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5 Bizarre Business Decisions Social Media Could Have Prevented
These days it’s difficult to imagine the business world without its obligatory Facebook and Twitter pages; almost every company has them as they help one-to-one customer support and other business decisions. Decades ago, however, industry moguls weren’t in the same position. Connecting with the public was difficult and often not even attempted; as a consequence some businesses suffered greatly due to a lack of communication. Here we take a look at half a dozen examples of such bad decisions, and what could have happened had social media been around.The Coca Cola Re-Brand
In April of 1985 one of the biggest brands in the world made an almost catastrophic blunder. The decision was made to tamper with the famous recipe following the continued success of rival Pepsi’s marketing plan “The Pepsi Challenge”, which showing alarming signs the public preferred the taste to Coca Cola. Paranoid Chief Executive Roberto Goizueta launched New Coke in an attempt to win over old and new customers alike. This didn’t go to plan.
After three months of boycotting, hostility and general vitriol from customers, the company’s head executives re-released the original version as Coke Classic. To their bemusement this went on to outsell every other drink on the market!
The Solution: It seems, at the time, customers may have preferred the taste of Pepsi, but their loyalty lay with Coca Cola. A simple Twitter campaign could have solved this! “Remember why you love @CocaCola!” would send the customers hurtling to the shops. Or the soft-drinks giant could simply ask its millions of followers if they would like a new taste range.Atari’s E.T. Disaster
In 1982 Steven Spielberg’s film E.T proved a huge success; inevitably, spin-offs began in numerous industries. The burgeoning video games industry wanted in on this, so market leader Atari created an adaptation for their Atari 2600.
The game was rushed through production in five weeks. Meantime, anticipating vast Christmas sales, Atari ordered over four million cartridges to be produced. On its release the game performed well on a commercial level, but was critically maligned, and once customers realised just how awful the game was they sent their copies back in disgust.
With millions of E.T. cartridges finding their way back home to Atari’s headquarters, the dismayed company took the extreme measure of burying them all in the Alamogordo, New Mexico landfill! The failure of E.T. is attributed to their eventual downfall in the videogame market.
The Solution: A number of simple activities could have saved this disaster, but when the worst came to the worst Atari could have avoided the need to use a landfill. Tweets, and a vigorous Facebook campaign, would have informed customers to dispose of the cartridges sustainably to save public face.Donkey Kong VS King Kong
In 1982 the growing success of video game company Nintendo attracted the attention of movie giant Universal City Studios. They contended the Japanese firm’s popular arcade game, Donkey Kong, was a breach of their copyright for King Kong.
A brief court battle later and Nintendo won after their lawyer, John Kirby, highlighted the rights to King Kong were in the public domain. MCM had not helped their cause by proving the point themselves when releasing a King Kong film decades earlier. Nintendo received a hefty sum from Universal Studios, the latter being criticised for their attitude towards litigation. The incident was also voted one of the “dumbest” moments in video game history.
The Solution: A round of e-mails, Tweets, Google searching and foresight could have avoided this humiliation for MCM. The moral of the story here is to always research. Thoroughly. Something easier to do than ever thanks to the internet age!
Why Landing Pages Are an Essential Marketing Tool
A landing page is simply the term used to describe an online marketing tactic focused on getting people to “land” on a Web page that asks them to take one specific action. Today, landing pages have become a required element in the marketing toolbox for every imaginable business, including local brick-and-mortar types.
To maximize your advertising and promotional efforts, you must direct your ad or e-mail recipients to specific page, which details exactly what they’re going to get and how to get it, as opposed to your site’s homepage. There are many great articles on how to create better landing pages, but I want to focus on why you need to create and use landing pages as a core online marketing tool.
Improve your site’s ranking. One of the best ways to get your site to rank higher is to have lots of local content. Creating landing pages that feature very localized, down to the neighborhood perhaps, content is a great way to start building up the local content and links necessary to have your website’s pages move up in the search index.
Deepen your social connections. Sending your LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook connections to landing pages that are personalized to each network is a great way to deepen the connection. By running Twitter and Facebook feeds on these pages, and acknowledging the connections that come from those networks, you will find a much higher degree of engagement in those networks.
Give visitors what they want. By creating landing pages that address the specific market segments, product segments or key content segments for your business you can begin to better funnel people to the specific types of content they desire. Using a tool like Survey Funnel in conjunction with your landing pages enables visitors to tell you what they are looking for and then be directed to specific content based on their choices.
Capture more leads. When done right, landing pages can be your lead capture workhorse. If you have a great e-book or free workshop to promote, you may want to create sign-up forms for most of your Web pages, but your sign-ups will soar when you create a landing page that details, sells and demonstrates the benefits of signing up for that workshop. A landing page with video, audio, images, descriptions and a very intuitive call to action is a must for lead-capture campaigns.
Reinventing local search for everyone!
Read the complete and original post at www.blog.foursquare.com
Every day, people use Foursquare Explore over a million times for personalized recommendations, whether they’re looking for a romantic dinner spot or a fun family outing. Today, we’re making it available to everyone, everywhere – Foursquare.com now provides the best recommendations for what to do, even for people who haven’t checked in or signed up.
When we first launched Foursquare Explore, we knew we could make great, personalized recommendations for the 25,000,000 members of our community. If a person had checked in at ten places, we could recommend ten more that we knew they’d be happy with.
Since then, we’ve been tweaking and improving the formula that supplies those recommendations, analyzing and re-analyzing our nearly 3 billion check-ins and 30 million tips to find the keys to the best recommendations. In fact, we even started running an experiment: without any check-ins, can we still provide the best local recommendations? Thanks to those 3 billion check-ins and 30 million tips (and a bit more magic behind the scenes), we’ve gotten really really good at it.
Try it out now for yourself. Head over to Foursquare.com and search for ‘pizza’ or a ‘sushi.’ No need to create an account; just go there and type in what you’re looking for.
Foursquare doesn’t just hand you a one-size-fits-all list of suggestions. Even if you’ve never checked in, Explore still can make great recommendations based on a number of signals, like what’s popular in the neighborhood, new places, places that are trending at the moment, where experts go, and what’s popular on that day of the week. If you search for a bar, we don’t just tell you about great bars, but rather the best places you should go tonight.
You’ll also notice that it’s flexible – search for a type of place (‘sushi’), a particular item (‘veggie burger’), or a specific place (‘Starbucks’). Because Explore searches through those tens of millions of tips, we can find exactly what you’re looking for. We’re in the process of adding even more information to our listings – like when a place is open and how much things typically cost there – but in the meantime, try searching for things like ‘cheap’ or ‘late night.’
All of this gets even more powerful if you download Foursquare on your phone. We can then customize Explore based on what you like, where your friends have been, and show you money-saving specials. And, of course, it’ll be even easier to search Foursquare on the go.
Planning a night out this week? Let us know how the all-new Foursquare.com works for you.