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Tag - YouTube

Latest Social Media Stats for Marketing

We’ve looked at some of the most recent studies on social media topics and trends and picked out our most surprising and revealing ones that all businesses should be aware of. Let us know if you find any other good ones.

The Essentials of Social Media Marketing

The devil is in the detail when it comes to social media marketing. A small mistake can become a big one and may risk you losing everything you have worked so hard for.
So how do successful business owners use social media to promote their business?
1.    Website link. Social media is a communication platform. It allows you to directly interact with your target clientele. So, you’ve got the Facebook and Twitter page, what do you do with it? Keeping it updated with the latest about the business would be great but forgetting to add the website link is like asking your clients to look for a needle in a haystack. Make it easy for them to find you with a website link at the end of every post.

2.    Targeting campaigns to a specific audience. Targeting and re-targeting are smart tools in content marketing. Doing so will help small businesses on Facebook and Twitter to keep track of specific leads that could be helpful to the business. Targeting content can turn potential customers to real paying ones in a snap.
3.    Exert effort on social media. How many social media pages do you have? If you think having all of them and being active in all is the secret to your success, you remain uneducated. Social media marketing is about keeping one or two social media pages and working hard on building readership and following in these areas. You can expect higher engagement at relatively affordable costs.
4.    Email marketing rules. Email marketing may seem like old hat for this generation of digital natives but its ability to form one-on-one connections with clients still keeps it in the top spot in your social networks. The likelihood of your emails being read is high IF the subject line is compelling and the content relevant and engaging. When read, the chances of email content being shared in Facebook or Twitter is very high too, which of course is good for business.
5.    YouTube is still an online strategy. Don’t underestimate YouTube because the suggested videos on its sidebars are as good as the ads that you pay for in websites. Make your own videos today and start sharing them on YouTube. Be the expert that you are. Share videos that show your expert how-to’s which potential consumers might find too interesting to share or better yet, they might be entertained by it. Winning their heart is always the best way to go.
6.  Content marketing always lends itself to small-scale or large-scale business owners. It’s the one strategy that any kind of business can use. Like all of those I have mentioned, this digital strategy thrives in originality and details.
 
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A Star is Tweeting…I Mean Born

What’s not to love about Robbie Williams? He can sing, dance and transfix a crowd with his charisma and the feeling that he’s “one of us”. I witnessed this first hand last month in Singapore at his outdoor concert.

Just before he came on at 10.30pm the rain started pelting down and didn’t stop for his whole performance. Instead of sheltering under cover with the rest of his band he came out and was saturated within minutes as he put on a magical show. It made for an unforgettable experience.
So too is the birth of your child. But when it’s Robbie Williams’ child, it’s SHOWTIME!
Thanks to some nifty live tweeting the whole world joined Robbie as his wife Ayda Field went through labour and gave birth to their second child. Words, videos and pictures caught every stage of the process.
You can say that he has one INCREDIBLY understanding wife; and you’d be right. But given the number of retweets, favourites and news stories you could also ask why we need to voraciously devour every detail of celebrities’ lives. It’s as if their music, movies and books etc. are no longer enough. This pressure seems to compel some celebrities to allow access into parts of their lives that for most of us are incredibly private.
All of this begs a very human question though: if the performance never ends and the lights never go down, what happens to that person when we inevitably lose interest?

 
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Images Courtesy:  www.straitstimes.com, Youtube.com

Time to Get (Digitally) Active!

Australian small business owners, we need to talk.
About what you may ask? Well, it’s a little awkward but there’s something I really need to tell you.
You need to be active online.
Don’t be mad. I know you have a million things to do. I know you think this internet thing is all too hard. And you probably know lots of people like you that who also think this online marketing is a waste of time.
Which makes them and, hate to say it, you wrong, deluded, misguided and completely out of touch. And that’s being nice.
The most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that only 41.6% to 44.4% of SMEs have an online presence. That compares to 97% of large companies.
If you were smart – which you have to be to run a successful small business – you’d see this as an opportunity rather than a problem. On average, most of your competitors are missing out on building their brand, engaging with current and potential customers and positioning themselves as thought leaders.
And the good thing is that it doesn’t cost a fortune to get involved. In fact, with a little imagination and effort you can be online in no time.
So why am I going on about this? Your business has survived so far, what’s the rush? I always like to answer that by suggesting that you look at your own online behaviour. See how many of these sound ‘familiar’ to you: research restaurants, possible illnesses, movies, potential partners, latest celebrity news, check your bank balance, pay your bills and get a new employee.
Heck, it would be easier to list what we don’t do online than to list everything we do.
So isn’t it time to commission a new website, or to start regularly emailing your customers, or create a Facebook page? How about starting a blog and writing regular posts. And while you’re at it you’re only a few taps away on your smartphone from recording videos to post on YouTube. All of which will in all likelihood find itself to the internet’s big bopper.
Google is used by Australians 6 million times every day to search for goods, services and information. According to a Fleishman-Hillard study 89% of consumers search for information online before making a purchase. I’d wager that a fair few of your current or potential customers make up those numbers.
So I guess the final question is “WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR????”
Being active online is simple but it’s not easy. It takes consistent work, dedication and focus. But think of the competitive advantage! And hard work? Pffftt, you’re not scared of hard work, right! For your sake you have to be in it. Run to your nearest computer or smartphone and start!
Now.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Images Courtesy: www.unziptheweb.com, www.digitalbusiness.gov.au

I Post Therefore I Am

I didn’t post on Facebook today. I didn’t upload a photo to Instagram or a video to YouTube. Today, I didn’t exist.
That’s what it seems like for those of us who ‘must’ regularly post, tweet, upload, like or comment. One of our 20 something client service staff had her mobile phone stolen and was without it for three weeks. It was purgatory for her – and for us. Being off the social grid is like being off life support.
In the old days people kept diaries. Every night they confided their deepest and most personal dreams, fears and aspirations to a book meant only for themselves. It was part confessional, part friend. There was never any judgement or comments from others. Your diary was sacrosanct; it was for you and no-one else.
How quaint. How boring.
Now if what we do and feel is not there for the world to see and judge, we’re somehow diminished. There’s only one thing that’s worse: if one of our posts gets no likes or comments.
It’s ridiculous isn’t it. Call it an addiction to social validation or to our mobile phones; either way, it has to have an impact on how we interact with the world.

Try walking down a busy street and see how often you’re almost bowled over by someone walking the other way engrossed in their mobile phone. As for the impact on car accidents, the numbers – according to a US National Safety Council study – are terrifying with 1 in 4 accidents caused by ‘cell phone distraction’.
Is there a solution? I can’t think of one. As technology permeates every corner of our lives and increases our slavish consumption of social media, our values are changing. We seem to care less about what we personally see, touch or smell and more about what we read, watch or listen to.
The sad twist in the tail is that so much of what is posted and consumed on social media is trivial beyond belief. Photos of daily cups of coffee, pets, inspirational quotes, selfies at the beach, child standing/walking/swimming etc. This is the content that’s so vital eye contact can’t be established or the road watched.
If this is a younger generational thing, what will the next generation cling to? Or given that everyone under 35 seems so obsessed with their digital world, perhaps there won’t be another generation.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Image Courtesy: twoinklingsintheshire.blogspot.com.au, prezi.com, broku.ca

The Art of the Hoax

If you hang around the Internet, as people tend to do these days, it would take a big effort to miss the “First Kiss” video. Teary eyed friends have shared it, calling it the most beautiful thing they ever saw. It’s so spontaneous, so awkward, so heart-warming; and so very much an ad.
Not long ago it was revealed that all the 20 men and women in the video were in fact paid actors, musicians and models. It takes away the spontaneity, erases that somewhat sweet awkwardness and sees the warmth slowly fading away. What’s left are the cold, hard facts and a liberal dose of reality. Sure, it was an actual first kiss for the people involved, but one planned out in detail in an attempt to go viral. No fun!

Anyway, this wouldn’t be the first time that love has been used for viral marketing purposes. Some may remember the Cinderella story including the Australian girl Heidi and her mysterious “man in the jacket”. They met at a cafe and really enjoyed each other’s company. Unfortunately he was in a rush and accidently left his jacket behind. Disaster! What’s a girl to do? Well, she posts a video on YouTube, asking the man owning the jacket to get in touch. That’s sweet, isn’t it? But as it turns out, there wasn’t really a prince charming to begin with, only a jacket from a menswear line from a big Australian retail company.

All’s fair in love and war… and advertising, or is it? We want to believe that those kisses were real and that Heidi was in fact looking for the man of her dreams, because those things DO happen, right? When confronted, “Heidi” (her real name is Lilly) wouldn’t admit that the video was a hoax, had us clinging on to the hope that romance isn’t just created by the media. When she eventually came clean, it didn’t even matter anymore. The video had already gotten a lot of attention, mission accomplished.
Viral marketing – cheap trick or effective strategy? How much attention would the “First Kiss” or the “Man in the Jacket” videos get if they were, without a doubt, ads? The secrecy is part of the marketing; the discussion around the authenticity of the videos is what gives viral marketing some of its power. It doesn’t matter what you think about this way of promoting a product. “First Kiss” got all kinds of attention from social media, in the press and now you read about it in this post, proving that it does in fact work. Viral marketing may however result in a society where we are reluctant to trust anything at all, which just might be a way of killing online marketing in the long run.
There are however examples of where this kind of authenticity stunt is just pure fun, not to say genius. Otherwise it’s best to be honest, as deceiving your customers just might backfire on you.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Image & video courtesy: independent.co.uk, Youtube; Tatia Pllieva, H3idi8

What’s in a Social Media Policy?

Almost everything you post online is open for public viewing. This should come as no surprise but you wouldn’t believe how often a lack of common sense is the culprit in social media mishaps. Yes, there are numerous examples we could provide: People posting (what many of us would call inappropriately) silly videos of themselves on YouTube or tweets that were meant to be funny but took to Mama Mia’s leading story within minutes. Then there’s the occasional picture meant for a partner that in some way managed to reach the entire Instagram public. What people do in their free time is their business, but what if they are doing it whilst representing your business? The obvious solution is to ban social media, but as it turns out, it’s also a very bad idea (unless you’re going for a reign of terror, and employees will just find a way anyway).
What you need is a social media policy.
Ah, yes, one of those policy thingies. If it’s well put together, it could save you a lot of embarrassment whilst getting your brand out of harm’s way. But this goes beyond risk management; there are clear benefits in allowing, and encouraging, your employees to update their social media accounts at work (in moderation of course). As experts on most things related to your business they are ideal brand advocates, and all come with their own networks of potential customers.  Your employees are your extra marketing team, customer service team and in house support team. Allow them the opportunity to communicate amongst themselves and with the rest of the world and they will help your business grow. They do however need guidelines.
A social media policy should do two things; provide guidelines to the employees, preventing them from causing or getting into trouble and inform them of the disciplinary actions that will be taken if they do. You could of course Google another company’s policy and use that as a template, but the document will be that much more effective if it’s customised to your particular field with your employee’s particular positions in mind. Ask yourself these three questions;

        What’s the worst that could happen if employees are allowed access to social media?
        How does my social media policy prevent this worst case scenario?
        How would it have employees respond to it if it happened?

Be clear and concise in your policy. “Be professional in what you say on your social media profile” is a good start, however when not put into context this alone leaves a little too much for self interpretation (note, don’t be too precise either, or you’ll risk drowning the message in definitions). It should all be based on common sense; the policy should be a supportive document, not a hindrance. It won’t do you or your company any good if it diminishes social media efficiency.
So, what can be found in a valuable social media policy?

        A paragraph on who the document applies to – are freelancers and employees working from home included?
        Guidelines on what employees shouldn’t do online (what information to disclose, what not to share, what sites not to visit etc);
        Guidelines on what employees CAN do (encourage creative behaviour that indirectly hints at your amazing corporate culture);
        Information on disciplinary measures;
        An educating section on online behaviour, just in case;

The positive effect your employees’ online presence can have on your business is too good to pass up. Make sure to educate employees in the potential dangers of online activity and about sharing information too generously. Present them with so called “Cosmic Law”, coined by Jay Shepherd; always assume that the one you least want to see your post will in fact see it. With this in mind let your people get out there and endorse your brand to help it grow.
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Image courtesy: thesocialworkplace.com, socialnewsdaily.com

General Pants + Tinder = Strategic Partnership

If marketing was easy, then every business would be a success (theoretically speaking). Of course it isn’t easy and businesses spend hours upon hours developing marketing strategies to clearly communicate what they actually want to say. Content creation, budgets and social media updates can be time consuming and if you’re unlucky (or get it wrong), sadly unsuccessful. But what if you could be offered a well deserved break? What if someone else could help you lift that heavy load of online marketing? Enter a strategic partnership in the form of a fashion retailer combined with a digital dating app (which go together like a horse and carriage don’t you think?)
General Pants hooked up with the flirting app Tinder around Valentine’s Day this year, offering users the opportunity to send a push mobile notification inviting other users to “get in my pants”. Tinder users could show their profile in a General Pants store to get 20% off their next purchase. Everybody wins – users get a Tinder experience plus 20% off pants, all at a lower cost than the usual marketing campaign.
Tinder has been busy getting it on with other brands in the form of strategic partnerships. The app helped promote the TV-show ‘Suits’ as well as ‘The Mindy Project’. Characters in the shows would discuss Tinder while Tinder would display the same characters within the app. This is perhaps as subtle as eating a giant Mars bar on live television, but at least in the case of ‘The Mindy Project’, the Tinder appearances kind of make sense as the show has a romantic focus.
It would be impossible to write a post about strategic partnership without mentioning the almost legendary alliances involving Ron Burgundy, the scotch loving main character in the Anchorman movies, played by Will Ferrell. The most famous was Burgundy’s promotion of the Dodge Durango via 70 YouTube videos, or perhaps we should say “promotion”, as Ron (or Will Ferrel as himself for that matter) wouldn’t always speak well of the car at all. It was a huge success (apparently sales went up 59%) that cost Dodge close to nothing, as the movie makers payed for the videos in order to promote Anchorman 2. A less well known partnership hosted by the man with the mustache included a limited edition Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. The flavour? Well… scotchy scotch scotch of course!
Strategic partnerships are a smart form of marketing – as long as they provide customers with sufficient value and grow the businesses at a low cost for all parties involved. A bit of logic does help, don’t put a giraffe on a skateboard unless it makes sense in some way. Consumers are becoming more skeptical when they see brands working together and collaboration without some kind of common ground will only create uneasiness (which a clever enough marketing team could no doubt use to its advantage). Don’t overdo it – people eventually get tired of Ron Burgundy and those Tinder related dialogues becoming a little too obvious at some point. We’re talking collaboration, not necessarily a merger, so don’t rely too heavily on others to pull your brand.
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Image courtesy: pixelworld.deviantart.com, examiner.com, nolandalla.com, abine.com

YouTube, a Pirated Movie Haven

Ever had that moment when you’re trying to remember a particular part of a movie or a lyric in a song, and you leave it up to the Internet gods to help you find it? Google may be your best bet in refreshing your memory, but for those who prefer a bit more visual, you’d have to agree that YouTube is your best friend.
 
With millions of videos uploaded on the site, it’s almost impossible to keep all videos at bay before upload completion. Even with all its security systems and copyright regulations, a good percentage of the videos uploaded on the site still infringe most copyright laws. Interestingly, these videos don’t only defy copyrighted songs, music videos and personal clips, they go beyond that…way, way, way beyond that.
The online platform, known to most as a video haven, can also be seen as a sanctuary for pirated movies. Hundreds, if not thousands, of full length movies are available to stream on YouTube for the entire world to see. The big question, however, is why Google (who owns YouTube) allows this illegal process to succeed when it has always been a strong supporter of anti-piracy acts? Let’s take a closer look at what the site has to say.
What is Copyright?
According to YouTube, a copyright is automatically attributed to the person who created or originally owns the work. For a work to be eligible for copyright protection, it must be creative and in a tangible medium. This means that TV shows, music videos, musicals, songs and movies are held under this clause.
Why isn’t YouTube Putting Pirated Movies Down?
YouTube says they do not have the capacity to determine copyright ownership. The site, however, offers a Content ID feature which allows content owners to submit their content to the site’s database which will be used to scan all videos uploaded on the site. If the feature identifies a match, it will apply corresponding policies that will be chosen by the owner.
Notably though, the social media site stresses that it does not have the power to mediate between copyright ownership disputes. It can only take down or block a video if the owner sends a notice to the website.
Having said this, could it be that YouTube’s more lenient regulations on copyright infringement is a part of its online strategy to keep users glued to the service? A way to push customer retention by allowing them to post any video and let content owners do the dirty work? Seems like, although it’s hard to say.

Conclusion
YouTube seems to be washing its hands off this tricky issue. As much as it wants to keep its relationship with its partners on top, it also has to serve the needs of its target market—that is the video-uploading population. Actually, it is worth noting that YouTube’s move to reconcile both the market and its partners’ (content owners like labels, production houses and networks) welfare is commendable. It was able to optimise what they have to benefit the content owners, the video up-loaders and YouTube itself.
 
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Video/Image Courtesy: Youtube.com

Stars That Made a Career from YouTube

YouTube has become one of the most powerful social media sites in the world. In just a little less than eight years since its official launch in 2005, It already reaches more US adults (ages 18-34) than any cable network. It has millions of subscribers, and the numbers double each year. The site is also available to hundreds of millions of mobile devices.
 
While YouTube may be the perfect online platform for your digital marketing strategy, aside from pushing brands into greater heights, it has also been proven to catapult people into stardom. Several of the biggest names in the entertainment industry were once just another face on the YouTube screen.
Here are several of the stars that made it big through the video sharing site:
Justin Bieber
Who doesn’t know Justin Bieber? You may hate him, you may love him, but you definitely know him. The Biebs shot into fame after American talent manager Scooter Braun saw his videos on YouTube, and as they say, the rest is history.
Bieber has been singing since he was a kid. At the age of 12, he entered a local singing competition in Stratford, Canada, where he sang Ne-Yo’s “So Sick.” His mum, Pattie Mallette, uploaded the video on YouTube for their family and friends to see. She continued to post videos of Justin singing, and continually it gained more and more hits.
Since being discovered on the video sharing website, Bieber has released four studio albums; has won a multitude of awards, including a Billboard Music Awards Milestone Award and two Grammy Award nominations; has toured the world over; and has gained millions and millions and millions of fans (he has the most followers on Twitter with 42.7 million).
His story shows perfectly how to use social media marketing.
Sophia Grace and Rosie
These two youngsters made TV look cute (and annoying) again. Discovered by Ellen DeGeneres on YouTube, after Sophia’s mom posted a video of the two giving their cutest rendition of Nicki Minaj’s “Super Bass” in a tutu, Sophia Grace and Rosie have become instant superstars. Aside from a recurring segment on “The Ellen Show” called “Tea Time with Sophia Grace and Rosie,” the two have been correspondents for awards shows like the Grammys, MTV VMA and the Billboard Music Awards. Sophia Grace recently released a music video, and is reported to star in the movie “Into the Woods.”
The Annoying Orange
The web series started in 2009 and quickly became a hit online. Using YouTube as its communication platform, creator Dane Beodigheimer initially wanted to make just one video. But after viewers asked for more videos, he decided to make it a full length web series. The Annoying Orange now has more than 200 episodes on YouTube, while also having a TV series, a video game, toys and a clothing line.
The Annoying Orange is the perfect example of how to optimize YouTube not only for fame, but also for profit.
 
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