Marketers need to be more 'likeable' online

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Chicago—Dave Kerpen, chairman of Likeable Media, a social media consultancy, and a speaker at the BIGFrontier Big Ideas event here Friday, said being more “likeable” online boosts brand marketing. “I look at social media as the world's biggest cocktail party,” Kerpen said . He said an effective social media presence focuses on starting conversations and building relationships. “Listening has always been 50% of any communication, but businesses have been much more focused on the talking part,” Kerpen said. “Social media gives us a 24/7/365 focus group. It allows us to listen to more people than ever before.” Being responsive is also essential, Kerpen said. “Today's comment cards are Facebook and Twitter posts, and if you don't respond, that's now a response in itself,” Kerpen said. “It means you're a company that doesn't care about a customer.” For b-to-b brands, Kerpen gave specific advice about how to be successful with social media. “There's no such thing as b-to-b,” Kerpen said. “Only b-to-p: business to person. You have to find the person on the end of the interaction, the decision-maker.” At the “world's biggest cocktail party,” b-to-b companies must get the attention of people of influence, he said.
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