Once again going to be live blogging SMMOC this week…
Facebook Places And Other Check In Services
Being rolled out in other places but should be now live in the United States. Early pre-meeting discussion was if it was a replacement for FourSquare? Mel Aclaro asked yesterday what everyone thought about whether it’s better or should we stick with FourSquare.
Discussion is about how it’s a monetization strategy for Facebook. Way to get businesses to advertise on there. I agree.
Stacey Harmon suggested that a major issue with it is privacy and that you might not want everyone to know you are with someone. The default is to off so if you want to enable privacy make sure to check that out at Facebook Privacy.
Jeff Friend showed exactly where it’s at:
Once you get to Facebook Privacy
This tells you if everyone can see it or if Friends of Friends, Friends Only, or perhaps some other setting that you’ve created is enacted. My default was Friends Only. But it’s definitely worth checking out your settings if you’re worried about these things.
After the privacy conversation Rachel Rusnak pointed out the TechCrunch video mentioned that Foursquare and GoWalla might start pushing the places into Facebook Places.
Note that Check In Services have varying popularity. As many have posted you can’t ignore this. While some think checking in at some places like grocery stores are silly others see a lot of value in it. For example it’s possible that many of the granular places like the grocery store offer discounts. ( PS – Someone stated that FourSquare has a Sports Authority has a special of $10 for anything you buy, even if it’s just $10!)
UPDATED: It’s a fact! California Pizza Kitchen has a special as well, free appetizer with $20 purchase. There are plenty of other places offering a discount just for checking in as well, not that you have to be a mayor of the location. Of course most people are familiar with Starbuck’s usage of being the mayor of a store for $1 off a Frapp.
Everyone agrees there is a lot of opportunity here for both the networks and businesses to utilize these user bases to generate conversations about their brands….
Facebook has started to roll out their feature that allowed you to @Reply people to do it now automatically. If the service thinks you’re discussing an individual user or page then it will auto post to that page without you using the @ sign.
If you have a Facebook Business Page Hilda Ramirez gave everyone a free code to use to get $50 in free Facebook advertising. Use the code: CAHCCFREE50 at Facebook Advertising Facebook is also launching a new division to help businesses use Facebook to market at Facebook Marketing.
AOL was the Internet King. We discussed how they are shifting their strategy to become an online journalism source. They are building up Patch.com The point of bringing this up was a discussion that Rachel Rusnak and I had regarding if Facebook can survive 45 years. People get complacent and forget to keep innovating. What are you doing to innovate in your business?
Have Your Own Domain
My biggest pet peeve in real estate? Professional Realtors using @AOL.com as their email address. Why don’t you go register your name at GoDaddy.com (use the code CJCFAT749 for $2.50) and get yourself setup at Google Apps?
You can also go get yourself a Flavors.ME account and connect that up to your site. It’s simple to use, you can have it up and running in 30 minutes if you don’t want to have a WordPress site etc.
Engaging and Authenticty
We discussed real estate brokerage brands in Orange County and which ones are engaging and which ones aren’t. An example given of broadcasting and not working with customers was First Team Real Estate. Their account is doing nothing but broadcasting their advertising. Who cares about that? Social Media is not an advertising channel, instead it’s a communication channel, it’s a two way street. Other brands are doing effectively with that, obviously Amanda Wernick who runs the @7GRE brand account and Linsey Planeta who runs her own @MRealtyOC account.
Hilda Ramirez got an email this week from a company who charged $60 for canned Facebook status messages. Obviously this breaks any authenticity and will quickly kill your status messages. The problem is of course that many Realtors forget that what is worth doing is not easy. It’s about building relationships and that is not an automated process.
I love to describe your online presence as social currency. You have to consider that with everything you do online you either are investing or spending currency. If you’re pushing your own stuff you’re spending your currency. If you’re sharing great content, you’re gaining currency.
There are plenty of agents that are not monitoring what’s being said about them online. I recommend using Google Alerts but you should check in on review sites like Yelp. There are plenty of agents in a short proximity to the Costa Mesa area with terrible reviews and other have marked the review as “helpful.”
Also did you know that if you use Yelp regularly your comments are weighted heavier than those that just had one bad experience. Therefore it’s a good idea to build up your Yelp usage so that your voice has more of a say. Keep an eye out for the Red Stars those are more heavily weighted.
I mentioned that we have to be careful in Southern California because people in other places aren’t always familiar with these things.
Yelp has Monacle there are others. Mel pointed out that the US Postal Service has an Augmented Reality program to figure out if something will fit in a priority mail box. A watch maker has something that allows you to try things on with just using Augmented Reality, check it out!
WordPress has a Bookmarklet feature that is one of the most underutilized features of the blogging platforms. PressThis is a built in feature with the service that allows you to grab content with auto attribution and then comment on it. This became really popular with Posterous (pronounced PAH*ster*us according to the founders).
Is RSS Still Relevant?
Mel suggested that many people are dumping RSS to push Emailing Posts, he wanted to know if people were still using it on their sites. I think most people do whatever their theme does. Linsey brought up that most people are dumping things like Google Reader because they are overwhelmed.
I think that having the email sign up to receive the posts in their email are really important. You can now see who is subscribed and send out other items in the email suggesting they come check out other portions of the site. It offers a branding opportunity.