Yesterday was the 2nd annual Social Media Day, and for all of us in the social media marketing field it’s nice to have that recognition. I (personally) spend the majority of my life in Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and writing blogs so it was nice to actually get out from behind the computer and be social!
This year we held our get together at Uno Mas in Mount Pleasant, keeping to our Mexican food theme (last year was at Taco Boy)! We had a great turnout, great food and even better happyritas!
Thank you to all those who came and a big thanks to Dine with Sal and everyone at Uno Mas for hosting the party! Here at Step Ahead we’re already looking forward to next year.
*** For more pictures visit our Tumblr account!
Is Foursquare going the way of Friendster or do you think it has some staying power?
In this Social Moms post, I review my personal “check in fatigue” and what gave me renewed enthusiasm for Foursquare.
Lyn spoke for a second time with Mike Switzer, host of the daily South Carolina Business Review radio show on South Carolina public radio, about the latest trends in social media and reassured businesses they can be profitable with the right approach to social media. Listen to the 10- minute interview.
Social media is a powerful tool for business that’s transforming how restaurants market to their customers and increase foot traffic on a daily basis. Scott Wise, president and CEO of A Pots & Pans Production, which manages seven restaurants in Indiana, has increased event attendance by 400% with the use of Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and email blasts in just a year!
Scott, who is known for his entertaining personality on Twitter, jumped on the social media bandwagon long before it was the cool thing to do, starting with MySpace and email blasts. He’s a big proponent of Foursquare, and has run some pretty outrageous promotions, attracting a lot of attention. One of our favorites was renting a boat to set next to one of his restaurant locations, tagging the location as “boat” on Foursquare and then inviting people to come get their boat badge! Some other favorites include a contest inviting people to post a picture of themselves sticking their tongues to a pole like the movie “A Christmas Story” and also inviting them to jump into Indy’s White River Canal and get a photo.
Read more from Scott to find out how one businessman who truly gets social media has used these tools successfully.
What is your job/company/profession/title?
President/CEO, A Pots & Pans Production – the management company that runs our three concepts (7 restaurants): Scotty’s Brewhouse, Scotty’s Lakehouse and Thr3e Wise Men Brewing Co.
My job: the details – making sure every food item, drink item, atmosphere and marketing promotion has my approval. I work on the marketing campaigns. And, I’m the Director of “Motivation, Morale, Inspiration & Company Growth”
What was the first social media technology you used?
Don’t laugh… MySpace. Back when MySpace was Facebook and Facebook was only for college kids.I’ve also been using emarketing blasts the longest – probably eight years or more. We have collected about 33,000 email addresses and still hold contests with our staff to get the most comment cards filled out by guests, but they are only valid with an email address that allows us to enter them into our database. We send weekly campaigns.
What is your favorite social media tool?
I think it is a combination of Facebook and Twitter. Twitter is great for quick conversations and I can take care of problems, comments and questions a guest has and usually influence an immediate purchase or take care of a complaint on the spot. I think to use social media properly, you must use all the big three to fully reach your clientele: Twitter, Facebook and emarketing blasts. (I think blogs and YouTube videos are great to incorporate too.)
How have you used social media for your business/company and how has it benefited?
We have seen increases of 400% in event attendance with the use of Twitter and Facebook over just using email blasts in the past year. Foursquare is the easiest to use. It doesn’t have as much flexibility and we would love to do more with it, but it is a great form of the modern day customer loyalty card on your phone and without a key fab or card you must carry.
How much time would you say you spend a day engaging social media?
A lot. 25-30% of my day. Thank god for TweetDeck’s Tweet Scheduler. I often schedule 90% of my tweets the day before or from 6-7am.
How do you incorporate it into your day so it’s not a time waster?
See above. I try to take about five minutes every hour to see if I need to comment on any questions from guests and then move to my next task.
Is there a social media tool/technique that you think is underutilized that you would like people to know about?
I think that Google Alerts or any Twitter Alert service are both underutilized. Many people don’t take time to look up your handle and may have a bad experience they post on any one of a 1000 social networks. It is your job to scour the web and find them so you can respond. We like to know when we make mistakes: we like to fix them, educate our staff and make our customers happy. We can usually turn the worst customer experience into our most raving fan.
Where can people find you online and via social media?
Lyn: “Where We’re Headed”
This is always one of my favorite topics, as in the world of social media this is an ever-changing ever-evolving target. Certainly the two trends that emerged in 2010 that I think/hope will gain popularity in 2011 are location based tools and social buying.
Foursquare, Gowalla, SCVNGR, Yelp and the like are all tools that allow you to “check in” wherever you are via your smartphone. I think it’s an amazingly powerful marketing tool for businesses who want you to come to their location. You can offer deals to people for checking in, encouraging them to promote your business to their friends, follow them on Twitter so you capture them forever and help drive traffic to your location during slow periods. One of the best tools I’ve ever seen for driving traffic. I think as soon as the discount shoppers realize that they can cash in on special deals just by checking in, more businesses will offer deals and off it will take…
Do I need to say anymore than Google offered 6 billion to buy Groupon? That speaks volumes. However, despite that some people think this is just a trend that will die away. Do I think so? I think if this industry can keep focused on the one deal a day concept and not overload us with all kinds of different deals that dilute the offers and confuse, they’ve got a good deal going J! However, if it becomes overwhelming and cumbersome, they’re dead in the water. We’ll see…
Bailey - “It’s All About Mobile”
I hate to admit this, but my brain doesn’t work well when it comes to predictions. My hesitation in disclosing this is due to the fact that people who predict what will be next are usually the ones who create some of the most amazing technologies, companies or products. My brain wants to take concepts that are popular now and perfect them, so that’s how I’ll approach the future of social media.
It’s all about the mobile! I read recently that soon more smart phones will be bought than laptops and that made my jaw drop. Although I am surprised by this, it does make sense, as we do so much on our mobile device. We’re telling our friends where we are, making payments, playing games and downloading every app imaginable all on our mobile devices.
Mobile platforms are growing so popular that the new Apple Operating System will be app based, making our iMac or Macbooks look like our phones. My point here is that there’s so much room for growth in this mobile world, and that is our future.
All companies having a mobile website or mobile app, companies expanding their marketing campaigns to include using mobile games and all retail stores taking mobile payments is where the future is. I personally can’t wait to see what all is in store for mobile and how it affects social media!
I recently was asked to write an article for the Hoosier PRSA (Public Relations Society of America) enewsletter to help PR professionals get a better grasp of geolocation services like Foursquare, Gowalla and Facebook Places this year.
Check out my article to learn what you need to know about these tools in 2011 for marketing your business.
It’s great when social media can bring attention to social causes. Urban Ministries of Durham (N.C.) is doing just that using Foursquare.
When people in Durham check in to their favorite shops and restaurants via Foursquare, they’ll also have the option of checking in to such spots as a trash can behind the restaurant, a tent under an overpass or a trashcan in a vacant lot. Foursquare tips will highlight information about Urban Ministries of Durham.
According to an article about the campaign, people will be sharing the message about homelessness with their friends. An example: “UMD serves 220,000 meals a year. But we’d rather keep people from being hungry in the first place. Check in to raise awareness for our cause, or learn more at umdurham.org.”
I love this idea and hope to ‘check in’ (I couldn’t resist) on it in a few months to see how it’s working.
So this article got me thinking, how can other nonprofits use tools like Foursquare, Gowalla or Facebook Places to spread their mission? At Step Ahead, we help the Charleston Parks Conservancy with its Foursquare efforts. As people check in to parks they see tips about the park or upcoming events hosted by the Conservancy.
Surely there are other causes in Charleston that could benefit from Foursquare: literacy, hunger or even our city’s own efforts to curb homelessness. How would you use social media to solve a social issue? Have you seen other organizations doing this?
Are you looking to save money this holiday season? Who isn’t?! Well, don’t forget about social media as a great tool to save you some bucks on your holiday gift list.
In this week’s TwitterMoms.com post, I’ve got 7 ways you can score some deals using social media tools like blogs, Facebook, Foursquare and more. Read on!
Been ignoring Facebook Places up till now like me? Well, I hate to say it folks, but it’s now time to give it a try, and businesses, yep, you need to get with the program and set up your Facebook “Place”.
Why? It’s a little feature called Deals launched last week as an addition to Facebook Places that turns this Foursquare copy upside down and gives it an advantage.
If you’ve got the basics of social media down, but are finding that your audience has leveled off or not talking back to you, it’s time to spice things up with a contest or promotion.
Ever considered buying a blimp…. ? In my weekly TwitterMoms post, I’ve got some fun ideas to get your creative juices flowing and give your audience something to talk about!