CEOs and social media...it's not a pretty mix. Did you know that in 2012 only 16 percent of CEOs were actively participating in social media? Three years 80 percent of CEOs are now engaged in social media.
My experience is that most CEOs still feel that social media is silly stuff, not the stuff of serious business. When I read the thoughts a of friend, Don Sandler a professional writer in the financial services industry, I found it both helpful and interesting. Enjoy Don's thoughts below or follow the link to his blog. He is a great writer.
Ok CEO's consider this! If you do NOT participate, you are now a marketplace laggard! If you want help thinking through how to "do" social media with an intent of profit, give me a shout.
Social Media Marketing: Living Up to the Hype
When I'm wrong about something, I'll usually admit it. OK, my wife and daughter might dispute this - so let's just say that when I'm wrong about something related to my business or industry, I'll usually admit it.
So I have to admit that when it comes to social media marketing, I might have underestimated the power of this relatively new medium. Based on what I'm seeing, social media marketing very well might actually live up to all the hype that digital marketers have been giving it the past couple of years.
When I wrote about social media marketing in my newsletter a year and a half ago, I confessed that I'm not a big social media guy. It took me a long time to join the 1.5 billion other people worldwide who are on Facebook, and I still don't engage on other social media platforms - like Twitter, Instagram, Pintrest and Tumblr - except for LinkedIn.
How Personal Experiences Changed My Thinking
But my personal experiences on Facebook recently have shown me first-hand the potential power of social media as a sales and marketing tool. Here are two quick examples:
Last fall I started noticing Facebook ads for a new gym, Crunch Fitness, that was going to be opening near my house. I was interested in joining because I'd been going to my old gym for over 6 years and was getting kinda bored. Crunch used Facebook to promote their grand opening, publicize pre-opening deals, and even answer people's questions. I joined and told the manager how effective their targeted Facebook advertising was.
About the same time, a new local record store's ads and posts also started popping up on my Facebook news feed. So my daughter and I went to check it out loved the store, Comeback Vinyl - it's owned by a mom and her son who love vinyl records and decided to open their own store. Now we stop in regularly and never leave without buying an album, book, poster or the like.
Would I have even heard of these new businesses - much less visited them and become a regular customer - if I hadn't seen them on Facebook? I suppose I might have driven past them, though neither is on routes I usually drive or has a very visible street presence. And I might have seen a newspaper or TV ad if they'd gone this route, though I'd guess these are much more expensive.
Plus, their social media presence enabled the gym and the record store to regular interact online with their customers and prospects. The gym posted updates and pictures every day about the progress of their renovation, building interest and excitement, and the record store regularly posts links to interesting articles about music and bands. There's also the ability to do local targeting on Facebook - the gym and record store are both fairly close to where I live.
CEOs Are Jumping On Board
In 2012, Forbes.com ran an article titled "Why CEOs Should Care: How Social Media Drives Business." The article noted that a survey of CEOs worldwide found that only 16 percent of them were actively participating in social media. However, it predicted that this percentage would grow to 57 percent within five years.
Fast forward three years later and according a Forbes.com article published last May, 80 percent of CEOs are now engaged in social media. This was a significantly higher percentage than the magazine predicted in about half the time it originally anticipated. This indicates that business leaders, while slow to embrace social media at first, are now jumping on board along with everybody else.
5 Social Media Marketing Tips
If you are planning to launch a social media marketing campaign - or if you have a campaign but would like to improve your results - here are 5 ideas from social media marketing pros, as complied by Social Media Examiner: