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Social Media Craze.  Too much or not enough?  The new trend for marketing is digital whether you like it or not.   Listening and hearing good isn’t just in person anymore.  However, raw emotional feelings can’t be found in research.  In fact most relationships online are just so you can say you accepted another friend request.

“You have more digital handshakes, than you have in person.” -Paul Cheyney

I don’t agree with that statement, but its hard to ignore when the Atlanta aquarium is no offering discounts in twitter.  Plus, all this brand engagement is helping to create brand loyalty.  The marketing trends of links and networks has reached consumers, friends, and family in a way like any before.  It allows for the exchange of personal information, professional information, and connections related to products and common interests.  Social media can track ordinary aspects of peoples lives. Consumers hope to use these services to improve their own lives.  Some companies are using this information to improve sales.  For example, Amazon and Netflix are currently using social media for profiling customers and recommending new products for them.  Marketing on social media websites offers a lucrative opportunity to target a large audience and use consumer information to better profile potential customers. Web services such as Facebook, Linkedin, Youtube, Twitter, and others allows marketers to make information available to interested groups.  Online communities for promoting products and gathering information have also formed.  Johnson and Johnson, a company with great recognition, is creating its own social networks for customers.

“Don’t leave a digital paper trail that could come back and haunt you.”

Some have even divorced and site Facebook as ruining relationships due to jealously or inappropriate pictures.  Future conflicts over privacy may arise over how much personal information marketers or companies can use from these websites.  Procter and Gamble has developed a social media lab to better understand the impact of social media on brands.  Other companies should also create programs to track the effectiveness of social media advertisements in generating interest in a product or company.  This knowledge will enable marketers to use social media to better tailor their advertisements to consumer needs.  Finally, this will also create more lead generation and referrals; a key to generating more sales.

After looking through the B2B Magazine a while,  one can understand the differences in social media for B2B and B2C.  Cisco is successful in getting leads, getting in niche, and other areas of marketing growth.  Twitter surveys of B2B have produced  50% satisfaction bringing in results and greater things in the future.  Content also plays a large role in B2B marketing.  How do people make decisions?  Content is all you have. Training organizations, and books about social media can help you get content and customers.  Yet, providing thought leadership content is important..  It just like any decisions in business.  You make decisions by being educated and informed.  Content is the foundation for social media, but also a barrier to entry in organizations.  Thus, becoming your own media outlet may be easier than for businesses.  Business need to use cases, concepts, tools, applications, a sales force, thought leadership and content engagement  to come to solutions for social media.  Thus, the strategy for B2B social media shouldn’t just be  marketing.  It should be operations, dealing with customer questions, costs, sales components (exchange of info).  The value social media can bring to a sales force process is an empire.  Social media brings revenue, customer loyalty, enhances customer satisfaction, saves money, and are becoming fundamental drivers in business.

The BIG 3

1. Facebook

The mainstream social media with over 400 million in personal and business networking tools.  It has almost become somewhat of a monopoly in social media if you ask me.  The history of Facebook is known well.  With the production of the Social Network movie and college students study time being dwindled by procrastinating on Facebook, Facebook is the number one visited website in the world right now.  Yet, how businesses use it is still a relatively new strategy.  Questions of security settings are also constantly being changed by Facebook. Business must use Facebook to optimize their fan page, find target markets they want to engage with, engagement strategies, and groups.  Or these are business objectives that can be achieved as we say in Marketing Strategy.

F8 conference here

2. Twitter

Has been used for a more productive and time efficient manner.  Yet, twitter isn’t always happily tweetful.  Nuances for Twitter inlcude communications channels, terminology, revised profiles, best practices, implementing Twitter, individual twitter marketing, brand twitter marketing, sts tags twitter conversation streams, and even more online etiquette.  Just like Facebook, Twitter has its do’s and don’ts.  It can easily be integrated with LinkedIn and Facebook though which make this social media make you wanna follow.  Twitter is a one-to-one customer and prospect engagement tool, while Facebook is a powerful community manager. The two sites require very different strategies in order to leverage them most effectively

3. LinkedIn

This new social media is meant to be more professional.  Obviously you don’t want future employers seeing UGA game-days, but you still need to keep you networks.  LinkedIn creates a strategy that is effective and measurable, has a professional target market, shows main message of brands.  Yet, do businesses spend more time on LinkedIn because of the professionalism it is know for carrying?  Overall strategy for new media needs to show where target customers are online by having a strong content strategy, producing and re-purposing, making people engage, implementing consistently, using tools that are free and not, and know what is working and not working.  Thus, experimentation in a new innovation will need to take place, but not without careful consideration.

Social media should be used as interactive forums, vital learning, discussing the critical topics, keeping your marketing resources tights. Yet, it is often dismissed in favor of experimentation with social media, day to day social media infrastructure and plan.  What is most important with social media though is content and understanding where your traffic is coming from.  Have a micro-strategy for each platform.  Social media talent is also in high demand currently with social media’s exponential growth.  Internships, coordinator positions, and ambassadors are being used to take brand messages and stewardship for applying in social media.  Therefore  communication in writing, how to blog, post, tweet, ability to communicate, your personal community, and your social media ethic of association are all necessary to be successful in social media.

Final Thought:

“One should not always try to sell, but to help extroverts, people, relationships, contents, and technology.”

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