With this past weekend being both Friday the 13th and the deadline for tax returns, it got Your Guerrilla Marketer thinking about… death and taxes. Benjamin Franklin has been attributed to saying, “The only things certain in life are death and taxes.” And, with even Albert Einstein admitting, “The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax,” I believe many Americans would rather face death than try to figure out how to complete their annual income tax return.
If you own a business, would you try to file without any assistance? Chances are, your time is better served running your company. Who should you turn the responsibility to? The intern or part-time help? Perhaps the mid-level manager who does their own personal tax return at home? Surely, they are familiar with the concept and can figure out how to do it for a business, right?
Sound preposterous? Yet, senior executives make the same mistake when trying to figure out who in the company should handle Social Media. Often, it is passed along to the intern to create a Facebook page or, assigned to the Marketing Manager because Marketing and Social Media are the same, right?
While Your Guerrilla Marketer believes in doing it yourself, sometimes it is better to hire an expert. Even Mr. Fix-It himself, Bob Vila, says if it is going to cost you as much as a contractor, you might as well hire a pro and get it right the first time.
Five years ago, this may have been an uphill battle. Today, most companies embrace the need to have a presence in social media. Still, where do you start? Who should be in charge?
An expert can help you create a Social Media strategy. Social Media is primarily about third party opinion. It is most successful when other people are talking about your product or company. The focus should be on the message, not necessarily how it is delivered. Developing the right content is key, so the reader feels the urge to “like,” retweet, forward or reply. The 3Rs are essential in social media, or the message becomes lost in thousands of other messages they see every day.
Successful marketing principles are still true in digital marketing. It comes back to the basics with the “3Rs.”
- Is it Relevant? Does the person receiving the message care and, more importantly, pass it along?
- Is it Real? Today’s consumer can easily cipher through all the hype.
- Is it Responsive? It is essential to respond to what your customers say and do, especially negative.
Prior to launching any Marketing or Social Media campaign, you need to do research. To find out what is relevant to your customers, you need to pay attention to what is important to them. Where is your audience? Facebook? Twitter? Message boards and blogs? You can use services like Trackur to see what people are saying about you and, just as importantly, where.
Once you know where your customers are and what they are saying about you, you can speak about what interests them in the way they prefer.
But, like getting an expert to handle your taxes, you may want to consider contacting an expert to help you figure out your Social Media strategy. While the penalties of making a mistake may not seem as daunting as an improper tax return, they could be worse: missing out on crucial sales the exposure of an effective Social Media strategy will give you.