February 18, 2014

Using brand ambassadors to complement your social media campaign

brand-ambassadors
Brand ambassadors know the difference between establishing contacts and spamming.

Target audience: Marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, businesses, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

Post by Andrew Lisa

Andrew-LisaIn the beginning of the brand ambassador movement, the job entailed – and still does, to a certain degree – “going out” and announcing the brand to interested parties. Social butterflies who enjoyed interacting with people, early brand ambassadors combed nightlife spots, events, conferences, and parties, bringing with them the news about the business, whose intricacies they made it their business to obsess over.

Modern brand ambassadors are much more technologically inclined, and they spend much of their time “going out” on social media. Continue reading

January 14, 2014

Should you hire a social media community manager?

community-manager

Think about who can convey your tempo to the world

Target audience: Business execs and managers, community managers, marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, Web publishers.

Chris AbrahamHiring someone to both speak and respond as you on social media is not cheating. Think of it as delegation: you can’t be everywhere, all the time. There’s just one you and there are upwards of 1.4 billion people who, at any moment, could engage you, your brand, company, product, or service — brands, companies, products, and services. Your slice of that humongous pie is surely fewer than the global membership of Facebook; however, even if your portion is modest, are you committed to not only producing content for online consumption (broadcasting) but listening, responding, and engaging, too?

We’re coming up on the 10-year anniversary of Facebook this February 4 and we’re still arguing about online authenticity. There’s still a core group of social media consultants who consider outsourcing your most personal social media properties as being somehow inauthentic. Sort of like cheating. Continue reading

December 9, 2013

7 emerging social media marketing trends for 2014

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Pinterest, Vine and Google Plus: three of the sites to keep an eye on in 2014.

Predictions to help businesses stay ahead of the curve

Guest post by Nikhil Jain

Target audience: Marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, businesses, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

nikhil-jainWith 2014 knocking on the door, we thought it was time to put down the eggnog and take a hard look at what’s going to be hot on the social media marketing front the coming year — and what won’t be hot.

Before we do, let’s take a quick look at a roundup of trends that have originated from the most popular social networks this year. Continue reading

October 10, 2013

How social media has changed TV advertising

camel
Image by Geico Insurance

Ad campaigns now often feature ‘second screen’ integration

Target audience: Marketing professionals, SEO specialists, social media managers, businesses, brands, Facebook administrators.

Guest post by Joseph Stark

joseph-starkSocial media didn’t just explode onto the scene over the past six years or so. In fact, it has been steadily gaining steam and heating up for the past two decades. Social networking options like SixDegrees.com and AOL Instant Messenger have been around since personal Internet access became a widespread concept in the early to mid-1990s. It’s a new development, however, that marketing campaigns are focusing their efforts on social media and capitalizing on it in a big way.

Watching television isn’t simply a matter of watching television anymore, and advertisers are taking note. People used to interact with TV through water cooler conversations about football games and plot twists, but the market has become increasingly segmented, and advertisers are now aiming to engage consumers through their viewing patterns — and social media habits. Continue reading

September 25, 2013

Book review: ‘Age of Context’ captures the pulse of new tech

Robert-Scoble-Google-Glass
Robert Scoble, co-author of “The Age of Context,” wearing Google Glass at the 2013 Startup Conference (Photo by JD Lasica).

New book, out today, identifies ‘five forces’ animating modern culture

JD LasicaEvery few years someone comes along and pulls the camera back to reveal a wider view of the technological changes coursing through the business world and larger culture. Robert Scoble and Shel Israel have done just that with their new book, “The Age of Context: Mobile, Sensors, Data and the Future of Privacy” (paperback, self-published).

The authors nicely contextualize what they call the “five forces” in what amounts to a technology megatrend: mobile, sensor devices, social media, big data and location-based technologies. These forces add up to a formidable package, one that deserves scrutiny far beyond the boundaries of greater Silicon Valley, where much of the action takes place.

age-of-context

The book goes on sale today on Amazon (though Amazon lists its release date as Sept. 5).

Scoble and Israel (both friends) convey their thesis – generally about the public good that will be served by the new contextual technologies, accompanied by the occasional caveat or warning – by stringing together short anecdotes about how people are adopting and adapting to this quickly emerging landscape.

Throughout the book, the authors raise provocative questions about how society should navigates an era of pervasive data: Who owns data being collected on individuals? How are the rules of privacy being reshaped, and who gets a say?

As someone who is immersed in Silicon Valley culture, I found myself nodding along more often than not, bemused by some of the bouts of optimistic boosterism and skeptical of some of the more grand claims. But that’s precisely why “The Age of Context” works: It raises the right questions and takes square aim at many of our cherished beliefs. We all have opinions about the effects that these transformations are casting on society, and you’ll have your own chance to cheer or jeer at the conclusions the authors draw. Continue reading