Almost daily we get asked for advice about Social Media and creating synergies across multiple social platforms. That said, our strategist has decided to extend some helpful “Tips and Tricks” every once in a while and here’s the first pass.
- You are not omnipotent and cannot be everywhere online. Social media is too broad - - and just when you think you’ve got a broad swath of your target covered, a new ‘Tween’ community will pop up in Eastern Europe with seven million users. Look at it like the soft drink market; every country may have there own Cola, but there’s only one Coke. Start with the social ‘notables’ for your demographic and psychographic target and recognize that you have to be in fewer places, but need do more with those places you commit to – hence the need for cross-media synergies.
- Activate and energize your followers (or “fans”), as they are not simply to be collected like Hockey cards. Engage them to generate content (comments, reviews, etc.) and always strive to ensure the relationship is symmetrical and participatory, with a clear value-exchange.
- Acknowledge the world is changing and the future of the Web is distributed. It’s a push world now, not a pull world and the days of corporate monologues are dead. Take the best 2-5% of your existing (most active and participatory) website content and extend it into the social places where your fans and prospects are spending their time (i.e. Fish where the fish are.)
- The most successful social media initiatives today marry offline activities with online. Why? Simply because virtual is still virtual. The highest levels of activity and engagement are achieved when online activities are used collaboratively (synergistically) with offline activities to promote, amplify, and energize the base.
- Social media is not meant to replace or offset your ongoing online marketing activities. It’s supposed to be complementary. The real secret is to combine the two by using social forwarding tools to extend and evolve the conversation. Extend social media as another brand touch-point to grow email distribution and segmented ‘opt-in’ lists.
- Use the right bait. Extend the right social media and message based upon your target demographic and psychographic profile. Forrester™ has an online tool that can assist at http://www.forrester.com/Groundswell/ladder.html