Social Media – have you jumped on the bandwagon?!

Social media has been hitting the headlines increasingly in recent months, with Tweeting being a widespread hobby of the rich and famous to vent their frustration / anger / excitement / love / whatever else happens to pop into their heads. However, we have also recently seen the arrival of Google+ and amendments to the ever-changing face of Facebook leaves marketing professionals all over the world debating on the implications that social media has on online marketing and branding.

One noticeable change to Facebook in the past few weeks is that they have added the ‘Ticker’ bar to the right hand side of the page, just above the chat box. According to Mark Zuckerberg, this is a new way of providing ‘frictionless sharing’. But what does this mean? Well, put simply it means that whatever you are doing is automatically posted to the Ticker bar, and your friends can all see what you’re up to including now what websites you visit, what music you listen to and what you are saying to friends that they may not even know! Aside from the fact that this has its flaws, which are being discussed in detail on many online forums, including invasion of privacy (see here for an interesting write-up by the Washington Post), apathy towards what other people are up to and it just being annoying and intrusive it’s also clear to see the value this free publicity can offer marketers and advertisers as long as Facebook, in time, finds a way to up the relevance to its users, and therefore optimise conversion for brands.

We could dwell on many aspects of these recent debates, but we’d rather focus instead on how social media enables us to qualify and gather more appropriate leads and how we can tie this into the work we do at Magnetise.

We always make sure we understand and integrate the best channels for our clients and have therefore been looking into the integration of our services with Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus. Right now, Google Plus is still unproven regarding the platform it can provide marketing and advertising campaigns. It is an exciting time as the network is growing rapidly though and we’ll be keeping a watch on things as they evolve. In the meantime, we’ve assessed and started to integrate ‘like’, ‘tweet’ and ‘plus 1’ buttons to TopFox, our white label competitions platform, to enable increased viral propagation of our clients’ campaigns through consumers’ social network profiles. This will be extended so that people can sign up to, and sign in to, TopFox directly from their social network account, making it quicker and easier for them to enter competitions, and for our clients to collect invaluable prospect data.

We’re taking this careful approach to social media for a very good reason. We’ve found that many in our market rush into new channels in a ‘land grab’ manoeuvre, and while they may collect a good volume of leads, these are not converting into sales. And isn’t that why we’re here?!? We believe that quality is just as, if not more, important than quantity, and with all the noise out there about social media, it’s easy to lose sight of this central premise, something that was referenced eloquently in a recent article on Tech Crunch. Another interesting viewpoint is the danger of over-monetisation talked about by Sir Martin Sorrell in The Guardian article linked above. There is no doubt that social media’s potential pool is immense, yet without context and relevance you won’t hook many fishes!

With all this in mind, we have so far researched and identified the core aspects that drive our client's businesses forwards - including signing in with Facebook to reduce the steps a consumer needs to take, and 'liking' comps to drive viral propagation - and will roll in others as they become a true value-adds for our client base. We are already using these features with a Lead Intelligence campaign for ‘The Week’ magazine and on our competitions on Gumtree. Click the links to see these live, or see below.


What we at Magnetise would like to know is whether you have been collecting leads via social media, and if so, have they been as valuable as those gathered through other channels? Do let us know in the comments section...

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