“Socially” build the consumer brands that would reflect and mature into all round growth (online, offline) and yield higher ROI.
Establish our “own share of voice”.
To be present in all social media platforms that rank highest traffic-wise thereby benefitting from such.
Ensure regular and real-time communication with consumers, fans and users which in-turn strengthen “Brand Integrity” and develops’ into “viral marketing.”
Listen so that we can be listened to.
Cohesive video strategy. (The web is resulting to videos and YouTube has overtaken Yahoo as the second largest search engine and now third right behind Facebook.) We need to take advantage of this.
Increasing brand awareness and sales
SOCIAL MEDIA COMMUNICATION BREAK-DOWN.<br />
CONVERSATION ON OUR SITE: - To engage audience and have them return / introduce new visitors, we need to allow and encourage conversations on our site. This would include: - (a). Guides (b). Knowledge sections (could be in form of FAQ’s or Q and A) (c). User Groups (d). Discussions
CHANNELS ON OTHER SITES: - to ensure maximum benefits from other sites (social media sites) whose sites usually produce top results in Search Engines, we need to be actively present in them. This way, we get indirect presence / referrals from them, double our ASERP (Active Search Engine Result Page) ranks. The best are: -(a). Facebook: - Fan community for interaction. (b). Twitter: - Good for real time and frequent updates.(c). YouTube: - Video sharing.(d). Hotklix : - Link building and general sharing
OTHER CHANNELS ON THE WEB: - these other channels help us to attract visitors from other sites and platforms and often, we could provide good content that would make these sites refer to us and link to us. They include: - (a). Blogs (niche related)(b). Forums (niche related)(c). Partner sites (niche related)
Also, in addition, the benefits of these platforms are: - <br />
Conversation on our site is definitely the biggest source of our “brand -loyal” community. Therefore with this, it also opens other doors for expanding the site according to the growth and direction of the community.
We have general control of user experience.
We can acquire deep analytics and also have good CRM integration.
Social Media Channels enables us to meet people where they live (this is the latest trend of the web as many people now spend more than half of the day online thereby making it their second home though they actually spend more time in it than their real homes).
We would broaden to new audience and expand our capture and dominance of the market.
We would be able to leverage tools which are interactive and viral conversation on the web.
We would also encourage evangelism and generate “Live Links”.
We would also be able to monitor conversations and engage where necessary.
RULES FOR ENGAGEMENT.<br />
While posting, we need to avoid secrets, racism, tribalism or gender / race offensive comments.
Restrict from talking about financials.
Do not make forward looking statements.
Quality posting and “brand-point” comments should be adhered to.
Be honest and transparent.
Stick to writing what we know.
To reach out properly to the public, we need to start telling our stories directly and doing it in a way that sparks conversation.
Never ignore or “over-react” in a conversation or to a fan as this might hurt the entire community.
According to research, the best posting time is 3pm. However Social Media traffic has also been known to be high at 11 – 1pm, 5pm and 9pm. So take maximum advantage of these timings.
Following the recent Facebook statistics the below are reasons why people leave your brand or page: - (a). Loss of interest in the brand. This could result from posting un-interesting comments, contents or ignoring fans. Accounts for 32% of people leaving a brand.(b). Frequent Info. Publishing. Posting so frequently (so many times a day) pisses off the fans and is of no benefit as soon, you might be classified as “SPAM” by facebook or Fans would hide posts from you. Accounts for 27% of fan loss.(c). Offering boring contents. This is the third major reason why fans leave a brand. Try to publish what is “Socially pleasing” as often, “Serious minded” and elder people tend to read magazines but for the social circle, the young at heart want “Info-tainment” and not just information. Accounts for 22% of loss.
(d). Un-frequent update also causes loss of fans as they no gradually see no reason being your fan and soon categorize your brand as “Not functioning”. Accounts for 7% of fan loss.
ESTABLISHING OUR SHARE OF VOICE.
“Share of voice” is defined as the percentage of the mentions that are about our brand / company in the particular “NICHE” or market that we are in. This simply puts this question before us; DO THEY TALK ABOUT US IN A SPECIFIC OR GENERIC MANNER?
MARKETS ARE CONVERSATIONS: - Share of voice leads to market share. Establishing and tracking share of voice used to be advertising metric. However since the most trusted form of advertising is now conversations (as people now rely on comments and testimonies from users rather than advertisers words), it has become an important one for social media.
STEPS TO TAKE TOWARDS OUR SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY<br />
Learning the market we are in. We cannot learn if we do not listen. Therefore our strategy would start from “Listening”. This means studying and surveying the market (Online market) to see what people are saying, what is said about us (POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE). This would be executed via polls, survey, online research and sweepstakes.
Identifying listening channels to see who is talking about us and who is talking to us. Once we know where the majority of the conversations take place, we can sensibly allocate our resources for best ROI.
Every ITP account must be owned by someone in the company (responsible for monitoring and responding to conversations).
We need to start addressing specific consumer needs (queries, enquires, comments etc.) in real time to nurture and strengthen the relationship as one fan is like a seed planted, we never know how many trees it would result to. Social Media is most successful when specific consumer needs are addressed and straight to the point.
Automatic Facebook and twitter feeds would be disabled. This is because they would both be carrying the same story in the same words. We could put full story on the website, charming caption on Facebook and heading / main point on twitter then share the website links on all for more information.
Developing content strategy is the key success factor in social media. It is all about engaging people and the key to engagement is “Good content”. In social media, people are creating, reading, saving, tagging and sharing content. If we don’t produce the kind of content they value, it wouldn’t get any attention not to talk of getting re-published or shared.This leads us to the big question, how do we know what content to create?
To know what kind of contents to create, we need to LISTEN and OBSERVE properly. This ensures that we know what our fans are talking about, what they want and what they are expecting. From this, we actually know it is not possible to provide everything they want. We can however pick the achievable ones, fine tune them to our standards and offer it to the fans. From here, we would definitely have criticism, appreciation and rejection. This is the simple “MAGIC”. While people who appreciate it would speak on your behalf to those who don’t, those who don’t would further try to prove their point. This is where we come in, moderate it, say thank you to those who appreciate and clarify those who don’t. With this, we will definitely end up capturing and pleasing both parties.
Also note that social media is not just FACEBOOK AND TWITTER. Experimenting or managing just the two of them isn’t enough. Supporting content is needed and that is where other Social Media channels come in.
Good content not only sparks conversation, it also builds links. People will share the content and it would get linked to by blogs / forums. It would be evangelized and disseminated by posts and tweets. THIS RAISES SITE VISIBILITY AND DRIVES A LOT OF TRAFFIC.
Finally, measurement and analytics takes place. This is done to see where our efforts have taken us to, where we are yet to establish a strong presence and where we have failed. This means that regular listening and market survey would be repeated regularly so as to often increase our “Share of voice” and “Market share”. This then leads to the next line of action which is acting on what we have listened to and acquired from studying the market.