When it comes to marketing the landscape is a rapidly changing place. It goes without saying that marketing, when done well, is hugely beneficial for a brand. It is not just the taste of Coca Cola that has made it such a hugely popular beverage, it is also the far reaching and effective marketing spin that has been employed to sell the product. So, while marketing is undoubtedly important, how important is the social media space for selling a brand? The answer is that it is very important, dare we even say crucial! But before you look to step out and play in the social media space, here are some things that you might want to consider.
Know what you are doing
Just because you recognise that it is important to play in the social media space, doesn’t mean that you are an expert there. The field is broad and extremely diverse, and you need to approach it strategically. In this regard it is probably a good idea to partner with a social media management agency who can work with you on developing your strategy and facilitating its roll out.
Typically marketing campaigns are developed and implemented over a long period of time. They are not necessarily nimble. Social media still needs to be strategic and thought through, but it also gives your brand a voice and an ability to interact directly with consumers. This means that you need to be able to respond quickly and effectively. But it also means that you probably need a few people primed and ready to enter conversations on behalf of the brand. Be careful who has permission to use the brand handles because social media is a very public forum and one foot incorrectly placed can be a disaster – just ask Donald Trump!
Social media works best when you are able to leverage against conversations that already taking place. For example, if your brand is relevant in the sports space you might want to try and enter a conversation around a specific game or tournament. If you are in the culinary space, you might try to insert yourself into a conversation around Master Chef. The angles are there – you need to anticipate the noise and then create relevant and shareable content that will allow you to surf the wave of social media activity.
Know the differences
Social media is a catch-all phrase that covers a range of platform, all of which are different. You cannot apply your Twitter strategy to Facebook, or your Linked-In strategy to Instagram. They are all very different and they all talk to their audiences in different ways. You will likely find the same people across a range of social platforms, but that is not to say that those people will want to be served to same message on each platform. The one is corporate, the one is image smart, another allows for easy shareability. In short, they all have strengths and weaknesses and you need to create content and messages that play to the strengths of each platform.