Social Media 2012


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Social Media 2012

  1. 1. Social Media Wrap Up January 2012 Powered by NetLine Corporation
  2. 2. Social Media Wrap Up: January 2012Table of ContentsQuestions to help you decide: should you use social media Page 14 Fresh Reasons Why Social Media is the New Farmer’s Market Page 3Why Your Company Might Want to Consider a Social Media Agency Page 5Social media experts can’t do it all for you. It’s yours Page 7Social Media as a Brand or Person? Page 912 things I thought I knew About Social Media in 2011 Page 1115 Things I’ve Learned from 138 Social Media Tweetchats Page 13Stagger Social Posts for Maximum Exposure Page Page 1548 Ways to Measure Social Media Success Page 16
  3. 3. Sep 16, 2011 at 8:20 am Questions to help you decide: should you use social media open a YouTube channel account or sign you up on Twitter. It’s true, creating an account on many of the tools and networks is free. But that’s where free ends. To integrate social media into the rest of your mar- keting, which is an absolute if you want to consider it a business tool, you are going to have to expend some resources. Social media requires care and feeding. It requires brand integration. And it re- quires a well-conceived strategy. All of those are going to cost time and money. …is social media right for your business? Don’t misunderstand. I believe in the power and T here are a lot of social media “experts” out reach of social media and most of our agency’s there who will tell you that every single orga- clients are using social media tools as part of their nization on the globe should be participating overall marketing strategy, but I am not bullish on in social media. They will point to the cool Facebook the belief du jour that everyone must do it and it’s fan pages they’ve made or the funny videos their free. Neither is true. clients have on YouTube and say “see, you can do this too.” And they’re right. You can. Here are twenty questions to ask yourself as you consider melding social media into your existing The question is: Should you? marketing strategy. The real answer to that question is “it depends.” How will it save us money? It depends on whether or not it can do one of two things. 1. Will it allow us to stop doing something we’re currently doing? 1. Save you money 2. Will it allow us to extend/expand something 2. Make you money we are currently doing? 3. Will it lower our customer acquisition costs? If it isn’t going to accomplish one of those two goals, 4. Will it connect us to existing customers in then you have no business engaging in it. Why? an efficient way? 5. Will we be able to use social media to create Participating in social media is expensive. I know a community specifically for our customers? everyone talks about how cheap it is…but that’s 6. Will it be easier for our customers to rave because they are not thinking like a business owner. about us/create positive word of mouth? They’re thinking like someone who knows how to 7. Do we look behind the times to our custo- Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 1/18 Page 1
  4. 4. Sep 16, 2011 at 8:20 am Questions to help you decide: should you use social media mers if we aren’t there? You might also like 8. Will it introduce us to new potential custo- mers at a low lead generation cost? 1. You can’t sleep through 9. Will it make us more findable (either within your own social media the social network or on search engines)? efforts 10. Will it impact our search engine results? (so we don’t have to buy results) How will it make us money? 11. Will it shorten our sales cycle? 2. What should you buy from a 12. Will it create credibility/trust faster social media savvy agency? among prospects? 13. Can we establish ourselves as the expert? 14. Will it shorten customer service response time? 15. Will it create a sense of accessibility for our customers? 16. Will it increase trial of our product/ser- vice? 17. Will it allow us to connect with more 3. Do you have confidence in prospects at once? your social media strategy? 18. Will it increase repeat buying? 19. Will it increase up sells? 20. Can we collect/use testimonials? If the answers to those questions indicates that so- cial media would be a smart investment for your company to make, then you should be there. But now you will enter into it knowing that there’s a return for that investment. Now we’re talking smart marketing, not marketing hype. 4. What social media tools are a must for business? Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 2/18 Page 2
  5. 5. 08 December 2011 4 Fresh Reasons Why Social Media is the New Farmer’s Market I had the chance this sum- It’s often where everyone is being social mer to speak in rural Ja- pan (Kumamoto, Kyushu Everybody congregated at the farmer’s market. It for those of you who was a huge social event. So is social media. The key might have been there to to being successful, therefore, is that we have to be see Mount Aso) at a social. We can’t just set up a Page and expect things workshop on social me- to happen just like you can’t just set up a stand and dia for the agricultural expect to sell. You shouldn’t be over-pushing your industry. Whenever I product like some vendors do, but those that tend speak, I always mention to sell a lot of produce at my local farmer’s market how social media truly are those that have free fruit samples. Not only do transcends industry (as my kids love them, it gives us a chance to try out well as discipline) and their products and establish a relationship with the always ask someone to vendors. What is the free “fruit” that you are giving challenge me in finding away to those who engage with your business in an industry that can’t find social media? a use for social media. The agricultural industry is ripe (pun intended) for It gives you a chance to go direct to your using social media because it really does represent customer what the farmer’s market used to be. Farmer’s mar- kets don’t just sell agricultural products, either, so The advantage of social media as a marketing tool listen up all you small businesses! is that it allows you to go direct to your customer. Similar to how vendors need to build trust at the It’s often where your customer is at farmer’s market by providing quality produce week in and week out, you too need to do the same with If you wanted to sell your produce in the past, you the amount of online conversation and recommen- had to go to where your audience was. With 65% dation apps that exist. That’s why you should be of Americans using social media, there is no doubt taking advantage of what social media provides you that your audience is spending more and more time to get to know your customer a little better. Don’t on social media. Obviously you need to figure out be shy: engage. which platform is appropriate for you, but there is a social networking site out there where your tar- It gives you the ability to easily establish a get customer lurks. Chances are that platform will new brand be Facebook, but depending on your product you might have better luck concentrating on LinkedIn. I actually spoke at a workshop that was co-sponsored by Tomamo-chan. Tomamo-chan is the result of a major seed distributor realizing that Kumamoto is the leading producer of tomatoes in terms of volume Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 3/18 Page 1
  6. 6. 08 December 2011 4 Fresh Reasons Why Social Media is the New Farmer’s Market in Japan, but very few consumers knew this nor Yes, social media can make your company were buying tomatoes specifically because they were and your employees feel good too! from Kumamoto. The seed distributor got several of the leading tomato producers to join forces and Sometimes we overcomplicate social media with create a new brand to co-brand their products going the technology and tools that we can leverage. If forward. Such is how “Tomamo-chan” was born you remember that social media is the new farmer’s – “Toma” coming from tomato and “mo” coming market and think how you would represent your from Kumamoto. A cutesy character was created company at the biggest farmer’s market in the world, (displayed above), and through the help of my friend hopefully you’ll see how common sense should be Katsuyo Nakao, they were able to easily establish the cornerstone of your social media marketing this brand by tweeting and launching a Facebook strategy. Page where fans could actually see, and help “Toma- mo-chan” grow up. I always say that social media Have you ever sold a product through a Facebook provides a land of opportunity for unknown brands Page comment? How do you feel when someone to make a mark in whatever marketplace they are Likes your content? Let’s chat! trying to establish a presence. By showing up in social media with a unique brand in a consistent If you enjoyed this article, sign up for my newsletter and engaging manner, it is as easy to establish a and get FREE chapters from Neal’s Books! new brand entity through social media just like it is by consistently showing up at the farmer’s market. Please wait while we sign you up to our newsletter. Case in point to drive all of this home: At the end of the presentation, a gentleman in the back of the room raised his hand to share his experience with us. He was a watermelon farmer from the rural prefecture of Oita. He started a Facebook Page and was sharing how watermelons were harvested by using both photos and videos. There was nothing high-tech about what he did. In fact, he didn’t even have any apps installed or a Facebook Ads budget. He had some of his friends “Like” the page and it grew from there. One day someone simply posted on the wall that they wanted to buy a watermelon, and he took the order via email. Since then he confided he’s sold quite a few watermelons. A tea farmer also stood up and reminded us of how much content farmers had to share – and how good it felt to share it. The farmer reminded us of how labor-intensive and tedious a job traditional agri- culture is in Japan, but that when “fans” started to “Like” his photos, it made him proud. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 4/18 Page 2
  7. 7. 01 December 2011 Why Your Company Might Want to Consider a Social Media Agency a social media agency is a logical move to help you immediately ramp up within your potential budget constraints for employees. Do we have internal expertise in social? It’s not about hiring an intern or learning on the job. You wouldn’t hire a sales executive if they didn’t have sales experience. Why would social media be any different? Your brand is at risk if you can’t engage with those that are both saying negative things about you and are missing out on huge opportunities by As not developing brand ambassadors with those someone who has traditionally worked with compa- saying positive things about you in social media. It nies consulting with them on their social strategy, requires a different mindset and set of core compe- I realize that for many of them they are interested tencies to succeed, and social media agencies that in creating a strategy as part of a social media audit have worked with a multitude of companies on their to see what they can do to better maximize social social implementation have acquired expertise that media or what is possible. The problem, however, is hard for a solo practitioner to emulate. is best indicated by the question I always get: “Do I have to hire someone to do this?” We use an agency for ads, but what do we do with social ads? Social Ads on sites like Facebook, Social media requires an investment in time, re- Twitter and even LinkedIn are already accounting sources, and education among over things. I re- for more than 10% of online ad spend in 2011. Has cently wrote about why this can be counter-intuitive your company began to invest in social ads or are to small businesses who want immediate ROI from satisfied with what your traditional ad agency has social media marketing. Larger companies and big done for you? Social media agencies who offer ma- brands have the resources to invest and are willing naged social ad services can help your company to take a long-term view of social, but the problem effectively microtarget communities where your now becomes a new one as indicated by the ques- target audience is because they deeply understand tions companies should be asking themselves below: who uses and how they use these social destinations. Do we have the people in place to invest in so- We use an agency for creative help and expertise cial? You need potentially create an entirely new – but why would we need them for social? Social department which must include an experienced media is ripe for experimentation and creativity in community manager, a content czar, and a social order to better leverage the functionality that they media strategist. Do you have people to spare in offer as well as figure out how to better engage with place to handle the job? The right social agency your targeted community. Social media marketing will. With limited personnel budgets, bringing on needs to be creative because it is not digital mar- Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 5/18 Page 1
  8. 8. 01 December 2011 Why Your Company Might Want to Consider a Social Media Agency keting; it is not about pushing your message out If you enjoyed this article, sign up for my newsletter but in communicating with and listening to your and get FREE chapters from Neal’s Books! audience. A good social media agency can provide you with advice here because they understand the Please wait while we sign you up to our newsletter. social website platform functionality as well as have probably had creative experience in the creation and management of social media campaigns that were socially interactive. Not every social media agency is alike nor offer all of the above services, and companies are best to do due diligence by selecting an agency carefully and making sure they make sense in their offering and are truly hand-holding you through the process rather than creating a black box and asking you to pay dearly for it. But if you think your company can go it alone without an agency, you might want to make sure you are confident that you have all of the above pieces in place at your company. If not, why not contact a social media agency and find out what you might be missing? What’s your take on the potential role of a social media agency? And if you want to see me speak on the issue, see my Social 5150 video below. Thanks! Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 6/18 Page 2
  9. 9. Aug 5, 2011 at 7:54 am Social media experts can’t do it all for you. It’s yours After that, we help them tweak the strategy and we might help with some content editing or repurposing some existing content for a blog or e-newsletter — but for the most part, they’re doing it on their own. Because it is their conversation to have. At this point in the phone call the prospect stopped the conversation and said “wait a second, are you saying that you don’t believe you should do it all for us?  I’ve talked to four other firms/consultants and  no one’s ever suggested that we would do some of  it ourselves.  They said it would be much easier on  us if we just paid them a monthly fee and they took care of it all.” …no effort, no real gain What??? Are you freaking kidding me? I will admit right off the bat, this is a bit of a rant, which you know I don’t do very often. I’m not going to get into the “social media expert” discussion because it’s been done to death. But, it I was on the phone with a prospect (an organization infuriates me when people hold themselves out as who is just contemplating how/if they should begin any sort of expert and then purposefully give their to participate in social media) and I was talking clients bad advice because it puts more money into about the process we’ve developed to help clients their own pocket. It’s not only a crappy way to do create a social media strategy that actually defines business and dishonest — but it has the potential why they’d invest resources into the effort and then to do some serious damage to the client’s business. measures against those goals. Of course hiring someone else to do it all for you Just like any marketing strategy — we identify au- would be easier. But that doesn’t make it better diences, key messages, the right channels etc. or even right. It would be easier if you sat on the couch rather than going to the gym — but you don’t We end up creating a very robust strategy with our actually build any muscles that way. clients and then we teach them how to implement it. For the next several months, we walk along side Now don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong them as they get their sea legs. We help them test with hiring someone to help you. People hire MMG drive different tools and schedules until they really all the time for that very purpose. feel confident that they can generate, conduct, find and participate in the kinds of conversations where But you have to do some of the driving yourself. they can add value and get value in return. Think about it. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 7/18 Page 1
  10. 10. Aug 5, 2011 at 7:54 am Social media experts can’t do it all for you. It’s yours Can a paid consultant respond to a customer com- plaint on a Facebook page wall or add to a conver- sation about your area of expertise in your blog’s comment section? They can probably fake it. But it certainly is a lost opportunity if you let them “handle” it rather than you digging in and really either starting or enhancing a relationship — all in front of hundreds (or thousands) of potential buyers. Don’t let any social media agency, company or consultant own your social media activity any more than you’d let a stranger answer your customer service line. If you do, it may be the most expensive buying de- cision you ever make. You might also like 1. Social media cheat sheet 2011 2. Social Media Cheat Sheet 3. Do you have confidence in your social media strategy? 4. Social me- dia isn’t for eve- ryone Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 8/18 Page 2
  11. 11. 03/01/2012 17:49 Social Media as a Brand or Person? Writing by Brick Marketing in Social Media E very business should have a social media presence. It’s an important way to share and connect with target audience members, build a brand, and improve your SEO efforts. Sometimes the hardest part about using social media for business is getting started. You need to decide which social networks to be active on and develop a strategy for each one. As part of that strategy you need to decide how your business will be represented and who will be the “face” of the strategy. Are you going to only set up accounts in the business name, or will an individual represent the business in social media? Will your primary Twitter handle be “Company X” or “Jane Smith” (SVP of Marketing for Company X)? How about both? There really is no right or wrong answer, just a few things to consider. There is no confusion when using social media as a Brand. People know who they are connected to and more or less know what kind of information they will be receiving. However, the major drawback is that by hiding behind a company logo the strategy lacks that personal element that is so important in social media. People want to communicate with people, and it’s hard to feel any sort of true connec- tion when your followers don’t know who is talking to them. It could be the CEO, a VP, a marketing ma- nager, or maybe even an intern. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 9/18 Page 1
  12. 12. 03/01/2012 17:49 Social Media as a Brand or Person? Using social media as a human representative of a particular company eliminates that problem. There is no doubt about who it is sending you a message. You know that it is “Jane Smith”. There is more ac- countability on an individual which can result in more trust. While this strategy can work very well, it’s important to be aware of the problem that arises if that individual decides to leave the company. They will take all of those valuable followers along with them. Because each strategy has pros and cons, many busi- nesses will utilize both. There is nothing wrong with that, as long as each account is treated differently. Don’t post the same exact content at the same exact time on both. Switch up the message on each and use a combination of informational, educational, or even humorous posts if appropriate. Remember, any account that represents a business needs to remain active and engage with followers regularly. Don’t think that you can let one slack because you have the other to rely on. Not every target audience member will follow both. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 10/18 Page 2
  13. 13. 03/01/2012 17:49 directmarketingobservations. com 12 things I thought I knew About Social Media in 2011 « Direct Marketing Observations Just because I might know more about social media than the average person, it didn’t preclude most corporate heads to assume that they knew just as much about social, if not more, than I did. Can you say bite your tongue? 2) That the whole ROI thing would have sorted itself out by now We’re getting closer, more and more corporations seem to now understand that you need to associate some type of KPI to a social initiative, which is a start in the direction of measurement; but you still had the camps of “you can’t make money from social media” to “let’s just grow our audiences across all social platforms and call it a win”. Ugh! 3) People would trust what I know and do as I advise I found out in 2011 that although people would nod their heads in agreement when we’re in the conference room, once I was gone- the silos ree- merged, the battle lines were redrawn, the skeptics reappeared and the notion that a consultant was not necessary reared its ugly head-and thus the follow up discussions were slow to evolve. Can you say self doubt? As 2011 winds down, it’s time for me to reflect on the state of my social media world in 2011. 4) We had gotten over being enamored with the quantity of friends, followers, fans and likes Things that I thought I knew about social media in 2011: Some have and some have not and we’ll leave it at that. It’s a blog post in and of itself. 1) That I knew what I was talking about 5) Corporations were ready to be transparent in 2011 Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 11/18 Page 1
  14. 14. 03/01/2012 17:49 12 things I thought I knew About Social Media in 2011 « Direct Marketing Observations They’re ready as long as they have their social media Ha! Just because I got in to the boardroom and we policies in place. Even then, after the policies are in were talking about it, didn’t mean it was going to place, there’s transparency and then there’s “their” be happening anytime soon. Of course I thought definition of being transparent-on their terms, and 2010 was going to be the year as well. Can you say not the terms of the masses. It’s actually a start. mad silos? 6) That the “new guard” would be saying so- 11) Brands knew what they were doing on Twit- mething different ter. New social media faces and new social media names Last time I checked, brands are still using Twitter talking and preaching about things we talked about as a push style vehicle for marketing and selling 4 years ago. Where is the disconnect? Is the customer product. Some have gotten creative, but most are of not getting it? Or is the consultant not listening? the Tweet with a link with no conversation camp…. Or are we still not there yet? Do we want them to Does it work? Let’s ask them? Oh wait we can’t be- repeat what we have been preaching? Maybe so. cause all they do is tweet links and sales. Is there an alternative? Sure there is, don’t do it in 2012. 7) That the “old guard” would have evolved 12) Google Buzz would be around. Old faces and familiar names talking about the same things we talked about 4 years ago. Is nothing new? Silly me to think that Google Buzz was viable. Ac- Or do people just not get it? Or is it uncorrelated wis- tually it wasn’t. Neither was Sidewiki or Wave either. dom? Do we need to start teaching SM 201 and 301? What’s the over/under on Google Plus survival? 2 years? 8) That FB would get to 1billion users in 2011 How do my “things I thought I knew compare with This is going to happen but I am starting to see little yours? Let’s share. tiny micro-cracks in the Facebook brand. Can you say Facebook Burnout, Blowback or Billion? Like this: 9) That Twitter would be making money by now 2 bloggers like this post. Well they sorta are making money and they are rol- ling out custom pages for brands. Does that count as truly making money? No. The problem? Would you pay 5 bucks a month to use Twitter? No. Would you pay to advertise on Twitter? No. That’s my point. I think I might have predicted in 2009 that Twitter would be making money by now as well…Le Sigh 10) That 2011 would be the year that corpora- tions would be ready to adopt social media both internally and externally Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 12/18 Page 2
  15. 15. 03/01/2012 17:50 directmarketingobservations. com 15 Things I’ve Learned from 138 Social Media Tweetchats « Direct Marketing Observations M ore than 2 years ago Jason Breed and I de- 5) There is never a shortage of topics though some cided to create a Tweetchat. The format seem to be more popular than others. was pretty simple, we would find a killer, compelling host in the social space, like a Beth Harte 6) Passion is never on short supply. who was our very first host, and we’d pick a killer, topical, compelling, subject. After we settled on the 7) Smart people are everywhere. topic, we would collaborate on 3 questions and off we would go to promote it for the following Tuesday. 8. The generosity of the hosts has always surprised We also decided to create a killer, award winning, me and yet doesn’t. website thanks to developer Terry Mckyton that would captures all of the conversations in real time 9) The value of the conversations lasts longer than and even allows you to tweet from the site, but other the Tweetchat than that, we were ready to go have Tweetchats. Boom. 10) We can always learn and takeaway something even from sub-par Tweetchats When Jason first called me, he was looking for ways to brand his previous company. At the time, the 11) Every Tweetchat will be different. No two are Tweetchat, “Journchat“, was on fire and that was the same. our inspiration. In the course of about a 1 minute conversation, Hashtagsocialmedia was born. We 12) There is a ton of room for growth for all Tweet- had no idea that 2 years and 138 tweetchats later, chats. “Hashtag” as we call it would still be chugging along. 13) There needs to be a next gen level of Tweetchats So what have I learned? 14) Businesses, brands and companies should in- 1) Tweetchat’s don’t work w/o participation. From corporate tweetchats into their marketing mix having great hosts to having great participants, you need both to succeed. 15) People actually learn from tweetchats. 2) The content comes from the crowd. The gold is I could easily come up with 123 more “things” I in the conversations. have learned, because I have learned something from each and every one of them, but the point is, 3) Trolls can easily be exposed and don’t last long, there is always a takeaway. In fact, not only have but contrarians can bring balance and perspective. I grown from these Tweetchats, but also from the half dozen others that I pop in to from time to time. 4) There is always a retweetable soundbite that can The bottom line is that Tweetchats are a tremendous sum up the discussion. Always. opportunity to network, grow and expand your user, knowledge and friend base to the nth degree. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 13/18 Page 1
  16. 16. 03/01/2012 17:50 15 Things I’ve Learned from 138 Social Media Tweetchats « Direct Marketing Observations I’m better because of our Tweetchat, I’m better be- cause of the people I’ve met from them, and I know it brings value to others and that makes me feel pretty damn good. Tweetchats work. So tell me, have you participated in our or any Tweetchat? What has been your experience? Like this: Be the first to like this post. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 14/18 Page 2
  17. 17. 03/01/2012 17:50 Stagger Social Posts for Maximum Exposure Writing by Brick Marketing in Social Media The best time to post social media content really depends on your target audience so it’s important T here is a right way and a wrong way to use to understand their usage behavior. While it makes social media for business. Unfortunately too sense to hit a 9-5er with your marketing message many companies think that “doing social me- right when they boot up their computer or while dia” means creating profiles on the big networks, they are browsing their social pages on their lunch and posting a few links whenever they feel like it. break, these times don’t make sense if you are tar- That is the wrong way. If you want to use social geting a college crowd or people that work nights media correctly to build a brand, communicate because it’s likely that they are still fast asleep. You with target audience members, and improve SEO also need to consider the location of your target au- efforts, it’s necessary to have a strategy and goals dience members. If you target a national audience in place. One important goal should be to get your or an international audience obviously the best time social content Liked, Shared, +1’d, and Re-Tweeted in one area isn’t the best in another. by others. This will improve brand visibility, ex- pand your reach in social media, build your own Therefore, it’s important to post content more than followers, and improve your social signals which once a day in order to ensure that it is viewed by have an impact on search engine ranking. a larger amount of people. If you only post first thing in the morning, that post will never be seen by someone that only checks their account at lunchtime because their feed has filled up with other posts. Many people follow hundreds, if not thousands of accounts. When posting more than once, it’s impor- tant to switch it up. Don’t post the same link over and over again, that will only be annoying to those that do see all of your posts! It’s all about finding the right balance that will be most effective. Of course, in order to get your social content shared by your followers, it first has to be seen by them. One of the biggest frustrations about using social media as a marketing tool is that there is a lot of noise. You are competing with other brands and friends, family, co-workers, and other acquaintances of your followers for their attention. Even those that use social media the most frequently only have so much time and don’t pay attention to every post that crosses their path. For this reason it’s important to consider timing when posting social media content and stagger social media posts. Love this PDF? Add it to your Reading List! 4 Page 15/18 Page 1