When you watch a bad movie, the first things that jump out to you are typically a bad plot, poorly developed characters and/or bad acting. Social media does not have much to do with the latter, but plotting and character development are huge aspects that translate into having a good social media strategy. How? Why?
1. Branding is storytelling. Social media helps bring this story out with multimedia and writing.
2. There are various stories with each brand or organization – both behind the scenes and on the front lines. What the hell does that mean? Well, brands have internal stories about the people behind the brand. Don’t ever be afraid to tell that story. A brand’s “front lines” story is the one everyone sees on the stages of Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, etc. on a daily basis. It is the character, logo, cause, etc. we connect with as a fan or follower.
3. Storytelling creates consistency. Fans and followers will return to your channels if they are interested in what is happening in the brand’s story.
4. It increases engagement. People want to interact with characters and plot lines they can relate to. Having a brand’s story connect to someone’s lifestyle is the ultimate win.
5. It’s just plain fun. Remember, storytelling is an art form. People enjoy sitting down and listening to something with a beginning, middle and end. Albeit, I would not advise creating an end anytime soon! Let fans and followers in on your brand story so they can get hooked.
Which brands do you think have the best stories?
There’s nothing wrong with tossing some bacon, roundhouse kicks and mullets into your day. To break up my day I will, from time to time, watch clips from the Swayze classic, ‘Road House.’ In watching these clips I could not help but think “what if Patrick Swayze was a marketer? What if he had access to social media?” My dwellings on this below…
1. Be Nice
You are going to encounter A LOT of personalities you don’t like. Big ideas will float around that are terrible. And you will butt heads with people who work close to you. When these times arise, be nice. When there are too many cooks in the kitchen, be nice. When a campaign gets a green light that you don’t like, be nice. Now, I’m not saying have no opinion and bottle everything up. But handle things that are out of your control with the attitude of being nice.
2. When Someone Calls You A Name, Be Nice
As Community Managers we all know there’s going to be people out there who bash your brand – some brands more regularly than others. It happens. Deal with it with transparency. When tackling negative feedback from people, it is essential in my opinion to be nice. Having been a disgruntled customer before (who hasn’t?), I have been completely won over by kindness and brand’s willingness to help. When brands become human and are nice to their fans and bust their ass to help them, it typically results in winning that person back. If that person is not completely sold they will at least have something good to say about your customer service. Remember, wins don’t have to come from just a sale.
3. When The Time Of Being Nice Is Over, Stand Up For Yourself (Or Your Brand)
This is a VERY rare circumstance in social media. I repeat: this is a VERY rare circumstance in social media. When a brand has been nice, accommodating and given all 120% of themselves to helping a disgruntled person and that person continues to come back with bash after bash after bash about the same situation then it is time to stop being nice. THIS DOES NOT MEAN BE OUTRIGHT RUDE! But it does mean that brands, on occasion, need to stand up for themselves and their content. Defend your castle! A brand can simply say something like “Sorry, [insert name]. We have given you every possible resource at our disposal. If you continue to use graphic language or rant on our comment threads you will be reported and banned.” Don’t be afraid. Stand up for your kindness and willingness to be good at customer service. Because that’s exactly what you’re doing.
When have you had to stand up for your brand? Or continue to be nice?
Social media is a touchpoint for marketing; it is not marketing, nor is it branding. Rinse that and repeat. So many people throw a hail mary with social media expecting it to be this saving grace that brings their brand or organization back to life (if it even needs it in the first place). Social media is an extension for your brand’s image and voice. Don’t ever ever ever try and brand yourself with social media. Your voice and message will fail because people will immediately detect your brand’s incoherent and inconsistent voice. Believe me, I have seen startups think social is the key to success and then their brand falls flat. Why? Because there was no brand in place prior to.
When I tell people social media is a touchpoint for brands, organizations etc. I sometimes get bug-eyed looks accompanied with “wait, isn’t that what you do for a living? What exactly do you do with your days if it just a touchpoint?” Well buckaroo, that little touchpoint is actually massive. There are infinite ideas, strategies and tactics that go into socializing a brand. And those tactics will not only fill up your day but swallow it whole.
Understand that branding and social are two very different things – think of them as peanut butter and jelly. Let social bring our your branding and allow it to flourish and gain reach, engagement and word of mouth. Just remember to make the divide between these two…always.
Dear Young Social Marketer,
You are entering a world of conversation, clicks and CTR’s. Don’t be scared, if you do your research you will execute all of these things just fine. Social media is nearing its end of “the new way to market” and is becoming essential to how a brand markets its message and content. You must value time management, creativity and collaboration. If you have an ego problem then you can go ahead and check that at the door – no room for that in this industry. But guess what? You will have to learn how to deal with others who don’t value that. Hard? Very. Good experience? Like you wouldn’t believe.
Know that your days will be spent on a timer and that you will have to not only execute your creativity, but execute it at hyperspeed. Oh, and it has to be good. You will have to write, write and write some more. Content creation is fun, but wait till you sit down to a blank editorial calendar. Get the ink ready! You will enjoy the creativity, but you better love it enough to have days where ALL you do is brainstorm, brainstorm and brainstorm some more. Trust me, midday coffees will be your new best friend. And just when you think you are about to leave, you will have a “quick” stream of work come down the pike that has to be done by EOD.
Be ready to handle a lot of money that is not yours. You will be running multiple social campaigns that must have good CTR’s and engagement. Tell that to your friend who says, “uh, you play with Facebook and Twitter for work?” Don’t worry, they still won’t get it. Be prepared to be on the ground floor for live events that revolve around your social media pushes. You will have to be the most charming person in the room, while also being the best marketer in the digital space at the same time.
But you know what…
It’s all so worth it. When you see your social campaigns surpass their numbers. When you see twitter streams light up like Christmas trees. When people give you feedback that says, “wow, thank you.” At the end of the day you live for this. You are a connector. A creator. A marketer. A master linker between brand and consumer, bridging the two dimensional traditional gap with the three dimensional injection of the all powerful social media. So, pat yourself on the back Young Social Marketer and know that all good word-of-mouth starts with your passion for social media marketing.
by: Jamey Brown
We all want em! As soon as our beloved content goes up we wait on those numbers to skyrocket. But what do the likes, comments and shares mean? Alright, so someone shared content you posted, so what? Does one have higher value than the other (if you’re a Community Manager feel free to shake your head yes now)? Below are likes, comments and shares broken out.
- The original form of engagement for Facebook.
- Likes are the “ok, well at least I got that” app of Facebook.
- Sadly, they don’t hold as much value as they once did.
- These are always welcome and definitely pivotal in Facebook marketing.
- They let a brand see what their market is thinking, a test group if you will.
- They also allow a brand to keep a finger on their community’s pulse. Word of advice: don’t take your finger off…
- The most important button on Facebook.
- Promotes virality (yes, this is now a word because Facebook said so), thus allowing content to go viral
- Sharing is caring; if you ask your community to share content they will probably do it, but only if you have been keeping that finger on the pulse. Oh yeah, use CTA’s sparingly. Too many call to actions and your community will see it as spam and not do it anymore. You don’t want this tactic to lose its zing!
The next time you push out content, either for yourself or the brand you manage, remember what your community is thinking when they are clicking these buttons. And if you think of it prior to publishing then you might see some more success with overall engagement.
What kind of engagement does your content produce?