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Real-Time Marketing: 5 Ways to Do It Right
real-time marketing

Real-time marketing is keeping up with online conversations and comments about trends, ideas, your industry, or your brand as they’re being said.

Sounds easy, right?

I figured it was, until I read an ebook from The Dachis Group, Real-Time Marketing Explained. Even though The Dachis Group targets enterprise-level companies, there are some great tips in there relevant to small businesses.

With that said, for a company to do real-time marketing correctly, some planning is absolutely critical.  Here’s how to do it well:

1. Understand your audience

You need to know what trends and ideas matter to your audience. As the ebook helpfully points out, the trends that matter to Nike are different from the ones that matter to Kraft.

2. Follow trends

You can track trends on Google, in the left rail on your Twitter page (as I write this, Dina Lohan is trending – for a DUI arrest), or on CNN Trends (or any news site, really – they all track trending news).

3. Have good judgment

This is a must. A lot of celebs and brands (with big marketing budgets!) have screwed up for their bad judgment, and of course, those mistakes go viral and becomes top news (see this Mashable infographic for some examples). Use good judgement, and make sure that whatever you say is appropriate.

4. Say it with an image 

An image is worth a thousand words, right? If people are talking about a product that you just started carrying, share a photo of it sitting on your shelf. You can also polish your (basic) graphic design skills, and comment on a trend with a photo or graphic; having a sense of humor can help (depending on the situation).

5. Respond quickly

Obviously, real-time marketing only works if it’s timely. You can’t respond to a conversation that happened yesterday – or even 6 hours ago – and still be relevant. If you miss an opportunity to jump on a trend (like the Harlem Shake), don’t worry – another will come along soon enough.

How do you keep up with online conversations in real-time?

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