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Social-Media-Marketing is perfect to communicate with your customers on one level and to maintain their trust in the long run. We show how.
How to use Social-Media-Marketing correctly: With these tips you turn customers into fans
Only if your marketing strategy continuously adapts to current requirements and trends can your company operate successfully in the long term. Former giants such as Neckermann or Quelle had to learn this the hard way, after having slept through the digital turnaround for a long time. The digital turnaround was followed by the next big change a few years ago: the triumph of the Web 2.0..
Since that time, the own company presence on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter or Youtube has become an essential element of every marketing strategy, without which no company can do without. But how exactly these channels need to be used to ensure measurable success, what and how should be communicated, and where the added value for companies in difficult market fields lies, remains a matter of great uncertainty, especially for smaller and inexperienced teams.
At the same time, many companies fail to recognize the danger of inadequate social media marketing – the countless so-called “Shitstorms” of recent years should therefore come as no surprise. On the other hand, however, marketing in the vastness of social networks also has enormous potential, with which you can not only retain old existing customers in the long term. The following article will clarify what you need to pay attention to.
Why Social-Media-Marketing is essential
Social-Media-Marketing creates proximity and sympathy to your company
In “classic” marketing channels, the relationship between customers and producers is usually clear: on the one hand, we have the powerful, profit-oriented and unapproachable company whose marketing strategy is based solely on one-way communication. On the other hand, there is the individual customer, whose concerns and wishes are answered slowly, professionally and with the appropriate distance, if at all. As a result, however, it is precisely these customers who build up a comparable distance to the company in question, which can develop into rejection within a very short time in the event of complications.
This is exactly where Social-Media-Marketing has to start: On Facebook, Twitter and the like, companies still maintain their professional attitude, but communication is much more direct and closer to the customer. Accordingly, especially in the B2C segment, even the most conservative companies are per you with their fans, are characterised by closeness and humour and do not shy away from touch. Through the suggested proximity, your company not only gains the sympathy of interested parties, but also an increased and more frequent attention, which can support you in spreading new products or promotions.
Another decisive factor is the transparency and interactivity of social media channels, which enable your users to connect directly with your company and with each other. Accordingly, the goal is less the acquisition of new customers and more the care of old existing customers. Your social media presence helps your customers to get in touch with each other and with you, to be made aware of your activities on a long-term basis and to get the opportunity to exchange information and to inform themselves.
Other advantages include the following:
Cost-effective: Regular posts on your social media channels usually only cause expenses in the form of your employees. However, there are no financial expenses for the printing, distribution or communication of your advertising messages. Social media marketing is therefore the ideal means of reaching old existing customers and winning new fans at a particularly low cost.
Which advertising methods are available to your company?
The inclined company has countless marketing methods available on its social media platforms, which can be optimally adapted to the respective industry and the prevailing needs.
The three most important methods include campaigns such as competitions, crowdsourcing and social shopping.
- Social Shopping: Products of your shop can also be presented on your social media channels like Facebook. Although the final sales process remains in your online shop, this allows users to exchange information about the products on offer and to contact you quickly.
However, the core of every social media campaign should still be the comprehensive integration of customers into the company’s everyday life: let your fans participate in your events, your work and your products, involve them interactively in your processes and communicate with them.
The activity counts
Like everywhere else in life, it is not enough to deal half-heartedly with a topic and let marketing slide. In these cases, your success will remain at an extremely manageable level. Two aspects prove to be essential:
: Regular and high-quality updates are the key to satisfy your fans and keep their attention for a long time. Longer breaks should be avoided.
Furthermore, you should not be too promotional : instead provide your fans with behind-the-scenes insights, exclusive information and background knowledge that will keep them interested in your company.
It also proves to be positive for your company image if you respond to as many enquiries as possible. Because even unanswered inquiries are visible to everyone and show what “esteem” fans have for you.
For whom is social media marketing suitable and for whom not?
In principle, social media marketing is suitable for every company. However, the extent of the potential success depends strongly on the respective industry. Social media platforms such as Facebook are preferably used as a means of communicating one’s own lifestyle and the preferences based on it. Companies from the leisure and consumer goods industry, well-known brands or manufacturers of electronics, vehicles and similar products therefore find it easier to achieve high interaction rates.
In industries that are rather difficult to mediate, and especially in the B2B sector, the number of shared contents is likely to be very limited. However, these companies can also obtain attractive benefits through social media marketing. In addition to more intensive networking between companies and the possibility of acting as experts through shared content, platforms such as Instagram or Flicker in particular have great potential by ideally complementing the visual presentation of your offer by displaying it on a public platform. In addition, it can be assumed that activity on social media channels will become more relevant to Google in the near future. In this case, a well-maintained social media marketing will improve your position in the search results.
What you have to pay attention to to avoid failures
As mentioned at the beginning, social media marketing is not immune from a number of risks. The high level of activity in combination with the strong viral effect carries the danger of causing undesired reactions, which spread rapidly and uncontrollably due to the fast speed of the social media world. We only remember the numerous PR debacles of recent years, from which even the most successful companies have not been spared. To avoid such cases, a number of factors should be taken into account:
- Do not underestimate your users: Do not try to sell your users as stupid. Dubious actions or insufficient information will be quickly recognized and criticized as such.
- Communicate: Critical voices should not be ignored. Unanswered criticism can quickly be taken up by other users and increase the undesired effect. In addition, the critics concerned feel that they are not taken seriously and react accordingly.
- Keep the balance: Even if a certain amount of cheekiness is positively received in certain sectors, you should be careful not to overdo it. This applies both to your tone and to the thematic focus of your advertising measures. Overly controversial topics or actions may generate a lot of attention, but at the same time there is a risk that your concern will trigger a negative knock-on effect, which will ultimately do more harm than good to your company, despite the media presence you have achieved.
- Do not publish anything rashly: Facebook and co. tempt you to “publish a few things quickly before closing time”. But even simple answers to comments can trigger a high level of activity that can quickly harm your company.
- Plan ahead: While publishing interesting content at your own discretion is not a capital offense, your success should be much better if you place your activity within a comprehensive overall strategy. For example, you will achieve the greatest impact for competitions or campaigns if you prepare and inform your users beforehand.
If you consider the aspects described above, nothing stands in the way of successful social media marketing!