The trend towards the heavy use of social technologies in undeniable. More and more home builders are realizing the opportunity to build relationships with their prospects sooner, and save money on marketing at the same time. However, the world of social media is a big leap for the new user. There's lots of new tools, rules, and slang to confuse those who're not sure where to start.
For this reason, I put together a thorough overview defining social technologies, how they're changing consumer behavior and expectations, and why its important for companies to use the tools available to them.
The following is an excerpt from the free Social Media White Paper available for download.
It's rare that I speak to an organization who believes they "got in the game" too early when discussing their Internet initiatives. Most often, after seeing the impact the Internet has had on commerce, companies look at history and see missed opportunities to grow faster, and edge out their competition.
Do you ever wish your organization was a little quicker to embrace the power of the Internet as a customer service and marketing tool? Ever feel like your company was behind the curve? The next generation of tools are creating new opportunities, just as having a traditional Internet presence did for businesses a decade ago.
It's truly not possible to speak of a comprehensive web strategy in 2009 without discussing social media and social networking. The Internet is evolving and these new technologies are undoubtedly changing consumer behavior. This changing behavior impacts how people shop and make buying decisions. Organizations that embrace these new tools early on can gain a competitive advantage.
The social web is exactly as the word describes it - social. So throughout this paper, I will use examples comparing online social interactions to offl ine social interactions to help demonstrate how the behaviors parallel one another.
Social Media and Social Networking are the primary technologies that have been changing the face of the Internet into what is popularly described as "Web 2.0". The Internet as we know it has grown so much; sometimes it's hard to believe we're only a Web 2.0. So, what's so special about now?
Until recently, the majority of the Internet was a very one-way conversation. Like traditional books, just in electronic format, the Internet was speaking at its readers. There were limited opportunities for the visitors to these websites to have an immediate impact on the message. There were opportunities to share something noteworthy with your friends through the "email this" links, or even emailing a page to someone. However, consider that these conversations occurred in a tunnel. Emails you send go straight from you to the recipient(s). No other visitor to that website will receive the benefit of your insight or your witty joke.
You had two choices to share your voice in Web 1.0 - You could have your own website or you could send emails to those you thought may want to hear what you had to say. While more than possible, it's not quite practical for everyone to learn to build websites, or to hire a web designer to build one for them. Email is a great tool, but what if an old contact changed their email address? And it's a bit awkward to fi ll your friends Inboxes with everything on the Internet you fi nd interesting, no?
The social web is creating a space that enables every person with even the most limited understanding of basic computer functions to become a publisher. Waves of new tools have given every Internet user a microphone if they so chose to use it. Social networking tools enable their users to stay connected, without email, to share as much or as little as they want, and enable each users' contacts to hear as much or as little from them as they choose.
|To download the complete White Paper (18 pages of Social Media goodness), please visit www.escapadeoneil.com. Its free and priceless at the same time.|
Dennis O'Neil is a partner in Escapade ONeil Media Group, a full-service marketing and advertising firm representing home builders, and leads ONeil Interactive LLC, an marketing strategy company for the new home industry. Dennis specializes in targeted and measurable marketing using experience in both the technical fields and new home sales and marketing.
You can follow Dennis at http://twitter.com/dennisoneil