The emergence of social media has brought advancements to our day to day lives. It is much easier to communicate with friends through social media. Even though they live far away, internet has brought us closer because of its boundless reach.
However, like a double-edged sword, social media has also brought some problems to our day to day lives in the form of cyber-bullying and online trolling. People who are bullied or trolled online may experience emotional or mental discomfort because there is abuse. In some studies, people who are victims of cyber bullying and trolling often experience depression and low self esteem. In some extreme cases these untoward actions result to suicide.
What is Trolling?
Trolling over the internet is viewed as an action over the internet that aims to upset its recipients. An internet troll may post inflammatory remarks for the sole purpose of upsetting the other party. It is indeed unpleasant yet some resort to trolling because they feel empowered when they are able to upset people with their remarks that they think are wise or clever. It can be viewed as dominance too because usually it is the internet trolls who win since victims are often left upset or annoyed.
What is Cyber-bullying?
Cyber-bullying is deliberate and repeated harm inflicted through using the Internet, interactive and digital technologies, or mobile phones. Like trolling, people who engage in cyber-bullying feel empowered when they are able to exert dominance to their victims. They usually post mean comments or derogatory remarks to offend, humiliate, or intimidate their victims. Some resort to cyber-bullying as a sort of revenge from being bullied in the past.
Anonymity as the Main Reason why People Bully or Troll over the Internet
The internet allows users certain degree of anonymity. Using alias and avatars, users are able to express themselves without being judged. However, the same privilege is used to inflict harm to other users. People find it easy to bully and troll online because they are able to hide from their true selves. It is much easier for these individuals to throw derogatory remarks because they are anonymous in the cyber world.
How to Handle Cyber Bullies and Internet Trolls
When someone over the internet bullies or trolls you, the correct response is to avoid engagement. Remember, these people are empowered whenever they see their victims react to their actions. Therefore, avoiding these people is the right thing to do. Often times, cyber bullies would often stop when they don’t get any reactions from their victims. In social media we often encounter this warning “Don’t Feed the Trolls.” This warning teaches us not to engage such activities because reacting to the act of trolling or bullying will only encourage these people.
Right now, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter take cyber-bullying and trolling seriously. Users who feel they are victims of such actions could easily report these people and the site admin or moderator impose actions like give warnings or give immediate ban. These sites also provide users the power to end bullying and trolling by deleting the comments or blocking unruly people.
There’s no doubt about Facebook’s popularity. It has surpassed the 1 billion mark in terms of active users making it the number one social media platform of this generation. However, some are unfamiliar with Facebook especially the features it offers to its users. Take for example Facebook Pages, Groups, and Profiles. People use them often yet some of them aren’t aware of its function and purpose. Knowing what these entities are and how they behave will allow you to understand their functions. Understanding them allows you to make the right connections. As such it is important to get oriented with these entities before using them. Below explains the features and functions of each Facebook entity.
Profile is also known as timeline. This is popular among individuals whose aim is to connect with families or friends. It is more personal than commercial which is why the features are aimed at individuals or people who mainly uses the profile.
Profile allows you to create a personal account where you can add people you know later on. You receive updates from these people that appear in your newsfeed. You can also chat with them via Facebook chat or messenger.
Aside from connecting with these individuals, profile allows you to post status and upload photos and videos. Posting these things create an impression that you are active in Facebook. Your friends also connect with you through these things.
Although not official, some individuals use Facebook profile for business purposes. One of the reasons why people use this instead of pages is familiarity of profile functions. It is easier for a business person to connect with its followers through profile because it is easy to add people in the profile.
If Facebook profile is aimed at individuals whose goal is to connect with friends, Facebook page is aimed at people looking to establish connection through this social media platform in a not so personal level. Businesses who would want to make their presence known to Facebook users (since they are potential customers too) can take advantage of Facebook pages because this is much easier to connect with people on a large scale. Rather than adding people in the friend’s list, Facebook pages establish following when an individual “likes” the page.
Celebrities also use Facebook pages because it is much easier to create a large following. People will only hit the like button available on the page and voila, the celebrity is now connected with that individual. Every time an individual likes the page, the activity appears on the newsfeed of people connected with that particular individual. As such, it is easier to accumulate followers.
Also, Facebook Pages allow owners of the page to monitor its standing as well as its followers’ activities. Monitoring these trends will allow users of the page to enhance the brand.
Facebook Group is for discussion purposes. It is aimed at individuals who like to establish or join a community in the social media platform. In Facebook groups, people who are added can exchange conversation even if they aren’t connected in their respective Facebook profile. However, because they belong in the same Facebook group, a community is formed because the same interests are shared in the group.
These are the features of Facebook profile, group, and pages. Familiarizing their functions and purpose will allow you to use them correctly. You can connect with the right people if you know which entity to use.
We have yet to witness gender equality because up to this day, women still feel mistreated or discriminated in our society. The struggle is evident especially in social media where women are often objectified and exploited just because they belong to that gender. However, like a double-edged sword, social media is also used as a tool to end inequality. Currently, there are several campaigns and movements that seek to end discrimination not just in social media platforms but in all aspects where women feel unwelcomed. Below are stories that involved the usage of social media to promote gender equality.
#HeforShe Gender Equality Campaign
The hashtag #HeforShe suddenly became a huge trend in Twitter after Emma Watson – UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador, gave an important and moving speech at the UN Headquarters last September. The campaign seeks to end gender inequality and misconceptions about feminism. However, the main selling point of the campaign was to encourage men to join the fight. “Men – I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue, too” said Emma during her speech at the UN.
The campaign seeks solidarity by uniting both genders to support one another. She said, “If we stop defining each other by what we are not and start defining ourselves by who we are, we can all be freer. And this is what HeForShe is about; it’s about freedom.”
After her speech, the HeforShe campaign became viral all over social media. About 100,000 men worldwide participated by using the hashtag in popular social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. It even caught the attention of celebrities, both men and women.
The First Female Twitter Board Member
Back in 2013, Twitter released its IPO paperwork however; the media’s attention was not on the figures but on the fact that Twitter had no female as part of its board members. This is true because Twitter’s board members consisted of men. One individual by the name of Vivek Wadha called the attention of Twitter’s CEO Dick Costolo for failing to include women in its board. The two personalities even engaged in a little Twitter war. Two months after the issue was addressed, Twitter appointed Marjorie M. Scardino as one of its board members.
Santa Barbara experienced a horrifying tragedy when a man named Elliot Rodger went on a killing spree and killed 6 people and injured 13 others before he committed suicide.
Authorities found out later that his anger over women who weren’t sexually interested in him was the main reason behind his killing spree. His misogynist manifesto was made clear in his video blogs and comments on the internet.
His bent logic alarmed people especially women. As such, a campaign was started to help women who experienced the same mistreatment from men. The hashtag YesAllWomen was used by women who have stories to tell about their horrific ordeal. The hashtag was retweeted and used more than a million times.
Social media used to be a tool for building network of friends. Well, it still is. However, users of social media also use it for purposes beyond socializing. When it comes to calamity disaster response, social media is a forerunner. The tool brings people closer even more even in dark times.
The Devastation Left by Hurricane Katrina
Back in 2005 when hurricane Katrina devastated the eastern seaboard, social media particularly Facebook played an integral part in providing a bridge between victims and their relatives when other means of connection failed. Cell sites, electricity, and other means that support communication were down. Victims of the hurricane were left alone during the first few hours of the hurricane’s impact. Fortunately, social media remained available allowing victims to reconnect with people from the outside. Aid was much easier because authorities could easily find people through Facebook. Some victims provided information allowing authorities to come up with a sound plan.
Twitter also filled the void left by these cataclysmic events. As soon as signals are up, victims can easily update their accounts with precious information that authorities can use. Without a doubt, social media is more than just a tool for socialization because people now use it during emergencies.
Downside of Social Media during Disasters
Although innately good, there are instances when social media is used wrongly in times of disaster. Some users of social media like Facebook and Twitter aren’t responsible enough to use the tool. As a result, false rumors spread like wildfire, creating panic instead of self control. This is one of the problems faced by authorities. Up to this day, some people take advantage of the situation by creating alarm instead of spreading truths in social media. As such, authorities always reiterate the importance of correct usage of social media.
Another problem occurs when people would rather update their social media instead of removing themselves away from the danger. Some users of this tool feel the urge to be there when the disaster happens as social media creates people who think of themselves as reporters or journalist who have a big scoop to tell the rest of the world. This is really dangerous because people are putting themselves in harm’s way. Again, this is the reason why authorities are reminding individuals who are in social media to use the tool for good.
But all in all, social media is creating a new approach to disaster response. Its benefits outweigh disadvantages making social media a primary tool not just for socializing but also as a frontline for disaster response.
Much has changed in business particularly the marketing aspect since the arrival of social media. Before, businesses were only concerned with traditional outlets like TV, radio, and print ads. Today these aren’t the only marketing outlets that entrepreneurs should consider because social media plays a vital role in business. To remain relevant and ahead of the competition, every business must tap the emerging social media market.
Improving Social Media Presence in 4 Easy Ways
As mentioned, to remain relevant in the field of business, you need to join social media too because this is where majority of consumers right now spend most of their time. Millions of consumers own gadgets with access to the internet and social media platforms and it is only logical to follow them here. But introducing yourself to millions of users of Facebook or Twitter is just the tip of the iceberg. After you have made registered and came up with a profile, you need to maintain these accounts as well. Improving your social media presence is the key to a success social media marketing that’s why it is important that you maintain your social media accounts all the time. Here are tips on how you can boost your presence among social media users.
- Improve Your Social Media Profile
It is important that you build a better social media profile. Think of your business as the applicant and social media users as the interviewer. The ticket to getting hired is a good resume and in this world your resume is your social media profile. As such it is important that you improve your profile so users and followers will have an idea what your business is all about. An incomplete profile is a grave mistake. You may have posted information about your products or services but you forgot to input your address or buying options available. Potential customers remain potential because you failed to inform them where they could reach you.
- Make Your Social Media Account Engaging
It is not enough that you have an attractive Facebook or Twitter page. What’s more important is engaging with your followers. Users are likely to follow you if they know you are hands-on with your page. Answering directly to customer queries shows that there is a human being behind the page who they can interact with. It is important that you maintain this relationship because people feel good whenever their queries are answered.
In contrast, it is important that you answer criticisms too. Unhappy customers can’t be avoided and they will try to tell everyone about it. Shutting them down is not the answer because they will find a way to let other customers know about their disgust. So instead of blocking them, acknowledge their criticisms and reply positively.
- Offer Promotions and Rewards
This is a traditional marketing strategy that works well in social media. Right now businesses come up with all sorts of strategies that offer rewards or promotions to clients. This makes your page engaging to customers as well. The promotions or rewards don’t have to be big. All you need to do is come up with a marketing that will pique their interest. For example, posting a snapchat photo about your latest product will surely create excitement among your customers. Liking and sharing a photo in Facebook and showing it to you to avail discounts can also boost your social media presence since this marketing will certainly create buzz in the social media.
- Pay Attention to the Buying Behavior of your Customers
Your marketing efforts are useless if your customers aren’t there to see it. As such, it is critical that you observe their behavior in social media. This is why it is important that you take advantage of Page in Facebook because it will inform you about engagements done by your customers. If you have this information, it is now easy when to introduce new marketing efforts that will have positive impact later on.
Billions of people are into social media because platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube allow users to interact with families, friends, and other people in their circle. These platforms also serve as their source of information. Users get information from these platforms which they also share back to their network of friends. The fact that billions of people spend most of their time in social media tells you one thing. In this day and age, it is important for businesses to tap social media to achieve growth.
However, tapping social media is just the beginning. It is not enough that you make your presence in Facebook or Google+ users. It is imperative that you develop a strategy before you enter this virtual environment. Without clear cut social media strategies, your presence will be overwhelmed by the competition.
Benefits of Social Media to Businesses
Most businesses venture into social media because this is where modern consumers are found. As mentioned earlier, billions of people have access to social media – and we have technology to thank for. That’s because advancements in technology provided us with gadgets and tools that allow us access to social media with convenience. Plus, social media makes our day to day lives more interesting. As such, we spend most of our time on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, and more. This trend shouldn’t be disregarded by any business. That’s because people in social media aren’t just regular users. These people are consumers as well.
Developing Strategies for Social Media
Businesses have invaded the social media scene which makes it even harder to compete. As such, it is important that you develop strategies that secure business growth and relevance as well. There is a need for marketing strategies designed for social media because as stated above, users have the capacity to pay as well. One example is Spotify – a music streaming service that allows users to listen to different genres of music. Although the service is free, some interesting features require payment from users to fully enjoy the app experience. This strategy allowed Spotify to earn millions in revenue each month.
Strategies for social media also helped businesses in these platforms to retain their presence. Without these plans, attempts could easily drown as competition among businesses in social media remains aggressive. A plan that would help businesses to remain relevant among users is a must. Lack of social media strategies is the reason behind the decline of users in some social media platforms.
How to Excel in Social Media War
To succeed, there are a couple of things you need to do. Most companies use the most popular social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. However, you can also use other outlets like Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, and Youtube because these channels have their own followers who you can tap.
When you are in world of social media, it is important that you maintain consumer engagement. It’s not enough that you make yourself known to users. You need to maintain their interest to you because that’s how you are able to utilize them. For example, in order to maintain a healthy Facebook Page of your company, you need people who will constantly fill the page with useful information. Interaction with consumers is important to because this creates a feeling of importance among your followers.
Finally, you need to monitor your performance. There are tools in social media that you can use to gauge your standing. This technical aspect of your social media strategy is important because it tells your strengths and weakness as well as opportunities to tap and threats to anticipate.
It is really great to start a company right now because social media makes it easy to run a company no matter how small it is. It evens the playing field because social media is highly accessible even to startup companies. All it has to do is develop a strategy specifically for this environment.
In this day and age, traditional marketing strategies such as putting up ad placements on TV, radio, and newspaper, aren’t the only channels that will guarantee company growth. Today, internet plays a vital role in business. Majority of consumers these days spend most of their time online which is why it is important for companies to tap this market as well. Since internet as well as its users, behaves quite differently, it calls for new marketing strategies. One of the strategies that companies employ to gain following or gain presence online is Growth Hacking.
What is Growth Hacking?
Growth Hacking in essence is a marketing strategy but unlike traditional marketing techniques that we know, growth hacking uses creativity, analytical thinking, and social metrics to sell products and gain exposure. The techniques used by growth hackers allow companies to thrive especially on the internet where competition is fierce. Also, growth hacking is important among startup companies because the strategies are do not require huge capitalization allowing businesses to introduce their products or services without spending much on marketing.
Classic Examples of Growth Hacking Techniques
Some companies we know over the internet used growth hacking techniques to introduce their products and services to people in the web. One classic example is Dropbox. Before Dropbox became a popular cloud sharing site, it struggled to market its services because cloud services weren’t popular in the past. This changed when the company decided to offer users additional storage size every time they make referrals to friends.
Another company that used growth hacking strategy is Facebook. Before Facebook became the largest social media platform, it encountered obstacles too. However, people behind FB thought of an idea that would introduce the platform to web users. One of the techniques they employed was embeddable widgets and badges. These widgets and badges that link back to Facebook were embeddable on websites and blogs. This led to people to sign up to Facebook thus increasing its following in a short period.
Growth Hacking Techniques that can Improve Web Presence
If you are a struggling startup, don’t fret because like Facebook and Dropbox which were relatively small companies back in the day, your company can experience growth too just like them. Here are some growth hacking techniques that you can use to gain following.
- Use Every Social Media Platform Available
Sign up in Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, and other popular social media networks because consumers these days use these platforms on a daily basis. Of course after signing up, take advantage of each social media platform’s features that target followers. For instance, Facebook Page has features that allow you to monitor your followers. In Twitter, you can manipulate your tweets so your announcements are better seen by your followers.
- Engage Target Users
When you come up with a website or a platform that offer web services, it is critical that users continue to use your platform. It is not enough that you have a good idea for a product because if there’s no user engagement, your efforts will be useless. As such, it is important that you come up with ideas that will influence users to use your product often. For example, you can reward users with points each time they visit or contribute in your website. These points can be redeemed for anything they can use. People are now addicted on online games because game developers reward users with points that they can convert into something they can use in the game. This is how you keep your users engaged.
- Incorporate Sharing Options
Most startup companies achieved success through this feature. People become famous over the internet because they are able to share their antics over the web. By applying the same to your product say a blog, it would be easy for you to expand because your users can easily share what they read in your blog. If you are running an online shop, it is important that your platform has options to share to different social media networks. Buyers will likely share in Facebook or Twitter things they saw and like in your website.
- Search Engine Optimization
You can also apply SEO techniques to propel products and services over the internet. Since people are using search engines to find stuff, it is important that you rank first in the search engine result page.
These are some of the techniques you can use to market products or services over the web. It is important that you know who your targets are and you know how to tap them. Traditional marketing strategies are no longer reliable because today’s market behaves differently which is why new approaches in marketing must be used as well.
Hollywood was rocked with a huge scandal recently after nude photos of famous celebrities were leaked and circulated online. Photos of Jennifer Lawrence, Ariana Grande, Kate Upton, Kim Kardashian, Kirsten Dunst, and other high profile female celebrities were posted on 4Chan, an image sharing form. Authorities established that the individuals responsible for the leaked photos hacked iCloud accounts of the said celebrities.
Iphone and Ipad users are granted iCloud service that they can use to store photos, documents, emails, contacts, and other information that can be passed online. By syncing their gadgets to the cloud service, photos and documents are stored automatically. The account is protected by the user’s password. A photo or document can be retrieved if the right password is used.
How Hackers Hacked Famous Celeb’s iCloud Accounts
Apple is saying that it protects the whole service with robust security features. It is difficult for any hacker to get into the system. However, if a hacker acquires the right password, this person can retrieve whatever is uploaded in the owner’s iCloud account. Authorities also believe this was how hackers got into the celebs iCloud accounts by using the right passwords. Others are saying that hackers got hold of the celebs’ password by using a hacking program that exploits the “Find my Iphone” app.
Effects of Celebrity Nude Photos Scandal
Celebrities involved in the scandal are now looking for legal remedies to stop the circulation of their nude photos. Currently, their legal representatives are asking search engine sites like Google and Yahoo to filter search suggestions related to the scandal.
Also, Apple already fixed the security flaw in their Find my Iphone app since the leak. Tim Cook recently said in a journal published by The Wallstreet Journal, they are tightening security to protect its millions of users. One measure would alert users when there is an attempt to restore their iCloud data on a new device, change an account password, or log on to an account using a new device.
However, the scandal created fear not just among Apple products users but to cloud users in general. iCloud is not the only cloud service available. Dropbox is another popular cloud service. Even Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram operate the same way. People whose activities are mostly online are now concerned with the security provided by these platforms.
Surprisingly, the scandal did not affect the sales of the recently released iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus. People were speculating that the scandal would affect sales. However, sales of the new Apple gadgets broke previous records indicating that the scandal brought about by the iCloud leak is a separate and unimportant issue to most of its users.
Two of the most popular social networking sites right now – Facebook and Twitter, have recently updated their respective platform to boost profit. In addition, these changes are meant to serve clients better.
Since these two social media giants are used in marketing efforts these days, it is only logical that we get to know what these changes are and how we can utilize them in enhancing presence to our followers. This article summarizes the top 5 updates of Facebook and Twitter and explains how users can use them to market products and services.
5 Updates in Facebook
New Facebook Page Layout
For those who maintain a Facebook page, Facebook just recently rolled out a new layout so owners can better manage their page. In the new layout, you will notice new features such as the New Page Likes tab, Overall Post Reach tab, Unread Messages tab, and Notifications which include clicks, likes, shares, and comments to your page by your followers. These new features will allow you to track your standing each week to see whether your page is making progress or not.
Under the cover photo are several tabs which include “manage tabs.” This feature allows you to add or remove apps to your page. You can use this feature in relation to your Facebook ads since you can drive traffic using this feature.
You can now add scheduled post in your Facebook page. This will allow you to monitor post you have on schedule and when to post them. You can easily view these posts and you can even edit them.
Pages to Watch
You can now add pages to monitor under the new feature called pages to watch under the Insights tab. You can add pages of competitors to see what attracts your market. This will allow you to improve your engagement by looking at the interests of other pages. You can model what your competitors are doing or you can think of other ways that will improve those strategies employed by other pages.
The About Section
This section is for you to add description about your page. However, you can also use this space to add announcements. You can even post websites to inform your followers.
5 Updates in Twitter
Bigger Profile Header
Users are now granted a bigger profile header. Previous, this is located behind the profile picture. Now it is located at the top where people can see what your Twitter account is all about. If you are managing a Twitter account for your business, you can post images of your new products or services like an announcement to your followers.
Bigger Profile Picture
The profile picture just got bigger too. Now, you can add company logo as a profile picture and people will see it clearly due to the adequate size Twitter has allowed its users.
Additional Layout Redesigns
It is now easy for you to manage your page due to several revisions released by Twitter. For example, you now have the option to view your followers as well as monitor what’s currently trending. You can also filter your feed by choosing what feed to appear. You can also filter the Twitter feed to see more videos and photos posted or retweeted by your followers.
In the new Twitter update, you can now see your popular tweets. These are your tweets which have been retweeted, favorited, or replied most by your followers. These tweets will appear larger than the rest of your tweets so you can focus on them.
Like Facebook, you can pin important tweets in your account. The pinned tweets will appear on top so users visiting your page can easily spot them. You can use this feature to pin announcements of new products or services or upcoming promos.
Since the introduction of Twitter in the social media scene, individuals as well as businesses were quick to take advantage of the tool to promote their interests to their followers. Thru tweets, the user can send message in the social media platform that his or her followers can retweet so others may read it as well. Retweeting can be likened to a 21st century word of mouth which can propel the original poster to popularity or fame.
Whether you are an individual who use twitter as a tool to promote your interest or a business owner who use the tool to promote products and services, it is important that you create tweets with the potential to go viral. This is how tweets get retweeted by your followers. And as mentioned, retweets from your followers help your interests to become noticed in the social scene.
So the aim when using twitter is to create viral worthy tweets but the question is how. How can you create tweets that will be shared or retweeted by your followers?
Tip 1 Know When to Post a Tweet
Certain studies revealed that Twitter users are most active during the middle of the week. In one study, it revealed Wednesday and Thursday as the days with most activities (17.2% and 17.4% respectively). But when it comes to retweets, users are most likely to share tweets during Sundays. In addition, the study revealed that users retweet during 10-11PM.
As such, when there’s something you want people to know about you or your business, choose these time and day to post a tweet.
Tip 2 Use Hashtags and Username Mentions
The more hashtags you use, the more chances your message get retweeted by your followers. Studies show up to 5 hashtags in a tweet gets more retweets than a message without a hashtag.
In addition to hashtags, if you mention followers by posting @ followed by a username, your tweet gets retweeted more. That’s because, mentioning usernames creates good relationship with the people mentioned in the tweet.
Tip 3 Use of Photos
This is pretty self-explanatory. If you want something your followers want to know about you, incorporating a photo gets more retweet. A study comparing a tweet without a photo and a tweet with a photo shows a significant contrast between the two. A tweet without a photo gets 0.133 retweets while a tweet with a photo gets 0.404 retweets.
Tip 4 Use Uppercase, Exclamation Marks, and Make Sure Your Grammar and Spelling are Correct
Uppercase really attracts Twitter users. That’s because words in uppercase are implied as kind of announcements. Also, users are more likely to see the announcement clearly when the words are in uppercase. Putting exclamation points also help posts get retweeted. It yields high emotion making the whole message more noticeable. Lastly, make sure that you use proper grammar and spelling in your tweet because words and sentences spelled and constructed properly are more pleasing to read.
Tip 5 Use Most Retweetable Words and Avoid Least Retweetable Words
Make sure that you incorporate words which are found to be retweetable. These words include you, twitter, please, retweet, post, blog, social, free, and media, help, follow, how to, check out, and more. In addition, use action words (verb) because these commands followers. On the other hand, the least retweetable words are game, haha, lol, bored, bed, well, tired, tomorrow, and night.
Follow these tips to create viral tweets. The more people share your tweet, the more the tweet becomes viral.