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The Social-Media Revolution

(August 2013) posted on Tue Oct 01, 2013

Use Facebook and other platforms to target customers at a granular level.

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By Mark A. Coudray

What’s surprising is the year before, Independent Reviews were 74% and Peer Reviews were 88%. From the numbers it should be crystal clear the need to be connected to as many friends and fans as you can and communicating with them as often as possible. People buy from those they know, like, and trust.

A significant number of Likes will be a low-level form of social proof or endorsement that you’re bringing value to the table. The next level up are shares, where your friends and fans are actually sharing what you post. You can use the same strategy to get your posts shared as you did for Likes. The value of a share is greater because of the peer-to-peer effect.

I’ve used the Facebook example as a starting point. I also use LinkedIn, Twitter, and now Pinterest and Instagram in the same way. Because we’re in the graphic-communication business, we have all kinds of arresting, likeable, shareable imagery we can use.

Data metrics and analytics
The real, revolutionary, business changing, disruptive technology of social media lies in the underlying analytics. These are big data, also known as predictive modeling. You’ll recognize it if you’ve ever used Amazon, Netflix, or iTunes. Basically, it’s a way of showing you what others viewed or bought based on your own browsing and buying habits.

Everything that happens in social media—every post, comment, Like, share, and tag—is tracked. Everything in every profile is tracked. Log in and duration is track. Every search you make is tracked. Everything, related or nonrelated, is tracked. Furthermore, the next-generation database software behind all of this works differently from what was available in the past.

This software looks for patterns in the data. Nonrelated events can take place and resulting behavior is detected and revealed. If a restaurant chain were using one of these data engines, it could identify an increase in the sales of certain menu items based on time of day, weather, geo-location, or time of year. That’s a very simple example, but it’s totally relevant.

As it relates to social media, every advertiser (including you) has access to these data through their application programming interface (API). Now I know this sounds pretty geeky, but it really isn’t. Let me use Facebook again as an example to show you what you do with this.


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