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Talk Social: 25 October, 2016

Social word of mouth is a big influence on Facebook

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Facebook wants to add another layer to the personal information it holds on users – this time, to turn social word of mouth into an advertising tool.

Users posting the right type of question in a status update will now be detected by Facebook’s algorithm and offered the chance to seek recommendations from friends.

This could be the best place to go in Merseyside on half term holidays, to the best places to eat near Euston Station. Local businesses will then be highlighted in responses.

The social network is also highlighting events that are taking place in the surrounding area, again to boost the visibility of local businesses and places through peer review. If you know your friends are all going somewhere, it’s going to make you want to go too.

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You’ve got to be Pin in to win it

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Everyone’s after influence these days and identifying those with the most online clout is lucrative indeed.

So, Pinterest doesn’t want to be left behind, especially by Instagram, when it comes to convincing brands that it is the place to come for social persuasion.

Hence the creation of The Pin Collective, a gathering of elite content creators who Pinterest is promising to match with brands to create memorable original content.

The platform is promising to deliver commercial return from the creation of Pins, videos and more content.

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Hashes to ashes?


If Goldilocks was posting on social, how many hashtags would be too little, how many is too much and how many are just right?

A study of 65,000 posts across twitter, Facebook and Instagram by TrackMaven threw up vastly different results.

On twitter and Facebook, the optimum number of # vs engagement on each post is one – with sharp declines in engagement for each additional # added.

By contrast, Instagram users love a hashtag with nine being the peak number and nine to 12 the best range of hashtags to use.

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Snapchat rips up the advertising rulebook


After luring mega publishers like Mail Online, Cosmopolitan, Mashable and Sky Sports into its Discover section, Snapchat is now changing the rules.

Where once the publishers and the social network split the revenues of all advertising, now Snapchat wants to keep all the ad money, while paying the content producers a flat fee.

The publishers will have little choice but to go along with it, such is the reach and the power of the mega social networks such as Snapchat.

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Art imitating (social) life?


Anyone who has seen the new series of Black Mirror on Netflix will be disturbed to see one of the episodes potentially coming true in China.

The Chinese government is proposing to introduce an all-powerful single social network that will reward those who climb up the social ladder while punishing those who fall down it.

Exact details are scarce but, in scenes eerily similar to Black Mirror’s Nosedive episode, all social and personal data on individuals and businesses would be gathered, and everyone assigned a ‘score’. Scores would be based on political, social, commercial and legal behaviour.

In an attempt to stamp out widespread corruption across China, the idea is being floated to promote trust and high standards. Doctors, teachers, local governments and businesses could be scored by citizens for their professionalism.

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