Occasionally we like to “toot our own horn” because we are proud of our clients’ success. But this story stands above and beyond as a little 8-year old girl takes on global child slavery through a small lemonade stand that grew into an organization called Make A Stand.
Our challenge as an agency was to harness the channels of social media to take a local lemonade stand and build a global movement.
Make a Stand was born when an 8-year old girl named Vivienne Harr, saw a picture of two young boys in Nepal. They were about her age. They were brothers. And, they were modern-day slaves. They carried slate rocks on their backs, but they were holding hands to make them “feel better” as Vivienne said. She didn’t understand, but she knew it was wrong. She told her dad they needed to “make a stand” for them.
And so, as kids have done for time immemorial, Vivienne set up a lemonade stand and started selling lemonade to end child slavery. “It was the only “business experience I had,” she said. She didn’t understand that one child selling one small cup of lemonade at a time couldn’t possibly make an impact on something as big as global child-slavery, but she was undaunted. “I didn’t think of all the reasons why I couldn’t help; I thought of all the reasons why I must help.”
Vivienne set out to raise $100,000 by setting up her lemonade stand, every day, rain or shine.
Resonate was tasked with spreading the story as far, fast and wide as possible—without losing the remarkable authenticity of its origins. Moreover, we wanted to help Vivienne raise money for her cause of ending child slavery.
So, the agency established a “crowdfunding” page for her, and leveraging social media, the donations started coming in.
On day #52 of , the agency helped Vivienne reach out, via Twitter, to New York Times’ Pulitzer Prize winning columnist, Nicholas Kristof.
It worked. Kristof retweeted Vivienne and that set off a firestorm of traditional and social media. The agency helped to engage influencers such as Actress Jada Pinkett-Smith, Giants Pitcher Jeremy Affeldt and The Duchess of York.
On 12-12-12 in Times Square, the agency provided live coverage as Vivienne sang Katy Perry’s “Firework” to hundreds in person and millions worldwide. She raised over $60,000 in crowd-funding dollars in six days.
The agency also deployed Facebook ads and generated daily content to drive audience reach from 0 in August, 2012 to over 22 million in April, 2013.
Little Vivienne Harr sold lemonade every day for 173 days straight and exceeded her crowd-funding goal of $100,000 ($101,320 to be exact) and contributed to the freedom of hundreds of enslaved children.
Since then, she has raised close to $1 million in crowd-funding and traditional investment to start her own company and “bottle the movement.”
While the story was inherently “share-worthy,” the agency was successful in helping Vivienne’s moment become a movement. Millions of people around the world are now aware of her story. The BBC World News, ABC News, CBS News, Parenting Magazine, The New York Daily News, The Huffington Post, FOX News, Yahoo News — and over 700 media outlets across the country and around the world from Australia to Brazil to Hong Kong — have covered the Make a Stand movement. Vivienne has touched the hearts of millions and sparked a movement to help end child slavery.
The agency also helped Vivienne develop marketing partnerships with the likes of Twitter, Facebook, Disney and Hilton Hotels, primarily by establishing such a robust and authentic social media presence. The agency also helped Vivienne develop a relationship with a film crew that is going to follow her for five months and create a feature-length documentary about VIvienne’s story, leveraged in social media along the way to a nationwide theater release. After the showing, the agency will coordinate a live-cast interview with Vivienne.
What Resonate is most proud of is that we managed to build a sustainable groundswell of support for Vivienne’s cause that will carry forward for years to come. We built sufficient “social capital” so that the Make a Stand movement can continue to grow and flourish as bottles hit the marketplace.
“Instant karma’s gonna get you.”
Poor Charlie Wenzel. Poor, poor Charlie Wenzel. He’s quite like the hapless fella in the cartoon above. To find out why, read on. You’ll want to hear this.
On October 2, 2005 at precisely and fortuitously 9:21pm, this struggling 19 year-old decided to sell some truck gears. He listed them on an industry website for $100, plus $15 for shipping. Sounds fair. A buyer cut him a check, which Mr. Wenzel speedily cashed. Sounds good. Happy ending, right?
Actually, wrong is not a big enough word. People like money. It’s nice to have. And Mr. Wenzel wanted more. So naturally, he surreptitiously edited the original post and “showed” the buyer the “real price”: “$125, plus $15 for shipping.” The buyer didn’t buy it. He asked Mr. Wenzel to do the right thing. He didn’t, so the buyer asked for his money back. Mr. Wenzel not-so-politely declined.
Then, all [h-e-double-toothpicks] broke loose.
Mr. Wenzel didn’t nearly grasp a key aspect of social media, namely: people are in no mood. They don’t want honesty and transparency. They demand it. And they’re willing to defend it furiously.
A small but passion-driven army of red-faced people let loose on poor Mr. Wenzel. The threats eventually moved from “clicks to bricks”—in other words, from digital intimidations to real-life ones. One man, who claimed he knew where Mr. Wenzel lived, threatened to “back up a truck and pour cement” on his front lawn if he didn’t return the buyer’s money.
Naturally, Mr. Wenzel caved. I mean, concrete on your front lawn —for gears?
He genuflected on the forums, begging for forgiveness, and sent the gears back to the buyer. Too little, too late. In that time, the buyer learned the gears were not, in fact, shiny and new, but used…and used. Like any self-respecting gear buyer, the buyer wouldn’t take them back.
What ensued likely stunned Charlie Wenzel and serves as a sobering lesson for us all: His last name became synonymous with the word “fraud” across the internet. In fact, “Wenzel” became an Internet “meme,” which is essentially an idea that is propagated so far and so fast across the Web that it becomes a verb, like “Google.”
Mr. Wenzel earned a lifetime achievement award—in the Urban Dictionary, a Web-based, user-generated dictionary of millions of slang words and phrases. Here it is: “
To get wenzeled: 1. Defrauded by an Internet seller. 2. Publicly outed as fraudulent person of low character. 3. The act of being screwed on a fraudulent internet sale, as in:
“Hey, wanna buy some brand new gears for your truck?”
LOL ok, here’s $115.”
“Now I want $140 for used gears out of my 2WD truck.”
“Oh snap! I just got wenzeled!”
Imagine how you’d feel if that were your last name being bandied about like that online. Unlike an ink variety, the “digital scarlet letter” will never fade. There’s so much association between the words “Wenzel” and “fraud” online that Charlie Wenzel will forevermore be remembered as a fraud, unless he does something cosmically impressive to crowd out those search results—like discovering life on other planets.
Someone actually found Charlie Wenzel’s yearbook photo, scanned it and made t-shirts with the photo and a line that says “Handtool.” The t-shirts are selling. Just writing that makes me chuckle (and cringe).
When Mr. Wenzel’s children and grandchildren want to learn more about him, they’ll go online and discover that grandpa was…a low-class, fraudulent hand tool. And there is nothing he can do about it.
Most people have a strong sense of social justice. Now they have the tools to inflict justice. I love how the new rules of social media are in fact old school.
Mr. Wenzel isn’t old school—and in this new media, he got punished for that. He was dishonest and deceptive in his dealings with the buyer. The community made him pay more than $100, plus shipping. He paid with his reputation, plus humiliation. Sorry, Charlie.
Eric Harr is the Founder & President of Resonate Digital an integrated digital media agency in San Francisco. He is the CBS News social media expert and the best-selling author of: “The REAL TRUTH About Social Media: 8 Timeless Truths Uncovered & 8 Monumental Myths Revealed” available on Amazon.com.
“Social media has become mass media. It’s the oldest form of marketing—word of mouth—with the newest form of technology.”
~Marc Pritchard, Chief Marketing Officer, Procter & Gamble
Since my grandpa Varnum (real name) had a bakery on Bourbonus Avenue (real street) in Kankakee, Illinois (real place), word of mouth has always been the most
reliable way to build a business. Studies show it is more effective than ever: word-of-mouth converts a sale orders-of-magnitude more than paid advertising.
I stare, mouth agape, in a semi-drooling state of befuddled awe, when companies say to me: “We don’t have the time or resources to dedicate to social media.” I wonder: “Where are you dedicating your time and resources? There are hundreds of millions of people—your past, current and future customers—who are defining your brand, making product recommendations and influencing one another’s purchase decisions more broadly and more rapidly than ever before. One satisfied customer can bring 50 new customers to you in a single Tweet. One displeased customer’s scathing review on Yelp can prevent hundreds, or thousands, from ever doing business with you. You don’t have the time or resources to dedicate to this? Um, hello?”
The Rewards: What You Stand to Gain
Social media is like a freight train. If you catch it just right, “oh, the places you’ll go!” However, if you wait too long or if you make a misstep, at best, you will miss an historic ride. At worst, you and/or your business can be left behind with blinding speed. Let’s say you catch the train. Here’s what you can realistically stand to gain from social media.
Let’s look at it like a pyramid, in the following order, with Brand Awareness at the base. The first few benefits are relatively easy to achieve. As you move “up the pyramid,” the benefits get tougher to realize.
When you start engaging in social media, you can get on people’s radar relatively quickly. They see a Tweet or a post and within minutes, they’re moseying over to your website (or more likely checking your social footprint) to see what you’re all about. This raises a salient point: people are learning about your brand in ways you wouldn’t expect. Think they’re forming impressions about you from your website? Think about. They’re savvier than that. They know that your website was planned and edited and honed and refined ad nauseum.
To learn what you’re really about, people will Google you. They’ll study your Twitter timeline. They’ll scour your Facebook page. They’ll even dig into what individual employees work for you, and what those people are saying from their personal social profiles, in their free time. While you cannot control what others are saying about you or your organization in social media, you can guide the discussion in your favor. It’s imperative that you do. People are talking, and if you are not part of the conversation, they will lead it, and in the process they might undo all of your best branding efforts and well-laid plans. Social media puts the “public” back into public relations. If you are in business, you must take the time to listen, engage, care—and take part. It no longer something you can ignore.
Authentically engaging in social media shows your customers—and the world—that you care enough to invest the time and resources to talk with them (and not at them via traditional marketing). Two-way conversation is the best branding there is. Brands that do not engage on Twitter—a free and easy-to-use social media platform—are essentially saying to past, present and future customers: “We don’t have the time or energy for you, our customers.” That is a terrible blow to a brand. Twitter and Facebook are the two most powerful customer service platforms in the history of business. They allow brands to address customer concerns and issues in real-time: one-to-one interactions, via many-to-many platforms. If you properly cultivate your community, your loyal, informed customers will start helping and serving one another in these channels! That’s the Holy Grail of customer service.
Our social media agency sees this a lot with our clients’ Facebook pages. These living, breathing, thriving communities are so passionate about these brands that they volunteer their time to answering one another’s questions! It not only saves our clients time and money by easing the burden on customer service, it actually elevates the customer service to another level. For free.
This is social media’s most obvious benefit. Social media is now the fastest-growing form of communication in history. Brands that disregard this new paradigm may be left behind with blinding speed. In his book, The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell speaks of “Connectors” as: “…people who link us up with the world…people with a special gift for bringing the world together. They are a handful of people with a truly extraordinary knack for making friends and acquaintances.” Influential Twitter followers and Facebook fans (we’re still calling them “fans”; we refuse to call them “likers”) are Tipping Point Connectors.
But, take heed: these sophisticated TPC’s won’t generate word-of-mouth marketing for you or your company unless what you produce is awesome. Not salesy. Awesome. (See Timeless Truth #8: People Share Awesome Stuff.)
Next is customer loyalty. This occurs when existing customers find you in social media; they develop an affinity for what you’re doing—and they become more inclined to keep doing business with you.
By engaging with, and listening to, your customers—and providing them with stellar service—they will not only remain loyal to your brand, they might evangelize it. Therein lies the secret sauce of social media: enlisting evangelists through superior service and interaction. Getting others to speak favorably about you is the Holy Grail of marketing. Social media can help you achieve that, but you’ve got to be willing to work at it, just like you would a human relationship.
An effective way to conduct market research in this digital economy is to put it to your communities in social media. Tap the collective wisdom; it can provide a richer and more textured result than a few experts (just look at how Wikipedia is faring against Encyclopedia Britannica!). Asking a large number of people a question in social media is known as “crowdsourcing” (a play on the word “outsourcing”) and it is arguably the most effective and economical form of market research there is. But for it to be statistically significant you need critical mass: You need a few thousand followers and fans. Quality is important in social media, but so is quantity.
Negative press can inflict terrible damage on a brand. As a business, you should be listening 24/7/365. Ten years ago, it wasn’t as important. If people had a problem with you, they might send an email to their friends (which would almost invariably flame out), or they would write a blog post (which was largely hidden from view). Now, everyone is a veritable media outlet. Sweet, demure Karen from Kansas has a captive Twitter following, loyal Facebook friends, an engaging YouTube Channel and an influential LinkedIN business network. Do not underestimate Karen. She’s a powerhouse, and she’ll take you down. Right down to Chinatown.
In Gladwell’s “The Tipping Point,” he speaks to another critical group of people who help “tip” a brand. They’re called Mavens, and in social media, they are more empowered than ever.
Not engaging with, and thanking, your Mavens could be the biggest mistake you could make in growing your business. These people have enormous influence—and are ready, willing and able to serve as your volunteer marketing department. Your social media efforts should bring them into the fold and empowers and inspire them to be “forces of nature” for your brand. It breaks my heart when I see dormant Facebook brand pages where these energized Mavens are posting—and the brand is cavalierly dismissing them because they’re “too busy” with other matters. Please: Pour yourself a glass of wine and spend 30 minutes a week loving on your Mavens.
Social media has a way of focusing us on the things that matter. What would you publish on Twitter? What do you want people to know about? Generally, that holds meaning for you—and in that way, you social media properties become online journals for yourself, or your business.
Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh wrote a piece: “How Twitter Makes You a Happier Person.” Hsieh believes social media can make you a happier person, because it inspires you to catalog those little moments that may have passed you by.
“Twitter helps me reframe reality. Anytime something that used to get me upset or frustrated happens, I try to find the humor in the situation and think about how the situation can be reframed. I’ve found that almost every “bad” situation is actually an opportunity that can be entertaining to my followers on Twitter, which also forces myself to see things in a different light. In fact, I now almost looked forward to situations that would normally be frustrating, because I’ve learned that almost any situation can be reframed to be funny as a tweet, which then makes the situation in real life funny as well. For example: Recent Tweet: “Airport bathroom: guy tries washing hands – auto faucet motion sensor broken. He tries voice recognition instead by yelling “Wash!” at sink.” If it weren’t for Twitter, I would have instead probably been a bit annoyed waiting in line behind this man who was unfamiliar with motion-activated sink faucets. But instead, Twitter forced me to search for and find the humor in the situation by taking a step back and realizing that it actually was a pretty funny situation.”
I resolutely believe that social media can unleash a world of social good. I’ve seen it first-hand as charitable organizations raise awareness, and dollars, faster than they’ve ever been able to do it before. If your business does good, let the world know and let them amplify that good. Don’t be bashful or have false modesty. You can lift up the world in these channels. If you aren’t engaging in social good, resolve to do it. It can be good for you, good for your business and good for our world.
This benefit is listed last for a reason: it is outrageously hard to move conversations to conversions. It’s just tough to drive transactions via social media. People are inundated constantly with sales pitches. For them to purchase something, they need to be significantly compelled. It can be done, but trust, care and service must precede this benefit.
By optimizing a website for the major search engines on relevant keyword strings—and producing the most effective “inbound marketing” there is via blog content—a brand can drive sales and track where every dollar came from. That’s a powerful attribute of social media: it is measurable to the most minute detail. You can code a Tweet, a Facebook post or a YouTube video with a trackable link, and see, almost in real-time, how your message is impacting your market, and if it’s compelling them to purchase. That’s because, at the end of the day, social media ought to drive your economic engine and power your businesses to greater heights.
Richard Genovese lingers over his latte, delaying the inevitable. Like millions of business owners, that familiar, queasy feeling forms in the pit of his stomach as the website loads. He hopes for the best…but expects the worst.
“Argh. Another tough one. This is going to be a stressful day,” says Genovese, the Vice President of Marketing for YMT Vacations, a travel agency in El Segundo, Calif.
With over eight million reviews flooding in each day to an ever-burgeoning mass of review sites, consumers have never been more empowered—and emboldened. And, businesses have never been more criticized—and concerned.
Consumer review sites such as Yelp and Complaints Board have shifted the landscape in a seismic way. A mere decade ago, the best recourse a dissatisfied customer had was to call an 800-number, send an email or file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau.
Now, a slightly-irked Karen in Kansas can post a scathing review on Yelp, in real-time, that spreads viral views far, fast and wide, influencing purchase decisions—and eroding tangible brand valuation—along the way. And, these posts remain are there for the world to see 24/7/365. Forever.
It’s a fresh, daunting challenge for Genovese and millions of businesspeople like him.
“The power balance is in the hands of the consumer,” says Genovese. “Before, a bad customer could tell nine people. Now, they can tell 9,000.”
Most experts believe that the genie is out of the bottle. And, it’s not going back in. The argument goes like this: humans have waited millennia for this kind of power. For the first time in history, the individual controls the message. And, that power can often be intoxicating. Consumers think to themselves: “You had better help me, or I’ll Yelp you!”
The upside is that these review sites can provide valuable market insights to business—but it can be nerve-wracking and exhausting to keep up. “If companies don’t do everything to the client’s satisfaction, and I mean everything – even if those expectations are unreasonable – you’re held hostage to negative press,” says Genovese. “It’s hurtful on a personal level—and it hurts our business.”
Now, that’s no longer a hollow threat – and it can inflict terrible damage on a company as people place increasing stock in peer reviews. In fact, a recent study by Jupiter Research found that the mere sight of bad review or a “rich snippet” (the stars that appear on a Google results page) of below 3 ½ stars is enough to derail over 80% of customers from doing business with the ill-reviewed company.
“My first reaction when I read negative posts is: did we drop the ball?” says Genovese. “Almost every time, I discover that we did everything we could do, and yet these folks still post a negative review. It’s wrong. It hurts. And, there’s no way to get it taken down. We feel powerless.”
This begs the question: are review sites and complaints board good for consumers, but unfair to businesses?
You’ll likely find two camps of vocal evangelists on either side of that question. The only thing we know for sure is this: social media and review sites are here to stay. And, it’s a challenge all businesses must face—and overcome.
“We understand that in this word-of-mouth economy, the best marketing is a terrific product or service,” says Genovese. “Social media forces all businesses to up their game. And, I suppose, in the end: that is a good thing.”
Eric Harr is the new Social Media Expert for CBS News and the Founder & President of Resonate Social, an integrated marketing agency in San Francisco. He is the author of “The REAL TRUTH About Social Media: 8 Timeless Truths Uncovered & 8 Monumental Myths Revealed” now available in Barnes & Noble nationwide and on the REAL TRUTH Website. [Use code “GIVEBACK” and receive 10% off. Proceeds benefit CARE, to defend dignity and fight poverty worldwide.] Resonate Social is the creator of SocialSee, the first technology that shows True ROI from social media in a real-time dashboard- Coming Soon!
IT IS SAID that when someone gives you something of perceived value, you immediately respond with the desire to give something back. When Alexandra (my wife) is cleaning the house, I feel an immediate, guilt-driven desire to get in there and start scrubbing the floors. Guilt is a powerful, intrinsic driver of human behavior!
Today, one of our clients asked a poignant and incisive question: “I noticed you are Tweeting some content that has nothing to do with our website or our sales. How does that drive our bottom line?”
It is a perfectly good question. This client invests a substantial sum with Resonate each month; what is the ROI of Tweeting valuable content that does not drive sales?
Answer: The Law of Reciprocity.
Gary Vaynerchuck said it, and I wholeheartedly agree: We are in the midst of a “thank you economy.” When you inspire, entertain or inform people – in the genuine effort to help them lead better lives – they will eventually be motivated to return the favor. It may take a minute, a month or six months, but most people will reciprocate.
What most brands don’t understand is this: why would a person follow your organization on Twitter? To be marketed to? To be sold? Absolutely not. They get enough of that in their lives.
The brands that serve up a steady stream of relevant, compelling, fresh content inspire people to follow them. The smart brands nurture the relationship. They give and give and give. They might throw the periodic promotion in there, but if they are focused on giving, their followers won’t mind the errant promotion.
Let’s say you have a travel company. If you Tweet content about “how to pack” or “how to stay safe overseas” – with no reference to sales – you are earning people’s trust. You are winning their hearts. You are inspiring them to retweet you. And, you are engaging the law of reciprocity.
At Resonate, we take a longer-term view of social media. We don’t believe social media is a media – or a marketing channel. We believe it’s a human relationship. Try to monetize people too soon, and you push them away.
Think about it this way: let’s say we’re friends. And all I do is give to the relationship: I listen to you. I give you book recommendations. I prepare freshly-baked goods and lovingly deliver them to your doorstep. Eventually, you are going to reach a tipping point and exclaim, while eating my tangy lemon squares: “Enough already, Harr! What can I do for you?”
The corollary in social media is that if you constantly Tweet out and post good, solid content that people can use to improve their lives, they are going to find their way to giving their business to you, rather than to your competition who doesn’t listen to them – and doesn’t care.
Your social media strategy should be to give and give and give. Provide stellar content. Care about people. Listen to them. Connect. Engage.
Do these things, and what goes around comes around: the business will come to you in droves.
Eric Harr is the Founder & CEO of Resonate Social Media. He likes to give.
Most people, and brands, charge into social media with a missionary zeal. They believe that social is “the next big thing,” and the primal fear that they might fall behind, compels them to start Tweeting and blogging and Tumbling and Flickr’ing with reckless abandon.
But, social media is not Twitter or WordPress or Tumblr or Flickr. It is far more foundational. Social media starts with shifting your corporate mindset and honing your culture. It is a highly-nuanced, highly-public undertaking. As such, it requires a well-designed, well-deployed strategy.
If social media is indeed a “cocktail party” — as Jim Tobin so aptly articulates in his outstanding book – then creating social content without building a “why-driven” brand construct or performing conversion optimization on your website, is like inviting your party guests to an unkempt home, while you’re still in your towel with toothpaste on your face.
1. Know Your Why
Before you craft a single Tweet, you first must figure out what you want from social media. And, please don’t say: “fans and followers.” You don’t want those things. Dig deeper. It is online sales? “Tipping Point Mavens?” Unaided brand awareness? More positive sentiment? Less negative sentiment? A boost to company-wide morale? An improvement of customer service? The ability to generate market research? These are disparate goals that require varied tactics.
2. Define your KPI’s
Next, you must define your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) – and perhaps more importantly, what metrics and tools you will use to measure progress. Social media suffers from “shiny object syndrome.” Don’t be distracted. Drill down on the stuff that matters most to your business and then relentlessly measure those metrics — and pursue the tactics that are actually moving the needle. I cannot over-emphasize this enough. The vast majority of brands miss this critical point.
3. Socialize Your Brand
Third, you need to craft a “why-driven” brand statement that will resonate in social channels and transform customers into evangelists (the Holy Grail of Marketing). In this word-of-mouth economy, you must socialize your brand statement. Throw out the tired, staid “corporate-speak” and connect with consumers. [To understand the importance of being "why driven," watch this video.]
4. Optimize Your Website
Next, you need to perform website conversion optimization, otherwise all of the biggest, brightest social buzz will not convert to sales. If you are driving people to a website that has a poor funnel, or defies basic design concepts like “reading gravity,” that toothpaste is still on your face. People won’t be able to take their eye off of it — to do business with you. Decide what one thing you want your website visitors to do when they arrive at your site – and design the entire experience around that call to action. And yes, you should have a secondary call to action, such as an email signup/lead nurture program, so that people who aren’t yet ready to buy from you, can be nurtured over time with valuable content (please don’t ever, ever spam your email list). This is a “thank you economy.”
Inspire and educate people how to live better lives, and you win their hearts. They will do business with you, and more importantly: they will invite their spheres of influence to do the same. You want evangelists, not one-and-out customers. Build social capital. Stop trying to make out with people on the first date.
5. Perform a “Brand Audit”
You’re almost there! Next, you should conduct some extensive brand monitoring and sentiment analysis to see where you are vis-a-vis the online conversation. If there are some vitriolic, negative posts about your brand online — and worse, if Google is returning those on the first page of search results — you have a major problem on your hands. The first thing most people do when performing due diligence on a person or a business is to “Google” them. That first page of results is your most forward-facing marketing. It is far more impactful than your website.
You’ll need to engage diplomatically with your detractors. If an apology is in order, give one. If they are misinformed, correct them with elegance and civility. Then, all of the “lurkers” online – the people who do not add to the conversation, but make purchase decisions based on them – will be swayed to your side. Because you were listening, and you took the time to engage. And, 90% of the time, your biggest critics can become your most valuable evangelists, if you simply take the time to listen to them – and respond.
Let the Party Begin!
Once you’ve done all of that, your home is ready for the party. You’re dressed and ready to go. Your teeth are sparkly – and there is nary a spot of toothpaste on your face. You look mah-velous! Now, you can get in there and start growing your social communities — and inviting them to your party. More people will come. More people will do business with you. And, more people will talk not about the toothpaste on your face, but rather how charming and elegant and brilliant you are.
Eric Harr is the Founder & CEO of Resonate Social Media. He likes cocktail parties.
“Nothing is stronger than the heart of a volunteer.”
—Lt. Col. James H. Doolittle, April 18, 1942
AT 855 MILLION ACTIVE USERS, social media is now the #1 online activity and the fastest-growing form of communication in history. It is the oldest form of marketing—word-of-mouth—with the newest form of technology.
Roughly 280,000 people join Twitter each day. YouTube serves more video content in one day than all three major TV networks do—in one year. If it were a country, Facebook, at 580 million users, would be the world’s 3rd largest
This is a word-of-mouth economy in which the individual is empowered with mass-market publishing tools. One person is a veritable print and broadcast media outlet. Companies must re-tool their brand statements to harness that power. The key in this economy is to build a brand that people want to get behind.
To do that, your brand statement must resonate. It must use the human voice. Tired, staid corporate statements will fall on deaf ears, and fall flat, in social media. A dynamic, emotional “why-driven” brand statement will move people from awareness to interest to trial to evangelism—the Holy Grail of marketing.
Draw together a few thousand of those strong-hearted volunteers—in marketing parlance: those “Tipping Point Mavens”—and they will roll up like a juggernaut and power your brand to victory.
Eric Harr is the Founder & CEO of Resonate Social Media. He likes that name.
About Resonate Digital
Resonate Digital is a results-driven, integrated digital marketing agency. While social media is our core competency, we integrate it into a broader marketing strategy that includes effective storytelling, brand development, website optimization, SEO, PPC, email marketing, brand monitoring, influencer engagement and traditional media. Read More»