland, vp of marketing at Buffalo Wild Wings. "It gives us the opportunity to create content—in this case, video—which showcases [social] content that [fans have] provided."

Buffalo Wild Wings will create three videos during the NFL postseason for the divisional conference championship and Super Bowl (you can watch the first one, released Monday, below). A total of 47 tweets are rattled off in two-and-a-half minutes.

As of Wednesday night, the video had been viewed 261,200 times across Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. On Facebook alone, the video had more than 260,000 views, showing how the social network is encroaching on YouTube's territory.

Buffalo Wild Wings is running paid ads on Facebook to get the video into news feeds, but the stats underscore Facebook's rise in becoming a video platform for brands. Also, with more brands ditching expensive in-game TV ads for social media campaigns around the game, the Facebook ads are likely chump change compared to the $4.5 million price tag of a 30-second spot.

"The great thing about digital and social media as it stands today is that it creates an opportunity for people where they can engage with their fan base without spending the kind of money that you had to spend in the past," Ruhland said.






January 16th 2015 Facebook, Technology, Twitter, YouTube

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg Will Hold Public Q&A In Colombia Next Week

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said today that his next public Q&A session will be held Jan. 14 in Bogota, Columbia. Zuckerberg, who will be in the South American capital next week working on the company’s Internet.org effort, made the announcement on his Facebook page: These Q&As are…



Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

January 10th 2015 Facebook

Pew Survey: Facebook U.S. User Growth Flat, But More Engaged Than Ever

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Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest are still adding people in significant numbers; Everyday use of Facebook is picking up pace.

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January 10th 2015 Facebook, Twitter