Engagement: How We Now Do Marketing

Engagement is that really so important?

I read a blog post recently commenting on the differences of publishing and marketing in today’s new media marketing environment. And it’s a great point to make. Today’s social media marketing approach is quite different than that of simply publishing content.

And while we, as new media marketers, do a large number of ‘awareness’ campaigns, we know too that engagement is the solidifying factor; not simply the icing on the cake, but the proverbial glue that brings it all together.stick together

So, pushing pushy products without any real concern for the validity and value of a product – accordingly – has a limited shelf life as an approach to sharing your brand’s story and driving interest. Moreover, understanding a community and being (1) capable and (2) willing to engage on that very honest level is currently how it’s getting done.

If your agency, if your company is online in the networks and isn’t bolstering their campaigns and programs with genuine engagement you need a redirect. Remember people talk to other people and without trying, you may well already have a reputation online.

Keep today’s new rules for engagement in mind. Find your influencers, stay relevant, and stay engaged. As you pursue success with your own ‘engagement’ campaigns, don’t forget new opportunities do arise. Here are a few to consider.

Spring and Summer Potentials for Your Next Community Engagement Campaign

foursquare_logoGo Mobile & Get Social ~ Mobile will sweep you and your customers away this summer. While the gadgets take a beating occasionally we know they likely aren’t going anywhere soon. And now with 4G approaching and iPhone look-a-like/act-a-likes on the market the marriage of mobile and social networks continues to gain shape and evidence in our lives.

Businesses should find ways to share their unique value proposition in places where they can be found.

There are a growing number of case studiesarticles, and blog posts pointing to this potential. So, let’s get to it.

Yelp, the nifty review site, is a resource and opportunity for local and smaller businesses looking to tap the web for work. Consider yelp-logotapping into Yelp’s free business tools. And again, recognize Yelp has a collaborative, simplifying aspect that we hope to see in more of the tools and networks we use. Resources of this type have a promise and staying power that complicated systems just cannot enjoy. Choose wisely and don’t avoid building with the long-view in mind.

The need to clarify and simplify continues to go unfulfilled. Use that.

Wear-down of Networks ~ A lot of people are still looking for that one-in-all tool that can help make things online cleaner, simpler and less frantic. Businesses should be aware of the exhaustion and obscurity potentials when asking cusotmers and clients to join yet another group, page, network, or outing. Some poeple need more, most need less.

For instance, the recent announcement of Google Buzz left a lot of social media enthusiasts saying, “no more, please!” Though it’s usefulness, at least in my mind, is closely tied to it’s namesakes suite and the ability to bring regular users one step closer to Wave, Google Buzz, still represents, just that, another network.

Gist is an organization tool from a company that understands users have a need to up with contacts across multiple networks. I’ve just recently started using this service, but really like it so far. The modules that bring items including email attachments, searches for individual contacts, RSS feeds and more all together really do seem like a potential time-saver and advantage.

South By Southwest Interactive: Will You Be There?

South by Southwest (SXSW) is a world renown conference, trade show, exhibit that features the best and brightest in all things Internet, Music, and Film. More than a cultural barometer for all things hip; SXSW is a ride into the future.

Interactive: The Interactive element of the nearly 2 week event in 2010 carries the tag line: Tomorrow Happens Here (in deedie it does). Last year I was able to attend and purchased a Gold Badge which allowed me to see all of the elements in the Film and Interactive portions of SXSW.

A Context: SXSW takes place in Austin, Tx. (Keep Austin Weird (ya’ll) – they will.) This year’s event is from March 12 through the 21.  A badge to enter all of the Interactive sessions, which include trade show booths, panels by industry experts, new product announcements, keynotes, and pArtIes (not that those matter : D) is but a drop in the bucket for its value. The city becomes a swarm of hipsters and tech geeks, and venture capitalists, and progressive musicians and groupies, film buffs – > and the beauty of it is that you can’t take a step in downtown Austin without bumping into Uber Geeks, Indy musicians, etcetera-etcetera.

The Skinny: $500.00 clams will get you into all of the Interactive Element jazz. That includes Trade Show booths with all the SWAG you can carry, keynote addresses, and more. -That price goes up $50.00 day-of, so order you badge in advance to getting there if possible. The film badge is $450.00; the music badge is $700.00 (it started as a music event; film and interactive have been added, respectively.) To enjoy all 9 days of weirdness you can purchase a Platinum Badge for $1125.

Why Go?: Well if you’re not already a cultural anthropologist and so interested in seeing things progre

ssive and interesting, you might find that the network of interesting and Influential folks there, is worth the time and travel. Last year I met and spoke with Guy Kawasaki, CC Chapman, Chris Brogan, Wayne Sutton, Brain Solis, and Jason Falls to name a few. I absorbed talks from Jeremiah Owyang, Gary Vaynerchuck, economist Chris Anderson, David Meerman Scott. THIS IS THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG><

I could go on (and on) but I won’t. If this is your gig, it’s your gig and you’re likely already psyched about it. I know I am. Long story short, it’s coming, it’s going to be BIG, and I WANT TO GO!! : )

See you there? Seriously, last year a buddy of mine connected me with a Philadelphia-based web developer via Twitter. We were on the same flight, but had never met. Needless to say, we lunched and chatted things up throughout SXSW. This is the type of thing that happens. This is what makes it so valuable and interesting to go. I have 15+ stories like this from last year; did I tell you I met the guy that pulls strings in ESPN’s marketing dept at a burrito bar?