I was chatting with a group of friends the other day and one of them mentioned an article she had read in a magazine about the social media marketing ‘boom’ and it’s downfalls and the notion that it will disappear and we will get back to ‘normal’ marketing soon…
Hmmm… yes I replied there are a lot of people using social media badly – yes still, and a lot of businesses not really knowing what it is for and about – yes still.
Let’s be very clear social and digital marketing is not a boom, and ‘normal’ marketing is social and always has been, it is now social using the internet as well and not just person to person.
FACT – every advertiser and marketer knows that word of mouth recommendations are the Holy Grail of all marketing, when a business can convince their customers and audience to talk to others about them marketing magic is created.
Just take a look around you. Look at what your family and friends are doing with social media. Where do they look before they book that hotel in the Greek Islands? Yes, Tripadvisor, because they believe what ‘real people’ have to say before glossy brochures and company websites. And ask yourself this question: Why are the world’s most oppressive regimes working so hard to block social media so that they, and they alone, are able to influence public opinion?
Because the internet has given ‘the people’ the power to influence and recommend on a global scale, our ‘reach’ has become the world rather than just those 6 great friends we trust and respect. We all now ask the opinion of others on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.. Just the other day I asked for an opinion and recommendation about buying a new TV and got over 30 answers which gave me some great statistics for my purchasing decisions as more people recommended one brand more than all the others.
This is how we buy now and always have, by asking our friends what they think, and listening to their recommendations when they offer them. We just have more friends to ask now, LOL.
Interestingly enough more friends doesn’t really mean more influence nor do we listen to the recommendations of all of our social media connections, we are still influenced mainly by those we have created a definite connection to and by those we trust and respect. So if you are going for quantity you may be missing out on having the time to create that much needed real connection with your audience so that you can influence their word of mouth recommendations.
It doesn’t matter what you are selling, word of mouth is still the priority your marketing should be aiming for, which is why great jingles are created, so that they stick to your lips and you find yourself singing them at the strangest times, LOL. It’s one of the things the big boys know about marketing that you might not have understood – ALL MARKETING IS AIMED AT PRODUCING WORD OF MOUTH RECOMMENDATIONS. YES ALL!!
Now that we are clear, think about social media and how you are using it, are you using it with this focus in mind? Are you posting content that is irresistible sticky and viral? Are you creating connections that are based in trust, loyalty and respect?
If not it might be time for a new plan…