June 09, 2013 by
90% of the data in the history of the world has been created in the last 2 years (source: IBM).
It’s given rise to an industry, Big Data, and a significant portion of it comes from social media chatter.
Does it make sense for brands to listen to social media data? What kind of insights are revealed? Does it result in better decision making?
Here are 8 case studies that show the predictive power of social media listening.
- CALIFORNIA ELECTIONS: In the 2010 California governor’s race between candidates Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown, a study from Activate Direct social listening proved the ratio of positive to negative social sentiment to be very much in line with the ratio of favorable to unfavorable ratings shown by traditional polling and on-going focus group. But social media listening identified potential crises earlier, faster and for less research money.
- DELL: Uses social media chatter for cross-departmental team collaboration. Over 90,000 employee quickly and easily collaborate and listen in 11 languages in places like the company’s Listening Command Center. What has they found> In the US, Twitter chatter has a positive impact on their reputation and gained positive coverage in Mashable and Fast Company; in Germany, social media chatter among employees helps monitor the success of internal conferences; in China, blogposts have a direct effect on coverage with Sina, RenRen, microblogs and forums.
- HEDGE FUND MANAGERS: “Analyzing social media conversations can provide insights, ‘like X-Ray vision’, about a company’s performance in between their quarterly financial reports.” That’s the point of view of the McAlister Study and how hedge fund managers now listen to social media chatter when their research showed a direct positive correlation between sales and chatter; a 5% rise of positive chatter led to a 5% rise in sales.
- MORTON’S: You may have heard about social media consultant, Peter Shankman, who had the good luck when tweeting a shout out about how a Morton’s steak would be just the right ending to his flight arriving in Newark. The consultant with 150,000+ Twitter followers was greeted at the airport by a man in a tuxedo sent by Morton’s to deliver a complete steak dinner. Social media listening enabled Morton’s to pick out advocate from the crowd and create influence at a low cost. It probably didn’t hurt Shankman’s influencer rating and visibility either.
- NIELSEN: The gold standard for assessing the performance of TV programming, has started collecting social media chatter for TV rating. The Nielsen company said that one in three people using Twitter in June of 2012 sent messages at some point about the content of television shows, an increase of 27% from only five months earlier. Nielsen also estimated that 41% of tablet owners and 38% of smartphone owners used their devices while watching television.
- QUENTIN TARANTINO: His violent Nazi revenge fantasy Inglorious Basterds pulled in more than $37 million domestically in its opening weekend. A good portion is thanks in part to Twitter. After a $14 million opening on Friday, the film picked up steam over the weekend as the positive tweets kept rolling in. Research service, Trendrr, showed the number of tweets about the movie climbed steady through most of Saturday before tapering off early Sunday correlating directly with movie receipts.
- TOYOTA: At the beginning of 2012, the company faced very negative press due to revelation of recalls and announcing them late to the public. Toyota launched a large “transparency” and “apology” campaign using social media outreach. The company had four official Facebook pages, which saw a 10% fan base growth between late January and early March. USA president and chief operating officer, Jim Lentz, also participated in regular Twitter Chats. Toyota experienced a 41% increase in March 2010 sales, compared to March of last year. The company can’t prove a link between social media outreach and the sales boost, especially considering the unprecedented sales incentives and discounted leasing deals and mainstream media appearances by executives on such outlets as NBC, ABC, and NPR. But it certainly didn’t hurt Toyota to be transparent through social media and was a very smart part of a successful integrated campaign.
- UNISYS: A 100+ year old company, Unisys understandably has had some obstacles to overcome when adapting social media to their corporate culture. With several top executives leading by example, departments began to openly share communication using internal social media applications. But success stories within the company show huge innovative payoffs aided tremendously by the open sharing of information available through well-constructed social media platforms and corporate adaptations.
To be transparent, not all brands are benefiting from social media listening. Coca-Cola reports it has yet to see any sales lift from social media buzz, even though the brand has 61,000,000+ fans on Facebook but the company continues to listen.
In the music industry, Tom Silverman reports: “My new take is online media is the propagation channel through which attention waves travel. Bieber and Kutcher have huge attention waves so they travel far and fast. Speed of propagation is greater on YouTube than any other social platform due to the sticky video content. Media is not necessarily neutral. Great images and videos drive engagement faster than words for example. But we keep learning from real life stories. His New Music Seminar is this week in NYC.
Do his case studies prove the predictive power of social media listening? Do you need help finding insights in the chatter for your brand?
May 27, 2013 by
Nowhere do the words, Fan Engagement, have greater relevance than in the music business and social media.
The music industry, the first media business to be consumed by the digital revolution, has experienced profound change. But in 2012, for the first time since 1999, sales increased. They went up 0.3%, to $16.5 billion, a far cry from its $38 billion peak in 1999 (source: International Federation of the Phonographic Industry).
Although it may not be time to party like it’s 1999, the music business is growing again. Social media is helping the transformation. That’s why from June 9th through 11th, you’ll find me at the NMS New York New Music Festival. It’s dedicated to help artists and players break through in this difficult market by providing the knowledge and connections they need to succeed.
The New Music Seminar (NMS) began in 1980 and ran through 1994. In its 16-year run, the first series of seminars annually attracted more than 8,000 participants from 35 countries. In 2009 NMS was revived because the music business was in crisis after a decade of dropping album sales. Label executives, agents, promoters and artists needed find ways to break away from the traditional album-based business model.
The #1 goal in the music business today is monetization. That’s why social media plays a prominent role. Here are 10 case studies that prove Social Media ROI in the music business.
- JUSTIN BIEBER: Owes much of his fame to social media. One example is when he created a huge PR buzz in a seemingly innocent way from a rumor he spread that the music video, ‘Baby,’ was to be deleted from YouTube because it had 1.5 million dislikes, and millions of Follower tweets poured in to protest. Today, “Baby” on YouTube has 836,039,006 views.
- BONNAROO AND CMA FESTIVAL: Are two big festivals that occurs every year in Tennessee. A local SEO, SEM and Social Media Monitoring software company, Raven, captured the social attention the festivals were getting with Infographics (one is shown at the bottom of this post). The Infographics were featured in the Tennessean’s Business Section and USA Today. From the publicity, the agency secured new business from a regional tourism entity, an international record label and and an international entertainment television network.
- MATTHEW EBEL: A Boston-based singer generated 26.3% of his income from 40 hard core fans. Matthew used social media to drive his super fans to a susbscription based website. He sold packages ranging from $5/month to $15/month, as well as annual options. He offered a wide range of perks are including members-only parties, VIP seating at shows, access to new music as soon as he creates it, new live concert recordings every month, broken apart tracks ready for remixing, behind-the-scene sketches and drafts.
- KING ISSA: A rising hip-hop turned to a unique, first-of-its-kind mobile app: an iPhone application that delivered a musician’s mixtape with exclusive in-app content. In one week, the app received 50,000 download and live tracking and analytics data from over 35 countries that were used to secure iTune sales and depth of Fan Engagement for repeat purchase.
- LADY ANTEBELLUM: Integrated exclusive social sales offers, such as their “Own The Night” flash sale, where the band offered fans an exclusive bundle offer for a zip-up hoodie and an autographed photo. By combining the exclusive offer with social commerce apps that enabled fans to click through and complete their purchases within the Facebook Newsfeed, the deal sold out in an hour, with 85% of sales going to new customers. Another flash sale in Facebook Newsfeed that same night sold out in just 10 minutes, proving the value of social media as an effective sales tool when used intelligently.
- LIVE NATION AND SMASHING PUMPKINS: The Smashing Pumpkins took over Live Nation’s Twitter Feed for 7 hours. In that time, they answered 200 questions and had 570 engagements with Fans and Followers. The real time engagement generated 12,280,000 impression generated in that time.
- NEXT BIG SOUND: An analytics and insight company that tracks billion of social signals to help record labels, artists and brand managers make better decisions did an analysis on the key factors impacting digital sales of iTunes. In order, they were: 1) Radio Spins, 2) YouTube Views, 3) Facebook Fans and 4) Twitter Followers.
- AMANDA PALMER: On a boring Friday night, Amanda managed to make in $11,000 in just two hours. It all started with her tweeting about how she was alone, again, on a Friday night sitting in front of her computer. Others started chiming in and began claiming how “we are all losers.” Dialog continued and grew at a rapid pace. A faux organization was started called, “The Losers of Friday Night on their Computers.” Amanda created the hashtag #LOFNOTC and thousands joined the conversation. A follower suggested the group create a t-shirt. Amanda quickly decided to run with it. She took a sharpie and made a t-shirt design. A website was thrown up that night with the t-shirts available for $25 a piece. 2 hours later… $11,000.
- ROXY: The legendary Sunset Strip music venue uses social media to measure Fan Engagement. They use TweetReach to measure the number of people their tweets reach, as well as the number and quality of retweets. They also like Klout, which helps them compare their efforts to similar businesses. TweetReach demonstrates to a talent agent that they could reach a larger potential audience through Twitter so they should stop advertising in certain local publications. Print advertising is expensive, but Twitter promotion is a free.
- “SOCIAL STRIP”: is the name and social umbrella that lives over the Sunset Strip for all the entertainment venue (e.g. Comedy Store, Roxy, Viper Room. It’s part marketing, part information and part online community. One of their events is the the Sunset Strip TweetCrawl. The TweetCrawl is a bar and restaurant crawl using Twitter to promote specials and other prizes and encourage participants to patronize multiple business on the Strip. The first TweetCrawl was in July 2009. It has been an annual event ever since.
These case studies show how important listening, analytics, monitoring and partnerships are in the music business. They also show how many different types of music or music-related businesses can benefit.
Do these case studies prove Social Media ROI in the music business for you? Will you be going the the New Music Festival in NYC this June? Will you give me a shout if you’re there? Here is the Bonnaroo Infographic.
May 19, 2013 by
With colleges out and students looking to make their mark or start a career this summer, here comes a rite of passage: Putting interns to work doing social media marketing for your business.
After all, who knows more about social media and spends more time on social networks? What business doesn’t want people to “Like” them on Facebook? Why wouldn’t it be a great idea?
It rarely is. As both an owner of a digital marketing agency and MBA faculty at Rutgers CMD who teaches digital and social media marketing, I hear it from both sides. Interns, who generously give of their skills and time, don’t get much from the experience. People who hire them then say they tried social media for their brand but not much happened.
Do businesses get what they pay (or don’t pay for)? Here are 12 lessons learned when interns do your social media marketing.
- HAVE WITH A BUSINESS STRATEGY: Having interns do your social media is not a business strategy. Giving them a focus on the desired business results is a much better place to start.
- TO BUILD AN AUDIENCE ON THE INTERNET TAKES TIME: The internet is one of the most effective and profitable places to build an audience but it doesn’t happen overnight. Thinking the work of interns in a few months can change the course of your business is probably not going to happen.
- KNOW WHO TO ATTRACT: Social networks are great for building relationships that couldn’t have happened through normal channels like email and the phone. Having followers on Twitter or a robust Pinboard on Pinterest doesn’t matter if your audience is on LinkedIn. Relationships that lead to sales can’t be created until your customer is clearly defined.
- IDENTIFY ADVOCATES: There are many case studies of businesses where social media played a pivotal role due to advocates who made strong, authentic recommendations. Louis Pasteur said, “chance favors the prepared mind.” The odds of advocates influencing your business are much greater if you spend time looking for who they are.
- CREATE A “VOICE” FOR YOUR BRAND: Social media marketing is different from traditional marketing. It’s a conversation, not a monologue. Intern shouldn’t be expected to know the dialogue you want to make happen. You need to tell them.
- HAVE PLENTY OF RELEVANT CONTENT: After your product or service, relevant content is your most valuable asset. Interns can’t make this up, you have to provide it at the outset with the establishment of key topics. Then, they can help you develop a content calendar.
- MAKE SURE YOUR WEBSITE IS A DESIRABLE PLACE TO VISIT: People like to business with people they know. If your social media efforts starts to show progress, your audience will want to get to know your better. Don’t disappoint them with a website that doesn’t live up to the quality of your social media content and conversations.
- INTEGRATE SOCIAL MEDIA WITH OTHER MARKETING INITIATIVES: Social media works, but it works much better when it’s integrated with all the other marketing efforts and each are supporting one another.
- HAVE A SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY: Every business should be guided by standards and values. If a real social media example helps, GM has a blog called Fast Lane. It’s written by their senior executives. Their social media policy is one companies big and small can learn from and we can all learn from GM.
- CREATE AN ACTIONABLE SCORECARD: It’s more important to learn than to be right. If you’re wondering what a “Like” has to do with sales create an actionable scorecard of Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) that you can look at regularly, provides insights and helps you take action.
- EMPHASIZE WHAT’S WORKING AND PULL BACK ON WHAT”S NOT: Some initiatives will work better than others so spend time interns have generously given you pursuing what’s producing results and de-emphasize what’s not.
- VIEW TIME AS YOUR MOST VALUABLE, NOT YOUR MOST EXPENDABLE, COMMODITY: Many businesses start their journey with interns viewing their time as something that, for a limited duration, is expendable. There is a different way to think about it. That is, given what interns can do with the right direction, the time they’ve given you is invaluable because it’s capable of producing extraordinary results.
Are you having interns do your social media marketing this summer? Do these lessons help teach you how you should be putting them to work?
April 15, 2013 by
Social networks exhibited mixed results last year after years of significant growth. It was bound to happen.
Maybe, if you’re in social media, this is a concern but here are 10 signs social media peaked. 9 reasons to be glad the “Hype Cycle” has passed.
10 SIGNS SOCIAL MEDIA PEAKED
- SOCIAL NETWORK USAGE: 24% say they use their favorite social media site less than when they first signed up (Source: Gartner)
- FACEBOOK: Visits were +10% in the 12 months ending in October versus +56% a year earlier (source: The New York Times)
- FACEBOOK AND TWITTER: In another study, Facebook and Twitter grew only +2%; there was no growth in corporate blogs (source: University of Massachusetts Dartmouth)
- YOU TUBE: Usage by companies has fallen, from 45% in 2011, to 30% in 2012 (Source: University of Massachusetts Dartmouth)
- PINTEREST: Only 18% of 2012 Inc. 500 companies use Pinterest (Source: University of Massachusetts Dartmouth)
- DIGITAL SPEND: 60% of marketers expect to increase their digital spend this year by 40% or more; only 10% of that digital spend will go to social media (source: Technorati)
- SOCIAL MEDIA JOBS: Have declined from about 1.3% of all jobs to 0.7% (Indeed.com)
- MEASUREMENT: Only 40% of marketers have confidence in their ability to measure social media campaigns. (source: eMarketer)
- TRUST: 56% of consumers trust retail web site with their purchasing decisions; 34% trust brand web sites; only 31% trust blogs (source: Technorati)
- FATIGUE: Gartner reports consumer fatigue from the social media Hype Cycle.
9 REASONS TO BE GLAD THE “HYPE CYCLE” IS PASSED
- GETTING PAST “HYPE CYCLE” MEANS SOCIAL MEDIA IS HERE TO STAY: The “Hype Cycle’ (below) occurs because of “inflated expectations.” Although after that, there is the stage of “disillusionment.” Then, it goes to “enlightenment,” and “productivity.”
- ROI: #1 question 4,000 marketers ask every year is “How to measure Social Media ROI.” Now, we can get down to business (source: Social Media Examiner).
- LISTEN RATHER THAN “‘LIKE’ US ON FACEBOOK”: With social network growth plateauing, there’s more opportunity in listening to fans and followers than spending all that time saying “‘Like’ Us on Facebook.”
- ENGAGE MORE OFTEN: If growth is slowing, this frees up time to engage. It will probably produce bigger benefits.
- MAKE RELATIONSHIPS MATTER: There’ll be more advantages than ever to having conversations, not monologues, with consumers, and building stronger relationships.
- PRACTICE MARKETING INTEGRATION: Instead of looking at social media as a singular solution, now we can practice putting social media into the integrated marketing mix. Social media, mobile and traditional media work better when they work together. Here are some case studies to prove it.
- CREATE RICHER CONSUMER EXPERIENCES: Marketers can spend more time learning about the new technologies in video, mobile, apps and promotions, as well as regular updates and improvements from the social networks themselves, to give consumers a richer social brand experience.
- STILL GROWING: Although growth appears to be slowing, it’s still growing and faster than many traditional media channels (which are declining).
- COMING OF AGE: Similar channels like email marketing and digital marketing have gone through the “Hype Cycle” as well and proven their longevity. I expect the same to occur for social media. How about you?
I’m glad we’re through the “Hype Cycle” of social media and ready to focus on benefits like ROI, better engagement, stronger relationships and marketing integration. For a FREE eBook that shows Social Media ROI is not that daunting of a task, download 166 Case Studies Prove Social Media Marketing ROI.
Do these signs prove social media has peaked to you? Is it a relief? Would you like to tell me why?
March 18, 2013 by
“Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work” – Peter Drucker
Peter Drucker’s succinct truths are one reason he is regarded as the father of modern marketing and management. In The Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask About Your Organization, his requirements for every business are to know:
- What is our mission?
- Who is our customer?
- What does our customer value?
- What are our results?
- What is our plan?
With so many new tools, tactics and data to provide customer insights and measure results, how would Peter develop a marketing plan today? Here are 12 ideas.
- Management by objective works if you first think through your objectives. Ninety percent of the time you haven’t: Peter was more concerned with acting on learning than being right. Today, he would likely be an advocate of agile marketing, a process that demonstrates the ability to adapt/change to market, customer, and competitive signals. Turning that learning into actionable insights.
- The purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer: His foundational principle for every brand would be at the core of the marketing plan. Today, this means his marketing plan might include CRM, Social CRM and, to keep and retain customers, possibly a Loyalty Club, Gamification and a Mobile App.
- The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself: To gain insights into customer behavior, Peter might look into Big Data with the aim of helping make better business decisions.
- The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said: As 90% of all purchase decision begin online, Peter would likely turn to Google Trends to analyze and interpret customer needs. He would probably regularly check the Google Analytics of his business’s website to understand consumer behavior for his brand and look into some social media monitoring tools for listening purposes.
- If you can’t measure it, you can’t measure it: Peter would identify key metrics for growth and set up Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s), an actionable scorecard to keep strategy on track.
- What’s measured improves: Once KPI’s are established, Peter would identify the factors and time frame for Return on Investment (ROI). He would make sure there is consensus around the KPI’s and ROI so stakeholders are accountable.
- If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old: It’s unlikely benchmarking, is going to be found in a marketing plan from Peter Drucker. That’s because, benchmarking, is process of comparing one’s business processes and performance metrics to industry bests or best practices from other industries. Said another way, it’s setting the standard for the new from the old way of doing things.
- The key to success is for you to make a habit throughout your life of doing the things you fear: It’s likely a Blue Ocean Strategy is going to be found in a marketing plan founded on Drucker principles. That’s a strategy to challenge everything you thought you knew about the requirements for strategic success, not by battling competitors, but rather by creating “blue oceans” of of uncontested market space ripe for growth.
- Whenever you see a successful business, some once made a courageous decision: A Drucker marketing plan would likely be looking to Find the Next “S” Curve. Nothing grows forever. The time to innovate—the innovation window—is when the first growth curve hits an inflection point. How do you know when you’re hitting the inflection point? You never know. So the best companies are forever paranoid and make innovation a continuous process.
- The best way to invent the future is to create it: Points 8 + 9 = 10.
- Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes, but no plan: The purpose of this post is to be of help and guide you. Hopefully, it does, but whether it does or doesn’t, you still need a plan.
- No one learns as much about a subject as one who is forced to teach it. In teaching, we rely on the ‘naturals,’ the ones who somehow know how to teach: I teach the principles of Peter Drucker. Why? His wisdom means something to me and is a better way to bring a brand to market. It’s in plans for our clients at BarnRaisers and part of my MBA teaching at Rutgers CMD.
If you’re a fan of Peter Drucker (as I am), I hope you got something from these Drucker-ism. Did you?