I was in Kelowna, BC, May 22 and 23 for the Meeting of the Centre for Chief Marketing Executives.
My fellow presenters included:
- Mitch Joel, President, Twist Image
- Bryan Segal, Vice-President, Sales, comScore Inc.
- Jeanne Houweling, Vice-President, Advertising Services, NebuAd
We talked about the growing influence of social networking websites and the implications for Canadian Marketers.
In addition to participating in roundtable discussions, I presented on “Internet and Social Media: Strategies and Tactics”. For the most part, I showed the web sites in a browser window, hence no slides to share with you. But below are my key points.
Boxcar Marketing: how can we help your business?
We’re called Boxcar Marketing because we think about online marketing tools as boxcars in a train: you can link together any combination of online marketing tools. When used together in combinations that are appropriate for your campaign, your business, your customer base, they create momentum for your other marketing activities.
One company’s online marketing strategy might include:
Search marketing + Blogging + Email marketing
Someone else might use:
Search marketing + Facebook + Twitter + Flickr
Any combination is possible. My challenge to marketers is to go beyond your current set of online marketing tools.
Most businesses are using:
Email marketing + Websites
Some are using
Search marketing + Email marketing + Websites + Blogs + Facebook + YouTube
But what about these top social media tools:
- Virtual worlds: SecondLife
- Wikis: pbwiki
~~~ Monique Trottier on Social Media Marketing 101 ~~~
A) Introduction to Social Media Marketing
What is it? Why is it important to you, your business and your customers? What can you do?
Why is Social Media Marketing important?
Because the media landscape has changed. Because customers have changed.
Mass marketing is harder to do effectively because of the fragmentation of attention. Media is fragmented. There are more radio stations, more tv stations, more magazine titles, more books, millions of websites.
There is a proliferation of products, meaning customers have more things to choose from. We have more devices: video games, computers, dvd players, televisions, satellite radios, TiVo, cellphones and PDAs.
With those devices we email, instant message, Google, blog, create videos, podcast. We also Twitter, Facebook, StumbleUpon, Ning and Digg.
As businesses, we have to care about these things because interruptive marketing is harder and harder to do.
Customers are not listening. They are busy creating content. They are producers.
They are busy recommending and talking about their experiences with products and services. They are reviewers. They are marketers.
Customers are more demanding and have greater expectations about how businesses should interact with them.
It is harder to get customers to come to your site because they are busy doing other things online. We have to go to them.
No online community has ever sat around saying, you know what we need? More marketers.
We have to get better at connecting to our customers online. At joining the conversation. At being more collaborative. At being an active part of a community. At speaking with our human voice, not our marketing & PR voice.
B) A Few Social Media Marketing Tools At A Glance
What is it? What are successful business uses?
- Location-based social networking. See where your friends are and what they’re up to, in real time. Meet people around you.
- Good for guerrilla marketing, ARGs (artificial reality games), treasure hunts, location-based marketing.
- A place for people to discover and share content from anywhere on the web. Content moves to the top based on user voting.
- Add Digg this Article to your site.
• A social utility that connects you with the people around you.
• Online book clubs. HarperCollins Canada has 855 members who actively discuss new books.
Note on Facebook:
As businesses we have to keep in mind the nature of the communities we are joining. Facebook is about personal networks. It became the phenomenon that it is because it’s simple, it’s fun, it has photos, it has spam-free email, there’s very little advertising. If you want to be active in Facebook, go beyond advertising. Create value-add appllications, like the TripAdvisor map. Create fun games or quizzes or tools that help users socialize.
- An online photo management and sharing application.
- Example: Nikon Stunning Gallery. Nikon contacted 16 bloggers who would use the new Nikon D80 and post photos to Flickr using the tag “nikonstunninggallery”. Other Flickr users were invited to also tag photos this way in order to be entered into a contest to win a free camera. This type of contest works because the product (a camera) is directly tied to the activities of the community (taking photos).
- An online network of more than 20 million experienced professionals from around the world, representing 150 industries.
- Connect to me on LinkedIn. See my network of connections. Do we know anyone in common? Do you have a question that you’d like me to pose to my network? Looking for an expert in something? Maybe I can link you up to someone in my network.
- Create, customize, and share your own Social Network for free in seconds.
- See if members of your industry have already started social networks on Ning. Then join.
- Example: HotelNetwork.Ning.com is a forum for hotel owners, operators, and industry folks. “A wide range of topics are covered from a macro level such as the state of the industry to the property level with development opportunities, best practices, etc.”
- Online news and press release distribution service used by more than 40,000 organizations of all sizes to increase the visibility of their news, improve their search engine rankings and drive traffic to their Web site. Watch the CommonCraft video on how PRWeb works.
- Example: See how 3M uses PRWeb.
• A service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?
Note about Twitter: I love Twitter because it is real-time conversation, it’s easy, it’s mobile (I can send and receive Tweets from my computer and my phone), it’s business and personal. I think Twitter is the tool to watch. The integration, simplicity and mobility of this tool is key to its success.
Examples: Social bookmarketing site Ma.gnolia.com uses Twitter as a customer service and help desk. Instead of emailing the company when service is down or bugs are detected, you can follow the Twitter feed to see if they are aware of the problem and what the fix status is.
- A community for discovering and sharing events.
- Add your event. Check for networking events in your area or social media sessions or marketing events such as Case Camp.
- Easily upload and share video clips across the Internet through websites, mobile devices, blogs, and email.
- Example: Nick Haley, student at University of Leeds, loved his new iPod Touch so much that he created a commercial for it. Apple saw it. Was impressed. Flew him out to New York to re-create the ad, which now plays on television. Watch Nick Haley’s original Apple iPod Touch ad.
Where are we going? What should we take away from this presentation?
We understand that the media landscape has changed.
- Newspaper readership is down.
- Direct mail success is down.
- TV viewership is down.
- We understand that 80% of offline purchases are a direct result of online window shopping (JC Williams Group).
- We know that the use of social networks, blogs, websites continues to hold steady or rise.
- We are going to see more social media tools.
- There will be greater integration of devices.
- There will be more conversations online, definitely between customers (and hopefully between customers and companies).
- There will be more collaboration online.
- The changes in the media landscape will continue to fragment the market.
- Smaller, more personal campaigns will have greater success and impact than larger, mass media campaigns.
- Community, conversation and collaboration will continue to win over controlled, closed networks.
- As businesses we need to remember to be human. Humans are tool users. Find the social media tools that are right for your campaigns.
About the Centre for Chief Marketing Executives
CCME is an exclusive network for Canada’s chief marketing executives that addresses marketing’s role at the corporate strategy level.
About Speaker Monique Trottier
Monique Trottier is President of Boxcar Marketing, a marketing and communications firm with expertise in online marketing, web design and search marketing. Monique is experienced at bridging social interactions on the web with offline conversation. She’s adept at helping companies understand and respond to how their products or services are represented online. Talk to Monique about in-house consultations, public speaking and presentations.