Bitter Tweet Social Media in Business

This week began with a story that can only be described as bitter tweet. A celebrity in Australia has taken to a gossip columnist on Twitter. This is not the first time that a celebrity has tweeted controversial, negative, angry or personal tweets.

Social Media

The internet has given rise to a new phenomenon of airing your dirty linen in public. It began with emails. People seem so ready to say things they would not say over the phone and never say in person.

The keyboard seems to create an impersonal arm’s length distance and immediacy in one tool. So vents and rants can happen instantly and without the filters many would apply in person-to-person communication.

Twitter and Facebook have just taken these rants to a new level.

It’s always good to remember that in print we can’t see your expression or hear your tone. Why is this an issue?

Well words account for less than 10% of our communication. But online words are all we have – no tone or body language.

Social Media Issues

For Business Every day there appears to be a new call for business to not only be online but participating in social networks. Where there are benefits there are also risks. Happy customers tweeting about how great you are is a great ego boost. An unhappy customer venting with vehemence is a nightmare snowball that can create an avalanche of complaint.

For every fan page you can have an equal and opposite hate page. You don’t have the same censorship or control of your message.

What about employees? An employee tweeting about a great day in their fantastic workplace can be great employer PR. When one starts to rant online about the terrible day, or break privacy laws, hinting about famous clients, or stupid things people have said they can potentially land your business in very hot water.

Social media filters have exacerbated this in some workplaces where employees use their own technology in their breaks and consider their updates to be personal without regard to the organisation.

What would happen if we ever had to apply honestly filters to likes on Facebook pages. Take a look at many business pages or organisation fan pages. Scan the people liking and see how many appear, reappear, work there, or worse manage their marketing. Almost like the people running the page think we are too stupid to notice the artificial and contrived nature of the likes and responses.

Be Prepared

Much of business is not prepared for what they will find or what they will do when they find it!

I remember searching information on social media in business.

I found a page on the use of social networks for small business run by a large computer firm. I clicked through to their social media presence to find several pages of customer complaint about service and response. These included statements from people who were no longer resellers because of these issues. The big problem there was nothing from or for the company even trying to address, solve, stem the tide. They only seemed to be showing evidence of the customer service their customers were complaining about.

Have a plan – know what is out there – be prepared to participate even if it’s negative or hard.

Action Plan

Develop a social media policy and a social media plan. Take into account the opportunities and risks. Remember their have been prosecutions from social media so you need to be prepared and apprised of the law.

Establish a point of contact. No matter what happens make sure there is a person or board who manage positive campaigns and also emergencies should any arise.

Know the law, the risks and obligations of using social media in your strategy. It will be interesting to watch whether social media risks lead to social media insurance policy clauses.

Properly Engage in Social Media Networks: Business and Personal Life

The Rise of The Modern Social Media Network

Social Media has become an integral part of modern society. Members on certain sites number far more than populations of most nations in the world. Before the pillars of the social media market of today existed (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) there were many social and business sharing platforms that paved the way for their efficiency. In 1979 Usenet systems allowed online communications between newsgroups, Bulletin Board systems (BBS) came shortly after, along with forums. Originally these systems had to be dialed into by one user at a time. After BBS, came “online services” such as CompuServe and Prodigy, these were the first corporate strategies online. In 1985, a subsidiary of General Electric actually developed the next set of systems called Genie which ran through 1999.

Blogs then started developing as people started spending more leisure time online and less time strictly looking for information. As sites became less boring and rudimentary, people started really getting involved socially online through dating sites and websites, like Six Degrees, which was launched in 1997 as the first modern social network. However, Friendster was the first really modern style social network and it was launched in 2002 allowing users to do the things they do today on Facebook like post pictures and comments and find other friends within the network. Facebook, originally Facemash was concocted on October 28, 2003, Twitter was launched publicly in July of 2006, and LinkedIn on May 5, 2003.

Promoting a Business Properly in a Social Media Network

Fast forward to 2010, the Biggest “do” regarding social media for business is to get involved. Never underestimate the power of these sites for businesses. One can establish their business among a wide variety of prospective clients through social media networks. Creating a business presence on these sites also helps to shape the integrity of the business while expanding its customer base.

The biggest “don’t” for social media in business is getting involved before one knows what they are doing. All of the newer ways to advertise online can be so exciting for a new or developing business once they are introduced to the idea that some people dive right into setting up their profile before they understand how exactly the sites work. Before devoting time into these sites, one should familiarize themselves first with the good and bad aspects of getting involved so that detrimental mistakes can be avoided. A business can run a very smooth social media campaign fairly easily when the proper precautions are taken initially. Remember, there is no social media insurance.

Personal Profile Do’s and Dont’s for Social Media

The biggest “do” for social media for personal use is to have fun. Before diving in, and experiencing all the leisure and exploration that the sites provide, please take the time to do a few things that may help to avoid a bad situation later on. Here are a few things that everyone should be practicing online to protect themselves from fraud and other criminal concerns: change passwords frequently, adjust privacy settings appropriately, be selective when adding friends, be careful when clicking on things that are unfamiliar, get familiarized with privacy and security settings, learn how to report a potentially compromised account, pay attention to what is appropriate for business and personal life, and more importantly where the line is drawn for adding friends that are family or coworkers to a personal profile.

The Future of Social Media Networks For Business

According to Nielson Reports, as of June 2010, Americans are spending 22.7% of the time they spend online engaged in social media networks. Money that companies spend advertising within Social Media is forecasted to hit about $1.7 billion this year, and $2 billion in 2011. Social media shows no signs of slowing its involvement in both the business and personal lives of people young and old around the world. Placing ads within Social Media sites is extremely effective. Facebook, for example, allows companies to place ads based on users demographics (i.e. Users age, martial status, likes, etc).

This is very powerful as a business owner can ensure that their ad is being placed in front of their target market. Say for example, a business sells wedding cakes, they can place an add in their region to appear in front of women in their mid to late 20s that have a status of engaged. This is very effective because these engaged young women are the perfect audience to be marketing wedding cake services. If you are a business owner, it is recommended that you consider a social media strategy if you want to remain competitive in our ever changing world of communication.

Short Term Health Insurance – Prompt Cover When Needed the Most

Due to the worldwide shortages of medical professionals throughout the world, many countries rely on temporary medical staff to cover the shortfall; ensuring the public has access to adequate and professional healthcare services. When times of emergency hit, such as the recent seismic events in Christchurch that have received massive media attention, the need for temporary medical staff increases exponentially; as the current supplies become overworked and additional staff are required to not only ensure that normal levels of healthcare provision is provided, but to assist with the increased workload as a result of such emergency.

With any overseas travel, whether for business, work or leisure, it is only prudent to ensure that you are covered in case of any eventuality. This situation is none more so when medical staffs are coming to a country for the recovery program following a major earthquake for example, where the level of risk associated with property loss or personal mishap is increased. There are numerous policy types available on the market; selecting the most appropriate cover and policy is of utmost importance. For that medical staff that are temporarily working in the country, or have been called up on short notice, short term health insurance is the most suitable. The major advantages of short term health insurance policies is that cover can be arranged in less than twenty four hours with the term of coverage being available for up to a six month term; with the possibility of extension if the employment requires an additional length of time to be completed.

The affordability of short term health insurance, where compared with traditional media insurance plans, is one of the key benefits. Often between 20% and 30% cheaper than major medical plans, they offer professional medical staff a standalone policy or as a complimentary policy to a larger medical coverage to offer immediate cover when the underwriting procedure takes some time to complete.

The popularity of this short period of health insurance is a result of the policies ability to provide versatility and secured coverage in times of emergency and sudden change. Providing personal cover and back up in times where it is needed the most, short term health insurance is one of the most valuable policies for medical staff that need to travel on short notice. When considering your options for short term health insurance, professional advice should be accessed from reputable insurance agencies that specialise in this type of health insurance. Furthermore, not all insurance agencies offer short term health insurance; so decide wisely who will be providing cover for you.

Top 2 Quick And Effective Insurance Marketing Ideas

If you’re an Insurance Agent, you should always be looking for new and inventive insurance marketing ideas to implement into your agency. Not only do you need to implement these ideas, but you need to implement them correctly, so they will actually produce exploding results. For an agent to be successful in the highly competitive insurance industry, you need to set up marketing strategies to build prospect list, and make sure your agency is being seen everywhere where today’s buyers are.

Great Websites and Social Media are the top 2 Insurance Marketing Ideas that are bringing in leads on an explosive basis every day to the top insurance agents. Both of these campaigns are based on building prospect list (in the thousands) that can be advertised or marketed to on a daily basis. If prospects see your agency on a daily basis, you will eventually get their business.

Websites: Insurance Marketing Idea #1

Most agents have websites, but the majority of these insurance agency websites are not doing what websites should be doing now days. Websites need to be a home base of information and list building for your agency. Most insurance agency websites have been built, just to be in the internet arena and make you feel that you’ve actually joined in the technology arena. Most likely your website is doing nothing for you. The top insurance agents understand that the #1 goal for a website, is to build prospect list and generate leads. If your website is not producing list building of several hundred local prospects a month and several hundred leads a month, then you need to change your marketing strategy for your website. This is very easy to do.

Quick tips on what your website needs to have:
* Keyword optimized throughout the whole site
* SEO (Search Engine Optimized) to get ranked in the top 5 listings on Search Engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo.
* Free Giveaway’s and Opt-In Forms. Get them on your list by giving them the Top Tip of the month for your product.
* Internal, External and Back links so Search Engines can rank your site high
* Provide great content on your site. If you have great content, people will come back and see what you have.
* Most Importantly link back and forth to your Social Media Sites. Show customers and prospects all your offers and specials.

Social Media: Insurance Marketing Idea #2

Social media is growing to the top of the list for many agents implementing new insurance marketing ideas. Most veteran insurance agents want to stay away from MySpace, Facebook and Twitter. Most of these agents either don’t understand the technology end of it, or just don’t understand what it can actually do for them. This is the worst mistake they can make. I used to be one of those agents. Then I realized that people are on Facebook and Twitter all the time. Therefore, you will get more leads and sales if your agency is where all the people are. It just takes a little extra effort to understand how to market you agency on the Social Media channels. You need to understand that Social Media is completely different for businesses than it is for personal usage. Businesses use Facebook and Twitter as a way to build list, and market to that list, through information and entertainment. The goal is to get people to read your emails and sales pages everyday. The Social Media channels can accomplish this with great content. Just take a little time every day to learn how to set up Facebook sales pages within accounts.

The best Insurance Marketing Ideas, include SEO optimized websites and production Social Media campaigns.

Media Insurance – A Must for Awards Ceremonies

Media insurance does not immediately spring to mind when thinking about the entertainment business, but given the attention paid to many such events, then cover is a necessity, not a luxury.

Take the example of the spate of award shows that hover around the month of February like a rash. In just four weeks there are the Baftas, the Grammys, the Brits and The Oscars.

And working on each event are a large number of media professionals who work on freelance contracts. These guys and gals will need the support of great media insurance policies, because if anything should go wrong, then at least there is some come back.

And things do go wrong.

People with a long memory will think back to the Britannia Music Awards (now the BRITS of course) in 1989 when the event was recorded live, as it is now. It was completely unrehearsed and top celebrities of the day, model Samantha Fox and band legend Mick Fleetwood, presented one of the most wooden award performances ever seen. Not only did they appear to be lost most of the show, but the ‘back-room’ support did not appear much in evidence. Whichever media team put the show together, might have had to reach quickly for their media insurance policies.

The year after that debacle, the BRITS was recorded the day before and then broadcast on TV, ensuring that there were no further embarrassments. It was not until 2007 (the BRITS had been on ITV since 1993), when confidence was restored to such a degree that it returned to a live show, but three categories were dropped from the proceedings:Best British Rock Act, Best British Urban Act and Best Pop Act.

But the point is that things do go wrong. This is where media insurance is vital. A recent gaffe by a CBS presenter Serene Branson when commenting on the Grammy Awards outside the venue in Los Angeles, proves just how wrong they can go.

After the studio host cut to Branson for an update, the blonde began to speak into the camera, but the words coming from her mouth were totally disjointed. Random sounds and bits of words were heard, but nothing which made any sense. Concerned viewers immediately rang the CBS studios and wondered if the presenter had suffered some sort of seizure, or undergone a mental aberration. On-site paramedics checked the presenter out, but she was declared ‘sane’ and fully in control of her facilities.

Clips of her ‘seizure’ were quickly posted to YouTube and various sound tracks were added. CBS were not so amused and feared the clip would go viral, which it quickly did, and damage their reputation. They claimed it was their intellectual property right and the clip should be brought down.