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4 Ways to Tank Your Social Media Campaigns

Posted by Jenna Bruce on Thu, Jun 01, 2017 @ 04:11 PM

Reaching and engaging customers via the proliferation of social media channels has become a huge priority for most businesses. And yet many of these companies create and post pointless, promoted posts, sharing information none of their customers really cares about.

The result: wasted ad spend on campaigns that fail to cut through the digital noise and drive action.

How do companies tank their social media campaigns over and over again? By making one or more of the following mistakes:

  1. Having No Strategy

It’s said you can’t get to your destination without a roadmap. You can, as long as you don’t know where you’re going.Business man pointing to transparent board with text What's your Online Marketing Strategy?.jpeg

While you don’t have to plan out every single tweet or Facebook post verbatim, you DO have to plan what content and events you are going to create content around.

You also must do a bit of research to determine which channels are the right ones for your business. Despite what you may think, you do not have to have a presence on every single social media channel. Trying to maintain myriad SM accounts will spread your marketing team too thin and waste precious resources.

 

Instead, determine WHO your customers are and WHERE they choose to get their information. If you’re a B2B company, you may find you only need to be on LinkedIn to get excellent reach. Other companies may find Facebook and Google+ work well, while others Instagram and Youtube.

  1. Not Acting Like a Human Being

If you’ve been focused on traditional advertising channels like newspapers and TV ads, you may stumble a bit when first using social media. That’s because traditional advertising incorporates one-way messaging. You talk – they listen.

But social media is a digital conversation. This means you have to be the HUMAN behind the company and engage with your customers, not sell to them all of the time. This will entail listening to their problems and offering real help, or just offering a smile in the form of a funny photo.

With social media, you want to throw a party, invite all of your prospects, and then be the life of your own party.

  1. Not Bothering to Automate

You probably already know this, but it bears repeating: social media marketing isn’t something you do once a month. It’s definitely a commitment of time, and since so many small business owners have very little time, the best thing they can do is prepare a chunk of content ahead of time, then load it all up into a robust automation tool like Hootsuite or Buffer. A set-it-and-forget-it approach will help you be consistent with posting.

Just be sure to spend a little time each week (or assign the task to someone else) responding to comments and answering any customer questions that may pop up.

  1. Not Bothering to Measure

How do you know if your social media campaigns have been successful if you don’t measure them?

Besides reach, one of the other main benefits of social media is it can be predictably analyzed. SM can be easily broken down into analytical definitions like retweets, replies, mentions, and engagement.

It’s important to set some realistic metrics for your campaign (150 retweets) before you launch, then see if you were successful or not. If not, tweak and refine your content strategy and check to make sure you chose the right channels and right time of day to reach your audience.

Social media can be a great addition to an integrated campaign, but if you want this channel to work for you, you’ve got to read this post one more time to ensure you don’t make any of these common mistakes.

Topics: online, social media, online advertising, social media engagement, integrate print and digital, Twitter, Facebook

Power Your Retail Business With Content Marketing via Vine

Posted by Scott Olson on Mon, Dec 09, 2013 @ 02:21 PM

Stores and online retail heavily rely on social media to promote sales, gain new customers and show off new merchandise. Reaching out on Facebook and Twitter is ideal because the costs are nearly non-existent for significant returns. Now stores have a new way to engage an audience with Vine.

By now, you're probably familiar with Vine, a mobile app that records six seconds of video and shares it to a social feed similar to Twitter. Most of Vine's base consists of amateur users making funny videos to share with friends, but now with the new editing and draft features, businesses and retail companies are using Vine to create a whole new level of marketing.

How It's Done


Photos via Apple App Store

Vine videos are usually short clips stitched together to create the final six-second product. Originally,you could tap the screen to create dozens of separate shots or hold it down for just one take, but once the video is finished there is no editing. What you shot was what you got. But now, Vine has been updated with two new features, editing and drafts. Drafts lets you save up to 10 Vines at once and editing enables rearranging of clips.

It will take a few attempts at first, but don't be discouraged. Making the perfect Vine is just like anything else — it takes practice. There's no better place to draw inspiration than companies already on Vine. Here's a stop-go video from JC Penney promoting in-store deals:

How It's Shared

A great benefit to sharing videos on Vine is it's directly tied to Twitter and Facebook (Twitter actually owns Vine). You don't need to build a new following with your Vine account. The existing base on other social networks will see your videos without ever using Vine in the first place. On the other end, following a variety of brands on Vine is a great way to gain a sense of what methods work best for engaging audiences with this new social network. Follow companies like Lowe's, Urban Outfitters and Gap to see different videos other businesses are coming up with.

How It Helps

Once you have a grip on how Vine works and feel comfortable creating videos, there are several ways to make it work best for your retail store.

Intuit, which offers accounting and payroll solutions for small businesses, suggests using Vines as "mini ads" to market your company. It is a cost-effective and lucrative way to reach an online audience. According to Intuit's blog post, "when it comes to digital advertising, people tend to prefer brevity." Highlight your workplace culture, various products and services or encourage video participation from customers.

A great way to include followers in your videos is to interact with your audience via your account.

This Vine from Diabetes UK acknowledges a follower who donated to its cause. Videos like these are a good way to go above and beyond a simple thank you email because it give public recognition to donors.

The idea behind Vine is just like any other social network — to engage an audience — but here you have the opportunity to show instead of tell. Vine is another example of a place for advertisers to reach consumers digitally. If you're looking for tips on local digital advertising, check out our eBook titled 'The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising.'

Download  The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising

 

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5. The Best Advertising Campaigns Drive Social Traffic

Topics: digital advertising, social media, digital publishing, social media engagement, content marketing

Capitalize on Black Friday with Social Media

Posted by Scott Olson on Wed, Nov 27, 2013 @ 11:24 AM

Any American business knows the value of drawing customers to their doors (or e-doors) on advertisers can capitalize on black friday with social media and mobile marketingBlack Friday and Cyber Monday. Last year, the National Retail Federation reported that Black Friday recorded nearly $60 billion in sales, with the average shopper spending more than $400. Some retailers have found the best way to maximize sales is to open the doors earlier and earlier, but crafty businesses have found a way to utilize social media to draw in customers without needing to extend their hours. How can social media work for you on Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

Make It Mobile

Between deal-seekers waiting in line on Black Friday and keyboard warriors clicking around on Cyber Monday, more companies this holiday season will be investigated via social media on a mobile platform than ever before. ComScore notes that Facebook recently took the No. 1 spot for mobile apps, leapfrogging arch-rival Google. Make sure your social page shows up on iOS, Android and Blackberry mobiles, with streamlined features that don't take too long to load or reply to. If you can release an app for your company's shopping, that’s even better. A simple app that allows customers to easily navigate content or find a store is ideal and lets your customers know you are available for them on any platform.

Use Every Platform

Your company likely has a Facebook page for users and customers to connect, and perhaps a Twitter account to directly send updates out to followers. While these two social media titans deserve the most attention, your company should pursue every social media avenue available to get the most viewers. Pew Internet reports that between six to 20 percent of adults use secondary social media sites like Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn and Instagram. While this is only a fraction of the users for Facebook and Twitter, it represents an additional audience that you can connect with once you have filled your customer's feeds up to the brim. Create relevant and interesting posts that will keep customers loyal and draw in a new audience. Pay close attention to your social media presence. You can even promote sales, specials and exclusive content for fans.

Create Social Media Displays for Waiting Customers

Waiting in line to get into a store is a Black Friday tradition for the shoppers who brave the cold and the crowds to get great deals. While they are eagerly awaiting your store's opening, create interactive social displays for them to either connect to on their mobiles or keep advertisers can engage with consumers on black friday by creating unique hashtagstucked away in their memory. Retailers like Macy's use these displays for Black Friday marketing, so that customers who shop at Macy's get firsthand info about new deals. These retailers' interactive displays include Twitter hashtag searches for new products, Instagram pictures on rotation, YouTube videos about products, QR codes that lead to a mobile site or information, Vine videos or a running tally of Facebook likes.

Respond Early and Often

Some social media updates merely throw a product description out into the world without care for its responses. Even if your social media team is swamped come Black Friday or Cyber Monday, posts without follow-through represent a lost opportunity. The fewer responses a company provides to their customer's inquiries, the less these customers want to buy the product. New York consulting agency Mr. Youth released an infographic study noting that only half of all brand statuses reply to their followers. A company that does its best to reach out, update information and thank customers gets much greater social interest than the digital equivalent of a dial tone. Ultimately, the more versatile and accessible you are to your customers, the happier they will be and the bigger your holiday season revenue.

Engaging with affluent audiences can be the key to your Black Friday success. Take a look at why you should be targeting boomers and the most effective methods for reaching affluent and educated consumers.

Download The Benefits of Marketing and Advertising to Baby Boomers

Download Proven Methods for Reaching Affluent and Educated Consumers

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Topics: social marketing, social media, black friday, social media engagement, social media advertising

3 Ways Marketers are Trying to Buy Social Media Love

Posted by Scott Olson on Thu, Sep 26, 2013 @ 10:50 AM

Companies, organizations and governments of all shapes and sizes are all atwitter about social media and determining the best way to get engaged. The social media platforms are many and continue to expand. Gone are the days when most people were on Facebook, a few on Twitter, the professionals on LinkedIn and the soccer moms on Pinterest. Now each platform has millions of users around the world and we have Google+, Instagram, Snapchat and Foursquare in the mix.

With all these networks, and still only 24 hours in the day, it’s hard for any organization, but especially smaller organizations to determine where to spend their time, effort and dollars, since each platform has their own ad networks and opportunities for advertisers. Because of this scarcity of time but perceived requirement to have their name published and network expanded, some organizations are determining how and if they can outsource a social presence to buy themselves recognition. The tough part is, buying love isn’t easy, as we learned from The Beatles.

Below are three methods companies are using to build their social media presence when they can’t find a way to do it themselves:

  1. Outsource – This past summer Constant Contact surveyed 1,305 small business owners to determine how they engage with social media. The result was that 19% of respondents said they would like to outsource social media, but only 3% are currently using a third-party to expand their social reach. The reason: money. The Constant Contact survey found that 36% of those who said they’d like to outsource social media but can’t are keeping it in-house because they can’t afford it. Another 12% responded that they don’t have the internal bandwidth for social media and 6% stated an inability to find “effective external resources.”
     
  2. Create viral content – Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: How do we create the next Gangnam Style?
     Who knew Grumpy Cats or Ermahgerd would take off? I’ll tell you who: nobody. You can’t exactly predict how things are going to get shared, but you can keep trying until you find something that gets passed on. One way is to submit your ideas or content to ‘Seed Groups,’ to get the sharing process started. The idea goes like this: share your content with a targeted list who would be susceptible first to your message, and second to sharing it. Once they share it, assuming they have enough interconnectedness among them, the rest of the group will hear the message and then pass it along. It’s like the telephone game, except the misinterpretation of information hopefully isn’t as bad. What the study from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point’s Network Science Center also found was that it doesn’t matter as much who shares the message (i.e., famous people or celebrities), it’s more about how many, which shouldn’t come as a huge surprise.
     
  3. Hire the masses – MediaPost reported last week that the Turkish Government, who had previously called social media a ‘menace’ and a ‘curse,’ has since changed its tune. The majority party in the country has ‘hired’ “6,000 social media activists to help influence the public opinion in the digital arena.” While technically these Turkish social media representatives are volunteers, Israel has taken a bit of a different route. The Israeli government announced a plan to hire college students to counter anti-Semitic sentiment and share pro-Israel messages. In return for their efforts, students will be granted partial or even full scholarships, which isn’t a bad deal for a few 140 character messages a day, especially when they probably don’t even have to write them.

What it comes to is that engaging in social media comes in many different forms, so it depends on your goals and what you hope to get out of it. If you’re looking to get in touch with local audiences, there are plenty of options for that. We have even written blog posts about that specifically and you can take a look at those through the links below. If digital advertising and engagement on a higher level is more of what you’re looking for, we have an eBook for you. Check out ‘The Smart Marketer’s Guide to Local Digital Advertising’ now and let us know when you’re ready to reach local audiences.

Download  The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising

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3. Target and Facebook Team Up to Take Digital Retailing to New Heights 

4. Social Media Strategies: Not Your Grandma's Internet, or Is It? 

5. Social Media's Role in Botching the Boston Marathon Bombing Reporting

Scott Olson is the director of marketing at Mediaspace Solutions. His career has spanned marketing positions in the non-profit, software and utility sectors providing various marketing experiences. You can connect with Scott on FacebookGoogle+Twitter or LinkedIn.

Topics: social media, social media engagement, advertising campaigns, mobile social marketing

Social Media Strategies: Not Your Grandma’s Internet, or Is It?

Posted by Scott Olson on Thu, Sep 19, 2013 @ 12:33 PM

Despite popular opinion, social media isn’t just for the kids and the Millennials. And as we at Mediaspace are wont to do, we like to challenge traditional thinking and assumptions, which is why we’re going to just come right out and say it: when you put together your social media strategies, you need to include the age groups beyond 34.

Now, while I consider myself to be a fairly convincing person (except when arguing with my boomers are engaged in social media, and there are multiple people who are studying it, not just Mediaspacewife, of course), I think it might be more effective if you heard from some other sources as to why you need to keep generations born before 1975 in your social media strategies. Reason being, I was born after 1975, and as a 33-year-old father of two who likes to ride bikes and coach youth sports, you might not be convinced by anything I say about my elders. So instead of spouting off about my parents and grandparents texting, fully engaging with Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter and creating their own Spotify stations, I thought it might make more sense to cite some other people, including one not in the United States.

Let’s start there. Just last week Danny Bradbury at theguardian.com wrote an article titled ‘Marketing to the silver surfer,’ in which he wrote, “Six in every ten 50-64 year-olds use social media.” Not bad, considering that’s an increase of 10x in eight years. The thing is, while we continue to see an increase in the number and prevalence of boomers and the senior audiences online, the advertising that’s happening isn’t targeting these groups. Bradbury goes on to talk about the scarcity of ads targeting a group who, it turns out, has an abundance of disposable income and purchasing power. Those who do, he notes, are pandering a bit too much to the norm or expected, which includes assisted living facilities or home care tools.

Research shows boomers are using social networking sites more regularlyWhat we should point out here is that the boomers and seniors who are most active online are more likely using the World Wide Web for shopping, research, banking and many of the same activities, may I dare say, ‘kids these days,’ are engaged in.

Clearly there are multiple media choices for engaging the boomer and senior audiences, and you have choices to make. As the Pew study referenced above points out, digital display is going to continue to become more targeted and consume a larger part of marketing budgets. While the audience might be smaller, as Rachel Stelmach of GlynnDevins points out, it’s a “much more engaged and qualified audience.”

This is all great news for digital marketers as we are able to reach a broader set of demographics and demonstrate to our clients their ability to reach whoever they want with the right type of campaign. What we have to hope doesn’t happen is that social media becomes such a large part of all our lives, including the boomer and senior audience, that we all become Parasomniacs, engaged in social media while we sleep. As Erik Sass of MediaPost points out, it’s bad enough some people are so hooked they’re interrupting, or maybe not interrupting, sex while managing social media. Talk about a new definition for ‘sexting.’

Clearly the Internet continues to become more popular, and audiences of all ages and ranges are engaging more and more in all it offers. If you want to find out how to become a smarter online marketer, check out our eBook ‘The Smart Marketer’s Guide to Local Digital Advertising.’ Once you’ve read that, give us a call and we’ll help you engage with your audience, regardless of when they were born.

Download  The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising

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5. Who you tryin’ to get crazy with ese? Don’t you know I’m local?

Scott Olson is the director of marketing at Mediaspace Solutions. His career has spanned marketing positions in the non-profit, software and utility sectors providing various marketing experiences. You can connect with Scott on FacebookGoogle+Twitter or LinkedIn.

'Convincing' image courtesy of Inkjot Comics

Topics: social media, social media engagement, Boomers, millennials

The Best Advertising Campaigns Drive Social Traffic

Posted by Hannah Hill on Tue, Jul 16, 2013 @ 12:05 PM

Have you ever visited a brand’s website or social media platforms as a result of being exposed to a television, magazine or digital ad prompting you to take either action? If yes, you’re not the only one. If no, you’re probably lying based on the following statistics. According to a study conducted by Burst Media, digital ads (61.0%) and television ads (58.7%) are most effective at driving interaction with a brand’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram platforms.The Best Advertising Campaigns Incorporate Social Media Print, radio and outdoor advertising also spark social interaction, though at lower rates. Two-thirds of those surveyed between the ages of 18 and 34 claim digital ads with social media prompts inspire them to take action, and it won’t be long until social traffic increases even more.

Super Bowl 2013 hashtagsBrands continue to increase their visibility on social platforms in an effort to drive interaction with consumers. The companies that invested in Super Bowl 2013 advertising took advantage of the big game’s captive audience. More than half of the commercials contained a Twitter hashtag. Sysomos analyzed the hashtags used during the game and found that hashtags containing a brand name were mentioned in the most tweets. Let that be a lesson to you. The top performers were #doritos (33,323 tweets) and #CalvinKlein (29,381 tweets). Incorporating social icons, hashtags and the like is a step in the right direction for brands who wish to increase favorability in the eyes of consumers.

"We found that marketers who use social sharing and action prompts within advertisements create authentic interactions that drive further engagement," said Mark Kaefer, marketing director at Burst Media, an online media company. "On the digital front especially, display, mobile and sponsored online content campaigns that include social media prompts can virally and exponentially extend campaign reach through consumer status updates, likes, tweets, pins and more."

Dr. Pepper’s “Always One of a Kind” commercial sparked a lot of Twitter talk in early 2012.

The ad featured people in red shirts proclaiming everything from “I’m a control freak” to “I’m a cougar” and everything in-between and concluded with the hashtag #ImA to continue the proclamations online. Because the hashtag was open-ended, many people engaged in conversation with Dr. Pepper. It doesn’t take a whole lot of thought to complete a sentence that starts with #ImA which is why this push to social media was so successful at increasing interaction and driving social traffic for Dr. Pepper.Dr. Pepper

Dodge Ram released an ad during the 2013 Super Bowl that generated more than 402K social media comments, 288K more than last year’s top performing spot. (Social comments were measured for both ads during the same 45 minute time period after they were initially aired.) Interestingly enough, “Farmer” did not include social media icons or hashtags, and it still drove an insane amount of social traffic. However, this isn’t common. Unless your ad is top notch (or controversial), you aren’t going to experience this kind of social buzz without providing some sort of social media call-to-action.

The best advertising campaigns drive social traffic and word-of-mouth marketing. The next time you sit down to watch your favorite TV show or read your favorite magazine, pay attention to how many ads push you to a social networking platform. I think you’ll be surprised. Before you strike up another conversation with your Twitter followers, download the “8 Steps to Increase Advertising Success via Twitter.” If you missed the Facebook checklist we released earlier this year, download it now. While your checklists are printing, download The Smart Marketer’s Guide to Local Digital Advertising to learn how online media consumption has evolved across local markets and the benefits of local digital advertising.

8 Steps to Increase Advertising Success via Twitter Download  The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising

Hannah Hill is a marketing specialist at Mediaspace Solutions. Her marketing experience includes writing, inbound marketing, social media and event management. You can connect with Hannah on LinkedIn, Facebook or Google+.

Topics: social media, social media engagement, advertising campaigns

Target and Facebook Team Up to Take Digital Retailing to New Heights

Posted by Hannah Hill on Tue, May 21, 2013 @ 12:19 PM

On Wednesday, May 8, Target announced its new money saving tool, Cartwheel, and it already has more than 50,000 users. The retailer designed Cartwheel to bring guests “a whole new spin on saving” with the hopes that it would be a new driver of sales revenue and bringTarget's Cartwheel takes digital retailing to new heights customers back into their stores. In order to access the deals available through Cartwheel, Target shoppers must have a Facebook account. From there, they can collect various discounts across multiple departments and earn badges for even more savings. With more than 21 million Facebook likes, Target has an incredibly large online fan base and stands among the top 20 most-liked companies on Facebook. “We've been partners with Facebook for a while, and it's been a mutual discussion on how to integrate and have a savings program with a social element,” said Eddie Baeb, a Target spokesman. Target wants you to share your great finds with friends and family via Facebook, and the more you share, the more you save with upcoming offers. Plus, you are able to use each discount multiple times up until its expiration date. The shopper becomes an online advertiser as their purchases are visible to friends through Facebook’s News Feed, unless privacy settings are enabled. How many times have you gone to Target for one thing and walked out with a full basket or cart? By enticing shoppers with these coupons, Target hopes to see even more full carts at the checkout.

Target's Cartwheel takes digital retailing to new heights

Cartwheel is currently in beta which means Target employees are still working out the kinks while testing the program with a limited group of users. For now, shoppers need to access the coupons through the Cartwheel site (cartwheel.target.com) which is linked on the Cartwheel Facebook page. Target has plans to release Cartwheel apps for Android and iOS in the upcoming months. So far, a variety of coupons have been offered via Cartwheel including 10% off Dove chocolate, 20% off Mother’s Day cards, 15% off Nate Berkus bedding and even 10% Justin Timberlake CD on Cartwheeloff the latest Justin Timberlake CD, though I’m sure JT’s biggest fans would be happy to pay full price.

The idea of offering deals via Facebook is not a new concept. Retailers have been driving business through social media channels for years. According to Monetate, a company that leverages data to create personalized and engaging online customer experiences, store traffic generated from social media is lower than traffic generated by both search and email. But this is probably because search and email have been around longer than social media, so they’ve had more opportunities to experiment and figure out what works. While some may believe the program to be a lot of work for the small discount received, we have to remember that Cartwheel is still in beta. It is highly likely that Target will be making changes to the savings program continuously through the testing phases and up through the initial launch to create a better user experience. Their ultimate goal is to drive store traffic and sales through Cartwheel, so they’ll need to listen to consumer feedback and fix potential bugs. Money-saving junkies like myself will start using the program right away, regardless of the “effort” needed to cash in on a deal. What do you think of a digital retailing program like Cartwheel? Will it work? Let us know in the comments section below.

Just as Target allows shoppers to pair manufacturer’s coupons with Cartwheel coupons to achieve greater savings, you should pair print and digital advertising to achieve greater success. Download our eBook “The CMO’s Guide to Integrating Print and Digital Media” to learn how you can take advantage of multi-channel advertising.

Download the CMO's Guide to Integrating Print and Digital Media

Hannah Hill is a marketing specialist at Mediaspace Solutions. Her marketing experience includes writing, social media and event management. You can connect with Hannah on LinkedIn, Facebook or Google+.

Topics: digital marketing, social media engagement, digital retailing, coupons

User Preferences for Social Media Engagement

Posted by Brynn Haugen on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 @ 01:05 PM

As the world of social media continues to evolve, businesses large and small are creating Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest accounts to promote their company.  Frank N. Magid and Associates Inc. conducted research on how individuals interact with companies on social media sites and the significance of “liking” a brand on Facebook.   Some key takeaways?

  • Facebook users who follow businesses tend to be females ages 25-44
  • Male Facebook users ages 55-64 tend not to follow companies on Facebook
  • More than half of social media fans already love the brand that they “like”
  • Engagement with brands on social media drives web site traffic
  • Half of Facebook users don’t see the value of following companies on social media

So what does this mean for using social media to promote your business?  Even though not every Facebook user interacts with businesses via social media doesn’t mean businesses are not seen by those users on social media sites.  As social media continues to grow, sites like Facebook will continue to be more business oriented. To find out more about user preferences for engaging with social media, check out our graphic below!

describe the image

Topics: social media engagement, driving web site traffic, social media infographic

Instagram for Brands – Authentic Community Engagement

Posted by Pasquale Festa on Wed, May 09, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

Instagram Icon Medium

This week, Melissa Pitts from the media company gyro wrote an interesting blog post over at Forbes discussing ways in which Facebook’s purchase of Instagram will have a positive impact on brands and their approaches to advertising in the realm of social media. In particular, Melissa sees four key reasons the recent acquisition is good for brands: it’s simple to use, it allows for visual storytelling, it’s non-intrusive, and it’s made for mobile. I really can’t argue with her analysis and completely agree that social media applications like Instragram and Pinterest can really do a lot for a brand – there is so much more there in terms of quality content as compared to a simple status update.

In addition to Melissa’s points, there is another positive impact this full-on integration of Instagram and Facebook will have – it allows behemoth brands (like Pepsi and Red Bull) that may often be seen as distant and impersonal by consumers to finally open up dialogs with and amongst their communities. Some brands have already taken advantage of the community building advantages Twitter has opened up, hiring full-time tweeters to solicit feedback from customers, joke around with them, and offer customer service. As Melissa noted, Red Bull runs a “daily awesome” image campaign via Instagram and Twitter that asks followers to hashtag their images to be included in an aggregate feed. This manner of advertising does a number of things for a brand we haven’t seen before: it allows a brand to better know the culture of their customers through direct contact, opens a forum for customers to interact with each other, and provides consumers with award and recognition for taking part in the advertising and purchasing process. When you provide your customers with this type of experience, you’re really offering them a much more authentic interaction with your brand; they’re actually a part of the conversation and aren’t being forced to passively accept your message. This new opportunity is a blessing for brands because, as James H. Gilmore and B. Joseph Pine II write in the opening of Authenticity: What Consumers Really Want:

So just as the rise of services helped to establish quality as a field worthy of deliberate management attention, the rise of experiences calls for a new arena of management expertise. Organizations today must learn to understand, manage, and excel at rendering authenticity…. To be blunt: your business offerings must get real. When consumers want what’s real, the management of the customer perception of authenticity becomes the primary new source of competitive advantage – the new business imperative.


Topics: social media engagement

Things You Need to Know to be a Successful Networker: Part One

Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Sep 06, 2011 @ 05:20 AM

Networking is essential regardless of your career path. Technology has changed the playing field through social media, but the traditional means are still used. Many people are still getting into social media through Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and all the new tools that are popping up. There is now Google+ that is becoming more popular.

Google+ realizes that human beings are naturally social and the interactions between us are happening mainly online. Google has created google+ to make interacting with people more smooth and efficient. You interact with everyone differently instead of just putting everyone in the friend category.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=BeMZP-oyOII

You can also learn more about google+ here: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/06/introducing-google-project-real-life.html

In regard to networking, you should be doing this proactively. If you only start networking when you need to, for example when you are job searching, it is already too late for you. At this point you should just focus on who you already know. A good book that focuses on this thinking is “The Power of Who: You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know,” by Bob Beaudine. It’s important to create a positive association to your name. If you only contact someone when you need something from them chances are they will start deleting your emails or avoiding you when you reach out.

“What goes around comes around.” If you help someone connect with someone else, they might not return that favor right away, but there is that feeling of obligation they have which will pay off eventually. However, if you are just helping someone to get something out of it, you shouldn’t. You should be genuinely helping them; people can easily tell when you are being disingenuous.

Everyone has their own network, but some people over-protect their network. You need to give a little to get a little. If you keep your network too protected, it defeats the purpose of networking as it will be harder for you to build it. No one will want to share who they know with you in regard to the rules of reciprocity.   

Building Up Your Network:

It’s something that should be fairly innate. We are constantly meeting new people. It’s up to you to take the opportunities and time to make these meetings valuable. When at a networking event, it’s more important to have quality over quantity. You might think that the more people you meet at this event the more valuable it would be. You need to realize if you interact with someone briefly and are eagerly looking for the next person to talk to, this person can see your disinterest and it leaves a negative impression of you. They are less likely to remember this brief encounter, and your relationship will not be as beneficial compared to if you took the time to get to know the individuals you meet. Also in regards to Dunbar’s number, the average person can only maintain stable relationships with approximately 100-230 people.

You can read more about Dunbar’s Number here: http://www.lifewithalacrity.com/2004/03/the_dunbar_numb.html

If you want to take a more proactive approach, set a goal of how many people you’d like to be connected to through social media. It’s surprising how many people you actually know if you actually sit down and think of it. Networking doesn’t come naturally to everyone but like everything the more you practice the better you will be at it.

Keep in mind the more you help other people connect the higher the chances are you will be able to connect to someone they know and increase your network.

Stay tuned for next week’s blog on how networking at Mediaspace Solutions has helped us and our CEO, Scott Jagodzinksi.

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Topics: social media, social media engagement