Social Is Not The New Request Line
March 25, 2014
In the social space, most of today's challenges aren't really about the platforms as much as they are about understanding why people use them. Each social outlet serves a very unique purpose – something brands tend to overlook.
Twitter, for example, beyond the wisdom and information shared every day, has a lot to do with the humor and snark – the playfulness that transpires every day on this platform that many enjoy.
Yet, all too often when a media brand is trending on Twitter, it usually seems to be less about that great wittiness, and more about frivolous contesting.
Brands forego dynamic interaction (what fans really want) in favor of telling them what to do. This often takes the form in tweeting incessantly in order to win concert tickets and backstage passes.
But what you're creating with tactics like that are problems for fans socially because that's not why people come to Twitter in the first place.
They lose followers, their friends get annoyed with them, and mostly, they miss the point of the social space.
Social is not the new "caller 10."
It's deeper than that. Social is personal. It's an opportunity to create meaningful moments – making people feel seen and heard. And it's about honest, fun engagement, and real reciprocation – that's how fans tend to value Twitter.
And Sirius/XM's Ron and Fez offer a great visual of what that looks like. It comes from their nationwide trending moment I saw form last week:
I wanted to see what they initially tweeted in order to claim such a rare and prestigious spot on Twitter's trending topics. And when I saw their tweet, I knew this was the perfect image to share and show what it looks like to hold a promotion socially.
They invited fans to use social the way the fans enjoy using it – in this case, snark and community – rather than being told to tweet for tickets – ultimately telling the brand's story:
And Twitter did not let down. The fans' of Ron and Fez were truly funny:
You can read more for yourself here on Twitter.
When brands hold competitions socially, fan participation should have something to do with showcasing them first, all the while telling your story. After all, aren't we using social to build the brand (what we do) and the reputation (what people remember)?
We're not always going to hit it out of the park with "being" social. But the more we study consumer behavior on social platforms and their expectations from brands, the more we'll develop a better understanding.
The era of entitlement is over.
It's a new era of "earn."
We have to be willing to let go of the traditional tactics that game the PPM/diary methodologies socially.
Social is a whole new mindset. It's about hacking our way the best we can to personalize each fan's journey with us – not treat it like the new request line.
Being the random winning tweeter is not today's currency. It's really creating memorable moments where fans feel community and offering personalized acknowledgment.
Radio has some of the greatest brands in media, but that doesn't mean we're entitled in the social space. We have to work at this.
And that means putting the fans first and focusing on how they like using social platforms so that we may earn the privilege of their time and attention.
Brand behavior and fan expectations must be considered. And this is where Jacobs Media's Techsurvey 10 can really help inform your strategy. Fred Jacobs will have revealing results of this April 3rd and 4th at Worldwide Radio Summit 2014.
There are chunks of data in Techsurvey10 that will make it clear why you should grow beyond traditional contesting tactics, and also, why acknowledgment matters.
These are just some of the things I study and work on when assisting Jacobs Media clients as well as Albright & O'Malley & Brenner's portfolio. If you're heading to Worldwide Radio Summit – I look forward to seeing you!
Reach out to me anytime on Twitter @lorilewis.
Please enjoy MERGE archives here.