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Trump presses Facebook to restore his account

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A mobile billboard, deployed by activist group Accountable Tech, is seen outside the Meta headquarter on January 17, 2023 in Menlo Park, California

A mobile billboard, deployed by activist group Accountable Tech, is seen outside the Meta headquarter on January 17, 2023 in Menlo Park, California – Copyright AFP MIGUEL MEDINA

Former US president Donald Trump is urging Facebook to reinstate his account two years after it was deactivated, his aides said Wednesday, as he gears up for a third bid for the White House.

The social media giant banned Trump a day after the January 6, 2021 insurrection, when a mob of his supporters tried to halt the certification of his election defeat to Joe Biden by storming the US Capitol in Washington.

The former reality TV star had spent weeks falsely claiming that the presidential election was stolen from him and he was subsequently impeached for inciting the riot.

Trump’s lawyer Scott Gast said in a letter to Facebook parent company Meta, obtained by AFP, that the ban had “dramatically distorted and inhibited the public discourse.”

He asked for a meeting to discuss Trump’s “prompt reinstatement to the platform,” where he had 34 million followers, arguing that his status as the leading contender for the Republican nomination in 2024 justified ending the ban.

“We also believe that a continued ban would basically constitute… a deliberate effort by a private company to silence Mr. Trump’s political voice,” Gast wrote.

A US congressional committee recommended in December that Trump be prosecuted for his role in the Capitol assault.

His Twitter account, which has 88 million followers, was also blocked after the riot, leaving the 76-year-old Republican to communicate through his own platform, Truth Social, where he has fewer than five million followers.

California-based Facebook had said it would review Trump’s ban on January 7, after two years had elapsed.

“We will announce a decision in the coming weeks in line with the process we laid out.” the company told AFP on Wednesday.

Trump’s shock victory in 2016 was credited in part to his leverage of social media and his enormous digital reach.

New Twitter owner Elon Musk reinstated Trump’s account last November, days after the tycoon announced his decision to run for another term in the White House. He has yet to post.

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X Experiments with New Grok AI Access Buttons In-Stream

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X Experiments with New Grok AI Access Buttons In-Stream

I’m not sure that X’s “Grok” AI chatbot is ever going to become a major element of the in-app experience. But owner Elon Musk has invested a lot into the new tool, so soon, it’ll be added to a lot more surfaces in the app, as X looks to make it a bigger enticement to get more subscribers to its X Premium+ subscription offering.

Last week, Musk noted that, soon, Grok would be available to analyze X posts in-stream.

In order to facilitate this, X is now looking to add a new Grok button to the lower function bar in the app, seemingly, at this stage a least, replacing the current Communities shortcut.

As you can see in this example, posted by X News Daily, a new Grok button may soon be displayed in prominent position, right in the middle of the bottom tray. Which would then make it easier to consult Grok for analysis of content, or potentially to assist in post creation, while there’s also another Grok tab in the sidebar, providing alternative access.

Grok chatbot

All of this is still in flux, as X works out the best placement for the option. But one way or another, Grok is coming to the main X UI, which could see a lot more content being pumped out by Elon’s sarcasm-focused AI bot, which is trained on real-time X conversation and data.

Though, presumably, access will remain limited.

Right now, Grok is only available to selected users who have subscribed to X’s highest-priced “X Premium+” monthly subscription package, which currently costs $US16 per month. X is rolling out Grok access to Premium+ subscribers based on when they signed up to the program, as it gradually expands the presence of its AI chatbot tool.

You would assume, then, that these new buttons and Grok analysis options will only be made available to those who are paying a premium for the app, though whether that’s actually worth the $US168 a year (annual plan) to gain access is another question.

But then again, millions of people have signed up to ChatGPT, and Elon seems confident that Grok will be as good, if not better than that. And in that sense, maybe Grok will prove to be a winner, which could then help X to maximize its subscription revenue intake, and broaden its income streams.

It’s impossible to say, because Grok is only in limited access, and as such, there’s not a lot of insight as to its potential value, or not, as yet.

But Elon wants to ensure that there remains a generative AI option that’s not biased, and not censored, a market gap that he believes Grok can fill. And again, given his investment in the required technology (Elon reportedly spent “tens of millions of dollars” on GPUs for his alternative AI project), he’ll also be looking to glean some return on that outlay, which will likely see X looking to make as big a push on Grok as it can to maximize interest.

Whether that’s a positive or negative, we’ll soon find out.



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Beyond the buzz: Blue Tick’s formula for social media success

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Beyond the buzz: Blue Tick's formula for social media success

Photo courtesy of Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels

Opinions expressed by Digital Journal contributors are their own.

Breaking through the constant clamor of the social media world is no easy feat. With the world more interconnected than ever, attention isn’t just a valuable commodity, it’s the currency brands and marketers trade in. This bustling digital bazaar has brands tripping over themselves to capture even a fleeting glance from consumers, and while some do it successfully, many often fail. Blue Tick Ltd is one of the pioneering brands that understand the rhythm and flow of the online attention economy.

Under the dynamic leadership of its founder, Dylan, Blue Tick doesn’t chase attention — it commands it. A community marketing expert with wide-ranging expertise, Dylan has always had a keen eye for what works. Thanks to his fascination with the nuances of social media strategies and consumer engagement, he proudly holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing communications and a master’s degree in digital marketing. That fascination was also the catalyst for Blue Tick, an enterprise that reimagines the connection between brands and their communities.

“In school, I led several successful social media campaigns that not only increased engagement with campus events but also brought significant online attention to my academic community,” Dylan recalls. “After graduating, I founded a community marketing company called Blue Tick.” This community doesn’t merely aim to increase visibility but strives to forge a bond with audiences through authenticity and innovation. Unlike traditional advertising, community marketing is about creating a living, breathing ecosystem around a brand.

At Blue Tick, the focus isn’t on broadcasting messages but on creating dialogues, recognizing that a personalized touch can turn a passive observer into an active participant and brand advocate. In a digital terrain where every brand is a storyteller, Blue Tick’s narrative is distinct. It isn’t about adding more noise; it’s about fine-tuning the message to reach the right ears. Their approach is both an art and a science, melding creative content with a laser-focused targeting system backed by robust data analytics.

“My work has proven that combining creative content with precise targeting can create impactful online experiences,” Dylan explains. Blue Tick’s marketing campaigns aren’t just seen but felt. The content they create isn’t just encountered by consumers; they experience it. As Dylan explains, “Our campaigns are more than just text and images; we also include interactive content, gamified elements, and storytelling that make the brand more vivid and interesting and stand out in the busy world of social media.” Every campaign they roll out isn’t just a series of ads; they’re the opening lines to a conversation that makes every single person feel seen and heard.

Data-driven decision-making is another of Blue Tick Ltd’s pillars. The company meticulously analyzes consumer data to understand preferences, behaviors, and trends. This insight allows them to craft marketing strategies that are not only creative but also incredibly targeted. “The content I receive is more relevant, making me more likely to pay attention, share, or make a purchase,” says one consumer, highlighting the impact of Blue Tick’s data-driven strategies.

Over the years, Dylan’s team hasn’t just understood the landscape of social media marketing; they have redefined it. As their success proves, community marketing succeeds because consumers become brand ambassadors who not only love the products but also feel a deep connection to the brand’s ethos. With Blue Tick, it’s clear that the future of marketing is not just about reaching audiences; it’s about speaking directly to the consumer’s heart, turning every campaign into a conversation, and every consumer into a community member.

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7 tips for creating great digital presence

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7 tips for creating great digital presence

DEAR READERS: Companies of all kinds are finding it imperative to build a digital strategy to compete in a world where almost everyone is shopping and doing business online. How can small companies, including startups and those with just a few employees, get the kind of following on their websites and social media platforms that they’ll need to succeed?






There are several steps to take to build your business online.




It is a problem many companies are trying to get their arms around, according to everyone I reached out to. Here are a few tips to get started on the road to social media success:

Develop clearly defined goals. “Determine your objectives, whether they are enhancing brand awareness, generating leads or driving sales growth, as they will serve as guiding principles for developing your strategy,” suggests Dmitriy Shelepin CEO and head of SEO at Miromind.

Identify your ideal followers. That means going beyond demographics like gender and age, according to brand consultant Faith James, CEO of The Personal Branding Consultancy. “It’s important to go deeper into their psychographics — how they think, what motivates them, what their core desires are,” James says. “By focusing on the psychographics, you focus on the emotional connectors that build a stronger connection which goes beyond just the transactional ‘buy my stuff.’ ”

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Choose and prioritize platforms. Shelepin says it is crucial to choose platforms “that resonate with your desired audience and align with your business objectives,” and suggests focusing on one or two of those platforms “to deliver quality over quantity.”

Provide value. James says value can come in various forms, but stresses that it boils down to “helping your audience get a small win in the areas that are meaningful to them.

“If a hair salon is looking to grow their following, they might offer tips on their website and social media platforms such as ‘How to Have Your Hair Color Last Longer,’ ‘3 Tips on How to Beat the Humidity Frizz,’ or ‘How to Avoid Chlorine Damage While Swimming at the Pool,’ ” James says.

Value also can come by educating and informing your audience with things like educational blog posts that establish industry expertise, Shelepin adds.

Invite engagement. This is an essential step, James stresses. “In all instances, the business would invite the audience to share their own hair drama stories, share their own tricks they are using to make their hair color last longer, and invite the audience to submit their own questions about hair care,” James explains.

Build relationships. “Use social media to connect with customers, respond promptly, and share relevant content,” Shelepin says.

Don’t forget about email. It is a great way to maintain customer relationships and to deliver exclusive content and special offers like discounts, Shelepin explains.

Shelepin acknowledges that businesses won’t realize success in the digital realm overnight, but stresses that success is possible to achieve.

“It’s important to maintain consistency, in creating content and engaging on media platforms, as building an online presence takes time,” Shelepin concludes. “By adhering to these strategies, small businesses can cultivate a strong digital presence, enabling them to thrive in today’s competitive landscape.”

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