Sunday, April 17, 2011

Finding Your Way With the Social Marketing Compass

I am loving all of the diagrams in Engage! by Brian Solis.  As a visual person, I have been looking up some of the charts and diagrams online to get a better feel from them, and I am not disappointed by the results.  As with the Conversation Prism, the Social Marketing Compass is a helpful tool for current students to begin to comprehend and understand the importance and detail that goes into brand management through social media.  

This diagram would have been helpful last semester when I was working on a group project that involved creating and implementing the beginning steps of a PR plan revolving around social media for a local non-profit.  While my team understood what social media outlets might be best for the organization as well as basic ways that they could utilize these outlets, we by no means had an understanding that was this in-depth of the brand, their stakeholders, players, platform, channels, and sentiment.

As PR students, I don't think we were quite at that level of thinking yet, but as I go on in my classes, I am leaving them with a better understanding of the mindset it takes to create real and meaningful social media interactions and plans for a brand or organization.  The details and time it takes to do proper research can seem overwhelming, but with diagrams, advice, and guidance from books like Engage (and all of the visual aids that go with it!) PR students everywhere can learn what it really takes to succeed in new media.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Why you should use the Conversation Prism

For our class we're monitoring a brand or company for several weeks as an assignment.  As a member of the generation that demands to find out things instantly and believes procrastination is a way of life, I thought the assignment would be easy: Google said brand/company; search for them as a hashtag on twitter, and check out their Facebook page. There. Done. 

However, after reading through the chapter about listening and monitoring of Engage!, I was fascinated with the intricate detail of the conversation prism and how much more complicated brand monitoring can get.  The gives a liter step-by-step on how to listen to an audience over social media.  It'll be a very helpful chapter in about a week when I put my monitoring project together.  The halos of the prism show each level of engagement and listening, and include a how-to navigate the waters of each--it's the most helpful guide a brand persona manager could have. 

I think this model is creative, innovative, and best of all--actually helpful.  It's easy to understand, logical, and offers the reader tips and suggestions on how to engage/observe/monitor.  I was compelled to look at the blog and saw just how much research went into it as well as a look into how much it changes each time it is updated.  New media is an ever-changing world, and each update of the conversation prism takes away the irrelevant social media and inserts the up-and-coming tools.  This model can be applicable to any brand or any company.  It's a great thing to know how to do well, and this project will help our class be in a better position at our future jobs.  When you think about it, having a good handle on what the world is saying about your brand or company is almost like insider information.  Those who are top brand managers don't only know what the brand thinks the brand should be-- they also know what everyone else is thinks.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Online Personalities

Chapter 12 of Engage has been the chapter most relevant and helpful to me as I debate on how to handle my online personality.  As I have been applying to graduate school as well as making professional connections, I've been struggling to decide how I should come across online. My facebook has been around since I was in high school so there's lots of old stuff on there, and my twitter was originally started for personal purposes as well.  As I've learned more and more about social media and personal branding, it's been hard to decide if I should be strictly personal or strictly professional.  I think I'm beginning to suffer from Multiple Online Personality Disorder.

My twitter followers get quite an array of tweets, and I'm not sure that I am coming across very well after reading this chapter and really looking at my followers, who I'm following, and what I retweet.  For example, I retweet a lot about sports as well as interesting facts about New York as well as interesting social media and  PR topics. It's easy to see that I'm suffering from a little bit of multiple personality disorder.

A recent topic I've become interested in is student affairs/higher education, and those who are starting to follow me can look at my past tweets and see quickly that this is a recent interest.  However, I still would like to have my personal interests on twitter, so it's hard to figure out what I should do about this new online community I've become interested in.  Through the advice of Brian Solis, I think that I am going to manage this difference in interests by creating a new blog and twitter for me to engage with this student affairs community professionally.  This way, I can keep my personal twitter about sports, friends, and restaurants separate from the professional relationships that I'm hoping to build.  When I do this, I will definitely be looking back at the tips given in order to make sure I establish good brand pillars and characteristics as a student affairs graduate student.