10 Ways Social Media Technologies are Adding Value and Productivity | Jeffbullas’s Blog

10 Ways Social Media Technologies are Adding Value and Productivity | Jeffbullas’s Blog.


Social media technologies have touched humanity in a primal way. You only need look at the adoption rates of Facebook and Twitter to realize that the web is indeed connecting human consciousness.

At almost no cost we can connect with like minded tribes globally at scale and speed. We can share ideas and knowledge in words, images and with the virtual face to face technologies of  online video that transcends time and place.

Knowledge transfer is almost instantaneous. It is transforming humanity deeply at the personal and business levels.

Social technologies are unlocking ideas from isolation and allowing them to be free to roam and add value to our lives.

This process is also being accelerated and amplified by the wide adoption of the smart phone.

The potential value of this transformation has been estimated by a study from McKinsey Global Institute as having a value of up to $1.3 trillion across just the 4 industries that they studied.

  1. Consumer packaged goods
  2. Consumer financial services
  3. Professional services
  4. Advanced manufacturing

This is just a sample of the potential that awaits globally across many more industries that could benefit from the efficient use of social technologies.

Potential is Largely Untapped

The potential for the enterprise is still largely untapped despite the widespread adoption by consumers as evidenced by the following facts and figures.

  • There are 1.5 billion social network users
  • 80% of online users interact with social networks regularly
  • 70% of companies are using social technologies

Social networks can add value to almost any business but companies that will benefit most from social technologies will have these characteristics.

  • High percentage of knowledge workers
  • Business success is dependent on brand recognition and consumer perception
  • Need to build credibility and trust to sell their products and services
  • Digital distribution of products and services
  • Experiential or inspirational products and services

The report estimates that consumer goods companies could increase their margins by up to 60% using social technologies through goods that better meet customers needs and improve the productivity of knowledge workers.

Ten Ways Social Technologies Add Value

Across every industry there lies enormous potential to add more value through implementing social technologies from better customer insights, improved marketing to social commerce.

Here are ten ways social technologies are adding value that are revealed by the study from McKinsey.

10 Ways Social Media Technologies Add Value

1. Co-Create Products

Companies using social platforms can crowd source ideas from their consumer community. This could  include product ideas, evaluation of the ideas by the crowd and the continuing modification and evolution of the products and services to produce a better product that better meets needs. It could include consumers submitting designs.

2. Demand Forecasting

Through multiplying the the potential sources of information about demand, companies can obtain more accurate and granular data. This could lead to better inventory control and better placement of stock where local demand is higher. The buzz from social networks can help pinpoint where the first responders are and allow staff to redirect additional stock to the highest buzz spots.

3. Distributing Business Processes

Companies such as TomTom and Google Maps are using inout from users to locate and qualify mapping errors and the latest updates to road networks. TomTom is even now adding crowdsourced  real time traffic flow to its service that provides the latest data on traffic jams and accidents provided by users from their cars.

4. Market Research

Market research can be costly and take months but now you can gather online chatter about your competitors in real time. There are now tools that can measure sentiment as it happens that allows companies to see if the latest feedback about a product is positive or negative. Brand health can be now checked by the “Chatter” tone online.

5. Marketing Communications

Marketing interaction was limited in the past to snail mail and was costly and slow. Now we have communication that is effectively close to zero cost and provides feedback in minutes. You can see what types of marketing communications are engaging and what aren’t. Online customer communities are being created by the savvy enterprise with Adobe’s forums having one million members.

6. Lead Generation

Sales opportunities required telemarketing and expensive advertising to make the phone ring. B2B companies are now discovering the power of social networks to attract customers and drive inbound inquiries. Displaying a companies expertise via blogs and online whitepapers and ebooks are transforming how professional services companies market their business. Software companies such as Hubspot have created online tools that allow companies to become much more efficient with their marketing.

7. Social Commerce

All of us listen to the recommendations of friends and family and social commerce allows companies to make it easy for their consumers to share what they have bought or “like”. This amplifies the marketing message and also improves conversion for online stores.

8. Customer Care

Companies such as SouthWest Airlines use channels like Twitter to respond to potential PR issues that are quickly diffused before they turn into public relations disasters. Agencies and larger brands are monitoring social media channels with community managers who monitor social networks such as Facebook to turn customer care problems into opportunities to impress customers with the speed of the response.

9. Collaboration

Social technologies are improving organisational performance by making collaboration and co-creation efficient both internally and with external suppliers and partners. This reduces time spent in face to face meeting and ensuring that best practice is followed and shared. Companies such as 37Signals uses social technologies to run a multimillion dollar company that operates with only 16 employees and is spread across 6 countries.

10. Matching Talents to Roles

Social platforms such as LinkedIn provide insights into people’s skills, passions and interests that provide a more complete picture of a candidate than a one dimensional resume will ever achieve.

Read more at http://www.jeffbullas.com/2012/07/30/10-ways-social-media-technologies-are-adding-value-and-productivity/#2trPmxdYaFxj77VL.99


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via www.jeffbullas.com/2010/05/26/how-best-buy-energized-170000-employees-with-social-media/.

Social Media is transforming the way organisations engage  internally with  their employees as well as externally with their customers.Best Buy Social Media Case Study

Best Buy, which is a large multi-channel home electronics retailer with nearly $50 Billion in sales, 3,000 locations globally (predominantly in the USA and North America but starting to also spread through the UK and Europe) and with 170,000 staff is a large organisation by any standard. Their challenge with this size company is not only to communicate externally with customers but also to listen, interact and empower the passion  and expertise that is within the company.

Internally they use

  • Forums such such as Geek Squad Forums and “Best Buy Community” which is a place to ask questions and to exchange ideas, information, opinions and tips with other technology users
  • Wikis like the Best Buy “Loop Marketplace” which is for employee suggestions (an electronic suggestion box), as well as stock market simulation game where instead of trading stocks, employs post predictions of what will be hot in the future and other employees value those ideas by buying them.
  • Video’s such as the internal competition for “best video” to encourage employees to sign up to the pension plan
  • A MySpace Community “Type” site called “Blueshirt Nation” which enables employees to stay connected via email, sms, or web. As the site says, employees can “share and access information anytime anywhere…mix connects us and makes us more valuable to each other and our customers.”

The internal social media channels are essentially to “harness the energy” of the 170,000 staff as the CEO, Brad Anderson likes to put it.

To engage with ther customers on external social media channels Best Buy use a range of multi-channel social media platforms

Blogs: on topics such as Mobiles, Latest and Greatest, Lights, Camera, Action (cameras), Best Living and others  (they have more than 11). These are targeted at different verticals or persona’s that they sell their products and services to such as the online shoe retailer “Zappos” does well. Their Geek Force Blog is obviously targeted at Geeks which seem to breed near technology stores whether that be online or offline.

Best Buy Social Media Geek Squad Blog

Twitter: Where they provide customer service as well as announce specials but they encourage their employees to use Twitter to spread the Best Buy brand… and by the way they have no Twitter policy! One of the multiple Twitter accounts they run  is called “Twelpforce” which is used for customer service.

Best Buy Blog Social Media Channel Geek Force

Facebook: Where they provide a wide range of content on products, recycling and gift ideas for sharing.

  • The Best Buy Over 1 million fans conversing with no moderation mostly sharing positive comments like, “Geek squad baby,” “Bought a laptop today,” “Great company!” A few exceptions describing in-store experiences.
  • Questions that Best Buy asked received 100′s of comments from mobile apps & plasmas. Others promoted upcoming events.
  • Their innovative Facebook tabs included ways to search products, ask your Facebook friends for gift ideas (and create passive impressions for Best Buy) and links to other Best Buy initiatives.

Best Buy Facebook Social Media Channel

The Chief Marketing Officer Barry Judge (who also has his own personal blog where he shares what both he and his marketing team have on their mind) comments on what he is attempting to achieve with Social Media for Best Buy

  • Talking with Customers not at them like they used to exclusively do with traditional mass media like TV,  radio, newspapers and magazines.
  • You can no longer control the message
  • Be part of the conversation
  • Consumers will give you all sorts of information if you are willing to listen
  • Be transparent
  • Showing people what is good and not so good about you creates trust
  • The smart phone is the Internet in your hand

He sums it up with to be relevant in a digital world you need to

  • Live digitally with your communication to your customers and staff
  • Live digitally with the products you sell

The “Best Buy” case study shows that social media is not just about communicating externally but using the technology and platforms to make your organisation social, connected and energised and from that communicate with your customers in ways that make your brand stand out from the competition.

www.jeffbullas.com: 14-key-findings-on-how-the-global-fortune-100-are-using-social-media/

via www.jeffbullas.com/2010/02/25/new-report-reveals-14-key-findings-on-how-the-global-fortune-100-are-using-social-media/.

Following in the footsteps of consumers, large international companies are now becoming active participants in social media. The recent Burson-Marsteller study found that

  1. 79 percent of the largest 100 companies in the Fortune Global 500 index are using at least one of the most popular social media platforms: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or corporate blogs
  2. Twitter is the social media platform of choice among the Fortune Global 100
  3. 65 percent of the largest 100 international companies have active accounts on Twitter
  4. 54 percent have a Facebook fan page
  5. 50 percent have a YouTube channel
  6. One-third (33 percent) have corporate blogs.
  7. Only 20 percent of the major international companies are utilizing all four platforms to engage with stakeholders.
  8. Companies based in the United States and Europe are more likely to use Twitter or Facebook than they were to have corporate blogs
  9. Companies from Asia-Pacific were more likely to utilize corporate blogs than other forms of social media.
  10. Asian companies will use Twitter or Facebook to communicate with Western audiences (for example, Toshiba).
  11. Companies are getting more comfortable using social media as they are interacting and engaging more and not just broadcasting corporate messages
  12. Companies using Twitter are following an average of 731 people each
  13. 38 percent of companies are responding to people’s tweets (for example, Vodafone UK)Social Media Top Global Fortune 100
  14. Thirty-two percent have also “re-tweeted” or reposted user comments during the last week (like Verizon Careers).

To help companies navigate the social media landscape, Burson-Marsteller has developed anEvidence-Based Tool called the “Social Media Check-up” which looks at how a company’s social media presence is impacting their overall online health and reputation. To access the complete analysis of these findings click here for the PDF report.

See the Slideshare presentation here Social Media Top Global Fortune 100

www.jeffbullas.com: 10 Key Elements Of One Of The Top Facebook Marketing Campaigns Of The Year

via www.jeffbullas.com/2011/02/28/10-key-elements-of-one-of-the-top-facebook-marketing-campaigns-of-the-year/.

Online creative marketing  has been taken to new levels in the last 2 years with social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube providing new and intriguing digital channels to promote and market companies products.10 Key Elements Of One Of The Top Facebook Marketing Campaigns Of The Year

Facebook due its massive audience is being chosen more often as the social media platform of choice on which to base a marketing campaign.

Ford has been using social media creatively since 2009 with its breakthrough marketing campaign for the Ford Fiesta headed up by the passionate Global head of social media for Ford, Scott Montyand continues to lead the way in its innovative approach to digital and social media marketing. Their latest campaign has taken some risks with it being based almost exclusively on Facebook and replacing a traditional auto show product launch with a virtual digital car launch.

Ford Explorer 2011 Facebook Reveal Marketing Campaign

Ford decided not to release its new 2011 Ford Explorer at an auto show which has been done for the last 50 plus years but launched it on Facebook, which I believe is a world first. So instead of a real auto show Ford released its new model in a virtual online world. This focus on Facebook was all about spreading the brand by “World Of Mouth” instead of relying on traditional mass media marketing and traditional word of mouth. It took the lessons of its Ford Fiesta social media marketing campaign which I covered in an article “The 7 Secrets To Ford’s Social Media Marketing Success” and created a Facebook centric promotion that allowed a global audience to view the unveiling. The campaign combined the synergy of paid and earned media to produce a multiplier effect that could not have been provided by a traditional auto show launch.

Ford Facebook Reveal Marketing Campaign

The 10 Key Elements Of The Ford Explorer Facebook Virtual Auto Show Campaign

  1. It was run as an all day event with the goal to gather 30,000 Facebook fans for its page (It now has over 142,000)
  2. Goal was to reach 50 million people  using digital marketing
  3. The campaign was designed to synergize paid and earned digital media
  4. The marketing team at Ford made a number of strategic digital ad buys to drive people to the Facebook page on hundreds of websites including Facebook and Yahoo (the top two websites in digital display ads)
  5. It planned a series of videos and events to replicate an auto show experience but with more insights including interviews with executives including the CEO
  6. It placed  a “Reveal” tab on its Facebook page at just after midnight to kick off the all day Facebook “Auto-Show”
  7. 7 Hours later it released a video that displayed the Ford Explorer in Auto-show style
  8. This was followed by indepth detailed tours during the day with photo galleries, live Q&A on the Facebook wall and Facebook live chats
  9. Ford used Facebook’s Open Graph to implement “Like” buttons into the ads themselves. This means that Ford gathered “likes” from ad viewers
  10. The 2011 Ford Explorer  virtual auto show on Facebook was launched 6 months out from the actual product being available to buy

The Results

  • 75,000 Fans logged on the day of the virtual auto show
  • The #1 Twitter trend on the day
  • The #2 Google trend
  • Over 1 million views on YouTube
  • The Ford.com website had its second busiest traffic day
  • Ford Explorer wins the “North American Truck Of The Year”

These are the soft results with the hard results for the Ford Explorer yet to be realized in actual car sales (so watch this space). There is one thing for sure that a car company that spends twice as much as its  competitors on digital media, has led the way on use of social media since 2009 and has just announced  its best profit results in more than a decade ($6.6 billion profit for 2010), is doing something right.

how-effective-are-facebook-ads ? Jeff Bullas

via www.jeffbullas.com/2011/02/25/how-effective-are-facebook-ads/.

Another Great paper from Jeff Bullas:

Facebook ads are offering an alternative to other digital advertising and in 2010 the number of  display ads served up by Facebook  passed the 1 trillion for the first time in history passing Yahoo with 529 billion ads according to recent report by Comscore.

The question is though are they as effective as the industry benchmarks? According to a recent survey by Webtrends of 11,000 Facebook campaigns Ads on Facebook performed about half as well as traditional banner ads and are cost more in 2010 than they did in 2009 as competition increases.

Webtrends accessed a large database of Facebook campaign results including.

  • 4.5 billion impressions
  • 2.2 million clicks
  • 11,200 ads

So here are some stats to digest to assist you in calculating the benefits of Facebook advertising for your organisation in comparing them to your current digital and online marketing campaigns.

1. From 2009 to 2010 the average CTR dropped from 0.063% to 0.051%

2. Cost per click increased from 27 cents to 49 cents

How Effective Are Facebook Ads

3.  The older you are the more you click until you reach 65, with 55-64 year old women having the highest click through rate (CTR) at nearly 0.06%

4. Social Brands perform better because most people are on Facebook for fun so it makes logical sense that industries such as tabloids and blogs top the list for (CTR) at 0.165% followed by

  • Media and Entertainment (0.154%)
  • E-commerce (0.89%)
  • Travel (0.86%)
  • Automotive (o.82%)
  • Nonprofits (0.77%)
  • Start ups (0.74%)
  • Cosmetics (0.072%)
  • Retailer (0.70%)
  • Restaurants (0.66%)

5. Facebook rewards social brands with cheaper prices with the lowest rate being tabloids and blogs at 12 cents per click

6. Everyone clicks more if a friend likes an ad with the CTR nearly doubling if friends are targeted

How Effective Are Facebook Ads

7. Fans that didn’t attend college click on more ads with non college at 0.043% compared to college at 0.023%

8. Social ads have a short shelf life with interest targeted ads burning out after 3-5 days (successful search ads can be run for months without any changes)

So the takeaway from this is that despite the lower click-throughs for Facebook display ads, the power of the word of mouth through friends recommendations makes Facebook ads last longer and that reveals the leverage of social media.


via www.jeffbullas.com/2009/07/28/how-social-media-can-help-organic-seo-2-case-studies/.

I visited one of my clients today and it inspired me to write this post. Why, well since they rebuilt their website for ”Organic SEO”, implemented a blog and engaged with Social Media since January 2009, his Google search page has gone from a “page eight” ranking on search to “page one”, also their enquiries have increased by nearly 300%. What do they put it down to, well simply “Organic SEO” and its methodologies because he hasn’t changed anything else and as we know, the economy is not booming. So this raises the question, “What is Organic SEO?” this then prompts another question, “How do you implement it?”
Firstly lets look at “What is Organic SEO?”
Organic SEO—What Does It Really Mean? this post by Scott Buresh’s Post from Marketing Profs is the best explanation I have come across ( I couldn’t put it any better), below is an excerpt from his post.

“When people refer to “organic SEO” (search engine optimization), they almost always use it as a blanket term to describe the unpaid, algorithm-driven results of any particular engine. However, a sophisticated search engine optimization company will often take the meaning of “organic” one step further.

To such companies, the “Organic SEO” is essentially 2 Things (but not only). These are

1. What shows up in the “natural” search engine results

2. Methodologies used to achieve such rankings, such as great content and utilizing social media like Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Technorati, Reddit, Digg, Stumbleupon and other types of social media

A search engine optimization company usually falls into one of two camps.

  1. A “White Hat” search engine optimization company will use a largely content-based approach and will not violate the terms of service of the major search engines.
  2. A “Black Hat” search engine optimization company will use a largely technology driven approach and often ignore the terms of service.

Neither approach is invalid (by the way there is nothing illegal about violating a search engine’s terms of service), and both can achieve high rankings. But a search engine optimization company that takes the word “organic” literally believes that the “Black Hat” approach is anything but “organic SEO.”

Merriam Webster defines organic, in part, as “having the characteristics of an organism: developing in the manner of a living plant or animal.” To a search engine optimization company, this definition accurately describes the approach taken to achieve long-lasting results in the “natural” section of search engines

Below are just a few comparisons of the different approaches taken by the two types of SEO firms. For the sake of clarity, I refer to the two approaches as “Organic SEO” and “Artificial SEO.”

…. More: http://www.jeffbullas.com/2009/07/28/how-social-media-can-help-organic-seo-2-case-studies/