Bethany

Archive for December, 2010|Monthly archive page

RockMelt…my new Internet Browser

In Strategy, Trends on December 30, 2010 at 5:52 am

There’s a new browser in town…  and it has been “rockin'” my online experience for the past couple of months.   :)

And, if you’re like most people, you might be thinking “oh great, another Internet browser…I was getting along just fine with my Chrome, IE or FireFox”….

Well, you’ll be happy to know that ROCKMELT allows you to blend in your social media world too, especially for the Facebook lovers.

Here are a few features:
– Facebook contacts on left side of window
– RSS feeds run down the right side
– Search bar is next to address bar at top
– “Share” button in between address and search bar
– Facebook chat is integrated right into browser
– “Favorites” are at top, under the address bar

Check out this video for the demo:

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2011 Marketing Trends: Social Technology

In General, Trends on December 23, 2010 at 12:08 pm

Definitely agree with Dave Evans, Digital Voodoo co-founder, in regards to one of the MAIN marketing trends in 2011 will still be social technology…though, it will spread to include/involve the whole business – all departments and aspects, not just ‘marketing.’   How is your business embedding social media into various aspects of your business?

As social media has firmly established itself–whether in interest or actual practice–within the marketing and promotional disciplines that power small businesses, a burning issue has emerged: “What happens if the social web turns against me? What if one customer has a bad experience, creates a video, and that video goes viral?” The first part of the answer is found easily by searching the web or consulting any of a number of great social media books or online resources: As a small business, develop a plan to actively listen, to participate and the respond to both the positive and negative conversations that involve your product or service.

logoThat sounds simple in theory, and in many cases it is: Using Twitter or Facebook or LinkedIn or…whichever of the social media channels and platforms are applicable given your business objectives and customers your marketing team can craft a plan to promote and protect your brand through participation on the social web. The real challenge–and the indicator of the next big trend–arrives with the realization that you can’t directly control conversations on the social web. When they turn negative, it takes more than a response from marketing (alone) to adequately respond.

This reality is the driver of the next big trend: Leading from marketing, it’s the spread of social technology across the entire business so that the entire business acts in support of the marketing-led effort to respond to negative conversations. In my newest book, “Social Media Marketing: The Next Generation of Business Engagement” I re-define engagement as a collaborative effort between customers, with the business drawing in employees, suppliers and partners in response to what customers are doing and saying. Customers can and do say some very nice things, but conversations can just as easily turn negative, and for many reasons: One of the most effective techniques in turning negative conversations around is involving these customers directly in the business. When customers have a say in the experience they are less likely to adopt or hold onto a negative view.

The next big trend is therefore using social technology–platforms for customer collaboration, Twitter-like messaging services connecting employees inside the organization, customer-driven support forums, communities that link suppliers, partners and customers together with each other–to improve the core customer experiences and thereby head-off or manage negative conversations, all the while boosting and amplifying the beneficial ones. The technologies involved are all themselves examples of the same sorts of underlying technologies that are now familiar to members of Facebook or LinkedIn, for example, social technologies that have been re-cast and deployed across the larger business organization toward the end goal of creating better outcomes.

Search the web for “social media business engagement” to get an idea of just how real–and just how close–this next trend is.

80% will use Social Media by 2011 But…

In Trends on December 14, 2010 at 6:35 am

Willis Wee of Penn Olson wrote the following article, “80% will use Social Media by 2011 But…”  The question remains, what businesses will make social media part of their budget, and which businesses will have a plan?  :-)

More businesses are using social media for marketing and a steady growth in adoption rate is expected. eMarketer’s predicted that 80% of the businesses (with more 100 employees) will adopt social media for marketing purposes by 2011.

That is 4 out of every 5 businesses. The forecast was based on a dozen of third party surveys accompanied by independent studies on social media trends like consumer usage and companies’ social media involvement. Currently, about three-quarters of businesses are using social media this year.

social-media-graph social-media-budget

Read Full Article (Willis Wee)…

Dell To Launch Social Media Listening Command Center

In Strategy, Trends on December 9, 2010 at 10:32 am

Listening.  This is one area and opportunity that most businesses miss out on when getting involved in social media – as most are focused on the technologies over the conversations and strategies.  And, in 2010, the majority of businesses got on board with some sort of social media talk or action… and in 2011, more will catch on to listening – just like Dell.

Dell’s CEO Michael Dell and CMO Karen Quintos will officiallylaunch the company’s Social Media Listening Command Center today.

We first heard wind of this development in October when Dell’s Vice President of Social Mediasocial media and Community Manish Mehtaannounced that Dell had plans to launch the program at Altimeter’s Rise of Social Commerce Conference. Just more than two months later, that announcement is coming to fruition with the opening of the center.

Shortly after the October announcement, Mehta commented on a blog post by Altimeter’s Industry Analyst Jeremiah Owyang about the project’s purpose:

“Our new ‘Ground Control’ is about tracking the largest number [of] possible conversations across the web and making sure we ‘internalize’ that feedback — good and bad…

“Dell’s Ground Control is also about getting that information to the right people wherever they are in the Dell organization, globally and functionally. It’s also about tracking what you might call the ‘long tail’… those smaller matters that might not bubble to the surface today, but are out there… and deserve to be heard. We want to ‘hear’ them too — contrary to the scenarios about ’squeaky wheels getting grease.’”

Based in its Round Rock, Texas headquarters, Dell’s new social monitor center will be an integral part of its @Dellcares customer care and tech support. The company already does a commendable job at reaching its global audience via social media, but it plans to up the ante by offering support in 11 languages by the end of the year.

Dell is using social media monitoring tool Radian6Radian6 to power its data collection. The center will track on average more than 22,000 daily topic posts related to Dell, as well as mentions of Dell onTwitterTwitter. The information can be sliced and diced based on topics and subjects of conversation, sentiment, share of voice, geography and trends.

While this is an innovative move on Dell’s part, this isn’t the first social media monitoring center of its kind. In June, Gatorade was the first to launch a social media control center, with the opening of itsSocial Media Mission Control Center, which looks strikingly similar to Dell’s center.

This news, combined with Gatorade’s earlier launch, seems to be the start of a new trend of developing specialized monitoring practices within organizations. We hope that it leads to brands becoming more participatory in online dialogue about them, and that those insights are used for optimizing product and marketing decisions.

….

Read Full Article (Mashable)

LinkedIn now at 85 million members

In LinkedIn on December 4, 2010 at 10:27 am

The top business social networking site, LinkedIn, recently hit the 85 million members!  And one business (and life) success principle can be noticed here too: It took the site close to 500 days to get the first million members, and only 9 days to get the last million!  Small principle to keep in mind when growing your audience, and/or with anything you set out to do – the “slight edge.”

LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner just dropped some numbers on the LinkedIn social platform’s measurement of user engagement, revealing that the social network now boasts 85 million members and is adding a member each second. “That’s the fastest ever,” Weiner said revealing that it took the site 477 days to get the first million and 9 days for last million.

“We have begun to establish critical mass, especially on a global basis,” said Weiner. Indeed, half of new membership now comes from overseas. The site is also close to hitting 60 million monthly uniques according to Comscore which means that a good proportion of its members return visit.

LinkedIn currently has $103 million in funding led by Sequoia Capital. You can watch more of today’s Web 2.0 Summit talks on the Livestream here.

**If you have any questions about LinkedIn (how to make your profile findable and/or strategies for networking/connecting, and more, feel free to email me)!  b@socialbuzzmedia.com

Top Holiday Shopping Sites

In General, Strategy, Trends, Uncategorized on December 3, 2010 at 8:24 am

Tis the season to be jolly!  :)

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love the holiday season…and I love giving!  However, I have to be honest…I struggle writing a blog post that might remotely promote the idea of ‘useless’ or ‘excessive’ spending.  Most can agree that we Americans go overboard with shopping, food, clothing, etc.  And it’s not too shortly after New Year’s that the jolly and cheery spirit of people, comes to a screeching halt…boom, the first credit card bill arrives!

Soooo…instead, a list of shopping sites has been compiled below (with help of Cameron Huddleston & Kay Whittenhauer!), that will help you SAVE money on the gifts you’re looking to purchase.  :)  Perhaps with the money that is saved…everyone can do a random act of kindness to help someone in need…or donate to a cause (check out Advent Conspiracy)?  :)  That’s definitely spreading good cheer.

ZingSale.com – set up alerts for items you’re looking to purchase, and you’ll get notified when the product goes on sale!
Yotify.com – similar to zingsale, check out the demo
Retrevo.com – the ultimate electronics marketplace
DealNews – reviews the incentives of over 2,000 online retailers (and refuses to cover sites with poor customer service)
Gottadeal.com – comprehensive listing of deals
Slickdeals.net – includes deals + passionate penny-pinching and helpful community forum
DODTracker.com – condenses the information from hundreds of “deal of the day” sites; big win for the 24 hour deal shoppers
Amazon.com, Pronto.com, & Google Product Search – great comparison shopping sites
Couponcabin.com, Couponwinner.com, & Alexscoupons.com – great resources for coupon clippers.  Alex’s Coupons donates a portion of its profits to childhood cancer charities.
Plasticjungle.com & Giftcardgranny.com – sell gift cards for less than their face value (also the sites will buy or trade gift cards you don’t want for 80-90% of their value).
Freeshipping.org & Freeshippingday.com (Dec 17) – awesome at helping consumers save $$ on shipping gifts for free!
Wallet Pop’s JuliaScott, the Bargain Babe offers GREAT shopping tips & deals for savvy spenders
HSN.com – under the “gift store” tab there’s an option to choose “gifts under $25”
QVC.com – on their home page, put your mouse on “Christmas” you’ll see an option for gifts under $25.  Great return policy too
Overstock.com select the department of your liking, and then scroll down to the price section and choose “under $20” (most furniture will not be under this selection though).
REI – Great gifts for those who like outdoor activities, and they offer the same “$20 or less” shopping option too.

Also, if your company is looking for a unique and healthy gift idea for another company you work with… check out fresh fruit delivery at FruitToWellness.com :)
What other sites do you recommend?