19 Apr Social Media: What’s the Next Big Thing
Moderated by technology columnist Rob Pegoraro, the Social Media: What’s the Next Big Thing session was one of the talks that I was most looking forward to attending. The panel included:
- Brendan O’Donovan, Product Marketing Manager, Vocus
- Gayle Weiswasser, VP, Engagement, New Media Strategies
- Lisa Byrne, Social Strategist, Pappas Group
- Susan Ganeshan, CMO, New Brand Analytics
The session provided insights into best practices for popular social media sites as well as what platforms marketers should be on the lookout for in the future. A few of the key takeaways included:
- Social tools are incredible young – almost all the major ones have been around for less than 10 years with many of them only popping up in the last few years. Brands and corporations are just now trying to wrap their arms around how to best use them to their advantage. The key is to know what social sites your customers use and value. Results will likely be much more positive if the campaigns are targeted rather than a free for all on every social site out there.
- Using social media to push out content is great, but where you will really see value is through engaging. While it may be difficult for smaller organizations to respond to every post they receive, it is essentially to sort through and find the most important comments – both positive and negative. Engaging can truly make a difference when it comes to how a customer will view your brand moving forward.
- While it is important to keep the heaviest trafficked sites in mind when determining a marketing strategy, the up and coming ones should not be overlooked. A few that were mentioned as sites our panelists turn to include: Path, Vine, Social Cam, WhatsApp, and Tumblr. Tumblr, in particular, the panelists agreed, was a good site for marketing to younger generations. These customers use Facebook to find their friends, LinkedIn for colleagues and Tumblr for stumbling around finding new things and passions. Additionally, when experimenting with new sites the panelists look specifically for sites that work seamlessly across devices as well as offer brands some sort of control of the page should an irate ex-employee have a vendetta.
- The panelist unanimously agreed that measurement for marketing on social sites needed to go beyond likes and follower and focus on specific goals. Are sales goals being achieved? What is the end result to the bottom line? The marketing campaign’s success needs to be measured in actual business goals – not in number of comments. If the platform does not seem to be reaching your goals it doesn’t necessarily mean it is a failure– just that the strategy needs reevaluates to determine if you need to change the content or switch platforms.
- Finally – the message that was reiterated throughout the session and discussed at length at the end was to understand who your followers are and to how best relate to them. If personal connections are developed, customers won’t feel as though you are marketing to them, they will choose to be engaged.
Tune in for my next post on the last session of the day – Startup Marketing: Working with a Lean Budget.