Assignment 4: Internet Technology, Marketing, and Security
The purpose of this assignment is to “evaluate the reasons Social Media Marketing has become exceedingly popular among businesses of all sizes. Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of Social Media Marketing for business entrepreneurs. Assess how Social Media Marketing is helping Pepsi gain more customer insight than it would have otherwise. Research two (2) other businesses that have used Social Media Marketing to their advantage. Discuss how each of these businesses has utilized Social Media Marketing and provide examples with your discussion. Speculate what impact Social Media will have business over the next decade and identify what skills you need to improve to take advantage of the changes (Boone, Kurtz, 2012).”
Evaluate the reasons Social Media Marketing has become exceedingly popular among businesses of all sizes. “The experimentation era in social media marketing is long over. Social media has proven to be a viable and potentially lucrative marketing channel for B2B and B2C companies of all sizes, across the globe. As more and more companies jump on the social media bandwagon, it is more important now than ever that you provide value, not add to the clutter already on the social web. The reigning champions of social media are the brands that listen to their community, and deliver worthwhile information based on what they hear (Top Rank, 2013).”
Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of Social Media Marketing for business entrepreneurs. “Your online advertising strategy might include paid advertising on search networks such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo. Social ads on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn may also be effective tools for your messaging. Our first step is to determine your goals and where your audience lives, in order to place your brand in front of the right people, in the right place, at the right time (Top Rank, 2013).”
“Through compelling, creative copy and imagery, our search, display and social ads inspire your audience to take your desired action, whether your intent is to:
• Attract new prospects and customers
• Engage consumers and build community around your brand • Convert prospects to loyal customers (Top Rank, 2013).”. “Regular reporting and ongoing optimization ensures you receive maximum accountability and the best results possible from your online campaigns (Top Rank, 2013).”
Assess how Social Media Marketing is helping Pepsi gain more customer insight than it would have otherwise.
“The rise of social and mobile is rewriting the marketing playbook for even the most established companies. While many brands are still casting a wary eye at social media for business, Pepsi has embraced the technology, carving out an ambitious social strategy aimed at building relationships with the Millennial generation, soon to be the largest consumer group in US history (Social, 2012).”
“A recent article by David Hatch of US News and World Report does a great job of breaking down Pepsi’s social strategy, the centerpiece of which is its “Live For Now” marketing campaign. The campaign, targeting 18-35 year olds, is a great example of an established brand effectively utilizing five critical aspects of social media marketing: consumer engagement, user-generated content, data aggregation, geo-local, and inbound marketing (Social, 2012).”
DYNAMIC CONSUMER ENGAGEMENT
“Pepsi’s new digital dashboard is the most recent iteration of an online strategy that included last year’s debut of Pepsi Pulse and Sound Off, online destinations that encouraged visitors to comment on The X-Factor, a Fox network reality television show whose sponsors include Pepsi (Social, 2012).”
“To further engage its online community, the song selection and encores for a Pepsi concert series this summer featuring major artists will be chosen in part by tweets from the live audience and people watching online
“Pepsi is learning that if you want to remain relevant with this new type of consumer, you have to be where they are, you have to talk their language,” and you have to connect with them in a way that “keeps them feeling like they want to be part of your brand,” says Brian Solis, a principal analyst at the Altimeter Group. Connected consumers, he adds, are “getting groomed and conditioned to expect the world to come to them (Social, 2012).”
‘Social media marketing is becoming increasingly dependent on user-generated content, meaning reviews, comment, or any other input from customers. Peer influence has a measurable impact on consumer purchase decision, especially among Millennials (Social, 2012).”
“Understanding this, Pepsi has created a new digital dashboard on their Pepsi.com place page to support the Live For Now campaign, highlighted by user-generated messages from Facebook and Twitter that include the #LiveForNow hashtag (Social, 2012).”
“Moreover, with the help of SocialFlow, a tool that ranks the popularity of editorial content within audience segments, Pepsi is paying attention to what their target audience is interested in. “It’s all about that movement [online], and where people’s time is being spent,” says George Smith, senior manager, social strategy and execution, for Pepsi Beverages (Social, 2012).”
“Actually listening to consumers in order to understand their wants and needs builds user loyalty, creating brand evangelists who will spread the word and act as online defenders of the company brand (Social, 2012).”
“Moreover, by monitoring what people say online about its products, Pepsi is able to manage user complaints in real time, before they take on a life of their own (Social, 2012).”
“Unlike traditional, harder-to-track advertising methods such as TV and print, social media provides a wealth of statistics about the age, gender, demographics, interests, and reactions of consumers. As Smith notes, “With digital, you end up with a lot of extra data, and you end up with a lot more understanding of who your consumer is (Social, 2012).”
“This consumer data helps Pepsi refine its consumer engagement model, the effect of which is to attract new fans, and thus more data (Social, 2012).”
“Pepsi is hopping on the newest trend in social: SoLoMo, or Social, Local, Mobile. Thanks to the massive consumer adaptation of smart phones, companies like Pepsi can integrate social media with location-based mobile marketing. (Social, 2012).”
“Why do so? Because Pepsi can be more surgical about reaching populations in specific geographic areas. “We’re seeing good results from that,” Smith says, explaining that the company can target local audiences with specially tailored advertising messages fueled by location information provided in Facebook profiles (Social, 2012).”
“This kind of micro-targeting allows brands to hunt consumers with a high-precision rifle instead of a shotgun (Social, 2012).”
Out with the push, in with the pull (Social, 2012).”
“Pepsi has recognized that the tech-enabled power shift to the consumer has effectively neutralized many traditional forms of outbound, or push, marketing. Today’s savvy consumer wants to be listened to and courted by marketers. They want direct channels of communication to brands. In short, consumers expect brands to employ inbound marketing best practices as an engagement model (Social, 2012).”
“When done properly, this approach is a win-win for brands and consumers. Pepsi’s social strategist George Smith recognizes the mutual benefit of direct consumer interaction: “It’s nice to be able to have that direct conversation with them, and not have to rely on a specific media channel to push this, or buy TV constantly to push that message,” he says (Social, 2012).”
“By last count, Pepsi’s 8,181,075 Facebook fans agree (Social, 2012).”
Research two (2) other businesses that have used Social Media Marketing to their advantage. “At TopRank® Online Marketing, we understand that your company’s success in social media requires a deep understanding of your customers’ needs and their journey throughout all stages of the buying cycle. We specialize in crafting targeted, high quality content that serves to attract, engage and even convert customers as they factor their social relationships into their purchasing decisions. Many companies offer social media marketing, yet we are one of the few with experience and proven results to consistently reach goals in branding, social PR, and even lead generation using social (Top Rank, 2013)”
“…’ BFM® is a unique industrial pipe connector designed to provide safe, sanitary and efficient connections for the transportation and movement of powder within bulk powder processing plants (Top Rank, 2013).”
Their objective was “…’ develop a new website and launch a strategic online marketing program that would increase visitors as well as sales inquiries for the company…’ (Top Rank, 2013).”
“The decision was made advertise their brand on the website utilizing search engine optimization (SEO) tactics:
• Website development and technical assessment
• Keyword research and content optimization
• Content promotion and link building
• Web analytics and conversion tracking (Top Rank, 2013).”
These actions utilizing social media marketing resulted in, “… website traffic increase more than 700% in its niche market. Additionally, with the launch of its creative campaign, The Powder Doctor, organic traffic to the company website has more than doubled. (Top Rank, 2013).” “Organic search, combined with the creative concept leveraged for online PR and email marketing campaigns, have helped to increase bottom line sales for the company by 83% (Top Rank, 2013).”
Discuss how each of these businesses has utilized Social Media Marketing and provide examples with your discussion.
“A success social media strategy ties outcomes to overarching business goals and connects you with the right prospects and customers on the proper platforms. It engages your loyal fans, friends, and followers through a combination of organic and paid media (Top Rank, 2013).” “Our social media marketing experience at TopRank spans all of the major social networks and a variety of niche sites, including Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, SlideShare, YouTube and more (Top Rank, 2013).”
Speculate what impact Social Media will have business over the next decade and identify what skills you need to improve to take advantage of the changes.
In closing, the purpose of this assignment is to “evaluate the reasons Social Media Marketing has become exceedingly popular among businesses of all sizes. Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of Social Media Marketing for business entrepreneurs. Assess how Social Media Marketing is helping Pepsi gain more customer insight than it would have otherwise. Research two (2) other businesses that have used Social Media Marketing to their advantage. Discuss how each of these businesses has utilized Social
Media Marketing and provide examples with your discussion. Speculate what impact Social Media will have business over the next decade and identify what skills you need to improve to take advantage of the changes (Boone, Kurtz, 2012).”
Boone, L. E. & Kurtz, D. L. (2012 Update). Contemporary business (14th ed. Hoboken, NJ: John
Social Media Today (2012). 5 Ways Pepsi’s Use of Social Media is Right On. Retrieved from
Top Rank (2013) Online Marketing. Retrieved from http://www.toprankmarketing.com
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