The Social Media Manifesto
This week’s social media blog posts:
Monday: The Social Media Manifesto.
Tuesday: Social Media and business.
Wednesday: Your Social Media strategy: What are you hoping to achieve?
Thursday: Social Marketing turns the Media Funnel upside down.
Friday: Action steps for getting your business started in Social Media—today.
(This is the third in our series of Social Media posts for the month of October. We look forward to your feedback on this series.)
For brands, Social Media allows for a new way of reaching more and better people in a less intrusive, more personal, more likeable fashion. The barriers that exist in traditional mass media don’t exist in Social Media. People are paying attention to you because they want to. There is an opportunity to provide instant feedback, and a more relevant solution in the context of people’s lives.
As a reminder, when we refer to “Social Media,” we are referring to it as anything you do in the online space that allows others to converse, contribute, add to, distribute or give feedback to.
What are the characteristics of a successful Social Media campaign? What does a successful Social Media campaign look like? While there are many ways to engage with others online, there are a few universal “truths” about successful use of Social Media we hold to be self-evident. Feel free to use the following list as a print-and-post:
- We’re all social marketers. Online or offline, we all have our communities that share our interests. We’re all looking for places to fit in and for feedback from others.
- The customer (or user) is in control. The customer decides when (or whether) to engage with us online. Intrusion doesn’t work. You can’t force your message onto users.
- Transparency is the key. There’s a huge difference between the old way we used to view marketing (“What do I have to say to get you to buy from me?”) and the Web 2.0 view on marketing (“Who do I have to be for you to engage with me?”) Don’t say something or take a stand because you think it’s what customers want to hear, or because or it might “sound good.” If your organization isn’t behind it, drop it. Be authentic. By transparently expressing your values to visitors, and allowing them to see how you “walk your talk,” you’ll set the stage for developing trust.
- Social Media operates in real time. By being responsive to visitors and customers, it shows you care about them and the community you’re taking part in.
- Thou shalt not sell. Your goal in Social Media is to solve problems. Once you are trusted by followers as a “problem solver” the sales will come.
- Everything is “opt-in” (or, in the very least, avoiding the “opt-out”). Key is to maintain a Social Media presence and keep your content fresh, useful and engaging.
- Cherish the relationship over the transaction. Find out what the customer is trying to accomplish, what they are trying to get done, then do whatever you can to move them towards that. A successful interaction is more than its own reward. It is proof to a customer that you’re in it for more than the sale, and that is how you will earn their trust.
- Social Media is a long-term proposition. Even if you are using social media for a tactical campaign, your online efforts go on for as long as they have momentum. Your challenge is to keep it fresh and engaging.
- When customers interact with you, interact right back. Have a strategy in place for how you will leverage that initial engagement you have earned into something more long-term and meaningful.
- Give away your expertise. The most successful Social Media programs are where you help visitors solve problems. The knowledge and experience you have around your business and industry gives people a reason to consider you a solution.
- What someone says about you is more important than what you say about yourself. Effective social media is owned, operated and moderated by its users. Your primary job is to listen and look for opportunities to share and solve.
- Social media is not a strategy, it is the amplifier of your strategy. What is your Brand Vision? How do you want to be perceived by customers and others? How do you want them to refer to you? How is your social media strategy forwarding this Brand Vision?
- Social Media is about your customers and your community members, not about you. Social Media enables marketers to speak with their audiences (instead of to them) and the participants are the stars…with brands relegated to playing a supporting role.
We’ll have the opportunity to elaborate on many of these subjects as the month goes on. As always, we look forward to your feedback on this series. If you’re not currently receiving the Quisenblog, you can subscribe here.
Posted by Mickey
- Social Media and business.
- A brief introduction to Social Media: What is it, and how does it work?
- Social Marketing turns the Media Funnel upside down.
- Use Social Media to give your customers a seat at the table.
- Give away your expertise.