How Social Media is Shifting From Marketing to Targeted Digital Advertising

Targeted Digital Advertising

The trends have been pointing in this direction for a while, but now many social media companies are making it official. The “pay to play” model is in full swing, and despite how this might make social media content companies feel, this is a really good thing for businesses.

Facebook is the most recent to announce that spam from businesses won’t be tolerated. This has really been the unspoken case for a while, but now they’re upping the ante by threatening to remove posts from brands that are too promotional.

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In Advertising, Let the Data Be Your Guide

Guide

Today, there is no shortage of data. There is exponentially more available data in our hands today than a decade ago, and there will be much more data available tomorrow than there is today. With so much information available, it’s strange that many still rely on their instincts or sales pitches to determine where to put their advertising dollars.

Most big companies get it. They will go so far as to buy other companies just to get access to their data. This has been common for decades, but today the ability to sift through and organize the data in a quickly-retrievable manner makes it even more prevalent than the past. For smaller companies, it gets a little more complicated, particularly if they’re working within a constraint such as limited potential customers bases or localization. That doesn’t mean it’s not impossible.

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Reddit’s Self-Promotion Conundrum

Reddit Self Promotion

Here’s where we get a little snobbish. Reddit has never been a good place to promote your own interests unless you’re a celebrity. That’s all there is to it.

This stems from a heartfelt plea from James Andrews. He made some incredible points. He deserves to be able to promote his new website, especially considering that it’s promoting indie bands, they get most of the money, and charities get money from the endeavor as well. Others with similar sites have been allowed to self-promote. Why can’t James?

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Why Social Media Won’t Die Any Time Soon

Hula Hoop

I remember the first “social media is dying” post that I read. It was early 2008 and MySpace was already showing signs of starting to implode upon itself. The article I read (wish I would have saved it) gave a very compelling argument about how social media was a fad and that privacy would eventually prevail once the glow of the “look at me” mentality that drives social media wears off.

It never did. It never will.

There’s no going back. Social media is the ultimate legal voyeurism into the lives of those we care about, whether we like them or not. We can see what our old high school friends are doing now. We can monitor the activities of our friends, family, coworkers, and anyone else of interest. We can keep track of the news as it’s unfolding, not told by a news anchor but told by the reactions of people we may or may not know.

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Why Soshable Went Dormant (and why it’s due for an eruption)

Eruption

When I first started playing around with social media marketing back in 2007, it was new, fresh, and wonderful. I created this blog to keep my thoughts in order, to have a central point through which to post all of my content, and to build a brand that could eventually become a company of its own.

Things change. Directions change. Elements of our lives that we once considered to be important become secondary in the blink of an eye. For me, Soshable has been one of those aspects of my life that fell by the wayside. My focus on automotive social media marketing has allowed me the privilege of forming a strong company with a bright future that takes up way too much of my time and my former blogging stallion was put in the barn.

That is changing. The good part about having a company grow is that you can start to hire people to do much of the work that you had to do in the beginning. Things that took up all of my time when I started my company less than a year ago are now superbly handled by a team that makes me look good. Time is opening up. Needs are growing, but in different directions. It’s time for Soshable to erupt into what it once was – a place where I and other authors promote the best practices available in social media.

It doesn’t need to be a social media blog. It needs to be the social media blog, the one that it once was and that it can be again. Thankfully, it’s not like a boxer coming out of retirement. When a volcano erupts after being dormant for a long time, the fury is often greater than it every was before. That’s my hope. Bring the marshmallows. We’re about to spew some heat.

4 Tools That Simplify Life For E-Commerce Startups

Keep it Simple

Startups are exciting, bewildering and hugely risky things to be a part of. There’s the constant worry of the whole thing imploding under the weight of your multi-pronged business ideas. There’s the fear of being chewed up and spit out by larger competitors with deeper pockets. There’s also the need to attract the fickle online customer and retain their loyalties for as long as you possibly can.

In this race against time and resources, every smart e-commerce startup could do with some tools that make their lives just a tad bit easier. Here are my top four picks. [Read more…]

Social Media Marketing: Another Thing to Love About Responsive Website Design

Responsive for Social

As a good chunk of the internet is finally starting to switch to responsive websites, let’s put another nail in the unresponsive website design coffin. For social media, consistency between mobile devices and desktops is imperative.

Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest can send a good measure of traffic to websites, particularly if appropriate campaigns are being run on them. Creating landing pages that are “social-appropriate” can be a challenge when there are two variations of a website running, which is the case with adaptive websites that present different pages for the same URL depending on the device through which they’re called. If the goal is to send traffic to the website through social media, responsive is an ideal solution.

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The Two Categories of Social Media Marketing Strategies

All In

When it comes to marketing (and just about everything else), there are right-brained thinkers and left-brained thinkers. The right-brain thinkers are more subjective and often more creative and would not like the concept of social media having two options. It makes it too black and white. Left-brain thinkers are guided by logic and wouldn’t necessarily believe that there are only two categories in social media marketing. In other words, neither type of person will likely agree with the assertion of this article, at least not at first.

One can make an argument that there are definitely multiple sub-categories, styles, and strategies that go into social media marketing, but there are really only two stances that businesses should take. These two categories can be called “outbound” and “inbound” social media strategies. They shouldn’t be confused with inbound or outbound digital marketing strategies. In the case of these social media categories, we’re being a little more straight forward than that.

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Transparency in Contact Forms Desperately Needed on Websites

Privacy Transparency

Just about anyone who has been on the internet in the past couple of decades has fallen victim to the unfortunate fraud of contact form ambiguity. You fill out a form in order to get some information or to be contacted by someone, only to receive the wrong information or to be contacted by the wrong (or even multiple) people. It has gotten to the point that contact forms in general often leave a negative taste in web surfers’ mouths.

Moreover, they rarely have the right information even in the forms themselves. It’s common to be filling out a form and not have all of the information necessary to know if you’re filling out the right form or not. This is not only a pain, but it can be dangerous as well. Between privacy issues and the need for transparency, collecting information on the internet has gained a bad but deserved rap.

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Facebook Admits to News Feed Experiment Meant to Control Emotions

Mind and Heart

Recently, some social media users have been in an uproar after Facebook admitted to carrying out a secret experiment in which the news feeds of more than 600,000 users were filtered to see if those individuals would have differing emotions based upon what they saw on the screen. For example, it was determined if a person was exposed to more positive news from friends, he or she would be less likely to post something negative as a status update. The opposite was also found to be true.

“Massive-Scale Emotional Contagion”

On a smaller scale, most of us are already familiar with this phenomenon. Spending time with a friend who is in an abundantly good mood probably makes you feel similar, even if you were previously feeling a little down in the dumps.

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