Inbound marketing channels provide opportunities for interactions between consumers and brands. These interactions can grow into relationships if given proper care and feeding.
The Thoughtlead group has been running a series of interviews with industry experts on the future of marketing. Here is what Paul McNulty, CMO of Unica had to say.
If I had one tip, I'd say that marketers of the world should engage in true interactive marketing. By interactive marketing I'm not referring to websites or online marketing. I'm referring to engaging each customer and prospect in a relevant cross-channel dialogue that builds upon their past and current behavior. When I'm talking about channels, I'm referring to traditional outbound channels, like direct mail and email, as well as inbound channels, like websites, call centers, and social media. To do this you need to break down the data and execution silos in your company, and embrace technology that allows you to interact seamlessly with your customers and prospects across all channels in real-time.
To be successful, interactive marketing must lead with the relationships. Not the ads. Not the commercials. Not the latest new thing from their respective company. Todd Defren, Principal at SHIFT Communications, was also interviewed for a 60 second blurb on the future in marketing series on Thoughtlead. He was asked to speak to the problem of customers not reading social media content. He underscored the importance of taking a relationship-centric approach to communication.
What the social media channels have in common is the emphasis on conversations and relationships. Twitter, as most of us have experienced, can be used ineffectually. For a fun take on this side of Tweeting, watch this video called Twouble with Twitters on Current TV's SuperNews!
We Like Tweeting - We Like Peeps
Twitter is the most frequently used of the social media channels, so it must do something more than annoy or inform. Twitter is a source of fulfillment for our residual sense of tribal community. Ma highlighted how Twittering meets the love/belonging and self-esteem needs described by Abraham Maslow in 1943. Maslow's work, Hierarchy of Needs: The Five Levels of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs was based on his theories of human motivation. There is ample evidence that people are motivated by their social media interactions. The new Twitter user interface is designed to enhance those interactions within our respective communities all the more.
Twitter is Tops for Social Media Marketing
Michael Stelzner, founder and publisher of the Social Media Examiner, released the 2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report. The report illustrates the popularity of Twitter with interactive marketers.
Twitter is used by 96% of marketers who have been employing social media for years, followed closely by Facebook. 93% of marketers are using Twitter and 71% plan on increasing their use of the network to further their marketing objectives. 85% of large businesses will be increasing their Twitter activities.
With interactive marketing embracing Twitter and other forms of social media, attention increasingly turns toward performance. Stelzner reported on the top questions asked by marketers.
Top three questions marketers want answered: (1) How do I measure social media return on investment? (2) What are the social media best practices? and (3) How do I best manage my time with social media?For details on how to measure Twitter marketing impact, see the About.com article Twitter: How to Measure the Buzz.