Friday, August 30, 2013

Keep Calm and Carry On

Facebook announced proposed changes to their policies and we have one week to comment before the changes get modified or enacted. Everyone (Baby Boomers) goes into a tizzy because it is "news". One week will pass and we will all go on with our lives. Are you really going to delete your Facebook profile? Do you understand the implications? I've listed instructions below on how to see which pages you have liked already and how to edit those if you wish.

If You Are Not Paying, You Are the Product

Here's one of the "OMG! Facebook is going to show pictures of your baby in diapers to advertise for Pampers" article: (OK, that is not the example they used in the article, but I thought it was funnier.)

Facebook’s Policy Changes Will Mean Your Content Can Be Used In Ads If You Use Facebook

This article includes the appropriate links to the actual Facebook proposed updates (since you didn't read the email you received from Facebook) so you might want to read their perspective and then check out the links.

The reason I bring up your baby in diapers is so that you think twice before using any other photo besides a photo of yourself as your profile picture. Until you are fully aware of where that picture will show up, you should stick with a professional head shot (which is my recommendation to everyone anyway - the same one across all of your profiles on social media).

Will people be less likely to "like" brand pages if they know that their friends / the entire world will find out they like that brand/company? Maybe at first, but I don't think anyone was under the impression that those "likes" were ever really private. Please, correct me if I am wrong. I'm pretty sure that this has been going on for quite awhile and yet we don't hear complaints about it until Facebook makes a clarification in their terms of service in an effort to seem more transparent.

If your settings only allow your "likes" to post on your behalf to "Friends", then Facebook says it will respect those settings when using your content in advertisements. So, either think twice about who you "friend" on Facebook or think twice about who you "like" on Facebook.

How to see all of the pages and interests you have liked:

  • Click on your name on the top right hand corner
  • Click on Activity Log
  • On the left hand side, click on Likes
  • Choose Pages and Interests  

If you click on the pencil on the right hand side of each post, you can hide their updates from your timeline (although, chances are you are not seeing their updates anyway) or you can unlike. If you hover your mouse over the picture of the page on that post and then move your mouse to the box where you would like/unlike, you get more options such as getting a notification every time they post something or changing the frequency of posts you see from them.

So, really. Keep Calm and Carry On. Stay informed and respond appropriately. Let me know if you have any questions.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Live Event Hangout Party Crashers

A live event was hi-jacked tonight. Kudos for streaming your live event as a G+ hangout on air. However, it was a bummer when the party crashers showed up and were very rude and crude. Honestly, I was impressed that you were able to figure out how to kick them out but I wonder how many people left the virtual event because they didn't want to listen to the disgusting and degrading attempts at humor.

This post isn't actually about what went wrong. I just wanted to show you how people these days are taking risks and learning by doing. How are you playing with new formats and technology?

I see tech events and meetup groups playing with innovation (sometimes without knowing what could go wrong) much more often than I see meetings and events industry professionals taking risks with their own industry events. How are you learning to provide the experience at a virtual and/or live event that your constituents are seeing elsewhere? Are you quickly losing your edge because you only want to plan a perfect event?

Why would someone need to hire you in the future if they have already figured out how to rent a venue and set out some food & beverage. Which, by the way, would be way below your standards, but I don't hear too many complaints and I don't see any comments on twitter about these setups. Most people are happy to get a piece of pizza if the price of the ticket is low. Food is no longer a requirement for meetings and events. Maybe the art of hospitality is dying, but that is a whole different subject.

The leaders of our industry associations are afraid to take risks - and part of that fear comes from the community's criticism when something does go wrong. Lighten up a bit and cut them some slack if you have identified that they are trying something new. Appreciate the learning experience and find out exactly what went wrong so that you could potentially try the same format or technology, but with success!

Combine the fear of innovation with apathy towards promoting the importance of professional meeting and event planners, and the future does not look bright. I have seen a concerted effort to get meeting and event planners to advocate for why their roles are important. Unfortunately, when I asked how we could capitalize on a gathering of 800 or 900 industry professionals last week, no one wanted to step up to the plate and take action. Many folks want to keep their heads down and hope that their jobs won't be lost.

Do you get support from your boss to take risks? Would you prefer to experience new formats and technology at meetings industry events so that you don't have to be the one to try something new to learn about it? What examples do you have of a mistake that was made and the solution was announced publicly for everyone to learn from?