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    13 Replies Latest reply on Apr 27, 2009 3:22 PM by Spamfork

    Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?

    davidglenn33 Wayfarer
      Hello all!

      I posted a question last year asking the question if Small Business understand Social Networking. The post had several very good responses and provided a great deal of insight for many.

      After a full year of leading a very successful social networking/media company, I'd like to pose a new question:

      Social Media Marketing?
      Does Small Business understand what it is? The value it can bring? How much more effective and cost effecient it is vs. traditional "marketing"?

      Some enterprise clients are understanding the power of Social Media Marketing, but I am not certain if small business people understand it, know what to use, where to get solutions and how to measure it?

      To help drive the discussion, ideas such as:
      - leveraging FaceBook to drive "the right" types of customers to your site
      - leveraging content from your site and pushing it to other social media properties, your base of customers & your prospects to continously engage them and drive up sales
      - incorporating tools such as iphone applications
      - most importantly, do Small Business have a strong social media concept, approach and research to really minimize the rish and help to ensure your success in Social Media?

       

      I'd very much appreciate the community's input on this.

      My very best regards -

      David Glenn
      http://www.linkedin.com/in/davidglenn33
        • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
          ThemedSEO Wayfarer

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          linkedin
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          meetingwave.com
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          visiblepath.com
          fastpitchnetworking.com
          littleengine.com
          wellcomemat.com --- realestate
          mybigz.com
          arenasia.com
          viadeo.com
          socialcast.com
          octopuscity.com
          naymz.com
          spoke.com
          mails.ru
          upperz.com
          netparty.com--hotel
          networkingforprofessionals.com--paid
          yorz.com--
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          ecademy.com---
          wecando.biz---
          bni.com--paid

           

          You can visit our link http://www.themedseoservices.com/
          • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
            davidglenn33 Wayfarer
            Thanks for the response.

            Just to add more food for thought, many companies are leverging rather simple social media tools such as Twitter to promote product offers (e.g. Dell having an offer for the latest laptop), create facebook applications that cater to and are marketed at your target audience to drive awareness of the company and bring people to you web site, iPhone applications that enable a simple, but highly functional, application that drives engagement for people in an "off-line" or "mobile" way. Other companies are leveraging social media marketing technologies to embed video/photo/stories/etc... in other social media properties such as MySpace, Facebook, Bebo and others to drive greater awareness. Lastly, many companies are leveraging services such as SMS (texting) to market to existing customers and prospective customers with specific offers which drives sales, but can also be forwarded to friends and family which is a fantastic way to enable Word Of Mouth (WOM) marketing.

            Now...the tough ellement is the measuring of the ROI for these efforts. But, many companies are willing to at least start with Social Media Marketing, see what sales happen and then measure success after a period of time.

            There are many many more ideas for Social Media Marketing. The key to this is working with many different ingredients to make up the best social media marketing play that works best for YOUR company.

            But, I have to say the key all social media and social media marketing is to really understand who your customer/audience is, where they live online, what motivates them, what will bring them to your site and what will bring them back again. With out knowing this, the level of risk can go up dramatically. The good news is there are many tools available to the business to fully understand the audience.

            I'd love to hear more ideas and success stories from other small business owners.

            David
              • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                Evan.Jones Wayfarer
                If done right, social media marketing (ex: getting your website to the first page of Digg, or tweeting helpful insights) can be an asset for your company.

                Unfortunately many businesses look at Twitter and see a great opportunity to spread their brand name instead of establishing real human relationships.
                (see #5 here http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/02/10/10-harsh-truths-about-corporate-websites/)

                I don't use social marketing (yet) but when I do, its going to be like Zappos.com does. Real, honest posts with an actual person behind them. Think of it as bottom up grassroots branding and less like spraying your brand out of a firehouse :)

                Zappos & Twitter article: http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/zappos_twitter.php

                -Evan
                  • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                    davidglenn33 Wayfarer
                    Here's the questions again. The previous post did not come out right.

                    What are the best social media tactics to use for my business?

                    Am I currently doing the right things based on my business objectives?

                    Where are the conversations happening?

                    Are the conversations good or bad?

                    What is the impact on sales, customer support, web traffic?

                    What impact will social media marketing have on my current marketing budget?

                    Is social media marketing more or lesseffectiveness vs traditional
                    marketing?

                    What resources (human, capital and tools) do I need to drive success?

                    How muchtime do I need to devote to my social media marketing before I start to see success?

                    Can I scale my efforts?

                    What are the impacts (positive or negative)on other areas of the
                    business?

                    Does it improve cusotmer support, should I change support
                    habits, should I change the way I communicate with my customers, do I
                    need a PR team, etc...?
                • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                  vistasad Adventurer
                  Someone in this thread has provided around 25 social networking sites. We have a list of almost 50. The problem with our list is that it does not contain 'typical' profiles of visitors.
                  That would be useful for marketeers.

                   

                  http://www.vistasads.com
                    • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                      davidglenn33 Wayfarer
                      Is the question of ROI on Social Media Marketing an importat one to answer?

                      I think many senior level marketing people would want to know the answers to the following quesitons:

                      What
                      are the best social media tactics to use for my business?

                      &bullAm
                      I currently doing the right things based on my business objectives?

                      &bullWhere
                      are the conversations happening?

                      &bullAre
                      the conversations good or bad?

                      &bullWhat is the impact
                      on sales, customer support, web traffic?

                      &bullWhat impact
                      will social media marketing have on my current marketing budget?

                      •Is social media marketing more or lesseffectiveness
                      vs traditional
                      marketing?

                      •Whatresources (human, capital and tools)
                      do I need to drive success?

                      •How muchtime
                      do I need to devote to my social media marketing before I start to see success?

                      &bullCan I scale my efforts?
                      •What are the impacts (positive or negative)on other areas of the business? Does it improve cusotmer support, should I change support habits, should I change the way I communicate with my customers, do I need a PR team, etc...?


                      Are there any other questions the marketeer wants to know?

                      Thanks all!
                    • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                      iyazam Adventurer
                      Social media marketing is all about two things:

                      1) It allows you to reach more people

                      2) It allows you to market your information to those people.

                      Recently I launched an E-Book explaining how to do Social Media Marketing:

                      The Super Website Marketing Handbook!
                      http://www.iyazam.com/our-book.html
                      • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                        vnavguys Tracker
                        Yes it works and it works well. In fact Googles new algorhytm has 10 new social media pieces to it. I rely on it, in fact I created a job just for marketing our sites, projects, posts, products etc,.

                        Ken
                        • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                          vjoyhme56 Newbie
                          I am new to this type of networking and so far it has not helped my business. I am not sure how to target my audience or how to get them to view my blog. I have over a thousand contacts on linkedin but it has not helped my business. I have connected several people looking for job oportunities or reconnecting with old friends. If you can tll me how it is supposed to work I will regroup and try again. I am working on a setting up facebook, twitter, and myspace. I have a website for my business https:www.privatequarters.net/5228 but I need to know how to utilizing the tool of social media mktg.
                            • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                              davidglenn33 Wayfarer
                              Hi vjoyhme56,

                              Are the people on linked-in your customers? If not, I'd go to the base of customers you have and begin there. Social Media marketing is about giving your customers and prospects a voice and this in turns generates more customers. I recently read an article posted on the CMO Council site called "
                              turing customer pain inot competitive gain". This a great article and
                              could give you much food for thought.
                              In this article, they talk to the "customer 2.0" as being very sensitive and trusting of recommenations from consumers as being the number one source of trust when making a purchasing decision.

                              About your business, I looked at your site and you can really build on this.

                              The value social media marketing provides you is in leveraging what your
                              customers tell your prospects about your product and service. This is
                              the root of your success. You can start small with this and get a few
                              customers talking about you on your site.

                              I'd think about encouraging your customers to get a conversation going as to what gives them the most comfort and enjoyment from your products or even similar products. The technology your want for this is a forum, or you may even be able to use your blog account. You'll have to check into how your blog is set-up and how it can be used. Here's the idea....you want the customers to tell stories, give thier opinions, give ideas and suggestions on how to use your products, etc.... You want to build the conversation and get customers to be your best advocates.

                              You'll have to work on this, but it can be easily accomplished by simply email and calling your customers and asking them for a bit of help. You can even offer them a steep discount on thier next purchase as an encentive.

                              Next, I'd be sure to contribute to the dicussions on the forums as the subject matter expert. Adding your own input and ideas. You'll need to provide a steady diet of thoughts, sugestions, stories and recommendations to keep the conversation going. This will take some work at first, but after a period of time, it will take on a life of its own.

                              As far as the other ellements go...

                              Your blog is only one component of your social media play. Is the blog linked to your website? Are you posting on the blog on a regular basis? Do you know who many people are reading it? Are you incouraging them to comment back? Do you have a forum where customer and prosepects can engage? I'd understand how you are using your blog first and the results you are seeing now.

                              The other elements are used to provide additional support. Social Media is like a cake, you'll have to try a few different ingredients to get the right taste. This is a trial and error process - just like traditional marketing.

                              The facebook page is a good idea and so is twitter. These are different ingredients that help support the overall play.

                              But, I'd also think about where your inteneded audience lives on line, where do they go, what are their habits, what are their interests, etc.... I can help you on the research side of this as well. I have great contacts with companies who do social media research.

                              Lastely, I'd try and get your customers and prospect to do a very simple registration when they become a member of your "comfort community" (catchy hu?). This is where you capture simple information like name, email and mobile number if you can. You'll need this data to be able to market to them as well.

                              There are social media marketing technologies as well. Once you have a base of customers built, there are a few great tools out there that can really help spread the word and drive engagement and bring people back to you site.

                              Sorry for the long post, but I hope this was helpful.

                              Any other thoughts from othere Bank Of American participants is much appreciated.

                              My very best regards,

                              David
                                • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                                  vjoyhme56 Newbie
                                  David,
                                  Thank you very much!
                                  The people on linkedin are not my customers but I am working on that by providing help where I can and asking them to visit my website.
                                  I will work on getting customer reviews and posting on the site, that is an excellent idea! I am considering adding information about the value of a good nights sleep since I have been doing some research in that area. I like the catch phrase of comfort community, I will build on it!

                                  Be Blessed!
                                  Vickie
                                    • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                                      davidglenn33 Wayfarer
                                      Great.

                                      Also, I'd consider posting an offer of some sort (10% XYZ or Buy 2 for 1, etc...) on your main page as well.

                                      Remember to keep the customer in mind at all times. The more you make your site about "comfort community" and about them, the more they will come back and invite others.

                                      Simple rule for you to remember:
                                      1 - What will bring the customer to my site
                                      2 - What will bring them back
                                      3 - What will encourage them to invite others to come to it too

                                      You'll be amazed what you can learn about what motivates them if you can get the conversation rolling on your site. And it's a blast too....
                                • Re: Social Media Marketing?  Does it work?
                                  Spamfork Wayfarer
                                  I'd say social media marketing can work and does work for some..... One trick is to understand that social marketing is fundamentally different that what many people are used to. For example don't compare social media click through rates to AdWords or normal banner click through rates. Test - test - test & take advantage of some of the incredible ad targeting options through sites like FaceBook.

                                  P.S. New Small business customers can try FaceBook Ads for free. Just head over to Manta.com to register for free....
                                  http://www.manta.com/member/register/