PBS on Facebook

Matt Mattus mmattus@charter.net
Sun, 31 Jul 2011 11:23:19 PDT
TO add to this Facebook discussion ( I hope this is not too off topic, but
it is relevant to any plant society).

1. Anyone can create a Facebook page about anything. In fact, most
organizations and brands, encourage it in any form. We should try to own our
own name, but after that, we should hope to see fan pages like "John's PBS
page, Matt's Bulb PBS page) etc.

2. A 'fan created page' is NOT a website. We can, if we choose to, create
our own 'Official' Facebook page, but I'm not convinced that we need to yet,
or, if we are ready to. Clearly, this group would not know what to do with
one anyway, so don't worry about it.

3. If there is a page, embrace it. It's OK. Or, create a new one. We should
be hoping that there might be 65 pages someday, not just one.

The web is inherently participatory, not just interactive. It is constantly
encouraging you to comment, to contribute, to join. Organizations and
businesses who realize this new phenomenon, use Facebook in a most effective
way- rather then shutting down fans who start their own pages, rather, they
encourage participation, and if anything, inspire new ways for new members
to join. My company used to sue anyone who opened a page with one of our
brands or feature films, particular if they posed as a character on Twitter
or Facebook. Today, we count how many and use it as a marketing tool.

Engaging your audience is the goal, today. Not rejecting them. Wonder how
hot ad agencies suggest we work with Facebook? Take this example. Cascadian
Farms Wild Blueberries knows how to use it....they are working with Zynga, a
startup company in SF. This little Blueberry company knew that over 65
million regular users play on Facebook's digital game Farmville every day.
They have now introduced a digital crop of digital blueberry bushes for
'in-game crop integration'. Compared to television in North America with
major networks reaching 18 million adults 18-49 in 2010, that 40-60 million
user base surely must have reached some new customers. There are greenhouses
( alpine houses?) in Farmville......It's not out of the question to see
NARGS troughs and pots, right?

Afraid of attracting too many posy pushers and tulip growers? They may be
our future, if we offer them a PBS-lite membership-could be our bread and
butter. All options should be left open if we want to grow carefully.

Does PBS need to do this? Of course not. But, my point is that we should not
be so quick to say no, when the internet is fragmenting to quickly,
redefining how audiences work - the idea of memberships and exclusivity is
evolving faster than we think.

4. fear of loss of control - It's OK, don't worry. What is wrong with having
a lot of 'Friends"? Really? What's the harm? No one is getting emails from
our Fav list on Facebook. It's just a free ad to join, if they want to.

Look, Facebook is NOT a website, it's like an entire network onto itself. As
new companies and organizations begin to use it, they are learning that just
'making a Facebook page' means nothing at all, unless you link to content
somewhere else, or have engagement on it. Sure, 'Friends' can Fav it, but it
still means nothing at all - no harm, no benefit.

So why is everyone here so worried about it? I would have hoped that there
was more than one Facebook page for bulbs, with maybe one for each genus and
species, it may happen one day. Still, I can't see how a Facebook presence
can hurt un in anyway. We could only hope that we get 1500 Fav's ( there are
no friends on fan pages) ( or, we can change what we want to call friends,
most organizations choose the word, RECOMMEND). One benefit might be that
once we have a lot of "favorites", we might end up higher on the Google
search engines when someone enters in the word 'BULB'.

Amazing opportunities exist for those willing to step out there and use
social media sites effectively.  It take a load of creativity and money,
however, to do it right. Anything else, is harmless.

Matt Mattus
Worcester, MA

On 7/31/11 11:38 AM, "John T Lonsdale" <john@johnlonsdale.net> wrote:

> Yes, all it needs to be is a reasonably attractive placeholder managed by
> the PBS that points interested people in the direction of more resources.  I
> don't know much about Facebook but the page might also need a PBS
> administrator if it is to be used actively (so that is more work for
> 'someone').  If someone with the permission of the PBS wants to develop it
> further under the auspices of the PBS then that would only be a good thing.
> Best,
> J.
> John T Lonsdale PhD
> 407 Edgewood Drive,
> Exton, Pennsylvania 19341, USA
> Home: 610 594 9232
> Cell: 484 678 9856
> Fax: 315 571 9232
> Visit "Edgewood" - The Lonsdale Garden at http://www.edgewoodgardens.net/
> USDA Zone 6b
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