FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND YOUTUBE A Social Media Guide for the City of Ravensburg

FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND YOUTUBE A Social Media Guide for the City of Ravensburg
Anastasia Onishko
FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND
YOUTUBE
A Social Media Guide for the City of
Ravensburg
Bachelor’s thesis
Degree programme in Tourism
September 2011
KUVAILULEHTI
Opinnäytetyön päivämäärä
08.09.2011
Tekijä(t)
Koulutusohjelma ja suuntautuminen
Anastasia Onishko
Nimike
Matkailun koulutusohjelma
Facebook, Twitter ja YouTube. Sosiaalisen median opas Ravensburgin kaupungille
Tiivistelmä
Tämän opinnäytetyön tavoite on opastaa Ravensburgin kaupunkia tekemään itselleen
Facebook-, Twitter- ja YouTube- profiilin. Ravensburgin turisti-informaatio antoi
minulle toimeksiannoksi selvittää, mitä kaikkea he voivat kyseisillä sosiaalisen median sivustoilla tehdä ja miten. Kehitin pienimuotoisen oppaan, jossa kaikkien keräämieni lähteiden perusteella kirjoitin pääasiat Facebookista, Twitteristä ja YouTubesta.
Keskeisimpiä asioita olivat tietysti Facebook, Twitter ja YouTube, mutta lisäsin opinnäytetyöhöni myös tietoa sosiaalisen median tärkeydestä, riskeistä, hyödyistä, historiasta sekä kuluttajista. Yhtenä osana on myös perustietoa Ravensburgin kaupungista,
heidän markkinointistrategiastaan sekä tulevista aikeista sosiaalisessa mediassa.
Opinnäytetyössä on käytetty laadullista tutkimusmenetelmää. Lähteinä käytin kirjoja
englanniksi, saksaksi ja suomeksi, sekä nettisivuja ja henkilökohtaista tiedonantoa.
Työ perustuu lähteiden tutkimiseen, vertailuun ja yhdistelemiseen.
Tutkimuksesta käy ilmi, mitä yrityksiltä vaaditaan ja miten tärkeää yrityksille on nykyään olla sosiaalisessa mediassa internetin käytön yleistymisen myötä. Facebook-,
Twitter- ja YouTubeprofiilin luominen on selitetty helposti ja tarkasti. Myös kyseisten
sivujen hyödyt ja haitat yrityksen näkökulmasta on otettu työssä huomioon.
Asiasanat (avainsanat)
facebook, twitter, youtube, internet, sosiaalinen media, mediamarkkinointi
Sivumäärä
Kieli
URN
44
Englanti
Huomautus (huomautukset liitteistä)
Ohjaavan opettajan nimi
Opinnäytetyön toimeksiantaja
Olli Suhonen
Tourist Information Ravensburg
DESCRIPTION
Date of bachelor’s thesis
08.09.2011
Author(s)
Degree programme and option
Anastasia Onishko
Degree Programme in Tourism, Bachelor
of Hospitality Management
Name of bachelor’s thesis
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. A Social Media Guide for the City of Ravensburg
Abstract
The aim of this thesis is to guide the city of Ravensburg to create a Facebook, Twitter and YouTube account for themselves. The Tourist Information of Ravensburg
gave me an assignment to find out what they can do on these social media sites and
how to do it. I created a small guide about the main points of Facebook, Twitter and
YouTube, based on my material.
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are naturally of the centre at this thesis, although I
have also added some information about the importance of social media, and the
risks, the advantages, the history and the consumers of social media. In addition one
chapter gives general information about the city of Ravensburg as well as about their
marketing strategy and their future concerning in social media.
This thesis was conducted using qualitative research. I used books in English, German and Finnish, as well as websites and personal communication as my source material. The work is based on analyzing, comparing and combining the material.
This research shows how important it is for companies to be in the social media
nowadays when the Internet is so popular and tells the companies, what is expected
from them. Creating a Facebook, Twitter or YouTube account is explained carefully
and in detail. The risks and advantages of using these websites have also been explained form the company’s perspective.
Subject headings, (keywords)
facebook, twitter, youtube, internet, social media, media marketing
Pages
Language
URN
44
English
Remarks, notes on appendices
Tutor
Bachelor’s thesis assigned by
Olli Suhonen
The Ravensburg Tourist Information
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1
2
INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................... 1
1.1
The Subject and the goals of the thesis .......................................................... 1
1.2
Study method ................................................................................................. 2
1.3
Thesis composition ........................................................................................ 3
SOCIAL MEDIA AND SOCIAL NETWORKING................................................ 4
2.1
What are they ................................................................................................. 4
2.2
The history and the evolution of the Internet ................................................. 4
2.3
The importance of the Internet ....................................................................... 6
3
THE RAVENSBURG TOURIST INFORMATION .............................................. 7
4
NEW MEDIA IN TOURISM.................................................................................. 9
5
4.1
Getting started ................................................................................................ 9
4.2
Engage your customers ................................................................................ 10
4.3
Advantages and risks ................................................................................... 11
FACEBOOK ......................................................................................................... 13
5.1
How to build a large and loyal following .................................................... 14
5.2
Facebook features ........................................................................................ 15
5.2.1 Profile............................................................................................... 15
5.2.2 Fan Page and Groups ....................................................................... 17
5.2.3 Events ............................................................................................... 19
5.2.4 Photos and Videos............................................................................ 20
5.2.5 News Feed ........................................................................................ 21
5.2.6 Ads and Applications ....................................................................... 21
5.2.7 Privacy ............................................................................................. 22
5.3
6
Example cities .............................................................................................. 23
TWITTER ............................................................................................................. 26
6.1
Getting started .............................................................................................. 27
6.2
Twitter features ............................................................................................ 28
6.2.1 Profile............................................................................................... 28
6.2.2 Tweeting .......................................................................................... 29
6.2.3 Following and followers .................................................................. 31
6.2.4 Online bio and URL ......................................................................... 31
6.2.5 Applications and Twitter Analytics ................................................. 32
6.2.6 Privacy ............................................................................................. 33
6.3
7
Example cities .............................................................................................. 34
YOUTUBE ............................................................................................................ 35
7.1
How to create a good video for marketing................................................... 36
7.2
YouTube features ......................................................................................... 37
7.2.1 Profile............................................................................................... 37
7.2.2 Videos .............................................................................................. 38
7.2.3 Ads ................................................................................................... 39
7.2.4 YouTube analyses ............................................................................ 40
7.2.5 Privacy ............................................................................................. 40
7.3
8
Example cities .............................................................................................. 41
DISCUSSION ....................................................................................................... 42
SOURCES .................................................................................................................... 45
1
1 INTRODUCTION
I was doing my Erasmus exchange in Germany in autumn 2010. I stayed there for six
months, and I liked it so much that I decided to write my thesis in Germany. I did not
want to go too far from Ravensburg, the city where I was studying, because everything
was familiar there, and because my friends and my apartment were there as well. My
coordinator in Ravensburg helped me to find a company that I could write my thesis
for. Then I found a company called the Ravensburg Tourist Information. The Ravensburg Tourist Information is a company which helps for example tourists and local inhabitants find information about the city or upcoming events.
1.1 The Subject and the goals of the thesis
The Ravensburg Tourist Information wanted to expand the marketing of the city of
Ravensburg to social media. They wanted to start using Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, so they asked me to find out what they can do on these sites, and what are the
risks and advantages of using them. My thesis is mostly like a guidebook on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube with all the basic information that they need to get started.
Social media is very important today for companies that wish to get more attention and
visibility. I have also added information about social media in general to show how
important using social media is and why it is so. In addition I have explained about
getting people to follow you in social media, and given some general information
about the Ravensburg Tourist Information. The city of Ravensburg wanted to join social media and learn what other cities do with them. The cities that the Ravensburg
Tourist Information wanted as an example are Biberach, Ulm/Neu-Ulm and Friedrichshafen.
My main study question is “What can the Ravensburg Tourist Information do in social
media such, as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube?” To answer this question I searched
for information in my material I collected and visited these web sites myself. I created
an account for each of these pages to find out how they work and what can be done
with them. The other study questions I have are: “What are the risks and advantages in
social media?” “How do Biberach, Ulm/Neu-Ulm and Friedrichshafen use their social
media sites?” and “Why is social media so important?” To answer these questions, I
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also read my material and searched the Internet for more information. I visited the web
sites and the social media account of the other cities to see what they were doing and
compared them.
1.2 Study method
The type of my research is qualitative research. Qualitative research is a method,
which is the opposite of quantitative research. Qualitative research concentrates on
analyzing the material thoroughly as it is very important to truly understand the subject
of the research. In short, qualitative research concentrates on the quality of the material, not on the amount of it. In qualitative research observation, fieldwork, interviews,
enquiries, literature and documents are used as sources of information. Documents are
for example e-mails, blogs, websites, magazines, photographs or people’s own experiences. In addition also the researcher’s own observations and opinions can be used as
documents. (Myers 2009, 5–9, 153; Sarajärvi & Tuomi 2002, 70, 87-88.)
In this thesis I used literature and websites as my material. As my study concentrated
on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, I have the following words as keywords: facebook, twitter, youtube, internet marketing, new media and social media. I collected all
the literature first, and then searched for the most important information I needed. I
studied the web sites of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to get more proper information, and to check whether the information in the literature was correct. To get information about the company itself, I send my contact person from the Ravensburg Tourist Information, Dana Gaudszun, questions via e-mail. I got the answers written on the
free space I left for her on my thesis.
I wrote this thesis from the point of view of the company. The Tourist Information of
Ravensburg gave me the topic, and I answered their questions in this research as well
as I could. I found the information they needed, and wrote about it in a way that was
easy for them to understand and use for their future business.
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1.3 Thesis composition
The second chapter of the thesis begins with the basic information about social media
and social networking. At first comes in general what social media is, and what it can
be used for. Next is about the history of the Internet from the beginning till today,
about what can be done there now and, what kind information can be shared. At the
end of this chapter can be seen how and why the Internet and the social media have
become so important. I compare the Internet to other media to give the importance of
the Internet more credibility. I used American researches I read on the Internet as my
resources.
The third chapter of this thesis is about the Ravensburg Tourist Information. I wrote a
little about their marketing strategy, about what they are doing now and why, and what
kind of goals they have concerning new media. There is listed the strengths and weaknesses they think they will have in a new media. In this chapter is used the information
from Dana Gaudszun, my contact person in Ravensburg Tourist Information.
The fourth chapter is about the new media in tourism. This chapter is like an introduction for the next three chapters. At the beginning of this chapter I give some general
advice on how to get started in social media and how to make a good first impression.
I study how the other example cities informed everyone that they joined the social media and why Ravensburg should also do that. The chapter has also information about
customer engaging in social media. I discuss what should be done to keep people interested on the social media, how to make the company interesting, and what people
expect from the company. Finally I studied about the risks and advantages of social
media. I discuss the results of my study, about what can be good or bad for the company when they join one of the social media sites.
Chapters five, six and seven discuss the main topic of my thesis. In those chapters I
will talk about Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube; about the sites, about their features
and how to get started. All three chapters contain the same kind of information so that
the Ravensburg Tourist Information can see the differences between those three sites,
and what they can and cannot be used for. At the end of each chapter I will tell what
the other example cities do on these social media sites and then I will compare them.
4
2 SOCIAL MEDIA AND SOCIAL NETWORKING
2.1 What are they
Social media is a platform where people can express their opinions and ideas and
communicate with other people from all over the world. Social media can receive text,
audio, video and photo formats. A social network, on the other hand, is a website
where people connect with their friends and share information and files with them.
Social networking sites are a hot topic for marketers. They present a number of opportunities for interacting with customers via different applications, groups, and fan
pages. Each social network page presents its own possibilities and challenges. (Scott
Meerman 2010, 90-91; Zarrella 2010, 53.)
Social media marketing is a process that made it possible for companies to introduce
their products and services in the Internet, and reach a community and customers
which they could not reach with traditional marketing channels. There are many different sites in different forms with different users. The task of the companies is to find
the right way to use the right social media channels for themselves. In social media
marketing companies must listen to the need of the community and answer them the
right way. (Weinberg 2010, 4.)
2.2 The history and the evolution of the Internet
In 1969 the first Internet project was made for military research. It was an experimental network called the ARPAnet. At the beginning Internet was not open for public but
eventually it developed into the World Wide Web which we can use today. (History
and the evolution of the internet, 2009.) The beginning of online social networking can
be traced about to the 1980s bulletin board systems (BBSs). These systems allowed
users to log in and to share software and data, as well as to send and post messages.
After a while social networking moved to web-based applications. The use of the
Internet grew rapidly in the 1980s and early 1990s, and it got its popular success in
1989 when the hyperlink was born. A year later Tim Berners-Lee created a “browser”
5
that allowed users to look at information on the network. (Cairncross 2001, 36-37;
Hörner 2006, 22-23; Zarrella 2010, 53.)
Early in 1991 the World Wide Web was born, and it needed one more step to become
more popular. In 1993, Marc Andreessen and his colleagues came up with the multimedia Web browser. For the first time there was a browser that could find web pages
including images with the text. The World Wide Web made the Internet easily accessible and fun. In 1994 an online directory for the web sites Yahoo!, Classmates.com,
and Match.com were created. People have been keeping journals for thousands of
years, but they have been able to write them online only since 1994. A student, Justin
Hall, was one of the first web diarists when he started writing about videogames in the
mid-1990s. In December 1997, the world weblog, now shortened as blog, was born.
Blogging did not begin to blossom until 1999, when LiveJournal and Blogger were
launched. (Cairncross 2001, 36-37; Hörner 2006, 22-23; Zarrella 2010, 11.)
In the last decade of the twentieth century the revolution of the Internet took a significant step forward. The modern social networks began in 2002, when Jonathan Abrams
started Friendster. Then, in 2003, Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook, which was finally in 2006 opened for everyone. Reaching a global audience of fifty million took
thirteen years for television, thirty-eight for radio, seventy-four for the telephone, but
only four years for the Web. The traffic on the Internet now doubles at least every
hundred days. At the end of 2005 more than three million users were registered Internet users in Germany, whereas in 2006 the number was already more than ten million.
(Cairncross 2001, 37; Hörner 2006, 23; Zarrella 2010, 53, 55.)
Any information that can be stored in digital form can be conveyed on the Internet.
This does not only mean data, but also for example voice, video and photos. Anyone
with Internet access can research, study, and investigate anything from Marshall’s
economics to Madonna’s music. The Internet creates unlimited shelf space, which is
good, but it can also cause some problems. Because it is free, the Internet offers so
much information that it can be difficult to find the piece of information that one really
needs. (Cairncross 2001, 80.)
6
2.3 The importance of the Internet
It is important to be a part of the Internet and social media nowadays. The popularity
of the Internet has grown so fast during the past few years, and the Internet has become such a big part of people’s lives, that it is almost impossible to avoid it. According to a research from the year 2003, (Hörner 2006, 2-3) 23% of people would not be
able to stop using the Internet. When compared to other forms of media, only television got a higher rating of 44%, whereas 57% of the people interviewed for that research said that the Internet is the first media form they use for getting information
every day.
The Internet and the TV are the most frequently used media. Additionally, the Internet
usage is growing as of time spent for people, with 47% saying that they spend more
time online now then they did a year before. The highest age group is the 18-24 yearolds at 52%. Videos or DVDs was the next biggest media with 24%. Watching TV got
only 17% of increased time spent compared to a year ago. More American adults now
consider the Internet their favourite and most reliable source for reading the news.
Internet is now more popular than television, radio, and newspapers combined. (Warholic 2011.)
Because so many people today use Internet rather than other media, many companies
have their business on the Internet. The Internet can be used for marketing research, to
find the customers’ needs and wants. On the Internet the customers can easily access
information and make purchases. Internet can also archive customer satisfaction by
asking questions or making enquiries. This kind of service can tell the company
whether their site is easy to use, whether it performs adequately, what the customers
like the most, and what should be improved. (Chaffey, Ellis-Chadwick, Mayer, &
Johnston 2009, 10.)
Nowadays the fastest growing media tool is the mobile phone. For most people the
mobile phone is now like “life-support tool”, it is impossible to go anywhere out without it. From the 1983 till today, mobile phones have been developed to be all-knowing
and all-doing machines. You can not only call or send messages, but you can also listen to music, watch movies, read books, go to the Internet, use Bluetooth, take photos
7
and much more. In other words, is not only for keeping in touch with friends and family, but also for getting information. Now that it is possible to connect the Internet with
a mobile phone, so much information can be accessed with a mobile phone and with
the help of mobile marketing. All these applications for the mobile phone are chargeable. (Bammel & Holland 2006, 1-3.)
Mobile marketing can be done with text messaging, mobile websites, mobile advertising, mobile email, applications, search, and phone calls. The most common form of
these is normal text messaging. Because it is possible to use the Internet with mobile
phones, the web had to be changed in order to be more suitable for mobile phones.
Websites and emails are made to be easily visible on the small screen. Google, Yahoo,
and Bing have specific versions of their search engines for mobile phones. Many applications can be downloaded onto a mobile phone, and can then be used either for
entertainment or some useful purpose. (Meyerson 2010, 278-279.)
New web technologies have made social media sites easy for anyone to create. A blog
post on tweet or a YouTube video can be created and viewed by millions a day virtually for free. Advertisers do not have to pay publishers or distributors to give their
messages to people. Now the advertisers can make their own interesting content that
viewers can see online for free. This is really important feature of social media. The
social media is free and it enables fast feedback from the customers, which means that
the products can quickly be improved according to their wishes. Companies can study
who their most potential customers are, and perhaps even find a new group of people
interested in their products. (Zarrella 2010, 3.)
3 THE RAVENSBURG TOURIST INFORMATION
Ravensburg, "The city of towers and gates" is situated between Lake Constance and
Allgaeu in a beautiful landscape with a view of the Alps. In the past, the city was a
major, medieval commercial centre. Today, with a population of 49,774 people and its
50,000 residents it is the lively, economic centre and an attractive holiday destination.
Over the years Ravensburg has become intercultural city for German and international
students with its several universities of Ravensburg and Weingarten. From the top of
the Blaserturm tower visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding coun-
8
tryside as far as Lake Constance and the Alps. Down on the town’s main square
Marienplatz, people stroll through the traffic-free square or relax in one of the many
street cafés. Young and old meet for a chat at the fountains. In the warm months of the
year, Ravensburg exudes a Mediterranean flair. Ravensburg offers a wide variety of
cultural events, many of which can be enjoyed in the historical atmosphere of architectural monuments. (Stadt Ravensburg, 2011.)
Today the city of Ravensburg advertises actively in local and national newspapers and
magazines. The city has had its own website and it has all the information from tourist
attractions to economic matters. The city tries to stay modern and to attract more tourists. Ravensburg want to become more important and improve its economy. In order to
archieve this, it should attract more students, families and tourists. (Wirtschaftsforum
Pro Ravensburg, 2010.) Their main goal in new media is to gain more customers and
to attract more attention from young customers, such as students. These days students
use the Internet more than before and for the students it is easier to check the information they need online. The Ravensburg Tourist Information wants to start to be visible
in social media by following new trends, such as using Facebook. (Gaudszun, 2011.)
What the social media can offer for the city of Ravensburg are the possibilities of
communication in media. With the help of social media they can get direct and honest
feedback and communicate with the customers to find out what their customers think
and want. It is very easy for anyone to join the company’s group in Facebook or follow
in Twitter and therefore the company can become more popular quickly. The possibilities of communication can, however, also be seen as weakness. People can post their
comments to an Internet event too easily, and then it may become difficult for the
company to read them all. In addition, Ravensburg does not yet have a person for this
work which means that someone else at the moment has to check the company’s pages
whenever possible. Because of this it is possible that the company misses some important comments, or is not active enough. Free commenting can also cause many of so
called “spam messages”. Spam is explained later in chapter 4.3. (Gaudszun, 2011.)
I agree with the city of Ravensburg about gaining more tourists and students. The city
is very attractive and it has a lot of universities and schools. I lived in Ravensburg for
nine months and I say that students really need more entertainment. Most of the stu-
9
dents I talked with complained about the lack of events and possibilities to spend free
time. In Facebook I am friends with Ravensburg Partykalender. This is the company
who advertises and writes about all the upcoming party’s of different clubs and it has
4966 friends now. The reason why it is so popular in my opinion is that so many people can easily read about the upcoming party on their Facebook wall and do not have
to spend a lot of time searching themselves what to do. This way night clubs get more
customers easily.
I do not say that there is nothing to do in Ravensburg. The city and the companies in
the city have different events but it is hard especially for exchange students to find it. I
think that if Ravensburg will join social media they can easily gain the same popularity than Ravensburg Partykalender. Students and tourists can get their information fast
and events will have more participants. This will make the city more interesting for
students and they find what to do. The information which the city of Ravensburg will
post in the social media sites should be in my opinion in German and also in English.
They do not have any person who will work only with social media but I think it is
important to have. The more proper and interesting information posted, the more customers it is possible to have. Without a person working in social media the city will
not have a change for getting feedback if the city will not be there answering the questions and requests.
4 NEW MEDIA IN TOURISM
4.1 Getting started
In the following chapters I am going to explain briefly how to get started and how to
use the social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. The important part
of the social media is to set up the goal first. The company should first find their target
group and to find out what and how these people are ready to do in social media. The
next step would be for the company to think their own goals, like what the company
would like to accomplish in the social media. Setting up the goals should be done before the technical planning and realization. The last step before the technical realization would be for the company to think, what kind of differences the social media will
10
cause. For this kind of planning Forrester Research created the POST-method. (Li &
Bernoff 2008, 67–68.)
First the company should get to know the sites, and then design their look. After this,
the company should let the customers know that they are now a part of social media. It
is also important to give a good first impression in the social media. When the social
media site is ready, it is good to put a link on the company’s web site. Friedrichshafen,
Biberach and Ulm/Neu-Ulm have their links on the first page on the right side, along
with all the other services they have to offer. Ulm/Neu-Ulm and Friedrichshafen both
have their social media site links high enough on the page, so that the customer do not
have to scroll the page down to find it. Biberach, on the other hand, has its social media site link at the bottom of the page. (Stadt Biberach 2011; Stadt Friedricshafen
2011; Ulm/ Neu-Ulm 2011.)
I think that people will notice the link easier, if it can be seen right away after opening
the page. Not everyone scrolls the page down if they are not interested in the whole
page. I think the link should be easy to find, so that people can begin following the
company as soon as they have joined the social media. For the city of Ravensburg I
suggest to design these links to be on the main homepage on the right or left, but not
on the bottom of the page.
4.2 Engage your customers
Engaging customers has been discussed by at least Meyerson (2010) and Sahlin and
Zimmerman (2010). On their opinion one of the biggest mistakes that the companies
using social media make nowadays is that they take old-time marketing methods into
the new world of social media. Many companies see that social media is a place to
market with sales letters and traditional strategies. The problem is that those strategies
are not social. It is not enough to just show the products, people must be let get to
know you. By doing this, people begin to trust the company and choose it over thousands of others in the same business. People begin to think that the company is the
expert and become its customer. (Meyerson 2010, 108-110.)
11
It is often easier to sign up for an online community than to stay active in it. The customers will soon notice if the company’s participation is missing and may decide it is
not worth their time. Therefore the company should an active participant, not only its
salesman. In order to keep people interested and to follow the company in social media, they need to be engaged. Sometimes the best way to keep customers engaged is
simply to give them a topic on which they have plenty of opinions. Sometimes it is not
necessary to comment often, it is needed only just watch and observe. As people want
everything to be fast, simple and effective, the web page should not be too difficult to
use. (Meyerson 2010, 89; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 94-95.)
At the end of each post, the opinions of the readers can be asked by posting openended questions. Simple yes-or-no answers should be avoided. A good way to get
opinions is just by asking simple questions such as: What do you think about this
topic? What ideas do you have for this topic? Sending a quiz to the pages can also be
helpful. By giving the customers options where to go now or where they can find further information, there should not be too many options. It will only confuse them and
for example a link saying “Click here to see more” is better option. (Meyerson 2010,
114-115; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 94-95.)
Fans need to know that they are important. When answering the customers for the
company, the important thing is to remember to stay professional. There is no need to
answer every comment, but only the ones which are important and which can somehow create further conversation or be helpful. People who provide feedback need the
answer, because they are looking for an acknowledgment. Sometimes negative comments also need an answer to fix a problem, or to make the products better. Inappropriate comment can be removed but removing negative or critical comments could end
the conversation too quickly. Sometimes the simplest posts are the best. Sometimes
readers need only straightforward information. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 95.)
4.3 Advantages and risks
One of the best things about Facebook, Twitter and YouTube is that they are free.
Joining the sites and spending time there will not cost anything. However, some of the
applications on Facebook, for example some better games may cost for the user. On
12
YouTube, advertising on other videos or downloading specific applications are
chargeable. In addition to those, the only expenses can come from hiring someone to
update these pages or from buying an Internet connection or a computer. These social
media sites offer very good opportunities for marketing and getting more customers
because they are free. However, in order to get new customers it needs to be learned
how to use the social media. (Facebook © 2011; Twitter ©, 2011; YouTube LLC ©,
2011.)
Security is always an issue when it comes to storing information on the Internet. Because the Internet is a network open to everyone, the main threats it poses are hackers
and viruses. Especially commercial users need privacy and security, two qualities that
are difficult to be incorporated into an open network. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube
have their own security systems. They are all good, and the personal information is
well protected. It is always possible to choose who can see shared information. In addition, many outside applications ask for a permission to use the data. Any of these
sites do not ask for any of the secret personal information, such as credit card numbers
for example, so there is no need to be afraid of someone getting some of the personal
information. It is possible to choose which information to share, which gives the possibility to leave out all the most personal and sensitive information. (Cairncross 2001,
81; Facebook © 2011; Twitter ©, 2011; YouTube LLC ©, 2011.)
The threats from hackers and viruses and the costs of keeping them away are both
growing rapidly. Hackers can hack into any data and steal information. Viruses are
programs that can disable a computer or destroy data. In Facebook, Twitter or YouTube hackers often steal a profile to make fun of it. Some people share personal information about themselves, which hackers then use for their own purposes. To avoid
hackers, you should never open suspicious emails or messages you get on Facebook.
Viruses can be caught basically anywhere. Even you can have a virus on your computer without knowing it, and if it gets to your social media web site, someone visiting
it can also get the virus. Luckily, a good security system will save your computer form
most viruses. (Facebook © 2011; Twitter ©, 2011; YouTube LLC ©, 2011.)
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Flaming, spams and trolls are not exactly a threat, but they can become very annoying
at some point. A flame is a post designed to do nothing else than incite hated reactions.
They often cause emotional discussions about things that people are especially passionate about, such as sports, politics, or religion. A spam is a message sent to everyone, and it does not matter whether the receivers are interested in the topic or not. A
spam is often some kind of advertisement, a sale offer, or a chain letter. A troll is a
person, whose only intention on a forum is to annoy people. Trolls like it when people
loose their temper, they need the attention and the emotion. The best way to defeat
trolls is to ignore them. On Facebook, Twitter and YouTube it is possible to block the
users that are annoying, or to report them to the authorities of the page. (Facebook ©
2011; Twitter ©, 2011; YouTube ©, 2011; Zarrella 2010, 157.)
As social media has gained more popularity, it has also become more difficult to gain
visibility among millions of users. The companies have to come up with something
new and interesting all the time to get people’s attention and to stand out. The biggest
downside by far is the amount of time needed to invest in social media to see results. It
is needed to review all the comments and respond to them, as well as to provide new
material. To keep people interested, the company needs to be visible and active all the
time. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 21.)
Being active in social media can take so much time that without self-discipline and a
well-planned schedule that it is easily become so overbooked that other tasks remain
undone. The challenges of Internet marketing are for example unclear responsibilities,
especially without a clear plan, budget problems, without knowing where to invest
money, or the lack of information when it simply is not clear what to do and how.
(Chaffey, Ellis-Chadwick, Mayer & Johnston 2009, 23; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,
21.)
5 FACEBOOK
Facebook is the dominant social networking site and it has become very useful to the
social media marketers (Zarrella 2010, 67). Mark Zuckerberg and his friends Dustin
Moskovitz, Chris Hughes and Eduardo Saverin created Facebook in February 2004.
For the first two years Facebook was available only to colleges. Later, Facebook was
14
opened for everyone and now, everyone over the age 13 may create one personal profile with his/her own first and last name. (Meyerson 2010, 182, 188.)
Since 2006, Facebook has continued to increase its popularity and with its hundreds of
millions of active users and new users joining everyday, Facebook is the second most
trafficked website in the world after Google (Meyerson 2010, 182). Facebook has a
commanding percentage of college students as members. However, now its fastest
growing segment has been users older than 35, and according to recent data, the 35-54
age group has become bigger than the 18-24 age group. (Zarrella 2010, 67.) At least
100 million people log on Facebook every day (Scott Meerman 2010, 282). Facebook
appeals to all age groups, and it is used by rock musicians, school children, Army
moms, and others who want an online presence to communicate with friends or to start
a business in Facebook (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 395).
Twitter is known for the possibility to post information that will find the followers
fast. However, to post longer information it is needed to find something else. Facebook enables to do both, post fast and post a lot. In Facebook it is possible to create a
personal Profile, a Fan Page, Groups and Events, as well as to post photos and videos.
In addition, it gives for example the ability to sync them with a blog and Twitter.
Facebook is the largest photo-sharing platform on the Internet. (Meyerson 2010, 183.)
Many companies are on Facebook, and Facebook allows them to create public profiles
that have many of the same features as a normal user’s profile (Sahlin &Zimmerman
2010, 395; Zarrella 2010, 67). Now, it is also possible access Facebook via a mobile
phone by using the Facebook Mobile application which allows sending the messages
and uploading the photos and videos. It is also possible to use Facebook by just signing in on a mobile phone if you it has an Internet connection. (Facebook © 2011a.
Zarrella & Zarrella 2011, 47)
5.1 How to build a large and loyal following
This chapter is based on the speculations of Meyerson (2010) about which are the best
way to build a large and loyal following. His main point is that it is a good idea to
choose the one profitable area of business that the company is passionate about, and to
15
lead with that. When focusing on the quality, the quantity will follow. (Meyerson
2010, 191, 193.)
Building a large and loyal following can be done in many different ways depending on
the person’s goals. Here are some of the basic rules or suggestions everyone can use
when creating their own profile and reputation in Facebook. Every time when using
Facebook, have to be careful, because it is unknown who might be observing the updates, posts and photos. It often takes only a nanosecond for people to see and decide,
whether a person or company fit their network or not. (Meyerson 2010, 184.)
It is unknown how many users are looking at persons or company’s Profile or Fan
Page. It is ideally to update a Profile and Fan Page at last once a day. This way it is
possible to get more authority and credibility in Facebook. However, overdoing the
links and statuses on Facebook profile is not good. The posted information should be
useful, not blatant advertisement of something completely outside the topic. It is essential to post actively on Facebook, and to have an attractive and active Fan Page.
However, active participation on other social networks, such as Twitter and YouTube,
is also needed. (Meyerson 2010, 184-187, 193.)
5.2 Facebook features
5.2.1 Profile
It is possible for everyone over the age 13 to create a free Facebook profile using their
own first and last name. It is not allowed to use business names, fake names or duplicate accounts in the personal profile. The standard Facebook page is open only to
friends approved by the user. The Facebook allows changing all the settings on the
profile. In the Facebook it is possible to post personal information and invite friends to
view the profile. Everyone can send messages privately or in public by posting something on a friend’s wall. It is also possible to chat online. Whenever someone sends a
message, Facebook will send an email, which says that you got a message. It is possible to turn this setting off. The user and his/her friends can comment on all the information on the walls. All the posts which appear on the wall can be removed by pressing a small “x” on the top right corner of the post. If someone disturbs you often with
16
their posts, you can report this person or post to Facebook keepers. (Haasio 2009, 1720; Meyerson 2010, 188; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 395.)
The compulsory information needed for creating a personal profile are first and last
name, date of birth and an email address. After signing in, it is possible to fill in the
information concerning for example your education and work, personal interests and
activities, hobbies, contact information, (basic information, philosophy, sports, arts
and entertainment,) as well as featured people. It is possible to make all this information visible to all your friends or a larger audience. It is also possible to post photos,
notes, videos, links, and a new feature, questions, on your wall. You can also fill in
“mini bio” box which is located right under your profile picture. There you can write a
short introduction about yourself or post a link in that post. All the friends added to
your friend list will be shown on the left side of the page, under the small “mini bio”
box. You can separate family members and a relationship partner from other friends.
(Facebook © 2011a.)
On the right side of the Profile Page you can see advertisements, upcoming events,
pages recommended for you or people you might know. Facebook will suggest you
people that it thinks you might know, or want to add as a friend. All the friend requests, messages and notifications you will receive, will be seen on the top left corner
of the screen. On the News Feed page you can see all the posts and updates of your
friends. You can choose to look at either Top News or Most Recent News. On the left
side are all the recently used notifications, friends online, the joined groups, and all
received messages, friend requests and events. (Facebook © 2011a; Haasio 2009, 2326.)
If you have a Gmail, Yahoo! or another free email service, all you have to do is type in
your email address and password on the Find Friends page. Then Facebook will find
you all your friends in Facebook who are using email address added to your contacts.
Click the “Add as Friend” link next to anyone you want to add as friend. It is possible
to have up to 5,000 friends on a personal profile. After adding friends, it is also always
possible to remove them. When you want make some of the information you share
more personal, you can decide which of your friends can see it. For that purpose you
should create some groups and add friends there. When you post something, add pho-
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tos or write on your wall, you can select from your settings which groups can see the
information. (Meyerson 2010, 188; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 400; Zarella & Zarella
2011, 41.)
5.2.2 Fan Page and Groups
An attractive and active Facebook Fan Page is essential for all business. In Facebook
is possible to have an unlimited number of fans, and to send messages to all fans at
once or only to a segment chosen by location, age, or gender. You do not have to approve every person who likes your page. Each time you publish an update such as
status update, photos or videos, on your Fan Page, all these activities will be published
in the News Feed of your fans. This way, more and more people can see these activities and interact with them. Any Facebook user can like your page. The downside of
having a Fan Page is, however, that it is not possible to see the profile of the people
who like it. (Meyerson 2010, 189-190; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 397.)
You can create a Facebook page for a local business, brand, product, organization,
artist, band or a public feature. First, you have to title your Fan Page. Often, the shorter
title the better, because each time you add content to your Fan Page, a long title will
append to each post. If you are creating a page for yourself, use your own name, but if
you are creating a page for your company, use your company’s name. After you getting 100 fans, it is possible to register a unique username at facebook.com/username.
Then you can choose for example your brand name or your company name. At the
beginning, you can get fans by sending them an invitation from your page. If you are
too busy, you can create additional administrators for your page by choosing them
from your fans. (Meyerson 2010, 185; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 404, 437.)
It is always good to have a photo on a profile or a Fan Page. The ideal size for a Fan
Page image is 200px wide by 600px high. There is a small text box area under the
picture. This area should be used strategically to summarize what it is that the company does. The space is for adding a succinct sentence or two, and possibly to include
a call to action or even a link. However, you should not add your whole history and all
personal information in this box. There is a description area in everyone’s information
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settings designed for that purpose. (Meyerson 2010, 194; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,
404.)
By editing the settings you can limit the Fan Page to show only either your posts, or
the posts by your fans, but it is highly recommended to set it to show both. This way
anyone visiting the page can see the both sides of the interaction. If you have a great
number of Fans, it can be easier to set the system to show only the Fan Page posts,
which makes it is easier to view the page. All the comments, taggs, and photo uploads
by the fans will be sent to your email. Using the “Notes” application every time you
make a blog post, your Fan Page automatically updates itself and your fans can read
and comment on the post. It is also possible to adjust the settings to restrict the countries from which users can like the page, or the user’s age. (Meyerson 2010, 196-197;
Scott Meerman 2010, 283; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 410.)
The fans can add their own photos, videos and comments on your wall. When allowing and encouraging the fans to do so, their own content will make them feel that they
are an integral part of your online Facebook community. When you respond actively to
your fans’ comments, questions and ideas, you show them that our company listens to
their customers, takes action and is a part of the community. It is possible to have a
conversation with the fans by using Discussion tab and creating topics to talk about. It
might also be nice to create a special canvas page and a custom tab for anyone who is
not yet a fan of the page. (Meyerson 2010, 196-197; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 462.)
The Facebook Fan Page is at the moment the only feature fully indexed by Google.
This means that: “By inserting keyword-rich text throughout your Fan Page and updating regularly, you can create tremendous search engine optimization.” After creating a
Fan Page it is good to make your entire target market aware that they can find you in
Facebook now. At first you should get the customers’ attention and make them feel
that they are at the right place. You should also inspire them to become your fan and
later try to engage them with your page. In addition, if you keep up their interest, then
they keep coming back. (Meyerson 2010, 194; Scott Meerman 2010, 283.)
If you are also in Twitter, it might be a good idea to use the Twitter application for a
Fan Page at facebook.com/twitter. After connecting this application to the Facebook
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Fan Page, it is possible to write a post up to 420 characters only. It will automatically
be truncated to around 120 characters and be posted to Twitter with a shortened link
back to the Facebook Fan Page. In order to connect a Facebook account to Twitter, it
is needed to write a Twitter username and password to the Twitter application. After
that you may choose what kind of information from your Facebook page you would
like to share on Twitter. (Meyerson 2010, 190; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 406-407.)
The Facebook “Insights” provides with a method of tacking a business page activity. It
tells how many people like it, and how much interaction they have had with the page.
Insights box can be found on the left side of the page after pressing “Edit Page”. After
that it can be seen how many subscribers the page has, the number of interactions per
post, the breakdown of active fans and much more. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 474475.)
The Groups in Facebook look somewhat the same as the Pages and the Profiles with
the tabbed design wall. Groups have a less commercial spin and the members get together over shared interests, whereas a Fan Page is usually used for business purposes.
Like Events, Groups can also be public, which means that anyone can see the group,
who is in it, and what the members post. Groups can also be closed, which means that
anyone can see the group and who is in it, but only members can see the posts. In addition groups can be secret, when only the members see the group, who is in it, and what
the members post. Settings for Groups are the same, and you can add the same information to the Group Page as you can to your Fan Page. (Facebook © 2011a; Meyerson
2010, 191.)
5.2.3 Events
“Events” is a very good feature in Facebook for letting people know about upcoming
events. Event can be created almost the same way as a Fan Page, but with less information. It needs only the information about the event, but it is also possible to add the
time, the location, and other more detailed information about the event. The event can
be public, or visible only to invited friends. It is possible to make events open to everyone or just to a selected group, and whenever someone from non-selected group
wants to attend the event, he/she has to ask for promoter’s permission first. When
20
Events are public, everyone can invite their friends to attend them. (Facebook ©
2011a.)
All the friends invited to an Event will get the invitation and they can choose, are they
attending, not attending or maybe attending. This way it is seen who would like to
attend the event, although the number of participants on the Facebook Events is
probably not the same as the number of participants in reality. Facebook users can
comment on as if it was an event like any other page, and they can also post videos,
photos, and links to it. Whenever you need to inform all your quests about your event,
it is possible to send a personal message to all guests. The event will look better with a
picture. It can be done the same way as with any other page. (Facebook © 2011a.)
5.2.4 Photos and Videos
Facebook is the leading photo sharing platform in the world, and the more photos and
videos are added to the profile and the Fan Page, the better. Fans should also be encouraged to add their own photos. Photo albums can be created and made visible only
to the chosen friends. Uploaded images can be in GIF, JPEG, or PNG format. When
uploading photos, the Facebook Photo Uploader allows uploading multiple images,
but for that the user must have Java installed on his/her computer. If someone does not
have Java, they need to click the link “Try the basic uploader”. After uploading the
photos the cover, order of the photos, and add descriptions and tags to the photos can
be changed. (Facebook © 2011a; Meyerson 2010, 191; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,
422, 425.)
The own videos on Facebook have to be smaller than 1024MB and less than 20 minutes long. Uploading a video can sometimes take some time. It is possible to add the
names of people in the video and enter a title or a description. It is also possible to
post own photos or videos from other web sites. However, for example not all videos
from YouTube can visible to all the friends from other countries due to the copyright
issues of the music on the video or the video itself. (Meyerson 2010, 191; Sahlin &
Zimmerman 2010, 428; YouTube LLC ©, 2011a.)
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5.2.5 News Feed
News Feed is one of the most powerful features in Facebook. All the activities which
are shown in a News Feed are the activities of all the friends. In addition, all the activities on a profile will be shown in the News Feed of all hand-picked friends. News
Feed is seen right after logging in Facebook. It will usually show the Top News first.
These are news that all the friends have interacted with the most. After clicking a link
“Most Recent” it will show all the activities of the friends. In Most Recent can be chosen to see, for example, only the status updates, the photos or the links. If something
that some of the friends have posted on the News Feed is pleasing, it can be shared
either on the own wall, on a friend’s wall or in a group, or send it as a private message
by clicking a small link under the post. Then it will say on the own wall that it is published it via the friend who originally posted it on his/her wall. (Facebook © 2011a;
Meyerson 2010, 194.)
5.2.6 Ads and Applications
When you promote a Page or Event you have created on Facebook, you have the opportunity to show social endorsements in your ad, making them more personally appealing and relevant to your audience. It is shown as an ad with information about the
viewer’s friends, who have engaged with the Facebook Page, event, application or ad.
For example, after creating a Facebook Event for a sale or promotion, customers will
be able to get to the sale directly from an ad. If a viewer's friend has engaged with the
event, the viewer will see which of his friends are attending. If someone likes the
Facebook Page, a story will appear in the News Feed, where his/her friends will also
see it. (Facebook © 2011a.)
Facebook presents four main steps to create an ad: First identify the goals. Second,
define who will be searched with an ad. Third, create an ad and set a budget, and
fourth, Facebook's advertising policies and an ad approval process needs to be accepted. The most effective ad campaigns focus on just one goal at a time. Depending
on a marketing objective, Facebook Ads offer specific ad types to promote an external
website, a Facebook Application, a Facebook Page or a Facebook Event. Many Facebook Ad types have a "Like" link. By clicking on the "Like" link, users are able to
22
express their opinion about the business or organization and share it with their friends.
The "Like" button will only appear in the ad if Facebook Page, Application, or Event
are promoted. The "X" in the top right corner of the ad allows users to give a quick
and easy feedback about on ads they see. The Facebook administrators take this feedback into account as they continue to improve this advertising system. (Facebook ©
2011a.)
Facebook offers a great selection of applications, which are very appealing and useful
for both personal and professional use. Facebook has the following kinds of applications: business, education, entertainment, friends & family, friends, games, just for
fun, lifestyle, sports, and utilities. Some of the applications are offered by Facebook,
such as Photos and Notes, whereas some of them are made by users. Users can, for
example, create tests or enquiries connected to those sectors or something simple, such
as daily horoscopes. You can explore the applications to see which would be suited for
your business page. It can be done by clicking “Edit Page”, and then scrolling down to
the bottom of the page. Then, after clicking Browse More in the More Applications
section it is possible to find and add applications to the page. Everyone can create an
application. Many applications can be posted to the profile without doing anything
else, but some of them will ask for some of the information in order to work properly.
(Facebook © 2011a; Meyerson 2010, 191; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 465-466;
Zarrella & Zarrella 2011, 43.)
5.2.7 Privacy
There is a widespread fear of privacy violations when it comes to using social networks. Fortunately, Facebook has the most granular privacy settings of all social networks. It says on Facebook (2011) that: “Facebook has been awarded TRUSTe's Privacy Seal signifying that this privacy policy and these practices have been reviewed by
TRUSTe for compliance with TRUSTe's program.” Facebook never shares personal
information with its advertisers. Facebook's ad targeting is done completely anonymously. If advertisers choose demographic targeting for their ads, Facebook automatically matches those ads to the appropriate audience. Advertisers only receive anonymous data reports. (Facebook © 2011a.)
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The privacy settings you choose allow you to control which people and applications
can see your information. You can share your information with friends, friends of
friends or everyone. The settings can be customized or it is possible to use recommended setting set up by Facebook. With "Everyone" you can share information with
a larger audience, which means everyone who is registered in Facebook. "Friends of
Friends" are all friends of the friends you have added. "Friends Only" are the people
you interact with directly and are added as friends. (Facebook © 2011a.)
You can control who can see all the content you post on a day-to-day basis, such as
status updates, photos and videos. This also includes some things you share about
yourself, such as your birthday and contact information, and content others share about
you, such comments on your posts, and the photos and videos you have been tagged
in. The name, profile picture, gender, networks and username are available to everyone because this info is essential when connecting with your friends and family.
(Facebook © 2011a.)
The Applications can only see the information already made visible to everyone. For
more information, the applications have to ask for permission for each piece of information, and it can only be information that is needed for them to work. It is possible to
view all applications, remove any of them, or turn off a platform completely. This
however, means that it is not possible to use any platform applications or websites,
and Facebook will not share your information with them. People can be blocked completely from interacting or seeing any information. The user can ignore application
invites from friends, and see a list of the applications that the user have blocked from
accessing his/her information and contacting him/her. (Facebook © 2011a; Haasio
2009, 65-67.)
5.3 Example cities
Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing has only a little information about the city on its information page. It includes an address which acts as a link to the Bing search engine,
where you can see the location of Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing. The location is also
shown as a map on the info page, and after clicking it, the whole map will become
visible on the page. Other information on this page are websites, their phone number,
24
open hours, email address, and some information about the company itself. (Facebook
© 2011b.)
Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing has chosen not to allow its fans to post anything except comments on the wall. This strategy may work, if you only want to give away
information about yourself and not have videos, photos, or notes posted on your wall.
Whenever some of the city’s fans want to find some information, they do not have to
scroll through all the unrelated videos and notes. They only share information about
what will happen and when. Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing has several albums with
photos of the city and events that have been held there. You can like and comment all
of them. As a profile photo they have a photo of the city, which always works if you
have a Facebook Page for a city. Under the profile photo, in the menu list, they have
links to their wall, their Facebook info, friend activity, photos, events and notes. These
are the basic links which everyone has, if they will not change their settings. (Facebook © 2011b.)
Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing posts a link with every comment it writes. This gives
the fans an option of where to go for further information. They have a few notes where
they have for example written all the information about some upcoming event. This is
one way to give the followers more information. Friedrichshafen Stadtmarketing has
several pages it likes, and all of them are somehow related to the city. For example the
Zeppelin Museum has its own page. Liking the pages of the companies in your city
can make all of them visible more easily. (Facebook © 2011b.)
Stadt Biberach an der Riß has only some basic information about the city on their information page. The page also includes an address which acts as a link to the Bing
search engine and a map where you can click to location better. Other information they
have on their page is their telephone number, the address to their web site, their open
hours, and email address. They do not have any information about the city on the information page or in the small mini-bio under the profile picture. You can find all the
information about the city by clicking the small link on the left, under the profile picture. There they have a lot of basic information about the city and a photo, which you
can turn into a video about the city by clicking it. Under the profile photo, in menu
25
list, they have links to their wall, Facebook info, friend activity, their own info, Twitter page, YouTube page, photos, discussions and events. (Facebook © 2011c.)
Stadt Biberach an der Riß allows posting comments, links and photos on the wall. All
the comments are about upcoming events in the city. As a profile picture the city has
its coat of arms. The city has one photo album where you can find photos of the city.
So far it has no pages it likes, but a few events have been created. All the posts also
include a direct link to further information. Stadt Biberach an der Riß joined Facebook
only recently, which may be the reason why it does not have that many activities going
on. (Facebook © 2011c.)
Ulm/Neu-Ulm Touristik GmbH also has the same basic information as the two other
above-mentioned cities. Some basic information about the city is also included in
there. The page allows posting comments, links, photos and videos on the wall. All the
posts are about what will happen in the city, about where it will happen and when. The
city has a few photo albums with photos of the city and events that have happened in
there. Some of the fans have also tagged Ulm/Neu-Ulm Touristik GmbH in some of
their photos. Under the profile photo, in menu list, they have links to their wall, Facebook info, friend activity, photos, discussions, reviews and events. (Facebook ©
2011d.)
Ulm/Neu-Ulm Touristik GmbH likes several pages, and most of them are other companies from the same city. Some of the pages are events, opinions or the pages of other
companies. All the posts also include direct links to more information, and they have
also created a few events. You can like and comment all the posts and photos. (Facebook © 2011d.)
For the city of Ravensburg I think the best option will be to create a Fan Page, not a
Profile. Profile is more for an individual person when a Fan Page is more for the companies and the marketing purposes. I recommend that the Ravensburg Tourist Information should let its fans to post on the Fan Page. Every time fans upload photos and
videos to the Fan Page and tag themselves, that photo or video will be posted to the
fans’ profiles and their friends’ News Feed, creating vital visibility for the Fan Page in
the process. If Ravensburg will get so much popularity that it will become hard to fol-
26
low all the comments, the city can easily limit what their fans can post. I like the idea
of the link to a Bing search engine. This way fans can see the location directly from
the page and they do not have to try to find it themselves. The photos and information
with a homepage link are for me really important features which should be in every
Fan Page.
6 TWITTER
In 2004, a group of people created an organizational tool called the “TXTmob” that
allowed communicating via short text messages, such as SMS, which you can send
from mobile phones. Two years later, in 2006, the board members of Odeo decided to
“reboot” their business, and Jack Dorsey proposed an SMS broadcast system similar
to, and inspired by the TXTmob. This way Twitter was established in March 2006.
Later the same year the service reached its first tipping point, as usage spiked from
20,000 messages per day up to 60,000 messages per day. Thousands of people used
Twitter to find one another and to comment on panel sessions in real time. In May
2007, 111 microblogging systems were in operation, but Twitter is by far the most
popular today. (Zarrella 2010, 33.)
Microblogging is a form of blogging that limits the size of each post. In Twitter, updates can contain only 140 characters. This limitation has created a set of features,
protocols and behaviour that are unique to the medium. Twitter began to become
popular in the first half of 2009 as a result of its high-profile celebrity members. Most
companies should be in Twitter. It is easy, it requires only a little investment of time,
and it can quickly prove worthwhile in increased sales and consumer insight. Twitter
can be used to announce offers or an event, to promote new blog posts, or to keep
readers updated with links to important new stories. (Zarrella 2010, 31.)
Twitter can facilitate customer relations because companies post information about
their products, solve problems, provide customer service, and more, which can lead to
increased sales. A Twitter presence can also be used also to squelch false rumours.
This way it also helps the company to avoid bad customer relations. Take some time
to watch the posts of the people or businesses you are following. This may give you an
27
idea of what people in your industry are saying. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 320,
332.)
6.1 Getting started
One of the best qualities at Twitter’s is its simplicity even though the service now has
several of additional tools and ads-ones, it still resembles nothing more than a way of
describing what you are doing in no more than 140 characters. Another good quality is
its speed. After sending one tweet to Twitter, all the followers will be able to read it at
the same time. (Comm 2010, 22.)
Signing-up in Twitter is easy. On the Twitter homepage they only ask for a full name,
email address and password. After signing in, you have to create a username, or use
the one Twitter suggests. A given full name will be visible on a profile, with a username under it. However, the username will be a part of a URL, and it will be visible
whenever the person promotes his/her Twitter page. The username should be one that
is easy to remember and which is somehow related to the person. A random username
or a phrase can be difficult for others to find. (Comm 2010, 33-34; Haavisto 2009, 1213.)
When you search something with the Twitter search engine, use “#” in front of the
word you use. This way Twitter will directly show all the tweets where someone has
mentioned a searched word. This way it is easily to find out what people are talking
about a company or its products. Moreover, when you want people to find your tweets
more easily, use “#” in front of the topic you are talking about. (Sahlin & Zimmerman
2010, 342, 348.)
You should also put some information on your tweets and invite people to respond to
them. Ask questions and give people useful information. Engage your followers. In
order to keep them engaged, you need to keep up conversations and be useful and informative. It is not necessary to tweet only about business. You can also give your
followers information about what is happening behind the scenes. Remember to be
yourself. Make your tweets interesting and funny to follow, retweet messages, and talk
to your followers. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 354.)
28
6.2 Twitter features
6.2.1 Profile
At first a personal profile will be empty. There will be no photo, no followers and no
tweets. At the top right corner of the profile page, you can see information about you;
how many tweets you have made, how many people you are following, how many
people follow you, and all your listed followings. Under that section Twitter will suggest what to do next. Right next to a name there is a profile picture, and under it all the
tweets. At the top of the page it is possible to search people, go to a home or profile
page, send private messages or find someone to follow. The username is at the page on
the right. By clicking it you can go to settings, get help, switch to old version of Twitter, or sign out. (Twitter © 2011a.)
When you create your username, use your own name without spaces. Do not create a
too long username, because it will take much space on a tweet, which means that it
will take away much of a allotted 140 characters per post. In addition, Twitter limits
you to a username fewer than 15 characters. The given email address must be to an
active account. Let people find you in Twitter by using your email address. This way
all the contacts and customers you already have can easily find you. If the is more than
one company, it is possible to set up a Twitter page for all of them. This, however,
requires to have a unique email address for each of them. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,
323-324, 336.)
In the settings email address and username can be changed. In addition, it is possible
to enable geotagging, and much more. Entering a mobile phone number allows other
users to find it and use it. On the applications settings, you can select when you want
Twitter to send a message. For example when ever you get a new follower, Twitter
will automatically send a massage, unless this setting is turned off. Whenever you
change these settings, Twitter will ask you for your password. (Sahlin & Zimmerman
2010, 328-329; Twitter © 2011a.)
The background image can be changed. Twitter gives a selection of 12 background
images, but everyone can also create their own. TweetPages is a design firm that spe-
29
cializes in Twitter backgrounds. It is possible to order a good-looking background
image from Tweet Pages, but naturally, you also have to pay for it. If you want to design your background image yourself just open Photoshop and start designing. Wayne
Sutton has uploaded a free template that anyone can download and use as a foundation
for
their
own
backgrounds.
You
can
download
it
from
Box.net
(www.box.net/shared/lgw2pz4gso). Natalie Jost is giving away many of beautiful
background patterns at TwitterPatterns.com, so you have from where to choose.
(Comm 2010, 55-56, 64-65.)
6.2.2 Tweeting
A tweet is like a status update. You can write up to 140 characters about what is going
on into the text field. Tweets are supposed to describe what are you doing right now,
but they can also include opinions, announcements, and conversations. Anyone who
looks at someone’s profile can see all the tweets. Followers can also see a list of
tweets from everyone they follow. They will also see tweets sent from people they
follow to other people they follow. This allows them to jump into conversations between friends. Twitter makes it also possible for mobile phone users to send and receive updates from their mobile phones. You can protect your tweets, which means
that only your friends can see your tweets. If you are using Twitter for marketing, do
not click this setting on. If people can not see your updates, they will not follow you.
For building your brand and growing your business, you want anyone to see your page.
(Comm 2010, 24-26, 52, 76.)
You can reply to someone’s tweet to make a conversation, or retweet their tweets.
Retweeting means copying someone’s tweet and tweet it yourself, but you must give
credit to the original Twitterer by adding “RT” of “Retweet” together with the username of the original Twitterer to a tweet. You can also add your own words to retweet
or cut some parts out. People will follow the tweets only if they think that they have
information that is worth reading. This is one reason why it is a good idea to answer
questions about your subject, rather than just any question you happen to see. To see
what other people have answered to a tweet of someone you follow, you need to click
the arrow next to the tweet. Then it is possible to see all responses on the right.
(Comm 2010, 107, 97; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 351; Twitter ©, 2011a.)
30
While logged in Twitter, you have to refresh the page all the time to see new tweets
coming to your page. If you want to follow all the tweets in real time, you need
TweetDeck. It is possible to find it at www.tweetdeck.com, and it will show all the
tweets which are coming up in real time. It can be downloaded onto your computer for
free. It is also possible to upload photos, see people’s profiles, and use many more
applications via TweetDeck. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 363.)
Conversations on Twitter are made through “@” replies. When you are replying to a
certain person, include “@username” in the tweet. The username is the name of the
person you are talking to. This way an answer will show up in that person’s Replies
tab. If a tweet starts with an @ sign, only people who are following both you and the
person you tweeted will see the tweet. If you forget the @ sign, the message will be
seen only by your followers, but not by its intended receivers. (Sahlin & Zimmerman
2010, 348; Zarrella 2010, 41.)
You can also send a private message to someone you are following, but only if they
are also following you. Direct messages were a very useful idea once, but now inboxes
have become collections of automated and spam messages. A private message can also
be only 140 characters long. (Comm 2010, 39.)
One of the rules in Twitter is not to spam. When you see someone following several
thousand people but only being followed by a handful, that is a good sign that they are
looking to spam. So if you send a wrong type of message on Twitter, your followers
may stop following you. (Comm 2010, 106.)
You can see what other people are saying about you in Twitter by using the search
engine on the page or TweetBeeb (www.tweetbeeb.com). There you can enter the
keywords that you want to follow. TweetBeeb will search for them and send you an
email every time it comes across a new mention of that term. If you find some bad
press about your company by another Twitter user, you can respond him or her quickly
to fix the problem. If you find some good things about you, retweet the message.
(Comm 2010, 144; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 336.)
31
6.2.3 Following and followers
After creating your account you need to find your followers. The first request Twitter
will make, is to search for the online mail service that you use, such as Hotmail, Gmail
or Yahoo! – to see if someone with the email addresses listed in an address book has
already registered as Twitter account. To find someone to follow, you can click a link
“Who To Follow”. It will show several suggestions and you can browse categories you
are interested in. After finding someone interesting, click the “Follow” button. It is
also possible search for someone by using the “Search engine” by typing names or
email address. (Comm 2010, 35-36; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 324.)
If you start following people in Twitter, or they will follow you, Twitter will send a
message saying who the follower is. This application can be turned off at your application settings. Some of the people you follow will automatically follow you back. If
there is a big gap between the number of people you are following, and the number
who follows you, Twitter will stop you following any more people until you get more
followers. (Comm 2010, 79; Haavisto 2009, 15-16, 40.)
Look at the number of followers who follow people you are following. If someone is
followed buy a large number of users, it often means that this person has something
useful and interesting to say. At the beginning the profile will show that you are following many people but that no one is following you. You will want to have more
followers than the number of people you are following. When you follow many more
people than are following you, it looks like someone in search of party, but when more
people are following you, you are the party. It is possible to “unfollow” the followers
or block and remove them from the list. (Comm 2010, 36-37, 39; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 323-333; Twitter ©, 2011a.)
6.2.4 Online bio and URL
A small online bio about you will appear on the right, under the information about
you. There you should write a small description about yourself. (Twitter © 2011.) You
have to find the things in your life that are interesting to others, and make yourself
appear a professional. Twitter gives only 160 characters for writing an online bio. This
32
part should not be empty. There can be several users in Twitter with the same name as
you. To make it clear to everyone that who you are and what you do, write a small
introduction about yourself and what do you do in this online bio. (Comm 2010, 47;
Scott Meerman 2010, 294.)
The downloaded picture to a Twitter profile will appear very small. The uploaded image can be in GIF, JPG, or PNG format, and the size of the image must be less than
700K. This means you should use a close-up of your face that makes you recognizable.
If you want to upload a photo of yourself where you are shown fully, you will be
hardly recognisable on your profile. Ideally, a face should fill most of the frame and
nothing should be visible from behind. Think carefully about what kind of photo you
post, about what kind of image of yourself you would like to give to everybody.
(Comm 2010, 53-54; Scott Meerman 2010, 295; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 330.)
Twitter’s profile provides space to promote just one web site. It will appear beneath
the name at the right side of the screen. People will click this link to find out who you
are, so it will be a good idea to use your original web site. Do not use shortened URL
in this space; it is more effective to use the whole address. When ever you talk about
your products or try to sell something, it is really important that your followers can
find out where to buy it and read more information about it. You can write only 140
characters on your tweet, so in order to get further information, your followers will
need a place where to find it. (Comm 2010, 46-47.)
6.2.5 Applications and Twitter Analytics
Twitter has several different applications which are possible to add to a profile or
download onto a computer. Some of them are free, whereas some of them cost a little.
In Twitter applications it is possible, for example, to bookmark URLs, share music,
photos and videos, as well as see who of your followers are following you. You can
also connect your Twitter to other social media sites, such as Facebook. (Sahlin &
Zimmerman 2010, 365-367.)
There are several good analytic applications on the Internet that are devoted to Twitter
analytics. To find out what has been going on in your Twitter page, you need to enter
33
your username. Twitter Analyzer, at www.twitteranalyzer.com, tells about your activities on Twitter. You can see for example the number of tweets, the conversations you
have been involved in, the number of times you have been mentioned by others and
the links you tweeted. TweetStats, at http://tweetstats.com, gives graphs showing what
you have been up to on Twitter. TwInfluence, at www.twinfluence.com, measures
your influence on Twitter. Twitterrank is a service that uses the number of incoming
replies to give each Twitterer a score that represents their popularity (Comm 2010,
102; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,384.)
6.2.6 Privacy
When you create a Twitter account, you provide some personal information, such as
your name, username, password, and email address. Some of this information, for example your name and username, is listed publicly on Twitter’s Services, including
your profile page and search results. You can also make some additional information
public, such as a short biography, your location, or a picture. You can also add information such as a mobile phone number for SMS messages, or the content of your address book, so that Twitter can help you find users you know. Twitter may use your
contact information to send information about Services, or for marketing purposes.
(Twitter ©, 2011a.)
Most of the information you provide will be made public. This includes the messages
you Tweet and the metadata provided with Tweets, the lists you create, the people you
follow, the Tweets you mark as favorites or Retweet, and many other bits of information. Twitter almost always makes the information you provide public, but they also
have settings to make the information more private. Your public Tweets are searchable
by many search engines and are immediately delivered via SMS and APIs to a wide
range of users and services. (Twitter ©, 2011a.)
Twitter may share or disclose your information with your consent, for example when
you use a third party web client to access your Twitter account. Twitter engages certain trusted third parties to perform functions and to provide services. They may share
your personal information with these third parties, but only if necessary to make these
functions work. Twitter does not knowingly collect personal information from chil-
34
dren under 13. If a child under 13 shares personal information, Twitter will take action
to remove such information and terminate the child's account. (Twitter ©, 2011a.)
6.3 Example cities
The name of Friedrichshafen in Twitter is Stadtmarketing FN, and its username is
@zeppelinstadt. They use a photo of the city as the background image of the page, and
another photo of the city as a profile picture. Friedrichshafen has a short introduction
of the city under the username. You can see the tweets from @zeppelinstadt quite often, and they are short and simple tweets about what is going to happen in the city.
After every tweet they have put a link for additional information. All these who
@zeppelinstadt is following are people living in those cities. (Twitter © 2011b.)
The name of Biberach in Twitter is Stadt Biberach, and its username is
@stadtbiberach. They use a light coloured picture with their name on it, as the background image, and their coat of arms as their profile picture. They have included two
web sites under their username. You can see tweets by @stadtbiberach almost every
day, and they are also short and simple tweets about what is going to happen in the
city. Almost after every tweet they have put a link for additional information.
@stadtbiberach follows only other companies from Biberach. (Twitter © 2011c.)
The name of Ulm/Neu-Ulm in Twitter is Ulm/Neu-Ulm Touristik and its username is
@Ulm_Touristik. They have a photo of Ulmer Münster on their page and they have
put a few photos of the city to be seen at the background of their profile. Their page
has a short introduction of what they are tweeting about, and the address of the city’s
web page under the username. You can see tweets from @Ulm_Touristik quite often,
and they are short and simple tweets about what is going to happen in the city. After
every tweet they have put a link for additional information. @Ulm_Touristik is following a great number of people. Many of them are other companies from Ulm or
other cities and some people they have chosen to follow. (Twitter © 2011d.)
Twitter is really easy to use and follow. I think that Twitter will be the easies social
media site for Ravensburg to use from all I wrote about. Twitter is good if you can
update your status often enough to keep the followers interested. One tweet can have
35
only 140 characters which will not allow posting too much information. For getting
more information, followers need to click the link which should always be in the end
of the tweet. I think it is good for followers, because they can decide which information is interesting for them and which not. Whenever they find something interesting
they can click the link. If they have some questions it is always possible to send a
tweet. If there are no events coming up in Ravensburg, the city can send a simple
tweet about what they are doing or planning.
7 YOUTUBE
YouTube was estabilished in 2005 by three PayPal employees, Chad Hurley, Steve
Chen and Jawed Karim, and it has become the world’s most popular video destination
and third most visited site on the Internet. Over 40 % of all online videos are watched
on YouTube. Its average number of videos viewed per person also comes in higher
that any of the other video sharing sites. In 2006, Google bought YouTube for $1.65
billion. This is why Google shows you videos in YouTube which match the topic you
are searching for. Now it is also possible to access YouTube from your home entertainment systems via devices such as Apple TV, TiVo, Boxee TV, Wii, and PlayStation 3. You can also record and upload videos directly from your own mobile
phone. It is now possible to link videos and YouTube links in forums and other social
networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. (Meyerson 2010, 231-234.)
YouTube is a trusted video destination where people can subscribe to your content,
comment publicly on your content, and interact with others (Meyerson 2010, 234). It
is possible to comment on other videos, comment on other channels, rate and favourite
videos and create playlists. On a YouTube channel it is possible to see own personal
information, some of which is visible to all, and some of which you can add if you
want to. The channel shows all of your videos, recent activity, subscribers, subscriptions and comments. Here you also have the possibility to add friends, although you
can also see their profile without adding them. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
The homepage will show you the most popular videos of every category. By clicking
the Browse link at the top, you can select the category you like. When you click on the
Music category, you will see the most popular hits of different categories and music
36
charts. Look at the categories that are the type of the video you want to upload and the
type of your business. This way you can find the most suitable category or categories
for your video and then upload it there. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 290.)
7.1 How to create a good video for marketing
You will need to produce useful quality content in order to get subscribers and returning fans. Keep you videos short, under four minutes if possible. Attention spans are
short nowadays. For effective marketing videos, simply tell who you are, what you
have and then just give the call to action and be yourself. Plan what you are doing before doing it. “On the fly” seems more real but honestly, it is much better and affective
to do it without dozens of “ums”, “likes”, and “you knows”. Do your audience a favour, give your message quick run-through before you start recording. If you plan to
make videos without live human beings on camera, be sure to keep things visually
stimulating. It is easy to find images to share without violating copyright, so take time
to find them and use them on your videos. (Meyerson 2010, 238.)
If you want to create a videocast that grabs the attention of potential customers, you
have to bring in your best. The uploaded videos to a hosting service must be in an approved format. The hosting service will compress the video for optimal Web delivery,
so you must send the video in the best quality you can. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010,
281.) How to create a video that can meet all expectations and be at good quality?
Here are some basic rules for success from Sahlin and Zimmerman (2010).
When you are filming your video, capture it to a flash memory card or hard drive
rather than to a cassette tape. This makes it much easier to connect it to the computer.
Capture your video in the MPEG-4 format, because it offers fairly high-quality video
with a small size that is easily viewable also on portable devices. Many sites provide
HD video options which are a bonus if you can capture your video in HD. Record the
stereo sound at 48 Kbps, it also works well on mobile devices. (Sahlin & Zimmerman
2010, 282.)
You must consider the sound quality in your video. If it is possible, use an external
microphone jack. It makes it sound more professional and it gives better quality. It is
37
definitely necessary when shooting video from a far distance. Built-in microphones
easily capture the small sounds around the camera and also a motor noise of recording
and zooming. To avoid unwanted noises, the videos should be recorded in a quiet area.
If you hear a car approaching, stop speaking until the vehicle is gone. In a room, create
a temporary soundproofing by covering windows and noisy equipment. Keep the microphone close to your lips to get a good sound quality, but not too close, because it
will overmodulate. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 282, 284.)
If the video is recorded inside, the background should look good and appropriate. If
someone else is recording the video for you, use a tripod. It will steady the camcorder.
When you are speaking, speak as if to your best friend. You need to be relaxed and
natural. Before you start speaking, drink a glass of water. It will keep the voice steady.
Choose a position wisely and think how much you want to show of yourself on the
video. Look directly at the camera. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 282, 284-285.)
Leave a few of seconds of silence at the beginning of the video. There you can add
your logo and introduction. Put the logo before the introduction, and make them both
the same length. When you finish filming, you need to edit the videocast and delete
any mistakes. After this, render it in a format suitable for the service that will host
your video. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 285-287.)
7.2 YouTube features
7.2.1 Profile
The username you select for yourself when you set up your YouTube account becomes
your profile name. Your profile name is also your YouTube channel. So it means that
your account name, username, profile name, and channel name all mean the same. The
best username hints at and, even contains some of your main nice keywords in it.
(Meyerson 2010, 235.)
YouTube offers some colour combinations for your channel background. You should
customize and organize your cannel so that it will grab the attention of your customers
and build your reputation. Making your channel an inviting and informative hub will
38
allow you to gain subscribers via YouTube to your company’s website. When choosing your photo, choose the one that is professional and gives the image you want it to
give. (Meyerson 2010, 234, 236.)
All that you do in YouTube, will be shown in “Recent Activity” on your channel. You
can control what to show. The most important activities you should show are: uploading a video, commenting on a video, rating or favoriting a video, and subscribing to
another channel. These activities show that you are an active member, which will
make a positive impression on the visitors. (Meyerson 2010, 236.)
By clicking the account name at the top right of the screen you can see several options
where to go or what to do. You can subscribe someone whose videos you like. You
can go to his/her channel and press the Subscribe button. This means that every time
this person uploads new videos, you can see it on your Subscriptions- page. You can
view your history at the History page, where you can see all the videos you have already watched. In “Inbox” you can see all your messages, comments, friend invites,
and video responses. In “Settings” you can change your personal information, privacy
settings, email options, and the information you are sharing. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
7.2.2 Videos
You can upload videos that last no longer than ten minutes or are no larger than 2GB.
If you upload a low-quality video on YouTube, it will look awful. To ensure that you
upload a high-quality video, YouTube recommends HD video that measures 1920 x
1080 pixels. Use data rate of about 1200 Kbps using the MPEG-4 format. You should
also use AAC audio option and render the audio as 2-channel stereo with a sampling
rate of 44.1 kHz. (Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 292.)
Categorize your videos to mach the type of the video you created. Ask for the subscription, the rating, or the act of favoriting or even commenting on your video. All
these activities will tell how popular you video will become. It will not do any harm to
ask, and this way you may get comments more easily. Just use simple phrases like:
“Please, rate my video,” or “Leave a comment to let me know what you think.” When
you get a comment, you will receive an email. Link your videos and YouTube channel
39
on Facebook and Twitter. Always tell your viewers where to go for more information.
Add you homepage site, Facebook or Twitter page on your video or description.
(Meyerson 2010, 239; Sahlin & Zimmerman 2010, 288-289.)
Analyze and try to find the keywords others use in their videos, titles, and tags. You
will need to find keywords you would like to use in your videos and optimize them.
Put your most important keywords in your video’s title, at the front end of the title if
possible. The title of each video should make sense and contain the most basic words
that people are likely to type. Try not to waste tag space on words like “and”, “the”,
and “to”. (Meyerson 2010, 240.)
Insert your website URL in the video using for example video editing software or the
YouTube Annotations tool. Your URL can be added to the beginning, middle, and the
end of your videos, and this will make sure that the people watching your video know
where to find more information about you. YouTube “Annotations” is a way to add
interactive commentary onto your videos. It can be done after you have uploaded your
video in YouTube. You should also hyperlink your URL as the first item in your video
description. This way it will be always visible, even if visitors do not click on the
“more info” link. (Meyerson 2010, 242-243.)
The more active you are the more it will increase your ranking. There are several factors which increase your video rankings. These are: how many subscribers, views and
friends you have, how many comments you have made, how many videos you have
uploaded, how many videos you have on your play lists, and how many inbound links
you have pointing out. One more way to get more rankings is to share your video
links. Share your videos on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. You can
use the “Share” feature to send a video directly from YouTube to social networks, or
send your video directly to someone by email. (Meyerson 2010, 245-246.)
7.2.3 Ads
“YouTube Video Ads” shows a brand's YouTube-hosted videos. On YouTube, it is
possible to
create advertisements
by using the Partner Watch tool, at
http://www.youtube.com/t/advertising_partnerwatch, for the main front page, the front
40
page of each category, or in a video. All YouTube advertisements must follow Community Guidelines set by YouTube and the advertising content policies. All ad units
must also conform to Technical Guidelines. Rich Media Mastheads are the largest ads
on YouTube and some of the largest ads on the Internet. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
7.2.4 YouTube analyses
“YouTube Insight” is a self-service analytics and reporting tool that enables to view
detailed statistics about the audience of the videos. Use video-level data to understand
your audience. You can see with an interactive graphical trend line and a heat map
where your videos have been viewed. You can adjust the period of time display, the
continent, country, or state. You can also see which search terms on YouTube or
Google led the user to your video, which related videos led to your discovery, or
which websites embed your videos. The tool will also show the age and gender of your
audience. The "Hot Spot" feature tells you which parts of your video are hot and which
are cold. In addition, you can see if there is a point in your video which makes viewers
drop off. You will also see how many times viewers rate, favorite, or comment on
your videos. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
7.2.5 Privacy
The Privacy Policy in YouTube is the same as in Google, because YouTube is part of
the Google service. Google has five privacy principles, which I found at the privacy
page on YouTube (2011). They describe how they approach privacy and user information across all of their products:
1. Use information to provide our users with valuable products and services.
2. Develop products that reflect strong privacy standards and practices.
3. Make the collection of personal information transparent.
4. Give users meaningful choices to protect their privacy.
5. Be a responsible steward of the information we hold. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
Google has also created some privacy settings specifically for YouTube. You can
watch videos and contact YouTube Help Center on YouTube without having a YouTube or Google Account. For uploading videos, posting comments, flagging videos, or
41
watching restricted videos, you need a YouTube or Google Account. The information
they ask when you create an account, including your email address and a password, is
used for protecting your account from unauthorized access. When you use YouTube, it
records information about your usage of the site, such as the channels, groups and favourites you subscribe to, the information you display about yourself and the information you click on in YouTube. Any personal information or video that you have submitted online, may be collected and used by others. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
If you submit personal information to YouTube, it may use that information to operate, maintain, and improve the features and functionality of YouTube, as well as to
process any flagging activity or other communication you send. YouTube do not use
your email address or other personal information to send commercial or marketing
messages without your consent, but they may use your email address without further
consent for non-marketing or administrative purposes. You can also choose how often
YouTube sends you email updates your YouTube Account. YouTube uses cookies,
web beacons, and log file information for example to store information, so that you do
not have to re-enter it during your visit or the next time you visit YouTube, or provide
customized or personalized content or information. (YouTube ©, 2011a.)
When you create a YouTube Account, some information about your YouTube Account and your account activity will be seen by other users. Your YouTube Account
name is displayed to other users when you engage in certain activities on YouTube.
Other users can contact you by leaving a message or commenting on the site. Any
videos that you add on YouTube may be seen via the Internet, other media channels or
other user accounts. You may also choose which personal information you want to
make visible, such as your name, gender, profile picture or other details. (YouTube ©,
2011a.)
7.3 Example cities
Only Stadt Biberach an der Riß has its own YouTube channel. They have posted two
videos. One tells about the city itself, about the possibilities it has to offer, whereas the
other is a video of the life of a white stork with its fledglings. They have used an exciting YouTube canvas as their background image and have only the basic information
42
about their channel visible to all users. The friends they have are mostly other companies in Biberach. They have a few subscribers, and most of them are as their friends.
Their video about the city have been viewed over 3,000 times, and the other video
over 400. The city does not let the viewers to comment on their videos, which in my
opinion is bad. It is possible to get a feedback about the city and video itself by letting
the viewers to comment them. If there is something missing, the city can do more videos which their viewers would like to see. (YouTube ©, 2011b.)
In my opinion Ravensburg should definitely join YouTube channel. I think it is not
enough just to show photos and write some posts in Facebook and Twitter. For example if I would like to know a new city, I would like to see a video about it first. There
is several events going on in Ravensburg around the year and I think that Ravensburg
can easily post several videos about different topics on YouTube. I think it is also important to post all the videos in YouTube also in other social media sites.
8 DISCUSSION
The topic of this thesis was really interesting. The Tourist Information of Ravensburg
let me to decide myself how to do my work. The main topics of my thesis were Facebook, Twitter and YouTube but for me it was also important that the company knows
about customer engaging, importance of the Internet and how they should start with a
social media. Luckily Ravensburg has a university with Media studies, because I found
all the material I needed at the university library. I found books in German and in English, which made my work easier. I have been using Facebook and YouTube for a very
long time so the topic was already familiar to me, and getting all the information I
needed was easy. I only had to learn how to use Twitter, because I have never used it
before.
I also agree that it is very important for companies to join these social media sites because so many people around the world use them every day. This way it is easy to
reach the customers and information will spread extremely fast. While I was reading
all my material, I realized how much all the experts are trying to get companies to join
these sites. I was amazed about how every step at the process was explained in great
detail. You were told what to do as well as why, and in which order to do it. I found a
43
lot of literature about the same topics. I carefully studied them and compared, if the
information was the same. After I read all the literature I went to the websites to see
myself, whether the information I read was correct or not. One or two time I found fail
information. I took the information for the source which in my opinion had the information I think was important for the tourist information of Ravensburg.
As I already wrote, the biggest group of the Internet is the 18-24 age group but in the
Facebook the 35-54 age group has become bigger than the 18-24 age group. The main
goal of the city of Ravensburg is to attract more tourists and I see that the Internet can
be really helpful. Not only students are using the Internet, but also older people and
because of that Ravensburg can easily find new customers for example in Facebook.
In my opinion Facebook will get more visibility than Twitter. Facebook gives more
possibilities and applications than Twitter. Facebook allows posting longer messages,
more and bigger photos and gives the possibility to choose between Group, Fan Page
or Profile. I see a Fan Page better option for Ravensburg because it is possible to have
more people liking it than having friends in a Profile. Fan Page is also specially designed for companies and the companies can register their own name that no one else
can use it. One advantage of the Profile in my opinion is that you have a profile, you
can ask someone to be your friend. When you have a Fan Page, usually someone
should suggest the page for others that they can like it. If it will seem to be hard to get
fans, I can suggest that someone from the tourist information will make a Profile and
suggest the Fan Page of the city to others or the city can have both, a Fan Page and
Profile.
Even if I said that the Facebook can get more visibility than Twitter, I still think that
having a Twitter account will be good. In Twitter you have to send short messages, but
because of that only thing you need to do is to add a link on a tweet that the readers
can get more information. In Twitter I like short tweets also because it is easy to write
them and they reach so many readers in such a short time. In tweet it is easy to write
some small fact or just to say what you are doing at the moment. It does not always
have to be about the business. Also it does not have to be like that in Facebook, but I
think in there people are used to read longer messages with more photos and links. I
44
think that students are using more Facebook than Twitter and to get the attention of
the older people or the other companies, Twitter is a good option.
I think that Ravensburg can get a lot of viewers in YouTube because of their popular
events, like Rutenfest. Making a quality video can be challenging and the city maybe
do not have anyone to do it but I think that even a small videomaterial can be interesting. I have seen couple of videos in YouTube about the events in Ravensburg and
maybe it can be possible for the tourist information to get them that they can post it on
their own YouTube channel. Other option I can think of can be that when you like
someone’s video on YouTube, it appears on your own channel. This way Ravensburg
can have some important videos on its channel.
I hope this work will be useful for the city of Ravensburg in the future. I tried to write
everything as simple as I could and tell all the variations, so they could choose the
ones suitable for them. I wanted this work to help them to join these social media sites
easily and quickly. If you do not know much about them, or if you do not spend much
time in the Internet, it can be really difficult to try doing everything by yourself. Even
though I have been using Facebook for a long time, it can sometimes be difficult to
find the information I am looking for, or to understand how something works.
My suggestions for the future researches are for example same kind of guide book
about other social media tools, like mobile phones. Other suggestion I have will be
that after the tourist information of Ravensburg will create its profiles and have them
for a while, the next research can be about how well they succeeded in their mission
and what they can change or do better. In this research can also be included interviews
and some tests.
45
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