Tag Archives: marketing

Why Not Exploring Social Media Marketing for Your Company is a Mistake

Jim Tobin, who heads Ignite Social Media in Cary, N.C. said of social media,  “There are tons of studies that say word-of-mouth is more effective than any other marketing, and this is essentially word-of-mouth on-line.” He also wrote a book called Social Media is  Cocktail Party.  (I haven’t read it, but I just ordered it because I love the title.)  However, I keep hearing that social media isn’t for everyone, and many companies simply are NOT interested in learning and incorporating social media into their efforts. My question is why? If it really is as great as everyone all say it is then why isn’t EVERYONE jumping on board? Other than an attachment to the traditional methods (which is hard to break away from), why are some companies uninterested?

There are a few different answers to this question. Some don’t want to deal with regulations, or being held accountable for what is said in discussion on their websites.  Others don’t have the man power – blogging and social media involvement and upkeep is definitely a time consuming branch for any company. Also – there is a huge risk of opening doors to negative criticism , like this example below found in, “More Companies are Using Social Media for Marketing

In its work for a financial services company, Capstrat detected a popular YouTube blogger who had posted a video slamming the customer service he had received from the company. The video attracted more than 100,000 viewers within 90 minutes.

The client’s vice president of customer service e-mailed the blogger, expressed regret for the problem, and gave the blogger a number to call to discuss the situation. The executive also posted a contrite message on YouTube.

The problem was resolved, and the blogger quickly posted a second video praising the company’s response.

In the end — it really ended up benefiting the company because their positive response was widely heard of, and their customer service turned it around for an unhappy customer, SUCCESSFULLY.  That’s real, that’s transparent, that’s honest… and that’s word-of-mouth at it’s best. That’s what social media marketing is all about.
I have come to a conclusion about these companies that think social media might not work for them, or are uninterested in giving it a shot to see what it would mean. I’m going to go out on a limb here and saying- bad idea.  I think they are wrong. Wrong not to look into social media, work not to explore how it might benefit their company. Just because  not every outlet of social media works for every type of company doesn’t mean there isn’t at least one outlet or way you can be using social media. There are different tears, different levels, and so many creative ways to use social media.  Not ever opening that door is 100% of the time going to be a big loss for that company.

My advice – get yourself out there. Hire a social media expert to evaluate what your company or brand can be doing on the social web. Just do it.

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Online Profiling: Speaking to One vs. Many

There has been a shift in the methods that defines on-line marketing on customer outreach.  Today the efforts are not so much like using megaphone and getting your message out there as loudly and as noticeably as you can —  so that as many people as possible hear what you have to say and know what your brand is.  It has gone from more of an outreach measured by quantity to a direct and personal message outreach towards an individual. This individual is who you have created the message for. You altered and molded that message for what this person likes, what they think about, what they do in their free time, what kind of family they have, and what they are passionate about. Web technology is now more and more geared to collect personal information about you based on what web sites your visiting, and what you are talking about in your e-mails.  Is it invasive or…awesome? It’s a little process called “on-line profiling” and I vote awesome.  (I would much rather see a Michael Kors add pop up on the left of my monitor than one for Home Depot.) Companies (and on-line brands especially) SHOULD tailor our ads to what a customer likes, especially companies that aim to have an active social web presence.   Cater to your audience, as individuals, instead of using broader advertising and marketing to capture a group.  Sometimes you have to figure out what your average individual customer would be like based on your target group.  What would your ideal customer be like? (Someone that would be most interested in the tool/services/products that you have to offer.)   What music would that person listen to while jogging on a Saturday morning? What kind of connection tools are they interested in on-line? What types of circles do they run in? What are their interests and goals? You use those things to connect them with your brand on a more personal and intimate level. Speak right to the heart of what they want and need. The social media tools that currently exist are rapidly developing to allow marketers  to become much more personally involved with their audience and community.  Eric Imbs talks about how giving the customer an opportunity to choose their favorite color or favorite car, then cater to them based on their choice. He says, “colour is… a much more personal piece of information, which if used properly could make an ad much more targeted and….personal.” Through the on-line profiling that is possible today, we are allowed to get to know our customers at a closer level.  Use this.  Stop shooting for the crowds attention, and connect with your customers on a more intimate level.

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