This Week In Social: Facebook Rolls Out Sponsored Stories, The Old Spice Guy Returns

By Rob McNair

Facebook Rolls out Sponsored Stories, The Old Spice Guy Returns and Facebook Makes Facebook Credits Mandatory

Facebook Announces ‘Sponsored Stories’ Ad Platform

Sponsored Stories is, “a way for marketers to sponsor activities that happen throughout the News Feed” Facebook Product Marketing Lead Jim Squires told Mashable. Companies can choose to take certain user actions — such as checkins or actions within Facebook apps — and feature them in the column on the right side of the News Feed.

For example, if you’re Whole Foods and you’re looking to increase your exposure on Facebook, you can pay to have a percentage of all checkins to Whole Foods featured in a Sponsored Stories slot in the right-side column. Your content wouldn’t be shown directly, but the actions of a user’s friends would appear. Users seeing their friends “liking” or checking in to Whole Foods will drive increased trust and increased traffic.

Twitter Launches A Self-Serve Ad Platform


Twitter has begun testing a self-serve ad platform with advertisers and agencies it plans to roll out in the first half of this year, and MediaPost got a glimpse.

Clix Marketing Founder David Szetela began supporting a handful of clients this week. Among them, Guy Kawasaki, who signed on to promote his forthcoming book.

Advertisers participating in the program must commit to three months, Szetela says. “Twitter plans to open up the platform to other beta users in February,” he adds.

The self-serve platform lets advertisers create two types of campaigns: Promoted Tweets, which encourage users to engage with the tweet; and Promoted Accounts, which aims to increase the number of followers for an account.

Facebook Make Facebook Credits Mandatory For Game Developers


Facebook has confirmed that it is making Facebook Credits mandatory for games, with the rule going into effect on July 1 2011. Facebook says that Credits will be the exclusive way for users to get their ‘real money’ into a game, but developers are still allowed to keep their own in-game currencies (FarmBucks, FishPoints, whatever). For example, Zynga can charge you 90 Facebook Credits for 75 CityCash in CityVille.

However, there will be incentives for developers to sell goods in terms of Facebook Credits instead of their own proprietary currencies: items that are sold in terms of Credits can be promoted on Facebook’s Games dashboard, and will be eligible for more targeted ad programs.

Read more on TechCrunch.

Zuckerberg’s Fan Page Has Been Hacked?


Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook fan page seemed to have been hacked this week, with the hacker posting a message calling on the company to transform into a “social business.”

The message read: “Let the hacking begin: If facebook needs money, instead of going to the banks, why doesn’t Facebook let its users invest in Facebook in a social way? Why not transform Facebook into a ‘social business’ the way Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus described it? [LINK] What do you think? #hackercup2011″

Read more on Mashable.

The Old Spice Guy Is Back and as Articulate as Ever!

All you Isaiah Mustafa fans out there that have been laying awake at night wondering if “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” was gone forever, have no fear!  He’s back and his big brown eyes are more striking than ever.

Read more about the new Old Spice adverts on SocialTimes.

What a week in social! Do you think that the Facebook Sponsored Stories ad platform will be a hit? Are you comfortable with brands on Facebook sharing your activity with your friends? Will the monopolising of Facebook game currency lead Zynga to split from Facebook? Does the Old Spice Guy make Old Spice smell any nicer to you? We’d love to get your thoughts in the comments below!

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This post was written by Rob McNair

Rob has experience advising some of the worlds most iconic brands. He thrives on helping improving social media knowledge within organisations with the ultimate goal of making theirs brands more social, transparent and accountable.