Changes in Today’s Marketplace #8
Changes in Today’s Marketplace #8
This is the eighth in a series of what has changed in customer perceptions and resultant buying behaviors.
Change #8 – Success with Social Media Requires Being Interactive and Social
To be effective with any social media marketing you have to be social by continually interacting with users. You are well-served to do this by keeping them informed and providing ongoing interactive value. It is in many ways, relational marketing in its purest form. To accomplish this in our lightening fast communication world, you must repeatedly keep your website (yes, it needs to be social) and social media content updated, relevant, and fresh to make it effective as a promotional tool and to ensure you are seen as distinct.
Social media takes all forms beginning with your website and continuing through Twitter. Many organizations and businesses spend thousands of dollars designing websites that look good and are referred to as “user-friendly.” Yet the evidence of short visits to most of these websites is well documented. The average website home page visitation is less than 33 seconds. Sure, some consumers click through. Others click away having reached your site in error. But all too often qualified prospects also click away to another site. To capture click-throughs there must first be a compelling reason to stay and look around.
You have to think about the experience people will have on your site. Does it educate and motivate? Is the design such that it is easy to navigate to find what they want? Are you writing and speaking to them or at them? Are you telling them how you deliver their desired end result? In a clear delineated way, with a combination of visual and text components? Could you conduct a virtual tour? Are you speaking with prospective customers in their language or in industry jargon and acronyms? Is your site and message sticky, personalized, engaging and clearly positioning you as distinct? Do you have a blog or other contact method where they can ask questions easily?
Finally, can they view your site on their smart phone or mobile device clearly and distinctly? Why? Primarily because more and more consumers want the information, the solution, the provider’s name now.
In addition, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter are all vehicles to socialize, interact, and deliver your message to buyers.
Your Facebook page should encourage your customers to “Like” you. Building a large base can imply value and that implication is often all the proof people need to go on to your website and order or inquire. Also, commentary or feedback from current customers who friend you should speak to why they do business with you. Google is currently ranking businesses based upon what people say about them on the social networks. There are of course other factors they use to rank businesses for search optimization. But this one you have knowledge of and can influence based on direct input from your customers. Thus, customer testimonials should not be about how good you are, rather how doing business with you is good for them.
YouTube boasts the second largest number of queries in the world behind Google. But you must be right on point with your message. Most YouTube video clips are funny or entertaining or at the very least informative with an interesting delivery. No matter which approach you use, be certain that your videos are not about how you are good. Rather use it to entertain, inform or educate viewers. They will quickly see your value, particularly if your message is engaging, and will forward your link to others. To be distinct and viral can lead to explosive growth!
LinkedIn is another tool to expand your network and to get your “net” working. Building a base of linked customers and prospects enables you to communicate with them in distinct ways. It also expands your reach into potential new markets. However, review your profile. Be sure it is not just about you, your title and vitae. Rather write to the user. This approach ensures you are consumer-centric not me-centric. It also from our experience creates interest and numerous inquiries.
Twitter is also ideal for engagement and responsiveness from colleagues, customers, peers and those tracking key words and responding. Remember different things motivate different people. Tweet ideas and thoughts that are of value to your customers and prospects. Tweet active links about various business issues to fully engage your followers. By so doing, you will get many new followers through re-tweets to their fellow tweeters. This is valuable word of mouth and it does give you a distinct presence because you are engaged and social.
Of course, not every benefit of social media can be quantified, but in today’s mobile world you need to be there. It is not only what you might gain, it is also about not losing new buyers because they don’t find you there.
For examples of an interactive and social approach, visit our websites:
Follow us on Twitter
Check us out on LinkedIn
Friend us on Facebook
View us on our YouTube channel