Category Archives: Social Media Networking

Afrikaners is plesierig

So the song starts at least. Two of the things I encounter most often when dealing with social media are:

  1. We don’t want to open our brand to attack or negative comments. (Client / business perspective). Which is completely understandable, since the most common user perspective seems to be…
  2. I don’t want to waste time on Facebook or Twitter until I had a negative brand experience.  (Individual user perspective). At this point we often find socially inactive or dormant users awaken to blurt out their frustrations on a social platform.

How very odd. Apparently we don’t trust social sites enough to let them dramatically influence our purchasing patterns yet but we (as individuals) believe that we can negatively impact a brand by blurting out our frustrations in the social mix.

Very, very odd. Perhaps we aren’t so very “plesierig” after all.

So what to do now?

As a business:

  1. Stop the fear cycle. If they have something negative to say, they will do it regardless of whether you have a page or not. My thoughts are that if you have a centralised business page you at least have the capacity to influence the conversation and resulting perceptions. (You could of course follow trending topics and monitor how your brand is talked about but my guess is that if you are still debating the virtues of Facebook, this is might as well be written in Greek….)
  2. Swift, sharp, to the point. If you receive negative comments react as quickly as possible (within 2 hours). Don’t take it so personally – focus on getting to the root of the problem and advise on your findings and your intended corrective action. If the conversation is deliberately malicious, delete the post and take it offline. (You are after all the page admin!)
  3. Keep your house in order. Don’t make claims that are untrue, publish rude or offensive comments or advertise misleading promotions. If you don’t create obvious gaps in your integrity, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the lack of attack from Joe public.

As a person:

  1. Don’t be so quick to assume that your comment will sink a ship. Don’t underestimate the value of your opinion either. If you have a legitimate concern feel free to express yourself but take heed! Avoid enraged comments with flowery, emotive or offensive language. If you have it, say it and stick with it.
  2. If you really want to have influence, build your network. Having 50 Facebook friends doesn’t make you a social sheik. Sure 50 of your friends might consider never buying xxx milk again but so what? Grow your network (i.e. make more friends) if you want to have a real circle of influence.
  3. Try out the rest. Use the variety of social platforms as more than just a soap box. Look for friends. Pin a picture on Pinterest. Post a video on YouTube, or if that is too frightening at least comment on someone else’s, Tweet a comment on a worthwhile subject or share a (meaningful) thought on an interesting blog (The Spear lives On).

 

And while we are at it

let’s work on being more “plesierig”. Put equal amounts of zeal and effort in congratulating and complaining. Use your posts / tweets / comments or blurbs to commend businesses / brands on extraordinary customer service experiences. Changing a culture starts with you and me – its time to revolutionise the South African social media experience.

Diva, over and out!

Social Media Mixing (courtesy of http://www.bnettv.com/social-media-marketing/)


Socially in South Africa

10 days in the USA! It was amazing. The trip of a lifetime. A conference in Atlanta and my ENTIRE first day was filled with speakers talking about various social media angles. Having listened to them, working through my notes and just taking stock, here’s what I now know (perhaps I even knew it all along)….

My social media take-aways from the USA:

 

  1. South Africa is not the USA. Our consumers and social groups have not adopted social media communication to the level the international audience has. I do believe that we will get there, but at the moment our social media landscapes differ significantly. Here, I still start most social media conversations with the “why you should” sentence or the “benefits of”. There it is an assumed reality that you are connected socially on more than one platform. Delegates swapped social addresses like we would exchange business cards. Conference updates happened via Twitter and both delegates and organizers used the platform well without the fall back to more traditional communication methods. In other words – there was no FEAR…
  2. We aren’t ready to be the USA just yet. I felt completely exposed and laid bare with life happening in split-second bursts in the online world and it left me wondering whether it really is so bad to be patient while our country and culture readies itself for real global, social connectivity? I will be more focused on equipping our clients with appropriate communication skills than to rush them onto social media soapboxes (with nothing to say).
  3. We don’t have to pretend it’s our invention. Kudos belong (and should remain) with the North American’s, we don’t have to try and do it all over again. I was overwhelmed with the quality, quantity and type of social media interaction I experienced during my brief visit to the States. We should look at what works for them and then add our own Local is Lekker flavour. It’s OK to do what works… :)

 

And lastly, I was pleased to see that although all of the above is true, our (Adrinalin Concept) interpretation of sound social media practices stood with the rest. You can look forward to more from us on:

  1. Engaging with your audience in a meaningful way.
  2. Connecting with parents.
  3. To do and not do’s

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them here or on our Facebook wall!


Key Take-Aways about Facebook

Fear of Facebook

Engaging on Social Media platform (like Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn) is still a pretty daunting concept for South African SME’s if our day-to-day clients are anything to go by. The typical issues they grapple with are:

  1. Should I bother? (I believe we have conclusively answered this question.)
  2. If I do bother, what should I write about? (Again, we have posted on this previously.)
  3. Does it matter? Ahhh, now we we get to the fun stuff. Do we know that what you are doing is making a difference? Firstly, your Facebook page insights will be crucial in understanding the efficacy of your posting methodology. Secondly, your page interactions will also provide you with real-time feedback. I have said it before and I will say it again – every strategy MUST be different. This means that you can model your strategy on what others have successfully implemented but you must try your own hand at it.
  4. Who am I writing for? Putting a face to this concept has proven to help our clients significantly when it comes to maintaining an active social media strategy. And that is what I want to do today – share some insights about Facebook users with you.

Social Media Statistics & Facts

(Circulated from Social Media Examiner) Please note that this data focuses on the American Online community. takeaway’s are extrapolated from there.

What was found in this recent study on the habits of Social Media users, included some of the following interesting facts and take-aways:

  1. Online users still prefer to use Facebook over other networks like Blogger, Tumblr, Twitter and LinkedIn (listed in order of usage preference). Online users spent a total of 53, 457, 258 000 min’s on Facebook during the month of May 2011. Closest competitor was Blogger where users spent a total 723, 793 000 min’s online during the month. Take away – It IS worth the effort and time.
  2. More than half of Facebook users log in every day – that’s more than 400 million people.
  3. The average user has 130 friends and is connected to 80 pages, events and groups.
  4. There are 900 million objects that people interact with (pages, groups, etc…).
  5. Facebook hosts over 7 million apps, and over 20 million apps are downloaded each day.
  6. Around 75% of Facebook users are outside of North America with accounts available in 70 languages.
  7. The average user spends about 20min logged into his / her account

And here’s a humdinger:

  1. 51% Facebook fans are more likely to purchase the brands they follow!

Crucial take-away’s

  1. Be sure to integrate your social media efforts with your website and mail efforts (online and offline).
  2. Because many customers show a tendency to stay on social media sites, find ways to keep them engaged.
  3. The previous five statistics show the strong competition for eyeballs. A critical success factor for getting seen is consistency. There is a cumulative effect to your social efforts. The next stat highlights this.
  4. Don’t use the excuses of having a limited budget or a small fan base to prevent you from broadening and deepening your social efforts.
Start your business dialogue on Facebook

Start your business dialogue on Facebook

Conclusion

Stop the fear. Dip your toe into the social media pool – you are bound to find that your consumer engagements deepen, intensify and become more rewarding. If you are swimming in the online pool already, work towards maintaining consistency and visibility.

If you need help with your Social Media (Facebook) strategy – book your seat at our Facebook for 2012 (Straterific Workshop) on Friday 25 November 2011. For more information or to book e-mail junkies@adrinalinconcept.co.za


Google+ and the social tendencies of today

The biggest challenge we still face with Social Media (as South African SMME’s) is the fact that it is, well, so social. Clients and colleagues alike complain (time-and-time again) that their Social Media Networking strategies are too time consuming. I believe we need to cultivate a culture of focused activity. We need to find create a plan that will empower us to implement social networking activities without the risk of getting lost in the rabbit holes.

According to Mashable Google+ is now open and available to everyone. No invitation required! Yay? Well, not really. For us local folk, this adds just another online networking platform that needs to be maintained, managed and fed with current, relevant and up to date information. Even more time needed.

Let me be clear. This problem is not a Google creation – it is of our own design and making. We need to manage our time more effeciently if we hope to create sustainable online strategies. So the million-dollar (or rand in our case) question – can it be done?

Yes.

Here’s how:

  1. Plan ahead. If you know where you are going, you can (pre)-create some of your input and use an automated publishing tool (i.e. HootSuite) to make your life a whole lot easier! The added advantage of using an automated publishing tool, means that you hardly ever run the risk of getting caught up in the online intrigues of loves lost and found or the latest company gossip.
  2. Dedicated time. First thing in the morning or in the afternoons before you get ready to punch out, put time aside to interact with your online communities.
  3. Pick and stick. As tempting as it is to create a profile on every new social networking platform that springs up, it is impossible (and unnecessary) to maintain this level of engagement. Review the platforms that you are most interested in (this typically should be driven by where your preferred market congregates) and focus your energy here. Quality versus quantity as the saying goes.

So, despite having a blog, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube profile – will I create a Google+ account. Probably. But I have always been more curious than is good for me ;)

Diva, done and dusted!