Digital Marketing Looks Good Overall, Social Media Marketing on the Rise

The Society of Digital Agencies released their Digital Marketing Outlook for 2010 and the tone was hopeful.  For the Outlook, SoDA polled more than a thousand individuals engaged in digital marketing:

  • Executives from major global brands
  • Traditional and Digital agencies
  • Vendor and service providers that operate in the Digital space
  • Freelance and independent Digital practitioners.

I think this cross section of the industry is a good representation of the collective voice and the data is quite interesting.

I really think that some of the quotes tell the story though.

Just as much as the conduit for brand storytelling has evolved, the modern consumer of 2010 plays a huge role in your marketing plans. Consumers have beyond proven themselves as content creators and distributors – they are the medium. Consumers are “living, breathing, passionate people who are redirecting traffic and content in real-time, based on personal interests, relationships, and the culture of the moment.” – Peter Caban, Mekanism

Check out the SoDA report here.

Alterian, a marketing firm that also does some research, released a report based on their interviews with  just over 1000 marketers.  The findings were very much what I’d expect.  More than half of respondents said they’re going to invest in social media marketing.  A third said they are investing in social media monitoring and analysis.  Close to half said they don’t incorporate web analytics data into the customer and email database.

Check out the Alterian report.

Conversationalists New in Social Technographics

If you’ve never read Groundswell, add it to the list of books to read soon.  Groundswell does a great job of explaining how the internet is empowering customers and how businesses can adapt to this new environment and thrive in it.  In the book, they have a useful graphic that profiles people (US online adults) by the ways they use the internet.  There are spectators, creators, critics, etc… By grouping individuals this way, Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li are able to give some profound insights.

Check out their post on the topic at the Groundswell blog.

Social Technographics

To Tweet or not to Tweet

So we’re looking at some pretty popular tactics for businesses and helping you decide whether or not this tactic is right for your business.  When deciding whether or not to use these applications, you must understand the application.  If you can’t explain what Twitter is, then you shouldn’t be using it.

Let’s first summarize what the tool is.

Evan Williams, one of the founders of Twitter, does a great job of introducing it here and sharing some of the ways businesses use the tool!

Summary: Twitter is a service that allows you to post 140 characters or less in an ‘update’.  People who have subscribed to your posts (followers) will receive those messages.  They can opt to receive your posts via SMS text message as well.  Messages can be searched as well using the internal search engine.  In order to tag your message you’d put a # in front of the category word.  (ex. We love #firmdigital blog posts.)  You can also include links in twitter though due to the length of some links, companies like TinyURL help you shorten them to make more room for your posts.

Now that you have a basic understanding of what Twitter is, ask a few questions.

Is your customer here? This is an important question to ask.  In addition to your customer, you may have other audiences that you would want to reach like potential employees, the media, policymakers, and so on.  You could check out the age demographics of Twitter users, or use a couple of key searches to see if people are talking about a problem that your product offers a solution for.   One could also see if the competition is using Twitter and see what their following looks like.  This is key because you want to know how many potential/current customers could be in this group and then you need to figure out how to get them to follow your tweets.

How would you use the tool? You could send your blog posts with tiny urls or send out discount codes via the twitter feed.  Some businesses send updates on job postings.  Some businesses send information about where they’ll be heading for promotional events.  These things could be useful for you. Twitter also may have useful data you can gather.  Use the search function to see what your subject area trends are.  Some associations and industry organizations have Twitter profiles as well.

You may be a perfect Twitter fit, but take the time to find out.  This post is a start to helping you find out whether or not Twitter would work for you.  Remember to always factor in the time it would take to begin using the tool.

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