Measurable Success With Social Media
March 1, 2011
Measurable Success With Social Media
So many people I talk to today are not really looking for the latest social technologies or tactics as much as they are trying to identify how social media can assist in achieving goals/objectives.
Because there’s not enough time in a day or attention given to one article to devote to all the ways social media can help you achieve your goals and objectives, we’ll go over these elements one at a time so we can have dialogue about each area.
Certainly we will dive into how to monetize through some of our social and digital channels, as well as consistent, real traffic conversion to your website, but one of the more important aspects of social media is something that’s difficult for number-crunchers to grasp, only because the ROI to this area is the long-term health of your brand, not directly related to physical dollars attributing to the budget.
It’s called “Managing Brand Equity.” Brand Equity is “the value - both tangible and intangible --that a brand adds to a product/service,” Since we no longer get to be in charge of hiding negative feedback, we certainly have the opportunity to influence conversation and analyze issues, patterns and trends from what consumers say, whether it’s on our social properties, or somewhere else -- and take a central position giving consumers reasons to change their minds.
We are no longer just marketing our stations;we’re marketing conversation, so perhaps we could tap into the benefit of getting to hear/monitor what people are saying about us 24/7.
There are a slew of tools to help you monitor social conversation -- besides looking your brand up directly through Facebook’s search, Twitter's search helps , as well as Addictomatic helps you see various channels, and Blogpulse.
Managing brand equity should be a team responsibility, as long as the team is on the same page in how we manage dialogue in a 2.0 world. We want to engage everyone -- all consumers ... even the worse-case haters. What we want to shy away from is taking it personally:
- Listen Carefully
Don't react ... just listen. A bad comment doesn’t mean it's the truth; it only means it is their experience/perception of your brand.
Consumers’ comments are motivated by emotions. Typically, if someone is being negative, they feel wronged and see spreading negative about you as a path of revenge.
- Analyze what you read and the person behind the comment
Comments aren't as important as the people behind them.
For example: Look at the Twitter user - How many people actually reacted or re-tweeted that tweet? How many friends agreed with their negativity on Facebook?
Odds are they are riding solo with negativity. However you still want to acknowledge the comment. You can’t allow your consumers to assume you aren’t active on your social sites/websites, or that you condone their “lively” language by staying silent. You also shouldn’t get into the habit of censorship by deleting comments.
- Don’t be afraid to be the voice of reason
Know your brand in and out and also understand the concept of 2.0 is not censorship. Unless the comment is so outlandish with vulgarity, we don’t interfere with the primary purpose of two-way dialogue. We simply:
Ask everyone who works around your brand:
- What do consumers think we’re about?
- Respond with What do we want them to think we’re about?
Most folks are just hoping social sites are serving as the bridge between the consumer and the product, like this example I found using Twitter’s search: Big Rig @ WXTB/Tampa (98ROCK) responding to a tweet:
Best Buy is another great example of managing brand equity ...always there, attending to their consumers:
A real brand offers mutual help and nurtures relationships ... through all channels.
One thing I love is that it’s not just what they are saying about us; we get to monitor what they are saying about our competitors, too. If you’re competitors are leaving their followers with no response, perhaps it’s opportunity to reach out to them and earn their trust ... win over consumers one at a time.
We’ll look into other areas of managing brand equity later in the column as well, such as how does your brand perform in search? How do your competitors rank?
Social and digital channels give us the privilege to create worthwhile conversation with the folks who have the power to define us. Don’t let modern conveniences become inconveniences. What people say about our brands, how we respond or chose not to respond weighs more than what we say about our brand.
Reach out to me anytime on Twitter @lorilewis.
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