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Getting To Know Your Customers Using Forums and Blogs - SEMA 2012

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An education session given at the 2012 SEMA show discussing the great opportunity to engage with customers and consumers that live within forums and blogs.

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Getting To Know Your Customers Using Forums and Blogs - SEMA 2012

  1. 1. GETTING TO KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS: Using Online Forums & Blogs to Increase Sales Tyler Tanaka CIE Digital Labs @tylertanaka
  2. 2. The Information Shift
  3. 3. Confidence Shift 92 percent of respondents said they had more confidence in information they seek out online than anything coming from a sales clerk or other source *  According  to  Synovate  consumer  survey
  4. 4. Conversation Shift
  5. 5. Billions of Searches Each Month It used to be a few educated people who controlled a finite amount of knowledge. Search has changed that. Now everyone can be an educated consumer through the power of collective data. Over 90% Search
  6. 6. The Long TailMost page views delivered to 84% least trafficked sites
  7. 7. Search Is “All” Powerful “Michelin PS2 Review” 4,6,8,10,11,18,19,22,2 4,25,26,28 “Bridgestone RE010” 7,12,23 “Goodyear GSD3” 11,12,13,15,17,19,20,2 3,27,19,20,23,27,28,30
  8. 8. Be As Smart As The Average Bear
  9. 9. Forum LandscapeNetworks: To Find Blogs and Forums: - Vertical Scope - Google - Huddler - BigBoards.com - Internet Brands - AllTop.com - Madison Ross - Vortex Media - AOL Independents: - Many others - NASIOC - PerformanceIX - Hundreds More...
  10. 10. The Automotive Blog Worldhttp://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/ http://www.autoblog.com/http://www.motoiq.com/ http://www.jalopnik.com/http://www.bangshift.com/ http://blogs.automotive.com/http://www.speedhunters.com/ http://blog.caranddriver.com/http://www.sub5zero.com/ http://blog.roadandtrack.com/http://www.motormavens.com/ http://blog.cardomain.com/http://www.racer.com/ http://blogs.insideline.com/ To find the best blogs in any category use AllTop.com
  11. 11. Original Social Networks!  43% of US online users visit at least oneAutomotive Web Site each month (94.6MM) !  28% of US automotive resource users visit automotive forums each month (19.5MM) Forum Audience Profile !  39% plan to purchase in next 6 months (7.6MM) !  81% visit automotive forums daily (15.8MM) !  26% believe forums reliable source than other auto information sources !  28% believe forums are the most important influence on their purchase decision !  Millenial Smartphone users represent the highest audience growth segment (20%+)
  12. 12. Compelling Data
  13. 13. Forum Data:
  14. 14. Forum Data:
  15. 15. Today’s Panelists- Andy Jacobson, Vertical Scope- Chad Reynolds, Bangshift.com- Brian Lohnes, BangShift.com- Mike Kojima, MotoIQ.comModerator: Tyler Tanaka, CIE Digital Labs @TylerTanaka / tyler@ciedigital.com
  16. 16. Who Are The Users? • Passionate Enthusiasts • Loudmouths & Mavens • Experts (both real & self-proclaimed) • Searchers Doing Research • Positive Reviewers & Negative Pot Stirrers
  17. 17. How Can Companies Get Involved? • Community interaction • Site sponsorship • Sponsored events • Promoted Posts • Display advertising • Review & sampling programs
  18. 18. Best PracticesMake sure to be:• Authentic• Transparent• Human• Quick to respond to questions• Above all else, be patient
  19. 19. Moving Beyond The Basics• Product news, pricing, launches, photos, videos and installs• Exclusive offers, discount codes• Promotional events drive store and site traffic• Opinion polls and open forum feedback• Use forums to drive company product development• Product content integration…
  20. 20. 10 Good Sponsor Tactics1. Monitor/Subscribe to your sponsored forum/blog2. Post pricing, product news, photos of part installs, photos from shows/races/meets3. Offer exclusive discount codes and promotional information to forum members4. Develop and promote Group Buys and Liquidation Sales5. Ensure that your banners are relevant, legible and correctly sized. Change them FREQUENTLY!6. Ensure that links refer customers to a relevant landing page, not just your home page7. Take advantage of all opportunities to build your brand equity, including commenting, signatures & avatars8. Use the “search” function to look for posts/threads about products, services and brands that you offer9. Offer technical advice to those in need – don’t make it a sales pitch.10. Respond quickly and avoid talking negatively about other vendors and their products or services
  21. 21. Reference and Tools• PostRelease.com - Case studies• Forrester Research• Mashable.com – Social media blog/guide• Quantcast.com – site traffic/demographics• Compete.com – compares sites• Quarkbase.com – website history/traffic• Google Alerts – Customized about your brand online• Service Excellence Research Group• comScore Media Metrix• Big-Boards.com – Forum lookup• All Top - Blog finder
  22. 22. Q&A Thank you!

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