Social Media Marketers: Will they stay or will they go now?

I’m BACK!

Sorry for the blog hiatus, as I was working on a few different projects and wanted to concentrate on the growth of those. Since my last post I also moved out on my own, and learned to be much more inspired to work harder. Naturally I become inspired and motivated by social media related growth, but then I question this growth as well? Is social media, and especially social media jobs, a fad?

Recently I went on a good two week streak of job searching, resulting in nothing more than a few good contacts and one great lead. I focused on two areas, one being social media and one being hospitality. I would love to be able to focus strongly on social media, and I try to do this, but in the back of my head I keep thinking, will these jobs last? Hence why I keep hospitality in mind as well, everyone is going to need a hotel!Image

Marketing itself has been around for a donkeys age, with Gutenberg and the printing press making mass media more accessible. Businesses saw they could get their name out, and since then it hasn’t stopped growing. Many different versions of marketing are out there, and social media is the most recent. The difference between social media and what the professionals call “traditional” mediums, is that social media is much more accessible to the general public. Almost everyone has access to Facebook or Twitter, and therefore could take part in social media marketing. Not everyone has access to traditional forms of marketing like radio, television or print advertisements.  Herein lies my confusion as to if social media marketing as a profession, will last. I of course wouldn’t write a blog on social media unless I believed that it will last. I tend to second guess it every once in a while though, but in the long run, social media marketing is just another form of marketing.

Admen have talents in certain areas, and social media marketers have a talent to market in a certain way. Marketing and social media have to work seamlessly in order to have the most impact, and the social media marketer does this. Social media loses its appeal when marketing becomes to apparent, and selling takes precedence over the act of being social. Therefore, some people have the special talent of creating campaigns and ads that are directly social media related, where engaging the audience, in turn, creates a buzz about a product or company. This is different than the graphic artist or ad exec that has a talent for words and can create a slogan for a car commercial. Social media engages audiences while most marketing speaks to the audience, and each involves a different talent. Therefore, social media marketing I believe is a talent that some do have, and a profession that I believe will continue to grow!

 

I hope….

Think different?

As Apple releases it’s newest and greatest technologies, as everyone sits by and takes note, I notice something different. I watched Steve Jobs biopic… “jObs” when it was released and I found a big theme was his motto “Think Different”. As I understood not just from the film but from just watching Apple grow, this is how the company became so successful. Mr. Jobs didn’t want to be like everyone else, he wanted his company to stand out. He did this by focusing on the minute details, and flipping conventional computers on their head, example: creating the tablet market by introducing the iPad. Recently though, as more products are unveiled, we see a trend.

As we know, iPhone was released, then the iPhone 3G, then the iPhone 3GS. The iPhone 4 brought a new form factor, then small internal upgrade again for the 4S. The 5 brought a new form factor and now the 5S upgrade, again mainly internal. The iPad followed the same upgrade cycle as well, maybe with a bit more flair with new names like Air, but we all know it’s an S upgrade. There’s only so Many times a phone or iPad can become thinner, lighter and faster?

My thought is that Apple, although they do keep updating us with new and faster technology, is it differing from the motto that made them so great? I don’t believe it is. Now don’t get me wrong, I love Apple and stand by them all the way. Apple has always had a way of creating a stir, and I think they’re going to have to really do something drastic to keep up that buzz. They set the bar so high, but in the tech industry, you can’t just sit back and wait. Knowing Apple, I have no doubt they’ve got something cool, most likely am iWatch from the rumors we’ve heard, up their sleeve. I think they way they release the next product, should be different from the rest. An invite to the new campus where Tim Cook walks out with the watch, may not be so exciting. What should they do? Not to sure yet, but I have no doubt it’ll be good. But also be weary, as they build buzz and pour millions I’m R&D to make it perfect, I believe they should also rethink their introduction strategy. Once again, go back to their roots and think different.

They also have to make sure they stand out from the others, faster and better looking only go so far.

What are your thoughts on Apple current situation? Should they continue with the same update schedule for their products, same way of introducing products? Let’s hear about it!

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“Strategize not apologize”- Making your Social Media investments succesful

Social Media is now relevant in almost all businesses, it’s becoming an integral part of a companies overall business plan. It is important though in this time of change, where everyone is getting on the Social Media bandwagon, to have a strategy!  Anyone can create a twitter account, follow people and businesses that are similar and create a small following for themselves. The hard part is making sure that account, as well as others (you can’t just be part of one social outlet), fits in with your overall business plan. You must:

                                            “Strategize not Apologize!”Marketing business sales

This phrase is important for any company, because you have to create a plan for your new avenues of marketing and public relations that fit with the rest of your business plan. In other words, your Twitter and Facebook pages can’t be an after thought, instead they have to be an integral part of your business. Why you ask? Good question!

When social media becomes an after thought for your business, it has a different voice and a different feel than the rest of the business. It won’t work smoothly with your marketing campaigns because the two weren’t created at the same time. Your company Facebook page and Twitter feed will just re-iterate what your other channels already are presenting. New information meant specifically for those channels won’t be available, and your customers won’t be engaged.

A poor social media presence can also be confusing to customers. The consumer is turning more and more to social media in order to answer simple questions, and if all parties in your company are not on the same wave length, customers may receive mixed messages. This in turn will get them annoyed and you will end up looking unorganized, a big no-no in any successful company!

Below are two great examples of companies, one with a successful social media strategy, and one that seems to be an after thought!

Nike during the 2012 Summer Olympics, created the #makeitcount hashtag, and showed 11 Nike athletes and how they pushedImage their personal boundaries. They had billboards around the city with the “make it count” hashtag, a true sign that all outlets are involved in the making of a marketing plan. The whole company was behind the idea, and all marketing avenues presented the message in varying ways. The best way they showed this was by using a #hashtag, therefore consumers could easily track all parts of the campaign with one simple slogan! They created engagement as well, by allowing others to tweet or post about how they #makeitcount. It was a very successful campaign overall, especially when Adidas was actually the official Olympics sponsor!

An example, one of many, of how companies who are trying to piggy back on trending topics, is Kmart. Shortly after the Newtown shootings in Conneticut, Kmart issued a tweet paying respects to the families. A nice form of sentiment, but then they added a promImageotional hashtag about toys! Not a good form of business, and it seems little thought was put into this tweet. Yes a tweet is only 140 characters but it can have a huge impact! Also, piggy backing on a trending topic is ok, but not when its a national crisis with innocent children involved!

So remember, “Strategize not Apologize” and your company can succeed in all Social Media channels!