Is Your Social Life on Target?
Rightfully so, social media experts are currently blogging about the importance of establishing a social media marketing strategy as opposed to jumping in and out of various venues with a garden variety of blurbs and notices that have no sense of purpose or any real value to target audiences.
Quite frankly, the “social” or informal aspect of today’s online media shouldn’t lull any of us into thinking that simply showing up or even creating a splash ensures that people will be happy to see us, take us seriously, or engage us in any way. Just like a “friend” who always attends but never adds anything to the party, we can appear here, there and everywhere online, but that doesn’t mean our target audiences will take note, or if they do notice us, “like” what they see and hear.
Just as we would plan a traditional marketing strategy based upon concrete objectives, we need to decide where we’re going and why in social media–a purposeful social media marketing strategy.
Consider, for example, possible objectives:
- Meeting new contacts who can be developed as customers, referrals, etc.
- Touching base with current contacts so that we are first in their minds when the demand for our products and services arise
- Encouraging out friends to introduce us to their contacts, who, in turn, could become customers or referral sources
In some way, all of the above are ongoing goals of most. To accomplish them, we might go to many places with the same message or target specific venues using different tactics.
To garner interest and elicit behavior from desired contacts, we can generate all kinds of tactical communications:
- Commenting on the product, service or new venture of a client or business friend
- Spreading news about our clients, who achieved success as a result of our service
- Sharing professional insights about a new technology or change in the industry
- Announcing a community or professional event in which we are involved
- Asking for opinions or ideas; generating pertinent discussions
- Responding to a question related to our field
- Unveiling a new product or venture
- Extending a special offer
- Running a contest
All in all, the company we keep and the actions we take should positively reinforce who we are. Walking a line between personal and professional, we can be funny, philosophical, passionate and even controversial; however, whatever it is we bring to the social scene should meet a well-defined strategic purpose.
Before going out, let’s consider where we’re headed, why we’ve chosen that venue, what we’ll share, and how.
What are your social networking plans?
Sallie W. Boyles, a.k.a. Write Lady