Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

The Most Complete Twitter Application List Available – 2011 Edition

To see this great list, please go to my new home at www.ericgoldstein.net.

Here is a direct link to the article.

Social Networks And Your Sales Force – By Dino Cattaneo (SVP – Account Services)

Twitter Social Network

I wanted to repost this excellent article by Dino Cattaneo – – SVP Account Services at One To One Global.

One of the biggest challenges focusing companies with large sales forces these days is how to deal with social networks. This is particularly true of companies that operate in highly regulated industries in which the sales force interacts directly with consumers, industries such as financial services or healthcare. The first reaction, which is to simply ban any sales rep from having a social media presence, is not practical and in the long run it will put the company at a disadvantage. Allowing participation without any guidance is also not an option. So companies are caught in a dilemma: on one hand, planning how your sales force uses social media requires careful thought and planning. On the other hand, the evolution of the market is putting pressure on companies to act quickly. A way to solve the dilemma is to take a gradual approach.

We have identified three steps that companies can take to gradually allow their sales force to participate in social networks. With this approach, there are three degrees of involvement, which can be undertaken as subsequent steps:

STEP 1
The first step is to set up guidelines on use of social media. These will be primarily compliance guidelines. Such as how the brand should be represented, if at all, within the social network once a sales rep starts using it for business. The tone of the conversation. The regulatory guidelines on which subjects can be discussed in a social network context. This step is primarily a risk mitigation step.

STEP 2
The second step is to develop a set of recommendations on how to use social networks to generate new business and nurture existing customer relationships. These recommendations may include listing which networks (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) to use to generate connections. What content is effective on each network. Strategies to increase the number of followers/connections on each network. This step really begins to take advantage of the potential of social media as a marketing and lead generation tactic. While this is a great step, and can generate good results for the sales force, it still leaves one big issue unresolved: the ownership of the customers. When a sales rep builds a set of connections through a personal profile on any social network, if the rep leaves the company, all those relationship may leave with him/her.

STEP 3
The third and most advanced step is for the company to proactively build and co-manage the presence of each sales rep on the recommended network. This is especially true in Facebook, where a business can create individual pages and then co-assign the management of the page to each designated rep. This gives both the company and the rep a number of advantages. The company can populate content that is appropriate to all the reps, or a subgroup of reps at the same time. Assuming that the content is valuable, from the rep’s standpoint, this is a true benefit, because it allows someone with limited time to still have a fresh presence in the social realm. From the company’s standpoint, it provides first of all a consistent customer experience. At the same time, the company’s relationship with the customer is preserved.

Managing large amount of rep pages on a social network may very quickly become cumbersome. In addition, it is important to assess how effective is the presence of the company in a specific network. This is why One to One Connect created MessageMaker Social, a tool that allows companies to manage both their email efforts and their social efforts through a single platform. MessageMaker offers sophisticated communication options as well as powerful analytics to measure campaign effectiveness.

Again, be sure to follow Dino for more valuable tweets and info.

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Top Ten Reasons Why Twitter Is NOT Stupid and Why You Should Care

In my last post, I tried to summarize a few of the things I often hear about “Why Twitter Is Stupid”.

http://ericsgoldstein.wordpress.com/2011/04/27/top-ten-reasons-why-twitter-is-stupid/

As a semi-recent convert to the power of Twitter, I wanted to quickly play counter-point to my previous argument and provide a few real life examples of how I’ve actually found Twitter to be very useful.

  1. Ability to Interact With Employees / Executives / Leaders:  Regardless of what you’re interested in – politics, sports, t.v., social media, etc.., many of your “idols” are probably on Twitter right now.  At worst, it can be interesting to hop on and see what they’re rambling about.  In many cases, the information they are sharing can be very interesting and valuable.  Finally, because it’s quick, you can sometimes even get a little interaction with a famous person that you probably would never have had.  Check out this recent interaction my friend had with Tiger Woods:
    Tiger Woods Response
  2. Valuable Pre-Call / Research Sales Tool:  If you’re targeting a certain person or contact, you can often find that person on Twitter.  Reading some of their tweets will give you insight as to who they are, what they like to do, and even an image of what they look like.  Typically, you’re not going to get all that info with Facebook or even LinkedIn unless they agree to “friend” you.
  3. Connect With A Tough To Reach Contact / Prospect:  Anyone who sells knows the challenge of getting someone to respond to your e-mails, phone calls, and voice mails.  Assuming your message didn’t end up in a spam folder, it’s probably one of 200 your contact received that day.  Sending a tweet mentioning your prospect (assuming you can’t send them a DM because they’re not following you yet) can sometimes open a quick dialog if they actually use Twitter.
  4. Track The Competition:  The fact that Twitter is very open does create some interesting insight from a competitive research perspective.  You can see what your competition is saying and what people are saying about them (good and bad).  You can see who the competition is following and who is following them (a very interesting resource for leads).
  5. Interaction / Support From Small Companies:  I recently had a few technical problems with my iPhone caused by apps I purchased from small developers – neither of which had an available phone number and one of whom didn’t even have a public e-mail address.  However, I was able to post a quick Tweet and within a few hours, I actually had a personalized response and answer to my question.
  6. Interaction / Support From Large Companies:   I’m not as convinced about this one yet, but I do think that many companies are looking to monitor the Twittosphere for complaints, questions, and compliments.  A few interesting examples include this campaign by Wheat Thins:
    And click to read about this KLM story about a guy who tried, successfully, to get KLM to change their flight schedule via a Tweet.KLM Story on Tweet That Filled A Plane
  7. No Advertising & Targeted If Used Correctly:  Although Twitter is FILLED with people tweeting every 2 seconds about get rich ideas, it is basically advertising free depending upon the client you use.  While I occasionally skim my main timeline, I primarily use Twitter’s List functionality to keep an eye on different people I want to follow (e.g. Social Media Leaders, Celebrities, Prospects, People From Work, etc.).
  8. Very Real Time and Mobile:  It is interesting to see how recent events around the world have been impacted by the real time nature of Twitter.  The uprising in Egypt and elsewhere as well as the death of Osama Bin Laden were spread and driven by the power of Twitter.  In addition, Twitter can be a real time measurement and gage of your own efforts.  For example, a recent blog post I did on social media by employees was published on Social Media Today and I could track in real time as people retweeted it, made comments on it within their Tweets, as well as sent DMs to me to offer their own thoughts.  The fact that many people tweet from their mobile phones and devices makes the comments even more immediate and unfiltered.
  9. Amusing At Times:  Occasionally, I find people / comedians, writers, or Tweets that are funny – similar to the silliness that is spread around via e-mail and Twitter.  Most recently, I did enjoy @ghostosama impressive growth to 35K followers in 12 hours with only a few pretty funny tweets.  Check out the story here.Ghost Osama Tweet
  10. Create “Flash Groups” & “Flash Trends”:  The searchable nature of Twitter and the ability to easily add hashtags to tweets can create interesting quick groups.  Companies are experimenting with using this concept at events by having people tweet with specific tags to win prizes.    I also enjoyed the quick group that started up around #govtshutdownpickuplines.govshutdownpickup

Bottom line, social media is not going anywhere.  I think Twitter is an interesting tool both for companies and individuals.  The trick is to find ways to make it work for you and ignore the rest of the noise.

Please follow my noise @ericsgoldstein or check out my blog at http://www.ericgoldstein.net.

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Top Ten Reasons Why Twitter is Stupid and Why You Should Care

To read this article, please go HERE.

I’m trying to move off my WordPress.com site to my self hosted blog, but some of the search engines still drive people here.

Centralized Social Media Control For Distributed Organizations — From InformationWeek.com

Article Written By David Carr From Information Week After An Interview With Myself and TJ Crawford:
April 15, 2011 07:00 AM

Originally Posted Here:

One to One Global has joined Hearsay in attacking corporate-local structures with an emphasis on central control.

Some companies have a Facebook page, while others have thousands of them. When an organization has lots of local agents or representatives, all of whom want their own Facebook business page, putting out a coherent corporate message gets more difficult.One approach is to try to provide a local touch by delegating responsibility to local agents or representatives within a set of guidelines, while monitoring their activity for compliance, as Farmers Insurance is doing with Hearsay Social. One to One Global’s MessageMaker Socialtries to tackle the same problem, but is geared to organizations that want to assert a greater degree of centralized control.
One to One is a Boston-based interactive agency that has entered the market for web-based marketing software with its MessageMaker product, which also includes modules for managing email campaigns and distribution of marketing applications for installation on mobile devices. The social media module was released in December. One to One also has a large insurance company as an early customer, one that is “outside the Fortune 70 but inside the Fortune 100″ that it hopes to get approval to name as a reference customer, said Business Development Manager Eric Goldstein in an interview.
Hearsay’s product, which launched in February, allows organizations to distribute content suggestions to local representatives who have the ability to choose which ones to promote on their own pages, personalizing them in the process. The organization can also monitor and archive posts and conversations that occur on a Facebook page (or on Twitter or LinkedIn)–something that’s particularly important in regulated industries that must maintain rigorous compliance programs.
MessageMaker Social has the same goal of helping organizations manage lots of different pages, but in its model the central organization asserts sole administrative control over them. In other words, local insurance agents and financial advisors can be assigned their own pages, but before any of their posts can appear they must get an approval from headquarters.One to One Director of Product Management T.J. Crawford said the software may eventually support something like the Hearsay workflow as an alternative, but that’s not where the greatest demand is. “We saw we had a number of companies asking us for a more centralized model of managing pages,” he said. “They’re saying we are going to create these Facebook pages, but we want to have over them for our compliance and our risk team to sign off on social media activity.”
One to One is also trying to centralize the management of Internet communications by having reports on the performance of social media campaigns available from within the same administration tool its customers use to manage their email and mobile marketing campaigns. Across Facebook and Twitter (the two networks MessageMaker has targeted for starters), the reporting tool also tries to normalize measures of engagement based on Facebook likes and comments, Twitter retweets and replies, boiling the activity down to common measures to the extent possible.

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Employee Usage Of Social Media – A Toy or a Tool?

Please go HERE to see this article.

I’m trying to shut down this site and move to my self hosted blog, but some of the search engines and links still drive people here.

Annoying or Cool?? Create an animated or video avatar / GIF within Twitter

All –

I’m in the process of shutting down my WordPress.com site and have moved to a self hosted site.

For this post, please click HERE or check out http://ericgoldstein.net/?p=130

Thanks.

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