Monday, September 20, 2010

How To Know If Social Media Network Can Help Your Business

We have all heard that Social Media Network is to be integrated into the overall marketing plan. While we have heard that Social Media has a lot of benefits for the business we may often wonder if it is 'really suitable for our individual brand and category', 'is this right for my business?'. There are often doubts that I notice when people look at Social Media. Many a times industrial and manufactures think that they may not find Social Media path a very fruitful marketing endeavor. While others at professional level, retail level, consumer durables and FMCG do work towards the Social Media space.

Social Media is not and should not be a constraining factor to any business. The logic is very simple here on how to determine if your business should take the Social Media path. First and foremost check on who is your target audience.

Your target audience decides if you should be on Social Media or not:
If your customers are online then you 'may need to consider Social Media'. However this plain understanding is not enough to decide that you should be on Social Media space. Lets consider the below factors:

What type of online activity do your target audience indulge in?:
If your target audience is merely looking at emails and not really spending time on other Social Media sites then you need not get into Social Media Network. Perhaps you may need to consider email marketing alone in this case with regards to online activity.

Target Audience looks for information alone? They are not on Social Sites like Facebook, Twitter and others?:
  • Incase your target audience sees search then you may want to consider Pay Per Click method of Google AdWords, and other advertising methods along with those spaces that does not require a registration and login. For instance blogging is a great method. Your target audience need not login nor register they can view and read your blog posts directly after coming from the search link. Search engines have a very high affinity of crawling and indexing blogs. This is a very good and positive way of Social Media path.
  • Additionally, You can be a writer for various other sites, like for instance you could look at writing for your industry and category specific sites. Add to this you could look at writing industry and category specif articles and submitting the same to article sites.
  • There are lots of [PR] press release sites that enable you to submit your information and publish the same. 
Target Audience looks at search and other Social Networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and others?:
Great! Now you definitely can look at blogs, PR sites,and article marketing path and in addition to these you can be on Social Media sites as well. However: you need to still determine on:
  • What exactly is their view, behavior and attitude towards the Social Media. How do they use and consume the Social Media. What relevance and role does Social Media play in their life.
  • Based on this information you need to plan your strategy. 
  • You can then, determine where your target audience is and 'if' you should also be on those site. We need to be careful here you need not be on each site that your target audience is. The site selection depends on two main factors: one being the target audience and the other being the brand personality. If your brand personality does not allow your interaction on a particular site then lets not be there. The Social Media site personality [perception] matters as well.
  • Dependent on the involvement level of your target audience with a particular site you can then determine what should be your frequency of posting content. What kind of content will bring about the desired call to action.
Additionally there are various others factors as well no doubt, for instance creating your own website etc.

Conclusion:
  • Determine your target audience behavior, attitude and usage on the internet.
  • Have your brand personality and brand print drawn out properly.
  • Understand the mood, tone and functions of the various sites.
Do join in here and share your parameters to help business to determine if they should be on the Social Media path.