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Social Mention as Currency

Wed,Mar 09, 2011 @ 11:30 AM

"Pay with a Tweet" (PWAT) is a recent, effective form of viral marketing that revolves around the concept of paying for a product or service with a mention in some form of social media. Originally, it was used on Twitter to promote digital products like e-books. An e-book seller  would require a user to tweet about the product, and in return, the user would be able to download the product free of charge. The tweeter's followers are, in turn, encouraged to pass along the message if they want the product too.

The site www.paywithatweet.com formalizes the process and tracks when a tweet has been made. Here are some other potential platforms to use the model.

Facebook Wall Post - Given the similarities it shares with Twitter in terms of network structure and user interaction, Facebook is a logical extension of the model. Marketers would require Facebook users to pay by posting a product URL on their walls. Or, marketers could simply require a "Like".

Blog Post - PR and marketing professionals have been sending key influencers free products to review for years. The key difference with the PWAT approach is that it isn't limited to influencers. Any blogger is eligible, and while not all will be high quality, it has the potential to reach a lot more users.

Social Bookmarking Sites - Digg, Reddit, StumbleUpon, or Delicious. The more social mentions you get on these sites, the more visibility you receive.

Monitoring mentions is possible, but can be time-consuming. Expect more tools to be created for time and cost-effective monitoring. As long as you can offer social users some form of value in return for their mention, you can market anything alongside this value.

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Chandler Austin

Written by Chandler Austin


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