Is all the effort you put into your web presence paying off?
Social media activation involves reaching beyond your immediate circle to a
broader community online. You can measure the influence your actions have to
see how big your brand is becoming. The Internet is littered with an
innumerable roster of service offerings, so here is a compilation of 8 lesser
known tools that are particularly valuable:
Keyword trends - Trendrr
tracks and compares the trends of any keyword – brand names, executive
officers, and can even compare them to other keywords. Trendrr produces pretty
eye candy charts too.
Twitter account age determination – Digimantra offers a free
tool that displays when an account profile launched.
Twitter account importance
– Tweetreach assesses how wide an impact
an account has. The larger the influence an account has, the more valuable they
are to have in your network.
Post to multiple Twitter
accounts – Hootsuite is a web based app
that is very similar to the popular TweetDeck
but does not require the resource sucking Adobe Air. Hootsuite has a feature
that allows posting of the same tweet to multiple Twitter accounts, which is
especially useful if you facilitate multiple brand identities. Hootsuite also
includes analytics that let’s you see who is clicking on your posts, who is
retweeting your messages, etc.
Free conference calling –
Calliflower operates a convenient
platform that integrates web and phone applications and offers both
other countries local numbers. The web app features live chat on the site.
Calliflower can save the call recording as an MP3 file and post it to iTunes
for free as a podcast. Other nice features include SMS text, e-mail reminders,
and various administrator features.
International VoIP calling
– Truphone is a mobile VoIP service that
is especially useful if your travels take you out of the country and you want
to be able to call back to the
using Wi-Fi rather than setting up your mobile phone with an international
Your Online Reputation – Online ID Calculator
looks at the strength of your online Identity and reputation. When people perform
a search by name for someone, they judge the results based on both volume and
relevance. Quantity implies that you have something to say. Relevance is of
greater important as it assesses what that quantity of posts say about you, do
they back up your written and oral claims, and ultimately, are you compelling?
Your Online Visibility – Addictomatic instantly creates a custom
page with the latest on any topic or person. It looks at how you show up across
search and social media platforms such as Google, Twitter, Bing, FriendFeed
(part of Facebook), Twingly YouTube, Digg, Flickr, Delicious, BlogLines,
Truveo, Wikio, Yahoo, Technorati, etc.
David Alpern (firstname.lastname@example.org) is
Vice President, Strategic Client Services of Interactive Buzz, LLC., an
experienced Social Media company delivering high performance results for the
comprehensive activation of Social Media strategies.
Much has been written about staking out a presence in social media and how this marketing platform is not a fad but rather the biggest shift since the Industrial Revolution. Many brands have diligently gone out and planted their stake in an attempt to be social. While the strategy is sound and these businesses have the best of intentions, execution leaves a lot to be desired. This divide generally manifests itself in a focus on the “media” rather than the “social”.
Part of this is due to the nature of advertisers to see locations like Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter as fresh media outlets; new places to distribute and broadcast their message. As such, it is easy to perceive success when a Twitter follower count reaches a certain level, or a Facebook contest succeeds in sparking some momentary activity. However, as social is not a passive broadcast media, it is not enough to simply have a presence or even to populate that profile with compelling content pointing back to your corporate website.
Results come from interaction. Not the initiation of conversations but rather the practice of responding to existing threads, and preferably hosting some of those conversations on your own site. That said, community gatherings take place organically where a community gathers, and you need to take part in those conversations, at least in part. Do not react to everything. Reply just enough to let the community know that you are part of the conversation, but not to the point where you are saturating the environment, or worse yet, generating the perception that you are present there purely for commercial reasons.
The tactical difficulty is that it is time-consuming to monitor and reply to conversations. It is thus important that employees across the organization be educated in using social sites and are encouraged to interact within the confines of provided corporate guidelines. Postings and more notoriously, comments sections, are going to contain factual errors, be they deliberate or on accident. Your team can use the opportunity to step in and correct errors as a way to take part in the conversation.
Often, the community is grateful to learn that the business is listening and, even better, attentive. Comments like “it is so rare for someone from the inside to respond” reflect the appreciation these steps generate. This helps a company build a brand and goodwill. Reaching out with a comment on a blog or a post on a social network also can hold the potential of having someone read of your activity and suggest new business leads and contacts.
Social is a conversation, and conversations by definition involve multiple speakers and listeners. It is not enough to just show up and broadcast your advertisement. You need to dive in, listen, and respond robustly.
David Alpern, VP Strategic Client Services, Interactive Buzz, LLC.
Since the inception of Interactive Buzz, LLC in 2007, we have always supported the ethics standards of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA). Over the past two years, the watchdog of consumer interests, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been working with Word-of-Mouth Marketing industry leaders to formulate a strategy addressing the difference between Traditional Media that states and promotes a position of the brand, to Social Media that promotes a conversation with consumers about the brand.
The FTC has made it clear that the key to current and future advertising must support full disclosure and transparency by brands, agencies, and social media activators (bloggers, celebrities, agents, ambassadors) who receive any form of consideration, compensation, products, samples, or services from the brand, either directly or indirectly and presents an endorsement of the brand.
The FTC Guide puts teeth into the WOMMA ethics code. FTC quoted WOMMA on twelve points throughout the 81 page document, FTC Guidelines . At this time the emphasis is on enforcement by exception, rather than proactive enforcement. To clarify, it is nearly impossible for the FTC to proactively monitor and manage the millions of posts being conducted throughout all social media channels. That said, it is imperative to understand that the arm of the FTC reaches far beyond the doors of Washington, D.C. Enforcement will come from other sources bringing attention to those in defiance. Sources, such as, local consumer affairs organizations (e.g., BBB), plaintiff lawyers representing class action suits, state attorney generals, individual consumers filing complaints of being wronged will likely avail themselves of the new code.
For those willing to adhere to this newest set of codes directly impacting Social Media and Web 2.0, life should be fine. In supporting transparency, brands should state their position clearly, agencies should reinforce brand messaging that includes the caveat of disclosure and transparency, and social media activators should carry that message forward in a reasonable fashion across the various channels.
Significant, is the strong recommendation that all stakeholders of Social Media employ best practices for conducting Word-of-Mouth Marketing and Outreach. These best practices should include processes and procedures stating how transparency to the brand should be handled when conducting posts online. There should also be a process in place to monitor that these posts are, in fact, being conducted in accordance with the FTC Guides. Periodic checking, screen shots and other methods should be employed to assure consistency of message and compliance.
A number of other areas are touched on within the new FTC Guides, including, celebrity endorsements, Fortunately, Interactive Buzz, LLC. does manage each and every Social Media Outreach campaign in accordance with WOMMA ethics, and now, the FTC Guides. Transparency, honest identity has been our hallmark since the beginning. Our approach is supported by our proprietary and exclusive campaign management engine called, Buzzing OnlineTM.
For more information, please contact Interactive Buzz, LLC.
Stephen Kruger (email@example.com) is CEO and Founder of Interactive Buzz, LLC, an experienced Social Media company delivering high performance results for the comprehensive activation of Social Media strategies.
– A Key to Marketing Success is Enhanced with Social Media
branding initiatives seem to typically be in vogue when the economy is robust,
and fall out of favor as the economy dances with recessionary periods. Suspect,
is the perceived cost and effort associated with traditional brand building. With
the growth of the Internet and social technology tools, opportunities have
emerged that find some marketers focusing on online tactics without realizing
that an opportunity exists to leverage branding and strategy.
good old fashioned branding is just as important today, one must understand the
nuances and operational tactics inherent in the robust Social Media space. When properly executed, a successful Social
Media Outreach strategy has the potential to drive conversion events that
translate into robust branding initiatives.
Media buzz is designed to add your brand’s voice to a conversation and direct
traffic and awareness to your properties, both online and offline. Converting the
messaging of your brand to social media messaging represents the
art of a high performance outreach program.
Your contribution must be believable and credible within the confines of
your brand identity. Would a Saks Fifth Avenue posting about recessionary
shopping be as believable and relatable as a similar posting from Target?
brand’s voice should be relevant by remaining within context of the prevailing
conversation in that social media platform and affinity group. If you are
contributing a comment to an article or blog posting, your brand image will be
hurt if the post reads mostly as advertorial rather than as a relevant
contribution to the conversation.
your Social Media programs to these principles and you will soon find that Social
Media Outreach is affording a gateway to vibrant and prolific branding for your
David Alpern (firstname.lastname@example.org)
is Vice President, Strategic Client Services and Stephen Kruger (email@example.com) is
CEO and Founder of Interactive Buzz, LLC., an experienced Social Media company
delivering high performance results for the comprehensive activation of Social
Media strategies. The Interactive Buzz team’s
experience includes representing Del Monte, Unilever, The Advertising Council,
and more. Past experience included Proctor
& Gamble, Toyota, Honda, Conde Nast Publications, Scripps Network, NBC,
Social Media and Interactive Buzz
With the growing nature of Social Media, building quality representation throughout the Internet is imperative. Understanding what is being said by 2 billion people who access the Internet is not only important, but should be a requirement for responsible businesses. Afterall, wouldn’t you want to know what is being spoken of your brand, your company, and your people?
The Internet marketplace has become a community who want to validate, experience and explore what’s important in their lives. Having a responsible presence in the Social Media arena, beyond a website, is key to activating your audience and participating in the discussion. Discussions and conversational marketing brings respect and credibility to the company and increases brand awareness.
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