The paradox of consistency

May 11th, 2009

When you begin in social media, there’s a lot of conflicting advice. For example:

  • Experiment to find what’s right for you
  • Be consistent
  • Once you put anything out there, it’s there forever and can’t be removed
  • Make mistakes, you’ll learn from them

The problem is, they’re all true. Your end goal should be a consistent social media presence, whether it’s regular blog posts , YouTube videos , or conversations on Twitter.

Yet it’s inadvisable to try to keep a schedule when you’re operating in a vaccuum. Your schedule starts to write itself as you interact with your community. That’s when you start to find that you should write your blog posts every Tuesday at 10am. Or that your audience likes to watch your videos over the weekend. It all happens through relationship. And that takes time.

So in your search for consistency, keep the end goal in mind – relationship with your community.

How did you find your social media "rhythm"? (Or are you still trying to find it?)

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What’s social media good for? Depends who you are.

March 16th, 2009

It’s hard to explain the value of social media because it’s good for so many things.

Different departments of an organisation can use social media for different purposes, and apply different measures. Here’s a partial list. Have we missed anything?

Marketing

  • Increase web traffic
    • in order to increase ad revenue
    • in order to increase sales
    • in order to increase paid membership
    • in order to increase site membership and engagemen
  • Increase word of mouth marketing
    • in order to cut marketing spend
    • in order to create authentic, grassroots community -> co-create products, services
  • Grow database
    • in order to build long term customers
  • Brand win-back
    • Entrench brand loyalty
    • Build customer loyalty
  • Sales

    • Increasing sales through all channels
    • Leveraging salespeoples’ personal brands

    HR

    • Recruitment
    • Employer brand positioning
    • Revealing internal culture for recruitment
    • Education – explaining company’s role
    • Headhunting through social network sites
    • Training
    • Increasing engagement
    • Culture change
      • Opening up communications channels/dialogue
      • Breaking down silos

    PR

    • Telling your side of the story
    • Crisis management
    • Blogger relations
    • Media relations

    Customer Service

    • Reducing customer support costs
    • Increasing customer service quality

    Market Research

    • Generating consumer insights -> innovations
    • Brand sentiment monitoring

    Events

    • Get more attendance
    • Make event more interactive

    Branding

    • Humanise the brand (thanks to Mr K for the suggestion)

    Operations

    • Virtual teams/collaboration

    What’s missing?

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    How to promote an event through social media

    February 9th, 2009

    As we’re gearing up to promote this Thursday’s Twestival and the Marketing Now Conference in April, I’ve been thinking about how best to get the word out about an upcoming event.

    Here’s what I’m learning:

    Add intimacy to reach and frequency.

    Traditional media rely on reach (how many people hear your message) and frequency (how often they hear it). This gets a little annoying (like those TV ads you like the first 5 times, and hate thereafter).

    Adding intimacy is something you could even do on traditional media, but few people do. It’s a sense of letting your audience in behind the scenes, so they know and are a part of the event, before it happens.

    It could be as simple as me twittering: "Going to the printer’s to pick up the nametags for Thursday’s Twestival. I hope we don’t run out; we printed 100!"

    This communicates a subtle reminder of the event, while also communicating other information (there will be nice printed nametags, there will be about 100 people – we hope!). It also lets the audience know what’s happening behind the scenes, and the live, real-time nature of Twitter/Social media somehow helps this.

    Get your audience involved

    If you’re running the event, maybe you can crowdsource suggestions on different aspects of the event.

    Why?

    • Better ideas
    • A greater sense of involvement from those who have contributed ideas – and therefore greater likeliness that they’ll attend and encourage others to come.

    Sometimes event organisers do this the old-fashioned way, through a competition. But instead of inviting the feedback of potential attendees, they just bribe their way through with a prize.

    Sure there’s value in prizes and incentives, but sometimes as an event organiser you can offer great value, without paying a cent. Being heard is increasingly valuable in a busy world where the biggest dollars usually have the loudest voice.

    Variations on a theme

    Twitter promotion can be like radio advertising – you need to promote your event at different times of the day to reach different audiences. Yet some people will be on there all the time, and since they’re likely to be quite influential you do not want to annoy them.

    What to do? Variations on a theme. In other words, don’t just tweet the same old message. Find all its different flavours, and explore them. Are there different speakers? Promote each one and the message they’ll be delivering.

    Share your learnings

    As you go, maybe write a blog post about … um, "how to promote an event through social media"!

    How do you do it?

    If you run and promote events, how do you use social media to promote your event? We’d love to see your comments below.

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    Talking, listening everywhere…

    July 29th, 2008

    Listening
    Creative Commons License photo credit: nyki_m

    We’re about to enter a slightly crazy time of public speaking engagements, which means just as much listening and talking – if we do our job right.

    Here they are, in short order:

    And if you can’t make it to any of these, we’ll still be producing the weekly Jump In video podcast , and appearing from time to time on Radio NZ National’s Virtual World segment with Jim Mora .

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    Jump In #19: Your comments + the Jump In story

    April 15th, 2008

    You did it! After a month of no video or audio comments from Jump In! viewers, we have three. But here’s the weird thing. They’re all from outside New Zealand!

    What’s up kiwis? We want to see your face, and hear your voice. And not just so we can save postage when we send your free copy of Joseph Jaffe’s Join the Conversation.

    As well as comments from Ron Mader, Gideon Shalwick and Adam Mezei, we’ve also got Simon’s presentation from a recent event hosted by The Internet Bureau.

    {vidavee id=”7622″ w=”320″ }

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    Jump In #14: Bebo founders Michael and Xochi Birch

    February 28th, 2008

    Bebo is one of the world’s largest social networks, dominating New Zealand and Ireland and a close third in the USA.

    Bebo’s founders, Michael and Xochi Birch, share their insights into:

    • How marketers can engage the Bebo audience
    • How social networking is changing media
    • What’s the future of social networks?

    {vidavee id=”5352″ w=”320″ }
    Referred to in this podcast:

    • Idealog magazine, where you’ll find a more detailed interview with Xochi and Michael in the latest issue
    • DLB Magazine, the publication of the Marketing Association, which features a piece by Simon Young, “Jump Into Social Media“. We have several spare copies – if you want one, just ask us!

    Get the latest Jump In for free in iTunes or on the web. Subscribe!

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    Our backyard

    October 25th, 2007

    We’ve been talking a lot to organisations who’ve shown interest in the new social media phenomena.

    From the conversations we’ve had questions. Questions need answers. How do we provide answers for a phenomena that is new. One way is to experiment. Be curious. Ask lots of questions. Find out who is doing is what.

    Here are a few questions we’ve been asked:

    • Where are we heading with this social new media phenomena as a society?
    • How would it change the way I communicate as a person?
    • How will this change the way we do business in the future?
    • Why should I blog?
    • Is it a phase?
    • Where do I find the time?
    • What are the risks of not getting involved?
    • How does my organisation make money from it?
    • What are the pro’s and con’s?

    I decided to start a personal quest to find out the answers instead of trying to do my own research. Why not talk to one of our NZ universities and see what they think? what are they researching? what have they found that is beneficial for you?

    I spoke to Dr Margo Buchanan-Oliver this morning at the University of Auckland Business School. I explained what iJump is about and in all honesty I didn’t know where to begin. Margo mentioned a monthly seminar which is held at the campus called Code which is multi-disciplinary. It combines both academic and commercially relevant research. It investigates how new digital technology is being used and can be used. And it explores the implications of such use within the practice of business.

    In the next couple of months we’re share with you what their findings are.

    We don’t have all the answers. But we’re prepared to jump to get them.

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