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Social Media in Transportation in 2012

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It is hard to believe that a year has gone by since I sat in on a presentation on Social Media in Transportation at the 2011 SMC3 Winter Conference.  This past week David Tuttle, VP, Digital Strategy at TMP Worldwide (who spoke last year) was back again and joined by Bobby Harris, President and CEO of BlueGrace Logistics.  In the short space of 12 months it is clear that social media have exploded in popularity. 

Here are a few statistics to reinforce this message.  There are 800 million global profiles on Facebook, Twitter has 175 million users and LinkedIn has 150 million profiles.  Facebook reaches 85% of logistics professionals on the internet – over 2.8 million people; Twitter reaches over 22% of logistics professionals on the internet; LinkedIn Reaches 19% of logistics professionals on the Internet.

Beyond the impressive user numbers, there appear to be two breakthroughs this year.  The first is in functionality.  Companies and individuals are now starting to figure out how to embed the capabilities of social media in their businesses. 

David highlighted the “follow me” feature on LinkedIn.  It allows people to stay up-to-date on employment opportunities and organizational changes at companies of interest.  Your “career page” beside your “company page” is a powerful tool to “inform active and passive candidates” of opportunities.  It can be used to “see who is following your company and send automatic updates.”   Twitter can be custom branded and used both as a tool to communicate with your followers and to follow them as well.   

David also noted that a Facebook page for your business, with photos that tie in to the website or other business activities, can play a key role.  Targeted ads can be placed on the right side of the Facebook page and can be tailored to the specific demographics and interests of your customers. Each company pays for these ads on a CPC basis.  He also spoke about the importance of scheduling your communication over a period of time to maintain the attention of your fans and followers.  Take advantage of opportunities to connect directly with your fans.

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