2012: Social Media Marketing Trends (by Jeff Rozic)

Here are three important trends to bank on in 2012:

Go Mobile: Mobile continues to be adopted heavily as a research and purchasing tool by savvy consumers, accounting for 14% of all Black Friday traffic by some reports. Marketers should view it as a core tenet of 2012 planning. Stay ahead of the curve in 2012 and interact with your on-the-go audience in fun and unique ways. Utilize check-ins, instant offers or coupons to engage your audience in real-time. Think about using QR codes, which are underused and often misunderstood; when used properly they can help drive consumer behavior and can be a great compliment to a promotion such as a sweepstakes. Go beyond the web and reach customers in person or through print ads that utilize QR codes to drive consumers to your website, social channels, or a dedicated microsite.

Go Cross-Platform: Cross-channel promotions are becoming more essential than ever, as Google+ and other platforms continue to grow in popularity and cater to different user types and behaviors. The most social brands on the web are already experimenting with Google+ to find ways to authentically interact with their audience on this emerging platform. Google already announced that promotions cannot be hosted on the social network, surprising many brands that look to promotions to grow their audiences and interact with their fans. Instead, brands can use dedicated microsites, promoted and linked from their Google+ pages like they already do with Twitter sweepstakes, as the hub of a promotion geared toward their Google+ audiences. Microsites are the perfect way to allow engagement for users from their preferred networks, while controlling the visual branding, sharing tools and features.

Get In the Cloud: You know about the cloud, but you thought it was just for storage, security or distributed processing? It’s time to take your marketing into the cloud, too. Proactive brand marketers, already investing resources to engage audiences across social channels, think of their marketing as an always-on service targeted across a vast network of consumers, rather than a series of one-off campaigns and promotions. They use technology partners to deliver on-demand marketing utilities, ranging from promotions to branded apps to powerful back-end management and metrics dashboard.

You can start integrating the cloud by licensing a Software-as-a-Service tool (such as the Votigo Platform for creating audience engaging apps across all social platforms) or by tapping into a powerful API which your own developers can use to build out the social marketing apps that your need to take your audience to the next level.

Found on: Socialmedia.com

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