Social media marketing has become a dicey space for many brands. While almost all of them have accepted social media marketing as the next goal post to focus on, none of them have any idea how to. A couple of infographics, a few vague and superficial tweets every day, a promoted contest once in a while, and brands think they’ve cracked the nut out of the shell. Once in a while, every brand throws up a sporadic surprise – Oreo’s Superbowl Blackout tweet or Sony’s Pinterest Charity campaign – but those are few and far in between.
The general understanding of Social Media amongst most brand is that regularly updating something about yourself and a few promoted posts here and there will create enough buzz around the brand. Social Media is a different space. People don’t necessarily come here to buy, they have to be provoked to or led to buying your products. And the only way of making that happen is to create some value about your brand – and this does not necessarily have anything to do with the products or services you have on offer.
Yes, you need to have a content plan in place … well in advance. Still, keep your content dynamic. Don’t stick to a template of posting arbitrary information about your brand or product. Be quick, topical, and witty. Attune your content with current trends and news. See how you can marry your brand-related content to trending keywords. Jump onto the bandwagon, there’s no harm in that. Even if you cannot find a way to wrap your brand around a certain trend or news, go ahead with just the trend or news. Sometimes, underplaying makes the brand appear a lot more human. It shows you care and are not here just to sell but to connect.
Let us face it, nobody visits social media platforms to give their reading hobby a larger canvas. They have blogs or still better good ol’ libraries for that. Social Media is a very quick medium. The content shouldn’t be too long to bore the user, but neither should it be too short to be forgettable. If you want them to read and see your content, the only plausible way of getting that done is to get the user to share it. Social media users want to build an image for themselves on these platforms – smart, intellectual, philosophical, witty, etc. Play to that pattern. Give them content that will help them build their social image and provoke involvement. The number of users shares your content, the number of people will be talking about you.
Google started it way before online communities were the rage. Photos depicting Google’s dorm-room office culture are cult favorites around the internet. General Electric in recent years took to Instagram, and later Vine to give a behind-the-scenes sneak peak to its fans. This goes a long way in building a community of loyal fans online. Make your brand appear, human, not a corporate robot box. Engage with the customers. Address their complaints. Airlines have used Twitter to great effect to address baggage and service complaints. Deleting negative customer feedback without addressing the issue and satisfying the customer will harm your brand like nothing else. Remember – the Internet is an unforgiving place.
Content brings in fans. But fans stay with trust. Build an aura of trust and quality around your brand see your brand soar the digital skies.