Things I've Learned from Lately #19

“Things I’ve Learned from Lately” is a regular compilation of articles that have made me a smarter social media marketer. Hopefully, they’ll help you, too.

Four Rules for Social Business – Andrea Cook of Social Media Explorer shares insights from the Explore conference on social business, a concept that brings a lot of confusion and a lot of opportunity. Cook provides four rules for becoming a social business.

Key Takeaway: The rules laid out in the article are solid, and they boil down to the idea of keeping things simple. Make sure communication is tight, focus on what really matters, connect with consumers based on what they care about and if it sounds too good to be true (like a score to rule them all), it probably is.

Influence Algorithms: Formulas with Assumptions – In this article, shared with me by Matthew Dooley, Tom Webster of BrandSavant breaks down the biggest challenge associated with influence algorithms like Klout: assigning value to individuals. This makes scores more descriptive of the level of activity than of an actual behavior or ability to influence a behavior.

Key Takeaway: There is no silver bullet for measuring influence. At best, the tools that exist are directional. They give marketers an idea of someone’s influence, so they can look into this person more to understand whether or not this person is truly influential. Yes, a little bit of work is still necessary.

Can Social Lead to Impulse Purchases? AllThingsD shares a post from Jim Stoneham of Payvment outlining the range of mechanisms on social networks that reflect user action. The post shares findings on user behavior in regards to broadcasting purchase intent—something people tend to avoid.

Key Takeaway: The lowest hanging fruit for marketers is leveraging lightweight actions like ‘Like,’ which can be used to lead users down to more definitive actions like purchasing or broadcasting an intent to purchase.

A Deeper Kind of Influence – Christopher Penn analyzes some recent trends in influence, including YouTube’s emphasis on ‘time viewed’ in video rankings. He considers where we are going when it comes to influence and moving beyond rebroadcasting to conversions and actions taken.

Key Takeaway: Marketers are asking for more, and the tools are getting smarter. We’re entering a time of measuring actions taken and level of engagement. This means moving beyond reach analytics to deeper measures of influence. I’m ready.