Killing the facebook Logo Softly

Reducing the noise of social media icons on websites is a trend (finally).

With little scientific measurements, I suggest most people tap their flip-flop strapped feet to rhythmic beats; so is the same with non-profits tweeting and giving facebook updates. It’s part of their natural response to the current webby beats — they can’t stop themselves from telling the world of their work. While this social buzz has become the norm, something great has happened. The loud promotion of this natural act has seen a quieting. Notice the hush. Notice the amount of web pages that have shrunk and moved their big honking social media icons/logos to the footer — and in some cases it is not visible anywhere on the page.

Three popular websites that have relocated and quieted the social icons to the footer

Some popular websites that have relocated and quieted the social icons in the footer

Back when Kelly Clarkson was belting songs (in 2005) the most common design task was enlarging the social media icons/logos and in some cases making them larger than the non-profit’s own logo. Some of you still have those grandiose facebook icons…

Three reasons to quiet your social media promotional buttons:

  1. You are advertising someone else’s company and associating yourself with their brand — how important is it to your mission to make them more popular?
  2. Those buttons compete with your primary interface goals.
  3. You would not put a starburst on your business card that read “we have a website”, why do the equivalent on your website with a facebook logo. Trust me, people will look for your social platforms after they see value in “following”.

I know the concern about people not seeing these callouts because its still important to notify readers of your facebook page and tweets, but the way you get people to “follow” you has changed. Today, people expect you to have a presence in the social world but they need information on how you’re using social media and how they will benefit from following your organization.

Here, the social promotion is treated as a call-to-action or advertisement in the side column. A typical place for loudness and distraction.

Here, the social promotion is treated as a call-to-action or advertisement in the side column. A typical place for loudness and distraction.

Like your email address and phone number, let us all regulate the social media icons to the footer and implement ideas that display the value of your facebook, twitter, pinterest, and youtube activity in new ways that don’t involve large logos (plug – follow openbox9 on facebook for recent samples of our work and more useful non-profit tips).

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Michael has spent the past 20 years applying his experience and superpowers to further the missions of social-good organizations, and has no plans to stop.
September 19th, 2013 // // , ,
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