Twitter Optimizations Now Live

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Hello Blyverati,

Just a quick note from your friends at Blyve.  

Over the past few days, Twitter has been sending us duplicate Tweets, as many of you have reported, which has caused some unanticipated frustration.  Unfortunately their documentation states that applications like ours “must tolerate duplicate statuses…”.  Well, since this was the first time this happened in over 5 years, we decided now is the time to do something about it…and quickly.  

So, effective immediately regardless of what Twitter sends us, we now remove duplicates on your behalf. Additionally, we have introduced a few optimizations to improve overall performance in regards to Twitter.  Within your “event settings” module you will see a “Twitter Options” setting.  Once you open that, you’ll see an option to “Show retweets”, if you desire.  By default this is turned off as retweets (typically) add very little value to events as they occupy valuable real estate in both the Twitter Search and Pending Stream columns.  

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For the feature trackers out there, we used to have an option to show/hide retweets but it wasn’t very effective as the Tweets were still being pushed to your browser.  Now, those too are filtered out.  So if you follow a lot of Twitter accounts within your Blyve events, you should see a much cleaner, speedy interface (including those who search on popular terms).

Finally, we optimized a few other things around the pending stream (for those of you with popular events).  We are now caching comments requiring less calls to our servers, which in turn should increase the overall efficiency of your browser’s performance.

In the end, most of these changes should be transparent.  Usually we don’t mention these types of enhancements as they should typically go unnoticed and “just work”.  In this case, we thought we should let you the details as the issue was consumer facing and rather unpleasant.

That’s it for now.  Let us know how things are working, k?

Talk soon…

-Ramsey

Feature update: trusted users can now reply with media

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Hi everyone, just a quick feature update for this Friday…

In our recent Blyve 2.5 release we enabled Trusted Users, typically experts you bring in for a Q&A to whom you’d like to assign messages to, to compose new messages with media (either media from their desktop or via Dropbox).  Now, with today’s update, Trusted Users are also able to reply to comments with media.  A picture is worth a thousand words, right?  Sometimes a picture might be a better way to respond to an audience member’s question, if not augment an answer.

That’s about it for today.  We hope you have a great Friday and upcoming weekend.  We’re looking forward to all those Oscar Live Blogs!

-Ramsey

Export Event Stats is Now Available to all Blyve Users

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Howdy folks!  We hope you’re all checking out all the Blyve 2.5 features announced yesterday.  So, in addition to all those great features, we have something new to talk about today.  If you have used our new Export Event Data via our brand new “post event report”, you should also know that that data is also now accessible via the Manage tab on your Dashboard.  Even better, you can now export all of your events in one quick step.

How does this work?  Well, via the Manage/Manage Events tab on your Dashboard, select “view stats” for an individual event and then select “Export Event Data”  (this similar to your post event report).  Or, at the very bottom of the page, you can now pick from a set number of events to download into single CSV file (or if your browser doesn’t support the download ability, you’ll see a window come up where you can copy and paste the content into a CSV file via a program like Microsoft Excel).

One last thing:  these stats are not just your event attendee data (attendees, messages, web/mobile, etc).  These stats also include your poll data as well as your ad manager data (if you are a premium user).

We hope you like this improvement!  Drop us a line if you’d like more information or contact us if you’d like a demo of this feature (see below).

-Ramsey

Screenshot of the Manage Events page with new stats:

event stats

Blyve 2.5 is now live: Live Map, Pinned Messages, Q&A upgrades, and much more!

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Hi everyone, we’re very excited today to announce Blyve 2.5.  We have been working on this release since October and we believe it’s something to be excited about!  What’s even more exciting is that the majority of the new features are  customer driven…meaning you are looking and finding more and more ways to engage with your audience.  You’d like to plot your attendees on a map?  Sure!  You’d like to pick out specific messages and post those permanently at the top?  Why not?  All in all, thank you for the incredible feedback as we strive to make your live events, live blogs, live chats, Q&A sessions, and all the above the best in the business.

Live Map: map your attendees on a world map!

Our Blyve Premium users now have the ability to add a little extra pizzaz to their events.  When attendees join your Blyve live event, they will be prompted to share their location.  If they do, their location will be grabbed from their browser and plotted on to a world map (see image below).  For anyone concerned about too much location detail, we kept it “high level”, meaning that you can’t zoom in too far.  There’s no reason to see anyone grabbing the mail in their pajamas.

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Pinned messages: feature a collection of messages at the top of your event

Have you ever tried to set a message as a status to not only want to set another message as a status?  No, this isn’t a riddle.  The way this worked in Blyve 2.0 is that you could only feature a single message.  With Blyve 2.5 that restriction has gone the way of the dodo.  Now, you can pick and choose as many messages as you’d like by pinning them individually to the top.  Even better, once they’re all nicely in there, you can remove a pin or move a pinned message to the top of the queue.

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Post Event Report – have all the details at your fingertips

When you “finish” an event, you will now see a Blyve Post Event report.  Within, you’ll see the usual statistics for your messages as well as your completed poll results.  Additionally, if you’re a Blyve Premium user, we  show you Ad Manager stats and Live Map stats.  Even better, this data is now available as a CSV download (or a copy/paste if your browser doesn’t support the download functionality).

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Updated comment box – new design and new functionality

This update is long overdue.  We’re sorry.  We’ve updated all the comment boxes with minimalistic and clean design.  Apologies and visual improvements aside, you also have the option to choose how the enter button operates as your typing in a comment.  If you’re in the mood to write paragraphs, the enter key adds a new line.  If you’re the type who types short bursts of messages, the enter key acts like a submit button.  The good news is that in either scenario, they shift key along with the enter buttons does the exact opposite.  Confusing?  Just give it a try!

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Trusted user image upload:  trusted users can add media to messages

Trusted users, we’ve ben thinking a lot about you.  Part one of your upgrades includes the ability for you to upload images along side of your new comments.  Just like a moderator, you can upload directly from your desktop or by connecting to a Dropbox account.

New image upload icon appears as soon as you’re trusted:
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Upload media from your Desktop or via Dropbox:
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Message and image ready to be submitted:
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Q&A/Assigned Comments Upgrades

Part two of the Trusted Users user upgrades includes enhancements to the assigned comment flow.  What’s that you say?  Well, when moderators decide to “trust” you, they can assign comments to you.  Maybe you’re a celebrity guest during a Q&A session or an expert available to answer audience questions.  In either case, questions assigned to you now work like this:

Assigned comments now appear in the comment area (notice the “3”):Image

Viewing list of assigned comments (notice the reply and decline):Image

Once you reply, your comment is submitted as usual.  What’s new is the “decline”.  When you do that, it is sent back to the moderator as an “unassigned” comment.  FYI, a comment becomes unassigned once everyone it was assigned to declines.

A few other goodies that are worth mentioning:

  1. Assigned comments, when assigned to multiple people, stay in each trusted user’s assigned queue until each individual trusted user either replies or declines
  2. Once a message has been assigned, the message now says to which trusted user(s) it was assigned to

Polls Upgrades:  results, results, and more results!

Polling is by far one of the best tools you can use to engage your audience to determine who they feel or think about what it is your covering.  With that said, we thought you needed a little more information at your fingertips:

  1. Within the polls module, under manage, you can now see how many actual votes a specific answer has received (in real-time of course)
  2. If you are an Enterprise Blyve user, and are using Live Boards, you will now see a filter of live and completed polls (to encourage more voting within actual live polls).

Deleted Comments:  recover comments that have been accidentally deleted

Last but not least, moderators now have the ability to un-delete comments that have been accidentally (or otherwise) deleted.  If the comment was from a moderator, co-moderator, or trusted user, it will automatically go into the live stream.  If it’s from a viewer, it will appear at the top of the pending list.

As with all releases, there are tons of bug fixes, optimizations, and performance enhancements (you’ll find a bunch of those on our Liveboards beta feature).  Over the coming weeks, we’ll do a deep dive into many of these features with a few video demos. Stay tuned to for blog posts, Tweets, Facebook updates, and the like for links to those videos.

Thanks everyone and we hope you can take these features for a spin today!  If you’re interested in a demo, just let us know below.

-Ramsey

Live #blogging #thenextbigthing with @Blyve

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Blyve is the perfect platform for live blogging the announcement of #thenextbigthing. I’ve compiled a list of 5 product features that you should be focusing on:

  1. Customize the look, then embed
  2. Schedule ads
  3. Add trusted contributors
  4. Publish to Twitter & Facebook
  5. Draft your polls ahead of time

View the Slideshare presentation below which includes a video demo of the Blyve console:

Got any questions on live blogging and/or Blyve, ping me (Randy Ksar) at randyk@blyve.com

Top 5 Tips on Creating a Real-Time Engagement Strategy

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2014 is going to be an exciting year in real-time marketing and engagement strategies. Brands in 2013 spent time figuring out how to get to their customers at the right time based upon trending data but now brands have an opportunity to be proactive creating real-time events based upon their schedule (e.g. product launches).  The below presentation covers 5 tips on creating a real-time engagement strategy with your community of passionate fans and how to strategically plan and tactically run a branded, moderated, engaging and online event.

5 Tips on Live Blogging Your Next Event

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5 Tips on Live Blogging Your Next Event

Brands have a huge opportunity to engage with their community during product launches. No longer are you just having a press only event but brands have the ability to invite their communities that can’t attend the event in-person to a live engaging online event.  From a tactical standpoint having been involved with over 150+ online events with my clients over the years here are 5 tips:

1. Empower your employees

You might be a one person social media machine at your company but you can’t be everywhere at the event so train your employees to take photos, videos and post messages to their favorite social network about what’s going on from their perspective. A couple of weeks before the event, have a lunch meeting and update the team (product, marketing, event, customer support and pr) on the live blogging & social strategy.

2. Incorporate & Curate from Twitter

It’s without saying with any event that you produce whether in-person or online or a combo, a hashtag is helpful to amplify your message to influencers. Incorporate it into all the presentation decks, speeches, posters, badges, event marketing materials and the live video stream. Once it is incorporated, they key issue as a live blogger for a company is how are you going to curate that content in a moderated fashion. Not every tweet is going into your live blog stream so find a live blogging platform that can help you with the moderation flow/process.

3. Give your online attendees some love

So often in live online events, the online attendees are not highlighted or even given the ability to ask questions. For example, the Salesforce Dreamforce events do a great job of video streaming but a poor job of incorporated real-time user feedback into the presentations. Best thing you can do is the following:

  • Announce attendee locations – simple yet effective.
  • Take questions from the online audience – give a few mins of love and have a platform that can save questions for the right time during your event.
  • Raffle off a prize for online attendees or offer some exclusive content.

4. Have your social media toolkit ready for prime-time

Here is a mini-checklist of tools you should have at your disposal and shared with employees attending the event, if applicable:

  • SLR camera w/ external flash and if possible mobile lighting system (Canon 7D is my choice of camera)
  • Your preferred choice of mobile app publishing tools (depending on the client I use Blyve, Sprout Social or Hootsuite)
  • FAQ that includes answers to respond to common expected questions
  • Social content that can be referenced in the form of product launch videos, how-to videos, datasheets and screenshots. Store everything in Dropbox or similar service and make sure everyone has access to it.

5. Make it an integrated marketing campaign

Market the online event at minimum 2 weeks out if you have that flexibility. When marketing it make sure it is in all your event marketing materials, tell your partners/vendors to tune in and use your employee’s social influence to spread the word. As the owner of the live blog / online event, create a doc that is easy for everyone to cut-n-paste content into their specific channels. Provide small, medium and large copy blocks, imagery, links to share and your contact info.

In the words of philanthropist Margaret Mead:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.

If there is one thing that you leave from this blog post, empower a small team of bloggers with real-time engagement tools and real-time marketing content. If you have that in place you’ll have a successful live blog with community engagement that ties back to your business goals.

As always, comment below or ping me at randyk@blyve.com or @djksar on Twitter.

Happy Holidays!

This blog post originally appeared on the Business 2 Community website & syndicated on Yahoo! Small Business.
Image Credit: Flickr User Zach Scott