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Marketing: Your Friends Are Watching [Wall Street Journal]

This excerpt originally appears here at the Wall Street Journal.

WEEKINIDEASThat “Like” button, it seems, can work two ways.

If a potentially embarrassing product has the popular Facebook button or Twitter icon next to it, consumers are less likely to buy than if the social-media links are missing, two marketing scholars have shown. But if a reputation-enhancing product has the links, consumers are more likely to buy.

In the study, nearly 200 people, ages 16 to 45, rated their likelihood of buying items presented on a mock shopping site. When men considered the acne medicine Clearasil and women looked at Spanx body-shaping underwear, ratings on an “intend to purchase” scale were 25% lower when social-media symbols were present. But when men looked at bike shorts and women at fashionable perfume, the likelihood of buying rose by about the same amount. The icons made consumers act as if they were under surveillance by their social networks, the authors said.

“The ‘Conspicuous Purchase’ Effect,” David Neal and Claudia Townsend, paper presented at the State of Style Conference, New York (February)

Can Pinterest Help Your Job Search? [Mashable]

This article by Sean Weinberg originally appears here at Mashable.com

Sean Weinberg is the COO and co-founder of RezScore, a free web application that reads, analyzes and grades resumes instantly. You can connect with Sean and the RezScore team on Facebook and Twitter.

Just when you thought you had mastered the job search on all social media platforms, along came Pinterest.

You’ve optimized your Facebook and LinkedIn pages and you’ve got the Twesume. Now it’s time to amp up your job search even more by putting your resume onPinterest.

What’s the Big Deal?


For those of you not in-the-know, Pinterest is a social networking site where people can create and share content within the context of visually-oriented pinboards. Its recent explosion in popularity has helped this site expand beyond cute baby/dog/porcupine photos and wedding event planning tips, which are still plentiful. Now, with something in the neighborhood of 6 million users, you’re a fish in a pretty big pond.

Instead of butting heads with the “big three” social media sites, Pinterest complements social media usage by tying into Facebook and Twitter.

Much like Facebook or Twitter, job seekers are using their Pinterest account to share portfolio work, personal content and yes, their resumes.

Apart from the fact that it’s still the hip new thing — and it still requires an invite, though it’s not hard to secure one — Pinterest serves as a new and convenient avenue for job seekers looking to share content. It’s not like a blog that demands attention, and it doesn’t run the risk of having that one obnoxious friend who tags you in photos you don’t remember.

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Branding And How It Works In The Social Media Age [InfoGraphic]

This article originally appears here at aytm.com

Facebook has more than 800 million active users with more than 200 million added in 2011. Twitter now has 100 million active users every month with visitor growth up 60% this year. Social media has become a pervasive part of culture and digital life all around the world. It’s essential that brands understand how their fans and customers interact with them on Facebook and Twitter if they hope to leverage these great platforms and grow their businesses.

To get a better idea of how US consumers are interacting with brands in the social media space, AYTM conducted DIY market research utilizing our online consumer panel and survey tool. The highlights of our discoveries are encapsulated in this infographic.

Branding and Social Media Statistics – How People Are Interacting With Brands Online
Source: AYTM Market Research

Wall Street Journal: The Art of Online Portraiture

This article by CHERYL LU-LIEN TAN originally appears here on the Wall Street Journal Online


Social-media profiles are increasingly important in building your business identity. “It’s a hugely powerful branding tool—and you have to be very strategic about building it,” says Nicole Williams, connection director for LinkedIn.

A key component is the profile picture. The New York City-based Ms. Williams, who primarily splits her time among three social-media sites—Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn—says it is crucial to strike the right tone.

First, you should have a profile picture. LinkedIn research shows that a page with a profile picture is seven times as likely to be viewed as a page without one, she says.

Think of these pictures as the modern-day version of the oil paintings that estate owners once commissioned. The smallest details in them will convey volumes. It’s best, Ms. Williams says, to have your profile picture feature you alone, not your pet or significant other. “Being so strongly identified with your dog or your husband might not be appropriate unless you’re a vet or a marriage counselor and that’s part of your professional image.”

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