My days start the same way. Every morning at around 2:15am, I wake up and hit the feeds. I have over 20 SEO blogs, 40 social media blogs, and a dozen automotive blogs that I start with at the beginning of my day and that I check regularly throughout. I read more about these two important topics, search and social, on any given day than most read in a month.
This isn’t about food. It’s not about power. It’s not even about pride. This time, the stakes are much higher. This time, it’s personal.
Over 3 years ago, Louie Baur and I embarked on a contest of Twitter domination. It was fun, but it highlighted many of the problems that Twitter had at the time surrounding churn that have, for the most part, been fixed now. We have been good friends and work partners ever since and our combined social media forces have been used on a regular basis to help companies around the world get their social groove on.
That may end. When the BukaVIP contest opened up earlier this month, it seemed like a fun way to shoot for an excellent free meal. In the world of Klout, Kred, and other social metrics that reward the active social media peeps of the world with everything from free Subway sandwiches to monthly stays at snazzy resorts, a good dinner is enough to take friends and rip them apart.
Okay, so it won’t rip us apart. This isn’t really personal. We are, however, both extremely interested in winning the prize of $100 in culinary awesomeness. If you want in on the action, all you have to do is visit their page and take a shot. You’re a tweet away from good eats.
Whether you realize it or not, if you belong to a social media network of any sort, you have some kind of influence. There is a never-ending flow of information that travels within these social media sites, causing people and brands to compete for consumer influence by relying on the magic of “sharing”. In order to get more shares, you must first gain popularity in the digital world. Of course, being ‘popular’ within your network communities doesn’t mean you will have a high influence in your industry.
It’s no secret that social media has given so many opportunities to share content on a much larger scale than ever thought possible if you look back even only a couple of years ago. I don’t think anyone could’ve imagined social media marketing being as influential as it is today. News, opinions and product reviews are always being shared and posted on social networks such as YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter and of course Facebook.
By targeting the appropriate audience, people are able to use these sites and others to promote their content, engage consumers and build up their online reputation. Twitter especially helps spread brand awareness on the Internet and within industries being as it is currently one of the fasted growing social networks out there.
All social technologies connect people and businesses as well as reduce the chances for marketplace exploitation. Marketing on the web exposes the good and the bad of most brands and people, sometimes without our knowledge or consent. In order for you to drown out the bad though you need to make sure that your brand shines brighter than the rest and you engage more than your competitor as well as post more interesting content.
In order to be successful in marketing with social media, you have to make sure that your social project doesn’t evolve into some sort of basic marketing campaign. You want to ensure that you reach your goes through collaborative association with customers so that your reach doesn’t die down after only a short period of time.
There’s a catch-22 in social media for those whose job it is to stay active and informed. On one hand, you have to constantly update Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and Foursquare; slowing down on any of them can hurt exposure though the various ranking systems (such as Facebook EdgeRank) associated with them. On the other hand, you have to keep them somewhat diversified to both cater to the specific personalities in each as well as give a valid reason to be followed actively on multiple channels. Why would people follow your Google+ updates if they’re just carbon copies of your Facebook posts, for example.
Last April, Facebook launched a ‘Journalists on Facebook’ page, intended to serve as a resource for growing number of reporters using Facebook for the purpose of finding sources, interaction with people and to publish stories. A couple of months later, Twitter introduced a similar initiative as well. ‘Twitter for Newsrooms’ (#TfN), is a guide for reporters on how to best use the microblogging site for the purpose of reporting. The endeavor elicited a mixed response from journalists and media pundits.
Klout recently unveiled the newest addition to its website that claims to measure “social influence”. Klout’s formula puts most of the weight on a user’s Facebook and Twitter pages. Then it measures that user’s social “Klout” based on a variety of factors such as how many “likes” a user’s posts get or how many retweets they receive. Basically, Klout considers you to have a high Klout score based on raw numbers, not on content.
In case you weren’t 100% completely aware that social media is a grouping of storms that rage with massive levels of activity every moment of every day, here’s an infographic to reiterate it.
Since the days of the Myspace era, and now to the era of social networks like Facebook and Twitter, people have been sharing very valuable information that most companies would pay for. People share the products they enjoy, the ones they don’t, the colors they prefer, the items they buy, and the services that that they enjoy or even detest.
Not every business can sell to the same customer daily, many must wait months or years before they can connect with a returning customer. This is especially common in amongst the Automotive Industry and in the age of a customer service evolution, it is more important now than ever before to maintain a relationship with customers in order for them to become loyal and return to your business.