Social Media Works Regardless of Your Feeling On Buzz Words

On the AMA’s Special Interest Group (SIG) message board, marketing diva Toby Bloomberg wrote a post that caught my attention. Her remarks are aimed at a recent AdAge ezine that had a link to a report (free registration may be required) that talked about marketing executives’ reluctance to engage web2.0, social media, blogs because they were tired of the “buzz words”. She remarks:

Wait just a NYC minute. While Web 2.0 might indeed be classified as a “buzz word”, blogs and social networks have proven to be credible marketing initiatives.

However, as marketers well know, perception is reality so for the marketing executives who participated in this research, it appeared that social media has yet take its place in the marketing strategy tool box.

So what executives are saying is that while they think that there is much success with social media marketing, they don’t want to do it because they think it’s just “buzz”? It’s an interesting Catch-22 now, isn’t it? You’re basically telling your team to promote the company’s product without promoting it. No, it’s not some zen philosophy, but it is rather hypocritical. You acknowledge that the method is out there but you tie the hands of your marketing team because you’re scared of it.

It is alright to let go of your fear of the web. Traditional marketing and promotion no longer works. The community is used to responding back to your efforts and if you don’t use social media, you’re missing out. Stop ignoring what others are saying. “Web 2.0” has allowed people to engage in a dialogue and discuss what’s going on in the industry and help address the needs of all stakeholders and buyers.

Social media will work. It can…you just need to engage. Give it a try. No one is telling you to totally abandon what’s being done with your marketing. Throw social media into your arsenal and show the community that you understand how to reach them on their level. What? You don’t want to open up another portal that contains multiple touch points? Who wouldn’t want that?!?

Don’t fear social media. You won’t conquer your fears without learning about it. There are statistics that shows the power behind web 2.0 solutions:

Twitter:

  • Compete shows about 900,000 U.S. monthly website visitors in 2008
  • What’s most interesting is the rabid Twitter usage by active users – they send an average of 15 Twitter message per day.
  • Companies on Twitter: Comcast, Southwest Airlines, JetBlue, Dell, etc.
Source: http://socialmediastatistics.wikidot.com/facebook

Facebook:

  • More than 150 million active users
  • Average user has 100 friends on the site
  • he fastest growing demographic is those 25 years old and older
  • Able to create more of a business presence to capture attention of Facebook users.
Source: http://www.facebook.com/press/info.php?statistics

YouTube:

  • In July 2008, Google Sites once again ranked as the top U.S. video property with more than 5 billion videos viewed (representing a 44 percent share of the online video market), with YouTube.com accounting for more than 98 percent of all videos viewed at the property.
  • More than 142 million U.S. Internet users watched an average of 80 videos per viewer in July.
  • 51% of users go to YouTube weekly or more;
  • 52% of 18-34 year-olds share videos with friends / colleagues often
Source: http://socialmediastatistics.wikidot.com/youtube

Still don’t think that there’s a reason to jump onto those sites? More statistics and trends are available online on many different sites. Don’t be scared just because web 2.0 might be a “scary word”. The tools are there to help. Take advantage. Don’t be left behind because you’re afraid.

By Ken Yeung

Ken Yeung is a journalist fascinated with the stories of the tech industry and internet culture. He's currently the Technology Editor at Flipboard, where he observes what's happening in the space while also identifying new topics of interest. In addition, he co-hosts the weekly internet show "The Created Economy," which focuses on what's happening to creators and influencers. Previously, he was a reporter for VentureBeat and The Next Web, covering tech startups, the industry's innovations and funding. Ken also has a newsletter you should also subscribe to called "Filed."