Need a place to start while you create your ‘social media’ strategy for 2012? I have it for you. You see, it’s relatively simple if you think about it and Matt Briton has given us a baseline to go by – and it applies to any brand at any point in their social journey. Matt gives us the five “need states” that brands need to address and I’m going to elaborate here with my thoughts & opinions:
- Utility: Matt said that “Utility means creating something the Millennial Generation needs”. I think this applies to a broader audience then just the Millennials, but lets think about that. Giving your consumers something they need (whether they know they need it or not). In the case of consumer technology – something they need could be a focused around an app (Briton gives the example of Intel’s ‘Museum of me’ app which allows teens to connect a Facebook app to their profile to create a museum of their lives). For anyone else this can be: tutorials, tips, tricks – basically anything the consumer needs that will allow them to use your product better, or allows them to utilize something new you have created to make their (online) lives better in some way.
- Entertainment: “Entertainment used to be as simple as dialing up a celebrity as a spokesperson or sponsor but that now, celebrity could be a YouTube sensation like Kelly, picked up by Marshalls for a promotion”. The key to consumers hearts has always lived in entertainment. I mean you can’t even see a Proactive commercial without Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, or the like in it. Now it’s just easier, cheaper, to get at these people – and to get them to speak on behalf of your brand. Now, if you don’t have the massive budgets to get celebrities – there is a simple place to start. Your people. Your people could be your customers, your employees – or anyone else in your arsenal. Sure, they may not be famous, but it’s a way of entertaining your audience. Whether they follow these people through events, posts, or any of the like – they are a simple and easy way to create an entertaining persona for people to pay attention to. I mean, if Coca-cola can make the nobodies who started their Facebook page entertainment, and Axe can entertain through their ‘Danwithaxe’-like persona’s, there are easier ways to create entertainment out of existing (non-famous) people.
- Information: “It’s not always about product or service, but about the customer”. We live and breathe vanity in this day and age. Everything from Facebook profile pictures to Klout scores scream LOOK AT ME! We want to be catered to, and sometimes it’s as easy as information. Think not about your products (for once) and think about bigger thought categories. If you sell vacuum cleaners, give information about cleaning or maybe information about what happens before you even start cleaning (NYE parties, anyone?). If you sell deodorant, give information about activity (partying, sports, dating etc.) that requires you to smell good. If you sell software, think about the computer or devices and interest categories that are used before someone even opens your software. Think about a wider scope than your own niche category.
- Rewards: “Brands often try to reward for acquisition, but now brands realize they have to reward for loyalty. Doing that brings organic growth” I remember hearing while I was selling cars that the most important time for a customer and for a business is not at the point of purchase, but between transactions. I cannot think of an instance that this is not true. It is cheaper to keep an existing customer than it is to go out and find a new one – so why does this go unnoticed? You must know yourself that when you’re loyal to a brand or service – you (to a certain degree) expect to be rewarded for it. It’s like when you sign with a particular insurance company – you expect that if you’re with that same company for 5 years you should get some kind of loyalty discount on your premium, right? This kind of program has become easier to facilitate with social. You can have a fan-only contest, exclusive perks once someone is a ‘member’ and ongoing discounts and promotions. Of course, there are hundreds of thousands of variations of loyalty programs but they don’t have to be huge or expensive, they just have to be right.
- Recognition: “It’s looking at what consumers care about and fitting in that framework”. All recognition means is spotlighting consumers involvement in brand equity. Recognition can be as simple as engagement on posts, tweets, videos, what have you – all the way to going above and beyond to recognize your best customers. Matt gives the example of Wheat Thins showing up unannounced at the houses of one of the brand’s social media ambassadors with a pallet of the crackers and filming their response. It’s the little things we will do to recognize the few special people who are nice to us and treat us like we (almost always) don’t deserve to be treated.
So that’s that. I know this isn’t a strategy all lined up per se, but if you cater to the 5 basic needs, I assume that you will be successful in social.
You can read the original article here .
Happy New Year!