Staring At The Finish Line ... Without Starting The Race
March 15, 2011
These are incredible times we live in. It’s exciting to have the ability to create worthwhile conversations with our audience; no longer are we chest-pounding about how great we are, but actually we’re actually showing interest in how great they, the consumers, are. Having a social and digital presence can amplify an already well-invested brand ... as long as we know why we’re doing it.
There’s a lot of talk about measuring success (and as an analytical junkie, I’m right there with you), but are we getting tripped up by the idea of getting to the finish line without even starting the race?
I mean, we’re just at the beginning of learning how to be effective in a world where consumers are completely fragmented because they each have their own individual preferred channels of communication (e.g., texting, Facebook, blogs, YouTube, e-mail, Twitter, LinkedIn, apps, RSS, etc. Plus, nookmarking sites like Digg and aggregators like News.Google.Com, etc...)
Collecting “Likes,” “followers,” etc. ... won’t guarantee that you’re creating brand impact nor will it measure the quality and depth of your brand. Distinguishing and implementing how our brands serve, however, can create brand impact and start answering some of those days that end in “why.”
Three basic ways to distinguish how we can serve:
1. Enhancing consumers’ primary purpose behind their preferred platform
In research that was shared here on Merge last month, there are “conversation”-based sites and “transactional”-based sites. We should learn the difference between all the channels we use in order to serve and meet consumer expectations.
For example, Facebook is a “conversation”-based site and WMTX (Mix 100.7)/Tampa on-air talent Nancy Alexander does a great job letting the audience knows she’s there when they need her.
Whatever the preferred channel is, know what it is they expect out of you and engagement will become seamless.
2. Tap into your targets’ culture and be a part of their lives.
Contrary to what was said at CRS earlier this month -- about how Country music listeners don’t read blogs (there’s a need for a whole different article on that misinformed, broad statement) --blogging is one of the most effective tools to accomplish the goals of deepening the connection, making your digital/social presence more effective and ultimately growing the bottom line.
Blogging star WNCY (Y100)/Green Bay/Appleton Charli McKenzie has increased the effectiveness of WNCY.com singlehandedly with her blog. Charli simply creates conversation on her blog, not limited to Country music stories, but writing about stories her community is talking about, too.
Look at how many people shared Charli’s blog. If an average Facebook user has about 200 friends - what’s the math at the amount of exposure WNCY and Charli McKenzie received with that one blog alone? What kind of exposure would that traditionally cost?
3. What’s in it for them? (and we’re not talking about winning prizes)
101 WRIF/Detroit simply creates dialogue around the product. Not about it. This type of communication runs deeper than winning prizes.
Consumers have become so accustomed to this new world -- where dialogue is 24/7 and they can talk all about themselves on their own Facebook page, Tweet about themselves, upload videos of themselves ... so in order to be part of their world, we should continue to build upon our brand with two-way conversation on their preferred channels that makes their life better, easier and/or richer.
Perhaps it’s just a matter of taking the time to distinguish how our brand can serve to give our digital and social presence a deeper meaning.
Reach out to me anytime on Twitter @lorilewis.
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