Success Strategies- Social Media for Business -
Here’s the deal ... Social Media has revolutionized the way we communicate and it is forever changing the way we interact with our customers and prospects. By leveraging the power of Social Media you will be able to connect with more people, tell your story in a more relevant and meaningful way, deliver better customer service and ultimately grow sales. The broadcast model of advertising is broken; those with the loudest voices no longer win, they just annoy the most people. It’s not enough to tell people to buy, you’ve got to tell them why. You have to solve a problem, provide a solution or satisfy a need. In this book we offer Strategies for Success in this new arena, we give you a “JumpStart” guide and some solid how-to tips, training and techniques designed to both educate and inspire.
What is Social Media?It’s compromised of two elements; the “Social” and the “Media” - the social part isthe communication, the connection with your customers and prospects. The mediapart is the technology, the social networks where the conversations are taking place.Social Media is a conversation online that’s open to anyone with an internetconnection and an opinion. The conversation is real, complex, organic and human.Social Media is not a strategy or a tactic (although both have their place inmarketing) it is a channel for conversation and communication, difﬁcult to organize,impossible to control. This is a place to have real, genuine interactions with people.From our perspective, it’s marketing; if it doesn’t move the needle - it’s not worthdoing (and this starts with moving the customer service needle).
What’s In It For YOU?What if you could turn your best customers into Brand Ambassadors - peoplewho not only bought from you and enjoyed the experience and bought somemore, but told their friends about it and suggested that they do the same?This is the new world of Marketing as opposed to the old world of Advertising.Social Media enables you to have an unprecedented level of communicationwith your customers, as you utilize that communication to give great serviceand contribute value to their lives, they will love you more, talk about youmore and help you grow.The reality today is this: 90% of people trust peer recommendations while only14% trust advertising. People understand that real ads cost big money andmust produce ROI - so there is an inherent distrust of traditional advertising.
Resistance is Futile. Business resistance to Social Media is futile. Your customers are there, your competitors are there and your prospects are there. Your business is already being talked about in Social Media, so the only question is; are you part of the conversation? Social Media is much more than another marketing channel - it’s PR, customer service, collaboration, thought leadership, networking, loyalty & brand building ... and customer acquisition. With Social Media you have the opportunity to move your marketing from a one way broadcasting of your “message” to a two way communication and conversation with the people who should matter to you most - your customers.
It’s About Word of Mouth :Old Model : Treat a customer well and they tell someone. Treat a customer poorly and theymight tell 10 people.New Model : We get treated poorly and now can easily can tell a hundred or a thousand orhundreds of thousands.Your customers have the ability to snap a photo with their smart phone, post it and theirthoughts to Facebook, send out a Tweet to their followers and write a review on Yelp - all inreal time, from your location. This can be very, very good - if you take care of them. Ifsomething goes wrong, it can be bad - if you fail to ﬁx it.For a company, ‘engaging’ in Social Media (not ‘using’ it) means discovering theconversation, participating in it, contributing to it and ultimately inﬂuencing it. The peoplethat are likely to talk about a misadventure with your brand online are very, very likely totalk about the positive way you ﬁxed it. You have to be part of the conversation - or at leastlistening to it - to do the right thing.
This is the “Social” part : In many respects Social Media is like a giant party, there are many conversations going on and many groups of people having them. Find the people who are interested in what you’re interested in and sidle over and talk with them. Social Media is supposed to be a dialogue, not a monologue. This is real people talking to real people, don’t hide behind your brand, get in front of it. Here’s where you can humanize your brand, put a face - or faces - on your company. Ask questions. Give responses. What if your best customers told you what else they would buy if you sold it? They can. They will. If you ask. Social Media is free, real, transparent and authentic. You are going to make mistakes - that’s human. The question is; how are you going to ﬁx those mistakes? No more ignoring, no possible sweeping under the rug or hoping it will go away.
This is the “Media” part : Facebook is about friends and family. Facebook is where people are - and it’s where you need to be, as a brand or company, to be found when they go looking. As customers join your page you have the opportunity to interact with them ... and by extension their friends who may join you - if you give them a reason. LinkedIn is about business, it’s the new age rolodex, it’s the modern resume. You’ll ﬁnd groups built around what you do - join them and participate in the discussion - when you have something to add. Twitter is text messaging for adults and a giant river of information, as you grow more comfortable with it you’ll learn how to search for relevant people and topics. YouTube is modern day television, and the #2 search engine after Google. It’s not replacing cable - but adding to it. People want to watch the internet and YouTube is where they can watch you and your company in a personal and intimate way if you wish.
5 Stages of Social Media :Listen : Pay attention to what’s being said.Converse : Join in, be a part of the conversation.Contribute : Add content and be of value.Connect : Engage people and add them to your list.Convert : Win the customer, earn the sale.
Listen : You have to be aware of the conversation before you can participate in it. Listen by setting Google Alerts for your company and key words and phrases. Search Twitter by key words and #hashtags and follow everybody that seems to have something interesting to say about what you’re interested in. Check out Social Mention, it’s like Google alerts but speciﬁc to social media. Set up your proﬁles and pages, even if you’re not able to do everything at once, set up the accounts across the board with the same user names, it’s like a land grab - set up your accounts (and ﬁll out the proﬁles) wherever you can, this gives you a consistent identity across the various social networks so they are there when you need them. Don’t make yourself crazy about it, add a photo or logo, bio or company description and contact info. Keep a list of where you are and come back to them when appropriate.
Listen : Create your Strategy. What do you want to accomplish by putting this effort into social media? Time is your most valuable resource and this requires an investment of time. Don’t let all the tools and technology get in your way - there really isn’t anything radically new in “Social” Media - you are merely talking to your customers and prospects, listening to what they need, want and feel while telling them a bit about what you do, what you’re passionate about and how it relates to (and beneﬁts) them and the world at large. Learn the Ropes. Like anything else, there is a certain amount of lingo and behavior that is unique to the social networks and these conversations - nothing complicated and you will catch on in no time at all. By paying attention, you’ll be a master in no time! Build your Brand’s Presence. It’s important to build your ‘outposts’, your proﬁles and pages that will help people ﬁnd you - be consistent with graphics and contact info. It is important though to post with some regularity to show you care. Search Google, Twitter & Social Mention for what you’re interested in ... and yourself!
Converse :Once you’ve gotten your feet wet by listening and setting up your proﬁles (oroutposts), it’s time join in the conversation. This does not meaning post-post-post ortweet-tweet-tweet and hope for the best, this means following conversations andwatching (listening) to what others are saying and weighing in, agreeing, makingan additional point, providing additional information or a new perspective. Ifsomeone asks a question take a minute to answer it (or ask a question of someonewho seems to know their stuff) - no big secrets here, you’re engaging in adialogue, the only new element is the venue; online.One way of getting into the conversation is with ‘Other Peoples Content’ - by re-posting, re-tweeting or ‘liking’ what others are sharing is the internet equivalent ofapplause - it’s also reasonable and appropriate to say “Cool, Thanks, Good Stuff”.
Contribute : As you grow more and more comfortable in this arena, you’ll want to contribute to the conversation, to share what you know and what you’re into. The 80/20 rule certainly applies here (perhaps even 90/10) - when you post, tweet and share make it about others, ﬁnd great ideas from other people and share them with your network (of course acknowledging the source!). This can be as simple as hitting the share button on Facebook to ‘share it forward’ or forwarding a tweet that resonates with you, posting a link to an article, news story, blog post or video that is interesting and valuable. Do you have some news to share about your company? Did you just write a brilliant blog post or put up a cool YouTube video? Then share that as well, but make sure it’s part of the mix - not “me-me-me” - it’s bad manners! It’s nice to be recognized, it feels good to have information you share validated by your peers, so do it for others!
Connect : Social Media is all about making real connections - you are in the process of forming a bond with people, letting them know who you are and what makes you tick and what you do (and why) as you learn the same about them. The connections you are making are very valuable; no telling where they might lead and, as importantly, you don’t know who they know. You might meet people online (or in a coffee shop - doesn’t matter) with whom you ‘click’ - but they don’t really need your products or services (today) however, they understand that you are a real person and a nice person who knows what you’re talking about so why wouldn’t they recommend you to their friends? They would - and it’s with that introduction that your network really begins to ﬂourish and grow and your inﬂuence begins to spread. HOWEVER! Remember this one CRITICAL thing: to truly engage people and connect with them for the long term, you MUST add them to your email subscriber list, newsletter list or contact datebase - anything where you can contact them outside of the networks. Remember; your Facebook page (and those hundreds or thousands of friends) belongs to Facebook, not you. Your Twitter account may connect you with thousands (or eventually tens of thousands) of people - but the account belongs to Twitter. If for some reason your account is suspended or terminated - poof, goodbye connections. Tough luck.
Connect :True engagement means making a connection that puts you in control of your network. The mostsimple and clear cut way to do this is to get people to join your email list, an opt-in process ofthem saying “Yes, send me more”. People can subscribe to your newsletter or sign up for awebinar or special deal announcements, they can download a white paper or complimentaryeBook or watch a special video in exchange for signing up with their name and email - givesomething of value in exchange for their digital ‘currency’ : their contact info and permission touse it.If you are providing valuable information - ideas, training, tips, techniques, inspiration, motivation- whatever form that may take, then people are willing to subscribe to your newsletter/blog etc.Don’t abuse this relationship - whenever you mail to your list, make sure the content is createdwith one thing in mind : what’s in it for THEM? You have an agenda (fair enough) but people willnot really care what you say until they know how much you care. Give, give, give and you willeventually build a strong and loyal following - people who consider you a reliable expert withsomething to say.
Convert : Build Value, Build Social Equity Do you want people to place an order, request a catalog, visit your website, watch a webinar? Give clear calls to action, Space out your offers Make it easy for people to buy from you
Social Media MarketingOld marketing is interruption based, new marketing is permission based. It’s a simple question; doyou think you’ll grow your business faster talking to people who are interested in what you do andwant what you got, people who are just deciding when to buy and from whom - or should you yellfrom the rooftops and radio sets and hope for the best?Traditional marketing just doesn’t work anymore - people are getting better at ignoring ads withDVRs, caller ID, spam ﬁlters - junk mail goes right to the recycle bin, newspapers are on life support,radio has to compete with ipods and satellite.The new marketing is all about Social, Search, Video and Email. It’s about being available, providinginformation and value and earning the right to a sale. The difference is; along they way to earningthat sale you have very likely developed a loyal customer, maybe even one that will spread the word.People are going to Google and the social networks to get answers to their questions, the onlyquestion is “Will you be there to answer them?”
Social Media StrategyYou can’t approach new media with old thinkingTraditional marketers don’t understand channels where you have to talk and listen at the sametime. There is way more to social media than a ‘follow us on facebook’ button and a website totake ordersWhat do you want to accomplish? Drive more trafﬁc to your blog? Have a big Facebook page?Increase your Twitter followers? Double your email list? Generate awareness? Become a morerecognized expert? Increase awareness and build your brand? Deliver extraordinary service?Based on these strategies and goals you’re developing, what are the various ways you can moveforward towards success? What are the social media tools and platforms that will best support you?Don’t think Social Media is the answer to everything - if your product sucks, social media won’t ﬁxit. However, if your customer service sucks ... social media can help.
Developing StrategyThe 5 “W’s” :What - are you going to do?Where - are you going to do it?When - are you going to start?Why - are you going to do it?Who - is going to do it?
Social Media is like a party -You meet people, chat with them, ask some questions.Then you join the discussion more often, becoming part of the community and then you begin toadd value to the community.You’ll begin to ask questions and trust the responses, and you’ll begin to answer questions andhelp others. It’s nice, fun easy and becomes natural.Unlike a traditional party, social media has no boundaries of time or space, other people can easilylisten in from anywhere and then they can join in - if you give them a reason, and your communitygrows and then your friends bring their friends and your community grows even more.... and most of all, it’s fun. You may feel, as we did, that in the beginning it’s a bit much to ﬁgureout and kkep up with - don’t worry, it get’s easier, and easy tends to be fun. You’ll come to enjoythis new world of communicating, especially as you see the results in growing your business!
Success Strategies - Social Media for Business - This book has been created from some of our extraordinary seminar and workshop material as part of the Summer 2011 Video Training Series, ifyou’d like to stay in touch and up to date with the latest version - join us at www.SocialJumpstart.com & www.Facebook.com/SocialJumpstart mike@SocialJumpstart.com @MikeWolpert 2007-‐2011 All rights reserved.Soci@l, Soci@l Jumpstart and Social Jumpstart are trademarks and tradenames exclusively owned by Moose & Wallaby Consulting, Inc. All other marks are owned by the respective third parties.