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Journalists on Facebook

Facebook announced a new “Journalists on Facebook” Page yesterday, a new Facebook Page dedicated to helping journalists use Facebook as a reporting tool. My first reaction to this announcement was, didn’t they do that last fall? Yes, Facebook did launch Facebook for Media last Fall, but that Page is more geared to media, the organization.

Journalists on Facebook (or Facebook and Journalists, depending on what you read), is all about the individual. It exists to help journalists better wrangle the power of Facebook for journalism – both from Facebook-provided best practices and peer collaboration from a swelling community of journalism professionals.

What Can You Expect From Journalists On Facebook?

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Surviving Facebook’s New Fan Page Photo Roulette

In typical Facebook fashion, they’re giving you about 4 weeks to ponder how you feel about the new Fan Page layout. Then, on March 10th, they’ll upgrade your page whether you “like” it or not. And while many of the updates are positive for page admins, there is at least one change that has the potential to rob you of control over your brand image. We’ll call it Fan Page Photo Roulette. And although it can be scary, there are ways to survive. [Read more...]

Newsroom Facebook Fans: Quality vs. Quantity

If we were talking about ice cream, I’d say quality all the way: I’ll take a scoop of Ben & Jerry’s over a gallon of Good Humor any day. But when it comes to Facebook Fans, this question of quality versus quantity becomes a bit more complicated. It seems that every brand in America is on a quest to simply gain as many fans as possible. Yet I keep hearing from newsrooms I work with that they’re concerned about “quality” fans too.  To be honest, my instant reaction was that they’re crazy. Newsrooms (and brands in general) should just get as many fans as possible, right? Maybe, maybe not.

There are at least a few arguments that support building a quality fan base and many more that support building a fan base simply for quantity. Here’s a look at both sides and how your station might be able to get the best of both worlds. [Read more...]

8 Ways Your Newsroom Can Get More Out of Facebook

Being on Facebook is a bit like going to prom. Everyone’s going; no one is quite sure what to do when they get there. And while newsrooms have a huge advantage when it comes to building a Facebook following, very few stations truly have a defined idea of what they hope to gain from those users. Here are 8 tried and true ways to make sure your newsroom is getting the most out of each and every fan.

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NEW Facebook Groups: Pros and Cons

Somewhere between the (estimated) 10th and 20th Facebook redesigns, I stopped using Facebook Groups. Well, let me clarify: I stopped caring about Groups. I very well could still be a member of the Groups I joined when I first registered for Facebook, which was back in 2005 when it wasn’t even available to all colleges yet (“Praise Urban Meyer and Eat Cake” was one of said groups, a wise decision on my part.)

So when Facebook came out last month announcing it was improving its Group features, it came as a shock. Facebook still has Groups? I thought Pages did away with that? I don’t even see which Groups I’m in on my profile page (I know it’s there somewhere).

I was flabbergasted. There are Pages about interests and Groups about businesses. So what is it about Groups that set them apart from being lumped in with Pages? In theory, Groups and Pages do the same thing: connect people with similar, dare I pun, likes. So, hoping to gain a little more insight, I did what any red-blooded journalist would do: I Googled. Well, in this instance, I Facebooked… [Read more...]

Top 25 U.S. Newspapers on Facebook

While Google PageRank is an accurate gauge of authority on the Web, it doesn’t tell us much about how much people ‘Like’ a newspaper. When it comes to ‘Likes’, Facebook is the authority. It took a little (okay, a lot of) trial and error to find the Facebook Pages for each of the Top 25 U.S. newspapers (you’d be surprised how hard some of the top 25 make it to find), but alas here’s the list of the Top 25 U.S. Newspapers ranked by the number of Facebook Friends (‘Likes’) each newspaper has (click the link to visit the newspaper’s Facebook Page):

  1. The New York Times - 781,655
  2. The Wall Street Journal140,515
  3. The Washington Post68,152
  4. The Denver Post30,690
  5. USA Today28,332
  6. The Los Angeles Times - 20,715
  7. The Chicago Tribune - 19,448
  8. The Arizona Republic - 18,002
  9. The New York Post8,087
  10. The San Francisco Chronicle8,051
  11. The New York Daily News7,376
  12. The Cleveland Plain Dealer5,996
  13. The Houston Chronicle5,486
  14. The San Jose Mercury News - 5,417
  15. The Detroit Free Press5,379
  16. Newsday5,092
  17. St. Petersburg Times4,538
  18. The StarTribune3,563
  19. The Dallas Morning News3,498
  20. The Seattle Timesseattletimes    3,112
  21. The San Diego Union-Tribune2,822
  22. Philadelphia Inquirer2,100
  23. The Oregonian1,890
  24. The Chicago Sun-Times1,837
  25. The Oakland Tribune - 1,132
  26. The Contra Costa Times971
  27. The Tampa Tribune – 625
  28. The Star-Ledger372

Once again, The New York Times demolishes the competition online, with five times the Likes as The Wall Street Journal. On the other end of the scale, it would appear Facebook is a low priority for The Star-Ledger, with only 372 Likes. Of course, this could be an error on my part – they could a more popular, but harder-to-find Page… but that seems unlikely. [Read more...]

Facebook Media Page Just for Journalists

Journalists need social media, but probably not as much as social media needs journalists. Journalists — in any shape or fashion — have always been, and will continue to be, the disseminators of news. Journalists are the storytellers, the connectors between people to information. Social media has just become the best way to do that.

While everyone can have a blog, not everyone knows how to write. Even less people know how to report. And while everyone can have a Facebook or Twitter account, we also can’t expect everyone to be experts in social media, even if there are few steadfast rules to help people use Facebook and Twitter. [Read more...]

Facebook for PR Launches

I wrote about Facebook for Public Relations back in January and provided a few suggestions for how public relations professionals can use Facebook as part of the PR tool set. Facebook must have really enjoyed the post, because now they have launched a new Facebook for PR Page dedicated to “Best practices and conversations around using Facebook for PR.” I love it.

Facebook is the perfect example of an organization that understands modern day public relations and the importance of integrated social media. Don’t discount the effectiveness of Facebook’s public relations efforts and assume they have some sort of unfair advantage being the world’s largest social network. Facebook uses its own services to extend its brand and earn the loyalty of fans the same way you and I do. That impresses me.

Think of the statement Facebook makes with creating a Page dedicated to talking about how you can use Facebook for PR? The medium supports the message Facebook is trying to get across. Maybe I’m a little over the top here, but the company is doing a lot of things right (remember “How to Build a Better Online Newsroom“?).

Other social networks should take note of this move by Facebook (side note: I’m surprised LinkedIn didn’t do this already, since they’ve had LinkedIn for Journalists for a few years now) . The PR community serves as one of the largest influencer segments online and offline. We advise our clients on the best communications strategies and tactics to use. By strengthening its relationships with public relations professionals, and showing us the right ways to leverage Facebook for PR, the company is making great strides at getting us all to ‘Like’ them more.

The company’s official position on the creation of the Facebook for PR page is to create a forum where it can (I’m paraphrasing) share its learnings about creating social content, promoting events, optimizing Pages and integrating with tools off of Facebook.

I’m on board. Learn more about the effort and join the conversation here.

What do you think? Do you think Facebook for PR is a useful resource for PR professionals? Do you use Facebook for your PR efforts on a daily basis?

(Image Credit: Facebook for PR Page)

How Not to Be Annoying on Twitter and Facebook

Where there are social networks, there will be people who abuse them ­— and you certainly don’t have to go far to find them. Just rewind back to Friday morning for example: Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff littered Twitter with tweets announcing the firing-squad execution of Ronnie Lee Gardner, which stirred up just as much controversy as the actual execution itself.

Social media missteps like this happen more frequently than we care to blog on, and in a time where communicators can’t get away with avoiding the conversation, there’s one question that’s going to keep surfacing (other than what’s going on with the World Cup): Where is the line drawn between interesting tidbits and overly annoying posts? So, in an effort to help answer this trending topic, I’ve pinpointed three of the most common ailments that strike social media newcomers. [Read more...]

Facebook for Public Relations

Should you use Facebook for PR? This has been one of the more popular post suggestions from Journalistics readers. The answer really depends on your definition of “PR” specific to the question.

I’m going to assume that most people are asking about using Facebook for media relations, so I’ll start there. I see Facebook as a powerful tool for promoting organizations, leading community outreach programs, or building affinity for brands – so I’ll hit on those as well. [Read more...]