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31/03/2010 by

7 Solid Social Media Marketing Trends

We, at ViralBlog, are into social media. We not only hear, read and talk about what is going on, what works and what doesn’t; we also practise it professionally. And we notice that there is a need for marketers to know what us social media geeks are all about.

So, if you are a marketer (or if you happen to know one and want to help him/her) continue reading on these seven social media trends for brands.

1. The Audience Is In Control
Now don’t let this one scare you, more and more marketers understand that ‘in social’ there always is this ‘social’ factor. Together people create content about brands, and in many occasions the brands have no idea. Look for what’s already out there and embrace it, like Jeep does once again.

2. Social Media Is Not Free Publicity
‘If you pay peanuts you get monkeys’. That really applies to social media. Big trend we see for the coming years is brands that hire specialized social media content managers; people that not only create a Facebook page and wait and see where it goes (we can tell you now: nowhere), but also actively create news around the brand, make (and keep) it interesting to follow a brand and answer questions.

3. Social Gaming
Do those FarmVille messages in Facebook annoy you? Over 23 million people are fan of this social Facebook game. Simple games that can be played with friend within your fan’s favourite social network. For now people buy sheep and chickens, but soon they buy your product to step up their game.

4. ROI Measurement
Measuring the effect of your on-line activities on (off-line) sales becomes increasingly important. Obviously you, the marketer, see the possibilities of social media marketing and together with your social media agency you have great ideas. Now all you need is approval and money. And as you know you only get that when you can prove the return is bigger than the investment. So measuring and tracking plays a big part in social media marketing.

5. Integrating, Mixing & Sharing
Many brands ask visitors of their (campaign) websites to become a fan on Facebook and/or follow the brand on Twitter. Surely that is great, and you should definitely not stop doing it, but now start looking at integrating these platforms in your brand dotcom. Have video content on your dotcom? Embed it from YouTube. If you ask visitors to participate on your campaign site let them spread the word to their friends on Facebook!

6. Mobile & Location Based Content
Many companies block social networks because the IT guys think they are evil. At the same more and more people have a smartphone, leading to heavy use of social networks on mobile. The integration of social networks with the functionalities of smartphones make great location based social applications, like Foursquare, and make it easy for brand to connect (with) people and places.

7. Social Commerce
Now that more and more brands understand their target audience has a grouped presence on social networks moving (or adding) a shop in social networks is a logical step to take. Look at EasyJet who are planning to sell flights directly on Facebook, and Dell who are embracing group buys by starting its Swarm service.

Constantly evolving and discovering social media leads to new ways of engaging people in marketing strategies – more and more ‘trends’ will be visible. What trends and opportunities do you see in the near (or far) future?


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Niels Bellaar
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