In the comedy series the Rise and Fall of Reginald Perrin his boss CJ of " I didn't get where I am today..." fame, had two telephones on his desk.
He would pompously announce when answering on which he was answering " CJ on red" or "CJ on Green".
Nowadays many sales and marketing people like CJ have two phones but mobiles ( e.g. A blackberry and a smart phone)
On the desks of some captains of the profession we are now seeing a second computer screen - not for following share prices or the financial news but a screen dedicated to following social media in real time.
Sellers and marketers have become increasingly voyeuristic and posssibly even narcisistic when it comes to social media monitoring and listening to the crowd talking about our brands.
The London Evening Standard's Gideon Spanier ran an interesting story on Social media marketing on Monday 24th Oct. twitter address @standardcity
The volume of social media chatter measured by Peer Index http://www.peerindex.com/ who monitor key influencers on social media say they have observed companies now get 20, 30 or even 40,000 in bound messages about their brand a week. With such volumes marketers clearly need some way to segment them.
With so many consumers willing to share so much personal detail about themselves - the fact that so many have few concerns about their privacy settings-means there is a veritable goldmine of data to be harvested.
The Incorporated Society of British Advertisers (ISBA) http://www.isba.org.uk/isba/home/ survey found 72% of are now monitoring the conversations in social media about their brands. around half of these firms are using the systems offered by the monitoring agencies Brandwatch http://www.brandwatch.com/ , Radian6 http://www.radian6.com/ and Sysomos http://www.sysomos.com/ .
Consumers are spending more time rather than less on sites such a Facebook whose users are rumoured to be close to a billion.
68% of Chief marketing officers ( CMOs) feel under-prepared when it comes to IBM survey of 1700 CMOs.
Yet the challenge for many CMOs is to decide what is the purpose of their social media strategy.
Many have been seduced to accumulate lots of friends and followers and then to jump into online conversations. Yet many of the consumers who are having such conversations reagrdles to whether the brands have chosen to get involved or not.
Apparently those social media users are not keen to receive marketing messages or to buy goods and services.
What carries far more weight are recommendations from friends carry more weight.
Christian Galdwell of Human Digital advises marketers not to join but LISTEN.
Beyond mere monitoring to gain deeper insight marketers need to make long-term, pro-active strategic decisions about their brands rather than just short term knee-jerk responses to the latest reputation crisis.
Facebook, Twitter and the rest should be used less of a communication channel and more as tools for marketing research and insight and customer relation tools.
Spanier surmises that it is only a matter of time before mobile payment catches up with the rise of smart phones. "The social media revolution has a long way to run"
Engaging social media