Everybody is jumping on the bandwagon of social media. Businesses large or small, want to be where their audience is – online. But what does that really entail? Posting updates? Sharing links? Forcing your meaningless product on people? It’s neither of these and organizations need to realize this quickly. Besides the cost of a skilled team, it doesn’t take a huge amount of money to do social media marketing. So when it’s nearly free then why not take advantage of the fact that everybody you need to buy or use your product is available in one place? Your message and content will determine the interest level of your audience.
Content Is King
Content is the king of the marketing circuit. When you have the right content, it won’t matter how mundane your product is or how hot selling your service is. The lack of understanding as well as absence of correct content strategy in place can only mean a downfall in the social media world. An audience will react better to a good digital content strategy, that is built on 3 pillars: Relevancy, Frequency and Advocacy
Relevancy of the content to audience requirements, frequency in which you push this content on to them, and advocacy, peer recommendations, shares, retweets etc-all of these will tip the scales for you. Digital content is the message that goes out – the complete package, a holistic approach – the direction a customer conversation has gone in, the avenues you employ to shout out loud what you have and what you can provide.
It is all about the big 4 Ws:
- Who should listen to your message?
- What do you want to say?
- Where do you want to say it?
- When do you want to say it?
Who Do You Want To Say It To?
Sometimes, it works for organizations to talk about themselves, how they have grown, how they envision the future and so on. Other times it works to talk about what does the customer want and how you, as an organization and your product/service, can fit in their lives. What you talk about will depend purely on who your target audience is. Who are the end listeners of your message? Identify those members of your audience who are most likely to react to your message, put them in a separate bucket. Reach out to them first.
What Do You Want To Say?
Before you decide what channels to use, how to design your message, what pretty images to add, the first and foremost thing to decide is “What do you want to say to your target customer?” Do you want to tell them what they want to hear or would you rather just talk about random things with complete disregard for what the outcome maybe? Your message should effectively communicate, in as minimum words as possible, what it is you want the customer to know about you/your product or service. Customize the message to suit the audience needs, but maintain the theme and appear consistent to your entire audience set.
Where Do You Want To Say It?
Now that you have decided what you want to say and who you want to say it to, it won’t be too much trouble to identify the right channel to use to put out your message. Where you want to stand and shout your message for the world will depend purely on where your target audience is seated. You wouldn’t want to be holding a megaphone standing in the O2 Arena in London, when your audience is sitting in Madison Square Garden in NYC. Identify all the places online where your target audience is available and utilize to your advantage the facilities that channel provides to you to converse with your customers.
When Do You Want To Say?
If your target audience is an office going crowd, that typically works 9am-5pm, would you choose to put out your message at 11.30am, when you know for a fact that everybody is busy at work and has no chance of getting (let alone reacting to) your message? Audience, message and channels being decided, when you put them all together, the ideal time for dialogue will present itself. If in case you are a creator of aprons for the stay at home moms/dads, then you may want to reach out to them in the middle of the day, since they are homemakers, mid-day is when they have some time for themselves.
All in all, if I was to compare content with an object, I would choose to identify it with water. It has no form and can be stored in any manner, can be changed to adapt colors and is in free flow. It is available for everybody and can be shared easily. I put together a little poem for my content team at work; printed it out and posted it on each of their desks:
A conversation to be started, a message must be delivered,
Good content will take you places, bad will get you murdered
For content is our king, we serve only him,
He shines upon us all; we act as per his whim.
Content sits on our head, ruling us day upon day,
He protects vested interests; makes sure we don’t go astray.
In conclusion my marketing buddies; let us bow to our king,
Good content will make us #1, be it social media, search engine: google, yahoo, bing.
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