Archive for May, 2009

With all the talk of social marketing in the news today and utilizing it as a tool to market your business in a unique way, I got to thinking “when did it all begin?” Did this just appear in the last few years or has it morphed from traditional marketing?

Marketing experts agree that social marketing first emerged in the healthcare field in the 70’s. It was first used to communicate health issues related to contraception, heart disease, drug abuse and organ donation. According to Nedra Weinreich of Weinriech Communications:

Social marketing was “born” as a discipline in the 1970s, when Philip Kotler and Gerald Zaltman realized that the same marketing principles that were being used to sell products to consumers could be used to “sell” ideas, attitudes and behaviors. Kotler and Andreasen define social marketing as “differing from other areas of marketing only with respect to the objectives of the marketer and his or her organization. Social marketing seeks to influence social behaviors not to benefit the marketer, but to benefit the target audience and the general society.” Like commercial marketing, the primary focus is on the consumer–on learning what people want and need rather than trying to persuade them to buy what we happen to be producing. Marketing talks to the consumer, not about the product.

Why is social marketing so appealing to businesses and to consumers? Because, as everyone knows, we are much more likely to do business with someone we know and trust. Social marketing addresses that issue and allows both to develop those relationships that benefit not only the business, but ultimately the consumer. Instead of dehumanizing the business relationship, it brings back personalization and reminds me of the old “mom and pop” business model we loved in the 50’s and 60’s.

Click here to read the entire article: What is Social Marketing?

Do you use social marketing in your business? What have you found to be the most difficult to learn: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube? What is your favorite social marketing tool?


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Today I realized, after posting all my links to blogs and websites, that I’m everywhere. Literally. Keeping up with the massive amount of presence online has begun to overwhelm even this multi-tasker. Since I’m a mom, and a small business owner, and a wife I know all about multi-tasking. If my kids were still at home I have no idea how I would find the time to keep up with it all. I admire so many cybermoms that are indeed “Power Moms” in my book; juggling their online presence with their real life presence and their business presence. It’s truly remarkable.

I had a conversation one night with a Twitter mom about outsourcing. That’s got to be the key. Delegate those tasks that you do everyday that take you away from your passion to someone else. But, here’s the clincher. In today’s economy, you have to balance the outsourcing with your bank account. For many small businesses, who are trying to build their business capital, outsourcing ends up turning into “do-it-yourself”. It’s not a very good use of your time, but sometimes it’s a necessary evil.

But, all is not lost. I had this MARVELOUS brainstorm yesterday about offering an internship to a college student over the summer. And, while many internships are unpaid, the students would be gaining valuable business experience and building their resume in the process. I know that my daughter worked at several “unpaid” internships in college. But, those internships provided her with experience when she graduated and added a great deal to her viability as a hands-on marketing professional.

If you know of a college student that might me interested PLEASE pass this link along. I need someone who is familiar with Twitter, Facebook and WordPress. They can contact me via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or email here. Plus, the great thing about the internship…you don’t have to BE in my office. It can all be done in cyberspace. At the end of the summer you’ll have a great resume boost and if it works out for both of us, perhaps a job at graduation!

See you in cyberspace!

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galtime logo

Since I’ve been talking about women in business, I thought I’d take this opportunity to mention two talented businesswomen, Charlene Bert and Susan Krivelow. They are veteran broadcast journalists with twenty years of experience in the video business, having worked in major market television newsrooms as well as national news syndication on-air and online. They have partnered together to bring us a “different type of site–for women, by women”, GalTime. They are gathering a network of leading experts in various fields and also women online to bring us information that women need on health, money, career, beauty/fashion, social networking, cooking and all kinds of do-it-yourself topics. Since I’m a DIYer myself, I am excited to hear they are adding the DIY topics as a valuable component.

The great news about this site is that it’s bringing together so many women from all walks of life to become a part of this huge network. And these two ladies are breaking down walls by partnering with women in so many different areas of expertise. Here’s a clip from their “temporary” site:

We believe the GalTime.com community itself has a lot to offer. You’ll get your chance to chat, share your ideas and weigh in on the topics of the day. It’s an empowering community, both for visitors/members and contributors. There’s no better time for women to help each other out!

We’ll be announcing our partners and how to become a member soon …so STAY TUNED…Giveaways? OF COURSE!

You can find them on Twitter (@galtime). Follow their tweets and keep abreast of the latest announcements re: the site launch and partners. As a “power mom” myself I am extremely excited about this new online meeting place and avenue for much needed information.

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I just read an article on Marketing Vox about the “Power Moms” online. According to the article:

Power Moms – women between the ages of 25 and 54 with at least one child and who participate regularly in online activities – represent 19.2% of the active internet population in the US, wielding a record level of online influence that continues to grow, according to (pdf) a report from Nielsen Online.

The article goes on to elaborate and talks about the TOP 50 Power Moms:

The list segments Power Mom bloggers into the following categories, based upon their blog content and content initiatives:

  • Queen Bees: Mom bloggers who anchor their writing around parenting, nesting, décor, and food.
  • Savvy Spenders: Mom bloggers who share money saving tips, coupons, freebies and other deals.
  • Mom Approved: Mom bloggers who trial, sample and review product (often brand-sponsored).
  • Mamastes: Mom bloggers who stretch beyond their spheres to explore going green, travel and spirituality.
  • Tech Moms: Mom bloggers who are also PDA-toting, digital enthusiasts that love to stay connected.
  • CEO Moms: Mom bloggers who juggle work and mommyhood.

It’s been my experience over the last few months that the world wide web is jampacked with some amazing Moms. These women are charting their own course in today’s new marketplace online and are establishing a presence that busts up the “old men network” of the past. My congratulations to all “Power Moms” out there who are blazing the trails for the daughters of the next generation!

What about you? Have you noticed the influence of women online? Have you seen the overwhelming presence of Moms on Twitter and Facebook?

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Today I’d like to toot someone’s horn. This woman is amazing. Why do I say that? Because she gets “it”. She gets what Twitter is all about. She gets the value of Facebook. And most importantly, she understands the overall big picture of social marketing. Her name is Donna Kozik.

Donna runs a business called My Big Business Card. She helps small businesses use a book to establish credibility. She provides this by promoting her “Write a Book in a Weekend” event in which she coaches via phone and the internet and provides the tools to actually write that book that will be your “business card”.

The most important lesson I have learned from Donna is this: make connections, provide information and establish relationships with potential customers. She has given away her expertise free of charge via Twitter, emails, teleconference calls, webinars and even Facebook posts. I’ve learned so much from her and I haven’t plopped down one cent. It’s not that I don’t want to, but right now I have other priorities (a daughter getting married). But as soon as I can manage it (and the more she gives, the more I want to make it happen), I’ll be signing up for her weekend event and utilizing her expertise to write my book.

Here’s the bottom line. Donna gives freely and shares what she has learned knowing full well that she might not get anything back in return. And by doing that, she underscores the beauty of the new business model: share what you know and people will want to do business with you.

If you build it, they will come (Field of Dreams)

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One of my Facebook and Twitter friends (@mickswampole) posted a link to a great blog about social networking. It was written by a pastor, applying Biblical admonitions. And while many of you might not adhere to Biblical principles, he made some very valid points that should apply to ALL of us as we communicate:

THINK before Communicating
Is it True?
Is it Helpful
Is it Inspiring
Is it Necessary
Is it Kind

This goes along with the business principles of social networking: contribute valuable content and engage your readers and followers. If you ask yourself these 5 questions as you communicate, it might change your content and increase your followers. And increased followers can mean profitable business connections.

If you are so inclined, here is the original blog link.

What do you think? Are these valid questions to ask yourself? Are there some others that you might add to the list?

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I was speaking on the phone today with @galtime and @juliegoodale (that’s how you know you’re addicted to Twitter–you use Twitter names) about GALTIME and the  new website launch. In the course of the conversation, the topic of Twitter came up (since that’s where we all met) and how addicting it can become. My husband is constantly belittling my Twitter fascination and my Twitter friends. In his defense, he simply does not understand the benefits. Besides, we all know we can’t go a day without a good rationalization and mine today is: Twitter is good for business, therefore it’s a positive addiction. Moving on…

I forsee in the future counselor specific articles helping people cure addictions to social marketing. It’s easy to fall into the trap of living on the computer 24/7, so much so it affects your personal life and your work life. I just read an article by @paulwilson about tweets that can get you fired–comical with an underlying warning of truth. I can envision people who are so attached to their Facebook page that they rarely venture out of their home. The reality is that social websites can replace real-life relationships if you’re not careful. But, on the other hand they can foster real-life relationships if used properly.

Here’s how I look at it. In any area of our lives, we need to maintain a balance. Addictions are possible when you cross that line from balance to obsession. But I guarantee you that there will be social marketing addicts abounding in the near future. I’m just not one of them (as I’m heading back to Twitter to tweet about this article).

What about you? Have social websites replaced your real-life relationships? Are you trapped online by your “addiction”? Or do you have it all under control?

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