As businesses extend their marketing strategies to include social media, the rate at which social technologies are changing makes it hard to stay informed and on top of the best channels to reach your audience.
Mari Smith and Guy Kawasaki recently hosted a webinar titled “7 Hottest Business Trends in Social Media.”
“Social Media continues to grow at a phenomenal rate and it is becoming more and more important each day to understand what the latest trends are to ensure that your business isn’t left behind.” – Mari Smith
The top trends include:
1) Big Brand Bypass – New platforms are allowing consumers to bypass big brands and buy, sell and exchange directly with each other. The internet has leveled the playing field for businesses of all sizes.
2) Humanize to Monetize – Brands need to show a human side to make a more personal connection with consumers. Brands with personality such as Zappos, SouthWest Airlines, Starbucks and Virgin are succeeding online. The size of your business no longer matters. People crave a human connection and receiving acts of kindness.
3) Cause-based Consumers – Consumers’ growing concern over the environment calls for companies to communicate charitable and green initiatives. Companies need to be transparent, share ethics and how policies are shaped and regulated to build trust and credibility.
4) Super Social Status – Badges, gamification, influence scores are all increasing in social media. Status ratings such as Klout are changing the way society regards influence. One example is restaurants using FourSquare and rewarding the mayor and those who check-in to make customers feel extra special.
5) Awesome vs. “Flawesome” – Consumers realize that companies aren’t perfect. Companies that admit they made a mistake and quickly take action to right the wrongs achieve a Flawesome status. Showing transparency and empathy will keep customers and fans satisfied. Handle negative comments and reviews, don’t delete them. 68% of consumers trust reviews more when there are good and bad scores. (Source: Revoo.com January 2012) FedEx and Comcast are great examples of brands embracing social customer service.
6) Mad for Mobile – Mobile device usage outnumbers computers 5-to-1 worldwide. How is your business adapting to mobile marketing? Websites, email, video and online marketing messages need to be optimized for mobile devices.
Image via Mashable