Monthly Archives: February 2011

New Ways to Make Permission Marketing Work For You.

Google, Yahoo, and Bing have made great advances in targeted marketing, allowing brands to focus on their most prized demographics. But none of them can yet answer the most important question: does a particular person actually want to buy your product?

That’s where permission marketing comes in. Coined by best-selling marketing guru Seth Godin, it has included opting in for newsletters, requesting catalogs, or signing up for e-mail updates. Now, innovations such as Facebook Connect and Google Buzz have ushered in a new era of permission marketing. These and other emerging services can provide you with additional opportunities to connect with your chosen audience.

For example, look at how the Huffington Post has led the way. Readers give “permission” by registering for the site with their Facebook or Twitter IDs. The Post then customizes their user experience based on information in the reader’s profile, news feed, and Facebook Likes. In return, the reader can now easily share stories from the Post with their Facebook and Twitter friends, leading to true social marketing.

Bertelsmann, a multinational media company, allows candidates to sign into its career site using Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.

Three reasons to incorporate permission marketing into your next recruitment campaign:

  1. Permission marketing creates a group of self-selected candidates who want to learn more about the company. This stands in contrast to “interruption” marketing, in the form of e-mails, banners, or Facebook ads. No matter how relevant or well targeted, many candidates still see these unwanted messages as spam.
  2. It allows your brand to build a relationship with candidates over time. Candidates who have given permission have expressed their willingness to learn about a brand and don’t require aggressive, one-shot promotions to grab their attention. This lets you educate the candidates about the company’s employer brand, benefits and opportunities.
  3. It strengthens a sense of community and identity, and thus works especially well in company intranets. Since permission marketing specializes in non-anonymous volunteers, it can work especially well in building relationships with a company’s management, employees, and staff. In fact, every B2E (brand-to-employee) strategy should include at least one element of permission marketing.

Start using permission marketing in your current campaigns, whether through traditional opt-in communications or new services like Facebook Connect or Google Buzz. You’ll maximize your resources, greatly increasing your rate of return. You’ll also gain new information about your target demographics from their profiles. Most importantly, you’ll cut through the noise of interruption marketing and convey a personalized, anticipated message to a more receptive audience.

Is Social Networking a Waste of Time?

In HRmarketer CEO Mark Willaman’s recent post, he raises the concern that the internet and SMM has gotten out of hand, and is a huge drain on productivity.

What he didn’t address though, is the growing positive influence social media has (and will continue to have) on all business.

Social networking is brand awareness. The brains behind digital brand awareness these days are called social media marketers, editors, or managers. Bigger companies, like the New York Times, have a whole team of people managing their social networking sites, while others have a single mind working their Tweets. In fact, a recent study from Jobvite revealed that 13% of 1044 responding job seekers got a job through social networking. I would guess that they wouldn’t consider their networking a waste of time.

Depending on the size, outreach, brand, demographic, market and direction of the company, each organization will do its social networking a little differently. They find what works best for them. So, instead of blaming social networking for a company or individual’s lack in productivity, I would first evaluate the approach they used.

Here are a few tips:
1. Answer the “what”: What are you looking to accomplish?
2. How much time and talent will it involve?
3. Is this a good use of time and talent: What else could you be doing?

Let’s just say it’s not the constant Tweets that are wasting time, it’s the strategy behind it that may need to be reevaluated.