If you follow the news, interact with people or breathe with any regularity, chances are good that you’ve heard about ‘social media.’ Twitter is hot, MySpace is not; LinkedIn is booming and Facebook’s users are democratically selecting their new Terms of Service. Whatever your understanding is of this space, you probably have a feeling that it’s big. You should. It is.
Social media isn’t just for amateurs anymore. Business is getting done in a wide variety of ways all-day, everyday. This shift has been occurring for some time now, but speed is picking up as more businesses adopt the powerful tactics formerly employed solely by anonymous bloggers and college students.
Brands seeking evangelists (read: any and all brands) need to get on the band-wagon now or risk getting left behind. Jumping in is an understandably daunting proposition for many business owners, but social media is truly just new technology for old tactics.
Word of mouth is arguably the oldest form of marketing, and certainly one of the reasons that many businesses, including Treacy Marketing Group, have had years of success. While this is a fact, we need to adapt as the game changes. The new technology everyone is buzzing about gives businesses the opportunity to connect with their customers and prospective customers in new, more powerful ways.
Social networks may offer the ability to reconnect with your high school prom date or keep track of former colleague’s professional endeavors, but they also are proving to be excellent venues for brands to interact with their target audience. If you’re a gourmet food company, what better place to interact with your target market than through groups focusing on your shared interest – gourmet food?
Niche websites, or niche groups on the big social networks, give marketers the opportunity to target their audience when they are more receptive to your message, and brands can even create that venue for themselves by setting up their own blog or Facebook fan page, among many other options. Sharing content through these channels allows for your customers to join your sales force and tell their friends about the wonderful products and services you offer.
Social media is the polar opposite of mass-media. The days of ‘spray-and-pray’ are behind us. The information age is making way for the conversation age.
Before you go dive in head first, keep in mind that social media needs a strategic approach just like any other marketing effort; goals need to be set, measurements put in place, and standards must be determined ahead of time. This strategic approach will need to be analyzed and tweaked as you learn the landscape, and lessons will certainly be learned about how to best engage your target audience.
Treacy Marketing Group is taking advantage of social media to engage with our clients and prospective clients. We want to help you and your brand join the conversation. Contact Beth Treacy at info @ Treacymarketing.com to schedule a consultation.