News & Events
#008 – Scrumptious Social Media
- 14th June 2017
- Posted by: Nicky
- Category: Episodes
We’re talking social media which weirdly eight podcasts in you may have thought we have concentrated on a bit by now.
But I guess we know our listeners are familiar with social media as it is now central to business. So first I’d like to talk about the differences between using these tools for business and in a personal context. Then I’d like to explore damage control and finally look at small business social trends and highlight some tools listeners may like to consider.
Wow, that seems like a lot to cover in 15 mins! We all know the world is changing rapidly. We were only talking about this the other day, weren’t we? When we talked about how technology has changed over our careers – and the fact we can remember the days before computers!
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Yes, I know. So we both live and breathe Social Media now but 25 years ago I started my career on a Canon Typestar display typewriter which at the time I thought was cutting edge. Then 12 years ago a manager suggest we try blogging, I’d never heard of a blog at the time but fast forward five years and I was blogging, running email & Facebook campaigns and training charity groups on social media. So, I guess the point is, the digital world has exploded, and small businesses ignore the benefits of social media at their peril because ultimately, we never know where the next tool is going to come from, or what the developments from these channels might be. So, miss the boat and you are already behind the curve.
Communication has always been important, obviously in marketing. It’s just a little faster moving nowadays – which can be an amazing commercial opportunity, but also businesses need to be mindful of the risks if they get it wrong or, worse, bury their heads in the sand. I guess the key to it is the interactive aspect. It has to be a 2-way dialogue, otherwise you’re just making noise and talking AT people.
Definitely. Now we all know how a well-managed social media campaign can help you build your market whether that’s simply to just increase communication with clients or drive traffic to your site or whether you’re using it to gain feedback and customer insight, or possibly all those objectives at the same time.
The only real negative I can think of with social media is that to do it properly takes time and effort. Lots of time and effort. What’s more, once started you must keep putting one in front of the other. You can’t just stop when you think you’ve done enough.
Yes, it’s all about consistency and we talk about that all the time at The Marketing Menu. Plus, there are simply 100’s of channels, and obviously, others are coming on stream all the time so it’s no wonder people get confused about which are the best channels to use.
True. Businesses need to find out which channels their customers are using. While it could be said that there is little need for an accountant say to be on Facebook, Facebook may well be the platform that people are on when trying to avoid doing their tax return for example. So maybe Facebook isn’t the platform you’ll prioritise, but it should be one you at least have a presence on, although you will more likely get a better return on LinkedIn say, which is still a social media channel, or at least increasingly so.
So, we would advise listeners to think of social media in the context of traditional marketing. For any marketing to work, you have to look at what we discussed in podcast 4, What Makes Your Customer Tick: Attention Interest Desire Action. So it’s important to:
- Research your audience: Understand your demographics – what do they read, what do they do, where do they go, what are their hobbies
- Gain ATTENTION either through advertising or posts
- So you can arouse INTEREST – not by flogging things but by either educating or creating engaging content
- So that you increase DESIRE in your product or service
- Which will, in turn, lead to ACTION on behalf of your audience through increased interest and ultimately potential sales
Yes, perfectly put. It is ALL about raising awareness and influence but remember the more useful and interesting the content means you will gain more interest. But ultimately remember the old mantra of “be everywhere” should be replaced with “be where it matters”. It all comes down to interaction: so how many people listen and talk back to you on social media (through likes, shares, comments, replies, for example).
If you are talking and no one is listening, your social media activity is a waste of time. The more interactions you receive, the further your message spreads, the greater results (whatever it is you are measuring) you see.
So, again back to Podcast 4 when we looked at What Makes Your Customer Tick – you need to think about your customers’ problems, their needs, wants and hopes and then write compelling copy for each that creates desire, provokes a reaction and in turn reveals a benefit, and then divide audiences into groups based on differing needs, so that you interact with them in different ways and possibly on different channels.
Yes, I read an interesting article on Mashable the other day from a young guy who was complaining how hard it is to know where to post on social media nowadays. We all know how in a rush people are to be the first to share stories and there’s a tendency to share, well, dull stories or perhaps not dull but not of interest to everyone on that platform so I guess this demonstrates how important it is to choose certain platforms and then dig in rather than simply post to everyone.
It also highlights that it’s important to use each platform differently. And also don’t post the same content on every channel. I guess what you mean is keep certain platforms for say friends and others for purely business?
Yes, I think there’s a bit of a backlash going on as certain channels like Instagram and Snapchat Stories have been jumped on by people simply trying to sell stuff, and I guess it’s just muddied the water a little bit which brings us on to damage control quite nicely.
Just before we do that, it’s time to remind listeners that if you are enjoying this Marketing Menu podcast, please do make sure you share and subscribe via iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn or Blubbry when this edition has finished. We’re a new channel and we’d really like to get out there and help as many growing businesses as possible by making some impact.
So obviously having a Social Media presence that represents your brand means you must respond quickly and directly to any adverse reactions. Is that right?
Yes, and do plan for the worst while expecting the best to happen. A professional responsible manager should oversee communication on corporate sites and be well versed on the risks.
Of course, all employees are potential spokespeople, but everyone from executives down should be trained in the basics of good and bad communication.
Definitely. I witnessed another car crash waiting to happen the other week following the horrific Manchester bombing. An American freelance writer for some major players like Yahoo and CBS tweeted a disparaging remark about the singer Ariana Grande in relation to the fatalities. My goodness, the backlash that followed was quite rightly scary and although he followed it up with an apology, and then removed the post the damage was already done. So I guess I stress again be careful what you post and keep your personal and business profiles or at least comments really separate or you could do untold damage.
Yes, we all know of good examples of this I’m sure but I think your point is that it’s important to ensure that teams understand the implications and put in measures to ensure things are addressed professionally should there be some nuclear fallout is, that right?
Yes, for sure. I know I have one client who has a no go social media policy when it comes to staff linking private profiles to mentions of the business, and while I think this is a little OTT, it is extremely important that you provide the training for your staff so that you put some good governance in place. Plus, then there’s the issue of tone of voice, but I think that’s for another Marketing Menu Episode.
Yes, we’ll come back to that for sure, and of course we’re here to tailor the content to your needs so if you have any questions, please do get in touch but most of all please share our channel with others who you feel may benefit from tuning in.
So, I had a quick look at some of to date social media facts recently and have got some interesting nuggets to share.
What are those then?
- 79% of Pinterest users are female
- 88% purchase a product they pinned
- And if you think Twitter is viral well it has nothing on Pinterest. Over 80% of pins are re-pins, compared to 1.4% of tweets re-tweeted, plus they also live longer, so obviously, Pinterest is very good place to promote a business.
- Now Twitter has 319 million users worldwide (2017), but only 1.4% of tweets are re-tweeted
- The average number of posts per page is 1.48 posts, but in retail, this shoots to 7.4 posts a day and this is probably because the organic reach for a Facebook page post is now 2%. That said the average number of people buying or selling on Facebook monthly 450 million (Mar 2016)
Wow, that’s a lot of posting I guess we need to consider posting far more frequently and then think about paying for boosts and traffic on Facebook and Twitter.
It seems to be that way but you know I think as marketers, we need to be creative in the way we use social media and try to avoid treating out potential customers as stereotypes. I read another report that scored social media platforms on issues of mental health and wellbeing of young people in the UK. After surveying over 1,500 young people across the U.K., they concluded that certain platforms specifically Instagram and Snapchat, which as we know are very image-focused may be driving increased feelings of inadequacy and anxiety in young people.
To quote Shirley Cramer, the chief executive of the Royal Society for Public Health, “social media is almost as addictive as cigarettes and alcohol, and is now so entrenched in the lives of young people that it is no longer possible to ignore it when talking about young people’s mental health issues,” particularly when relating it to factors such as depression, body image, loneliness, and bullying, among others.
So, when you mention being creative, are you suggesting brands try to counter this by flipping the stereotypes?
Yes, I think that would be great, don’t you? Although it’s a risky strategy, I notice Nike has recently pushed this idea on Instagram but I think it could really work for smaller brands. There’s so much pressure on young people nowadays. Imagine if you offered advice, support, and celebration of body image instead. Anyway, it’s just an idea listeners may like to throw around if this is your target market and of course it’s not just for young people either.
So, out of interest, which were ranked the most positively about health and wellbeing?
Well they were ranked
- YouTube (most positive)
- Instagram (most negative)
So, you mentioned tools at the beginning of this episode so what are you thinking about here?
Well, Liz as you know I am a firm believer in ensuring all this social media does not make me a social media junkie. I can’t afford to be on social media all day every day so I try to think of social media management in two contexts. First is the housekeeping element and the second is the ‘in the moment’ stuff.
Yes, so together I know we use different tools to schedule content and stuff but perhaps we should share what tools we’ve explored so that listeners can look at these after the broadcast and maybe try some out for themselves, so I use…
Tweetdeck – allows you to schedule but only for Twitter but you can’t add photos
Socialoomph – where you can add photos
I also use the scheduling tool on Facebook all the time, is that the same for you?
Yes although I’ve swapped Tweetdeck for Hootsuite as I am running multiple accounts across multiple platforms. I also tried eClincher for a while which I thought brilliant but it is a little more expensive so I’m waiting on that one until I feel I can justify the cost. Then I use drumup as a means of following certain topics because they also have a free entry level option, but as with many platforms you need to be mindful of Americanisms, for example putting in Hampshire say as a term means you’ll end up with loads of suggestions from New Hampshire but you can counter this with negative keywords and then finally I still use old faithful Google Alerts – to help me build content sources.
So listeners, it’s probably useful at this point to say we’ve included a transcript of this episode on our website The Marketing Menu.com which will also include links to these platforms if you want to investigate further, so if you’re not already on our website, head over there afterwards to download your copy.
So although we’ve covered a lot what are the key nuggets for listeners to take away from today’s episode?
Well firstly always be mindful that you don’t need to be on every channel but be where it counts, choose your platforms and then dig in, keeping in mind at all time that you are there to drive engagement. If you’re stuck, research your competitors and see what is working for them.
Secondly, keep personal and business profiles separate and hold different sorts of conversations on each and if you have a team then please make sure you prioritise training and put in place some decent controls and procedures without hampering enthusiasm and creativity that is.
And finally use tools as Nicky said to do the housekeeping element of your business updates and then search out others to help build your content around other people shares, always remembering to quote them of course. Which is I suppose is a case in point, please do share this with your own channels when you’ve finished as we’re keen to get out and help as many other potential listeners as possible.
Yes, so before we wrap up let’s just add a big thank you to our listeners for tuning in – we’re very glad you chose us as we know there are lots of other podcasts and webinars out there. We very much hope what we’ve shared today will give you some tips for your social media activity.
Yes, so tune in again on Wednesday 28th June when the subject will be all about Public Relations and how it can work alongside your marketing. So this is a goodbye from me, Liz til next time.
And me, Nicky goodbye.
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