Twitter Announces Update to Embedded Tweets

Today, Twitter announced a revamped embedded tweets experience allowing you to add a bit of social pizazz to your website or blog.

“Tweets bring you closer to what’s happening around the world, from breaking news to global conversations. With embedded Tweets, you can see and interact with Tweets across the web.”

More content and context. Embedded Tweets display photos, videos, article summaries and other content shared in a Tweet, just like you see on twitter.com. You can also view retweet and favorite counts to better understand engagement. Twitter made some tweaks to the design so that embedded Tweets are easier to read.

Faster loading. You’ll see Embedded Tweets show up faster on the sites you visit.

Embed with ease. It’s now even easier to embed a Tweet on your own website. Just click the “More” button in any Tweet on twitter.com, and then select “Embed this Tweet” to enrich your blog posts or pages.

It’s easy to embed a tweet. Here’s a recent tweet straight from Santa Maria, California (eh…twitter.com)!

Establishing your digital footprint and embarking on a journey of content marketing is made easier as Twitter and its social media counterparts evolve.

What Executives Should Know About Social Media

New research conducted by Stanford University’s Rock Center for Corporate Governance, the Center for Leadership Development and Research at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and The Conference Board details the results of a survey of more than 180 senior executives and corporate directors of North American public and private companies. The findings reveal a disconnect between companies’ understanding of social media and the actions they are taking to apply it to their business. The report demonstrates significant room for growth in the area of practicing social media.

“Companies appreciate the potential that social media can have to transform all aspects of their business: branding, reputation, communication, outreach, and identifying strategic risks,” says Professor David F. Larcker of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and lead author of the study. “They also realize the serious threats that it can pose. They’re just not doing very much about it.”

The study provides several important steps that executives can follow to implement a winning social media strategy:

  • Assess their current capabilities with social media
  • Determine how social media fits with their strategy and business model
  • Map their companies’ key performance indicators and risk factors to information available through social media
  • Implement a “listening” system to capture social media data and transform it into metrics
  • Develop formal policies and guidelines for employees, executives, and directors
  • Consider the legal and behavioral ramifications that could be involved if the company’s board receives summary data about social media

An appreciation for social media is one thing; putting best practices in place and making full use of social is another.

 

Marketers Finding Value in Social Media

Recent eMarketer news paints a picture into the current value of social media for both business-to-business and business-to-consumer marketers. Social media is a powerful tool for engagement and top of mind awareness but many find it difficult to measure ROI. Not any longer. Recent findings suggest that marketers plan on increasing their social media budgets in 2013.

In its “State of Digital Marketing 2012 Report,” Webmarketing123 found that 52% of US B2C marketers and 41% of US B2B marketers planned to increase their social marketing budgets in 2013, while an additional 46% of B2C and 56% of B2B marketers will keep them the same. (eMarketer)

The results are no surprise as B2B marketers continue to look for ways to tap into social media as a means for creating impact across their industry pipeline. For B2C marketers, social media continues to be a major focus with Facebook leading the pack.

“These investments in social sites are showing results. Two-thirds of B2C marketers (67%) said they had generated leads from Facebook, and 39% said they saw sales as a result of outreach on the site. This was compared to 39% of B2B marketers who reported leads and 19% who reported sales. For B2B marketers, not surprisingly, LinkedIn saw the most success, with 44% of marketers seeing leads and 23% seeing sales from the site.”

A solid strategy is an important step in increasing these successes and require that marketers embrace the power of social as a legitimate tool for leads, sales, and ongoing engagement. 

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Time to Make Pinterest Your Bread and Butter for Referral Traffic

We’re not going to tell you to stop pinning your marketing dollars on SEO but recent data related to Pinterest make an excellent case for rethinking where you spend time building your inbound marketing funnel. A recent article in Forbes points to the reason why a site like Pinterest needs to be in your digital marketing repertoire.

Invest in real, valuable, relevant content that your audience wants. Grow your internal thought leaders to where they can add value to your audience and positioning in the market. Follow internal SEO practices to make sure it is found and sees the light of day. Take the time to make it so compelling that people talk about it and share it. – Ken Krogue, Forbes contributor.

Exactly why a site like Pinterest is able to overtake Yahoo as a leading source of online traffic. The bread and butter of Pinterest is built on quality content in the form of visual aesthetic. Tapping into the power of niche interests is a key contributing factor to Pinterest’s rise. In fact, the site drives more referral traffic than Google+, LinkedIn, and YouTube combined!

Consumers are pinning in droves on Pinterest because of the ‘interest’ to display their interests to the masses. The dynamics of social sharing and content generation are in full effect on Pinterest making it important for today’s businesses to look for strategies to capitalize on the opportunities presented by rising online destinations like Pinterest, and maybe in the future, App.net, Branch, and Medium.

Bye Bye Marketing

Have you ever seen the film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory? (The original 1971 version.) The story is engaging built around a young boy who gets the opportunity to explore the most eccentric and wonderful candy factory of all. Remember the scene where all the golden ticket winners introduce themselves to Willy Wonka himself? Well, there was one dude who, without invitation and hesitation, pulled out his business card and gave it to Mr. Wonka. Game over.

That’s the problem in today’s business environment. Over indulgent self promotion. The businessman’s gesture is now a 40-year-old lesson in what not to do when you first meet someone. We’re not against handing out business cards. Winning friends and influencing people is built by placing the spotlight on others. The same can be applied to today’s new marketing environment.

The problem is that many marketers, small business owners, community leaders, politicians, and (insert desired title)s are stuck on outdated technology, medievel institutions, and relentless self-speak as opposed to shifting their focus on strategies that influence and engage consumers. The right mindset has the ability to literally break the bank and foster a customer base of advocates and satisfied patrons.

A recent Harvard Business Review (HBR) article entitled, “Marketing is Dead” by Bill Lee, is a timely piece and a rallying cry for individuals and brands to move beyond business as usual. Complacency hasn’t just killed the cat, it’s hindered the productivity, efficiency, and impact of communities, municipalities, governments, market sectors, nations and institutions of all shapes and sizes.

Traditional marketing — including advertising, public relations, branding and corporate communications — is dead. Many people in traditional marketing roles and organizations may not realize they’re operating within a dead paradigm. But they are. The evidence is clear.

The Industrial Revolution brought about mass production. Marketing presented consumers with options and competition. We are experiencing a much bigger shift where the saturation of sales messaging and unending pitches bombard consumers to a point of immunity. This might be hard to grasp but consumers really don’t want to be sold. There’s a reason DVR is so popular. Consumers are happy to fast-forward through any form of relentless advertising. Technology, social media, and the power of purpose (think social responsibility meets cause marketing) has created a whole new marketing landscape.

Consumers are not the only group feeling tired and adverse towards business as usual.

73% of CEOs think Marketers lack business credibility and are not the business growth generators they should be: they are still too far from being able to demonstrate how the cross-channel marketing strategies and campaigns they deploy grow their organisations’ top line in terms of more customer demand, more sales, more prospects, more conversions or more market share.

Marketers need to slow down and smell the roses. The allure of bright and shiny new objects combined with business constraints and a lack of real strategy makes it difficult for marketers to achieve what really matters. Results.

So, what’s the solution for success in the new media arena of marketing and communications?

A Change of Mindset

When radio first came out, people were quick to shoot it down as a weird device with lots of buttons that everyone seemed to be glued to. They deemed this new technology as waste of time. Sound familiar? That’s the mindset that individuals have towards new media. Communication platforms and social networking sites such as Facebook, Medium, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest are popular for a reason. Engagement and peer influence! Leaders that embrace these new tools of communication are sure to outshine the competition.

The Power of Community

Traditional marketing has given way to a new approach where community-oriented buying experiences and social connections influence the purchase decision life cycle. We trust our friends, family, and associates for purchase decisions. Peer influence has a huge impact on where we invest time, money, and resources. Tap into the power of the crowd by building bridges with connected audiences and watch business priorities turn into a reality despite the existence of any real or implied constraints. Build networks, identify influencers, and empower them with the opportunity to build social capital.

Speak the Language of Value not Gibberish

“Until Marketers start speaking the P&L language of their CEOs and stakeholders, and until they start tracking the business effectiveness of all their strategies and campaigns to prove they generate incremental customer demand, they will continue to lack credibility in the eyes of their CEOs and will continue to be seen more as a cost centre than an asset” said Jerome Fontaine, CEO & Chief Tracker of Fournaise.

Talk in terms of your audience’s pain points and things will become much easier. The following is a good formula for capturing attention of key stakeholders:

Did you know, according to ________ your company can ________ because ________?

Knowledge empowers the willing into a whole new arena of impact, influence, synergies, and business success. Embrace it. Pursue it. Share it.

 

Hub 81 is a strategic branding and digital marketing agency based out of the beautiful Central Coast of California helping individuals and brands engage today’s hyper-connected consumer throughout Santa Maria, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and beyond. For more information, say hello.

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How to Thrive in a Saturated Social Media Marketing Environment

The Association of National Advertisers recently released data shows that the percentage of marketers who are using social media edged up just 1% over the last year, from 89% in 2011 to 90% this year.

Slow growth but significant nonetheless as this data confirms that more and more people are grasping the concept of social media and running full speed ahead. But therein lies the problem. Success in social media and digital marketing is not based on speed but rather quality engagement.

Brands must realize that this isn’t a race.

We’ve witnessed several accounts on sites like Twitter where brands seem to have given up on the opportunity of social. The new media arena might offer cost effective opportunities but the trade offs come in the amount of time and effort required. You have to be present to have a presence.

How do brands succeed when everyone is using or at least giving social media a shot?

Here are three tips for standing out from the crowd:

Have Fun

It’s okay to be polished and sophisticated but let go! People are online because of the fact to connect with interesting people and engaging content not the boardroom.

Experiment

Sometimes it’s great to be first. The brands who are playing around with the new kids on the block like Pinterest are finding great returns in the form of awareness and publicity. Take those who are moving their websites to Pinterest for example.

Know Thyself

Look in the mirror. It’s the best thing a brand can do and opens the window of opportunity for some deep self analysis in the form of questions about purpose, passion, and focus. Consumers have a knack for pointing out a brand’s flaws which means marketers better be ready to respond. Oh…and when you do respond please be swift.

As more and more brands jump on the social bandwagon, we’ll find countless examples of how not to engage in social media marketing. However, there will be champions of engagement and it’s up to us to thrive.

By the way…we can help your brand move the needle of appreciation into new arenas of visibility and consumer engagement. Just drop us a line.