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How does B2B social media differ from B2C & strategies for building a great digital business

1

“It’s a no-brainer strategy” to use Black Friday and Cyber Monday content to also sell subscriptions, said Chris Erwin, founder of commerce consulting firm Rockwater. That’s because it’s about monetizing the audience in every possible way. If a publisher is seeing a surge in traffic come to its commerce or content channels, then it makes sense to spread that audience to other areas of the businesses as well and engage and monetize them through subscriptions or use that surge to sell advertising, he said.  

Digiday: How Wired leveraged Cyber Week readers to increase subscription revenue

2

“Facebook’s discriminatory recruitment and hiring practice is routine, ongoing, and widespread,” the complaint reads. “It discriminates against U.S. workers because of their immigration or citizenship status, and it harms them by limiting their ability to apply, to be considered, and to be hired.”

In simple terms, prosecutors believe Facebook was hiding job listings reserved for visa-bound workers that the company had already contacted and knew it wanted to hire. But in its rush to clear the lane for its preferred applicant, the company allegedly violated important labor rules.

The Verge: The Justice Department is suing Facebook for side-stepping visa rules

3

Facebook reported last year that around half of auto consumers say that recommendations from friends and family are influential when deciding which new brand to buy, and 77% indicated that posts on social media had made them consider buying or leasing a new model.

That’s a significant consideration, and now, Facebook’s providing more tools to help car dealers connect with potential buyers on its platforms.

Facebook has added three new elements to its automotive promotion tools.

Social Media Today: Facebook adds new tools for automotive advertisers

4

We have a simple, five-part approach to building new businesses: breakout, blueprint, build, boost, branch. How do you rapidly identify the idea that would drive a lot of value? How do you flesh it out in a blueprint so you can assemble the plan and the team? How do you quickly work cross-functionally to build the actual business—not just the product but the commercial and operational elements? The last two parts are taking the kernel of a business and boosting and scaling it quickly and then thinking through how to potentially spin it off.

McKinsey: Building a great digital business

5

Hybrid Theory uses Facebook to create brand awareness by informing its audience about current industry topics like statistics that enable the followers to always relate the interesting information to the company. LinkedIn is used to communicate the company’s expertise, with the objective to get in touch with potential customers by showing off concrete solutions for their needs. 

The content and objectives on social media should be designed according to whether the company is a B2B or B2C company. However, content should be adapted for the different platforms and their different audiences. 

The Drum: How does B2B social media differ from B2C?

6

The next evolutionary stage of technology depends on completing the transformation that will make silicon architecture as flexible, efficient and ultimately programmable as the software we know today. If we cannot take major steps to provide easy access to ML we’ll lose unmeasurable innovation by having only a few companies in control of all the technology that matters. So what needs to change, how fast is it changing and what will that mean for the future of technology?

TechCrunch: AI’s next act: Genius chips, programmable silicon and the future of computing

7

Whether advertising can make a difference to a company’s survival depends on how brands approach their marketing communications. As Debenhams has proved, high profile above-the-line brand building does not guarantee commercial success. But if a brand takes a bottom up approach, starting from the customer perspective – listening, learning, adapting and then optimising appropriately – the advertising outcomes will be more valuable, as the marketing communications can inform decision-making.

By reading the signals customers are giving them, rather than relying on the subjective opinions of boardroom members and partner agencies, marketers will avoid bias and focus on what shoppers want from the retailer.

Campaign: Could a marketing rethink reduce the chance of another Debenhams?

8

In the plan, the Commission says the forthcoming political ads transparency proposal will “target the sponsors of paid content and production/distribution channels, including online platforms, advertisers and political consultancies, clarifying their respective responsibilities and providing legal certainty”.

“The initiative will determine which actors and what type of sponsored content fall within the scope of enhanced transparency requirements. It will support accountability and enable monitoring and enforcement of relevant rules, audits and access to non-personal data, and facilitate due diligence,” it adds.

TechCrunch: Europe to put forward rules for political ads transparency and beef up its disinformation code next year

9

While they embrace their individuality, Gen Zers believe that they are better together, leaning into communities on social media to connect with others. Communities can be formed around an array of things such as neighborhoods, hobbies and support groups, providing a place of acceptance and belonging. According to a study commissioned by Facebook IQ, 30% of Gen Zers believe that a commitment to community can help brands communicate more effectively on Instagram and spark meaningful connections.

Advertising Age: The rise of Gen Z

10

He says that the huge growth in digital advertising has helped deliver scale, but not necessarily the right kind. There’s too much focus on identifying someone without thinking about how we connect with them more meaningfully based on the context. Affleck says an “obsession” with targeting, precision and accuracy has replaced established marketing theory and norms.

“Because we can identify someone, we have forgotten about the context in which we are talking to them, the mood they are in, and their mindset. Are they sitting forward, are they entertained? We’ve almost just forgotten all of that and are just hitting people with endless comms.”

“It is utter, utter nonsense,” he says. And so, plugging the strategic context into these hugely expensive media buys is the group’s selling point. At a time when budgets are tighter, clients must get more bang for their buck.

The Drum: The pandemic could awaken marketers from ‘dumb period’, says Havas Media’s Patrick Affleck

Ready for Facebook’s biggest update in 5 years?

The New Facebook, or FB5, announced last year was a milestone in Facebook’s push towards improving privacy.

Facebook has gone through many changes over the years and has increasingly become a Group centric platform.

Zuckerberg in Time Magazine:

“In addition to the digital town square, we also need a digital equivalent of the living room that is just as built out as a platform.”

Unsurprisingly, then the new update has a much bigger focus on Groups and Events. 

The new navigation bar also points towards what Facebook thinks is important for its users. Engadget says:

“The slither at the top of the page is a little taller than before and has five centrally-aligned icons, which represent Home, Watch, Marketplace, Groups and Gaming. The search bar, which used to dominate the top navigation, has been condensed and shuffled to the left with the new-but-still-blue Facebook icon.”

Their biggest update in 5 years. But have they improved privacy?

FastCompany’s thoughts:

“. . . any version of the service that introduces no fundamental change to its privacy model feels unfinished. But as the company [Facebook] points out, an awful lot of groups are private or even secret. So its newfound effort to encourage people to interact more in groups rather than sharing with their own friends and family is, by itself, a subtle shift toward a less predominantly public Facebook.”

Facebook is still a pay-to-play platform.

Even if they have been focusing more on groups for a while now.

And you’re unlikely to get any organic engagement unless you invest in community management.

This change isn’t going to be a revolution for many marketers or publishers. But the fact that they’re embracing groups as a central feature of the platform is certainly a meaningful development.

Kelly Ehlers wrote in AdAge that brands need to take advantage of this shift in focus:

“I see this shift in gears as an opportunity for businesses to increase brand awareness and engagement. Personally, my company is using COVID-19 strategies of relationship building, meaningful creation and virtual experiences to harness the update’s huge potential.”

The results are out for Facebook

The purpose: “the audit doesn’t situate Facebook’s decisions in the context of it competitors, instead evaluating the company’s behavior on its own. The approach is useful, because social media companies often get a pass for behavior that’s standard in the industry, an approach that lowers standards across the board rather than looking at real world impacts.”

The verdict: “This report outlines a number of positive and consequential steps that the company has taken, but at this point in history, the Auditors are concerned that those gains could be obscured by the vexing and heartbreaking decisions Facebook has made that represent significant setbacks for civil rights,”

SoMeToday highlighted these key criticisms raised in the report against Facebook.

  • Allowing harm and divisive rhetoric.
  • Failure to address voter suppression tactics.
  • Lack of representation in leadership.
  • The need to create a more diverse and more inclusive culture. 

Another article in the CampaignUK quoted Sandberg saying “There are no quick fixes to these issues – nor should there be… What has become increasingly clear is that we have a long way to go. As hard as it has been to have our shortcomings exposed by experts, it has undoubtedly been a really important process for our company. We would urge companies in our industry and beyond to do the same.”

and “While we won’t make every change they call for, we will put more of their proposals into practice.” 

One thing’s clear. As a business, Facebook lacks accountability and unless they start taking their role in both safeguarding free speech and curbing the spread of false information and extremism seriously, as users and advertisers, we’re left with audits like these to remind us of our role in this mess.

Here’s the full 89-page report.

The long list of grievances against Facebook

Over 900 advertisers have paused buying ads from Facebook at least until the end of July. While this boycott is related to Facebook’s failure at curbing hate speech, advertisers have many other grievances with the platform.

Digiday wrote that; 

“Funding hate speech is on a list of bugbears advertisers have with Facebook, which also includes their inability to properly validate campaign data as well as concerns over the efficacy of video ads in its news feed.”

For advertisers banding together to make Facebook accountable would have been illegal, but #StopHateForProfit gave them the platform they needed to poke Facebook.

Perhaps it’s the pressure from the boycott but Facebook committed to a brand safety audit last week.

In a separate article Digiday reported that the purpose of this audit is to;

“assess its ability to apply brand safety controls within other partner publishers’ content that includes advertising slots and appears in-stream, in Instant Articles or on the Facebook Audience Network. Facebook said it also expects the audit to cover its partner monetization policies and content monetization policies — the rules publishers and creators must abide if they want to make money from their Facebook content through ad revenue — and how it enforces them.”

This isn’t the only MRC audit facebook is committed to and as WSJ reported they’ve been running into trouble with how the measure video ad metrics.

What do consumers think of this boycott? An impromptu survey from MarTech discovered that the majority of consumers in the US were either unaware or undecided. The highest awareness and approval was among Gen Z.

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Facebook invests in Asia’s largest Super App outside China

Facebook may have missed the boat on building its own Super App but its recent investment in Gojek gives it the front row seat to the growing mobile-first digital economy in South-East Asia.

FT reported that Facebook has recently invested in Gojek’s mobile payment service called GoPay. This is their second big investment in Asia having invested $5,7 billion in Reliance Jio only a few weeks ago.

In case you haven’t heard, Gojek is an Indonesian super app that offers ride-hailing in over 200 cities and mobile payment processing in more than 370 cities across Indonesia, They also offer logistics services and operate in Vietnam and Thailand as well.

Besides Facebook, Google, PayPal have all invested in Gojek to get closer to the millions of people in Indonesia’s growing digital economy.

Announcing the investment Facebook wrote:

“This investment will support Facebook and Gojek’s shared goal of empowering businesses and driving financial inclusion across the archipelago. WhatsApp helps small businesses communicate with customers and make sales, and together with Gojek, we believe we can bring millions of people into Indonesia’s growing digital economy.”