Growing your business with social media can be a challenge given the number of networks and how quickly everything changes. But even a half decent social media campaign can produce astonishing results, which makes it a challenge worth overcoming.
Keeping yourself well informed about important trends may not be easy. New techniques are developed every day making it tough to know whether it will affect the way your business operates, or if it was just another failed idea.
My associates and I at Formal Armour do whatever we can to remain on top of these new techniques. There are several things to be aware of. Besides attending conferences we consult with quite a lot of people regarding their difficulties with branding on social media.
Below is a short review of some of the most significant trends for businesses going social.
#1 – Moving Customer Service To Social Media
Supporting customers over social media is actually becoming more convenient for both companies and customers. Some of the larger brands resisted in the beginning due to the thought of having customer grievances in the open for everyone to see, but customers were pushing companies to make a change. If companies wish to create a social media presence why not have offer customer service through it as well?
Although businesses have handled customer service over social media for years, it has never competed with other customer service methods in the past. Take a large company such as Whole Foods for instance that addresses customer service in-store, on the phone, and over social media. Whole Food’s Director of Social Consumer Relationship Management and Customer Care, Natanya Anderson, stated over 40 percent of its customer questions are asked via social media.
As more businesses continue to handle higher volumes of customer service by social media, many are improving the overall quality of service. Response times have even become increasingly better! Although, this customer service channel isn’t perfect it will continue to improve as time goes on.
Many companies understand that customer service over social networking sites cannot be separated from other channels. Representatives must get in touch with customers in a similar manner on social and off. Agents should also be as encouraged to deal with problems throughout all service methods. If customers are asked to switch service methods, be sure to state the reason is due to sensitive information. Keep in mind that it’s important to make the transition between service methods as seamless as possible.
#2 – Keep Content Sharing Simple
There is so much content available on the web and it remains one of the main problem areas for all brands. There are several smaller trends taking place within content sharing as well. Just take the increase in video and mobile sharing. Remember that less is more. Sharing too much creates a chance of content overload, which presents unique number of challenges. One of the biggest problems business has is how to go about sharing content. After all, how do companies determine exactly what content to share, which social media networks to share it on, and how to best create a level of user engagement?
To begin with, large brands pay social networks to promote content, which is great if you have a large marketing budget; but not so great for small businesses. Even on networks that are receiving great organic engagement, like Instagram, things never stay the same. Networks that work today may not work tomorrow. The perfect scenario for improving sharing is to have a well thought out marketing campaign and a lot of money. If you are short on cash don’t worry, more of one makes up for less of the other. If money is tight what should you do? Start by making smart decisions with regards to the sharing channels you choose. If a channel works with the overall marketing strategy and goals, the content will be able to develop an active audience.
Content can be shared across many networks, so it makes sense to develop content that fits on multiple networks. But then again, a number of networks and their users can be fussy. Some content must always be written particularly for these groups because it could have a significant payoff when it comes to reach, engagement, and with attracting a new audience.
Brands that are looking to improve sharing must always be testing new tricks, gauging, comparing, and making modifications considering what works and what does not. When trying out new techniques remember to keep your overall business goals and how customers view what your content in mind.
#3 – Converting Marketing Data To Content
Information transforms how people do business, which is why there’s been such a huge shift to social media over the last few years.
The internet has made is easy to gather statistical data on target markets. This information has a significant influence on businesses due to the fact it’s now easier to understand customers, and subsequently having the ability to get through to them better. We’re observing excellent instances of brands customer feedback to improve services and products or create content.
Over time, significantly more brands realize its difficult to take observed and surveyed marketing data and contextualize in the form of content that will engage people. There is a ton of info floating around the web, but occasionally less is more. Brands with a narrower scope of target market data is more manageable and may produce better results.
With regards to paid content distribution sharing many argue over what’s actually seen, and the impression that this content gives people. Kraft’s Julie Fleischer has stated that most statistical data and market research is “crap.”
Along with performance data, there is certainly a better way transition away from individual network data, to metrics which can be lined up with most of the overall business goals.
#4 – What’s Next After Social Media?
Most people and businesses involved with social media have been ignoring this thought for a long time, but what’s going to be the next big step for businesses after social media?
Businesses and companies have emphasized establishing a social presence across all business functions to help reach out to a larger customer base. After reviewing the overall sales, marketing and content marketing strategies, customer service, PR, besides other divisions and extending social media contact to those teams instead of running it to these groups individually.
The difference may not appear to be clear, but there’s actually a major distinction between both methods.
What can you do to determine the primary difference between a business on social media, compared to a business with a social presence built in a greater plan? In cases where a brand introduces a new type of product the company advertising choices to choose from. For instance, should they just release the product to stores, television ads, or possibly figure a way to compliment a web campaign with social media support? People operating social media campaigns intend to generally improve social-specific metrics, and usually are responsible for the overall success from the campaign.
Think about a grievance from a customer that’s posted on one of your social networking pages. Suppose it’s a vague service inquiry, while the agent tasked to respond to it on Facebook isn’t capable of answering it himself. Should he inform the individual to contact someone else in the company? Or perhaps there is also a process designed to give it to somebody that is equipped for it, regardless of if that person doesn’t typically contend with matters on social media.
The idea is that quite a few important applications for businesses, sales, marketing, and customer service happens on social media. The affect social media has is diminished when it appears by itself. All applications should continually be utilized as being a definite element, ordinarily an exceptionally effective one.
Whenever changes are consistently evolving, it is not difficult to concentrate on short-term plan. Trends are constantly changing, what works today may not work tomorrow. Be prepared to change your strategy at a moment’s notice. Businesses that have been able to go social increase their overall performance and are likely to be positioned better than competitors who are not.Read More