May 8, 2013

Little Bird: A game changer for tracking influencers

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Photo by Jessica May H on Flickr (CC BY license)

New social tool helps agencies, businesses mine verticals for the big kahunas

Target audience: Businesses, brands, digital marketers, advertising agencies, SEO specialists, entrepreneurs, educators, journalists, Web publishers.

JD LasicaIf you know how social media marketing works, then you know that social has changed the rules of marketing. It’s no longer about targeting a desired demographic and then bombarding that audience with one-way commercial messages. Madison Avenue and Don Draper live on in the form of mass marketing, but social marketing has transformed how we share commercial messages.

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In this new world, we create content, stories and shareable objects that people will find valuable and may want to share on their social networks. We try to build a community so that we can engage in a conversation that will eventually spur them to become evangelists or ambassadors for our brand. And we run campaigns that enlist their help in getting out the word about a new product, service, cause or idea.

But there’s always been a missing piece of the puzzle: Identifying your most ardent fans has been a painstaking process. Small or mid-size businesses and organizations either do it manually, through the use of Twitter and Google Analytics combined with inputting their names and social handles into a spreadsheets or Google doc, or they throw up their hands at such a daunting undertaking. Organizations with a budget and more resources dabble with a bevy of Social Customer Relationship Management (sCRM) tools or social media dashboards or social search engines or digital campaign platforms. (See my writeup on SocialToaster.) Tools like Sprout Social, Nimble, Traackr, Klout and SocialMention get you part of the way there — but only part way. (SmallAct’s SocialVision, due to launch next month, is geared to tracking brand influencers and potential donors in the nonprofit sector.) Continue reading

May 6, 2013

Blogger outreach is more PR than social media

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Discover and engage your allies with long-tail blogger outreach

Chris AbrahamThe current catch-all these days for what I do is ‘social media’. Unfortunately, when what you do is described as such, people tend to think FacebookTwitterPinterest, and maybe Google+. My expertise, however, is online community outreach and engagement. Back in 2006, I developed a strategy of blogger outreach that allowed me to reach out to more than just 25 top-tier bloggers by hand but to 2,500-5,000 bloggers.

I have always called this long-tail blogger outreach — though I would love your help with choosing a new name for it — because it focuses on the B-Z-list bloggers, the online influencers who are often overlooked by most social media teams at digital agencies.

While I agree that the top-25-50 bloggers do deserve deep, long-term, and personal engagement, spending that sort of time, over time, on “everyone else” would take all the time in the universe. So, what my team and I developed is the equivalent of blogger-brand speed dating. Continue reading