This week we are going to discuss the “5 Lies of Social Media Marketing”. I came across a great blog by Mikal E. Belicove “The Daily Dose” that had this as a title and I thought that it was worth repeating and expanding on. So this week I decided to go through the 5 and give my own take as well as the original from Mikal.
1. Size Matters! “Many small businesses equate the number of ‘likes’ or ‘followers’ on branded social-media platforms to success, not realizing that it’s the quality of those likes and followers that is important. More people signing up to view your message doesn’t necessarily equate an increase in sales or even a bump in long-term or sustainable brand recognition.” Mikal Belicove
I could not agree with Mikal more. It seems as if everyone is bragging on their numbers lately. ION Television is announcing that they have over 150,000 followers on their Facebook page and thanking everyone, but I would love to see the Nielsen ratings of how often those followers are viewing their programs and more importantly to a channel like ION paying attention to the commercials.
Creating a Facebook Page and Twitter Account just for your marketing message misses the point of Social Media and that is to build trust in the community where your audience is. And add value to your audience. What is the key here? Knowing who your audience is.
So many blogs have been written about Trust and Joining the Conversation with your Audience that it is worth linking these two words with previous blogs. Just google these two words and you will get millions of hits.
The point is that it is the quality of your message and the effect on behavior that counts as opposed to the size of your following or likes. Keep this in mind the next time you hear a business or someone bragging about the number of followers or likes they have on Social Media.
2. The medium is the message. Just because it’s Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, MySpace or some other newfangled online or mobile-powered platform, the message still carries more weight than the medium. It’s always been about the message. It’s not about the platform or the technology. The technology is just a tool, and just because younger people were the first to use Twitter and Facebook, don’t think for a moment that older employees can’t effectively use them just as well.
The message is much more important than the medium. So whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, your website, or any number of platforms, what you say is more important than what technology you use or how it looks. And don’t forget that your audience must be able to respond to your message.
3. Social media gurus really do exist. No, they don’t. Here’s my advice when you run across someone positioning himself or herself as a “social media guru” or expert. Run for the exit. Everybody working in this field is practicing on the job training. Just because they’ve written a book like I have or spoken in public about the do’s and don’ts of social media, doesn’t mean they know your business and how to conceptualize and manage campaigns that hit upon your business-related goals.
I totally agree that the company, or so-called guru, does not know your business and social media has to come from within. When I speak to, or work with, companies the goal is to develop an internal team that learns to use social media in a strategic way for the organization. I or one of my consultants acts as a catalyst to build that team around until they can strategically do the process themselves.
4. Social media is ‘new’ media. No, it isn’t. Media is media. At one point or another, newspapers, radio, television and the Internet were considered new forms of media and now they’re labeled as “traditional” media. So “new” media doesn’t mean that only “experts” or young hotshots can successfully operate your social-media team. That’s hogwash. Nothing replaces knowledge of the basics of marketing, combined with knowledge of your business-related goals and the need for authenticity and transparency in your socially laden communications.
I believe a little differently on this one. I believe that Social Media is different from other media. Why because of how it works. “…newspapers, radio, and television” is a broadcast media that talks at their customers. Social media is a media that is only truly successful with dialogue. It’s about the conversation! Having one!
Bottom line is that Social Media is a different media than has ever existed before and the rules are different from other media marketing. So no matter what you call it you need to know your business and build an overall strategy using social with other forms of marketing efforts. If you don’t believe me look at Coca Cola and how much they don’t spend on traditional marketing and how much they have invested in social media marketing.
5. Social media can be effectively outsourced to a PR firm. Nobody knows your business like the people who work inside your building. You can certainly work with an agency to set up and implement your social media-related efforts or to propose ideas for contests and the like. But when it comes to communicating your messages on a daily basis, your people are in the best position to keep your community of customers and prospects up to date and informed about what really matters to them.
At Orange SMS we work like this. We put a consultant in your organization and either work with your current team or build a social media team around that person. The goal is to keep the social media efforts internal. Meaning the posts and the information comes from within the organization. Our goal is to work ourselves out of a job, so to speak. To build a strong strategic oriented team within the organization so they don’t need the consultant any longer.
So bottom line I will once again quote Mikal Belicove “In my view there is no ‘one way’ to manage your online positioning using social media. Instead, each company’s marketing strategy should differ depending on specific goals and target audiences.” I agree 100%!
Les Adkins CEO and Founder Orange SMS, Serial Entrepreneur, Adventurer, and co-founder APocket (coming to your mobile device soon) #LikeAPocketonFB #ChangeTheWorld
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