Category Archives: Social Media

Advertising Fireworks, Social Bonfires

By Kelly Wright

“If advertising is a firework, then social media is a bonfire”. This phrase was coined back in 2009 by innovator John V Willshire. But what does this analogy mean for marketers?

Fireworks = Advertising

Think of advertising like fireworks – a big bang that demands attention. They’re great for raising awareness, and good ones draw people in from miles around. But they rarely leave a lasting impression – they fizzle out and leave people looking for the next bang to capture their attention. You have to keep lighting more and more to keep people interested, which can be expensive.

Bonfire = Social Media

If advertising is a firework, then social media is a bonfire. Building a bonfire takes time and it can be an effort to keep it going. It may go out but persevere. Slow to start, collaborative to build, it slowly gets bigger and brighter. As the fire gets bigger, more people are attracted to the warmth until it becomes the place to be. It’s where you make your longer term engagements, sharing and shaping opinions. From a small start you can end up with a hotbed of activity, just like social media.

Bonfire Night = 360 Campaign

Firework Display - 5th November - EnglandLike Bonfire Night without fireworks, advertising and social media work best when used together. Think of it as an integrated approach, not one or the other. If you have a raging bonfire already, use a few fireworks to create a buzz and bring people to the fire. If your fireworks are already grabbing attention, keep your audience by getting a good bonfire going and building a relationship.

How to Make the Most of Your Social Media Strategy

By Kelly Wright

From videos and blogs to Twitter and Facebook, social media has become part and parcel of modern marketing. But some people are reluctant to invest resources in it as a worthy marketing strategy.  These five best practices will show you how to generate significant return on investment through social media.

1. Listen to your customers
Social media comes in many forms so you need to find out where your customers are. You need to know them inside out to understand their buying cycle and how they consume content. Plug into the channels your customers use and focus on them. Engage with customers to find out what they’re most interested in and why, and act on every response. Asking the right questions and engaging with your customers in the right way is the first step towards a strong ROI.

2. Align with traditional marketing
Social media is an invaluable communication channel with the unique capability to capture customer feedback in real-time. Your social media strategy should support and complement your broader product marketing strategy. Compelling messaging and a coordinated communication plan will help you run these in tandem. For example, if you run an email campaign for a new product, you should support it with social outreach. Use unique tracking URLs for each channel so you know what vehicle drives the most traffic.

3. Map to business goals
What does ROI mean for your company? Is it total number of sales or qualified leads? More downloads of a document or money saved? Establish your goals and clear metrics, then determine what tactics will help you achieve them. Try to broaden your criteria from traditional captured metrics from Google Analytics, Omniture etc (page views, time on page) to other measurements. You may want to consider Facebook ‘Likes’ for example, but ensure you define what the Like means from a business perspective. What do you do to keep that person engaged after the initial ‘Like’? What is the conversion? When and how might that conversion happen? A conversion could be a sale, a download of campaign material or participation in a webinar or event. Determine how your conversions will be measured before you launch.

4. Don’t forget qualitative results
You can benefit from a raft of qualitative measures when using social media marketing. Comments, customer feedback, market insight, publicity, brand awareness, problem solving, customer service, event marketing and even recruitment are all possible using social media. Your company may agree to consider a range of qualitative business benefits as acceptable ROI.

5. Become a habit
A good trick is to make yourself so useful, customers turn to you first out of habit. Ask yourself what problem you can offer a clever, unique or novel solution to. Could you use this to talk about your product in creative ways that bring value to your customers? Post less to offer discounts or gain attention and more to solve customers’ problems.

Do you use social media in your marketing strategy? How do you measure your ROI?

Range Rover Cheater Revealed

By Kelly Gerrish

The truth behind the “cheater” Range Rover that went viral earlier this month has been revealed.

The £90,000 white Revere Range Rover Vogue became an internet sensation after a “spurned lover” supposedly covered it in red paint messages including “cheater”, “liar” and “hope she was worth it”.

Hundreds of people crowded round to take photos of the vehicle that was left in Knightsbridge and the car quickly went viral, with thousands of social media shares and coverage in the national press.

But as this video reveals, it turned out to be a cleverly executed publicity stunt to promote the new Revere Range Rover Vogue.

The video follows the vehicle from the design shop, driving through London until it is eventually parked outside Harrods where dash cam footage from inside the car shows hundreds of people looking and taking pictures throughout the day.

Who says marketing needs to be expensive and complicated? Sometimes the most simple ideas generate the most attention. It remains to be seen whether Range Rover will see an increase in sales, but that probably wasn’t the aim. Their brand awareness has certainly increased as a direct result of the stunt. The moral of the story? If you want people to notice you, do something completely unexpected.

Keeping It Real

By Kelly Gerrish

Thanks to the popularity of social media, today’s brands are able to react almost instantaneously to events and news. Companies need to be agile and quick off the mark when jumping on current trends, or run the risk of being left behind. Real Time Marketing (RTM) can be a great way to creatively promote your products while also interacting with your audience.

Done properly, RTM is classy, witty and hugely effective, boosting brand awareness through social sharing. Done badly, it can be embarrassing, ridiculous and irrelevant.
Here are four of our favourite examples of companies getting it right at the right time.

Oreo
When the lights went out during the 2013 Super Bowl, Oreo’s social media team were quick off the mark. Their genius ‘You can still dunk in the dark’ tweet netted more than 15,880 retweets and 6,200 favourites, becoming the watershed moment for RTM. The timing of the post couldn’t have been better, coming when many people’s attention had switched to social media in the blackout.
Oreo

NASA
NASA brilliantly inserted itself into conversations around the 2014 Oscars. As space thriller Gravity was awarded 7 Oscars, NASA spent the evening cleverly tweeting out real facts and amazing imagery using #Oscars2014 and its own hashtag #RealGravity. The result was authentic, totally relevant and on-brand for NASA.

NASA-RealGravity

Warburton’s
The best RTM campaign and responses stay relevant to their audience and their products. In July 2013, there were plenty of desperate attempts to cash in on the Royal Baby fever sweeping the globe. Warburton’s stood out as one of the best to capture the mood, staying relevant to the company’s products and sense of Britishness.

Warburtons

Smart Car
If handled well, comical responses to customers can work too. Smart Car impressively replied to a snarky tweet by amusingly disproving the science of the claim with a funny infographic. Their quick and clever response led to the brand’s increased exposure on the web.

Smart-Car

Four Steps to an Effective Social Media Strategy

By Kelly Gerrish

Social media is big news and only getting bigger. A recent report on social media habits estimated that Britons spend 62 million hours each day on Facebook and Twitter – an average of one hour per person. If you’re not already marketing on it, you’re likely to be missing a big chunk of your target market.

As a product of the Facebook generation, it’s easy to understand why people are so obsessed with social media. For marketers, the potential to grow their business via these networks is endless. Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ are just some of the prime networks every company needs to have an active presence on. It’s now inexcusable for any business that wants to thrive to not be tweeting.

social_media_strategy111

Here are four strategies to take control of your social networks and give them a boost.

1. Create a plan and stick to it

Without an execution strategy, your content is meaningless. Set a limit for how many tweets or posts to publish a day. This can be adjusted as needed but having a target will give you a benchmark. You want to be active enough to be interesting but not too active you become annoying. Plan ahead but with the flexibility to add posts in to cover breaking news in a timely manner.

2. Treat each platform individually

Content can be used across multiple channels but each network should be treated separately. Adjust your messaging to suit the channel. For example, LinkedIn should focus on educational, in-depth business-focused content whereas Instagram should feature engaging visual content.

3. It pays to talk

Never ignore a comment posted to you on any platform, whether stellar or critical. If a customer doesn’t receive a response, your lack of communication could cost you that sale and ensure they go running to your competitors in the future. Negative feedback needs to be addressed as well in a thoughtful, timely and respectful manner. Aim to create brand advocates by using your social channels as an opportunity to show how well you treat your customers.

4.  Embrace mistakes

No matter what tools and technology you use to power your marketing, don’t forget that humans are behind it. We’re the ones telling those tools what to tweet, who to email, what to publish. Mistakes are unavoidable because we’re only human after all. If you make a mistake, embrace it. If appropriate, be creative in addressing your faux-pas.

Time to Get Social

By Kelly Gerrish

The past few years has seen an explosion in social media. Ignoring it is a big mistake for any business. In an ever expanding landscape, those that don’t move with the times will be left behind.

If you’re managing social media for your business, these five surprising stiStock_000025709660_Largeatistics might make you rethink your approach.

1. Social media is now the number one online activity

We all know social media is popular but did you know it’s now officially the most common thing we do online? Social media is clearly not a fad and it’s not going away. It continues to grow as a habit as new platforms continue to appear and develop.

2. 93% of marketers use social media for business

Only 7% of marketers say they don’t use social media for their business. It’s becoming increasingly common to include social media as an integral part of an overall marketing strategy.

3. 189 million of Facebook’s users are ‘mobile only’

There are more users accessing Facebook purely from mobile devices than you think. It’s worth considering how your content will look on a smaller screen before posting it because nearly 10% of users will never look at it on a computer.

4. Two new members join LinkedIn every second

The social network for professionals continues to grow every second and is definitely worth paying attention to in your social media strategy. Make your group a great source of information to help you make the most out of the growing user base and share from your company page.

5. 25% of smartphone owners can’t remember the last time their phone wasn’t in earshot

We’ve all heard the cliché of smartphone owners who never let go of their phones but it seems it’s not too far from the truth. 25% of people aged 18-44 can’t remember the last time they didn’t have their phone with them, meaning they’re connected all day, every day.

Social media has fundamentally changed how we communicate. There has never been more immediate ways to connect with your customers. While it is undoubtedly an invaluable tool when used correctly, it must also be used with caution. The world is constantly evolving, and so must your social media strategy to adapt.

Socially Devoted to You

By Kelly Gerrish

Customers want to interact with the brands they love. More and more of us are taking to social media to engage with brands on a daily basis, be it likes, follows, shares, comments or questions. The numbers don’t lie – customers asked nearly 9 million questions on Facebook and Twitter in 2014 alone. It seems the more focused a brand is on social customer care, the more interactions they receive. But what does this mean for modern day brands?

Creating an online brand experience is an opportunity to engage and interact with customers on a personal level, speaking WITH instead of TO them. These relationships can evolve into strong brand advocates to share your message, service and products. This word of mouth advertising is the best form of marketing your brand can hope for. Every customer is connected to the conversation and has their own voice.

The constant availability of social media means we use it to raise our voice until we’re heard. Post a Facebook comment or send a tweet and often the response is instant or within 24 hours. Compare that with sending an email to a customer service team. It’s easy to ignore an email but ignore a public comment and the world sees it. Social media means customers can share their experiences with the whole world, so it pays to make their experience with you a positive one. Pay attention to them, understand their pain points and give them viable solutions.

As the volume of online comments grows, so too will the demand for ever improving social customer care. Brands can either choose to stick their heads in the sand on these very public spaces, or they can interact with their customers and try to manage the social conversations happening around their brand.

Stats Every Marketer Needs to Know

By Kelly Gerrish

Times are changing and businesses need to change to adapt. Most brands have woken up to the power of social media and realise it’s not just a fad. In fact, if Facebook were a country, it would have the third-highest population in the world. And more people these days own a mobile device than a toothbrush. Explore the changing face of social media in 2014 by watching this video and understand why every business should get social.