Common Sense Social Media Marketing Strategies
Presented by Clover’s Amplify Digital Marketing Platform
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On Message | Marketing & More is a new quarterly editorial department inspired in part by input from The Cannata Report’s Dealer Advisory Board that explores key dealer channel marketing topics and trends. “It’s More Than Likes and Comments” is the third of four 2018 installments, the first being “Branding Awareness,” and the second being “Website Recharge.” Researched, sourced and written by The Cannata Report, On Message | Marketing & More is presented by Clover’s Amplify Digital Marketing Platform.
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Social marketing may be common sense, but the problem is common sense is not very common. That’s according to social marketing strategist Ted Rubin, CMO, Brand Innovators who shared those words of wisdom in his keynote address on the first day of the thINK 2018 Conference in Boca Raton, September 5″“7.
I arrived at this conference expecting to learn more about inkjet technology, which I did, but thanks to Rubin’s keynote, I also gained a new perspective on social marketing. For instance, Rubin believes baby boomers are better at social than millennials because baby boomers have more experience. Let that one sink in.
In Rubin’s opinion, social marketing is not about selling but building relationships.
“Relationships are the new currency,” he said. “Everybody you meet today is a potential long-term relationship.”
Rubin recommended thinking of relationships the same way one thinks of their home””upgrade, nurture, paint, clean, and make it nice.
“Get people to care about what you’re doing and start doing it one by one,” he said.
Rubin’s comments about social media were particularly pointed as he highlighted social media is not just about who likes what you’re posting or who makes a comment about what you’re posting. That’s because most people are lurkers and doing what he calls “participating vicariously.” As a result, you may not always receive an immediate reaction.
As an example, Rubin talked about the funky socks he’s known for wearing, which he posts photos of on Twitter. The reason he does that is to create conversation.
“It allows people to approach me,” he said.
Rubin recalled a meeting with a CEO of a Fortune 500 company whom he’d never met before. As soon as the CEO saw Rubin, he asked, which socks Rubin was wearing that day.
“The point is I didn’t know this guy, he didn’t have a social media profile I would know of, but he’s out there lurking, reading posts, seeing what people are doing, and getting a feel for what is happening much more than what you’re going to get on CNN or Fox News,” stated Rubin.
In Rubin’s view, social media platforms are facilitators of relationships, but not the relationship itself. A connection on social media is an opportunity to start a relationship.
“The biggest mistake made by a majority of businesses is they think a click, a like, a handshake is a relationship,” argued Rubin. “Don’t mistake followers or likes for a relationship. You develop a relationship by interacting with people.”
He acknowledged this is common sense, but as noted earlier, common sense is not very common.
His recommendation for building relationships is connecting with people on a regular basis and letting them know you care while being authentic and genuine at the same time. Dealers might be able to relate to this recommendation as it relates to customer engagement.
That’s something that can be achieved with content that creates conversation.
“Conversation is the best content,” observed Rubin. “You want to be authentic by creating conversation.”
The discussion of social marketing and social media platforms segued into a discussion of target marketing, a term Rubin dislikes. He prefers matchmaking.
“When you think of matchmaking instead of target marketing, you think of bringing two things together that can work well together,” he said. “Start thinking about making matches and sharing what’s important. Your brand as a business or person is what your business does. Your reputation is what people remember and share.”
With effective social marketing, he emphasized that people will start talking about your business. For example, this company sells printing, they take care of this for me. But what’s important is when they say, I love these guys. They deliver everything on time, they give great advice. That, Rubin said, is a reputation.
“Start thinking reputation, not ranking,” noted Rubin.
Given today’s emphasis on social media, texting, and email, Rubin believes people are losing an opportunity to make a personal connection. He challenged the audience in the next 30 days to pick up the phone and call someone they haven’t spoken to recently, even if all they do is have a brief conversation, not simply saying they’re calling to touch base or leaving a voice mail.
“Humanize yourself, that’s what a brand is,” he noted. “Think connection, not network. Get to know your customers and prospects. If you’re only focusing on the money, you’re completely overlooking the people. It’s simple, just be nice. Get the reputation for being nice.”
One way to stand out in the social realm is liking or following your customer before they like or follow you.
He gave the example of tipping the waiter as soon as you walk in the door of a restaurant.
“Want to see great freaking service? Tip them when you walk in,” he said. “Start thinking about doing those things to create those mindsets and those relationships.”
Rubin also shares content from someone he’s met with his online audience every day.
“Aim for ongoing engagement to keep the conversation going,” suggested Rubin. “Look people in the eye digitally. Listen for moments to make it personal.”
He summarized his keynote with the following three points:
- Awareness = revenue. People can’t buy from you if they don’t know who you are.
- Differentiators = margins. If you are special or nicer, you can charge more.
- Authenticity = loyalty/advocacy.
Rubin’s final message to the audience was that at the end of the day, these platforms are built for fun, so have some.
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