Nowadays brand’s marketing by utilizing digital media is more extensively done. Digital media is nolonger an alternative media, but has become a potential and effective media to communicate withcustomers. It is something you can hardly do using conventional media in which thecommunication pattern is rather a one-way communication between from brands tocustomers. Through digital media, especially social media, brands can interact directly, and canfoster a deeper emotional bond with customers.To determine the proper strategy and marketing activities in digital media, brands need to set theirgoals and first do some research. We can get various insights directly from customers in digitalmedia that can determine the direction of strategy and marketing activities. There are importantinformation, the ones should be known by the brand that can be obtained based on customers’conversations in social media.
Conversations’Content andMeaningBy listening to our customers’ conversation in social media, we can find out what they are talking about our brand and ourcompetitors. We can quickly identify and capture the emerging issues. By knowing the customers’ conversation, we can determinethe right content of communication in the digital marketing strategies and activities that we will do.We can also find out the discussion about our competitors and identify topics of interest and the problems perceived by ourcompetitors’ customers. Furthermore, we can compare the content of the conversations between our brand and the competitors’. Ifthe conversation about the competitor’s brand is more interesting and more relevant, then we can begin to initiate a dialogue withcustomers about the topic. This is important because the conversation between the brand and customers in social media willbecome a reference for other customers.For example, our brand is a fast-food restaurant chain. The customers’ conversation on our brand is only talking about the menu soldat the restaurant. While conversations on the competitors are more varied, such as "lunch", "dinner" and "hanging out". It is clearthat the competitor’s restaurant is "closer" to the customers that it becomes a part of their daily conversations related to theirdining-out activity. Those conversations will be taken as recommendations for their friends to come to the competitor’srestaurant. The competitor’s restaurant will likely be the choice when they do activities related to "lunch", "dinner" and "hangingout".
There are several popular and growing social media channels in Indonesia, such as Facebook, Twitter, forums (Kaskus, femaledaily,Detik forum, etc.), blogs and Youtube. The users of those social media are making conversations about various topics, topics variedfrom personal conversations, work, social to politics. Also many are talking about the products and services they use, including yourbrand. Every single day your brand is being talked about by the consumer in social medias, sharing their experiences, questions,comparisons, hopes, praises, complaints and grievances.Your customers need a quick and appropriate response in social media. If in the conventional media you can respond to their reader’sletters within 24 hours, then in social media customers demand the response to be much much faster, in a matter of hours or evenminutes. With this kind of characteristics, the brand must be able to identify the media where customers are having theirconversations. This is important for the brand to be able to put the effort and resources on the appropriate media. Because each typeof industry has different media characteristics.Although Facebook and Twitter are two of the most popular and growing social media, but that does not mean all industries’conversations are mainly done on the two, for example:For the banking and finance industry, blogs and forums are sources of important information for customersFor the cosmetics industry, forum is a more trusted source of information to get an experience share about the quality of a cosmeticsbrandFor the telecommunications industry, it is a must to monitor twitter timelines because customers like to express their frustration there
ConversationTimeThe advantage of social media is that all things in it can be tracked down. Every conversation donein social media contains various informations, one of which is the conversation time. You can findout exactly in what kind of times your brand is often mentioned by customers in social media. Byknowing the customers’ habits, you can determine the right time to communicate with them, sothat your message will get through.Through social media we can also find out consumer’s behavior and use that information to have amore meaningful communication with them. For example: at a high level of consumer’s “badmood”, brand can give out promotion programs or activation that can entertain the consumer andlower the “bad mood”.
Social media has become a reference for customers in determining the choice of products andservices. They have come to put their friend’s status or comments about your brand on social medias as atrusted reference. You must identify the influencers for your brand in social media. These influencers arepeople who often mention your brand in social media and get lots of responses from their friends orfollower. They mention your brand because they are your customers and they share their experience aboutyour brand. Their comments can be positive or negative.It is best to involve these influencers in your digital marketing activities. Positive influencers can be a goodspokes person for your brand, because their sound is the sound of the original consumer. While thenegative influencers need to be embraced and given a solution for their issues, because of their negativereferences may lead to their friends and followers’ losing interest in your brand. You also can identifycompetitors’ influencers and offer them free samples of your products. If they like it, they will begin toshare the positive comments about your brand to their friends and follower instead of your competitor’sbrand. If the competitor’s influencer can be turned into a customer of your brand, then their whole socialmedia network also has the potential to become your customers.Brand’sCompetitor’sInfluencer
Costumer’s PerceptionThrough social media, you can "get into the head" of customers and understand the expectations,desires, and problems they have. One of the important KPI’s of digital marketing activity isincreasing the number of positive conversation and minimize the negative conversations aboutyour brand. By listening to customer conversations and analyzing it, the brand can find out positiveconversations along with the topic and attributes. Vice versa, the brand can also find out negativeconversations along with the topic and attributes.Brand can also find out whether the current positioning and communication done fits theexpectations in the customers’ minds. By knowing whats on their minds, brands can plan strategiesand marketing activities that are appropriate and sharp.
By setting goals and having the information sourced directly fromcustomers, you can make a good and accurate strategic planning anddigital marketing activity. You can communicate with customers,because you already understand the contents of their heads. In the eraof even tougher competition, the brands who are able to understandthe consumer will win their hearts and will eventually win thecompetition. Yose Rizal CEO & Founder MediaWave mediawave Thank you