How to Disable Emails from Google+

Yesterday, Google announced that any Google+ user will soon be able to send an email to your Gmail account. This feature will automatically be turned on for all Google+ / Gmail users and will be available to use once everyone has received the official announcement email from Google. Brands are excluded from this feature and if you don’t have a user in your Circles, they can only email you once via Google+ so you cannot be bombarded with follow up emails.

Not interested in this? Google added a new setting in Gmail to control this new feature. To turn it off, visit your general settings page and find the Email via Google+ option. In the drop down menu select no one.

Untitled

Here’s the full email from Google:

Gmail update: Reach more people you know

Ever wanted to email someone you know, but haven’t yet exchanged email addresses? Starting this week, when you’re composing a new email, Gmail will suggest your Google+ connections as recipients, even if you haven’t exchanged email addresses yet.

How it works with email addresses
Emailing Google+ connections works a bit differently to protect the privacy of email addresses. Your email address isn’t visible to your Google+ connections until you send them an email, and their email addresses are not visible to you until they respond.

Receiving email from people outside your circles
If you receive an email from someone outside your circles, it will be filtered into the Social category of the inbox (if enabled) and only after you respond or add them to your circles, can they start another conversation with you.

Suggested reading: 

Why You Shouldn’t Freak Out Over Gmail’s Update

Sorry Google+, We Still Won’t Come to Your Party

Best Twitter App Update

20130821-155038.jpg

Not sure when this happened, but I love that you can now add or remove people from lists in the Twitter app. I have always wanted to do this!

Look Mom, We’re Going Viral!

So I have to do some bragging. I quietly launched a campaign theme for Algorithm to promote our webinars. The theme came from something that our President is always saying, which is that the solutions available to Macola users today can create an environment that is nothing like their dad’s Macola.

So, I went with that to promote our upcoming webinars. I even made this. I used this theme on the landing page, in tweets and Facebook updates and in an e-mail invitation to our customers.

not-your-daddys-macola-pulse2

Today I noticed an interesting source for a new webinar registrant. They had found our website by searching Google for “not your dad’s macola.” Here’s the proof:

Capture

What’s the moral? Listen to those funny things your CEO always says. One may be magic.

Instagram Adds Video

20130620-142451.jpg

Are Facebook Posts With Photos Getting Less Reach?

Think Facebook success is all about photos? Think again!

I recently saw a Facebook tip from Social Identities that suggested removing the image and link preview from Facebook posts. He showed evidence of posts on his page performing better if these were removed. So I gave it a shot.

I decided to test this out on a Facebook page I manage. I continued posting as usual, but removed the link preview and stopped using as many photos. What I saw showed just that – simple text posts reached more people.

In the screen capture below  you can see that the post with a photo was seen by 24 people, while the post without a photo was seen by 89. The text post also received 2 more clicks. Both posts included a link fan could click on but the text post did not include the link preview.

Facebook Reach Experiment

I am not saying that photos don’t work on Facebook. Some of my most engaging posts have used photos.

Facebook engagement experiment

But for my everyday posts, it seems that right now a simple text update is reaching the most people. The important thing is to find what works for you. Also consider how many clicks, visits, or conversions you are getting from Facebook and how different posts affect those numbers. It is always best to test out different types of post and see what works for your fans. You might find that a healthy combination is best. And sometimes a picture is after all worth a thousand words.

Tell me in the comments below, what types of posts perform best for you on Facebook? Are you noticing similar trends on your pages?

How to Use Photo Tagging / Photos of You on Instagram

Today’s Instagram app update adds a very Facebook feeling feature – photo tagging. This adds a new section to your profile for photos of you. When someone tags you in a photo, you will be notified and the photo will appear in the Photos of You section on your profile. You can adjust your settings to approve tagged photos before they appear on your profile. The Photos of You section of your profile will not be made visible to other people until May 16.

Here is how Instagram photo tagging works.

First, select the photo you wish to share as usual.

Once you add your filters and add a caption you will see a new section to add people.

photo_2

Click “Add People” and then, similar to Facebook, you can tap an area of the photo to search for and add a friend’s name.

photo_3

Once you are done you will see your friend’s username in the “Add People” section. To add more friends just tap another area of the photo. Finally, share your photo.

photo_5

Once shared, you can see who is tagged in photos by tapping the image once.

photo_6

Want to manually approve photos others tag of you before they appear on your profile? Navigate to the Photos of You section of your profile and tap the settings icon. Then choose add manually to approve each photo.

photo (1)

Suggested Reading:

Instagram’s official announcement of this new feature.

Thoughts on the Facebook Newsfeed, EdgeRank and Advertising

Back in October of 2012 I noticed many Facebook pages I follow encouraging fans to add them to interest lists to make sure they keep seeing updates from them in their newsfeed. Rumor had it that Facebook was changing again and going to make page owners start advertising to reach their fans. While this was neither true nor false there was more to the story.

Bob Schneider

For the most part I ignored these posts. I made sure I had liked and selected “Show in Newsfeed” for the pages I wanted to see. And when browsing Facebook, I look at the most recent stories and not just top stories.

But recently I have heard rumblings again about drops in organic user interactions. One story I recently heard about, thanks to Connie Schultz, comes from New York Times Columnist Nick Bilton. In his article, Nick explains:

“From the four columns I shared in January, I have averaged 30 likes and two shares a post. Some attract as few as 11 likes. Photo interaction has plummeted, too. A year ago, pictures would receive thousands of likes each; now, they average 100. I checked the feeds of other tech bloggers, including MG Siegler of TechCrunch and reporters from The New York Times, and the same drop has occurred.

What changed? I recently tried a little experiment. I paid Facebook $7 to promote my column to my friends using the company’s sponsored advertising tool.

To my surprise, I saw a 1,000 percent increase in the interaction on a link I posted, which had 130 likes and 30 reshares in just a few hours. It seems as if Facebook is not only promoting my links on news feeds when I pay for them, but also possibly suppressing the ones I do not pay for.”

Facebook stands behind their EdgeRank algorithm that determines the content users see. What EdgeRank leaves out though is advertising, which is playing an increasingly important role in what appears in the Newsfeed. Are more ads in the feed going to dilute the personal Facebook experience? If so, this could be the beginning of the end of Facebook.

I love James McQuivey’s, an analyst at Forrester Research, wisdom here:

“It’s not just that people will feel nickeled and dimed by this, it’s that ultimately the value of the product disappears as the stream of information in your social network, one that used to be rapid and friction-free, is no longer there and now consumed by advertising.”

Suggested reading:

EdgeRank: Doing the Right Things Doesn’t Solve the Bigger Issue
Calling Facebook Edgerank What It Is: Censorship

Image credit: Hugh Briss

Image credit: Hugh Briss

Email Marketing and Communications

I have experience using Campaigner, Constant Contact and HubSpot email marketing tools. For the past year I have been using HubSpot to send email newsletters to customers as well as nurturing emails to leads.

email marketing

Results:

  • Increase customer engagement
  • Keep the conversation moving with inbound leads

email marketing

Online Community Setup with BuddyPress

In 2013, Algorithm wanted to create a space for customers to gather online and find and share information about the software solutions they use to run their business. To create this space, I built a custom online community using BuddyPress. The community features member profiles, forums, groups, blog posts/updates and an activity feed.

About BuddyPress
BuddyPress is an open source platform that allows you to create an online community / social network inside of a WordPress site.

Algorithm BuddyPress Community

community2

community3

Well Done, Dove #wearebeautiful

As a marketer and sociologist, I really love this social experiment from Dove. Dove explains their Real Beauty Sketches campaign:

Women are their own worst beauty critics. Only 4% of women around the world consider themselves beautiful. At Dove, we are committed to creating a world where beauty is a source of confidence, not anxiety. So, we decided to conduct a compelling social experiment that explores how women view their own beauty in contrast to what others see.

I think Dove has done a great job showcasing true beauty. As a marketing campaign, I like this because it makes viewers think. It  is real, emotional, positive and is something viewers want to (and did) share with others.

Dove is a company though and, of course, want to sell more products. So as a consumer I am slightly skeptical about how this relates to soap. I love the message here but when I am buying personal care products, I still care more about what is actually in the product. Just as a documentary, I love this video!