Archive for the 'Business' Category

Dealing with the Negatives of Social Media

Facebook FailSocial media has certainly has made a quick transition into our culture and has become the new platform of communication primarly for persona, business, news source, and organization use.

User-generated content is the foundation for social media and let the user select what he or she wants to follow, read, engage etc on their SNS.

Non-profit organization and activist are weary of using this new technology for many reason primarily it is opposite of traditional communication way that it encourages user feedback, comments, criticism and knowledge. If not used correctly, social media could hurt your reputation and effect donations, volunteers and support for you cause.

Also some question this new communication tool ability effetely persuade the audience to take action or get involved. With such a new technology, new studies are showing the true effect social media has on individuals and their patterns.

Negative feedback on your social media pages and how to deal with it on

Mashables-How to deal with negative feed back article discusses the cause of negative feedback on companies, brands and organizations Facebook page.

“badvocates” –- the folks who spread negative comments about you with their networks and are caused by:

  • Inconsistency across different mediums (Facebook, Twitter, Website)
  • Inconsistency of expectation (what does your organization want your fans to do)
  • Negative relationship with people who represent your organization

Social media pages should be clear and simple and lay out exactly what your organizations goals are. If not consistent you will most likely see negative feedback appearing on your organization wall.

The four types of negative feedback you may receive  provided by HOW TO: Deal with Negative Feedback, illustrate the different levels of negative response.

  • “Straight Problems – Someone has an issue with your product or service and has laid out exactly what went wrong. This type of feedback is negative in the sense that it paints your business in a poor light, but it can be helpful in exposing real problems that need to be dealt with.”
  • “Constructive Criticism – Even more helpful is when the comment comes with a suggestion attached. Many customers — including some of your most loyal — will use social media to suggest ways in which you can improve your product or service. While this type of feedback may point out your flaws, and is thus negative, it can be extremely helpful to receive.”
  • “Merited Attack – While the attack itself may not be merited, the issue that catalyzed it does have merit in this type of negative feedback. Essentially, you or your company did something wrong, and someone is angry.”
  • “Trolling/Spam – The difference between trolling and a merited attack are that trolls have no valid reason for being angry at you. Also in this category are spammers, who will use a negative comment about your product or service (whether true or not) to promote a competing service.”- HOW TO: Deal with Negative

Although laid out for business purposes these comments can occur on non-profit, social interest or events pages.

How the organization should respond:

The article HOW TO: Deal with Negative also lays out tips of  appropriate responses

When dealing with straight problems, a response is almost certainly necessary. This insure your users get fast response resulting in a positive experience on your SNS.

You should always try to keep in mind that this type of feedback, as harsh as it may be, has a basis in a real problem. It is best to respond promptly and with a positive vibe. This example of a response if provided by HOW TO: Deal with Negative:

“Example: thank the commenter for the feedback and assure them that steps are being taken to correct the issue or mitigate their problem, such as offering a partial refund.”

Ethical dilemmas non-profits bring to social media

In many cases the issue you are trying to support may not be social acceptable or a controversial topic.

Online users behave differently than in real life situation. The online world add the factor of annonomis and engaged in consequence thinking, not moral thinking.

Carrie James Speech discusses her findings of the ethical thinking of youth today online.

She found that the youth don’t find “Youth tend to think they cant change whats online, if they see something unsettling or disturbing they don’t think they can do anything to change it”

Promoting you cause online can be difficult to get people to notice and more important interested  in the cause. Although there are exceptions the majority of youth believe they can not make a change online.

Advice for organization and non profits and try and open up the wall of communication more encouraging those passionate to help spread the word.

Social Savings: Groupon and Living Social

The Internet has shifted the way we do most day to day events. We dont waste time any more clipping coupons out of newspapers in this technology driven world today.

“40% of online economic users searched on the internet for cost-saving coupons” Pew- The Internet and the Recession

In times of the recession and everybody is more cautious with our money, Two sites have made a name for themselves for having amazing deals of local restaurants, cool events, spas, drink special. (fun and some functional deals we all need in theses hard times!)

Groupon and Living Social have integrated web 2.0 philosophy with the growing trend on the web of location and personal and are known as group buying sites

These sites incorporate these factors:

  • Big savings
  • Sharing with friends
  • location

Location!

“Over the past year, more and more marketers, tech wizards and startups have adopted a new mantra from their brethren in real estate: “Location, location, location.” (The New Dot-Com Boom)

The web is shifting and making it more focused on the individual offering relevant specials and deals that that person could do in their home town. Living social specialized location page is just for the town you live in and feature only small businesses and events in those towns. Whats unique about Living social is they incorporate a background of that town making it more personalized for you.

Benefiting The Little Guy

Small business are also benefiting from group sharing sites. They are getting recognition on a heavy traffic site. Small Business get people interested in their product or service and get people new cliental.

Site like LivingSocial encourages sending it to friend and if 3 of them buy the coupon you can get yours for FREE! Groupon also encourages you to share that days deal with friends and provides social media links.

Small business are getting free advertising and marketing and generating large amount of traffic through these social based group sharing website onto hundreds of people Facebook and Twitter pages.

Livingsocial logo

Living Social

Founded: Washington DC in 2007

Estimated to have around 10 million subscribers in 2010- Techcrunch

Living social includes: Living social, Escapes and Adventures

How living social works:

How Living Social Works

Groupongroupon logo

Founded: Georgia in 2008

Over 31 million total groupon bought and over 1 billion dollars saved

Groupon is also an international service having deals offered is many different geographical locations. Groupon recently reported on Feburary  19,2011 that they were preparing to launch in China. Wikipedia

Groupon asks what area you live in as well as our age to help promote deals that would interest you instead of just broad deals that might not have any relevance to your life.

For business use there has been a great feedback on the service these websites provide. For example, GrouponWorks states:

97% of business want to be featured again on the site.

Facebook Place and Social Media Campaigns

Social media allows businesses to advertise in a unique cool ways.

Encourage followers to check in with Facebook PlacesFacebook Places

Facebook released in September a new upcoming popular way to get people share where they currently are with their mobile device.

When they check in they post on their wall which reaches all their friends. Facebook places is pretty much a free advertisement for businesses. If they check in and mention their friends, that post reaches even more people.

Checking in is one of the most effective type of advertisements which is Word of Mouth. Friends are seeing where their friends hang out, shop and eat. Encouraging conversation about the post.

A great way to get people to check in is offer a discount and deals if they show you they checked in. People can see which companies give discounts for check in’s with the yellow discount icon in the check in page. Many big name brands such as Gap.

There are 4 types of Deals: individual, friend, loyalty and charitydiscount places icons 

  • Deals and donations are offered by individual businesses, not Facebook, and may be available in limited quantities.
  • Friend deals require tagging a number of friends to share savings.
  • Loyalty deals require multiple check-ins, similar to a traditional punch card.
“Facebook is making a big push into what can be called “geosocial services,” blending online with the real world. Cyberspace and marketplace.” Marketplace

Online Campaigns

We see online campaign or social media campaigns in a verity of ways.

  • nation wide events
  • call to actions
  • contests, prizes, special deals
  • viral videos, memes, internet phenomenons

Successful campaign can spark your business and in the spotlight.

One of the most recent Facebook campaigns is Oreo’s attempt at setting the world record for most “likes” in 24-hours of their Facebook page.

Oreo Post

Other businesses are in this race with Mitsubishi setting the record a week earlier with their new video on YouTube

and Lil Wayne just announced he will be competing as well.

The record is 45,000 likes in 24-hours.

THIS IS GREAT PRESS!

  • Millions are seeing your content on their friends pages.
  • The campaign gets press from newspapers, news stations, blogs etc.
  • You grow your branding
  • Increase your online popularity

However, campaigns do come with a risk

“For Oreo, the stunt is a clever use of social media that is not without its risks; falling short of the goal could be embarrassing. Since that prospect seems unlikely, the attempt will no doubt spur copycat attempts.” Todd Wasserman

The overall goal for social media advertisement is to..

get your fans involved

Introduction to business and social media

Social media has shifted the way business connect with their customers.

We are seeing more business utilize these tools to handle customer service, promote new product and have a healthy competition from competitors.

Traditional marketing and communication to consumers has been replaced with new technology.

Many cool things are happening on these sites

I hope to explore more about how business are utilizing social media.