Visit the New LunaWeb Blog

December 8, 2009

If it looks like we’ve been as quiet as the dark side of the moon, It’s because we’ve moved.

LunaWeb's new home: LunaWeb.com

Please visit our new homepage at www.LunaWeb.com, and our new blog at blog.lunaweb.com.

If you’d like to connect with us through social media, we’d love to hear from you.

Visit us on Facebook at Facebook.LunaWeb.com and Twitter at Twitter.com/LunaWeb.

We hope we’ll see you out there!

For so much of the 20th century, Sears’ name loomed large in the American consciousness. “Sears” has taken quite a beating recently. The current recession has drastically cut demand for the durable goods that are Sears’ bread and butter. The retailer still hasn’t quite bounced back after how it suffered at the advent of online shopping.

Sears Crosstown by nichcollins on Flickr

"Sears Crosstown" by nichcollins on Flickr

But online shopping has quite a lot in common with Sears’ catalog origins, so it’s nice to see that they seem to realize how important it is to have a strong online presence.

It’s just too bad they don’t seem to know what to do with it.

While it’s a great step in the right direction for Sears to have a public profile on Facebook, there’s a slight catch: they put information out there, but they don’t seem to check back for their fans’ responses.

This seems like it might be okay, but when you scan their wall, you’ll see that there are 23 posts from customers – seven of which are complaints. That’s almost a third of all the complaints, and they aren’t the softer side of Sears complaints, either. These customers aren’t merely dissatisfied; they have vitriol enough to fuel a thousand Craftsman mowers. These people feel abused and ignored.

Sears’ apparent response? Ignore them.

That’s a bad move, no matter how you look at it.

Now, to be fair, it should be noted that Facebook doesn’t currently notify the administrators of a public profile when fans post to their wall. The people managing Sears’ page need to keep an eye on it every day if they want to stay updated. And it’s clear that something isn’t happening like it should be.

The employee(s) responsible are treating Facebook like just another task. Make a post, move along. They aren’t responding to negative comments – or positive comments. There is simply no apparent understanding that social media functions and thrives based on interaction.

Looking for answers, we went to MySears.com, the social network Sears started for itself. We signed up for an account and made a post on their message boards asking why this was happening. To our amazement, this began turning things around – within hours of our posting, happy, zealous Sears employees found our post, and set about responding to the angry customers.

We love watching people who clearly love to make things right – especially when they understand how to do so online. It’s too bad, though, that there is nothing on these employees’ Facebook avatars identifying them as legitimate (if non-sanctioned) representatives of Sears.

Whoever it is who posts the fun discounts, sales, and videos to the Sears Facebook public profile needs to stop turning a blind eye to the fact that there will occasionally be a customer who gets the raw end of the deal.

If Sears were to publicly make things right with the customer complaints on their Facebook wall, it would show to all other customers that, though things do go wrong, Sears is committed to their customers.

We like to call this possibility “a public relations coup.”

This is true for any business – the easiest way to show the online world that you’re focused on your customers is to actually focus on them. Interact with them. You can make the wrong things right, changing detractors into promoters, and turning the loyal into evangelists. It’s not called “social” media for nothing.

There are important models out there. Try Dell Computer, or Comcast. Even smaller retailers like Zappos shoes continue to make a name for themselves as companies run by real people – the kind you could meet on the street and have a conversation with.

After many hours, delays and modified direction over the past two years, we have proudly launched our new website at LunaWeb.net. It’s a complete redesign from our old site, and it connects with several new dimensions of our online presence.

LunaWeb Home Page

LunaWeb Home Page

Redesign

We’ve changed from the old design completely to include a much more colorful interface and Flash on the homepage  to keep things interesting – but if you don’t have Flash, don’t worry, you’ll get a static image. We tried to create an updated, clean and friendly overall look.

Social Media

Social Media made a huge impact on our new presence. We took advantage of tools which allow us to make the site more interactive and conversational. We’ve brought in a Twitter feed that not only shows our tweets, but shows what others are saying about us. Videos that we switch out occasionally will be featured prominently. We also have links that give you one-click access to several of our Social Networking presences so you can join us in the conversation.

New Pages

You’ll find a few new pages on the site that we’re especially proud of. Primarily, new content reflecting our Social Presence offering (we have the most experienced and largest department of Social Media in Memphis). You will also find a link straight to our blog (this very one), which we regularly update with related information. There is also a portfolio page that will give you a quick peek at some of the websites we’ve created for our clients.

There’s a lot more new to be seen. Thank you for taking a look at our new home. We hope you like the changes.

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The post “LunaWeb Launches New Site” by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

TechFuel: New Modes

April 28, 2009

Memphis may not be used to being in the spotlight, but the city has received its fair share of attention over the past several months, due in large part to the efforts of LaunchMemphis and their partners.  The latest TechFuel event, that took place in the Launchpad of the Emerge Memphis building, was just the most recent of those efforts.

TechFuel: New Modes by LunaWeb on Flickr.
“TechFuel: New Modes” by LunaWeb on Flickr.

C.C. Chapman and Adrian Ho, two of the top thought leaders in the online community, joined us to share their passion about Social Media and the new climate of “online marketing”.  Both men gave insightful presentations that went far beyond the tools and how-to of Social Media.  They also allowed for exhaustive Q&A in which great questions were met with equally strong answers. The real value, as always, was in the conversation.

A great turnout to the event translated into a valuable forum for networking, brainstorming, sharing ideas and meeting the movers and shakers of the Memphis community.  C.C. and Adrian stuck around through the late evening hours, and tirelessly conversed with Memphis’ entrepeneurs.

Check out the Commercial Appeal coverage of the event.

Next for LaunchMemphis is the 2nd Startup Weekend in Memphis.  A wide range of thinkers and creators will be needed to band together in an ambitious attempt to launch a new startup in just one weekend.

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The post “TechFuel: New Modes” by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

There’s a rumor going around that Oprah has gained control of her eponymous Twitter handle, and that she’ll be posting her first tweet during the show tomorrow. You can imagine what kind of immediate impact that this will have on the service.

As a result, we’ve been thinking a lot about the recent explosion in popularity of Twitter.

There used to be a standard progression for people making their way through social media.

The online presence of the first digital natives seemed to evolve from writing online journals read by only four or five people to maintaining MySpace and Facebook profiles with a few dozen friends on to full-fledged blogs and Twitter accounts accessible by the general public.

Digital Natives at Work by Gerard Bierens on Flickr.
“Digital Natives at Work” by Gerard Bierens on Flickr.

Though other sites and services empowered them to take those steps, Twitter seems to have been the triggering mechanism for making social media into a more truly mainstream phenomenon.

Twitter’s simplicity took the focus off of the means of communication and put it right onto the communication itself.

It may have been that simplicity, along with the suddenness of communication via Twitter, that led mainstream media to embrace it as a way to get information to consumers as quickly as possible. National Public Radio and the New York Times, for example, have been using Twitter since the network was still in relative infancy.

Even celebrities of all kinds have embraced Twitter, from TV Host and comedienne Ellen Degeneres to basketball player Shaquille O’Neal to songwriter Colin Meloy.

Twitter has officially broken down the barriers between the common person and celebrity. We here at LunaWeb have to wonder if this is why people who haven’t really dipped their toes in the waters of social media are now doing cannonballs into the deep end of Twitter.

If so, this marks not so much a gradual evolution in people’s progression through social media as a sudden mutation.

Whereas the digital natives eased themselves in, this new flock of Twitter users seems to be jumping right into using publicly accessible forums.

It’s exciting to watch. Especially considering that many of these new users aren’t digital natives at all. They’re immigrants to the internet world. By jumping in like they have, they’re expressing a newly empowered willingness to learn a new – online – dialect.

Once these new digital immigrants are acclimated and fluent, however, and they decide they need something other than what Twitter has to offer, where do they go?

Will they behave like a flock of migratory birds, moving almost as a single organism, or will they simply quietly disperse, as though the party has ended?

One (completely unresearched) impulse, based on Facebook’s near-simultaneous bump in membership, is to say that this new social wave is like a flock of birds. It’s not exactly predictable, but it undulates gracefully, pulsing with each new possible direction.

Flock of Birds by Picture Perfect Rose on Flickr.

"Flock of Birds" by Picture Perfect Rose on Flickr.

Here at LunaWeb, we’ve been giving a lot of beginning social media lessons to our clients. We’re thinking about opening these up to the public. If you’re part of this new wave of users, please sound off in the comments. Let us know what you’d like us to cover.

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blogpost by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

The fun doesn’t stop

April 9, 2009

Last week was a busy week. Not only did we have the Social Media Expedition breakfast, but we gave a half-day workshop for the Grizzlies Foundation.

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The workshop, held at Second Presbyterian Church in Memphis focused on the ways non-profit organizations can use social media to promote their message and attract supporters. We had representatives from over 50 local non-profits show up.

By all accounts, everyone was grateful and eager to learn why and how Facebook, Twitter, and blogging can all be great tools to spread your organization’s message.

But one busy week can lead to another, and another after that.

April 16, for example, marks the second time we’ll be holding TwilightCamp, the evening time equivalent to our Social Media Expedition Breakfasts. It’s the same idea, plenty of time to learn and network with fellow Memphians, and with those core conversations to tap your new friends’ minds for answers to your social media questions.

Twilight Camp will take place from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. We’re still not sure on the location- we want to be sure we can fit everybody, so please RSVP immediately.

And then, on April 23, Launch Memphis, along with Southern Growth Studio, is hosting Tech Fuel, a combination private workshop and open panel discussion. This time around, the theme is “Mastering the New Modes: Insights and Innovations from the Blending Worlds of Technology, Marketing, and Culture.”Adrian Ho and CC Chapman: Mastering the New Modes, hosted by Launch Memphis and Southern Growth Studio

The speakers for this event are Adrian Ho of Zeus Jones and C.C. Chapman of The Advance Guard. These two are leaders in innovation at the blurring intersection of marketing, interactivity, and user experience.

You’ll need to reserve your seat for the private workshop in advance. You can do that through the Launch Memphis website.

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blogpost by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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