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How Does Your Company Handle Change in Social Media?

11 May

Cross Roads of Social Media

The concept of social media remains the same; leverage your networks to introduce content that creates engagement and encourages sharing of that content. It’s a basic premise but often gets complicated due to the changes that happen in this fast paced and ever changing landscape of social media.

How does your company handle and react to change?

At the crossroads where business and social media intersect, change happens fast. Technology changes, social networks change and new platforms emerge that all change how fans interact with their favorite brands online.

How quickly a company can adapt and integrate these changes are paramount to their long-term social media marketing success. Companies both large and small who are actively engaging in social media must find a way keep pace with this change curve.  

As companies navigate these social media waters industry leaders emerge but it’s often the companies who can quickly adapt and integrate with new changes that allow them to stay nimble and keep pace with change.

Here are some examples of change:

Established and existing platforms will change.

Facebook recently made changes to the entire way businesses present themselves and how they interact with their fans via the new timeline functionality.  

New and emerging platforms emerge, quickly. 

Platforms like Pinterest and Instagram are such a huge success that companies must now incorporate new ideas using these platforms into their current social media strategy.

The technology you use change

As social networks change so do the technology vendors that empower you to get the most out of all your social channels.  These social media management systems often have to quickly adapt to these changes and implement new and innovative ways for brands to utilize these system and leverage these social media networks to their advantage.

Its human nature to become comfortable in a routine and any change that gets introduced immediately is viewed as a negative. Instead of viewing these as a negative, learn and try to understand what these new changes bring to the table. By embracing change, your company can adapt quickly and learn to use any changes to your advantage. 

By – Adam Lazzara

DISH Network Charges us $14,898 for Monthly Service

18 Jan

Dish Network RIP OFF

DISH Network charges us $14,898 and tells us it’s our fault. 

To DISH it’s no big deal. Two charges for $7,499 dollars within a week of each other certainly has to be a mistake right? 

To Dish Network, it’s not a big deal they are just another multi million-dollar company that doesn’t care about their customers. They have overdrawn my girlfriends bank account twice now leaving her with zero dollars. That’s zero dollars, for gas, food, and paying your right. In this case, you can also include moving expenses and buying a new car as that was what we were trying to do before Dish Network continued with their fraudulent charges against our account.

So what happened? A week ago we entered an online payment for a monthly services of $74.49 and DISH Network accepted this as $7,449. Realizing that we did not want to pay DISH over 7 Grand for their already terrible monthly television services we picked up the phone and called them to cancel the charge and pay the correct amount. This is where things get interesting.

Shockingly the first rep told us that it wasn’t their fault and there was nothing to do, call our bank. Ok, so we called the bank, they were equally as shocked to hear what DISH Network told us to do. So we called back in hopes to get another rep that would be more helpful to us instead we got further explanation as to why they could not cancel this pending charge and that we needed to wait the 3+ days for them to reverse the charges.

After going for several days and having several hours of phone calls between the bank and DISH Network the fees were finally reversed. Whew, it was rough having zero dollars in a bank account.

This morning at 6am the bank called, DISH Network has charged our bank account again for $7,499 and now we were overdrawn with a down payment on a new car pending. Not to mention the upcoming moving expenses we have, being overdrawn, everything is bouncing.

Immediately we call DISH Network, the rep reduced my girlfriend to tears as he said that it was not their fault because we messed up in paying them.

So here we are, roughly 7 thousand dollars overdrawn and DISH Network is laughing at us telling us it is our fault.

Please share this story with everyone you can at the very least it will give us peace of mind that their fraudulent actions are being exposed while we wait to legally get our money back. 

PS – On a somewhat laughable note, the DISH rep told us today that we would be required to pay a $10 fee since the funds where not available. Sure ,why not just tack it on our bill whats another ten bucks…


Involver & Klout for Cool Kids Only?

27 Jun
Involver, Klout, Audi

Last week Klout and Involver partnered together to do something very interesting on Facebook.

First, you should know what Klout is about. Klout is a tool that measures social influence across the web. The higher the Klout score, the higher the social influence, at least to according to the people at Klout. 

Involver is a social media management system that allows brands to publish, monitor, measure and manage social media content across multiple social networks in one dashboard.

Now that the formal introductions are out of the way here is what they have done.

Klout and Involver have allowed brands to deliver specific content to fans with a specific Klout score. The greater your “Klout” score the more exclusive content from the brand will become available to you. In theory this seems like it could be a rather interesting way to deliver specific content to a fan with a larger social reach than other fans with a smaller social reach.  While the two companies should be applauded for opening this proverbial door of social reach potential there are still some major fundamental problems with it.

Problem #1

The announcement of this partnership came with an example. If you visited the Audi USA Facebook page you were greeted with a message prompting you to “Get your Klout Score and download your Audi Le Mans desktop graphic.” Clicking on this image will prompt you to authorize access to your Klout Score and thus allow you to download the Le Mans graphic image. I wasn’t a fan of Audi before I authorized access and despite allowing Audi access to my Klout Score I wasn’t prompted to “like” the Audi page so I took my Le Mans graphic and ran. Since Audi doesn’t even gain a fan from me authorizing my Klout score there just doesn’t seem to be a lot of value here especially after just giving me an image to download.

Problem #2  

Having a higher Klout score will give me access to “more exclusive” content. So if I am not constantly working on increasing my Klout Score am I not worth it to the brand to give me access to something exclusive? According to Involver “the Klout Coupon App is an innovated way to engage users while targeting your most valuable promotions to your most influential fans.” Again, I guess since I do not spend 12 hours a day tweeting and increasing my Klout score I am not worth receiving that special promotion.  Cool kids only I guess. 

Right now there just doesn’t seem to be much value to this interesting play from Involver and Klout but that doesn’t mean that there wont be.  On one hand the brand really isn’t giving anything away of any value and on the other hand the brand makes itself seem like they will only cater to the really “popular kids.” There is a fine line here that needs to be balanced but I believe with a bit more thought and strategy surrounding it, things can be rather beneficial for both the brand and the fan. Kudos to Involver and Klout for opening this door of social influence now we just have to see if it makes sense for us to step through it.  

Running a Facebook Contest? Don’t Break the 1st Rule

21 Jun

Facebook Ghost Town

Many of you still are putting your company at risk despite the new Facebook policy change regarding contests and sweepstakes.

Many of you reading this are saying, what policy change? Well on May 11th there was a policy change that Facebook announced regarding how contests and sweepstakes are to be run through Facebook. 

How do I know that you have no idea about this policy change you ask? It’s because every day I see a new page that is asking its fans to “Like” or “Leave a Comment” to enter themselves to win something. Shockingly some of them are even major national brands. It’s almost as if your trying to draw the ire of Facebook to see what will happen.  I assure you bad things will happen, things that you are going to have to explain to your boss such as to why your Facebook page with 30k fans has been frozen as Facebook investigates things further.  After all you are breaking the first rule.

1. Promotions on Facebook must be administered within Apps on, either on a Canvas Page or an app on a Page Tab.

This means that you must use an application to run your contest. It’s a pretty simple premise that either you are not familiar with or just flat out don’t care about. Either way you are putting your company in jeopardy by violating this rule.

I strongly advise that you follow ALL of the promotional requirements that Facebook has established as of May 11th 2011 otherwise your dream job as a community manager may end up not having any community to manage after all. I think you all know what happens to a community manager that has no community to manage, don’t ya? 

Find the new promotions and guidelines change from Facebook here:

Digital Summit 2011 in Atlanta is a Wrap!

18 May

Digital Summit 2011 Atlanta

The 2011 Digital Summit in Atlanta has wrapped and overall it was a great time. There certainly were some hits and misses with the presentations but all things considered the hits outweighed the misses and that’s all you can really ask for.

Being from NYC and still very new to the digital scene here in Atlanta I noticed some distinct differences between the social media communities. New York City is always moving and people are always looking for hot new companies coming out of the tech sector. If you have a new technology that you are actively building and is considered in stealth mode there is a good chance somebody is going to find out about it or already knows about it. In NYC you never have to look very far or hard to find a group of entrepreneurs, social media junkies and tech geeks getting together to chat about their passion.  In Atlanta, you have to really go out and find these scenes to become involved.  But, let me tell you, Atlanta is connected.

Atlanta has a very large and robust social media networking scene with some very passionate and bright minds in the game. It was a pleasure getting to meet many of you face to face for the first time and learning about some of the exciting things that you all are doing. I am certainly looking forward to collaborating with all of you at some point on some very awesome social media initiatives.

Digital Summit 2011 had Gary Vaynerchuk as its keynote presentation and he delivered with a bang. That dude is seriously amazing, if you ever get the chance to listen to him speak I seriously suggest that you do, you will be amped beyond belief when he is through and if you’re not you have a great career ahead of you as care taker in a funeral home.

James Andrews the founder of Social People, man that cat is really captivating. He is a very sharp guy who used to work in the record business so he knows a thing or two about making your brand famous, it was great listening to his insight on reputation management.

Debbie Curtis-Magley from UPS shared some insight on social media defense, what to do when crises erupts from social media. It was too bad that the Sony Playstation people where not here to listen to her speak as they surely could of learned how to properly handle a crises when disaster strikes your brand.

Erika Brookes from Vitrue did a fantastic job sharing her top ten social media trends which I found quite valuable. I totally expected this to be all about how Vitrue can help your brand and be just one giant sales pitch but it was not at all, very informative and insightful. Kudos Vitrue!

The keynote lunch panel was easily the most entertaining portion of the conference. Dallas Lawrence of Burson-Marsteller and Christine Cook of The Daily bantering back and forth on the paywall for news discussion was priceless. Christine believes people should have to pay for “good” news journalism and content while Dallas believes that model will never fly. The Digital Summit #DSum11 hash tag feed was flying as spectators chatted amongst each other about these issues; it’s fair to say that 98% of those in attendance side with Dallas Lawrence on these issues.

The speakers were great and the people I met were equally as awesome, thanks to everyone involved and I look forward to engaging with you all again very soon!  

Digital Summit 2011 in Atlanta Day 1

17 May

Digital Summit Gary Vaynerchuck

Monday May 16th Digital Summit in Atlanta kicked off so a lot of you who follow me on Twitter saw a ton of Tweets with the hash tag #DSum11 accompanying them. It was a big day as Gary Vaynerchuck was the featured keynote speaker at the conference he delivered in the typical Vay-Ner-Chuck fashion, which can only be described as awesome.

The day started at 2pm and it was great to connect with so many social media people here in Atlanta. It was definitely awesome to meet many of you in person as we have frequently connected virtually through our networks.

Following the #DSum11 stream on Twitter today proved to be more lively then many of the speakers today unfortunately. I believe this was partly because of the limited time that they were given for their presentations. You really can only present very high level information when given 20 minutes to present your companies social media approach which leads to information that was common knowledge to many of social media folks. “Fish where the fish are” was one major brand presenter’s social media advice for us which lead many of us to joke, “no kidding, you mean we should be using Facebook and Twitter for our social media campaigns”. In the brand manager’s defense, given more time to explain I believe she would have had the opportunity to explain how and where to find the communities within the major social networks, in essence finding those fish.

Tomorrow is day 2 of Digital Summit Atlanta and I hope to meet many more of you and learn even more from our speakers. If you are in attendance, be sure to say hello! – @AtlantaSnoop

Sony Playstation Network and Poor Crisis Management

27 Apr

Sony Playstation Network

If you were not already aware, an unauthorized party compromised the Sony Playstation Network last Thursday resulting in bringing the powerful Sony network crashing down. Users have not been able to access any online content since that time last week and any online services that are running through the network are down as well. Using your PS3 to stream Netflix,, Hulu Plus and others? Not while the network is down. It is not so much the downtime that has users frustrated, well it does actually, but the main point of contention seems to be really aggravating users is the lack of updates from Sony.

With all of the social media channels available there really is no excuse for not providing your customers with continuous updates to keep your fans in the loop even if there really isn’t much of an update to provide.

I have but three words for Sony and they are:  “Effective Crisis Management.”

Patrick SeyBold (@SeyBold on twitter for those interested) is the Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Social Media. That is his title and he has provided us with 6 updates as to the status of the network via Twitter.

Playstation Network Twitter

It was brought to light today that user information such as name, address, telephone number and oh CREDIT CARD INFORMATION could have been stolen by this 3rd party. In Sony’s latest update they kindly refer us to the three credit reporting agencies so that we can keep an eye on any suspicious activity. Gee, thanks guys this is just what I was looking to do, spend my afternoons monitoring my credit reports.

In not so many words you almost make me feel like it’s my fault that my credit card information was hijacked.

The beauty of social media is that you can leverage those channels to manage a pr crisis like this appropriately, that is of course if you choose to actually use them. Sony should have started a specific Twitter handle to deal with messaging specific to this issue. This would of directed angry users away from their core Sony PlayStation identity to their new, temporary, crisis identity in which users can watch for updates, vent their concerns and engage with Sony specifically on these issues.  

Follow Me: @AtlantaSnoop

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