Archive for September, 2010

7 Realities of Social Media that will change in 6 months

Friday, September 17th, 2010

We’ve been thinking a lot about measurement lately at Applebox Studios. Not only measuring our efforts as an ad agency in Pittsburgh, but also our social media efforts, as well as our marketing initiatives and how it all plays out into today’s economy and it utlimately affects you, the consumer. Thus, we came up with a couple of absolutes that for now, make sense to us.

  • Social media measurement will adapt with the changing of external markets and it‚Äôs influencers.
  • The rules of engaging the consumer and marketing to that consumer are changing at light speed with the advantage shifting towards the consumer.
  • Social media engagement should be measured differently in tough economic times.
  • The tone of marketing and social media marketing is changing.
  • Consumer expectations of social media will not change during¬† the current economic woes because they haven‚Äôt set any precedents yet.
  • The importance of social media optimization and SEO has never been larger.
  • Social nets have a better chance to thrive now, more than they did at this point last year.

Why most people don’t know about your blog.

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Is this your company?

You’ve been told that you should have a blog. Though the reasons why seem somewhat hazy. You’ve been told that you yourself should write the blog posts. Though the last time you wrote anything of length it was a letter to the judge to try and keep you out of Juvee.

Ok maybe I’m kidding about that last part. You know, you probably actually read some blogs yourself. Though you might not even know they are blogs. If I asked you what the basic structure of a blog was, could you tell me? If I asked you what the purpose of a blog was, would you be able to muster an answer?

What If I said it was for SEO purposes-would you know why and how? If I told you that you should write a blog so that you can connect with your customers-would you know how? Would you know what to say? Would you know where they are?

Please don’t tell me that your company does have a blog…

You keep hearing that social media is THE thing that your company needs to get into-but what do you know about social media? Do you even have the time to answer that question, and any of the questions asked above?

If I were you, I would at least make time to learn it before you decide whether it is right for you.

Most people don’t know about your blog, because you don’t what you’re doing or why you’re doing it.

7 Ways to Doom your Marketing or Social Media Marketing Strategy.

Friday, September 10th, 2010

Sometimes marketers think they know what they are doing. Other times, if they don’t, they pretend that they do.¬† Luckily, our little Pittsburgh based ad agency is smart enough to know that it’s easier to say I don’t know or to appeal to a higher power than it is to suffer these 7 marketing mistakes.

1) The lights are on but no one is home: In your push to increase customer loyalty and retention, you’ve driven your customers away with poor messaging, poor communication and complete disdain and compassion for them and the product they love.

2) We must be #1: In your zeal to hit the ground running with your product, you have failed to realize that the product has serious deficiencies and you choose to launch anyway. Your product awareness campaign has only increased the awareness of how bad the product might actually be. Why? You were not listening and your timing could not be worse.

3) You have burned bridges. In your quest to create brand advocates you have created the anti-brand champions who have made it their goal in life to do everything in their power to make sure that your brand does not succeed. You made enemies and yet you continue to not listen and you decide to push on without addressing it.

4) You really don’t know who your customer is. In pushing to roll out your social media marketing plan, you miss the mark completely¬†and are marketing to the wrong¬†people. In your¬†rush to create new revenue streams, you‚Äôve decided to beat a dead horse. Not knowing your customer and assuming you did. Bad.

5) Stubborn as an old school mule. You decide to do it your way. You think your one way style of contacting and talking at the customer using the latest social media tools should work just fine in its own intrusive way. You have decided that frequency is better than reach and breadth is better than depth. You have not heard a thing that has been said.

6) You’re an impostor.¬† You‚Äôve decided that you need to hide behind a few layers. You don‚Äôt want the customer to know anything about you, the company, the realness of the people behind the product. Nothing.¬† One of the most important aspects of social media marketing is being transparent, or had you not heard that yet?

7) You’re a liar. You’re not who you say you are. This speaks as much to #6 as it does all of the rest.  But one of the keys to any relationship be it personal, or business, is honesty.

Have anything to add?

What Social Media is Not…

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Often times we get caught up in the semantics of what social media is and isn’t. In this slide share presentation we look at what social media is not.

The RO-Why of Social Media

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

So do we talk about the ROI of social media or KPI’s? Do you know the difference? The difference is similar to the difference between an advertising agency and a company that focuses on marketing. Or better yet, Heinz Field and PNC park.

From a purely definitive standpoint ROI is pretty basic, ROI = (X – Y) / Y, If you invest $10 and get back $30, your ROI is (30 – 10) / 10 = 2 or 2 times your initial investment.

Now let’s apply that to social media. Having solid goals and a realistic baseline measurement is crucial to figuring out your social media ROI.¬† So before you set out to measure and monitor your social media returns, you need to have a clear idea of what it is you want to accomplish. <—-Isn’t this something you would do in any business situation?

So once you have your goals defined, you need to gauge the baseline for your levels before starting or changing your social media strategy. For example, if your goal is to increase social media mentions of your company, in order to measure the ROI of any actions taken toward that goal, you need to know where you stand now. You can’t evaluate the ROI accurately without a baseline. If the baseline is zero, so be it.

Now KPI’s are completely different in that you’re tracking and making sense of interactions, which is a fundamental part of social media. Many of these metrics are factored into the notion of “Key Performance Indicators” and in the same way you can score different interactions to create some kind of interaction index, each one has it’s own merit. For instance here are 15 fairly common social media KPI’s.

  1. Alerts
  2. Bookmarks
  3. Comments
  4. Downloads
  5. Email subscriptions
  6. Fans
  7. Favourites
  8. Feedback
  9. Followers
  10. Forward to a friend
  11. Posts
  12. Social media shares / participation
  13. Uploads
  14. Views
  15. Widgets

So what are the KPI’s that you are using within your organization to measure your social media interactions?