With Social Media, It Pays to Fish Where the Fish Are
The buzz surrounding companies investing in social media marketing to reach consumers has created a lot of attention for sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and the recently popular Foursquare. Millions of consumers are spending their time online with social networking and media sharing sites instead of other media.
Some companies are wasting significant resources by chasing after too many different services without taking the time to figure out which social networks and Web sites their customers prefer. Why not fish where the fish are? Here are three tactics you can use to better connect with customers on the social Web:
- Ask Them! One of the most effective and accurate methods of finding out which social media sites your customers prefer is to survey them. That same survey can do double duty and invite customers to friend, fan or follow based on their preferences.
- Social Media Monitoring. Free services like trackur.com or socialmention.com can help uncover which sites customers are using that also discuss your brand. Paid services like Scout Labs or Radian6 are very useful for more advanced monitoring and social CRM.
- Web Analytics. Review your Web analytics to see which social media sites are already sending you traffic, and leverage that insight to decide where to participate.
Doing your homework on customer preferences for how they discover, interact and share on the social Web will shorten the time to reach the right people and help create a more relevant opportunity to interact.
Lee Odden is CEO of TopRank Online Marketing, a Minnesota-based digital marketing agency with experience providing search engine optimization and social media PR consulting services to organizations including PRSA, PRWeb, McKesson and Marketo. His SEO advice is featured in a chapter of “Online Marketing Heroes,” published by Wiley; he contributes to Mashable, iMediaConnection and the Microsoft Advertising Blog, and is executive editor of Online Marketing Blog. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.