Culinary success is based on having a recipe. The recipe is a plan; similar to a marketing strategy.
Typically a recipe features a mouth watering description of the final product to focus the preparer on the end goal. Next, the key ingredients are listed in their correct proportions. Instructions are then provided for combining all the ingredients together to form the final product.
Sustaining your social marketing, like cooking, requires a recipe or plan. Imagine if a chef randomly grabbed several ingredients and mixed them together. The outcome would be uncertain at best and probably inedible.
What does it take to sustain your social marketing efforts? Let’s take a moment to look at the ingredients in a successful recipe.
Develop A Social Marketing Plan
A Social Marketing Plan is key to sustaining social marketing efforts. Without a plan, you’re left to randomly chase tactics. A marketing plan will identify objectives, define target audiences and their behaviors, and provide an effective way to measure success.
Marketing is no longer about broadcasting messages. Listening to customers, constituents, complaints, compliments is crucial. Monitor social media platforms, be attentive to trends; respond to comments, ideas, and complaints.
Pay attention to Culture
Empower stakeholders by creating an environment that will encourage sharing, innovation and collaboration. Be curious, encourage experimentation and initiative. Make sure there are social media guidelines in place.
Change is occurring rapidly. Consumers are constantly exposed to new options and alternatives. Seek ways to continuously improve processes, products, services, etc. Encourage and reward feedback from internal and external stakeholders.
Publish Relevant Content
Content can create consumer engagement at every phase in the buying cycle. Content educates consumers, it should allow consumers to easily find your product or service using search engine techniques.
Social marketing requires support from senior managers or owners. While you can delegate responsibilities for scaling the effort there really is no substitute for being actively involved in some form of social media.
Measure what matters to your business. Make sure that you can track, measure and evaluate the key metrics necessary to determine the value social marketing is contributing to your business.
Sustaining social marketing requires collaboration, commitment and a spirit of continuous improvement. Social marketing is the new normal, companies that learn how to combine these ingredients in the right proportions will serve up a profitable future.
Questions for the #SMchat
Q1. What would you say to a client who isn’t sure they need a Social Marketing Plan?
Q2. How important is culture in sustaining social marketing?
Q3. Do you think top management support is necessary?
Q4. Is a content marketing strategy necessary?
Q5. What are the most important metrics?
Hat tip to Chris Jones @SourcePOV for the topic idea.