Tag Archives: audience

Trim & Focus: Keep Content Lean and Keep Your Audience

Courtesy of Contentshortcuts.com

Courtesy of Contentshortcuts.com

Information overload is a significant issue for everyone. Of the 200+ emails I receive each day, I delete half without reading. I opted to receive most of them, but I rarely have time to get past the subjects lines. I dedicate a few hours per month to unsubscribe to lists that over-communicate or share frivolous content. In the same vein, I am actively removing Twitter accounts for the same reason. It is my dream to have an efficient and relevant content feed, worthy of the time I allot to reading it.

Isn’t that what we all want?

As marketers, isn’t that our job, to know our audience and deliver the content that will help them, in the appropriate intervals? Through my PR training, I learned to write a press release knowing that a journalist might only get to the headline. Furthermore, sending one release to a specifically targeted journalist will matter far more than blanketing everyone. The same guidelines should be considered for the general public. A few good leads that result in sales are better than hundreds of unqualified ones.

This concern is #1 on Julia McCoy’s list of priorities in The 2014 Social Media Guide, which she wrote for Social Media Today.

There are many more interesting ideas in her article, which, I might add, are nearly all relevant to me, a social media marketing consultant. I will be keeping them in my Twitter feed (@socialmedia2day).

Examples as a Way to Teach Social Media 

people-talking-in-conversationsIt happened again.  It was Saturday late afternoon. I was minding my own business, slurping an iced latte in a local Starbucks, reading a magazine. The glass door of Starbucks swung open, and in walked an acquaintance whom I hadn’t seen in almost six months.

He spotted me across the room.  Waved.  After the Barista served up his iced drink, he joined me at the long pine table, the one that makes you feel like you’re at a library; an often coveted seat with the outlet for laptops.

We went through all the perfunctory, how’s this, how’s that.  And then, onto work. “What are you up to these days?” he asked.

I admit, the espresso and freeze from the ice cubes had just settled nicely across my forehead. Ah, I thought.  How am I going to explain this?  He’s a scientist after all. 
He squinted his eyes. It was either the sunlight through the window, or he was truly perplexed. But I began my rather long-winded Social Media explanation, how blogging and micro-blogging are not so dissimilar from posting content on a website, and how its published more frequently. You can write on a variety of topics suited to your audience. You can encourage conversation. Have two way dialogue. Surely he must relate to a website, I thought.

He shook his head back and forth a few times. “Yeah, but what does all this—Social Media—mean exactly?”

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What's Up with Advertising?

search advertisingThe March/April issue of Technology Review has an interesting article entitled “But Who’s Counting?” by Jason Pontin, which describes how the “general inability to agree on [online] audience numbers is stunting the growth of display advertising.”

The research firm, eMarketer, predicts that this year, advertisers will spend $25.7 billion of dollars for online advertising. The problem, Pontin writes, is that “the correlation between the size of Web audiences and their value to advertisers is not direct. Online advertising is complicated because it’s based upon ad impressions, the number of times a specific ad is served to a particular part of a website.” Pontin further suggests that the consequence of audience measurement problems is effecting the transfer of advertising from older media to new.

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Social Media: A Strategic Approach to Authenticity

Celine Rogue has an interesting piece, “It’s Not About the Tools, It’s About the Strategy,” on the New York Times website.

Rogue writes that with so many choices of social media tools available many people are spending too much time obsessing about which ones to use, instead of developing strategies and plans.

Rogue offers five areas to keep in mind when focusing on
Social Media Strategy
1. Define your goals
2. Find your audience
3. Keep it simple
4. Stay authentic
5. Know when to stop

Her message about staying authentic is a good one for anyone who writes for online media, regardless of whether it’s a 140 character message or 500-1000 word post.

So what do we mean by authentic?
The Oxford English Dictionary describes it this way:
“Of authority, authoritative; entitled to obedience or respect.”

Yes, by all means we want our messages to have authority and be respected. But how can you be sure that’s what you’re doing if you don’t have an editor looking over your shoulder?

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