BFF is for brand and the facebook facelift

I’m still getting my head around the new Facebook timeline functionality and how this can be used for brand advantage, but thankfully there are two great SlideShare posts that can get you up to speed quickly and  inspire some new ideas.

01#          Marketer’s guide to facebook timeline: Tips for brands and marketers. Ben Grossman from Jack Morton talks through the key facebook changes and how to take advantage of them. Key highlights and tips:

  • One engaging post per day is ideal
  • Emphasis on visualization is best practice. Visually engaging posts get x2 the engagement. So consider a vibrant cover image [see below] and appealing pictures for posts.Engagement of facebook is greatest between 9pm to 10pm
    • The cover image is your ‘first welcome’ to a user – so use the right imagery to keep them connected. Image needs to be 810 pixels wide (851 x 315)
    • Update the cover image regularly.
  • Posts between 100-250 words have 60% more likes than larger posts
  • Highlight ‘what matters’ such as key events, campaigns and acknowledgements
  • Story telling through milestones. Use create milestones to create a visual history of the brand
  • Review and manage your new user control settings to protect your brand   

02#          50 branded Facebook cover photos. Digital Marketing Director, Bulent Keles, shares 50 visually inspiring profile pages from the likes of Mercedes, Sony, Dyson, Lego, Armani, Chelsea Football Club, Ben & Jerry and MIT. Great stimulation to reevaluate what can be achieved from one profile image.  


When the job and a pay packet isn’t enough


When the job and a pay packet isn’t enough. The perks at google, LinkedIn, facebook ….

I is for infographics

I do like a good a infographic and here is a great selection to keep you inspired.

N is for the Next Brand Landscape

NEXT BRAND LANDSCAPE 2Explaining the changes in digital media, it’s effects & opportunities for marketers.

Some thought provoking quotes from the presentation:

  • “Long term brand building. We need to fill the holes in the bucket, not pour new water from the top. In other words, it’s about creating solutions the client sees can create long term loyalty/relationships/partnerships between the client and the participant. It’s about brand utilities, brand immersions or content marketing ideas.”
  • ” Move from CHANNELS [where brands are law enforcers]
    To ARENAS [where brands are participants]
    We need to be PARTICIPANTS on every arena”
  • “We need to start looking at collaboration as something richer than getting participants to contribute their preset format content in a serial, one dimensional string; within a rigid set of publishing.”

S is for Scribbles from a change management conference


 “A pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. An optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”. Winston Churchill

  • Introducing change takes empathy. To get people to take a ‘leap of faith’ you need to ‘win’ people over with support and trust.
  • People need to experience change to understand the change.
  • CHAOS needed for positive change management = Confidence + Hope + Authenticity + Optimism + Spring boarding
  • Learn from the past. Be clear on rationale for change. What does success look like?
  • Be honest about risk. What talent do you need in the ‘new world’. Are your current high performers right for the future?
  • Don’t let the tail wag the dog. Get the right people involved in the right conversations. But dont include everyone.
  • Embed change into DNA. KPIs aren’t a job descriptions. KPIs are what is critical for a professional to deliver on. Only four (4)  KPIs per person!
  • Communicate communicate  communicate… but apply the ‘smell test’. Be honest.
  • Don’t implement change unless there is 100% buy-in at leadership(sponsorship) level. Without 100% leadership sponsorship, don’ t bother [implementing change]
  • Knowledge management is critical.
  • Don’t stick to one change management framework – adapt to the organisation, the situation and the culture.
  • Strength of your feelings is not a true test of reality

@ARK Furturistic Change June 2011

I is for taking in information, C is for covering all bases

How people take in information is critical to understanding the impact of change, the resulting behaviours and consequently the communication requirements for that change.

This is all part of  the stakeholder analysis process.

So before you take on your next change process and start analysing your stakeholders,  start by analysing yourself.
Ask yourself … How do I take in information?

What is my preference?

Do you see the detail in every element? Do you relish in the specifics, the numbers, the blow by bow descriptions?

Or do you see what’s not there – the abstract? The pieces that fly into your head when you look at something new?

Do you look at a detailed map and feel anxious with all the specifics or do you feel comfort in knowing that everything has been covered? Do you see what no one else sees or do you see blurred lines and noise?

I asked this question today to a team of change consultants, using the following image.

What do you think they told me they saw? Have a look and jot down what immediately comes into your head.

If you notes cover things like: trees, paths, green, castle, windows, people … then you likely have a preference for detail or as Myers Briggs would classify it, sensing (S). On the other hand, if your notes define things that you can’t see like: money. Vanity Fair, Louis XIV, fairies (yes, that’s been called), then you are likely to take in information in an abstract form, or intuitively (N) as Myers Briggs classifies.

What is important to note here is not what is right or wrong, but that people have a preference to take in information in either a sensing (S) or intuitive (N) form. This means for change or communications professionals, awareness of HOW stakeholders TAKE IN INFORMATION is critical and good professionals are prepared to meet both preferences (or needs).

When you next implement change ask yourself … what is the preference of my stakeholders?

To cover all bases, ensure your communications ….

• Articulate the high level goal (N) – abstract thinkers think beyond today. So where will you change take them?

• Define the future aspiration (N) – What is the goal state? What is the driver? Where is the north point? Abstract thinkers need to know where they are heading (and let’s face it, don’t we all?)

• Provide detail on the outcomes (S) – eg. What are the objectives, expected timelines, breakdown the elements as much as you can (and if you need to, ‘bore them senseless with the detail)

• Explain the how (N & S) – Both preferences look to understand how the change will be implemented. For the N’s make sure there is a diagram that summaries the change process, for the S’s give them more step by step information.

• Pre-empt frequently asked questions (S) – eg. What happens if? How does this impact me? What can I expect? Answer them all …

In addition to understanding your publics (or stakeholders) what is important to understand is that abstract thinkers (N) will eventually reach a point where they will seek detail (S).  So to, detailed thinkers (S) will reach a point where they will look for the high level overview (N) to put their thoughts into context. This is why good communications cover all aspects.

So, in essence … cover all bases

Persuading leadership to embrace (and un

Persuading leadership to embrace (and understand) social media.

“What if talent is more like an orchid,

“What if talent is more like an orchid, thriving in certain environments and dying in others?”

Thanks guys for helping me get to 1000+

Thanks guys for helping me get to 1000+

L is for Leadership

Leadership communications during times of change, whether restructuring or downsizing, relies on one critical factor,  trust – something that can’t be conjured up overnight. Trust takes time, but like all good things, is worth the wait. 

Trust leads to employee engagement and during diffiult periods it is the employees that will make all the difference.

Following is a presentation I gave to the CEO Institute in 2009 (Adelaide) on Leadership Communications during times of change.

What do you think is critical for leadership communications during difficult times?