Last week I had the pleasure of attending an American Marketing Association-Richmond lunch meeting where the guest speaker was social media expert and author, Shama Hyder Kabani.
Shama Kabani recently published “The Zen of Social Media Marketing and discussed some of the key principals of social media and online marketing as described in her book. The “zen” of social media marketing is about understanding the mind-set of people who are using social media and then using it to your advantage. In her book, Kabani first sets the record straight by acknowledging that traditional marketing is not “over.” However, she feels it has evolved and the internet has woven it’s way through it. She further believes that online marketing “is the art and science of leveraging the internet to get your message across so that you can move people to take action.” Whether it’s consumers donating their time or buying a product or service, the marketing goal remains the same..just the tools keep changing. Kabani contends that successful online marketing can be broken down into 3 main components: attract, convert and transform.
- Attract—means to get attention or stand out by attracting attention to your website—your main online marketing tool.
- Convert—this happens when you turn a stranger into a consumer or customer—and there is a difference between the two. A consumer may take in your information or sample your product, but might not always buy it—at least not right away. Over time the consumer may become a customer.
- Transform—this is when you turn past and present successes into magnetic forces of attraction. This goes beyond regular testimonials. It involves telling your customers’ story of what they achieved through your product or service.
For the longest time, marketing was used to put out a message about a businesses’ product or service and was controlled strictly by the business. With social media, multiple online mediums are all controlled by people participating within them. They are people who are busy having conversations, sharing resources, and forming and participating in communities. Social media is full of constant activity that is controlled by no one individual in particular. Unlike traditional media, it isn’t passive, Users don’t just receive content, they create it too.
Please note that Kabani’s book is listed in the Recommended Reading section of this e-newsletter issue. I encourage you to read this book and determine how social media can best fit into your business or lifestyle. Then, I invite you to come back to our blog, Facebook or Twitter pages and tell us what you think.