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Integrating a social media plan to your branding strategy has shifted from being an option to becoming a necessity for survival in today’s fast moving market arena. Some years ago, the thought of adding a viral component to a campaign was a nice add on, but mere a requirement for success.
But today, companies have understood the importance of social media such as Facebook, Twitter sites and they are experimenting with it in order to find the best ways to control its reach and power to drive returns.
Social Media is produced via self- publishing and user- generated content vs the professional media outlets like TV, Radio, Magazines, and Newspapers etc.
As far as marketing is concerned, Social Media leverages pull marketing, whereas traditional media relies on the push marketing strategies.
Apart from this, what’s most impressive is the cost involved in social media. Social Media requires much smaller monetary investment in comparison to traditional media.
The social media typically reaches a highly targeted niche market and its messages come directly from individual consumers whereas the traditional media messages come most often from the company behind them.
Thus, this highly interactive strategy of branding is surely considered as ‘The next big thing’.
Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are beyond addictions, they’re necessity now and your presence there tells of your presence in the networked professional world. Smartphones allow users to stay connected to the social networking sites wherever you are and this is a big sigh of relief for people who travel a lot or have other internet access issues.
This not only depicts the growing reach and importance of social media but it also tell us how essential it is to stay connected to the world and how easy it has become to stay updated on not only world affairs but also what your friends just thought about!
The ‘always on’ smartphone is making social networking ‘always in’.
A simple question on twitter “what’s happening?” more XXX million people across the world sharing and responding on politics, natural disasters, common causes, events and activations as well as just plain feelings. With open API’s on most social networks, your 140 character micro-blog on twitter, becomes a status update on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Buzz and whole load of other such sites.
Evolving technology around social media platforms is bringing the world together on a number of common platforms making new and innovative business models for almost all sectors such as Entertainment, sports, non-profit firms, education, matrimony and mostly everything else but news!
So get tweeting on your Smartphone and be a part of the growth!
Social Media is indeed great and it has surely kicked the doors on traditional journalism. It is reshaping the title of journalist and revolutionizing how news is both reported and broken in near real time.
But can we trust Social Media as reliable and accurate news breaking medium? Most of us will say ‘No’. Isn’t it?
But why can’t it be trusted? The answer to this question is both surprising and ironic in that it has nothing to do with Social Media as a medium, but rather everything to do with its core foundation.
The future lies in the present
Let us just say that Social Media and news are the here and now. How it will evolve for the future has a lot of people asking this question and looking for answers. However, just weeks ago it was everywhere on the web that Facebook could soon become the globe’s leading news reader.
People have also been shouting from the hilltops for what seems like an eternity that Twitter is the wave of future for breaking news.
But just because people say this statement, does that make that true? The undeniable truth is another resounding no; it doesn’t make Social Media a reliable source medium for breaking news simply because someone says so.
Social Media needs to prove itself in this category before it will be called as a reliable breaking news source.
Content Source- Mashable.com, Image Source- Google images
Social Media has long back moved on from being merely a medium for entertainment and a spare time activity. The span has widened for social media and with context to education. It can be of high educational value as there are various tools like Blogging, Multimedia Sharing through YouTube and Slideshare, Collaborative authoring like Wikipedia and networking with Twitter and Facebook. All of these can be useful for students in various ways and this has been proved by some live examples of this emerging trend. We’ll look at Harvard.
Harvard Business School integrated Social Media largely into their running by creating their presence on all the major SM tools and linking them onto the university website
The social media page on the university website links you to the Leadership blogs and Microblogs by the professors while it also connects you to eleven Twitter accounts managed by the school, each related to a particular field like HSB News, alumni or MBA students and so on.
The page also connects you to the LinkedIn with separate accounts for alumni and students along with YouTube links, five Facebook pages and six RSS subscriptions! This way they have by large covered almost all major social networking and all of these networks are frequently updated and loaded with conversations!
The students read the blogs written by the professors and each other while they stay updated about news, events, datesheets, and syllabus that they are updated on by HBS Tweets. Social media has helped Harvard maintain a constant connection between the students and the teachers and keeping this communication largely based on studies.
Similarly Amity has also utilized the wide arena of social media through various tools which includes Facebook Applications like Are you a true Amititian and Smart Careers which generates a high amount of involvement of the students and the outside world too. They also use Slideshare for sharing applications and projects.
Social Media is the growing face of peer- to – peer communications with Social Networks such as Facebook, MySpace, Orkut becoming the new opinion discovery and sharing engines communication. Social Media is being used as an effective awareness and activation channel by a number of global brands with marketers reaching the audience directly. The film industry has made a move in bits and pieces too but it is still not a well thought-out initiative. Strangely, film industry is one of the verticals that can gain the maximum through social media, mainly because their target audience is everyone out there and everyone out there in an urban multiplex context is on Social Media!
The recently released Whats Your Rashi was promoted by Cloud9 on www.astroyogi.com and it helped the movie generate curiosity amongst the people who strongly believe in astrology.
- Wikipedia: Signing up on Wikipedia and feeding all the basic and interesting information about the film can make the film get noticed each time anything similar is being searched about. Frequent updating of information and events can continue generating traffic and hence developing curiosity.
- YouTube: YouTube is the web hub of the new generation and uploading the movie’s trailers, songs and behind the scene videos can definitely help keep the movie on top of minds!
- Facebook: 3 Idiots is an excellent example of this one, the official fanpage of the movie on Facebook gathered more than 6 lac fans. But creating a page alone would not help. My Name Is Khan and 3 Idiots may have generated equal amount of controversies and news but here 3 Idiots won the race. The reason is that the fanpage of MNIK with merely 50 thousand fans was not planned or well-executed. The updates had YouTube links and interviews while 3 idiots played it smart by frequent updates, adding contests, quizzes and later by posting most liked dialogues from the movie and the outcome was evident.
- Twitter: The world is tweeting and this is a great platform to showcase whats in the pipeline. Creating an official account, talking about the movie, sharing interesting facts can get you more and more followers. But over tweeting can backfire too so be there but as much as required.
- Official Blog: An official blog is where you can put elaborated information about the movie and generate interest. Movie buffs and fans would love to read about people they like so it is important to write about everyone associated with the film along with all miscellaneous activities and events.
Social Media can be a great help to the film industry if the strategic thought is based on consumer participation as was the case with 3 idiots. The context and content go hand in hand in the hearts of the consumer.
Social Media isn’t just about fun and entertainment; it is also a savior in hard times. This was recently proved when the dreadful earthquake hit Chile. Twitter, http://www.facebook.com, Google and other social media tools are not mere networking sites but also informational banks that can help find people and connect.
- Google Person Finder: it has been a phenomenal tool for those seeking information about their relatives and friends affected by the Haiti’s earthquake. The tool has two buttons where one can either look for someone or provide information about someone; the data is stored in a central database now having over 22000 records. With reportedly over 700 people dead it is a sure sigh of relief to get an instant Google update if someone saw your relative walk past than to wait for the official records.
- Google Maps layers: Google Maps has a feature called MyMaps that allows the user to see the markets that are still operating. The maps also show the geological effects of the earthquake. Moreover Google is constantly updating the information from US geological survey showing the after-effects of the earthquake and the aftershocks
- Twitter: Twitter updates can be sent as easily as in the form of an sms. This makes it the most easily accessible tool that can instantly disseminate the updates. The Chilean Red Cross are issuing new updates via Twitter.
With the constant growth of technology social media tools are adopting new features to become more user-friendly and useful.
Social networking websites like YouTube, Facebook, MySpace Twitter and several Google applications used to be banned at certain branches of the military in US. This was done due to the information exposure and the possibility of malicious acts. The ban has now been removed through a recent policy released by the Pentagon.
However there are certain limitations to the policy. The change would only be brought to the non classified Internet network and certain restriction can be instated by the high officials depending on the situation. Despite these limitations, it is indeed a reason to rejoice for all the military staff and their families. Internet is the medium through which one can stay connected with people anywhere around the globe and what could be better than this for the friends and families of the men and women working with the US military.
This is a great step by the Pentagon and will not only bring people together but allow the military staff to stay updated on the happenings around the world, bringing an element of entertainment to them. Although considering the risk factor that still exists, there will be strong monitoring of the communication and sharing that occurs.
This can be called a huge milestone for Social Media as it is apparently the popularity and vast usage and importance of the medium that resulted in this decision being taken.
The latest study from the Pew Internet analyses that various Americans look for different ways to search for the news. As per the sample of 2259 adults, the study reveals that three fourths of people i.e. 75 percent of them find news online.
They get it either forwarded via e- mails or posts on social networking sites and half of them (almost 52 percent) people forward it via those means.
Doesn’t it translate to a large portion of all Americans? It certainly does.
Apart from this, 59 percent of those surveyed gather there news from a combination of online as well as offline resources.
However, the study also tells that very few people (7 percent) these days are getting information from a single media platform. In fact, nearly half of Americans i.e. 46 percent of them get their news from 4 to 6 media platforms, out of which social networks are on the top.
Most people believe that Television is still the biggest source of news and they gather most of their news sitting in front of their TV sets. But the working populations rely on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter etc only to know what’s happening ‘in’ and ‘around’.
There are many journalists and free lancers that stay connected to their Facebook or Twitter accounts via their mobile phones in order to get the latest updates in different areas.
Ford Motor Co. is rejuvenating its popular Fiesta Movement, which is the social media strategy Ford used to promote Ford Fiesta last year.
Ford unveiled that it has selected around 20 teams nationwide to participate in the movement.
This social media movement has been scheduled to take place from March 10. Each team will include two people that will drive the 2011 Fiesta and use social media sites such as Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, Facebook etc in order to document their experiences.
The teams will get to drive the cars for free and Ford will also pay for their fuel and insurance.
The idea to revive this campaign came after the success; the company got from their previous year’s movement. According to Ford, last year’s Fiesta Movement received 6.2 millions YouTube views, 4 million Twitter impressions and more than 750,000 Flickr views.
This movement got people talking about the Fiesta. Some groups even had number of people participated in the discussions hold on them.
Believe it or not, more than 6,000 people have already made reservations to buy the new 2011 Fiesta when it goes on sale this summer.
Whether it is the social media impact or the Fiesta’s performance, it has definitely worked wonders for the car company.
It is the era of digital media and due to the features like instant and anytime access as well as frequent updates, online news could be a strong competition to the existing mediums of the fourth estate. This is precisely the reason why news agencies like CNN, NDTV and others have established their own online news portals.
A survey conducted by CNN says that 6 out of 10 Americans get news from the internet. Social Media has made news become a social experience. News on the web can be shared through links, can be commented on live, allows you to browse through old stories in about a few clicks and much more. Moreover… it is any day easier to bookmark a link on your browser than to preserve a newspaper clipping!
The ad campaign by Idea, where newspapers are being delivered through internet to save paper, reflects the same story. Considering the pace at which social media is growing, it would not be wrong to say that it is on its way towards surpassing all other forms of media. Digital news is convenient for the people in various other ways like the news can be viewed along with relevant images and videos and with reliable agencies like BBC or CNN providing the news there is no doubt on the authenticity of the news too. Therefore every person who has access to internet would apparently prefer this medium to stay updated on the recent happenings around the world.