The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing


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On October 5th 2011, Jim Gilbert, President of Gilbert Direct Marketing presented The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing to a packed house at the Direct Marketing Association's annual conference and exhibition in Boston. (DMA2011).

This presentation is the culmination of the last 5 years of research and execution of social media marketing programs for multiple clients.

Included in this presentation is a caste study of how Jim Gilbert built the social media marketing program for a consumer diet business from the ground up.

Reach Jim at

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  • Above all I am a direct marketer - old school meaning traditional DM principles applied to new media and channels!
  • ----- Meeting Notes (10/5/11 07:16) -----Throw what you know out the window!
  • No paradigms. I’m a heretic. No assumptions made for results. Just connect! How to build it so they will come.----- Meeting Notes (10/5/11 07:16) -----Forget the DM science for a while!
  • Why I do what I do… my motto!How does this TRANSLATE to a social world?
  • Engagement!----- Meeting Notes (10/4/11 23:31) -----How does this translate to a social world?
  • Engagement! Connect… be real! Dialog! Two way street.
  • Engage with./.. Engaging customers/prospects in social media channels increases brand/time.The more time a consumer spends with your brand and your products, the more likely they are to buy.
  • Engage with./..
  • We focused heavily on facebook. That was the central hub for our communty.
  • Actually 23K indecember.
  • Actually 23K indecember.
  • We do everything in our power to drive traffic to FBEven over our website in many instances
  • Humor, tease customers, deal ASAP with issues, Don’t just push out info, engage and build relationships
  • Email newsletters always promote!!!ContestsFreebies
  • Now back to ENGAGEMENT…
  • Out CTO developed a way to tell people if they chose too many carbsI wanted to brand it and did ws contest on FBContests are how we
  • Drive to utube, blog contests, twitter, etc…As a reformed cataloger, this is a familiar concept of DM and LTVWe cross promote fb, youtube, twitter, blog, website, etc!
  • We use twitter to drive to FB and Blog
  • Real voice, address concerns, etc.
  • I was in Disney this weekend, and our customers and fans ran the page for us, did contests, prmoted specials, etc.
  • Branding tfd employees video
  • We do this cross channel too, website, newsletter, etc! The more transparant we are, the more we open ourselves up to consumers as real, the more they respond.
  • January fiascoHowards market
  • United breaks guitarsYou will bet skewered.Brands better button up CS, product, brand image must match up!January snow, changes to food.
  • United breaks guitarsYou will bet skewered.Brands better button up CS, product, brand image must match up!January snow, changes to food.
  • The Fresh Diet Vs Yelp!
  • Engage with./..
  • The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing

    1. 1. 9 Immutable Laws ofSocial Media Marketing <br />Presented by James Gilbert, CEO<br />October 5th, 2011<br />
    2. 2. Just who do you think I am?<br /><ul><li>30 year history in DM (old school > new school)
    3. 3. CEO, GDM
    4. 4. Board member – FL DMA
    5. 5. Professor Direct Marketing
    6. 6. Author Target Marketing Group
    7. 7. Return on Intelligence Blog
    8. 8. Guide to Social Media - Content</li></li></ul><li>“What can I expect from Social Media?” <br />“What kind ROI will I get?” <br />“I tried social media and gained No Customers!”<br />
    9. 9. No<br />Paradigms!<br />
    10. 10. Orientation <br />(What these laws are really about!)<br />"There is only one valid definition of business purpose – to create a customer. <br />Companies are not in business to make things… but to make customers.”<br />-- Peter F. Drucker<br />
    11. 11. Translation? <br />One Word...<br />
    12. 12. Engagement!<br />Fulfill the DM Promise of true 2 way communications<br />
    13. 13. Social Media Law # 1 <br />The deeper the level of engagement, the deeper the trust/bond with your company!<br />Nothing happens without engagement!<br />How engaged are your social media fans?<br />
    14. 14. The Law of Engagement! <br />The goals of every social media marketer...<br />Engage!<br />Draw them out!<br />Get them involved!<br />Tug at their heartstrings<br />Tell a story!!!!<br />Create drama!!!!<br />
    15. 15. Case Study – The Fresh Diet<br />About The Fresh Diet<br />Focus on Facebook<br />
    16. 16. Level of effectiveness = 0<br />November2009:<br />94 fans<br />
    17. 17. Level of effectiveness = 100<br />December 2010:<br />24,195 likes<br />That’s a lot more than nutrisysem!<br />
    18. 18. Level of effectiveness = 1,000<br />October 2011:<br />66,000 likes<br />That’s a lot more than nutrisysem!<br />
    19. 19. Building our brand via Facebook<br />Our facebook page is our calling card.<br />Many times we prefer to send to FB over web <br />More powerful than our website<br />People see engagement and want to join in<br />People see happy customers and order! <br />Beyond our “likes” thousands of people check us out on FB daily. <br />
    20. 20. Don’t be an info pusher!<br />
    21. 21. How we got there – Goals!<br />Main goal!<br />Put a human face on the nameless faceless corporate entity<br />Distinguish ourselves from big corps<br />We are real people, promoting a healthy lifestyle<br />People respond to real<br />
    22. 22. How we got there – Goals!<br />Build relationships - Build engagement<br />Speak in a real voice<br />Develop trust<br />Give to get world<br />Time spent on site = engagement<br />Engagement = Sales<br />Sales + Engagement = Advocacy<br />I tease people, draw them out, call them out, etc<br />
    23. 23. How we got to 66K – the basics<br />Call center<br />Collateral Material<br />Mailers<br />Email signatures<br />Email newsletters<br />Any place we can think of<br />
    24. 24. How did we get there?<br />Facebook ads<br /><ul><li>Can be hit or miss
    25. 25. Effective in driving targeted traffic
    26. 26. Target by:
    27. 27. Geography
    28. 28. Interests (dieting, kosher)
    29. 29. Work (where)
    30. 30. Education type
    31. 31. Connected to people, businesses</li></li></ul><li>Step 2 building engagement<br />It started with a single contest.<br />Carbometer<br />We now run contests every day of the week<br />
    32. 32. Contests mean to us<br />A way to seed the market with food<br />A way to have people come back and give positive feedback<br />An engagement tool<br />Fun – draws people out<br />
    33. 33. Contest examples<br />Plate your favorite meals<br />
    34. 34. Contest examples<br />Halloween costume contest<br />
    35. 35. Contest examples<br />Motivation poster contests<br />
    36. 36. Contest examples<br />Fresh Diet-ize a Beatles Lyric (in honor of John Lennon)<br />Fresh Diet-ized Haiku<br />
    37. 37. Contest examples<br />Video contests<br />This contest coined the phrase, “the fresh diet delivery fairies?<br />
    38. 38. Contest examples<br />Ultra secret contests<br />My excuse to give away food<br />Any old contests<br />Banner ad<br />
    39. 39. Contests Recipe winner<br />
    40. 40. Any Excuse for a contest<br />
    41. 41. Social Media Law # 2 <br />Brand + Channels = Revenue. <br />The more channels a consumer interacts with your brand in, the more likely they are to buy. <br />Offering multiple engagement channels allows for consumer self selection of preferred channels. <br /> Being in the right social media channels based on your market increases channel interaction.<br />
    42. 42. Building Traffic – Fans and Likes<br /> network allows you to buy paid tweets from celebrities<br />Gained 400 fans in one day<br />
    43. 43. Building Traffic – Fans and Likes<br />Tie ins with other sites drove major traffic and likes<br />We did this one in conjunction with a freebie every day.<br />
    44. 44. Building Traffic – Fans and Likes<br />Tie ins with other sites drove major traffic and likes<br />We did this one in conjunction with a freebie every day.<br />
    45. 45. Building Traffic – Fans and Likes<br />Paid tweets from Heidi Montag promoting a contest drove fans and contest entries<br />
    46. 46. Building Traffic – Fans and Likes<br />Using the @ sign drives traffic<br />This post ran on TFD and Holly Madison’s FB page at the same time<br />
    47. 47. Social Media Law # 3 <br />Brand + time + channels = advocates. <br />Consumers spending time in multi channels breeds customers more likely to become brand advocates and influencers. <br />This is the new multichannel marketing model for the 21st century. <br />Social media creates brand advocates and turns peers into your best salespeople.<br />
    48. 48. Engagement, our customer take over<br />In a social media driven world – people buy from their peers!<br />
    49. 49. Engagement our customers take over<br />In Orlando<br />Customers ran contests, promoted specials answered CS Q’s<br />Our customers would walk through fire due to the trust we have built.<br />We ask people from FB to do interviews, show up at events, etc… even be on TV.<br />
    50. 50. Customers take over<br />Fresh never frozen<br />
    51. 51. Social Media Law # 4 <br />The exponential search factor. <br />Social media increases your search engine rankings, and when combined with your website drives additional traffic via organic search.<br />
    52. 52. Social Media Law # 5 <br />The new-fangled customer service factor. <br />Consumers choose their contact preferences. <br />Brands not having multiple channels for customer service risk losing customers. <br />Consumers expect instant gratification and social media delivers.<br />
    53. 53. Facebook as a customer service tool<br />Our Sales and CS people inhabit our page<br />Customer service is no longer limited to the call center!!!<br />When questions get asked, we answer ASAP<br />Speed and agility in a social media world<br />If we don’t answer fast enough, we get grief<br />
    54. 54. Facebook as a Customer Service tool<br />When issues come up we must address them with speed, agility and accuracy, otherwise we will get skewered<br />
    55. 55. Facebook as a Customer Service tool<br />When issues come up we must address them with speed, agility and accuracy, otherwise we will get skewered<br />We took a beating due to the snow in the NE<br />
    56. 56. Social Media Law # 6 <br />The behind the scenes factor.<br />People don’t buy from brands - they buy from people. <br />Social media puts a human face on the faceless corporate entity. <br />The biggest opportunity around social media is to allow people to connect with your employees as peers.<br />
    57. 57. The days of “big anonymous corp.” are over!<br />
    58. 58. Bio’s of our employees bring customers closer to the company<br />
    59. 59. Build involvement and trust<br />Be Transparent<br />Go behind the scenes<br />
    60. 60. Bringing our customers closer<br />Image done by one of our customers of our CEO Zalmi Duchman.<br />He is officially Zman or Zuperman to our fans<br />
    61. 61. Again, we do a lot of video<br />
    62. 62. Social Media Law # 7 <br />Trust is the new black. <br />The aforementioned laws allow consumers to build or rebuild trust if done correctly. <br />Social media harkens back to the days of the corner store where consumers and brands had a cordial relationship. <br />Social media builds relationships over time.<br />
    63. 63. Trust? Our involvement devices<br />Delivery fairies<br />Fearless FB leader<br />Overgiving<br />We let our customers run and judge contests<br />Brand everybody<br />Make fun of ourselves<br />Have all get involved in company<br />Ask questions, involve customers (bag, slogans)<br />
    64. 64. Building Trust – Random Freebies<br />Every day we give food away randomly on FB. <br />Other times we just give it away for no reason<br />Is it expensive? Sure, but the rewards are enormous<br />People are always promoting us to our friends<br />Another way we seed the market and drive positive reviews<br />
    65. 65. Build involvement and trust<br />
    66. 66. Give to get – Random Freebies<br />
    67. 67. Social Media Law # 8 <br />The online reputation factor. <br />Whether you like it or not consumers are talking about your brand. <br />Social media is the great neutralizer. <br />It allows your company to seek out negatives and turn them into positives via reputation management and communications.<br />
    68. 68. Rep is everything<br />
    69. 69. Rep is everything<br />
    70. 70. Social Media Law # 9 <br />The time spent factor. <br />Customers are not always ready to buy. <br />Social media’s eight other immutable laws prepares customers over time. <br />
    71. 71. Social Media Law # 9 <br />Engagement + time + trust = revenue.<br />When we run sales on FB sales come!<br />Use promo codes to track<br />Customers do the selling for us.<br />Must try this!<br />
    72. 72. Get a copy…<br />Drop me a business card and I will send you a copy of this preso!<br />Feel free to pass it along too!<br />
    73. 73. Thank You!How to reach me… @gilbertdirect561-302-1719Don’t forget linked in!<br />