Influence of Social Media Marketing

Isn’t it enormous how many people use social media?

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Source: http://tobesocial.de/blog/social-media-marketing-mobile-online-trends-2013-studie

When I saw this current statistic from 2013 I was really impressed by the huge amount of people hanging around at social media platforms. Concerning the rising trend of those platforms in all various facets my interest focuses more on the marketing and advertising part that is generated there.

 

Marketing Possibilities for Businesses

Looking at a business’ marketing concept: In general you want to address a lot of people, want to connect them and want to put the record of your business straight.

That’s why Stephanie Chandler, an economic book writer is convinced of social media marketing. She demonstrates that the possibility to sell your business or your product in the best customer addressing way and use the repeat exposure tool to influence the users mind subconsciously with your advert is provided by the platforms. Banners decorating social websites assure the constant stream of commercials and logos.

Supportingly, David Dubois, assistant professor of marketing INSEAD, invokes the example of American Express which includes the introduction of a conversational page at Facebook(Amex on Facebook). The successful leverage hereby is that Amex provides continuously relevant information for potential customers or investors to stimulate interaction between the audience. Including facts and trends as well as professional contributions on their Facebook page, Amex is able to address the audience directly and because of the conversations Amex is also able to align their business to customer needs.

As well as American Express is able to position itself in the center of information exchange, HP also experienced a boom becoming the first business which has 1 million followers on LinkedIn which are in return connected to 43 million other members.

To turn the tables, Paul Dunay, global VP of marketing for Maxymiser, states that the usage of social media may also end up in a total mess! Quantas Airlines for instance ventured a faux-pas by raffling a first class pajama to promote their possibility of luxury flying and raise Twitter followers. The thing was, that this came after months of negative publicity stemming from disputes which then lead to Twitter comments like:”Getting from A to B without the plane being grounded or an engine catching fire. #qantasluxury”, which were spread over the internet immediately and finally, resulted in the grounding of the entire Quantas fleet.

 

Trends of Social Media Marketing coming up 2013

To drift away from good and bad examples of social media marketing I was wondering what the year 2013 will bring us in relation to marketing trends.

What caught my attention was the increasing trend towards the mobile usage of social media. In Germany, the acquisition of smart phones in relation to other mobile phones raised from 67% to 77% in the end of 2012. Last December, about 16 million Germans had access to social networks or blogs via their smart phone.

To relate this trend to marketing via social media, Facebook already faces a downturn in revenues because of the declining PC usage.

Advertisers are not willing to pay as much for mobile ads because they simply are not as effective as ads on a desktop. And the mobile ads that advertisers are buying are a lot cheaper than ads on a desktop, pricing at 56 cents on the dollar”, Colin Gillis, analyst for BCG claims.

The development of viable advertisement from desktops to mobile platforms is not as easy as thought. Recent studies show that 41% of adverts are shared via display, whereas only 8% attention is given to mobile adverts.The question arises how to squeeze ads on tiny mobile screens to still afford marketing options for businesses.

Ryan Holmes, CEO of HootSuite announces that new social ad models characterized by innovative offerings like Promoted Tweets and sponsored Stories will replace the traditional banners and pop-up ads. The main concept is convergence. The target is to combine ads and content.

 

How important are the social media ads? How do they influence users?

Social networks became more powerful than one has probably thought of: navigating purchase decisions, rising confidence in brands and communicating with customers affect the everyday usage of social networks. According to a recent report from YouGov, in the UK 23% of users researched a product after seeing it on a social media site, which represents a 6% increase of the year before. In addition to that research 13% of the people decided to actually buy something, which increased 7% from the year before.

To come back to the percentage of users who researched on a product the study also reveals that only 5% actually claimed that they have clicked on an advert in the last year. For me it seems to be an indicator for subconscious marketing. Another aspect which is interesting to me is that according to the study less than 1 in 10 feel that targeted advertising is relevant to them.

To conclude, users are obviously open to influence by adverts in social networks. Although at the moment it seems to be more like a subconscious absorption, I guess that when target groups would be addressed better advertisement would me more relevant for them and had more potential to grow.

 

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Social Media – Friends, Trends .. and Jobs?

Because of the restrained German economy in 2012 the job market was recently not very offensively. But the perspective for the next 5 years are all in all increasing!

Recent surveys show that the educational level still plays a crucial role for recruiting. Employers prefer Master degrees with more than 86% whereas Bachelor degrees are only demanded by 38%. To attract graduates of Generation Y a lot of employers have changed their handling concerning the junior staff. To mention is here of course the recruiting trend towards Social Media.

The “Social Media Recruiting Studie 2012 von Deutschland” compares the popularity of social media with the traditional ways of recruiting. One can say, that especially the use of the Internet in total has gained a lot of importance. 84% of German companies operate HR websites as well as online job boards. The number of companies using Social Media has increased in the last years to a percentage of 74% whereas recruiting via print is only used by 45% of the companies. Stefan Schär of Social Media Schweiz invigorates this by emphasizing the advantage of using Social Media to receive a more authentic insight into a company which doesn\’t work as good using print. To continue, further Social Media extension plans are already made by 2/3 of German companies for the year 2013.

As the 2nd prevalent platform right after Xing(68%), 65% of companies use Facebook for searching and communicating with potential employees. “The connection barrier between employer and employee has reduced and it is easier to build up business relations.” states Schär.

To mention another point of view: “Indeed Facebook is established as a recruiting channel but nevertheless it is still way far from being professionalized!” claims Jan Kirchner, partner of the digital agency Atenta. This statement probably refers to is the insufficient upkeeping of most of the firm\’s fan pages. Recently, it is enormously criticized that after the “Facebook Recruiting Study 2012”, 46,7% of the companies show no reaction to fan activities on their pages at all!

But on the other hand there is still high potential for improvement. To present one\’s company with videos or pictures on Facebook is one possibility that already exists and another that was introduced lately is the Emplido- Facebook App for applicants which includes filtering one\’s strengths and looking for valuable connections for professional success to help you find a job. A further project which Facebook is planning on is the introduction of a meta-job board to focus more intensively on the Social Media recruiting trend.

In the view of Alexander Senn of KPMG, Social Media should just serve as a primary source of information or as a leverage but will never replace the personal contact.

Keep it simple and stupid

This week I was helped to discover that my interest is in data visualization. So with this post I want to give my readers and interesting insight of the topic of data visualization. Of course not the topic as in general, but more like something that caught my interest during this week.

I tipped over a quote of Grace Dobush, who said:

“What’s the big deal? Everybody’s doing it, right? If you put [Infographic] in a blog post title, people are going to click on it, because they straight up can’t get enough of that crap. Flowcharts for determining what recipe you should make for dinner tonight! Venn diagrams for nerdy jokes! Pie charts for statistics that don’t actually make any sense! I have just one question—are you trying to make Edward Tufte cry?”

For me personally data visualization has always been a tool that enables us as humans to get an better understanding of complexity by just simply visualizing it.

So where is the problem here?

According to the “Gurdian UK” data visualization tools like “Wordle” had been designed as an academic exercise that had turned into a common way of showing word frequencies over the past years.
Furthermore, it claims that during the past years the supply of data visualization tools that were free has not been that much as it is now. And compared to what we are being offered nowadays is more “fancier” and also more diverse. As a result of this people have been tending to make data visualization look less and less nicer.

But we still want to keep on using data visualization tools. Ian Lurie is on the opinion that more people want to easily follow a story that is being told visually then being told verbally. And it is nothing wrong with that. But it is important to not get excited and overzealous about what data visualization tools offer to us.

So here are some advises for everybody they should consider when working with data visualization:

 3D

In recent times 3D animations and pictures have become more and more popular. They are associated with a high degree of fanciness and we love to use them. But we have to be careful when using them. Fanciness does not always lead to fancy story telling. 3D data visualization can create more work, because more data or information is needed, since you now have another axis that has to be filled up with the right information.

Colors and Data Visualization

Some of us might feel, the more colors the better. Well when it comes do basic data stick with a basic amount of colors. Too many colors for the certain data set will only lead to confusion and nobody wants that. Keep it simple and stupid actually fits in here perfectly.

And here I have another example:

fina destination

The information based in this picture is based on the data given at this website.

1. The term destiny is here not clearly defined.
2. The circles represent the amount of fatal accidents. Using the USA as an example this picture states a number of 2613 fatal accidents. But do we know how many flights were flying to the USA? In fact do we know how many flights were operating in general? This picture might lead to misjudgment for example thinking the USA is a dangerous place to fly to.
3. Do the dots stand for the certain city or the country itself? (see Europe)

After this week I have learnt some more on data visualization and I hope you have, too. It is always good to put yourself in the position of a listener who does not want to be shocked with a chart that contains all colors of a beautiful rainbow.

What are lately smartphone users looking for? How

What are lately smartphone users looking for?

How does the value of Apple products like Iphones change in the next years? After Michael McQueen, a social researcher who also delved into this theme, preferences and tastes of Gen Y will diverge away from the now leading trendsetters within the next 5 years.

A huge problem McQueen points out is that Apple for example focused more on business rather than on the lifestyle market of potential customers. Additionally Apple also faces a problem of hubris because of its apparently never ending success of the last years.

Concerning the younger generation which should be addressed as potential new customers or even the younger customers which should be kept as already existing customers are not addressed adequately by the classical super high tech devices, McQueen blames. The generation and the tastes are changing continuously, and even faster in the last years, but mostly products don\’t… at least as not as fast or pleasing. An other argument Leanna Kelly, a sociological US writer, invokes is that the new generation, the gen Y, is mostly concerned about themselves rather than about any brand which is “just cool at the moment”. That basically means that they care more about presenting themselves via sharing and creating their own content rather than paying much attention on the brand. Isn’t it that a lot of us just want to create an identity via their smartphones using facebook for instance to show pictures, to write down your biography or to localize themselves via linking. A nice quote she uses is: “You are what you share”. That’s one aspect which should be considered and added to the just technological and business conducted strategy of most companies.

Compared to Apple’s Iphone which faces a downturn, Samsung has lately reached numbers to be shown off! It’s mixture of engineering know-how, manufacturing strength and marketing savvy which lead Samsung’s profits to a record high of 76% on smartphone sales. The American Customer Satisfaction Index also proves that Apple Iphone scores decreased by 2% from 2012 to 2013 whereas Samsung’s score increased by 7%.

 

Is the Iphone loosing popularity?

The blog post “Customers not as happy with iPhone as they were last year” by Shara Tibken and published in May 2013 on cnet.com deals with the Ipone loosing good customer reputation. According to the American Customer Satisfaction Index, Apple still issues the best customer satisfaction. What Tibken now addresses is that although Apple is still the leader, it lost customer satisfaction of about 2% from 2012 till 2013. On a scale of 100 it is a decline from 83 to 81. Based on the American Customer Satisfaction Index, Tibken argues that companies like Nokia, Samsung and Motorola increased their customer satisfaction for up to 5% since last year.