Get Involved in the Conversation.
The one thing I learned in 2008 is that I needed to get up to speed with all things Web 2.0. That’s a hard thing to do considering it evolves every 10 seconds. So in 2008, I became active on Facebook and LinkedIn, created my own blog: http://www.midwestmediagirl.blogspot.com, set up RSS feeds of my favorite bloggers and even dabbled in Twitter.
As we start 2009, my recommendation to everyone in marketing is get involved. I know, I know, “I don’t have time,” or, “I can’t keep up with all the work I have to do already.”
Well, unfortunately, you have but two choices:
A) Keep evolving and become an expert in the field.
B) Become out-of-touch very quickly.
I recommend “A”. You can start with the simple things first. Create a Facebook page and use it. It will make you uncomfortable to be “out there” but you will quickly see how “active” conversations really are out here. It will also become apparent how advertisers are using it to sell their products or to promote events. There are very passionate consumers in the social media space — and with the right strategy, you can target them effectively. It can also be a great way to connect with people professionally and personally.
You can also start using RSS (Real Simple Syndication) feeds to monitor your favorite web sites. Did I mention I have a blog? Visit http://www.midwestmediagirl.blogspot.com and click on the “Subscribe to my blog!” button. Do this for all of your favorite sites. You will see, in one glance, the new articles available to you.
If you have a business, I will bet that there are conversations going on about you that you may not be aware of. You can monitor this dialogue in many ways. Visit http://search.twitter.com to see what consumers are saying. Google allows you to set up email alerts and blog search feeds for any topic. If your business or competition is mentioned in the Web 2.0 space you will be notified. It can be very eye opening to hear what people are saying about you — good and bad.
I know this sounds time consuming, but it is all marketers’ responsibility to be familiar with tools that your consumers are using on a daily basis. If you need to get inspired check out some of the great blogs on social media and web 2.0 when you have a chance.
So, find me on Facebook and be my friend. Just don’t send me any “flair,” please.