I was about to title this post “Why Social Media Still Matters,” but then assumed that if you’re reading Media Bullseye, you probably already know that. Why the need for such a post, you might ask? To be honest, I see a lot of negativity out there lately.
Some of it is all in good fun. I did get a chuckle out of (NSFW language) WTF Is My Social Media Strategy?, and Geoff Livingston’s ongoing and campaign against “personal branding” has cracked me up a time or two. But sometimes I just get tired of even the most vocal social media “gurus” (and yes, I too hate describing them as such) talking about how no one “gets it”, how catch-phrases aren’t strategy (true, but how about offering alternatives to those who may think that way rather than just complaining?), or, basically, how this communications platform that many of us have built careers on adds up to nothing. So, I’ve decided to spend this week’s jots focusing on posts with helpful advice, strong strategic recommendations, and proof that social media strategy isn’t just a catchphrase to impress potential clients.
One trend I’ve noticed during the evolution of social media communications is a decline in blogging. Without naming names, I will tell you that when I returned to these jots (and therefore upped my weekly reading in my PR & Social Media RSS feeds), I was surprised to find how many of my previously daily reads had stopped updating. Some are only updating once every few weeks. While sites like Twitter and Facebook continue to flourish and explode with content, blogging seems to have diminished. I’ve focused a few of the Jots this week on finding good posts with blogging tips and strategies, and why we’re all still here. Enjoy!
Blogging Still Matters – Mitch Joel – This post is an excellent reminder of why blogging is still important; why it is still a terrific tool to keep in your social marketing arsenal. Everyone loves Twitter, and other tools are also coming into their own, but by reposting an interview with Tom Peters and Seth Godin on the power of blogging, Mitch brings us back to our roots. “After having not seen the clip in almost a year, it struck me because of how powerful the sentiments were and how relevant they still are today in a world that has almost forgotten the power of the published Blogging word in lieu of shinier objects like Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and more. I took a couple of moments to transcribe what each best-selling business book author said, so that I can re-read and remind myself of why I do this (and why you should do this too).”
How to Have a Totally Freaking Amazing Corporate Blog – BL Ochman – I love posts with practical advice and solid strategic tips. Many brands simply don’t know where to begin when it comes to launching a corporate blog, and I’d argue that this post from BL Ochman is a terrific place to start. “When people do get to your blog, you need to be talking about what people want to hear, not just what you want to tell them. Simple as that sounds, heavy-handed selling or, worse yet, bland “don’t offend anyone” writing are the major reasons that nobody reads most corporate blogs.”
Value Your Blog Real Estate – Chris Brogan – Once you’ve got your blog up and running, added some quality, engaging content, and have started the process towards building an audience and community—then what? Chris Brogan has some solid advice on how to make the most of your blog’s look and feel. Where are you placing ads? What are your calls to action, and where should they go? Read on and find out. “Everything about your site is a choice. And each one comes with a mindset and a general response from your peers as well as your prospective audience or community. If you want advertising revenue, be aware that some people will be turned off. If you want more engagement, make it easier, not harder, to comment. If you want more sales, consider where you’ve put your calls to action.”
Five Steps to Strategic Social Media Management – Kami Huyse – While the previous tips on quality blogging are important, so is understanding how blogging fits into an overall social media strategy. Kami Huyse offers some basic recommendations on managing your social media resources; I was most struck by her argument for integrating all your strongest voices, rather than assigning social media management responsibility to just one team member. “More than ever, the person running the social media team needs to be a conductor rather than a soloist. Moreover, the whole organization needs to be a part of that mix. There are subject matter experts (SMEs) in your organization that have amazing credibility with your stakeholders. You should be adding them to the mix.”
The Case for Social Media in B2B – Valeria Maltoni – I think that B2B marketing is often overlooked when discussing social media. So much of social communications is geared towards companies connecting with consumers on an individual level, but what if your customer base is other businesses? Valeria Maltoni has some great ideas for integrating social media ideas into your marketing mix, even when selling to other businesses online. “Integrating social in their marketing plans is humanizing the company, providing it a more genuine voice to the market. A voice that customers (read people) are more apt to connect with and have a desire to be associated with. Let’s face it, people buy from people they like, have things in common with, and demonstrate an understanding of their situation.”