Tag Archives: Social media

Change is in the Air

It’s an exciting time. Summer is over and the smell of Fall is in the air. It’s the perfect time to announce some exciting changes.

PR Meets Marketing is Moving

For the past 3.5 years, I’ve hosted my website on WordPress.com. While there are many benefits to keeping my blog here, I’ve decided that hosting my own website provides more flexibility with regard to plugins, themes and monetization. After today, all future posts will be on my new website as PR Meets Marketing.

Clear Focus

When I first started PR Meets Marketing, my intent was to write about the intersection of PR and marketing. This includes highlighting how PR is an integral way to drive tangible results that address marketing objectives. I’ve also written extensively about social media and virtual events/meetings.

With the new website, I plan to further explore these topics and understand how each – PR, marketing, social media and virtual events – drives business results that matter.

What Now?

I’m excited with the next stage of PR Meets Marketing and the opportunities this presents. I look forward to exploring the intersection of PR and marketing for more years to come!

Thanks To All My Readers

And finally, I want to thank everyone who’s read my blog, commented and linked to my blog. Without all your kind words, I wouldn’t have had the motivation to continue writing all these years.

So are you ready to join the journey?

  • Subscribe to the new feed here: http://feeds.feedburner.com/PRMM
  • If you prefer to receive this via email, I don’t plan to move the current list and request that you resubscribe on the website.
  • If you’ve been kind enough to link to this website, please update it here: PR Meets Marketing, http://www.prmeetsmarketing.com.

I look forward to reading your comments, feedback and questions. Thanks!

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Recent Twitter Update and Implications for Marketing

September 1, 2010, Twitter sent an email to users regarding two new updates to its service. I found the update about moving to t.co URL wrapping intriguing, especially this sentence:

When you click on these links from Twitter.com or a Twitter application, Twitter will log that click. We hope to use this data to provide better and more relevant content to you over time.

This signals more than providing protection against malicious content (which is important) and to provide better content for users. Rather, by “logging the click,” I see this as part of Twitter’s continued efforts to provide value-added services and data tracking for corporations:

  • Measurement and Analytics: The click-through rate will help with Twitter’s “Resonance” rating. While the resonance rating is part of Twitter’s Promoted Tweets campaign, there is value to provide companies – small, medium and large – access to this data, similar to a Google Analytics dashboard. Maybe Twitter can provide an entry-level offering with minimal information and then charge for for more analytics and optimization options.
  • Content Creation: One type of intelligence is understanding how your audience consumes and distributes the content. By analyzing these patterns, you can gain insight into the types of content that your audience is seeking. You can then develop a content strategy to reach and connect with your tareted audience segments.
  • Influencer Relations: By combining Twitter’s retweet information with the t.co click-through data, you can better identify influencers within your social graph. These would be individuals whose followers not only retweet content but also takes action via click-through information. 

Conclusions

I’m curious to see what future developments will be introduced (or maybe acquired) by Twitter to enable individual and corporate brands to optimize their presence on Twitter. And whether or not these services are complimentary or competitive to companies like Radian6.  What do you think? Anything I’m missing?

Social Media Strategy 101: Setting Expectations

 In a recent report by Jeremiah Owyang of The Altimeter Group, The 8 Success Criteria for Facebook Marketing, the group highlighted the need to set community expectations as a key component for success in Facebook marketing. I think this is not just for Facebook but something to consider as part of your social media strategy. Furthermore, this extends beyond your external audience but also should be shared with employees and supported by your executives.

 Here are key elements to consider to set the proper expectations:

  • Engagement: Be clear on how often you plan to engage via your social media outlets , as well as the guidelines for participation and behavior. In addition to incorporating the policy into your social media strategy, consider placing this on your corporate website to ensure consistency and refer back to it when appropriate.
  • Transparency: While people will engage with a brand, I strongly believe that putting a name and face to the company strengthens the connection with audiences and humanizes the company as a result. Incorporate a page that provides at least a bio and photo of contributors.
  • Purpose: Provide a clear sense of why you’re engaging people with social media. Is this to get feedback from consumers, to sell something or for customer support? Not only will this minimize confusion with external audiences, but also help internal employees understand what they can reveal publicly.
  • Consistency: Once you set the expectations deliver on this consistently.

Are there other factors I missed? Let me know in the comments, and I’ve also embedded the full version of the Facebook Marketing Report below for your reference.

Social Media Marketing 101

Social Media Strategy 101: Which Persona Helps Tell Your Story?

You’ve decided that you want to engage in social media. You have the resources, you have executive support, and you have a larger marketing strategy. Time to open the Twitter account, create the Facebook Page and post YouTube videos, right? Wrong.

Social media is about engaging your audience. The next step in your social media strategy is knowing what story to tell to draw your audience in. Here are some “personas” to help tell your story:

  • Johnny Carson: Humor is a great way to draw people in, engage them in a laugh and leave them with a wanting with more. But you have to be cautious with using this method. There’s only been one Johnny Carson and many imitators. Make sure your use of humor fits with the messages you’re seeking to communicate and the personality of the company you’re cultivating online.
  • Just the Facts Ma’am (Dragnet): The straight forward and direct approach informs your audience about your products, solutions and company. This provides an additional channel for your audience to get answers to their questions. The challenge is developing a style that encourages engagement with your audience versus being seen as a broadcast of your marketing messages.
  • Tony the Tiger Mascot: Creating the right mascot can enable audiences to instinctively relate to your company and brand. The challenge – making sure the mascot doesn’t overtake the business value of your company.
  • The Old Spice Man: We’ve all seen the commercials and subsequent videos online. The Old Spice Man is a caricature that seeks to use satire to target audiences. While highly amusing, incredibly viral, and deeply memorable, use caricature cautiously. Of all the characters, this one can backfire quickly if not done well.

What other “personas” do you see in social media?

Email and Event Marketing on Facebook Doesn’t Work

Outside of some close friends, one of the little known secrets about me is that I used to salsa dance. Not only did I enjoy dancing, I also competed in group and couples competitions. Like all enthusiasts, I subscribed to all the salsa lists to learn about upcoming events, lessons with outside instructors and more. Since I broke my ankle preparing for a competition (um, long story =), I’ve discontinued following the salsa activities and unsubscribed from all the lists. At least I thought I did.

Recently, I’ve started receiving notifications about these events, not through my email, but through Facebook. It’s getting so bad, that I’m on the verge of unfriending someone who has been sending me the most number of “event notifications.” In one case to be removed from a list, the response I received was: “however, please be advised this is a public event and it could be that one of your friends who originally received the invite from me extended the event invitation to you.”

Three Things to Consider Before Hitting Send on Facebook

 While the full potential of Facebook is yet to be tapped by marketers and businesses, here are some key considerations before dropping your email lists into Facebook:

  1. Relationships Matter: The intrinsic value of Facebook is that friends are great filters for knowing what I like and don’t like. Make sure you have an established relationship before sending an email or invite to someone, which leads to
  2. Permission Marketing: Seth Godin’s book is key to engaging people via online marketing. Make sure you received permission from someone first. If you’re seeking to migrate your email list to Facebook, then be transparent about what you’re doing. Personally, the best thing is to ask those on your email lists if they would like to be contacted via Facebook – this way, they opt in for your Facebook communications.
  3. CAN-SPAM Compliance: While I don’t know what the legalities are, I assume that Facebook communications would fall under the CAN Spam Act with regard to commercial content. As stated on the FTC website:

“Despite its name, the CAN-SPAM Act doesn’t apply just to bulk email. It covers all commercial messages, which the law defines as ‘any electronic mail message the primary purpose of which is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service,’ including email that promotes content on commercial websites. The law makes no exception for business-to-business email. That means all email – for example, a message to former customers announcing a new product line – must comply with the law.”

As such, make sure to allow for peopel to easily opt out of future communications.

Conclusions

To my knowledge, there is no way for me to opt out of someone’s “marketing” communications. Rather, I have to go to each group or event to leave. This is frustrating as many times, I have not directly signed up for the initial communications. Ideally, Facebook would create a backend platform tool for marketers to manage these types of communications. Similar to existing email solutions, the communications platform would enable businesses to:

  • Send communications to people who have opted in
  • Manage opt out requests for individual groups/events or everything managed by that business
  • Monitor response rates, unsubscribes and clickthroughs for the communications
  • Provide trending reports, such as friend referrals, time of day opens, etc.
  • And much much more

And for members, we should be able to filter out communications beyond just the spam button. For example, I do want to stay updated with my friend, I just don’t want all the updates regarding the next salsa class or bachata dance off.  What recommendations would you provide for marketers and to Facebook?

Social Media Marketing Strategy 101: Definitions

I had an interesting conversation with someone a few weeks ago about the definition of social media and social media marketing. I think it’s important to explore the definitions to ensure that we’re on the same page.

I posted this question to my different social networks and here are couple of responses that came back:

I would define social media and social marketing, as an attempt to connect with a niche portion of the population, which utilizes digital channels of communication. These individuals were formally unavailable and couldn’t have been harnessed through traditional marketing avenues. This day and age, it has become increasingly important to reach out to these individuals, especially in light of the expansion of social networking. Consequently, social platforms now grant businesses the ability to accomplish this with ease. By establishing more transparency and openness, companies can ultimately harness potential customers that were previously unattainable. – Ryan Schoenefeld via LinkedIn

akornblatt Social Media are the tools, Social Marketing is what you use Social Media for.

akornblatt Social media are the tools used in social network and social marketing, which are both unique as well

Social Media and Social Marketing Defined – Simply

While Wikipedia provides a fairly academic definition of social media, here’s my simple definition: Social media is when you and I use online applications, such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. to create, share, and distribute content (e.g. Video, blog posts, etc.).

If Social Media is the tools, then Social Media Marketing is the toolbox. From my perspective, Social Media Marketing leverages social media to achieve key marketing objectives and engage in conversations with key constituents.

Conclusions

Based on these definition, my goal with these series of posts is to explore how organizations can leverage a social media marketing strategy to achieve marketing and communications goals. Like all marketing strategies, this requires different components to come together under this umbrella, such as public relations, lead generation, customer relations, analyst relations and more. Hence, I am changing this from “Social Marketing Strategy 101” to “Social Media Marketing Strategy 101.”

Do you agree or disagree? Let me know.

Other Posts in the Series

Social Marketing Strategy 101: Are you ready?

Previously, I highlighted how I used social media. After reading recent posts by Dave Fleet and Social Media Explorer regarding the social media marketing ecosystem and measurement respectively, I wanted to expand upon my thoughts about how to take social marketing to the next level.

One challenge for many marketers isn’t how to get started, rather it’s how to delegate your time to make the most out of your social marketing. This series of posts will look at putting a social marketing strategy together. And where relevant, I’ll add my thoughts in terms of how PR can leverage this information for their strategies as well.

While many may start strong with social media, these efforts may slowly stop without fully evaluating if you’re ready to embark on a social marketing strategy. Here are six questions to ask yourself before starting:

  • Are your executives supporting you? While social marketing is being adopted by corporations, the question is whether your executives understand the value of social marketing to the business. Since results may not be immediate, you’ll want one executive sponsor who can advocate for the program and highlight the long-term benefits.
  • What are your objectives? The tendency is to start setting up pages and accounts before fully understanding what your objectives are. Take a step back and outline what your goals are before setting up accounts.
  • Where is your audience? Along with your objectives, evaluate where your audience congregates. Jeremiah Owyang of Web Strategist Blog calls this “fish where the fish are.”
  • Do you have something to say? Getting started is easy. Maintaining the momentum is difficult. Do you and your company have something to say, consistently? If not, then maybe starting a blog isn’t the best venue for you but maybe slideshare.net where you can post occasional presentations and white papers.
  • How much time do you have to dedicate to this? According to Exhibitor Media Group, 30% of marketing professionals spend 6+ hours on social marketing a week, with 10% spending 21+ hours. Do you have the time to monitor, create content and track metrics for your programs?
  • Who’s doing the work? Ok, you’ve identified someone who has the time, but who is that person? Social marketing is an extension of your corporate brand. You need to have the right individuals in place to evangelize and steward your brand.

Conclusion

By answering the above six questions, you can develop the right approach that fits your company and time. What other questions should one ask before pursuing a social marketing program?