This week, Jen Zingsheim and co-host Doug Haslam of Voce Communications (a Porter Novelli Company) discussed Friendster, Delicious, and the importance of owning your own content; a study that shows social media has no impact on online sales; and having a social media contingency plan. Mark Story will be happy to note, they did *not* discuss the Royal Wedding.
This week’s show is 30 minutes in length.
- First, Doug and Jen talk about this week’s rumored demise of Friendster, and the sale of Delicious by Yahoo to a new company started by the founders of YouTube, once again highlighted the importance of not putting all of your content in one place, with no backup. Doug points out that this is something that every company and every person needs to consider when posting content on any site, referencing his experience with Utterli. Friendster has given users until May 31 to copy and back up their content, which is a good move. Services that disappear overnight certainly don’t endear themselves to the public.
- Next, the two discuss a study conducted by Forrester Research and GSI Commerce that shows social media has a negligible effect on online sales. Jen notes that the narrow definition of impact–a direct link between the social network and a sale–doesn’t leave room for the effect of online word of mouth, which is likely just as strong online as it is offline. Doug points out that it’s always important to note the role of those who conduct the study–GSI Commerce provides interactive marketing services.
- Finally, they talk about a post authored by Heidi Cohen discussing the need for a social media contingency plan. What kind of contingency plan? Well, in case your (very public-facing) social media manager leaves, have a plan in place so he or she won’t take your company’s fan base with them. Doug notes that this is just good planning, and that many companies have already seemed to work out a reasonable mix–using Ford’s Scott Monty as an example. Jen points out that the post is timely–between the maturation of the social space and the improving economy, many of those with established online reputations may be looking to make job changes.
And, one final note: please consider checking out Ike Pigott’s Twitter stream, and if possible contributing to help those in need in Alabama and other parts of the South hit hard by tornadoes.