Micro is the new small. Progress, one micro step at a time.

A couple of weeks ago I attended Jeff Pulver's #140 Conference in Detroit. I have to say that it was one of the more inspired gatherings of people that I've been to in some time. The more conferences I attend the more I find that any conference with the words "social media" in the title are total crap. Same people, same thinking, no progress. I'm trying to diversify and find the other people who are doing the work.

The #140 Conference brought together storytellers who talked about how they are affecting change in the city of Detroit and the world. Two of the top presenters had something in common which I find fascinating and in both cases, revolutionary. It's the evolution of micro.

I've written about micromedia before as far back as 2007. The web has made big things small and small things big. New trends are emerging now around micro-payments, micro-fundraising and even micro-real estate. Meet "Lemonade Detroit" and "Loveland".

Lemonade Detroit:

Lemonade Detroit is a documentary film about the people who are in the city of Detroit who are not leaving and who are committed to making things better. Here is the trailer if you are interested:

The coolest part of the project, however comes in the way the filmmakers are trying to fund the film. They're allowing the public to purchase individuals frames of the film. Once purchased, that person will be listed in IMDB as an official "Producer" of the project. So, you get to help a filmmaker and get a cool bonus on the side. Such a cool way of thinking differently about raising money for a project like this.

Screen shot 2010-11-01 at 4.46.21 PM.png

Loveland Inchvesting:

Welcome to the microhood! Along the same lines as Lemonade Detroit, Loveland is trying to improve the city and allow people to invest (or inchvest) over time. Loveland is a small physical parcel of land (see map below) located at 8887 East Vernor Highway and Holcomb streets where people can purchase inches of land. Once purchased, the ownership is mapped to a digital environment where people can chat with their neighbors and form real relationships. People can earn badges, name the city and give it their own personality.
Screen shot 2010-11-01 at 4.51.16 PM.png

Screen shot 2010-11-01 at 4.51.36 PM.png

This way of thinking small can have a big impact. It's different, adds value to the community and to individuals and makes you sit back and think about the possibilities. Just think about micro funding a novel all the way up to a project to bring clean water to Africa. There are amazing possibilities that open up when conencted to mobility and mobile micropayment by SMS/RFID.

What would you do as a side project if you could? How would you change the world?

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags:
, , , ,



If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Search + social media, the evolving landscape

Screen shot 2009-12-10 at 11.31.30 AM.pngYou have undoubtedly heard about Google and Bing announcing partnerships with Twitter/Facebook/et. al. to include real time social media results into their search indexes. However, even if you did hear about it, I think few people have seen what it looks like in Google's environment, so I recorded this short video for the search term "Copenhagen". Have a look. (Bing takes a slightly different, segmented approach.)

Key Takeaways:


  • These results are pulled into the first page of Google, there are substantial reputation issues to consider
  • These updates are not listed like other webpages/fan pages/primary Twitter accounts, they are in a separate area on the page (fairly contained...for now)
  • The searcher will see what is hot at that point in time
  • It seems like this would be very susceptible to fraud and Tweet bombing, would love to get your opinion on that

What does this mean for you and your brand(s)? How are you preparing/sharing and engaging around this? One of the keys to social media gaining the traction it has is its uncanny way of tapping into the power of search and this is taking that to the next level.

Let me know what you think.

[UPDATE 12/11]: It seems that Yahoo has also added in-line Tweets to search results. This model pulls in three recent (not sure the exact algorithm here) Tweets to the bottom of the result page. Screenshot below.

Screen shot 2009-12-11 at 4.06.01 PM.png

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg


Technorati Tags:
, , , ,



If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Want better digital strategy, ban seven dirty words

Picture 12.pngIf you love strategic planning as much as I do then I am sure that one of your biggest pet peeves is when people jump to tactics straight away in a planning meeting. Despite your most desperate attempts to steer things back on course, and define what the overall strategy looks like, you die a little when someone blurts out "Let's set up a YouTube channel and Tweet about it!".

How do you get around this? Here is what I have started doing in my initial planning sessions and it seems to be working well so far. I've banned what I consider the seven dirty words of digital strategy. They are:


  1. Twitter
  2. Facebook
  3. YouTube
  4. MySpace
  5. LinkedIn
  6. Flickr
  7. Ning

Why are they so bad? Because it allows people to jump to a tactic without thinking about brand essence, audience, voice, etc. It also takes attention away from a more integrated digital approach (email, loyalty programs, SEM, etc.). The pure hype behind these seven words has turned mass media and corporate boardrooms on their heads trying to figure out how to best leverage them.

So, the next time you walk into a planning meeting, lay out your list of dirty words and create a penalty for anyone who mentions them. You'll be surprised how quickly your discussions turn to audience, engagement and how fast you come up with more creative, innovative solutions. Once you have that, you can see talk about these platforms if, and when, they are determined to be the right tools to be most effective in reaching your audience.

Oh, there are more dirty words like Friendfeed and Delicious, even more general terms like blog and wiki, but removing those seven from your planning vocabulary will help you reach a new strategic mindset and come up with better solutions for your clients.

What are your seven dirty words? Let me know how this works for you!

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Maximizing ROI: content as commerce

iStock_000009060484XSmall.jpgIn my career working in the digital marketing space, I have worked on hundreds of projects for clients in practically any industry you can think of. In that time, I have had the pleasure of working on a number of e-commerce sites that provided me a fantastic perspective on designing with conversion in mind.

One of my key takeaways in doing business online is that no matter how you execute (basic website, social media engagement, search engine marketing, etc.) and no matter what industry you are in, you MUST treat your content as commerce.

I cannot tell you how many meetings I had been in where people say, "We are not an e-commerce site, how can we measure ROI?". That's a bad point of view to have and this post will hopefully work to change your mind.

So, what do I mean by content as commerce? There are a couple of steps in this process. First, you have to do the little things right from the start. Usability is, as in e-commerce, a key to making sure that users can find what they are looking for quickly.

Second, map out your site and weight content that is a priority, then compare it to your actual traffic. See a difference? Here is a good model that I have used before to help with this mapping. This is from a guest post that I did for Drew McLellan back in 2007.

step1.png Draw a map of your current site. You can use Visio, Word, pen and paper or anything else you have at your disposal. Just treat each page/object/action as a block and show them in their hierarchy.
step2.png Now, create a copy of the map and color code each page so that is aligns with your business goals. For this example we'll say red is a top tier page that generates revenue, orange is a second tier support page, yellow is a third tier information page and blue is non-essential.
step3.png Now, create a copy of the color-coded map and roughly scale each section as it relates to your page view metrics so that pages with more views are larger and less views are smaller. Try to keep them in proportion. This is where people go on your site compared with your business goals. In our example, we need to create tactics that shift more views to the red blocks and less to the blue. (Note: you could also scale based on time spent on each page or other key metric)

Third, we need to assign values to content in order to get some more concrete numbers. For example, you could assign a value of $5/5 points when a consumer downloads a PDF or $25 when they sign up for your email newsletter or $30 when they become a fan on Facebook. The more you roll these numbers up across all of the channels you participate in the better. This is obviously behind the scenes, so you can try it in your own time.

Action NameValue#Total
Download White Paper$15.00750$11,250.00
Became a Fan on Facebook$25.002,500$62,500.00

How do you get those numbers? You can obviously make them up, but this has more impact when the numbers are real and when they have executive buy-in. Another way is to use some old school comparisons like impressions or cost-per-acquisition. Ideally you can get to a place where you start to see the metrics take shape and the more that shape is printed in dollars, the more successful you will be. (You wouldn't spend time and money promoting something useless would you?)

Keys to succeeding with content-driven sites:


  • Create a clear interface for your users
  • Rank content in the order it is valuable to the business, weigh that with the value to the consumer (these should ideally be aligned)
  • Visualize your traffic to see where it is going and shift it to the content you value
  • Adapt over time. You can A/B test content, tease it with advertising or promote it in email to see what works. This makes the rest of your marketing better as well.
  • Assign values for specific actions and track it over time.

What are your thoughts? What would you add to this list?

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Launched: Papa John's Road Trip augmented reality

Launched is a series that highlights practitioners who are using social media in consumer and B2B campaigns. The goal is to cut out the theory and rhetoric and focus on real world examples of social media in action.

This example is for a Papa John's campaign created by Fleishman-Hillard (my employer) and includes physical events, social media hooks and includes a cool augmented reality example. The campaign is in support of Papa John's 25th anniversary and ties into the Road Trip program. This post looks at the augmented reality application and tie to the broader campaign.

Here is a quick video overview of the technology:

[Feed readers please click through to the post to see the video.]

Marketing takeaways:


  • Good use of technology to tie physical customer interactions back to virtual elements and then through to transaction
  • Measurement through unique coupon codes in the augmented reality environment

If you have a suggestion for a future episode of Launched, drop me an email.

For my complete library of my videos for marketers, click here.


Download the Techn//Marketer podcast here!To help you stay on top of what is happening in digital marketing and social media subscribe to the Techno//Marketer podcast on iTunes. Stay informed and get access to new videos first.

podcast-logo1.gif If you use another podcatcher you can grab my podcast RSS feed here.


RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Tourism and social media

Earlier in the week I presented on the impact of social media in the tourism industry at the Idaho Conference on Recreation and Tourism in Sun Valley, Idaho. A fantastic crowd and place to visit. Here is the deck.

For more information on booking me to speak at your event, click here.

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Ball bearings, social media and you

iStock_000004515838XSmall.jpgAbout three years ago I spoke at an event in a town to the south of Cleveland. The audience was a more traditional marketing audience and they were very receptive to what I had to say...except for one guy at the side of the room. If you give presentations, you know this guy. He nodded a little, but shot an occasional contrarian scowl.

If there is room to become a social media leader in the ball bearing industry, there is room to become a leader in your industry.

After I was done I saw him hanging out toward the back of the room and as I wrapped up my obligatory mingling, I approached him. After introducing myself I asked if he had any questions that he wanted to address with me.

He started, "Matt, I know what you're saying, but this doesn't work for every company. People don't care about some of these products."

I had to wonder what the heck this guy did to have such a low image of his company. I probed a little further, "I think it does apply to every company to an extent and you need to be listening to know when the timing is right. What is your industry?"

Sheepishly the guy said, "We make ball bearings."

I do love a challenge. I mentioned that his company could take a leadership position with customers and in search engines by adopting social platforms now versus waiting to play catch up. He agreed to watch, but I am doubtful that he actually took my advice.

Tonight, I took a quick stroll through the social web. Here is what I found surrounding the ball bearing industry.

How bearings are made:

Bearing service center tour:

Advances in ball bearings using ceramic:

Photos of ball bearings on Flickr:

  

Wikipedia has a good overview of the industry.

Chinese ball bearing company uses a blog to post information about their products

Other companies syndicate their news via RSS to be listed among related blogs.

Bearing manufacturers have Facebook groups as well. On Facebook there are poeple who love ball bearings and people who hate bad ball bearings.

Ball bearing companies are on Twitter too as are fans of ball bearings and the media that covers the space and professional groups as well. There is actually a lot of conversation on Twitter about bearings.

So, what the heck does this mean for you? Ask yourself, who owns my space in the social sphere online? Do a search inside the top social networks. Who is already forming relationships with my customers/potential customers/influencers? What is the best entry point for my company? How can I get involved NOW in order to not lose more ground?

If there is room to become a social media leader in the ball bearing industry, there is room to become a leader in your industry.

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

When everything becomes social, what is "social media"?

iStock_000005140921XSmall.jpgWhat do you think of when I say the term "social media"? Do visions of Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, YouTube channels, blogs and wikis dance through your head? If you do, I think you're selling yourself short. VERY short.

Social media is a fad. All media will be social.

For the past year, I have included a slide in my presentation decks that says "Social media is a fad. All media will be social". We're already seeing instances of this in mainstream media. Just look at the Facebook/CNN partnership for the inauguration. It nearly crippled business networks around the world as people chatted with their Facebook friends while watching broadcast TV online.

This is an experience that has been taking place through divergent platforms for more than a decade (IM + TV), but is now becoming integrated into a single user experience. Just open Twitter during prime time TV and see what dominates the conversation. It's people talking together around a common topic enabled by whatever show is on.

Current showed us another example of the integration of TV with social technology as it flowed in real-time messages from Twitter during broadcast. This is a clunky solution for now until cable platforms integrate these services into the broadcast or they focus more on online delivery of content.

Picture 2.png

In-person events are even taking advantage of social technology to make the event even more engaging. Speakers (including myself) take questions on Twitter and engage people beyond the four walls of the room. Live streaming of video allows a global audience to participate in a local event.

Social technology is allowing radio broadcasts to expand their conversations as people engage online while listening or even while not listening. Smart stations are engaging with their audiences through multiple platforms. Each morning I listen to the BBC's Radio 1 on my drive to work. The Chris Moyles Show uses multiple platforms including Twitter, Facebook, email and SMS to engage the audience in real time. The hosts are savvy and the technology is simple and fast.

Mobile device experiences will become increasingly more social. You're seeing the start of this now with applications like Loopt and FourSquare, but you will see social interactions around news content via iPhone apps or any other platform that brings people together.

Does news become more relevant when discussed with my peer group? Absolutely. Once of the main problems with most social content is that the group of people commenting/creating are not relevant to my interests (see YouTube comments for example). If I can select who I have conversations with on certain topics, it's very valuable to me. I'm not saying we should censor people, but the technology allows for added relevance that we should be taking advantage of.

Even outdoor ads have started to become vaguely social. Mini Cooper took the lead on this a few years ago by using RFID technology to display custom messages to their customers as they drove by.

C92C7A5A-EC0D-410A-813E-2B8AA99DB1D9.jpg

So, instead of taking a narrow, short-term view of "social media", we need to step back, look at all media and see what the social technology potential is and look at how to take advantage of that to deliver more relevant experiences.

How does this notion that all media will become social change your view of media? Is TV/radio dying? What about magazines? Do these have to be digital to be social?

Let's hear what you have to say!

Note: If you're interested in having me speak to your group or organization, check out my speaking page to get in touch with me.

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpg

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Launched: Skittles.com

skittles.pngLaunched is a series that I am renewing to highlight practitioners who are using social media in consumer and B2B campaigns. The goal here is to cut out the theory and rhetoric and focus on real world examples of social media in action.

** Let's cut the BS on this one. I've seen a lot of people pontificate on if this launch is good or bad. Honestly, that is up to Skittles and their agency who are the keepers of the campaign objectives and analytics.

Now, on with the post. There has been a lot of buzz around the new launch of the Skittles.com website. Long story short, Skittles launched a site that uses third-party social media outlets as the base for their content. That means load up the site, you see a small Skittles widget on top of either Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr or Wikipedia. Take a look at the video to see what I mean.


[Feed readers click through to the post to see the video.]

It has certainly created a lot of initial buzz, but that seems to be quickly tailing off.

Twitter Buzz:
Picture 24.png

Blog Buzz:
Picture 25.png

Picture 26.pngWhat I have not seen, and this may be more telling about their overall approach, is engagement from the brand. No outreach, commentary or other follow up. That is a huge loss for the brand in extending the conversation to an even broader audience.

As I mentioned in the video, the age verification "restrics access" to the content (even though it is wide open if you go directly) if you are under 13. Via Quantcast (not 100% accurate, but picks up trends) around 16-26% of their total visitors are under 13. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

Pros:


  • Very open and transparent
  • Bold move for a consumer brand (I wonder what legal said)
  • Provides easy access for customers to engage on their own platforms
  • Created buzz online (was it all echo chamber rhetoric?)

Cons:


  • Not what you would expect at Skittles.com (games, Flash video, etc.)
  • There are some usability challenges that detract from the concept
  • It has been done before (although not at the brand level)
  • Social media is susceptible to attack/fraud/defamation and, while transparent, could be of concern for a lot of companies

Key Takeaways:


  • We need to know the goals of the campaign to judge this fairly
  • Buzz has definitely picked up, I wonder if they'll be as open with their sales trend data to show results
  • Good embrace of social media (especially with a younger audience)
  • The total lack of any control is a little scary, why not pull in all of this content into a branded site? Does this form factor add or detract?
  • You need a VERY open legal team to let something like this through, with Skittles they are young, open and it may not concern them at all

What say you? Take the following poll and let me know. Is this smart, dumb or are you waiting to see?

For my complete library of my videos for marketers, click here.


Download the Techn//Marketer podcast here!To help you stay on top of what is happening in digital marketing and social media subscribe to the Techno//Marketer podcast on iTunes. Stay informed and get access to new videos first.

podcast-logo1.gif If you use another podcatcher you can grab my podcast RSS feed here.


RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

The two hour minumum

iStock_000002783708XSmall.jpgI am sure that if you are in an agency, on the client side or an individual in the social media space, the following question has popped up.

How much time do I need to spend in social media each day?

I hear this being asked in meetings, presentations and see it pop up across the web. To be truthful, there is no set rule here. However, I have come up with the guideline that I'll talk about in this post for engaging clients in new work, managing existing campaigns, talking to up-and-coming bloggers, etc.

It's the two hour minimum per day.

Why two hours?

The two hour minimum comes from my experience here on the blog as well as in the agency environment. I've given this a lot of thought, but at the end of the day, I've tried different formulas to arrive here.

To give you an example, I spend around 5 hours a day personally on this blog and in my networks. This is on top of my workload and personal commitments. I've found that if I spend around two hours I can stay above water. As soon as I dip below that, my community suffers. That's what I am trying to avoid. I've backed this up through client work where that number seems to fit with our internal teams as well as client-side teams.

Two hours is the absolute minimum amount of time that a company/individual needs to spend EVERY DAY in this space.

What do you do with two hours?

Oh, trust me. Once you start engaging, two hours goes by like a speeding bullet. The following items are a good foundation on how to spend the time each day.
    Listen - Check your feed reader, check your Google alerts, monitor Tweetdeck, do a Twitter search (unless you've added them into your reader), check Technorati (you never know), look at your commenting service (co.Comment/Backtype/etc.) to see who has replied to you. This isn't a one-time thing, set a schedule through the day and check back for 5 minutes.

    Engage - Monitor those conversations through the day and reply as close to realtime as you can. Overnight delays are common and (I think) accepted in most cases. During the workday, however, you can make more impact by replying within 2-4 hours. If you have a blog, write a post or at least brainstorm new ideas based on what you're seeing.

    Discover - Another part of the day should spawn from the listening and engagement phases. You should constantly look for new blogs, people on Twitter to follow, new relevant posts to comment on, etc.

This sounds like a lot to do in two hours, eh? It is. Remember I said this is a minimum starting point for entry into the space. The commitment will grow over time.

*Variables: Note that the complexity of your business/industry will weigh on this minimum requirement. If you have 5-10 brands, you may need to spend an hour each. This is not set in stone, just a guideline to get you thinking and talking.

What next?

Scale is important to be aware of in social media. The more success you have, the more time it will take to grow to new successes. The more you monitor, the more conversations, the more people you meet, the more time you spend.

Be aware of this and scale your two hours up to 3, 4, 5 to a full time person to a team of people. Richard Binhammer at Dell (@richardatdell) could probably teach a class on this.

Advancing from two hours

As you grow, it's crucial to maintain your level of engagement. This is a financial commitment for your client/company and needs to have accountability.

Some situations that can tell you when to scale:


  • When your response time is slipping due to volume
  • When your discovery portion of the time you're spending is limited due to listening and engaging
  • When your customers ask you to ramp up

These are good problems to have by the way. It means your community is starting to embrace you and your team. The goal is to grow steadily over time for maximum results. Quick wins are few and far between. It takes real effort and dedication.

How much time do you spend each day? Please weigh in on the poll below.

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Executing a listening plan

iStock_000000564491XSmall.jpgLast week I wrote a post on the lack of listening that is taking place among top marketing executives. In my opinion, most of the problem with listening stems a lack of the right tools and a lack of an action plan for what to do with the information.

Two of my top key takeaways from that post got me thinking.


  1. You have to have humans involved
  2. You have to have an escalation plan

I'm a visual person, so I wanted to come up with a construct that could frame this challenge in the enterprise for further discussion. Here is what I cam up with, let me know what you think:

layersoflistening.png
[Click to enlarge image.]

The data layer

The data layer has been getting a lot of attention lately. Many companies are very active in this space and provide great solutions. However, data without human filtering is useless. The key to the data layer is that you're listening to the spaces that matter and that it spans media types.

Data alone without human filtering is useless.

Aggregating news, TV, radio, blogs, micromedia, message boards, etc into a single location is becoming a necessity. People are doing this now, but the information is rarely synchronized and shared in a coordinated manner. Good filtering in the data layer can help to eliminate work in the human layer, but it's a fine line to make sure that emerging trends aren't excluded. The solutions that exist in this space at the current time are not adequate for major global brands.

The human layer

This, in my mind, is the key to success. No matter how good the data layer, you still need a human looking at it who knows the business, challenges and processes. You need to spot trends across media, uncover new innovations, and listen to what is happening with internal department responsibilities in mind.

The humans in this layer should span media formats, look for trends and spot emerging issues to flag for appropriate follow up. Within a company, these flags will need to be communicated to the right department at the right level. That's where the action level takes over.

The action layer

Listening without action is a waste of money and is one of the reasons I think more companies are not engaging. Companies are huge, siloed beasts that eat disorganization for lunch. Rolling out a listening plan is a challenge, but not one that can't be overcome.

The humans who review data need to know the structure of the organization and the people involved. In other words, these people need to be 100% integrated in the company's culture/process. They need to know the legalities of the business, HR issues, communications opportunities, brand/product feedback, how employees are engaging and representing the company and what is being said about the companies media properties.

In a company that is fully engaged in social media, this structure is VERY flat and responsive to even the smallest issues/opportunities.

Within each layer there needs to be an escalation plan. I didn't show that in this diagram, because each department will be different. You need to think about how the business operates and look at the possible issues that could arise. For each possible issue, determine who needs to know what and how fast they need to know it.

Here is an example for a consumer product company:


  1. Issue is detected. What is the issue?
  2. It's a product safety problem. How serious is it?
  3. Lives could potentially be threatened.
  4. Alert all heads of departments by SMS/email as well as key contacts within each department
  5. Schedule call as soon as possible

A cross-functional team needs to sit across all related departments to bind this process together and ensure success. They determine alerting protocol and responses. In a company that is fully engaged in social media, this structure is VERY flat and responsive to even the smallest issues/opportunities.

Listening as step one

If you remember my post from late September "Should your company blog?" (it applies to your company/CEO/VP/or yourself), the first step in the process is listening. The more companies that take this first step and listen are on their way to a solid foundation in customer engagement. You can't start truly engaging with a strategic insight until you listen. What's stopping you?

blog decision tree.png

How would you improve this? What am I missing? I'd love to have your feedback.

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Microsoft takes on QR codes

Picture 7.pngA couple of weeks ago I posted an update and video demo showing how QR (quick response) codes work. Today, I was pointed to a separate Microsoft version of the technology. It's called Microsoft Tag. The way it works is identical to the QR code system (download an app, take a photo, decode the photo through a gateway and deliver you the content).

Where QR codes came out of technology and manufacturing, this new system is coming into the world with a consumer-friendly push. The site is easy to use, shows the value of the service in terms that consumers can understand and provides a direct link to have the software download page sent to your device. The iPhone app has worked well in my trials.

Picture 6.png

The same Microsoft system enables marketers to create the codes through a central interface, track engagement through usage and render code images in a very easy manner. The application asks for your location (not sure if this is shared back to the marketer or Microsoft).

Here is a video demo of the Tag technology.

[Feed readers please click through to the post.]

Challenges

However, with the excitement around this system the same challenges exist for Microsoft as for other providers. There is a lack of education about this in the public and software readers are scarce.

Real world example

97200020-E04D-4DE7-9C8D-5E5D7581BDE8.jpgJust as an example of the kind of linkage you can get with this technology, I saw a QR code in the wild the other day when I was in a movie theatre. The cardboard standup for the movie "Notorious" had two of these codes on it. The code linked the user to the movie's trailer on YouTube and the revelation that people had when I showed them how I just linked the physical marketing to the online was amazing.

Could a move by Google embed this into the mainstream? What if all US carriers started installing this software standard? What would you use it for in an existing campaign? How are you engaging people offline to bring them online?

This isn't a short-term answer, but it does get you thinking.


Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

You suck at listening!

iStock_000002581157XSmall.jpgWell, not you personally (I hope). A recent CMO Council study, however showed that only 16% of 400 executives they surveyed have an online listening plan in place. 56% have no plan to track of drive word-of-mouth and only 30% thought they had the ability to resolve complaints quickly. Why such a low percentage? What is stopping these CMOs from implementing a plan?

Personally, I think that creating a listening plan is pretty easy. It's what you do with the information that you are collecting that is the hard part. This is where these marketing executives are falling down.

What you do with that information once you have it? How do you get all of the other departments to commit to the initiative? How do you execute on it without losing productivity? It really comes down to creating a customer service culture, where the customer is the priority. This is not how a lot of companies operate, however.

From my post earlier in January, here are three keys to listening online:

  1. Find your customer and spend your time there. While Twitter is great for some brands, you will find that message boards, Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Orkut, etc. may hold the majority of your customers. If you're listening in the wrong place you're not doing any good.

  2. Use technology to speed the process. Instead of watching Twitter for 12 hours a day, subscribe to the RSS feed for your keywords on Twitter Search. Do the same with keywords on Google and your Technorati page. Check this a couple of times a day. On top of that, you can overlay that information on top of the monitoring tools.

    Big tip, I've seen monitoring companies sell their services as the end-all of this area and they are not. This requires a human being who knows the industry and company to make it worth while.

  3. Create your active listening plan. Listening is a good first step, but a lifetime of listening without action is not going to move the needles that you need to move for your business. Creating an plan for what to do with the information you learn is key.

    I wrote this post in February of 2007 on active listening and it still holds true today. This quote sums it up:

    "Agile marketing companies are leveraging new technology to create real, one-to-many and many-to-many conversations. They are using the outcome from that interaction to make meaningful, remarkable, relationship-enhancing changes that impact their clients in a positive manner. Are you listening?"

Key Takeaways

  • You have to have humans involved. This is often overlooked with all of the technology that we have out there, but humans can spot trends, flag issues that matter and ignore ones that don't. Whatever automation you employ, make sure you have a smart person reviewing it.
  • Have an escalation plan. Don't just listen for listening's sake. You need to know what to do when you hear something. Set action alerts when a certain criteria is met, set a clear path for issues to be escalated through and assign a person to follow up and make sure they're resolved.
  • Use the community to improve your ideas. Just like the examples I mentioned in this post listening can give you insights into your customers that would otherwise cost you millions in testing and research. Listen hard and act on what you hear.

At the end of the day, listening is easy. Setting up the systems and processes that take what you hear and turn it into a business resource is the hard part. What steps would you take if you were in their shoes?

2/3/09 - IMPORTANT UPDATE: I think that it's important to note that 75% of journalists get story ideas from blogs. How can you not be monitoring the space that has this much influence over the editors who cover you? This single reason alone should be enough to get people off of their butts and starting to plan their strategy.

Also, check out Jon Burg's great follow up post "10 reasons CEOs need social insights and 6 steps to setting this up".

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Killing Google

google-.jpgToday, I am featured on Louis Gray's fantastic blog with a post that I've been working on called "The time is right to kill Google (if they don’t kill themselves first)". The post comes out of a couple of experiences I have had with the company at a time when user loyalty and customer service should be paramount. Click here to read the post, and if you don't subscribe to Louis' blog I suggest you do!

[Update:] Some great comments on Louis' blog as well as on the FriendFeed thread. Check em out.

If you're visiting here from Louis' blog, welcome to Techno//Marketer. I hope you stick around!

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Marketing imperatives for 2009 (free eBook)

AEB6B71C-CCA7-4F88-BD8A-42352B2099D8.jpgMy good friend and blogging role model Valeria Maltoni has done it again. Valeria has created a free eBook written by 12 marketers (myself included) about our execution imperatives for 2009. There are some new voices and fresh thinking inside and is absolutely worth a read.

Here are some quotes from the book and links my fellow co-authors:


  • "Basic metrics you can initially use to match up before, during and after sales deltas are frequency, reach, and yield"
    - Olivier Blanchard, The Brand Builder, @thebrandbuilder
  • "There are three imperatives for execution programs in 2009 - start with measurement, create content for the open Web and for mobility"
    - Matt Dickman, Techno//Marketer, @MattDickman
  • "The foundation and core of what social media is, consists of the five C's. Conversation, community, commenting, collaboration and contribution"
    - Mike Fruchter, My Thoughts on Social Media, @Fruchter
  • "With social media as a platform for participation, people can behave the way they were hardwired to behave in the first place - humanly, tribally"
    - Fancois Gossieaux, Emergence Marketing, @fgossieaux
  • "Social media enhances marketing efforts as an additional indirect communication channel"
    - Beth Harte, The Harte of Marketing, @BethHarte
  • "Companies with greater social intelligence have stronger bonds with employees and customers, and that translates into revenue"
    - Lois Kelly, Beeline Labs, @LoisKelly
  • "Change ensures our own livelihoods - new opportunities and trends to capitalize upon, unique products and profit centers that merit development, robust innovation to leverage"
    - Christina Kerley, CK Epiphany, @ckepiphany
  • "Social media interaction allows us to have… well, interaction with our customers. It lets us see them as people instead of statistics and it lets us hear their voices"
    - Jennifer Laycock, Search Engine Guide, @JenniferLaycock
  • "Goals absolutely must be built on business objectives"
    - Amber Naslund, Altitude Branding, @AmberCadabra
  • "A proper social media education is more than just learning new tools. The most important lesson we can impart is the necessity to think 'humans'"
    - Connie Reece, Every Dot Connects, @ConnieReece
  • "Social media isn't causing problems, but it is revealing them. And the problems aren't new; they've been around for a while"
    - Mike Wagner, Own Your Brand!, @bigwags
  • "The secret of success in social media is a product or a service that people actually like and use"
    - Alan Wolk, The Toad Stool, @awolk

Take a read and let me know your thoughts. What are your execution imperatives for 2009?

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Three keys to better listening

iStock_000000564491XSmall.jpgAre you listening, I mean really listening? Over the past month and a half, I have been running a poll in the sidebar on this blog asking people "How do you listen in social media?". I want to share the results of this poll with you as well as some observations that I have regarding the responses.

First off, 85 total unique visitors took the poll (see final results below). While that's not a huge number it is pretty solid. Far and away Twitter was the top listening tool (75%) followed by Google alerts (48%). After that, Google search and monitoring tools came in with 16%. The "other" category was next followed up by Technorati at around 6%.

Picture 14.png

Key takeaways from the reader poll:

  • Twitter is a great tool, but you have to make sure your audience is there. If you're listening in the wrong place, you're missing the point.
  • Google alerts are also great to have and easy to set up. However, they often miss content that needs to be picked up in other ways.
  • Google search is also very easy, but has the same problems as Google alerts (duh). It's also a little too overwhelming unless you do an advanced search and limit the timeframe. (Don't forget you can subscribe to a search's RSS feed to keep updates manageable.)
  • Monitoring tools are very helpful at making sure you see the whole conversation. They do, however, suffer from the same faults as Google alerts. There is just too much data to manage effectively. It takes a human to process it.
  • Technorati, though low on the list, does still serve a valuable roll and can catch blog mentions before other means.

Three keys to better listening:

In order to do this right, follow these keys to better listening online:
  1. Find your customer and spend your time there. While Twitter is great for some brands, you will find that message boards, Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Orkut, etc. may hold the majority of your customers. If you're listening in the wrong place you're not doing any good.

  2. Use technology to speed the process. Instead of watching Twitter for 12 hours a day, subscribe to the RSS feed for your keywords on Twitter Search. Do the same with keywords on Google and your Technorati page. Check this a couple of times a day. On top of that, you can overlay that information on top of the monitoring tools.

    Big tip, I've seen monitoring companies sell their services as the end-all of this area and they are not. This requires a human being who knows the industry and company to make it worth while.

  3. Create your active listening plan. Listening is a good first step, but a lifetime of listening without action is not going to move the needles that you need to move for your business. Creating an plan for what to do with the information you learn is key.

    I wrote this post in February of 2007 on active listening and it still holds true today. This quote sums it up:

    "Agile marketing companies are leveraging new technology to create real, one-to-many and many-to-many conversations. They are using the outcome from that interaction to make meaningful, remarkable, relationship-enhancing changes that impact their clients in a positive manner. Are you listening?"

Be sure to answer the new poll question for an upcoming post. Do you have (or advise your clients to create) a social media policy for employees? Let me know your thoughts!

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

The 2008 election ROI paradox and drumming gorillas

iStock_000005509580XSmall.jpgAt the IDG conference in Seoul last month I had the pleasure to meet Bruce Haines of Cheil Worldwide, a British expatriate living in Seoul. Bruce is one of the smartest marketers that I've met in a long time. During his keynote, Bruce cautions marketers against trying to assess ROI in a vacuum devoid of the brand. As with any number, ROI figures can lie and can be easily manipulated.

Bruce cautions marketers against trying to assess ROI in a vacuum devoid of the brand.

The 2008 Election

Bruce used the example of the US election to prove the point. This was an example that that made a lot of the people in the room sit up and take notice. I wanted to dive into it a little deeper to show the point and open a discussion around ROI. It's something I've written about before, but this is an ongoing conversation, so let's look at the numbers.

Here is a breakdown of the actual election spending numbers. The dollar figures are the reported spending amounts from the Federal Election Commission. Final votes are from CNN.com.

Picture 4.png

Looking at the return (votes) on investment (dollars spent) McCain is clearly in the lead. He ended up spending approximately $3.50 less for each vote.

That, however, does not tell the whole story as we all know. The real return that matters is the brand that was built and ultimately winning presidency. Looking at the wrong checkpoints on the way to a goal can lead us astray.

Drumming Gorillas

Another example Bruce used to hammer the intangible value of branding is the Cadbury drumming gorilla ad. Here is the clip if you don't know what I am talking about.

If you look at the overall success of the campaign from a purely fiduciary standpoint, you could say it was not very successful. This article originally from Grocer Magazine shows that Cadbury's market share actually dropped to around 1%. Again it depends on what you're measuring. If you expect ad spending to increase market share, this would not have been a success. Factors that you don't see include increases in raw materials costs and consumers price increases.

The issue for us here today is how to measure cool.

What is not measured is that Cadbury is now seen as a "cool" brand according to Bruce. He mentioned that if you'd told him a year ago that Cadbury chocolate would be seen as cool he would have laughed. The issue for us here today is how to measure cool.

So here are some discussion starters, to bring this back to marketing:


  • What % of your ROI metrics are custom to your business? What % are "industry standard"?
  • As ROI is necessary to prove marketing value to higher ups, how do you deal with it?
  • How do you define the right metrics to make sure you're spending the optimal amount of money executing the right strategies?
  • How do you measure intangibles like "cool"?
  • Similarly, brand is nearly impossible to measure, yet extremely valuable. How are you attempting to measure brand value?

RSS_quote.pngIf you liked this post, you can subscribe to the Techno//Marketer RSS feed in your reader or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

81B7407D-819E-4FC1-9D5F-9D777D91D6EC.jpgTechnorati Tags: , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

IDG Next Generation Marketing 2008 - Kwang-Seop Sohn, Chiel Worldwide

34A83C7A-5FB1-4AD5-AF08-54B56D985072.jpgKwang works at Chiel Worldwide in their interactive group, "the i". The presentation focused on a case study for Samsung's HAPTIC device. The Haptic looks very similar to the iPhone, but the operating system is unique.

Here is a video overview of the phone's functionality:

  • Focus of the campaign was on brand experience and contagion
  • The Haptic phone launch is very similar to the iPhone (full screen touch)
  • Phone launched with a premium image/brand and technical image
  • "first is better than better" - Samsung was not the first mover in this space
  • The touch sensor provides feedback
  • Japanese book "HAPTIC" gave the team feedback on how to approach marketing the device
  • Had to explain the haptic term through many media outlets in a way people could understand
  • Launch show made to mirror Steve Jobs keynote addresses, invited power bloggers
  • Tagline "touch and it will react" driven through ads
  • Use of celebrity to drive the "touch" focal point in ads, online, screen saver
  • Haptic blog helped to engage users, also reached out to power bloggers to get their unique and personal experiences

Samsung also created a new ad where a building transforms in to the phone. The gist of the conversation is the guy with the phone says that his phone can become anything he wants. The other guy asks him to prove it by making the building transform.


Technorati Tags:
, , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

IDG Next Generation Marketing 2008 - Jung-Yul Yang, CEO TNS Korea

picture-7.jpgJung-Yul is the CEO of TNS Korea. His talk focused on finding the channels that are most effective for marketers to reach their customers. His firm has some interesting measurement methods and constructs for marketers.

Key takeaways:


  • Purpose of marketing comms - persuade, create a higher brand experience
  • Experience/encounters are made up of consumers (who), content (what), contact (how)
  • Fragmentation is a challenge, new mediums are popping up, more selective consumers
  • Questions for marketers are which points to use, how to spend the budget, how to optimize relationships
  • Companies are imitating, experimenting, etc. to find what works
  • Global economy is impacting marketing budgets and year-over-year budgets
  • ROI measurement is lacking across channels
  • Need four items to choose the right channel 1) market contacts, 2) channel clout factor [level of influence of each customer], 3) brand experience points and 4) brand experience share
  • Market contacts - mass media, POS, one-to-one, indirect, sponsorships create 35 possible options
  • Channel clout factor (CCF) - which are most informative, make brand look appealing, rank the 10 most important in daily life = CCF
  • BES/BEP are derived by looking at the clout of each channel compared to the brand
  • Look at most influential channel for a product category - rank from most to least
  • In a credit card example in Korea, TV had the most influence followed by a point of sale solution
  • The influence varies with each product and situation
  • The challenge is to align channel spending with brand experience for that channel
  • Shift viewpoint to that of the customer when viewing each channel
  • Have to look at what the competition is doing to make competitive decisions


Technorati Tags:
, , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

IDG Next Generation Marketing 2008 - Helen Park, SVP SK Telecom

Picture 39.pngHelen Park works for SK Telecom, the company who runs Korea's largest social network Cyworld. Today she is presenting their "T" brand case study. T is the mobile lifestyle service from SK Telecom (similar to Verizon/AT&T/etc).

Key takeaways:


  • Rebranding campaign from previous Speed 011 name
  • Three stage advertising campaign - dreamer, 24 hours T, mobile communications
  • Previous campaign was disconnected from the consumer's view
  • Mobile = necessity, essential
  • Moved from service proposition to value proposition brand
  • Engaged in storytelling to convey the new brand proposition
  • Had to evolve from storytelling 1.0 (push/mass) to a never ending story in storytelling 2.0
  • Enable the consumers to tell the story themselves, re-craft it and have it become their own
  • Song in ad campaign was very catchy, open structured and could be crafted into something new
  • Played well with Karaoke culture in Korea
  • Ad campaign played on the openness of the brand through song and the "realize" tagline
  • The gist was "whatever you think can be realized" "anything is possible as you think"
  • Used digital to allow customers to add their own lines to the song
  • Used 2008 Beijing games to build momentum
  • Transformative logo was more symbolic, more rounded (adaptive) and streamlined to match brand attributes
  • Created brand shop "hello T" to pull all of the elements together

Here you can see one of the clips with one of Korea's most popular singers:


Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

IDG Next Generation Marketing 2008 - Jacklyn Lim, SVP AmorePacific

Picture 38.pngJacklyn Joung Ah Lim is the SVP of Marketing Strategy and Planning at AmorePacific (a global beauty products company). Her presentation is on the role of Consumer Behavior Knowledge. Jacklyn spent about 20 years in the US with various consumer products companies include Motorola.

Key takeaways:


  • Changes in product delivery is changing marketing
  • Businesses are spanning categories, channels, geographies and consumers
  • Changing consumer trends: experiential, well-informed, self-preservation, quest for health and wellness, self-obsessed, search for authenticity
  • Need to provide product that matches these trends (though many overlap)
  • Consumer behavior (brad patterns): multi-brand usage pattern, multi-channel shopping, dabbling and sampling, verbal and demanding with frequent brand switching
  • How to win -- focus on the consumer
  • Approach to an emotional category - consumer segmentation and loyalty management
  • Segments look at myriad factors - media consumption, rational v. emotional, spend level, country of origin, information engagement, involvement, etc.
  • Form micro segments to manage portfolio and design the consumer experience
  • Look at demographics, lifestyle, channel behaviors, product needs, media consumption, etc. to form unique profiles
  • Take micro segments and apply them to the business (design, R&D, channel planning, communications)
  • Loyalty management is the second key to delivering value
  • Consumer grading - segmentation based on purchase value
  • "Mileage program" - beauty points across channels add value
  • Look at product value across the consumer's lifetime
  • Each change in life allows for an opportunity for them to migrate, need to track how many defect to another brand



Technorati Tags:
, , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

The IM, SMS, email shootout

iStock_000003737885XSmall.jpgI came across this chart in today's eMarketer email and wanted to flag it for you to weigh in on. The chart looks at the preferred channel for receiving messages from marketers across various age groups. The channels they looked at are instant messenger (IM), text messaging (SMS) and email.

The chart (below) gives an interesting view of the choice of interaction. Note the IM numbers are actually shrinking as SMS is replacing that functionality especially as mobile devices improve. SMS is booming in the younger (high school) generation and holds strong through the 18-24 college group. The recent grad group drops off on SMS toward email and once you pass 35, nearly 80% goes toward email.

Here is the eMarketer data:

099014.gif

Email importance grows as age does while SMS importance grows as ages gets younger. Take a look at this in graph form to see the trends more clearly.

emarketer1.png

Basically, if you're looking for the preferred (read most effective) way to reach certain age population groups, make sure you keep this in mind. There are a lot of tools in the digital arsenal that need to be formed into one cohesive strategy.

It's also very important to recognize that the next generation of consumers are engaging in drastically different ways. We have got to have a good grasp on these platforms, what makes them effective, what makes them fail and grow our planning to include test cases NOW. Next quarter could be too late if your competition is already engaging. It's crucial to sustain future growth.

This goes toward explaining my post yesterday looking at the ROI from a digital marketing point of view and why email is still delivering results. Are you using SMS/IM in your marketing mix? We've seen studies about how people want to be communicated with in social media. How do you see them balancing?



Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Best ROI from digital marketing

A few weeks ago I launched a new poll in the right column on this blog asking you where you were seeing the best ROI from digital marketing. I wanted to share the results as I think they're telling of what I am seeing in this space. If you're curious, this is where those votes came from geographically.

Picture 19.png

As you may expect, search engine marketing leads the pack. Social media marketing, however, came in second with 27% of the responses followed by email marketing. This was a little surprising to me in that social media marketing is showing proven ROI when up against email and search. Those were two of the early leaders in getting dollars from marketers and have solid track records where ROI is proven (versus traditional ad spending).

I also think it's how you're quantifying the return. Is it new connections, sales driven from social media outlets email acquisitions or conversations? I a new world of marketing, there needs to be new measures of ROI. What are you using?

Websites were surprisingly low on the list of ROI at only 12%, less than half of social media marketing. I think more people count a website as a cost of doing business and are looking for other ways to extend their brands. What do you think? Does this surprise you?

If you're curious, this is where those votes came from geographically.

Does this echo what you are seeing in your business? Dare to share?


Technorati Tags:
, , , , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

Solutions stars video conference by Network Solutions

421394B3-063D-4B36-B275-836F4FCC5991.jpg


One of the hightlights of my trip to the Blog World Expo was sitting down with Geoff Livingston for a short video on behalf of Network Solutions. The video is now part of a new virtual conference by Network Solutions called the Solution Stars Video Conference. It will take place on October 29th from 1 p.m. ET until about 3:30 p.m. ET, users can log in and watch videos and live discussions featuring 32 people Network Solutions calls, “the world’s leading business and marketing experts.”

There are nine areas that will be discussed including:

  • Building Web Presence
  • The Social Opportunity
  • Start with Listening
  • Strategy Drives Outreach
  • You Need Social Networks
  • To Blog or Not to Blog
  • Visibility Through Search
  • Rising Above the Noise
  • Time Demands

Participants include:

You can also visit the “Solutions Stars Video Conference” event pages on Facebook and Upcoming:



Technorati Tags:
, , , ,


If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.

The age of Facebook vs. MySpace

iStock_000005753573XSmall.jpg [Update: New November stats available here] This is a continuation of my look at social networks and their populations from a marketing perspective. When it comes to this arena Facebook has most of the buzz, but MySpace still has the volume. As strategic counselors to our clients, it is important to make qualified decisions about the vehicles we use as part of a campaign.

MySpace has become the red headed step child of the social media world as Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn have continued to gain popularity and support. But, what does MySpace really look like and how does it compare?

I was able to pull comparison numbers for the age of both networks and some interesting patterns emerged. Take a look at the following graph that shows MySpace in blue and Facebook in red.

The age of MySpace vs. Facebook (US)

MS_FB_Age.png
Click to enlarge image.

MySpace has more people in every segment (nearly double across the board), but a couple points stand out:

  • The 13-17 age group on MySpace is four and a half times larger than that of Facebook.
  • Every age range between 18 and 50 is close to double on MySpace what it is on Facebook.
  • The 50+ group on MySpace is 10 times larger than on Facebook, that is a 1000% difference.
  • The 50+ age group on MySpace is nearly one quarter the size of the entire Facebook community.

Here are the actual numbers:

age range Facebook MySpace variance
13-17 4,943,960 22,618,106 457%
18-21 9,957,600 20,326,180 204%
22-25 6,833,380 13,029,345 191%
26-30 4,282,200 10,528,581 246%
31-35 2,402,720 4,958,016 206%
36-40 1,503,640 2,843,813 189%
41-45 727,880 1,577,310 217%
46-50 473,240 981,911 207%
65+ 703,020 7,030,912 1000%

Takeaways and questions:

  • These numbers represent all total users, not active users so take it with a grain of salt.
  • I don't have growth numbers on MySpace so it's tough to gauge its vitality at this point.
  • MySpace has a huge number of Boomers in their community. I will watch this demographic in coming months.
  • MySpace skews younger than Facebook, engaging more of the highschool population.
  • Populations between MySpace and Facebook (18-50) mirror each other in terms of population trends.
  • Both sites offer ad targeting

What do you think? Are you still considering MySpace for campaigns? The demographics and targeting options let you reach people in tailored ways. I do think that the marketing options on MySpace are very limited and that's one hesitation that I have personally. 

 

Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , , ,

If you liked this post, you can subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to get updates FREE by email.