Social media is the new marketing phenomenon of the computer age. Facebook, Twitter, MySpace at the very least you’ve heard of them, although for many it is possible that you don’t know much more than that, at least in terms of marketing.
For marketers social media is principally a way to attract, meet, and engage with your market. It can be best thought as product placement in a movie. Think of the James Bond movie franchise. Aston Martin, the car manufacturer and Tag Heuer the watch maker both spend a lot of money having their products featured on James Bond.
The rationale is that by associating their brand with the brave, suave and sophisticated Mr. Bond, it will certainly produce a positive effect on product sales. Which is true, at least to a degree, but what is also true is that no matter how brave, suave or sophisticated James Bond is, if the film wasn’t practically guaranteed to sell out, to fill the house, and get maximum exposure for the brand then it would be a lot harder to find sponsors for product placement.
For example, arty European or for that matter any non-English speaking films, rarely receive product placement advertising revenues. So what are you? Are you an Internet version of James Bond, exciting, compelling and with significant commercial appeal or are you a rarely viewed foreign art film?
Now here’s the important piece of the jigsaw. If the James Bond show purely filmed James Bond driving around for 90 minutes in an Aston Martin, solely showing shots of the interior of the car, drivers view, passenger’s view, shots of the front, side and rear then it is highly unlikely to engage people. It’s obvious isn’t it, they’ll get bored real fast and turn off.
In the same way, if every single time you post a message on one of the social media forums like Facebook, MySpace or Twitter you’re blasting your friends/ followers/ market with a sales message, then its likely that you’re going to have a shorter, or at the very least less fruitful relationship with them, than could otherwise be the case.
Effective product placement, like social media networking must be subtle, and therein lies the skill. Think about how to become like the James Bond movie franchise.
Here are some tips –
1) Vary your message – be real interesting. That doesn’t mean you need to be fake. The key word here is “real.” Tell them about your dog, your brother, what’s going on in your Life.
Design a rota for your messages, for example write your messages that sequentially focus on Your Health & Fitness/ Self, Community/What’s Going On Around You, Relationships, Business/ Making Money/ Offers/ helping your friends/ followers/ market by providing tips or answering queries for all to view,
2) Be consistent, like the ocean. Get into a routine, and do this. Like most things in life, the rewards are rarely all at the beginning, but the rewards do come when you are consistent,
3) Think about your market when writing your posts and messages. Pay attention, and vary your
message as you keep your finger on the pulse of your market,
4) Don’t forget to include compelling offers that you tweak, and tweak, and retweak to get the best possible response from your own unique and personalised market, that you have attracted and retained through the power of persistent attention to your social media marketing,
5) Cater your follow up to your market, monitor and personalise your sales strategy to the best of
your ability, to build an even stronger market, and make even more sales.