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Social media
Social update

A lot can happen in social media in a very short period, so here’s a recap of what’s happened so far this year 

By Kelly Wheeler | Published in Attractions Management 2013 issue 3


oing back to the beginning of the year, Facebook announced the launch of Graph Search in January, which could be a significant game-changer for brands which are on Facebook. The problem is, however, that eight months later, it still hasn’t rolled out to many users outside the US.

Facebook is trying to make its world more open and connected, giving people the tools to map out (or graph) their online relationships. In essence, Graph Search is a new way to search for information on Facebook. While a normal web search will supply links, Facebook wants to give answers. For instance, you could search for ‘Paris attractions that my friends have been to’ and Facebook will trawl your entire ecosystem to deliver personalised, relevant results.

Graph Search isn’t currently available to all Facebook users and only time will tell if it will be successfully adopted. However, there are certain things that can be done in the interim. The search algorithm includes profiles, pages, apps, groups and games, which offers brands a huge opportunity. While your updates may not have appeared in every newsfeed, you could now be found via a search. This means a second, organic opportunity to engage with fans. All Facebook content should now be optimised for discovery via search as well as for the newsfeed. A page’s About section should clearly note all the venue’s details – especially the up-to-date phone number, physical address and check-in information.

While the full details of the Graph Search algorithm will never be revealed, it’s safe to assume that page Likes will play a vital role. As all search results are connections-based, it makes sense that the more connections (Likes) a page has, the more discoverable it’ll be.

Graph Search is a joint partnership between Facebook and Microsoft Bing, so don’t forget this search engine when creating your integrated search and social media strategy.

Another recent addition to Facebook is, in a Twitter-like move, the use of hashtags. While not stunningly original, users are still enthusiastic about now being able to search hashtags on Facebook as well as Twitter and Instagram. This is worth bearing in mind when creating Facebook updates – you can now include a hashtag as you would elsewhere and also encourage fans to use specific hashtags across all your social platforms.

Instagram Video
Possibly the biggest change that Facebook has announced so far this year involves Instagram, the Facebook-owned image-sharing social network. After much hype and speculation, it was announced that users can now create 15-second video clips on Instagram, using similar filters and editing tools that are already popular for images.

Each video can be shared via Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and email, making it a powerful tool to use within an integrated social media content strategy. So far, brands have been using the new tool to do everything from promoting new products to showing what goes on behind-the-scenes and sharing exclusive snapshots of events.

The possibilities seem endless. For example, you could give your fans a front-row seat on your newest, scariest rollercoaster before it’s even been opened to the public – just for the cost of someone being brave enough to sit up front with their smartphone.

What about Vine?
Remember Vine – Twitter’s video-sharing partner that lets you create six-second clips and share them via Facebook and Twitter? Vine was launched in January and labelled the next big thing. For a while that seemed to be true – with 13 million users in just six months, Vine seemed to have effectively capitalised on the video-gap.

However, a recent study conducted by Marketing Land using the Topsy tool, showed that Vine shares on Twitter dropped by almost 40 per cent between the 19th and 20th of June – the day that Instagram video launched. Unfortunately for Vine, that doesn’t seem to be a blip that can be written off due to first day hype. Vine shares have continued to fall, which could be largely due the fact that it isn’t an integrated part of Twitter. Users need to created their video separately and then share via Twitter, whereas Instagram video is embedded within the existing app.

It’s worth noting that Topsy’s data doesn’t cover the whole of Twitter, but rather uses a sample of the most influential people and tweets to gauge emerging trends in real time. So while these statistics don’t necessarily mark the end of Vine, they do show that the video-sharing platform didn’t build up the monopoly on short form video sharing. But, as with all things social media, nothing stands still for long. So you can expect an update from Vine soon – in fact their own blog has already promised that “some exciting new parts of Vine” are on the way.

Google+
In May, Google+ announced 41 changes to the platform, but it’s the main redesign that holds the biggest implication.

The new three-column layout is heavily image focused and intends to allow users to scan much more content without having to scroll. This means that content is even more important – regular updates with compelling imagery are key. However, Google+ also allows users to see the details behind those images, including file name, the file size, camera make and more. So bear this in mind when sharing new images.

Google+ now adds hashtags to new images, which offers more opportunities to expand your brand’s reach. For instance, Google+ will recognise an image of the Eiffel Tower and hashtag it as such. Encouraging users to upload photos, along with the hashtag, can ‘train’ Google+ to recognise images of your venue and organically increase your presence on the platform.

YouTube
Following the 2013 trend of redesign, YouTube has also changed the way it looks, otherwise known as the One Channel design. On the face of it, this was simply an accessibility and user-focused move, ensuring that all channels are responsively designed to appear on all major devices – including large screen tvs, mobile phones and tablets (before this update, channels on mobile phones or tablets didn’t display significant branding or unique designs).

In the video aggregator’s own words, it’s moving from “a video-based site to a channels-based site, where subscriptions rule” meaning that channel images need to be checked to ensure they display appropriately, regardless of device. Also, optimisation now needs to include the channel (not just the videos) and playlists are even more important.

There are also broader implications. Historically, YouTube has rewarded videos with high view counts with better organic rankings. However, over the past year the focus has shifted from views to engagement. Now what gets a video or channel visibility is its view-through-rates, number of subscribers, likes, comments and the channel owner’s own activity – how many times a brand responds to comments, how often it comments on other videos and channels and what videos it likes.

This is quite a shift and comes with a few challenges. The first is to readjust your existing YouTube strategy – content should no longer be posted and left to exist on its own. Instead, content plans should include engagement tactics and communication parameters. Also, it’s now vitally important to generate channel subscriptions. Tactics such as video annotations, channel outreach and regular video updates need to be investigated to deliver results.

YouTube has always toed the line between a content platform and a social network and this recent move will only muddy the waters even further. However, as with most social media platforms, the path to success is paved with value-adding content and user engagement.

Platforms
While not exactly new, SnapChat’s worth mentioning. Created as a design project by two Stanford University students two years ago, SnapChat has since exploded to the point that users are sharing up to 200 millions photos per day.

The premise is simple – not everything needs to last forever. A SnapChat image is sent out, viewed and destroyed. As soon as a user has viewed the photo, it will disappear.

This is fairly unchartered territory for brands, but offers a host of opportunities. You could use the app to give your community a sneak peek at something new – the fleeting nature of the image makes it feel even more exclusive. While the longevity of the app isn’t yet certain, it’s a fairly unique offering that could be extremely lucrative in the future.

There’ll be plenty more to come from our favourite social media platforms over the course of the rest of the year. While not every update offers immediate opportunities for brands, each one will be trying to create a better experience for the user. As long as you embrace each change with the user in mind, you won’t go wrong.

Twitter to the rescue

Twitter has many uses and can now add heroism to the list. Recently, a red panda managed to sneak out of the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington DC, USA. The zoo staff tweeted that Rusty was missing and, more than 3,500 retweets later, he was spotted by a local resident. Within three hours, he was back at the zoo, safe and sound.
 



Twitter to the rescue
Toeing the line

Whether you use Vine or Instagram, short form video-sharing is a goldmine of opportunity. The San Francisco Zoo has been using Vine to show off its animals in a mission to connect people with wildlife, inspire caring for nature and advance conservation action. One particular Vine shows a poisonous frog eating flies and points out how they twitch their toes to stimulate their prey. The Vine is both educational, entertaining and shows of what the zoo has to offer in order to attract new visitors.
 


PHOTO: © marianne hale

Toeing the line
Acting up

Google+ Hangouts have become better integrated into a Google+ page. The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) used Google+ to put together its 40th rendition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The play ran almost exclusively on this social network and included behind-the-scenes imagery, public rehearsals and a live stream of the final show.
 


PHOTO: © RSC

Acting up


Kelly Wheeler
Senior Social Media
Manager, Quirk London
[email protected]
+44 (0)20 7099 8849
www.quirklondon.com

YouTube’s redesign includes a move from a video-based site to a channels-based site Credit: PHOTO: © shutterstock
SnapChat images disappear as soon as the user has looked at them, so could be useful in a marketing teaser campaign Credit: PHOTO: © Andresr @ shutterstock
COMPANY PROFILES
IDEATTACK

IDEATTACK is a full-service planning and design company with headquarters in Los Angeles. [more...]
Alterface

Alterface’s Creative Division team is seasoned in concept and ride development, as well as storyte [more...]
ProSlide Technology, Inc.

A former national ski team racer, ProSlide® CEO Rick Hunter’s goal has been to integrate the smoot [more...]
QubicaAMF UK

QubicaAMF is the largest and most innovative bowling equipment provider with 600 employees worldwi [more...]
+ More profiles  
FEATURED SUPPLIER

Attractions industry to reunite this September at IAAPA Expo Europe in London
For the first time in more than a decade, industry leaders from across the global attractions industry will once again gather in London as part of the annual IAAPA Expo Europe, the sector’s premier international event. [more...]
VIDEO GALLERY

Red Raion TV - Opening Event: FICO Eataly World
Last July 7th, Red Raion took part in the opening event of FICO Eataly World, the Italian theme park dedicated to food - the only one worldwide! Find out more...
More videos:
Red Raion TV - Testimonial: Leolandia – Red Raion
Red Raion Showreel 2021 – Red Raion
Keynote | Moby Dick - Friends to the rescue! – Red Raion
+ More videos  

CATALOGUE GALLERY
 

+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

27-29 Sep 2022

International Congress on Thermal Tourism

Ourense, Ourense, Spain
13 Oct 2022

VAC 2022

The ICC Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom
+ More diary  
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©Cybertrek 2022
Jobs    News   Products   Magazine
Social media
Social update

A lot can happen in social media in a very short period, so here’s a recap of what’s happened so far this year 

By Kelly Wheeler | Published in Attractions Management 2013 issue 3


oing back to the beginning of the year, Facebook announced the launch of Graph Search in January, which could be a significant game-changer for brands which are on Facebook. The problem is, however, that eight months later, it still hasn’t rolled out to many users outside the US.

Facebook is trying to make its world more open and connected, giving people the tools to map out (or graph) their online relationships. In essence, Graph Search is a new way to search for information on Facebook. While a normal web search will supply links, Facebook wants to give answers. For instance, you could search for ‘Paris attractions that my friends have been to’ and Facebook will trawl your entire ecosystem to deliver personalised, relevant results.

Graph Search isn’t currently available to all Facebook users and only time will tell if it will be successfully adopted. However, there are certain things that can be done in the interim. The search algorithm includes profiles, pages, apps, groups and games, which offers brands a huge opportunity. While your updates may not have appeared in every newsfeed, you could now be found via a search. This means a second, organic opportunity to engage with fans. All Facebook content should now be optimised for discovery via search as well as for the newsfeed. A page’s About section should clearly note all the venue’s details – especially the up-to-date phone number, physical address and check-in information.

While the full details of the Graph Search algorithm will never be revealed, it’s safe to assume that page Likes will play a vital role. As all search results are connections-based, it makes sense that the more connections (Likes) a page has, the more discoverable it’ll be.

Graph Search is a joint partnership between Facebook and Microsoft Bing, so don’t forget this search engine when creating your integrated search and social media strategy.

Another recent addition to Facebook is, in a Twitter-like move, the use of hashtags. While not stunningly original, users are still enthusiastic about now being able to search hashtags on Facebook as well as Twitter and Instagram. This is worth bearing in mind when creating Facebook updates – you can now include a hashtag as you would elsewhere and also encourage fans to use specific hashtags across all your social platforms.

Instagram Video
Possibly the biggest change that Facebook has announced so far this year involves Instagram, the Facebook-owned image-sharing social network. After much hype and speculation, it was announced that users can now create 15-second video clips on Instagram, using similar filters and editing tools that are already popular for images.

Each video can be shared via Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and email, making it a powerful tool to use within an integrated social media content strategy. So far, brands have been using the new tool to do everything from promoting new products to showing what goes on behind-the-scenes and sharing exclusive snapshots of events.

The possibilities seem endless. For example, you could give your fans a front-row seat on your newest, scariest rollercoaster before it’s even been opened to the public – just for the cost of someone being brave enough to sit up front with their smartphone.

What about Vine?
Remember Vine – Twitter’s video-sharing partner that lets you create six-second clips and share them via Facebook and Twitter? Vine was launched in January and labelled the next big thing. For a while that seemed to be true – with 13 million users in just six months, Vine seemed to have effectively capitalised on the video-gap.

However, a recent study conducted by Marketing Land using the Topsy tool, showed that Vine shares on Twitter dropped by almost 40 per cent between the 19th and 20th of June – the day that Instagram video launched. Unfortunately for Vine, that doesn’t seem to be a blip that can be written off due to first day hype. Vine shares have continued to fall, which could be largely due the fact that it isn’t an integrated part of Twitter. Users need to created their video separately and then share via Twitter, whereas Instagram video is embedded within the existing app.

It’s worth noting that Topsy’s data doesn’t cover the whole of Twitter, but rather uses a sample of the most influential people and tweets to gauge emerging trends in real time. So while these statistics don’t necessarily mark the end of Vine, they do show that the video-sharing platform didn’t build up the monopoly on short form video sharing. But, as with all things social media, nothing stands still for long. So you can expect an update from Vine soon – in fact their own blog has already promised that “some exciting new parts of Vine” are on the way.

Google+
In May, Google+ announced 41 changes to the platform, but it’s the main redesign that holds the biggest implication.

The new three-column layout is heavily image focused and intends to allow users to scan much more content without having to scroll. This means that content is even more important – regular updates with compelling imagery are key. However, Google+ also allows users to see the details behind those images, including file name, the file size, camera make and more. So bear this in mind when sharing new images.

Google+ now adds hashtags to new images, which offers more opportunities to expand your brand’s reach. For instance, Google+ will recognise an image of the Eiffel Tower and hashtag it as such. Encouraging users to upload photos, along with the hashtag, can ‘train’ Google+ to recognise images of your venue and organically increase your presence on the platform.

YouTube
Following the 2013 trend of redesign, YouTube has also changed the way it looks, otherwise known as the One Channel design. On the face of it, this was simply an accessibility and user-focused move, ensuring that all channels are responsively designed to appear on all major devices – including large screen tvs, mobile phones and tablets (before this update, channels on mobile phones or tablets didn’t display significant branding or unique designs).

In the video aggregator’s own words, it’s moving from “a video-based site to a channels-based site, where subscriptions rule” meaning that channel images need to be checked to ensure they display appropriately, regardless of device. Also, optimisation now needs to include the channel (not just the videos) and playlists are even more important.

There are also broader implications. Historically, YouTube has rewarded videos with high view counts with better organic rankings. However, over the past year the focus has shifted from views to engagement. Now what gets a video or channel visibility is its view-through-rates, number of subscribers, likes, comments and the channel owner’s own activity – how many times a brand responds to comments, how often it comments on other videos and channels and what videos it likes.

This is quite a shift and comes with a few challenges. The first is to readjust your existing YouTube strategy – content should no longer be posted and left to exist on its own. Instead, content plans should include engagement tactics and communication parameters. Also, it’s now vitally important to generate channel subscriptions. Tactics such as video annotations, channel outreach and regular video updates need to be investigated to deliver results.

YouTube has always toed the line between a content platform and a social network and this recent move will only muddy the waters even further. However, as with most social media platforms, the path to success is paved with value-adding content and user engagement.

Platforms
While not exactly new, SnapChat’s worth mentioning. Created as a design project by two Stanford University students two years ago, SnapChat has since exploded to the point that users are sharing up to 200 millions photos per day.

The premise is simple – not everything needs to last forever. A SnapChat image is sent out, viewed and destroyed. As soon as a user has viewed the photo, it will disappear.

This is fairly unchartered territory for brands, but offers a host of opportunities. You could use the app to give your community a sneak peek at something new – the fleeting nature of the image makes it feel even more exclusive. While the longevity of the app isn’t yet certain, it’s a fairly unique offering that could be extremely lucrative in the future.

There’ll be plenty more to come from our favourite social media platforms over the course of the rest of the year. While not every update offers immediate opportunities for brands, each one will be trying to create a better experience for the user. As long as you embrace each change with the user in mind, you won’t go wrong.

Twitter to the rescue

Twitter has many uses and can now add heroism to the list. Recently, a red panda managed to sneak out of the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington DC, USA. The zoo staff tweeted that Rusty was missing and, more than 3,500 retweets later, he was spotted by a local resident. Within three hours, he was back at the zoo, safe and sound.
 



Twitter to the rescue
Toeing the line

Whether you use Vine or Instagram, short form video-sharing is a goldmine of opportunity. The San Francisco Zoo has been using Vine to show off its animals in a mission to connect people with wildlife, inspire caring for nature and advance conservation action. One particular Vine shows a poisonous frog eating flies and points out how they twitch their toes to stimulate their prey. The Vine is both educational, entertaining and shows of what the zoo has to offer in order to attract new visitors.
 


PHOTO: © marianne hale

Toeing the line
Acting up

Google+ Hangouts have become better integrated into a Google+ page. The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) used Google+ to put together its 40th rendition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The play ran almost exclusively on this social network and included behind-the-scenes imagery, public rehearsals and a live stream of the final show.
 


PHOTO: © RSC

Acting up


Kelly Wheeler
Senior Social Media
Manager, Quirk London
[email protected]
+44 (0)20 7099 8849
www.quirklondon.com

YouTube’s redesign includes a move from a video-based site to a channels-based site Credit: PHOTO: © shutterstock
SnapChat images disappear as soon as the user has looked at them, so could be useful in a marketing teaser campaign Credit: PHOTO: © Andresr @ shutterstock
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+ More news   
 
COMPANY PROFILES
IDEATTACK

IDEATTACK is a full-service planning and design company with headquarters in Los Angeles. [more...]
Alterface

Alterface’s Creative Division team is seasoned in concept and ride development, as well as storyte [more...]
ProSlide Technology, Inc.

A former national ski team racer, ProSlide® CEO Rick Hunter’s goal has been to integrate the smoot [more...]
QubicaAMF UK

QubicaAMF is the largest and most innovative bowling equipment provider with 600 employees worldwi [more...]
+ More profiles  
FEATURED SUPPLIER

Attractions industry to reunite this September at IAAPA Expo Europe in London
For the first time in more than a decade, industry leaders from across the global attractions industry will once again gather in London as part of the annual IAAPA Expo Europe, the sector’s premier international event. [more...]
VIDEO GALLERY

Red Raion TV - Opening Event: FICO Eataly World
Last July 7th, Red Raion took part in the opening event of FICO Eataly World, the Italian theme park dedicated to food - the only one worldwide! Find out more...
More videos:
Red Raion TV - Testimonial: Leolandia – Red Raion
Red Raion Showreel 2021 – Red Raion
Keynote | Moby Dick - Friends to the rescue! – Red Raion
+ More videos  

CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

27-29 Sep 2022

International Congress on Thermal Tourism

Ourense, Ourense, Spain
13 Oct 2022

VAC 2022

The ICC Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2022

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
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ATTRACTIONS HANDBOOK
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