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Facebook’s Answer To YouTube Is A Social Video Platform Called ‘Watch’

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Facebook, the social network once heralded as a great disruptor of traditional television advertising, has just launched its very own TV product.

Called “Watch,” the social video platform will offer a slew of original content created in partnership with some familiar publishers from your News Feed, such as ATTN, BuzzFeed’s Tastemade and Condé Nast, among others.

Unlike traditional TV, and similar to Netflix, Watch debuts with a focus on personalization and discovery. A Watchlist, unique for each user, will feature prioritized shows you may like based on the shows you already follow. A Discover tab will surface new programming for you to browse.

In the announcement, the company strategically positions Watch in line with Facebook’s revamped mission statement, which revolves around building “meaningful communities.” This positioning is supported by product features that allow people to comment and react to videos as they watch, as well as view other people’s comments as part of the overall experience.

“We believe it’s possible to rethink a lot of experiences through the lens of building community—including watching video. Watching a show doesn’t have to be passive. You’ll be able to chat and connect with people during an episode, and join groups with people who like the same shows afterwards to build community,” Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post.

Facebook believes that the commentary around video is as core to the experience as the content itself, and so it’s categorizing content around things like total volume of conversations (“Most Talked About”), how people are reacting (“What’s Making People Laugh”) and what users’ immediate networks are watching (“What Friends Are Watching”). Moreover, each show will get its own Page where fans can form communities around their favorite programs.

Interestingly, earlier this week YouTube introduced its own social video update to the mobile app: a messaging feature that allows people to connect with friends to discuss video content.

So, what types of shows can we expect to see? According to Facebook: a little bit of everything, including scripted series, live events and reality-style programming. According to Business Insider, BuzzFeed, Tastemade, ATTN and Condé Nast are among the partners who will be producing content and receiving a share of mid-roll ad revenue. Creators and publishers will also be able to natively partner with brands, but the onus is on them to tag the sponsor.

Last year, Facebook reported that the average user spends 50 minutes per day with the platform—a substantial number but less than the 2.8 hours per day the average American spends watching TV and movie content, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. With Watch, Facebook is making a clear play for this attention and hopes that user behavior (and ad dollars) will follow suit.

Practitioners in the marketing world might see the debut of Watch as social media coming full circle. When Facebook once debuted as a viable channel for marketers, agencies and brands responded by building out their social and community practices to reach consumers in a new environment. Over time, Facebook’s slow and steady algorithm updates forced brands to revert to paid social media to reach audiences there.

Watch brings the advertising world back to traditional TV model, except instead of mass media buys with major networks, ads will be served programmatically, customized by viewer and able to be hyper-targeted based on the treasure trove of data Facebook holds for each of its 2 billion users. Crowdtap CEO Matt Britton predicted such a model during his SMWLA keynote, which discussed the possibilities of programmatic TV.

Facebook is rolling out the new platform over the next few weeks. It will be interesting to see if eyeballs follow the update, or if people will continue using Facebook as they do today. Ultimately, it’s the content will determine the user behavior (and ad revenue).

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

Social Media Week is a leading news platform and worldwide conference that curates and shares the best ideas, innovations and insights into how social media and technology are changing business, society and culture around the world.

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This Week On SMW Insider: Facebook, Brit + Co, Morton Salt and More

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Welcome to another edition of This Week on SMW Insider.

Highlighted on the platform this week we have Michelle Klein of Facebook on the future of video in advertising, an interview with Brit Morin, founder, and CEO of Brit + Co and more!

Check out this week’s clips below and sign up for a 7-day free trial to access over 200 hours of educational talks and interviews.

The Future of Video in Advertising with Michelle Klein, Marketing Director of North America at Facebook

In this talk Michelle Klein, Facebook’s Head of Marketing, North America, shares Facebook’s vision for the future of video, the role it will play in advertising and how language and communication will continue to evolve in this space.

Powering the Human Connection (Hosted by Hootsuite)

In this session, Hootsuite Industry Principal, Adrian Cockle talks through ways to transform your social marketing strategy simply by putting Humans first. He will discuss how brands can use social media to create human connections at scale, deliver on their brand promise, and drive business results.

The Power of Partnership: How a Salt Brand and a Rock Band Came Together to Make One of the Year’s Most Viral Music Videos (Hosted by Morton Salt)

At Social Media Week Los Angeles, Denise Lauer (Morton Salt), David Hernandez (Ogilvy & Mather), Adarsh Alphons (ProjectArt), and Damian Kulash (OK Go) discussed being comfortable loosening your grip on your brand, inspiring people to engage with it on their terms and how to take calculated risks and sell ideas into your organization.

Interview: Brit Morin (Founder and CEO, Brit + Co)

Brit Morin is the founder and CEO of Brit + Co, a digital media and commerce company that provides tools to teach, inspire and enable creativity among women and girls. Brit + Co connects a community of over 90M women (75% millennials) together every month to provide skills and inspiration for a more creative lifestyle.

In this interview, Morin talks about the importance of video in marketing and the biggest challenges with video content for marketers.

Artificial Intelligence for Real Social Traction (Hosted by IV.AI)

Explore how AI is changing everything through machine learning, data understanding, and bots. Learn how to grow your audience in a personal way and understand every interaction.

Access 200+ hours of educational talks and exclusive interviews on SMW Insider. Activate your free trial here!

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7 Facebook Messenger Marketing Strategies You Can Try Today

Entrepreneur

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There are now more than 1.3 billion people using Facebook Messenger every month.

Have you considered the possibility of using it for your marketing? We certainly have. And we have been experimenting with different ways to include Messenger as one of our go-to marketing tools, by sending out our latest blog posts through Messenger and engaging and helping our customers through the platform too.

Related: How to Create a Social Media Marketing Strategy From Scratch

Since we are in the midst of figuring things out, we thought it would be great to share what we have found so far.

Here’s everything we know about using Facebook Messenger for your marketing.

Why use Facebook Messenger

We often think of social media as just the major social media networks such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. But that thinking misses a big part — a bigger part, in fact — of social media. And that’s messaging apps.

According to BI Intelligence, more people are using the top four messaging apps (WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat and Viber) every month than the top four social media apps (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn). And it seems that the gap between the two lines is getting bigger.

Instead of being a one-to-many channel, social media is becoming a one-to-few — and often one-to-one — channel.

Facebook IQ conducted a study on the use of mobile messaging with 12,500 people across the world and found several promising trends among the people surveyed:

  • Sixty-three percent said that their messaging with businesses has increased over the past two years
  • Fifty-six percent would rather message than call a business for customer service
  • Sixty-one percent likes personalized messages from businesses
  • More than 50 percent are more likely to shop with a business they can message

Here are a few more interesting statistics about messaging:

If you are starting to think that messaging might be great for your business, read on to find out the seven ways of using Facebook Messenger for your marketing.

7 ways to use Facebook Messenger for your marketing

1. Deliver your content

The most common approach to deliver content to your readers is to use email. But HubSpot wanted to find out if using Facebook Messenger is a better alternative. So instead of just asking people to fill out a form and get the gated content via email, they offered the option to skip the form and get the content via Facebook Messenger. After four weeks of testing, they found a clear winner.

The Messenger strategy results in a 242 percent higher open rate and a 619 percent higher click rate.

If you want to explore this strategy, Matthew Barby from HubSpot wrote a great guide on building a Messenger chatbot using ChatFuel. With ChatFuel, you can create a chatbot to deliver your content (and more) without having to code. And it’s free regardless of how many messages you send.

Here’s an example of how a chatbot newsletter opt-in looks:

(We are testing a Facebook Messenger chatbot to deliver our latest blog posts. It’s not perfect yet but if you are interested, you can find it here.)

2. Help your followers find the most relevant content

Besides pushing content to your followers, you can also use Facebook Messenger to help your followers “pull” content to themselves.

There are many great examples of this use case on Facebook Messenger. Companies like Whole Foods MarketFood Network and TechCrunch have Messenger chatbots that can help their followers find articles that they want to read. For example, this is what it looks like when I try to find articles related to Elon Musk on TechCrunch, using their chatbot:

This turns things around for content marketing. You now have a non-intrusive way to deliver personalized content to your target audience. If you are considering this strategy, here are some best practices, according to Ana Gotter on the Social Media Examiner blog:

Creating a chatbot that allows your followers to search is a little more complicated than creating a chatbot that simply delivers content. But tools like ChatFuelManyChat and Botsify have guides and templates to help you. If this strategy excites you, I would encourage you to have a go at these tools and see what you can do with them.

3. Engage participants during event

Another way HubSpot uses Facebook Messenger is to send important information and reminders about events that people have signed up to. Similar to the example above, they found that the response rate on Facebook Messenger was significantly higher than that on email.

Here’s a recent experience I had with HubSpot:

  • I signed up for their Four Days of Facebook event through Facebook Messenger (which felt much nicer than filling up a form).
  • The day before the event, they sent me a reminder with links to add the schedule to my calendar app.
  • During the four days, they updated me about the day’s talk and sent me a link to watch the session online.
  • At the end of the four days, they followed up to ask if I enjoyed the event.

The entire experience felt smooth and appropriate for an event on Facebook. And it works well for events that are not on Facebook, too. For example, for their offline events, HubSpot made use of the Messenger code to allow attendees to receive real-time updates through Facebook Messenger.

With a tool like ManyChat, you can create subscriber lists and broadcast messages easily. Broadcasting messages is very similar to sending an email. Just type your message, add attachments and send.

 

4. Generate high-quality sales leads

Since Facebook Messenger is still a relatively new and novel marketing channel, it is a great way to get people’s attention and to generate high-quality sales leads. According to Dmitriy Kachin from Chatfuel, the response rate on Facebook Messenger is incredibly high at the moment.

Valassis, a marketing agency, built a Facebook Messenger chatbot for Feldman Automotive Group to help drive leads and sales for their local auto dealers. They ran click-to-Messenger ads with location targeting to reach their target audience on Facebook. When a person clicks on the ad to learn more, she will be brought into a Messenger conversation with a chatbot that would ask a series of questions. (She has the option to speak to a real sales rep, too.)

Related: 14 Ways to Increase Your Facebook Page Engagement

Within a few months, they reached more than 100,000 people and generated about 50 sales per month through the Facebook Messenger chatbot.

When HubSpot tried a similar approach to generate leads through Facebook Messenger, they “saw a staggering 477 percent reduction in our cost per lead, while lead quality only slightly decreased.” Their advice?

“It might take a little muscle to build a Facebook Messenger bot to collect lead information, but the effort is well worth it. Use Facebook ads plus Messenger as a powerful one-two punch.”

5. Re-engage potential customers

One thing you might be wondering is this: how do I get people to talk to me on Facebook Messenger in the first place? Facebook ads.

There are two types of Facebook Messenger ads you could use. The first type, click-to-Messenger ads, which I mentioned briefly above, allows you to direct people from the Facebook News Feed to a Messenger conversation with you. The second type, sponsored messages, allows you to initiate a Messenger conversation with anyone who has messaged your Facebook Page before.

A great way to use these Facebook Messenger ads is to re-engage potential customers, such as people who have visited your pricing page but didn’t purchase your product or people who have asked you questions via Facebook Messenger before. For example, you can use the click-to-Messenger ads offer them a channel to ask any questions they have or you can use sponsored messages to send relevant content and offers to them.

Molly Pittman from Digital Marketer described these two approaches in great detail in her blog post. Using sponsored messages, she was able to get a read rate of 67 to 90 percent. Compared to an open rate of about 20 percent for emails, these results are incredible!

For a detailed walkthrough on how to create these ads using the Facebook Ads Manager, check out Jon Loomer’s guide on Facebook Messenger ads.

6. Reach your target audience one-to-one

The Facebook News Feed is saturated with ads. Imagine being able to reach your target audience without all the noise. One-to-one.

With Messenger ads, you can do just that. People will see your ad in the home tab of their Messenger mobile app. When they tap on the ad, they will be brought to your preferred destination — your website or a Messenger conversation.

Here’s a short video of how a Messenger ad looks like and works:

But here’s something to consider: the reaction to such ads is mixed. While marketers are likely rejoicing at this opportunity, some people are finding such ads unpleasant. (What’s your take?) It might take some time for people to get used to having such ads in the Messenger app.

To have your Facebook ads displayed in the Messenger app, select Messenger Home for the placement of your ad.

 

7. Provide speedy customer support

The last strategy (of this list) for using Facebook Messenger is something you might be already doing. That’s providing timely customer support through Facebook Messenger. As Jay Baer, President of Convince & Convert, suggests, social media customer service is the new marketing.

It’s clear that people prefer to contact brands through messaging than through other channels.

And they want a response from brands — a quick one.

As mentioned earlier, Facebook found that 56 percent of their study’s respondents would rather message than call a business for customer service. In a survey of more than 1,000 people, Sprout Social found that most consumers expect a response on social media within four hours (while brands take an average of 10 hours to reply). They also found that 30 percent of the people would go to a competitor if a brand doesn’t respond.

It’s very easy to get started with this strategy.

First, you want to allow people to message you on Facebook Messenger. You can enable this in your Facebook Page settings. Under the “General” tab, look for “Messages” and click “Edit.” Then, check the box and click “Save Changes.”

Now, visitors to your Page will see a “Message” button on your Page, which they can use to initiate a conversation with you on Facebook Messenger.

Related: How to Engage With Your Social Media Followers Quickly and Authentically

When you receive messages, hop over to your inbox by clicking on “Inbox” at the top of your Facebook Page. Your inbox will look something like this:

At Buffer, we use our social engagement tool, Buffer Reply, to reply to all conversations on Messenger — and Facebook, Instagram and Twitter — from a single inbox. If you manage multiple social media profiles, we would love for you to check it out.

How would you use Facebook Messenger?

As more and more people adopt messaging, the potential for you to market and grow your business through Facebook Messenger becomes even bigger. And Facebook is working hard to make Facebook Messenger a great channel for businesses. For example, Facebook created a new Messages objective for Facebook ads, which allows you to reach people who will most likely reply your business on Facebook Messenger.

I believe it’ll be great to follow this trend and not to be left behind. Here are the seven ways you can get started with Facebook Messenger marketing:

  1. Deliver your amazing content
  2. Help your followers find the most relevant content
  3. Engage participants during event
  4. Generate high-quality sales leads
  5. Re-engage your potential customers
  6. Reach your target audience one-to-one
  7. Provide speedy customer support

This story originally appeared on Buffer

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10 Things You Should Know About tbh, the App for Teens That Facebook Just Acquired

Entrepreneur

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Facebook yesterday announced it had acquired tbh, one of today’s most popular apps among teens. But just what is it?

Tbh is an anonymous compliment app geared towards tweens and teens. Unlike the now-deceased Yik Yak and Sarahah, which often incite negative gossip, tbh only allows its users to share positive things.

Related: Is Your Organization Playing the ‘Gossip Game?’

But the real question is: Why would Facebook even want to acquire tbh? Well, shortly after its launch in August, the app skyrocketed in popularity, quickly becoming the number one free app in Apple’s App Store. It gained 2.5 million subscribers and was only available in a few states. While Facebook has been losing its appeal to this younger audience, the company’s new acquisition might be to help tap back into this demographic. And like it did with Instagram and Whatsapp, the social media giant can use its power to help grow tbh, expanding it to every state and even outside the country.

Here’s everything you need to know about tbh.

1. It’s a compliment app.

Tbh is an anonymous comment app. After signing up, selecting their school, gender and grade, users are presented with nice, fun polls with questions such as who is “going to win an Academy Award,” who will be the “next international fashion icon” and other yearbook superlative-like nominations. Users are presented with four options of friends to choose from for that specific question. If they don’t think any of those friend options fit the bill, they can hit “shuffle” or “skip.” Users can also make up their own polls as long as they are positive.

2. “Tbh” is an acronym.

The name is short for “to be honest.”

3. It’s all about positivity.

Anonymous comment apps such as Yik Yak and Sarahah usually wind up with loads of negative and derogatory comments and gossip on them. However, tbh’s goal is the opposite. In fact, the app only allows positive comments and polls. In a statement to TechCrunch, one of the app’s co-creators Nikita Bier explained: “We think the next milestone is thinking about social platforms in terms of love and positivity. We think that’s what’s been missing from social products since the inception of the internet.”

Related: How BuzzFeed Discovered the Secret to Success on Social Media

4. It’s totally anonymous.

The app is totally anonymous except for a person’s gender. So when a user is chosen for a poll, they receive a notification but only the gender of the people who voted for them is revealed. A person also has the option of “prefer not to say” when inputting their gender upon sign up.

5. It’s designed for tweens and teens.

The app is geared towards kids and teenagers age 13 and older, particularly those in school. With Snapchat and Instagram Stories, Facebook has been losing steam among its younger audience. With tbh’s appeal to teens, Facebook might be able to re-attract this younger generation.

6. It’s only available in nine states right now.

Tbh initially launched at a school in Georgia and by the first day of its launch, 40 percent of the student body had downloaded it. So far, it’s available in nine states including Florida, Washington, Rhode Island, Texas, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Massachusetts and California. With the help of Facebook, not only will the app be able to quickly expand to every state in the U.S. but also internationally in different languages.

7. It’s one of the most popular free apps.

Having only debuted in August, the app quickly became one of the most popular app among teens in Apple’s App Store this September.

8. It gained 2.5 million subscribers in a matter of months.

Right now, it’s the number one free download in the Apple app store, and has a whopping 2.5 million subscribers.

9. Tbh will stay tbh.

Even though Facebook acquired the popular app for an undisclosed amount, not much will change. Its four co-creators, Nikita Bier, Erik Hazzard, Kyle Zaragoza and Nicolas Ducdodon, will move to Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters and according to Fortune, Facebook plans to keep tbh running as a standalone service as well as keep its name and logo.

Related: The Secret to an Engaged Workforce and a Gossip-Free Office

10. Tbh and Facebook have similar values.

While the services themselves are very different, tbh and Facebook actually have one important thing in common: their values. In an announcement post, tbh wrote, “When we met with Facebook, we realized that we shared many of the same core values about connecting people through positive interactions. Most of all, we were compelled by the ways they could help us realize our vision and bring it to more people.”

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