// April 14th, 2009 // Comments Off // Technology
While preparing to talk about managing social media at the Charleston Chamber of Commerce Area Business Council tomorrow morning I was thinking how to best present the tools and practices that I use to cover all social media. My mind shut down. There are so many different ways to use social media and manage it. For me, managing social media is all about organization, which I suck at. However, with the tools given to us these days even I can stay focused without A.D.D. medicine.
To start, my basic philosophy for social media; You have to get in the conversation. It’s a must. People are talking about you and/or your company whether you like it or not. You can choose to get in the conversation and say “thanks” or even give your perspective on an issue that customers or clients may disagree with you on. You have to be listening to know who may be talking about you, your company, your products & your brands.
The point of my talk is to address managing social media and interactive marketing. Most of you have chosen to engage the social media world and now need to know how to handle and manage all the different types of outlets… blogs (personal, corporate), social networks (facebook, linkedin), micro-blogs (twitter, friendfeed), social bookmarking (digg, delicious), media sharing (youtube, flickr), social reviews (trip advisory, yelp) , User Generated (Wikipedia).
First you need to decide what’s the purpose? To engage customers? To build your brand? To protect your brand? Generate new leads? Have a presence since your competitor does? All of those? There’s no way I can write one blog post to hit all the different ways to disseminate your information or campaigns in just a few short minutes so I’m going to touch on managing your presence.
How to listen, how to join the conversation.
Create a dashboard
Google has made this a simple setup with iGoogle. You can add “widgets” to give you a quick overview of what is happening in your online world. You can setup up widgets that interact with Twitter, Google Analytics, Google Alerts, Email, Facebook, Digg, LinkedIn & all the major news outlets. This is a quick and simple glance to your online world.
Flock, the social media browser is a little more comprehensive and by default is a web browser. However, with some time and understanding Flock can act as a fully functioning, deep and detailed dashboard. Another post coming soon for how I use Flock as my dashboard.
Twitter search has drastically changed the face of the common search engine. Twitter has pulled off what Google has yet to do, real time/live search. Twitter search gives you the ability to monitor your product, brand , company & competition all in real time.
Using a desktop app is the most effective way to utilize all the power in Twitter. Tweet Deck allows you to update, read, search and group all your followers/friends without ever visiting a website. Powerful tool and easy to use- an app like Tweet Deck will change the way you view Twitter.
Pages for your business allow you to control your brand, build brand awareness, engage fans to promote for you, test new ideas/products with proven customers/clients & keep your client/fans up to date.
Fans of business pages are your evangelists! Most fans are likely customers/clients and they believe in your brand enough to share with their “friends”. Find ways to engage your evangelists so they keep on sharing your product or brand.
Anyone who is a member of Facebook can create a fan page- another reason to jump in the conversation! Do you want someone else running your page on Facebook? Sure, sometimes it’s great but there is a difference in a fan of your brand and actually managing your brand.
I have a two part challenge to help you get in the conversation.
First search twitter for your brand, company or product–> Search here in real time.
Secondly setup a Google Alert for your product, brand or company. You can have this delivered to your email daily or subscribe via RSS.–> Setup alerts here.
What did you find? Positive results? Negative results? No matter what you find, you have an opportunity to enter the conversation to say thanks or to address a concern or issue. It’s up to you now!