The power of social media

Prior to starting on my new vocation, I did a lot of personal study on website marketing with the intention of applying these principles to my personal website. However with an average of 5 views a day, there really isn’t much to work on. To be fair to the authors of these very good books, the main problem rested with the inactivity of the webmaster herself.

However in my present portfolio, I am actually paid to study these things and apply them! We have a website that already generates about 1 million views per month as well as a Facebook presence which has thus far garnered 15,000+ fans.

I was assigned to engage fans on the various social networking platforms which initially scared me. It was quite impossible to separate the voice of the person administering the content and the organisation he/she represents, which in my case is the government. How could I engage members in a personable way while watching what I say so as not to project the wrong messages? 

I have just completed reading ‘The New Rules of Marketing & PR’ by David Meerman Scott. It is an easy read as he uses his blog voice in his writings. I like the way he espouses the use of various digital media – blogs, social networking tools, new releases, pod/vodcasting to reach buyers directly. The focus is on delivering free and useful content that helps our buyers make good decisions whether to purchase a product, or tosupport a cause. He emphasised the importance of these digital mediums in our buyers’ everyday lives, helping readers to generate their own ideas, instead of instructing on detailed search engine marketing tips.

Following an inspiration from the book, I experimented with posting photos of the recently concluded seminar on the night of the event (Saturday) itself on Facebook. The pictures were not taken by our professional photographer but a colleague and some from my mobile. So much for projecting a good image. But what really got me thinking was when our official website needed photo updates come Monday.

Our vendor had failed to provide us the official photographs so by the time we actually got them out to our parent organisation to be published, it was already a week after the event. While respecting the need for professionalism and image, I wonder if information could be distributed in a more efficient manner? And that’s probably the power of social media where one can afford to be slightly less formal and restrictive.

I am beginning to slowly embrace the use of Twitter as an interesting way to gather happenings around the web quickly. And blogs are an excellent way to hear what people really think about current affairs. Things you don’t always hear on the traditional media.

Having said that, since starting work I make it to MRT stations early enough to get my copy of My Paper and Today. After reading a few of both, I have decided that Today’s publication is really more superior. I like their comments and analysis section written by prominent contributors around the world who are not afraid to write their in-depth and honest opinions. It is such analysis that makes reading news worthwhile.

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