Social Media is more than just a channel or tactic and it requires integration. More specifically, social media is the interrelated and cumulative actions and reactions of individuals and businesses in which they create, share, and exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and in real-time. B2C markets were the early adopters of social media and many social media strategists emerged from this focus. Now, B2B markets are embracing social media as individuals and communities share, co-create, discuss, rate, comment and modify user-generated content. In short, using social media introduces substantial and pervasive changes to communication between organizations, communities and individuals. As a marketer, it’s essential to learn to leverage social media to build relationships, listen to the market, promote content, engage users and influence buyers.
In order to build a pragmatic and actionable social media plan, it’s necessary to first step back and develop an understanding of how social media can impact the business and where social media strategists have been successful. The next logical step is to conduct an assessment of where your organization currently stands, in terms of people, skills, processes and systems. Then, a business has a solid foundation on which to develop a sound social media marketing plan that supports an organization’
Because of the many connections social marketing creates, communication flow has evolved from a serial line of communication that businesses use to control to a bidirectional flow of meaningful and relevant content that the peer-to-peer influencer model creates, engages with and regulates. Social media platforms are effective to build a brand, develop products, provide support, recruit employees, communicate with existing employees and sell more products and services.
Peter Buscemi, CMO and founder of VP Marketing on Demand sees social media impacting many facets of every business and patterns developing in the behavior of social media strategists. Specifically, from a Marketing & Sales perspective, prospects have up-ended the sales process as prospects now typically have access to product, pricing and references or reviews before the sales process ever starts and that requires a revamped demand creation plan.
Engagement is the key to success with any social media strategy. Engagement is a precursor to learning so it is important to understand how people learn. In short, there are three basic types of learning styles. The three most common are visual, auditory, and kinesthetic:
• Auditory: auditory learners would rather listen to things being explained than read about them.
• Visual: visual learners learn best by looking at graphics, watching a demonstration, or reading.
There are three important elements required to develop an effective social media content strategy:
• Know what your audience or community wants to talk about or is talking and be willing to engage in those conversations with meaningful content.
• Understand where your audience or community wants to have these conversations—
• Measure the results of your conversations to see which ones are correlated to the sales pipeline and convert to sales.
A good rule of thumb is to create entertaining content once a month like a quote or cartoon that is on topic. Every other week, create or push out content that is inspirational (success stories, underdog). Once a week, start a conversation on a relevant topic. Twice a week, offer tips and tricks or some insight on how to do something that is relevant to your community. Two to three times a week, provide relevant content in the form of a tweet, retweet, blog, post, link to a video, image, etc. Download the Social Media Strategy Example now.
About VP Marketing On Demand
VP Marketing on Demand was founded by Peter Buscemi, a CMO with 30 years experience that spans start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. The sole purpose of VP Marketing On Demand is to provide marketing insights and a huge head start to those tacking key marketing projects, through managed, repeatable processes. Over decades, in working with various boards and executive management teams (CEO's, COO's, VP's Sales and Development)