After working with the social media management space for a number of months, and watching a new industry being born, I thought it was about time for a comprehensive review of the products and tools that are out there. You can jump right over to download the report now. Continue reading “In-Depth Report on Ten Social Media Management Platforms”
At this year’s SXSW, I attended a session on the future of online video, with Mark Cuban, who is part owner of HDNet, and Avner Ronen, CEO of Boxee. Ronen was bullish, declaring that the web would be the future of video. Cuban countered that video online would never have the heft and marketplace presence of traditional network and cable television (or, at least, not in the next 5-10 years).
The flaw in the debate is that both of them spoke about video as entertainment content only. That’s not surprising, given that both HDNet and Boxee are entertainment companies. But, this belies an important truth: historically, entertainment has been supported by advertising. But when products can create their own engaging content, then there is no need for retailers to support expensive entertainment creation.
This is the real future for online video. Companies become content creators, which supports their value proposition and sales pipeline. The practical uses of video content are much bigger than just entertainment. That’s where Liveclicker has built a unique offering.
The era of big data is upon us. Over the past 20 years, we have seen a huge increase in the amount of data that the world produces. And it continues to grow. IDC estimates (PDF) that the world will have 988 exabytes (988 billion gigabytes) this year. That’s a 4x increase since 2006, and a forecast of 57% CAGR moving forward.
And that’s just the beginning.
We can’t even yet conceive of the new uses of all of this information. But they are coming, and they will bring both problems and opportunities.
Grant McCracken‘s book, Chief Culture Officer, makes a bold declaration: corporations must institutionalize the study of culture in order to make things that resonate better with consumers. He proposes doing this by creating a new C-level executive: the CCO. The CCO is responsible for keeping the corporation in touch with culture, and to find ways to align the corporation with the culture of the moment. In that way, the corporation can affectively integrate with larger cultural moments, connect in an authentic way, and increase its own profits.
This framework sounds wondrous: the public gets a corporation more attuned to what they want. The corporation gets a larger customer base. And the CCO gets to sit on top of the pile.
But, you know what they say about things that seem too good to be true, right? The sad reality is that the type of role that McCracken defines would surely be doomed to failure. Continue reading “Chief Culture Officer: Nice Work If You Can Get It”
Total read time: 5 minutes
Games have been around for thousands of years. But while Go and Chess are complicated (and have even been proven to correlate with intelligence), for most of history, games have not been taken seriously. Until video games came along. In the span of 30 years, a great gaming industry was built. Nintendo, Electronic Arts, Sony, Atari, and Microsoft owe billions of dollars in revenue each year to games. The video game industry is now worth more than $18BN (incidentally, that’s more than the movie industry). And Zynga, the social gaming company that created Farmville and Mafia Wars on Facebook, went from a valuation of $1BN last year to $3BN in February, to $5BN in April. Continue reading “Game Mechanics: The Most Important Online Tactic You’re Not Using”
Total read time: 4 minutes
Recently, Augie Ray and Josh Bernoff at Forrester Research released a new study on “peer influence analysis” – a systematic, data-driven way to determine who the influencers are for a particular brand, and understand the social channels in which they are active.
They used technographic profiles to slice users by social activity, in order to determine “Mass Connectors” and “Mass Mavens” (with appropriate hat tip to Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping Point). What they found was that just 16% of internet users account for 80% of social influence – which might include content creation, impressions, virality, and other factors.
Previously, I talked about how marketers need lots of content – way more content than they can produce themselves. That’s where the emerging category of curation tools becomes an important part of the online marketer’s arsenal.
Curation tools help push a lot of content through your site. That’s a good thing – you stay relevant in search engine results, and keep popping up in social spaces every time a new piece of content goes up on your site. Continue reading “HiveFire: Content Curation for Marketers”
In a complex sale, the path from awareness to purchase is long and fraught with distraction. Many different stakeholders are consulted at different times, and with different information needs. The business analyst who is looking to streamline a process might initially find your service. The system engineer then needs to vet whether it will fit into the existing structures. The C-suite needs to understand how this piece fits in with the larger business roadmap. And the end user needs to understand how the new solution will be better than the current one.
UPDATE: For a more comprehensive overview of 10 SMMPs, please check out this new post for a downloadable report.
Total read time: 4 minutes (italicized highlights and chart); 15 minutes (full post)
It seems that every new marketing campaign comes with an accompanying Twitter account. In addition, the customer service department needs a couple (or many) distinct accounts. And certain key individuals, like your CMO, need their individual accounts. The slow creep of campaigns, positioning, and different department needs continue to expand, and suddenly, you realize that your company has a couple dozen Twitter accounts, several Facebook pages, and hundreds of personal accounts across multiple social networks.
The reality is that all of these accounts are needed – your product manager has a different focus than your customer support team, and you don’t want to mix together messages directed toward journalists with that campaign you did targeting stay-at-home-moms. But, you can’t even remember all of the handles, much less the passwords.
It’s time for a social media management platform.
Today Twitter announced their advertising platform, called Promoted Tweets. Twitter’s focus on message resonance is a large step forward in content marketing because it uses algorithms to determine valuable content within advertising units. This convergence of paid and earned media tactics raises the importance of effective content marketing strategies for digital marketers.