The term social media marketing is usually associated with the idea of promotional messages deployed across networking platforms like Facebook, YouTube etc. Although essential for maintaining a social presence, these channels will resemble social media ghost towns if not supported by the key pillars of marketing success: Customers, Content and Communication.
Thismoment delved into why the three Cs are crucial to social marketing success and here’s what we found:
- Customer satisfaction was among the top priorities for US marketers in 2011, with 25% media & entertainment brands and 46% utility services brands rating this to be one of the top KPIs for measuring social engagement (Forrester Consulting).
- Having understood the importance of producing valuable content, US marketers cited original content creation to be among the top challenges in 2011-12 (eMarketer).
- Social media is more about communication and interaction than pushy sales talk. According to a recent study by PulsePoint Group, socially engaged companies see 4 times better returns than those that aren’t.
- The level of communication, or the lack of it can impact consumers’ purchasing decisions and their impression about the brand(s). 49.5% consumers said they were far less likely to buy anything from a company if they saw unanswered questions on their Facebook page.
Customers, Content and Communication: Everything Brands Need to Know
How can brands better communicate with customers and create and deploy winning marketing content across multiple social channels?
- The Importance of Demographics & Psychographics: The first rule of marketing is to know as much as possible about the target audience.
- Demographic analysis provides brands with basic data about their target audience. Brands, for instance, can use Thismoment’s social media monitoring and measurement capabilities to identify who their customers are, their geographic location and information about their gender, age etc.
- Psychographics is the next step. It tells brands what motivates customers to purchase something by giving marketers an insight into their personalities, lifestyle etc.
- Communication: The Key to Social Community Management: The growing presence of social media communities across various platforms means brands need to do a lot more than post promotional messages. Social communities comprise of a highly engaged and sometimes influential group of people. To engage and communicate with them, brands need to spark conversations, share relevant information and answer questions.
Community management also means handling negative feedback/comments about your brand. In such cases, brands need to reach out and communicate with the community at the earliest, showing them you’re listening and that you care.
- The Power of Story Telling: Built using Thismoment’s DEC platform, AIG’s YouTube channel tells the story of the company’s promise to the US Government and American taxpayers, without directly selling something. This example tells us that consumers are looking for more than just promotional content. By keeping marketing content subtle and make it resemble a story, marketers can:
- Build brand awareness.
- Capture consumers’ attention and keep them interested long enough to engage with them.
- Deploying Content Across Multiple Channels: With the recent proliferation of social channels and devices, brands find it challenging to deploy and manage content simultaneously across multiple channels. The biggest challenge that companies worldwide expect to face is the growth of channel and device choices (eMarketer).
How Can Brands Benefit from Thismoment’s Distributed Engagement Channel (DEC)?
- DEC enables brands to simultaneously update content across multiple social platforms.
- Using the “Create Once, Deploy Everywhere” approach, DEC allows brands to reuse content across various platforms and mobile devices.
- This helps marketers create and distribute a single, consistent brand voice across multiple channels and devices.
For brands, building solid, lasting relationships with customers requires being as interactive and communicative as possible. While customers and communication are two of the three Cs, the third, content plays a big role is connecting the two. Promotional content, disguised in the form of interesting stories and deployed across multiple platforms keeps the communication going between customers and brands. While there isn’t a single formula for success, the secret lies in “Communicating with the Customer with some great Content.”
- Shama Ahmed