4 Ways Fitness Brands Can Use Facebook's Open Graph

Today Rose Yao shared on the Facebook Developers Blog some Open Graph success stories in the fitness category. Among the highlights featured include Nike+ RunningLivestrongruntastic,and RunKeeper, among others.

Here are some best practices these apps employ in order to resonate:

#1: Make signing up easy. It's not just fitness apps that use Facebook Login to help drive easier sign-ups from mobile, but they are many cases of them doing it quite well.

#2: Make stories social. Fitness apps should add friend tagging, if it's relevant to their app. Nike gives a good example of this, allowing runners to tag who they're running with. On the whole, stories that tag others are more likely to be engaged with.

#3: Help users share achievements. Facebook offers explicit sharing functionality to Fitness apps (and apps in general), so app users can share milestones and other non-routine activity. RunKeeper is one example of an app using Facebook's explicit sharing API to ask users to post their completed activity, such as a new distance milestone.

#4: Make stories visual. Visual stories can often lead to better Facebook click through rates. Fitness apps can publish stories using the map layout for a more visually compelling narrative.

The Social 6: Stories You Missed This Past Weekend, 8/27/12

Social Media 101: Getting Started On The Top Social Networks - Business 2 Community

Reading this Business to Community piece made me feel like I was reading one of the earlier chapters of my upcoming book Going Social (shameless plug). Really nice set of tips if you're just starting out.

How Congregation Beth Elohim in Park Slope developed a winning social media campaign

I don't normally share Jewish news despite growing up as a Modern Orthodox Jew, but this crosses over into my love for leveraging social platforms to create value. This Clodagh McGowan (great name) on Brooklyn Ink gives great insight as to how the congregation used grassroots support to create a powerful campaign.

Big investors rethinking social media

This San Francisco Chronicle piece outlines how the stock market's treatment of Facebook, Zynga and Groupon has led many Silicon Valley insiders to rethink their investments in social platforms. I believe this to be ultimately a good thing, as investors will really be thinking about what companies are working on initiatives that can be monetized in the near future, versus companies that brag about how many users they have without a clear path towards building impressive revenue numbers.

How Instagram's New Geotagging Feature Can Be Used by Brands

While the title is somewhat misleading in that Instagram has had geotagging for awhile (its Photo Map is truly the new innovation), this article by Allie Snelius outlines some of the opportunities now available to brands.

She's 14, Going on 140 Characters

This New York Times piece really elicited a ton of clicks. It profiles Maude Apatow and her intense Twitter following of 67,000+. Pretty nice profile; I personally loved seeing how her famous director/producer father, Judd, uses Twitter to engage with her.

Barry Diller's InterActive Corp acquires About.com for $300M

Pretty big business move, as Barry Diller’s massive but surprisingly under-the-radar Internet conglomerate InterActiveCorp (IAC) has purchased About.com for $300 million in cash, according to reporting from the New York Times and Mashable.


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The Social 6: 8/25/12 News Roundup

Social media in sustainability: your questions answered

This Guardian piece is a Q&A with Dana Poole, a global digital communications consultant with BP. The answers given here are useful not just for a social media practitioner interested in sustainability, but for anyone involved with social marketing in general.

Storytelling, One Frame at a Time

Want a compelling for how visuals elicit engagement on social platforms? Look no further.

Global communications agency M Booth developed this great Infographic from multiple data sources,which was then shared on Mashable, which I then pinned, and later tweeted. Don't you just love how information spreads these days?

Facebook releases update for iPhone/iPad app, claims it's twice as fast

I'll admit I was late on sharing this news: the new "5.0" version of Facebook's iOS app debuted Thursday on the App Store, debuting to largely solid if not spectacular reviews.

What's wrong with Microsoft's new logo, & how to avoid the same mistakes

Microsoft unveiled its new logo this past week, and many have called it an outright failure. While there's truth in the fact that a logo might have less power for a multinational conglomerate for which most people have quite established views already, it's hard to argue logos simply don't matter. This Entrepreneur piece by Jason Fell outlines what went wrong, and how to avoid those pitfalls yourself.

Multiple People Shot Near Empire State Building

I work a few blocks from the Empire State Building, and yet I found out about the situation via social media. Within minutes, the news of the shooting was seemingly everywhere. Yesterday's shooting was another case study in how quickly journalists need to get the story right, as there's such pressure to be the first to report on details.

Apple v. Samsung verdict, & what it means

As you've probably read, a judge had a $1 Billion+ settlement in favor of Apple in its case against Samsung.  We'll probably be dissecting this case for awhile to come, but Rachel King's ZD Net piece begins to frame how Samsung and other phone manufacturers will have to steer pretty clear of designs and gestures originated by Apple in the future. When you think about it, isn't that better for us consumers?

The Social 6: 8/24/12 News Roundup

As you may know, I’m a voracious reader and tend to share a good deal of news via my social platforms. Here’s a countdown of the top six most important articles I’ve shared in the last day. I curate this top six based on number of retweets, clicks, favorites, and mentions, so you guys are a large part of what ends up listed here .

#6: Nicholas Sparks Beat Box Office Predictions After Social Media Campaign

While this is old news in that The Lucky One came out earlier in the year, Jason Boog of Galleycat shows how author Nicholas Sparks used social media to spark (sorry, I tried to avoid it!) increased word of mouth and box office receipts.

#5: News Corp.'s digital chief, Jonathan Miller (former AOL CEO) is stepping down, as company prepares to split

News Corp.'s Jonathan Miller, who has led its digital efforts for a year years, is stepping down. This is just one of many executive moves since the company announced it would be splitting its traditional publishing business from the company's other properties. Miller's departure is just another sign that News Corp. is going through a pretty significant overhaul.

#4: Facebook Has 44% Fake Followers; Twitter Has 33%

The @facebook account on Twitter's following is 44% fake, and @twitter's number is at 33%. That's according to the new online tool provided by StatusPeople, a social media management company out of London, that looks at a Twitter account's following and estimates its number of fake, inactive, and authentic followers. I've tried this tool, and while I can't (yet) attest to their entire methodology, it's certainly a good place to start. From some of the accounts I've tested already using their tool, it appears that it's at the very least a good tool to get a directional sense of whether or not you have an inactive/fake follower problem.

#3: Mayor Bloomberg & NYC launches digital toolkit for small businesses

Mashable, Google, Tumblr, Weebly have partnered with the City of New York to provide small businesses a digital education program to, essentially, start kicking butt and taking names with respect to their digital aptitude. Rachel Sterne, NYC's Chief Digital Officer, will be teaching the Digital Toolkit's first course on September 20th. All in all, a really cool initiative to give small businesses some of the tools they need to compete effectively.

#2: 7 Ways YouTube Can Grow Its Platform

Is YouTube still one of the top social platforms, and the web brand most associated with video? Absolutely. However, it's important to continuously innovate and address its challenges to stay ahead. In my second piece for Mashable, I outlined ways that YouTube can accomplish just that, some of which are already in the process of being addressed (good for them!).

#1: 3 of 4 CMOs Say Social Media Impacts Sales

This Forbes piece shares results of a Bazaarvoice survey asking 100 members of the CMO Club how they feel about social media. While it's a pretty small sample size, over half of the CMO respondents represent brands with over $1 billion in annual revenue, so it's very interesting -- and important -- to note their results on how social media affects sales.

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The Social 6: Stories You Missed Yesterday, 8/21/12 edition

#6: Internet and Attitude, a Powerful Combination

The NY Times Room for Debate typically has some interesting conversations going on, and this piece by Spencer Ackerman of Wired.com isn't any exception. Nice discussion of Russia's Pussy Riot controversy, and how social platforms like YouTube and Twitter played major parts in the story.

#5: Coca-Cola worried about Ottawa Public Health campaign

Jessica Smith writes in the Metro about a compelling story: some Coca Cola managers in Ottawa have written letters to the city's Mayor, expressing their misgivings over Ottawa Public Health's planned social media campaign about sugar-sweetened beverages. Key takeaway from this piece: just because you can raise social media awareness for your business or cause's issues, doesn't mean your opponents can't use "going social' tactics to respond in kind.

#4: A Hidden Evil of Google Plus

Margie Clayman writes a really nice Business 2 Community article talking about how Google Plus' privacy settings have had a negative impact on Google Analytics, and getting to know your customers better. Kind of interesting how Google's social platform, in some ways, hurts site owners when it comes to going social with customers!

#3: PR and Social Media: A Beautiful Relationship

This Business 2 Community piece was shared my good friends at DKNY on Twitter, letting it reach a pretty sizable audience -- many of which found this pretty interesting! Laura Szatkowski writes from the perspective of a young PR person building a career, and noticing how social media can really benefit a PR career. Worth a read for PR mavens in the making, but also for young people in general.

#2: Here’s Why Zuckerberg Needs to Stay as Facebook’s CEO

This piece by yours truly elicited considerable interest, especially considering how many investors and pundits have looked for reasons why Facebook's stock has sunk so low. Zuckerberg is really not the problem, which I outlined in this piece that a number of you found interesting.

Beyoncé for World Humanitarian Day. Photo: Cliff Watts

#1: For World Humanitarian Day, Beyoncé Helps Makes Social Media History

Did you know World Humanitarian Day was August 19th? I admittedly missed it, and personally, I think it ought to be a bigger deal. MTV News Australia shares news about how Beyoncé collaborated with the United Nations to help raise awareness for World Humanitarian Day, and how social media played a part.

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Here's Why Zuckerberg Needs to Stay as Facebook's CEO

Todd Wasserman just posted an article entitled Should Zuckerberg Resign From CEO Position?, with a poll included. Snapshot in time, here's where results are netting out right now:

  • No way. Everyone needs to chill out.  45.35%  (2,321 votes)
  • Yeah. Sorry, dude, but you're in over your hoodie. 41.91%  (2,145 votes)
  • Not sure.  12.74%  (652 votes)
English: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and...
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, during a European Tour. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To take you back to what inspired Todda's story: an LA Times story quoted investors, including Barry Ritholtz of research firm Fusion IQ and, Chris Whalen, senior managing director at Tangent Capital Partners, among others —who feel that Zuckerberg should stay on in a creative capacity, but that Facebook needs an experienced CEO.

Out of the 5,118 votes cast thus far in the Mashable poll, I'm pretty surprised that almost 42% are asking for him to go. Spoiler alert: I voted no. If Facebook hadn't been given a crazy valuation in the first place, its stock wouldn't have fallen this far. Facebook's long term roadmap shouldn't be all that different from what it was before the company went public.
Would it hurt for the company to find some quick revenue wins? Absolutely. Some small gestures to calm investors could go a long way. But, Facebook's strategy isn't broken; it just needs tweaks. Pressuring Zuckerberg out of the CEO role sends the message that Facebook is going to be reactionary, and no longer a visionary leader -- and exactly the wrong move for Facebook in the long-term.

The Social 6: Key Stories of The Last 24 hours, 8/17/12

iPhone Twenty12 | 57
iPhone Twenty12 | 57 (Photo credit: esharkj)

#6 A $12-Million-A-Month iOS Game? NaturalMotion Has It With CSR Racing

Benchmark Capital-backed NaturalMotion has announced that its high-profile game, CSR Racing, is now surpassing $12 million in monthly revenue. If that’s the case, that would be the most any iOS game has hit to date, and illustrates the potential market opportunity here.

#5 Case Study: Salon Keeps Customers Coming Back With Wacky Rewards

Stephanie Miles tells why salon customers that go to Red 7 Salon keep coming back for more after they receive rewards. Really useful Street Fight article if you run a brick & mortar location.

#4 The Hulu Dilemma: How Private is Your Video Playlist?

While I’m very far from a privacy advocate, in that I personally tend to make things public by default online whenever possible, this article outlines the challenges associated with considering anything private online when it’s stored on a third party’s server. Nancy Scola writes a strong ReadWriteWeb article on how Hulu is dealing with a class action suit relating to privacy, and how your private playlist may be private to your friends, but not to data miners.

#3 HTML5 Gaming Gets Another Contender With Goko's New Platform

Another gaming piece today! HTML5 gaming gets a new cohort of startup contenders. Kim-Mai Cutler delivers a great article on TechCrunch explaining about Goko, a Redwood City-based company that may make it easier for game developers to publish HTML5 games. This looks like a pretty strong platform; I’d recommend keeping an eye on Goko.

#2 Little Black Bag Stows Away $8 Million in Funding for Social Shopping

Another social commerce company, Little Black Bag, has raised $8 million dollars to fund. Tricia Duryee writes for All Things D saying the inspiration came from a Japanese New Year's Day tradition. Yet another sign that social shopping startups are red-hot.

#1 Meet the Guys Who Started Stanford's Facebook in 1999

Jesse Draper posts a video on Mashable from back in the day. Believe it or not, Stanford shut down “The Facebook” in 1999 because of safety precautions. Interesting piece to check out, and wonder if the founders ever think “what if?” I can related: I created smithfacebook.com for my business school, the Robert H. Smith School of Business at University of Maryland, back in 2005/2006 or so – so I can completely empathize and wonder what might have been!

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The Social 6: Key Stories of The Last 24 hours, 8/15/12

#6 Done Deal: 10 Weeks Later, Salesforce.com Owns Buddy Media

Peter Kafka delivers a great article for AllThingsD sharing that Salesforce.com now officially owns Buddy Media. The deal was said to have closed at $750 million. All in all, a pretty quick acquisition as these deals tend to go. Congrats to my friends at Buddy Media for officially being part of the Salesforce family.

#5 Facebook's Instagram Deal Moves One Step Closer: UK's Office Of Fair Trading Gives IT The All-Clear

Speaking of slower acquisitions, Facebook’s Instagram deal is one step closer to being a reality: Ingrid Lunden of TechCrunch explains some of the anti-competitive concerns surrounding the deal. Personally, I can see why any consolidation of social platforms should be closely reviewed.

#4 Mobile Apps Could Be Affected by New COPPA Privacy Rules for Kids

Brian Proffitt writes a great article on ReadWriteWeb explaining why the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act are considering new changes.

#3 How the Second Screen Scored in the Summer Olympics

Mobile media became a huge deal during this years Olympics. John Paul Titlow writes an interesting for ReadWriteWeb telling why, and is a great way of telling what the future holds for mobile event consumption.

#2 Ultimatum to stores: sign pledge not to sell 'trampy' kids clothes or be boycotted

Nick Ralston posts a video and an article on Life & Style about whether or not to sell kids clothes that may be a bit revealing. Inappropriate clothing for children has raised as an issue against Target Australia (*very* loosely affiliated with Target USA), and a grassroots attempt is being made to respond to the store’s decisions.

#1 Dell CEO's Daughter Booted From Twitter for Security Reasons

How annoying would it be for you to spend $2.7 Million to keep your family safe, only to find that the biggest security concern was your own daughter? Even though it was innocuous, Alexa Dell, CEO Michael Dell’s daughter, posted a photo going to Fiji, which could lead to people following her. Zoe Fox writes for Mashable and gives more details to the situation, which sheds some light on the concerns associated with geo-location sharing.


The Social 6: The Weekend Recap, 8/13/12

You know the drill by now: here’s a countdown of the top six most important articles I’ve shared in the last day. I curate this top six based on number of retweets, clicks, favorites, and mentions, so you guys are a large part of what ends up listed here :)

#6 5 Tips to Take Food Photos Good Enough to Eat

I think most people can agree, seeing great pics of food can make you hungry. Samantha Murphy delivers a great piece on Mashable giving you tips on how to take great food photos using your smartphone.

#5 5 Reasons Why Your Social Media Training Will Fail

There are things to always keep in mind so your social media training does not fail. This Business 2 Community piece by Kate Rose gives 5 reasons why training fails, and some tips for making sure this doesn’t happen to you.

#4 Stronger, Faster, Nastier

The Summer Olympics had plenty of viewers and pundits going social, turning to social media and traditional media to criticize Olympians in real-time. Even if you’re not remotely involved in the Olympics, this is a great piece to read to get an understanding of the problems with media scrutiny in 2012 and how to best deal with it.

#3 Funded! Dalton Caldwell’s Twitter alternative App.net reaches $500,000 funding goal

App.net , a “real-time social feed without the ads,” reached its funding goal ahead of time. The approach Dalton Caldwell and his team have taken is commendable: reaching out to users and developers first, with the goal of putting them ahead of advertisers. There’s an alpha available at https://alpha.app.net/global/ if you want to check it out. Great project and worth rooting for.

#2 Paul Ryan Is Gabe From 'The Office'

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI)
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


The most newsworthy story this weekend undoubtedly had to be Mitt Romney's selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate. While there's tons of serious analysis out there, Amanda Wills takes a different approach, and posts a great slideshow illustrating the similarities between Gabe and Paul Ryan. Nice to see that Gabe Lewis is (in a way) finally getting what he's always wanted - a shot at the bigtime. Personally, I've noticed some similarities between Gabe and VP nominee Paul Ryan, so it's nice to see I'm not the only one.

#1 Viewpoint: 11 Reasons a 23-Year-Old Shouldn't Run Your Social Media

Wow. This story sure elicited plenty of feedback and retweets from you guys. I think the provocative title may have helped.

Technology is changing at a rapid pace, sure; however that doesn't mean you must hire a 23 year-old to manage your social media. Hollis Thomases writes for TIME Business and offers some great guidance. Don't be misled by the title of this article; the analysis inside is a serious, thoughtful approach to how a brand should be handling its social strategy.

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The Social 6: Key Stories of The Last 24 hours, 8/10/12

#6 Facebook turns to its army of users to report phising attacks using new public email address

Facebook's success unfortunately makes it a target for phishers and scammers. Matt Brian writes a great article on TheNextWeb explaining how Facebook is turning to its users to cut down on Facebook-related phishing. Solid move for the company to get the rise in phishing under control.

#5 Are RIM and Samsung Ready to Do the Deed?

Richard Adhikari writes a nice article on Ecommerce with details about how Samsung and RIM might be getting in bed together, either through a licensing agreement or flat-out acquisition. In my mind, RIM’s value isn’t going to go up anytime soon, and a deal would be a step in the right direction for the struggling firm.

#4 Where Apple's Boy Genius Went Wrong

During the Olympic coverage, Apple aired three ads that they thought could have helped sales, but they’ve been reportedly pulled from the air pretty quickly. Chris Maxcer delivers a great E-Commerce Times article explaining why the ads were pulled, and how an advertising powerhouse like Apple went wrong.

#3 Chick-fil-A: Stop Trying to Control the Conversation

Another strong E-Commerce Times piece! Christopher J. Bucholtz outlines where Chick-fil-A went wrong in its support of gay marriage. If you’re following my writing or my tweets, you know I think Chick-fil-A is 100000% within its rights to support its brand values, but the shifty way they managed the fiasco from a PR perspective is what really got to me – and many others.

#2 If a Google Employee Dies, Spouse Gets Half Pay for 10 Years

I wrote my upcoming book Going Social based on not just being sociable with your customers, but being good to them in general. When you think about it, some of your most important customers – or constituents – are your employees. This piece outlines how amazingly good Google is to its employees. It’s not just free food and fitness classes anymore: the death benefits extended to employees are pretty impressive. Samantha Murphy of Mashable goes into good detail in this piece.

#1 Pinterest Drops Invites, Now Open to Everyone

This past Wednesday, Pinterest announced they have removed their invite-only strategy towards increasing membership, and are now open to anyone with a pulse. Yet another sign Pinterest is looking to go mainstream in a major way. It will be interesting to see how adoption rates go up – or not – as a result of this move.