In the Office

3 Myths Busted by B2B Social Media

This past month HM&P had the opportunity to bring back two former employees, Jeff Cohen (@jeffreylcohen) and Kipp Bodnar (@kippbodnar) to HM&P headquarters to share insights from their new book The Social Media B2B. Kicking off their book tour, they stopped off here at their old stomping grounds to give our team a presentation on the state of B2B Social Media. In the next few weeks, we will be sharing key takeaways from our session.  We hope you enjoy these insights and gain a new perspective on social media and it’s role within the B2B space.

Of the many myths that surround social media, Jeff and Kip aptly debunked the following:

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Social Media Is More Than A Tweet

Social media is more than a buzz word – it’s part of almost every campaign we work on these days. We all know it. The tough part is making sure your social media efforts produce results.
In fact, we held a lunch and learn here at HM&P about this last week. We welcomed two former HM&P-ers back to discuss how the social media landscape is changing. Kipp Bodnar and Jeff Cohen, who each led the HM&P social media team in the past, spent time with us and our clients to share insights and experiences. As the authors behind the top-rated B2B Social Media blog, they recently co-authored a book: The B2B Social Media Book.  Their mantra? Social media programs can – and should – produce major ROI. They should drive sales leads and garner engagement beyond the web. They should impact a business.

Here’s how:

  • Create original content: white papers, blogs, infographics
  • Strategically deliver it: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest
  • Create a call to action:  Webinar sign up, Facebook Like Gateway Download
  • Convert to leads: Funnel the information to the sales team
  • Get new business.

When you do it right, the results can be phenomenal. When you do it wrong, you are left asking where the value is.

We know our clients, friends and prospects ask these same questions. So, we spent some time with Kipp and Jeff. Asked them questions and picked their brains. We’ll be sharing those interviews here in the coming weeks. We hope you’ll find the information valuable and insightful.

Until then, check out their book. It’s a good read full of great tips.

Read 3 Myths Busted By B2B Social Media

The Step2® Company Names HM&P As Agency of Record

RALEIGH, N.C., Feb. 17, 2011 – Howard, Merrell & Partners was recently named the agency of record for the Step2® Holdings Company, LLC – and its Step2® and Infantino® brands that foster learning and development through creative play in children from birth to school-age years. Howard, Merrell & Partners will provide brand management support, integrated marketing collaboration, public relations and social media, event planning, and creative development..

“We need an agency that can look at our business strategically and execute upon that knowledge in an integrated fashion across multiple marketing disciplines,” said Jerry McDermott, chief marketing officer, Step2® Holdings. “Howard, Merrell & Partners possesses a long and outstanding track record of seamlessly integrating marketing activities into unified campaigns that strengthen brands. We are looking forward to this partnership.”

Read the full release.

5 Ways To Connect With Consumers With Pinterest


“Are you on Pinterest?” This question is coming up in more and more conversations by the day. If you answered no, you’re missing out on one of today’s hottest social media platforms. Despite its invite-only status, Pinterest experienced tremendous growth with a 4,000% increase in site visits from 275,000 per week to 11,000,000 in the latter half of 2011. Pinterest is a virtual pinboard where users can pin and organize images from around the web to different boards. These boards can help them do everything from collecting recipes for their next dinner party to discovering DIY tips for turning their old cardboard boxes into stylish storage solutions.

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Weekly Wrap Up #16 – It’s all about Facebook

This week in Facebook!

Yes, that’s right. This week’s wrap up is all about Facebook. The mega-awesome, all-inspiring, IPO-releasing (eventually…), Facebook.

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The Art of Storytelling

We don’t often realize the advertising industry is an intrinsically complex-natured place. Too many times do we attempt to “dumb things down” so that the essence of an idea, or concept, comes through without a hitch. We attempt to make things as simple as possible in order to get our “value proposition” in the right place. We make things simple in order to drive ROI. We make things simple to get better conversions on our landing pages.

As marketers, advertisers, creatives, and interactives we sometimes overlook one of the most beautiful aspects of what we love doing. As we keep delving into more data and more statistics in order to drive a bottom line, we forget to tell a story!

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Major Culture Shift and I’m Jumping on the Band Wagon

I’ve been at the Internet Summit in Raleigh, NC the 15th & 16th of November, and I have to admit I left feeling like a changed woman.  As for any conference, the speakers and sessions can be hit or miss.  I gained some valuable industry tips on paid search, digital marketing and SEO but the most impactful event for me was the keynote speaker, Gary Vaynerchuk.  Prior to the conference, I’d never heard of this guy and now I can’t wait to read his book, The Thank You Economy and use his business practices in my own life.

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Worst Ad in America – 2011

According to the readers of Consumerist magazine, the worst ad of 2011 is Luvs Diapers’ “Poop, There It Is.” Can’t say I’m too surprised. There’s something about competitive pooping that’s a bit disturbing to me.

So, one might say that Luvs really sh*t the bed on this TV spot. Or did they? It might not be the most liked ad out there, but it’s drawing plenty of attention. The brand is getting a lot of publicity. Hey, it made its way on this blog, and I assure you, it’s been posted on plenty of other sites too. That raises the old question, is bad/annoying advertising effective? Will Luvs’ stinky commercial move diapers off the shelf? I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

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The Future of Online Video

I’ll be heading to the Internet Summit today and have been researching some of the panels I’ll be attending.  One in particular I find very exciting is Online Video.   Most of our clients are asking for video and we’ve been working to find outlets to share their message.  Forrester Research shows that by 2012, $7.1 Billion in advertising will be spent in the online video environment.  This makes perfect sense if marketers are watching the increase in online video consumption.

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Weekly Wrap Up #10

It has been another action-packed week here in Raleigh, and another Friday means another weekly wrap up. This week had a lot of great stuff floating around, so here are 5 links for you to check out!

1. Heinz builds on QR code success with new cause-marketing effort

Heinz QRThe new 20oz Heinz Ketchup bottles now have a QR code to support the Wounded Warrior Project. With over 1 Million scans from their previous QR code campaign, the expectation for the current project is to have consumers scan the code and be able to send a “Thank You” to soldiers from as part of the Wounded Warrior project, as well as to “Like” the Heinz Facebook Page. For every “Like” or “Thank You” sent, Heinz will donate $0.57 up to a total of $200,000. If you want to read the full article you can find it at Mobile Marketer.

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