As expected, social media is on fire this morning and will continue throughout the day as both President Obama and Governor Romney secure their votes from the American people.  Both candidates have a strong social media presence but it appears the incumbent has a slightly larger lead on Twitter, evidenced by the amount of activity and trending topics that involve Obama and not Romney.

I was speaking with the Washington Post yesterday describing the major role that social media will play on Election Day and it seems to be coming true.  Arguing that President Obama seems to have a stronger social media influence is evidenced today by the fact that 3 out of 10 trending hashtags on Twitter involve President Obama while none represent the Romney / Ryan ticket.  What’s more, President Obama is even running a sponsored and promoted initiative today through Twitter.  This could indicate positive news for the President as Governor Romney has an inferior presence on Twitter today.

An infographic by OpenSite designed to show the impact of social media and the Election indicates that this year, 4 out of 5 adults will gather their election news through the internet.  It furthermore explains that 53 percent of adults will fact-check claims made by both candidates online this year.  The most staggering number is the fact that 40 percent of eligible voters will use social media to help them make their decision this year on who to vote for.  Given these statistics and the current influence of President Obama, he looks to have an advantage.

CNN has one of the better live election maps and is tracking the votes all day as they come in.  NBC News provides a comprehensive 2012 Election Book that includes statistics, battleground map, advertising spending and more.  FOX News also provides a live election map including up to the minute updates from the polls.

Apple has released their smaller tablet version of the iPad, the mini.  The mini is available today for sale however does the price defeat the purpose?  The mobile and tablet market is thriving and virtually exploding!   In fact, tablets are set to surpass notebook growth in 2016.  Research conducted by Display Search indicates that tablets are expected to be the driving mechanism for the mobile market over the next 4 years.  With this extreme growth and demand for mobile and tablet devices, Apple decided to launch the iPad mini to compete with lesser expensive and smaller sized tablets.  However, many consumers feel the price they offered is a bit too aggressive for the mini tablet.

The full size iPad right now ranges from $499 to $829.  In order to stay competitive in this market and challenge the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (starting at $249), Kindle Fire HD (starting at $199) and the GoogleNexus (starting at $199), Apple released the iPad mini, ranging from $329 to $659.  With Apple’s product priced much higher than the competition, consumers are asking each other if Apple is asking for too much for the mini and furthermore if this is a sign the tech giant is becoming slightly over-confident in their pricing models.

When we look at the market share of the mobile and tablet market, understandably so we acknowledge that Apple has a commanding lead.  This lead, however is slipping away to Android-based devices.  According to the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, Apple had 81 percent market share in 2011 however that has been reduced to 52 percent for 2012 while Android-based devices have climbed to 48 percent for 2012.

The growth in competition has led Apple to release a smaller version of the iPad however the aggressive starting price may defeat that purpose.  Simply put, consumers are able to purchase the GoogleNexus (Android-based device) for more than $129 less than the iPad mini.

We want to know, do you feel the Apple mini is priced a bit too high and are you more inclined to purchase the iPad mini or another mini tablet device?

There are more than 23 million small businesses in the United States, representing 54 percent of all U.S. revenue.  While the majority of these firms oftentimes have smaller marketing budgets versus larger firms, competing against the majors becomes an integral component to any small business marketing strategy and thus a major focus for sustainable growth.

Key statistics gathered from the Small Business Administration indicate that since 1990, as big business eliminated approximately 4 million jobs, small businesses actually added 8 million new jobs.  While small businesses are essential components to the overall economy, it is becoming more challenging to compete in a global climate dominated by higher leveraged organizations; until now.

Lesser expensive and highly efficient marketing tools have entered the marketplace and such tools including social media, mobile marketing, and even paid search components now find their way in to small business strategic planning sessions.  While these tools have proven to be extremely effective for the small business sector, there remains a significant percentage of small business owners who have been hesitant to accept the change.  Given the fact that the median age of the U.S. based small business owner is 49.25 years, this generation is historically hesitant to change their marketing methods and incorporate modern-era marketing including using smartphones versus television and billboard advertising.

There are presently 116 million U.S. smartphone users, a representation of 37 percent of the overall population, according to eMarketer.  While mobile marketing has become a larger piece of the pie, a recent study indicates that only 20 percent of local businesses said they are implementing mobile marketing.  Simply put, businesses that focus the majority of their operations within a defined geographic radius are missing out on potential consumers, while larger competing firms are scooping up the opportunity.  Take, for example, a local coffee shop losing business to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts.

Leveraging social media is cost-effective and can dramatically increase the efficiency of a small business marketing strategy.  Consumers are on social media.  They are no longer tuned in to the TV and radio through the workday as much as they are checking in on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus.  In fact, Facebook just crossed the 1 billion user mark and Twitter has an average of 6.9 million daily active users.  Creating brand awareness and enhancing visibility through the use of social media has become a major asset to small business.

With the increase in small business advertising through the use of social media, mobile, and paid search, these firms are able to effectively reach their customers directly, using less resources than big business.  Lesser advertising and marketing expenses can help a small business compete on price against the larger firms which can ultimately improve their bottom line and create sustained growth even in a recovering economy.

MOUNT LAUREL, NJ (OCT. 17, 2012)Kenneth Wisnefski, founder and CEO of WebiMax, the fastest growing private company in New Jersey on the Inc. 500, announced the unveiling of a new website aimed at  providing valuable information on brand management and reputation management for medium and large-sized businesses.  Brand Management dot com delivers important information regarding how to successfully manage a brand’s presence online and furthermore includes important resources for decision makers at these institutions related to these services.

“I have discussed with many decision makers at some of the most reputable and largest businesses indicating that this community needs up-to-date resources on brand management techniques,” states Wisnefski, who founded WebiMax in 2008.  “Brand Management dot com serves this purpose and furthermore provides valuable statistics on how brand management and reputation management have major impacts on consumers and their buying behaviors.”

While core fundamentals of the marketing mix and other key tangibles remain relevant for branding purposes, statistics indicate that the proactive management of the brand through online methods and techniques have become crucial elements in remaining competitive and building an authoritative brand.  As of today, more than 89 percent of consumers said they use online channels to investigate the product and brand they are purchasing.  In addition, approximately 87 percent of consumers indicated that positive reviews they have read online convince them to buy a specific product.

“Consumers today are leveraging technology more than they ever have before in their purchasing decisions,” states Wisnefski.  “Today’s consumer is smarter and more aware of product and brand alternatives and how they are rated online, and 89 percent of them use these online reviews to make their purchasing decisions.”

Brand Management dot com includes statistics, case studies, a regularly updated blog, and other resources for businesses.  The website is managed by a team of seasoned brand and reputation management experts that also develop these strategies for clients.  Visit http://www.brandmanagement.com/ for more information.

About WebiMax.

Led by serial web entrepreneur Kenneth Wisnefski, WebiMax has become the leader in online marketing services, including a focus on Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, Paid Search and PPC, Website Design and Development, Reputation Management, and more. The company was named to the 2012 Inc. 500 (No. 37 overall) and was also selected as one of America’s Most Promising Companies (2011) by Forbes Magazine (No. 30 overall).  The company employs over 125 personnel in 12 offices including 8 U.S. based, and 4 International. Visit http://www.webimax.com/ for more information.

MOUNT LAUREL, NJ (AUG. 23, 2012) – Inc. magazine this week ranked WebiMax No. 1 in New Jersey as the fastest growing private company on its 31st annual Inc. 500 | 5000 list.  There are approximately 153 New Jersey based private companies on this year’s Inc. 500 | 5000.  The full list of top companies in New Jersey can be found here, courtesy of Inc. magazine.  In addition, WebiMax ranked No. 37 overall in the United States, with a three-year sales growth of 5,651 percent.

Kenneth Wisnefski, New Jersey-based entrepreneur and founder / CEO of WebiMax, said “I am pleased to announce WebiMax is the fastest growing private company in New Jersey according to the Inc. 500, a highly reputable and respected name worldwide in publications.”

Wisnefski founded WebiMax in 2008 as a small startup and has since grown the company to employ more than 300 New Jersey residents in its four year history.

The 2012 Inc. 500, unveiled in the September issue of Inc. (available on newsstands August 21 to November 15 and on Inc.com), is the most competitive crop in the list’s history. To make the cut, companies had to be founded in 2008, and have achieved a staggering minimum of 770% in sales growth. The Inc. 500’s aggregate revenue is $15.7 billion, with a median three-year growth of 1,431 percent. The companies on this year’s Inc. 500 employ more than 48,000 people and generated over 40,000 jobs in the past three years. Complete results of the Inc. 500 | 5000, including company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found at http://www.inc.com/500.

“We work with more than 800 clients worldwide and employ over 100 employees in our company headquarters, based in Mount Laurel, New Jersey,” states Wisnefski.  “WebiMax’s growth is a result of our highly innovative products and services offerings, in addition to our success in delivering high quality services to our clients.”

While the company has always been headquartered in New Jersey, Wisnefski indicates that he has been approached by other towns and municipalities across the United States to relocate WebiMax but Wisnefski continues to turn down these opportunities.

“Ever since 2009 when our growth skyrocketed nearly 1,000 percent, year-over-year, WebiMax has received generous offers to relocate our business however we remain based in New Jersey and will continue to operate out of this great State,” states Wisnefski.  “Being the number 1 fastest growing private company in New Jersey is an honor for us and I thank those at Inc. magazine for this accolade.”

Methodology.

The 2012 Inc. 500 | 5000 is ranked according to percentage revenue growth when comparing 2008 to 2011. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2008. They had to be U.S.-based, privately held, for profit, and independent—not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies—as of December 31, 2011.  The minimum revenue required for 2008 is $100,000; the minimum for 2011 is $2 million. As always, Inc. reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons. Companies on the Inc. 500 are featured in Inc.’s September issue. They represent the top tier of the Inc. 5000, which can be found at www.inc.com/500.

About Inc.

Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders.  Total monthly audience reach for the brand has grown significantly from 2,000,000 in 2010 to over 6,000,000 today.  For more information, visit http://www.inc.com/500.

About WebiMax.

Led by serial web entrepreneur Kenneth Wisnefski, WebiMax has become the leader in online marketing services, including a focus on Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, Paid Search and PPC, Website Design and Development, Reputation Management, and more. The company was named to the 2012 Inc. 500 (No. 37 overall) and was also selected as one of America’s Most Promising Companies (2011) by Forbes Magazine (No. 30 overall).  The company employs over 100 personnel in 12 offices including 8 U.S. based, and 4 International. Visit http://www.webimax.com/ for more information.