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Browsing Tag How to build a brand online

Its Just A Virtual World With Real Money!

Its Just A Virtual World With Real Money!

virtual-theft

Would you pay good money for:

-Something you can not hold?

-Something you can not touch?

-Something you can not smell?

-Something you can not take with you?

What’s that? No? Me either. Yet we do it all the time. Let us review it in list form, people like lists:

-In Facebook people can give virtual gifts to friends by  paying real money for virtual credits.

-In Second Life people make a living by creating virtual clothes and goods. People also pay real money for virtual land.

-In World Of Warcraft there  is a whole secondary market where people who have set up businesses  selling virtual gold coins to people so they can buy virtual goods in the game.

The list goes on and on… crazy right?

This is bigger then playing games on line or networking with friends. Companies need to start thinking outside the box and starting embracing these new ways that people interact and consume products. Brands need to do more then buy  a commercial on tv, a radio spot, or a print ad. Consumers are more then ever interacting with brands directly and in different ways. People are spending real money on virtual items and spending real time in virtual environments with brands

Lets look at some examples of how companies use virtual goods and worlds to increase brand awareness and/or generate more revue:

- On top of the monthly fees World Of  Warcraft users are spending up to $10.00 extra for a limted edition virtual pet to use in the game. They sold out.

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-Facebook users sold out limted edition virtual New York Times newspapers that had the headline of Obama Wins.

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-Club Penigun has created its whole business model around kids paying a membership so they can earn virtual coins to buy virtual goods to decorate their virtual homes..(follow that one?) It is so successful Disney bought them. They paid with real money, not virtual.

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MTV has created entire virtual worlds around their tv shows. Even though MTV airs the same episodes 8 times a day, users want to spend more time with the brand. They log into a virtual world based on the show. They cant get enough. It is so successful they now have over 5 virtual worlds based on their tv shows.

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Wells Fargo Bank create an entire virtual world and active community to help educate youth on banking called StageCoach Island This includes a community site and blog. It has been so successful it has been around for over 2 years.

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So have I made my point? Let me say it again. Companies, brands, businesses, etc need to think and market in new ways. Virtual goods and virtual environments is one way to do it. Wheather they are spending money to buy virtual goods that represent a brand or logging into a virtual world to spend more time with the brand, it is another way to build brand loyalty.

December 16, 2008 By : Category : Blog Tags:, , , , , , ,
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Your Week In Review

Your Week In Review

Thought I would try something different and share what I have been reading, researching, working on, or just excited about.  Since I have been lagging with my Facebook and Twitter posts.  Of course I will do this in list form because people like lists!

-The Social Media Expert Question How do I become a Social Media Expert? I get the question a lot Here is CC Chapman’s response to the term. I thought he nailed it very well

-Do Brands Belong on Twitter? Here is a very different take on the question.  I don’t agree with all his points, especially banning them altogether.  The author makes some great points though.

-10 Tips For Getting New Twitter Followers His tips are excellent and right to the point. Its worth a read.

-General Mills’ Pssst…is a Weak Stab at Branded Community GM gets a gold star for trying, but its a swing and a miss. Trying to build an online community is not as easy as it seems. Check out Paul’s review.

-BlogWorld & New Media Expo Now One Super Huge Event! About time! This is a great move for both! This makes me fired up to go. Some of you may remember my review of New Media Expo , on my other blog. It got some interesting feedback.

-SXSW is coming. Its one of the biggest and the best. Are you going?

-Community 2.0 is a great conference coming up in May 2009 you may want to check out. I am thrilled to be part of it.

Let me know if you like this Week In Review format. If so, I will do my best to keep doing it. It is always good to try something new!

Have  a Great Weekend!

December 12, 2008 By : Category : Blog Tags:, , ,
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How Do I build A Brand Online?

How Do I build A Brand Online?

Have you heard the term ” Online Branding” and wonder what the heck it means? Let’s start with what  a brand  can be. It can be:

-a symbol

-a name

-a term

-a sign

-a design

- or any combination of those

So you have figured out what the base of your brand will be. Now you need to build it up online. Get the word how so to speak.

When your try to build or create a brand online you want to take certain steps to help make this happen. What are those steps? I will share with you some of what I consider the basic building blocks.  Let’s see, how should I share these with you? I know let’s do it in list form, people like lists..

-You should have a website that  follows  K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stupid). It should be clear and to the point. Let visitors know who you are, what you’re about, what you do and why it should matter to them.(my father in laws favorite point) Oh and the website should look good. Remember it reflects your brand. It is the first thing people see when they are learning about you.

-Something that drives me nuts, companies who try to push their brand online via twitter with a company logo. Come on.. a company does not blog, share, or do things. It is the people behind the company that do it. I want to know them. So put a picture of a real life person up on the page. I want to see who I am talking to. It helps people well, bond.

-Leave comments, post to forums and message boards.  If you are trying to sell soda, go to a soda forum and join the conversation. Now when your there don’t just push your product. You need to help others and give good information. Maybe post links where people can find the info they are looking for. Join the conversation.

-Pictures, people like pictures. Show people what you are doing. Where you are located. Give them a picture to associate with. Like this:

-Either create a  fan page on Facebook or a newsletter. Heck do both. Let people join in and feel like they are part of something. Make it a community.

-When you are blogging, tweeting, updating your status, plurking, etc.. talk to your users. Do not lecture them. Do not post just about your product.  Make it a two way conversation. It is about building relationships.

Remember your message about your brand should be consistent.  Oh and  you need to understand the likes and dislikes of your target demographic.  This I learned from  Harvard Business Review on Marketing which Chris Brogan told me read.

How would you build a brand online?

December 11, 2008 By : Category : Blog Tags:, , ,
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