Getting Your Feet Wet with Social Media Part 3: Developing a Game Plan

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To make social media a beneficial component of your marketing mix, it is important to layout a detailed plan that will serve as your guide. A well thought out plan will save you time and effort in the long run. I’ve added my own ideas (in ital) to a recent post from Mashable that describes some steps to get you started:

Step 1: Listen

Social media is a term we use to to discuss the tools that facilitate conversations. Before your company can be a part of those conversations, you need to know what people are already talking about so you can determine how you can best contribute.

Setting up some tools to monitor conversations is easy. The difficult part is choosing the keywords that will return the most usable results.

Here are some tools to get you started:

Social Media Firehose: Kingsley Joseph used Yahoo Pipes to create one RSS feed that aggregates results from Flickr, Digg, YouTube, FriendFeed and other social media sites.

Latest Blog Mentions Pipe: This is another Yahoo Pipe that will aggregate brand references across several major blog search engines, including Technorati, Icerocket and Google Blog Search.

Alltop: This website aggregates the top posts from the top blogs around the world. Because it divides the blogs into categories by topic, itï