You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Social Media’ tag.

First there was Vine, and now videos on Instagram. Video is the direction social media is heading in.  People use social media to tell stories—personal stories, celebrity stories, as well as brand stories. The option to be able to use a fifteen second clip to animate a story, brings the story to life and gives it an element that didn’t exist with a photo alone.

How is this different from Vine, other than the video length? Instagram filters, which held much of the platform’s appeal, can be incorporated into your video. The new feature gives you thirteen filters to choose from, as well as cover image options to use when your video is not playing, to keep your Instagram content beautiful and personalized.

Consider some of these options as a marketer when utilizing Vine as part of your content strategy:

Showcase and/or demo products

Video is great way to showcase something about your product that a consumer wouldn’t know by looking at a picture. Think technology. You can showcase a lot more about a complicated gadget with video than you can with just pictures.

Give zealots a behind the scenes look

Show them your office! What goes on behind the scenes? Your most passionate followers want to know everything about your brand. Videos are an interactive way to give them this inside look.

Showcase brand personality

Emotions are hard to convey in photos alone. Think about how easy is it to convey humor in a photo. Videos add an element that allows brands to show consumers who they are.

Encourage engagement

Think emotional advertising. If your products are vacation homes, what’s a more engaging message: a picture of the beach, or a family playing on that beach?

Instagram videos add a brand-new artistic appeal to what you are able to create on social media. Check out Instagram’s promotional video for the new feature to get a glimpse of the possibilities.

When you think of social media, who comes to mind? For me, I think of a young audience. Teens and Twenty somethings galore. And while that is correct (83% of people age 18-29 use social media) teens and twenty-somethings aren’t the only ones Facebooking. I found this interesting info-graphic on Mashable. Take a look:


Like many of us, when I open up Facebook each morning I’ve made it a habit to check my friends’ birthdays and give them a standard shoutout. But last week when I went to wish one of my friends a splendid birthday, I saw something new:

Screen Shot 2013-02-15 at 3.48.14 PM

Send her a Starbucks birthday present? Hm.

So I clicked.

Screen Shot 2013-02-15 at 3.49.38 PM

What a brilliant idea. Gone are the days of paying $1 to gift your friend a worthless Facebook image of a cupcake. Now you can easily buy them a real gift that’s delivered real time. Because let’s face it – we don’t know it’s anyone’s birthday until we see it on Facebook anyway.

Facebook didn’t stop there. What was yesterday? Valentine’s Day. What was at the top of my news feed? The option to buy a gift.

Screen Shot 2013-02-15 at 3.54.04 PM

The gifts were sweet, fun, and funny. And incredibly affordable.

Screen Shot 2013-02-15 at 3.55.40 PM

While I do think Facebook missed an opportunity for waiting until the day-of the holiday to place the “Choose a Gift” option on the site, it’s quite fun. Have any of you received a Facebook Gift yet? How’d it go?

I’m always on the look-out for smart brands. Brands that bring something new to the table or brands that do an amazing job engaging their Zealots. When I first stumbled upon Warby Parker I knew they were someone to take note of.

What’s Warby Parker?
HTOWP is a vintage-inspired eyeglass company based in New York City, known for their online sales program. While selling eyeglasses online doesn’t seem like the smartest business model, WP has thought it through. As a potential costumer, you simply pick out 5 of your favorite frames and WP ships them to your home for free. Your instructions? Wear one pair each day so the people who see you the most can give you feedback. Then, pack all 5 frames in the box and mail them back – shipping covered by WP. If you found a pair you like, simply order that frame with your prescription and the glasses will be custom-made for you. Sounds like a pretty pricey product, right? Not at all. Each complete pair of glasses costs $95. Plus, for each pair purchased, one is donated to someone in-need. Talk about making your customers feel good!

Get Social
Warby Parker has a strong social presence – both on and offline. When WP sends your Home Try-On kit, you’re encouraged to share pictures on the Warby Parker Eyewear Facebook Page. So not only can you to get feedback from your friends, but you can get feedback from the WP community as well.

Screen Shot 2013-01-30 at 2.31.54 PM
For those of you addicted to 140 characters, give WP a Tweet. Even with an average of 3592 Tweets to @WarbyParker each week, they do an amazing job of interacting with their followers. Here’s my friend’s interaction with WP. In fact, it was her posting on Twitter/Facebook that first introduced me to the company. See? Engaging your Zealots truly pays off.

Screen Shot 2013-01-30 at 2.59.15 PM

WP has also thought about their more traditional customers, making their frames available in 12 showrooms across the US as well as on the traveling Warby Parker Class Trip. Visiting 9 cities over six months, this school bus full of frames is touring the US, with members of the WP team posting pictures of their journey along the way. Simply put, this campaign it’s buzz-worthy and fun.

Screen Shot 2013-01-30 at 2.46.59 PM
After all this research about Warby Parker, I think it’s about time to get a new pair of glasses. Stay tuned.

Recent blog from Harvard Business Review expounded the virtues of CEOs using social media. They cited several facts, some of which don’t exactly make the case.  For instance, LinkedIn was the most used medium (26% of CEOs surveyed), however only 4% use Twitter.  Another study predicts CEO use of social media will rise from 16% to 57% in the next 5 years.

Old+School+RocksBeyond “keeping up with the Jones,” here’s a take on why involvement in social media makes sense for CEOs.  Now. Two “old school” reasons:  building trust and gaining insights.

First, social media is about accountability if nothing else. Where does “the buck stop” in a company?  With the CEO of course.  Companies that engage in social media are 82% more likely to be trusted.  Want to be trusted?  Want to convey authenticity?  Play in social media.

And, CEOs love insights … into their customers, how their products are perceived and “what could be.”  Social media, unlike any other media, offers the opportunity for spontaneous research.  Without the recruitment, the staging or the pretense.  Most importantly, the CEO that engages in such forums, not only gains a new appreciation about his customers’ perceptions, he will gain brownie points in terms of referral.  How likely will a customer tweet or post an online discussion they have with the company’s CEO?  How will their followers view the company?

As CEOs discover that social media offers traditional tasks they personally value, more will jump on the bandwagon.

Many of us have been there. Inspired by the “holiday giving” spirit we often wish we could give back to the community or a nonprofit organization. However, with the strains of traveling and buying presents for friends/family, it is easy to feel the financial strains of the holidays. As a result, many of us find ourselves unable to stretch our pocketbook and make a donation.

Problem solved! This year, we came up with an idea. To show each and every one of our clients just how thankful we are for them, we have decided to give back. Today through December 31, 2012, for each “Like” Guest Relations Marketing receives on Facebook, we will donate $1 to our non-profit clients. Up to $10,000.

So, all you have to do is give us a like and help spread the word by sharing with your network.

Remember: 10,000 Likes = $10,000 donation!

We made a quick video. Check it out:


We wish you a happy Thanksgiving and joyous holiday season.

We hear this quite a bit. Many B2B execs view social media as, well, social. And not intrinsic to their marketing and sales communications needs.

Something to consider: how hard do sales people work to establish a personal – or social – bond with their contacts? How many companies employ an actionable database, such as SalesForce? In each case, the goal is to have regular, extended and more personal conversations with their prospects and clients.

So, it is a myth that B2B sales is not a “social enterprise.”  There are various studies that attempt to determine the proper frequency of contact, but two things are certain:

  • Increased frequency will result in increase conversion/sales
  • People will remain “opted-in” when the contacts are relevant, interesting and not an intrusion

What exactly in these two points makes social media not a potentially relevant business communications strategy? As with any medium, it begins with understanding how your target engages with it. And then, how you should participate. The sales person who calls each week to talk football knows his call is welcomed, because we love to talk football. It gives him the access to find out what we are doing that day and see if a further business conversation is warranted. Business is social.

One final bit of evidence – C-suite participation in Twitter:

  • C-level people over 50 years old: 6%  (several times weekly)
  • C-level people under 40 years old: 56%

I am sure by now you have seen a video clip of the controversial call at the end of Monday night’s NFL game, featuring the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks.

During the very last play of the game a wishful pass was thrown into the end zone by the Seahawks quarterback in an attempt to win the game with time expiring. They were successful, but according to just about everyone that watched, it was a bogus result.

A highly charged reaction on Twitter sent users into a tweeting frustration frenzy as they flocked to the site to share their opinions on what happened during the final seconds of #MNF.

According to @twitter, more than one million tweets had been generated on the topic in less than 48 hours.

Even NFL players didn’t hesitate to share their opinion by tweeting in response to the replacement referees call.

Finally, the NFL and its referees have agreed on a deal and will return immediately. What do you think? Did the reaction on Twitter encourage the @NFL to establish a contract agreement with  its referees?

Recent report from Admap: an average of 0.5% Facebook fans interact with brands in a given week. Pretty low response, eh? Which is why direct marketing with average response rates of 1 – 2% is still a viable media option.

Every time a new touchpoint is invented, people and especially marketers rush to put it into an existing bucket.

We love what social media offers marketers. There is clearly a place for Facebook and other social media. But to consider it a replacement for other aspects of a marketing mix is a major mistake. Every media has its strengths and shortcomings.

I preach it over and over again. Never underestimate the power of social media. Not only can it send your organization’s message viral in a matter of hours, or even minutes, but it can also expose you just as quickly.

I say this not as a means to scare companies who are hesitant about becoming involved in the platform, but voice it to generate awareness of the positive power it can also possess [Stay tuned next week for a case study on CURE Childhood Cancer].

For now, let’s take a look at the recent viral campaign created by Greenpeace as a means to protest against Shell’s push to drill in Alaska. While I think the idea was a great one in theory, I also believe that the environmentally driven company should have thought a little more seriously about the perception it could have caused.

For those who are unaware of what I am discussing, let me give you the 140 character version: Greenpeace staged a fake launch party for Shell’s “Let’s Go! Arctic!” campaign and created a spoof video of a malfunction of a model rig.

The video received a large amount of attention from the media and within 24 hours the had over a half of a million views on YouTube, not to mention the endless amount of retweets, using the hashtag #ShellFail, from people who believed the video was filmed at a Shell private launch party.

Shortly after this video was released a website was created by Greenpeace and Yes Lab, appearing to be Shell’s own, entitled that allows people to submit tag lines for Shell advertisements. This site was staged as the social media hub for the “Let’s Go! Arctic” campaign. On the homepage it stated, “We at Shell are committed to not only recognize the challenges that climate change brings, but to take advantage of its tremendous opportunities. And what’s the biggest opportunity we’ve got today? The melting Arctic.”

Within hours people were tweeting links to these images, spreading virally about how Shell’s attempt to engage an audience had turned into a PR nightmare. The true problem? Greenpeace released a statement admitting that the entire campaign was a hoax and done in attempts to generate awareness of their global action to save the arctic.

As you can imagine, this staging did not fair well with journalists who had been tricked by the environmental activist.

Ryan Holiday, at Forbes, described it as a media manipulation and a deliberate attempt to deceive and mislead their audience stating, “It may have been done for noble reasons, but that doesn’t change the salient fact that they are manipulating the media by creating a fake scandal and lying about it to get more coverage.”

This situation is a perfect example of how social media can be used to go viral and generate awareness, but also exudes why this should be done in an honest and respectful manner. People LOVE a creative campaign, but people DON’T LOVE being deceived. While Greenpeace has received a large amount of publicity through this social media extravaganza, they have also found themselves in a situation of vulnerability as the media refers to them as villains, liars and evil.

Ryan Holiday adds,” Even if you think Shell is evil and will lie to achieve their goals, now you know Greenpeace is the exact same way.” Followed by a comment from Martin Robbins, journalist at New Statesman, “Spending tens of thousands of dollars to deliberately mislead and manipulate the public used to be something the bad guys did, but here we all are watching pigs in suits drive another important debate into the quagmire.”

Follow us on Twitter

Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.