Storyteller App Turns Facebook Posts Into Sponsored Stories
Social brand marketing service Wildfire has launched a Facebook App focused on creating better content for Facebook’s Sponsored Stories.
Facebook launched Sponsored Stories in January and pitched it as a more social and engaging ad format. Brands can turn user activity such as checkins, wall posts and likes into a small advertisement that appears to the right of the Newsfeed. If your friend checks into a Starbucks via Facebook, his or her checkin could make an appearance as a sponsored post the next time you open up your Facebook account.
We’ve heard good things about Sponsored Stories, but it does come with issues. The biggest one is that advertisers don’t control the content that appears in an advertisement. The problem is that most Sponsored Stories are boring. Seeing someone “like” the Starbucks Facebook Page is far less engaging than a Facebook status update talking about how much he or she loves the Starbucks Chai Tea Latte.
We suspect that’s why Facebook asked Wildfire to develop an app to make Sponsored Stories more engaging. The result is is the Wildfire Storyteller App, a Facebook application focused on turning user feedback and opinions into not just Newsfeed stories, but Sponsored Stories as well. [Read full story on Mashable]
Today, 10 percent of venture capital dollars comes from corporations, nearing the previous bubble-era high of 15 percent in 2000. Facebook, Zynga and Amazon.com are investing in social media start-ups. AOL Ventures restarted last year after three previous efforts, and Intel Capital expects to invest more this year than the $327 million it invested last year.
Facebook Is Getting Into the News Business
Facebook has a war on its hands, and Mark Zuckerberg knows it. Practically overnight,Google+ has gone from a rumor to a thriving community with over 10 million members. With some 700 million members of its own, Facebook is thinking less and less about how to grow that number and more about how to get current users to live more of their lives within its virtual walls. One answer it has come up with: asking a select number of news outlets to produce “Facebook editions” — basically, app versions of themselves that can be read and consumed right there on Facebook.
Everybody knows they can drive traffic with the titillating or trivial… Web traffic is important and engagement is important. But if the entire mission is dictated by that, it’s hard for me to see why people would want to bother with The Post. Can The Post ever be as deep into this as say, the celebrity site TMZ? The answer is no, or if it’s yes, it wouldn’t be The Post.
Source: Washington Post
From journalism.co.uk: How journalists can best use Facebook pages.
In this week’s feature podcast Journalism.co.uk’s technology correspondent Sarah Marshall looks at how journalists can use Facebook pages to connect with sources and readers and increase traffic to news sites.
- Vadim Lavrusik, Facebook’s new journalist programme manager explains how pages can be used for showcasing their work;
- Visiting professor at City University, London and part time course leader for the MA in Online Journalism at Birmingham City Paul Bradshaw tells us what he has learnt from a month-long experiment of using his Facebook page as a blog;
- Jack Riley, head of digital audience and content development at the Independent, explains how the news site has cracked the Facebook code with a 430 per cent rise in referrals from Facebook to its website.
An arms race in the tech sector
Heron says she asks reporters who want to create social accounts to first explain their strategy for interacting with users. “We really want them to have a strategy so they know how to use it well,” she says. “Develop relationships, reply when people talk to you.”
Nic Newman presents the latest Reuters Institute research followed by 10:10 debate with Liz Heron (New York Times) and a panel discussion featuring Mark Little (Storyful) and Mark Rock (Audioboo) asking whether mainstream media can compete with start-ups in social media innovation.
News outlets should think before they act, when it comes to implementing a social media policy
There’s been quite a bit of hoo-haa about how journalists and news outlets should navigate what many see as the treacherous waters of social media - a sentiment very much reflected in a recently released ASNE’s report, “10 Best Practices for Social Media: Helpful guidelines for news organizations”. The report attempts to provide some buoys to help journalists guide their way through the troughs and crests created by the likes of Twitter and Facebook.
As much as I agree with most of the recommendations the report makes, I thought the report failed to suggest perhaps a hugely crucial point: Decide what the aim of engaging with social media should be.
As I browsed through some of the social media policies of some news outlets as laid out in the report, many provided guidelines without explaining why - with a couple of exceptions, The Roanoke Times has a good one. Some guidelines themselves were terribly vague - a clear reflection that most outlets still really don’t know what they want to get out of social media, and hence how to handle it.
It’s a matter of think before you act, right?
There are a couple of goals newsrooms can achieve with social media:
1. Build brand awareness
2. Engage with the audience
3. Build story ideas, which can be argued as a subset of the latter point.
4. A distribution platform that can complement the media outlet’s business goals
If I were managing a newsroom, depending on which goals my news organization wants to emphasis and achieve, its social media policy can then be built around it.
With that said, then, there is no right nor wrong way, as long as those goals are being achieved.
For example, if there’s a stronger emphasis that social media be used to build the media outlet’s brand as a breaking news outlet, and less of a distribution platform, (Note the word “less”; it’s not necessarily an either-or thing) then perhaps it is OK to tweet a breaking news event before a story is posted on the outlet’s website. A follow-up tweet can with a link can then be posted later.
If the goal is reversed, then the news outlet has every right of justifying that every tweet or Facebook post be accompanied by a link to its website, as a way of driving web traffic and building authority (think SEO), regardless - even if it’s linking to the site’s homepage. In this case, during a breaking news situation, it might be useful for the news outlets to have the capability to create a story shell with the initial headline for the front, with maybe just a couple of sentences in the story that is sourced accordingly.
The social media landscape is complex and layered and it’s important for news organizations to determine what they hope to achieve with it - and I have confidence they will.
Let me echo what RJI Fellow Joy Mayer emphasized during a presentation she gave on engagement: Know what your goals are. Ask: Why are we doing this?
Just as with blogging, many jumped on the bandwagon without really thinking through what they hoped blogging would achieve. Today, most newsrooms have a way with blogging - some, purely to promote stories, others as a breaking news platform, others as a creative outlet for journalists.
As cliche as it may sound, the adage holds true: When there’s a will, there will be a way.