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Spoiler Alert: Facebook Fans can be Brutal When it Comes to Spoilers

If you’re a Walking Dead fan like me and access Facebook regularly, you may have seen a post on the Walking Dead’s Facebook page show up in your feed with a major spoiler, possibly before the 11/30/14 show even aired in your time zone. Generally, the social media team for TWD have been great at posting teasers without spoiling episodes for those who haven’t seen it yet. Unfortunately, they jumped the gun with a spoiler post and got to deal with the backlash from angry fans.

I hadn’t seen the episode yet (still haven’t, actually) and I know I was disappointed, but other fans lashed out calling for the person who posted the spoiler to be fired. Posts like this can also cause fans to un-like pages or hide posts to prevent future spoilers, decreasing the page’s fan base. Many posted that the episode had not yet aired in their time zone and was “ruined” by this lapse of judgment or that they unfollowed the page.

Turns out fans can be quite unforgiving...

Turns out fans can be quite unforgiving…

 

Others argued with each other that fans should “know better” than to go on social media before watching the show and that they should know there are going to be spoilers. Unfortunately for many, the spoiler appeared before the episode had aired in most of the world, so even if they had just jumped on Facebook to post “So excited to see what happens in the mid-season finale of the Walking Dead!” there would have been a good chance they would accidentally stumble upon the spoiler post.

Additionally, because of the backlash of so many fans commenting on the post, it increased the engagement rating on the post, thus increasing its reach to a larger audience through Facebook’s algorithm that spreads the post to more viewers because it appears to be of major interest.

As of this posting less than 48 hours later, the spoiler post had 8,474 shares, 403,253 likes and thousands of comments. A new generation of Walking Dead spoiler memes was born and battles over when people should be on Facebook or not were exploding.

While the TWD social media team couldn’t take back the post (although there are rumors the spoiler was quickly removed then re-posted), they acknowledged the backlash immediately and within 24 hours had posted an apology to fans. As of this posting, the apology had more than 281,000 likes, so it seems fans can be forgiving and looking at the AMC and TWD memes in the comments, many decided to just have a sense of humor over the accidental spoiler.

Well done, TWD social media team, well done.

Well done, TWD social media team, well done.

Or did they?

Look at the flowers, AMC...

Look at the flowers, AMC…

This #RIPSpoiler example is an excellent lesson in bouncing back from a social media slip-up. The social media team quickly responded to thousands of upset fans with a sincere apology and almost poke fun at themselves with the #RIPSpoiler hashtag. Additionally, they welcome fans to continue commenting, encouraging more feedback. The way they handled it, it’s hard to stay upset with the team; they just came out, admitted they had inadvertently made a mistake, no harm was intended and that they would be sure to prevent future spoilers like this to occur in the future.

Takeaways:

  • Be very cautious about posting potential spoilers on your page. This can apply to businesses as well. For example, many radio stations will post about TV shows or sporting events and could fall into a similar situation, although on a much smaller scale. But it’s best to always try to keep your fans happy as a general rule of thumb.
  • If you make a mistake, acknowledge it and let your audience know what you will do to fix it. This goes beyond just social media posts, but can be applied to reviews as well. If a customer comments that your company did something unfavorable, acknowledge their comment, clarify the situation politely without pointing blame, and let all those who see it know what you will do in the future to prevent it from happening again. Here’s a great post of how to respond to reviews that goes into much more detail.
  • Engage with your fans. Hopefully you’ll never have to deal with thousands of upset fans, but if you do, let them know they are being heard and that you value their feedback, negative or positive. Ignoring them or focusing only on the positive will only make things worse.
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5 Things You Should Know About Facebook’s New Page Layout (with video)

Starting the week of March 10, 2014, Facebook started rolling out a new layout for pages. They claim the new layout will be more streamlined,making it easier for fans to find the information they’re looking for on your page and also making it easier for page admins to access the tools they use the most.

Behold, the new(est) Facebook page layout!

Behold, the new(est) Facebook page layout! Screenshot from here.

Whether you like it or not, it’s coming. So here’s what’s changing:

1. New Timeline Design: The left column of the page will have your business information that was previously tucked up under your cover photo. Tabs as we know them will be gone and replaced with simpler text-only tabs located below the cover photo. Your timeline will once again be a single column with posts showing up chronologically and all in one place (versus the current setup showing just highlights).

2. Easy Access to Admin Tools: Facebook is adding a “This Week” panel to the right of your cover photo that will give you a basic overview of your page stats and more detailed stats by clicking on the panel. There will also be admin navigation tabs above the cover photo for quick access to the tools you use as well as direct access to your Ads Manager page.

3. Pages to Watch Update: If you haven’t set up your pages to watch, it’s a great feature to keep tabs on what pages of your choosing are up to and how well they’re performing. With this update, the overview tab will show key stats and the posts tab will show the pages’ most engaging posts. Page admins will be notified when their page is added to another page’s watch list, but Facebook does not reveal which page added it so you can do so anonymously.

4. Messages: Messages will now be accessed through the Activity navigation tab above the cover photo as well as through the “This Week” panel.

5. Expanded Content Section: Where before, fans had to click on the small tabs below the cover photo to access your photo album, video, notes and other content, all of this will be expanded and displayed down the left column of the timeline to show more content and make it easier for your fans to view and access the content you want to share. Content will still be available through the text-only tabs under the cover photo, but the expanded view allows for a much more attractive page display.

How do I get the new layout?

On your page, there may be a section just below the Admin Panel and above the cover photo that looks similar to the section below. Click on Join Waitlist to get added. There’s no word yet on how long it will take to get added, but joining the wait list should improve your chances of getting the new layout sooner rather than later.

3-26-2014 5-31-52 PM

Click it! You know you want to!

For more information and detailed page preview screenshots, see Facebook’s news page.

4 Reasons Why You Should Never Buy Likes for Your Facebook Page

Managing a Facebook page is very challenging.  The rules change frequently and keeping your fans engaged is a continually evolving process.  Just getting fans is challenging.  So some Facebook page administers resort to buying likes.

But there’s more to a Facebook page than just the number of its fans.  Facebook pages are about building relationships as an extension of your business so when your fans want or need your product or service, you’re fresh in their mind.  Fake fans won’t buy into your real business.

Here are 4 reasons why you shouldn’t buy Facebook likes:

  1. Buying likes violates Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.  If you get too many likes too quickly without organic methods such as Facebook ads or links from a website, Facebook has spam detection methods of detecting this and can disable your like button or even unpublish your page.
  2. Purchased fans won’t be your customers.  They are for numbers only and many are in different countries or are fake accounts without a real person behind them.  Since the main purpose of having a Facebook page for your business is to build and maintain relationships with customers or potential customers, you are defeating your own primary goal.
  3. Purchased fans will decrease the percentage of real fans who actually see your posts.  Since only a small percentage of your fans see your posts, Facebook decides the percentage based on how many are interacting with your posts (EdgeRank).  Increased interaction increases this percentage and vice versa.  So if your fans aren’t engaged in your posts, Facebook will show fewer fans your posts and chances are many of the fans who do see your posts will be fake.
  4. You can easily get real fans using inexpensive Facebook ads.  Why should you pay to advertise on Facebook?  Because it’s extremely effective.  Facebook offers amazing targeting capabilities to ensure you’re getting the most out of your advertising budget.  And since you set your daily or campaign budget, you can get a lot of likes for a very low amount.  (I got 51 likes for just $25 on one page.)

So while it may be tempting to purchase likes on your Facebook page, in the long run it’s only going to hurt the effectiveness of your page.  Instead, stick with legitimate methods to get real fans so you can build real relationships with them and eventually turn them into real customers.

Recommended Books About Facebook

Don’t forget to check out my book!

Everything I’ve Learned About Facebook: A complete guide on how to create, strategize, manage and promote your Facebook page to increase customer base and brand awareness for any size business

Manage Your Facebook Page in Minutes a Week Using the Scheduling Tool [with VIDEO]

One mistake a lot of business make on their Facebook pages is the obvious “Oops, I haven’t posted for a while so I’m going to make up for it right now” posting snowstorm.  Considering only a small percentage of your fans generally see your posts, this may not be a terrible idea, but for those who do see them, it can get annoying and ultimately, you will lose fans.

As a solution, Facebook has provided tools so you can post what you want when you want to best target your audience.

In the past, I’ve mentioned using Buffer to schedule posts to Twitter.  However, I don’t use it for Facebook because Buffer inserts a tag that the post has been scheduled via the Buffer App.  The whole goal here is to appear that you have someone actively updating the page, so the Buffer tagline shows that you are not and defeats the whole purpose.

The Facebook schedule tool is super easy to use:

After entering a post, click on the clock icon below the status box. Select the date & time you would like your post published.

After entering a post, click on the clock icon below the status box. Select the date & time you would like your post published.

So here are four easy steps to managing your Facebook page in minutes a week:

  1. Find content. On one of the pages I administer, I post a daily trivia question. I don’t actually post these every day; instead, I compile the questions and answers in an Excel spreadsheet and spend maybe 15 minutes every few weeks posting and scheduling. That way, my posts are consistent and I don’t have to interrupt my day to post on a regular basis.  If you have trouble finding content, here’s a handy post about how to generate content easily.
  2. Determine the best posting times. Facebook now offers even more in-depth  so you can determine when your fans are online and post accordingly.  Just click on “Insights” and choose “Posts” then “When Fans are Online” to determine the best posting times.

    Click on Insights > Posts > When Your Fans Are Online to determine the best times to post

    Click on Insights > Posts > When Your Fans Are Online to determine the best times to post

  3. Schedule engaging posts at peak fan time.  Maybe your fans are online outside of business hours.  Schedule your posts when they are most likely to see them.  Obviously if you’re posting for them to contact your business, you’ll want to schedule that post for business hours.  However, for general content, schedule it when your fans are most likely to see it to get the best results.
  4. Set aside 10-20 minutes one day a week to schedule posts.  Maybe Thursdays are a little slower for you. Set aside a few minutes each Thursday to find content and get it scheduled so all you have to do is periodically check on the page throughout the week.

Remember, posting when your fans are online is useless if your posts aren’t engaging.  Continue to check the success of your posts and review your best types of posts using the Facebook Insights tool to ensure you are posting what your fans are interested in seeing.  Also remember that what works today may not work 3 months from now, so continue to monitor your insights and adjust your types of posts for best results.

Recommended Books About Facebook