Evolve CommunicationsDigital Strategy

Posts Categorized: Digital Strategy

Are You Creating Social Media Dead Ends?

There’s no doubt that professional networking has been massively transformed by social media. We actively use Twitter and LinkedIn (and sometimes Facebook) to meet new people in our field, prospective clients and other “people of interest.”

And many people use these tools effectively on their websites by linking to their various profiles.

Lately, though, we’ve noticed a lot of dead-ends. That is, when we click over to someone’s Twitter page or other profile, the page doesn’t provide any further details no other websites, no contact information, no links to other social media profiles.

Case in point: we really liked this blog post by @cassandrabianco about what marketers can learn from mixologists. First, the link to her Twitter account actually ended up at @piamara‘s Twitter page (an oversight, we’re sure). @piamara clearly has a food connection based on her profile description and her background, so we easily believed she had penned the post. We wanted to read more of her work (and not just her Tweets). We wanted to learn more about her, what she does professionally, where she might work, etc.

Unfortunately, @piamara doesn’t have a website or a real location on her Twitter page. There was no way we could find out more about her, unless we wanted to ask her directly. Which we didn’t want to do for a variety of reasons, most importantly of which was that we just didn’t have the time to hunt for it. It was a dead end.

Sure, if we wanted to reach @piamara, we could’ve taken an extra step. But what if we were a potential customer or useful contact for her? Would we bother doing further googling to find her contact info? Possibly. But possibly not.

Who knows how many lost opportunities happen when people or companies don’t create dead ends like this. Sadly, we’ve been seeing this more and more. Someone even pointed out to us recently that our phone number isn’t listed on our contact page (we fixed that immediately).

Bottom line: close the information loop. Cross-link your social media profiles and your website. These are simple ways to let people learn more about you and your business. And not doing them is like leading people down dead-end streets. Make it easy for people to find you and reach you.

NOTE: It was only until we started writing this post that we realized that @cassandrabianco was the true author (and she indeed does have her company website linked on her Twitter profile).

It’s not all social media!

It’s true, social media is the marketing darling of the moment. But let’s remember four facts:

  • By nature, the web has always been social.
  • Online marketing has been around as long as the internet has been public.
  • There is always more than one solution to a problem.
  • When all you have is a hammer (social media), everything is a nail (social media programming).

Social Media HammerIt’s essential to remember that what clients want is to win. But in a game whose rules are only limited by the imagination, it can be difficult to define what winning is. And with social media taking the spotlight, it might be easy to see how that is the solution to a marketing problem.

Yes, it’s also true that social media is changing how we interact with each other, and how businesses interact with its stakeholders (be they customers, stock holders, vendors, etc.). That doesn’t mean every marketing challenge has a social solution. Instead, social media may be a single tactic in an array of tactics meant to work together.

And, lastly, it’s quite common for businesses to believe they need to be on Facebook and Twitter in order to do social media. Smart consultants would argue that’s putting the cart before the horse. Remember, blogs can be social, too (remember when they were the hottest thing several years back?). Videos are clearly social vehicles. Bookmarking, like blogs, have been eclipsed by social networks, they are still social, and when combined with blogging can be powerful traffic drivers.

The key, of course, is to understand how these tools and tactics work together, and to apply that knowledge creatively. That will ultimately net the biggest benefit to the client.

A Stellar Strategy to Reach Solar Customers

What can we say? When it comes to the process of developing digital strategies, we’re traditionalists. We believe every strategy has five essential components:

  • Research
  • Messaging
  • Strategy
  • Tactics
  • Measurement

What we don’t believe in is boring strategies. While our process remains the same for every strategy we develop, the ideas are always fresh. And that’s exactly what we delivered for Solar Energy World.

Our comprehensive research uncovered a few key facts about their audiences:

  1. They want to save money on their electric bill.
  2. They are generally financially savvy.
  3. They see themselves as leaders in their communities.

We also found that there was a paltry amount of reliable information online. And because Solar Energy World had experienced great successes with their free solar workshops, we knew that providing educational opportunities online was the best way to be the resource potential solar panel customers are desperately seeking.

Based on those conclusions, we built a comprehensive strategy that incorporate live and recorded videos, whitepapers and presentations, blogging and a snazzy animated video showing the impact a single residential solar installation can have on the environment.