The rapid growth of the social media in the recent past made it an indispensable tool in the hands of marketing managers around the world. Social media improves the opportunities to connect with your customers and facilitates two way communication between you and your customers. Social media strategy when properly implemented can boost both your internal and external brand.
Women rule social media. There have been numerous studies that show that sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are dominated by women. 75% of women according to Pew Research Center use social networking sites compared to 63% of men. This is important to understand.
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.
If the goal is to get attention or exposure on Pinterest, there’s one thing to consider with your pictures: go vertical.
Preparing for 2012
Preparing for a new year is never easy no matter what line of work you’re in. In social media, it’s damn near impossible. Regardless of how much analysis of the previous year you complete or how strategies you put in place to start the year, things change… rapidly.
What do people think social media professionals do for a living? They are not wizards like Gandalf. They can’t raise their staff and command visitors to become permanent residents of a site. [Read more...]
I learned how to drive 36 million pageviews to web properties through social media platforms by employing three levels of adoption. The Social Trinity is the foundation of a social media policy that allows you to use communication tools on digital networks for the purpose of building your own community. Once you gain an understanding of the true value of each contact feature on a digital network, you can adapt the use of social platforms, formulate your social media strategy, and communicate with your target communities and to make them part of your own community.
The Social Trinity
- Identify all points of exposure for your digital assets.
- Identify all points of private contact.
- Study popular sections and past successful campaigns launched on the digital network.
For instance on Twitter, a point of exposure can be an @reply, hashtag, comment on a wall, link to external website over which you have control. Points have exposure leave your footprint on an action performed on a social network. When you @reply a person your conversation exchange is viewed by everybody who follows you and that person and people who find your conversation through a search engine query. Naturally, the more you @reply people the more you are exposed to their followings. Similarly, on Digg when you vote for content, you leave a link pointing back to your profile; thus the the more you Digg the more exposure you receive to your digital asset on Digg – your profile.
Points of private contact will allow you to work out collaborative arrangements with other users of the platform. Peripherally, you should also learn how the culture on the digital network shapes the way private means of contact are used. I know of many people with large followings that typically ignore direct messages; an alternative way of contact would be to follow the link in a Twitter user’s profile to load up a person’s blog or other website that may have an email or other point of contact to which a person may pay more attention. Some people more frequently use the Facebook private messaging system.
Some platforms have popular sections such as the Digg front page and Twitter trending topics. You could study these popular submissions and adapt your submissions to cater to the community members’ interests. When popular entries are hard to find, google terms such as ‘twitter case study’ or ‘[social network]‘ + ‘case study’ or ‘[popular tactic]‘ like ‘contests, sweepstakes, viral campaigns.’ Once you learn of popular and successful campaigns you can try a similar campaign adapted to cater to your target community; you use your points of exposure and points of private contact to communicate with other people on the platform required to execute your campaign.
Social media has officially become a business. Many in the industry would argue that it’s been a business for years, but until recently it has been very hush-hush and hidden in the shadows. If you were to count the number of people claiming to be social media gurus, experts, marketers, or strategists a year ago, it would have probably been in the hundreds.
Today, it’s in the tens of thousands. Scanning Twitter and Facebook alone is evidence of this, and they are only a small part of a true strategy.
As huge corporations, home-office startups, and everyone in between rushes to get into social media, the first question that they must ask themselves is, “Do I do it myself, hire someone to do it at the office, or outsource it to a social media marketing firm?”
It’s a good, simple question. The answer is far from simple.