Facebook and The Consumer Learning Process

A great deal of successful marketing today depends on closely understanding consumer behavior. As a marketer, you may always be curious to understand what excites or motivates your customers into buying either your products or those of your competitor. Depending on the buying and consumption cycle of your product, there can be several factors that will determine the sales conversion ratio for your product.

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Toward Right Learning

A successful sale happens when your customer understands his need and is convinced that your product can satisfy that need in a reliable way. Both these steps happen through a process, which is known as learning. Hence as a marketer, your job begins by ensuring that the customer perceives his need and, more importantly, finds the solution in your product

Right Learning and Right Conversations

At this very moment, you may be reading this article on your laptop or desktop. Remember the day when you had decided to buy your first computer. You must have considered many factors before finalizing which computer to purchase. One of the important decision points for a buyer is his circle of reference. It is natural for you, as a buyer, to discuss with your informed friends about the best brand. Positive references from friends and acquaintances help one make a decision.

How has Facebook changed all of this?

Research has shown that buyers do a great deal of product research on the Internet and most of the time choose to purchase the product either online or offline. The power of the Internet as a research and information resource has been realized to a great extent by customers worldwide.

The basics of consumer behavior, learning, reference groups, and buying decisions have remained exactly the same. But what has changed significantly is the speed with which everything happens. Technology has brought down the barriers in global communication. Social networking sites, and more importantly the rising popularity of Facebook, bears a strong testimony to the growing power of the Internet as a mode of communication and a source of information.

Before and After Facebook

Like we discussed, most of the learning before the proliferation of Facebook and social media happened through advertisements on television. During the days of conventional media dominance, marketing was driven by the power to broadcast. Marketing communication was primarily unidirectional through blaring advertisements and press releases.

Word of mouth happened on a one-on-one basis, where the conversation would begin and end around a small group of people.

Today, a search on your favorite brand on Facebook may reveal many conversations about the brand, which may depict user’s positive or negative experiences with the brand. Unlike the clandestine brand gossip of earlier days, the Facebook era ensures that conversations are documented and made easily available through social networking sites.

Brands trying to ignore this new medium find themselves in a state similar to an ostrich, with its head buried in sand, thinking the world cannot see it. The real image of the brand in people’s minds shows up aloud these days through conversations on Facebook.

Facebook and Online Reputation

The power of Facebook, as discussed, has extended the scope of Word of Mouth beyond the good old conversation between friends. Today, each and every Facebook user is free to publish his views on your brand. The true effect of this happens whenever these conversations appear in searches and influence people’s opinion about the brand image.

This is where online reputation, primarily on a widely accepted medium like Facebook, matters.

In a nutshell..
Managing a positive image of your brand requires you to expand your reach, more than what you would do in case of conventional media. The conversational nature of social networking sites, such as Facebook, demands a different approach. Unlike one-time broadcast by the conventional medium, Facebook stores each and every conversation and makes it available through the search option for anyone who is curious to know more about your brand.

That is the reason why it is a critical part of any brand plan to feature positively on social networking sites, such as Facebook. Engaging consultants who have experience in managing brands through the new era of social networks is a growing practice that can help brands manage the new wave.

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Marketing as an activity is all about reaching the right customers with the right products, and the result sought is delighted customers who are more than willing to open their purses wide enough to boost your revenues. For many years, marketers stalked their target customers through various means and by trying to get their message across to spread awareness about their wares.

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Traditional Means of Communication

Traditionally, marketing communications were conducted via print, broadcast and such traditional media through disruptive advertising, where advertisements appear in between the content of interest for the customer.

Traditional media does give a large reach to a marketer with its programming of mass appeal. However, the wastage is equally high, since a large portion of the audience would belong to a different segment than the one that is to be targeted by the marketer.

Enter Social Media and the Internet

The revolution stirred by the internet as a medium took place because of the fact that it is highly personalized and provides more content on-demand than any other available medium. Social sites proliferated far and wide in their usage for a few simple reasons:

The power to create and distribute content is equally available to every user, irrespective of him/her being a customer or a marketer. In the earlier forms of media, that power rested with the editorial staff of the channel or the advertiser, but hardly ever with the user.
The medium is completely personalized, and a user can create or join groups and further create content based on what he/she likes.

Opinions are free and fair. This is one reason why social media is of utmost concern to marketers, since buying decisions are no more influenced as much by advertisements. The traditional word-of-mouth marketing approach has grown leaps and bounds on social networks.

Facebook – At the Center of Social Media

With 500 million (and growing) unique users worldwide, Facebook is the number one social networking site in terms of activity and subscriptions. What started as a garage initiative by Mark Zuckerberg has now become the biggest phenomenon on the internet.

A user interface that allows for quick communication and the ability to create fan pages and groups at the click of a mouse button are what make Facebook extremely popular. Another important reason for its immense popularity is the wide variety of social applications that have been developed and made available within the Facebook environment.

These applications can allow users and friends to do joint activities like playing games that run endlessly, sharing photos, videos, and web links, and many more.

How does this help a marketer?

Traditionally, media plans were drawn to include television channels, publications, or any other media that can grab maximum eyeballs and effectively reach a selected target audience. The science of segmentation and targeting has become only more accurate in the case of social media.

Facebook provides a wide variety of avenues to communicate with the audience, which opens up an entirely different world of possibilities to have a fruitful dialogue with customers. Some of these methods used popularly by marketers are:

Advertising: The first opportunity, which is the most obvious one, is advertising on Facebook. The difference, however, is the fact that you can create your own advertisement in a matter of minutes and also specify the details of your target group in terms of demographics and types of discussions where you want your advertisement to appear.

Fan Pages: Facebook allows every brand, as well as individual users, to create fan pages for their favorite celebrities and their own homegrown businesses. Large brands have also created their official pages on Facebook that have a huge, immediate fan following around the world. The fan page has immense utility to convey first hand information about the brand and also to collect immediate and frank feedback from your customers.
Branded applications: One of the most effective ways to engage a user toward your brand is by creating an application; this could be a game or a contest, with your branding coming across subtly through it.

What makes Facebook even more exciting is the way it allows you to target your communication sharply just to the customer segment you want to attract. It also provides analytics and page insights that give good feedback and measurement on the activity done.

The options provided by Facebook can be creatively explored and used judiciously for bringing about maximum benefits to any brand.

However, while doing all this, you need to be aware of the fact that customers have an equal say and have the ability to respond immediately to any of your actions with a thumbs up or a thumbs down. Availing the service of a social media consultant to work out a social media strategy may be required so that your efforts will not be in vain.

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Here are two, of many, aspects to Learning How To Generate Leads

Article sharing and content is becoming one of the best ways to generate free MLM
leads and traffic to your business. It is important to provide real value and
content to help your target market to solve their problems. The majority of network
Marketers have a lack of knowledge to attract potential customers and marketing signups.

Therefore, you need to provide marketing solutions and strategies on how to generate
more leads, signups and, ultimately, an effective workflow do this, it is important to
learn about attraction marketing.

The proper training will show you how to position yourself and gain the maximum exposure
to your target market through this powerful marketing strategy.

Imagine if you had 1 item relevant to your target market and submitted to 10 article
directories on the web, that is like having 10 pieces of real estate on the Internet.
Now, what if you wrote an informative article every day? At the end of the week in which
would be 7 articles that once submitted to the article 10 directories would be like
having 70 pieces of real estate on the Internet each bringing their own returns.

To make the most of article marketing, first of all, it is necessary to understand
how to get your articles and content highly ranked search engines like Google. You
need to understand how to do effective keyword research you use terms that are commonly
searched and have little competition from other Web sites.

For example, if I did a search in Google using the term “MLM”, it would return many
competitor websites which would be too competitive to obtain best rank. Instead, you
need to find terms of keyword that are commonly used and that return of less than
20,000 websites. In this way, you can easily compete for top ranking in the search terms.

How to do this? You can make use of the free wordtracker which is good for generating
ideas for keyword in your target market, but limited in use to find the best results
for keyword. The paid version of wordtracker gives far greater results and analysis to help
you find the best keyword terms to achieve maximum results.

You can also use the Google AdWords keyword tool and search words and related phrases.
This tool gives you the number of searches. You can go to Google and search that
phrase to find the number of the comparative websites is anything less than 50,000,
and ideally under 20,000.

When you have found your top 10 keyword phrases you are now ready to write your article
and include these keywords in the title and the body of the artice, thus they appear in
Google searhes. Do use more than one item, send it to the article and ezine directorios.
Google loves the Web 2.0 content index and often you can quickly sort your items.

OK, it is time to take those ideas and generate a steady stream of potential customers
to your MLM business.


Best Way To Make Money Online

If you are looking for the best way to make money online, you should think first of your objectives. Divide those into short term necessities (one to six months) and long term goals (six months and beyond).

Second, you need to conduct a personal inventory of your skills. The key to making money online is to align your objectives with your skills. You will probably find that you need to learn some specific skills before you will be able to make meaningful money on the internet. Choose your short term money making strategies to allow you to build knowledge and skills that will pay off in the longer term. In other words, the best approach for one person may not be the same approach that would be best for you.

Third, take a look at your current finances and at how you expect your economic situation to change over time. Education and investments require money, but you need to be realistic about what you expect to achieve from both investment and education before you launch into your new career–whether that career is to be full or part time.

Best Way to Make Money Online: Combining The Variables

Let’s say, just as an example, that you want to make $100 per month online in the short term, but you want to be able to build that amount so that you are eventually earning a full-time income.

Buy An Existing Online Business:

If you have money to invest, you can purchase a ready-made online business. However, you should never invest more than you are willing to lose. If that is your choice, make sure that the seller can demonstrate income that slightly exceeds your target amount. Buy only from a seller who is willing to answer questions and give advice for at least a month after the sale. Due to your lack of experience, you will probably not be able to do quite as well as the seller for the first month or two. During that time, learn as much as you can from the original owner, but go beyond that person’s input because you want to eventually grow the business well beyond its current size. Use this time to learn as much as you can about internet marketing. A great resource for free learning is the Warrior Forum, which is a gathering place for internet marketers to ask for help and share information. Basic registration is free. The website has search functionality, so you can find answers to many of your questions.

Make Money Performing Tasks For Online Businesses:

Most people do not want to invest money into an existing business–or may not have the financial resources to do so. If that is your situation, then you will need to provide a service that is needed by other online businesses. To see what kinds of services are in demand, you can browse one or two websites that connect freelancers with people who want to hire others to perform specific tasks. One of the many such websites is Guru.com. Choose one of those tasks (or a few) for which you already have the skills or for which you can learn those skills very quickly. Select service work that will allow you to learn more about internet marketing while you are being paid. As a newcomer, you may need to work for a small amount of money. As you develop a portfolio of your work and get good references, you will be able to raise your prices gradually but significantly over time.

Continually learn other skills so that you can expand the menu of services that you can provide. In that way, you are moving ever closer to having the skill set necessary for your own lucrative business at some point in the future. Also use part of your internet income to prepare for the future. If your original goal was $100 per month, as you begin to earn more than that amount, set aside most of the excess to buy training aids as well as to build a nest egg for beginning that dreamed of business.

A Sample Scenario of This Approach to Earning Money in Action:

Let’s say that you discover on Guru.com or elsewhere that there is great demand for the simple task of commenting on blogs and forums, including a link to your employer’s relevant website with each short comment. You read about what makes good comments and how to add a “keyword” optimized link in a forum thread on Warrior Forum (or elsewhere). As you do a good job with your commenting jobs, your online reputation will increase as people rate you highly on the various freelancer websites.

In the meantime, you should have read about how to write keyword optimized articles for an internet website. You can now expand your menu of services and begin writing blog articles, which will pay better than commenting does. As you continue to write articles for a website and you insert links to other pages within that website you will be learning the importance of keyword research.

By this time, you will have learned two of the most important elements that go into your own online business–writing for the web and the use of keyword optimization. You can use that knowledge to promote your own online writing business or even branch off into a new direction altogether.

Remember, the writing path used in this example is just one of dozens of paths for you to follow. Begin your quest with tasks with which you feel comfortable and use those to improve your skills and build the necessary knowledge to undertake a business that will provide for you an answer to the question, “What is the best way to make money online?” Everyone will have a somewhat different answer.


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