Social Media Changing Marketers Approach

    September 28, 2009

Social media is causing organizations to rethink and evolve their marketing strategies, according to a new study by Alterian.

The research indicated that 60 percent of organizations think that personal one-to-one engagement with consumers requires a new way of creating content and on-demand services, while 60 percent also feel the existing strategies for understanding consumers needs can be improved significantly.

Mike Fisher
Mike Fisher, Alterian

"The research clearly evidences that there needs to be major changes implemented in marketing organizations across the globe. The engagement of so many individuals across social networks, blogs and other online channels has meant that organizations need to increasingly treat consumers as individuals – both in order to recruit new customers and to retain existing ones," said Mike Fisher, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, The Americas, Alterian.

"Conversations can now spread across the web in seconds that can have both a dramatically positive or negative impact on a brand dependent on their content. Businesses need to evolve their monitoring and marketing techniques to offer one-on-one engagement with the customer and act on these conversations in real-time."

Social media was identified as the channel which has had the most influence on the customer experience in the last twelve months (27%) and, is the channel which businesses expect to have the greatest effect on the customer experience in the next year (48%).

In terms of return on investment, over a quarter of respondents (28%) cited email as the channel that offered the greatest ROI and the second most popular channel (20%) for investment in the next twelve months.

Other key highlights include:

  •  46% of respondents felt that strategy was the most important factor in defining the customer engagement agency
  •  25% stated that the top obstacle to overcome in online marketing was the integration of online with database marketing and offline channels
  •  The lack of ability to assess or manage internal infrastructure and culture challenges (25%) and the integration of all the technology to power the cycle (20%) were identified as the biggest factors in implementing the customer engagement cycle.