RSS

Category Archives: Social Media

A Marketeer’s work is never done


Image

 

I was asked to do a presentation to Hull University Students this week on Digital Marketing.  After mulling over how I should approach the lecture, I  have to admit I was a little bit nervous about talking to a group of young adults about one aspect of Digital Marketing….social media, which I was sure they would know more about that I do.

It occurred to me that whilst they might know more about social media tools than I do but did they really understand how it might be applied in the work place and in particular for smaller businesses.

I did wonder if businesses will recruit graduates and expect them to be social media experts because they use the tools a lot in their personal life.  Using Facebook/ twitter/ snap chat to communicate with friends and find out information, is a lot different to coming up with Digital Marketing Strategies and generating sales and growth for companies.

Hull University Business School had a real awareness of this concern which is why they invite guest lecturers to come and talk about their real experiences of marketing for a variety of organisations.  It is often a criticism leveled at Universities that they teach theory but graduates are not prepared for the world of work.  This was certainly the case when I left university….many moons ago!

By doing a case study on the digital marketing I have used in marketing a medium sized family business I hoped to demonstrate to the students how the tools they are familiar with (Google, Social Media, Video, Email) could be used to market a business and a brand. I talked about the challenges we face (constant change, budgets, resource);  the things that have not worked so well for us and the remarkable (and unexpected) success we have had.  These successes inlccuded increasing sales of used cars by 46% following a PPC campaign; increasing our reach on social media by 1200%; and the great feedback we have had from customers on our videos.

I also wanted to show that marketeers can not rely on just one medium to bring in the sales and that digital tools can be used for different things.  We have not generated any sales through Facebook, for example, yet but our audience and engagement with customers and potential customers has increased.

Finally I wanted to show students that marketeers are never done!  Marketing and in particular Digital Marketing is constantly changing and you can feel like you are always behind the curve.  The key is to be open to new things, keep an eye on trends and be prepared to keep learning.  In a way you never leave university, your degree is just another step in the journey to becoming a marketer, that is something they do not tell you in a text book.

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Twitter – We really are better connected


Last night I attended homage2fromage, a Leeds based cheese club.  The club was the brain child of two cheese lovers Nick and Vicky, and in the 6 or 7 months it has been running they have gone from a small gathering of 20 or so cheese lovers to a membership of over 80 people. It was a really great evening of learning about and tasting Italian cheeses, it was also fantastically social and I met loads of really interesting people.

The cheese club started and was promoted through the social network Twitter and last night there was lots of people meeting face to face, for the first time, who had already interacted on Twitter.  It got me thinking about the social network and how it has impacted on my social life and my involvement in the community that I live in.

There are lots of noises about social networking being the death of conversation and social interaction.  There are even some scaremongers who would have us believe that the future sees us all locked in our homes only interacting on-line and becoming socially inept and lonely.

I beg to differ, by using social networks such as Twitter I have found out more about what is going on in Leeds and my local area and I have genuinely felt more connected to the place I live.  I have met new people and developed both business and personal relationships.

Last year I attended an event called the Clandestine Cake Club, where people who love cake and baking get together to eat cake and make friends. Started in Leeds the organisation has used Twitter to generate interest and build a network of cake clubs all over the world.  I first saw a tweet from Lynn, the founder of Clandestine Cake, and I started to follow her and connect with others with a passion for baking.  I have now attended 3 cake clubs, met some great people and had some fab nights out.

Through Twitter I have been to bars and restaurants that I would not have discovered and art exhibitions and events that I would not have known about, all of which have expanded my horizons and taught me something about the city I live in. A year ago I responded to a tweet from Culture Vulture about an opportunity to get involved with Yorkshire Dance as a volunteer.  I responded and I am now a volunteer on their marketing committee.

I moved to Leeds about 5 years ago after living in London and Sydney and I was constantly bemoaning the fact that there was nothing going on in the city, I was wrong. I just didn’t know about it and didn’t know how to find out.  Twitter has opened my eyes to the wide range of stuff that is happening and more importantly encouraged me to get involved.  I feel more connected to the place I live and the people in it.  I was speaking to a fellow cheese clubber (Ewan Mitchell) who suggested that Leeds has really bought into Twitter, more than other cities, if this is the case I think other cities can learn from the “Leeds Experience”.

Social Media is a tool that individuals and businesses alike can use to engage, excite and converse with an audience but the real power is translating that into real life connections and relationships.

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Facebook Fatigue…have you got it?


Interesting to read an article in The Drum http://thedrum.co.uk/news/2012/02/06/global-internet-survey-charts-facebook-fatigue this week about some research done on internet usage by GlobalWebIndex which, amongst other things highlighted decline in Facebook usage amongst the early adopters. Coined as “Facebook fatigue” it seems that these early adopters might now be leaving Facebook behind.

Whilst at the outset this might look like bad news for Facebook, in practice it really isn’t. Early Adopters tend to represent around 13% of consumers and they are likely to be more fickle and move onto new technologies quicker than others.

Facebook has experienced rapid growth since 2009, 5 years after the launch in 2004.  This growth will have been made up of consumers labelled as the Early and the Late Majority.  The Early Majority wait until the Innovators and Early Adopters have given something their seal of approval before committing.  This group can represent around 34% of consumers and once they start signing up the medium goes into the biggest growth phase eventually attracting the Late Majority – again around 34%.  This is where Facebook is probably now and it is inevitable as it becomes more mainstream that the cool kids, innovators and early adopters will tire of it.

It is no different to the band you liked when no one else knew about them graduating to being on the playlist at Radio 1. Suddenly they lose their appeal, the exclusivity of the club is no more and the values that you once so admired seem to become swamped by commercial drivers.  For Innovators and Early Adopters the fact that their Dad and their Nan are on Facebook and that big business are set to invest, moves it from cool to mainstream and there will inevitably be a decline in interest from this group.

For Facebook, however, this is the coup.  They now have on board the consumers who are the most loyal, the least reluctant to move to new technologies and the least concerned about being “cool”.  These people have developed networks, connected with friends past and present, shared information and personal details with something that they trust.  It is the perfect time to announce a flotation on the stock market because this adds to the credibility of the business in their eyes.

It seems Facebook have succeeded where MySpace failed. MySpace went after the cash too early and lost credibility amongst their following which was substantially smaller than Facebook’s. They have since struggled to regain this and with recent reports that even their employees have lost faith in it, it remains to be seen if the recent joint venture with Panasonic will save them. They would need offer something innovative and new to win back some of the Innovators and Early Adopters they have lost, get them to breath new life into their space and champion it to those more reluctant to take risks.

Some research done in the states suggests that early adopters are still using Facebook on a regular basis and it might be that the talk of “Facebook fatigue” outweighs the reality of people disconnecting from the space.  Whilst our friends and family are talking and connecting on Facebook we have a compelling reason to stay that is part of human nature….we don’t want to be left out or miss anything.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,