Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Are you talking to me?

When planning out your social media strategy there is one thing that you must know.

Answering this one sentence will be a major factor in the success of your brand. But it's a deceptive question with constantly evolving answers. There are 3 main ways to look at it.
1. Why is your brand using social media?
Go back to your business plan and remind yourself about the brands mission and purpose. Then determine how social media will help to achieve that mission. If your company is retail based then you may want to advertise daily specials or events. If it's non-profit based then you may be using social media to find sponsors or educate the public. Whatever the purpose decide why your company is on social media to avoid confusing followers.

Probably not here to bad mouth potential customers

2. Who is your brand trying to reach?
This is about the people. The actual people that you are trying to become customers or fans or whatever you decided in #1 the purpose is. They are referred to as followers, fans, audience and, in the industry, targets. These are the people that you want to get the attention of because they are the most likely to buy your product. A very common mistake is to not know enough about who the company appeals to. It's more than women or men, teens or elderly. It's who are they as a group. Will your potential customer like sarcasm or find it repulsive? Are they cutting edge trendy or more conservative? Do they love to see "check-in" posts or do they find them juvenile and silly? The majority of social media faux pas are because the company, or the person managing the social media, didn't realize that their comment would be taken as offensive.

Nope, #Aurora was about the shooting in CO. Oops!

3. Where is your audience?
Contrary to popular belief, not everyone is on everything. Or rather they aren't active on everything. Brands need to assess where their audience (see #2) is and concentrate on those platforms. Have a product that helps moms? Start with Facebook. Is your product geared towards people who love tech? Google+ may be a better fit. Figure out where the audience is and then tailor the brands posts to take advantage of the unique aspects of that platform. 
Once you have answered these questions then you will have a better understanding of who needs your products or services and you can better respond and develop your brand.