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Archive for March, 2010


Yes, it’s happening. Brands and people and groups and everyone else is starting to flock to social media this year. Gone are the days where people were just intrigued about social media, we are now seeing more use of social media and it’s going mainstream. Now everyone wants to pitch you. And there lies the problem.

If you are a brand, the moment you start to pitch and sell, you’re toast. You might as well not even be on social media at all. People will tune you out.

So, for those brands that are savvy enough to understand this and more importantly, spend time to show their personality and allow their base to contribute to the discussion, or better yet, LEAD the discussion, we offer you these tips to stand out:

1. It’s not about YOU, it’s about THEM. This one is hard for many brands to understand, since they are so used to pushing things out. If you want to stand out, allow your base to participate 100%. Always. The good, the bad, and the ugly. And make sure you are responding.

2. Feed your base value and content that will keep you relevant, but don’t do it every 5 minutes. Find your focus, your purpose, and stick to it.

3. Be a moderator of the discussion. Use all the tools to track what people are saying about your brand, and make sure you are involved. Remember: a moderator doesn’t censor discussion, but allows it to occur.

4. Make your social media time a “job.” Most everyone associates social media with fun, but at some point, all brands need to understand that this is a job that allows you to create a more direct path to your base. Treat it as such, but you can have a little fun with it as well.

5. Once in a while, stir it up and stand out above the crowd. For example, here’s a crazy idea: dedicate one whole day of the week to just responding to everyone who connects with you instead of promoting what you are doing. Make a big deal out of it. Have fun with it, and who knows, you might get more interest and see your base grow.

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Sure, it has silly apps, stupid games (Pillow Fight can be deleted for all we care), annoying notifications, and for a while, we were getting inundated with invites and requests, but we are here to say that yes, Facebook is still the best social media site out there.

Let’s take the case of Fernando Varela, whose Facebook Fan Page is nearing 3,400 fans and is growing every day. It, in essence, is becoming Fernando’s social media hub.

And what we have seen over the last month from Fernando’s page is fascinating:

1. There are now more Spanish-speaking fans on his site than English-speaking fans.
2. The top country with the most Fans is Venezuela. The United States is #2. Then comes Colombia, Argentina, and Mexico.
3. The top three cities with the most Fans are Caracas, Bogotá, and Santiago.

And what does this mean? As Fernando’s fan base grows in Latin America, we are seeing more fan comments in Spanish as well as more fan comments in the stream. We are seeing comments from people who want to get Fernando to sing in their country. So we tell them to share his page with others and then his Fan Page grows and then we get more comments asking about when Fernando can get to sing and then his Fan Page grows, etc., etc.

So, basically, Facebook allows Fernando to instantly connect with a global audience. A few months ago, the Fan Page was mostly English-speaking and US-based. Within a few weeks this year, even though there is a strong US base on his page, there is now an even stronger base from Latin America. All of a sudden, interest increases and so do new markets.

Basically, Facebook is Fernando’s virtual fan club, and as this club grows, so will awareness of Fernando’s amazing talent. Pretty simple and pretty powerful, huh? All because of a web page called Facebook, which, by the way, is free to join.

Facebook still rules, of that there is no doubt.

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