Social media has become more of a platform which acts as a bridge not only to reduce the regeneration gap but also it forms a perfect marketing mix. We are well aware of the 4Ps of Marketing and it is perhaps this social media which has made product, price, place and most importantly promotion, all available on one platter.
From marketing managers of multinational companies to the freelance web developers. It is not sensible enough for anyone to ignore this medium anymore. Making it work is however as tricky as it could be. Some undermine it’s power while others overestimate it. If you want to encash the opportunities social media has in store for you, you have to be well aware of certain myths about it. Avoiding and including these may help you to integrate social media into your marketing mix and gradually leverage your marketing outcomes.
It is good because it is free
Time is money, an old cliché but true. If it is quality time that yo are investing in on social media then it isn’t free. So formulate a strategy which optimizes your social media presence and gets you attention. Going haphazard without a strategy in place, you may not lose money but it might will divert you from the core area of your business. You can be a paid user and still be bereft of all the benefits. The key is to be at the right place, at the right time and target the right audience.
RAM would work
RAM means Random Acts of Marketing. Anyone can write a 144 character tweet or can post updates on Facebook. Just because anyone can use it does not necessarily mean that anything posted or shared would make sense. One has to device a proper strategy to make it work. Also, because of the fact that it is public in nature, one must also keep in mind as to what all is to be showcased as this would impact your brand image to a great extent. The ‘No-Need-To-Plan-Just-Be-Social’ attitude will not simply work. One has to understand their audience, set goals and objectives and build a plan to get there.
We have to be omnipresent
There are hundreds of social media platforms and it is humanly impossible to update everywhere. You have to demarcate a segment which you think is apt to target. Identify those platforms where your clients are and where you estimate that potential clients may join in. It might not be the most effective one but can act as a filter for you. Rather then joining several platforms, one can make there presence prominent on selective places and be more effective.
Have to be formal all the time
On social media one need not be all formal. Posting official announcements and press release will not help. Your official website is the right place for that. Social media is a platform to interact and not make announcements. The best of business deals can be made through informal communication.
Integrating social media into business isn’t important
You are highly mistaking if you think that integrating your business with your social media strategy is avoidable or not that important. Do not just work on arbitrary things, make your presence felt for the target audiences. The better you can integrate social media into your business sales, customer service, and marketing processes, the better you will be able to connect with and serve your clients.
Facebook can’t be a serious business platform
It is the most common prejudice that people have about Facebook. Well again, you are mistaking then. With more than 800 million+ users it is definitely one of the best platforms for business networking. It gives you ample of opportunities to think of the most creative and interactive ways to promote your business. Sharing how the work place looks like, what all team building and recreational activities you do off the record gives a humane touch to you business. It brands you as an easy going fun brand.
Twitter is for individuals
Well it may seem so with the limited number of 144 character posts however it isn’t so. Sharing relevant links, posts and regular posts, at times with grammatically incorrect words can get you great results. Most marketers get to business deal using Twitter in the most informal way.
Social media marketing is like regular marketing
Well social media marketing is all about being creative, interactive and innovative. You can not follow the regular formal presentations and sales pitch framework for it. Posting and sharing boring things and usual office updates won’t help. One has to think out of the box, try new things and keep it interesting. The key is to be informal yet convey the message loud and clear.
Its not going to work
Unlike email marketing or ad campaigns, social media marketing might not give you instant and measurable results but be assured that it will. Once it starts churning out results it would be overwhelming for you to handle all of it. Do not lose hope in few months. Be persistent, be consistent and be diligent in your efforts and it will give you measurable results. Study you insights, map you audience and develop relevant content and you will definitely hit the bull’s eye.
It is not about the people, it is about the technology
Well the term itself is the combination of two things which perhaps are the key components too. Social means people and media means technology. You may create hundreds of blogs, pages, the best fan page on Facebook or the most attractive website but unless you connect with the target audience, it is of no good use. So, invest in people. Work towards getting more and more of them because these audiences would later transform into your customers.
It allows people to bad yap about the brand
No doubts social media gives people the liberty to express themselves freely and without any inhibitions, chances are that more than appreciating your services, product or ideas they would criticize them. Nevertheless, it lets you know of your drawbacks and you may work upon them as and whenever required. Moreover when you know what the problem is or where there is a disconnect, you can actually defend or improve yourselves.
My target audience isn’t there
To expect the least, there would be influencers and strategic partners in your business ecosystem who are actively engaged in social media in some capacity. Also, if your customers aren’t there than they are perhaps the people whom you should probably target if at all you do not want to limit yourselves to the present client base. Social media yields you leads rather than just letting you follow your existing clients.
Quantity before quality
It is again a overly believed myth. The number of people will not matter until and unless it is the crowd that you are concerned about. Quantity both in terms of what you deliver and the number of people who follow you is to be taken care of. More the number of people, the more is your responsibility to deliver better and the more is the pressure. And the number is useless if they aren’t following what you have to say or share. 10 genuine users are far better than 1000 inactive members.
No need to plan, just be social
Well it is like selling space suits to a common man. Nor it is affordable and neither is it of any use to them. So identify where and who all are your target audience. Do not sell cellphones to an infant and toy car to an adult. Plan your strategy, study your audience, set goals and work to get there.
Were you already aware of all this? Do you have anything more to add to this. Please share your experiences and help others understand the online social cosmos better.