Facebook for Businesses – Best Promotion Tactics

The following is a post by Patrick Mackaronis.

Regardless of the size of a new business or company, many industry leaders are turning towards social media websites like Facebook to reach out to larger population of potential customers. However, not all companies are aware of the best business practices to use when using Facebook in this manner. Here are a few tips to consider when setting up a Facebook for businesses.

Facebook for Businesses: The Difference Between Profiles and Fan Pages

When first creating an account on Facebook, new users will be asked if he or she wishes to create a profile or fan page. What is the difference, and which should be used for a company or business? Simply put, this depends on the approach a company wishes to take in order to reach out to new customers.

For example, Facebook profiles are meant to be more personal in nature. Sharing personal photos, links, or personal status updates are commonplace with profiles since these accounts are usually managed by one person. Businesses can use profiles to reach out to a target customer population by creating a profile for a company mascot, for example. However, individual company employees should steer clear of creating profiles as Facebook requires the user to include personal information for profile accounts. In addition, other Facebook users become “friends” of profiles and have the ability to comment on the company’s profile page. In many ways, this can be dangerous for the business, especially in the event of negative (and sometimes vulgar) comments from other users.

As an alternative, companies may wish to create a fan page on Facebook. In this instance, personal information is not needed in order to create a fan page and multiple account users can manage one page at a time. Company logos, events, and photos can be used on fan pages as well, however the account manager can limit the interactivity of other Facebook users on the company page. Furthermore, other Facebook users become “fans” of a fan page and are substantially limited to how he or she can interact with or alter content on a company’s fan page.

Update Content Regularly on Facebook

Perhaps the biggest downfall that companies using Facebook notice in advertisement success rate is lack of consistent and updated information. When using Facebook for businesses to reach out to new customers, companies should designate a department, team, or employee as being responsible for updating their profile or fan page regularly. For best results, companies should update Facebook at least once a week. These updates need not be major and can simply be sharing a new photo, internet link, or status update.

The two tips mentioned above can serve as a great start for any company thinking about using Facebook for their advertising methods. As social media continues to grow in number of users and popularity, companies would be well-advised to try their hands at other networking sites as well.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Facebook Enjoyment: Five Things People Like Most

The following is a post by Patrick Mackaronis.

A short while ago, adults on Facebook were not as common as they are today. Many parents of pre-teens signed up for a Facebook account to keep an eye on what their kids were doing.

Ask any adult what they do on Facebook. Checking up on their kids will be last on the list in most cases. Ask any teenager on Facebook if one or both of their parents have a Facebook account. You’ll be able to tell the answer by the look on their face.

Facebook allows people to communicate with one another in real time, and it allows everyone to let the Facebook world, or just their friends, know how they feel about any given subject. You can upload and share photos with others, and it has one other nifty feature; games you can play alone or with other Facebook users.

Here are five things that cause the most Facebook enjoyment for users:

Facebook Enjoyment: Five Things People Like Most

  • Playing Farmville

When most people accepted their Facebook friend’s invitation to be their neighbor on Farmville, they intended it to be a kind gesture. That gesture turned out for most to be fun and entertaining. For some, it turned into an obsession that no one would admit to having.

  • Cafe World, Mafia Wars, Slots, Poker, and other games

For the same reasons, depending on your likes and interests, these games are what most adults are doing on Facebook lately. Whether you prefer cooking, getting the bad guys, or winning tons of play money, there is a game on Facebook to suit everyone. Most of these, however, have not reached the heights of the Farmville Fever.

  • Reconnecting with old friends and classmates

Sadly, as much as we would all like to, we lose touch with good friends from our childhood. People move away, get married, and start families. The chances are good that you can find anyone you ever knew, on Facebook. You get to reminisce about the old days, catch up on what ever happened to this one or that one, and behave as though you never left the neighborhood where you grew up.

  • Keep up with family news as it happens

Entire families are on Facebook now, including in-laws, cousins, and immediate family members. If a school age student wants to share the A they just got on a test, or tell the Facebook world about the home run they scored in a little league game, everyone finds out about it immediately, all at once. The whole family also hears about promotions, raises, and unfortunately, with the sign of the times, the loss of a job. Facebook enjoyment via Facebook friends and family are there to cheer or console.

  • Preventing worlds from colliding

If anyone remembers when the character, George on Seinfeld, worried about his fiancé hanging around with his best friends, saying that “worlds would collide”, can understand this one.

We are different people to our closest family members, than we are with our friends, coworkers, or old friends. Religion, politics, childrearing ideas, and even our views on issues such as global warming or the Arizona Immigration Bill, can cause problems if we share them publicly with a large group of people that we know personally. Discussing these subjects on other social networking sites, forums, or message boards, is different, because if we disagree with people we do not know, it is not a big deal.

Arguing about social or culturally issues with family out there for all the world of Facebook friends to see, can ignite an old argument, and cause a family feud.

Whatever you enjoy doing on Facebook, we have to admit that Mark Zuckerberg really started something amazing. It is something most of us hope will never go away.

Patrick Mackaronis, the CEO and Founder of Brabble, can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Farmville Progression: Quickly Advancing Experience

The following is a post by Patrick Mackaronis.

Many people play Farmville regularly; in fact it is highly addictive. The main aim is to move up through the levels so that more items can be bought for the player’s farm, and this must be done by gaining Experience Points (XP). Here are some hints on how to gain XP quickly and achieve higher levels.

Farmville Progression: Work Out Which Plants to Plow and Seed

XP are mainly gained for plowing and planting seeds. Different seeds have different XP, and grow at different rates. If the player has plenty of time, the best plants to grow are strawberries, and they can be harvested every four hours, with XP gained every time plowing and seeding is done. Raspberries only take two hours to grow, but beware – they do not give any XP!

Those players who have money to spare can gain XP fast by purchasing seeds, then deleting the seeded fields, re-plowing and seeding all over again. This will cost a lot of ‘coins’. It will also enable the player to gain a great deal of experience points quickly and move on up through the levels. The best plants to grow for this purpose are soybeans. They only cost 15 coins each, but offer 2 XP.

Farmville Progression: Buy Large Items Such as Farm Buildings

All items bought on Farmville qualify for extra XP. If the player has extra money, it’s worth working out the best items to buy. This is often farm buildings – even if they are sold back later on.

Farmville Progression: Win as Many Farmville Ribbons as Possible

Farmville offers ribbons when different tasks are completed, and winning these ribbons means the player gains more coins and XP. So it is worth clicking on animals and trees when they are highlighted. They may not give a huge number of coins, but hey do enable the player to gain more ribbons and therefore more experience points.

Farmville Progression: Visit Neighbors and Help on Their Farms

Farmville offers coins and XP if they player helps on a neighbor’s farm…but only once a day. However, this means it is worth inviting friends to play, and having as many neighbors as possible. At the time of writing, however, there was a minor ‘bug’ in the system which is quite useful. This means that it is possible to click on a neighbor’s icon, then click on it quickly again before their farm downloads. If the player is quick they can do this several times. They can then help out several times on that farm, winning a large number of XP. If the player has several friends, and does this consistently, a large number of experience points can be gained in this way. However, who knows how long this will be possible!

Playing Farmville and moving up through its levels in this way can be very exciting, and also relaxing after a hard day. However, be warmed – the game is very addictive!

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Google+ And Facebook: What’s The Difference?

The following is a post by Patrick Mackaronis.

What are some Facebook and Google comparisons?

Like or not, Facebook and Google are both household names. Even if you don’t use one or the other or neither, they are a large part of our everyday world that you have to, at least, admit exist. Google has made several attempts to clone Facebook and failed miserably. They have now come up with a re-tooled Google-designed version of Facebook. Kinda. Sorta. Yes, it’s true that Google+ most certainly is a social networking site, but don’t dismiss it as just a Facebook clone. This time, there’s more.

Google+ works in combination with a number of Google’s other services and are in effect all joined with your own Google account. Let’s say you are on Google’s home page, up on the top right of the Google bar, you will see your Google+ profile info and link to your account, the notification indicator and a Share button. This way you can stay connected even if you aren’t on the Google+ site.

What are the new Google+ features?

There are a few features that are totally new and different from Facebook. Circles, Sparks and Hangouts are only some of the ways you can enjoy a social networking platform with some customization.

Some of the other features that are unlike Facebook are how you connect with friends. You invite friends and they accept. But, you can use the Circles feature, which permits you to customize and sort your friend’s list. This customization is a great feature in that you can share with friends something you wouldn’t want your mother or boss to see. Or, vice versa. If you want to say something sappy sweet to mom and grandma, your college fraternity brothers will never know.

Sparks is designed as an online sharing engine. You add interests and an assortment of related content to your profile, which can include videos, and they will be delivered to you. This feature makes this content easy to share with your circle of friends. And, by the way, the feed is available in over 40 languages.

A feature called Hangouts is not what you expect. You’re probably thinking Hangout will allow you to schedule a meeting, get together locations or geolocate your friends or circles for hanging out. Not with Google+. Instead it’s a live multi-person video chat so you can virtually hangout. You simply set yourself to available. Friends in your circle can then join the video chat and hangout. Google+ has yet to set a limit to your hangouts, so yes, you can have multiple friends, although at this point there is no clear limit as to how many.

How can I get Google+?

Google+ was launched on June 28, 2011. Only certain individuals were chosen to test and those individuals have invited others – which is how I got a preview. The software is still in the beta stage and Google is working on any bugs the test group find.

Word is, Google is planning on introducing the platform on or before July 31. Customization features, video chat capability with no add-on and being able to surf the internet while still being “connected” are only some major plus signs for Google+.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Facebook Advertising for Internet Marketing Campaigns

The following is a post on utilizing Facebook advertising for internet marketing campaigns by Patrick Mackaronis.

When it comes to talks about advertising online, Facebook is growing in popularity. With the 400 million active users typically on the social networking website for almost an hour per day, it’s no wonder why so many online advertisers are beginning to use it as part of their internet marketing campaigns.

The Process of Creating Facebook Advertisements

Among the most appealing features of Facebook advertising is its ad-creation platform. Using the interface, online advertisers can create Facebook ads as easily as they would submit any other type of content (links, wall posts, status updates, or images) on this social networking website. They also have the option to link to an external website or a page they have created on Facebook.

Because of this simple platform, all there is to designing a Facebook advertisement is a link, a title with a maximum of 25 characters, an advertising copy composed of 135 characters, and an image. There’s no need to worry about design concepts or layouts. There’s also no need for skills on Photoshop or similar image editing software.

Once the advertisement has been designed, Facebook advertisers just need to specify their target audience. Facebook allows them to do so through both demographics and psychographics. Then, advertisers specify a daily budget, an ad schedule, and a maximum bid (per click or per 1,000 impressions). After that, advertisers need only to review entries and submit.

The Facebook Advertising Team’s Review Process

Upon submission of the ad creation form, it is added to the queue of advertisements that the Facebook team needs to review. Basically, they approve and reject ads depending on whether or not they meet the social networking website’s content guidelines. If an ad is approved, it is run according to the specified schedule. If it is rejected, the advertisers have the option to revise their entries and try submitting again.

It is worth noting that Facebook is incredibly hard to deal with for advertising inquiries, and have a tendency to ban accounts without warning. Online marketers advertising offers that fall outside the terms of service are destined for a headache by using Facebook’s advertising platform. Nevertheless, there are practices that make it easier to get approval for Facebook advertisements.

Although there are downsides to Facebook advertising, they are almost negligible to online marketers running legitimate campaigns and promoting ethical online businesses. What’s important to consider is that this social networking website offers a legitimate platform for reaching a massive number of users around the world in a simple yet effective manner.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Mark Zuckerberg: 2010 Time Person of Year Title

The following is a post about Mark Zuckerberg being named the 2010 Time Person of the Year written by Patrick Mackaronis.

The computer whiz becomes the 83rd such designee; and he is the 77th man, 52nd American and 10th businessman so recognized.

Mark Zuckerberg Public Response Mixed

Public reaction has ranged from complete agreement with the magazine’s choice to scornful derision for what critics called a “safe” choice, with possibly no lasting significance to humanity; and, furthermore, some added it was calculated to incur no political repercussions in this prickly world (C|Net News).

In describing the achievement of the winner, who dropped out of Harvard University in his sophomore year, the Time citation said: “For connecting more than a half billion people and mapping the social relations among them, for creating a new system of exchanging information and for changing how we live our lives, Mark Elliot Zuckerman is Time’s Person of the Year.”

Facebook’s Evolution in Six Years Shows Speed of Digital Age

So astounding is the concept of connecting over 500 million (and counting) subscribers on Facebook, 70 percent of whom live outside the US, that one tends to forget Zuckerberg’s visionary genius in managing the development of the software and platform and management structure to make using the Website simple yet creative in just six years.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the value of the privately-held Facebook is $43.1 billion. This places Zuckerberg, with his equity of $6.9 billion, in a tie as the 35th wealthiest American, according to Forbes magazine.

Time magazine’s top five choices for Person of the Year were:

  1. Mark Zuckerberg
  2. The Tea Party
  3. Julian Assange
  4. Hamid Karzai
  5. The Chilean Miners

Time Person of the Year Title Not Always for Good Deeds

The magazine’s annual selection has expanded in scope considerably, since it first recognized the intrepid Charles Lindberg in 1927, as the planet’s supreme mover and shaker for that year and the one most impacting the lives of people.

The magazine’s editorial folks are quick to point out the citation is not necessarily an honor or good Samaritan award, but a recognition of a person(s), group(s) or thing(s) that have most affected peoples’ lives. Adolph Hitler was the recipient in 1938 and Joseph Stalin in 1939 and 1942.

In 1982 the Computer Was the Most Important Thing

In a radical departure from the “people” convention in making choices, the magazine named the computer in 1982 as the person of the year, although it would be a stretch to say the machine impacted lives greatly that year. IBM had introduced their IBM PC only the year before.

Perhaps the rush to crown the computer was Time’s secret ploy to expedite the developing of artificial intelligence by computers, providing a jump start toward parity with humans and maybe even chimps.

Just suppose the magazine had adopted the “thing” deviancy early on. Is it not entirely possible the rickety Spirit of St. Louis, the plane which Charles Lindberg jockeyed across the stormy Atlantic ten feet above choppy waves at times, would have been named “machine of the year” instead of “Lucky Lindy”?

Zuckerberg Finished 10th in Time Reader Poll

Candidates for Person of the Year are chosen by magazine staffers from outside interviews, archival research, staff filtering discussions and even a poll of Time readers.

Readers parted company with magazine insiders on a number of candidates. For example, the winner Mark Zuckerberg was 10th in the reader poll. Closest match between the pollsters and Time was Julian Assange, the stealthy Wikileaks whistleblower. He was tops in the reader poll and third in the final magazine selection.

A listing of top winners in the reader poll, in order of preferences, follows:

  1. Julian Assange
  2. Recep Tayyip Erdogan
  3. Lady Gaga
  4. Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert
  5. Glen Beck
  6. Barack Obama
  7. Steve Jobs
  8. The Chilean Miners
  9. The Unemployed American
  10. Mark Zuckerberg

Men Outnumber Women Seven to One in Annual Recognition

The Time recognition is an event in which women have some catching up to do. Through the years, males have been tapped 77 times, while women have won the acclaim 11 times.

In occupational categories, politicians have dominated results in 54 years; businessmen in ten years; soldiers in six; space pioneers in five; and clergy in four. The rest of the winners are scattered among social activists, law and science.

Mark Zuckerberg Received Distinction for Actions in 2010 Only

There is always a reluctance to drape a mantle such as “Person of the Year” around the shoulders of such a youthful founder of something as grandiose as an engine of social change. There are many directions in which the young global network can metastasize, for good or evil or in between. Only time will tell.

However, it is important to remember the designation of Mark Zuckerberg as “Person of the Year” by Time magazine was not about the future; rather, the acknowledgement was a proclamation that he had affected the lives of over a half billion people on earth in a single year.

Using that criterion alone, he might well be the most deserving recipient since the title was begun in 1927.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Privacy Issues on Facebook

The following is a post regarding Facebook and its abundant privacy related issues by Brabble CEO and Founder Patrick Mackaronis.

Countless social media, despite their common goal of connecting people have now recognized the significance of including privacy settings in their features. This is in response to the unvarying criticisms addressed by Facebook users, politicians and privacy regulators.

Some say it directly contradicts the mere purpose of subscribing to a certain social media. Others say employing privacy settings is a way of giving subscribers a sort of choice in selecting friends and in broadcasting statuses and other details about them.

Facebook, through the course of its popularity, has employed numerous changes trying to satisfy the character of the audience. However not all changes were accepted since some of these have made the use of Facebook more complicated than ever.

The “Like” Button

Facebook’s “Like” button is now being featured to external websites and media. Before this change, the said button only existed for Facebook users who hit the button to approve and share their opinions with friends about posted photos, uploaded videos and other changes in one’s information. Even comment threads can now be “liked” by other subscribers.

At the moment, Facebook estimates more than 350,000 websites with the “Like” feature. In fact, the autonomous technology blogsite, “All Facebook” has nearly 65 million “Like” clicks per day. Other websites have already offered the button without the users knowing that their likes are being exposed and shown on the media, and other sites in the Interweb.

Consequences of the “Like” Button

In an article by Jacquie Mcnish (theglobeandmail.com), the author notes a statement from Ottawa University law professor and Internet advocate David Fewer, “There is a lot of uncertainty about the consequences of the Like button. You don’t know what is going to happen to the information or how it is being stored.”

In 2009, Canadian Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart led an investigation on Facebook’s omnipresent “Like” button after receiving an unrevealed objection that the said element violates privacy rights. The agency called for a stricter yet uncomplicated application of Facebook privacy settings.

Stoddart claimed that Facebook was indecently allowing outsiders access to personal photos, information and other data posted by other users.

Facebook and the Canadian Privacy

Los Angeles Times’ Jessica Guyn reports, Canada’s privacy commissioner said that Facebook has resolved concerns she raised a year ago over third-party access to the social networking service’s users.” (Los Angeles Times).

The report further states that before the changes, subscribers who wanted to play games or access third-party applications had to make all of their information available. “In May, Facebook changed its policy, requiring applications to tell users what parts of their profile the applications want to access and to get permission to access them.”

Stoddart said that she is satisfied the way Facebook has created simplified privacy settings and has applied a tool that allows users to control a privacy setting to each photo or comment they post. However, she said that her agency will remain vigilant on probing and monitoring other issues involving Facebook and privacy.

Time Newsfeed writes, “Despite those improvements, Stoddart believes the privacy battle is far from finished.

Redefining Privacy

Facebook has changed its regulation on third-party access to social networking service’s users. The company claims to give users more control over what information they share and with whom by using the customized and simplified privacy settings.

Facebook’s privacy officer Michael Ritcher states, “Making the privacy controls on Facebook comprehensive and easy to understand is an important part of our commitment to giving every person the power to control their own Facebook experience.”

There is still a huge ambiguity regarding how people interpret “privacy” across different nations. With Facebook catering to various nations worldwide, the challenge to satisfy varying audience’s character will persist.

Conversely, some people are now thinking of the possibility that Facebook can serve as a surveillance tool.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Facebook Tabs and Pages for Social Marketing

The following is a post on Facebook tabs and pages, and their use in social media marketing by Brabble CEO and Founder Patrick Mackaronis.

If you are in business or promoting a non-profit organization you probably use Facebook for personal and professional networking. Using a Fan Page on Facebook to promote your company or group is a common way to introduce and maintain relationships with “fans” of your business.

A crop of new technology startups are competing for the privilege of providing you a way to easily create custom Facebook tabs and pages. Let’s look at a few of the companies offering custom Facebook tabs for your company Fan page. None of the applications reviewed here provide customized personal pages, these are strictly for businesses, groups and organizations.

These cloud based solutions connect with your Facebook Fan page(s) and allow you to create and add one or more new custom Tabs and Pages. Some of these applications allow you to use your new custom page for your Facebook landing page. This means when new visitors arrive at your Fan page, they see a customized page, and not your “Wall”.

Facebook Tabs, Many Pages with TabSite

TabSite allows you to create and manage content on one custom tab,per account. One simple template page gives most users the tools they’ll need to design a graphic and link heavy page. The custom facebook page can include have images, videos, and text. Online help is minimal, but email support response is good.

One of the interesting and different aspects of TabSite vs it’s competitors, is the ability to create sub-tabbed pages on the main TabSite page. Each sub-page can have its own custom tab and contain linked buttons, graphics, video, text and more.

TabSite offers a free version that does not expire, but also does not allow you to give the Tab a custom name. Even with the free version it does allow you to create a custom page with the name “Welcome” or “TabSite.”

Subscriptions start at $5/month if you want to add a tab with a custom name. TabSite is not difficult to use but does require some knowledge of HTML, web site design, and basic internet applications.

SplashTab Offers Many Page Layouts

SpalshTab offers a 14-day free trial to try out their service. Unlike TabSite which gives you unlimited page design freedom and no templates, SpashTab gives you many template choices, meaning preformatted pages where you fill in the areas with video, text, graphics and links. The Premium subscription allows you to create your on page layout or template if you can’t find a template that suits your needs.

The Tab names are limited to those on a menu list. There are enough to match up to most common page content, and if you must have a custom Tab name they will do that for an additional fee.

Each account or SplashTab is for one Facebook Fan page only. Additional custom Fan pages require their own paid accounts for each Fan page. Some templates contain buttons or links that require a secondary subscription but do not alert you to that prior to selecting the template. Online help is virtually non-existent on the website, but you can send a message to tech-support.

SplashTab is easy to use with the same level of skill as TabSite, and the templates are very useful and make creating a custom Facebook page fast and easy.

Widgets Galore at NorthSocial

NorthSocial is another new and very slick Facebook Custom Tab and Page application that offers a 14 day trial. NorthSocial differs from the others in offering multiple pre-made apps that are added to a custom page with a couple of clicks. NorthSocial offers everything from customizable sweepstakes, contact, and product pages called “Show & Sell” which links directly with your shopping cart. In addition you can plug in photo galleries, video applications, rating and discussion modules.

Set up and configuration is only a few clicks, which connects NorthSocial with your Facebook account. Subscriptions start at $19 a month. How-to videos are available for each application without having to log in, so you can get a very good idea of what’s involved before signing up.

With the free accounts and trial subscriptions you could give each of these a try and see which best meets your needs. Each application has a strength that distinguishes it from its competitors. Compare and decide which has the features most important to your social network marketing strategy.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Facebook “Like” Button = Improved Communication

The following is a post about Facebook and their Like button by Brabble CEO and Founder Patrick Mackaronis.

There is a feeling among millions of Facebook users that its “Like” button leaves a very limited scope to communicate a non-typographical response to a piece of content. Facebook is all about communication at the end of the day, and anything that limits the ability to communicate goes against the spirit of all that Facebook has come to symbolize.

All Facebook Users are not Equally Communicative

The popularity and usage of Facebook’s Like button arises from the fact there are many Facebook users who may not be very expressive about what they want to convey. So the Like button provides them with an effective option to communicate their reaction without having to actually write a single word. However, the effectiveness of this button is obviously very limited. It fails to differentiate between great liking and average liking. The user of this button has to be content with just a simple “Like” and can do no more with it.

Incentive to Write Well

If Facebook expands the scope of the Like button to include, say, ratings from 1 to 5, or introduce more expressions of appreciation, approval, or even disapproval, both verbal as well as graphic, it can serve as an ideal incentive for the writers to write well. It will enhance the overall interaction between the writers and the readers on the social network. In absence of a response, any good writer is likely to get discouraged with the social network after some time. Quality of content on Facebook certainly needs a facelift, and it can happen only when there is more responsiveness and reactions to a writer’s words.

Motivation for those who Write Comments

Since the same expanded response possibilities would apply to those who write comments on a friend’s Facebook page, the quality of comments would also be enhanced. At present, if any comment deserves a polite disapproval or a thumping approval, there is no option to be so expressive, except writing another comment about it. Those who are not verbose have to be content with only a single choice of expression, “Like.” Multiple choices of expression can change all that, and the entire Facebook experience can get enriched substantially for everyone involved.

Ratings Button can be Optional

There will be some social networking users who may not prefer their content to be rated by others. So the ratings button, in whichever form, can be made optional. The users who do not want it on their Facebook page can hide it with the click of a button. This eliminates the scope for any controversy, and provides a perfectly democratic field for all Facebook users who love to give a vent to their creative thoughts on this wonderful social networking medium.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Dungeons and Dragons: Tiny Adventures

The following is a post on the Facebook game Dungeons and Dragons: Tiny Adventures by Brabble CEO and Founder Patrick Mackaronis.

Wizard of the Coast’s role-playing game application Dungeons and Dragons Tiny Adventures for Facebook allows players the ability to D&D adventure without requiring any bit of effort whatsoever. The player chooses a character, equips armor and weapons, purchases items at a shop, and partakes in adventures. The game basically plays itself, as a simple die-roll added to the character’s attributes determines success upon various encounters.

Despite its simplicity, or very likely because of it, Dungeons and Dragons: Tiny Adventures offers months of entertainment with very little time investment required.

Below is a list of various unlockables achieved through generations. The generation level increases every time a hero retires at Lv 11.

List of Generation Unlocks / Bonuses in Dungeons and Dragons: Tiny Adventures

Generation Unlock (1): Pass down one item to the next hero. This simply means the player can choose any one piece of equipment to pass down to the next generation hero. Items that sell for more money are more rare and typically better items to pass down. Extremely rare items like the Invulnerable Coat of Arnd offer great bonuses for a new hero. Always make sure the item can be used by the next hero’s desired class.

Generation Unlock (2): Expanded selection at The Shop. This one is fairly self-explanatory. More selection at the store makes it more likely to find good items to equip for the hero to raise the hero’s encounter success rate.

Generation Unlock (3): Basic class power is unlocked. The class power, or class ability, is a move unique to each class, used similarly to potions by clicking on the icon. The Fighter can use “Unstoppable” to gain +2 Strength and some damage reduction for a few rounds, the Wizard can use “Magic Missile” to gain +5 attack for three rounds, etc.

Generation Unlock (4): A new hero mode is available: ironman mode. Ironman mode is the same as playing the game normally, except that if the hero dies in the adventure, the hero is dead permanantly and the player must create a new hero. The only real benefit to playing ironman mode is to be ranked on a different set of leaderboards, and to simply increase the difficulty of the game, if desired.

Generation Unlock (5): New class available: Swordmage. The Swordmage is a unique character class that uses Intelligence as the primary stat, but uses swords and daggers and dual-weilding for weapons. The Swordmage’s first class ability forces one encounter to roll 10, allowing crafty players to plan a gaurenteed success on the final encounter. Swordmage is actually one of the better classes, and the male version has the best portrait, hands-down (see the pictures below).

Generation Unlock (7): Pass along one quarter of your final gold to the next hero. Again, a somewhat self-explanatory perk. If nothing good can be found in the shop, simply save the money to pass down to the next hero.

Generation Unlock (10): Advanced class power is unlocked. The second class power for all classes is unlocked. Class powers vary significantly by usefulness.

Generation Unlock (12): New hero mode available: elite mode! Elite mode is the same as Ironman mode, which means if you’re dead, you’re dead, but elite mode adds an added -2 challange. This effectively makes all encounters a +2 difficulty on top of the threat of permanent death. Once again, the only added benefit is scoring on a different set of leaderboards. Ironman and Elite modes also keep the game entertaining after all other generation bonuses have been unlocked.

Dungeons and Dragons: Tiny Adventures Generation Unlocks Conclusion

It may seem as though it’s taking forever to unlock all the bonuses through increased generations. Don’t worry about it; Dungeons & Dragons Tiny Adventures is a Facebook RPG with a relaxed, slow pace, and should be played as such. Think of the unlocks more as bonuses attained for playing, as opposed to goals to achieve, to keep the pace relaxed and enjoyable.

Patrick Mackaronis is the CEO and Founder of Brabble, and can be reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

Social Network Site Launches Facebook Stories and Facebook Places

Last month, a popular social networking site reached an important milestone. On 2014, Facebook announced 500 million people now actively use the service. The site has grown by leaps-and-bounds in just a few short years since its launching in 2004. In fact, Facebook is touted as the world’s largest social networking site with a population larger than the United States, Mexico and France combined.

Social networking websites allow users to connect with friends, family and loved ones all over the world. The social networking giant recently announced the launching of two brand new tools – Facebook Places and Facebook Stories.

Facebook Stories

In July, the social networking site launched its new Facebook Stories feature. Whether inspirational, political, humorous or heartfelt, users can now share personal stories or read the stories of other users.

The stories are categorized by a variety of themes including love, politics, military, pets, health, sports, college, religion, family and reunions. Users can also select stories by geographical location by clicking on the integrated Bing map available in 2D, 3D, aerial, bird’s eye and road views.

Sharing a story is simple – just write the story and select the appropriate theme. The story will be shared with friends via the News Feed. The most popular stories will be featured in the “Most Popular” section of the site.

Facebook Places

If you have a special location you’d like to share with friends and family, Facebook Places may be just the ticket. The new location-based service allows users to share their favorite restaurant, beach, camping spot or show with others in real time from a mobile device.

Whether you are enjoying an action-packed flick or eating a great meal, Facebook’s new geolocation features allow your friends to know exactly where you are. The check in option allows users to share exact whereabouts with other users. Once checked in, your information will appear on the Facebook Place page, News Feed and your Wall.

The application is simple to use. Just click the “check in” button and select your location. If the location is not listed, add it to the list. The “Here Now” section of the application allows users to see who else is in the area. And if you “tag” any friends you are with, they too will be part of the update. Depending on customized settings, users select who can and cannot see the information.

In order to use Places, the newest Facebook iPhone application must first be installed on your device. Users with other web-enabled mobile devices will be able to use the feature in the future. Places is currently being rolled out and is only available in the U.S.

Facebook Places Privacy Concerns

While various organizations and users have criticized Facebook’s lack of privacy controls and security features, the social networking site is pushing back against the criticism regarding Places. Users control aspects of the Places feature by accessing individual account settings located on the top-right hand of the Facebook page. Users can select one of the four privacy options under the “Privacy Settings” area. By clicking the “Customize Settings” link, users can fine-tune personal settings as well. Visit Facebook for more specific information on privacy issues.

Facebook Places and Stories are just two more reasons to connect with friends and loved ones on Facebook.

How to Set Up Business Fan Pages on Facebook

At this point in the process, many businesses have considered their customer bases, and determined that they should have Facebook presences. They have selected the right personnel for their social media work, and are ready to get underway… but how to get started?

How to Create a New Business Facebook Fan Page

The following are some basic guidelines and instructions for the preparation of the Fan Page:

  • Don’t create a “personal page” misrepresenting a business as an individual human being. Not only is it dishonest, it means the business won’t have access to the “insights” tools available.
  • Instead, fan a few businesses on a personal Facebook Account to see how they manage the Fan page.
  • To create a new page, begin by logging in to the personal Facebook Account of the individual who will be responsible for the Fan Page
  • From there, access a business fan page, and scroll down to the bottom.
  • In the right-hand column, click on the link to “Create a Page for My Business” (see image below)
  • Complete the short form to create the account.

Once the account is set up, then it will need to be correctly administrated.

How to Assign Administrators for a New Business Facebook Page

The person who created the page is automatically designated as an administrator of the account. For businesses, it is a good idea to have more than one person established as an administrator for the Facebook page. This allows the business to retain control over the account in the event of illness or turnover, and it provides more than one team member the opportunity to look at the insights and provide updates and customer interactions.

The individual who created the page can add additional administrators by:

  • Clicking the “Edit Page” link directly below the “?” placeholder for the profile photo.
  • Scrolling down to the “Admins” box in the left-hand column of the administrator page (about the fourth box down). The existing administrator will see his or her own profile picture in this box already.
  • Click the “Add” link in the upper right-hand of the box.
  • The pop-up allows the administrator to select team members from among his or her friends, or by entering an email address. The email address entered must be the one that is tied to the second administrator’s active Facebook account.
  • Click the “Add Admins” button, and the other person will receive an email notification that they have been made an administrator.
  • For that person to access the page, they must log in to their personal account, and Search for the page title in the search box in the upper right corner of Facebook. The page will appear to all admins, even before it has been published.

When to Publish the New Corporate Facebook Fan Page

Prior to publishing the page, businesses will need to set up initial information. The tools and user interfaces are very similar between personal Facebook pages and those for businesses.

At minimum, a business page should include a Profile photo, and the small text box beneath the photo should have a brief statement about the business.

The “Info” tab should be complete with the business hours (if applicable), website, and additional contact information. This area is particularly important if the Fan Page supports a brick-and-mortar store somewhere!

At this point, the business page can be published. After publishing the page by clicking on the link in red text at the top of the page. (see image below)

How Often to Post Updates, and What to Post

How often a business should post updates is going to be determined by the business and the marketing goals for the page. Best practices suggest a minimum of 2-3 posts per week, and at maximum one post per day from the business account.

Remember, the Fans of a Business Page have “Fanned” the account because they want to hear updates and news about the business, the industry, events and anything related to it. They will receive these updates on their personal newsfeeds, regardless of whether they are logged into regular Facebook or Facebook Lite.

Businesses add pages to Facebook to generate conversations and to create a new way to interact with customers – not to sell or convert Facebook Fans to leads. (That’s what the business website is for!) Use this as a way to spread the word!

How to Attract Fans to a Business Facebook Page

One of the things that Facebook users like about the Business Fan Page setup is that they are able to “pull” information about their favorite businesses to them, without having unwanted information “pushed” at them. As a business familiar with advertising and marketing techniques, this concept is tough to act upon.

A few ways to begin the process of building fans include:

  • Start off with promoting the Facebook page among employees and friends. This will start getting the word out to the personal page network.
  • Add a link to the fan page to the homepage of the business website, inviting visitors to become fans.
  • Create an email blast telling your email list what news and information they will have access to if they “fan” the business.

Use the Insights box (Administrators will see this below the profile picture on the Business Page) to track interactions with fans, how many new fans have been added, and how many have dropped off the page. This will give the business a great way to track the success of the Facebook initiative.

Does Facebook = Over Information?

Facebook statistics

  • More than 750 million active users
  • 50% of which long on any given day
  • Over 250 million active users currently access Facebook via a mobile phone device

These are just some of the figures that make Facebook the most dominate social network site on the planet. It has become much more than a social networking site, it defines not only social networking but also the advancement of the internet and the shrinking of our world. Facebook is currently translated in over 70 languages and the great majority of members are from outside the United States. This dominance, which is astounding considering Facebook was born in 2004, is due to in large part to its ability to be a simple and easy interface to use. This is why not only teenagers and 20 something’s use Facebook, as was much the case with the likes of MySpace. The older generations have openly embraced Facebook. They find (well did find) the basic layout of Facebook inviting and complementary to limited computer knowledge, no need to type in code in order to ‘pimp’ out there profile.

Simplicity equals success

The simple layout of Facebook and its ability to connect effortlessly propelled it to its huge member base, older generations find it easy, and younger generations embrace it, as it is the easiest way to get in contact with anyone. However, the rapid development and current changes are becoming more of an issue than a benefit. Facebook is ever increasing its ability to probe into our profiles; the latest additions of a continuingly updating status bar on the right tab and the ‘status’s we thought you would like’ feel more like overcrowding and have undertones of privacy invasion.

Facebook has had issues with its privacy properties in the past and appears aware of such issues. The once streamlined home page has now become a cluttered mess of over information,

  • friends on chat, other friends on chat,
  • lists: dividing your friends up into their respective groups
  • friends on chat collage on the left hand side
  • the second right hand side roaming updates

All the same thing, but each clutters up the new home page. The only benefit to new Facebook updates has been the increase in picture size. While I find and, I know many of my friends enjoy Facebook on our phones because it reduces the clutter providing access to updates and chat.

Why is Facebook rapidly changing and reinventing?

Facebook is reinventing itself in anticipation of Google+, which until a few days ago was invite only, it is now open to the public and surpassed 20million members in just 5 months. Nothing really to Facebook, but we need to remember MySpace once had well over 250million members when Facebook had limited members. Facebook does not want to go the way of MySpace, it will continue to evolve and incorporate new applications many of which are in direction competition with google+, with its circle systems and sparks.

Facebook will remain the dominate means of social networking, (for now at least) but it must not forget why everyone was hooked on it to begin with. Simplicity and ease of use, sure we love the games, we love the groups and, the chat features, but if our home pages continue to be cluttered and we can no longer swim through the mountains of advertising we may just have to get crazy and maybe chat to our friends face to face once again.

Greasemonkey is the Answer to Facebook Invite Dilemma and More

Since Facebook now has over 400 million members worldwide, it has been proven a successful modern-day platform for marketing products, services, events, games, causes, politicians, bands, and anything and everything under the sun. Many who use Facebook to promote their groups, apps and fan pages have shown an utter frustration in inviting friends to join their networks due to the lack of ease in the process of inviting.

Automatically Invite and Build Networks on Facebook with Fast & Easy Script Installation

Now, a company called Greasemonkey has created apps that will save time and effort in the tedious process of having to invite people manually, one by one, plus numerous other downloadable scripts that will ease and enhance the total Facebook experience.

  1. First, update all out-dated system drivers at : http://driverrobot.com
  2. Install the Greasemonkey add-on for Firefox Only works with Firefox browser – there are other scripts for Google Chrome, Opera and Internet Explorer, however, these have not been perfected and contain many glitches.
  3. Now, restart your computer.
  4. Log back in and go to userscripts.org to install the “friend-add script” and a Greasemonkey icon will appear at the bottom right of your screen. Right click the icon (or go to the tools menu and click Greasemonkey) and make sure that “enabled” is checked and proceed to “manage user” scripts.
  5. Highlight “facebook invites” and add it to the app form.
  6. Go to Facebook account and try it out. A box will appear each time there is a need to invite people to join a group, page, app, event, etc. There are many options in the pop-up box that appears. Options to “select all” “deselect” “only include recently added friends” “only friends using the app” as well as other convenient functions are available. Inviting “all friends” has never been easier and only takes seconds rather than many minutes to an hour the old way depending on how many people are in the list.
  7. Repeat this process for a host of other scripts to improve Facebook use.

Innovative Greasemonkey Add-ons to Save Time & Enhance the Facebook Experience

Now there is a convenient way to use Facebook more efficiently without having to deal with all the stumbling blocks of the notorious, “non-user friendly” platform. This “friend invite” script can be a social media marketer’s dream as it will save much time in spreading the message to targeted individuals.

There are also numerous other Greasemonkey scripts available. The purpose of installing some of these extra scripts is to help boost the personal/business collaborative practice with Facebook. With these scripts, one can add great features on Facebook that are not made available by Facebook. The following add-ons give choice and flexibility and have proven successful and popular with users. There are hundreds of others to fit personal style and needs.

  • Facebook Purity – gets rid of all the annoying application notifications that flood the facebok wall. This app disables these pesky clutter invaders from displaying on the wall forever. Original Facebook apps such as: status updates, wall posts, links, notes, photos, videos will stil appear.
  • Facebook Fixer – This provides many features which include bigger profile pictures and photos, easier viewing of albums, links to download videos, google calendar integration and keyboard shortcuts just to name a few.
  • Un “bad F word” Facebook – Despite its title, this app is one of the best as it is a clutter buster. It allows users to remove Facebook ads, make home page into two columns, hide app & fan stories on profiles, remove rounded thumbnails, block invites from apps, fan groups and events. Furthermore, expansion of the width of walls on profiles and direct share links can be applied with this script.
  • Auto-Colorizer for Facebook – This cool script changes the color scheme of any page to fit the default photo for a particular profile.

The days of mundane facebook encounters are over with a modern-day Greasemonkey to the rescue. Dirty hands are a thing of the past with this easy to use service. In a few a few quick steps, Facebook users can now save time, be more productive, increase efficiency, personalize settings and have an overall positive Facebook experience rather than a chore to battle each day.