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When you work at an agency, it’s easy to get sucked into that insular world and assume that everyone knows What’sApp or that Periscope has nothing to do with seeing underwater. That may be true in your part of the working world, but the reality is that plenty of companies and corporations – whether due to fear of exposure, lack of resources, or a myriad of other reasons – still resist the siren song of social.
The days when social media could be casually dismissed as another passing fad, however, are long gone. Granted, people join social media to engage with friends, foes, and colleagues, not normally with brands. But whether or not you are an active participant, there are conversations happening on social media about your brand. Studies have shown that brand loyalty is rare these days, but social media is one of the few places where you can still make a direct, personal connection. And if you aren’t engaged, listening and responding, customers will buy from someone who is.
Here are some steps you can take to convince even the most stubborn, old-school senior execs at your company to embrace social media and add another tool to your marketing arsenal.
If the c-suite at your company is data-driven, they’ll respond much better to hard numbers than anecdotal evidence. Speak to them in their language. Use relevant data – a platform’s annual growth, competitor’s customer engagement, stats about brands that use social for customer service – to speak to the demonstrated value of social media marketing.
Share with them a carefully considered, detail-oriented plan to demonstrate that this is a deliberate exercise and not something of a whim. If they are risk-averse, try to anticipate their concerns and explain your approach to trolls, crisis communications, and anything else that might cause them sleepless nights.
Detail your goals, how you plan to measure against them, and what success looks like. Tailor everything – from the particular platforms you propose to join to your content frequency and mix to tone of your copy – to your brand specifically.
Make the idea of your company on social media tangible. Create dummy accounts and mock up the kinds of posts you would publish to give them a clear understanding of your plans. Better yet – show them how your competitors are using social media successfully.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to social media marketing. But, if used wisely, it can be a powerful tool to distribute content, monitor public brand sentiment, and help drive sales.