Posts Tagged ‘Facebook’

You know what it’s like: sitting at the computer and staring at the “Social Media Slot Machine” with continuous updates from Facebook friends and the stream of tweets trickling down your screen… Not knowing what to post or even just lurking on different sites trying to learn how to get your customers involved with what your company is doing online… There’s a better way to interact online than silently stalking competitors to understand their strategy!

Here’s where we suggest you start.

First, think about your company (you may need to get out a sheet of paper to track this conversation in your head), and REALLY think about it. Lay out all your marketing messages, brand promises and mission statements and get down to the core of what your brand represents. Conjure up what it means to be a part of the company – to be involved in the everyday excitement of working with colleagues and having the opportunity to build relationships with new clients. It may help to think about the concept behind:

  • Brand Vision- What do you want to accomplish through social media? Do you want to teach your customers about your company? Or, do you want to educate other professionals about your industry? Picking the core vision will help when discerning what content to post online.
  • Brand Audience- What audience do you want to listen to you? Identify the key customers your company should broadcast its messages to.
  • Brand Personality- It’s more than just your company’s voice, it’s what that voice represents. Think of that ultimate employee who exemplifies the company’s values in everything he or she does on a daily basis. Whether it is in their communication mannerisms or the activities they participate in after work… Speak from this voice!

The next important step is to become an active and consistent presence online. By making daily updates on social media channels, customers following your company will begin to develop an understanding of your brand. You may be asking yourself, “I don’t even know what to post! How can I find something that will engage my followers?” Well, the good news is you don’t necessarily need to be the opinion leader yet, but you do need to have an opinion with what you choose to post. Find articles and online sites that correlate with the vision of your company and make sure they are fitted to enlighten your specific audience. As mentioned earlier – “customers following your company will begin to develop an understanding of you brand”… Therefore, make sure posts are ON BRAND!

Consistence and stability are both key to maintaining an authoritative position online. When sharing information, keep an even flow of communication from your company to your users. Sporadic postings may conflict with your company vision and users may lose interest in keeping up with your news feed.

Social media sites have provided companies of every size the ability to target and communicate with their customers much easier than ever before… Remaining consistent across all channels is a fundamental principle to actively connect and provide value to others. While these are only the first steps on the path to utilizing social media to its fullest potential, they are core concepts to understand and implement into your online branding strategy!

So, what do you think? What are issues you’re facing? What are some tips YOU can share with others?

– Grace

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Today Facebook reaches 200 million members…impressive!

Think about the value of 200 million to your brand…even more impressive.  Though you may be initially enamored with the pure number, each of these members represents more than just a marketing target and a set of eyes.  As marketers, researchers, communicators it’s important we get past the sure ambiance of the social media craze.  When you start looking at social media and its massiveness in terms of quantitative analysis, you loose the very essence of what social media is all about and where the TRUE value comes from.

Many times as I am talking to companies and c-level execs about social media I am first tasked with changing a mindset.  A mindset that for years has been focused on the value of numbers and “exposure.”

Step 1 – Change the “exposure” thought process of sending 1,000 messages that are then noticed by 100 and cause action in 10.

Step 2 – Ingrain the “relationship” model of creating 10 strong relationships and connections which then translate into 100 and on to 1,000.

Step 3 – Get past “twitter is cool, and make a FB page” – companies want and deserve more than that and need to be taught application and utilization based tools

Step 4 – Overcome the shock factor and urge to control – many teams once started become overwhelmed with the mass of information available at their fingertips and have the urge to control any perceived “fallacies or falsehoods” – Are they accurate and true? If so, change your practices.

Step 5 – Incorporate all of your channels and messages into the culture of the company and “live” your words like Zappos and SWA. Enhance  your relationships as they are the TRUE value from the millions of potential.

Step 6 – Fight the “dead zone” – DO NOT stop!  Push forward and maintain your early momentum

Of course along the way are different subtle points of emphasis and different things each company needs to incorporate differently, but time after time I work on implementing the same beginning process for those just starting.  For those who I work with that understand the basics, it becomes a question of “how do we enhance your current relationships” and how can I continue to stand out, make a difference as well as monitor the effects of our actions.  It’s hard to explain APIs to those who are still learning to RT.  But, once past the adolescent stages – your own creativity is the only limit!  This is when it becomes really FUN!  Having the opportunity to help companies stand out from their competitors and really harness the power.

200 million is astonishing and even more so is the quickness of their most recent growth.  As I have been preparing my keynote for Beyond Borders, I had a stat touting its 180 million, which I have since been required to update in the matter of a couple weeks!  So, take a step back and admire the sure volume and numbers, but then think smaller, way smaller, and start building a strong platform of relationships and connections.