Does New Social Media really Work?
It used to be just for fun, just to keep in touch with old friends, just to expand the network, just to upload picture and the like. It used to be just a stress-reliever, a way to get rid of all the drama in life. But since man is brilliant, social media began to function in ways nobody 50 years ago ever even dreamt of. But the question is, why did NSM click in the first place?
Fun and Easy to Use
You do not need to be a genius in order to use New Social Media. You just need to have the basic skills in computers and the internet and you’re good to go. New Social Media is relatively young which is why nobody can really be called an expert. Everyone is still going through the process of exploration.
Now, let me give examples of new social media and give you my insights regarding each.
Video Blog (Vlog)
We are so used to blogging, the one where we keep a written journal of our thoughts. Blogging has basically conquered the online world. With the rise of the improved version of the blog, the Vlog or video blog, more and more NSM users especially those who are not really born bloggers, or writers can now have a new avenue to relay their thoughts through videos. And personally, I think that this is more effective in terms of viewer response. People are visual. And the good thing about vlogs is that it contains movement and a story, things that are very marketable to the online world.
Sorry, but I think podcasts are not that effective in terms of communicating with the audience. It looks to easy to do because it’s basically just audio but come the final product, you do not get the feedback you thought you could receive. It turns out to be boring once you listen to it, very different from the energy you have when doing it.
Social Networking Sites
Friendster, Facebook, LinkedIn, Multiply, Twitter, Plurk are a few of the SNS widely used in the Philippines. Each has its own uniqueness which is why they practically become a necessity already. With the decline of Friendster came Facebook. Why has Facebook suddenly emerged on top? Probably because of the features it contains. You can practically do anything from uploading pictures, connecting with people, playing games, blog and all. One site where you can do anything is very practical I know. LinkedIn, on the other hand is the SNS for the professionals. You can upload your online resume for people to see, you might even get “pirated” by other companies. Multiply is I think still the online photo album. Twitter is widely used for sending short but meaningful messages while Plurk is the public conference room or a public thread where topics are posted and anyone can reply.
NSM is I think a very brilliant invention of man. It has made lives easier and more exciting. I cannot even begin to imagine what the online world would be five to ten years from now.
Aren’t you just damn sick and tired of hearing companies say how good they are, their strengths, achievements and the like? Of course, companies will always provide marketable information to the public. It is always the good side and the edge of one company over another. Sometimes, let’s just admit that companies are so full of themselves most of the time, wrong move, definitely a wrong one. People get easily turned off. Even in real relationships, people are usually like this, what more in a company-consumer relationship.
The Way to Go
It’s time to stop being so in love with your company. You do not need to overemphasize your edge. Just know what you are good at and deliver your work properly. Stop with the in your face attitude. Think of your target market for once. Let them know that it is not just your company that you are always concerned of. Show that somehow you care about your customers and you want to be of help to them in ways that are not really that related to the workings of your company.
Let’s not go too far in citing examples on goodwill. Everyone had been badly affected by the consecutive storms that hit Manila. And most companies, thank God for the companies, old and new, big and small who participated in the relief operations of the victims. Contributions in cash and in kind were of big help to those who were affected. And this time, these companies were not just after the free advertising of how good they are but focused more on what they can give the people and how they can help. Probably free advertising in some way, but the fact that they gave so much to the people, says a lot about their company.
Sometimes, it’s not always about just giving material possessions. Sometimes the mere act of going the extra mile like coming up with websites and creating online accounts to relay information regarding the relief operations for the victims. And I commend such companies for spending time and effort just to show that they are concerned with the people.
It is a life lesson that we care for our neighbors and not just the well-being of our own personal selves. We must take time to fulfill our social responsibilities in any way that we can.
After being postponed twice due to Typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng, the University of the Philippines Manila’s BA Organizational Communication finally celebrated its silver anniversary at the College of St. Benilde Hotel last October 9, 2009. Thanks to Twitter and Facebook, everyone were updated regarding the necessary changes and announcements related to the homecoming.
The event which showcased the 25 years of excellence, and brilliance gave the tribute to the pioneer of the course in the country, Ms. Angela Sarile, as well as Ms. Teresita Vacquer, who has dedicated years of service in training the OrCom students. Testimonials from students coming from different batches, including students turned professors touched the hearts of the two mentors, faculty, alumni and current OrCom students. Grades are just a number indeed, what really sticks to people are the experiences that left a mark in their life. The students might have forgotten all the lessons in OrCom but the life-related ones become imprints in everybody’s life.
As goodwill to the Filipinos hit by Typhoon Ondoy and Pepeng, a donation booth was set up at the registration table of the event. Donations in cash and in kind were both accepted and given to the relief operations of the two typhoons.
I would like to congratulate OrComSoc especially the seniors for making this event a success. OrCom life will never be complete unless you invest blood, sweat, and tears to things you love doing. May the legacy we leave behind make a mark on the lives we have touched. Cheers to OrCom love! 🙂
1 comment October 27, 2009
Among the New Social Media discussed in class, I personally felt as if it was Podcasting that was the most complicated to do/use. At first, it seemed so simple and easy to do. But come the final product, I really did not know what to look for and how to judge the podcasts in class. So, in this entry, I decided to come up with tips on how to make podcasts a success.
I came across this site, www.podcastloot.com and in it are5 simple tips on podcasting. I would like to share to you my own interpretation of the tips. 🙂
1) Plan it.
The thing about podcasts is that it can sound like a normal voice recorded in an audio recorder. In any endeavor, it is best if everything is planned from the topic to the podcast feel to the audience to the uniqueness of the podcast and to its market value. You may have the perfect and most interesting topic, but you failed to package it well, then it is still useless.
2) Be Original
It is a good feeling to join the bandwagon. You think you are in, you feel you can be easily accepted, you feel you belong. Yes, you may think that you will never go wrong in trends. But remember that podcasting caters to a particular target market. Make sure that whatever topic you have is something that the listeners might not have listened to yet. And in any instance that it is a very common topic, make sure that you have your own style in presenting the topic. Be original. Highlight your strengths and use them to your advantage.
3) Be Time Efficient
We all know how short the attention spans of people are especially in the online world. Make sure that you talk about the main topic of your podcast right away. Just have a little introduction and go directly to your point. This way you have already discussed the gist of your topic even before your audience leaves your page. Use your time wisely and do not spend it on unnecessary information.
4) Be Timeless
As much as possible, choose a topic that can be useful many years from today. This would be one of the factors to help you achieve success in your podcast.
5) Be Articulate
The hard thing about audio podcasts is that all your audience relies on is the voice of the podcast. People are very visual. People want movement. And with just a voice to pay attention to, the things that matter are the words to be used and how such words, phrases, or sentences have been packaged. Know your target audience and make a podcast that fits their interest and likings.
These tips seem so easy to follow. But remember, new social media is about collaboration, it is about conversations. Make sure the NSMs you use can trigger an open communication with you and your stakeholders.
People hate rules for some reason. Is it human nature? Well, rules exist to guide us, to better ourselves. That’s just how it is. Like any other new trend, there are rules to follow when it comes to achieving success in the use of NSM. Our professor laid out three important ones.
1) NSM is about enabling conversation with and among stakeholders.
Remember my post about the lovers (consumer and advertiser) arguing about their relationship being one way that was why it was a disaster? Well, NSM is definitely an answer to such problems. It will be very costly for companies to market a product but not getting the expected results just because they failed to have a dialogue with their stakeholders. Companies do not have anything to lose if they participate in the bandwagon. Anyway, they do not really need to worry so much on expenses because NSM is low cost and low maintenance. Anybody can create a profile and start a conversation. You just really have to know what you want to squeeze out of your stakeholders.
2) You cannot control conversation, don’t even try, but INFLUENCE
Control has its own connotation. People hate being controlled and manipulated. That’s why we are humans; we have the capacity to think on our own. We do not need anyone to make the decisions for us, or even to think for us. Conversations exist in NSM. For example, in Facebook, your friends can write a comment on your wall. In Twitter, anyone can Tweet about anything regarding your product or service. You can provide the venue but you can never really control what your audience wants to say. But don’t get all paranoid, providing the venue for conversation and having the power to start one or create a conversation thread gives you the power to influence your stakeholders through your statuses/messages/tweets, to persuade them into buying your products and services. When someone posts a bad comment about it, don’t get angry. Instead, reply in the most respectful way. It is just like ethics. Never control, just influence.
3) Influence is the bedrock of economically viable relationships.
The action part is the most important step in businesses. To ensure survival of companies, stakeholders must support their products and services. And how can the money keep on coming in? Well, with influence coming from the company of course. If you cannot persuade your stakeholders to try your products and services, then prepare to fail 😦
New Social Media is a strategy in itself. One just needs to plan every step. Each company is unique, with different goals to achieve. Know what you want and do something about it 🙂 You may hate rules but eventually I’m sure you will learn to love them.
Through Yahoo Messenger, I talked to my friend who owns a relatively young events organizing company. It was just one of those random conversations that started out with hi’s and hello’s. And through the course of the conversation, her company became the topic. She knew about the assignments in class because I interviewed her for one of the class requirements. “Buti pa kayo may ganyan sa UP, at least may background kayo sa trends ng businesses,” she said. And I agreed with her. Since her company is really quite young, less than six months old, she is still getting the hang of managing her business. She was still at the experimental stage, trying new strategies and waiting for results. If it works, then she continues to do it, if it fails, she thinks of another way to work with things. Sadly, she had to leave before I even had the time to give her advice. So, Kaye, this one’s for you.
If you want your website to be effective, take into consideration these Pillars of New Social Media Strategy:
Yes, very basic as you may think. Communication is an essential thing. But it should not be a one-way thing. Communication can only be effective when there is a dialogue between the customer and the company and in your case, a dialogue with your prospective clients. Keep in mind your key message and communicate this with your stakeholders. Always remember: Creating conversation is the start, but building good, stable and strong relationships are more important. Listen with the ear of your heart, focus. That’s the way to go!
You use new social media to communicate with your stakeholders like your prospective clients. However, all you have are pictures of events, and blogs to relay information on the package. Provide a venue where your stakeholders can share their opinions or ideas for the benefit of your company. Treat them as co-creators of your company. Anyway, you exist because of them so might as well include them in the workings of your companies.
It’s your company so you better know your edge. It is not just about what you are currently offering the market. It’s about leveraging your strengths and using them to your advantage.
We have to admit it. People have short attentions spans, especially those online, too many distractions and hundreds of sites to pay attention to. So, its best that you add a little color to the sites, something that is apt for your target market. In this case, since you own an events company, don’t just stick to pictures, maybe it’s better to upload video clips of the events you have handled so as to give your prospective clients an idea of how you work and the like. This is a strategy so stick to relevant entertainment, relevant creativity.
Just follow these pillars of New Social Media strategy, and you are one step closer to achieving more success. Good Luck!
Do not be apathetic. Stop pretending to care when you obviously do not. Oh yes, you probably have that new idea, that new product, that new event. And you definitely want to take all the credit for it. You think it’s the way to go but believe it is not just about the right product, or the right idea. You have to go beyond that. You have to think about the people you are interacting with, you have to give weight to their ideas, and opinions.
There is a huge difference between pinpointing who your target market is and taking your target market into consideration to the point of thinking how the target market thinks and what the target audience wants. Companies should put themselves in the shoes of their consumers in order to attain success.
The Whole Point of New Social Media
Yes, we know that NSM is beginning to take over the world, companies, and the like. They exist not just for displays or to add coolness into the image of companies. They exist for a deeper and more important reason. The whole point of NSM is collaboration of information, coming up with a two way communication with the stakeholders of companies, knowing what the market really wants. Come to think of it, why do most companies venture out into using Facebook and Twitter? It is for the simple reason that these platforms have the capacity to receive fast, and accurate feedback from people. Consumers can just log-in into to the internet, create a profile and voila they can interact with companies, air out their opinions regarding products and services.
For the First Time, Abuse Isn’t Such a Bad Thing
I used to have this motto, “You can do anything you want as long as you do it in moderation.” Yes, probably works for things such as eating, shopping, drinking, partying, and a whole lot more. But when it comes to using New Social Media in interacting with stakeholders, I do believe that companies are allowed to abuse the absorption of information from their stakeholders. The existence of companies relies so much on a good relationship with their stakeholders. And such a relationship can only be lengthened if both parties are happy and satisfied through two things: 1) the company listening to their stakeholders; and 2) the stakeholders giving honest information, and feedback regarding a company’s product and services.
The way to go is for companies to squeeze all the information that they can from their stakeholders and use it to their advantage. Not only will the company prosper but also the stakeholders would be happy and satisfied.
Near-death experience of many
Never thought Metro Manila would become a beach. Never thought the sidewalks of Padre Faura and Pedro Gil would disappear. Never thought that Starbucks Bayview Hotel would close because water was entering the place already. Never thought Metro Manila would temporarily be erased from the map. Got stranded for the very first time in my life. My heart broke upon seeing the news on the night of September 26. The typhoon hit too many people, rich and poor, young and old, celebrity and the ordinary leaving them nothing bu themselves. No food, no shelter, no anything. Upon seeing them, I realized, how will help reach them? How will the world know their situation? Freaking Globe was not working that night according to a lot of people. Telecommunication systems were down, so what do you do, what will they do?
NSM is the new Bestfriend
Thanks to the various websites such as Twitter and Facebook, news spread so fast. If before, people relied on TV news or the radio to get new information but now, the online world seems to be on the top of the list if you want to get fresh news updates.
Funny that GMA7 has a Twitter account making it easier for the public to know news regarding Relief Operations. Facebook was used as an avenue to spread relief operation schedules so that people would be aware and join. Come Sunday night and my Facebook account was flooded with posts regarding news on the typhoon, status on the victims, relief operations schedules and the like. Even celebrities from Hollywood heard the news through Facebook and even offered to donate just to help the Filipino people. See how fast the news spread because of the use of New Social Media? (WTG! :p)
People have joined the bandwagon already. New Social Media is like a virus spreading in the world. People are smart, and they will use their brains especially in the direst of situations. In tragedies like this one, time is very important. You can’t be slow.
You need to think fast, and act fast, and we cannot deny that New Social Media is indeed, FAST 🙂
If I walk down my trail of imagination, and visualize what the internet world would be like if they were made up of just sounds, probably I would already be deaf. Imagine all those pieces of information having sounds on its own, oh geez, that would be suicide. And the practical thing to do is to actually work with the sounds and participate in the sound-making process because then you feel that you belong. However, practicality is not always the way to go.
Being smart, and acting smart are the keys to a noisy environment. Take for example, the HBO series True Blood. The female protagonist played by Anna Paquin is a mortal who can hear the minds of everyone, just like Edward in the Twilight Series. Instead of shouting their hearts out just so they would not hear all the thoughts of others, they learned to filter and listen only to those information they think are relevant. Brilliant, just brilliant.
The talk on Viral Marketing by Yehey Philippines, Mr. Paolo Pangan, focused on viral marketing. And the title of this blog, “Don’t shout, LISTEN!“, is I think the most important statement he mentioned and worth talking about.
I would compare the listening scenario to a teenager wanting to experience the beauty of life. Let’s face it, some parents are really overprotective, afraid to let go of their kids. Just normal. But sometimes, reprimanding through shouting never really works. The more you shout at your kids, the more rebellious they become. Just like in marketing, if companies shout, the more hard it will be for them to convince their market to buy their products.
The way to go is to listen, communicate in such a way that the audience understands and wants. Then they feel as if they matter, and feel the sincerity of the company. And then, they buy the product.
Take for example the Facebook site of Dove (http://www.facebook.com/topic.phpuid=21435141328&topic=3516) and Starbucks (http://www.facebook.com/Starbucks=app_2373072738&ref=search) wherein they come up with certain discussion topics where their market can actually reply to.The audience would feel as if they belong, and such companies can listen to the sentiments of their audience and use the information in their marketing needs. Engagement, collaboration, all these are present in the sites.
People are not stupid. People will know if they are being played. Companies must always take this into consideration.
Viral marketing is indeed a new thing in the corporate world. Viruses can reach millions in a short time. Definitely a fast and reliable method, indeed.
Think real. Act real. LISTEN. Then at the end of the day, you will achieve success. 🙂
Have you ever imagined living alone, when all you have is yourself, your own opinions, and nobody to run to? Well, that will probably be your life withoutcollaboration. Personally, i enjoy the notion of collaboration. Most days, it feels great to find comfort in others, or in the context of new social media, it feels great to share information with others. Then you realize that you are heard and people actually communicate with you. And you feel as if you belong to something or more so, a family.
Wikipedia, and the other wiki sites are examples of the collaboration of information. And like these sites, companies can also use this like an electronic bulletin board where employees can combine, edit, and relay their thoughts.
Quite scary right? The wiki site may be too much of an open book which in turn may create chaos in the organization. However, there is a wiki etiquette that people should follow:
1) Be bold– create content or edit someone else’s work. the whole point of wikis is collaboration. With collaboration, feel free to manipulate what is provided as long as it can be proven right. Remember, what is right will always be right and what is wrong will always be wrong. Give useful information but correct errors if there are any.
2) Make notes– Respect is very important in anything. Correcting mistakes means someone has made that mistake. Like I said, mistakes should be corrected. However, out of respect, after correcting any statement or information, make sure to explain why it is a mistake. You can’t just edit something without explaining because that would be totally rude and uncalled for.
3) Be polite– the problem with written material is that it can be interpreted in different ways, good or bad. The way to go is to make sure that it is written in the most polite tone possible.
4) Don’t take it personally– the nature of collaboration is really about sharing information, probably getting praised or corrected if a mistake is seen. But that is just the way that it is. The goal is to provide useful information that would benefit the organization.
5) Don’t delete useful content– content is the battery of the wiki page. If there is no content, then the wiki page dies.
Who said, collaboration was scary? Who said it could ruin relationships? Yes, it is a dog-eat-dog world out there, but hey, people still need a little help, sometimes 🙂 Agree?