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Social Media Marketing
 
Social networking and social media marketing has seen increasing amounts of hype over the past couple years. The web is becoming a more social environment, and new tools allow users to connect in a way previously unheard of. Therefore the questions are: where does the hype and reality about social media marketing separate? And, how can social media marketing help your Organization?

According to a recently released study by Opinion Research Corporation for Cone, a brand marketer that counts social networking among its capabilities, nearly 60% of Americans who use social media interact with companies on social-media Web sites.

This new data comes on the heels of a Vovici Corporation study on behalf of Internet Retailer that found that nearly four out of 10 online merchants surveyed said they used social networks, with nearly one-third of respondents maintaining a Facebook presence and 25% each using MySpace and YouTube.

It is first important to explain what social media marketing is not about. It is not having a blog or having a Digg and Blogger icon on every page of your website. It is not about creating  a Facebook Page or Twitter account and then never using them – as this would be the same as installing phone lines for phone numbers you never give out, connected to phones that you never answer. These things alone do not help your company take advantage of social media.

When approaching social media, you first need to clearly define the success metrics you will use for the duration of the campaign before executing the strategy.

These success metrics will help you to understand where the return on investment will come from before investing your marketing budget in nurturing and supporting a new business community, paying for the production and development of online videos, product demonstrations, or even the cost of developing a corporate blog.

Without pre-defining metrics at the planning stage, you cannot feedback and refine strategies that could have an overall impact on the success of activity that will help shape future campaigns.

For example; if you are developing a strategy based on Twitter, your success metrics could be:

1. Quantitative: increased traffic to your website, number of sales leads, savings on customer relationship management, reduction in call centre costs, recruitment of new staff.
2. Qualitative: engagement with customers, types of communication, quality of followers, market research and feedback.

Social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, communities, blogs, podcasts and videos have many ways of contributing value.

Setting success metrics in the planning stage will help you identify the value social media can offer your business, at the same time as helping you measure the success and demonstrate the benefits of activity to your organization.

Social media marketing is about expanding your online presence beyond your website, and turning customers into evangelist. It is about fostering a community around the people who use or who are interested in your product, and letting your brand become synonymous with that industry.
 
Your social media presence and your website should integrate into one message and one brand. TNI Technology is highly experienced in this area. From custom Facebook applications and integration, to implementing a URL strategy and design concepts for Twitter and Facebook. In addition we can train your employees how to effectively tweet, to coming up with strategies that can open an entire new market through social networks.

 
TNI Technology provides a cost-effective social media management solution that promotes you and your brand, get talking, and keep it real while keeping the process under control. Our services include:

By reviewing your site, TNI Directory will identify the trouble spots and recommend how to optimize your site in order that it can be properly indexed by the search engines. This may involve as little work as modifying the text on your page(s), to a full website content review. Our consultants will provide the data depicting the requirements for the best results, and based on your budget we will develop a balanced plan.
 
• Using the latest monitoring tools to sweep and continually monitor the online conversation

• Identify key influencers

• Establish an authentic voice

• Compose fully formatted posts for all major social platforms – posts you approve, revise or reject at the push of a button

• Develop and share interesting, brand-relevant topics of conversation

• Crowd sourcing

• Build a following and build your brand
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