Buzz

The Big Brand Theory: Hyundai, Soccer, and Zombies

Social Media Today - Tue, 2014-06-24 03:55
Jon Budd, Senior Group Manager of New Media at Hyundai Motor America says that he loves working for the brand. "We're a challenger brand," he says. "So we're able to 'punch above our weight a bit' and in doing so have to be a little daring and risk-taking and not do that traditional mainstream marketing."

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The Complete Guide to Choosing a Content Calendar: Tools, Templates, Tips, and More

Social Media Today - Tue, 2014-06-24 03:52
Do you know what you're posting, sharing, and blogging this Thursday? How about two Thursdays from now? Thursday of next month? Thursday of next year? We don't have things figured out quite to that extreme here at Buffer, but we do have some idea of what's ahead.

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Marketing Automation: What It Is and Why You Need to Know

Social Media Today - Tue, 2014-06-24 01:43
For those who want to bring profit to their business through online marketing efforts, marketing automation is an invaluable tool. Marketing automation allows automated information sharing with your leads and customers to be carried out over a number of channels, from your website to email and social media platforms.

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LinkedIn Brand Page Best Practices

Social Media Today - Tue, 2014-06-24 01:29
Companies who are looking to launch a LinkedIn page, however, do not know where to start or what they can do to make their page stand out. It’s no secret that thousands upon thousands of different pages, companies and businesses are on LinkedIn. So what can a company do in order to get the engagement they want to get?

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Recent Social Media Disasters and What Companies Can Learn From Them

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 20:21
Social media can be a wonderful thing for a business. Companies can now inform, interact with, and advertise to customers in ways never before possible. While social media is a handy tool that can give fans and customers unprecedented access, the technology is a double-edged sword.

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Social Media Marketing Tips and Tricks for Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and More

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 20:14
It’s important to keep current on social media best practices to ensure that you’re doing all you can to keep your marketing campaigns and initiatives fresh. The team at Vocus has researched the latest and greatest trends in marketing on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Flickr, Pinterest, Instagram, Vine, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

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Having Trouble Turning Your Employees into Social Media Brand Advocates?

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 19:22
You’ve probably already heard how useful it can be if your employees are willing and eager brand advocates for your company across social media channels. In the best cases, employees who naturally promote your business in the social media realm can be more effective than even the most carefully implemented marketing plans.

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Reputation Management Lessons Learned from Australia’s Deadliest Animals

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 17:31
Much like bad publicity for a company, we don’t often highlight the deadliest animals here in Australia. It’s not exactly the best PR; however, once the word is out it can’t be ignored. Reputation management is essential for all brands large and small. Here are some reputation management lessons brands can learn from Australia’s deadliest animals.

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5 Things Fishing Can Teach You About Social Media

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 16:00
While on my latest fishing excursion to our local Old Man River in hopes of landing a 10+ lb Pike I began to think about the parallels between my day job in social media and my love of fishing. This isn’t as crazy as it seems and I promise you I can tie the two together.

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4 Real-Life Web Marketing Business Problems Shortcuts Can’t Fix

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 15:20
Building a better business website with lots of fresh content and high-quality links isn't easy, it can take a bit of time, and, it's the only way to succeed with organic search over the long term. And, seeing online activities as separate disciplines is about the best way to ensure that you'll never get the results you're hoping for.

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How to Create a Social Media Command Center

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 15:04
There are countless tools on the market that claim to be an all-in-one resource for social media marketing. But when several key features get bundled together, important functions get overlooked. That's why I'm a fan of putting together my own social media engagement suite, using five tools.

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15 Fascinating Facebook Mobile and App Stats [INFOGRAPHIC]

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 14:06
Did you know that 20 percent of the time people spend on smartphones is on Facebook and 556 million people log in to Facebook through their mobile devices. What if I told you that every month 927 million hours are spent on Facebook mobile apps and games?

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4 Questions Marketers Can't Answer

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 12:24
Over the last few weeks, more than 2,000 marketers have taken a social media marketing quiz that tests your knowledge on the various aspects of social media - ranging from content, to engagement, to ethics, to crisis management and more. The findings from that quiz have been a little... shocking.

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Think You Don't Need a Great Website? Wrong!

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 07:33
Good websites are not free or easy. Like all marketing, they have an associated cost and/or time commitment that can range widely from site to site. Hire a designer or a developer to build it for you, and the variations in price get wider. Especially for new, small businesses with limited resources, a website seems like a scary admission.

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Why Do People Use Social Media?

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 06:48
While most of us understand that being on social media for our small business is a worthwhile marketing endeavor we don’t always necessarily consider why our audience is on social media in the first place, which is ironic because that may be the most important thing to consider.

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7 Great Excuses for Curating Content

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 06:22
We’ve all grown up learning that “sharing is caring,” and when it comes to content marketing, it’s no different. Content curation isn’t just a great way to jump-start and maintain relationships with prospects and experts in your industry, it can also save you time and find new inspiration.

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6 SMS Marketing Ideas For Small Business

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 06:07
I'm a big fan of SMS marketing (text message marketing). I firmly believe SMS is going to take off in the next year and begin to outpace other forms of marketing (like email marketing, for example) in both popularity with consumers and effectiveness for small businesses.

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How To Convert Visitors to Customers With Your Web Copywriting

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 06:00
Do you have a lot of visitors to your site? Do you do a happy dance every time the number increases? It's exciting to see all of those numbers and all of those people, but eventually it becomes exhausting and overwhelming when those visitors leave and never become customers.

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SMToolbox: Integrated Social Media Marketing with Radian6 Buddy Media Social Studio

Social Media Today - Mon, 2014-06-23 03:55
Salesforce is the latest company to outline its vision for integrated social media marketing. Their new Social Studio is an integrated social media software suite that brings together two of its popular products - Radian6 and Buddy Media. We take a look in this week's SMToolbox.

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Categories: Buzz

Friendly skies

Buzz Machine - Sun, 2014-06-22 22:09

I was five hours late returning from San Francisco to home yesterday but I was remarkably calm and sanguine about the delay. Why? Because I was well-informed and well-cared-for. And that was the case because this year I joined the secret society of most-frequent travelers and ticket buyers on United: Global Services.

We were taxiing out to the runway at SFO for our agonizingly early 6:45 a.m. flight when the pilot said a gauge wasn’t acting properly. Back to the gate we went (and I was amused that my United app showed us arriving before we’d taken off). Much testing and back-and-forthing by mechanics ensued. It didn’t work. The plane was taken out of service. We were told to leave. Shit happens.

Then could have begun the customary hell of wrenches — literal and figurative — thrown into travel plans and planes. That was nearly the case. The entire planeload ran to a customer-service line seeking rescue. The person behind the counter said she couldn’t rebook us because our tickets were “used.” We were told United was, and I quote, “looking for” a plane. Pesky critters go hiding, apparently. Grumbling started to rumble.

But then two nice things happened. First, the lady behind the counter, named Rita, scolded operations at the airline for not giving passengers complete and accurate information. How nice — how rare — it was to have an ally fighting for us, the customers. That also preempted our need to fight for ourselves.

Then I got a phone call from Global Services. This, I quickly learned, is the real perk of being in the club (not just being the obnoxious guy who gets to get on the plane first). A very nice woman named Terry Norris told me that she had already rebooked me on three — yes, three — flights to afford choices based on time, airport, and seat assignment. Wow. I wasn’t sure what to do so I held onto one choice and Terry let me wait to decide while the airline went looking for its pesky plane. (Of course, when found, I imagine an employee shouting this:)

About an hour later, Terry called me back and informed me that a plane coming in from Raleigh-Durham had been assigned to us (which, of course, is what they mean then they say they “found” a plane). It would be arriving at 10:05 a.m. I’d still have my beloved first-class, aisle, bulkhead seat (I’d bought an upgrade with my miles). It so happens that I knew about the found plane before the gate agent did and filled him in.

I took to Twitter to thank and publicly praise these good people.

Thank you, Terry Norris of @united Global Services for rebooking me but more importantly keeping me informed. That's what matters most.

— Jeff Jarvis (@jeffjarvis) June 21, 2014

Want to thank @united agent Rita for scolding operations for giving passengers conflicting info. Shit happens but it's good to have an ally

— Jeff Jarvis (@jeffjarvis) June 21, 2014

And then @ahalam had a suggestion:

@jeffjarvis I expect a software agent to be doing this on my behalf in the future.

— I, Adnan (@ahalam) June 21, 2014

Right. Why shouldn’t everyone get the kind of service I got yesterday? Well, the answer at first is obvious: It would be prohibitively expensive for airlines to have lots of Terrys to personally take care of and inform every customer. I get that service now because the airline made a lot of money off me last year, when I flew more than 100,000 miles. But if every customer could, indeed, get that level of service, wouldn’t the airline make even more money from even more satisfied and loyal customers? Call me an cockeyed optimist, but isn’t that a service ideal?

Well, @ahalam is right: A software agent could take personal care of customers. The new United Android app is good and it keeps me better-informed than I used to be because now I can look up where the plane I’m waiting to board is coming from and when it will arrive as well as the status of wait lists for seats and upgrades. That’s quite an advance.

Imagine if when I arrive at the airport neurotically early, as I tend to do (thanks, Mom), United would ping me and ask whether I wanted that empty seat on an earlier flight. Imagine if when there are problems, United’s software agent keeps me personally informed and, like Terry, gives me other options to get to my destination. Imagine if this automated agent knew I liked going to on pleasure rather than business and sent me a tempting deal to fill up a plane. Imagine if, knowing my preferences in hotels and local transit — Über? rental car? train? — the agent booked and billed me from door to door, giving me choices but not requiring me to go through scores of pages to get the job done. Imagine if the computer agent knew me so well it could preload my own shows on the entertainment system (you left off at episode 23 of House of Cards, Mr. Jarvis) and order me the food and wine I like and seat me next to interesting people who like to talk or people like me who prefer the silence? Imagine, as I suggested a few years ago, if the airline could gather the collective wisdom of its passengers about their favorite destinations or hometowns and share that with other passengers. Imagine if just one airline did all that for us instead of making its money by nickel-and-diming us charging for bags of nuts or bags on the plane.

All that is possible. It would mean that an airline would have to respect customers as individuals rather than as anonymous butts in seats, building trusted and rich relationships with each one of us and rewarding us with tangible benefits.

More important, it would mean that an airline would have to become a technology company (which just happens to own metal tubes that fly). Such an airline’s core competence would be in building systems to super-serve customers with information and solutions and relevant suggestions based on rich data.

As we landed in Newark more than four hours late, I was starting to think this could happen if just one brave airline invested in such a future.

Four hours late? Didn’t I say above we were five hours late? Well that’s because the airline’s computer system had broken down and so none of the flights getting ready to leave were allowed to depart their gates and thus no gates were free for us and so we sat on the runway and — “the hits just keep coming,” said the pilot — then there was no one to drive the jetway to us. Oh, well. And I was imagining the new airline as technology company.

Well, a passenger can dream, can’t he?

In any case, given how much abuse airlines take on Twitter, I thought I’d say thanks to United for making a bad day as bearable as it could be for me. And I’m glad I wasn’t traveling with the passenger whose plane always flies under a dark cloud. See…

Buttry’s travels
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And a postscript from Mr. Buttry:

Finally landed, half hour late, 18+ hours after @USAirways wouldn't let me fly standby. https://t.co/Lh07jwzwRA

— Steve Buttry (@stevebuttry) June 23, 2014

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