“In Social Media the “squeaky wheel” gets the oil. You have to put yourself out there, to find people who will relate or even debate with you, depending on what you are looking for.”
-Jessica Northey, Multimedia Personality and Digital Consultant
SOCIAL MEDIA BRANDING
SOCIAL MEDIA IS HERE TO STAY
Social media continues to rise in its prominence as one of the go-to medias for advertising. If you don’t believe me, check the marketing budgets. The Journal of Marketing just published a report that found that social media is not just profitable, but Chief Marketing Officers are expecting to more than double their social media budgets over the next five years. That’s a pretty big deal when you think about the fact that social media ad spend hit $16.10 billion worldwide in 2014 which was a 45% growth from the previous year. It’s pretty safe to say that the business world sees social media as a profitable market and that isn’t expected to change soon. That means you will need to consider how social media branding can work for your overall marketing and branding campaigns.
FROM SOCIAL TO SALE
RESEARCH PROVES SOCIAL MEDIA BRANDING CAMPAIGNS MAKE SENSE
I was really impressed by the data in the report “From Social to Sale: The Effects of Firm-Generated Content in Social Media on Customer Behavior” and think it’s relevant to breakdown and share with you. I highly recommend reading it and sharing it with your account team. All of the work is there so you can test it. The big problem everyone (including Forbes) is struggling with is not whether or not social media is effective and worthy of spend, but what does it actually do and how to gauge it on its own. Advertising is complex. Usually there are several mediums at play at any given time. You have tv and radio ads, existing relationships, and email campaigns all working together to share the same information. What is unique about this study is that it untangles some of those complex problems. It tells us how well social media performed by itself (without tv and email). It also tells us how well it did with tv and email campaigns going at the same time. The results: social media always increases the customer spend and business profitability regardless of what other media is or is not being used on the campaign at the time.
YOUR MAIN GOAL FOR SOCIAL MEDIA: Interaction
The report also notes that there are several uses or goals that you can seek in your social media strategy, but the most successful use is that of receiving and interacting with the brand. Customers interact with companies on social media platforms. That is much different from a tv add where they experience or see and hear about the company. There is no way to take part in the tv add. The viewer can’t add their input or ask questions. That’s where the distinct value add exists in social media: you can interact with your customers and your customers can interact with you. These interactions lead to a more personal relationship with the brand and can equal higher spend, increased loyalty, and word of mouth exposure.
The report also presented four natural “suggestions” for management of a social network program:
- “Embrace social media.”
- Be proactive about finding opportunities to use more than one type of media in your campaign.
- Monitor your campaign’s popularity.
- Use social media to make your brand connections stronger.
- Run to social media with a holistic marketing mindset that incorporates all media forms as a single unit.
- Watch the results and adjust your campaign as needed.
- Incorporate “Reflective Interaction” to strengthen your brand connections.
- Enjoy the experiences and get to know your customers
For more on Branding, check out our blog series: