Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Social Media Strategy for Business Recap

Morgan Witt, strategic marketing and communications consultant from NovoLOGIQ, provided an overview of social media, the various platforms, how to integrate with your marketing mix, what to readers want and best practices for businesses.

Benefits of social marketing for your company:
Customer Communication, Customer Service, Brand Monitoring, Promotions
SEO (search engine optimization), Lead Generation, Sales, Build and influence opinions Develop relationships, improve organic search, cross promotion, PR to name a few.

Social Network Platforms:
Blogging Websites (on or off domain)
- http://www.blogger.com
- http://www.wordpress.com
- Many others

Social Websites (platforms most known)
- http://www.myspace.com/
o Younger demographic
o Flexible design (html based)
o Blog
o Content is easily shared
o Great platform for user generated content
- http://www.facebook.com
o Evolving to a better business networking tool
o The demographics are getting older
o Tons of profile data to leverage for behavioral targeting
o Web applications
- http://www.linkedin.com
o Groups
o Q&A
o Status updates
o In mail
o Networking community

Micro-Blogging Websites (happy medium between texting and blogging)
- http://www.twitter.com
o 140 character updates
o Happy medium from texting and blogging
o It’s rich and in real time
o Customer feedback data
o A monitoring tool
o Customer service tool
o One-one marketing channel

Photo Sharing Websites
- http://www.flickr.com
o User generated content
o Tagging
o Groups
o Community

Video Sharing Websites
- http://www.youtube.com
o User generated content
o Channels
o Tagging
o Subscriptions
o Community
o You can have a branded page
- http://www.12seconds.tv
o 12 second updates

Wikis (Lightweight web application that can be embedded on a website, blog, forum, etc. or downloaded onto a desktop and embed.)
- Clever social applications/widgets can become extremely viral

Best practices for social marketing:
Community Management is Key
Create a unique experience
Respond to comments
Tap into the reasons why friends share
Provoke thought and conversations
Cross promote your presence on other platforms
Promote social media through email newsletters
Promote email sign up through blogs
Set up blog up to twitter feed
Promote press releases through blog
Write to be helpful
Linking and Tagging
Keyword focus
Add RSS feed (feed reader)
Add a blog roll
Integrate social book marking tools
Add email newsletter sign up box
Post videos
Keep brand consistent
Point out interesting things about your company and space
Promote clearance sales
Share the human side of your company
Tell a story
Humanize your organization
Cross promote
Think outside the box

Early Adaptors:
Comcast, Jet Blue and Southwest Airlines – speaks directly with customers
Zappos.com – President uses social media well – telecasts when celebs are at the facility
First person to answer this question gets a pair of shoes…
Dell – Created a 40-50 person team devoted to social marketing
Starbucks built a social network to give and get feedback. Share / Vote / Discuss / See
Threadless.com - promotes, brands consistence, shows new product
Busted tees uses a social application where referrers got paid
Blendtec – uses a viral video “will it blend?” to increase sales by 300%
UPS - Creates widget that served a purpose and are useful to customers
- PC/Mac compatible
- Created and integrated marketing campaign
- Extension of the brand

Unique visitors
Page views
Time spent
Volume of contacts
Video/Photo views
Number of comments
Number of followers and comments

What do you want to think about?
Features and flexibility
Social Book marking (delicious and sharing)
Ask if these are actionable.
Understand that criticism of your brand is not bad
Gain understanding of the tools

My take on social marketing
Networking all platforms together to cross promote each medium thus having a cohesive message and brand. Whether you use myspace, linkedin, twitter, youtube or all of them you have to understand content is king, be compelling, tell a story and be human. Being funny also helps.