Our second panel of day two discussed the many ways in which Social Media Marketing can be used to help the role of the modern marketer. Our panelists here were…
- Sarah Hofstetter, Vice President, Emerging Media & Client Strategy, 360i
- Rob Key, CEO, Converseon
- Adam Sherk, Search/PR Strategist, Define Search Strategies
Rob came to the podium and delivered a very in depth post regarding the roles of modern marketers. Specifically, he highlighted the numerous ways in which norms, values and languages help to diversify the online communities that we use every day.
Rob then highlighted eight principles of karmic communication, which he feels is an important element to the growth and successful participation in social media environments…
- participate and learn
- make friends with elders
- understand community mores
- lead with altruism, come bearing gifts
- discover a community need
- learn the linguistics
- value and cultivate the relationships
- leverage these appropriately over time
Rob then dived into a review of Second Life, a three dimensional community for users to interact with one another in a virtual world. Rob, like many others, believes that the community will continue to serve as a major social network as time continues on. One particular thing that Rob has done in working on Second Life is a social to virtual experience called Second Chance Trees. This program allows people to plant a tree virtually, and then in the real world, a similar tree is planted in the world via a Google Maps mashup. It is a difficult program to convey via this live blog entry — so I would encourage you to review more about this at Second Life or by searching for “Second Choice Trees”.
Adam’s organization is actively working with large and well known brands to help teach them how to leverage the power of SEO and social media marketing for the purpose of developing in house teams. Since big brands represent such a large initiative, Adam tells us that SMM requires multi-departmental coordination. If you have ever tried to launch corporate blogs or social media communities for a commercial organization, there is certainly some truth behind this belief that Adam has shared.
Adam then helped out those in attendance by sharing some of the more common pitfalls of tapping social marketing. Such included…
- no strategy
- lack of support and resources
- poor coordination
- inappropriate content
- lack of understanding communities
- hiding your affiliation
- being overly promotional
To further guide us towards success, Adam shared his tips for success next:
- selling upper management on the concept
- getting buy-in from all key departments
- instilling a “give to gain” philosophy
- finding the right people to manage the efforts
- giving them what they need to be effective
- measuring results
Beyond these lists…
While these lists are great — it’s important to read into the messages that Adam has provided us with. My interpretation here is that in order to be successful with social media marketing, you need to have the right team and commitments in place. While many believe that social media is a quick way to gain exposure, it is also a quick way to make a fool of yourself if you do not take the right approach. Social media success is a long road that requires honesty, hard work and a consistent effort.
Adam wrapped up his fantastic presentation with some other things to consider. The one question that he poses here that stands out for me is — How will you sustain the efforts over the long term? This question begs to be answered, but it’s a tough one to tackle. When people in your organization leave, or when the organization you are with makes a change in their focus — your social media campaigns will certainly be effected. In a nutshell, be sure to cover all of your bases and plan accordingly while practicing full disclosure and transparency with your affiliations.
Sarah led off with some background on her organization, 360i. Two years ago, 360i grew out a social media division and Sarah was here to tell us how search and social truly connected. Sarah did this by covering a number of case studies that her organization has completed with major brands like HDTV, NBC, etc.
Sarah offered up many tips for increasing social media’s reach for brands, including how through the active use of social media web sites, you can control much of the search engine results for relative phrases. The key here of course is to ensure that each of these social media sites feature links to your company site actively and often.