Now What ?

As we all know we are living in a world where social media is constantly changing. There will always be something new or better that will catch peoples attention. A few years from now, Facebook could be in the past and a new social media outlet will be the top dog. Although this can very well happen, it may take a while to see what social media outlet will become the next top dog. However, this article explains the 9 social media trends to be on the look out for in 2015.

1.) Something smarter and more personalized : Brands will be spending less time and money to create and develop new platforms and content, instead they will be spending their time looking at what contents are working and which ones are not.

2.) More metrics : Using metrics is in efforts to personalize social media. It is tracking performances of users.

3.) More money will be flowing into social media : Social media companies will be making more money in 2015. Many brands know that more and more people are spending their time on social media and that is where they will need to target. Brands will pay millions of dollars in order to have their products promoted on multiple social media sites.

4.) Social media companies will become more than just networks : A simple example for this is Facebook. Facebook is a created website that is a social network and they also have apps connected to it. However, now Facebook is allowing advertisers to use their social graph which is a profile database that will reach other people in other places.

5.) Continued converged media : There have been plenty of social advertising on social network sites and there will be plenty more. Platforms like Snapchat are coming with their own ad products.

6.) More mistakes : There will be more mistakes that will be made. People may begin to overthink things and make problems that do not exist.

7.) Mobile First : Mobile has been looked at as the second screen, right after computers. However, in 2015 mobile may take the first place position with mobile-only.

8.) Visual Brand language : Apps like Snapchat, Instagram, Vine, and amore have the visual element in social media. Instagram had a 4.2% engagement rate compared to Facebook’s 0.07% and Twitter’s 0.03%. Easily put, post with images do better than post without.

9.) Breakouts : It may be that some of the top social media platforms will be the ones that revolve around images, messaging and video.

No one knows what exactly will come of social media in the future, but from the looks of it, it will still come strong.



Where do We Fit In?

Crisis communication planning is something that almost every organization has in mind, or at least SHOULD have in mind. Most organizations have it all written down as to what they will do if a crisis does come into play. They should have all the basis covered down to a tee. However, now that times are changing, have these organizations adapted? Since social media has come into play, have these organizations included it their crisis communication plan? Do they even know how to utilize their social media during a crisis? This article discusses where social media actually fits in.
There have been a few findings that were reported in a 2014 survey :

-Increases in social media usage overall
-Decreases in the number of organizations using social media to communicate with employees
-More than half of the respondents feel the benefits of using social media as a crisis communications tool outweigh the risk
-Yet 60% of organizations have no strategy or plan in place for using social media during a crisis
-Nearly 62% of respondents plan to use social media monitoring during a crisis
-Only 17% report having a centralized team in place to analyze and disseminate relevant information
-58% of the respondents rate mobile technologies as absolutely as absolutely vital in executing crisis communications plans
-90% of respondents feel that YouTube is not useful or only somewhat useful in communications during a crisis.

These reports show that there has been a increase in the value of social media, but it also highlights that there are concerns with using social media during crisis. If there is a lack of planning, everything could go down the drain.

Currently, the way social media is being look at is a monitoring tool. Brands can use social media to monitor what people are saying about their brands and what things need to be addressed the most. It is not about gathering as much data as you possibly can, it is about understanding what your data is trying to tell you.


Is Monitoring Important ? YES !

Who knew monitoring would become so important on social media? Who knew there would be a bunch of ways to easily monitor a brand’s social media? NOT ME, until now.

Keeping an eye on a brands social media channels is becoming more and more crucial for companies to be successful. Monitoring a brands social media is way more than just making sure their brand is posting the correct things, its about building and maintaining your brand. By using social media, a brand can receive positive or negative feedback at any time. All of this feedback can help build a brand tremendously, you just have to watch it.

This article gives five reasons as to why monitoring social media is essential for PR.

The first reason being that public relations is all about interpretation and anticipation of the public and their attitudes on things. By monitoring social medias it allows brands to take a look at all the feedback from consumers, negative or positive, and grow from them. If the feed back is negative it will allow the brand to jump up and fix the problem that they are getting the negative feedback from. By doing this, a brand could possibly prevent a future crisis.

The second reason being that social media monitoring is crucial during the marketing research. In order to to find a companies target audience they need to monitor their social media pages in order to find out what their online habits are.

The third reason is by social media monitoring a company can reply back to their customers. Companies can be interactive with their customers and once they post about a problem they may be having the company can instantly get back to them.

The fourth reason being that watching social medias can help companies in the future. They can provide information that can tell companies which social media were most effective and had the most post. They also determine which topics drove conversations between their consumers.

The last reason is that social media monitoring is a good way to turn complaints and negative feedback into positive publicly. After a company may get a bad review by someone on social media, by talking with them publicly and finding a way to make things better for the customer, it will allow other users to see how important it to the company to satisfy the customer.

There are plenty of social media monitoring websites, some that cost money and some that are completely free. It is up to the company to realize that motoring social media can be one of the most important things they can do to help build their company.

Just Keep Monitoring, Just Keep Monitoring

Since social media is on the move, it is time for companies to roll with it. Companies need to use social media to their advantage and the only way to do this is to monitor their social medias. I know, I know, who wants to do all the work that it takes to monitor social media, but it will be worth it! I promise! This article list five reasons as to why monitoring your social medias will be beneficial to your business.

The first reason being that monitoring your social medias will help you understand just exactly where you stand. Although the audience on social media can be tough, it would be nice to know what your consumers truly think of you and your company.

The second reason will allow you to jump at opportunities. A company should look at social media users as potential customers. With monitoring social medias it will allow brands to reach out to their customers. The article used the example of if a company is selling coffee,and a user post about their need for caffeine, that organization can reach out to them and put their brand name in users minds. It is all about going the extra mile.

The third reason is being crisis control. Social media can get ugly very quickly so companies cannot let users trash their reputations. When dealing with a upset customer they simply need to fix the problem and properly satisfy the upset customer as best you can before they try to ruin your reputation anymore than they already have.

The fourth reason is identifying influencers. Using social media monitoring it will allow brands to see who and has the biggest positive impact on your company. Those are the people companies will want on their side. Brands will need to answer and market their products to those customers

The last reason social media monitoring will benefit companies is because it will allow them to learn what works. By monitoring your social medias you can see what post people are responding to more and then you can continue to make similar post.


The Guide

Microblogging????? We all know how much we love twitter! Everyone is getting adapted to the world of microblogging and fast. Microblogging is a a brief update about what is going on and letting the world know what you have to say. Twitter is the most popular of the microblogging world and now everyone wants a piece of the action. Twitter is not only for people to express their feelings in 140 characters, but companies are starting to use social medias to inform people.

Now, we are starting to see microblogging being used for feed back, this article tells us what microblogging is and how to use it.

A few tips that this article list are basic tips.

-Consider your audience : Your feed is open to the public, make sure you are not giving out personal information. BE SMART. Remember that you are posting something to the public, make sure that there is a point to it. Allow your audience to connect with you.

-Post regularly, but not too often : Make sure you post regularly, users do not want to get bored with your page or feel as though you’ve been neglecting it. Make you sure you are keeping in touch with what is going on. Also, do not post EVERY TWO SECONDS. Your audience could see this and instantly get irritated or feel as though you post way too much and unfollow.

-Do not include personal details in an open broadcast : Seriously, if your page is open to the public, do not post your exact location, it may not end very well. Lets all be safe online PLEASE!

-Turn OFF alerts that do not feed you : ALWAYS get a feed sent to you by text of email. Getting alerts is a great way to stay in touch. When choosing who to get alerts from, make sure that it is something that will feed you and that is important to you. Nothing is worse than getting constant emails about something that doesn’t concern you.

This article is a little old and it really just gives you a quick rundown on how things should be started off. Although times have changed drastically, this article still list the basics.


Don’t Forget the Pic!

Photo sharing has been around for some time now, however, not everyone has come to use it to its best abilities.  When I was first introduced to the photo sharing concept I only felt as though it would be used to share funny pictures to friends and family.  However, as I get older and social media evolves, there is so much more to photo sharing.  Yes, it is always fun to see goofy pictures that your share with you on facebook, instagram, or twitter, but it is time to expand your horizons.

Photo sharing has become a huge marketing tool and some don’t even realize how helpful it can be.  By just posting a picture along with a few comments explaining what is going on in the picture allows audience to become more intrigued.  Not only is this very helpful to businesses, but it is one of the easiest things to possibly do now days.  There is no need to carry a digital camera and computer around in order to upload pictures on the internet.  As long as you have your smartphone and your social media apps, you’re good to go.

This article I found describes the age we live in as the “camera in everyone’s pocket.”   This just goes to show that smartphones are used to create a different buzz every minute.  The article goes into explain the three phases of the visual culture and language.  The article also gives six reasons as to why a user should include images in their post.

The six reasons focus on the statistics that come from post and their feedback.  I personally think that adding photos to your social media post will catch more eyes than just words.  In 2015 everyone wants to see proof, they want to see what things are looking like, they want to see that actual picture to make sure it matches with the picture that they made up in their head.

At this time, when it comes to social media, the images MATTER!  It could be the deciding factor.  Your audience could keep on scrolling past your 140 characters, or can be intrigued by the perfectly angled picture you attached to the post.


Rules of Engagement?! Say What?

As an organization or a business social media is a vital tool for success. A lot of times, especially with companies that are led by “old school” personnel, social media isn’t used either consistently, intended or wisely.

When I think of social media engagement, the dos and don’ts, one particular organization, that shall not be named, comes to my mind. I’ve worked with this organization for a short time. My role there was to help them with social media. Long story short, they didn’t want to take any recommendations and continue their regular social media practices. Okay, fine.

Don’t be them, and actually take social media seriously. It’ll be a very important tool for your company.

The Book Social Media Marketing: A Strategic Approach lists nine rules of social media engagement, and offers 21, but in my opinion there are some more important than others.

Favorite # 1:

Use social media as intended.

A company or organization has to be aware that whatever they posts must, and most of all, SHOULD reflect their values and mission. Too often do I see, especially small organizations, use their Facebook page to post personal things. Not only is that unprofessional, but it can “clog up” someone’s news feed with unnecessary, unimportant and annoying “stuff.” KEEP YOUR FACEBOOK PAGE PROFESSIONAL AND ONLY USE IT WHAT IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE USED FOR.

Favorite # 2:

Have a personality.

A lot of times I look through Twitter and see messages that are monotone, impersonal and boring. When I see that, I lose interest in the organization or company. I find it “attractive” when I read a post or tweet that sounds casual, upbeat and exciting. KEEP IN MIND: PEOPLE READ HUNDERDS OF TWEETS/POSTS A DAY, MAKE YOURS STAND OUT.

Favorite # 3:

Talk about the topic.

It’s super easy to involve the community in an online conversation. If you want to know what people think about a certain fundraiser idea, product flavor, color, etc., involve them. Ask them. Call for action. It’s as simple as: “We’re launching new head phones soon. What colors do you want to buy? #beats #technology…” That can spark a chain reaction of retweets and replies/comments. But that’s what you should want. DON’T BE AFRAID TO INTERACT WITH THE PEOPLE WHO BUY, WOULD BUY, OR COULD BUY YOUR PRODUCT.

Now my fellow social media lovers, or newbies, take a moment before you decide to create a social media platform, or before you post. Make sure you are consistent with posting, and always, always think “what would they want to hear/see.” That’s a pretty good rule of thumb to follow.