Monday, September 23, 2013

You may not vote, but you do tweet.

Social media platform used for advertising is nothing new. However, the current trend for for various government organizations to reach out to their constituents and citizens via social media platform is all the buzz.

Two social media platforms stand out in this trend are Twitter and Facebook. Twitter gives the constituents and citizens a direct way to speak their minds and communicate with the government organizations. Forget the email and snail mail, direct your tweet to your politician and organization. There is no wait time and, there is maximum visibility. When government organizations reply to people's tweets, people get a sense of significance and connection. The more content and interaction between the followers and  content creator, the better the bond. Take this White House Twitter account for example:

White House Twitter accounts uses their twitter to inform, educate, and appeal. Other political organizations are getting more involved as well.

Another way government organizations are using social media platform is to reach out and gauge certain demographics that are hard to grasp via orthodox means. In United Kingdom, Rushmoor Borough Council is using Facebook to gauge community opinion to help structure and plan their new bills.
As more government organizations become aware of the implications of the social media platforms can have on establishing bonds between their citizens, the better policies will reflect the opinions and concerns of the respected communities. Social media platforms are giving everyone a voice.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Twitter filing for IPO: Ingenious or Stupid??

As everyone should know by know, Twitter is following the footsteps of Facebook. No, they are not changing their privacy policy, but they are filing for IPO. This leaves the world of social media marketing to wonder, "Will Twitter be annoying now?" There is logic to this question in that with going public and offering stocks, every company is burdened with the pressure of making the stockholders happy. This means generating target profits or beyond every quarter in every way possible.

Investors are not exactly in the best interest of making social media marketing more pleasant and consumer friendly. They want returns, returns, and returns. This kind of risk makes Twitter be subject to advertisements. Although I personally have only been using Twitter for over 3 months, I am very happy with the power it gives me to directly interact with celebrities and brands. However, with the possibilities of advertisements, I may turn away from it entirely. I feel that this sentiment is shared by many users of Twitter who are likely at least be less satisfied if there were to be advertisements.

As a company that provides a great platform for social media marketing, Twitter needs to have the social media savvy consumers at the top of their list. Twitter is one of the greatest playgrounds for marketers and consumers alike to experiment with the possibilities of social media marketing. Just think about the impact of hashtags!

As of this moment, we cannot do much other than hope for the best for Twitter. This has the potential to make or break the company. I certainly am hoping for the best.  

When will you learn marketers????

Social media marketing has been prominent for more than a decade; however, we still see marketers fail miserably in utilizing such wonderful tool. This article by Steve Olenski points out one of the most costly mistakes marketers make to this day: focusing on selling rather than building a brand in social media.

In discussion of this saddening trend, I want to focus on the two of the many points highlighted by Mr. Olenski: 
1.Marketers are putting more emphasis on selling than they are at establishing relationships with consumers via branding.
 2.Marketers would rather try and sell you something than say tell you a story.

It's surprising to find out that marketers still continue to put more emphasis on selling. From Mark 4450, we have learned plenty of reasons of why this does not work in social media. More than anything else, consumers these days are just too smart to fall for such cheap tactics. Everyone is savvy to realize when marketers are trying to sell something than establishing relationships. Most consumers disregard any message or content on social media when it turns out to be an advertisement.

What consumers want out of brands in social media is real content. Content that tells you a story. Consumers want to be involved with the brands, and stories help them connect. The more connected you feel to a brand, the more your loyalty grows. Stories generate interaction which can increase brand equity. As a consumer myself, I love to be involved when brands tell me a story. It makes me feel like the company cares about what I have to say.

Hopefully, marketers will learn from these mistakes. There is so much to be gained from social media marketing. It is not about who has the more likes and the most traffic. Utilizing social media marketing the right way will be beneficial both to the consumers and the companies.