pinterest marketing (by Tom Fishburne: Marketoonist)

via Tom Fishburne: Marketoonist by tomfishburne)
March 05, 2012 at 12:17AM

Pinterest is the talk of the marketing town. It’s the fastest growing social network, stars a highly engaged high-income audience, and is driving more referral traffic than Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, and MySpace combined.

As brands jump on the Pinsanity bandwagon, remember the lesson from every social network that preceded it. What’s more important than the platform is what we’re asking our audiences to share. It’s not about the network. It’s about the content. More than ever, brands need a plan for content worth sharing.

I like the WholeFoods approach to Pinterest, profiled in this Mashable article recently.

“To make a lasting connection, the goal is not to promote the shampoos, strawberries and steaks that are sold in the actual stores but to communicate the lifestyle that the Whole Foods team aspires to — an appropriate ambition, given that Pinterest has often been likened to a digital inspiration board. And by creating an aspirational lifestyle, Whole Foods can convert casual pinners into brand enthusiasts and, hopefully, customers … And because the point of Pinterest isn’t to push products, but to help people explore and deepen their interests, consumers don’t feel like they’re being marketed to.”

What I find most interesting about Pinterest is the focus on visual content. As a cartoonist, I’m obviously a believer in the power of visual storytelling (and was excited to discover how many of my cartoons are already being shared on Pinterest.)

Pinterest has helped validate the next stage with Marketoonist. I’ve been growing Marketoonist into a content marketing studio to help brands create visual content worth sharing (like this Kronos cartoon series featured in CMI last week). I’m starting to expand with New Yorker and nationally syndicated cartoonists and look forward to sharing more detail in the coming weeks.

If you’re interested in more on the idea of content worth sharing, I’m speaking Friday 3/9 at 1:00 EST at the MarketingProfs Conference on Content Marketing (a free online event). My topic is “Content Worth Sharing: What Marketers Can Learn From Cartoons”. I hope to see some of you there!

(Marketoonist Monday: I’m giving away a signed print of this week’s cartoon. Just share an insightful comment to this week’s post. I’ll pick one comment by 5:00 PST on Monday. Thanks!)

Online Customer Service Is Essential To Successful Social Marketing (by Interactive Marketing)

via Interactive Marketing by Darika Ahrens)
March 06, 2012 at 02:28PM

Here is a picture of a cute cat doing something Internet related!

(Click image to see larger version)

That got your attention didn’t it? Something else which gets a lot of attention is when customers share stories of exceptional customer service online (if those examples include cats that’s just a bonus). This fantastic forum thread taken from UK ISP Be Broadband is currently doing the rounds. In it the customer complains his wireless network is frequently disrupted by his cat’s fascination with the router. After some playful banter that issues with feline “agressors” are a known problem the customer was supplied with a tactical decoy router. Subsequent images of the clearly fooled cat were posted by the customer showing success.

Wow. If you were currently feeling disatisfied with your ISP what would your brand perception of Be Broadband be right about now?

Customer service impacts social marketing

In this age of marketing it’s well known that customers make purchasing decisions based on peer influence and that social technologies are being used to share brand stories daily — often customer experience driven. Customer service is an essential factor in social marketing because Conversationalists and Critics are using social technologies to talk both positively and negatively about their brand interactions, something that previously stayed between the customer and the person on the other end of the line in the call center.

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The Startup Ecosystem: Predator vs. Prey (by Cool Infographics)

via Cool Infographics by Randy)
February 29, 2012 at 02:30PM

The Startup Ecosystem: Predator vs. Prey is a fun but informative infographic from udemy.  It looks at the different roles related to tech startup companies in an amusing way by personifying them as fish in the sea.

The startup waters are murky and full of hidden dangers. Below the surface, the ecosystem rests in a delicate balance between predators and prey.

To help you navigate these stormy seas, we’ve created the infographic below. Read on to find out where you stand in the startup food chain.

This one is light on data, but does convey valuable information to the reader.  The visual scale of Ubiquitous to Endangered is easy to understand, and the color coding is consistent throughout the design.

Found on Best Infographics