Malleable Musings

December 29, 2008

Some thoughts on Social Media Marketing

Filed under: Social Media — Brendan @ 11:13 pm

A post on mashable about the benefits of social media marketing (SM) got me thinking, especially when I started reading the comments (BTW no.9 was my favourite).  All of the benefits cited are undoubtedly important,  but surely the importance of each will vary according by industry and experience of SM (from personal, company wide and industry wide perspectives and possibly also according to the audience being targetted) as well as the goals that are trying to be achieved at that time by the marketing person in question.

I’ll probably use the list of benefits to explain why I’m devoting so much of my time to SM.  Although I’ll be ruling out low cost as for me time is definitely a huge cost.

From my perspective the top of my list – benefits of SM as I see them at the moment – would probably be:

  1. reach
  2. lead generation
  3. the nebulous “customer engagement”
  4. brand building
  5. direct customer communications
  6. credibility of the crowd (in certain markets)

Students and alumni are critical for referral – something like 40% of our new cohort each year say they were recommended by a current student or alumni.  Therefore building a sense of community within students and alumni and making it easy for recommendation to happen are critical.  However results from word of mouth initiatives (both in the offline and online world) are difficult to measure.

I suppose a start (in the above instance) could be to ask how they were recommended? However this just scratches the surface and probably won’t really tell me where I should be investing my time.

I know I’m going to have to define some new metrics and I’ve got a lot of learning to do….   ….exciting times!

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