7 Step Secret Sauce Recipe For Social Media Success

04/03/2013

Secrets in the sauceHe: I need more traffic to my blog, more followers to my Twitter account and more likes on my Facebook.

Me: So I told him the 7 Step Secret Sauce Recipe For Social Media Success. In all candour, it's nothing new but as a reminder I thought I'd pass along.

1. The End Game - Start with the end game in mind .. or as marketers might say -- your goals.

What do you want to achieve? What is success to you? Is it gaining a new audience or repositioning your brand with current customers? Is it building stronger relationships with your employees? 

2. Know Your Audience - The more you understand the profile of your audience the better you'll be able to put into play steps #3, #4, #5.  Building a personae of people you want to reach helps to go beyond traditional demographics to including digital/social behaviors. 

3. Selfless Content - Posts that take the needs of your community into consideration and are aligned with the values of your brand/company.

Mantra to repeat before hitting the publish key:

It's not about me it's about you.

4. Focused Content Direction - Choose a topic that is big enough to give you some flexibity but narrow enough to carve out a niche that sets you apart in the cluttered social media space. Helps if you are passionate or have a high interest in the topic .. to help you sustain over time.

5. Consistency Over Time/Social Platforms - To be The "go to diva or divo" - post several times a day about trends, hard to find information, hot tips, industry news.

To position yourself as a  "thought leader" consider weekly posts using platforms that offer longer formats than Twitter and can be deep linked e.g. blogs, YouTube/Vimeo (video), SlideShare. Content ideas: opinons on industry trends, current issues, interviews with leading experts.  

If you're focused on innovation or a start-up it might mean you become active on the latest shiny toy. Yes, there are times when jumping into the the new is a valid strategy.

6. Community Generosity - Identify your peers, influencers and greatest fans. Join the conversatons where they hangout. Contribute to the discussion with your ideas, links, opinions. Rarely does that mean pitch your product.

If you're in a more conservative world or your end game is to sustain your current positioning, it might mean the tried and true  blogs, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, etc. 

Keep in mind that you do not and never will "own" any social network e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, FourSquare, g+, etc. You are a renter abiding by the rules (terms of service) that can and are changed at the discretion of the network.

The only social media properties you have control over are the blogs, communities, sites you build and host yourself. 

6. Resources - Much as we might like to think that the digital world is a free for all .. if you're using social media as a business strategy keep in mind there is a cost. The price you pay is in time, human capital and yes, hard earned dollars too. 

Determining how your resources will be allocated will save you a few sleepless nights. 

7. Determine Results - Is it working? How will you know (refer to #1)if your end game is met? Think about the metrics that will provide you the greatest insight. Hint: Likes are probably not the best indicator. 

There are at least 27 billion tools (well .. that might be a slight exaggeartion but perhaps not!) to help you track, measure and analyze. Some are free while others can run you some major bucks.

A Few Resources - Tools

Twitonomy - a new fav for Twitter analysis

Curated from Social Media Examiner - 29 Tools

Curated from What's Next Blog - 6 Shiny New Objects You Can Use

He: If it's that easy why the big deal?

Me: Right, this stuff is really not as difficult as say finding the perfect jeans. (Girlfriend, now he began to look puzzled .. but you know what I mean.) But there is one more step that I forgot to mention. Gaping void your a social media specialst so am i

The spice that kicks it up a notch ...pulls it together .. it's the person who builds and implements and ensures that outcomes are met within two cultures -- that of your brand and social web.

The skill set and experience that should be brought to the party grows more sophisticated and complex as social media becomes integrated into a business' DNA. 

Social Media Manager Skill Set

Business experience, marketing experince, strategy understand and in the weeds tactics,  great verbal and written communication, knows how to write for the web, problem solving, analytic skills, expeience in web analytics, understands the concept of digital conversation, continuous learner, generously shares, team player with people of diverse backgrounds, comfortable moving between online and offline environments, creative approach to the mundane and the unexpected, ability to work in a constantly moving world, likes helping people, customer first orientation, understands the concept of selfless content, content curation and creation, importance of multiple devices, understands digital behavior and building community. 

Add to that the working knowlede of mulitple social networks, blogs, the concept of authenticity, transparancy, honesty.

Include an understanding of your brand value and promise and how content and conversations must align but not message or sell within the social web. 

Oh yes .. throw in a little passion for social media and the brand and having fun. 

I think that will do it. 

Post inspired by Amber Kapish and David Munk, Stargayzing.

Graphic credit Zazzle

Friday Fun: Entrepreneurial Spirit

03/30/2012

Friday Fun is Diva Marketing's virtual happy hour from cosmos to Jack to lemonade. A waiting for the weekend playground time to be sophisticated-silly. Or sometimes just plain silly.

  • If you don't have a dream how you gonna have a dream come true? - South Pacific 

Social media is built by people who dream and create. Two qualities of what I think of defines the entrepreneurial spirit.

Even if you're not developing a new social widget or strategy, but are exploring and using social media, I believe you have some of that spirit. You're thinking in new ways, trying a different approach.  Toss of a pink boa to you! By the way, in an innovative imitative Babson College is asking people to define "entepreneurialship." 

Entepreneurs inspire. We look at their accomplishments and perhaps we're encouraged to take our dream one step further. We look at the lessons learned that they pass along and take a few to heart. Perhaps we'll stumble over one less rock in the road. I'd like to introduce you to a couple of people who took a chance and are making their dreams come true .. some beyond their own expectations.

Think that fashion and bargains are just for divas. Think again. Jason Ross, founder of JackThreads tapped into guys who want to be cool on a budget. He built an eCommerce sample site ..with a twist. It was members only. Every aspect, from the products to the photography reinforces the brand value and promise.  Jackthreads

"We're kind of like the Robin Hood of men's clothing, minus the grand larceny and the pointy hat." - Jason Ross. MSN  Business On Main has a great interview with Jack. Worth a click and a watch. @jackthreads JackThreadsFacebook 

This week in Atlanta, the Digital Divas, a SIG of the AiMA (Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association), brought together a panel of women entrepreneurs.  Lynne Laube, President and Co-Founder, CardlyticsCaroline Van Sickle, Founder/CEO, Pretty in My Pocket and Kris Zagoria, founder, Moxie Interactive shared their stories and lessons learned of taking start-up companies to multi million dollar enterprises. 

I find it interesting what people take away from a speech. In tweets, here are some what the audience found inspirational. 

Digital divas tweets_1Digital divas tweets_2

Let's Have FUN .. You Can Win $100!

MSN Business On Main/Diva Marketing Small Business Tip Contest

 Your challenge is to share 1 idea on what inspires you when it comes to tapping into your entrepreneurial spirit.

 Rules of MSN The Business on Main/Diva Marketing Social Media Small Business Tips Contest 

1. Post your tip for how to use social media for branding on this Diva Marketing post And on this MSN Business On Mail PostIf you don't post on MSN BOM and indicate Diva Marketing you cannot qualify for the $100 prize. 

2. Identify your post on Business On Main with the words Diva Marketing

3. Winner is at the pleasure of Diva Marketing.

4. Contest ends midnight Saturday April 14, 2012.

5. You must be at least 18 years of age

6. A valid eMail address must be included on the "Post a Comment Section" of your Diva Marketing comment. (How will I know where to contact you to send your check?)

That's it .. now it's your turn! Wouldn't $100 a great way to say thank you to You? 

Looking forward to your ideas!

Thanks Rob for the edit!

Diva Marketing is part of an online influencer network for MSN Business on Main. I receive incentives to share my views on a monthly basis. All opinions are 100% mine.





 

Is Social Media A Strategy or A Tactic?

03/08/2012

  • In real life, strategy is actually very straightforward. You pick a general direction and implement like hell. – Jack Welch 

Strategy freenetwork
As BBF B.L. Ochman recently reminded me, social media has been around, and included in varying degrees (!), as a business initiative for the past ten years. Although most marketers agree social media is not a fad there is still a debate on what is social media. Is social media a strategy or is social media a tactic?

Just One Crowd Sourced Question

I was curious to understand what and why marketers thought on this issue and thought it would be a great question for Diva Marketing's sometimes series: Just One Crowd Sourced Question.

I reached out to people within social networks and invited them to reach out to their networks and answer .. just one question. It's a quick turn around .. a few days to respond. The goal, of course, is to bring you diverse opinions so we can learn together. 

Let's frame the question with a high level overview of strategy and tactics. The following is from Euromed Marseille School of Management, World Med MBA Program - Information Systems and Strategy Course

"Strategy and tactics are about means and ends: they bridge the gap between our vision of the future and our day to day decisions. Both strategy and tactics are about deciding the means by which a goal is reached. Ultimately the goal of strategy as a concept is to find a rigorous and systematic way of making these decisions."

Or put another way .. strategy is identifying which song to sing and tactics are identifying how to sing it. Then sing it out loud and strong! 

Crowd sourceOut of the 17 responses received, most people felt that social media was both a strategy and a tactic.

It was interesting that several marketers considered social media to be neither. They came up with their own creative descriptives ranging from "a corporate culture and state of mind to a platform and communications tools."

 Is Social Media A Strategy or Is Social Media A Tactic?

Social Media Is A Strategy

1. Social media is a strategy for communicating and engaging in/expanding dialogue with your brand's consumers/advocates/constituents. Sure, it's one tactic for broadcast marketing messages, but successful use of social media includes using it as a customer service, just as much as a marketing, tool.

Developing a strategy prior to implementing social media ensures that your company has the resources/manpower to keep it running; that you have the tools in place to measure its value; that you'll know what to do with it with a crisis strikes; and that you get the bang for your buck integrating cross-departmental use (customer service department, communications department, user experience, operations, etc.). - Laura Bellinger @madamebelle

2. Utilizing social media is a strategy. Tactics are how you accomplish the goal. Interestingly the idiom for strategy is "tools of the trade". - JoAnn Hines Packaging Diva

3. Because it helps to get your name/product out in the world by a host of different means. - AmyJo

Social Media Is A Tactic

1. While you can have a strategy for your social media program, it is a tactic within your overall marketing tool kit. It should be one element of a complete business/marketing strategy that aligns with business goals and objectives. - Katharine McMahon @marketingbykat

2. I think it is more of a Tactic than a strategy. A strategy is what you need to do to implement your goal(s). The tactics are the How's. Moreover, I believe that Social Media is more of a connector - it's the glue that links the offline and the online efforts of your marketing campaigns, it connects you to your fans, would-be fans, competitors and general public. That is built-in market research right there. - Sue Duris President M4 Communications, Inc. 

3. Like other forms of 'marketing' or engaging with your customer, social media exists to bring you face-to-face, either in real time or virtually. The strategy of your business needs to be finding the best ways to serve your customers - the tactic is in using social media, among other tools, to achieve that goal. - Yvonne DiVita, Lip-sticking 

Social Media Is Both A Strategy And A Tactic

1. SM is a great tool (tactic) to achieve and meet goals, but it truly needs a strategy to be successful. Without the strategy, how do you know if the tool is working? - Rachel Simon @raksimon

2. Offense is strategic, Defense is tactical. I see the world of social as offense versus defense. Tactically, I see the defensive positioning of responding to comments about your brand. Strategically, I see the opportunity to remain in an offensive position - pushing social campaigns and predicting results so you can stage the next campaign (think business process flows for social campaigns). - David Favero @mdavidfavero

3. Social media needs to be addressed as part of every marketing strategy. With a coherent, cohesive strategy in hand, a tactical plan to execute social media is the next step. Hard to have any effective execution without connecting the dots to a strategy that advances the business case. - Nancy Chorpenning CSuiteAdvisors @CSuiteAdvisors

4. For most brands it is mainly a tactic that needs to be integrated into a larger marketing plans BUT, several smaller businesses are utilizing it as a full-blown strategy because of the cost barrier being perceived as being low.- Anon

5. Social is breaking down the walls in the market allowing buyers to engage in a collaborative buying process in peer to peer networks for decision support. Buyers are building a strategic business case to justify their recommended approach to solving business problems while building consensus to the decision with their teams.

If we are buyer-centric in our commitment to helping our buyers make better decisions then we need to find where strategic and tactical intersect. Tactical engagement in support of strategic relationships for business impact. – Judy Mod @JudyMod @SocialCouncil

6. Mmm.that's challenging because a Strategy (in marketing parlance) really should be an idea of how to execute a goal...like "nuke the enemy to achieve world dominance." And the tactic would be the tools you use to do this. So technically Social Media is a tactic, but surely there is some way to define social media as a strategy? Am I waffling here? – Anon

7. Social media may be a strategic marketing approach. The actual way you use SM is tactical.A marketing strategy might be to use SM to launch a new product. Actually posting your campaign on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc. is a tactical exercise. - Maggie Buerger @getfamousfast

Neither A Strategy Nor A Tactic

1. Corporate culture, state of mind. For social media to be effective for a brand, it requires both the brand and its constituents to be willing to connect and engage. A brand that uses the tools just to promote misses the point of social.

On the flipside, brands that are willing to tell its story, listen to feedback, make the necessary changes AND defend certain key aspects of their 'personality' will eventually build trust and collaboration with their constituents which is the ultimate goal for any brand. - Jacqui Chew

2. Social media is a platform to communicate from one to many. Social media can be qualified as a medium for strategy or a tactic supporting a strategy if there is an objective for the platform. Without the two it is simply a Techology for publishing or consuming information. Peter Fasano @pfasano

3. Social media is a set of communication tools. Social media - media in which conversations can take place - is a set of tools in the communications toolbox. – Anon

4. It's a supporting arm of your marketing and communications goals. Not a strategy alone, but a strategic element that is comprised of many tactics. - Anon

Toss of a pink boa to everyone who shared their thoughtful insights!

My thanks to  Candace McCaffery for her post that inspired this Just One Question post.

Here's my comment on her post (add me to the Both list):

I believe that social media demands a strategy of its own .. not unlike pr or marketing or customer care or (fill in the blank).

Assuming that social media touches all aspects of an organization, it's critical develoip an over arching direction that integrates with all BU/departments/employees who are impacted by its intrusion (I use intrusion not as a negative). Without that high level focus how can the brand promise or values be consistently represented internally and externally? How can we use social media to support business goals and objectives? How can we incorporate it into campaigns and use it as a digital conversation tool that becomes an asset unto itself?

Social media has evolved into more than just a channel, communication outreach or customer service vehicle. I would suggest that the "tools" of social media e.g. social networks, blogs, podcasts, blogger relations, etc. are the tactics under the umbrella of social media strategy.

Social media has evolved to command the same respect as other marketing/communication disciplines to be consider a 'strategy."

Update: Thanks Damica Kombol for your contribution.

What are your thoughts? Do you consider social media to be a strategy, a tactic, both or something else?

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Grapic credi: tungphoto / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Social Media Listening Beyond Your Product

07/31/2011

Max and tag With almost 14 thousand views, my dog Max might qualify as a "D list" YouTube rock star! His circle of friends (not to be confused with a Google+ circle) includes people, dogs and cats (totally ..watch his video!). His howling "song" is a throwback to his wolf ancestory.

Oh yes, his breed is White West Highland and at 10 years old the vet is calling him a "senior" dog. Shh .. please don't tell him that he is sure he is still a pup.

Did you notice that when I described Max his breed and age (demographics) came last?

When you think about your customers how do you describe and catorgize them? What comes first in your customer profile: age, sex, income .. traditional demograhics? Or do you take into consideration their interests, networks and passions beyond your product or service?

Let's spin this into social media marketing. We frequently use social media "listening" to learn what customers are saying about our products and services, to identify trends and to build relationships. All good.

However, we have amazing opportunities to also see into the lives of our customers and prospects that go beyond tradtional research and our own company/product information. We can learn about our customers' passions, see who is in their social networks e.g., friends, likes, follows, circles. The clues we discover can lead to exciting new opportunities.  

For example, would you think that Max's friends included kitty cats?  Now you know. What would that mean if you were in the pet industry? Are there more dogs who like cats? What products might you create to tap into that market .. friendship collars? Treats for both cats and dogs? 

Here's another great example. When you think about Grandmamas what comes to mind? Blue hair ladies drinking tea and baking cookies? How about motorcyle riding mamas?! 

MSN Business on Main profiles "Grandmama" Kathy Tolleson the owner of Roar Motorcyles For Women. Roar is the first company that designs and manufactures customize motorcycles exclusively for women. Pop over for the story. Motorcyle_Kathy ROAR

What would have happened if Kathy had focused on demographics only instead of the passions of her customers? Would she have tapped into women over forty? Over fifty? Over sixty?  Roar has a social media presence that (I would assume) helps Kathy continue to understand the interests of her customers. (Hmm..thinking Kathy would be a great guest for All The Single Girlfriends' Girlfriends Helping Girlfriends series.)

Motorbikes are not so much my deal, but If I were to ride I'd want the biggest, baddest bike on the lot. Max, of course, would be uber cool in a little back jacket and helmet! 

Are you taking advantage of Social Media Listening beyond your product or service? If so what have you learned about your customers?

Note: Yvonne DiVita, Lipsticking, has a cool contest going .. you can win $100 for your comment about why women should own and ride motorcycles.

Update: See how KLM is listening and learning about their customers. In a strategy that turns little kindnesses into big smiles and I'm betting results in loyalty.  

Diva Marketing is part of an online influencer network for Business on Main. I receive incentives to share my views on a monthly basis. All opinions are 100% mine.

A Step Through The Looking Glass

06/13/2011

Alice through the looking glass_BOM At its heart Diva Marketing is about stepping through the mirror to a different way of marketing .. participating in conversations in social forums like blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  

Many of the posts reflect lessons I learned along the way, so you can avoid stubbing your toe or stumbling on a concept. With that in mind, here is one more. 

A few weeks ago I was approached by Mr. Youth, a social media agency based in NYC. They had an interesting assignment to create awareness of a new community for small businesses .. MSN's Business on Main. Part of their strategy included reaching out to bloggers .. made sense to me .. and Diva Marketing was one of the blogs that was tapped. Made sense to me. 

But wait, there was more. They asked if I would be part of an 11-month blogger relations program to share articles and videos from BOM that You might find useful and interesting. But wait, there was more. They wanted to reimburse me for the posts.

I've been offered $ for post before and have always said, "No thanks." However, this seemed different: a highly, credible site that offers well written content, a good fit for Diva, people I knew and respected were involved, Erin Finestone, my contact at Mr. Youth, was highly responsive and respectful.

Girlfriend, all that said, what also intrigued me was stepping into the other side. I've built blogger relationship programs for clients but (except for book reviews) never participated in one myself. What would it be like to step through the looking glass into Wonderland of how a large agency conducted BR?

Soo .. Diva Marketing is taking a skip into a slightly new direction. Sponsored content. BOM header  In keeping with FTC regs and my commitment to you, each post in this series will be of course be tagged as a sponsored content. Without breaking my contract (yes that was part of the deal) I'll also share lessons learned on blogger relations.

Soo .. it seems like an ok deal with multiple wins. Oh and Max is happy too .. extra $ =  a few more doggy treats! 

Interview with Ed Garsten: Chrysler's Twitter Storm Back-story

03/16/2011

Chrysler fiat logo It seems that every five years or so Chyrsler gets caught in a bit of a social media firestorm. Not bad when you think of the volitility of the social web.

For those people who might have been out of the country or unplugged from social media during the past week there were two events that occurred within a day of each other that had the social pundits buzzing and tweeting up a virtual storm. 

One: An agency employee (Chrysler's Marketing Department contacted with a PR firm to be their voice on Twitter) was fired for an inappropriate tweet that ran on Chrysler’s @ChryslerAutos Twitter account. Two: Chrysler severed relations with that agency the day after the tweet was posted.

Too often, especially on the web, it’s easy to connect the dots in ways that don’t always create a true picture. I admit I have been as guilty too.  As Gloria Steinem said on a Marlo Thomas post, “If it looks like a duck and walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, but you think it's a pig... it's a pig.”

Ed Garsten, head of  electronic media for Chrysler, offered an explanation on his blog. I thought it was pretty good. However, like a Pig With Wings, it seemed to me that the pieces of the story are still flying around the social networks.  I, like so many other people, couldn’t connect the dots. What was real? What was not? Pig with wings

I asked my friend, Ed, yes, we are pals, if he would take the opportunity to tell us the back-story on Diva Marketing. Then to open the discussion to lessons learned so we can all benefit. Diva Marketing's goal is always to understand how to use social media to bring people together in ways that support your brand’s value and promise.

Diva Marketing/Toby:  Mister Garsten, this virtual stage is yours .. please connect the dots for us!

Ed Garsten/Chryster:  Thanks for the opportunity, Toby.  Last Wednesday  we noticed, what you would call an “inappropriate Tweet,” coming from the @ChryslerAutos Twitter handle. That’s the handle for the Chrysler Brand and managed by our former social media agency, New Media Strategies (NMS). 

I won’t repeat the tweet, but I’m sure I don’t have to. It was hard to miss.  The tweet denigrated Detroit area drivers using an obscenity. Once we got to the bottom of what happened, we issued a statement relaying the information, apologizing to the public for anyone who may have been offended, and revealed that NMS terminated their employee, who apparently thought he was tweeting from his personal account.

There was a lot of chatter that Chrysler and NMS were cold hearted, terminating a person for a mistake and that using an obscenity on the web is no big deal. Chrysler did not ask for this action. NMS did it on their own.

Indeed, it wasn’t the obscenity at all that we took issue with. As I wrote on the Chrysler blog, it was the fact that we’ve built a tremendous amount of goodwill promoting Detroit and the U.S. auto industry through our TV commercial that first aired during the Super Bowl. That’s the one featuring Detroit-area native Eminem and the catchphrase “Imported From Detroit.” 

Any slam, intended or otherwise, against the great people who live in southeastern Michigan under a Chrysler brand banner is unacceptable and compromises the progress we made in a few short weeks.

By the next day, the company decided to cut its ties with NMS. Again, not because of one inappropriate Tweet, but for a collection of missteps that I’m not at liberty to discuss.

We issued a release announcing this development at about the same time I posted my blog item on the corporate blog.  We also spent the next couple of days responding to many tweets while posting the link to our blog, and to third-party stories that most fairly portrayed the situation.

Toby/Diva Marketing: Thanks Ed. Let's explore now how Chrysler is currently incorporating social medial.  Not to give away trade secrets, but what is Chrysler’s high level direction when it comes to participating in the social web?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: Having gone through three owners in five years the direction has changed about as often.  Thankfully, Fiat is aggressive in social media and all of the brand heads are turning to social media for everything from product launches (2011 Dodge Durango) to promoting marketing campaigns, and building communities. 

We’re also encouraged, and do, engage with the public on customer service issues, solving some, but not all, but nevertheless, pleasing consumers that they are able to speak directly to Chrysler.

Toby/Diva Marketing: Chrysler is obviously, subcontracting part of its “voice” in social media to agencies. Why did you choose to go this route instead of keeping all of social media participation in-house with the brands's employees?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: It’s a split decision, Toby. Marketing prefers to use an agency; we in corporate communications do everything ourselves.

As you know, it’s not uncommon for a company to outsource its social media activities and splitting the duties does have its challenges. However, we work closely with marketing to make sure messaging is consistent and there is a minimum of redundancy.

Toby/Diva Marketing: I always say, "Those who hold the conversation, hold the relationship." What does a brand gain by allowing an agency to hold the social conversations for it?

Ed Garsten/Chryster:  Basically, bodies. The auto industry has a long history of  using contract employees and agencies as a means of getting work done with a minimum of back-end costs. The trick is the brand must strongly direct the agency and the plan begins to fall apart when the agency decides to “freelance” on messaging.

Toby/Diva Marketing: Hmm .. perhaps it's time to reevalute that dated out sourced model. On the flip side, what does a brand give-up by allowing an agency to “talk” for the brand?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: Immediate control. The agency gets its direction from the company, but once the conversation begins, it can get off track very easily.

Toby/Diva Marketing: The world knows now that ChryslerAutos was authored by a PR agency. However, the bio on the Twitter page simply states: The official Twitter handle of Chrysler vehicle In keeping with the concept of social media transparency, why did Chrysler not indicate that in the bio?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: Good question. I honestly don’t know. As I mentioned, NMS worked for the marketing department and unfortunately, I wasn’t in on those decisions.

Toby/Diva Marketing: What I find interesting is the difference in approach to social media between Marketing and Corporate. Will Chrysler continue to engage third parties to author social media platforms? If so, how will you ensure Chrysler's brand’s values and promise are not compromised?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: We’re re-examining our strategy, although there is a strong possibility of going with a new agency, but perhaps more participation internally in creating content and engagement.

Toby/Diva Marketing: I'd fight for keeping it internal Ed! What are the critical lessons learned that we should all keep in mind from this experience?

Ed Garsten/Chryster:  Keep a tight rein on your agencies. Strictly forbid those who have access to your social media accounts from doing so on devices that are also used to access personal accounts.

React as quickly as possible. Even if you don’t know all the facts, let the public know you’re aware of the situation and will update them as you learn more.

Closely monitor the conversation and use social media to join that conversation to clear up any misconceptions or inaccurate reporting.

Toby/Diva Marketing: This week an Aflac tweeter joined the club of people who are misrepresenting the brand they work for. I strongly believe that part of the "fix" should be ensuring that Everyone who is involved in a brand's social media initiative understand the brand's value and promise. That means more than just messaging but getting it from the gut and heart. 

In Chrylser's case, I can't help but wonder if the agency dude had understood what Chrysler's Made in Detroit initiative was trying to accomplish (beyond just selling a few cars) if we might not be chatting righ now. 

The tweets aside, Chrysler is doing some interesting work in social. What’s cool on the horizon that you can share with us?

Ed Garsten/Chryster: We’re looking more at growing our mobile presence to better reach folks through their smartphones and iPads. We’re also using social media to launch vehicles rather than the typical auto show press days.

Why only tell reporters—tell everyone! It’s important to remember, our company isn’t quite two years old.  We basically started over again on June 9, 2009 when Fiat came in to manage the company, so we’re running fast to make up ground.

Toby/Diva Marketing: As a blogger, brands and agencies often share campaigns with me. Recently, I’ve been presented with several new auto campaigns. While the concepts are exciting, none address the women’s market.  Btw .. I must admit it’s a little frustrating. Does Chrysler have plans to engage with “my people" .. especially with women over 40?

Ed Garsten/Chryster:  I’m not aware of anything specifically, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t something in the works.

Toby/Diva Marketing: Hope so! Let’s wrap this with a similar question to the one I asked you in our 2005 interview:

Ed Garsten On Social Media

It’s the lawless society that presents innumerable opportunities to connect with people and communities and has given virtually anyone who can log on a voice.  From a company’s point of view, we’re able to directly connect with our customers, prospects, stakeholders, employees, investors without the middleman of the mainstream media.

Thanks my friend .. a toss of a pink boa! Pink boa

It Takes A Village To Grow A Blog .. Along With Your Girlfriends

03/01/2011

 Friends hugging fundraiser blog Subtitled: You Gotta Have Friends!

A few months ago I was chatting with Jeff Hillire, president of the Atlanta hot, interactive, agency Enguage, about, you guessed it .. social media marketing. I mused (do you like that word? I rather do.) that it might have been fun to work with a brand or large agency.

He smiled his too wise smile and said something that went like this, "The innovative work you've done in social might not have been possible within the politics of a large company."  Hmm .. never thought of that.

So with no one to tell me No! on Valentine's Day I launched another innovative social media initiative. All The Single Girlfriends, or as we fondly call it -- atsGf. I am excited to tell you about this adventure and to get your feedback. The back-story.

Unlike Diva Marketing and the eBook Social Media Marketing GPS atsGf is a run for the roses. Our goals are to monetize and capture the niche of single girlfriends 40+. In doing so we hope to provide a platform for women to tell their stories and voice their opinons in ways that reinforce there is no one right way to be single. Oh and by the way, brands and advertisers we have more disposable income than our mommy sisters. You're missing a huge opportunity .. pay attention to us too. 

Okay, you might be thinking, but Toby there are hundreds of women communities on the web what makes All The Single Girlfriends so special?  Think .. The View for real women who just happen to be in the demo (single and 40+ smart, savvy and no way boring .. but fabulous!)

It's girlfriends-talking-to-girlfriends about what Gf dish about .. relationships, love, careers, family, sex, dreams, challenges, loss, new beginnings and just life. What is amazing is the posts are from the heart stories interwoven with smart.  Banner  

There are about 20 GF authors and growing. The Gf authors bring diverse backgrounds, a range of ages, passions and experiences. As important each offers a unique idea of what it means to be single after the big 4-0 birthday.

If you've been around the marketing social media web you'll find some of your friends: Yvonne DiVita, BL Ochman, Jody DeVere, Sunny Cervantes, Connie Reece, Elana Centor, Jacki Schklar, Jane Genova, Tish Grier, Marianne Richmond, Susan Cartier Liebel, Mary Schmidt, Kelley Connors  .. and me! 

However, there are girlfriends with a passion to be part of this new venture who are new to the social world: Debra Pearlman, Dorothea Bozicolona-Volpe, Maggier Buerger, Bonnie Simon, Polli Graham, Rebecca Crichton, Tani Wolff. 

But back to Diva Marketing. The focus at Diva is to help you learn about social media often through my own trials and challenges. Here are my first two lessons learned or perhaps I should say relearned:

1. Let's call this the startup syndrome on a zero budget. It takes a village to grow a blog when there is no brand awareness . Your social media pals can certainly help with a jump start but it takes time and creativity to build new relationships in a new social "village." Going viral over night is usually a lucky fluke.

2. Let's call this Nancy White, Full Circle, was right. Several years ago Nancy told me that when a social site is set free to the world it is no longer yours ago. If you're lucky, your commuity will make it its own.; in doing that your vision or concept maybe changed. Hold on tightly .. it's a ride not for the faint of heart.

Come visit us on All The Single Girlfriends, Like us on Facebook and Tweet along @atsGf. Would love your feedback and ideas. I don't know where this one will go but I promise to keep you posted!

Since this is Diva Marketing .. a toss of pink boa Pink boa

to Marianne RIchmond who has been my cohort and the web GF.

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How Do You Build B2B Relationships Using Social Media?

02/16/2011

The miracle is this: the more we share the more we have. Leonard  Nimoy

 
Crowd source
One Tip Crowd Sourced Question

No one holds all the answers. Especially in social media marketing, or as some people refer to this brave new digital word as, new media. When you think of it how could she?

The tools like Twitter, Facebook, and geo location services such as Foursquare are nano seconds old. "Traditional" social platforms such as blogs, podcasts and video are two nano seconds old. Marketers are still learning how to talk to people without the benefit of their brand veils. 

I thought it would be interesting to crowd source a series of  "How do you do it .. 1 tip question posts." I reached into my social networks for answers.

People, with diverse backgrounds and experiences, generously shared their insights. The result is an invaluable learning for us all. Toss of a pink boa to everyone who is keeping the spirit of social media alive .. sharing knowledge.

How Do You Build B2B Relationships Using Social Media?

Add value through insights and content. That's how a good b2b relationship could start. - Cheers Rajesh Lalwani BlogWorks @rajeshlalwani

Whether for a business or an individual, powerful relationships are formed when social media is used to transform lives, whether by being responsive, connecting people, providing better service, creating better value or just by making someone smile. "What are you doing to make my life better via social media?" - Arun Rajagopal ArunRajagopal @arun4

Stop thinking of it as A "social media relationship" -- it's just a relationship, with a real person, who wants attention and appreciation. - Andy Sernovitz, author Word of Mouth Marketing Blog: Damm I Wish I Thought of That @andysernovitz

Be genuine and understand why you are talking to that particular person understand ones own business before you enrage with others Get a grip on what mediums one is using. - Anon

Consistency and persistence. Too many times, in the digital world, people are so hot and heavy in the beginning, then it all trails off like Summer Camp -- you fall madly in love and promise to keep in touch forever and then time passes. The real digital relationship honors go to the company that can leverage the CRM -- someone who can remember anniversaries and birthdays, if you will. Also, the relationships that are being constantly mined and "exploited" versus the ones that are kept aside like wine: in the cold for years.

In networking, there's a difference between collecting people and building relationships. If I met a mommy blogger and we hit it off, I am not going to say, "I have her in my pocket but I am not going to leverage this until the time is right and I have an important story."

That's true exploitation. That's a parasitic relationship. Intimacy is symbiotic. Intimacy is a muscle that must be exercised.

Intimacy doesn't just mean that if I buy you a steak at Morton's you're going to owe me a story.

Also, one must also remember that most digital relationships don't need to be intimate and can simply be transactional. That in order for people to really be able to connect, you need to connect lightly or hard.

Anyway, the biggest mistake that most people in the digital space make is not to "use" each other shamelessly... 

Generally speaking, this can't be done in-authentically. Either way, you need to find something you love about that person, no matter how small, and try to make the relationship about that real thing -- and it can be just the meta thing of social media.

Oh, and this all comes down to the fact that people love doing favors. It is actually rude not to ask the people around you for help, for love, for attention, and for a favor.

Oddly, people tend to love each other more the more they feel beholden, connected, and in each-other's debt.

I meet too many people who have a bunch of A-list bloggers they have met, they have the card for, but they never connect to them because they're holding off until they need something very badly -- sort of like a safety net. 

Like 11th hour conversions, they never tend to work out the way you would expect them to -- and generally fail. Who would want to fall into a rotten safety net? - Chris Abraham Abraham Harrison
@chrisabraham

Be the real and authentic you. To nurture and develop trusting relationships, a person has to be authentically themselves, This includes being ethical and honest in everything they say and post on social media, just as an every other aspect of your life and business. - Wayne Hurlbert Business World @waynehurlbert

Give consideration to the differences in HOW one can connect and why different strategies are necessary . This content is copyrighted by  - fjk @vitalingus   

Share what you admire most about their business in general, or their latest news. Use details when possible, not just an overall "like." They'll feel appreciated for their thoughtful strategy and work and they will appreciate you for it. - Melanie Notkin Savvy Auntie @SavvyAuntie http://savvyauntie.com

Use what I refer to as the "cord of three strands" principle -- on an individual basis, connect with another person on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. That way, you get to see their business side, personal side and what they're thinking about at a given moment.  – Anon

Use social media to stay top of mind by creating conversation around what your B2B client is interested in - without trying to sell! - Becky Carroll Customers Rock @bcarroll7

Do your research and find out where your interests intersect. - Bonnie Sahin Bonnies On It @Bsashin www.bonniesonit.com

Make them laugh. – Jackie Schklar Funny Not Slutty @funnynotslutty

Understand the power of the "Re" --- Retweet, repost, share, blog about others businesses to demonstrate that you follow and care about the other businesses news, events, progress, etc. Be sure to take the time to tailor your "Re" to match your customer/reader's interests as well as your business goals. It demonstrates that you read and thought about it. –

.. and my thoughts. Creating relationships in the digital world is really no different than in the offline world. Good ones take time to build. My 3 of 1 tips: 1. Provide selfless content that speaks to the needs of your comunity and not your brand. 2. Keep in touch with an @ tweet, comment or status up. 3. Give a little of your none business self. - Toby Bloomberg Diva Markering @tobydiva

Let's keep the leanings growing. How do you create B2B relationships using social media? Plese share your insights in the comments. 

 Tip Crowd Sourced Question Series

How do you take the fear factor out of social media?

How do you put soul into your blog posts?

Is social media a strategy or a tactic?

What are your scariest thoughts about social media?

Social Media Lessons In A Small Smooth Stone

08/27/2010

Inspiration can come in many forms and in many ways. From a dance troupe, as Yvonne DiVita  Heart 1a  describes, to a simple stone washed by the ocean. 

 As the tides came into the shore, I watched as gray sands began to cover the little stone-heart. I was tempted to pick it up and carefully place it in the purple straw purse I was carrying. Somehow it seemed wrong to do that. Instead I snapped a photo with my iPhone.

I continued my beach walk wondering if someone else would notice the stone shaped like a heart. Or perhaps it was just my imagination that a heart was hiding in a small, smooth stone. Maybe the next person would see something different.  

We each see the world through our own unique lens. Often people think they see something in a similar way. However, the illusion is it's never quite the same .. it's always a little different. 

In the world of social media we are learning that our customers can see our brands differently than what we might have imagined. In the world of social media we are learning that diverse views can help create better products. In the world of social media we are learning that there are many shapes hidden in a smooth stone. 

This post is dedicated to Susan Ellen -- Jessica's & Scott's mummy, my sister, Polli's friend, Kaye's & Mal's cousin and Barbara's niece -- who saw the hearts in little smooth stones. Sending virtual happy birthday xxoo. We miss you Sus. Susan atl  

Extreme DIY Social Media Media Blogger Relations Training For PR/Ad Agencies

07/02/2010

Press pass _toby
I really like the beat you cover
began one pitch that recently dropped into my inbox. 

Seems that PR people think that I am a media outlet.  Sort of funny.  However, at this juncture in the evolution of social media and blogger relations, sort of sad and frustrating that too many agencies still don't  understand the "human side" of "social." All they see is "media." 

One could make a case that most marketing and public relations higher education courses don't cover earned media well if at all. One could make a case that social media is new and many people are at the initial stages of learning. One could make a case that blogs appear to be a type of public information and leap to the conclusion that content creators are another type of reporter. 

One could come up with a whole bunch of excuses. But Girlfriend, if you don't fix the broken heel of your favorite Jimmy Choos you'll hobble along forever. Or something like that.  How do you "social media fix" a PR agency or ad agency? With a little training and a walk in a blogger's stylish shoes. 

Abc_1  For now forget the listen to the conversation. Forget the build the relationship first. If you've ever stepped your polished purple toes into the social media waters you've heard that at least a zillion times. Guess you didn't get it. 

We're changing Nike's Just Do It into "YOU do it" with Extreme DYI Social Media Blogger Relations Training For Agencies (and anyone else). It's not easy. It does take time. It's based on at least 2 people or 2 teams participating. It's not for the whiners. 

If you succeed at the end of the course .. you buy me my next pair of Jimmy Choos. If not I'll buy you a drink when your boss says the famous Donald Trump words - You're Fired!

Extreme DYI Social Media Blogger Relations Training - A Four Week 12 Step Program

Week One - Understanding Social Media 

Step 1 Read: Social Media Marketing GPS, my free eBook for an over view of social media. How long can that take to read it was based on 140 character tweets?  Follow that with: The Hyper-Social Organization, Naked Conversations, The Digital Handshake The New Rules of Marketing and PR - Second Edition. Look out for Nettie Hartsocks' soon to be released book Kiss Your Publisher Goodbye -- reading her blog is a good idea too.

Weeks Two, Three & Four - A Walk In A Blogger's High Fashion Shoes

Step 2 - Create 2 teams 

Step 3 - Read Pulse of the Industry Blogger Relations Series Parts i, ii, iii, iv and v

Step 4 - Read Susan Getgood's Blog with Integrity guidelines

Step 5 - Create a blog on any topic that you can sustain for three weeks. The graphical look and feel must complement your subject. Add at least 10 blogs that write about similar topics to you blog roll. 

Step 6 - Write a minimum of 3 well thought out posts per week for the next 3 weeks

Step 7 - Comment on other blogs at a minimum of 3 times per week. 

Weeks Three & Four

Step 8 - Pitch A Blogger

Step 9 - Develop a minimum of 4 pitches per week that you will send ONLY to the people who are participating in the Extreme DIY Social Media Blogger Relations Training with you.

Step 10 - For each pitch you receive do one or more of the following actions: a. reply back; b. post to your blog; c. do nothing; e. other .. you decide. Track your actions for each pitch. 

Week Four

Step 11 - Provide feedback to your colleagues on their pitches including how you responded and why.

Step 12 - What did you learn? How did you feel about response to your pitches? What will you put into practice in your next blogger relations campaign? Did you color outside the lines .. do more than was suggested? What?

Happy Graduation!  Jimmy choo_1