Posts Tagged ‘Mike Schaffer’


Rebranding Your Facebook Page

Wednesday, December 28th, 2011

What would you do if you had to start a new Facebook page for your organization and convince all your fans to like a new page? This is the reality for the athletics department of my alma mater, the University of North Dakota (UND). The university is going to stop using the “Fighting Sioux” as its nickname, and so they need to convince the 48,285 fans (and counting) of University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux to “like” UND Sports instead. To date only 2,296 fans have “liked” the new UND Sports page.

This brings up an important, but often forgotten, point about Facebook pages… You need to choose your Facebook page name carefully, because, as I discussed in my BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas post, Facebook Tips for PR Pros, you cannot change the page name once your page has 101+ fans. If UND had used “University of North Dakota (UND) Sports (or Athletics)” or some variation originally, this situation might not be happening. Remember, you can change the “About” and “Company Overview” at any time, so consider using these for more creative names and information.

Diane Thieke, founder, Simply Talk Media and Mike Schaffer, director of social media, iostudio have both recently helped clients make a Facebook page change. Both advocate a well-developed communications strategy, which should include:

  • Clear messaging: Why is a new page needed? What new benefits will it offer?
  • A transition timeline: Allow enough time to communicate the change. This can be as little as eight weeks, for a small fan base, up to six months or more for a large following. It is very important to give an end date for when the old page will no longer be updated, and stick to it.
  • Integrated marketing: Communicate regularly, and often, through multiple channels (email, newsletters, website, etc.) about the transition. You want to reach as much of your fan base as possible to let them know about the page change.
  •  A content strategy: Drive people to your new page. For example, post identical content to both pages until the end date is reached, but gradually phase out content on the old page. Eventually, your new page should offer unique information not available elsewhere. Expanded content, like HD video, pictures and polls, will give the new page more value.
  • A “like” campaign. Consider offering incentives. For example, you can donate $1 for every “like” to charity. Branded swag can help rebuild the emotional connection. Be sure to promote all campaigns across all channels of communication.

Thieke says, “Remember that social media is a conversation. Respond to the comments on the old page and acknowledge how your fans feel, but avoid engaging in arguments. Often, people just want to know they’re being heard.”

Rebranding is never easy. Schaffer confirms, “The key to remember is that the loyalty isn’t to the name, but to the institution.” If the new Facebook page is going to allow fans, students and alumni to gain information and insight to the teams, then they will make the transition. Eventually, the old name will become less important.

Have you had to change Facebook pages for your organization or a client? Can you share some lessons learned and best practices with the BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas readers?

PRSA-NCC: The Changing Landscape of Social Media

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

“I don’t know what Facebook is going to look like a week from now because, you know, we move pretty fast,“ said Andrew Noyes, public policy communications, Facebook, at the National Capital Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America’s (PRSA-NCC) event on the Changing Landscape of Social Media. The tools we use now are ever changing and new tools and platforms are always emerging.

Panelist Ricky Choi, social media strategist for LivingSocial, reminded the audience, “Social media should be visual, personal and conversational.” He noted that social media will be a better marketing tool than email in three to five years and that social media engagement is the sum of interaction and content. Communicators should try to include context without being salesy.

The evolution of the media is happening, but questions remain regarding the best way to translate personal use to the big picture, Noyes reiterated. Choi suggested more education as one possible solution. Facebook is trying to educate younger users on how to be good digital citizens and understand that reputation is important. The social media giant is working with outside thought leaders to encourage people to use their privacy settings effectively. (more…)

Will Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Shorten or Lengthen Your Mobile Leash?

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

Valerie Simon

YoGen Consumer Electronics ShowCommunications underwent a dramatic transformation in the past decade. As Josh Berrnoff noted in his recent Groundswell blog post, in the past 10 years, broadband went from rare to ubiquitous, mobile phone subscriptions reached 270 million (out of 305 million people) and digital video recorders came into 31 million homes. Media became social, with reality television, blogs and social networks turning the tables and providing the audience with a veritable microphone. For public relations professionals, the new media landscape (including the real time web) offers new challenges and opportunities. As we move into 2010, we will continue to see more applications and devices that will help us navigate our way through this new world. Here are a few of the trends we will learn more about this week at the Consumer Electronics Show that I am particularly excited about.

  1. Consolidation My Blackberry serves as phone, camera, watch, alarm clock, and calendar in addition to being my lifeline for email, Twitter and Facebook. I have also been known  to use it as a calculator. If only it could serve as a keycard and control the thermostat and lights in my house, I might stand a better chance of getting out in the morning without forgetting. Successful apps will help you to use technology in a more efficient and convenient manner. Be on the lookout for  technologies such as the  L5 Remote, an accessory and free app that turn any iPhone or iPod touch into a universal remote control. New apps will help you to manage more media, easier and quicker than ever before.
  2. Mobility What is your workday like?  Much of my day at BurrellesLuce is spent in meetings. And let’s face it, sometimes working is not conducive to… well work. Fortunately, as we move into the next decade media smart phones are becoming even smarter, and media will move with you. Consider  Free Mobile TV, vehicles that also serve as Wi-Fi hotspots… you can’t run away from the news. Whether you are working remotely or in a traditional office setting, visiting with clients, or attending a conference, your location cannot be an excuse for missing out on important information.
  3. Connectivity. If you are a communications professional not being connected is simply not longer an option (with the exception of a well deserved vacation, I suppose!) When it comes to staying connected, few things are as frustrating (or frightening) as being on the road or in a meeting and seeing  that the power bar on your Blackberry or laptop has dropped dangerously low. Since I hate packing numerous power cords (Okay, I don’t always remember to pack them), and have found myself in more than one meeting room with limited access to outlets, I was particularly excited to hear about YoGen, a green, universal mobile device charger that generates power with a simple pull and recharges devices in just minutes. One of my Twitter friends, Mike Schaffer, director of social media for Brotman-Winter-Fried Communications, will be helping to unveil the YoGen Charger at CES, so if you are in Las Vegas next week, be sure and stop by booth 4821 N, in the North Hall and say hello for me!

While I believe that these trends will help us to do a better job of managing our work, one of my colleagues pointed out that they may well allow work to manage us. Are these devices a leash that will keep you chained to work, or are they the keys to free you to a more flexible, productive and efficient workstyle? I vote for the latter, but I am curious to hear your thoughts!