Two good and three bad stories in Social Media
Social Media is the biggest thing in the world at the moment. You can hardly look anywhere in the press without being reminded of Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, etc. Well, of course you won’t fail to be reminded about blogs, I mean, you’re reading one after all. Lots of recent stories of failure (and deceitful success) has made me think that maybe it’s time I wrote a bit about it (again). When I started this I started looking at some of things I’d written that I could link to up here (I like doing that), but there appeared to be hundreds of them. So I’ll limit it to my top three: The advantages of Social bookmarking; Social Bookmarking is all about brand; and Social bookmarking is about networking. Technically speaking all of these are about social bookmarking but really social media is the same thing – you want your brand to be out there, you want it to be known as the best and you want other people to do it for you.
Success Stories and what they did well
Firstly lets look at a couple of success stories from different sides of the spectrum and things that they do well:
Omniture Care. Quite possibly these are my favourite because I use them so frequently. Who are they? They are a bunch of guys over at Omniture who decided that they should start using Twitter as an addition to their online support. Because, you know, sometimes it’s a pain having an online chat service at your fingertips who seem to know most things.
Why does it work so well? The Omniture hashtag on Twitter is a great thing. It is almost like a little community of people who help each other. One person asks a question and it isn’t just Omniture Care who now respond, it is the whole community of users. The more the people respond, the more people get involved. It’s the ultimate system of getting a load of people with strange Omniture implementations to help each other for no personal benefit whatsoever. I try and help out where I can, but frequently I am amazed by the knowledge of this small community.
Barack Obama. Obama has over 4.5m followers on Twitter. Almost 12m people have ‘liked’ him on facebook. In a way, this is all of little consequence, because the real work was put in during the election. How did it work so well? ReadWriteWeb will tell you all about the work he put in during the election to get all that traction, but the real key was the people he went for.
Yep, in a nice stubby little paragraph at the end, the reason that it worked so well for Obama was that he went for the people in his demographic. He made sure he was in a space where his voters would be and they could be the ones that helped promote him. I’m sure very little of the work was done by himself – most of it would have been done by ghost writers and so on.
If you want to look at a good comparison, this year’s British elections didn’t really touch enough on the social media aspect. Why not? Because the demographic of user online in the media that each of the parties went for isn’t necessarily the right audience. Obama did a good job of getting young people who don’t normally vote to vote for him by using the places that they frequent. The British politicians by contrast appear to have spent the whole time trying petty digs at each other. A don’t-vote-for-them strategy if you will.