A few years ago Annie Baptiste consolidated our company’s collective knowledge on marketing into five simple rules, namely:
- Fish where the fish are
- Add value, don’t discount
- Spend when people have money
- Dominate your media
- Measure your efforts
“Every time I talk to a client about marketing, I realise how universal these rules are. Because everyone is currently, and rightfully so, on the social media bandwagon I figured one could probably update and adapt these rules slightly for the social media environment,” says Annie
1. Fish where the fish are
Understanding your target market makes choosing your social message and the correct platform so much easier and more effective. In social media it is vitally important to know your audience and which platforms they use. The statistics are freely available online and a bit of online research will also tell you what these users are interested in seeing, and what will make them engage. Here a few statistics on the most popular B2B social media platforms that can help point you in the right direction:
(#Franchisors are allowing #franchisees to create store specific Facebook pages)
- Social sharing site
- 1 billion active users
- Micro blogging social site mainly for news
- 241 million active users
- Social network built by Google that allows brands and users to build networks (circles)
- 540 million active users
- Business orientated social networking site
- 300 million active users
2. Add value, don’t advertise
(Adapted to Social Media as discount doesn’t apply)
Do not see your social media platforms as a place to hard sell products. Social media users do not want to be talked to, but rather talked with. They want to be informed and will share interesting information freely, thus a social media presence should be used for starting conversations, fixing problems and sharing ideas in order to build relationships, and over the longer term, trust. Top tips and how to’s are ALWAYS a hit and get people engaging. Share your knowledge.
Here is an example:
3. Spend when people have money
This rule applies to the amount you spend as well as when you spend it. The secret of a growing social media presence is to be topical. Use Google trends to determine what is trending in your industry or in general. If you do not want to jump on the trending bandwagon, plan ahead for six months to a year, so you can link your social media presence with planned promotions and events like Christmas and Easter.
4. Dominate your media
Just as in traditional media, your social media presence needs an image and a “voice” that can be associated with and remembered as your brand identity. The picture below of the Skittles Twitter feed is a good example of having a “voice”.
Repetition in any good campaign is important to assist in top of mind memory. If your message is good, the consumer will share and create repetition for you. You can also use paid for platforms such as Google Ads (Remarketing), Facebook Boosts etc. to create repetition and more exposure.
Here is an example:
5. Measure your efforts
Most social media platforms share their statistics freely. A good idea is to decide what you want to measure before you start using social media.
Once you are using these platforms, you should constantly be monitoring your presence and collecting data of your followers, which information is shared as well as when your followers are most active. This is known as determining your Return on Engagement. On a Facebook page for example you can track your page’s activity using their ‘insights’ statistics tracker, this tracks your page likes, post reach, engagement and has a chart with your selected competitors activities, compared to yours.
Managing your social media reputation also becomes a part of measurement. We suggest having a plan as well as a social media policy before you embark on this journey.
In franchising this will be particularly important in order to ensure that all messages are consistent with the brand and the image one is trying to create.