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5 Rules for the Social Media Playground

Jumping (or dipping a toe) into the social media pool is great – after all, you do want to increase your online real estate.  But it’s important to understand a few guidelines first:

  1. Are you prepared to engage? It’s important to understand that social media is a two-way street.  Sure, it’s a relatively easy to way to broadcast messages to your marketplace.  But the market talks back –and it’s crucial that you engage with them.  A Facebook page for a well-regarded television drama posts exclusive behind the scenes videos but doesn’t reveal the date of the next season premiere, despite fan pleas.  Don’t leave your customers in the dark.
  2. Make the Commitment Lifestyle guru Oprah (@oprah) made a big splash recently by joining Twitter and sending out her first tweet, albeit in all caps.  But she’s only sent 44 messages since April 17th, indicating that she’s not a loyalist.  It’s important to set goals for your social media campaign and then execute.  An abandoned Facebook page, Twitter stream or blog sends the wrong message.
  3. Be interesting What does your target want to hear?  What are the issues in your industry?  How can you relieve pain?  No one cares what you had for lunch — unless maybe it’s the special at your restaurant!  Understand what information you can share that’s worth knowing.
  4. You can’t control the conversation Understand that social media can’t be controlled.  People are talking about your business or industry, whether you participate or not.  You can’t suppress negative comments, only respond to them so better you be there than not.
  5. Social media offers no fast fixes Social media campaigns usually can’t deliver the same kind of metrics as other marketing tactics. A good plan should develop over time and results will emerge over time.
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Filed under Blogging, Facebook, Flickr, marketing basics, social media, twitter, Web Marketing

One to One Communications Offers Increased ROI

In tough economic times, many companies move to cut costs and some of the first expenditures on the chopping block are marketing communications. Instead of cutting marketing communications budgets, it’s time to think strategically and reassess your plan – studies have shown that companies who increase advertising and marketing efforts enjoy a higher return on investment (ROI) than companies who decrease these efforts during difficult times.*

So what do you do?

Make sure your efforts are targeted. Don’t waste time or money producing messages that are not reaching your targets.

1 to 1 communications are a great way to produce targeted, personalized customer messages. 1 to 1 communications use information from your databases to create compelling and coordinated messages across print, email, and web pages. Of course, you want to be able to track effectiveness. 1 to 1 communications programs allows you to see exactly with whom your campaign is resonating.

So what is 1 to 1 communication? A customized direct mail or email is sent personalized with the recipient’s information from your database. It directs the target to visit a personal web landing page – i.e. janesmith.yourwebsite.com. Once the target visits their web landing page, they receive an email response – another opportunity to create a personal connection. Behind the scenes, a dashboard provides live, accurate campaign data and statistics for ROI analysis.

1 to 1 communications help you connect on a personal level with your targets and create warm leads to pass to your sales force.

*”Advertising during a recession,” Direct Marketing. September 9, 1991

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Filed under Direct Mail, Email Marketing, Web Marketing