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Facebook Shares Negative Feedback, and More Hot Stories from the Past Week

Regular Advisor

It’s been two weeks since we last checked in on the week's top stories and trends. In that time, Facebook Insights has gotten, well, more insightful. We've also had the trio of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday all contributing to the country's bottom line. That's making people busier than ever, so many of us are looking at the end of the year and hoping we can take some time off. A recent poll asked business owners what happens on social media when they take vacation. Those stories and more — is Google+ really showing signs of life? — are what we're buzzing about this week.   


1. Small Business Saturday 2011 considered a success

Big retailers are celebrating after a record Black Friday and Cyber Monday (heck, even President Obama had a Cyber Monday sale this year), but it appears that during the weekend after Thanksgiving, a large number of Americans were shopping small. Small Business Saturday, an event started by American Express, resulted in increased sales across the country for local independent merchants.


Bottom Line: We did our part for Small Business Saturday, we hope lots of other consumers did so for your business, and we hope this continues throughout the holiday season. If you ask us, Small Business Saturday should be every day.


2. Social proof is the new marketing

Social media has done wonders for word of mouth marketing. Now it's incredibly easy to share your interests, preferences, and activities with others and to influence untold numbers of your friends, family members, and colleagues. Quite simply, people like to follow the lead of others. According to one study, a restaurant increased sales of specific dishes by 13–20% just by highlighting them as “our most popular items." 


Bottom Line: The more your customers, clients, members, and supporters talk about you on social media, the more of an effect it can have on the people in their networks. Deliver a great customer experience, provide great content, encourage check-ins on location-based services like Foursquare. Let the actions of those you come in contact with drive the actions of others.


3. Facebook Insights now shares negative feedback

Facebook has added a new metric to its Insights dashboard that shares when users have either hid a post or given negative feedback on a brand's Page. Not all Page administrators can see this functionality yet (like many new Facebook features, it's being rolled out slowly), and there is no word on when everyone will have access to it.


Bottom Line: While it can sometimes be painful, knowing the not-so-nice things your Facebook fans are saying about you is incredibly helpful because it can encourage positive changes. Hopefully Facebook will make this feature permanent and available to everyone soon.


4. LinkedIn generates twice as many B2B leads as Twitter

According to a new study by marketing automation software provider Pardot, Twitter reigns as the social network of choice for B2B marketers. But LinkedIn is the site that generates the most leads. The study found that 32% of marketers had found leads on LinkedIn, versus blogging (27%) and Twitter (15%)


Bottom Line: Facebook and Twitter may get most of the attention when people talk about social media, but LinkedIn, with its quieter but active network of more than 135 million users, is an effective channel for some more than others. What's working for your B2B?


5. Google+ site traffic sees increase

After months of mixed opinion and low usage, Google+ is starting to show some signs of life. The social network had more than 6.8 million U.S. visits in the week ending November 12. That's a 5% increase compared to the week before, and a 25% increase compared to a month ago, according to Hitwise. The reason for this, at least according to some analysts, is that now that Google+ has more than 40 million users, people are finding more friends and colleagues on the social networking site than they were when it launched last summer.


Bottom Line: Are you on Google+? More importantly, are your customers, clients, members, and supporters? With more people using the site, it may be time to start exploring whether it's worth creating a page there for your business or organization.


6. Can you take a vacation from social media?

Do you let your social media presence go on vacation when the person responsible for it does? According to a SmartPulse poll, 35% of businesses say their social media posting goes on a break when their staffer is away. Perhaps more frightening was this statistic: 17% of employers said "Our social media person doesn't get to take vacations."


Bottom Line: Social media activity is 24/7. You never know when someone will tweet or post about your business or organization. But we're all human and we need a break sometime. Use a tool like HootSuite to pre-schedule social media posts, and then use NutshellMail to stay abreast of what's being said about you, even when you (or your social media person) are on vacation.


What news and trends caught your eye during the past week? Share your thoughts with us here or on our Facebook Page.


Martin Lieberman is Constant Contact's managing editor. He develops blog posts, articles, guides, and more about email marketing, social media marketing, event marketing, and online survey best practices, as well as small business and engagement marketing trends. Martin has more than 15 years of experience writing and editing content for a variety of audiences. Martin's tips, ideas, and solutions help small businesses and organizations build successful customer and member relationships. Follow Martin on Twitter at @martinlieberman.

1 Comment
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Social media are present and future of internet marketing, but blogs and emails can still be of use if implemented properly.