December 5th, 2008 by Sten Franke
Now, it’s finally official! The BVDW Arbeitskreis Social Media gets to work. The Arbeitskreis (Working Group) is managed by Axel Schmiegelow (sevenload&denkwerk) and Sten Franke (ethority)
This new BVDW Arbeitskreis aims for market transparency and together with Online Marketer (OVK) – under BVDW standards – also sets out to develop social media platforms. Hence, the Arbeitskreis Social Media will become the representative party and competence centre of Social Media platforms for the German market.
Sten Franke about the long term objectives:
“In the long run, it’s about developing standards for advertising in social media and those standards should be compatible to changes happening around the social media’s world”
The establishment meeting took place at ethority – in the heart of Hamburg – amongst others, present were United Internet, GWP, MySpace, StudiVZ, Lokalisten as well as Unister.
Beside the main focus on the possibilities and opportunities in Social Media Marketing, the Arbeitskreis will also emphasize on minor protection and data privacy as well as market research related to the realm of social media.
The Arbeitskreisp is not a closed circle group, but rather it will actively seek interfaces and cooperation in the future – e.g. with OVK or AGOF – in order to accomplish the above mentioned objectives.
As soon as the first results of Arbeitskreis Social Media becomes available, we will give you the coverage in details.
May 15th, 2008 by Sten Franke
Social networks enjoy increasing popularity with internet users. There is hardly a better way to take care of one’s personal circle of friends or business network. But which communities enjoy a good reputation with their German and English users and which do not? Which networks within the eight surveyed linguistic areas is talked about most frequently on the web? Which opportunities do network operators provide for marketers to use these platforms for advertising purposes?
The international social network study illustrates: within the channels of communication in German user generated media, SchülerVZ receives the worst image values according to the evaluations. In English-speaking areas, xanga.com achieves only bad image values whereas the international buzz is focussed on Facebook, Myspace and LinkedIn. In German-speaking areas, StudiVZ achieves the first place in the buzz index ranking. Concerning marketing strategies, traditional banners are still the prevailing choice for marketing within the social networks. Widgets are up and coming. The appeal of these small web applications lies in their immensely far range of coverage and they are increasingly provided by networks.
„The results of this study illustrate the prominent role of social networks within the environment of user generated media. No matter if within the EU, North or South America – In the future, social networking will more and more become one of the established social channels of communication. This is the specific reason why the appeal of networks will become particularly stronger for marketing departments. Although the first large-scale behaviour-targeting attempts of various network operators had to be classified as failures, the general marketing qualification of social networks should not be questioned. Take widgets, for example. These small programs are just one of the possible methods which lead to successful marketing.
But although they have many tempting possibilities in social networks, advertisers should not lose contact with the users. The key for successful marketing of social media offers lies in the direct and outspoken communication with the users…” says David Nelles, Company Spokesman of ethority GmbH & Co. KG.
For more than 10 years, ethority GmbH & Co. KG is successful at the market being experts in semantic web analyses and online marketing. ethority’s expertise includes market research and online marketing as well as the analysis, initiation and realisation of word of mouth campaigns in Germany. Here, ethority is not confined to the German-speaking market but is able to serve all international markets by means of their multi-lingual approach.
May 13th, 2008 by Mo
With immediate effect, the ethority GmbH & Co. KG includes the web service Twitter und large networks such as Xing in their monitoring and advisory portfolio. According to NZZ (Neue Züricher Zeitung), the number of twitter users has doubled within the past six months. But also the many-to-many communication within the online communities of major networks becomes increasingly important for the social media analysis.
With this extension, ethority is the state-of-the-art provider in the field of social media analysis. Micro-blogging and communication in online communities within the major networks produce a flow of information which should not be underestimated and which has to be evaluated accordingly.
Nils Maier, Director Business Development and Operations at ethority, states: “Monitoring the micro-blogging service Twitter enables us to be directly located at the pulse of sentiments and opinions of the consumer generated media. Not only the ordinary internet user has discovered Twitter but also journalists and news agencies increasingly use this service in order to spread information within the web. This development indicates that ‘twittering’, as a type of communication channel, will establish itself more and more and, thus, becomes highly interesting from the perspective of social media analysis. A specific field of application for the twitter survey is the utilisation of received information as a leading indicator for the issue management. In the United States, it is customary that companies keep an eye on twitter. On this point, see also Michael Arringtons experiences with Comcast. We have modified ethority’s range of services in order to provide our clients with an overall insight into web 2.0 communication. Hereby, overall means not only the conventional websites, weblogs and online communities but also network communities and twitter streams. “
May 13th, 2008 by Sten Franke
Within the channels of user generated media, family holidays are the most frequently mentioned issue. Users in weblogs like to discuss the topic of winter holidays, whereas a vacation in the snow does not enjoy great popularity in online communities. Here, users prefer to talk about cruises, while this topic cannot be found under the bloggers’ top 5 ways of travelling. Moreover, and in contrast to active online community members, bloggers rather choose to have conversations about package tours. Concerning the ways to travel, bloggers and online community members seem to agree on adventure and city travels. In both channels of communication, they are the most frequently discussed.
Top Ways to Travel – Online Communities:
Top Ways to Travel – Weblogs:
Users in weblogs and online communities also agree on the way of booking travels. At this, statements for booking offline have the lion’s share of the topics. About 2/3 of the statements on both channels are allotted to the traditional booking method. This confirms the results of the recent AGOF study. Consumers like to obtain detailed advice in the user generated channels but prefer to book offline in a travel agency.
Booking Methods – Online Communities:
Booking Methods – Weblogs:
The here described booking behaviour indicates the path that marketers have to take in the future. The increasing consumer focus on information concerning products or travels in online domains sets new benchmarks for a successful marketing mix. No matter if it is a large-scale print campaign or an elaborate TV spot – traditional forms of advertisement impress consumers to a lesser and lesser extend. Therefore, it is essential to meet the consumer where he increasingly searches for information. More and more often, customers use portals such as Holidaycheck, TripAdvisor or Opodien in order to obtain information about their potential travel destinations and holiday accommodations before booking. In any case, marketers of the tourism industry should be prepared for this tendency, especially in consideration of the current number of internet users. By now, according to the latest survey of Bitkom, already 63% of the Germans roam the internet.
May 13th, 2008 by Sten Franke
Regarding travels outside Europe, the US and Asia are clearly the main topics in weblogs and online communities. This resulted from the quantitative analysis of consumer comments in the current study. For the intense buzz in the United States, surely the decisive factor is the favourable dollar exchange rate because of which the US has become something like a shopper’s paradise.
In online communities, the African continent ranks third as a potential travel destination, whereas it ranks fifth concerning the overall buzz in weblogs. Bloggers show a greater interest in American Oceania and South America.
This quantitative netnographic study was based on 6500 user opinions in weblogs and online communities concerning the topic of Social Networks. The categorized and evaluated comments originate from ca. 1000 blogs and 400 online communities which have been located with the assistance of the gridmaster technology. Within the scope of this process, the respective channels of communication, topics and the tonality of the comments have been recorded.
The ethority study illustrates the importance of the channels of communication within web 2.0 for the tourism industry. Online communities and weblogs are increasingly used by consumers as relevant sources of information. Furthermore, recommendations, which are exchanged in these channels of communication, exert direct influence on booking decisions. The studies conducted by the American market research institute eMarketer, in collaboration with Deloitte (2007), are able to document this influence by means of their data.