As marketing by profession, usually we have to justify ourselves to the bosses, the clients and everyone in between – especially in the less-tested, sometimes, hit or miss arena of social media.
When the latest technology and the latest social media come out, marketing professionals who are living in the bloody edge of social media technology will rush to it. Marketers have been so busy jumping on the social media bandwagon. Set up a Twitter account or Facebook page to test the possibilities of the technology, experience it and see how those tools worked.
The ‘telling you do it’ caused lots of companies feel the pressure, they feel like if they don’t put someone there and get on the Twitter or Facebook, they will out of business soon. Well, many of them even don’t know why they do it, why they should be on those social media platform, other than the fact that someone told them too.
What clients actually really need from marketing professionals is they need you to help them map out a consistent marketing strategy of how to use the social media to their benefits, instead of just tell them to be on there.
By saying that, before get marketing strategy into the place, the strategy has to come first, asked the questions such as who are you as a company, what or which media is the best channel to suit your needs as a company, what your message is, and how to apply that etc.
You may already see there some companies are selling, example, Dell, they made a lot of sales by using twitter, the reason for that is because their message, the message they public on the Twitter stream is suit with the users there.
As you may already know, Twitter is more about what is going on Right Now; it is direct interactions between you and your prospects, existing and potential customers. If your message is not about that or not the now ones, then finds some other channels that more suit to your message. You can still use Twitter, but you should focus more on the social media that allows you to really hit home run when you use it.
Come back to the question, “Is using twitter necessary and do you really need to be on it?” – My answer is it depends on.
If a company doesn’t know what they’re trying to accomplish, then there will be nothing to measure and no way to determine success. Thus, they should work on their objectives and have it into the place first, and that objective shouldn’t be to distribute a press release.
If a company unsure of how to proceed and hesitant to dip their toes into the water, not sure whether social media is good for their brand or not, then they should slow down and get over the hesitation. They should look at their marketing plan and layout a consistent marketing strategy first.
If a company’s management is skepticism and not clear where they stand toward the social technology adoption, they should work out from their internal issue first, because to achieve a successful organization, it needs high-level support, otherwise the initiative will fail if management doesn’t encourage and reward participation.
On the journey to Twitter, Facebook or other social media marketing activities, companies will try new things, some will succeed and some will fail due to different reasons.
In regarding to the cost that spending on the social media program, according to MarketingSherpa recent surveys, there about 60% of social media program costs are traced to in-house activities – such as staffers who create content or monitor comments. And about 20% of spending is outsourced to consultants or ad agencies.
In addition to that, there’s no lack of commitment to these programs. The following percentages of firms, by industry, plan budget increases for the social media component of marketing budgets for 2010:
* Retail/e-commerce: 79%
* Publishing/media: 63%
* Computer hardware/software: 55%
* Business/consumer services: 54%
* Manufacturing/packaged goods: 53%
* Travel/leisure: 52%
* Education/healthcare: 43%
It looks like 2010 is the year that social media grows up.
In conclusion, no matter your company will be using Twitter, Facebook or not, look at your website first, make sure your website is working, put time and energy into its development, make your message consistent and make sure it converting people when they come to your sites, the purpose of using Twitter or Facebook is to send and encourage people to click on the link and back to your site. So understand how to make social media technology work for you is very important.
If Twitter fits into your business, use it. If not, maybe it’s not worth the time. If you want to use MySpace to meet your goals, you might be able to do that as well.