Posts Tagged ‘fail’

Social Wish List: No Thumbnail Image for Facebook Page Link Shares

March 17, 2014 Leave a comment
Facebook Link Share No Thumbnail

Thank you, Facebook, for once again allowing some pages to share links without a thumbnail image.

Note: This post was written before Facebook apparently allowed at least some pages to again post link shares with no thumbnail image. So thank you, Facebook. – Dan

Facebook has undergone a lot of changes in the past year, but one that has stuck a thorn in the side of many people is that pages must post an image when sharing links.

Facebook took away the option to post link shares with no thumbnails last summer for the pages that I manage. And I have been hearing and reading from others that they have lost that option since that time, too.

Whatever, Facebook.

We don’t care if you took it away to make people’s News Feed more visual. We just don’t care. Sometimes, we (as marketers) want to share links that don’t have an image. We know you gave us the option to upload our own, but that’s not always possible or applicable.

So quit acting like a belligerent teenager who’s making incessantly annoying rules in your own bedroom.

Facebook listens

I was planning to post this asking Facebook to bring back the option for pages to post links with no thumbnail image. But Facebook beat me to the punch.

As you can see with the photo that accompanies this post, I have the option to post link shares with no thumbnail image on all the Facebook pages that I manage.

I had not heard that Facebook was bringing this feature back, but I am very thankful that they did.

Let’s face it, Facebook should give the page managers the option to do so. And why not? If the content they share is not ranked highly, let it be so. Maybe marketers will stop sharing them automatically.

But maybe not. Maybe they want to share it because it’s a key part of their strategy.

Either way, thank you for giving us (or some of us, at least) the option to post link shares without mandating that an image accompany the link.

Note: If you manage a Facebook page, leave a comment to tell me if you have this option. Thank you!


Facebook Removes Page Option to Post Link with No Thumbnail

June 17, 2013 4 comments
Posting a Link with No Thumbnail on Facebook

I tried posting a link to my food blog page, A Duo of Chefs. Before Facebook would give an option to use no thumbnail. Now that option is removed.

Facebook has the ability to be outstanding and ever so frustrating, and anything in between, all at once.

It was the frustrated end of the spectrum that I felt recently when I found out Facebook took away the ability to post a link with no thumbnail as a page.

Thumbnails begone

Before, Facebook would give me an option below the thumbnail preview to use no thumbnail. Now that option is gone.

In general, it’s not a big deal. But there are some links that I post that I do not want to use a thumbnail, mostly because the thumbnail options that populate on Facebook don’t have anything to do with the link that I want to post.

Personal account

However, on my personal account, I can still choose to post a link without a thumbnail. This change seems to affect only pages that I manage.

There are other options to post links without thumbnails. The one that I have used is Hootsuite.

Your reaction: Have you seen this change? What do you think of it?

Categories: marketing, social media Tags: ,

Customer Service Case Study: Jimmy John’s

April 1, 2013 Leave a comment

Jimmy John's(UPDATE: 10:22 a.m. 4/1/13 below)

Yes, I have a food blog, and yes, that means I love to cook at home a lot.

But sometimes I’m tired and worn out and just want a quick meal without work. So I rely on a few nearby restaurants.

Jimmy John’s is one of them. And, after the service they gave us when we ordered from them last week, they won’t be included any more.

Freaky fail

The bad service started when my wife called our order in. The employee did not ask her how she wanted to pay. My wife had to call back to pay by credit card. The employee did not say “Thank you” or “Bye”; she simply hung up.

We have called this particular Jimmy John’s location to place an order before, and sometimes we have our food within 10 or 15 minutes. Freaky fast, indeed.

A long, long wait

But this time was different. In fact, my wife placed the order just before an NCAA March Madness game tipped off. By the time the game had reached halftime (20 minutes of game time plus multiple play stoppages), we still did not have our food.

After waiting for 45 minutes for our food, my wife went to call back Jimmy John’s to complain. Just as she was placing the call, the delivery driver called to inquire about directions. He was close but on the wrong side of a main road. And, for some reason, he thought he was delivering to a business.

We thought this was odd considering we have ordered before and had no hiccups in delivery service.

After we pointed the driver in the correct direction, he arrived about 10 to 15 minutes later. Considering where he said he was when he called, it should not have taken more than 5.

The trouble with money

When the driver arrived, the receipt said $3.62 instead of $11.50, which is what our order cost. We thought that was Jimmy John’s giving us a discount for their service.

My wife signed the receipt and sent the driver on his way.

No sooner had she set the food on the counter when the doorbell rang again.

It was the driver, and he said that the order had been rung up incorrectly and that we owed more money. After a bit of back and forth, my wife signed the receipt for $11.50.

If a restaurant undercharges a customer by accident, and the customer signs the receipt, shouldn’t the business should absorb the undercharged amount? We think so, yet the driver insisted we pay the full $11.50.

Managing expectations?

After all of this, my wife called the store and spoke with the manager. He said the service was not good because he had new employees, and he would speak with them about their performance.

What we expected was for the manager to say he would charge us just the $3.62 or some other similar recompense.

She also emailed a complaint to the corporate email account. We have not heard back yet, but I will update this post if we do.

(UPDATE 1): Jimmy John’s called my wife in regards to her corporate complaint and will be sending us a $15 gift card and said the service we received was not on par with what they strive to achieve. We appreciate that.

Sound off: Have you ever had customer service so bad that you stopped buying from that business?

Categories: business Tags: ,

Can Users Still Trust Other Google Products?

March 18, 2013 6 comments
The Death of Google Reader

Creative Commons photo by Irish Typepad

As I sit here, most of my Twitter stream and lots of people I am connected with on other networks are complaining about the impending death of Google Reader.

I’m right with them, in spirit at least.

Google has not shown as much support for it as it has for its other products. And it’s become clear after a petition to save Reader that the product has a big and devoted audience.

So it stands to reason: Can users continue to trust other Google products?

Google stalwarts

Make no mistake: There are some products that users can continue to use. Gmail, Google+, Analytics, AdWords and YouTube should all be safe. They’re among the best products or have no true competitors.

But what of others? Blogger, Calendar, Drive. They’re all products I use on a daily basis, but they are certainly other options out there if I lost faith in Google.

Consider in addition that Google ceased AdWords functionality in Feedburner in the past year.

All hail Google+

That Google has pulled support for Reader based on what others perceive as it being in competition with G+ demonstrates to users that Google is not afraid to pull its products, even if the user base is there.

Certainly it is not what it used to be, but based on petitions to save Reader, it’s safe to assume there are lots of people, like me, who use it every day.

How do you feel? Will you continue to use other Google products?

The Walking Dead Guide on How to Not Run a Marketing Campaign

February 4, 2013 Leave a comment

Creative Commons photo courtesy of mensan98th

Walkers are set to stalk television screens across the globe again now that the latest season of AMC’s zombie-rific “The Walking Dead” is back on Sunday, Feb. 10.

And, interestingly enough, there is a lot to learn from the show’s characters. Sure, being equipped for the beginning of the zombpocalypse is one of them, but there’s more, too.

In fact, as marketers, we can learn things from the characters on “The Walking Dead.”

They can show us how not to run a marketing campaign.

Keep it secret

The governor was a major new character in the first part of season 3. And as was seen at the conclusion to the first half of the season, people don’t take too kindly when you keep secrets.

Marketing takeaway: Be open, be vocal. Keeping secrets will not get you points with your target audience, and it certainly won’t with your coworkers.

Go off on your own

Another new character, Michonne, worked with the main group of characters in season 3. But toward the end, she went off on her own, trying to confront someone she did not trust.

Marketing takeaway: Communication is key. Without it, mistakes will be made, and unintended consequences will be unleashed. Don’t think that you know best.

Ignore surroundings

Rick wakes up in the hospital in season 1. Eventually he decides to head to Atlanta. When he gets into the streets of the city, he spots some walkers (the show’s term for zombies). He heads away from them, only to turn a corner straight into a horde of zombies.

Marketing takeaway: Prepare, prepare, prepare. Do your scouting work. And make sure you find takeaways at the end of the campaign.

Remain in fear

When the group in season 2 found Hershel’s farm, life seemed good. But then the group found out about a barn, and that drove some to fear it. Others were cautious or curious about it, a more level-headed approach.

Marketing takeaway: Experiment. Perform multiple tests. Don’t be afraid to fail.

How else do the characters’ actions show us what not to do as marketers?

5 Key Thoughts from the PR + Social Media Summit, #prsms

October 15, 2012 4 comments

Photo courtesy of Gee Ekachai via Instagram

Last week the 4th Annual PR + Social Media Summit was held, and if you weren’t there, well, you were probably following along from home (read: work) at the #prsms hashtag.

Right? Right.

Just in case you didn’t go and weren’t listening on Wednesday, here’s a rundown of 5 key thoughts to take away from the summit.

1. Not Everything is a Social Media Crisis

Augie Ray in his keynote burst some social media bubbles and at the forefront were crises. Not everything that appears as though it’s a crisis will turn out to be one.

As an example, NBC took a lot of heat for its Olympics coverage this summer. The tape delays were probably the most known one, but there were several other public outrages, too.

But NBC ended up garnering its highest ratings for the Olympics, and the network, which forecast itself to lose $200 million in the process, ended up breaking even.

2. Tell Your Story Visually

Gee Ekachai, whose Instagram photo is featured in this post, presented about that social network at the summit.

The main takeaway from her presentation? That visual storytelling is growing and so popular because it can cross language barriers.

(As an aside, I share a lot of pictures of my dogs on Instagram. I was happy to learn that the first photo on that network was of a dog.)

3. “Not Everyone Is Going to Be a Fan of Your Brand.”

I tweeted this quote, but forgot to give credit to its author. And now I can’t remember.

Regardless, it’s an important reminder. As much as anyone involved in social media is fixated on growing a brand, getting new likes and followers, it’s important to remember this.

Some people won’t be swayed and that’s OK. Instead, try to recognize those who love your brand, and give them content and interactions that will continually solidify that feeling.

4. Listening is of the Utmost Importance

“Brands who pay attention, get paid with attention,” said Molly McKenna Jandrain during her breakout session on “Sharing Your Brand Story.”

To me it seems like social listening is not talked about as much as other parts of social media like humanizing, tools to use or metrics to track.

But listening is half of social media — by definition, social media takes two partners, and you have to listen to the other partner to keep the interaction going. If you’re not listening — and even if you are — take time out to see how you can improve in this area.

5. Be an Industry Leader

No, those aren’t words that Nick Symmonds uttered about himself, but he might as well have done so. He’s an industry leader for Olympic athletes.

Nick seized an opportunity this year and sold a space for a tattoo on his shoulder through eBay. Summit sponsor Hanson Dodge Creative won the auction, and the two have a mutually beneficial relationship because of it.

The auction started because Olympic track athletes can show only one logo when running in races, and Nick wanted to bring attention to that and get it changed. He has brought a lot of attention to the issue, and he has found opportunity where none existed, by partnering with Hanson Dodge and growing his personal brand.

That’s what happens when you’re an industry leader.

Read more about the summit

You can read some of my curated recaps on Storify:

And if you still want to read more, I recommend this recap — 3 Takeaways from #PRSMS — from my Twitter friend Abi.

How the NFL Tarnished Its Brand

October 1, 2012 9 comments
Green Bay Packers vs Seattle Seahawks last play

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Dave Hoefler

I did not watch any NFL football this weekend, and I won’t any time soon. I’m a former NFL fan.

Why? Because, in my eyes, the NFL eroded its brand and tarnished its product greatly in the past week.

One week ago

It started one week ago when the Green Bay Packers (my favorite NFL team) traveled to the Seattle Seahawks on Sept. 24.

On the last play of the game, M.D. Jennings of the Packers came away with an interception, but the replacement referees on the field called it a simultaneous catch, awarding the catch to Golden Tate of the Seahawks. With the catch, Seattle won the game.

The play was controversial because it exemplified how inept the replacement referees were at times. And, without argument (I think), it cost the Packers a win.

Hurting the NFL brand

But more importantly, the botched call showed that the NFL was hurting its brand of sports entertainment by having below-standard referees on the field, showing that the outcome of the games can be decided not just by the players on the field.

And I was ready to write a blog post about how that call, and about how the replacement referees, were hurting the NFL’s brand.

But then the NFL came out with a statement Sept. 25 about the game.

In it, NFL officials said it supported the referees in not overturning the call of a simultaneous possession. Notably, however, the statement does not say whether the simultaneous possession call was correct, only that it should not have been overturned.

Quite a nuanced statement, in my eyes.

Say one thing, display another

After the game, some players were decidedly angry. They took to Twitter.

That was arguably the most viral of all tweets about the game that night. And the NFL normally fines players for using profanity like Lang did. But on Sept. 26, the NFL decided not to fine the Packers players.

The NFL fines players when they are in the wrong. It is not hard to reach the conclusion that the NFL does not think the Packers players did anything wrong, and that they are siding with them in believing that Green Bay should have won the game.

Thus the NFL said one thing in its statement — the Seahawks won — and another in its actions — the Packers won.

And that was how the NFL tarnished its brand.

How I’ll come back

The end of the referee lockout was the biggest issue for me before Sept. 25. Reaching a conclusion to the dispute was a big step in the right direction.

It would be nice to hear the NFL apologize for its stances on the final call of the game and on not fining the Packers players for their tweets. But that won’t happen.

Instead, I will come back when NFL officials — I don’t mean the referees — are consistent in their rulings and show respect for the product and the fans, something that was quite lacking in the past week.

How do you think the NFL fared in the past week?

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