In case you missed the news (and even if you don't care), Facebook has finally added something in the nature of a Dis-Like button. Or maybe it really will be what Mark Zuckerberg says it is: a way to express empathy. The new button will give Facebook users a way to react to something like an illness or injury that's a little more nuanced than the current simple thumbs-up. We'll soon see how it works with the world's Facebook users. "Not everyone is happy about having the option to dislike," writes Jessica Cherok on Digital Pivot. "Many feel it will be a tool for spreading hate and bullying others. Still, most people seem to like the idea that a dislike button can be used to show support, but in a more appropriate way than liking a sad or tragic post."
To test the user experience of the Twitter Buy button (a new call-to-action element available to businesses on Twitter), Lisa Braziel purchased a wireless speaker (in teal) on Twitter. Writing on Ignite Social Media, she details the steps of the transaction, with screen shots:
She found it easy and convenient enough. It will be interesting to see how successful this new sales channel is for businesses who try it. Can it help your franchise better engage with consumers?
Periscope, today's hot video broadcast network, allows users to record a live "broadcast" other Periscope users can view. Your connections on the network are notified automatically that you're broadcasting, and broadcasters and viewers can interact through a live chat feature built into the app. Common uses include live-streaming events like concerts or product announcements. It can also be used for live vlogging (video blogging). Viewers can send "hearts" to broadcasters so they know they're doing something people like. It's still the early days for Periscope, but it's free - and very popular. Could your brand be using it creatively to reach your target customers? Megan Totka, chief editor for ChamberofCommerce.com, thinks so, writing: "As mobile video consumption continues to rise, consumers will come to expect video outreach from the companies they want to frequent. Periscope is a very simple way to get involved in that realm of promotion and be ahead of your competitors."
Target has created an app for the new Apple Watch that lets you create a shopping list just as you would from the iOS app on your phone. When you visit Target, the Watch app guides you around the store, telling you where you can find the items you've chosen. Starbuck's Watch app lets users find a store, pay, and manage their rewards right from their wrist. Other companies are exploring the platform, and it's getting a lot of interest from app developers. At a minimum, the success of the Apple Watch makes Apple Pay a much more powerful and common platform for digital transactions. Jessica Ernst, writing on Aericon.com, says, "Using the wearable technology trend to the advantage of your brand, especially during the early stages of a technology trend that seems to be catching on, will allow you to gain a competitive advantage by positioning yourself at the cutting edge of technology."
Podcast: "a program (as of music or talk) made available in digital format for automatic download over the Internet" (Merriam-Webster Tenth International Collegiate dictionary). Podcasts got started way back in the olden days of the early 2000s, and have gone from being uber-geeky to near-mainstream in the past couple of years. In February 2014, 39 million people in the U.S. tuned into podcasts, and the number of podcast listeners is projected to grow significantly this year. Here's a beginner's guide to podcasts. One aspect the article does not touch on, which should be of interest to marketers, is the opportunity for brand advertising on podcasts. A popular podcast could be an attractive, still relatively inexpensive place for your brand to communicate with potential customers in desirable demographics. "Mixed solidly with a strong social media strategy and integrated well within all marketing efforts, podcasts can provide the perfect way to drive traffic to your website, while also increasing conversions and time on page for visitors tuning in on your site," writes James Prideaux in his blog on My Social Agency.
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