You may have seen the study put out yesterday by allrecipes.com and Psychster that studies the engagement activity around seven different online ad types (via Mashable). The stat that most stood out to me was this: "Corporate Profiles on social networking sites produced greater purchase intent and more recommendations when users could become a fan and add the logo to their own profiles than when they could not."
In honor of the season, where some celebrate the ancient story of slaves' exodus from Egypt, it's time for a new telling of the ten plagues: the Ten Plagues of Social Media.
If you were going to create a new application or tool to take advantage of the current trends in social media, what elements would you include? Add your thoughts in the comments, but I'll share my wish list.
Social media is a land of many holy grails - if it's not completely antithetical to have more than one - but probably none is more prized by marketers than the Influencer, that person who can sway opinion, get people to buy products and otherwise, well, influence the hearts and minds of dozens, hundreds and thousands of other people.
The New York Times has a big story today on online privacy -- or lack thereof. But that's not really the privacy story of the week that interests me. Yesterday, the AP ran a story detailing how the Feds use Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and Twitter to nab suspects -- sometimes by breaking the terms of service of these sites by pretending to be someone else. The IRS even uses Google Street View to investigate taxpayers, as it turns out. Better think twice before you claim poverty while actually in the process of putting a huge, new addition on your house.
If you want to experience a petri dish of thousands of educated, media savvy professionals and content producers actively using social technologies as part of their daily life, come to Austin, Texas for South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi). This is the festival that essentially launched Twitter in 2007 and Foursquare in 2009, and the expectations are always high for what will break out here.
Since it's almost three days later, maybe this qualifies as an irrelevant question to ask -- but are there any companies out there more clueless than Disney/ABC and Cablevision?
What would a brand need to give you to become a fan of their page on Facebook? A free hamburger? A pair of underwear? Virtual cash to support your virtual farm? These are all real examples. T.G.I. Friday's gave out the burgers in September 2009. And just last week, Microsoft ponied up (pun intended) 3 Farm Cash, the virtual currency of Facebook's leading application FarmVille, to players who became a fan of Bing.
True-confessions time: I used to be a PR person -- back when it was a very different profession. And social media is changing public relations still further from what I used to consider "doing PR." Today's case in point: Toyota Conversations, a site that aggregates tweeted news, images and video about Toyota, Toyota's own Twitter feed, and other crucial information for Toyota owners affected by the recall. It's not often that you come across a corporate site with links to stories that criticize the company, as in "How Will GM Deal With Its Recall? Blame it On Toyota."
If you look ahead at the agency business several years out, where will social media fit in, especially once some of the hype dies down? The question occurred to me after hearing a speech by someone I've worked with for over four years now: 360i CEO Bryan Wiener.