Every brand or business today is running or trying to run behind Social Media Marketing. Is Social Media apt for every business? Will it give you enough ROI? Do you even understood the right definition of ROI from Social Media? These were the questions I was asking to myself and I stumbled upon something very unique, its called 6C’s of Social Media Marketing.
“Be where your customers are.” Marketers hear the aphorism repeatedly. The challenge lies in determining the “location”. Thus before jumping on the social media platforms, research where the audiences spend time online. Create a game plan strategically as social media is a long term marketing plan. Social media being the core and integral part of overall marketing strategies, let’s see how these 6C’s are helpful?
Social networking is now an everyday part of most of our lives. But the question we face is how should we best use social media tools to compliment our professional relationships, not undermine them? Important tip for social media you should know what you are talking about and as a brand it is crucial you are honest, transparent and have awareness. Conduct yourselves online the way you would under any public circumstances. As a brand it is important to decide how to build your image by deciding how you will engage with your audiences, what sort of messages you will be sending and which mediums you will be choosing. Whatever you do or say, will come back to haunt you so be very alert and conscious of how your online presence impacts on you
The Art of conversation is considered as “Conveying information” that’s what most marketers consider. Thus just don’t throw your content and walk away. Let there be a chance of open dialogue, be accessible and responsive to your audiences, and engage them. With the level of increase in interaction will lead to building relationship with audiences. Research states- 1-3 negative online reviews were enough to deter over 1/3 of online shoppers, so listen to them as they are telling you what they want and don’t make mistakes on social media that other brands are doing.
Consumer is the king and content is the queen. Great content will keep your community engaged and attracted. But as these days originality is on a downhill and duplicity has taken over, but it’s very important be creative, original and fresh. Creativity makes marketing more vivid, and many researchers believe vividness attracts attention, maintains interest, and stimulates consumers’ thinking. With visual as it’s the grail of storytelling.
As the online world moves fast and social media is dynamic. You may have amazing content at hand but over a period of time you will realize that content alone is no more sufficient to keep your fans engaged. You need something more, you need to go one extra mile. And that is where the CONTEXT comes into play. Content coupled with context is a match made in heaven and good for your brand.
Cadence helps brands understand the constant flow of real-time data, so they can deliver the right message to the right audience at the right time. For the first time brands can respond to split second shift of interest and attention. With this it helps you understand what the audiences want and will make them engage, publishes content when audience is most receptive and with this you can improve the ROI. Thus in cadence it’s a 4 step of Listen, Assess, Engage and Evaluate.
Social media can both create and solve crisis, and the incredible fickle nature of social conversations requires brands to be on a constant state of readiness. Unlike traditional crisis management, which typically requires procedures for press conferences and written releases, in social media you have to be ready to make multi-media content. The best way to mitigate social media crises is to respond at the flashpoint, you must be prepared to make and launch content in a variety of formats and circumstances.
These 6C’s can also be called as 6 Pillars for Social Media Marketing and has been introduced to Digital Insights by Soumya Dev, who is Account Director and Head of Digital at Waggener Edstrom. Soumya has worked extensively across sectors, including automotive (Ford Motor Company, JK Tyre), technology (Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Intel), consumer lifestyle (Swarovski, Amway) and sports (JK Motorsports). You can catch up with him on Twitter with a beautiful quote below-
"The noise you are trying not to hear is always the loudest" – Anonymous
— Soumya Dev (@soumya_dev) July 28, 2012
We asked Soumya some questions about the integration of these 6C’s and the businesses or brands. Here is a quick chat-
How can Brands incorporate these six pillars for a better strategy?
The 6 pillars offer a step-by-step beginner’s guide to brands and individuals alike. Often enough brands establish a social media presence without defining the objectives and success goals that are linked to their business metrics. This approach helps to guide the strategy discussion towards a direction where the end goals are better defined and the necessary resources are better planned.
What Important measures should they focus on?
While establishing a brand’s social presence, some of the key factors to keep in mind are:
- People use different platforms for completely different reasons. The emotions are trigger points are dramatically different from platform to platform. E.g: I may have facebook, twitter and linkedin open on the same browser at the same time, but my reasons for engagement on each of these platforms may be very different. On Facebook I am more likely to generally socialise or stay in touch with friends and family, whereas on Linkedin I am more likely to build professional connections and share or consume content related to my professional expertise.
It is important for brands to understand their consumer’s trigger points in the various platforms, and tailor their strategies to be able to cater to the consumer’s interest areas in that platform.
- Social Media insights and analytics can be truly insightful if you have the nose for trends. Keep a track and respond to these insights. Often, the same individual may have different online and offline behaviours.
- Evaluate your social media engagement qualitatively and not just quantitatively. The value of the engagement increases as you evolve your measurement from attention to engagement to sentiment to influence.
Challenges brands may face while incorporating these?
- Understand the ‘implicit’ nature of social media. On your social platforms, users donot like “buy me, buy me” communication. If your content is tailored to the user’s interests, they will buy your product.
- That makes content at the heart of your social media strategy. Be creative, be agile and be relevant to the user’s trigger points for that particular platform. Ask yourself, “What’s your story of influence?”.
- User feedback on social channels can be both extremes – positive and negative; useful and bogus. Know to differentiate between the distractors and genuine customer feedback. Yes, in some cases people may even be driving an agenda.
Consumers connect with you on social channels because they want to connect with the personal side of your brand. They associate the brand as an icon but at the same time associate the brand with the faces behind the company. It’s no different than your offline interactions with the consumer. On your social channels, you have to develop the seemingly paradoxical skillset of talking to many, while talking one-to-one. Give it your personal touch.