It looks like Spring is finally here – hopefully everyone has seen some sunshine this week. We’ve started planning and working on our new look website. There is a lot to do but we’ll be working with some amazing people and look forward to sharing the learning. We still found time for some reading and this is our pick of social media articles this week:
3 Common Mistakes to Avoid with Your Social Media Marketing – jeffbullas.com
Some great advice about what to avoid and how social media is not a quick fix but if you have the right focus and strategy it can be a powerful additional to your marketing toolkit. Continue reading →
British Summer Time starts this weekend which means longer days and hopefully the opportunity to get out and enjoy some early Spring weather over the Easter weekend. It would be lovely to think we may even see some sunshine after all the snow and freezing temperatures. Although on the plus side the unseasonally cold weather did give us a chance to catch up on our reading and this week’s selection of social media articles:
Your Facebook Posts May Be Harmful to Your Child’s Future - socialmediatoday.com
A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to go to a talk by Anthony Mayfield on being aware of our personal presence on the web and creating our Web Shadow. Thought provoking article on how parents are creating an online presence for their children whether they want it or not. Continue reading →
The recent snow and icy temperatures have meant that areas of the UK have been without electricity and phone lines – especially in the news at the moment is the Isle of Arran off the west coast of Scotland. The arctic weather conditions have left islanders without electricity and in some cases without water,creating an anxious time for anyone waiting for news.
Probably like most people I’ve been watching the news and feeling grateful to be warm and indoors. If you are someone with friends and family caught in the blizzards it must have been a worrying time. So it’s been good to see social media, especially Twitter, making it easy to quickly share information and reassure family.
As well as helping keep other people’s friends and family updated on any news via Twitter
The dedication of the Mountain Rescue teams over the weekend has been amazing as they time and time again help and assist those in trouble. Anyone venturing onto the mountains or moorlands should always read their advice before setting off.
Hope everyone has had a good week - its been a busy week here talking to companies about some exciting projects. Here’s our take from the social media articles we’ve read this week:
The Ultimate List of Google + Tips – bloggingwithamy.com
Still thinking about Google+? Well Amy Andrews has written a great article including why you should be spending time on Google+ and there are plenty of helpful tips as well. Continue reading →
If you’re a fan of Facebook then you’ll have heard about the new look Facebook News Feed which will start rolling out soon. We’ve made sure to include a great article from Social Media Today on all the new Facebook changes, and what they will mean for businesses in this weeks Social Media Roundup.
So here’s our selection for this week’s Social Media Roundup:
Your social media reputation can attract employees- businesstime.com
A different twist on a business’s social media reputation and how it can help attract and keep the best employees
How Starbucks uses Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Google+ -econsultancy.com
Interesting to see how Starbucks uses social media to create engagement and brand awareness and surprisingly it seems to be the mix of type of posts that is important.
How Facebook’s News Feed Changes Affect Businesses and Marketers - socialmediatoday.com
Very helpful article from Cara Tarbaj for Social Media Today which outlines all the changes coming soon to Facebook News Feed – the main differences focus on the way stories and images will appear and the greater control people will have over the look of their News Feed.
If you want to join the waiting list for the new Facebook News Feed then sign up here https://www.facebook.com/about/newsfeed
Keeping up to date with the latest social media news and events can be tricky. There are plenty of excellent blogs and helpful articles out there but sometimes there isn’t the time to sit down and read them all.
Every week we will be picking articles that have caught our attention for the weekly Social Media Roundup
So, here is this weeks’ selection:
Pinterest changes its look - Econsultancy.com
Pinterest continues to grow and is an amazing place to store and share your brand’s image and products with the added benefit of driving traffic to your website. The new changes should make Pinterest stronger visually and even more appealing for businesses.
9 Must Have Apps for your Facebook Page –The SocialSkinny.com
There are some great ideas here for apps to use on your Facebook page. Apps are a great way to increase visibility and to integrate Facebook with all your other marketing activities.
Vine is a new mobile app that lets you record short videos and then share them on Twitter. It’s a nifty way to showcase new products or to share the fun side of your business. Have you tried Vine yet?
If you’re not using Twitter lists then you could be missing out on a useful tool to help you get the most value from your social media time.
Twitter lists make it easy to… Continue reading →
by Michael Aspinall, Barrister specialising in Criminal Law
How easy is it to stay within the law on social media? You can’t read a newspaper or turn on the television today without being confronted by a story of somebody who has become embroiled in legal proceedings because they have misused the social media; someone who has posted a message inciting others to commit crime or providing their less than expert opinion on somebody – often someone they have never met – expressed in the most vile and insulting language possible.
The increased popularity and use of social media is reflected in the growth of the numbers of such stories. The English language has even developed a new term for the latter type of behaviour: ‘trolling’. (usu. as noun trolling) informal send (an email or newsgroup posting) with the intention of provoking an angry response Concise Oxford English Dictionary © 2008 Oxford University Press.
Some deliberately use the new media to cause outrage or to harass. Many others have ended up in court because they acted without thinking of the consequences of their foolish acts.
Many say that the law – as usual – has failed to keep pace with the development and the uses of technology and the new ways people communicate with each other; it doesn’t understand the new society of its users who are rapidly creating new norms of behaviour. In short, the law does not appreciate how people interact with each other these days.
This misses the point: the purpose of the law is to protect the vulnerable. It does this by regulating people’s behaviour. The law is concerned with behaviour irrespective of the medium through which it is performed.
We are responsible for our behaviour
If I shout abuse at someone in the street, I would be rightly charged with a criminal offence against public order. If I write an article unjustifiably calling someone a liar or a pervert, he or she could successfully sue me under the civil law for defamation.
Should the method of the communication of my words affect the sanction it should attract? If I shout abuse in the street, my words are out of my mouth and then disappear into the ether. Of course they may immediately offend or distress the one or two people in the street who hear them but they do not persist. On the web, they can last for an eternity and they can be read by the entire world.
We have many existing laws designed to regulate behaviour. They can and are used to regulate the behaviour of those who act online. That is reflected in the number of stories of court cases we see. If we look at the law in that way, we realise it is unacceptable behaviour that is at fault. Most definitely, the medium is not the message.
Most of us understand the limits of our behaviour and we don’t go round acting in such a manner, whatever the temptation. We would never think of shouting abuse in the street or phone someone just to speak some bilious phrases to someone who has annoyed us. However, the very ease of broadcasting our current feelings via a computer makes us all open to scrutiny in a court of law.
The difficulty with using social media is that people’s instantaneous words are potentially broadcast to all. Secondly, they are captured and stored. They do not fly off into the air. The can be retrieved and analysed in ways they were never intended to be. We all have looked at our old school essay books and shuddered when we look at what we wrote in our spotty angst-ridden teenage years. Imagine the world at large being able to look at what you wrote when drunk or angry or feeling down.
Sitting alone after dark with just a computer to talk through robs us of those social cues we receive when talking to other human beings. We know when we have upset someone by his or her reactions, their tone of voice or the look on their face. If we have half decent social skills, we modify our behaviour so we don’t continue to hurt them.
Of course, social media can be a force for good. The oppressed and weak send messages to the world detailing the actions of the tyrants. It is the very universality and enduring nature of what they are able to write that is so powerful. But the flipside of this power given to individuals by social media is that those who defame, incite crime or abuse others also have their words broadcast and set in stone and can be called to account for what they have done.
I was always taught that if I wrote a letter in anger, don’t post it. Sleep on it and look at it again in the cold light of dawn. If you feel the same, walk to the post box and send it. If you don’t, revise it or don’t send it. That is because paper is real. We can hold and touch it. If we can, so can the recipient and he or she will have a permanent record of our felling of anger at the time of writing.
With computers, the sending of the expression of anger can be done by the press of a button. Once they are sent, they are recorded and we all know you can’t unring a bell.
So what are the laws that can be used to police the new media? They include the Malicious Communications Act was passed as long ago as 1988. It makes it an offence to send to another person a letter, article or electronic communication, which is indecent or grossly offensive, threatening or contains falsehoods, which the sender knows or believes to be false.
The Communications Act of 2003 catches those who use a public electronic communications network a message or other matter which is grossly offensive, or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character. As soon as the offending message is sent, a crime has been committed. Yes, using Twitter is using a ‘public electronic communications network’.
Inviting a few friends round to participate in a riot can put you in breach of the Serious Crime Act of 2007, which makes it an offence to encourage or assist someone to commit an offence.
Aside from the criminal law, if you say something that is false and discredits someone else, he or she could sue you for defamation. It could be a very, very expensive few minutes at the keyboard.
Tips for staying within the law on social media
So here are my top tips to stay out of trouble and out of court:
- The computer is not a shield –it is a sword. It cannot not hide you: You can and will be found.
- Never tweet in anger –always reflect on what you are writing;
- Never write anything that you cannot justify;
- What is extremely funny when you are drunk is often very far from that in the cold light of day;
- Always think twice before you press the send button!
Sometimes it’s difficult to keep up with everything – projects, clients, unscheduled meetings, and still have time for weekends. Suddenly your social media is out of control and you find that all the careful planning you had done has gone out of the window.
Recently I caught up with a couple of close friends, both serious runners, and while listening to their training schedules I started thinking about how the same approach can be used for a social media workout
Social media workout
Have a goal.
When you have a target in your sight it’s incredible how much more focused and determined you will be. So set yourself a goal and a date when you’ll achieve it by E.g. Increase web traffic by x% by end of September. Continue reading →
There’s a new kid on the block that’s making impact and demanding to be taken seriously as the new tool in the social media marketing arsenal – Pinterest.
It’s a social pin board that allows users to collect their favourite images from the web and ‘pin’ them to their boards, which makes it a bit like looking at a virtual magazine. Users can have lots of different boards (or folders) that represent the things that interest them i.e. food/recipes, favourite gadgets, fashion etc. Other users can see the ‘pins’ and if they click on the images it will take them directly to the originating website. They can also repin things that appeal to them onto their own boards.
It’s gaining the kind of momentum that makes Usain Bolt look like he’s out for a stroll on the track! Unique visitors to the site increased by a whopping 429% between Oct – Dec 2011 and while the current figure of 10.4 million users doesn’t sound that impressive when it’s stacked up against LinkedIn’s 150 million or Twitter’s 200 million plus active users, the big difference is in the amount of time those users are staying on the site.
The average Pinterest user is currently spending 1 hour 17 minutes per month on the site. Compare that with the other most recent social networking site Google+ where users are only spending 6 minutes a month and it’s easy to see why you need to consider whether you should be including Pinterest in your marketing mix – if it fits with your strategy.
We will be monitoring Pinterest and its growth and potential for effective marketing and we’ll be posting our findings so check back to find out what we discover.
Hope everyone has had a good post Spring Bank Holiday week. The work on our new website is continuing and happy to say that this week we’re almost ready to sign off the new look design which means it must be time to be busy with words and copy. Here is our pick of this week’s [...]