Canada's Top 5 Telecom Companies Social Media
But first, let's define our terms and provide some
background. For those non technical readers, Twitter and Facebook are
Internet-based applications that have set the stage for the stampede of
companies seeking marketing success with this new fangled advertising
medium called social media marketing.
How big is use of social media as an advertising
medium? Analysts predict that by 2013 the US alone will
spend $23 billion on this juggernaut-advertising vehicle.
Out of this social media fury emerge the SEO consultants,
architects of disappointment for corporate social media campaigns. They
are increasingly guiding their victim clients to adopt Facebook and
Twitter, but not helping them implement these applications properly.
Classic victims of the SEO snake oil consultants
appear to be Canada's five mobile service giants Bell
Canada, Rogers, Virgin Mobility, Telus and Fido. Or the
Corporate look the other way issue. Others are doing this Social Media
Marketing, so we need it. "HIRE someone to deal
Our techno crew had a field day investigating and
analyzing the Canadian Telecom pratfalls in adapting Facebook and
Twitter for their social media outreach. Our long-suffering word nerd
has tried to put this into English for the non-tech crowd. The
following is a synopsis of our research on the big five, mixing English
with accessible tech talk. Unlike SEO consultants, we want you to
understand what we are saying.
The findings we share here are more than
surprising to us. It's important to appreciate that these intertwined
telcos are the ones providing networks and Internet connections that
platform social media applications in Canada. You would think they
would be experts in wielding the social media sword. Shockingly, that
is far from the case.
One of the basic rules of good Social Media practice is to
make sure you have icons on your web site that let readers jump from
your site to Facebook and Twitter and other social media applications.
Virgin got a passing grade because its site had
Twitter, Facebook and YouTube icons on each page. At least Virgin
understands that such effort shows current and potential customers that
this company is in the social media game. The rest of
the telcos did not have a single social media icon on their sites,
leaving consumers to find their own path to Facebook and Twitter. A
sucker punch if I ever saw one. Left to find their own way, to these
applications what do consumers find? Almost nothing but
complaints about the telecom companies, making them easy
targets for the torrent of rabid protests about their unsatisfactory
service and poor business practices. My imagination is limited in
helping me understanding this reverse marketing technique.
Let's look now at how these telcos handled their
Twitter accounts. Rogers and Bell have shut down their Twitter accounts
because consumers were using this application to talk almost
exclusively about how bad these companies are. Obviously, when they had
Twitter accounts they have no icon button on their web sites, but let's
not flog a dead horse. Bell never really used the Twitter account,
garnering only 341 followers and a meager 25 updates. Rogers closed one
of its Twitter accounts, Rogers Buzz, because the company is basically
rethinking its overall social media plan. A bad social media plan,
coupled with a recent internal horseplay disaster, has resulted in mass
firings of their tech team. Have a look at the number of job postings
Rogers have online for social media positions. The last two have
Twitter accounts, but again, no icons on their web sites directing
readers to this application. And, they continue to use their Twitter
accounts to convey purely promotional tweets, numbing their intended
audiences with their repetitive messages.
Next, we looked at Facebook accounts. Virgin,
Telus and Fido have okay Facebook accounts. These three are promoting
awareness of social issues, not just pummeling their audience with
messages about their products and services. Bell and Rogers' Facebook
use is a PR disaster. Exponentially more wall posts and sites are loud
vehicles for consumer anger about Bell and Rogers service and false
promises. No one is touting the virtues of these two giants.
Aside from faulty Facebook and Twitter
application, we found other perplexing lapses in basic Social Media
good practice. "Search Engine Optimization" In any social media
exercise, the game is getting the search engines to love your content
and send it to first-page status. For this to happen, the company web
site must be registered with search engines. Again, this is Social
Marketing 101. We found only Bell Canada had done the technical job
correctly. So why is this a big deal? According to
Internet World Stats, 84 percent of Canadians use the Internet (the
highest Internet usage per capita in the world). These web users
perform more than 85 million searches a day. If your web site is not
registered with the search engines, these consumer searchers will not
easily find your site.
Here's another blunder. The entire idea of social
media is to share content about your interests and those of others. All
of these companies failed to do this on their web sites. Not one of
these sites included RSS buttons on their fancy web sites. Including a
RSS button is Social Media 101. Even my grandmother has one on her
blog. Also, none of them had share buttons, thus starving and isolating
the site from users, who, in a knee-jerk fashion, are happy to pass
your information and content on to the social media stratosphere.
Instead of helping to build more followers for these companies'
content, users find a dead end on these sites.
The other basics you would implement as part of a
social media strategy include an External blog. None had one.
They didn't use news distribution sites. Digg,
Mixx, Reddit, Newsvine are all free but were not resourced by the big
five. Social media book marking advantages also went unheeded by the
telcos. Bell had a few bookmarks in Yahoo about 1,300 links of more bad
news about Bell Customers.
The truly unbelievable aspect of all
this is they meant to get in the social marketing game. Much of the
social marketing paraphernalia are there. It's obvious they have spent
millions on research reports, studies, consultants and staff, who have,
for the most part, failed.
For those readers interested in
delving deeper into this quagmire of miscues and bad social media
management, I invite you to have a look at the statistics and analysis
we have provided to back up our observations and which are available in
In upcoming articles we will take
our lens to the social media gaffes of newspapers, government, banks,
retailers, restaurants, advertising agencies and SEO consultants.
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/social-marketing-articles/
About the Author
I assume that if you have a web site you have
arrived at this article for some social media yoga or meditation.