Archive for social media

Simplifying Social Media Metrics

Posted in WVU Marketing Communications Today with tags , , on May 21, 2018 by OC Talk Radio

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-w7v9c-91b84c

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Metrics are simply standards of measurement by which efficiency, performance, or progress can be assessed. Yet in social media it can get complicated quickly with amount of data and options of what can be collected and where. In this podcast, we will cover the basics of collecting social media data, tracking social media metrics and identifying KPIs (key performance indicators). We will also consider how to link social media actions to business goals and marketing objectives for social measurement and optimization. This episode’s host is Cyndi Greenglass.

Some of the talking points will include:

  1. Is there a simple way to link social media metrics to business and/or marketing objectives?
  2. What else should be as marketers being thinking about when it comes to social metrics?
  3. What is the biggest mistake marketers still make with social media metrics?

Think of Internet Talk Radio as Another Social Medium

Posted in Internet Radio with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 13, 2011 by OC Talk Radio

As a community radio station, our mandate is to “stimulate conversations” and give local businesses and community groups “a voice on the Internet.”

As such, we’re always looking for “learning moments” where everyone can learn from the ideas and experiences of others.  Here’s one of those “learning moments” from our show CRITICAL MASS FOR BUSINESS (which airs live on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 4-5pm PST).

Why I Created OC Talk Radio

Posted in Internet Radio, OC Talk Radio with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 31, 2011 by OC Talk Radio

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For those intested, here’s the “backstory” of how OC Talk Radio began.

“Social media is not an ad. People don’t see your post, tweet or LinkedIn profile and buy. The purpose (and promise) of all social mediums is simply to start a conversation with someone you’d like to meet.”

I belong to a group called CRITICAL MASS FOR BUSINESS. It’s a facilitated CEO PEER GROUP that meets once a month for 4 hours. The group is limited to 12 members, all of whom own similarly sized businesses in non-competeing industries.

Our typical agenda starts with a recap of what happened to all of us over the prior month including reports on whatever we did (or didn’t do) to implement the suggestions, ideas and “action plans” from our last meeting. For many of us (me included) this “accountability to someone other than yourself” may be one of the most important features of this group. We’re all entrepreneurs, not used to reporting to anyone but ourselves. The problem with that approach (however) is that it’s far too easy to make excuses or put off painful decisions when there is no one looking over your shoulder, prodding you to improve and move forward. “I’ll do it tomorrow” too often means it never gets done.

Then comes the truly transformative part of the meeting: the “round table discussions”. Here is where the rubber meets the road and people really get to the heart of their issues. Using a strictly controlled “question and answer process” (guided by our professional facilitators) we probe, distill and digest whatever issues each member wishes to bring forward. It’s not always a pleasant experience to be on “the hot seat” but it’s always informative and often illuminating. This is the only true “no spin zone” I know. You’re in a confidential setting with 11 other struggling entrepreneurs, many of whom are wrestling with the same issues and obstacles you are. And it s the only place I know where you get really honest, no bs feed back. Who else is gonna tell you such truth? Your friends and family (who don’t want to hurt your feelings?) Your employees (who don’t want to lose their jobs?) Or some consultant (who really wants to please you and keep getting paid and whose narrow expertise may not allow them to see the whole picture?)

This is the magical “mastermind” part of the meeting: 12 individual minds coming together as one urging, adding to and otherwise improving upon each previous thought. Organized brainstorming, proving once again that the sum is greater than the individual parts. How can this help? Well, it’s hard to describe unless you’ve experienced it. But let me say that (in my own case) it gave birth to a whole new business.

I was a long time PR person whose core clients (billiards, hot tubs and other home improvement products) had seen a dramatic decline during the recent “Great Recession”. Hot tub sales alone fell by over 70%. So, one by one, my clients were either going out of business or cutting back dramatically on their overall marketing services (including me). I entered the group to find a way to revitalize my business. Instead, the group opened my eyes to a whole new business opportunity.

As I recanted my problems to the group and discussed how foolishly I’d put all my “eggs in one basket” (by narrowly focusing on just one niche), how “fat and happy” and complacent I’d become in the process and how I’d generally stopped learning, growing and aggressively marketing my services to others, it became clear that I needed a new fire or passion to prod me in a new direction and a distinctive service to offer. Then, after casually mentioning that PR companies were being asked (more and more) to take on the role and responsibilities of “social media strategist” for their clients (since ad agencies-used to making ads–and marketing people-used to collecting and analyzing data–neither knew how nor wanted to explore this new aspect of marketing), the group started prodding me to explore this subject and educate myself on this opportunity. That led to long discussions about “what is social media”, “how is it different than traditional advertising, PR and marketing” and what is its fundamental purpose?

That, in turn, led me to some remarkble insights such as “social media isn’t an ad on the Internet”. People don’t just read your blog or “tweets” and buy. Instead, its something we’ve never seen before. The purpose (and promise) of social media is that it allows you to start a conversation with anyone you want to meet, from which you can learn, explain, explore and otherwise engage them in a meaningful dialog in which (hopefully) both sides receive some benefit. That means you can’t just “ask for the order” anymore. You have to be willing to offer some ideas and information for free, upfront, before you start the sales process. Information that your audience (hopefully) will find so interesting and informative that they pass it onto others in their network and community (creating “brand advocates” or “viral marketing” for your goods or services in the process). Then you have to respond to their questions and comments and keep them coming back for more. In other words, you have to have something interesting to say and then keep saying it regularly and often.

That’s why most social media programs fail. Most companies aren’t prepared to become their own media production companies. They run of out meaningful things to say and they don’t regularly keep at it, primarly because it takes time and discipline and it may not show immediate ROI. And quite often, no one in the company is prepared to take on the additional role of “social media spokesman”, which is why it defaults to the traditional PR people (who are used to regularly speaking for their clients).

And that’s when it occurred to me. This is what I should be doing, particularly since I originally started off in radio broadcasting and communication right after college (as a traditional DJ on WMYK, “K94″, in Norfolk,Virginia). Then came the even bigger insight that “I think I know a simpler and more powerful way to do this!” For if the purpose of social media is simply to start a conversation with someone you want to meet, then what could be easier than simply calling them up, interviewing them over the phone and then streaming that conversation live to the world? You could even record, archive and store it on some server, making it available 24/7 as a download for others to listen to and enjoy later as a “podcast” on ITunes and elsewhere.

Wouldn’t that be much easier to produce than trying to research and write a new blog or mini-article each week? And (ultimately) wouldn’t it be much easier for your audience on the Internet to consume (given the fact that most people would rather watch or listen to something on the Internet than read it?) And wouldn’t these weekly live conversations be more interesting and stimulating than just talking to yourself ? (a problem that plagues most other social mediums like blogs, tweets and traditional podcasts) And wouldn’t a live, weekly broadcast, at a regular time and place, be more likely to engage your audience, particularly if they could call-in their questions (just like any traditional talk show) or log-on, in real time, and tweet their comments ? And wouldn’t your guests immediately tell all their friends, customers and clients to listen? And wouldn’t they put a link to that recorded interview up on their site after the fact (which would help drive traffic and links to your site, thereby raising your search engine rankings and giving you a free ad on their website forever?) The answer to all this was “yes”.

Thus was born a new “social medium” and the business to go with it: OC TALK RADIO, Orange County’s only community radio station giving local businesses a voice on the Internet. For more information, check us out at http://octalkradio.net.

Putting the Social Back in Social Media

Posted in Internet Radio, Ladera Times with tags , , , , , , on April 15, 2010 by OC Talk Radio

Found a fascinating article by Paul Gillin in this month’s isssue of BtoB Magazine which really puts the whole “social media” problem in perspective. Too many people still see all “social mediums” (like our Internet Talk Radio shows) as a giant billboard on the Internet Super Highway which will drive sales instead of seeing social media for what it truly is: the most powerful form of customer communication ever invented. It fits into the BEGINNING of the sales cycle as a “conversation starter” and not at the end as a “closer”. And that’s the confusion. Here’s the article for you to consider:

“I recently surveyed 55 marketers, including many at b-to-b companies, about their satisfaction with social media tools. While the results aren’t statistically valid, they yield some interesting insight on how the media landscape has changed.

Respondents said that in 2006 their companies were using an average of less than one social media platform each. By last year, the average had swelled to more than eight. Equally interesting were the satisfaction ratings. Just two of the 55 respondents said they perceived the ROI on their social media investments to be negative, while 46 rated it somewhat or very positive.

There’s both good and bad news in these trends. Businesses have clearly turned the corner in their adoption of social platforms, but the rush to join the party indicates that they may be reverting to the mass-market mentality that social marketing explicitly rejects.

The mindset of mass has been ingrained in the marketing conscience for a century. In a world in which the only efficient way to relay a message to a small number of people who cared was to bother a large number of others who didn’t, big media was the only game in town.

Online media have flipped this equation. Success is now defined by the ability to establish meaningful conversations about very specific topics. Quality displaces quantity, and relationships replace messages.

A lot of marketers are having a hard time grasping this because they spent so many years doing the opposite. They see new channels as a way to build another mass audience for the same old messages. They wear their Twitter follower count as a badge of honor. They miss the point.

Social media are called social for a reason. They are a means to create relationships between individuals. Human resources professionals at Sodexo Worldwide have learned this. The big food service and facilities management company has all but discarded job boards in favor of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and a variety of conversational tools. The reason: They found that initiating conversations with applicants before moving them into the recruitment funnel improved both recruiter efficiency and candidate enthusiasm. Along the way, the volume of applications jumped 25% in two years, while recruitment ad spending dropped $300,000.

The new challenge for b-to-b marketers will be to exploit the potential of social media to create connections between all their employees and all their constituents. This will present enormous governance issues as we begin to “media-train” entire companies instead of just a few individuals. That’s a topic for future columns. For now, the challenge is to discard the old economics of mass and embrace the value of one-to-one.”

Courtesy of BtoBOnline.

Using Multiple Media Channels to Promote Your Business

Posted in Critical Mass with tags , , , , , , , on December 7, 2009 by OC Talk Radio

Don’t miss Jay Tolman from Agency 51 this Thursday, December 10 from 4-5pm on Critical Mass: The Radio Show as he discusses “using mulitiple media channels to promote your business”.  Only on www.OCTalkRadio.net.