Twitter – All talk and no pay!!

Twitter_TVTwitter is now surely the greatest example of building a brand by getting heaps of free media and not spending anything on traditional advertising.

According to an analysis conducted by Video Monitoring Services (VMS), Twitter got great benefit from 2.73 billion impressions last month, valued at $48 million.

Of this over 50% were mentions on TV – mentions largely due to celebrities. politicians, sporting and media personalities embracing it as a medium for direct communication with fans, supporters, voters etc.

While Google has had so much free publicity it has become a new verb in the language — “lets Google that!” — it has been outstripped by Twitter now.

“This is huge. It’s very, very high,” said Gary Getto, VP-integrated media intelligence at VMS. “In fact, we looked at online coverage of Twitter vs. Google. Twitter is running significantly higher than Google and I didn’t think anything was more popular than Google.”

Not only does Twitter not advertise it doesn’t even have any PR representation to generate this media … .

This is truly the power of Social Media to build Word of Mouth and rapidly develop a Tribe of Evangelists and Followers.

Its surely about the Brand

pontingWhen I see images of the Australian Cricket Captain – Ricky Ponting – in his faded, worn out, sweat/beer/champagne-stained, out-of-shape cricket cap I wonder about the brand of Cricket.

I understand the game is more about tradition than brand and I understand that Ponting wants to pursue a tradition of pride and worship of the Baggy Green (as the cap is known) but as a marketer I wonder about the impact on the brand.

Sure its great that the players (not all of them) who earn well in excess of $1million a year see this tradition as some symbol of loyalty and passion for playing for their country.

And I am sure the cricket aficionados steeped in the traditions of the game revel in this ongoing perpetuation in the notion that you only ever wear one cap through your career.

Thanks goodness that notion does not carry through to other items of apparel!!

But surely when the vast majority of the public (esp Aussies) see that beaten up cap with its faded Australian coat of arms they take little pride in it.

For those that don’t understand the tradition it appears that Cricket in Australia is in a pallous state and can no longer outfit its players appropriately.

So for newcomers who want to support and help develop the brand surely its time to put this tradition to one side.

As an old sports coach of mine once said to me – even if you can’t play the game at least look like you can by turning out in the appropriate gear and look the part. Obviously Ricky Ponting can play the game and as such feels such advice does not apply to him.

Surely the brand of Australian Cricket deserves better and the image of Australia on the sporting field deserves players wearing the brand of Australia to provide a better example.

It was good to hear on a radio interview that not all Australian players past and present don’t agree with Ponting and many share my opinion!!

The Game, The Brand and The Country should come well before a personal traditional view ….once again I don’t get it … but then again there is much about cricket that I don’t get.

But that’s another story for another day!!

Sponsorship 2.0 is the way for Australian Sport

AdvertiserAs a sports fan who loves a drink I could hardly resist the Banner Headline that screamed for my attention in today’s daily. On reading I quickly learn it’s doom and gloom.

AUSTRALIA’S premier sporting codes are under threat of losing up to $300 million a year in alcohol sponsorship.

But why is Sports promoting alcohol anyway and why has it not used its power to attract the myriad of corporates who want to attract people to join their Tribe and don’t have an unhealthy message.

Because I suspect they don’t get it .

After watching sport on TV on the weekend I decided to start on a paper on the future of Sponsorship, because it appears that Australian sport has not moved with the times. I see a fortune spent by BBX on elcetronic fence signage and across the front of the Port Adelaide AFL team’s coaching box … but they don’t tell me who they are and what they do.

I see a small Adelaide recruitment company, lets call them XYZ, who sponsor a local football team who were playing in the TV match of the day. And across the back of all of the players jumpers I see XYZ and once again I am expected to guess who they are and what they do. Even on the company’s website there is no mention of the sponsorship … I guess the boss likes the team so the sponsorship is philanthropy not business development. And clearly with some planning it could be both!

The addition of a web address below the letters/logos in both cases could fix the problem . If I was at the game I could look them up on my mobile by accessing their site or at home while watching TV I could go to my PC at half time … instead of watching ads.

It was interesting to note that signage at the test cricket from Cardiff had a very strong focus on web address and relevance. The glass in front of the players box displayed the web address of a glass manufacturer … Pleased to see it didn’t say proudly sponsored by.

Firstly if you aren’t proud why sponsor and secondly if a company name is displayed in such a way everyone clearly knows it’s a form of sponsorship … so why state the bleeding obvious.

All of this lead me to researching how sports were using Web 2.0 and Social Media to grow income (esp overseas). I was pleased to see that Sponsorship 2.0 is alive and well!! VODW Marketing company who predicts Sport Sponsorship worldwide to double or triple in the next few years has produced a significant report on the why and how of Sponsorship 2.0. The report by Roger Peverelli and Reggy de Frinks provides some good background and guidelines that sport should be embracing.

I am now in the process of developing my own guide for sports in Australia particularly focusing on how they can use Social Media Marketing to grow their income very significantly. Our Grumpy Old Managers Guide to Social Media Marketing covers the general principles but now we want to provide Sports/Charities with some specific guidelines as we are doing for a few industry segments.

The future is very much about building business for their Corporate supporters and not just building brands as it was in the past. So instead of bemoaning the loss of the booze money it’s time to embrace new ways and unleash opportunities as yet unheard of by leveraging their brand and their tribe of supporters … and linking sponsors to the right messages and the right means of reaching the consumers!

It’s the Law 2.0

lawyersAs we have completed The Grumpy Old Managers Guide to Social Media Marketing we have looked at how the tools of Web 2.0 can be applied to a variety of professions, industries, jobs. Our aim is to provide some good case studies to give our clients some ideas to kick start their specific Social Media Marketing plans.

The legal profession was one that took our interest so we headed to LinkedIn to do some research. We found over 200,000 lawyers are using LinkedIn to some degree. There are also a number of groups on LinkedIn specifically for lawyers to exchange info and learn from each other.

So like many other professions the legal profession is embracing LinkedIn. Some of the benefits being gained include:

  • Increasing traffic to their websites;
  • Improving their ranking in Google searches;
  • Researching potential partners or competitors or opposing lawyers or potential clients;
  • Researching potential jurors;
  • Keeping up to date with peers;
  • Building their professional network;
  • Researching/headhunting potential new staff/graduates;

So there are many benefits to be had and some very specific to the profession that open up via access to the vast amount of information available on Web 2.0 sites.

Clearly lawyers can’t and many aren’t ignoring Social Media. But like others they will find that these sites only work if they are prepared to invest time and effort to learn how best to apply the benefits to their specific situation. A great place to find more about LinkedIn and lawyers is at the Worlds Largest LinkedIn Lawyers Network.

Twitter – Does Traditional Media Get It?

Three items I saw in The Sunday Mail and on 60 Minutes TV Current Affairs show raised my interest in the traditional media’s use and treatment of Twitter.

Constantly the media talks it up but rarely shows any real understanding of Social Media and Twitter’s positioning within it. Hence at best it fuels Twitter’s short term growth by raising curiosity but rarely explains the why and the benefits of fully utilising it and the other tools.

A classic example was a full page story on Adelaide’s three most followed Twitterers by Olivia Watson in The Sunday Mail. The first thing I did this morning (24 hours after I read the article) was check to see if Olivia was on Twitter … not surprisingly she was not. Obviously she was not impressed by her own article!!

Next I checked the number of followers that 2 of the 3 listed in the story had gained in 24 hours. One had gone up by 500 to 10,023 and the other by 68 to 8858. So it appears the story did nosixty minutest impress many readers of the only Sunday paper in Adelaide (pop. 1 million).

One thing that impressed me in the article was that the second most popular AFL team in Adelaide has 429 Followers … over 200 less than me!! Maybe because they are hard to find! After several search attempts on Twitter I gave up.

The article seems to have failed to hit the mark as have so many in mainstream media as it did not talk clearly about why you would Twitter and the real benefits. Better make sure that Olivia gets a copy of the Grumpy Old Mangers Guide to Social Media so she can do a relevant follow up story.

The next item in The Mail to take my eye was a gossip piece on one of the judges, Todd McKenney, on Dancing With the Stars headlined “So I like Twitter get over it.” The article says the Channel 7 bosses are not happy with his mid-show “twitterings”.

But Todd says, “I like the concept of making the show interactive. I like to know what viewers are thinking.” Exactly!! Todd McKenney gets it but the Grumpy Old Managers at Channel 7 clearly don’t.

Better send a copy of the Grumpy Old Mangers Guide to Social Media to the Exec Producer.

Perhaps Channel 7 wants us watching the boring ads (that don’t work) instead of interacting and becoming more closely linked to the show … building a Tribe of supporters perhaps??

Then finally watching 60 Minutes at last I saw traditional media people (producers) that do get Twitter. They are encouraging followers heavily and as a result extending the life of the show over the week by seeking to interact with their audience. Building a Tribe … a source of feedback and stories. They are prepared to listen not just look at the ratings numbers!

Plaxo is not Unyk

UnykLogo2008In my last post I quoted Shelly Palmer as saying “So the Internet allows you to create value quickly, but direct translation into wealth is astoundingly elusive to most people.”

This reminded me of an email I received last week from Plaxo. I have been using Plaxo for over two years to provide among other things a free back up of my Outlook contacts. Since I have been using LinkedIn I have not used it to build my network as I had but all the same a very useful free tool.

But now Plaxo plan to charge for the features I use most. They have offered a free month trial of this version which also includes other interesting features. But before I could sign on for the trail I received an invite to join UNYK a free service (can’t be that new – more than 15 million users and 784, 867, 362 contacts managed) that provides all the features that Plaxo offered plus the ability to sync with my mobile … and much more.

As such I have installed UNYK and ignored the offer from Plaxo. I guess that tells me two things – I am a typical Net user … I expect everything for nothing … and the moment one company has a model in place to make money someone comes along and offers what they have invested money and time in for nothing.

So yes it is astoundingly difficult to make money developing tools and services for the online market (like me!!) … but harnessing those tools to build a Tribe of support is where the profits are to be found.

Once I have used UNYK for a while I will provide my views but in the meantime give it a go … it looks good!!