If you follow the latest trends, you’ve probably heard about a new fashion that has started in advertising – it’s called Social Network Marketing. It’s a new way to promote your products using conversation rather than traditional advertising. It gives you an opportunity to show your company’s human side, strengthen your brand and get new customers. In the face of growing popularity of social network sites, this kind of promotion will probably become a core of all campaigns and business strategies. The race has begun and it’s up to you, whether you make use of social network sites or just stand aside and watch.
Social Network Marketing introduces a new phenomenon. Opposite to the traditional marketing methods there is no difference between small and big companies, big brands and no brands. Every kind of enterprise can easily utilize social networks. There’s only one thing to bare in mind – there are some iron rules to follow.
A little more conversation
You’ve probably realized that keeping just a simple company’s website doesn’t attract your customers to stay there longer and surely doesn’t make them feel attached to your brand. But if you pick them up by an invitation to talk and ask about your products or make them even more interested by running a blog with insightful posts about e.g. your high quality, you’ll create a community around your company and offered products. A community that will promote your business for free.
Build a loyal relationship
Some customers could feel used and invaded, because of growing numbers of companies appearing on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and other sites, unless you seduce them with respect and a well maintained profile. Make friends with your potential customers, let them notice you easily and try to find out their needs. Don’t forget that as a member of a social network community you’re expected to interact frequently, follow the insights, provide help and show your interest in general. Of course, no one tells you to ditch your marketer’s nature – but conversational marketing (like no other way of marketing) gives you an opportunity to stay a friend. And one more thing – don’t spam your customers, encourage them in a sophisticated and subtle way. Otherwise, you’ll make all your audience unfriendly and wary of your products or services.
Patience pays off
Some marketers give up using social network sites as a business tool, probably because they aim at making money shortly after campaign’s launch. With conversational marketing you have to stay calm and reach your goals step by step. You have to observe your potential relationships carefully without a rush. You need to care about quality, not quantity. Try to make use of opportunities given by social media and take a dive into the word-of-mouth on the web. Setting up an account on Facebook, MySpace, Digg etc. doesn’t cost you a penny and your online presence will make you more visible for sure.
We are curious about your Social Network Marketing experiences and opinions, please share them below with us and other readers! Feel free to discuss with us on Twitter: @GOYELLO.
VP Software Development Europe for Aspire Systems. Sociologist and electrotechnical engineer, a great combination that stimulates him to look for the best working software solutions for clients. Passionate about converting great ideas into new solutions. Married and a proud father of 3 great sons. Training for and participating in triathlons/runs to stay fit.
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