Your Marketing: What You Need to Know for 2012

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What are you doing? Do you have a plan for 2012? Where do you need to focus your marketing efforts?

The world is changing with technology, and you need to keep pace, but it’s important to maintain realistic expectations of Social Media and other Internet-based marketing tools. They aren’t necessarily silver bullets, but they are still powerful ammunition you need to have in your belt. Traditional media (Radio, Print, direct mail, etc.) will continue to play an important role in the Central Oregon marketplace, but your BEST bet is a balanced coordination of traditional “push” marketing and today’s “opt-in” marketing that plays to the strengths of each. Here are a few marketing tips to help you make the most of 2012:

Mind Your Message

“Social media in particular is opt-in and holds brands/people accountable and puts a burden on the message to be intelligent, interesting and say something that matters. Brands must honestly evaluate if they can hold their own with a non-captive audience, or if they should stick to traditional TV/radio/billboard mediums.” Ryan Hart, Million Dollar Earth

Engage Your Audience Across Multiple Platforms

“Engagement is going to be a key performance indicator and main focus point with so many platforms that users can “belong to.” Brands will have to engage users in different, fresh ways to sustain them. Google+ will be launching brand pages at some point, and that will force brands to refocus social efforts and designate which platforms support their initiatives. Companies will need to create one universal social strategy for multiple platforms that will serve a core marketing purpose.” Andria Trivison, Digital Marketing.

Monitor, Measure and Respond (Quickly)

“The view many companies have of social media is going to shift in 2012 from focusing on content creation and publication to monitoring and measuring response…Companies will begin to focus on engaging with customers and prospects in social media with nearly real-time response and companies will begin to look for quality partners who can provide credible labor to convert leads.” Jenny Vance, LeadJen

Change The Way You Interact

“The convergence of mobile, social, local and email is forcing marketers to change the way they interact with customers and prospects to ensure that they are where their customers and prospects are, all the time. In 2012 and beyond, savvy marketers will need to cross promote between all channels—growing an email database through social and mobile, for example. Campaigns centered around sharing will also be critical; creating content that is share worthy and delivering strong calls to action at a point that makes sense rather than asking people to share something before they consume it will encourage sharing. Drive Twitter followers to your blog with teaser tweets, blog about exclusive [Facebook] promotions and use email to grow followers, fans or explain the benefits of a local check-in program—integrating social efforts wherever possible is key.” Loren McDonald, Silverpop

Drive Sales With Smart Strategies and Tactics

“2012 will be a transformational year for how social media is leveraged by brands to reach prospects, with the focus shifting from awareness building to driving sales and revenue. For last two years we’ve seen brand marketers leverage social media as a platform to build awareness for their brands, establish an identity with their customers online and drive eyeballs to their social media pages. Going forward we believe brands will focus more on leveraging social media to increase transactional behavior from prospects. More interactive strategies and direct engagement tactics will be implemented to usher in this change, such as behavioral targeting, social gaming, rewards for action/referrals, coupons and more.” Uzair Dada, Iron Horse

How is your marketing going? What are your challenges, and what has succeeded? I would like to hear from you, and if you would like to know more about these marketing principles, please feel free to contact me. I enjoy helping business owners in any way I can, and plan to hold free workshops and webinars on these and other topics in the future. Send me an email to let me know which topics you’re interested in.

Kelly Walker is President and Brand Communications Director for Incyte Marketing in Bend. For more information: Kelly@incytemarketing.com.

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