If you are a budding entrepreneur, chances are you must have already marked your presence on social media even before you contacted angel investors. Despite the fact that social media engagement plays a significant role in understanding customer requirements, what else do you think drives marketers to glutton over social media marketing?
Apart from the elusive marketing terms like ‘direct ROI’ and ‘enhanced sales conversions’ one reason which we all know is – because it’s easy !
And life is beautiful if it’s easy.
Time for a little walk down the memory lane. Think of a moment when you were constantly chased by a roadside vendor for buying something you didn’t want. How was the experience? Did you feel bothered or annoyed because of an unwanted intrusion into your personal life? Did he constantly pester you for purchasing his ‘services’ ?
Yes. He did.
The digital world works in the similar manner, only in a much sophisticated way. So think beyond the sales funnel and visualize how you would feel, as an empowered denizen of digital age, if you are constantly poked into your social life. A ‘Buy me! Buy me!’ whacks up every time you open your Facebook account.
Sounds bad, right? But true! Because you did not sign up on Facebook to hang out with them.
With almost every brand marking its presence on social media, it would indeed be foolish to abscond the ground zero. A customer has no religion and he is definitely not bound to be loyal to you unless you provide him with what he desires. So when you say social media is a great marketing platform, make sure you understand all its nuances before you take-off.
Chances are after reading this article you would google “Top 10 benefits of social media” and turn up the argument’s heat. But let me tell you this, this is not about why you should not use (or use) social media as a marketing tool. Instead it’s about how effectively and efficiently you can use this as a platform for your services or brand image.
Here’s what you can consider:
1. Use social media to build your reputation
Your reputation is your biggest asset. Focus on your customer’s expectations.
Share your success stories, give them a slice of your vision, converse about your values and what drives your passion. Take them from the virtual world to the reality where you can be their troubleshooter. This is where your ‘followers’ become your ‘fans’.
2. Do not ‘sell’ on social media
Instead focus on customer relevant information. Understand the difference between ‘selling’ and ‘marketing’. There is a thin line between the two and make sure you do not cross that line. When you market your product you are providing reasonable thoughts to your customers as to why they should choose you over a competitor. Your followers are not your prospective customers. Your likes are not your ‘sale conversions’. They follow you because they like you. So lure them for a better experience.
3. Don’t get deceived by the ‘likes’ and ‘shares’
We often are disillusioned by the number of views and followers. Albeit, that is a quantitative measure of your customer outreach, it sure doesn’t charter loyal customers. Quality prevails quantity. Followers are fickle-minded, they only search for a better discount. They don’t even think for a minute before replacing you with a competitor. So it’s better to win the faith of a hundred people rather than a million likes with no one talking about it.
4. Use strategic and engaging content
If you know your target audience then you should have a fair idea of what they desire. The biggest mistake which many organizations make is that they keep beating around the bush. You have got 140 characters to tweet and impress but if you talk about why Donald Trump is a good presidential candidate then you might as well do it from your personal account. Do not talk about issues which do not add value to your business. In short, keep your sweet little nose out of controversies. Instead, feed them on the next big technology which you implemented.
The charm that social media brings up is magnetic – true. But that mobile phone in your pocket can only do wonders if you use it wisely.
A person is not on a social platform to get pitched, to make an immediate purchase or for that matter a prompt business decision. If they ‘like’ you that means they have entrusted you to provide them with a solution. And when you cater to that need, that’s where you create a magical experience.
So yes, it’s time to reinvent your idea of social selling. Period.