Wise Virginia Woolf said, “If you don’t tell the truth about yourself, you cannot tell it about others.”
Admittedly, my blog speaks to something I truly believe. As a social media gal who hangs out online observing others’ activities and talking their talk – days, nights and weekends, I can confidently say that consistent and honest engagement via social media is a valid marketing strategy. Why? Because savvy customers and prospects want real conversation and the VIP treatment, whether they purchase a car, a subscription to your online learning tool or a designer suit.
Social media enables you to connect with your customers in “niche ways.” It gives them a glimpse of the people behind your company, what you stand for and how being in a relationship with you can add value. Customers want emotional interaction, so when you plan your next marketing strategy, really think about a balance of information that meets their needs and turns prospects into new users, new users into experts and great customers into long-time fans. How can you make each of your social media channels play a role in the customer life-cycle and sales process?
Seekers of Information and Validation
The Internet has turned us back into “hunters and gatherers.” We want to do business with you, but we want something in return. We’re anxious for you to make us laugh, teach us something, do good works or tell us about your social cause. We want you to touch our hearts, make us angry or passionate–after all it’s a crazy world! (I’m writing this on the 16th day of the U.S. government shutdown). Your customers (CONGRESS this applies to you) and constituents want respect, face time and to feel valued. If you do this now in social media, you are reaching tipping points in your marketing program that your competitors may not. If you just spew information out, please stop and regroup.
Community Engagement – Dive In!
Community engagement is personal, subjective and real-time. You can build a quick profile of your target audience using characteristics, demographics, social media preferences, publications and more. Profiling allows you to tell good stories of why you’re great – not because you say it, but because ‘like-minded’ customers prove it. Social media invites you to sync and leverage smart content messages within a well thought-out sales and marketing funnel. It’s a delicate balance, the tight-rope you walk over a customer life-cycle. Remember, it’s authenticity that wins people over!
In your marketing campaigns, do you evoke emotion that drives customers and prospects (two distinct audiences) to relevant touch points? This can be done by a compelling landing page dedicated to the new user – maybe to watch a demo, schedule a chat, download a white paper.) You might reserve your blog for best-practice stories. Your PIN for only great visuals or infographs that spark emotion. Your Scoop-IT to build credibility or Linked-In to strategically start a conversation. On Facebook, when you ask questions, what do you do with the responses?Ask others to address the point? Or let the comment go by? People give opinions. If you don’t respond, they don’t like it!
What Will Your Next Digital Marketing Campaign Be Like?
Try this smart content marketing experiment! Run an entire campaign based on one emotion: “trust,” “fun,” “fear, “excitement,” “inspiration.” How might this be radically different? Fun is the new call to action. Take the plunge and, if you need help, you know where to find me.