The First Lesson in Social Media Marketing

To have the mindset that the understanding and practice of core fundamentials will drive your business more than any system, gadget or gimmick -- your customers trust your sound business judgement and spread the word

Recap Week of December 28th, 2009

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Small Business Strategy
Lets break it down to some simple actions to start the new year. I've posted Lisa's articles before and she has a good perspective on what will/won't work. So remember, being social is a behavior not a tool.

1. Don’t go in thinking about ROI: Start by Thinking Networking not Numbers
2. Focus on the actions that matter: Listen Give Engage
3. Schedule time for it: Just like anything else of Value
4. Seek out local prospects: It’s about selling awareness
5. Look outside Twitter the box: Social Malls all across the Web
6. Learn from those before you: Top 150 social influencers
7. Take it Offline: We were social off line first!

"You're a lean, mean, fighting machine!"- Bill Murray as John Winger in Stripes. That's what John Winger would say to You - small business. Leadership and social media share common boundaries; just read this Tweeple-Byte "@shanegibson: SM Tip: "Many people will quit, shun and criticize social media marketing when they realize it's actually about leadership." Here is a great article by Richard Mammone, who says "The best type of market growth comes from making the pie larger for everyone, rather than just making your slice larger within the pie... The McKinsey survey also found that most businesses do not innovate to counter a competitor's threat. Instead senior management reacts with a knee-jerk response, moving down the tree and matching a competitor's price change or imitating its new product or feature... Gathering market intelligence is the first step." (Listen)

It's just natural not a department to be Social. One of today's Tweeple-Byte describes this article in 140 characters..."#10.@SalesDuJour: Social networking is older than technology and will outlive the internet. Be social and network wherever you are. #Sales #Marketing #Tip " . John @ducttape marketing puts it this way: "Now that hype surrounding the next new thing has settled a bit, businesses are coming around to the understanding that social media isn’t a department or separate marketing tactic. In fact, It’s not so much a tool as it is a behavior. And as such it can and should permeate the whole of the business."

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Social Conversations

Keep it simple and short when the conversation is the written word. I will let this article by Ari Herzog speak for itself. All I will say is...what an example! Mmmm... maybe why Twitter can be so effective?
Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

Social construction builds small business success. Although Doug Brockway doesn't talk about the KISS (Keep It Strategic and Simple) , I like the part that talks about cutting through the layers of business as a way to "...taking out intermediate steps, processes, systems and people no longer needed to get to an end point. It may be a long time, or it may be tomorrow, but social media’s success at this is likely to occur in your business and you don’t want to be the last to know. "
Three main reasons why social media is important to business. ... #1 It allows a company to build a community and engage in two-way dialogue with customers, the media, partners and other key external stakeholders, and internally with employees. #2 It allows for collaboration through what social mediaistas call “crowdsourcing,” to enhance products, gain insights, and improve customer service. And, #3 it enables a company to reach a broader market with fewer dollars.

It's time to go from Listening to Leading: Jason Cormier sneaked in this article right at Christmas, and it is worth looking at today. "I'll summarize the model by saying the ultimate value of starting conversations is in building and sustaining your brand as a leader."
Leadership, like almost everything that enabled your company's success, must be earned. Each (maturity) level within the pyramid model is representative of where your brand may be in any given conversation about a product, service, industry, etc

What Happens when Small Business Thinks Big. David Hauser says "brand loyalists don’t just buy your product and pledge allegiance to your brand, they’ll also help you market it to others and grow your influence even when you’re not aware of it. Having an army of brand loyalists will also help you refine your product or service through customer feedback, and in turn, enhance customer satisfaction and boost brand loyalty."

How do you build an army of brand loyalists?
1. Add value first.
2. Listen. Then listen some more.
3. Make a human connection.
4. Promote your customers.
5. Create a culture of responsibility.

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