Undoubtedly, social media has become the fastest-evolving (and most influential) marketing environment generally. Several platforms have developed leadership/niche power, and with massive amounts of invested capital, they are expanding, evolving and competing for mind-space and, increasingly, advertising revenue.
My e-book about social media marketing is still reasonably relevant for the architectural, engineering and construction community, in part because we are not and have no reason to be at the bleeding edge of social media. I doubt, for example, a contractor will really need to play around with Snapchat and other supposedly disposable quick communications systems. And I don’t think anyone really has lost business by not understanding Twitter’s nuances.
LinkedIn’s Products and Services Pages are out. Showcase Pages are in.
LinkedIn’s Products & Services Pages allowed you to list your brand’s offerings or share links to valuable resources like white papers, guides and case studies. The listings were a great opportunity for SEO, with keyword-rich content and links back to your website or landing pages.
The new Showcase Pages work more like sub-pages for your main LinkedIn Company Page. While you still have the opportunity to link out to your site and include a description (albeit a short one – under 200 characters), the emphasis is on sharing company updates, much like you would on your main page or other social networks. Users can follow your company’s main page or just the sub-page.
Atomicdust has started to play around with the Showcase Pages by adding a Social Media and Content Marketing Showcase Page. Check it out here.
Hohmeier also observes that “Facebook recently debuted a new look for Facebook Pages, with a new admin panel and the diminished presence of landing pages (apps or tabs).” Facebook has also developed a “Trending Topics” sidebar, which se says is useful.
The topic is listed along with a short recap explaining why it’s newsworthy, she writes. Clicking on the topic takes you to posts from friends, news sources and popular websites’ discussions of the story.
The “Trending” sidebar is a great place for social media marketing managers to see what’s trending online daily. It also provides yet another space where content creators can strive to be featured.
She also notes that “Instagram Ads are back“, but says it’s hard to make direct claims to ROI without linkable text in photo descriptions or in the photo itself, and I can’t imagine an AEC practice allocating what she indicates is the required budget of $350,000 to $1 million.
And beginners need not apply – Instagram Ad budgets are rumoured to range anywhere from $350,000 to $1 million depending on desired reach and frequency.
She writes that Twitter’s redesign puts an “emphasis on visual content, with a new profile layout featuring a larger profile photo and a header image – similar to what we’re used to seeing on Facebook and Google Plus.”
Other new features include pinned tweets, a larger display for popular tweets and the ability to filter a user’s tweets to show only posts with photos and videos or only posts with replies. It’s unclear whether features like these will be available through third-party applications like TweetDeck or Hootsuite.
Twitter has also stepped up their photo-sharing game, allowing users to upload up to four photos in one link (a feature available only on iOs) and added tagging functionality to photos. This emphasis on visual content can’t be ignored. If your brand doesn’t have access to visual content, you need to start thinking of ways to add it to your content strategy.
Finally, she observes that apps like Secret, Whisper and Erodr are gaining popularity.
It all started with Snapchat. Now a new batch of anonymous and/or self-desstructing message-based social networks are gaining popularity among younger demographics. Apps like Secret, Whisper and Erodr allow users to share content without worrying about permanency. Some argue interactions on these networks better mimic real life, as users are less worried about protecting their digital footprint or “personal brands.”
Maybe you can absorb all of this information. Frankly, it is overloading my mind — I realize that is a rather unusual observation from someone who writes an authoritative blog about construction marketing. Social media, I think, provides lots of opportunities — but can be overwhelming.