The value of social communities is consistently debated. In this presentation, you will learn of the kind of results you can expect from building and nurturing a community, how to start, and what it takes.
Thanks for joining us today; we always love coming to Vancouver and chatting with you.To start off, I’ll be walking you through the value behind social communities. This presentations goes beyond what the social platforms are, and speaks to their value and, in particular, how you can start building your own communities for marketing.click
Here’s what we’ll cover over the next 45 minutes or so.READ SLIDEclick
ASK AUDIENCE – ANY IDEAS ON HOW YOU WOULD DEFINE AN ONLINE COMMUNITY?DISCUSSclick
Offline, people are part of a community if they share something: a postal code, for example… or their walking club… or their golf club.Online, the sharing is still a basic tenet of a community. Online, people are sharing values, vision, passion for issues…click
If the group of people who come together to form the community do not have a vision – even if it is unwritten – share values, even if only experiences – then they are not a community. More importantly… if the people do not communicate, then it really is not much of a community at all. These components are necessary for a community to exist.click
This is not an exhaustive list of where communities exist… How many of you belong to an online community? SHOW OF HANDSAs a consumer, do you find value in these communities? ASK A FEW PEOPLE – WHAT DOES THAT VALUE LOOK LIKE?click
Now, as a business… there is time to be invested, perhaps some funding. It’s important to understand the value of these communities to the business itself.click
Communities can help you address business challenges in a very unique way, with a lower overhead marketing budget, and with a higher impact… because the people in the community end up having a vested interest in your success… because inevitably it becomes their success. They (and you) are part of a community all together and you are now sharing these goals.click
TD Canada Trust:Ranks highest in Customer Satisfaction in CanadaBut getting into the US market was quite a challenge! They had to become known as a part of the community. Today – TD Bank is the fastest growing bank in North America and the Caribbean, it survived the economic challenges and is #12 out of 50 banks in the US!Here’s a glimpse at how they did it… using community to create awareness:Click – to videosClick
At ComfortLife, our goal – as your partner – is to drive traffic to your website!We have established communities on a large variety of platforms: social networks (FB/LI), microblogging (Twitter), visual (Pinterest) and video (YouTube). We actively engage on topics to connect your audience to you, to educate them about topics that are important to their search, and to ensure we stay top of mind as the trusted source for these families.Via each of our social profiles, we offer information, tips, advice and thoughts on the process of selecting a retirement community or service. We engage in conversations around retirement, and interconnect conversations between profiles if – for example – an answer may lie on one of our videos, we’ll direct the conversation there, and into our website.All our conversations revolve around choosing retirement communities and services, and providing families with the information they need, and the choices they want in order for them to make the best decisions for themselves or their parents.click
Webtrends provides website analytics for some of the world’s Fortune 500 companies (today). But even though they do well in the space of analytics, they still want to grow – it’s the nature of business after all. They often attend tradeshows to meet new potential clients.In early March 2013, the staff of Webtrends attended a very popular digital tradeshow called eTails West. In order to cut through the clutter, become memorable and generate more valuable leads, they launched this social campaign. They sent out teasers prior to the conference… They had outlined who they wanted to reach and then came up with a program that would attract the marketers in those businesses. One representative was in charge of wearing these shoes, if you saw this person at the show, you would be asked to take a picture and share it via twitter or facebook with the #didyouseethat. Over 3000 people participated, of those 50% became leads and 10% (at this time) agreed to a one-on-one presentation. That’s 1500 leads & 150 presentations!
Now, to be able to garner the most value for your brand, there are some specific things you can do to apply these components…click
If you are looking to create awareness around your brand, you need to ensure you can align your brand’s visions/values to those of your market. Look for those topics, those areas of discussions in existing online communities. Listen, share dialogue with those who seem interesting to you, and who could be potential market. As you start to engage, you’ll naturally/organically find the right ways to infuse your thought leadership and your opinion. Be consistent.It does not happen over night, but over time, people – YOUR AUDIENCE – comes to recognize you for your philosophy. You will garner awareness.click
If your goal is to drive traffic to your website, look for conversations that are already happening in your particular industry and across your topics of expertise. People are always asking questions, sharing opinions and looking for dialogue. The difference between the activity to generate awareness vs. drive traffic is that in one, you listen and engage when you see fit (generate awareness); whereas in the other, you actively seek out the questions and the invitations from others to engage. When you do engage, share links to your website as often as possible… be clear and honest, that you are driving people to your website. Explain the value of what they will find – stats, facts, experiences, informational content.click
And, if your goal is to generate leads, you must approach this as you would any other lead generating campaign. A tweet does not generate a lead. What you need is an activity, an engagement, a piece of content. You need an invitation, something unique that stands out that will make your audience take notice. You need to be crystal clear on your call to action. There is nothing wrong in generating leads via social networks… but you must approach it with humanity and integrity. You must offer something of value. And you must be transparent.click
What will you get out of it?click
This is what ROI looks like via a social community: READ SLIDEclick
And… READ SLIDEAll of these elements can be measured, so you will quickly be able to see your results. Using free tools like Google Analytics, Hootsuite or Tweetdeck, Squeeze or Bit.ly and others, you can see how your campaigns and communities are tracking. You can see what is working. And you can improve, tweak and modify.click
Here are five steps on how you can begin to build your own community…click
Building/choosing a community always starts from the inside out…Next, you need to know where your audience is… where do they search for your topics of expertise? At ComfortLife, for example, we have the largest concentrated community of people looking for (and advocating for) retirement communities and services in Canada.click
Once you know where your audience is searching, spend some time listening. This is the “research” part… one of the great things about social networks is that you get free access to this amazingly rich data. It takes time, of course, because as is the case with traditional research, you need to weed the good from the bad. It takes practice, but the information you get is genuine, organic and in the moment. It is not doctored…When you understand what is being asked, you can begin to engage… To start, engaging in existing communities – like ours – gives you access to an already attentive audience. You want to engage on their platforms too – Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc…click
And finally – but perhaps most importantly – nurture. Nurture those communities!You will not “have anyone at hello”. This takes time; this requires genuine attention. You will need to build and share content beyond the website pages. And, you can ALWAYS ask for a lead – just be aware of your frequency for doing so… and know that you cannot START by asking for a lead. You must START by becoming a part of the community in which you want to operate.click
To wrap up… here is the 140 (EXPLAIN)click
ComfortLife Marketing Academy: Social value of community
Social: The value ofcommunityMay 2013Judi Samuels#mktgacademy @mktgacademy
What we’ll cover… What is a community? Why should I care? How can I apply this? What will I get out of it? How to build a community? Summary
An online community is a virtual place wherepeople from all walks of life come together overshared values, vision and passion…
To be a community, youneed… A vision Why is it important to discuss or share this particular topic? What is the positive impact in discussing this? Values How do people interact? What kind of behaviour is expected? People & Communications If you don’t have people – there is no community. If no one is talking with each other, there is no value.
Communities exist… Offline Your neighbourhood Your workplace Your gym Your sports team, book club Online Message boards Forums Social networks
Create awareness Goal #1: Get people to know you! Rally around a cause/topic/issue that mattersand connects to your brand Engage in existing communities1. Listen.2. Have a conversation.3. Share your thoughts and opinions.
Drive traffic Goal #1: Drive visitors to your website! Respond to questions, comment onconversations. Always provide additional content in the form ofa URL… on your website!1. Provide information and facts. (traditional website)2. Share stories and experiences. (blog)3. Engage more deeply through multi-media. (video,photos or other)
Generate leads Goal #1: Acquire qualified leads! Know your audience. Create a campaign. Use social channels to increase reach. Ask for the lead.
Return on investment A dedicated and nurtured community who will: Speak with you Provide feedback and ideas ADVOCATE The right visitors: Reduce your website’s bounce rate Increase content consumption INCREASE IN-SITE CONVERSIONS
Return on investment Qualified leads: Lower cost per lead Increase referral opportunity HIGHER CONVERSION TO NEXT STEP
Five steps to communitybuilding1. Know Your passion & brand Your subject matter expertise Your audience2. Search Beyond Google Seek conversations Seek existing communities
Five steps to communitybuilding (cont’d)3. Listen To your audience To existing community conversation To competitors4. Engage Like, Retweet, Repin, +1 others Begin with a conversation Be a part of the community, not just a lurkerwaiting for an opportunity to sell
Five steps to communitybuilding (cont’d)5. Nurture Building a community takes time You need to share others’ opinion and celebrateyour audience You need to share your thoughts and content You can ask for the lead, but not every day andnot all the time
In short… You must know your brand and your audience (andwhere they intersect) You must engage. Social communities cannot besuccessful without dialogue. You must provide engaging content. Content includes web information, but should alsoinclude blogs and videos. Not just facts – stories too. You must invest time to maintain & nurture thecommunity.
In short… You will gain: Awareness Web traffic LeadsThere is ROI in social communities.