The Social Brand; One Part Art, One Part Science
Category: Marketing Technology | Date: May 8, 2016
What does it really mean for a brand to be social? I stood asking myself this and many more questions after meeting with a prospective client whose company was envisaging ramping up their social media efforts to generate brand awareness.
After my usual explanations surrounding social media marketing being one part Art and one part Science and the need to approach it from these two standpoints, I was confronted with a management that just wanted to get on with it already. Everyone was on it, let’s look cool too, let’s be a social brand.
From experience, what happens next will be that they delve into some social media efforts by promoting their pages, increasing their likes and followings and then the enthusiasm dies down a few months down the line. The realization, then hits them, that social marketing of any sort is brutal, it demands so much more than we give it credit for.
Let’s be very honest, when Mark was designing the early version of Facebook in his Harvard dorm room, he sure wasn’t thinking about your brand or business, he was thinking about sparking connections within the university community and making the world a lot smaller than it was at the time.
We only adapted marketing to social platforms as an extra channel to reach our target audience. If your brand has to be on social media it must dedicate the necessary resources to make it work, a key component of making it work is making sure you have a competent team of individuals to manage your social media profiles but more importantly it’s about having a customer driven mindset.
In my experience, the most successful brands in social media have been the ones with a customer driven mindset, irrespective of whether they are B2B or B2C and this somehow has an overall positive effect on their social marketing activities.
For the pessimists amongst us, who is always waiting for the latest case study of brands that are succeeding with social before deciding to make their move, well, sorry to burst your bubbles case studies aren’t worth much in social media marketing.
Like they say, “the only way to get ready to start and grow a business is by starting one” case studies even in the same industry as your business can only do so much, you must be willing to start, test, iterate, fail, start again, more testing, more iterations before you can start succeeding.
However, the greatest advantage you can give your business is by seeing social marketing as one part art and one part social.
Any discipline that deals with human beings and human interactions is considered an Art, what worked an hour ago, might not work in the next hour, understanding of the basic drivers of human actions and interactions is imperative, make sure you have someone on your social media team who possesses such skills.
When it comes to results and the whole ROI revolution, a data driven approach to your social media marketing will stand you in good stead and guarantee you are ahead of your competition
You must be able to have;
Access To Data; Monitor real-time social performance data that can provide insight into the online behaviors of current and potential customers.
Track Conversations; Listen in on what is being said about your brand, competitors, etc. And use the insight to shape your content and brand conversations
Track Conversions; Your objective will determine what your conversions will be, it could range from a physical product buy if you are an eCommerce or product driven business, or a new lead that can crystallize into new business for your B2B business. However, you must have the necessary tools to be able to pinpoint when a conversion happens, what triggered those conversions and then put this insight to work to increase your conversion rates.
“The real juice in social media marketing is in bringing these two parts together,”
The real juice in social media marketing is in bringing these two parts together, the art and science into one cohesive structure where from a single dashboard you can view how particular actions; connections or conversations can have a meaningful impact on your conversions and ultimately your business objectives.
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