What Brands should be thinking about before jumping on the bandwagon.
Today I started my day by asking a simple question: Why do you Like or Follow brands on Social Networks? This was tweeted out to all my followers and some interesting insights were shared by most of them.
It’s important to note that not all brands have anything called an online strategy or vision when it comes to being on social networks. They either just “showed up” for the party & did not bother checking the RSVP or agenda or were trained by some social media training academy on ‘how to create a facebook page’. As hard hitting as these might sound, this is the ground reality.
This is the reason why we do not hear more success stories about engagement or brand rockstar’ing it on these social networks. But this is not the point. Coming back to the question, brands can learn & adapt rapidly just by understanding why would someone ever Like or Follow them, here is the summary from my tweetchat:
1. Like brand pages on facebook just so that one can write on the Wall or mention them in the comments.
2. Follow brands on twitter for goodies or freebies.
3. Follow & Like Brands on these popular networks cause they generate content that is interesting to share & talk about.
4. Majority of your fans might not be happy with your services or products, hence they will find you on social networks to complain & be heard.
5. Contests.. yes people love contests and ever so more – winning.
6. Most people might still Like or Follow you only if you show up in their friends streams or online advertisements.
7. Don’t respond to your followers and this is what happens – Twitter unfollow is common, it’s not the same for facebook.
So apart from #3, all other reasons seem very common & the easiest to figure out. What is your brand doing different on social media? Are you the anti-social types who probably underestimated the opinion & intellect of your customers?
Summation: Brands need to look within themselves and figure out how to engage with their audience on social networks. Great place to start is & might be the networks themselves, but then be honest about it. You need to nurture your community like you would do with your family, not everyone might really like you in realtime, but they will appreciate your effort to respond when the time is right.
Think about this, listen, respond & create the strategy. Be Social.
If I missed something, please add it in the comments