“It’s nothing new!” – Marketing /New Media Strategies for Small and Medium Scale Businesses
Being a Presentation by Chude Jideonwo, Managing Partner of the Red Media Group, at the Rosabon Financial Services Entrepreneurship Training for SMEs, Small Businesses and Start-Ups
4 April 2012 – Lagos, Nigeria.
This is about marketing strategy in general, with an emphasis on new media, for obvious reasons – that’s the new fad – but I will focus solely on New Media and use that as case study to advice you on Marketing generally.
DON’T GET TOO EXCITED!
– A business requires every tool that it can find in order to make it a) More effective b) More productive
– Technology should not be adopted for its sake i.e you don’t need to use Facebook because others are using Facebook or because it’s the cool new tool.
THE QUESTIONS IS: DO I NEED THIS TOOL?
For branding purposes – the catchphrase is ‘Own’ not ‘Use’. For instance, half of you do not need Youtube and do not need Google+. Do you?
Understanding – You must understand that there is a New Media factory driven in America – and I you run to every new new medium – you will find yourself lost somewhere between Pinterest and Instagram. Don’t get sucked into another man/woman’s marketing strategy. Focus on “your race.”
Need vs want – Our marketing communication firm Red Media has provided New Media services to everyone – Google, Etisalat, Nigerian Idol, the Nigeria LNG and everyone else – but I am telling you to ask yourself – why am I using this? Do I need it?
YOUR RESPONSIBILITY AS AN ENTREPRENEUR
Why am I starting on this note? Work smart!
Your job as an entrepreneur is to be both bold and cautious. You must take risks, but they must be calculated; you must take action, but they must be measured.
If you are MTN or Glo or Etisalat or Airtel you want to be everywhere; if you are an SME you want to be only at the place where you need to be for maximum impact.
Note: It is also mostly a mistake to have a specific New Media arm as a small business – unless that is your core service offering. It should be integrated with the rest of your business.
SO LET’S START FROM THE MIDDLE – WHAT ARE NEW MEDIA?
New media has been defined, and I like this one, as any interactive forms of communication that use the Internet and Mobile Technology.
– New media makes it possible for anyone to create, modify, and share content and share it with others, using relatively simple tools that are often free or inexpensive.
– New media requires a computer or mobile device with Internet access.
New media tools help you:
- CONNECT people with information and services.
- COLLABORATE with other people.
- CREATE new content, services, communities, and channels of communication that help you deliver information and services.
New Media expansion:
That’s the official definition, but as a century has gone by over the past ten years, these days, I say “new” media or “new” technology means small steps forward.
Examples: You know the instances – Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, Ustream and Blogs/Websites. Somewhere there you might want to add Sms, Mobile Phones, Skype, WhatsApp and BlackBerries.
LET ME BAMBOOZLE YOU
- As of February 2012, Facebook has more than 845 million active users globally.
- Facebook penetration in Nigeria is 2.83% compared to the country’s population and 9.78% in relation to number of Internet users.
- The total number of FB users in Nigeria is reaching 4302600 and grew by more than 416340 in the last 6 months.
- Currently, there are 4302600 Facebook users in the Nigeria, which makes it #38 in the ranking of all Facebook statistics by country.
- The the number of Nigerian Facebook users has increased from 400, 000 in the last four years to 4.3 million at the end of December 2011. The figure places Nigeria in the third position in terms of the number of Facebook users on the African continent, coming behind Egypt and South Africa with 9.4 million and 4.8 million users respectively.
- A survey carried out by a Kenya-based agency places Nigeria among the continent’s top tweeting nations.
- Portland Communications, says Nigerians are the third most active Twitter users in Africa.
- There are over 300 million users as of 2011, generating over 300 million tweets and handling over 1.6 billion search queries per day.
Mobile phone stats
- From 400,000 mobile subscribers in 2002, the Nigerian Communications Commission, as at September 2011, shows that active subscriber lines have reached over 93 million in a space of 9 years!
- Nigeria has the fastest growing mobile market in the continent.
Internet usage is above 45, 000, 000 (43,982,341 verified as at April 2011). According to Technorati, there are over 112 million blogs on the Internet.
SO, FOR YOUR MARKETING AS A SMALL/MEDIUM BUSINESS
– The role of the new media is to modify the activities of the traditional media to reach a wider audience in a different dimension and speed.
– New Media is crucial for two marketing incidents – publicity, for lack of a better ward, and customer interface (or care, or relations)
The matter of Market Segmentation:
Who are you trying to reach? The student in IMSU, then use Facebook; the radio presenter in Lagos, then use Twitter.
The advantage in a nutshell
New media is a marketing and communication tool that uses technology such as video, multimedia and the web to convey a message. This new and innovative form of communication enables anyone to express their ideas and opinions in an interactive way.
As new media is becoming more common many businesses, advertisers in particular, have found it a very valuable tool. New media ad spending keeps growing. With the increased opportunities involving new media, many advertisers are turning to this trend and finding it a powerful and essential marketing tool.
New media creates the opportunity for a business to be taken to a whole new level. Web videos, for instance, are a new way for businesses to communicate with customers in a more emotional environment. Combining the use of audio and visual effects on the web, can be a much more memorable experience for customers, and have much more of an impact.
Technology which allows businesses to view what type of customers are purchasing their products, and viewing their videos can be very beneficial to a company. Many companies provide spaces for comments and customer feedback on their websites. Receiving this type of information from customers saves businesses a tremendous amount of time and money, which would otherwise be spent on researching customer’s wants, needs, and opinions.
THE VIRAL TRAP
There is a deception/fallacy about how to make material ‘Viral’
Yes, it is possible. Web 2.0 is a term used to describe the new generation of the World Wide Web. No longer simply a collaboration of several websites, the web is now thought of as an application that fits somewhere between a traditional web browser, and desktop applications. A major benefit of Web 2.0 as a whole, is the ability for users to communicate with one another and share their information online, in a simple and organized fashion. The Web 2.0 allows online experiences to be much more interactive than in the past.
Whereas the old generation of the web was about companies and ownership, the new generation of the web is about sharing and communities. The Web 2.0 is growing at a tremendous rate. With new applications and technologies available, it will not be long until the Web 2.0 completely changes the way we once viewed and used the web.
It’s classic push-pull. Most times, to get a campaign viral, customers have to pull.
NOTE: This is controversial, but in some markets however, there’s no space for pull. Your mechanic doesn’t pull – and based on (low-cost), he doesn’t need to just yet.
7 ADVANTAGES OF NEW MEDIA FOR YOUR MARKETING
- Cost: Facebook and Twitter are free; using online video advertising allows businesses to bypass the high costs of producing television commercials.
- User-Interaction/Direct Feedback
- Control – You might not be able to choose your advert page, but you control your Facebook page
- Larger audience – Global etc
- Accessibility – Easy to use, etc
It’s still the same old questions; nothing’s really changed, or really new – just the tools we use, and maybe the methods.
Like with all business decisions, you ask yourself 1) What do I need? 2) How do I achieve it? 3) What’s the most cost-effective option? 4) What is the outcome? 5) Does it add to my bottomline?
As it is with new media, so it is with all the marketing decisions, and eventual strategy for your business. It is more urgent for you because as a small business, your margin for error is almost non-existent. As an entrepreneur, you must first understand your environment, confront the facts, understand you’re your business, and then proceed based on that.
Sources: WebKnox Corporation, CNN.com, Techcrunch, Business Standard, SocialBakers.com, Portland Communications, Technocrati, IternetWorldStats.com, Technology Times, Nigeria, Technuzu.com, The Punch Newspapers.