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Online Marketing Summit: Social Media Basics

Posted on Jun 3rd, 2009
Written by TopRank Marketing
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    At Online Marketing Summit held in Minneapolis and hosted by ClickZ, Caitlin McCabe of Sway Inc spoke to the audience about Social Media and had these insights:

    1. For people who think Facebook is just for kids, go search for groups relevant to you and you will find them!  Facebook offers many targeted marketing opportunities.

    While there are hoards of people, both professional and not, look for niche social sites where you can reach 100% of your target audience as well as an audience that is more engaged than perhaps the average Facebook user.

    People with more friends aren’t necessarily more valuable. Do they know all their friends and who are they? However, on a niche social network like, the friends are much more targeted than a big brand like Sara Lee.

    2. Check out the IKEA video channel on YouTube. Creating video content, if relevant to your target market, is excellent. In addition, the video content can create more for your target audience to bump into online.

    3. Launch a blog if you have the time and resources to allocate to it. Think about how big  the conversation is that you want to have. Do you have something to say every day, every other day or every other week. This should help you determine whether or not to start blogging.

    Do the planning before you do the blogging. If you outline a content plan and you don’t have content beyond month 1 or 2, you are going to run into problems. Get going on aligning your blog to overall marketing initiatives to help you create a content plan that extends 6 months and beyond.

    If you do start a blog, keep in mind that in the first 2 months no one will read it, comment or maybe even care. But don’t give up! Give it the time it needs and socialize. Go comment on other blogs and bring those bloggers back to your content.

    4. If you aren’t tweeting yet, start listening. What are Tweeple saying about your brand. And what are industry thought leaders saying?  Knowing what people are talking about can help you decide how and when to engage. At the very least, go register your Twitter handle so a competitor or money-minded company doesn’t do it first.

    5. You can connect Social Media to ROI, but only after an extended period of time and not your first priority. The first priority is connecting with the target audience via conversations, not marketing messages.

    Questions from the Audience:

    Q – How do you find niche social sites?
    A – You can find niche social sites by searching, looking at blogrolls and sites that target market friends are talking about.

    Q – Can you reach out to bloggers as an individual or as the company?
    A – You can do both, dependent on the blogger. If the blog you are talking to is small, then tailor the message and reach out with a non-mass email type note.