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The Latest Social Media Stats Promise a Happy New Year

The latest social media stats from Pew Internet Research promise a very happy new year for social media marketers. The study released yesterday reveals that 73 percent of online adults use a social networking site (SNS), the highest percentage we've seen yet.

Even more exciting is the news that 42 percent are now using multiple SNS. This means the cross-promotion possibilities for social media are increasing and we can have confidence in exploring other platforms besides the big two, Facebook and Twitter. For people who are concerned that their Facebook messages are not being seen (still the king of stats by the way), the fear of investing time on other platforms where audiences are building should begin to disappear. Here are some of the key takeaways of the new research:

data arrow going up

  • Instagram users are just as likely as Facebook users to check the site daily. Photos and videos are still the media that grabs attention.
  • LinkedIn and Pinterest both have more users than Twitter and Instagram. But, don't let those numbers fool you, just let them inform your process. The people are there, but are they your people? You still need to know the strengths and weaknesses of each platform and understand if they will help you reach your goals. Pinterest's strength is still women (4-to-1) and LinkedIn's strength is still professionals. Take a good look at the demographic information on the research report.
  •  The majority of single-platform users are on Facebook. Facebook is still at the top of the heap. Your challenge for 2014 is learning how to build a corps of ambassadors there that will magnify your content so it gets seen.If you haven't dabbled in Facebook ads yet, this might be the year to try it out.  If your Facebook strategy is pushing news-only, you may get lost in the fray.
  • The demographics of each individual platform will help you focus in on strategy. If you're just looking at bottom line numbers for a platform, your strategy is lagging behind. There is an excellent breakdown in the report on platform-related demographics. Become familiar with who is where. It will help when you are deciding a personality for each platform you use.

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Content Marketing is Difficult - Get Over It

I don’t need to look at your marketing strategy for 2014. I know for a fact that content marketing is somewhere in the mix. It’s probably near the top of your list, sitting neatly alongside social media and email marketing.

I’m also guessing, there are a number of question marks next to the content marketing bullet point on your plan.

The thing is, content marketing is such a wide ranging discipline if it is not properly planned it will raise more questions than answers.

At this moment you are probably asking yourself the following questions:

  • Who is going to produce this content?
  • Should we produce this content in-house or hire an agency?
  • How much content do we need to produce?
  • How are we going to distribute this content?
  • How are we going to gauge the success of our content marketing strategy?
  • How much is this all going to cost us?
  • How does this fit in with everything else we do?
  • What risks are involved?
  • Is content marketing really worth it or is it just another marketing fad?

It is because content marketing is difficult that makes it such an effective strategy – if it’s produced with care and attention to detail.

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Social Media Management: From Novelty to Utility

Social media is still a novelty to many professionals, especially those in leadership positions. Rather than viewing social and digital technologies as a radical departure from social management from novelty to utilitytraditional communication approaches, however, it’s better to think of them as “new tools for doing old things” and to remember they are facilitators and enablers, not an end unto themselves. Reflecting its role as a utility, best practices for social media management are emerging. These include focusing on the strategic as well as the tactical, effectively managing human capital resources, and managing Digital Era risks. 

“What is social media?” It wasn’t that long ago I was asked that question almost every time I brought the subject up. These days people no longer ask, but that doesn’t mean their understanding has evolved significantly. In spite of all the media hype, social media is still a novelty to many professionals, especially those in leadership positions.

Since 2009 I have dedicated myself to educating people about the applications and implications of new digital technologies for individuals and organizations of all types. For example:

The theme behind these posts and others is that rather than thinking of them as some kind of radical departure, using digital forms of communication should be viewed as an extension and new manifestation of what humans have been doing almost as long as we’ve been on the planet. Although technology, its uses, and our understanding have evolved and matured, our underlying motivations have not. It is as true in the Digital Era as it was in previous eras: technologies are facilitators and enablers, not an end unto themselves.

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Here's How to Start the New Year with a Bang That Counts!

First, I wish everyone the very best for the New Year, 2014. I believe it is going to be a better year with real progress towards peace and prosperity... or at least, more 2014-New-Year-HD-Wallpaper1prosperity than the past few years. There is a long way to go, but the signs of more cooperation and more concern for rights are everywhere. Let's all pray for the best and actually work to make that happen!

Here is one thing you can do to spread the spirit of cooperation and sharing for the New Year, and it won't cost you a thing: invite your colleagues and friends to join our groups. It's fast, simple and free. All you have to do is forward this email, that simple. Here's why:

- Our Social Media Marketing group (including the 20 subgroups) is the now the largest in the world, with over 800,000 members from over 180 countries. New members can join here: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=66325&trk=anet_ug_hm  . We provide the broadest range of information on everything social media, with phenomenal free information resources every week.

- We also provide free access to http://www.SocialMediopolis.com , a private online community of professionals in social media. This is another great resource to keep updated daily on all kinds of news and developments.

The power of nearly 1,000,000 members gives us tremendous leverage to continue to get free training guides, webinars, research, white papers and great live event discounts from great companies like HubSpot, Marketo, HootSuite, Social Media Marketing and many, many others.

Our 48 wonderful and hard-working moderators do their very best to keep spammers and scammers out so the discussions stay on topic and relevant. It's a great way to help your friends and colleagues going into 2014.

I wish every single one of you the most successful, happy and prosperous year of your life to come!

Here's to your success,
Mike Crosson
Moderator and Publisher

(Image via Search Marketing Sage)

3 New Year's Resolutions for B2B Marketers

Did you know that only 8% of all New Year’s resolutions are ever kept?new-years

The reason for this total failure of will power is most likely related to the fact that people tend to push off difficult decisions until New Year’s Even. It’s as if some magical change will happen at midnight on December 31st that will make quitting smoking, eating better or going to the gym easier than it was on December 30th.

As B2B marketers, it’s time for us to get rid of bad habits; we owe ourselves this much. There are a few simple resolutions we can all make this coming year that will help us shake off our old, ineffective ways and grab 2014 by the horns.

3 New Year’s Resolutions that all B2B Marketers Should Make:

Measure Goals

A major study from this past year 2013 elucidated a real problem plaguing B2B content marketers in the digital age.

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