Insights and Impressions - What are your social media analytics telling you?

Posted by Clayton Smith on July 18, 2011

You’re brilliant. You know you’re brilliant. You have a fantastic new Facebook marketing campaign for your product, and it’s the most brilliant thing you’ve ever come up with. It just shines with brilliance. So you launch the campaign, and you wait for the rampant success that should always come with this high level of brilliance.

But how will you know if the public thinks it’s brilliant? How will you know if your campaign really is destined to become that rampant success? Ideally, of course, you should see an increase in sales. After all, what is your hard work for if not to increase your company’s bottom line? But it can take time for your marketing message to translate into a customer purchase, and before that money starts flowing, it’s helpful to know how many people are actually seeing your message. Enter Facebook impressions.

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Topics: analytics, Business, facebook, gremlin, gremln, klout, linkedin, Marketing, media, ROI, social, social media, twitter

Social Media 101: The Tweetup

Posted by Clayton Smith on July 13, 2011

Gremln's “Social Media 101” is a series for social media beginners where we discuss the basics of social media marketing. Today, we define the tweetup.

A tweetup is a social gathering of Twitter users that is organized mainly or exclusively through the social network. The name is a mash-up of “tweet” and “meetup,” or “meet-up.” Tweetups usually focus on a common cause or theme. For this reason, tweetups often serve as networking events whereby attendees meet new people with similar interests.

A tweetup isn’t always restricted to a gathering of Twitter users. Although this was initially the case, over time the word “tweetup” has become ubiquitous across all social media platforms. Today’s tweetups are often composed of people who learned about the event through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, email, etc.

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Topics: Business, gremlin, gremln, ROI, social media, tweetup, twitter, twitter business, twitter marketing

The Missing Link -- Can LinkedIn be a viable social media marketing tool?

Posted by Clayton Smith on July 5, 2011

LinkedIn. It’s the king of digital business-to-business connections. Unlike other popular social networks, like Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn is more about networking than socializing. It tends to be seen as a networking tool for the businessman rather than the everyman. Does this white-collar stigma leave any room for business owners to use LinkedIn to connect with potential customers?

Marketing vs. CRM
From a business standpoint, it’s easy to think of Facebook and Twitter as marketing tools. That’s because as a consumer, all I need to receive Nike’s marketing message is an internet connection, a Facebook account, and the ability to click “Like.” That’s it.

But LinkedIn isn’t so easy. Sure, I can follow Nike on LinkedIn, but that basically sends me links to their blogs, tweets, and other non-LinkedIn information that I’ve already found on my own anyway. If I want to use LinkedIn to its full potential, as a peer-to-peer communications tool to really connect with the company, I need to know someone on the inside. I need to be a colleague of, or have done business with, or have gone to school with, or be a friend of, or have the email address of a Nike employee.

But I don’t know anyone at Nike.  I’m just a potential customer interested in their products.

This poses a bit of a puzzle for Nike (and every company on LinkedIn). How are they going to market to me if I can’t connect directly with them? LinkedIn is booming in popularity, thanks in part to its recent IPO, and it currently boasts more than 100 million users. That’s a large pool of potential for any company that can successfully tap into it. But doing so means finding a way to break the connection barrier.

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Topics: Business, crm, facebook, gremlin, gremln, linkedin, Marketing, ROI, social media, social media marketing, twitter

Get Crowded - Using social media to crowdsource your marketing

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 29, 2011

It was bound to happen. I mean, all the conditions were right. The economy fell like a sack of flour, forcing everyone to start doing a lot more with a lot less. We were suddenly faced with a large and talented unemployment pool. Meanwhile, social media took off like a rocket. Given these conditions, it’s no wonder crowdsourcing really exploded.

Crowdsourcing is a relatively new take on an old idea. The word “crowdsource” is a combination of the words “crowd” and “outsource.” Outsourcing has been around forever—the IT and sales industries are infamous for putting inexpensive call centers halfway around the world. Crowdsourcing is the same concept, except instead of hiring a specialized company to do the work in question, companies open up the job to the public at large. Anyone looking for a little extra work can take a shot at the project.

Leverage the power of the public

A good example of this is LG’s 2010 “Design the Future” competition. Using the popular crowdsourcing platform crowdSPRING, LG offered cash prizes (up to $20,000) to the person who submitted the best design for what the phone of the future might look like.

But wait. Doesn’t a company like LG have a Research and Development department for things like that? Sure, probably. But crowdsourcing is cheaper, and it allowed the company to tap into entirely new resources by way of Joe Public.

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Topics: Business, crowdsource, facebook, gremlin, linkedin, Marketing, media, network, ROI, social, twitter

The Daily Deal - Are coupon sites a help or hindrance for social media marketers?

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 24, 2011

In the interest of proving that we’re genuinely interested in providing social media education even if it doesn’t involve Gremln, I thought I’d spend some time addressing something that has absolutely swarmed the social media space over the last couple of years, the phenomenon of The Daily Deal. Led with considerable force by Groupon, the daily deal business model is now being used by literally hundreds of companies, including LivingSocial, Google, The New York Times, and Amazon. And why not? It’s a relatively cheap model to implement, the deal sites’ profit margins are high, and consumers love it. But is the daily discount a boon or a bane for your business?

We all know the basic idea behind daily deal sites: A company leverages a deal site’s popularity and reach to offer a coupon for a huge discount on its products or services for one day, and the deal site takes a percentage of the revenue made on the purchase of that coupon.

The group discount wagon may be ripe for the jumping, if it works with your business model. In an endeavor to help you decide if The Daily Deal is right for you, here are some pros and cons to consider:

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Topics: Business, business, discount, gremlin, gremln, Groupon, Marketing, ROI, social media

Is Myspace the Space for You?

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 20, 2011

Ah, Myspace. That plucky social network that just keeps hanging on. After its heyday in the twilight years of the last decade, Myspace faced severe user loss as a certain competitor site captained by one Mark Zuckerberg quickly rose to social media dominance. However, though the network may be down, it’s not out. Plenty of signs of life can be detected, and so the question is, is Myspace right for your business?

As with so many things in life, it depends. It depends on quite a few things, actually. But before you can figure out if Myspace is the online space for you, you should get caught up to speed on the once-popular, now-tepid social network.

Those of you who haven’t paid any attention to the program since early college days may sense a grammatical error in the spelling of the name “Myspace,” but it’s no mistake. As part of a semi-recent rebranding, MySpace is now Myspace. Actually, the full rebranding has the network promoting itself as “My_____” but it’s hard to know how to pronounce “______.” For media purposes, the company accepts “Myspace.”

This rebranding is one of the many changes implemented by Myspace’s current owner, News Corporation. You may recognize the name; News Corp. owns the entire FOX network and a plethora of other journalistic endeavors. To be specific, Myspace is owned by a division of News Corporation called News Corp. Digital Media, the imprint that controls such brands as Hulu and IGN Entertainment. But now, Myspace is back up on the selling block. When a company that owns a legion of struggling newspapers decides that you are the commodity that’s become too much dead weight, you have a serious balance sheet problem.

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Topics: education, facebook, gremlin, gremln, Marketing, myspace, ROI, social media, Social Media Updates

Social Media - The Cost of Free

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 16, 2011

Okay, this may not exactly be news, but you know what? Social media is great. Social programs are easy to access, profiles are simple to set up, and these digital darlings can be used for social communication, professional networking, marketing, searching, news, popular culture studies…the list goes on and on.  The benefits of using social media are impressive, to say the least.  And hey. Did you know that they’re free? No kidding. For the grand total of zero dollars, every company in America can have its own Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Myspace, Xanga, and Flickr accounts. Marketing directors should be jumping in the streets.

Right?

Well, no, not exactly. Despite the low (read: nonexistent) financial cost of entry, social media do come with cost baggage, and as we all know, nothing is ever truly free. Unless you have the best internship program in the world, you’re likely to expend quite a few resources when it comes to social media strategizing, content production and editing, strategy execution, impact analysis, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Social media may be free, but they aren’t publishing themselves.

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Topics: Business, business, gremlin, gremln, money, ROI, social media

New Content Manager: Clayton Smith

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 13, 2011
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Topics: gremlin, gremln, Gremln News, Marketing, network, social media

It's New. It's Green. It's Gremln.

Posted by Clayton Smith on June 6, 2011

Once upon a time, there was a tool called Twaitter. It was a good tool, strong and well-loved, but over the course of time, Twaitter evolved into an even better, and stronger, and (hopefully) more well-loved tool called Gremln. And while we’re not quite ready to unveil the complete Gremln tool suite just yet—though believe me, your patience will be very well rewarded—we are extremely happy to announce the new Gremln Blog.

See, for those of you have have been using Twaitter to schedule and manage your tweets, you’ve already seen a small glimpse of what Gremln will have to offer. And if you’re brand new to Gremln, welcome aboard! We have quite a few social media tools and tricks up our digital sleeves, and I’m pretty sure you’ll love what Gremln has to offer.

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Topics: facebook, google+, google plus, gremlin, gremln, Gremln News, linkedin, Marketing, media, social, social media, software, strategy, twitter

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