Social Media Solutions on a Budget — SES New York 2011

End of the day. I’m dragging. I’ll bet it’s because I don’t have a bagel. But what I do have is one more session and hopefully just enough battery to cover it.

Let’s get right to is. This is Social Media Solutions on a Budget and these are your panelists:

SES Panel: Social Media on a Budget Session

Jeffrey Harmon is up first — He was sitting in a marketing class and an entrepeneur came in for advice. His fellow students told him to give it up. 93% of products don’t get sold online.

Bad breath is a $3.1 B /year industry

He said — why not sell it on YouTube? 8% of people is still a lot of people.

Tripled their conversion rates by putting a ‘how to tell if you have bad breath’ video on their site.

Made their own and plugged their product in the end.

Sold out of 10k units in 6 weeks on a $30/day initial budget looking to just break even. They now have 3.5 Million views.

[There is a guy who is seriously enjoying himself in this session. Methinks someone started drinking already.]

Parody of the iPad2 commericial. Capitalizing on “edutainment” videos.

Dear everyone, please use this from now on instead of namechecking Will It Blend every ten minutes. Thanks.

Subscribers are the key to success. People who follow and consume regularly then share. Top cable networks have 400k subscribers. All of the top YouTube producers have more subscribers than that.

Regular web videos like Diaries of Morgan the tongue drive subscribers. Encourage engagement in the video and comments. They’re built for YouTube and get viewed between 30-100K times a week.

People started posting reviews on YouTube discussing their experiences with the product.  Used YouTube to drive App downloads.

Have 270,000 FB fans.

93% of sales /do/ happen offline. His class wasn’t wrong. So how do they get it into the stores? Stores started calling them from other countries. They’re in tens of thousands of stores now.

Effective online videos on your site double or triple conversions. If you adapt it, you can put it in a store and that will also raise your conversions there.

Why is on2off important?

SES: Social Media on a Budget Session

Online time is increasing. people are spending more and more time there. Online advertising makes sense.

[zero moment of truth]

The product purchase loop has changed from the initial model. You need to build in an engagment loop online to offline and back, then you’ll intercept people at their zero moment of truth more often.

Greg: They sold $1m of products at $5 each in the first year.

And now it’s Jason Yormark’s turn.

He was at Microsoft before but was laid off in 2009. With everyone competing for jobs, he had to learn to capitalize on inexpensive tools.

Implement social into your business doesn’t have to be expensive:

  • blogging
  • twitter
  • facebook

Provide value first — BLOG

If you’re not blogging, you’re not living. Google loves blogs in terms of ranking. You can never leverage social media as effectively if you’re not pushing out great content. Share your knowledge. It spreads influence, creates value, gains trust and credibility.

Time and cost constraints don’t really exist. There are tools out there.

Choosing a platform:



  • you own everything
  • more design * development
  • plugins
  • reputation


  • costs more
  • more complicated

Hosted solution: (blogger,, posterous, tumblr)


  • free
  • easy to set up
  • simple to run
  • [I would add instant audience through discovery]


  • less flexibility
  • less ownership

Blogging resournces




  • Windows Live Writer



Fuelyourcreativity is free if you can use photoshop

Building Following:

Find likeminded users to follow who are prominent. See who follows them. This is time-consuming but set aside a little bit of time each day to target and build your following.

CRM – content relationship management

He likes Hootsuite because it’s Web-based and thus accessible anywhere. Has tabs. Minimal analytics built in. Three levels of service.

Built the following for Mazatlan Lifestyle using the tactics he’s outlined.

Facebook Ads:

Why? – Targeting, very affordable


  • Keep your audience in Facebook
  • Make your landing page your facebook page
  • Consider running a contest
  • Ask questions, and ASK FOR LIKES
  • Advertise to friends of fans

LinkedIn Groups

Why – great resource for new leads customers, web traffic. Incredibly easy to share to


  • Identify relevant groups to join
  • Contribute regularly outside of your own cntent
  • Help others!
  • Add the LinkedIn Share button ot your blog/website

Social Analytics

SES: Social Media on a Budget Session

check out Social Mention, Klout, Peer Index.

No one of these is the be all and end all. Use multiple because they’re all different in how they figure. Track the trends and the sentiment.  Determine what the causes of large changes are.


One of his favorites. WP plugin. Measures engagement.

Sprout Social – paid product

Visually fantastic. Easy to use. More analytical power. and Rowfeeder

Download your followers –

Download keywords and hashtags – rowfeeder

Bottom line:

  • Create
  • Share
  • Influence
  • Engage
  • Measure


[first video]

Susan Esparza is former managing editor at Bruce Clay Inc., and has written extensively for clients and internal publications. Along with Bruce Clay, she is co-author of the first edition of Search Engine Optimization All-in-One Desk Reference For Dummies.

See Susan's author page for links to connect on social media.

Comments (1)
Still on the hunt for actionable tips and insights? Each of these recent Social Media Marketing posts is better than the last!

One Reply to “Social Media Solutions on a Budget — SES New York 2011”

Excellent Post. I have found myself wanting to become more diverse in small ways as well. Like Manta or MechantCircle for example, trying to connect with local businesses and so on. They have that make a connection feature, then use it. Anything that we can do to gradually work our business in front of more and more people naturally in the long run should make a huge difference. These area all great tips and techniques.


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