When developing content for your social sites, keep in mind that brands no longer call the shots. The power of the social voice has forced brands to rethink how they inform consumers about their products and services.
There’s no denying that traditional media has been usurped by social media. But let’s not throw traditional media out with the social media bath water just yet.
Integrate Traditional and Social Media
Integrating a social strategy with your traditional strategy improves overall marketing reach and even ROI. In particular, print advertising that includes social buttons for instant sharing encourages participation with your brand. At the next conference, make branded T-Shirts with a QR code that goes to an offer page. Make sure your sales brochures and pamphlets, even your business cards include your social links. Be bold and include your social links on your invoices!
Your social strategy should dovetail with your traditional media and help drive consumer participation. Including a social component to your print material has a tendency to humanize and warm up your brand.
But don’t play this like everyone else with the same old tactics. Your social follow buttons can be uniquely tied to your brand’s appeal. Make certain there is a good reason to participate with your company. What’s in it for the customer?
Nobody cares much about your goods and services, unless they have a reason and you provide solutions. People care about … themselves. There. I said it. If, you aren’t solving a problem or trailblazing new thought leadership, then who really cares?
Companies that develop a social strategy with the thinking you care deeply about their goods and services will unwittingly develop campaigns that trigger BS-meters.
Really!? – You’ve heard that word often enough. People have serious BS-meters. You don’t want your content, advertising or social strategy to cause loud beeps on the BS-meter. You certainly don’t want to invoke an exasperated “really!?”
Does your marketing material includes words like “flexible,” “scalable,” “leading-edge,” “mission-critical,” “leverage” – reflecting your choice corporate jargon? Will this effectively inform your consumer and encourage them to rally behind your brand?
These types of words are overused and will result in a meaningless campaign. You might as well slap up the words “Really!?” at least that would be funny.
Who’s in charge of credible content for your brand? Is it you or is it the consumer? You might want to get use to this increasingly common trend: The most trusted source of information about your company no longer comes from you. Highly satisfied customers – otherwise known as Brand Advocates – create content about your company in reviews, recommendations, ratings and referrals.
Do you read peer recommendations when visiting a retail website? I do. Why? I like to learn from my peers’ insights. A recommendation from a trusted friend is nearly 50 times more likely to result in a purchase when compared to other recommendation-types.
Earned media counts because it’s … earned. Earned media can’t be bought – this translates into credibility. Building your brand-appeal in the social space depends on credibility.
Social Media Changed The Game
Companies need to rethink what entails a marketing strategy. We have entered a time of instant, real-time communications. Creating human experiences and being real will lead to successful marketing campaigns. The new marketplace with it’s strong consumer BS-meters, bolstered by social outcry, can turn your brand into irrelevance in a collective nano-second.