Social Networks: Positive or Negative

Have you thought about your personal reaction and attitude as you spend minute after minute scrolling through your Facebook timeline?  I often feel as if I go through a roller coaster of emotions Facebook and Instagramlooking through my timeline.  Happiness fills my heart when I see pictures of family and friends.  However, my timeline is also filled with political memes, negative comments and other information I don’t care to see. By the time I am finished, I am usually more annoyed than happy.

Recently, in a meeting we discussed the difference between Instagram and Facebook. Besides the obvious differences between the social networks, we simply came to the conclusion that Instagram is the happier social network. Now don’t get me wrong, negativity does exist on Instagram, but to us, it doesn’t seem to be as in your face.

Instagram recently made changes to their comment filter which helps eliminate even more of the negativity that does exist.  For more information on their recent changes read the full article here.

So what do you think, is Instagram or Facebook the happier of the social networks?

How Much Does Digital Marketing Cost?

If you’re like most people, your eyes likely just scanned the page in search of numbers. Now that you’ve seen them, do they make any sense? Probably not without a little explanation.

Let’s start over.

Digital marketing, like marketing in general, requires a wide range of investment dollars depending on a number of factors. The main question is, what is the goal?

“Make money!” you say. Okay, fair enough. Maybe the better question is, what are the intermediate goals between where you are and where you want to end up?

Goal #1: Retain customers with improved service. If you are suffering from customer attrition because of staffing issues your primary goal might be to attract better talent before you refocus on sales.

  • Scenario 1: High stress environment with high turnover. You will need an ongoing campaign to continue filling your staffing pipeline.
  • Scenario 2: Complex work requirements. You will need to make resources available online and use SEO (search engine optimization) to lead them there.

Goal #2: Increase familiarity with your brand through dialogue. If you sell an unknown or expensive product or service, your primary goal might be to encourage engagement.

  • Scenario 1: New business. You may want to use social media to invite the public to special events.
  • Scenario 2: Wide variety of target demographics. Consider how many social media platforms you need to utilize to reach each group.

Goal #3: Educate the public. If you are a for-profit or nonprofit service provider that contributes to public well-being, you may need to bring issues to the public’s attention.

  • Scenario 1: Target audience prefers more traditional communication. You may need to consider incorporating e-mail marketing into your digital mix.
  • Scenario 2: Battling misinformation from competitors that damages your industry. A digital group space may be an effective strategy for addressing concerns as a thought leader.

These scenarios really just scratch the surface of potential digital marketing needs. Solutions may involve a website build, site maintenance, management of multiple social media platforms, e-newsletter distribution, etc. Or it may only require a few Facebook posts per week.

For Generation Z, Authenticity is King

Generation Z, the oldest of whom are about to enter their 20s, have grown up using social media. Today’s teens are interacting with everyone and everything via social media as naturally as members of older generations speak face to face. Social media isn’t something separate from other parts of life to them. It’s not “getting online” – it’s just looking, hearing, talking.

This generation is determined to make social media an equal playing field, where they can express their ideas and make waves as easily as corporations can. They come to these platforms to make statements about their identity; they use Instagram to be artistic, Twitter to be in the know, Facebook to be altruistic. Identity is their capital and they expect brands to speak the same language.

Marketing to Gen Z via social media (which is a must, because it’s where they live) means moving beyond traditional advertising messages. They won’t be impressed by how long you’ve been in business – that might just mean your ideas are outdated. They won’t care about how many customers you serve – they believe they can figure out a more efficient way to serve people themselves.

Today’s teens care more about who you are than what you do. Are you passionate about what you do? Are you a fun brand? Are you serious? What purpose do you serve? If they don’t know, Gen Z may just tell you to step aside so someone with a personality can take your place. If they see nothing to follow as customers, they’ll lead, as startups plotting to steal your market share.

To reach Gen Z, take a break from selling your product to start selling yourself. Be real. Reveal your passions, the way you think and the ways you’re impacting your community. The up and coming generation is asking why they should trust you and accept you as a leader in your field. Be sure to answer the question before they answer it for themselves.