Hello, this is Randy Hlavac, and welcome to the Social Media Marketing Specialization. We created the specialization in 2014, and one of our first learning videos was entitled; Surviving the Digital Revolution 2014. It highlighted the major trends impacting businesses today, because technology, new social media sites, and new media forms like video and podcasting are continually evolving. This video, like the rest of the specialization, must be continually updated. Throughout the social media marketing specialization, we are continually adding new videos and updating our marketing tools to provide you with the most current ways to prosper. Please enjoy the 2019 version of surviving the digital revolution. One great source of business insights is the IBM Global C-Suite study. Each year, IBM survey C-Suite managers in finance, IT, marketing, human resources, operations, and the CEOs themselves, from all types of businesses located throughout the world. Each year survey is designed to learn about the changing views of business, and the challenges businesses face today. For 2019, IBM surveyed nearly 13,000 executives. In their 2019 study, IBM reviewed the most important factors impacting businesses this year. If you look at it over time, market factors and technological factors are the most significant trends impacting businesses today. Marketing factors include issues like building an omni-channel experience, managing social media, building a holistic marketing program with measurable return on investment or ROI, and other trends. As IBM states in their any challenge, consumers want to engage with you anywhere they are at at any time and on any device of their choosing. Throughout this specialization, we will show you how to use social media and social media marketing to address these challenges. Technology has allowed global connectivity between consumers and businesses. Today consumers control the marketplace and are engaging with influencers, reading reviews and ratings to make their purchase decisions, and are connecting with each other in virtual, and real communities to address their patients in the trigger events which are impacting their lives. The IBM Global C-Suite study is a great free resource to better understand the factors that are impacting businesses today. The Edelman Trust surveys are another great source of business insights. These global studies focused on issues which impact trust between businesses and consumers. They explore the nature of our trust, about brands, brand messaging, CEOs, Social Media, and much more. Edelman research is constantly providing your business with important free studies designed to help you prosper in the new digital marketplace. From their annual Trust Barometer Report, the 2019 study identified two trust elements important to your business. The first is consumers trust colleagues, family, and friends when they are making their purchase decisions. Second, they use search to find influencers, reviews and ratings, and information to help inform their purchase decision. These findings are enhanced with other 2018 surveys on the importance of online reviews and ratings. As you see, consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from real people. They also go to social networking sites to find reviews, and consumers say that a positive online review does influence their buying decision. A good source of information on reviews and ratings is the Northwestern Medill Spiegel Research Initiative. They give you a lot of tips on how to use reviews and ratings effectively, and some things to watch out for, for example, having all five-star ratings is actually something that makes a consumer's suspicious of the reviews. So you want to have a blend of it. They tell you how to do that, and how to address negative reviews that you will pick up over time. From their global C-Suite study, IBM produces trend studies for CMOs and the other disciplines in the C-Suite. From their 2019 CMO study, there are two growth and three change areas CMOs feel are critical to their businesses success in 2020. The growth items are increasing sales and revenue and demonstrating the return on investment or ROI from their marketing programs. In terms of change, they see improving the omni-channel experience, reinventing their business to improve the consumer experience, and becoming more consumer centric as critical to their success. In this specialization, we will focus on all five of these issues, because consumers control the marketplace. You need to start by developing insights into your high-value markets to generate highly relevant experiences, and then track them to ensure they are profitable to your organization. We will show you how to do this in the social media marketing specialization. One last IBM global resource is their Institute for business value. It is the site where you can search for current information and case studies on different types of technologies which are impacting businesses today. You can search the site by technology type, your industry, and your global location to find the information most relevant to you. The Institute published two studies related to the 2019 CMO to-do list. When CMOs look at all of their marketing touch points, they find 44 percent can't link their marketing campaigns to revenue or sales, and only 51 percent are moderately able to identify the ROI of their programs. If we focus only on social media, HootSuite, another great source for business insights, found 58 percent of brand managers say measuring the impact of their social assets is a challenge, and more importantly, only 34 percent can measure the ROI of their social investment. This means about 60 percent of all businesses today can not effectively measure their social media marketing programs. What you need to realize is we are moving from the 4 P's of marketing, product, place, price, and promotion to the 4 C's of social, content, connecting, community, and curation. Today, your high-value consumers are in communities engaging with each other, and you need to be a part of that conversation. Our goal is to help you become an expert and an influencer in these communities, so that you can be there when they're ready to buy. To engage your markets, we will use a new digital model. One of the most common mistakes businesses make is they think they need to create all of the content necessary to engage our markets using social media. This is a true. Today you need an integrative strategies, where you first create high-impact content and then market it to your high-value consumers. Then you also need to identify influencers who are engaging with them on topics where you are weaker in your expertise. We will show you how to identify those influencers, follow them, and then when they create great content, you will amplify it by posting it to your markets. Each time you create or curate influential content, you will grow your follower base and increase your influence in the high-value markets that you want to develop. In summary, in this specialization, we will focus on three important business questions. The first is what are the strategies which produce measurable ROI for your organization? Our goal is to find the best ways to engage prospects to build them into customers, and then to build strong consumer relationships using integrated metrics. We want to be able to prove that each one of your social media marketing investments is providing a positive ROI to your organization. The second question is what are the best methodologies to design, develop, deploy, and measure your social marketing strategy? Throughout the specialization, you'll hear from experts and we will review case studies to learn the best ways to develop, justify and manage your social media investment. The final question is, what types of relationships does each strategy build? As you'll see, some strategies build marketing databases and user knowledge bases to help you grow strong one-to-one relationships with both your prospects and your customer. Enjoy the specialization. Remember, we're on the Coursera forums to address your questions and concerns. Also, connect with me on Twitter to become a part of my community, as we keep up with the ever-changing world of social media marketing.