Is it time to rethink your social media strategy?

Although we often rely on strategic PR moves to ensure that our products or services are marketed to the largest possible audiences, an astonishing number of businesses remain “in the dark” about how to effectively deploy social media in order to ensure maximum audience retention and conversion. We’ll let you in on a little secret. Social media is a NOT a shortcut to super success or millions of dollars in sales.

So, what is it exactly that distinguishes a wildly successful social media platform from its more forgettable peers? Simply put, the most powerful element of any social media campaign is the level of engagement between the company involved and its consumer base.If your social media tactics have involved solely a “post it and forget it” strategy or even worse a “lets spam everyone I know” strategy, you’re missing out on numerous opportunities to greatly expand the visibility and presence of your businesses. Here are five reasons why it’s in your best interest to forget everything you know about social media and start over with a clean slate.

Reason #1: Online Marketing Isn’t a Get Rich Quick Scheme

If you’ve gotten caught up in tweeting, Facebook “likes” and Pinterest repins, you’re probably counting on the fact that this “exposure” will result in increased consumer activity and, therefore, greater financial reward. This method of thinking, however, leaves out one critical element of successful business peractices, namely, the fact that customers must transition from a passive observer of your content to an active consumer.

No matter how many “thumbs-up” you have on Facebook, you still need someone to buy your product or service. Fans and customers aren’t always one and the same. In order to make this happen, you’re going to need to connect with your customer base in a more direct fashion. Simply put, you need to engage with them personally.

Reason #2: Everyone Can Make a Social Media Platform

If you think that your snazzy Facebook page is going to set you apart from the crowd, you’re gravely mistaken. What sets businesses apart from the crowd is doing social media the RIGHT way.As the popularity of social media has increased, these items have become the expected norm, not a noteworthy exception.  It’s taken for granted that you’re going to be rocking a dazzling, buzz-worthy Twitter account. The question then becomes: “What’s the next step?”

Reason #3: The Internet Reeks Of Anonymity, and No One Trusts a Stranger

Unless you belong to a mega-corporation (which, if you’re reading this, means you probably don’t), your credibility as a legitimate business enterprise will be tested, particularly if you rely solely upon internet marketing to lure in customers. If you really want to prove that your products or services are worthy of individuals’ attention, you need to make the extra effort to connect with them on a more personal level.Anyone can get a sudden spike in traffic or one-off results in social media, but that doesn’t create a long term viable business strategy. The key is converting followers into customers and customers into raving fans.

Related – 26 Tips for Improving Social Media Strategy

Reason #4: Customers Feel Respected When Their Voices Can Be Heard

No one enjoys feeling like a faceless drone, and it seems all too often the case that the internet converts would-be customers into usernames and passwords. If you can find a way to champion the thoughts and desires of your customer base, you will immediately set yourself apart from thousands of other businesses across the internet. This could be as easy as creating a message board or forum. The most important element of a properly functioning social media campaign is the integration of customer feedback and an active interchange between business and consumer.

Reason #5: The Sky’s The Limit When You Capture People’s Attention

We all know how powerful the internet can be for businesses. If you can leverage this vehicle for massive exposure and create lasting, personal impressions on your clients, there’s no telling how far you can go. Social media should be used as a TOOL to connect with customers and potential customers in a more timely and efficient way. It should not be the end of the line for customer interaction.

One example of a social media strategy gone totally right is Meetup.com. The site quickly connects people with similar interests who otherwise wouldn’t have known each other. Now here’s the kicker, the site encourages them to meet in real life! Imagine what you could accomplish for your business if you started using social media as a tool to engage with more prospective clients, partners and influencers in REAL LIFE. In a world that often hides behind its computer screens, imagine how much a personal touch could set you apart from your competitors.

Interested in learning more powerful PR and marketing techniques? Stay tuned for upcoming  Media Moguls speaking engagements to learn more about press releases, branding, social media and traditional marketing methods that STILL work, even in today’s fast paced world.

Improve your social media strategy by focusing on engagement.
Social media strategy: should you rethink yours?