Tag: Social Media
Mashable ran an article titled “Why you need to monitor and measure your brand on social media” . The author Maria Ogneva touched on the difference between monitoring and measurement. Very interesting article she has there.
Digital strategists look for data to better understand a particular situation and from there it attempts to offer a solution. So where does this data come from – in this context it would be listening to the conversation out there. Having been bombarded with the conversation – how do you make sense of it all? That is the question.
To monitor, there is a magnitude of tools out there, ranging from Google alerts (free) toRadian6 (paid). So what works? I cant answer that from you. For some, the free version works well, afterall, data is just data, its how you interprete the data that matters, isn’t it.
Alot of times people (read: clients) do not know the difference between monitoring and measurement (and also interpretation).
Whats is the point of monitoring – in my view the idea of monitoring is to garther insight and thereby use it to inspire strategy making. number (data) –> insights –> strategy – success in one audience generate success in another. Monitoring is pretty much useless if you cant interpreted to an action that ties in to company (campaign) objective.
Many a times, I hear companies say – so and so (competitor) have 5000 fans – in my mind (silently of course) – so what? what does these 5000 fans means? I can get you 10000 fans if you want – just give me the carrots (attractive) ones of course and I can bait. But sadly this is how it works out there. The success of a campaign is down to the number of fans…but isnt social media about conversation – candid conversation. Gone are the days of interruption marketing – we now need to engage and speak social language! So the advocates of social media says. we need interaction – we need to use their consumer language to make them act! of course in a subtle non-intrusive manner.
Typically, a successful online endeavour needs a plan and also questions that you need to ask your self.
Here are some…
- Behavioural : everything you communicate to your customers has a purpose. What do you want them to know?
- Essential : deliver information that your best propects and customers require to succeed in work or life – meet them expressed needs and wants – better still fulfil their latent needs.
- Strategic: – your efforts must be an integral part of the company overall business strategy - link your online endeavour (social media) to bottom-line results.
- Integrated Communication: Social media needs to be coherent with other modes BUT please do not just put a Press Release onto a social media platform (BIG MISTAKE).
- Targeted – you need to target your content (i.e. products precisely so that it is truly relevant to your prospects. Shift consumer behaviour via education.
- Ownership – get someone to spear head it and get that person to OWN it. I am a firm believer of people do not do what you say but what you paid. Pay for their behaviour and performance.
and last but not least – measure it! online can always be measured , but only if you have a clear understanding of your strategic communications objectives. just keep it simple – “how will we know that my content (social endeavour) is working to begin with….
What are your thoughts? I am keen to hear.
Social Media humanizes your brand? Sure but firms are more concerned about “negative comments”…true?
You bet! of course that depends on how you interaction and converse online. Social media gives firms the opportunity never before access to consumer’s candid feedback and are given the opportunity to shine like never before if done right.
But the ‘problem’ I see is that a significant number of firms still treat the social media as a channel for sales i.e make the next sales. Firms should think beyond that and use social media as a means to better interact with their customers and garner feedback and of course genuine treat feedback as something positive not negative.
But from experience, it seems (having spoken to many firms) is they seem to be concern about one major point – what if something talks bad about me “can i delete that comment” and “why should I get myself in that situation” instead of talking about how I should engage my customers or have a content strategy. They seemed fixated on “negativity”…
For those firms, I always have a standard reply “Social Media did not invent criticism” – firms have always dealt with complains via phone calls etc. So how different is this? Why are firms using this as an “excuse”?
Do firms always cite “online criticism” as something that are really concerned about? I’m keen to hear your thoughts…
A day doesn’t go by (online and offline) where people talk about seeding conversations – afterall it has been said social media is all about conversation and that content whilst important (takes a queen role) where interactions (or conversation) take a KING role.
So naturally, we need to have conversations online to ensure success (an indicator of success) – afterall agencies will be hammered should there by no conversations online – darn boring!
So what do agencies and corporations do? they seed! they enter the social media space and start talking (in the pretense of just another person – like a customer or potential customer) and hopefully they will engage the audience. Nothing wrong with that per se but is it authentic and may I dare say ethical?
I’ve also seen job placement ads that explicit states “Social Media Seeder” – in my opinion, its fine if one states it at the outset that X is a seeder in the social media space at least that sets the audience in the right frame of mind but my argument here is for those who pretend that they are just like you and I and start contributing away…
Afterall in social media – audiences that participate in this space want candid and truthful feedback and it has been found that a fair number make decisions based on those feedbacks.
So if that is the case, is it ethical to do that from an corporation point of view? Are these corporations ‘lying’ to the audience? What are the implications if the audience finds out that it is actually the agency or the company feeding all these information to the people and they had the impression that they were genuine. Would there be a public backlash? and in turn people may lose trust in the organization and ultimately it will hit the firm’s bottomline.
There are many questions here, until the industry starts to realize and debate about this, then this can move forward, at this moment it is still rather grey.
Is this the beginning of “Stealth Marketing”? – actually lets start defining “Stealth Marketing”
I’m keen to hear your thoughts.
Creativity is up the ante here. In this video by Samsung, an out of the box interactive video titled “Follow Your Instinct” – a departure from typical advertisements so to speak.
Samsung seeks an alternative route to engage its audience by using YouTube’s latest innovation – Annotation.
With this, Samsung was able to create an interactive video permitting users to determine the storyline. Its amazing, so far it only works in YouTube. Good stuff, YouTube.
Its a much watch! Love it to bits!
In media such as prints, TV ads, consumers will understand and recognize that these are all paid advertisement and they are perfectly fine with that. After all, this fact is known from the outset.
However what if this is not known from the outside? a trend that I see, from conversations with friends, clients and agencies is the notion of seeding conversations in Social Media. For example, firms employ (and pay of course) individuals to post comments on blogs, forums and such as to create a favourable image for the product and hope that it will generate more traffic and of course generate leads.
Is this right? I don’t know – Well for me, I hate to read comments that are not genuine especially if I found out later that this was a paid post or comment – some one who is employed by the company in question. I would lose credibility in the site or for that matter the product – trust is built in incremental steps but once lost, it falls exponentially – isn’t trust (and candidness) the bedrock of social media? Trust is one of the antecedents (drivers) of Word of Mouth (WOM).
From a marketer’s stand point, sure WOM is something they wish to achieve i.e. a result, by seeding comments, would one lose that trust if found out?
But I can understand from the agencies’s point of view is that it generates discussion in the comments section. Afterall social media is interaction and its success stems from conversations.
What are your views, I’m keen to hear them out.
Here are some of the Social Media Marketing Monitoring tools that I’ve used. Some are pretty good and some not so but nevertheless still works. Try it out for yourself.
Hope this helps.
Social Media Marketing Monitoring Tools
Free Social Media Monitoring Tools
• Google Alerts @ http://www.google.com/alerts (Generic KeyWord)
• Alert Rank @ http://www.alertrank.com (Accompanies Google Alerts)
• Social Mention @ http://www.socialmention.com (Targets blogs, forums)
• Tweetbeep.com @ http://www.tweetbeep.com (Targets Twitter)
• Twittrratr @ http://www.twittrratr.com (Targets Twitter with Sentiments)
• Watchthatpage @ http://www.watchthatpage.com (Monitor Specific Page)
• Lexicon @ http://www.facebook.com/lexicon (Targets Facebook)
• Backtype @ hhttp://www.backtype.com (Targets Blogs and Forums)
• Addict-to-matic @ http://www.addictomatic.com (Create One-stop Page of all mentions) *Love this*
• TechrigySM2 @ http://sm2.techrigy.com/main (Dashboard – Targets mentions of keywords)
• Board Tracker @ http://www.boardtracker.com (Tracks Forum Discussions)
• Trendrr @ http://www.trendrr.com (tracks everything according to them)
Paid Social Media Monitoring Tools
• Trackur.com @ http://www.trackur.com (Targets ALL social media mentions) – reasonably priced
• Dialogix @ http://www.dialogix.com.au (Targets ALL social media mentions) – mid tier pricing
• Radian6 @ http://www.radian6.com (Target ALL social media mentions) – high tier pricing.
Social Media Trend Tools
• Google Trends @ http://trends.google.com
• Blogpulse @ http://www.blogpulse.com
Please feel free to add to the list for those I’ve missed out. Thanks!
In my earlier post Social Media Marketing went “wrong”: Case: “Langham Hotel Steps in to Calm Online Storm” (Hong Kong) I wrote about how Langham Hotel’s campaign triggered a social upheveal online.
A month has passed since the event, it has taught a lesson to all – to take note of cultural sensitivities when engaging in a campaign and that one should not have retreated without an explanation.
I’ve always said that social media is a double edged sword, it can be your best friend and it can be your worst enemy. However having said this, don’t just treat the online marketscape or social media networking to be your foe only and forget the opportunities it entails. Embrace it and treat it an an opportunity to better understand your customers, cause people are going to talk about your brand regardless.
Just yesterday, to my pleasant surprise I received an email from Langham’s director of corporate communication.
Here is snippet of the email and I quote:
The videos were wrong. You were right to tell us so, and we’re sorry.
I thought that was a very amiable step and one worth applauding. I didnt expect this email (and its sincere apology) but I believe it will go a long way.
People make mistakes but most importantly is that one realizes it and make steps to heal it. For that – you have my respect, Langham, cause you have done just that.
All the best!
Below is the YouTube interview conducted by Marketing Magazine (Hong Kong) with Langham Hotel.
Every presentation I present, every organization I meet, it is without fail the above mentioned subject pops up. Loss of Control of my Brand.
Why is this the case? We humans love to control variables (control freaks?), the idea of losing control is something incomprehensible.
Afterall, companies have spent heaps of time and effort (and money may I add) to built and position their brand to what it is today and so the idea that they may lose control of its brand is a BIG thing (and rightly so).
Well what I normally say to them, hey even if you do not enter the social media online landscape, people are already talking about you. What makes you think consumers online are not taking about you and do you know what are they talking about?
Wouldn’t it be good to retrieve first hand candid feedback and improve yourself and perhaps in the process engage in customer engagement and/or turn negative experiences to positive ones.
There are heaps of opportunities out there for you to grab. Ultimately, ask yourself this.
Are you ready to enter as an organization and also where do you customer hang out?
Well its really up to you on how you look at social media, it could be your number 1 enemy and it could be your best friend – all I can say, it offers a magnitude of opportunities for you to further engage your customers and enhance your corporate reputation.
So is social media for you? that you have to ask your self. Loss of control of brand. Well I can say YOU BET! but hey isnt better that you get it and be able to influence it then to let it generate it by itself. Be part of the action!
I’m keen to hear about what is the number one concern you have heard about companies entering the online social marketspace.
There is another one: reputational management – the ability to take care of negative comments – that’s a separate issue which deserves a separate blog episode
A very interesting reality check podcast on social media marketing.
Click here for the podcast: MIS: Social Media for Businesses – A Reality Check
(For those who are unable to sit through the 28 minute podcast)
1. Engage in conversations (interaction), the idea behind social media.
2. Use tools (e.g. Facebook, Twitter etc) to better engage your customers, and these are just tools. Social Media marketing is a strategy in itself.
3. Nothing will replace a face to face meeting – not even Social Media marketing.
4. No longer to talk to them, now is I listen to you – from company to customer “what do you think of my products?”
5. Markets are getting smarter – you listen to the customers – and there is also alot of unhappy customers out there. You can get an anti-your company blog. But hey which company doesnt want to listen to those unhappy customers. On the contrary these companies give you a chance to better improve yourself.
6. Use Social Media to understand the customer and give it to them better. They use Social Media tools to listen to the conversation about the company in real time.
7. Companies should embrace the opportunities Social Media entails – think beyond the unhappy customers, on the contrary convert those unhappy ones to happy one and they will be your evangelists.
8. Listening is one thing, participating is another. Its very important to listen first and understand first and then response especially in this fast paced world we live in now.
Closing comments – Should companies get into Social Media?
- it depends on what you want to do and where your customer hang out.
- large organization cant afford to sit on the sideline, have to get in now before you get left behind especially now that a growing number of customers are spending a fair portion of their time online.
- Social Media gives you untapped opportunities and allows you to listen in to conversations about your brand and as a result allow to you understand where you stand, how you can improve and as such deliver better value.
Jeremiah Owyang chats about social media marketing, for businesses and how companies can best engage their online customers..
Two key take away points from this are 1) companies need to understand what is their business objective of using social media? and once they got that figured out, then they have measure it according to that objective stated at the outset and 2) tdudes/dudettes that venture online tend to want to express themselves and interact with others instead of looking out for advertisement (a good insight I might just add).
The question from me, is social media marketing suitable for all companies, are companies just following the band wagon? “Cause everyone is doing it so I must do so as well” I must do so as well.
I feel ultimately it boils down to the company’s objective and its means of competitions and how they view social media (Facebook, Forums, Twitter, Blogs). If the culture of the organization is pretty much conservative and bounded by heaps of regulations perhaps social marketing is not the right platform for them.
Enjoy the YouTube.