October 7, 2010 § Leave a comment
The Minnesota High Tech Association held its Social Media Event today hosted by Best Buy Corporation, featuring two outstanding panels of Social Media thought leaders. This event covered Social Media strategies from both the Marketing/PR perspective AND the Enterprise/IT perspective. As a designer and having interest in all things branding I attended the Marketing panel session. The moderator for the Marketing Panel was Albert Marguggi (@AlbertMarguggi) who is a recognized leader in business communications and is host of the Marketing Edge podcast. The panel consisted of John Bernier (@BernierJohn), a Digital Product Manager and Social Media Steward from Best Buy, Bob Brin (@eBob) head of Padilla Speer Beardsley’s social team, Padilla Gorilla, Arik Hanson (@ArikHanson) of ACH Communications and a top line blogger, Kate-Madonna Hindes (@GirlMeetsGeek) who is a national speaker and preaches emotional intergrity and the power of authenticity in today’s markets and finally, Tyler Olson (@TyOlson), the youngest of the group, who is president of SMCpros and speaks on Social Media across the country. A great collection of Social media professionals that kept the conversation lively and very informative.
Everyone came to this event with different expectations but I believe it was best summed up by the panel whose basic message was “This is not a fad. The tools may change but Social Networking is a practical way to market, enhance and promote your brand.”
I was most interested in a comment that Arik Hanson made when asked about new opportunities and where social networking can have an impact. Arik seems to think there is a great opportunity with B2B companies. I agree with him. Retailers seemed to have jumped on board and tapped into Social Networking to promote and sell their product and are doing a good job of it. B2B companies are just starting to find ways to utilize Social Networking to do things such as recruit qualified employees, create social networks for their business customers, clients, and vendors. Estimates are that B2B companies have already accelerated their spending to an excess of 200 million dollars in advertising to the business audience on sites such as LinkedIn and even on Facebook.* There will be opportunities and I think you will be seeing more B2B Social Networking startegies developed and marketing companies that are strictly B2B Social Networking experts.
I believe we have only scratched the surface of Social Networking. Twitter may not be around in five years but you can bet Social Networking as a legitimate marketing platform will be.