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The growing importance of social media for business

Posted 07/10/10 by David Web, Social, Brand & Design Permalink

The growing importance of social media for business

Social media is still in it’s infancy but companies are now slowly beginning to take this form of communication seriously. 

A recent article on The Drum - Surge in ‘Twitter consultant’ jobs as businesses embrace social media confirms this trend, stating over a 300% year on year rise in social media experts being hired by companies. 

This trend is further examined by a BBC report - Why companies watch your every Facebook, YouTube, Twitter move.  This article beings with the example of Canadian musician Dave Carroll who after 9 months of complaining to United Airlines for damaging his guitar decided to make a  music video and post it to YouTube.  The video was a huge viral success with over 5 million hits in only a few weeks.  This left United with a huge customer relations problem as it prompted thousands of other unhappy customers to voice their complaints.

Companies are now using advanced software tools to analyse social media trends and are attempting to gauge the online feelings towards their brand.  A number of examples are given including Alterian whose social media database currently contains about 9 billion postings and is growing by around 50 million every day.

The article continues with a number of successful examples of how companies use social media as a key marketing tool and how this is quickly overtaking more traditional newsletter based approaches.

Some of our clients are taking advantage of this new communication method.  Head of cult brewery BrewDog - @BrewDogJames uses a wide range of tools including – Twitter, YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook and Flickr to promote his brand, often using viral marketing to encourage interaction and gain both valuable feedback and sales.

Award winning designer - @johannabasford is another client who uses Twitter extensively to engage with prospective clients and the design community at large.  Her embracing of this tool naturally led to the production of her TwitterPicture prints based on suggestions from her follower’s tweets.  This innovative idea resulted in a product generated by social media that could then be purchased by the very community that designed it.

These examples show how social media can help a business improve both its targeted marketing and also its customer relations in both a creative and innovative way.  With many companies now getting onboard can you afford to be left behind?

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