Thursday, March 10, 2011

Not How, but What to do with Social Media

Scott Stratten has over 50,000 twitter followers and had more than 60 million hits on on his video Scott recently spoke at the Travel Media Association of Canada's annual conference in Ottawa and here are just a few of the things I found so great, I just have to share.

Stop marketing in the same old ways we've done it for decades - it's too hypocritical and customers know it.
Marketing is not a task - marketing is. It just is. It's a way of being. Everything we do from smiling at a stranger we pass on the street to a phone conversation to talking to customers - everything we do and say is always increasing or decreasing our impression to others. We are our front line to our customers/followers/friends. So, what is your brand impression?

Am I talking about on-line or in person? Both. In fact, we tend to be passive in person and aggressive on-line - think about it, there is a false sense of privacy when you can't see a person face to face, but the marketing power is still the same. Not to worry though, Scott explains, "To be great at customer service you just have to be average." Which means there are too many people not paying attention to customers, if you do, you win.

It's all about, Know - Like - Trust

With social media you can get to know and trust people, but with that comes some caution. Social media is not the place to flog crappy advertising. I you use the same concept as tele-marketing on social media, people will tune you out and you loose the trust. That means no pop-ups, commercials or anything that will get in people face. It also means - don't post your events or commercial messages on other peoples facebook!!! For all those who post on my wall and I've always found it annoying, now's my validation to tell you - stop it!

So what do we do? Well, ask yourself what you do every day to get people to like and trust you? - you talk! and talking is tweeting. But another caution - don't tweet about garbage! Who cares if you had tuna for lunch? Well, now I'm feeling bad because I shared my lunch experience with all my friends yesterday, but - in my defense I can say that I certainly wasn't expecting a meal on a VIA Rail train to be right up there with deLuca's Restaurant or On The Twenty or other fine dining eateries. I think my meal was awesome! And that's what your suppose to tweet about - only the awesome! SPRED THE AWESOME! You don't have to change what you talk to people about - just the way you talk to them.

So if you would not normally tell anyone you had tuna for lunch - DON'T TWEET IT! If you don't want your words to appear on a Billboard, don't tweet it!

If you tweet about awesome, people will retweet and share your tweet.

So how much time should you spend on social media? Well, how about only when you have something awesome to say? That's how you get people to trust you and want to follow you. Don't have a strategy of frequency because you end up saying stuff people don't really care about and you become one of those people at a party that no one wants to talk to.

So what media platform should you use? Connect them all together. It's not your job to tell people how to consumer your messages, it's only important that they do. Everyone is different so you'll get some who follow you on twitter, some on your blog, others on facebook, etc. Connect them so you're available to the largest audience. Now mobilize yourself with something like wetouch or wptouch (didn't hear very well). It's a free program, just download it and you'll be mobilized to reach a greater audience.

Did you know about TROLLS. they're not complainers, they spread hate. Don't reply to them, you're time is far too valuable building great relationships than to try to win someone over that has no interest than to spread hate. Make it your business to build good relationships.

Remember, people thrive on interaction but only the kind that makes them happy. Don't make them fill out a form with any personal info at all - you'll loose them. I know this because when faced with a stupid form - even if it is to send a simple email from a website - I refuse and go to another website. I know collecting demographics sounds like something you might like to do but remember what I said in the beginning - Stop marketing in the same old ways we've done it for decades. Social media is about trust and relationships.

So build your platform in what ever way you want, say only awesome things and build it one person at a time. Those that have thousands of followers started with one and don't believe them if they say it didn't take time and patience. If you want to get something out of this, you need to put something into it. Social media doesn't change the fact that relationships take time.

You must be PRESENT on social media and CONSISTENT. Reply immediately, if it takes longer to reply than to mail a letter you're not doing it well.

If you are your authentic self on social media, you will have no competition!

There's a Twitter Guide Book free on-line - get it! Read it!