Tag Archives: business

Businesses Benefit from Strategic Social Media Programs

Bridge to CustomersWhile social networking began as a consumer activity, it has become a crucial component of most business marketing strategies as it allows companies to reach highly targeted audiences with custom messaging to build brand awareness and establish a relationship with the customer who now expect companies to be reachable and accountable.

Business Benefits
Businesses are now regularly using tools such as Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and LinkedIn for hiring, customer support, product development, brand recognition, and, of course, client acquisition and retention. Social media has another benefit: the cost of acquiring customers is significantly lower than placing ads, and creates a lasting relationship.

The benefits of a quality social media marketing program include:

  • Transparent, authentic feedback from your audience
  • Integrates well with conventional marketing programs
  • Reach highly-targeted audiences
  • Improves search engines positioning
  • Lower cost than advertising
  • More long term and wider impact than conventional public relations

Listen first, Act second
Buyers look to objective internet sources to compare business products and services including existing customers who are more than willing to share their experience with these products. Companies can’t control the chatter, but they can learn what customers want.

Brands such as Comcast have made major strides in customer service by listening on Twitter. When their brand is mentioned, they know. When someone has a problem, they help them within minutes. They follow the first rule of social media: listen first, act second. Maintaining a regular monitoring program helps to understand customer sentiment and how it changes as you implement online programs.

Defining Success
Measuring the success of a social media campaign is possible only if you define your targets in advance. Whether they include increased traffic, website conversions or leads, you must have clear targets for successful campaigns, at short-term and long-term time intervals. A few examples of what success might look like include:

  • Gaining a better understanding of your customers
  • Increase brand exposure in ways which were not possible before
  • Reducing costs for achieving the same targets using other marketing tactics
  • Increase sales and conversions

Some great resources to compliment this blog post:

Social Commerce, Social Media Today, November 2, 2010

Content for People, Not Robots, Impressions Through Media, September 18, 2010

18 Signposts I Learned from MarketingSherpa’s Social Marketing ROAD Map Handbook

Signpost

The title of MarketingSherpa’s 2010 Handbook, Social Marketing ROAD Map, is not only a clever analogy referring to the territory marketers must navigate to map out a social media strategy, the acronym is memorable and quite right-on. ROAD stands for: Research, Objectives, Actions and Devices.

I know writers are supposed to resist the temptation to use clichés—but I can’t help it—so indulge me here for a moment while I offer you a personal perspective. For me, someone who fears getting lost, my Global Positioning System (GPS) has changed my life with its turn-by-turn voice directions. The ROAD Map Handbook offers the comfort and confidence that I’ve come to rely on from my GPS. I think you too will find great direction from the guidelines, best practices and tactics, templates, suggested resources, worksheets, list of social media platforms, and comprehensive glossary.

Whether you’re a marketer just starting out in Social Media or have been traveling these roads for some time, you’re bound to find many valuable tips and strategies in MarketingSherpa’s Social Marketing Road Map Handbook.

You’ll want to read the Handbook yourself to receive the full benefit but to get you started, here are some of my favorite marketing signposts. Continue reading

Social Media: It's About More Than the Numbers

horse riding into the sunsetWhen I hear people espousing how many Facebook friends they have, or how many people are following them on Twitter, sometimes I feel like the Lone Blogger calling, “Hi-yo, Silver, away!” as my laptop and I gallop towards the setting sun. I don’t know about you, but it makes me feel a little uneasy; like I’m back in High School, in the cafeteria before homeroom. (Sorry, that’s an other issue, one for a different audience.)

I admit, I check our blog analytics regularly, as well as the activity on our other social media sites. I’m a firm believer in monitoring, and having the knowledge about who you’re reaching, with what content, and how they’ve found your company. (Besides it’s very cool information!)

In their new book, The Online Communities Handbook: Building your Business and Brand on the Web, authors Anna Buss and Nancy Strauss write,

“…you can have ten thousand followers on Twitter, you can have five thousand friends on Facebook, you can have one million connections on LinkedIn through six degrees of separation—but often times that doesn’t translate into cold, hard cash.”

Continue reading

Impressions through Media Blog Celebrates 1st Birthday

Our first blog post appeared a year ago this week. Even though we started with a mission, objectives and a carefully crafted plan—like many new endeavors, sometimes you don’t know what to expect.

Years back I’d been a fan of old Bette Davis movies, and to this day I can still hear her say (in All About Eve), “Fasten your seatbelts, it’s going to be a bumpy ride.”

Blogging is a GREAT ride, and here at Impressions through Media, we’ve become passionate bloggers.

Thank you to our loyal readers, new visitors, guest bloggers—and to the vast blogosphere where we continue to learn and exchange information, and stumbleupon new blogs (literally and figurately.)

If you’re on the fence about starting a business blog, believe me, take the leap—it’s a great way to be part of the conversation, and well worth your time and energy!

If you’re already a blogger, we’d love to hear about your experiences!