Tag Archives: facebook

Take Control

Control How Facebook Displays Your Web Pages

Did you know that you can control how Facebook displays your web pages when they are shared on the social network? You may have found that when you post links to articles on Facebook, it sometimes pulls in an image from the post, also the title, as well as a description of the article. This is because the website is feeding Facebook with information that goes into the Facebook Open Graph Protocol. In short, this protocol is a little bit of information that lives on every page of your site that tells Facebook what the title, description, url, image, etc.. are for that particular page. Rather than making Facebook scan through the article and try to decide for itself, you can do some things to make sure that Facebook is using the information that you want it to use when the article is posted to Facebook.

If You Are Using WordPress:

If your website or blog is on WordPress, you’re life is made a lot easier if you want to control how Facebook displays your pages. Here’s what you do:

STEP 1:   Install WordPress SEO by Yoast. Yes, this is not only the best SEO plugin available for WordPress, but it also has a feature to control how your posts appear on social networks. Nice huh?

social-settingsOnce you activate the plugin, you will want to turn on the Social functionality. This is done by going into the plugin’s Social settings. Click on Social, and then check the box to Add Open Graph meta data. You might want to do the same for Twitter as well as Google+ while you’re in there.

After activating the social functionality, you will see the section (see below) on each of your posts that allows you to manage the SEO settings for that post. Click on the Social tab.

Social Media Settings - Yoast

Step 2:    Enter the Title that you want to appear when this article is posted on Facebook. Do the same for the Description of the page. You may also want to specify the photo or image that you would want to appear when you share the article on Facebook. Sometimes Facebook is smart enough to pull the featured image from the page, or another image from the page, but this is the easy way to tell Facebook which image you WANT to appear. You can choose from amongst your Media Files that you have already uploaded too.

You will notice that you can do the same for Twitter, as well as Google+ posts. If I were you, I would go ahead and set these up. Even if you don’t use those social networks, it doesn’t mean that your article won’t get posted on them. And if your article is posted, you’ll be smart to make sure that it appears the way that you want it to look.

Step 3:    Once you publish your new post, the information that you have included in the Social section of the Yoast plugin will be included on the published page. Just to make sure, you can test it out using Facebook’s Open Graph debugging tool:  https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug/

Make sure that you have published the page. Facebook will not be able to scan a draft post.

Enter the URL to your article and click Debug.

You will see what Facebook sees when your article is shared.

Facebook Open Graph Debugging Tool

Each of the elements that you edited on the Yoast plugin should appear, including a thumbnail of the image that you chose.

You will also be able to see a preview of how it will look when the article is shared:

facebook-post-view

Say you made some changes to the page, and want to test it again? Once you publish your changes, click the Fetch New Scrape Information button on the debugging tool. This will clear the page from Facebook’s cache and fetch new page info. You should see your changes there now. You can also use this method to clear Facebook’s cache at any time, for any page.

Once you have it looking the way that you like, go ahead and share it on Facebook, and anywhere else you want it to be shared!

Not on WordPress?

If you’re using another system, or building your web pages from scratch, you will want to make sure that you include the Open Graph tags in your page <head> tag. You should follow the official open graph protocol instructions, which are available here.

We hope that you found this article to be helpful, and that you can get started with making your sites pages more easily shareable and attractive to users when they are shared. If you need help with any of this type of stuff, let us know. We would love to help. Thanks for reading.

Tag Friends on Facebook Page Photos

If you reading this, then you are probably like me, and thousands of other people, and you have found yourself frustrated because you can’t tag your friends or page followers in photos that you post on your Facebook Page. Feels good to not feel alone huh? Anyway… Please note, this is not your personal Facebook profile that we are talking about here. I’m talking about the Facebook Page that you have for your business or brand.

Ok, so you’re posting a new update, and you’ve uploaded the image. Now, you have written something witty to go long with the image and you want to tag your friend, or a follower of your Facebook Page. You click Tag Photo, and you don’t get a single person that you know in the list! What the ?!? How frustrating!??!?!?

Well, it’s actually pretty simple. Go ahead and create the post. Don’t panic. Once it is up, click on the image itself. This will bring up the lightbox or “theater” view of the photo:

Tag Facebook Photo on Facebook Page

Now, look at the URL in your browser window. It will look something like this:
https://www.facebook.com/YourFacebookPage/photos/a.194423493934447.42456.109839319059532/887643727945750/?type=1&theater
Delete everything after the “?”.
So, it would now look like:
https://www.facebook.com/YourFacebookPage/photos/a.194423493934447.42456.109839319059532/887643727945750/
Hit enter, and you will see the old Facebook image page. Click Tag Photo and BAM! There you are! There are actual people that you! Yep. It’s that easy!
Tag Your Friends on Facebook Page Photo

 

I hope you found this helpful. If you did, please share it with some friends, because chances are they’re having the same problem that you’re having. And friends help other friends, right?

Social Media Marketing

How To: Simple Social Media Posting

This is going to be a quick and painless posting about the simplest things to do when you are posting on social media for your business.

Here are some quick how-to pointers:

  1. Don’t post as your personal account.
  2. – If you are posting for your business, then you should be using your business’ social media account. You can always share your business posting via your personal account once you put it up on Facebook, Twitter, etc.

  3. Use an image in your post.
  4. – People are more likely to see and engage with your posting if it includes an image. Embed the image right in the post, or make sure that your website is set up to display the images from the page when a page is shared on social media. If you don’t know how to do that, let us know.

  5. Include a link to the content that you want to promote.
  6. – If you’re promoting a product, piece of content or something else that you talk about on your website, link to the actual page of content. You ultimately want to drive people to your website, right?

  7. Use no more than three #hashtags in your post.
  8. – Don’t clutter things up. Use up to 3 appropriate and meaningful hashtags in your posts, should you have the character limit space to do so.

  9. Don’t tag yourself in the post.
  10. – You are already posting the social media update, so people will already see that it’s from you. You don’t need to tag yourself in the post.


    Like I said, these are just some simple tips to get you started posting the right way. If you want more help with your social media marketing, let us know.

    Do you have more simple suggestions for people? If so, post them below!

Happy Belated Birthday, Facebook!

Happy Birthday, Facebook!

For the last 10 years, Facebook has been our social media darling and is the central focus when we talk about connectivity in the digital age. While previous channels of social connectivity were around when Facebook came out, it was the social giant that seemed to get the formula for success down pat.

Facebook LogoThey were also the first with over 1 billion users and can be found in the proverbial dictionary under “social networking boom.”

So – what have we, the users, gotten out of Facebook in the last 10 years? I was able to collect a lot of different opinions on the topic by reaching out… via Facebook (and a couple of casual conversations).

Brittany Davies of Washington D.C. says that she uses social media for the purpose of keeping up to date with her family who are all located back in her home state, New York. Pregnancies announced, the goings on with siblings, and friends from college and high school are what keep her in the loop while she’s away. A devoted family person, she feels that it is Facebook that keeps her as connected as she needs to be.

And a lot of other people, in varying ways of doing so, agree that the number one reason for being apart of the site is to stay connected. Facebook is a tool for like or unlike minds to share experiences, share ideas, share opinions, and celebrate ones own life or the lives of those around them.

From my experience as an avid user of Facebook since 2006, I’ve also found this to be an incredible tool to cultivate professional and personal relationships that might be harder to do if I needed to reach each contact individually. And unlike the professional-focused LinkedIn or on Twitter, I feel like Facebook is where I can be more open with my opinions or my takeaways on whatever I post.

For some, Facebook has been a means of reuniting families (birth families of adopted individuals have been found via Facebook). For others, Facebook has been a means of revolution.

In 2010, Egyptians took to the social media channel to broadcast to the world the pain and suffering caused by Egyptian police and their government. Photos of brutally beaten, or killed, Egyptians began to appear the world over and individual Egyptians realized they were not alone and banded together.

Since then, Egypt has seen a lot of political and social restructuring as a result of the revolution. Since then, Facebook continues to be a tool for those hungry to stay connected.

For some, Facebook is a creepy, evil time suck of a website. For some it can cause social anxieties. Some use it to bolster their self-image (whether they do it right or not can only be judged on an individual basis).

As for the future? We can only wish Facebook the best. The times are changing and some would argue that the site is being severely challenged as the social Go To by the likes of Twitter. At any given time, you can read about how the executive team at Facebook is looking for ways to stay ahead of the curve, buying up companies that will help put Facebook ahead. Facebook’s mission is to keep us connected continues to show in their business and the news it makes.

And that is something worth liking.

Happy belated birthday!

Should Your Business Use Facebook Hashtags?

The internet is a-twitter (get it?) with talk about Facebook #hashtags.  I personally plant myself firmly in the “Hashtags are for Twitter” camp; however, there are great benefits for businesses using hashtags on Facebook.

So far, Facebook hashtags are relatively new and slightly limited in usage.  They are only workable on the “desktop” vFacebook Hashtagersion with Facebook hashtags for mobile being introduced in the future.  Also, the algorithm that distributes content on the news feed won’t be affected, which is good and bad; you can’t gain ground but you can’t lose it either.  Further, as Cotton Delo writes in AdAge, “Advertisers won’t be able to target people posting hashtags about a particular TV show or live sports event, and they won’t be able to sponsor a hashtag in the vein of promoted trends on Twitter.”

You can play with Facebook hashtags in other ways, though.  It’s a great tool to promote across platforms as the hashtag will now work between Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Facebook.  You can use hashtags as you would in those other platforms and have it populate on Facebook in a meaningful way now.  While you can’t target people, you can track what they’re saying and adjusting your content likewise, ie: you’re able to stay relevant in the conversation.

The SEO implications are also important.  Previously, if you searched for a hashtag, Google (or whoever you prefer-I’m also solidly in the “Google” camp) would pull up results for Twitter.  With the inclusion of Facebook hashtags, though, you’re now potentially increasing your Facebook traffic.

Reports are mixed as to what exactly Facebook will do with this information goldmine.  Again, Cotton Delo explains, “Posting with a hashtag could be seen as a more tangible expression of affinity and could thus help to make graph search into a useful product.”  Rather than “liking” content, you can engage in a more meaningful way by actually talking about a brand.  She cautions you to take things with a grain of salt, though, in another writing for AdAge :

Facebook has a much steeper privacy bar to clear than Twitter does in terms of publishing user content. The vast majority of Facebook posts are private, meaning that the public ones eligible to be shown on hypothetical hashtag pages would be the tip of the iceberg of conversation happening on the platform.

So if you’re one of the chosen ones who has been included in the hashtag roll out, give it a spin.  I know theBrewRoom would love to speak with you about deepening your strategy on Facebook.  It couldn’t hurt to be an early user of this experiment on Facebook.

What do you think about Facebook hashtags?

7 Things To Remember When Posting For Your Business

Inspired by a list published on AdAge.com by Simon Dumenco, “9 Media Things That Should Be Immediately Regulated,” I hereby give you my list of 7 Things That Should Be Regulated When Posting For Your Small Business (or any sized business for that matter) on social media accounts.  Posting for your business can be tricky to navigate at first, but it gets easier with practice (and remembering these reminders).  Please note: there is no particular order because these are all important.  Well, except for No. 1.  That’s pretty important.

7. Henceforth, your posts shall only contain one punctuation character in a row.  If you’re announcing specials, you’re understandably excited.  As they say, “Use your words;” so, use your words to show your excitement, not your punctuation.  Exception: ellipses…http://cdn.memegenerator.net/instances/250x250/37006275.jpg

6. Henceforth, you shall use effective descriptors.  As Stephen King says, “The road to hell is paved with adverbs.”  Please refrain from making a three-line chain of really awesome, super-great, exceptionally excellent words to get your message across.  Pick one that best describes what you want to say and use that (and only that) word.  Vary them between sentences if you just can’t play favorites and want to include them all.

5. Henceforth, you shall not ramble.  The ratio of number of characters per post to percent of increased engagement varies between Ragan, Short Stack, and Linchpin SEO infographics, but they agree that posts clocking in around 100-150 characters (3 lines of a Facebook update) see more interactions on Facebook.  Similarly, about 80-100 characters are ideal for a tweet.

4. Henceforth, you shall not post willy-nilly.  Everyone (yes, everyone) will tell you to make a schedule of posts and stick to it.  Users will know what to expect on each day, and you won’t realize it’s 3:30 on a Monday afternoon and you haven’t posted anything yet.

3. Henceforth, if you must automate posts, know who/what/where/when.  Remember those companies that forgot to “un-schedule” their posts when the tragedy in Boston occurred?  Make sure you know what’s going where and when.  Also, try your best to be available to make a quick change should something disastrous occur.

2. Henceforth, you shall not bombard the general public with updates.  Remember the schedule I spoke of earlier?  If you use it, you shouldn’t be guilty of this.  Nothing turns people off faster than overloading them with too much content too quickly.

1. Henceforth, you shall be interested in others instead of trying to get them interested in you.  As the owner of the YaJagoff blog will tell you, you can get more people interested in you by showing interest in them.  Think about the last time you were at a networking event and someone was insistent upon forcing their accomplishments on you faster than you could suck down your watery, one-drink-ticket-per-person drink.  Don’t be that person online.

Becoming a Local: Using Apps to Discover Your City

Once upon a time, if you were a new resident in a city and wanted to find out the best place to catch an off-Broadway show or grab a slice, you had limited options. You asked friends, family and neighbors. You looked in city guides. And then this amazing thing called the Internet happened, and all of a sudden, all of the information you needed was just a Google search away.

But search isn’t enough for us anymore. We want information from people we can trust, but we want it instantly. We don’t just want to experience our surroundings, we want to share them. And so, we’ve adapted to using the best city guide we can find: our smart phones.

I moved to Pittsburgh in Summer 2011. For a year, I lived with two roommates in a house in Shadyside before branching off on my own in Highland Park. While during my first year of living in Pittsburgh I focused on my career and trying not to get lost on one-way streets in my neighborhood, I now claim the city as my own and find myself wanting to explore its culture more.  My quest to become a real Pittsburgher has led me to tiny dive bars on Carson street, vegetable stands in the Strip District, yogurt shops in the North Hills and more. I’ve been checking things off of my list like lightning… all with the help of the iOS app store.

Pittsburgh art is highlighted on Penn Avenue during Unblurred.

On Friday night, I decided to go check out Unblurred for the first time and wanted to grab a bite first. Unblurred takes place on the first Friday of every month in the Penn Avenue Arts district and highlights local artists throughout venues on Penn Avenue. Taking a liking to the reviews of Brillobox on Yelp, I searched for it on Facebook to see if any of my friends liked the page. The menu, Yelp reviews and seal of approval from my Facebook friends cemented my decision. And I’m not alone in using Yelp to review or learn more about a business. According to the site, they had more than 36 million reviews at the end of Q4 in 2012.

After dinner, we set off down Penn Avenue to check out eclectic works of sculptors, photographers, performers, painters and artists of various other mediums – all who call Pittsburgh home. It felt amazing to be walking the streets of such an amazing city, and I wanted to share what I was seeing with others. So I checked in on Facebook. I checked in on Foursquare. I tweeted about the art warehouse I ended up in, which I took photos of and uploaded to Instagram.

While I’m not sure if I chose Pittsburgh, or if Pittsburgh chose me, I’ve used Google Maps, Urbanspoon and other apps to make it feel less like I’m visiting and more like I live here. Part of the beauty of choosing a city to live in is sharing the intimate and amazing parts of it with the world. We no longer need to see a pristine shot from Mount Washington to want to explore the area. Instead, we’re drawn to the places in the photos our friends post online.

Features like the Facebook Graph Search have made falling love with the city even easier, as I can now search for friends who have been to all of the spots I’d like to check out and ask their opinions. Or, I can do a search for all of my friends who live in Pittsburgh and choose who I’d like to come along.

Just like those Pittsburghers before us, we experience the culture of our neighborhood by getting up and seeing all of the amazing parts on our own. We just simply have a GPS to get us there and 40 photo filters in order to share it with the world. We live in a beautiful city. It’s time we started using all of the tools we have in order to see it from a new perspective.

Which apps have helped you discover your favorite parts of your city?

Brands Posts in Your Facebook Feed

Facebook Changes to News FeedUPDATE: Facebook has recently denied that they are showing posts less frequently. It’s a known fact that the more engagement you have with your fans, the more often your posts will show up in their feeds. So, ENGAGE, ENGAGE, ENGAGE!

You may have noticed that posts from Brand Pages that you have Liked on Facebook have been showing up less in your News Feed. Or, maybe you didn’t notice. According to Facebook, this is the result of some algorithm changes that were made to how Facebook decides whether or not to show you a News Post.

Based on what we’re told by Facebook themselves, it’s based on yours and others interactions with other posts from that brand. It also has a lot to do with the type of post that it is (image, video, poll, etc) and how you and others have interacted with those types of posts from that brand.

Basically, if you aren’t actively interacting with a brand on a regular basis, meaning you aren’t sharing, commenting on or Liking posts, then you are less likely to see all of the posts from that brand going forward.

Some have accused Facebook of decreasing Brand Page Posts in an effort to force them into paying to show their posts to a larger audience. Personally, I think that this has something to do with it. I find it highly likely that Facebook would want to find a way to drive more revenue for its shareholders, and paid “Promoted Posts” from Brands is definitely a new revenue stream that Facebook is looking to grow.

Well, don’t just take our word for it, TechCrunch presents a good article on the topic and includes some findings by others in the social media industry.

http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/16/facebook-page-reach/

What do you think about the change? (leave your comments below)

Do you think that they’re trying to sell more ads? Do you think that this has presented you with more of what you want to see? Less of what you want to see?

FacebookWhile you’re here, why don’t you go and LIKE our page? That way, we can keep you updated with stuff… or just not be shown in your News Feed. 🙂
https://www.facebook.com/theBrewRoom

 

Facebook Changed Your Email Address!

Facebook Contact InfoSo, did you notice that Facebook just changed your email address under the ABOUT section of your profile?

Oh, no, you didn’t? That’s because they’re sneaky! They want to sneak you into using their @facebook.com email address, not the one that you set your profile up with. Naughty Facebook!

Anyway, it’s easy to change back.

Here are the steps:

Log into Facebook (duh)

  1. Go to your profile
  2. Click on About
  3. Scroll down to Contact Info and click to Edit. You can make whichever email address you want to be Shown on Timeline. You’ll see that the Facebook email address is marked as visible, and the others are not. Go ahead and make set it to be whatever you want visible on your Timeline.
  4. Scroll down and click to Save.

facebook-email-changedViola! All Done! Thank you Facebook for making us waste more time!

8 Benefits to Facebook ‘Likes’

benefits of facebook likesJust in case you were wondering why a ‘LIKE’ on Facebook might be important to your business.

8 Benefits to Facebook ‘Likes’ | Practical eCommerce

In my opinion though, a ‘LIKE’ gained through true interaction and conversation is better than a ‘LIKE’ that was gained just because you were giving something away.

Once you have people that follow (Like) your page, you MUST engage with them. You will want to communicate with your followers regularly – daily if possible. You should use your Facebook page to ask questions, provide information on new things that are happening with your company, or if you’re up for it, to provide personalized customer service.

Have questions about getting started and how to engage your followers? Let us know! Send us a message and we’ll talk!