There continues to be a lot of attention paid to social media. If you are not sure if social media is right for your company, your problems go deeper than whether your answer is yes or no. Despite the fact that social media requires a whole new way of looking at your relationship with customers (it is a conversation that the audience controls, not you just sending out a message you hope they receive), the fact is, it is just a medium. Just a tactic.
If you are unsure of its value to your company, that means your marketing strategy is not clear to you. When you understand your strategy, decisions on tactics and media almost make themselves. To see if your strategy is clear, answer these three questions.
- Think of your two closest competitors. What sets you apart from them?
- Create a profile of your primary audience?
- What is it about your company that makes you the best choice for that audience?
Now your score. Which is your longest answer? It should be question 2. You should be able to give an instant and fast answer to questions one and three. No more than two sentences should be necessary to state your brand promise, and it should roll off your tongue as easily as does your own name. But defining your audience should take more of an explanation, because a lot of things distinguish them from the overall audience of those who use a product like the one you offer. If you make tool kits for instance, they may be for automotive professionals, roofers, handymen, single women, do-it-yourselfers or those not handy at all. Your tool kits might be packaged for easy apartment storage, for accessibility from a pickup truck, etc. Meaning that despite the fact that most people need tools, yours are best suited for some very specific group of people.
Are the answers to question 1 and three the same? They should be. What makes your offering unique should come as an automatic answer to any question of that type. What makes you different from your competitors should be as easy to identify as that which sets you apart in the eyes of your audience. After all, how you appear in the eyes of your primary audience is all that counts.
Once you understand your audience, and your place among them, forming a strong message and delivering it is easy. You can make a strong case for or against the use of various media as long as you make your brand the priority.