What NPR and the European Wax Center have in common

Posted on May 15, 2011. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Hello, World! Welcome to my blog for Emerging Media and the Market, my fifth class in WVU’s Integrated Marketing Communications program. While followers of my former blog (temporarily on hiatus while I earn a master’s degree) read all about my travels, training and racing, followers of this blog will read about my thoughts on the newest media technologies.

One of the best things about this new digital world is the ease with which we can interact. So don’t be shy – post a comment! Share your insights, ask a question, play devil’s advocate or express yourself through an emoticon. Seriously, this blog is graded and comments make me look good. 🙂

Now that the introduction is out of the way, I’ll get to NPR and the European Wax Center.

I just spent three minutes skimming my Facebook newsfeed and discovered that Julian thinks Hardball is a good movie, Kate is doing a walk to raise money for Children’s Hospital Boston, NPR wants to speak to expectant mothers for an upcoming story, Pollyanna goes to the European Wax Center…and much, much more. A quick peek at my Twitter account offers mentions of Myers and Chang, The GAP, Spirited Gourmet…and so on. You get the picture.

In his tech and gadget blog, PC Mike discusses how social media has changed “word of mouth” to “world of mouth.” With smartphones, apps, texting and the Internet, it’s easier than ever before to get brand recommendations, even while standing in the supermarket aisle. This is a boon for us consumers since we trust each other much more than we trust advertising.

Types of Advertising Trusted by Internet Users

But it’s also a win for businesses – at least the ones who are quick to adapt to and embrace new media. Think about it, how often do you mention brand names in your status updates, blogs or tweets? While checking in to Target on Foursquare isn’t exactly a glowing recommending, it lets all your followers know you shop there and puts the company’s name in their minds, if only for a brief moment. Compared with the thousands of dollars businesses pay for billboards, social media is cheap, quick and potentially far-reaching.

According to Alterian’s Eighth Annual Survey, however, a lot of marketers admit to being behind the curve. Seventy percent reported having “little understanding of social media conversations surrounding their brand,” while 75% feel “their brand is at risk of not being as engaged with customers as it should be.”

What are some brands that you feel “get” emerging media and are using it effectively to engage you?


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15 Responses to “What NPR and the European Wax Center have in common”

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I do use brand names often in my tweets and Facebook posts. Although I don’t use FourSquare, I think it is a great way for businesses to find exactly who is at their store. Great post!

Thanks for the comment, Nicole! I haven’t hopped on the FourSquare bandwagon yet either, but a number of friends have, and I sure know where they spend their time and money.

Thank you for this gentle introduction to the social phenomena of new media. I’m looking forward to future posts and to learning more about how emerging media is and will continue to alter social and business transactions in ways that never could have been predicted.

I know I may be biased, but I think Patch is one of them. We aim to not only be a resource where community members get news and info, but also a place where they can engage with each other and learn new things.

I also believe those businesses that offer discounts–similar to the Groupon method–“get” social/emerging media and how to use it. I have purchased many items on sale or at huge discounts but that are only advertised via their Facebook pages.

Thanks for chiming in, Susan. I agree that Patch is setting a high bar for engagement with its publics. I might have to dedicate a post to it!

“With smartphones, apps, texting and the Internet, it’s easier than ever before to get brand recommendations, even while standing in the supermarket aisle.”

Not just brand recommendations but brand information, including consumer gripes, gossip, positioning, and comparisons, and much more.

The brands that “get it,” IMO, focus on sharing news, information, events, and deals.

That’s a good point, Jon, that customers’ ability to share experiences so easily could be good or bad for the brand. It’s so important these days for companies to “listen” to social media to learn what consumers really think, and then respond appropriately.

I believe the world of non-profits has really embraced social media. Every day, I read facebook posts about people walking for cancer, autism, & other various fundraisers. By embracing the media, their message reaches a broader audience and their fundraisers are reaching out to people they may have never considered asking for donations (former classmates, coworkers, etc).

Great point, Matt! Social media is a free, yet powerful, tool for fundraisers.

Thanks for sharing the link. After reading the first blog post I am hooked and look forward to future ones…

Thanks so much for the support, Layla! BTW, heading to MHC this weekend for reunion. 15 years – can you believe it?

Its obviously a generational thing. I’ve never been on Twitter, I try to do facebook weekly to see what is going on. I’m faithful to email. I still read 2 Sunday papers and the local paper. While I love Goggle as a source of information I want, I am overwhelmed with the firehose of information that is spewed out constantly and cannot understand how you youguns manage to absorb and retain it. I still struggle with the concept of blogs. If everyone had a blog and commented on everyone’s blog, when do we interact? As I reread your blog, I saw the word ‘skim’. Maybe i need to skim more and read less. Good luck with your class!

Thanks for a different perspective, Dann. Rest assured that you are in good company in your feeling about the firehouse of information. A 2007 MediaPost article mentioned a study by NBC that found 75 percent of respondents experiencing a similar sense of being overwhelmed by media–and the study subjects ranged from GenY up to Baby Boomers. Four years later, however, I’m guessing some of these people have developed skills to overcome this feeling.

Like you mentioned, I think skimming is key. I do not carefully read my Facebook wall word-for-word (sorry friends!); rather, I skim and then focus in on the interesting items that jump out at me. All of this new media can be overwhelming, but it also gives YOU control – read and interact with what you want, skim/delete/ignore the rest.

Thanks for your comment!

As someone trying to promote a product, it is difficult to decide what to put in a tweet especially due to the limitations. But maybe the limitations are what make it more productive – less to read, direct info. I find that I save enough characters to put our website and hopefully enough to capture the tweeted’s interest to visit and order. We are still doing this ourselves so we are not sure about the APPs to add so people can order from their smartphones, etc. As it emerges, so do we – some obviously catch on faster than others or have the time to explore. I have become more familiar with brands or companies due to “friends” checking in or sharing and I have even tried those products because of the introduction or visited sites that I would not have gone to on my own.

Thanks for the comment, Patricia! Twitter was tough for me at first. My company used to tweet about our real estate (because that’s our business), but then we decided to focus on one target market and just try to be part of that community. We’re choose entrepreneurs, and so I now tweet and retweet interesting articles about starting a business, and only occasionally tweet about my company. Our followers are growing as we (hopefully) establish ourselves as a resource for this target market.

You might consider targeting endurance athletes or health food enthusiasts, and then concentrate on becoming a source of helpful information for them.

Good luck and let me know how it goes!

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