Facebook has become such an integral part of modern society that it’s hard to remember that the company is little over a decade old. Its unexpected, swift takeover has transformed the way people interact and share information and lead to the creation of many other popular social networks including Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Google+.
When it comes to marketing, it helps to understand what the appeal of social media is, which makes the process of marketing very different than the more conventional methods.
It used to be that if you wanted to share your company’s message, you booked a spot on TV or radio and your audience sat and listened.
Today, your target market has the control. With the help of their thumbs, they will decide whether they like what you have to say, or whether they prefer to move on to the next post – that picture of a wedding dress, that #HilariousHashtag, or what your kitten ate for breakfast.
What people are ultimately looking for is to connect. They want to touch their screens and reach something bigger to hear and be heard.
The blessing and the curse:
This new marketing landscape offers increased potential – and new challenges for businesses. On one hand, marketing is cheaper, and more accessible. It allows – and requires – brands and businesses to connect on a more human level, instead of “talking down” to their listeners.
It also eliminates the pressure to create the perfect ad campaign. Barring extreme exceptions, social media marketing is the sum of individual actions, and allows for an occasional mistake or imperfection.
On the flip side, marketing on social media requires a sustained and consistent effort. To keep your brand in the scene, you need to constantly paddle to stay afloat or you’ll drown in the endless flood of information everyone else is sharing.
It also means you need to learn a new type of language. Social media marketing is not about the snappy headline or catchy catchphrase. It’s about the human connection. And this often means that you’ll need to search deep within to find that spark, and learn how to share it with the world.
To have an impact through social media is to have daily conversations with your audience.
We’ve identified four key elements that lie at the root of our all of our campaigns, which allow you to do just that – find your inner motivation, learn to tell your story, have the courage to share it with the world, and the practical steps to doing so most effectively.
In the coming weeks, we’ll explore them in more detail.
In summary, so far we’ve discussed the following points:
- Social media radically changed the way people consume information
- This new approach offers new challenges to marketers – but also tremendous opportunity
- To communicate effectively on social media you must always find the human element – your story.