One of the things I come up against when trying to justify budget to invest in Social Media marketing is how to quantify results and tie them to revenue. I'm sure you've never heard that one before. Sarcasm. Direct your boss, client, business partner to this - Social media technologies like Facebook and Twitter turn communication into interactive dialogue. It allows the creation and exchange of user-generated content (like this post). We've all seen how poorly overt salesy tweets or Facebook posts have fallen flat on their faces enough to realize that there are significant limitations on how social can influence purchase. What social media does instead is give you an unprecedented window into the real thoughts and feelings of your customers.
Social media is about creating a brand personality which can be utilized to express views and opinions, participate in discussions and ultimately bring influence to bear in fruitful areas of your business and project your brand as a though leader in your industry. Social marketing aims to get your brand talking with people whose own internet behavior will have an effect on the number of people hearing about your company. Nobody has or wants to have a relationship with a faceless company like Coca-Cola or Microsoft. This is one way to personalize your brand and build community.
Let's talk about strategy. By tracking your brand buzz, comments on your company across the various social medias, you can get a pretty good picture of what your customers really think about you – and use that information to tweak your existing marketing strategies to closer match their expectations or to reshape your customers ideas depending on what you want them to take away from your brand.
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Chris Patheiger is a Vice President of Business Development at Redux Media, a leading international online publisher network of top-quality, specialty websites and media representation firms. Chris is responsible for Communications, Marketing and E-Publisher of TheMediaPath.com online advertising Blog. He can be reached at email@example.com