CONNECTING WITH CONSUMERS

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Wednesday, June 1 2011

Introducing the Hot New Social Network, PhoneBook


I couldn't resist - this published verbatim from The Borowitz Report, 9 February 2010.  It's dated, but for some reason, it just seems more and more relevant.  As I continue to bump into people poking at that little rectangular box in their hands as I walk the streets of Paris, I can't help thinking that those people are in that little box and not in Paris at all.  Maybe's there's something to the PhoneBook concept afterall.  Or better yet, to quote from Trainspotting, 'choose life.'

By the way, if you like the PhoneBook installment, check out Borowitz's current posting on the US Republicans' plan to replace Social Security with Groupon.

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A new social network is about to alter the playing field of the social media world, and it’s called PhoneBook.

According to its creators, who invented the network in their dorm room at Berkeley, PhoneBook is the game-changer that will leave Facebook, Twitter and even the much anticipated Google Buzz in a cloud of dust.

“With PhoneBook, you have a book that has a list of all your friends in the city, plus everyone else who lives there,” says Danny Fruber, one of PhoneBook’s creators.

“When you want to chat with a friend, you look them up in PhoneBook, and find their unique PhoneBook number,” Fruber explains.  “Then you enter that number into your phone and it connects you directly to them.”

Another breakout utility of PhoneBook allows the user to arrange face-to-face meetings with his or her friends at restaurants, bars, and other “places,” as Fruber calls them.

“You will be sitting right across from your friend and seeing them in 3-D,” he said.  “It’s like Skype, only without the headset.”

PhoneBook will enable friends to play many games as well, such as charades, cards, and a game Fruber believes will be a breakout: Farm.

“In Farm, you have an actual farm where you raise real crops and livestock,” he says.  “It’s hard work, but it’s more fun than Mafia, where you actually get killed.”

Tuesday, August 17 2010

Use of Social Marketing Tactics

MarketingSherpa has just issued the results of their latest benchmark survey of the social marketing tactics most frequently used by organizations for marketing purposes. Based on an assessment of more than 2300 companies, the results are summarized in the chart below, which shows the average percentage of companies using each social platform for tactical purposes.  And the winner is . . . drum roll please . .. participating on company branded or managed social networks, like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn (78%).



Not surprisingly, organizations are increasingly making an effort to engage with customers across the channels through which those customers are communicating with each other.  All of these figures represent an evolution of the stats provided in Connecting With Consumers.  Of course, what the chart doesn't tell us is the extent to which managers are simply going through the motions of channeling part of their marketing budget into social media because it's what everyone else is doing and so they can say, 'and we are, too.'  But it's one thing to have an intern managing the company's YouTube and Twitter content, and quite another to have a team working from a coherent strategic framework, one oriented towards true engagement.  Sherpa's takeaway point clearly zones in on this point:

Keeping in mind that your strategy must outlast the revolving door of leading social media technologies, tactics should be social brand agnostic when creating your organization’s plan.  In other words, an enduring tactic would be to "build and participate in a network populated by our targeted audience," not "build and participate in a Facebook fan page."

And it would also be helpful to know the extent to which companies are monitoring and tracking the impact of their social media activity.  Maintaining a serious, expert social media team requires money, and as we all know, budgets are dependent upon results.

Note:  Speaking of MarketingSherpa, a great online resource for social (and other) marketing information . . . keep your eyes peeled to their site because it won't be long before you'll have a chance to win a free copy of Connecting With Consumers (check out their 'Book Giveaway' link in a couple weeks).