New York—Is social media a fad, phenomena, or for real? That’s the question Aaron Kahlow, managing director of BusinessOnLine, posed to panelists at a June 19 keynote presentation at DM Days New York. Kahlow noted that the importance of social media is on the rise, with 30% of people who read blogs more likely to make an online purchase and 80% of people who post on blogs more likely to make an online purchase. “Social media companies are not being bought out for $1 billion price tags because they’re a fad,” he said.
Although running a corporate blog is not technically direct marketing, it is something marketers need to develop in order to stay engaged with customers, said Rebecca Lieb, editor in chief of The ClickZ Network. “It’s time to add some new tools to the toolbox,” she said, adding that not understanding the technology is not an excuse. “The conversation is going on and if you’re not a part of it, you’re going to be left out,” said Leslie Reiser, director of worldwide interactive marketing for IBM.
But what about retaining or converting your blog readers to customers? Lieb said that social media could actually lift search engine rankings because rather than receiving unwanted direct marketing messages, consumers are actively seeking you out for more information about your products or company.