Guest Post by Damien Basile, Read his blog | Follow him on Twitter
Just recently Fast Company launched a contest to find the most influential people online. I say contest because that’s what it is. People vote if they’re encouraged or reminded to do so. The prize for “these” influencers is that the winners get their photo in Fast Company in varying sizes according to who is more influential (aka has more votes). I suppose the The more influence, the larger your photo. The only problem is that this has nothing to do with influence. It does however, have everything to do with duping friends, followers, and peers into a link bait scheme that boosts the “popularity” of the person sitting at the top of the pyramid.
Social media didn’t invent conversations, it provided us with tools to surface and organize them. Conversations about brands predates the mediums used to connect messages and aspirations with consumers.
The motivation for brands to engage in social networks varies based on the culture and agility of each company, but what is constant is the aspiration to connect with customers and prospects to earn awareness, attention and connections. On the other hand, B2B and B2C consumers have also expressed desire to connect with those brands whose intent is genuine and beneficial to the each engagement and the overall relationship. The time has come to not only engage, but do so in a way that’s mutually beneficial to individuals, brands, and the ecosystem at large.
Social Shopping is not new, but it is indeed gaining significant momentum. In fact, it represents the latest leaf in the new Conversation Prism infographic set to launch next week. Twitter too, is gaining velocity in a direction many skeptics didn’t think possible, the ability to monetize the stream. Twitter is set to introduce a new ad-powered program, @earlybird – a service that appears to emulate the daily deals powering services such as Groupon with the direct to consumer link proved by @DellOutlet.
World Cup Fever is certainly a pandemic with champions spreading enthusiasm and passion around the world. It’s not only circulating from country to country and person to person, World Cup Fever is also propagating through the social graphs of fans in social networks around the world.
On Twitter, for instance, it is because of the World Cup that a new Tweet record was established. On Thursday June 24th during the Japan vs. Denmark match, 3,282 Tweets flew across the stream every second, beating the previous record by almost 200.
My friends over at Wiley Publishing alerted me to some good news today. If you own an iPad or iPhone, Engage! is now available in the Apple iBookstore.
Now is the time for businesses to shift from experimenting with social media to strategically designing and measuring campaigns that contribute to brand resonance, positive sentiment, advocacy, and most importantly, the bottom line. While many books, talk about social media as something that businesses need to embrace, most leave marketers wondering what they need to do and how this information applies to them
I’m working on developing ideas that originated when writing Engage. It didn’t make the deadline, but wanted to share them here with you for your review and also to seek your feedback…
Everything begins with a shift in perspective from viewing stakeholders as a separate entity, “us vs. them,” to a singular view of “us ” as this enlivens a new era of community-focused marketing and engagement.
If you want to get a glimpse of the economic future, focus on the emerging trends driven by those defining the evolution of the social Web.
Social media is not only democratizing influence and upsetting the traditional media ecosystem, it is now an indicator for a potential economic resurgence. Leading metrics firm, comScore, released its Q1 U.S E-Commerce Spending Report recently, finding that online retail spending approached $34 billion in Q1 2010, which represents a 10 percent boost compared to last year. The surge also symbolizes the first time that growth rates hit double-digits since the second quarter of 2008.
In business, we learn through everything we do and it influences all that we try and repeat. When something new comes along, we tend to view it with either enthusiasm or skepticism, or in some cases a bit of both. Such is true with the advent of Social Media.
One of the most sought after answers in Social Media is whether or not engagement in social networks such as Twitter or Facebook directly correlates to customer acquisition, retention, and advocacy. Before we can earn customers however, we have to recognize that at any given time, there are also prospects. And, prospects require information and confidence in order to make decisions, in your favor of course. The answer to our question lies in social engagement.
I recently hosted a discussion on the need to lessen, not eliminate, the emphasis we place on the social media case studies and “how to” posts that are now universal, as they won’t apply to the specific circumstances or context of our challenges, opportunities, and market dynamics. I believe that we should use them solely for inspiration, but not as templates for our work. The best advice that I or anyone for that matter, can offer, lies in our ability to help you define the questions you must ask and answer yourself.
Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research firm focused on disruptive technology. A digital analyst, sociologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and influenced the effects of emerging technology on business, marketing, and culture. Solis is also globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. His new book, What's the Future of Business (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold and flourish in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. Prior to End of Business, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.