We have moved full force into a world where marketing has become education based, NOT sales driven as it was in the past and this calls for a different route to be taken with marketing based initiatives.
Content creation is rapidly moving toward being a huge driving force behind what once was traditional advertising, marketing and sales. This changes how we think about marketing in general and will require organizations to re-evaluate their marketing strategies. Based on these changes, the ability to create original, thought provoking and shareable content is not optional anymore it is mandatory.
According to Ad Age’s survey, 55% of marketers have increased their content-marketing budgets this year and is expected to do so in 2014 as well. The companies that are forward thinking enough will be a part of this trend, those that are still old school will not and fall that much father behind in creating the digital footprint needed to present themselves as authorities in their field.
At one time there were sales collateral produced by companies that were used to promote that company as an authority in their field. Traditional print pieces, brochures and magazine articles were once used to promote organizations but with so many people living in a plugged in world these channels are no longer as effective as they were during the print era. This is the dilemma, so what’s a company to do?
It’s time for companies to take the shift in consumable media serious and open their eyes and minds to change. People are just not consuming media utilizing the channels such as print as much as in the past. Media or content is consumed on social media channels and blogs by way of tablets and mobile devices. So it is imperatives that business who want to be viewed as authorities start to take content creation very serious. Businesses MUST start creating content AND publishing that content to the channels that people are utilizing!
So let’s take a look at the what, when, why and how of getting started.
This is the easiest question you can address because the WHAT of content creation is promoting WHAT it is your organization does. Every office has one or two people that are informed about EVERYTHING about the company. These are also usually the people that have been with the company since the company started. This person is a valuable source of information to a content creator! They are your brand ambassadors and they have the ability to provide the WHAT of content creation for your content creator.
You should create as much content as you or your company can physically manage and post it as much as possible. If you get a content creator that is on their game they will be able to stretch out a small amount of content into multiple pieces of creative and engaging posts on a blog. This content can then be posted over a period of time. It would be a great idea to create a publishing calendar so that you can have an organized and consistent flow of content moving through your digital channels at all times.
By providing an abundance of content this allows you or your company to become authorities within your industry. If you become an authority in your industry you can increase your exposure, improve Google placement and potentially increase sales. This is just a no-brainer.
At one time the company with the biggest marketing budget was the company that had the most exposure and sales. The same thing applies here except we are dealing with online content, which has essentially replaced a lot of traditional marketing channels as a way to consume media.
There are so many ways to create content and so many types of content that you can create, written, visual, video or a combination of all. The most important thing is to provide a variety of types of content and use analytics/insights to gauge the effectiveness of the content that you are providing. Some say that visual content does best, some say video but every audience is different. This is why using the data from analytics is imperative because it will allow you to see what kind of content your readers like. This allows you to create and share more of the content that is in demand and less of the content that is less than favorable.
To get a better idea of the importance of creating content for your brand, take a look at the infographic below.
As marketing changes so MUST the willingness of companies to keep up with the trends that will keep them ahead of their competitors and content marketing is one of those trends. We no longer have such a high demand for print, brochures but an increasing demand for blogs, newsletters, website articles, white papers, and special reports. Content creators are key to providing this type of content and it is essential that that content be original, engaging and shareable.
So stop reading and get started with creating great content for your brand!
As usual, I welcome any and all comments good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be found on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, find me, follow me and let’s strike up a conversation about content creation!
I recently read that 71% of people hate their jobs and I though what a terribly high number. Has it always been this high and we just haven’t noticed? Has social media and the willingness to have open discussion shined the light on the 71 of every 100 people that despise, at least 8 hours of their day?
According to Forbes, Jobs Suck, so should those that are a part of the 71%, just SUCK it up and forge ahead. Should they grab the weekly paycheck and keep it moving? OR should individuals TRY to change the dynamic, Fight The Man so to speak?
Should those 71% that have “Checked Out” at the work place not expect more? Are work expectations too high?
Take a look at the video below that may help shed some light on WHY there are so many people that are dissatisfied with their employment situation and some possible remedies.
I think that expectations from the workplace have grown due to Generation X and Y. This generation has expectations beyond their parent’s expectations and requirements in the workplace. Also the growth in technology offers options beyond the commuting and cube life, of getting to work and clocking in to the cube.
What do you think? Should people just put in their 8+ hours, grab their paycheck every Friday and say what the hell? Or should there be a higher expectation? Take a look at the top 10 reasons people are reported to hate their jobs:
10. They think the grass is greener someplace else.
9. Their values don’t align with the company.
8. They don’t feel valued.
7. Job insecurity.
6. There’s no room for advancement.
5. They’re unhappy with their pay.
4. There’s too much red tape.
3. They’re not being challenged.
2. The passion’s gone.
1. Their boss sucks.
What do you think? Are you a part of the 29% or the 71%? I would really love to know your thoughts, good, bad, ugly or indifferent? I can be found on most social media channels, follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Google+ let me know what you think?
Hey Old School Marketers: Your Target Audience is DEAD
I grew up in an era that was not technology focused; there were no computers, mobile devices, or Internet when I was in high school. My generation did not even grow up with cable. In fact I remember when cable initially hit the scene, when MTV actually played music and the HUGE campaign “I want My MTV” which was used to push MTV to mainstream. Oh, those were the days. A lot has happened with the growth of technology since my high school years. If you have been able to adapt and embrace this super fast growth of technology, that is fantastic. However, if you have not you could be a little screwed now and a lotta’ screwed later. This, is especially the case if you are trying to run a business based on philosophies and an organizational structure from the 1980’s, MTV Era. The biggest mistake in taking that path is that this audience is dead or on life support.
Think about this, we are reaching an age when we have augmented reality and your business cards can talk. We are moving toward the Semantic Web, closer to an era when ALL of the computers mechanisms in our devices will be able to communicate with each other. Do you seriously THINK that people are in touch with old school methods? NO one is looking backward, or I should say consumers aren’t looking backward. This means that your organization is being left behind, if you are not forward thinking.
Companies that have not embraced our new social oriented culture and the growing mobile market, are whistling in the wind. Those companies are targeting a dwindling population. Just visualize it as a numbers game. Think about the target markets that are NOT online and those that are NOT mobile, this number is growing smaller and smaller as more people embrace the digital marketing space. So companies should NOT be gearing their primary marketing campaigns toward a demographic that is shrinking. It’s really common sense. Companies should be looking to always GROW their audience NOT focus on the shrinking audiences.
In essence, in choosing NOT to adapt to newer technologies companies are choosing to throw in the towel on their businesses whether they realize it or not. Companies MUST go where their audiences are, that’s the only way in which they will continue to grow. In fact Seth Godin wrote a post “What do you think of my brochure? ” 7 YEARS ago, about the total reliance on brochures as a way to reach an audience. That piece was applicable in 2006 and is even more so now.
The Internet is the 2nd most widely utilized channel for news. If people go to the Internet and social media channels for something as valuable and important as news, they will also go there for other information as well. So, every business SHOULD make it a priority to have a strong social media and mobile presence. The old saying, “If we build it, they will come.” definitely applies to a strong digital footprint. On the other hand, if we build it and it’s geared toward a dwindling demographic, they may NOT come. As business owners we should be interested in substantially shifting those odds in our favor by going where our customers are.
Ultimately if companies are not tapping a new more social and mobile oriented market with content geared for this demographic, they are taping a dead audience. Take a look at the video below to see exactly HOW much social and mobile is ingrained in who we are, as a culture now.
People are on the go, we now live in a super fast paced world, and people are looking for content that they can access easily and quickly on their mobile device. They DO not want to read a companies long-winded prepackaged full-page ad in whatever magazine that’s lying about in an office or waiting room. They want quick access by way of mobile while they are on the go. So as business owners we must be willing to supply them with this information or they will go to competitors that will.
The take away, while your organization is spewing their prepackaged printed message, other more innovative companies are going where their audiences are and moving past that 1980’s strategy. The time to step it up was a few years ago and companies that have not done so may be living a “STUFF” got real nightmare if they select to continue on this path.
I am not saying that companies should roll over and die, I am trying to subtly nudge those living in a time warp to adapt or die.
As usual, I welcome all comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I welcome dialogue even if we don’t agree, so follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ and lets start a conversation.
Due to #Mobile and #Social: Every Business MUST Be An Internet Business
When the Internet initially started to become mainstream in the 90’s there were so many companies that felt as if the, then called World Wide Web, was a fad and that it would go away. Hmmm, “how’d that thought process work for ya?” Not so well for those that were reluctant in embracing the World Wide Web, now called the Internet.
I cannot fathom why many many years later there are still people in the world that have selected NOT to embrace technology as a part of their lives. I do have a little bit of tolerance for those that are not into it on a personal level but businesses that STILL have not fully embraced technology are doing themselves a disservice.
In 1995 it was perfectly fine to consider getting a website and waffle in the process of getting that done. Fast-forward eighteen years, YES eighteen year, and organizations are STILL waffling and more behind than ever. We have moved so much beyond just having a website not that it is mind altering. We have also moved to an era where waffling could allow your competitors to get such a big jump on your organization that you would forever be behind the eight ball.
Due to the super quick growth of the tablet and mobile industry we do not have the luxury of waffling on decisions to go full force into the new and aggressive digital marketing space. In fact, if you have a brick and mortar business, you can really no longer even view your organization as a traditional business. YOU must start to see your business as an Internet business. EVERY BUSINESS IS AN INTERNET BUSINESS now.
There is literally no such thing as traditional business anymore, ANY and ALL businesses must be online; therefore, considered Internet businesses. With so many people accessing company websites with mobile devices it’s not even enough to have a traditional website. YOU must be mobile.
It amazes me that there are so many organizations that have not grasped the importance of an online presence. It’s been eighteen years or more since the Internet became mainstream, I don’t think it’s going anywhere anytime soon. Actually the Internet is fast becoming the most effective way to market any business.
Traditional ways of consuming media is a thing of the past, very few people read newspapers, magazine, flyers, brochures and pamphlets as a primary source of information as was once the case. If someone finds your traditional media somewhere, they search for a website or social media channel to find out more about your company using their mobile device.
So companies that are still utilizing these traditional media outlets for the majority of their business are placing themselves behind the eight ball and additionally presenting themselves to their clients as a company that is NOT on their game.
Companies must create a strong Digital Footprint for their brand and use traditional marketing as a means to DRIVE traffic to their online brand, not the other way around. Traditional media as a primary source of gaining information is DEAD, like the steel mills in Allentown. I’m not saying that all companies should stop using traditional media, but I am saying that you must go where your customer base is and that’s online and by way of mobile device. Simply, people are using mobile devices to access information about YOUR Company and YOUR competitors so that’s where you must go. People are on social media channels accessing information about YOUR Company and YOUR competitors, so that’s where your organization must go.
As we decide to lead our organizations into this digital journey of social media and mobile we must realize that we can not just adapt our old “shove the company pitch in their faces” way of marketing. That does NOT work with social media and no one using a mobile device will want to scroll through an old school organizations long winded pitch about what they do, what they sell, blah blah blah, on their mobile device.
A few keys to reaching your social and mobile audiences are:
Mobile Website: YOU must first have a mobile website. This is not even optional anymore. With the rate of people consuming media on the go if you opt out of having a mobile web presence you are turning your back on a huge amount of customers and YOUR competitors will be right there to grab them from you.
Social Media: You must have a strong social media presence AND a strategy that is socially driven. Posting your sales pitch on your channels ONLY displays that you have not fully grasped what our new social oriented world is about. Old school marketing strategy consisted of sharing prepackaged content saying all the right things to push your message without regard for the customer. Social Media is about sharing social oriented content that appeals to YOUR READER. It is NOT about you or your company but about building a relationship with followers, building trust with customers and providing information that THEY will find of value so THEY will then think of your company when it is time to utilize your services. I’ll say that again. It is NOT about you or your company but about building a relationship with followers, building trust with customers and providing information that THEY will find of value so THEY will then think of your company when it is time to utilize your services.
People are on mobile devices AND on social media with their mobile devices so it is imperative that ALL organizations have a presence on both. Take a look below in the statistic on mobile usage.
As of May 2013:
91% of American Adults have a cell phone
56% of American Adults have a smart phone
67% of cell phone owners check their phone for messages, alerts and calls EVEN if the phone is not ringing or vibrating.
44% of people sleep with their phone next to their bed.
As of April 2012:
55% of adult cell phone users use the Internet on their mobile, which has doubled in three years.
31% of cell phone Internet users mostly use their mobile device for Internet, not desktops or laptops.
17% of ALL adults cell phone owners use their cell ONLY for accessing the Internet.
31% of cell phone uses look for health or medical information online.
68% of Smartphone users use their device to access the Internet.
With desktop computer usage on the decline, laptop usage rising and mobile usage growing at a super quick rate of speed businesses, MUST start to see their businesses as Internet businesses. They can no longer AFFORD to ignore having a strong presence in the SOCIAL and MOBILE space.
It’s time to ADAPT your ORGANIZATIONAL strategies to the new the new mobile and social world NOT keep your same old school strategies and add digital as an afterthought. It’s a new world squirrel Adapt or die.
If you have any questions or comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent, I can be reached socially on a variety of channels. Follow me on Facebook, Google + or Twitter.
I remember the 90’s, when the Internet initially entered the scene. I was immediately very enthralled with this technology. I was immediately taken with the little computerized box that had moved beyond being used for just work related tasks to a place that held an abundance of information. It didn’t matter that the information was mostly text based; I was just fascinated by HOW much information that I had access to within this little box, called a computer.
At the time, this information intense technology called the Word Wide. I was working at the local Library when I first got introduced to this magical world. Once I had experienced it’s magic, I instantly developed a huge fascination for what is now called the Internet and a stronger drive to learn as much as I could. So, I was tasked with not only teaching the staff Windows 95 but with instructing Windows NT, to patrons in the newly proposed computer labs. My enthusiasm about this new Internet technology started my journey into the LOVE of technology and helped lead me to where I am now.
I recognized, even back in the mid nineties that this technology would be HUGE and would change the world. As this technology was really taking off and all of the Internet companies were booming I was finishing my Bachelors Degree in business. I was so involved with finishing school during the time, so regrettably I was not able to take an active part in this technology growth as I longed to. Although I was not in the thick of things, only instruction, it was still so exciting to see the Internet take off. I always did regret my inability to get involved and to take an active role in the growth of the first wave of the Internet Technology boom.
Roll the clock about 18 years ahead, and here we are. I cannot express the excitement at having an opportunity to be an active part in this era of what looks to be the NEW wave of Internet growth.
When I returned to grad school, I had no clue that the Internet Space would be heading toward the second boom. It was all a blessing, luck, great timing or some combination of all of those. Either way, it is an exciting time to be a part of the second technology boom.
Since the 1990’s we have gone from having huge monitors, towers and keyboards to having the ability to literally carrying our computer around in our pockets due to the growth of smart phone technology. THIS is the NEW Technology boom and I am so excited that I get to be a part of it this time around.
Smart phones are almost singularly responsible for the HUGE boom in technology because they allow us to literally become mobile WHILE being connected. The growth of smart phones has grown so much in the past few years that some say the there will soon be more mobile devices in use than there are people in the world. That is unimaginable.
With all of the growth of mobile technology businesses MUST quickly jump in this space if they want their organizations to benefit from those that are users of this technology.
The need for a mobile website should be at the forefront of every organizations digital marketing strategy. Organizations cannot be sluggish in adopting this as they were in the 90’s when they were prompted to get a traditional website. Technology is moving so much faster now than it was back then.
Take a look at the information below on HOW much growth is expected in the mobile area moving forward.
Global mobile data traffic grew 70 percent in 2012. Global mobile data traffic reached 885 petabytes per month at the end of 2012, up from 520 petabytes per month at the end of 2011.
Last year’s mobile data traffic was nearly twelve times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000. Global mobile data traffic in 2012 (885 petabytes per month) was nearly twelve times greater than the total global Internet traffic in 2000 (75 petabytes per month).
Mobile video traffic exceeded 50 percent for the first time in 2012. Mobile video traffic was 51 percent of traffic by the end of 2012.
Mobile network connection speeds more than doubled in 2012. Globally, the average mobile network downstream speed in 2012 was 526 kilobits per second (kbps), up from 248 kbps in 2011. The average mobile network connection speed for smartphones in 2012 was 2,064 kbps, up from 1,211 kbps in 2011. The average mobile network connection speed for tablets in 2012 was 3,683 kbps, up from 2,030 kbps in 2011.
In 2012, a fourth-generation (4G) connection generated 19 times more traffic on average than a non-4G connection. Although 4G connections represent only 0.9 percent of mobile connections today, they already account for 14 percent of mobile data traffic.
The top 1 percent of mobile data subscribers generate 16 percent of mobile data traffic, down from 52 percent at the beginning of 2010. According to a mobile data usage study conducted by Cisco, mobile data traffic has evened out over the last year and is now lower than the 1:20 ratio that has been true of fixed networks for several years.
Average smartphone usage grew 81 percent in 2012. The average amount of traffic per smartphone in 2012 was 342 MB per month, up from 189 MB per month in 2011.
Smartphones represented only 18 percent of total global handsets in use in 2012, but represented 92 percent of total global handset traffic. In 2012, the typical smartphone generated 50 times more mobile data traffic (342 MB per month) than the typical basic-feature cell phone (which generated only 6.8 MB per month of mobile data traffic).
Globally, 33 percent of total mobile data traffic was offloaded onto the fixed network through Wi-Fi or femtocell in 2012. In 2012, 429 petabytes of mobile data traffic were offloaded onto the fixed network each month. Without offload, mobile data traffic would have grown 96 percent rather than 70 percent in 2012.
Android is now higher than iPhone levels of data use. By the end of 2012, average Android consumption exceeded average iPhone consumption in the United States and Western Europe.
In 2012, 14 percent of mobile devices and connections were potentially IPv6-capable. This estimate is based on network connection speed and OS capability.
In 2012, the number of mobile-connected tablets increased 2.5-fold to 36 million, and each tablet generated 2.4 times more traffic than the average smartphone. In 2012, mobile data traffic per tablet was 820 MB per month, compared to 342 MB per month per smartphone.
There were 161 million laptops on the mobile network in 2012, and each laptop generated 7 times more traffic than the average smartphone. Mobile data traffic per laptop was 2.5 GB per month in 2012, up 11 percent from 2.3 GB per month in 2011.
Nonsmartphone usage increased 35 percent to 6.8 MB per month in 2012, compared to 5.0 MB per month in 2011. Basic handsets still make up the vast majority of handsets on the network (82 percent).
The Mobile Network Through 2017
Mobile data traffic will reach the following milestones within the next five years.
• Monthly global mobile data traffic will surpass 10 exabytes in 2017.
• The number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the world’s population in 2013.
• The average mobile connection speed will surpass 1 Mbps in 2014.
• Due to increased usage on smartphones, handsets will exceed 50 percent of mobile data traffic in 2013.
• Monthly mobile tablet traffic will surpass 1 exabyte per month in 2017.
• Tablets will exceed 10 percent of global mobile data traffic in 2015.
Global mobile data traffic will increase 13-fold between 2012 and 2017. Mobile data traffic will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 66 percent from 2012 to 2017, reaching 11.2 exabytes per month by 2017.
By the end of 2013, the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the number of people on earth, and by 2017 there will be nearly 1.4 mobile devices per capita. There will be over 10 billion mobile-connected devices in 2017, including machine-to-machine (M2M) modules-exceeding the world’s population at that time (7.6 billion).
Mobile network connection speeds will increase 7-fold by 2017. The average mobile network connection speed (526 kbps in 2012) will exceed 3.9 megabits per second (Mbps) in 2017.
In 2017, 4G will be 10 percent of connections, but 45 percent of total traffic. In 2017, a 4G connection will generate 8 times more traffic on average than a non-4G connection.
By 2017, 41 percent of all global mobile devices and connections could potentially be capable of connecting to an IPv6 mobile network. Over 4.2 billion devices and connections will be IPv6-capable in 2017.
Two-thirds of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2017. Mobile video will increase 16-fold between 2012 and 2017, accounting for over 66 percent of total mobile data traffic by the end of the forecast period.
Mobile-connected tablets will generate more traffic in 2017 than the entire global mobile network in 2012. The amount of mobile data traffic generated by tablets in 2017 (1.3 exabytes per month) will be 1.5 times higher than the total amount of global mobile data traffic in 2012 (885 petabytes per month).
The average smartphone will generate 2.7 GB of traffic per month in 2017, an 8-fold increase over the 2012 average of 342 MB per month. Aggregate smartphone traffic in 2017 will be 19 times greater than it is today, with a CAGR of 81 percent.
By 2017, almost 21 exabytes of mobile data traffic will be offloaded to the fixed network by means of Wi-Fi devices and femtocells each month. Without Wi-Fi and femtocell offload, total mobile data traffic would grow at a CAGR of 74 percent between 2012 and 2017 (16-fold growth), instead of the projected CAGR of 66 percent (13-fold growth).
The Middle East and Africa will have the strongest mobile data traffic growth of any region at 77 percent CAGR. This region will be followed by Asia Pacific at 76 percent and Latin America at 67 percent.
So needless to say I think it’s time to get mobile people! There are a variety of options available when considering a mobile website, that are great for corporate business. One of the options that I immediately wanted to explore was a mobile website powered by WordPress after all WordPress is one of the most powerful CMS platforms available. After being a WordPress hold out for so long, now that I am there I don’t want to leave. I don’t want to consider other options because this platform fits my business needs.
So in sticking with my need to go with WordPress I started exploring options for Mobile Templates that I could use for WordPress. At first I was only able to find a variety of plugins that would convert my WordPress site to a mobile ready site. The Plugins work fine if you page doesn’t have a lot of pages and submenus. If it does, the plugins make your page look goofy. YES, goofy is a technical term.
I then took a look at the responsive themes; they were fine but still didn’t suit my needs because I didn’t want to change my entire brand to go with a new theme. I wanted a mobile site that would match or closely match my current website.
Finding a fully functional Template built exclusively for mobile practically nonexistent, until I recently found a small company that ONLY Creates WordPress Templates for MOBILE. Excited I am! So I was able to throw up a fully functional WordPress Mobile website based on the look of my site. The great thing about it is that everything that I can do formy full website can be done for my mobile site. Guess WHAT? WIN!
So whatever route you decide to take in the mobile strategy of your business, make sure you get started right away!
Just a few years ago people were feeling a sense of urgency to get a very basic web presence up and running. Now companies that panicked in creating that very basic website now have bigger issues if they have not moved beyond updating that website.
Organizations not only have to keep up with all of the changes with web creation vs content management systems, they now have to integrate mobile into the mix. With the integration of mobile platforms, organizations must be able to adapt marketing strategies for mobile while keeping up with the many changes that go along with those platforms.
It is a brand new world, that world is fast moving, powerful and can literally fit in your pocket. We are living in a world driven by mobile technology and users that need to have an ongoing source of information all the time and at their fingertips drive this. This is GREAT for people like me that are driven by technology, that have embraced this super quick moving technology but for businesses it can be tough keeping up. Especially if your organization is NOT technology focused.
So, not only do organizations have to adapt to mobile technology they MUST see that the dynamic that pushed the change are the people that are utilizing these technologies. PEOPLE are the driving force behind the change, they consume information differently, and they NEED to have information at their fingertips. So since organization MUST adapt their business strategy to incorporate mobile technology they must also understand that people have also changed. This understanding will help in visualizing the future sales and marketing strategies of their organizations.
At one time people were fine with consuming content by way of traditional sources such as newspapers, radio, television and other printed materials. NOW there’s a wave of people that have limited interest in those forms of media. These are the people that are driving the super quick change and this is a huge demographic that organizations must adapt their content for and recognize that these people are the population that are driving the change.
Mobile technologies are growing at a quicker rate than any technology in history. Take a look at the infographic below to give you the what, when, how and why of this growth and what you need to do to adapt your organizational structure to capitalize from this growth.
Digital Marketing will be used to some degree for practically every marketing campaign moving forward. Whether we go with a campaign that includes video, slides or social media channels, digital marketing now is a huge aspect of marketing now. One of the most important things we can do when deciding which digital marketing channel that we utilize is deciding which platform(s) may target our audience best. This is becoming increasingly more important with so many digital marketing channels available now.
If we want to be successful in our Digital Market campaigns it is very important to stay abreast of all of the channels but also to be aware that all channels do not fit the needs of all audiences. For instance Pinterest is primary geared toward a female demographic so if we are marketing services that are geared mostly toward men, this may not be the ideal platform to use.
Take a look at the Infographic below to give you an idea of HOW to target the proper digital marketing channel for your target audience.
Social media and its uses have grown substantially in the past few years. Most people log in to social media channels several times per day and some just log on and never log off. I’m not admitting to this but I’ve HEARD that it happens. 🙂 Social Media has become so huge, as a source of information that news breaks on Facebook sometimes, quicker than traditional news media channels. I was literally watching breaking news live on TV and news still broke on Facebook and Twitter at least 5 minutes or so before traditional media. That is astounding and quite frankly still surprising, in a very cool way of course.
Social media has a variety of uses, it is a great way to catch up with old friends, meet new friends, extend your network and make business connections. It is also a great way to get involved with social good ventures and this is one of the most wonderful things about social media. I’ve found that social media has been for the most part good and this is primarily due to the circle of friends in my network. I’ve met so many people that have hearts of gold that it allows me to believe that there are still lots of amazing people in the world. We all need proof of good in a world, when we all see so many bad things.
I believe that social media is still primarily good because I am surrounded by so many amazing people that are involved with social good projects that really have helped so many people. These people throw themselves into causes selflessly and quite often. So much so, that I am in awe about the power of social media and how it can and is being used for great causes. With so many good things happening I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that sometimes good can be offset by some things that are not so good. One of the not so good things that have reared its ugly head is the growing trend of public shaming.
A few years ago I noticed an incident of public shaming in social media, which escalated into something quite ugly. There was a situation in which a few people felt as if another person was spamming. I cannot definitely say if the incident was true or false but I do remember that the entire situation was extremely ugly and brought out a lot of meanness in a lot of people involved. Everyone is very entitled to his or her views but what escalated this issue was how so many people jumped on the bandwagon and formed a Salem Witch Trial sort of hate mongering mob campaign against this one person. Ok, say if this person was in fact guilty of spamming, which is not a great thing but why would that person be deserving of the mob of people that went after him as if he were an abuser of animals or something equally heinous. What is most disturbing about this is the mob mentality and the willingness of people to jump in the fray for negative actions against another without finding out any details. At the time of this incident I believed it to be an isolated incident and proceeded to push it to the back of my mind in hopes that I would never witness a repeat of such unnecessary nastiness. Unfortunately this was not an isolated incident.
I’ve noticed a surge in these online behaviors starting with a restaurant and others resorting to public shaming. I also noticed a repeat in how quick others jump on the bandwagon of negativity, even when some don’t even seem to understand why they are doing so. There seems to be a new wave of people, organizations and restaurants that have resorted to public shaming for a variety of reasons.
I am not claiming that I have never taken a shot at an organization with less than desirable customer service utilizing online channels. I admit that I had a very open online divorce from Comcast, so maybe I am just as guilty as others. Although I have never gone after in individual with the goal of publically shaming them, I have had negative online dialogue about a company or two. Maybe they were wrong or maybe not but I think that I should now analyze and revaluate how I handle things. This realization is prompted by how ashamed I am of the behaviors that I have witnessed lately.
When we utilize an online platform as a means of public shaming, is that NOT a form of bullying? Could there possibly be a better way to make a point or let your displeasure with another be known? Is ruining a person’s reputation and possibly shaming them publicly the best route to take? Are we at the point that when we feel wronged that we are justified somehow by automatically jump on social media as a means to, not only voice our displeasure but round up the troops of our followers to jump on our bandwagon as well, in a lynch mob fashion?
Maybe we should ALL revaluate our usages of social media. How about we bring the human element back into social by reaching out to have a conversation [privately] with someone that we feel has wronged us instead of rounding up our loyal followers and creating a lynch mob. It needed to be said….
I will start with addressing my online behaviors….
I often have conversations about Digital Marketing and how things have changed. We have gone from focusing on Social Media and toward focusing on Digital Marketing all within a year. Although there has been a transition in dialogue and definitely a shift in consciousness, one thing that has not shifted is the degree of people claiming to be experts.
I’ve had a number of people say, “ I am a F-ing Expert.” Oh, I’m sorry seriously? I wonder if these people realize that I’ve been following them on a variety of social media channels AND I have a permanent echo in my mind of some of the dumbazz questions that I’ve seen in their feed. So, um yeah you post some stuff to your Facebook page but a Digital Marketer, that does not make you.
We have really reached the age in technology that companies are searching for more than a person that can post a few cute animal photos to their Facebook feed. I have always said that Digital Marketing is about way more than just posting content to Facebook. The social media aspect of digital marketing is about posting content that reaches out to touch readers/views and engages them enough for them to respond and share. This is of course all WITHOUT tagging 200 friends with the highest Klout score.
Not only do the peers of the so called experts KNOW that these people are no such thing, so do employers looking for talent in the Digital Marketing space. It’s NOT enough to post some stuff to Facebook, you must be on your game now that capabilities in this space is high. The first indication that a person is NOT on their game is those that claim the loudest about their expertise in an industry are usually the ones that aren’t. How can you be an expert in a field that is growing at super quick speed? The people that are dominating this space are those that quietly go about their way doing their thing while continuing to learn their craft.
It is not even a question about companies diving into this space; it is a must if they want to stay in business. Guess what, if you really think that claiming that you are an expert is going to be enough, good luck with that.
A huge part of being a Digital Marketer is creating engaging, relevant shareable content NOT just posting some crap on Facebook. Although the creation of this content is very important, there are so many more things that define what digital marketing is all about. Those that GET THIS, will be the ones that will be in demand in this space.
Right now we are at a pivotal moment in history and in the growth of this industry and it’s the ultimate Shit Got Real moment. NOW is a time when the Marketers that are so in demand move to the top of the pack and the chest beating, “Im a F-ing expert” Gurus fade to black.
If you want to compete in this space it’s time to start doing and stop yapping. Some of the in-demand skills are any combination of the following:
Social Media Marketing
Social Media Optimization
Search Engine Marketing
Search Engine Optimization
Content Management Systems
Customer Relationship Management
Direct Response Marketing
Marketing Agency Experience
Social Media Analytics and more
This list includes just some of the expectations of a Digital Marketer that I’ve read about. So needless to say you MUST be on your A Game, beyond just posting stuff on Facebook and boasting about your perception of your own expertise.
Hiring within this Digital Marketing Space is at an all time high and I expect that it will be continuing it’s upward growth. This growth is primarily due to the opinion that traditional marketing is failing in the area of producing tangible results. There was a huge report conducted by The Harvard Business Review, which states that CEO ‘s are tired of traditional marketing that lack results. This opinion is probably a huge factor in the growth of the Digital Marketing Industry. Take a look at the graphic below to display the growth in this field.
Although traditional marketing may be struggling according to this study it doesn’t minimize the need for businesses to market their companies capabilities. This is one of the things that are fueling the growth of Digital Marketers. It allows companies that are hiring to merge services already in use with new technologies to cover an area that is growing exponentially.
So if you are on your game in this digital marketing space, you are holding a winning hand right now. Take a look at the areas in which companies expect to place organizational focus in the graphic below.
If you are NOT holding a winning hand in some of these area, brush up on your skills, stop bragging and get on your game. Because really no one wants to hear about what a rock star, guru, maven what-ever-the-hell you are calling yourself this week, especially if your game AIN’T TIGHT.
As usual, I welcome comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be reached by Facebook, Google+ or Twitter.I’m pretty sure the GURU’s will be the first to comment.