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Avoiding pitfalls of social media marketing — imagination and inflation-beating social media marketing

Avoiding Pitfalls of Social Media Marketing — Imagination and Inflation-beating Social Media Marketing

SMM or Social Media Marketing seeks to combine natural skills, expertise, and social media skills allowing us to take full advantage of the Social Web.

Marketing is what most of us do all day long, and Marketing in the beginning was simple word-of-mouth conversations that has brought together sellers and buyers for thousands of years. Experience is what reputations were built on. With the introduction of modern advertising, mass communications, and public relations, the individual conversations that drove the sales cycle were all but buried. As mass communication developed and grew, so did the control of the Marketer. Each tag-line, professionally created ad, and PowerPoint slide deck exerted control of the message into the hands of the Marketers.

Now the pendulum is swinging back: The fundamental value of the individual is once again part of the landscape, pushing control to the ad-hoc communities created online and collective conversations that are created with ease on the Internet. The social Web is bringing the voices of customers to the forefront. Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn have huge social communities. These along with Micro-blogging, on sites such as Twitter and Seesmic, together with photo and video sharing, are in essence shouting the customer messages. As a result, some Chief Marketing Officers now find themselves in a tough spot. Anything that comes into the path of the consumer can be restated, remixed, and published. Now markets, at all levels, are dealing with the changes and fragmentation of traditional channels with the addition of the prospect of having an outright takeover of the communication message by the customer. When they agree and boost your message, it is the wonderful, but if they do not, things look bad real fast.

Building on the individual freedom and empowerment that the Internet is known for, consumers are actively talking online with each other, to share stories and information about anything and everything from toys and tools to food and drink. As they do so, they are amplifying and reinforcing marketing efforts or beating marketers at their own game by simply sharing their experiences and thoughts with each other. Because customers seem to trust conversations between each other a lot more than advertising, markets are now finding their advertising message held up for verification on a routine basis and the agencies and public relations firms have little, if any, control over this. This is a game changer – for these industries who are used to being in control.

This series of training will show how to properly use the Social Web and allow marketers to gain the skills needed to effectively take advantage of the opportunities, by adopting the behaviors that power the Social Web, enabling them to build business and marketing plans. It’s about an odd paradox of gaining control while giving up control. You cannot control social conversations, however, you can become a respected member and valid resource of the social communities that matter most to you. This training will help you realize and put to business use the powerful connection that exists between participation and influence, and to embrace what is coming next. You will see solid examples and trends and get the encouragement needed to plan ahead.

This article is part of the ?Commanding The Social Web? article series, offered to the public, at no cost, and can be effortlessly found on the Internet. I know you will want to discover and understand the entire series, to seize the success that can be yours from your interaction with the online community. You will be choreographing your own success on the Social Web.

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