Social Media and its Effects on Marketing Today
By Ryan Gumb
Social media has become a regular part of everyday life for countless individuals around the world. When we wake up in the morning the first thing that we do is grab our phones to check our social media accounts. In fact, for many of us, the time spent sleeping is the longest period of time we go without checking our social media accounts. It is an undeniable fact that social media has made its way into our society in a variety of different aspects. One of the greatest ways that it has impacted society can be found in modern marketing and advertising.
Prior to the emergence and subsequent boom of social media, the faces of marketing and advertising were very different. What is now known as “traditional media,” was referred to simply as “media.” Television and radio ads, as well as print ads in newspapers and magazines, were often the direction that marketers opted to go in. Often times, press releases would need to be drafted and submitted to news publishers in order to get the word out about whatever it was that was being promoted. With the emergence of the internet, digital advertising began to blossom. Buying ad space on websites became commonplace, whether it be through side banners, videos, pop-ups, or even via blogs. While all of these methods of marketing and advertising still exist to this day, they have become less prevalent in the wake of social media marketing.
Social media has allowed companies to connect more directly with their customer base than ever before. Customers now have a tool at their disposal that will allow them to directly contact a company that they plan to do business with, allowing for customer service to take place at a rapid, and sometimes instantaneous pace. Social media also provides companies with an opportunity to promote themselves in a very cost effective manner. It may cost money to pay a social media manager or to run paid ads, but social media is still cheaper than many of the other methods of advertising that had previously been more popular.
Some companies even opt to utilize services such as Sendible and Hootsuite which allow them to streamline and queue social media posts in advance. Social media has also brought forth the emergence of “influencers.” Influencers are individuals with significant followings on social media who partner with brands in order to promote their products or services. They essentially act as thought leaders, influencing their followers to patronize the brands that they are working with. Many companies have found success by making use of social media influencers, and this has provided them with another method that they can utilize to connect with potential customers.
Additionally, social media gives companies an opportunity to establish a brand personality for themselves. Wendy’s is a prime example of this brand personality development. Wendy’s is famous for their Twitter account, which is snarky and sarcastic, often times making witty comments back at people who reach out to them on the platform. Often times, they will even throw a friendly jab at some of their biggest competitors, such as McDonalds and Burger King. This tongue-in-cheek approach has worked very well for Wendy’s, but brands must be careful, as social media can lead to offensive conversations and ruin the reputation of the company. The minute that something is put on the internet, especially on social media, it is there forever, and many companies have experienced severe backlash for things that they posted online.
In conclusion, social media has completely changed the landscape of the world of advertising and marketing. Brands now have direct access to customers, and customers now have direct access to brands. While this may mean that it is easier than ever to reach a customer base, it is not necessarily a completely positive thing, as brands are more under the microscope than ever before, and must now make sure that everything they say and do is being perceived positively by the general public. The use of targeted social media ads, influencers, and positive direct customer interaction can establish strong reputations and personas for companies who would have had a hard time growing a few years ago.
How to Be a Better Client and Maximize Your Marketing Efforts
Some industries are labeled with a bad reputation no matter how trustworthy the individual business entity is. Auto body shops and marketers are two such industries. So what happens when a well-known marketing agency teams up with Staten Island’s only environmentally friendly auto body shop to increase business? This week’s Vonsense podcast, “How to be a better client” can answer that question.
This week the Von Agency team spoke with Barry Crupi, Co-owner and operator of Barry’s Auto Body to get his opinion about why his various marketing campaigns have been successful.
The first point that Barry brought up was the need for the client to know what s/he expects to gain from the marketing campaign. There are many forms of marketing – from Facebook ads, to LinkedIn, to YouTube videos and podcasts. Each platform presents different creative opportunities. As a client it is important to communicate your goals to your marketer and to work with them to adjust the campaign to optimize performance.
Passariello brought up the importance of tracking. In his words, “If you can’t track it, don’t do it.”
The team discussed the importance of being realistic when it comes to expectations. Several of the campaigns Politika created for Barry’s Auto Body were a bit edgy and resulted in a few negative comments even though the overall campaign was successful. As Barry said, “Sometimes you have to ruffle a few feathers in order to get people’s attention.”
The group discussed involving family in marketing campaigns as was the case with the “I Gotta Guy” series in which Barry, his sister and partner, Michelle and his father appeared in the video. Barry said that it was extremely important because all of his family is involved in the community so people recognized them in the video and connected them to the business.
That led to the discussion about what role community involvement plays in marketing. Barry emphatically stated that volunteering in the community and donating to local non-profits was extremely important because that creates trust between the community and your business. When small business engages with charitable institutions, everyone wins.
The group all agreed that customer service is the best marketing opportunity a business has. When you provide a quality experience for your customer you establish a solid base for word of mouth business, especially in today’s competitive market when customers are not geographically restricted on where they can shop.
To learn more about how to be a better client when dealing with a marketing agency, listen to this week’s edition of Vonsense:
Why and How to Launch a Podcast
In this fast-moving, digital age, convenience is key – that’s why, after losing a ton of holiday sales to Amazon, Toys ‘R’ Us has decided to close an additional 200 stores. After all, shopping online from your living room couch is far more convenient than driving to the store, finding a parking spot, searching a 20,000 square-foot-building for the item you want to buy, then standing in a long line of frustrated parents and screaming children waiting to pay.
Even utilitarian tasks, such as checking the weather and turning on the lights, are being simplified with products like the Amazon Echo and Google Home.
But making things convenient isn’t enough to attract millennial shoppers. If you want this demographic to spend their money on your product, you have to give them content- and not just any content either. Millenials want valuable content that can be consumed effortlessly in a short period of time while they drive, work out, do laundry or tackle any other task that requires less than 100% of their attention. Podcasts are a perfect medium by which to deliver your message because they tick off both boxes.
Launching a podcast is one of the best ways to spread awareness about your business, cause, hobby or message. Approximately 24% of Americans (67 million people) above the age of 12 listen to podcasts monthly. That’s a staggeringly large number of potential disciples primed to receive your message. If that statement of fact didn’t sell you on the reach of podcasts, consider this- 21% of Americans practice Catholicism which means that podcasts are more common in this country than a 2,000 year-old religion.
So now that you’re convinced that podcasts are far reaching, you will need to establish a format that people will want to follow. Unfortunately, there is no “secret sauce” for building a successful podcast. However, there are a few tips and tricks that will increase your chances of engaging your audience and attaining steady growth.
Consistency is important when launching a podcast. Know how many hours you are able to dedicate to your podcast, then build a schedule for creating and posting your content and stick to it. Be realistic when determining the amount of high-quality content you are capable of producing and the number of hours you are willing to put in. Remember, if you want your audience to be loyal to you, you must be loyal to them.
Professional equipment and a suitable environment can make a good podcast great. Be sure to use state-of-the art equipment, and top-notch software to deliver the highest-possible sound quality to your audience. Each and every episode becomes an audible representation of you and your company so don’t cheap out.
Generating content that your target audience considers valuable is one of the most important steps in creating a successful podcast; do your research. Keep yourself open to suggestions and try to find interesting guests who can relate to your audience.
It is important that your content lives on a variety of different platforms to allow your audience an opportunity to listen, engage, and comment with ease. Remember, content and convenience are essential.
Hiring a professional to edit and distribute your podcast can increase the number of active listeners and keep them interested.
Lastly, it is important to give your podcast a title that will grab people’s attention and help them understand your goals.
The wealth of voice-activated technology available on the market today is making podcasts more accessible. You can take advantage of this valuable and cost effective medium to tell your story to the millions of people waiting to hear it.
Need help building or marketing your business podcast? Contact us on one of our social media pages or call at (718)-873-4004.
Politika will launch its company podcast, “Vonsense: Navigating the Digital Landscape”, on March 1st. We will be providing tips on digital marketing, public relations and the ever-changing world of social media. Don’t miss out!
Blurred Lines: Why Social Media Marketing Just Got Tougher
By Joseph Corrado Quadara
If you’re an avid social media user (like 80% of the U.S population) you’ve probably noticed the frequent updates that take place on your favorite platforms. These changes happen so often that users are left confused and frustrated. Seems counter-intuitive since the purpose of the platform is to provide a positive user experience.
It seems like social media companies are spiraling deeper and deeper into a game of Monkey in the Middle. On one side are the billions of loyal users essential to a company’s success. On the other side are the millions of businesses/advertisers who pay the bills. With update suggestions from both sides, the company is regularly forced to make a choice between generating revenue and keeping its users happy. It’s a tough position to be in and the problem doesn’t end there.The executives of these companies must continually improve their platform to keep up with existing competitors.
With these constant pressures, the reputation and uniqueness of these platforms are at risk. Facebook users are becoming frustrated with the number of advertisements in their newsfeed. Unhappy customers? Time for another change.
” The first changes you’ll see will be in News Feed, where you can expect to see more from your friends, family and groups. As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media,” said Mark Zuckerberg in a recent post.
Good news for users but bad news for businesses who purchased Facebook advertising in order to be seen. It seems like Mr. Zuckerberg is focusing more on the user-experience and less on his bank account which has ballooned to a whopping $73 billion.
As a direct result of keeping up with the competition, the less wealthy, Twitter was forced to make some big changes. Since its inception, Twitter has been famous for its limiting the number of characters in its posts. This 140 character platform was once so popular that the act of creating a post, “tweeting,” was given a name by its users and included in the OED (Oxford English Dictionary). Caving to the pressure to assimilate, Twitter is now allowing users 280 characters in their Tweets, crushing the platforms only unique feature and leaving President Donald Trump’s entertaining tweets the only reason to sign on.
You don’t have to be psychic to know that social media platforms will continue to change. However, you do need to stay on top of these changes if you want to continue to use them as an effective marketing tool for your business. Unless your business is social media, the best way to capitalize on the platform would be to hire a professional. At Politika, our Social Media Managers remain up to speed on the newest platform updates. We analyze your business goals and create a plan to achieve them in an effective and measurable manner. As the line that separates one social media platform from another is becoming more and more blurred, the experts at Politika will focus on making your marketing campaign a complete success!
The Times Have Changed: Social Media and Relationships
You had friends, but now you have Facebook friends and real friends. Couples used to chat during dinner, but now they scroll through Tumblr while waiting for the food to arrive. You used to experience accidents and embarrassing moments once, but now your friends have taken to Instagram with #epicfail for the world to see your least delightful moments. And there was a time when friends roamed around the neighborhood and played games, but now most of us spend our free time visiting websites like Buzzfeed and read articles about how things were in the 1990s. Damn. Things have changed so fast in the past fifteen years, it’s no surprise that those born in the early 1990s feel so old. (more…)
How to Avoid and Resolve SEO Penalties
The launch of Google’s Penguin and Panda algorithm update has made Google the search-engine law enforcement and in turn, has changed the overall focus of website development and maintenance, and social media marketing (or SMM). Penguin was designed to decrease the search engine rankings of websites that violated Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and Panda was designed to decrease the search engine rankings of low-quality websites. Thanks to Penguin and Panda, websites with a high search engine ranking possess valuable content, is intuitive, is user-friendly, and is original. Websites that do not abide to Penguin and Panda guidelines can potentially face one or all four penalties: layout penalty, content penalty, link penalty, or over-optimization penalty. Websites struck with these penalties will suffer a drop in their search engine ranking and overall authority in the particular search term. The more penalties a website has, the lower its search engine ranking will be. These penalties were implemented to ensure fairness within search engine rankings and to ensure organic search results for search engine users. (more…)
Social Media Marketing Tips: Measure your results
If you don’t measure your results you will never learn what or when to post , you will never see if your social campaigns are working. Tracking is paramount, Google analytic will provide you with a good starting point and it is free; if your not able to setup Google analytic or get a professional too do it for you you can always fall back on the social networks , most of them provide a way for you to see tracking information , one example of this is Facebook Incites.. study your audience behaviors , get to know their habits and you will improve your social networking.
Social Media Marketing Tip: Engaging Promotions and Contest
The best way to reward your loyal social media followers and to obtain a new audience is promotions and contests. You can run specials and promotions that offer cash prizes or free products and services for the users that shares your content the most (Leader-board Contests) or offer a prize for the most likes obtained in a specific period of time. There are endless possibilities for social contest and promotions use them to your advantage.
Social Media Marketing Tip: Build social post around your business / holiday schedule
Don’t forget to schedule post for the holidays and for your company milestones. If you own a gym , make sure your class schedule is part of your post rotation, if your a restaurant owner make sure to post your daily specials in the morning, if your selling a product make sure to send your specials out via social media. Information is king, provide it for your members and they will engage with you more often and visit your page more frequently.
Social Media Marketing Tip: Timing is Everything
As in life so goes social media, timing is everything. Analyze your businesses social media pages to learn when your audience is most active and then plan your posting schedule around your audience not your convenience. Knowing the best time to make a post is as important as the content that is in it. There are many analysis tools that can help you make this decision like; Google Analytic , Facebook Incites and a myriad of others. It is your objective to get the most eyes as possible to see your content , time it right and you will.