Beyond simply posting updates to your social networks of choice, you have a growing arsenal of more sophisticated social marketing tactics at your disposal. Our features this week included a review of how brands can parlay positive reviews on social media into very effective marketing campaigns. We also looked at how brands can customize their messages through branded video, and how specific image hashtags can be used to create exclusive photo albums on the image sharing site Photobucket.

As always, click on any of the headlines below to read the complete articles. Please feel free to comment on any of the posts or contact us on Facebook or Twitter to let us know what you think!

Here Are the Best Ways You Can Leverage Positive Online Reviews

Your happy customers can be your best brand ambassadors, pushing your products or services farther than even the cleverest marketing campaign. “There is so much data out there that shows the importance of favorable online reviews,” says Richard Thomas, Executive VP of Listen360. “We all like to point to the Nielsen report showing that online consumer reviews are the second most trusted source of brand information after recommendations from friends and family. The number of consumers that rely on these reviews is rising.” [ Read More… ]

5 Great Branded Video Series and Why They Work

Television is the format of choice for many of today’s top entertainers, and in new ways, marketers are taking notice. Rather than produce sitcoms or procedurals, many brands have taken the idea of a serial program and applied it to their social and promotional videos.

Just like on the TV networks, some concepts have had more success than others in drawing an audience. Maybe it’s star power, savvy writing, or lavish production. Other shows have become hits for their kitsch factor or their sense of social responsibility. Here are five brands that created smart serial video series, along with an explanation of why they worked so well. [ Read More… ]

Photobucket Consolidates Social Shares Into Custom Hashtag Albums

Users have countless options when they want to share their photos or videos on social networks — but this can pose a challenge for a brand that wants to tap into its fans’ social sharing. Photo storage and sharing site Photobucket recently unveiled a new feature that consolidates social media sharing beyond its own network. With “Photobucket Hashtags” (now available in beta), photos uploaded by anyone on Twitter, Instagram, or Photobucket will be added to a Photobucket album — so long as the images have a custom hashtag attached.

“Using hashtags to bring photos and videos together makes it a universal solution,” explains Jessica Canale, Product Manager with Photobucket. “Anyone can contribute to a Photobucket hashtag album from anywhere, with any phone using the social apps they already have and know.” Tapping into the social behavior its users already had just made sense for Photobucket. [ Read More… ]