Facebook as a channel of business communication

Giovanni Carzana

Videos and photoes are crucial on Facebook.

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#DigitalTalk con Giovanni Carzana

With Giovanni Carzana we had already talk about his experience with Fantagazzetta; in this #DigitalTalk instead we try to shed light on some aspects of Facebook, offering some precious advice to entrepreneurs who would like to add this Social Media in their corporate communications.

Gabriele: “Facebook is now a communication channel which can’t be ignored. You were Chief Editor and Social Media Manager for fanpage.it until 2012, what it means to manage a Facebook page linked to an editorial project? Your experience can be applied to a company blog?”

Giovanni: “Managing a Facebook page linked to an editorial project is something very exciting, in particular, if it is an online generalist newspaper. Social media make available a whole range of instruments unimaginable until the twentieth century. First of all the relationship One2one with users. A newscast rather than a daily paper can detect the reader feedback and the appreciation of the contents only indirectly. Through Facebook, however, there is complete disintermediation between the issuer and the receiver (such as the famous model of Paul Grice): users can directly interact with the message and with the source of it through the comments, shares and famous likes. But this is only one aspect. Probably we do not even notice, but also in Italy, the current is closely related to social media, and not just recently. When in 2010 there was the earthquake in Abruzzo, I was already working in Ciaopeople (the company publishing Fanpage.it), although Fanpage.it was not yet born. I was involved with Ciaopeople Magazine. I was in Naples and at night I felt the shock, so I went on Twitter and when I found out that the area in which it was felt most strongly was the Abruzzo (so to several hundred km from Naples), I realized that this was a real disaster. I switched on the TV and the news began to speak of 1or 2 deads, while on Twitter it was clear that the number of victims was tragically higher. Things are a little ‘changed since then. Today the use of social media as direct sources was boosted enormously. Just think of the famous tweet of Matteo Renzi #enricostaisereno, published a few days before the secretary of the Democratic Party did the government Letta fall. A hashtag which is already past in history. It must be said, that the Italian media don’t understand the importance of social media and direct sources yet. The news of Pino Daniele’s death in January was revealed by Eros Ramazzotti by a tweet, but the most of newspapers, from the web to TV and radio, waited for ANSA communication to give the news. A model that could be good in the twenties or thirties, under fascism: ninety years ago. Not today, with all the communication world totally changed. Whit Fanpage.it we were real pioneers from this point of view, and this gave to the journal million of views every day. Numbers close to those of giants like La Repubblica and Il Corriere. Already some years ago we guessed that Facebook would be used by users not just for fun but also for information. We have adopted the editorial model that could be good on the web before the birth of social media. We wanted to focus on techniques peculiar for Facebook. We worked on the graphics, the relationship with users, the creation of a palimpsest for social media, those are just a few of strategies on which work to create a real community around the Facebook page of a magazine. About business blogs, there are certainly some common characteristics and differences about the use of social media. For example, for a magazine of actuality, the frequence of pubblication of contents must be necessary high to follow the news. As opposed the users of a business website will clik unlike if we publish contents about it with a particularly rilevant frequency. A common appareance is the importance of graphic contents, from the choice of profile pictures and of the cover.”

Gabriele: “So the social media are changing the way to make information. Actually, they already did, are we who are left behind. Tell me about the importance of contents, in particular about graphic ones. How can a business stay ahead with strategies, stating with a chronic lack of content? The images and videos are putting away the words? I think that the key is this, the need to produce quality contents. What for? To increase the likes?”

Giovanni: “About the lack of content I don’t agree. In the last years the UGC (User Generated Content) is increased exponentially, and the last updating of Facebook’s algorithm, with a big increase of visibility of users’ videos, it takes part in all the context. Between the reasons for which videos are stealing market share to words, there is the question about monetizing. The video contents give more visibility to agencies, with pre-roll, post-roll and sometimes also mid-roll (the three principle advertising formats that go with a video online). This is bringing in some cases also exaggerations. I imagine that there aren’t few users unhappy when a video of less than a minute is preceded by a 30 seconds spot, that they can’t move on. Make quality contents is important, but it’s not enough. You must know how to spread them, it is fundamental in the sea of information from which we are bombarded every day from media off and online, and in particular from social media. And it is for this that the corporation from SMEs to multinationals, to invest in Social Media Marketing is today fundamental. Therefore, for you, the principal problem isn’t the creation of content but their diffusion. At this point, we want to give some advice to entrepreneurs who are looking for the first time at the use of Facebook as a business touch-point? Three fundamental aspects are: 1. use Facebook without methodology that are good also for other media but don’t care about the features of this social network; 2. keep in mind that, over the textual content, on Facebook are fundamental the multimedia contents (photos and mostly videos); 3. consider that Facebook is the first big mass medium where the users interact in a personal way and with a name and a surname, with all the benefits and risks that it involves.”

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Defined by Going Global UK: "LEADING EXPERT IN INTERNATIONAL DIGITAL MARKETING STRATEGIES". Among the 5 major Italian marketing influencers according to Digitalic. Coordinator of the Networking Club of Philip Kotler at the Italian Marketing Foundation. The only Italian who accomplished the MIT Digital Business Strategy Executive Program about Digital Transformation (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). Co-founder of Weevo, co-publisher of Il Giornale delle PMI, author of "Strategie web per i mercati esteri", Hoepli 2016 (Digital Strategies for International Markets).

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