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SimpleFeed Screencast – SimpleFeed Adds Google+ Support

February 26, 2015

Today we are announcing that SimpleFeed added support for Google+ into our Social Syndication Hub. While Google+ may not have lived up its lofty expectations as a social network, adding Google+ has long been one of our customers top requests.


Why? Google+ is a major site for community engagement. Marketers can tap into those communities by publishing optimized content to their circles. Even more interesting is that Google puts that content into other Google products, such as Search and Maps. Depending on your business, your presence in those products may be more important than anything social networking related. That is why Google+ has a strong ROI relative to other social networks. The video below walks through some examples.


The Social Syndication Hub is an ideal solution for scaling campaigns on Google+. Most people have multiple Google identities which makes finding and publishing to a specific Google+ page difficult. It is also hard to determine what content will be successful as best practices are still evolving. That makes SimpleFeed’s predictive publishing, which suggests the ideal content to publish, a natural fit. For Channel Partners the SimpleFeed Social Syndication Hub is so easy to use, partners can be set up and publishing in less than one minute.


We will be adding more features to the Social Syndication Hub in coming quarters.


Video – SimpleFeed at the GrowthBeat Conference

September 11, 2014

At the Inaugural GrowthBeat conference earlier last month, I sat down with VentureBeat Reporter, Kia Kokalitcheva for a discussion of Big Data, Predictive Publishing in Social Media and the future of Marketing. After a slow start I get rolling on the value of Social Media for Channel Marketing, Automation and the future. Here is the video.

Data In, Data Out

April 9, 2014

That is the title of new research from Forrester describing future trends in Social Relationship Platforms. The report begins by describing the rather sorry state of social media marketing – only half of marketers are satisfied with the value received from their Facebook and Twitter programs. Forrester finds four major problems – can measure, don’t know what to post, lack people resources and not getting help from vendors. As you can see in the chart from the report’s associated blog post, only 27% would recommend their vendor – a net promoter score of -16.


So what is the solution? In Forrester’s view the path to success is to use “Data In, Data Out, ”SRPs that best pull data into their platforms will innovate social publishing.” We could not agree more. SimpleFeed is please to be one of the six vendors sited as using “Data In, Data Out” models which they expect will “disrupt the entire social space.” The report describes how SimpleFeed helps marketers achieve engagement goals by automating content selection — dynamically publishing social posts that have worked for other affiliates in the past.


We refer to this Data In technology as Predictive Publishing. See the video in our blog post below for a deeper explanation. If you would like to increase your engagement and expand your social footprint, please let us know.

SimpleFeed Predicitive Publishing for Social Explained

March 6, 2014

If you want increased social engagement watch this short video demo on Predictive Publishing from SimpleFeed. It includes a brief explanation of the technology and a visual case study of how one Fortune 100 company drove a 53% increase in Likes, Comments, Shares, and clicks on Facebook.

The SimpleFeed Social Syndication Hub improves engagement by taking the guesswork out of Facebook publishing, automating routine tasks and measuring the results of the program.  Look for more videos on the complete solution soon!

Facebook Paper for Marketers

February 4, 2014

Today Facebook introduced Paper, a mobile news reading application for IOS and Android. Paper combines your Facebook Newsfeed content with bundles of selectable pre-packaged news content to create a super slick mobile news experience. Given Facebook’s scale, access to content of interest, and the quality of the App, marketers need to watch Paper. So let’s take a look.

Choose ContentThe install is very easy. Since I have the Facebook App installed on my iPhone, Paper did not even ask for my Facebook login. Less appreciated is that Facebook sent me a text informing me that I activated “Code Generator,” which was not expected or appreciated. Upon launch Paper plays loud non-optional intro videos. It also displays several animations explaining the functionality were much more useful. You add some content sources and start exploring.

Paper might be more slick than Flipboard, and that is saying something. While Paper has a subset of Flipboard’s content, they have your friend and interest graph which makes things much more relevant. For now at least, there are no ads.



NewsfeedAnimationSo how do you get your content into Paper? Well, you are either in the Newsfeed or you are in the pre-packaged content bundles. The bundles are Facebook Timeline updates from media companies. So unless you are a media company, you need to get people to like your Timeline. Happily, there is a direct link to pages you have liked. Clicking on the Page brings up your content in the Paper interface.




PagesSimpleFeed PagesAt first glance it appears Paper preferences content with images over like/comment/share engagement. Compared to the standard Facebook mobile app, Paper is much more visual, so that makes some sense. Paper also displays more Page content than the standard Facebook app or the Facebook web view. So perhaps they are weeding out corporate content less aggressively with Paper. Or maybe they are just preferencing visual content. In any event, Paper is another reason to publish more content and more images to Facebook.

New Social Media Solutions and New Website

December 3, 2013

SimpleFeed Web SiteIn support of our big announcement last week, we just launched our new web site. It is hard to believe but it’s our first overhaul in four years! At the site we describe the workings of the SimpleFeed Social Syndication Hub and our new focus on Predictive Publishing across web and social channels. There is lots of great new content including case studies on how SimpleFeed customers are using the Social Syndication Hub to expand the distribution of their social content using their partners. Please let us know what you think.

New Wharton Research – Persuasive Content Most Effective on Facebook

November 5, 2013

Today Wharton Professor Kartik Hosanagar held a webinar to discuss new research on Facebook Content Strategies. Professor Hosanager used a data set of 106,316 Facebook Posts from 782 companies.  Those posts were categorized into 16 different content types (humor, philanthropy, product, deal, etc.). They reviewed the 450 million page fan responses to that content to determine content effectiveness for Likes and Comments on Facebook.

The research showed that “persuasive content” is the key to success.

prof“We find that inclusion of persuasive content − like emotional and philanthropic content − increases engagement with a message. We find that informative content − like mentions of prices, availability and product features − reduce engagement when included in messages in isolation, but increase engagement when provided in combination with persuasive attributes.”

Persuasive is a bit of an academic term in this context. They mean content which creates an emotional, trust or logic connection. This is as opposed to “informative” content which discusses product features and prices. Note that the professor clarified in the Q&A that the research is for B-C companies. Informative content for B-B is successful.

To clarify, I asked about content strategies for direct response, such as click/buy. Professor Hosanager appreciated the question as it allowed him to note that offers may not produce the same engagement, but they may produce clicks/revenue. Basically corporations may chose to trade off viral reach for revenue.

At SimpleFeed we find that Social Media Managers often frown down upon product and offer content. However, this research suggests that it is really about context. This content can be successful, even measured with engagement metrics, if it is presented with emotional, trust or logical context and connection.

results aloneProfessor Hosanager concluded with recommended three strategies

Signal Brand Personality

Highlight Social Initiatives

Use product posts with persuasive content

Typically I find academic research behind the curve, but this could not have been more timely and insightful. Our customers are eager for best practices on social content publishing. This is particularly true as Social Media Marketing is no longer just the purview of full time practitioners. A big theme for SimpleFeed in 2014 is helping part time social media mangers – channel partners, thought leaders, etc. make informed decision on social publishing . For example, our newest technology analyzes all possible content for a customer and makes recommendations on the best content to publish.

The complete research is available here.

The Google Reader Shut Down and the Truth About RSS

April 2, 2013

Since Google never tried to monetize Reader, the shutdown is not a surprise. What is interesting is the tremendous backlash. How can the cancellation of a product based on a “dead” technology be the biggest tech story of this year to date? It is a little like when people are dying – they start telling the truth.

There are millions of passionate RSS users in 2013 and that is not changing

In Forrester’s reaction, they noted that 9.6 million U.S. adults use RSS at least weekly and 24 million at least monthly.  That is a small number compared to social networking, but the number is only part of the story. 500,000 people signed up for Feedly, one of the many Google Reader competitors, hours after the announcement. [Update: on April 1, Feedly announced 3 million new sign-ups.] Google Reader is 11% of subscribership to our customer’s feeds. This implies there are over 5 million people who are really, really serious about RSS. These are people who need RSS to do their job and live their lives. Are there 5 million people who are deeply passionate about a social network? Certainly there are for Facebook, but the rest? With or without Google, RSS is here to stay.

RSS is critical to marketing

Bob Warfield says it very well. RSS is unique. Customers use feed readers to get information, not to view their friend’s pictures or catch up on celebrities. So if you sell a commodity product, RSS is probably not for you. However, if your customers need your information for your company to generate revenue, the loss of Google Reader is scary. Media companies are an easy example.

TechCrunch noted that RSS is their second largest traffic source and is fretting about the viability of their business. Let that sink in a bit. RSS is second only to Google Search. That means it is above direct, email, Twitter, Facebook, etc. And since TechCrunch publishes full text feeds, vs. summaries in those other channels, the only reason to click through is to see the comments. So as a media consumption point, RSS may be more important than their web site. Further RSS is where they reach the info junkies who republish the content to followers on social networks.

Google Reader is the IE 4.0 of the RSS Reading Market

Users were satisfied with Google Reader, and their content and customizations locked them in. So they did not evaluate new RSS applications. Now that they are being evicted, they will find greatly superior RSS readers, particularly in the mobile/tablet experience. As the economic opportunity rises from the demise of Reader, innovation is blooming.

At SimpleFeed we do RSS, Facebook and Twitter publishing and analytics. We see the numbers and the truth is RSS has been thriving for years. The user numbers did not grow like Facebook, RSS is just not as much fun.  But for reads and clicks, RSS is almost always number one. If you need to connect with an intelligent customers who need your information to make a decision, you need to use RSS.

The New Facebook News Feed – Power to the Fan and the Return of RSS

March 8, 2013

Today Facebook announced its most significant redesign of the News Feed in many years. When the changes roll out over the next few weeks, you can will see three enhancements – a greater emphasis on photos, unification of the mobile and desktop interfaces and new ways to sort your News Feed. For corporate marketers it is the latter that may be the most important.

Previously users had a choice of sorting their News Feed between “Top Stories” and “Most Recent.” Top Stories 3-7-2013 2-01-03 PM



The feature was hard to find so nearly everyone kept the default, Top Stories.

 Soon users will be able to sort their News Feed by All Friends, Photos, Music, Games, Following, Groups, even lists of friends. Importantly the News Feed selection area will be prominently displayed. New Sort highlight 3-7-2013 2-07-07 PMFacebook assures that EdgeRank will remain the same for the default News Feed. So if users keep the default News Feed, marketers should see the same results. However, if users select All Friends, marketers are shut out of the News Feed, unless they buy placement.

 From our prospective the most interesting News Feed segment is “Following,” which will display updates from Pages and people you follow in chronological order. Basically it turns your News Feed into a river of news RSS reader. They even use the same icon!Other Feeds 3-7-2013 2-02-58 PM


With the Following segment, no longer will the Facebook EdgeRank algorithm decide if your corporate content is relevant. Your Fans will decide. Since the feed is chronological, will it pay to publish early and often? Or is it a better strategy to hope you engage Fans so their social gestures will place your content in what is likely to soon be the coveted All Friends News Feed? How will marketers know what and when to publish? We will have some thoughts on these issues soon.

SimpleFeed Screencast – Social Sharing in RSS Feeds

January 8, 2013

Learn how to expand your social presence by using SimpleFeed’s Social Sharing Feature in RSS Feeds