Saturday, December 8, 2012
Are You Using Social Media Effectively?
In my last blog, I ended with the conclusion that shouting out loud is the first step of an effective social media strategy. However, you should never bother the 99% audience if there is actually only 1% audience have interest in your information. So, beyond the tired method of “shout marketing”, what else would make an organization’s social media usage effective?
Inspired by the research from the Harvard Business Review Analytics Services report "The New Conversation: Taking Social Media fromTalk to Action", I decided to apply the business thinking in this report and the experience of those most effective film users to the public sector--
1. Stop being hesitant. Action Now!
Research shows that a large percentage of organizations are still hesitant to get serious about social. Two-thirds of users had no formalized social media strategy, and just 7% had integrated social media into their overall marketing strategy. This data is from the private sector. We have reasons to believe that the situation may not be more optimistic in the public sector.
2. Conversation, not Monologue.
The best users understand that social media is a conversation, not a monologue. While most organizations who have social media tools now are having "better engagement with the audience and get them involved" as their social media targets, most of them don't have a very clear strategy path to achieve that.
3. Listen is the First Step of A Good Conversation
To better engage with the citizens or potential members and partners, organizations need to listen to their needs, comments, discussions, and even emotions before stepping to the next strategy. To be a better listener, organizations need to dedicate a portion of budget to it so that there are specialists working to create different audience groups, observe and monitor the trends and more detailed voices among different groups.
4. Associated Your Stories with People's Lives or Just Keep Being Cool
Imagine you are a social media consumer, why would you pay attention to a certain organization or an advocacy or a campaign? Several possibilities: a) it's highly associated with your interest or benefits; b) it's what your good friends like or have interest in ;3) It's just so amazing (can be funny, interesting, beautiful, moving or cool) that you cannot help paying attention to it and sharing it; 4) It's a hot social topic that a lot of people have already got involved. So successful social-media-using organizations must have deepest concern about the targeting audiences' needs and have the ability to touch the bottom of their hearts with fascinating stories.